Stewart, Alexander (d.1701) (DNB00)
STEWART, ALEXANDER, fourth Earl of Moray (d. 1701), secretary of state for Scotland, was the second son of James, fourth earl (who was a grandson of James Stewart, earl of Moray, d. 1592 [q. v.]), by Lady Margaret Home, elder daughter of Alexander, first earl of Home, and coheiress with her sister Anne, duchess of Lauderdale, of her brother James, second earl of Home. He succeeded his father on 4 March 1653. In 1654 he was under Cromwell's act of grace fined 3,500l., which was reduced to 1,166l. 13s. (Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1655, p. 72); but in January 1655–6 he presented a petition for the remission of his fine, because he ‘was a child during the late differences,’ and because his estate was ‘small and much charged’ (ib. 1655–6, p. 152). On 22 Jan. 1656–7 it was ordered that, on his giving security to the council of Scotland to pay 500l. before 1 Feb. 1657–8, the residue of his fine should be remitted (ib. 1656–7, p. 248).
He was admitted justice-general on 1 June 1675, appointed a lord of the treasury on 27 Sept. 1678, nominated an extraordinary lord of session on 17 July 1680, and on 2 Nov. of the same year appointed secretary of state in succession to Lauderdale. Previous to his appointment he was known as an active opponent of the covenanters. In 1675 he specially exerted himself in putting down conventicles in Elgin (Wodrow, History, ii. 284), and in March 1678 he was deputed by the council to London to encourage the king in his policy of repression (ib. p. 419). Afterwards he co-operated with James II, not only in his unconstitutional procedure, but in his endeavours to introduce Roman catholicism. In 1686, when an attempt was made to obtain toleration for the catholics, he was nominated for this purpose lord high commissioner to the Scottish parliament, and in the following year he was made a knight of the Thistle. At the Revolution he was deprived of all his offices. He died at Donibristle on 1 Nov. 1701, and was carried to Darnaway and buried in the church of Dyke on 24 Jan. 1701–2. By his wife Emilia, daughter of Sir William Balfour of Pitcullo, lieutenant of the Tower of London, he had four sons: James, lord Doune, who predeceased his father in 1685; Charles, fifth earl, who was created a baronet of Nova Scotia on 23 Sept. 1681, and died on 7 Oct. 1735, aged 75; John; and Francis (d. 1739), who succeeded his brother as sixth earl in 1735.[Cal. State Papers, Dom. during the Commonwealth; Wodrow's Hist. of the Sufferings of the Kirk of Scotland; Lauder of Fountainhall's Historical Notices; Douglas's Scottish Peerage (Wood), ii. 260.]