This page was last updated on 30 July 2018

Click here to 
Print this page

Biography finder





























Index of first names

Robert Douglas, 8th Earl of Morton









Robert was the first of ten children of Sir William, 7th Earl of Morton. He succeeded to the Morton title upon his father's death in 1648. Robert married Elizabeth Villiers, daughter of Sir Edward Villiers of Brakesby.

He was a direct descendant of King James II through his great-great grandmother Lady Margaret Crichton, the daughter of the Princess Margaret of Scotland.

After his father's death, Robert acted in a high-handed way in Orkney, overriding udal law, to raise money for the royalist cause.


The Morton interest in Orkney was a royal grant of Charles I, to compensate the 7th Earl for his subsidies and losses in the royal cause. At this point of the War of the Three Kingdoms the Morton control of Orkney assumed importance, because the forces of James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose intended in 1649 to land there and re-open the fighting in Scotland.


Death: He died at Kirkwall, November 12, 1649.

Father: William (7th Earl of Morton) Douglas b: 1582
Mother: Ann (of Marischal) Keith

Marriage 1 Anne Villers* Children
  1. Has Children William (9th Earl of Morton) Douglas
  2. Has No Children Robert Douglas - Master of the Horse to Henrietta, Duchess of Orleans; lieutenant of gens d'armes in France; lieutenant of the Horse Guards of CharlesII (dsp. 1661)
  3. Has No Children Anne Douglas
  4. Has Children Margaret or Mary Douglas = Sir Donald Breac Macdonald, 3rd Bt of Sleat

* Anne Villiers was the daughter of Sir Edward Villiers (c. 1574 – 7 September 1626) and his wife Barbara St. John, a daughter of Sir John St. John. She was the niece of the Duke of Buckingham, who was her father's half-brother. Anne Villiers' nieces were Elizabeth Villiers, mistress to William III, and Barbara Villiers, who was the mistress of Charles II of England and would be made Duchess of Cleveland in her own right.


Anne Villiers (c. 1610 – 15 December 1654) was an English noblewoman and Countess of Morton. She was famed for her beauty, bravery and loyalty to the throne. The first half of the 17th century closet drama Cicilia and Clorinda was dedicated to her.

Lady Dalkeith, as she was styled at the time, was the godmother of Princess Henrietta. During the civil war, the infant princess, less than one month old, was left in Lady Dalkeith's care. After being besieged in Exeter by Parliamentary forces in April 1646, she was forced to expend her own funds to care for the princess. She refused to take the child to St. James Palace, endeavoring instead to convey her to France to be united with her mother, Queen Henrietta Maria. She disguised herself and the princess as peasants and fled to Dover and then France. Apparently, during the journey, the princess nearly revealed their identity by innocently informing the townspeople that she was not accustomed to dressing in such a shabby fashion. Nevertheless, they arrived safely. Lady Dalkeith's actions were well received and highly praised upon her arrival. Shortly after, her father-in-law died, making her Countess of Morton.
Despite efforts of conversion to Catholicism by the princess' mother and the child herself, Lady Morton remained a staunch Protestant throughout her time as Princess Henrietta's governess. Lady Morton lived in France as the princess' governess until 1651, when her husband, the Earl, died. She herself died in Scotland on 15 December 1654, of a sudden bout of fever.











See also The Earls of Morton







Any contributions will be gratefully accepted



Errors and Omissions

The Forum

What's new?

We are looking for your help to improve the accuracy of The Douglas Archives.

If you spot errors, or omissions, then please do let us know


Many articles are stubs which would benefit from re-writing. Can you help?


You are not authorized to add this page or any images from this page to (or its subsidiaries) or other fee-paying sites without our express permission and then, if given, only by including our copyright and a URL link to the web site.


If you have met a brick wall with your research, then posting a notice in the Douglas Archives Forum may be the answer. Or, it may help you find the answer!

You may also be able to help others answer their queries.

Visit the Douglas Archives Forum.


2 Minute Survey

To provide feedback on the website, please take a couple of minutes to complete our survey.


We try to keep everyone up to date with new entries, via our What's New section on the home page.

We also use the Community Network to keep researchers abreast of developments in the Douglas Archives.

Help with costs

Maintaining the three sections of the site has its costs.  Any contribution the defray them is very welcome



If you would like to receive a very occasional newsletter - Sign up!


Back to top


The content of this website is a collection of materials gathered from a variety of sources, some of it unedited.

The webmaster does not intend to claim authorship, but gives credit to the originators for their work.

As work progresses, some of the content may be re-written and presented in a unique format, to which we would then be able to claim ownership.

Discussion and contributions from those more knowledgeable is welcome.

Contact Us

Last modified: Tuesday, 23 June 2020