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The Earls of Winton

The original line of the Lord's Seton devolved upon the 2nd son of George, 7th Lord Seton.  The eldest son, George, Master of Seton was greatly involved in his father's affairs and had been part of the events of Queen Mary's troubled reign, and that of the early years of her son, King James VI. It was natural that he should succeed his father, however, George, Master of Seton predeceased his father and thus his brother Robert became heir to the Seton Honours.  In 1582, Robert, 8th Lord Seton, as he then was, married Margaret Montgomerie, oldest daughter of Hugh, third Earl of Eglinton, by whom he had five sons and a daughter.  His son and heir, Robert, became 2nd Earl of Winton, but resigned the title to his brother George, who was the celebrated 3rd Earl

His 3rd son, Sir Alexander Seton of Foulstruther,  succeeded as sixth Earl of Eglinton by right of descent from his mother and which arrangement was negotiated with the Earl of Eglinton to continue the line in bearing the name of Montgomerie, and in descent from whom is the present Earl of Eglinton and Winton, Lord Montgomerie, Ardrossan, Baron Seton and Tranent, etc.

On the death of his father, George, 7th Lord Seton, in 1586, Robert succeeded as 8th Lord Seton.  Although his father left the estates heavily encumbered by reason of the great expense of several embassies and of his losses suffered by adhering to the Queen’s party, yet by prudence and ability he was soon able to put his affairs in good condition and provide both sons and daughters with respectable fortunes.  “He was very hospitable, and kept a noble house, the king and queen being frequently there, and all French and other ambassadors and strangers of quality were nobly entertained.”  He was a favorite with the king, and was created Earl of Winton with solemnity and pomp of banners, standards, and pennons, inscribed with loyal mottos and quaint devices at Holyrood House, on the 16th of November, 1600.  He was a great builder and a wise improver of his property, especially by working on the old harbor of Cockenzie, along the Firth of Forth, a curious fishing village of great antiquity whose history is little known.  It originally sheltered only small boats, but when improved by art and accommodated vessels of a larger size.  In January, 1599, the king granted him a charter under the Great Seal of Scotland concerning Cockenzie.

Robert Seton, 1st Earl of Winton

Arms of the Seton Earls of Winton © The Seton Family 2005
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   Robert, 1st Earl
   Robert, 2nd Earl
   George, 3rd Earl
   George, 4th Earl
   George, 5th Earl
   Viscount of Kingston
   The Eglinton Claim
   The Montgomeries
   The Arms