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John Middleton, 1st Earl of Middleton (c. 1608 - 3 July 1674) was a Scottish army officer, who belonged to a Kincardineshire family which had held lands at Middleton since the 12th century.

In early life he served as a soldier in France; later he fought against Charles I both in England and in Scotland, being especially prominent at the Battle of Philiphaugh and in other operations against the great Montrose. He held a high command in the Scottish army which marched to rescue the king in 1648, and he was taken prisoner after the Battle of Preston. He joined Charles II when that monarch reached Scotland in 1650, but he was soon at variance with the party which at that time was dominant in church and state and was only restored to favor after doing a public penance at Dundee. He was a captive for the second time after the Battle of Worcester, where he commanded the Royalist cavalry, but he escaped from the Tower of London to Paris.

In 1653, Middleton was chosen by Charles II to head the projected rising in Scotland. He reached Scotland in February 1654, but the insurrection was a complete failure. Its leader, who could not be held responsible for this result, remained in Scotland until 1655, when he rejoined Charles II, who created him Earl of Middleton in 1656.

He returned to England with the King in 1660 and was appointed commander-in-chief of the troops in Scotland and Lord High Commissioner to the Parliament of Scotland, which he opened in January 1661. He was an ardent advocate of the restoration of episcopacy, this being one reason which led to serious dissensions between the Earl of Lauderdale and himself, and in 1663 he was deprived of his offices. He was afterwards (1667) governor of Tangier, Morocco, where he died on 3 July 1674.

He married Grizel Durham, who died in September 1666. They had three children together:

Middleton's second wife was Martha Carey (1635/6–1706; married 16 December 1667), daughter of Henry Carey, 2nd Earl of Monmouth and his wife Martha.


Peerage of Scotland
New creation Earl of Middleton
Succeeded by
Charles Middleton


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