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The Scottish Nation

KILSYTH, Viscount of, a title (attainted in 1716) in the Scottish peerage, conferred in 1661, on Sir James Livingston, only son of Sir James Livingston of Callendar (see LIVINGSTON, surname of,) who got from his father the lands of Wester Kilsyth, in Stirlingshire, and died in 1549. His grandson, William Livingston of Kilsyth, had three sons: William, his successor; James Livingston of Inches, ancestor of the viscounts of Teviot; and Robert Livingston of Baldoran.

      Sir William Livingston of Kilsyth, the sixth in direct succession, was knighted in 1565, when Darnley was created duke of Albany. His only son, Sir William Livingston of Kilsyth, attended the duke of Lennox on his embassy to France in July 1601. He was afterwards knighted, and on 6th June 1609 was admitted a lord of session. He was sworn a privy councillor on 15th May 1613, and the same day appointed vice-chamberlain of Scotland. In 1621 he was nominated one of the commissioners for the plantation of kirks. He died in 1627.

      Sir James Livingston, of Barncloich, the ninth of the family, born 25th June, 1616, younger son of Sir William Livingston, lord of session, succeeded in January 1647 the grandson of his brother, Sir William Livingston of Darnchester, knighted at the baptism of Prince Henry in 1595. He was a steady loyalist, and offered to hold out Kilsyth castle against Cromwell, for which, and his other services to the house of Stuart, he got a letter of thanks from Charles II., dated 7th October 1650. By Cromwell’s act of grace and pardon of 1654, a fine of £1,500 was imposed on him, and on the Restoration he was created a peer of Scotland, by the title of viscount of Kilsyth and Lord Campsie, by patent, dated 17th August 1661. He did not, however, enjoy the honours more than a few days, as he died at London, 7th September the same year. With two daughters, he had two sons, James, second viscount, who died, unmarried, in 1706, and William, third and last viscount, born 29th March 1650. The latter opposed the treaty of Union, but was chosen one of the sixteen representative Scots peers at the general election of 1710; and re-elected in 1713. Engaging in the rebellion of 1715, he was attainted of high treason, and his estate, amounting to £864 per annum, forfeited to the crown. He died in Holland 12th January 1733. He married, first, Jean, 3d daughter of William, Lord Cochrane, widow of John, 1st Viscount Dundee (Graham of Claverhouse), by whom he had a son, who died in infancy; and, 2dly, Barbara, daughter of Makdougal of Makerston, and by her had a daughter, who also died young. The family burying vault, in the church of Kilsyth, having been entered, in 1795, by some students from Glasgow, the embalmed bodies of a lady and her infant, supposed to be his first viscountess, were found in complete preservation. The lady bore evident marks of a violent death, and it is said was killed by the fall of a house in Holland.

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