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David Wemyss

(Lord Elcho)

1721 - 1787

Jacobite. Brought up at Wemyss Castle (Fife), the eldest son of James, the 5th Earl of Wemyss and as such should have succeeded as the 6th Earl when his father died in 1756. However, Elcho joined Prince Charles Edward Stuart in the Jacobite Rising of 1745. He raised the elite 'Elcho's Horse', a troop of Horse Guards which supported the Prince. Promoted to the rank of Colonel, Elcho marched with the Jacobite Army into England and remained with his Prince until the bitter end at the Battle of Culloden (1746). Thereafter, he escaped to France, but his estates and titles were forfeit following an Act of Attainder in the same year.

Elcho married in Beutal (Switzerland) in 1776, but his wife died little more than a year later, having produced no heir. Elcho died in Paris eleven years later. It was not until 1826 that his great-nephew, Francis Charteris-Wemyss-Douglas (1771 - 1853), was able to recover the Earldom of Wemyss.

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