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Douglas of Lochleven



Sir William Douglas of LochlevenThe Douglas lairds of Lochleven



 Sir William's son, Archibald Douglas of Glenbervie, married Lady Agnes Keith, daughter of William, 2nd Earl Marischal, who bore the subject of this memoir about 1532, the only son among nine daughters. On St. Valentine's Day, 1552, William was contracted in marriage to Egidia or Gelis Graham, daughter of Robert Graham of Morphie,- and the marriage was celebrated shortly afterwards. Like the rest of his house, he was a Protestant, and fought in the battle of Corrichie, where the Earl of Huntly, head of the Romish faction, was slain in 1562. In 1570 he succeeded to Glenbervie on his father's death, and five years later he was retoured heir to his grandfather. Sir William, who perished at Flodden in 1513. He took little part after this in public affairs, both he and his wife being invalids, as appears from a licence granted to them in 1578 by King James to eat flesh in Lent " als oft as thai pleis," by reason that they were " subiect to seiknes and diseiss of body." *

Ten years later, when the Sth earl lay dying at Smeaton, he sent twice for the laird of Glenbervie to confer with him about the succession. Glenbervie's eldest son was a Roman Catholic, a sore distress to his father, all the more so because Angus seemed disposed to alter the succession upon that account. But the dying earl, though a staunch Presbyterian, and deeply concerned for the establishment of that form of religion in Scotland, was of too liberal a spirit to cause any man to suffer for his honest opinion : therefore, after questioning Glenbervie's son closely about the grounds of his faith, he declared that he would not meddle with the existing entail, made in 1547, whereby he had devised the earldom of Angus to Glenbervie, and the earldom of Morton to Douglas of Lochleven.


Lochleven ceased to be a royal castle in 1390 when Robert II granted it to Sir Henry Douglas, the husband of his niece, Marjory.  The Douglases already had an association with the castle for Henry's father, Sir John Douglas, had been among the garrison during the 1335 siege.  The Douglases remained lords of the island stronghold up to the seventeenth century.

John Douglas of Dalkeith d bef 1356
Henry, dc 1392, married Marjory Stewart
William, c 1392-1421
Henry, 1421-c 1469
Robert, c 1469-1513
Robert, 1513-c 1540
(Thomas, d bef 1540)
Robert, c 1540-1547
William, 1547-1606, who became 6th Earl of Morton
(Robert, dc 1600)
William. 7th Earl of Morton, 1606-1648
Robert, 8th Earl of Morton, 1648-1649
William, 9th Earl of Morton, 1649-1681, who sold Lochleven Castle in 1672

1. Sir Henry Douglas of Lugton & Lochleven + Marjory Stewart of Ralston d: 1438

2 Sir William Douglas of Lochleven d: 1421 + Elizabeth Lindsay of Crawford

3 Sir Henry Douglas of Lochleven d: AFT. 1469 + Elizabeth Erskine

4 Sir Robert Douglas of Lochleven d: 9 SEP 1513 + Elizabeth Boswell

5 Sir Robert Douglas of Lochleven + Margaret Balfour + Margaret Hay of Erroll b: ABT. 1453

6 Thomas Douglas + Elizabeth Boyd

7 Sir Robert Douglas of Lochleven d: 10 SEP 1547 + Margaret Erskine of Mar d: 5 MAY 1572

8 William Douglas, 6th Earl of Morton b: 1540 d: 27 SEP 1606 + Agnes Leslie of Rothes

 James Douglas of Lochleven was Commendator of Melrose Abbey 1569-1620

Research Note:
1. In his account of the murder of David Rizzio in 1566, Patrick Ruthven, 3rd Lord Ruthven, himself one of the conspirators, mentions William Douglas of Loch Leven. 

See also:

  • Lochleven

  • Lochleven castle





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