King, Robert (d.1693) (DNB00)

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KING, ROBERT, second Lord Kingston (d. 1693), was eldest son of John, first baron Kingston [q. v.], by Catherine (d. 1669), daughter of Sir William Fenton, knt., of Mitchelstown, co. Cork. He was brought up by his uncle, Sir Robert King who sent him to Brasenose College, Oxford, where he commenced M.A. on 25 June 1670. On 4 Jan. 1689 the protestant association for the county of Sligo chose King and Captain Chidley Coote their chief commanders. King arrived at Ballyshannon on 24 Jan. There he received a letter from the committee in Derry, with orders (as they said) from Colonel Lundy to keep the passes on the Erne Water. He obeyed these instructions with signal success, but on 15 April he received directions from Lundy to bring his men suddenly into the immediate neighbourhood of Derry. The scattered position of his troops rendered this impossible. He himself went at sunrise the next morning towards Derry to inquire into the situation of affairs, and learnt on coming within five miles of Raphoe that Lundy with his forces had fled to Derry, and that the Irish, who had reached Raphoe, would prevent him from approaching Derry. King thereupon hastened back to his troops, despatched orders for the horse to secure themselves in Enniskillen, and the foot at Donegal, Ballyshannon, and other places, and then with some of his officers went to Scotland in a French vessel, which they seized at Killybegs, co. Donegal, and hurried to give William an account of affairs (Harris, Life of William III, pp. 197–9). By Tyrconnel's proclamation of 7 March King was exempted from mercy or James's favour, he was attainted by the parliament on 7 May, and had his estate sequestered; but on 26 Aug. following he commanded a regiment of foot at the taking of Carrickfergus, and on the reduction of the kingdom took his seat in parliament on 5 Oct. 1692.

By deeds dated 19 and 20 Dec. 1693 King demised to Henry, lord Capel, Sir Robert King, and others the castle, manor, and lands of Newcastle, and part of the manor of Mitchelstown, in cos. Tipperary and Cork, for building, endowing, and establishing for ever a college in or near the borough of Boyle, co. Roscommon, to be called by the name of Kingston College, for one master and usher and a chaplain, with apartments for them and twenty poor widows, together with a free school and a chapel. He alienated his estate from his brother and successor, John, because he had become a Roman catholic and had married a servant girl; but John recovered it in 1708. King died without issue in December 1693.

[Lodge's Peerage of Ireland (Archdall), iii. 229 n., A Vindication of Sir Robert King's Designs and Actions, 1699.]

G. G.