Stuart or Stewart, Robert, 1st duke of Albany, 1340?–1420, regent of Scotland; third son of Robert II. As earl of Fife and Monteith, he held commands under his father and more than once raided England, leading the invasion of 1388. Because of his father's old age he was given the power of government in 1389; he continued it during the reign of Robert III, his infirm brother. Made duke of Albany in 1398, in 1399 he was forced to give up the regency to his nephew, David Stuart, duke of Rothesay. Rothesay died (1402) in the custody of Albany and Archibald Douglas, 4th earl of Douglas, both of whom were officially declared guiltless of his death. Albany became governor or warden again and continued in that position after Robert III's death because the new king, James I, was a prisoner in England. During Albany's rule the struggle with England went on, and the Scottish alliance with France was continued. At home he allowed the nobles much power but put down (1411) a rebellion of Donald MacDonald, lord of the Isles. Apparently Albany tried to make his sovereignty hereditary in all but name, and he was succeeded as regent by his son Murdoch, 2d duke of Albany. The latter proved a weak ruler, however, and was executed (1425) after James I's return to Scotland.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.