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Loudoun, John Campbell, 1st earl of

Loudoun, John Campbell, 1st earl of [S] (1598–1662). Loudoun played a dexterous part in the tortuous politics of mid-17th-cent. Scotland. The foundation of his career was his marriage to the granddaughter of the master of Loudoun, a baroness in her own right. Loudoun was raised to the earldom in May 1633 but, since he opposed Charles I's policies, the promotion was not confirmed until 1641. In the meantime, he had become a prominent member of the covenanting party. In 1640 he was sent briefly to the Tower on a charge of treasonably urging Louis XIII of France to intervene, though he claimed that only friendly mediation was intended. Nevertheless, bereft of friends, Charles I was obliged to appoint him chancellor of Scotland and 1st commissioner of the Treasury in 1641. He supported Scottish intervention in the Civil War and was a member of the team which negotiated with the king at Uxbridge in 1645 and Carisbrooke in 1647. In 1650 he issued a fierce denunciation of Montrose at his trial. He was on the losing side at Dunbar, took part in Charles II's coronation at Scone in 1651, but surrendered to Monck in 1655. At the Restoration, he was deprived of the chancellorship and fined. Though Clarendon accused him of a ‘loose and vicious life’, Loudoun seems to have been devoted to a presbyterian form of church government.

J. A. Cannon

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