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James Stewart, Lord of Douglas









While Tynninghame was held by the archbishops of St. Andrews, a formidable rival for possession of the barony appeared in the person of King James the Fifth. James Beaton, archbishop of St. Andrews, and his chapter, were induced to grant to James Stewart, eldest natural son of the king, whom failing, to James Stewart, his second brother, whom failing, to James Stewart, his third brother, whom failing, to Robert Stewart, their brother, another natural son of the king, and their heirs, the lordship of Tynninghame, with the office of bailiary of the whole lordship, as well property as tenandry thereof, in the regality of St. Andrews, for payment of the sums therein specified. The charter was confirmed under a commission from the pope on 11th December 1536.

James Stewart of Tynninghame had already been provided to a still more valuable living than his East Lothian barony. Archibald, Earl of Angus, was forfeited in the year 1528, and his extensive estates of Douglas were in 1534 provided to James Stewart of Tynninghame, who assumed the designation of James, Lord Douglas.


In February 1537, he, with consent of his curators, granted a lease to Eobert Lauder of the Bass of the barony and lands of Tynninghame, which he had in possession, for nine years after the date of the lease. To that lease the signatures of the king and of "James, Lord Douglas," and his curators, are adhibited, and also the seal of the granter. The seal is of some heraldic interest, being hitherto unknown. It bears the royal lion of Scotland, debruised by a bend. The bend is from dexter, probably a mistake for sinister. The shield is surmounted by a helmet and mantling, without a crest. There is no double tressure, and there are no supporters. But what is remarkable is the legend " Sigillvm Jacobi Comitis de Dowglas." This designation of Earl of Douglas may have been used in the belief that the king would make his son Earl of Douglas, as he had obtained the territorial earldom of Douglas, or the engraver may have made a mistake of earl for lord. The seal is a large one, but it is not a fine specimen of the art of engraving.


James Stewart of Tynninghame, Lord Douglas, was afterwards made commendator of the great abbeys of Kelso and Melrose, 6 and being thus amply provided for, he surrendered the lordship of Tynninghame and office of bailiary in favour of his brother, James Stewart, then commendator of the priory of St. Andrews, afterwards created successively Earl of Mar and Earl of Murray, and well known as regent of Scotland. The surrender appears to have been made in 1557, and the prior of St. Andrews was infeft in the barony of Tynninghame on the 25th September of that year.





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Last modified: Friday, 17 May 2024