John Balfour, 1st Baron Kinross

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The Lord Kinross

John Balfour.jpg
Lord Justice General
In office
1899–1905
MonarchVictoria
Edward VII
Preceded byJames Robertson
Succeeded byAndrew Graham Murray
Member of Parliament for Clackmannan and Kinross
In office
29 April 1880 – December 1899
Preceded bySir William Adam
Succeeded byEugene Wason
Personal details
Spouse(s)Lilias, Lady Kinross
Children5

John Blair Balfour, 1st Baron Kinross PC QC (11 July 1837 – 22 January 1905) was a Scottish lawyer and Liberal politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1880 to 1899.

"the Lord Advocate"
Balfour as caricatured by Spy (Leslie Ward) in Vanity Fair, May 1886

Life[edit]

6 Rothesay Terrace, Edinburgh (left)

Balfour was born in the manse at Clackmannan, the son of Rev. P Balfour, minister of Clackmannan and his wife Jane Ramsay Blair, daughter of John Blair. He was educated at the Edinburgh Academy and Edinburgh University, becoming an advocate of the Scottish bar in 1861. He served as Advocate Depute from 1870 to 1872, and in 1880 was made a Queen's Counsel. He was a Deputy Lieutenant for Edinburgh.[1]

At the 1880 general election, Balfour stood unsuccessfully for parliament at Ayrshire North but in a by election six months later was elected Liberal Member of Parliament for Clackmannan and Kinross.[2] He was appointed Solicitor General for Scotland in 1880 and in 1881 he succeeded this appointment by becoming Lord Advocate, a post he held for four years. In 1882 he became a Privy Counsellor.[2] He served as the elected Dean of the Faculty of Advocates twice: from 1885 to 1886, and from 1889 to 1892.[3]

In 1892, on the return of the Liberals to power, Balfour was again appointed Lord Advocate, finally resigning on the fall of Lord Rosebery's government in 1895. In 1899 he was appointed Lord Justice General of Scotland and Lord President of the Court of Session. In the 1902 Coronation Honours list it was announced that he would receive a barony,[4] and on 15 July 1902 he was created Baron Kinross, of Glascune in the County of Haddingtonshire.[5][2] He took the oath and his seat in the House of Lords the following month, on 7 August.[6]

Balfour died 22 January 1905, at his home at 6 Rothesay Terrace[7] in Edinburgh, and was buried in the "Lords Row" in Dean Cemetery, Edinburgh. His descendants are buried with him. [2]

Baron Kinross monument, Dean Cemetery

Family[edit]

Balfour married Lilias Oswald Mackenzie daughter of Donald Mackenzie, styled Lord Mackenzie, a Lord of Session, in 1869. They had one son, Patrick Balfour, 2nd Baron Kinross (1870-1939) who lived with the family and was trained as an advocate.[8]

He married secondly in 1877 the Hon. Marianne Eliza Moncrieff,[9] daughter of James Moncreiff, 1st Baron Moncreiff. [2] The couple had five children, 4 sons and 1 daughter.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Debretts House of Commons and the Judicial Bench 1881
  2. ^ a b c d e Omond 1912.
  3. ^ 'KINROSS', Who Was Who, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 1920–2016; online edn, Oxford University Press, 2014; online edn, April 2014 accessed 18 Oct 2017
  4. ^ "The Coronation Honours". The Times (36804). London. 26 June 1902. p. 5.
  5. ^ "No. 27455". The London Gazette. 18 July 1902. p. 4587.
  6. ^ "The Parliament - House of Lords". The Times (36841). London. 8 August 1902. p. 4.
  7. ^ Edinburgh Post Office Directory 1900
  8. ^ Edinburgh Post Office Directory 1900
  9. ^ "Sitter: Hon Mrs Balfour". Lafayette Negative Archive.

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Sir William Patrick Adam
Member of Parliament for Clackmannan and Kinross
1880–1899
Succeeded by
Eugene Wason
Legal offices
Preceded by
John Macdonald
Solicitor General for Scotland
1880–1881
Succeeded by
Alexander Asher
Preceded by
John McLaren
Lord Advocate
1881–1885
Succeeded by
John Macdonald
Preceded by
John Macdonald
Lord Advocate
1886
Succeeded by
John Macdonald
Preceded by
Sir Charles John Pearson
Lord Advocate
1892–1895
Succeeded by
Sir Charles John Pearson
Preceded by
James Robertson
Lord Justice General
1899–1905
Succeeded by
Andrew Graham Murray
Peerage of the United Kingdom
New creation Baron Kinross
1902–1905
Succeeded by
Patrick Balfour