Their ancient refuge was the Brodie castle near Forres in Moray.
The Chiefs of Brodie were survivors of the old Pict aristocratic order that spawned six Brude Kings. A finely carved Pict symbol stone still stands close to the castle as a momento of the dynasty which Saint Columba came to visit.
From the time of Bruce until the 16th century, the succession of the thanes of Brodie continued in the male line. This family was successful in staying out of the limelight until 1640, when Alexander Brodie of Brodie, a fanatical Presbyterian, became embroiled in the Great revolution. In 1650, he was sent by the General Assembly to persuade Charles II to sign the National Covenant and to invite him to Scotland as King.
In 1727, another Alexander Brodie became Lord Lyon King of Arms, but the family has continued its tradition of avoiding any part in public affairs. It has watched other families rise and fall while, since time immemorial, it has continued to occupy the same home.
In 1979, Ninian Brodie of Brodie conveyed Brodie Castle to the National Trust of Scotland, in whose care it is now open to the public.