Lockhart, James (DNB00)

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LOCKHART, Sir JAMES, Lord Lee (d. 1674), Scottish judge, was son of Sir James Lockhart of Lee, by his wife, Jean Weir of Stonebyres, Lanarkshire. While still a young man he was a gentleman of the privy chamber to Charles I, and was knighted. He sat in the parliaments of 1630 and 1633 as commissioner for Lanarkshire, and was appointed lord of the articles on 20 June 1633. He did not sit in the parliament of 1641, probably on account of his adherence to the Marquis of Hamilton. In 1644, and again in 1645, he contested Lanarkshire against Sir William Hamilton, and on the second occasion with success. Upon the first there was a disputed return decided, 5 June 1644, in favour of Hamilton. On 1 Feb. 1645 he was appointed a commissioner of the exchequer, and on 2 July 1646 an ordinary lord of session In succession to Lord Durie the elder, who had died. He took part in the engagement for the relief of King Charles in 1648, and under the Marquis of Hamilton commanded a regiment at the battle of Preston. Accordingly, on 16 Feb. 1649, he was deprived of his office by the Act of Classes, and was banished with others by an act of the estates, 4 June 1650. He petitioned for the removal of his sentence of banishment, and on 5 Dec. of the same year his banishment was annulled. Upon his return he became a member of the committee of estates, was chosen to superintend the levy for the invasion of England under Charles II. On 28 Aug. 1651 he was surprised by a party of English soldiers at Blyth, and was taken prisoner. He was carried to Broughty Castle, and was conveyed thence into England, where he was eventually placed in the Tower, and was imprisoned there for some years. At length, on the intercession of his son, Sir William Lockhart [q. v.], he was set at liberty, and in 1661 was restored to his seat on the bench, was sworn of the privy council in Scotland, and was again appointed a commissioner of the exchequer. In the parliaments of 1661, 1665, and 1669 be represented Lanarkshire, and was throughout a lord of the articles. In 1662 he opposed the Ejection Act at Glasgow, and was reported to have been the only man sober in the assembly, which earned for itself the name of the 'Drunken parliament' (Kirkton, History of the Church of Scotland, p. 149). In 1671 he succeeded Sir John Home of Renton as lord justice clerk, and held that post till he died in May 1674.

[Books of Sederunt; Acts Scots Parl.; Balfour's Annals, iv. 14, 42, 300; Brunton and Haig's Senators of the Coll, of Justice: Burton's Hist. of Scotland, vii, 435; Lamont's Diary, p. 41.]

J. A. H.