Archibald Primrose, Lord Carrington
The son of James Primrose (d. 1641) by Catherine, daughter of Richard Lawson of Boghall, he succeeded his father, who had held the office for upwards of forty years, as Clerk to the Privy Council on 2 September 1641.
Following the victory of Kilsyth he joined Montrose, was taken prisoner at Philiphaugh on 13 September 1645, he was tried by the Parliament of St. Andrews the following year, and being found guilty of treason only saved his life through the intercession of the Marquess of Argyll. Following his release at the end of 1646, he was knighted by King Charles I. Subsequently he joined Charles II and was made a Baronet, of Carrington in the County of Selkirk, dated 1 August 1651, at Woodhouse, during the march to Worcester.
As a consequence of his loyalty to the Crown his estate was sequestrated and his debtors prohibited from paying what they owed to him. He was also deprived of his office by the Act of Classes, the decree against him being sealed on 10 March 1649. Upon the repeal of this Act, and having given testimony of the satisfaction afforded by him to The Church, he was declared capable again of office on 10 January 1651, and was appointed Clerk to the Committee of Estates on 6 June following.
At the Restoration he was appointed Lord Clerk Register by Letters Patent dated 7 August 1660, and on 14 February 1661 was nominated a Lord of Session with the judicial title Lord Carrington. At the same time he was appointed a Lord of Exchequer, and a Privy Counsellor. He was the principal author of the Rescissory Act 1661, which ended Presbyterianism until the Act of 1690 re-established it again.
The enmity of the Duke of Lauderdale forced him to resign as Lord of Exchequer and Lord Clerk Register on 11 June 1676, in exchange for the far less lucrative one of Lord Justice General. He was deprived of this office in 1678.
Primrose died in November 1679, and was buried within Dalmeny church. He and his father between them had served the Crown successively for a hundred years all but one.
He was succeeded in the baronetcy by his eldest son William, whose son James was created Viscount of Primrose in 1703. Primrose's fourth son and namesake Archibald was created Earl of Rosebery in 1703 and was the ancestor of among others Prime Minister Archibald Primrose, 5th Earl of Rosebery.
- Dalrymple, Sir David, of Hailes, Bt., & others, An Historical Account of the Senators of the College of Justice of Scotland from its Institution in 1532, Edinburgh, 1849, pps:352-355.
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