Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Livingstone, Alexander (d.1450?)

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LIVINGSTONE, Sir ALEXANDER (d. 1450?), of Callendar, guardian of James II of Scotland, was eldest son of Sir John Livingstone of Callendar, who was killed at the battle of Homildon on 14 Sept. 1402. His mother was a daughter of Menteith of Carse. On 23 Feb. 1423–4 he received a safe-conduct till 30 April as hostage for James I at Durham (Cal. Documents relating to Scotland, iv. entry 942). He was also one of the jury at the trial of Murdac, duke of Albany, in 1424. After the assassination of James I in 1437 Livingstone seems to have been entrusted with the guardianship of the infant prince James II. To frustrate the designs of Sir William Crichton [q. v.], he aided the queen in removing the prince to Stirling in 1439. Shortly afterwards he came to terms with Crichton, and on 3 Aug. he forcibly entered the queen's chamber at Stirling, and placed her under restraint; but difficulties were finally arranged between them, and by a solemn indenture of 4 Sept. Livingstone was to retain the custody of the king till his majority (Acta Parl. Scot. ii. 54).

In 1443 Livingstone entered into a coalition with the Douglases against Crichton, and although through the influence of the Douglases he was in 1445 denounced a rebel and imprisoned, he gained his liberty on payment of a large sum of money, and was subsequently restored to the king's favour. In 1449 he was appointed justiciary of Scotland. The same year he was named one of the commissioners to England, and on 18 Sept. he signed a prorogation of the truce till 19 Nov. following (Cal. Documents relating to Scotland, iv. entry 1216). Towards the close of the year he, however, fell again into disfavour, and was imprisoned in Blackness, while his son Alexander, at a parliament held at Edinburgh on 19 Jan. 1449–50, was condemned to be executed on the Castle Hill. About the father nothing further is known.

By a daughter of Dundas of Dundas he had two sons—Sir James Livingstone of Callendar, and Alexander, ancestor of the Livingstones of Dunipace—and two daughters, Janet, married to Sir James Hamilton of Cadzow, and Elizabeth to James Dundas of Dundas.

[Auchinleck Chron.; Histories of Boece, Major, and Lindsay of Pitscottie; Exchequer Rolls of Scotland, vol. iii.; Cal. Documents relating to Scotland, vol. iv.; Douglas's Scottish Peerage (Wood), ii. 124.]

T. F. H.