Lords Somerville (c.1435)


1st Lord Somerville, Thomas Somerville, b.c.1370, a.c.1435, d.1444


The Somervilles are descended from William de Somerville, another of the many Normans brought to Scotland by King David I. He was given the estate of Carnwath, and his descendant, also William de Somerville, later acquired the lands of Linton in Roxburghshire, and later still yet another William de Somerville obtained the family seat of Drum Castle in Gilmerton near Edinburgh by marriage. Thomas Somerville was one of the guarantors for the release of James I in 1424 and later appeared on the jury during the trial of Murdoch Stewart, 2nd Duke of Albany. He obtained the lands of Cambusnethan by marriage.


2nd Lord Somerville, William Somerville, b.c.1400, a.1444, d.1456


Son of the 1st Lord and Janet Stewart, daughter of Sir Alexander Stewart of Darnley. He was used regularly as a Commissioner to the English.


3rd Lord Somerville, John Somerville, b.?, a.1456, d.1491


Son of the 2nd Lord and Janet Mowat, daughter of Sir John Mowat of Stenhouse. He was at the siege of Roxburghe when James II was killed by an exploding cannon in 1460 and was later involved with Robert Boyd, 1st Lord Boyd of Kilmarnock, during the kidnap of the young James III, though he was pardoned soon after by Parliament.


4th Lord Somerville, John Somerville, b.c.1484, a.1491, d.1522


Grandson of the 3rd Lord and his first wife Helen Hepburn (b.?, d.c.1456-1457), daughter of Sir Adam Hepburn of Hailes (progenitor of the earls of Bothwell), and son of William Somerville, Master of Somerville (b.c.1453, d.1491) and Marjory Montgomerie, daughter of Alexander Montgomerie, Master of Montgomerie (for whom see the earls of Eglinton).


5th Lord Somerville, Hugh Somerville, b.c.1484, a.1523, d.1549


Younger brother of the 4th Lord. He was captured at the Battle of Solway Moss and obtained his freedom on payment of a fine and, in a similar vein to other freed Scots, on agreeing to further the aims of the English King by supporting Edward, Prince of Walesí, marriage to Queen Mary. He and Lord Maxwell were the principal agents in the passing of information between the English and Angus, and they were captured in possession of a bond signed by Angus that disclosed their plans. In 1544 he supported the regency of the Queen Mother and was with the earl of Arran, his father-in-law, at Coldingham during the unsuccessful siege of the English garrison there.


6th Lord Somerville, James Somerville, b.c.1518, a,1549, d.1569


Son of the 5th Lord and Janet Maitland (b.?, d.c.1559), daughter of William Maitland of Thirlstane and Lethington, progenitor of the earls of Lauderdale. He served as an hostage in England for his father until released due to ill-health. He opposed the Reformation and was one of only three nobles who voted against the Confession of Faith. Unsurprisingly, he supported Mary, Queen of Scots, and was severely wounded fighting for her at the Battle of Langside. His first marriage was to his fatherís first wifeís sister Anne Hamilton.


7th Lord Somerville, Hugh Somerville, b.1547, a.1569, d.1597


Son of the 6th Lord and Agnes Hamilton, daughter of Sir James Hamilton of Finnart. He was initially a supporter of Queen Mary, like his father, but seeing the futility of this position gradually distanced himself from her cause, and was eventually sworn in as a Privy Counsellor by James VI.


8th Lord Somerville, Gilbert Somerville, b.1568, a.1597, d.1618


Son of the 7th Lord and Eleanor Seton (b.?, d.c.1603), daughter of George Seton, 4th Lord Seton (for whom see the earls of Winton). He had an extravagant lifestyle and in 1603 sold the estates of Carnwath to the John Erskine, 18th Earl of Mar. This estate subsequently passed to the Dalzell family, who were created earls of Carnwath.


9th Lord Somerville, Hugh Somerville, b.c.1573, a.1618, d.1640


Younger brother of the 8th Lord. At the Union of Crowns in 1606, the lordship was omitted from a list of Scottish peerages, and Hugh Somerville did not use the title during his lifetime.


10th Lord Somerville, James Somerville, b.1595-1596, a.1640, d.1677


Son of the 9th Lord and Margaret Hamilton (b.?, d.1644), daughter of Gavin Hamilton of Raploch. He went abroad and fought in the French Army, reaching the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel.


11th Lord Somerville, James Somerville, b.1632, a.1677, d.1693


Son of the 10th Lord and Lilias Bannatyne (b.c.1608, d.1675), daughter of Sir James Bannatyne of Newhall.


12th Lord Somerville, James Somerville, b.1674, a.1693, d.1709


Grandson of the 11th Lord and Martha Bannatyne (b.1634, d.1676), daughter of John Bannatyne of Corehouse, and son of James Somerville (b.1562, d.1682) and Elizabeth Graham.


13th Lord Somerville, James Somerville, b.1698, a.1709, d.1765


Son of the 12th Lord and Janet Murray. He claimed his right to vote at the election of Representative Peers in 1721. This claim being rejected, an official protest was made. His right to vote was also rejected at the election in April the following year, but it was then allowed in a further election later in the year. By a petition from the King, the House of Lords recognised his peerage in 1723. In 1741 he became a Representative Peer himself.


14th Lord Somerville, James Somerville, b.1727, a.1765, d.1796


Son of the 13th Lord and Anne Bayntun (b.?, d.1734). He joined the Army and served in the 2nd Regiment, Dragoon Guards, reaching the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel. He was a Representative Peer from 1793 to his death. He did not marry.


15th Lord Somerville, John Southey Somerville, b.1765, a.1796, d.1819


Nephew of the 14th Lord, being son of that manís younger brother Colonel Hugh Somerville (b.1729, d.1795) and his first wife Elizabeth Cannon Lethbridge (b.?, d.1765). He was keen to develop his estates and introduced new technology, planting and breeding. He was also a friend of Sir Walter Scott.


16th Lord Somerville, Mark Somerville, b.1784, a.1819, d.1842


Younger half-brother of the 15th Lord, being son of Colonel Hugh Somerville and his second wife Mary Digby (b.c.1750, d.1794). He died unmarried.


17th Lord Somerville, Kenelm Somerville, b.1787, a.1842, d.1864


Younger brother of the 16th Lord. He joined the Royal Navy in 1801 and retired in 1846 with the rank of Rear-Admiral.


18th Lord Somerville, Hugh Somerville, b.1839, a.1864, d.1868


Son of the 17th Lord and Frances Louisa Hayman (b.?, d.1885).


19th Lord Somerville, Aubrey John Somerville, b.1838, a.1868, d.1870


Cousin of the 18th Lord, being son of the 16th & 17th Lordís younger brother William Somerville (b.1789, d.1857) and Charlotte Bagot (b.c.1800, d.1865). When he died unmarried, the title became extinct.



The courtesy title for the heir was Master of Somerville.


(Last updated: 22/09/2010)