Earl of Buchan
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In the Peerage of Scotland the Kings of Scots have thrice created the title Earl of Buchan. Upon the extinction of the first creation, the re-created title went to Alexander Stewart, the "Wolf of Badenoch". In 1425, Murdoch Stewart, the third Earl of this line, also Duke of Albany, suffered execution for treason, and the title became forfeit to the Crown. Thereafter it was issued to James Stewart, whose descendants have held the title since.
The Earl holds the subsidiary titles of: Lord Auchterhouse (created 1469), Lord Cardross (1610) and Baron Erskine of Restormel Castle (1806). The former two of these titles form part of the Peerage of Scotland, while the barony belongs to the Peerage of the United Kingdom. The Earls of Buchan sat in the House of Lords by virtue of the UK title until the passage of the Peerage Act 1963.
 Family histories
The early earls of Buchan included Alexander Comyn (died 1289), John Comyn (died circa 1313), both constables of Scotland, and Henry Beaumont (died 1340), who had married a Comyn. John Comyn's wife, Isabel, as Countess of Buchan, crowned Robert the Bruce king at Scone in 1306, and afterwards suffered imprisonment at Berwick; not, however, in a cage hung on the wall of the castle, as legend would have it.
About 1382 Sir Alexander Stewart (died circa 1404), "the Wolf of Badenoch", a son of King Robert II, became earl of Buchan, and Stewarts held the earldom for about a century and a half, although not in a direct line from Sir Alexander. The most celebrated of the Stewart earls included the Scottish regent, Robert, duke of Albany, and his son John Stewart, who became a constable of France and was killed at the Battle of Verneuil in 1424.
In 1617 the earldom came to James Erskine (died 1640), a son of John Erskine, 2nd or 7th Earl of Mar, whose wife Mary had inherited it from her father, James Douglas (died 1601); and from that time the Erskines have retained the title.
Among the most celebrated of the later earls of Buchan we find the eccentric David Steuart Erskine, 11th earl (1742 - 1829), a son of Henry David, 10th earl (died 1767), and brother of Henry Erskine (1746 - 1817) and of Thomas, Lord Erskine. His pertinacity helped in effecting a change in the method of electing Scottish representative peers, and in 1780 he succeeded in founding the Scottish Society of Antiquaries. His correspondents included Horace Walpole, and he produced an Essay on the Lives of Fletcher of Saltoun and the Poet Thomson (1792) and other writings. He died at his residence at Dryburgh in April 1829, leaving no legitimate children, and the earldom passed to his nephew Henry David (1783 - 1857), the 12th earl.
The 11th earl's natural son, Sir David Erskine (1772 - 1837), who inherited his father's unentailed estates, worked as an antiquary and a dramatist.
- This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.
 Mormaers of Buchan/Early Earls of Buchan
- ?Cainnech (fl. early 12th century)
- Gartnait (fl. after 1131)
- Colbán (fl. 1174)
- Fergus (d. before 1214)
- Alexander Comyn (d. 1289)
- John Comyn (d. 1313)
- Alexander Stewart, 1st Earl of Buchan (d. 1404)
- John Stewart, 2nd Earl of Buchan (d. 1424) - Killed at the Battle of Verneuil
- Murdoch Stewart, 2nd Duke of Albany (1362-1425) (forfeit 1425)
- James Stewart, 1st Earl of Buchan (1442-1487)
- Alexander Stewart, 2nd Earl of Buchan (d. 1505)
- John Stewart, 3rd Earl of Buchan (c. 1497-1551)
- Christina Stewart, 4th Countess of Buchan (d. 1580)
- James Douglas, 5th Earl of Buchan (d. 1601)
- Mary Douglas, 6th Countess of Buchan (d. 1628)
- James Erskine, 7th Earl of Buchan (d. 1664)
- William Erskine, 8th Earl of Buchan (d. 1695)
- David Erskine, 9th Earl of Buchan (d. 1745)
- Henry David Erskine, 10th Earl of Buchan (1710-1767)
- David Stewart Erskine, 11th Earl of Buchan (1742-1829)
- Henry David Erskine, 12th Earl of Buchan (1783-1857)
- David Stuart Erskine, 13th Earl of Buchan (1815-1898)
- Shipley Gordon Stuart Erskine, 14th Earl of Buchan (1850-1934)
- Ronald Douglas Stewart Mar Erskine, 15th Earl of Buchan (1878-1960)
- Donald Cardross Flower Erskine, 16th Earl of Buchan (1899-1984)
- Malcolm Harry Erskine, 17th Earl of Buchan (b. 1930)