Sir John Livingston of Callendar

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John Livingston of Callendar

Birthdate: (52)
Birthplace: Callendar House,Stirling,Stirlingshire,Scotland
Death: September 14, 1402 (52)
Homildon Hill, Wooler, Northumberland, England, UK (Killed in action, Battle of Homildon Hill)
Immediate Family:

Son of Sir William Livingston, MP and Christian de Callendar
Husband of (daughter) Menteith, of Kerse and Agnes Douglas, of Dalkeith
Father of John Livingston; Robert Livingston; James Livingston; Sir Alexander Livingston; Sir William Livingston of Balcastell and Kilsyth and 4 others
Brother of Walter Livingston; William De Livingston, Laird of Callendar, Sir; Alexander Livingston; Patrick Livingston and Eupheme De Kirkbride

Occupation: Died at Battle of Humbleton Hill, of Callendar, Knoght, nobleman., Sheriff of Clackmannan in 1352, Lord of Calendar, Laird of Callendar
Managed by: Andrew Porter Glendinning
Last Updated:

About Sir John Livingston of Callendar

John Livingston (son of William Livingston and Christian de Callendar) was born 1346 in Callendar, Scotland, and died 14 Sep 1402, slain at the Battle of Homildon Hill, Wooler, Northumberland, Eng..

  • He married (1) unknown menteith on Abt. 1368 in Scotland.
  • He married (2) Agnes Douglas on 15 Aug 1381 in Marriage contract, still preserved, dilapidated condition, in charter chest of the Earls of Morton.

Children of 1st wife:

  • 1. Alexander Livingstone, of Phildes (Fildes)
  • 2. Elizabeth Livingstone
  • 3. Eupham Livingstone
  • 4. Janet Livingstone, of Callendar, b. Abt 1395
  • 5. James Livingstone, of Callendar,1st Lord Livingston, b. Abt 1410

Children of 2nd wife

  • 1. Archibald Livingston
  • 2. William Livingston who became 1st Viscount of Kilsyth;
  • 3. Henry Livingston who was Knight Commander of the order of St. John of Jerusalem in Scotland and Preceptor of Torphichen. 
  • 4. Sir John Livingston

Notes for John Livingston:

From The Livingstons of Callendar, etc by Edwin Brockholst Livingston 1920:

Sir John was, on Jan. 17, 1398-99, a member of the Duke of Rothesay's Council, the grandson of Robert II. In Feb. 1389-90 Sir John Livingston of Callendar had been appointed an arbitrator in a dispute between the Abbot of Cambuskenneth and William Fenton, and his name appears, also sometimes coupled with that of his eldest son and heir Alexander, as witness to various charters of that abbey, and charters of the Fleming family and others, circa 1899-140l. In July 1402 Sir John was an auditor of the accounts of the above Duke of Albany when Chamberlain of Scotland; and two months later he fell in battle at Homildon Hill in Northumberland, where the Scots under the Earl of Douglas were defeated by the English under Sir Henry Percy, the famous "hotspur,' and the Earl of March, Sept. 14, 1402.

The battle was famously recounted in Shakespeare’s Henry IV. Although Humbleton Hill is the modern name of the site, over the centuries it has been variously named Homildon, Hameldun, Holmedon, and Homilheugh.

Married: to (first name unknown) Menteith, daughter of John Menteith of Kerse.

Sir John Livingston and ? Menteith had the following children:

  1. Sir Alexander Livingston of Callendar
  2. Robert Livingston, Burgess of Stirling, reputed to have been the ancestor of the Livingstons of Westquarter.
  3. John Livingston, reputed to have been the progenitor of the Livingstons of Banton or Ballintoun in Stirlingshire.
  4. James Livingston who got into trouble with the officers of the Exchequer in 1417, in an attempt to evade the Linlithgow customs over the export of some wool.

Sir John Livingston married second on August 5, 1381 to Agnes Douglas, daughter of Sir James Douglas of Dalkeith and had the following children:

  1. Archibald Livingston, who was a "natural idiot", and after his father's death was placed under the charge of his uncles William and Walter Livingston and Sir James Douglas of Dalkeith. (for another case of insanity, see James Livingston, 2nd Lord Livingston of Callendar)
  2. William Livingston who became 1st Viscount of Kilsyth; his great X3 grand daughter Barbara Livingston married {Reverend} Alexander Livingston circa 1570.
  3. Henry Livingston who was Knight Commander of the order of St. John of Jerusalem in Scotland and Preceptor of Torphichen.
  4. Sir John is named as one of the executors in the 2 Wills of Sir James Douglas dated 9/30/1390 and 12/19/1392. In the first Will a bequest of a ring with a St. Christopher was to Sir John Livingston, but not mentioned in the second.


  1. The Scots Peerage: Founded on Wood's Edition of Sir Robert Douglas's Peerage of Scotland; Containing an Historical and Genealogical Account of the Nobility of that Kingdom, Volume 5 (Google eBook) James Balfour Paul D. Douglas, 1908 - Nobility.  "LIVINGSTON, VISCOUNT KILSYTH Page 185-186.

Homildon Hill

◦In September of 1402 a considerable army was raised, and sent into England under Douglas to imitate the great exploit of his father. He succeeded so far as to reach Durham, and was returning to Scotland in great confidence, with a rich harvest of plunder. When the reevers had got as far as Wooler they heard that Hotspur and the apostate March were coming to meet them with a large force.

They took up their position on a piece of strong ground called Homildon, Hill. It is said that Hotspur was for an instantaneous charge, as at Otterburn, but that he was stopped by March, who better knew both the strength and the weakness of a Scots force. Formed as hey were in a compact mass on the hill, the bowmen were set to play on them, and did so with deadly effect. The tactic of Douglas should have been, after Bruce's at Bannockburn, to charge the archers with cavalry. Though this arm existed in abundance, however, it was not used till too late. The Scots leader, indeed, seems to have lost head, for he allowed his troops to be butchered around him. So splendid was the English archery, that Douglas himself, though he wore a coat of mail of notable excellence, had five arrow-wounds, though none of them was mortal. A young knight, Sir John Swinton, gained fame by exhorting his countrymen to charge the enemy, and at all events die fighting-and he gave example by a dash on them with a few followers; but these were insufficient for the purpose, and were all speedily killed. It was a complete victory for England, remarkable for the number of eminent Scots taken or killed. It was entirely the reverse of Otterburn, both in the result and the method of attaining it; for, as Froissart says, there had been no bow drawn here-at Homildon all the work was done with the bow, and there was no hand-to-hand fighting.

The strength of a Scots army lay in the spearmen and the axemen. These were, terrible in hand-to-hand conflict, but their enemies had a weapon which cut them off froth their opportunity. It is difficult now to realize the power of the English bow and cloth-yard shaft. Much faith was given to the cross-bow, because it was bent up to its check by placing the foot on the bow and drag-ing the string with the hands, so that the strength of both arms and legs was given to the drawing of it; but it prove a paltry weapon beside the bows drawn by strong yeomen-bows so large that the fitting length was that which allowed the feathering of the arrow to touch the ear. Gunpowder had now been for some years in use. Barbour is supposed to speak of a gun of some kind when he says the English used " crackys of weir," or cracks of war, in the affair with the Scots reevers in Weirdale, before the death of Robert the Bruce. But hitherto in the home wars the long shaft shot from the upright bow was still the prevailing missile.


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Sir John Livingston of Callendar's Timeline

Callendar House,Stirling,Stirlingshire,Scotland
Age 25
Stirling, Stirlingshire, Scotland
Age 27
Age 31
Age 31
Age 35
Balcastle, Kilsyth, Stirlingshire, Scotland
September 14, 1402
Age 52
Wooler, Northumberland, England, UK