Lyle, Robert (DNB00)

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LYLE, ROBERT, second Baron Lyle (d. 1497?), justiciary of Scotland, was only son of Robert, first Baron Lyle, by his second wife, Margaret Wallace. In 1471 it appeared that he had been wrongly put in possession of Gaithop in Ettrick Forest by Lord Boyd, to the prejudice of George Tait, to whom it had been let. He must have acquired the lands before November 1469, the date of the overthrow of the Boyds. In March 1472 he was an ambassador for the conclusion of a truce with England, and was probably on intimate terms with James Douglas, ninth earl of Douglas [q. v.], then a pensioner at the English court. Lyle was soon afterwards accused of treasonable correspondence with Douglas, but on 22 March 1481–2 he was tried before an assize in parliament and acquitted. In 1484 and 1485 he was engaged on embassies to England (cf. Letters and Papers illustrative of the Reigns of Richard III and Henry VII, ed. Gairdner, i. 59, 61, 64), and received charters of lands in Renfrewshire and Forfarshire. In 1485 he was a lord in council. In May 1488 he is stated to have been one of those (chiefly lowland nobles) opposed to James III, and went to England with others under a safe-conduct; he was in England when James was killed on 11 June 1488, and returned before 25 July. Lyle now became great justiciary of Scotland, and was one of the commissioners for opening parliament on 18 Oct. 1488. He was one of those entrusted with the charge of Renfrewshire, the Lennox, and the lower ward of Clydesdale during the king's minority (Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland, ii. 208), but he joined the great conspiracy headed by Mar, Lennox, Forbes, and the Master of Huntly to avenge the death of James III, and was forfeited on 28 June 1489. His forfeiture was, however, rescinded on 5 Feb. 1489-90; he became justiciary again, and had further charters of lands given him. On 26 Feb. 1490-1 he appointed ambassador to Spain about the young king's marriage. In 1492 he was one of the auditors of the exchequer (see his signature reproduced in Accounts of the Lord High Treasurer, 1493, p. 192). The last mention of his name seems to be the notice sent to him in 1497 of an intended English raid, and he is presumed to have died in that year. He is said to have married a daughter of John, master of Seton, but if so she must have died very early, as he married before 1458 (Excheq. Rolls of Scotland, vi. 456) Elizabeth Douglas, daughter of Archibald, fifth earl of Angus. He left Robert, third lord Lyle, George Nicholas, John, and three daughters.

[Douglas's Peerage of Scotland, ed. Wiyd, ii. 164; Acts of the Parliament of Scotland, vol. ii. passim; Reg. Magni Sigilli Regum Scot. 1424-1513; Exchequer Rolls of Scotland, vols. vi-x.; Anderson's Scottish Nation.]

W. A. J. A.