Check all the Clans that have DNA Projects. If your Clan is not in the list there's a way for it to be listed.
Glenora Single Malt Whisky

Electric Scotland's Classified Directory An amazing collection of unique holiday cottages, castles and apartments, all over Scotland in truly amazing locations.
Scottish Review

Click here to get a Printer Friendly Page

The Scottish Nation
Lauderdale


LAUDERDALE, earl of, a title in the Scottish peerage, conferred in 1624, on John, second Lord Maitland of Thirlestane (see MAITLAND, surname of). His father, the first Lord Maitland of Thirlestane, was lord high chancellor of Scotland, and on his death in 1695, King James VI. wrote his epitaph in English poetry. His mother was Jean, only daughter and heiress of the fourth Lord Fleming, subsequently countess of Cassillis, to whom he was served heir, on 31st August 1609. He was admitted a privy councillor on 20th July 1615, and on 2d April following was created viscount of Lauderdale, by patent, to him and his heirs male and successors in the lordship of Thirlestane. Besides being president of the council, he was appointed an ordinary lord of session, 5th June 1618. He was at this time one of the commissioners for the plantation of kirks. He was created earl of Lauderdale, Viscount Maitland, and Lord Thirlestane and Boltoun, by patent, dated at Whitehall, 14th March 1624, to him and his heirs male, bearing the name and arms of Maitland. Removed from his place on the bench, on 14th February 1626, in consequence of a resolution of Charles I. that no nobleman should hold the seat of an ordinary lord, he was on the 1st June following appointed one of the extraordinary lords of session. It may be explained here that by the original constitution of the court, the king was allowed to nominate three or four additional or extraordinary lords, removable at his pleasure, but often appointed seven or eight. They were either noblemen or high dignitaries of the church. These extraordinary lords had no emolument, attended the court only at such times as they themselves thought proper, and were rarely there except when their own or a friend’s interest was at stake, when they came forward and voted as profit or caprice dictated. Their appointment was put a stop to by the statute George I. c. 19, and the last who held the office was John Hay, marquis of Tweeddale, who died on 9th December 1762. (Brunton and Haig’s Senators of College of Justice. Introduction, p. xlvii.)

      Lord Lauderdale continued an extraordinary lord till 8th November 1628, and in 1639 he was appointed one of the lords of the articles. On the breaking out of the civil war, he joined the side of the parliament, and was employed in a great variety of commissions of importance. On 4th June 1644 he was elected president of the parliament, and reappointed on 7th January following. He died before the 20th of the same month, and was interred in the family burial-place at Haddington. A poetical epitaph on him by Drummond of Hawthornden, as also the one by King James VI., on his father, the chancellor, will be found inserted in Crawford’s Peerage. Crawford says (p. 253) that the first earl of Lauderdale “was a nobleman of great honour and probity, and managed his affairs with so much discretion that he made considerable additions to his fortune;” also that “he made an exact inventory of all his charters and writs, and the charter chest of the family being concealed under ground in the time of the civil wars, the writs were so entirely defaced that they were become unintelligible, but by reason of the character of his lordship had for integrity, the inventory was, by order of parliament, appointed to supply the place of the ancient records of the family, the clerk register signing every page thereof. By his countess, Lady Isabel Seton, second daughter of Alexander, earl of Dunfermline, high chancellor of Scotland, the first earl of Lauderdale had seven sons and eight daughters. she died in November 1638, and is celebrated by Arthur Johnston in his poems, as is also one of her daughters, who died before her. Of the earl’s large family, only three sons and one daughter survived their parents. The sons were John, duke of Lauderdale; the Hon. Robert Maitland, a zealous loyalist, fined by Cromwell £1,000 in 1654, who married Margaret, only daughter of John Lundin of Lundin, in Fife, on whose death in January 1648 that estate devolved upon her and descended to her son; and Charles, third earl of Lauderdale.

      John, second earl and only duke of Lauderdale, whose oppressive and tyrannical proceedings while at the head of the government in Scotland, have acquired for him a name odious in history, was born at Lethington, May 24, 1616, In the early part of his career he was one of the most zealous supporters of the Covenant, and being much trusted by the Presbyterian party, he was, in 1643, appointed one of the commissioners from the Church of Scotland to the assembly of Divines at Westminster. In 1644, he was sent from the estates with other Commissioners, to treat with Charles I. at Uxbridge. He succeeded his father in 1645, and was frequently employed as a commissioner in the subsequent transactions relative to the king, for which purpose he resided for about four years in London. On the unsuccessful termination of the several conferences he joined the king’s cause, and for his relief in 1648, was one of the warmest promoters of “the Engagement.” When preparations were making for it, he was sent by the committee of estates, with Sir William Fleming, to the prince of Wales, afterwards Charles II., who then lay with a fleet in the Downs, to invite him to come to Scotland. The prince gave him a hearty welcome, and then began that intimacy between them which was renewed after the Restoration, and led to such a bitter persecution of his former friends the Covenanters.

      Lord Lauderdale formed one of Charles the Second’s little court at the Hague, and in 1650 accompanied him to Scotland. On his arrival, however, Charles was obliged, at the request of the estates, to dismiss him and other “Engagers” from his presence, as by the act of Classes passed 4th June the same year, they were debarred from returning to the kingdom, or remaining therein, “without the express warrant of the estates of parliament.” (Balfour’s Annals, vol. iv. p. 42.) He was with the king at the battle of Worcester September 3, 1651, where he was taken prisoner, and confined first in the Tower, and afterwards in Windsor castle. He did not obtain his liberty till the Restoration, when he was appointed principal secretary of state in Scotland. A contemporary author says, “chancellor Hyde endeavoured to make Lauderdale chancellor, under pretence of rewarding his sufferings, but really to remove him from a constant attendance at court. But Lauderdale, forseeing that he who was possessed of his majesty’s ear would govern all, thought fit to reside in London, and so that employment was bestowed on Glencairn.” (Memoirs of the Hist. of Scotland, page 8.)

      When the establishment of episcopacy in Scotland was proposed, Lauderdale was at first a strong advocate for Presbyterianism, and he told Bishop Burnet that “the king spoke to him to let that go, for it was not a religion for a gentleman.” (Burnet’s Hist. of his Own Times, vol. i. p. 197.) In 1661, Middleton, Glencairn, and Rothes went to London and urged upon the king to make episcopacy the dominant religion in Scotland. Lauderdale opposed its immediate introduction, and recommended that his majesty might either call a general assembly, consult the provincial synods, or summon the ablest divines on both sides to Westminster, to decide upon the matter. The result, however, of a long debate in council was that episcopacy was determined upon, and Lauderdale at once fell in with the views of the prelatical party, “as warmly,” says Guthrie, “as Middleton himself had done. This astonished Glencairn, who knew Lauderdale to be a violent presbyterian by profession.” (Guthrie’s General History, vol. x. p. 96.) The substance of a remarkable conversation which took place on the subject between these two noblemen, is given earlier in the memoir of the ninth earl of Glencairn. It is also related that as Lauderdale came out from the council, at which prelacy was resolved upon, he met Dr., afterwards Archbishop sharp walking with the earl of Stirling, to whom, in an angry tone and threatening gesture, he said, “Mr. Sharpe, bishops you are to have in Scotland, but whosoever shall be archbishop of St. Andrews, I will smite him and his order under the fifth rib.” Whether this story be true or not, it is certain that, from the period of Lauderdale’s defeat in the council on the prelacy question, the political rivalry betwixt him and Middleton, the most zealous advocate for its introduction, assumed that feeling of deadly enmity which, two years afterwards, led to the ruin of the latter. In a council held in London in 1663, Lauderdale accused Middleton, his majesty’s commissioner in Scotland, of many breaches of the duties of his high office, of arbitrary proceedings, and particularly of having accepted bribes from many of the presbyterians, to exclude them from the list of fines. He had procured a letter from the king to the Scottish council, suspending the payment of the fines, but Middleton, anxious to get the money, prevented its proclamation. This Lauderdale represented to the king as a daring violation of his royal prerogative, and Middleton was dismissed in disgrace (see MIDDLETON, earl of).

      The whole management of Scottish affairs was now placed in Lauderdale’s hands, but the persecution of the presbyterians continued unabated. Besides being secretary of state, he was one of the extraordinary lords of session, president of the council, first commissioner of the treasury, one of the lords of the king’s bedchamber, and governor of the castle of Edinburgh. On the erection of the high court of commission in 1664, Lauderdale was at first opposed to its institution, but afterwards acceded to it. On this Bishop Burnet has the following curious passage: “I took the liberty,” he says, “though then too young to meddle in things of that kind, to expostulate very freely with Lauderdale. I thought he was acting the earl of Traquair’s part, giving way to all the follies of the bishops on design to ruin them. He upon that ran out into a great deal of freedom with me; told me many passages of Sharp’s past life: he was persuaded he would ruin all; but he said he was resolved to give him line, for he had not credit enough to stop him, nor would he oppose anything that he proposed, unless it were very extravagant; he saw that the earl of Glencairn and he would be in a perpetual war, and it was indifferent to him how matters might go between them: things would run to a height, and then the king would of himself put a stop to their career; for the king said often, he was not priestridden. He would not venture a war, nor travel again for any party.” (Burnet’s Own Times, vol. i. p. 375.)

      In 1669 he was appointed lord high commissioner to the parliament, and he held the same high office in four succeeding sessions; also in the convention of estates in 1678. On the 2d May 1672 he was created duke of Lauderdale, and marquis of March, as descended from the Dunbars earls of March, by patent, to him and the heirs male of his body, and on 2d June following he was installed a knight of the Garter at Windsor. In 1674 the English House of Commons voted an address to his majesty to remove the duke from all his employments, and from his majesty’s presence and councils for ever, as being a person obnoxious and dangerous to the government; but, instead of doing so, the king, on 25th June of that year, created him a peer of England, by the title of earl of Guildford and Baron Petersham, by patent, to him and the heirs male of his body. He was likewise sworn a member of the privy council of England. His power had become so great, and his administration so oppressive and arbitrary, that a secret combination was formed against him in Scotland, at the head of which was the duke of Hamilton, and in 1679 the king admitted the latter, and others of his political opponents, to an audience, to complain of his proceedings, at which the earls of Essex and Halifax were present. Sir George Mackenzie, the lord advocate, was also there to defend Lauderdale’s administration. The king afterwards expressed his approval of his minister’s government in the following heartless words: “I perceive,” said he, “that Lauderdale has been guilty of many criminal actions against the people of Scotland, but I cannot find that he has done anything contrary to my interest.” On the arrival of the duke of York in Scotland in 1680, his influence declined. He was deprived of all his offices, except that of extraordinary lord of session, which had been conferred upon him for life, and in July 1682 the pensions granted to him and his duchess were taken away. He died at Tunbridge Wells on the 24th of the following month, in his 67th year. The following is his portrait:


[portrait of the duke of Lauderdale]

Fountainhall says, “He was the learnedest and most powerful minister of state in his age; discontent and age (corpulence also, it is said) were the chief ingredients of his death, if his duchess and physicians were free of it; for she abused him most grossly, and had gotten all from him she could expect, and was glad to be quit of him.” He was twice married: first, to Anne, second daughter of the first earl of Home, coheiress with her sister, Margaret, countess of Moray, of her brother, the second earl of Home, and by her had an only daughter, Lady Anne, who married the second marquis of Tweeddale; and 2dly, to Elizabeth, countess of Dysart, in her own right, widow of Sir Lionel Talmash, of Helsingham, in Suffolk, baronet. Having no male issue, the English honours became extinct, and also the titles of duke of Lauderdale and marquis of March. His other Scottish honours devolved on his youngest brother.

      Charles, third earl of Lauderdale, a lord of session under the title of Lord Halton, had married on 18th November 1652, Elizabeth, only daughter and heiress of Richard Lauder of Halton, or Hatton, in Mid Lothian, whereby he became possessed of that property. Shortly after the Restoration he was created master and general of the Mint in Scotland, and was sworn of the Scottish privy council 15th June 1661. Eight years afterwards, he was elected one of the commissioners for the shire of Edinburgh, and lord of the Articles in parliament, and on the 8th June of the same year (1669) was admitted an ordinary lord of session. In February 1671, he was appointed treasurer-depute and general of the mint. The same year, when his brother, the duke of Lauderdale, found himself opposed in his proceedings by Archbishop sharp, the duke of Hamilton, and the marquis of Tweeddale, he called in Lord Halton to be his principal support in the council, where, in the absence of the chancellor and lord privy seal, he enjoyed the honour of presiding. On 12th May 1672 Lord Halton was created a baronet. His overbearing and insolent conduct, as his brother’s assistant in the administration of Scottish affairs, was strongly complained of in a paper presented by the duke of Hamilton to Charles II., in 1679, detailing the grievances of the people of Scotland, under the oppressive government of the duke of Lauderdale. On the fall of Lauderdale, Halton’s enemies resolved upon his ruin. Burnet states that in July 1681, “As they were going on in public business, one stood up in parliament and accused Lord Halton, the duke’s brother, of perjury on the account of Mitchell’s business.” Like his brother, the duke, Halton had sworn on the trial in 1678 of Mitchell, who was accused of firing a pistol at Archbishop sharp, that he knew of no promise made to the prisoner that his life should be saved if he confessed the crime. To this passage of Burnet the editor of Burnet’s work has added the following note: “It is related that Lord Kincardine sent a bishop to Duke Lauderdale, desiring him to consider better, before he denied, upon oath, the promise of life which had been given to Mitchell, because Lord Kincardine had letters from the duke and the duke’s brother in his possession, which requested him to ask the king to make good the promise. On which place of Bishop Burnet’s history, the late Lord Auchinleck, Judge Boswell, who was grandson of Lady Kincardine, has written the following observation, inserted here by the favour of his lordship’s grandson, James Boswell, Esq. of the Inner Temple: ‘The bishop who was sent by my Lord Kincardine was Patterson, bishop of Edinburgh, and those very letters were the cause of Lauderdale’s disgrace. For when the duke of York was in Scotland he sent for my Lady Kincardine, and these letters of her. My lady told the duke she would not part with the originals; but that if his grace pleased, he might take a copy of them; which he did, and showed them to his brother, the king, who was stunned at the villany, and ashamed he had employed such a minister, and immediately ordered all his posts and preferments to be taken from him.’” The prosecution against Lord Halton was stopped by the adjournment of parliament, and referred to the King. In November of the same year (1681) a letter was procured from the king, whereby he was deprived of the honour of presiding in council, and at the same time the accounts of the Treasury were ordered to be investigated. In June 1682, a commission was appointed to inquire into the coinage and mint, and upon their report, he was deprived of his offices, and the lord advocate ordered to proceed against him for malversation. On 20th March 1683, he and Sir John Falconer were, by the court of session, found liable to the king in £72,000 sterling. This sum his majesty reduced to £20,000, and ordained £16,000 of it to be paid to the lord chancellor, and £4,000 to Graham of Claverhouse, as a reward for his cruelties towards the persecuted Covenanters. The same year Lord Halton succeeded his brother as earl of Lauderdale, and on 11th March 1686 he was readmitted a privy councillor. He died 9th June 1691. He had six sons and two daughters.

      Richard, the eldest son, fourth earl of Lauderdale, was styled before his father succeeded to the title, of Overgogar, and knighted. He was sworn a privy councillor, 9th October 1678, appointed general of the mint jointly with his father, and in 1681 made lord-justice-general. Being suspected, however, of being in correspondence with his father-in-law, the earl of Argyle, who had made his escape out of the castle of Edinburgh, he was deprived of that office in 1684. At the Revolution he went over to France, and joined the court of James VII. at St. Germains. He succeeded his father in 1691, and for his adherence to the exiled monarch he was outlawed by the high court of justiciary, 23d July 1694. Although a Roman Catholic, he disapproved of the violent measures of the abdicated king, and was not admitted to any share in his confidence. He advised King James to intrust his affairs to protestant statesmen, recommending the earl of Clarendon, the non-juring bishop in England, and the Lords Home, Southesk, and Sinclair in Scotland, as the fittest persons to serve his interests. His advice, however, was so little to James’ mind that Lady Lauderdale, who was a protestant, was ordered to England, not to return any more, while the earl himself was forbid the court, and reduced to a pension of a hundred pistoles a-year. He retired to Paris, where he died in 1695. His translation of Virgil was printed in two vols. in 1737. Dryden, who saw the MS., adopted many of the lines into his own translation. By his countess, Lady Anne Campbell, second daughter of the ninth earl of Argyle, he had no issue, and the title in consequence devolved on his brother.

      John, fifth earl, passed advocate 30th July 1680. He was afterwards knighted, and on 12th March 1685 was elected M.P. for Mid Lothian. Unlike his father, he concurred heartily in the Revolution, and was appointed one of the lords of session 28th October 1689, when he assumed the judicial title of Lord Ravelrig, from an estate of that name in Mid Lothian, which he had purchased in 1680. He was also sworn a member of the privy council, and was colonel of the Edinburghshire militia. On succeeding his brother as earl of Lauderdale, he took the oaths and his seat in parliament, 8th September 1696. He supported the treaty of Union, and died 30th August, 1710. He married Lady Margaret Cunningham, only child of Alexander, tenth earl of Glencairn, and heir of line of that family, and had three sons and a daughter. James, Lord Maitland, the eldest son, predeceased his father in 1709. He had married in 1702 Lady Jean Sutherland, eldest daughter of the fifteenth earl of Sutherland, and had one daughter, Jean, the wife of Sir James Fergusson of Kilkerran, baronet, a lord of session and justiciary. Her eldest son, Sir Adam Fergusson, baronet, in her right, claimed the earldom of Glencairn as heir general of the tenth earl, but his claim was not allowed. The other sons were Charles, sixth earl, and Colonel John Maitland.

      Charles, sixth earl of Lauderdale, served as a volunteer under the duke of Argyle at the battle of Sheriffmuir, 13th November 1715, and is said to have behaved with great gallantry. He was general of the mint, and lord-lieutenant of Edinburgh. At the general election of 1741 he was elected one of the sixteen representative Scots peers. He died at Hatton, 15th July 1744, in his 56th year. By his countess, Lady Elizabeth Ogilvy, eldest daughter of the earl of Findlater and Seafield, lord-high-chancellor of Scotland, he had nine sons and five daughters. The eldest, James, succeeded him. The other sons were, the Hon. Charles Mailtland Barclay of Tillicoultry, who was thrice married, and by his first wife, Isabel Barclay, heiress of Towie in Aberdeenshire, he acquired that estate, when he assumed the name of Barclay; the Hon. and Rev. George Maitland, a dignified clergyman in Ireland; the Hon. Richard Maitland, colonel in the army, died in 1772; General the Hon. Alexander Maitland; Rear-admiral the Hon. Frederick Lewis Maitland of Rankeillour, who married Margaret Dick, heiress of Rankeillour and Lindores in Fife, in right of her mother, the sister of James MacGill of Rankeillour, who claimed the title of viscount of Oxfurd; the Hon. Patrick Maitland of Freugh, commander of an East Indiaman; Lieutenant-colonel Hon. John Maitland, clerk of the Pipe in the Scottish Exchequer, elected in 1774 M.P. for the Haddington burghs; and Hon. William Maitland, who died young.

      Sir Frederick Lewis Maitland, son of Admiral Maitland of Rankeillour, the sixth son, distinguished himself as a naval officer, and to him the Emperor Napoleon I., surrendered on board the Bellerophon in 1815. He was born at Rankeillour September 7, 1779, and entered the navy at an early age. In his sixteenth year he was appointed lieutenant of the Andromeda, 32 guns. He afterwards served in Lord Duncan’s flagship, the Venerable, 74, till 1797, when he was appointed by Lord St. Vincent first lieutenant of the Kingfisher sloop of war, in which he assisted at the capture of many privateers belonging to the French; one of which, La Betsy, a sloop of 18 guns and 118 men, defended herself with considerable bravery. Upon the prize-money for this vessel being distributed, the Kingfisher’s crew subscriber £50 to purchase Lieutenant Maitland a sword. In December 1798, the Kingfisher was wrecked at the entrance of the Tagus, when proceeding to sea under the temporary command of Lieutenant Maitland, who, on his arrival at Gibraltar, was tried by a court-martial, and honourably acquitted. Immediately afterwards he was appointed flag-lieutenant to Earl St. Vincent, and on July 7, 1779, was sent to reconnoitre the French and Spanish fleets. Falling in with them the following morning, he was surrounded, and compelled to surrender. He was conveyed prisoner to the flagship of Admiral Gravina, who received him with the utmost kindness, and a few days after permitted him to return to Gibraltar, without being exchanged. After being commander of the Cameleon sloop, he was, December 10, 1800, appointed by Lord Keith to the Waassenaar, 64; but as that ship was lying at Malta unfit for service, he obtained permission to accompany the expedition against the French in Egypt, where his conduct in command of the armed launches, employed to cover the landing of Sir Ralph Abercromby’s army, and in the subsequent battles of March 13 and 21, 1801, obtained him the thanks of the naval and military commanders-in-chief. In October 1802, he was appointed to the Loire frigate, mounting 46 guns, two boars of which, during the night of June 27, 1803, carried the French national brig Venteux, lying close under the batteries of the Isle of Bas. In the succeeding March he captured the Braave, French privateer, and in August following, while cruising for the protection of the homeward-bound convoys, after a pursuit of 20 hours, and a running fight of 15 minutes, he made himself master of the blonde, of 30 none-pounders and 240 men. On June 3, 1805, he entered Muros Bay, on the coast of Spain, and the fort having been gallantly carried by Mr. Yeo, his first lieutenant, he took possession of all the enemy’s vessels lying in the road. On the 27th of the same month the common council of the city of London voted him their thanks for his distinguished conduct on this occasion, and about the same period he received an elegant sword from the committee at Lloyd’s. On October 18, the corporation of Cork voted him the freedom of that city, in a silver box. He afterwards captured the French frigate, La Libre, of 40 guns, and subsequently the Princess of Peace, Spanish privateer. On 28th November 1806, he was appointed to the Emerald frigate, on board of which he made several important captures of French, Spanish, and American vessels. After serving on the Halifax and West India stations, he was, early in 1815, removed to the Bellerophon, 74, in which he was sent to watch the motions of two French frigates and two corvettes lying at Rochefort. While there, he effectually frustrated the plans of Napoleon for his escape by sea, after the battle of Waterloo; in consequence of which the fallen emperor surrendered to him on the 15th of July, on board the Bellerophon. On their arrival at Plymouth, and previous to his removal to the Northumberland, his illustrious captive sent one of his attendants to Captain Maitland, proposing to present him with a gold box containing his portrait, set with diamonds, an offer which he declined; and some time after he addressed a letter to the Edinburgh Annual Register, for the purpose of correcting several misstatements contained in that publication respecting his prisoner. In October 1818 he was appointed to the Vengeur, 74, on board of which, in December 1820, he conveyed the king of the Two Sicilies from Naples to Leghorn, on his way to attend the congress at Laybach. On his majesty’s landing, he personally invested Captain Maitland with the insignia of a knight commander of the order of Sat. Ferdinand and of Merit, and presented him with a valuable gold box, containing his portrait set with diamonds. Subsequently he was promoted to the rank of rear-admiral and appointed commander-in-chief in the East Indies. He died on board his flag-ship, the Wellesley, at sea, in the vicinity of Bombay, December 30, 1839. He was nominated a companion of the Bath in 1815, and a knight commander, November 17, 1830. He married an Irish lady, by whom he had no issue.

      James, seventh earl of Lauderdale, the eldest son of the sixth earl, was for twenty-five years in the army; appointed lieutenant-colonel of the 16th foot, 20th September 1745, he resigned his commission on the promotion of a junior officer above him. He was one of the sixteen Scottish representative peers, and under the act of 1747, for abolishing heritable jurisdictions, he got for the regality of Thirlestane and bailiary of Lauderdale £1,000, instead of £8,000, which he claimed. (Douglas’ Peerage, vol. ii. p. 76.) He was a lord of police from February 1766 till the abolition of that board in 1782. He died at Hatton 17th August, 1789, in his 72d year. by his countess, Mary Turner, only child and heiress of Sir Thomas Lombe, knight, alderman of London, he got a large fortune, and had issue, Valdave Charles Lauder, Viscount Maitland, who died before his father, in 1754; James, eighth earl; Lieutenant-general Hon. Thomas Maitland, appointed in January 1805, governor and commander-in-chief at Ceylon; three other sons and six daughters.

      James, eighth earl, a distinguished public character, was born at Hatton, in Mid Lothian, January 26, 1759. He was early placed under the superintendence of the learned Dr. Andrew Dalzel; and after studying at the universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow, he completed his education at Paris. On his return home, he was in 1780 admitted a member of the faculty of advocates. At the general election the same year he was chosen M.P. for Newport, in Cornwall, and 1784 for Malmesbury. In the House of Commons he rendered himself conspicuous by his steady adherence to the political principles of his friend Mr. Fox. He was an energetic supporter of the latter’s India bill, and one of the managers of the impeachment of Warren Hastings. He succeeded his father in 1789, and at the general election in the ensuing year, he was chosen a representative peer for Scotland. On account of his health he went to Paris in August 1792, accompanied by Dr. Moore, father of Sir John Moore, who had formerly attended the duke of Hamilton on the Continent, and who, on his return, published a ‘Journal during a residence in France from the beginning of August to the middle of December 1792.’ The attack on the Tuilleries, and the imprisonment of Louis XVI. and his family, took place three days after the earl’s arrival in the French capital. After the massacres of the 2d September, the British ambassador having left Paris, Lord Lauderdale deemed it unsafe to remain, and on the 4th of that month he proceeded to Calais, but in October he returned to Paris, which he again left on 5th December for London.

      In the House of Lords he was a frequent speaker, distinguishing himself by his active opposition to the Habeas corpus suspension Act, the Sedition Bill, and other measure of the administration. His political opinions, indeed, were, for that period, considered extreme, and during the excitement consequent on the French Revolution, he made himself remarkable, by appearing in the House of Lords in the rough costume of Jacobinism. On the formation of the Grenville administration in February 1806, Lord Lauderdale was created a baron of the United Kingdom, and sworn a member of the privy council. In the subsequent July he was appointed keeper of the great seal of Scotland. On 2d August he departed for France, invested with full powers to conclude peace, the negotiations for which had been for several weeks carried on by the earl of Yarmouth. Arriving at Paris on the 5th, he joined that nobleman in the arduous task of treating with Napoleon and Talleyrand. The negotiations were conducted with Generals Clarke, afterwards duke de Feltre, and Champigny. The earl of Yarmouth was recalled 14th August, when the whole duty devolved on Lord Lauderdale. The war between France and Prussia breaking out in September, the emperor set off for Germany, and on 6th October his lordship addressed his last note to Talleyrand, which thus concluded: “If, therefore, the undersigned has received orders to demand his passports to depart from France, it is certainly not because he sovereign wishes to renounce peace, but because his majesty finds himself obliged to do so, the French government not having consented to all the conditions which were comprised in the proposals originally made by them to his Britannic majesty; and having, moreover, rejected, as the basis of the treaty with Russia, the just and reasonable conditions which the undersigned was authorised to propose.” His lordship quitted Paris on the 9th of October. A full statement of the progress and termination of the negotiations appeared in the London Gazette of 21st October 1806.

      His lordship only held office till the change of administration in March 1807. For the last ten years of his life he lived in retirement, engaged in agricultural pursuits. He died at Thirlstane castle, Berwickshire, September 13, 1839, aged 80. He was the author of ‘Letters to the Peers of Scotland, London,’ 1794, 8vo; ‘Thoughts on Finance; suggested by the Measures of the Present Session,’ 1796, 4to; ‘A speech on the Subject of the Finances,’ 1796, 4to; ‘Letter on the Present Measures of finance; in which the Bill now depending in Parliament is particularly considered,’ 1798, 8vo; ‘An Inquiry into the Nature and Origin of Public Wealth, and into the Means and Causes of its Increase,’ Edinburgh, 1804, 8vo; ‘Observations on the Review of his Inquiry into the Nature and Origin of Public Wealth; published in the 8th Number of the Edinburgh Review,’ Edin. 1804, 8vo; ‘Thoughts on the alarming State of the Circulation, and the Means of Redressing the Pecuniary Grievances of Ireland,’ Edin. 1805, 8vo; ‘Hints to the Manufacturers of Great Britain on the Consequences of the Irish Union; and the System since pursued, of Borrowing in England for the Service of Ireland,’ Edin. 1805, 8vo; ‘An Inquiry into the Practical Merits of the System of the Government of India, under the Board of Control,’ Edin. 1809, 8vo; ‘further Considerations of the State of the Currency, in which the Means of Restoring our Circulation to a Salutary State are fully explained,’ 1812, 1814, 8vo; ‘Letter on the corn Laws,’ 1814, 8vo; ‘Three Letters to the Duke of Wellington,’ on the public income and expenditure, London, 1829, 8vo.

      By his countess, Eleanor, only daughter and heiress of Anthony Todd, Esq., secretary to the general port-office, whom he married August 15, 1782, he had James, 9th earl; Hon. Sir Anthony Maitland, 10th earl; Colonel Hon. John Maitland, died unmarried in 1839; Hon. Charles Fox Maitland, died in 1817; and five daughters.

      James, 9th earl of Lauderdale, born May 12, 1784, succeeded his father in 1839, and died a bachelor Aug. 22, 1860. His brother, Admiral Sir Anthony Maitland, born June 10, 1785, became 10th earl; unmarried. He entered the navy young, and as a midshipman on board the Medusa frigate particularly distinguished himself in the attack on the Boulogne flotilla in 1801, when he was severely wounded. During the latter part of the war he commanded the Pique frigate on the West India station, where he captured the Hawk American privateer. In 1816, he was appointed to the Glasgow, of 40 guns, which ship formed part of Lord Exmouth’s squadron at Algiers, and the same year was named a military companion of the Bath. In 1817 he was reappointed to the Glasgow, and served on the Mediterranean station till 1821. In 1820 he was made a knight commander of the order of St. Michael and St. George, and in 1852, a military knight commander of the Bath. In 1848 he was appointed rear-admiral of the Red, in 1853 vice-admiral, and in 1858 admiral.

      The title is granted by patent to the heirs male of the grantee. Heir presumptive (1861) Admiral Sir Thomas Maitland, son of Hon. General William Mordaunt Maitland, 3d son of the 7th earl. Next heir after him, charles Barclay Maitland, born in 1822, son of Rev. Charles Maitland, rector of Little Longford, Wiltshire, and great-great-grandson of Hon. Charles Maitland, 2d son of 6th earl of Lauderdale.


Return to The Scottish Nation Index Page

 


This comment system requires you to be logged in through either a Disqus account or an account you already have with Google, Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo. In the event you don't have an account with any of these companies then you can create an account with Disqus. All comments are moderated so they won't display until the moderator has approved your comment.

comments powered by Disqus

Quantcast