Online Encyclopedia

WILLIAM

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V25, Page 141 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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WILLIAM, the 3rd earl of his line, whose earldom of Orkney was a Norwegian dignity, was made chancellor of Scotland in 1454 and Lord Sinclair and earl of Caithness in 1455. He took some part in public affairs in Scotland, and when in 1470 the Orkney Islands were ceded by Norway to King James III. he resigned all his rights therein to his sovereign and was known merely as earl of Caithness. His eldest son, William, having offended his father by his wasteful habits, the earl settled his earldom on his eldest son by another marriage, also called William, who was killed at Flodden in 1513. The elder William, however, inherited the title of Lord Sinclair, and the family was thus split into two main branches. John, the 3rd earl, was killed in 1529 while attempting to seize the Orkney Islands.
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