Archibald Campbell, 5th Earl of Argyll


Archibald Campbell, 5th Earl of Argyll

Archibald Campbell, 5th Earl of Argyll (1532/1537 - 1573) was a leading figure in the politics of Scotland during the reign of Mary, Queen of Scots and the early part of that of James VI.

Succeeding his father in the earldom in 1558, Argyll's inheritance made him the most powerful magnate in the kingdom. A devout Protestant, he soon became one of the leaders of the Lords of the Congregation along with his brother-in-law, Lord James Stewart, illegitimate son of James V of Scotland. Together, the two men negotiated with Sir William Cecil to secure English aid against the regent, Mary of Guise, and were largely responsible for the negotiation of the Treaty of Edinburgh in 1560, which saw the triumph of the Congregation and the withdrawal of French and English troops from Scotland.

With the young queen's return to Scotland in 1561, Argyll and Stewart, now Earl of Moray, retained their leading role in the kingdom, continuing to pursue an anglophilic policy. Their pre-eminence came to an end in 1565, with the queen's marriage to Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley, whose claims to the English throne did not endear him to Elizabeth I of England, leading Argyll and other Protestant leaders to rise in revolt. When the English failed to help their Scottish allies, Argyll, alone of the rebels, was able to remain in the Kingdom, due to his inassailable position in the Highlands. The failure of the English to come to the aid of his party led to the beginning of Argyll's disillusionment with his previous anglophilic policy.

Over the next two years, however, the shifts in Argyll's policies remained subtle, and he remained close to his old friend Moray. Argyll was tied to the assassinations of both David Rizzio in 1566 and of the King himself in 1567, and was horrified by the Queen's marriage to James Hepburn, 4th Earl of Bothwell. He joined with Moray and other Protestant leaders in fighting Mary and Bothwell in that year, leading to the capture of the queen at Carberry Hill, but broke with his former allies over the question of deposing the queen.

With Mary's escape from prison in 1568, Argyll became the leader of the Queen's Party, and led Mary's army in the defeat at Langside in that year. He continued to champion the queen's cause following her flight to England, but eventually reconciled with the regent Lennox in 1571, and lent his support to the King's party, as a means of restoring peace and lessening English meddling in Scottish affairs. He was appointed to the Privy Council that year, and became Lord Chancellor of Scotland in 1572.

Argyll, in his role as Campbell clan chief, was also heavily involved in the politics of Ulster during the 1560s. Although he initially hoped for an alliance with the English to secure his O'Donnell and MacDonald dependents against the encroachment of the O'Neill, English unwillingness to work with him ultimately led him to orchestrate a marriage alliance among the three feuding clans of Ulster, which would ultimately have major effects on Irish history with the eruption of the Hugh O'Neill rebellion in the 1590s.

Argyll died in 1573, childless, and was succeeded by his brother Colin.

Further reading

*Jane Dawson. "The Politics of Religion in the Age of Mary, Queen of Scots: The Earl of Argyll and the Struggle for Britain and Ireland". Cambridge, 2002.


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Argyll, Archibald Campbell, 5th Earl of, Lord Campbell, Lord Lorne — ▪ Scottish Protestant leader [1532 73] born c. 1532 died Sept. 12, 1573       Scottish Protestant who supported Mary, Queen of Scots.       Campbell succeeded his father, Archibald, the 4th earl, in 1558. He was an adherent of John Knox and… …   Universalium

  • Colin Campbell, 6th Earl of Argyll — (c. 1541/1546 – October 1584) was a Scottish nobleman and politician. He was appointed to the Lord Chancellorship of Scotland. Biography He was the eldest son of Archibald Campbell, 4th Earl of Argyll and his second wife Margaret Graham. He was… …   Wikipedia

  • Colin Campbell, 1st Earl of Argyll — (c. 1433 – 10 May 1493) was a Scottish nobleman. Biography He was the son of Gillespic (Archibald) Campbell, Master of Campbell and Elizabeth Somerville. Elizabeth Somerville was the daughter of John Somerville, 3rd Lord Somerville and Helen… …   Wikipedia

  • Archibald Campbell Argyll — can refer to more than one person:*Archibald Campbell, 2nd Earl of Argyll (died 1513), Lord Chancellor of Scotland *Archibald Campbell, 4th Earl of Argyll (1557 ndash;1558) *Archibald Campbell, 5th Earl of Argyll (1532/7 ndash;1573) *Archibald… …   Wikipedia

  • Argyll, Archibald Campbell, 1st Marquess and 8th Earl of, Lord Campbell, Lord Lorne, Lord Of Kintyre — ▪ Scottish politician [1607 61] born 1607? died May 27, 1661, Edinburgh, Scot.  leader of Scotland s anti Royalist party during the English Civil Wars between King Charles I and Parliament. He guided his country to a brief period of independence… …   Universalium

  • John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll — Field Marshal John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll, 1st Duke of Greenwich KG (October 10, 1678 – October 4, 1743), known as Ian Ruaifh Cean or Red John of the Battles [http://www.gencircles.com/users/thomasholme/1/data/4267] , was a Scottish soldier …   Wikipedia

  • Montrose, James Graham, 5th Earl and 1st Marquess of, Earl of Kincardine, Lord Graham and Mugdock — ▪ Scottish general born 1612 died May 21, 1650, Edinburgh, Scot.  Scottish general who won a series of spectacular victories in Scotland for King Charles I of Great Britain during the English Civil Wars.       Montrose inherited the earldom of… …   Universalium

  • Earl Cawdor — Earl Cawdor, of Castlemartin in the County of Pembroke, is a title in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. It was created in 1827 for John Campbell, 2nd Baron Cawdor. This branch of Clan Campbell descends from Sir John Campbell (died 1546), third… …   Wikipedia

  • Campbell Baronets — Several baronetcies have been granted to the Campbell family (listed in order of territorial designation) as follows:Campbell of Aberuchil, PerthCreated in the Baronetage of Nova Scotia c.1668 *Sir Colin Campbell, 1st Baronet (died 16 Feb 1704)… …   Wikipedia

  • Earl of Breadalbane and Holland — Arms of the Earl and Marquess of Breadalbane …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.