It dates from the 11th century, and once belonged to the Ogilvies, from whom it passed in 1535 to the Gordons.
From 1638 to 1811, when the title expired, it gave the title of earl to the Ogilvies, whose name was adopted in addition to his own by Sir Lewis Alexander Grant, when he succeeded, as 5th earl of Seafield, to the surviving dignities.
Montrose arrived a day too late for Marston Moor (2nd of July 1644); Rupert took his contingent; he entered Scotland in disguise, met the ill-armed Irish levies under Colkitto, raised the Gordons and Ogilvies, who supplied his cavalry, raised the fighting Macdonalds, Camerons and Macleans; in six pitched battles he routed Argyll and all the Covenanting warriors of Scotland, and then, deserted by Colkitto and the Gordons, and surprised by Leslie's cavalry withdrawn from England, was defeated at Philiphaugh near Selkirk, while men and women of his Irish contingent were shot or hanged months after the battle.
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