Bruce, Thomas (1599 -1663)

Thomas Bruce was born in Edinburgh in 1599, the second son of Edward Bruce, 1st Lord Kinloss, and his wife Magdalene Clerk.  He succeeded to the Scottish peerage as 3rd Lord Bruce of Kinloss in August 1613, aged 13, on the death of his elder brother Edward Bruce, 2nd Lord Kinloss, who was killed in a duel with Edward Sackville, 4th Earl of Dorset.

In 1624, King James I granted to Thomas the property of Houghton House near Ampthill in Bedfordshire, which became the principal residence of the Bruce family for over a century. He maintained close ties with the court during King Charles I's reign, and was created Earl of Elgin on 21 June 1633. He was also created Baron Bruce of Whorlton in the Peerage of England on 29 July 1641. Despite the royal favour, in the Civil War Thomas Bruce himself took the side of the Parliamentarians, serving on several county committees.

He married Anne Chichester (d.1627), a daughter of Sir Robert Chichester of Raleigh, and his first wife, Frances Harington, daughter of John Harington, 1st Baron Harington of Exton. Anne died on 20 March 1626/27, the day after having given birth to an only child.  He married, secondly, Lady Diana Cecil (d. 1658), daughter of William Cecil, 2nd Earl of Exeter, and widow of Henry De Vere, 18th Earl of Oxford. Thomas was succeeded by his son and heir, Robert Bruce, 2nd Earl of Elgin and 1st Earl of Ailesbury (1626-1685).


Seat / Residence(s): Houghton House
Stamp(s) Stamp Information
Title: Bruce, Thomas (1599 - 1663) (Stamp 1)
Arms: A saltire in chief on a canton ermine a lion rampant
Dimensions (height x width): 87mm x 53mm
Coronet: Earl
Heraldic Charges: canton, on a, Heraldic Charges: lion rampant, Heraldic Charges: saltire