John Dalrymple

(1st Earl of Stair)

1648 - 1707

Lawyer and Politician. The son of James Dalrymple (1619-95), 1st Viscount Stair and a noted lawyer. John Dalrymple communicated Scotland's conditions for accepting William of Orange as King. William later appointed Dalrymple as Lord Advocate (1689) and Secretary of State for Scotland (1691). Infamously, he was principally responsible for authorising the massacre of the Clan MacDonald at Glencoe (1692) by government troops in the form of the Campbell Earl of Argyll's regiment. This was intended to make an example of a clan with Jacobite sympathies. The repercussions resulted in his resignation (1695) and the incident led to the Dalrymple's armorial bearings (the nine of diamonds) being known as the Curse of Scotland. The result of the massacre was a surge in support for the Jacobites.

Dalrymple was a supporter the Union between Scotland and England, which was enacted in the year of his death.

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