Henry Douglas, Earl of Drumlanrig

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Henry   

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Father: Charles (3rd Duke of Queensbury) Douglas b: 24 NOV 1698
Mother: Catherine Hyde b: 1701

  • Birth: 30 OCT 1722
  • Death: 19 OCT 1754.

Henry was educated at Winchester College, " When Bigg presided and when Burton taught," and at Christ Church, Oxford University.

 

He entered the army and served two campaigns in the [last] war, under the earl of Stair, and three campaigns under the king of Sardinia, where he gave singular proofs of his military genius, particularly at the siege of Coni (1642), distinguishing himself so much that Charles Emmanuel, King of Sardinia, ordered his ambassador in London to wait on the Duke of Queensberry to thank him for the services performed by his son.

 

In May 1747, his lordship got a commission to raise a regiment of two battalions and twenty companies in the Highlands, for the service in the Scots Brigade of the States of Holland. On the second battalion being disbanded in 1749, his lordship brought them back to Scotland at his own expense.

 He married, 24th July, 1754, Lady Elizabeth Hope, eldest daughter of John, second Earl of Hopetoun. After passing some weeks in Scotland, he proceeded with his bride towards England, and riding before the carriage was killed by the going off of one of his own pistols, near Bawtrey, in Yorkshire, 19th October, 1754, in his thirty-second year.  His brother, Charles, succeeded to his title.

He is interred at Durisdeer.

 

There is another account of his death, which has in it something of a romantic character. It is stated that he had become enamoured of a Miss Mackay, and was desirous of marrying her, but the duchess, his mother, opposed the match, and, by intercepting their letters, caused an estrangement to take place between them. Being at length assured that Miss Mackay was married, his lordship espoused Lady Betty Hope, the lady whom her grace had fixed upon for his wife. While proceeding to London with his lady, he met Miss Mackay on the road, at a town where they temporarily stopped, and learning from her that she was not married, as he had been led to believe, he, the following day, shot himself in his carriage, by the side of his wife.  His countess never recovered the shock. She survived him only about a year and a half, and died, childless, 7th April 1756, in her 21st year.

 

Notes:

1.  Coni, also known as Cuneo, is a city and comune in Piedmont, Northern Italy. Cuneo became an important stronghold of the expanding Savoy state, and was thus besieged by France several times: first in 1515 by Swiss troops of Francis I of France, then again in 1542, 1557, 1639, 1641, 1691 and, during the War of Austrian Succession, in 1741. In all the sieges Cuneo resisted successfully. Cuneo was conquered by France only during the Napoleonic Wars, when it was made the capital of the Stura department. After the restoration of the Kingdom of Sardinia, and the unification of Italy, Cuneo became the capital of its namesake province in 1859.


Sources


Sources for this article include:
•  Chambers’ Journal, vol. x. p. 18
•  Drumlanrig Castle and the Douglases - Histories of Scottish families
•  The peerage of Scotland: By Robert Douglas, Esq

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Last modified: Wednesday, 18 July 2018