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Lords, Earls & Dukes of Buccleuch


Lords Scott of Buccleuch (1606)

1st Lord Scott, Walter Scott, b.?, a.1606, d.1611

The Scotts were a well-established border family who had build up their estates and become influential in the politics of the time. Their principal seat was at Branxholm Castle in the borders, which was frequently on the receiving end of English incursions, although the Scotts were also well known for raiding into England and for having an ongoing feud with the nearby Kers of Cessford. The future 1st Lord Scott was the son of Sir Walter Scott of Buccleuch (b.c.1549, d.1574) and Lady Margaret Douglas (b.b.1553, d.1640), daughter of David Douglas, 7th Earl of Angus (she later also married Francis Stewart, Earl of Bothwell). Scott was young when he succeeded to his father’s estates, and mired in border feuds. In 1585, he was part of the invasion led by Archibald Douglas, 8th Earl of Angus, to remove the Regent Arran from power, and was knighted and made Warden of the West Marches in 1590. In 1591 he was banished for three years for being complicit in the plots of his step-father Bothwell, but allowed to return to Scotland after only one year. When Bothwell was finally attainted and fled the country, Scott was given all of the Bothwell estates, and although most of these lands were eventually required to be handed back, he was allowed to keep Liddesdale and Hermitage Castle. He was a famous border reiver, and once led an attack on Carlisle Castle in order to obtain the release of one an Armstrong retainer who had been captured by the English. This led Queen Elizabeth I of England to make demands for him to be handed over, which were refused. However, shortly afterwards an English raid into Scotland was countered by Scott and Ker of Cessford, who executed the suspected culprits, and for this offence they were required to be turned over to the English in order to preserve good relations between the countries. They were treated well and released after a suitable period. When James VI came to the throne, Scott distinguished himself in calming unrest in the Borders and was raised to the peerage. In 1604 he led a contingent that went to fight in the Netherlands under the Prince of Orange and returned in 1609.


2nd Lord Scott, Walter Scott, b.b.1606, a.1611, d.1633

Son of the 1st Lord and Margaret Ker (b.b.1577, d.1611) (whose half-brother Robert Ker became 1st Earl of Roxburghe). He was created 1st Earl of Buccleuch and 1st Lord Scott of Quhitchester and Eskdaill in 1619. He spent most of his adult life fighting in the Netherlands and died overseas.

Earls of Buccleuch (1619)


1st Earl of Buccleuch, Walter Scott, as above


2nd Earl of Buccleuch, Francis Scott, b.1626, a.1633, d.1651

Son of the 1st Earl and Lady Mary Hay (b.b.1606, d.1631), daughter of Francis Hay, 9th Earl of Erroll. He was a prominent Covenanter and was with General Leslie at the storming of Newcastle. With Argyll, he opposed the ill-fated attempt to rescue the King, and he was one of the last nobles to submit to Cromwell, receiving large fines for his troubles and losing possession of his castles at Newark and Dalkeith. He was a very highly respected person and it was a great misfortune that he died so young.


3rd Earl (Countess) of Buccleuch, Mary Scott, b.1647, a.1651, d.1661

Daughter of the 2nd Earl and Lady Margaret Leslie (b.b.1632, d.1688), daughter of John Leslie, 6th Earl of Rothes. On her father’s death without sons, she became a sought-after match, and she became the pawn in the machinations of her aunt, who had married John Hay, 2nd Earl of Tweeddale, her mother, who married David Wemyss, 2nd Earl of Wemyss, and her mother’s brother John Leslie, 1st Duke of Rothes. The Duke and her tutor Gideon Scott eventually married her off when she was only 11 to Scott’s son Walter Scott (b.1644, d.1693), who was made 1st Earl of Tarras for life to make him the equal of his wife. After all the wrangling, however, she died at the age of 14.


4th Earl (Countess) of Buccleuch, Anne Scott, b.1651, a.1661, d.1731-1732

Younger daughter of the 3rd Earl, and sister of the previous holder. Her mother, now Countess of Wemyss, lost no time in arranging her marriage to Sir James Crofts in 1663, 1st and Last Duke of Monmouth (b.1649, d.1685), son of Charles II, and she and her husband were created 1st Duchess and Duke of Buccleuch independently on that day, he changing his name to Scott. He was also presented with the title of Earl of Dalkeith. Monmouth was popular, since he was Protestant while James, Charles’ brother and heir to the throne, was Catholic. He went off to war at the age of 16, and by 21 was senior officer in the British Army. After much action in Europe, he returned in 1679 to defeat the Covenanters at the Battle of Bothwell Bridge. In 1683, he went into exile after the discovery of the Rye House plot to kill the King, but when Charles died he returned to try to take the throne from his uncle in the so-called Monmouth Rebellion. However, his army was well-defeated at the Battle of Sedgemoor, and Monmouth was captured and later executed. As duchess in her own right, Anne’s titles were not affected by his attainder. Anne later married, Charles Cornwallis, 3rd Baron Cornwallis of Eye and retired to run the estates of Buccleuch with no little skill.



Dukes of Buccleuch (1663)



1st Duke & Duchess of Buccleuch, James and Anne Scott, as above


2nd Duke of Buccleuch, Francis Scott, b.1694-1695, a.1731-1732, d.1751

Grandson of the 1st Duke and Duchess, and son of Sir James Scott (b.1674, d.1704-1705), Earl of Dalkeith, and Lady Henrietta Hyde (b.c.1677, d.1730), daughter of Laurence Hyde, 1st Earl of Rochester. He was Grand Master of the Freemasons in 1723 and invested as a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1724 and as a Knight of the Thistle in 1725. He was a Representative Peer from 1734 to 1741. Shortly afterwards he was restored to his grandfather’s forfeited titles by Act of Parliament. This also allowed him to succeed as 2nd Earl of Doncaster as a result of the death of his uncle Charles Scott (b.1672, d.1673-1674) in infancy.


3rd Duke of Buccleuch, Henry Scott, b.1746, a.1751, d.1812

Grandson of the 2nd Duke and his wife Lady Jane Douglas (b.1701, d.1729), daughter of James Douglas, 2nd Duke of Queensberry, and son of Sir Francis Scott (b.1720-1721, d.1750) and Caroline Campbell (b.1717, d.1794), daughter of Field Marshall Right Honorable Sir John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll. Educated at Eton, he accompanied the famous economist Adam Smith in his travels, returning to London in 1766 after his brother was killed in Paris. He was invested as a Knight of the Thistle in 1767, and was Governor of the Royal Bank of Scotland between 1777 and 1812. He was also President of the Royal Society of Edinburgh from 1783 until his death and Captain-General of the Royal Company of Archers from 1778. In 1794, he resigned the Order of the Thistle to accept the Order of the Garter. He was Lord-Lieutenant of Haddington and of Midlothian from 1794 to 1812 and of Roxburghshire from 1804 to 1812. He succeeded as the 5th Duke of Queensberry in 1810 on the death of his distant cousin on his paternal grandmother’s side.


4th Duke of Buccleuch, Charles William Henry Montagu Scott, b.1772, a.1812, d.1819

Son of the 3rd Duke and Lady Elizabeth Montagu (b.1743, d.1827), daughter of Sir George Montagu (b.1712, d.1790), 1st Duke of Montagu. Educated at Eton and Christ Church Oxford, he served as a Tory MP on several occasions. At various times he held the posts of Lord-Lieutenant of Selkirkshire, Dumfries-shire and Midlothian. He was Captain-General of the Royal Company of Archers from 1812 to 1829 and he was invested in the Order of the Thistle in 1812. He made great efforts to renovate the dilapidated estates of Queensberry that had been neglected for many years. He was also a good friend of the novelist Walter Scott.


5th Duke of Buccleuch, Walter Francis Montagu Douglas Scott, b.1806, a.1819, d.1884

Son of the 4th Duke and Harriet Katherine Townsend (b.1773, d.1814). An highly ranked official, he held many posts over his life, as a Privy Counsellor from 1842 and Lord Privy Seal from 1842 to 1846. He was Lord-Lieutenant of Midlothian from 1828 to 1884 and of Roxburghshire from 1841 to 1884 and was endowed with many honours, including Knight of the Thistle in 1830 and Knight of the Garter in 1835 (the former having to be resigned before accepting the latter). He was also awarded honorary degrees from Oxford, Cambridge and Edinburgh universities. He was Captain-General of the Royal Company of Archers from 1838 to 1884 and President of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland from 1862 to 1873.


6th Duke of Buccleuch, William Henry Walter Montagu Douglas Scott, b.1831, a.1884, d.1914

Son of the 5th Duke and Lady Charlotte Anne Thyme (b.1811, d.1895), daughter of Sir Thomas Thyme, 2nd Marquess of Bath. Educated at Eton and Christ Church Oxford, he was Tory MP for Midlothian from 1853 to 1868 and from 1874 to 1880. He was created a Knight of the Thistle in 1875 and then of the Garter in 1897, resigning the previous post. He was Lord-Lieutenant of Dumfries-shire from 1858 to 1914 and was also Captain-General of the Royal Company of Archers  in 1900. He was made a Privy Counsellor in 1901.


7th Duke of Buccleuch, John Charles Montagu Douglas Scott, b.1864, a.1914, d.1935

Son of the 6th Duke and Lady Louisa Jane Hamilton (b.1836, d.1912), daughter of Sir James Hamilton, 1st Duke of Abercorn. He served as a Conservative MP for Roxburghshire from 1895 to 1906. After he succeeded his father, he was presented with similar honorary titles, such as Captain-General of the Royal Company of Archers and Knight of the Thistle. He was also invested as a Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order (GCVO).


8th Duke of Buccleuch, Walter John Montagu Douglas Scott, b.1894, a.1935, d.1973

Son of the 7th Duke and Lady Margaret Alice Bridgeman (b.1872, d.1954), daughter of Sir George Cecil Orlando Bridgeman, 4th Earl of Bradford. After serving in the Grenadier Guards, he was Commanding Officer of 4th Battalion, King’s Own Scottish Borderers between 1923 and 1930. He then served in various political posts, as MP for Roxburghshire & Selkirk from 1923 to 1935 and Lord Lieutenant of Roxburghshire. He was Lord Steward of the Household between 1937 and 1940, an honorary title in the English, and later also the British Court. As his father before him, he was also made Captain-General of the Royal Company of Archers, a Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order in 1935 and Knight of the Thistle in 1949. He was also awarded honorary law degrees from both Edinburgh and St Andrews Universities.


9th Duke of Buccleuch, Walter Francis John Montagu Douglas Scott, b.1923, a.1973, d.2007

Son of the 8th Duke and Vreda Esther Mary Lascelles (b.1900, d.1993). He fought in the Second World War, and was the Conservative MP for Edinburgh North between 1960 and 1973. He was heavily involved in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, gaining the rank of Lieutenant-Commander. He took spells as Lord Lieutenant of Roxburghshire and of Selkirkshire, and of the newly formed Roxburgh, Ettrick and Lauderdale lieutenancy from 1975 to 1998. He was made a Knight of the Thistle in 1978, and was Chancellor of that Order in 1992.


10th Duke of Buccleuch, Richard Walter John Montagu Douglas Scott, b.1954, a.2007

Son of the 9th Duke and Jane McNeill (b.b.1938). Educated at Eton and Christ Church Oxford, he was a director of Border TV from 1989 to 1990. He is a Brigadier in the Royal Company of Archers, and a Knight Commander, Order of the British Empire (KBE). As well as being 10th Duke, he is also 13th Earl of Buccleuch, 14th Lord Scott of Buccleuch, 12th Duke of Queensberry (or Queensbury), 10th Earl of Dalkeith, 13th Lord Scott of Whitechester and Eskdale (originally spelt Quhitchester and Eskdaill), 10th Viscount of Nith, Torthorwald and Ross and 10th Lord Douglas of Kilmount, Middlebie and Dornock, all in the Peerage of Scotland, and 10th Earl of Doncaster and 10th Baron Scott of Tyndale (or Tindall) in the Peerage of England. (The courtesy title for the heir is Earl of Dalkeith.)

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