James Stewart Mackenzie

On the wall of the south transept of Westminster Abbey is a white marble monument to Scottish politician James Stewart Mackenzie. This shows a portrait relief medallion of James, with a telescope, square and pair of callipers. The sculptor was Joseph Nollekens. It was placed near the monument to his uncle John, Duke of Argyll and Greenwich. The inscription reads:

This monument is erected to the memory of the Right Honble. JAMES STEWART MACKENZIE Lord Privy-Seal of Scotland. A man whose virtues did honour to humanity. He cultivated and encouraged sciences; and, during a long life, he was generous, without ostentation, and secretly charitable; friendly, hospitable, and ever ready to oblige. He was beloved and revered by all: He had many friends, and not one enemy. He died on the 6th of April 1800 in the 82nd year of his age. He was married to ELIZABETH daughter of JOHN Duke of Argyll and Greenwich, his uncle. This simple monument is meant as an expression of the gratitude of one who had the greatest obligations to that excellent man; and who, during the space of 42 years, had the happiness to enjoy, without any interruption, his esteem and friendship.

The coat of arms shows two shields conjoined, sculpted and painted.

He was born on 23rd February 1719, a son of James Stewart, 2nd Earl of Bute, and his wife Anne (Campbell). When his father died he assumed the surname and estates of his great grandfather Sir George Mackenzie. He was educated at Eton and later represented several Scottish constituencies. There were no surviving children of his marriage with Lady Elizabeth Campbell. He was made envoy-extraordinary to the king of Sardinia and in 1763 became Lord Privy Seal of Scotland. The instruments shown on the memorial show that he was an amateur scientist. He died in London but is not buried in the Abbey.


23rd February 1719


8th April 1800


South Transept

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James Stewart Mackenzie
James Stewart Mackenzie memorial

This image can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library

Image © 2024 Dean and Chapter of Westminster