Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Home, James (d.1666)

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search

HOME, Sir JAMES, of Coldingknows, third Earl of Home (d. 1666), was eldest son of Sir James Home of Coldingknows, by his wife Lady Anne Home, eldest daughter and coheiress of George Home, earl of Dunbar. He was sixth in descent from John Home of Whiterigs and Ersilton, second son of Alexander, master of Home, son of Alexander, first baron [q. v.] He became third earl of Home on the death of James, second earl, without issue in 1633. On 22 May 1636 he received by patent from Charles I a ratification of all the honours, privileges, and precedencies formerly enjoyed by the two earls of Home, to him and his heirs male. Along with Lord Lindsay, afterwards Earl of Crawford, he, in name of the nobility, ministry, barons, burgesses, &c., protested openly at the market-cross of Edinburgh against the king's proclamation of 19 Feb. 1638 (Spalding, Memorials, i. 85; Gordon, Scots Affairs, i. 32; Balfour, Annals, ii. 250). Gordon classes him among those of the commissioners in 1638 who were professed covenanters, or quickly afterwards declared for the covenant (Scots Affairs, i. 109). On 22 March of the following year he, in company with other leaders of the covenanters, went at the head of a thousand musketeers to Dalkeith House, and compelled the lord treasurer, Traquair, to deliver it up, when they discovered concealed in it an immense quantity of ammunition and arms (Balfour, ii. 321), and also the regalia, crown, sceptre, and sword, which they carried with them to Edinburgh (Rushworth, Historical Collections, ii. 908).

Notwithstanding his covenanting leanings, Home disapproved of the extreme policy of the Marquis of Argyll, attached his name in June 1641 to the band at Cumbernauld (Band, in Robert Baillie, Letters and Journals, ii. 468), and from this time gave the king his constant support. On 17 Nov. of this year he was nominated a member of the privy council (Balfour, Annals, iii. 67), but his name was deleted by the estates on the ground that he was opposed to the covenanters (ib. p. 148). For violently dispossessing Sir Patrick Hepburn of Waughton of Fast Castle and the adjacent lands of Wester Lumsden he was, in 1644, fined in the sum of 20,000l. Scots. Along with five other noblemen he voted against rendering the ‘raising of armes’ punishable by ‘forfaultry,’ and also against a similar punishment for ‘holding houses against the estates of the country’ (ib. iii. 200). In 1648 Home, in command of the Berwickshire regiment, served under the Duke of Hamilton in his expedition into England, which resulted in the disastrous rout at Preston. After the capture of the castle of Edinburgh in 1650 Cromwell sent Colonel Fenwick to seize Home Castle. Home was absent, but to the summons for surrender Cockburn, the governor, replied, ‘As for Home Castle, it stands on a rock.’ But soon after the assault began Cockburn surrendered, and the castle was garrisoned by Cromwell's soldiers. On 27 March 1651 Home was nominated by King Charles colonel for the shire of Berwick and the Merse (Balfour, Annals, iv. 278), his regiment forming part of the seventh brigade (ib. 301). After the final triumph of Cromwell in Scotland, Home's estates were forfeited. On the restoration of Charles II in 1660 he went to London as one of a special deputation to represent to the council and parliament ‘the grievances of this opprest kingdom’ (Nicoll, Diary, p. 279). In 1661 he was reinstated in his estates, and was named a member of the Scottish privy council. In 1664 he was appointed a member of the high commission for the execution of the law in church affairs. He died in December 1666.

By his wife, Lady Jane Douglas, daughter of William, second earl of Morton, Home had three sons: Alexander, fourth earl, who died without issue in 1674; James, fifth earl, who died without issue in 1687; and Charles, sixth earl, who took a prominent part in opposing the union, but died, while the result was still pending, on 20 Aug. 1706. Sir Thomas Hope, in his ‘Diary,’ frequently refers to some curious negotiations he had with the Countess of Home in regard to the compromising of a process by means of bribes.

[Spalding's Memorials of the Troubles (Spalding Club); Gordon's Scots Affairs (Spalding Club); Balfour's Annals; Whitelocke's Memorials; Robert Baillie's Letters and Journals (Bannatyne Club); Nicoll's Diary (Bannatyne Club); Douglas's Scottish Peerage (Wood), i. 738.]

T. F. H.