Andrew Hay, 8th Earl of Erroll

Andrew Hay, 8th Earl of Erroll (c.1531 – 8 October 1585) was a Scottish nobleman and politician.

The Earl of Erroll
Arms of the Earl of Erroll
12th Lord High Constable of Scotland
In office
Preceded byGeorge Hay
Succeeded byFrancis Hay
Personal details
Errol, Perthshire, Scotland
Died8 October 1585
Perth, Perthshire
Spouse(s)Lady Jean Hay
Agnes Sinclair


He was the son of George Hay by his first wife, Margaret Robertson.[1] His father inherited the earldom after the death of his uncle, William Hay, 6th Earl of Erroll, who died leaving only a baby girl, Jean Hay.[2]

The Peerage of Scotland is unique in that it allows the titles to descend along the female lines; Jean could have conceivable inherited the earldom as Countess of Erroll. Instead, the crown negotiated for George to inherit, with the condition that he pay 4,000 merks to the sixth earl's widow, Helen, Dowager Countess of Erroll, and that one of his sons marry Jean Hay "at the King’s pleasure."[2][3][4]

Andrew Hay died at his house of Logiealmomd in Perthshire in 1585.[5]

Marriage and issue

He married his cousin Lady Jean Hay, c.June 1552, daughter of the sixth Earl of Erroll and had issue. Sir James Balfour Paul writes that documents show King James VI and I frequently getting involved in the Earl of Erroll's family affairs and Erroll's clear displeasure with his interference.[6]

  1. Alexander Hay, deaf-mute, was set aside in the succession. In 1582, King James nominated Dundee surgeon William Duncan to accompany Alexander to France to seek medical assistance. Alexander became of age in July 1584 and was declared "insane" in 1596.
  2. Francis Hay, 9th Earl of Erroll
  3. Thomas Hay, also had some physical and mental issues; diagnosed "insane" in 1596
  4. Lady Helen (Helenor), married Alexander Livingstone, 1st Earl of Linlithgow

His first wife died in August 1570. In 1581, he married Agnes, daughter of George Sinclair, 4th Earl of Caithness and Elizabeth, daughter of William Graham, 2nd Earl of Montrose. They had three children:

  1. George Hay, father of John Hay, 12th Earl of Erroll
  2. William Hay
  3. Lady Margaret Hay, died unmarried

His second wife, Lady Agnes survived him and married Alexander Gordon, son of George Gordon, 5th Earl of Huntly.

On 14 April 1604, the Privy Council of Scotland charged George Hay with having "violently seized upon his stepfather" and helped him captive in the fortress of Blairfudie in Edinburgh. The council ordered him reveal Gordon's whereabouts to his mother; on 14 December 1619 the council formally ordered George to keep the peace with his half-brother, Alexander Gordon, over their mother's estate.[7]

In 1613, William Hay was charged by the Privy Council along with three others (Alexander Hay of Brunthill and his sons Patrick and George) for "violently molesting" his mother. They did not appear in front of the council and were denounced. They were later imprisoned. William Hay was released 7 December 1616.[8]

The eighth earl also had an illegitimate daughter Agnes, who married Patrick Bruce of Fingask.[8]


  1. Mackintosh, John (1898). Historic Earls and Earldoms of Scotland.
  2. James Balfour Paul (1906). The Scots Peerage: Volume 3. D. Douglas. pp. 568–569.
  3. Wormald, Jenny, Lords and Men in Scotland, John Donald (1985), 406.
  4. "The Hays of Erroll". The Spectator. 38: 579. 27 May 1865.
  5. The Melros Papers, vol. 1 (Edinburgh, 1837), pp. 305-6.
  6. Balfour Paul, pp. 571-572.
  7. Balfour Paul, pp. 572-573.
  8. Balfour Paul, pp. 573.
Military offices
Preceded by
George Hay
Lord High Constable of Scotland
Succeeded by
Francis Hay
Peerage of Scotland
Preceded by
George Hay

Earl of Erroll

Succeeded by
Francis Hay
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