The CLAN FRASER OF LOVAT, of which Lord Lovat is the chief, are of Norman descent.
The name of DE FRISELL, their original designation, occurs in the roll of Battle Abbey, and establishes their advent under the standard of WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR.HUGH FRASER, one of the hostages for the ransom of JAMES I of Scotland, in 1424, was, by that monarch granted the barony of Kinnell, and is sometimes known as Lord Lovat.
From East Lothian, their earliest resting-place in Scotland, the Frasers diverged into Tweeddale in the 12th and 13th centuries, and subsequently into Inverness-shire and Aberdeenshire.
Oliver Fraser, the chief of the clan, built and gave his name to Oliver Castle, which continued in after-times their principal feudal hold.
Dying ca 1440, he was succeeded by his son,
THOMAS, who died in 1450, and left a son,
HUGH, created a lord of parliament, as LORD LOVAT, or Lord Fraser of Lovat, in 1458-64.
This succession continued uniterruptedly until
HUGH, 9th Lord, dying in 1696, was succeeded by his great-uncle,
THOMAS, 10th Lord, 3rd son of the 7th Lord; who, on his decease, in 1696, was succeeded by his son, the ill-fated
SIMON (1667-1747), 11th Lord Lovat, "The Fox", who was beheaded on Tower Hill in 1747, for his participation in the rising of 1745, left a son and successor,
GENERAL THE HON SIMON FRASER OF LOVAT (1726-82),
a gallant though unwilling adherent of CHARLES EDWARD STUART (The Young Pretender), and subsequently, having obtained a full and free pardon, a distinguished soldier in the British army, with which he served at Louisbourg and Quebec, and in the defence of Portugal in 1762.He died childless in 1782, and was succeeded by his half-brother,
COLONEL THE HON ARCHIBALD CAMPBELL FRASER OF LOVAT (1736-1815), the 20th chief in succession from SIMON FRASER, of Inverness-shire; the rights of both Lovat and Stricken having centred in his person exactly 227 years from the time when the 2nd son of the 6th Lord Lovat acquired the estate of Stricken.
The Heir Presumptive is the present holder's younger brother, the Hon Jack Fraser, Master of Lovat (b 1984).
- Archibald Campbell Fraser (d 1815);
- Thomas Alexander Fraser, 12th Lord Lovat (1802–75) (Lordship restored in 1854; barony of Lovat created in 1837);
- Simon Fraser, 13th Lord Lovat (1828–87);
- Simon Joseph Fraser, 14th Lord Lovat (1871–1933);
- Brigadier Simon Christopher Joseph Fraser, 15th Lord Lovat (1911–95);
- Simon Fraser, 16th Lord Lovat (b 1977).
BEAUFORT CASTLE, near Beauly, Inverness-shire, is a Baronial style mansion built in 1880, but incorporates older building work.
There has been a castle on the site since the 12th century.
Beaufort is the traditional seat of the Lords Lovat, chiefs of the Clan Fraser.
Simon, 13th Lord Lovat (1828-87), built the present Beaufort Castle, to designs by James Maitland Wardrop, incorporating part of the 18th-century house.
The castle was sold in 1994 to Ann Gloag OBE by the 15th Lord Lovat, to meet inheritance taxes.
First published in December, 2013. Lovat arms courtesy of European Heraldry.