Scottish politician
Born 1530?- Died 1585

George was a firm friend of Mary, Queen of Scots. He was present at her marriage with the dauphin in 1557, and three years later he was again in France because of his adherence to the old religion. When Mary returned to Scotland he became privy councillor and master of the household, but four years later he again found it advisable to retire to France. Mary and Darnley spent their honeymoon at Seton Palace, and Mary found a retreat there after the murder of Rizzio and again after the murder of Darnley. She spent the night before Carberry Hill under Seton's roof, and he was waiting for her on her escape from Lochleven in May 1568. He took her to his castle at Niddrie, Linlithgowshire, and thence to Hamilton. A week later he was taken prisoner at Langside. He was set free after the assassination of the regent Moray, and made his way to Flanders, where he was said to have made his living as a wagoner. He was, in fact, entrusted by Mary's supporters with a mission to the Duke of Alva, and sought in vain to secure for service in Scotland two regiments of Scots then in Spanish pay.

He returned home in 1571, being apparently reconciled with the government, but he retained his Catholicism and his friendship for Mary, who wrote to Elizabeth in 1581 desiring a passport for Lord Seton that he might alleviate her solitude. In 1581 he was one of Morton's judges, and in 1583 he was sent as ambassador to France, where he sought interference on Queen Mary's behalf. He died soon after his return on the 8th of January 1585. The 5th Lord Seton figures in Sir Walter Scott's Abbot. He was succeeded by his second and eldest surviving son, Robert, who became 6th Lord Seton and 1st Earl of Wintoun. His third son, Sir John Seton of Barns, was a gentleman of the bedchamber to Philip II of Spain. He was recalled to Scotland by James VI, and served as lord of session from 1587 to 1594.

Extracted from the entry for SETON in the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica, the text of which lies within the public domain.