King James the Sixth (continued) (1604-1625) – Updated, pp.1-107.

[Historical Works Contents – Companion]


THE parliament that was indicted on the 23rd of January, this year, to begin [on] the 10th of April thereafter, in the year 1604, was prorogued until the 24th day of the same month first, and the until the 18th of June; and at last ordained, by proclamation, to be held at Perth, [on] the 3rd day of July, this same year. 

The 12th of March, this year, seven of the Macgregors and Armstrongs were hanged at the cross of Edinburgh. 

In July, this year, the plague of pestilence raged extremely in many parts of the kingdom. 

The 10th of September, this same year, [Archibald] Napier, [ninth] Laird of Merchiston, general of the coin house [Mint], went to London, to meet with the English commissioners about the coin, who, to the great amazement of the English, carried his business with a great deal of dexterity and skill; and having concluded the business he went for, he returned home in December thereafter. 

In October, this year, the whole magistrates of Edinburgh were chosen and elected by virtue of his majesty’s commission, wherein the persons to be elected were named. 

The treaty of the union of both kingdoms was set a-foot by his Majesty this year, and for that effect [Alexander Seton] the [first] Earl of Dunfermline, Lord Chancellor [of Scotland], took his journey to London, in October, this year; but the treaty being delayed, and the point agreed on, he returned. 

His Majesty, by proclamation of the [31st] of October, inhibit the ministers to assemble themselves together, without his express warrant, under the pains contained in the acts of parliament. 

The parliament held by his Majesty and estates of England at Westminster, was continued until the 7th of July this year, and then prorogued until the 7th of February following. 

The 12th of June, this year, Sir Thomas Smythe, alderman of London, was by King James sent [as] ambassador to the Emperor of Russia. 

Sunday the 5th of August, this year, a lioness in the Tower of London [gave birth to] a lion cub, which loved only until the next day. 

About the beginning of this summer, there arrived at London, commissioners from the King of Spain, and the Archdukes, to treat of a peace, viz., from Spain came, 

Juan Fernández de Velasco, Constable of Castile; 

Juan Baptiste de Tassis, [first Count] of Villamediana; 

Alessandro Robido, Professor of the Law, and Senator of Milan. 

From the Archdukes came, 

Charles [de Ligne], Prince and Count of Arenberg; 

Jean Richardot, knight, President of the Council of Estate; 

Louis Verreyken, Principal Secretary of Estate. 

For his Majesty of Great Britain met, 

Thomas [Sackville], [first] Earl of Dorset, Lord Treasurer of England; 

Charles [Howard], [first] Earl of Nottingham, Lord [High] Admiral of England; 

Henry [Howard], [first] Earl of Northampton; 

Robert [Cecil, first Earl of Salisbury,] Viscount Cranborne, Principal Secretary of State. 

This treaty was concluded at London, [on] the 18th day of August, this year, and drawn up in 34 articles, which were signed and subscribed by all the commissioners, and then solemnly proclaimed at Cheapside Cross by the heralds. His Majesty did solemnly swear and subscribe this league, on Sunday the 19th day of this same month, in his chapel at Whitehall. 

The 24th day of October, this year, King James was solemnly proclaimed by the heralds, at all the public places of the cities of London and Westminster, King of Great Britain, France and Ireland. Defender of the Faith. 

The 16th day of November, the commissioners for the standard of coin of both [the Scottish and English] nations, having concluded a proclamation, which issued from them this day, of certain new pieces of coin, both of gold and silver, with the true valuation and weights of them, according to the mint of both nations, Scotland and England. 


Friday the 4th of January this year, 1605, Charles [Stuart], Duke of Albany, being aged four years, second son to King James, the first monarch of Great Britain, with his knights of the Bath, were lodged at Whitehall; and on Sunday, the 5th day, they were knighted, and he [was] created with great solemnity, Duke of York. 

The 26th of February, this year, the lioness in the Tower, that had brought forth a [cub] in the former year, brought forth another now; but it died also within 16 days thereafter. 

The plague of pestilence raged most fearfully through all [of] England, this year, so that there died of the [illness] in London, in one week, 3094 [people]. 

The 4th of March, this year, Alexander Seton, Lord Fyvie, was created [first] Earl of Dunfermline; Alexander, Lord Home, was created [first] Earl of Home; and James, Lord Drummond, was created [first] Earl of Perth, with great solemnity. Each of them had 4 knights. 

This same day, likewise, the new coin was proclaimed to have passage as in London, in November the preceding year. 

On the 4th day of this same month, by his Majesty’s special commission, Alexander [Seton], Earl of Dunfermline, Lord Chancellor of Scotland, in the council chamber, solemnly knighted the Lairds of 


Nisbet, and 

Gideon Murray. 

The 25th of March, Charles [Howard], Earl of Nottingham, Lord [High] Admiral of England, being accompanied and attended with an earl, three lords, and 30 knights, [besides] gentlemen of quality, a herald, and 2 doctors of physic, was sent by King James [as] ambassador to Spain, to take the Spanish King’s oath, for observation of [the] league lately concluded at London by his commissioners; and for the same effect, on the 19th of April, this year, Edward [Seymour], [first] Earl of Hertford, was by his Majesty sent [as] ambassador to the Archduke [of Austria], Albert [VII.] and [his wife] Isabella, to Brussels, accompanied with two lords and 16 knights, and a great many gentlemen of note and quality. 

The 8th of April, this year, the Queen [gave birth to] a daughter, at Greenwich, about 12 o’clock [midnight]; for joy whereof ringing of bells, shooting of canons, and bonfires were [lit] in London the day following. 

King James kept St. George’s feast at Greenwich, this year, where the gentlemen and others that of long continuance had used to attend the Lords, in honour of that service, in their gold chains, and liveries, were now wholly omitted, and the King’s guard commanded to supply their places. But the subsequent year, blue coats, chains of gold, and feathers, began again to flourish, and ever since has continued according to the ancient custom of that order; and, at this feast, the King made two new Knights of the Garter, viz., Ulrik Duke of Schleswig, the Queen’s brother, and Henry Howard, Earl of Northampton. 

On Saturday the 4th of May, this year, in the hall of Greenwich, being ordered for that solemnity, his Majesty created 

Thomas [Cecil], Lord Burghley, Earl of Exeter;  

Philip Herbert, [Earl of Pembroke], Earl of Montgomerey;  

Robert Sidney, [first Earl of Leicester,] Lord Penshurst, Viscount Lisle;  

Sir John Stanhope, Lord Harrington;  

Sir George Carew, [first Earl of Totnes,] Lord Clopton;  

Thomas Arundell, Lord Arundell of Wardour;  

William Cavendish, [first Earl of Devonshire,] Lord Cavendish of Hardwick. 

On Sunday, his Majesty’s second daughter was christened, and named Mary. 

The 17th day of June, a combat between the Lairds of Edzell [David Lindsay] and Pittarrow [John Wishart], on the High Street of Edinburgh, the fight lasted from 9 [at] night until almost 2 in the morning, before they were separated. In this fight diverse [participants] were hurt, [but] one [man, Guthrie,] only [was] killed; they were summoned to appear before the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, and were both of them committed to prison. 

Saturday, 1st June, this year, Ulrik, Duke of Schleswig, accompanied [by] the King’s Majesty, Prince Henry, and diverse [others] of the nobility, went to Rochester, where the said Duke took [a] ship for Denmark. 

The 22nd of the month of June, this year, his Majesty, by his proclamation, commanded all dukes, marquises, earls, viscounts, [and] lords, to produce their evidence and patents of creation before certain commissioners, at Edinburgh, to the effect that all such controversy as had formerly arisen about the place of precedency, might be reconciled and taken away; and everyone to have that place due to him, both in parliament and otherwise. As also, that all the said lords appear [on] the 1st day of November next, and there, before the said commissioners, produce (as said is); as also, that each nobleman within the kingdom of Scotland, against the first parliament, be provided with robes of scarlet, doubled with white taffeta, and [striped] with ermine, with [a] hood thereto belonging, ready to attend his Majesty and his commissioner. These were the first parliament robes that ever were used in this kingdom. 

The 1st day of July, this same year, Sir George Home, Lord Treasurer of Scotland, came to Edinburgh, and upon the second day of the same month, he was solemnly, by his Majesty’s commission at Holyroodhouse palace, in presence of the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council and nobility, there solemnly created Earl of Dunbar, and Lord Berwick on Tweed. 

Saturday the 15th of June, Thomas Douglas was committed to the Tower of London, having irons on him, who arrived there some 3 days before, sent prisoner by [Frederick IV.] the Prince Elector Palatine of the Rhine; and on Wednesday the 26th of the same month, he was brought from the Tower to the Sessions house [outside] Newgate, and there arraigned and condemned of high treason; and on the next day was drawn from there on a hurdle to Smithfield, and there hanged and quartered. At his death he acknowledged all his indictment to be true, and did profess before God, that none but himself was accessory to his treasons; the abstract whereof I have here set down. 

[Firstly], Whereas the last year, James Stuart was executed for counterfeiting the King’s hand[writing], thinking thereby to have procured the great seal of England unto forged letters patents for conveying 100 merk lands by the year, of crown land, to himself: this Douglas was his counsellor and coadjutor; who seeing Stuart apprehended, presently prepared himself to gain wealth or preferment by device of foreign employment. 

And whereas, at first he pretended to have obtained the King’s privy seal or signet from [James Elphinstone, first Lord Balmerino,] the Lord Secretary of Scotland, by means of his brother, who did then serve the said Lord Secretary. The said Thomas Douglas confessed, after his conviction, that he caused the said signet [to] be counterfeited, and therewith sealed six letters to six [separate] Princes of Germany. 

1. To [Johann Nopel der Jüngere] the Archbishop of Cologne;  

2. To [Frederick IV.] the Prince Elector Palatine;  

3. To [Lothar von Metternich] the Archbishop of Trier;  

4. To the city of Cologne;  

5. To [Johann Wilhelm] the Duke of Cleves;  

6. To [Johann Philipp von Schönborn] the Archbishop of Mainz; 

in which he styled himself Robert Gray of the privy chamber. 

The 2nd of July, this year, the ministers held an Assembly at Aberdeen, for which, contrary [to] the King’s command, they were convened before the Lords of the privy council, which act of theirs they defended as agreeable to the word of God; for which, and denying the King’s supremacy in matters [of church], (as the tenor of their censure went) six of the ringleaders, the 10th of January following, were arraigned at Blackness castle, and condemned of high treason; but none of them did suffer more for it than banishment. 

[Georg] Ludwig, Landgrave of Leuchtenberg, arrives in England, with above 100 in train, ambassador from the [Holy Roman] Emperor Rudolf [II.], to King James; and on the 12th of July, this year, he had [an] audience [with] the King at Whitehall. Amongst other matters of his embassy, these were the 3 prime articles: 

Firstly, A congratulatory complement from the Emperor to his Majesty, for the peaceful obtaining and enjoying of the kingdoms of England and Ireland, his lawful inheritance; and for the preservation of the [friendship] that has been between the said Emperor and Queen Elizabeth, of good memory lately deceased. 

Secondly, For the continuation of the treaty begun in the city of Bream, a little before the Queen died, concerning the [Hanseatic Towns] and their privileges. 

Thirdly, For aid and assistance against the common enemy of Christendom, the Turk. 

This ambassador departed [on] the 22nd day of July, this year; and when he took his leave of his Majesty, he [gifted] him with a cupboard of silver plate, valued at 1500 pounds sterling. 

About the 5th of November, this year, that [terrible] powder plot was discovered, wherein the conspirators intended to blow up the parliament house at Westminster, (with gunpowder) with the King, Prince, Duke of York, and the whole nobility of England; with the commissioners of the shires and burghs of the same. Many of the conspirators being apprehended, were arraigned at Westminster, [on] the 27th of January, in the following year, before certain commissioners appointed by his Majesty for that effect. The parties indicted were: 

Thomas Wintour of Huddington, in Warwickshire; 

Guy Fawkes of London; 

Robert Keyes of London; 

Thomas Bates, yeoman. 

These 4 were arraigned for 

1. Plotting to blow up the parliament house with gunpowder. 

2. For taking [an] oath and sacrament for secrecy. 

3. For hiring a house near the parliament house. 

4. For digging a mine, and finding that faulty, for hiring a cellar under the parliament house. 

5. For bringing of powder, match and [tinder] into the cellar, to effect their treason. 

Robert Wintour, Thomas’ brother, 

John Grant of Yorkshire, and 

Ambrose Rookwood, of Stanningfield, in Suffolk. 

were all three indicted on these points: 

1. For being acquainted with the treason afterwards; 

2. For giving their assent thereto; 

3. For taking their solemn oath and sacrament for secrecy. 

Sir Everard Digby of Gayhurst, in Buckinghamshire, 

being arraigned, was indicted, 

1. For being made acquainted with the said treason; 

2. For yielding assent; 

3. For taking his corporal oath for secrecy. 


The 29th and 30th days of March this year, 1606, the wind so extraordinarily tempestuous and violent, that it caused [a] great [amount of] shipwrecks in Scotland, England, France and the Netherlands. It blew [down] trees by the roots, ruined whole villages, and caused the sea and many rivers to overflow their [usual] limits and bounds, that many people and [farm animals] were drowned and perished. 

His Majesty this year, in April, for [resolving] of some difference between his subjects of North and South Britain, travelling by seas, about the bearing of their flags, and for avoiding all such contentions hereafter; by his proclamation of the 12th of this month, ordained the ships of both nations to carry on their main tops the flags of St. Andrew and St George interlaced; and those of North Britain in their stern that of St. Andrew, and those of South Britain that of St. George. 

The 24th of the month of April this year, Don Juan [de] Mendoza, Marquis of [Montesclaros], Captain General of Portugal, accompanied with Don Juan Blasco de Aragon, of the council of Milan, with others, arrived at London, from [Philip III.] the King of Spain, to congratulate the King of England’s happy deliverance from the late gunpower treason. He brought a present from [Margaret of Austria] the Queen of Spain to [Anne of Denmark] the Queen of Great Britain, viz., a robe of [mulberry] satin, embroidered with gold; the forepart whereof was adorned with 48 [tassels], 3 inches long, of beaten gold, hollow within, and filled with ambergris, and a velvet cape, with gold buttons curiously enamelled like the tassels; a girdle suitable to the buttons. Every [one] of these [separately] enclosed in an oval box of gold. These were presented all together in a large vessel of gold, in form of a basin. He came to London on Tuesday; had [an] audience on Saturday; the next day the King feasted [with] them royally; on Monday he delivered his presents, and returned upon the Wednesday. 

The lady Sophia, daughter to the King’s Majesty, was born at Greenwich, upon |Sunday the 22nd of June, at 3 o’clock in the morning, and died the next day; and on Thursday following, was solemnly interred at Westminster. 

In this same month of June, Mr John Forbes, who had [believed] the Lord Chancellor Dunfermline, as one [who] had approved the late assembly held by the ministers at Aberdeen, whereat the King was highly offended. The Lord Chancellor denies it altogether, as an unjust [lie] laid on him, and humbly, by his letters, entreats his Majesty that it might be put to a trial; for which the King writes to the council. They cite Mr John; [in order] to verify his assertion, [and] produce as witness, Mr Walter Balcanquell and Mr James Balfour, ministers, and the Laird of Leys, [Alexander] Burnet, who all of them being examined, cleared the Lord Chancellor of that aspersion, as the Lord of privy council, with their depositions sent to his Majesty, did write the date the 14th day of June, 1606. 

The King of Denmark arrives in London, [on] the 18th day of July this year, and on Thursday, the [31st] of July, the Kings of Great Britain and Denmark rode through the city of London in triumph; and in August thereafter they returned home. 

The so often prorogued parliament sat down at Perth, [on] the 9th of July this year, wherein John [Graham], [third] Earl of Montrose, was commissioner for his Majesty. In this act passed the act for the restitution of bishops; and a taxation was granted to defray his Majesty’s debts, by the estates, of 4 [pounds] on the pound land; with the comfortable proportion to be paid by the prelates and burghs. This was to be paid in four years completely, and the first term’s payment to being at Candlemas (2nd of February) next. This tax was a large double of the greatest taxation that ever was granted to any King of Scotland [until now]. 

During this parliament, there fell out a great [disturbance] between the Earls of Eglinton [Hugh Montgomerie] and Glencairn [James Cunningham], and their friends. Many were hurt on both sides, and one man [John Mathie] of the Earl of Glencairn’s killed. But this, with the old feud between these two families, by his Majesty’s special commandment, was submitted to six of either side, to reconcile all matters, which if they could not be reconciled by the mediation of friends; then did these Lords absolutely submit all their debates and controversies to the King’s Majesty’s decision, which his Majesty and council fully composed and agreed by the industrious negotiation of [George Home] the Earl of Dunbar, his Majesty’s commissioner for that effect, in the month of February, in the following year; the Earl of Eglinton himself being dead, and Alexander [Montgomerie], the Lord Seton’s 3rd son, having succeeded him. 

George [Home], [first] Earl of Dunbar, his Majesty’s commissioner for ordering the borders, took such a course with the broken men and [thieves] in the borders of both kingdoms, in September, that in 2 justiciary courts held by him, he condemned and caused [to be] hanged above 140 of the nimblest and most powerful thieves in all the borders, and who were most obnoxious to the public peace; and fully reduced the other inhabitants there to the obedience of his Majesty’s laws. 

The plague of pestilence raged so extremely in all the corners of this kingdom, this year, so that neither burgh nor land in any part was free. The burghs of Ayr and Stirling were almost desolate; and all the judicatories of the land were deserted, except the meetings, now and then, of the Lords of the privy council, and only for a day at most, to keep some face and countenance of order and government; – these are [Alexander Seton, first Earl of Dunfermline,] the Lord Chancellor’s own words to his Majesty, by his letters of the 30th of October this year. 

John, Earl of Montrose, who, in the beginning of the preceding year, had [resigned] his office of Lord Chancellor, was made Viceroy of Scotland, with a good pension, and 6000 merks per annum, conferred on him and his, heritably. In his place of Chancellor succeeded Alexander [Seton, first] Earl of Dunfermline, President of [the] College of Justice; and to him, in the place, succeeded Sir John Preston [Lord Fentonbarns] of Penicuik, knight, one of the Senators of the said College. 

In December, this year, a General Assembly of the church was held at Linlithgow; wherein, amongst other business, his Majesty, by his letters to the said Assembly, (which they ordained their clerk to record,) recommended to the Assembly, with taking strict order with catholics, jesuits, and seminary priests, without exception of persons; and that they should take heed that people should not choke the good seed of the evangel. Diverse of the more precise amongst the ministry took this pious and religious admonition of the King’s as cream and oil, to soften and smooth his mysterious designs, and daily advancing of the estate of bishops, with new privileges, which daily encroached more and more, to the suppressing of the free liberties of this church; as was signified to his Majesty, the 16 day of this month, by the letters of his Viceroy, Montrose, Kenmure, Blantyre, and President Preston, who assisted at this Assembly. For it was notoriously understood, and manifestly known to the wisest, that [George Home] the [first] Earl of Dunbar, his Majesty’s Treasurer of Scotland, distributed amongst the most needy and clamorous of the ministry, to obtain their voices and suffrage, (or else move them to be neutrals,) 440 thousand merks of money, to facilitate the business intended, and [have] matters go [more] smoothly on. Which ministry of state came thereafter to light, by the view of the Lord Treasurer Dunbar, his accounts; a gross fault in him, which, if revealed in his lifetime, might have cost him his head, for his small prudence, and little circumspection, in leaving such an item on record to be look on by posterity; which account was shown to King Charles at the treaty of [Berwick], long thereafter, in [the year] 1639. 


The Lords of the privy council, by their letters to his Majesty, of the 27th of January this year, 1607, that his treasurer of England, contrary [to] the treaty of the union, had taken certain wines from a Scots merchant named Geddes, on [the] only pretext, that he was not a native of England; which was a very dangerous preparative for his Majesty’s Scottish subjects in matters of commerce, putting them in a worse state, than they were in before the union lately treated of, and whereat his good subjects here universally grieved at. Therefore they humbly entreated his Majesty to [have] his English treasurer restore the same, or the price, to the merchant; which his Majesty [had] speedily done, conforming to his privy council’s letter. 

The 7th day of this same month, Chancellor Dunfermline writes to his Majesty, that there was not so much as the least talk or [discussion] at the time, in Scotland, of any matter concerning the state, except some little of church matters, and of their differences; which notwithstanding were lately marvellously settled and quieted, and by all appearance would shortly wear to full conformity, answerable to his Majesty’s princely and pious designs. 

Archibald [Campbell], Earl of Argyle, by his letters to his Majesty, of the 28th of February, this year, shows that according to his Majesty’s command, he had contracted his eldest daughter, the 24th of this same month, to George, Lord Gordon, [George Gordon] the Marquis of Huntly’s eldest son; and therefore besought his Majesty to release Huntly for a time, and license him to come to the south, for accomplishing that marriage. 

The ancient laws of Scotland, collected by Sir John Skene, {Lord] Clerk Register, one of the Lords of the privy council’s recommendation to the King, by their letters of the 4th of March, this year, were ordained to be published and printed on his Majesty’s charge. 

The 26th of this month, the Clandonald of the Isles, that had shaken off the yoke of obedience, and committed many villanies and outrages, were, by the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, declared rebels; and George [Gordon], Marquis of Huntly, employed against them, to reduce them to their duty: which employment he took to be advised with, until the month of April following. 

The parliament which was called to sit down at Edinburgh the 18th of this month, was continued until the 11th of August following. 

This same month, Alasdair Dow Mhic-Gille-Chalum, a notorious thief and murderer, was taken by the Laird of Lesmoir, [James] Gordon; his brother John was hurt, and 5 of his men [were] killed. He was presented to the Lords of council, and thereafter arraigned and executed. 

In May, this year, the deadly feud and enmity between [John] Haitlie of Mellerstain, and Home of Eccles [son of Cowdenknowes], by his Majesty’s special command, was reconciled by a committee from the council table. 

The strict proclamations that had issued forth in the beginning of this year, inhibitting all his Majesty’s subjects, save his guard, to wear guns or pistols, was duly put in[to] execution, this month, by the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, with imprisonment and fining of the [offenders] of this edict and proclamation. 

A parliament held at Edinburgh, this year, wherein Ludovic [Stewart], [second] Duke of Lennox, sat as his Majesty’s commissioner, [on the] 11th of August. The 1st act of it was against sayers and hearers of mass; but there was another act giving power to Mr George Gledstanes, Archbishop of St. Andrews, to make [a] choice of 7 persons, beneficed within his diocese, to be his chapter and council, and so consequently to all the bishops of the kingdom to do the [same]; which indeed was the very restitution of [the] bishops, about the form of chapters. 

The synod of Clydesdale was held [on] the 18th of this same month of August, whereat, by virtue of his Majesty’s commission, [James Hamilton] the Earl of Abercorn assisted; and by his menaces and threats, [made] the said synod conform themselves to the act of the General Assembly of Linlithgow, and chose John Spottiswoode, Archbishop of Glasgow, their moderator; which election, diverse [members] of the ministry did oppose, but were so dealt with by the Earl, that they voiced. Not only two of them mainly opposed, and would never condescend, but spoke publicly against it, in bitter terms, which were Mr William Simson, minister of Drimnin, as the said Earl witnessed to his Majesty by his letters of the 26th of this August. 

This same month, Sir Bevis Bulmer, that had been employed by his Majesty for the silver mines of Hilderston hill, not being able to maintain the charge of these works, in respect of their small return, did by his bond and disposition, [gave] the said works to Sir Thomas Hamilton, his Majesty’s advocate, their first owner. 

The 6th of September, this year, between 3 and 4 in the morning, the north quarter of the palace of Linlithgow fell, roof and all, to the ground. It was thereafter repaired and a new [one] built, by his Majesty’s direction, Sir Gideon Murray, of Elibank, knight, being Treasurer Depute [of Scotland], in [the year] 1616. 

The 16th of November, proclamation was made at Whitehall, concerning the sudden flight of [Hugh O’Neill] the [third] Earl of Tyrone and [Rory O’Donnell, first Earl of] Tyrconnell, who had fled out of Ireland, in the month of September last, unto Spain. In this proclamation was declared the fugitives purpose and practise, to extirpate the English nation out of Ireland, and to yield and confer the kingdom of Ireland unto [Paul V.] the Pope; and the Earl of Tyrone soliciting foreign princes to attempt [the] conquest thereof. 

I will not omit how, on the 16th day of September last, the King’s daughter, the Lady Mary, departed this life, and was solemnly interred at Westminster, in the sepulchre of the Kings. 


In January, 1608, George [Gordon], Marquis of Huntly, was commanded to prison, in Stirling castle, this year, for refusing to conform himself to the orders of the church; likewise, he was commanded by his Majesty’s letters of the 15th of February, to send his eldest son to London, to attend his Majesty, which he willingly obeyed. 

The 9th of February, this same year, John Ramsay, [first Earl of Holderness,] Viscount Haddington, married Elizabeth, eldest daughter to Robert [Radclyffe, fifth] Earl of Sussex. 

By the crafty dealing of Mr John Spottiswoode, Archbishop of Glasgow, in February, this year, the new taxmen of the customs augmented their duty, and paid 35,000 merks more than ever was paid for them in former times. 

Upon his Majesty’s letters to the council, this year, Mr John Murray, minister, was questioned before the Lords of the privy council, for preaching a sermon, at Leith, and publishing the same, wherein some head of it seemed to imply a censure of his Majesty’s government of the state; of which imputation he cleared himself by the explanation of his own words to the Lords of the privy council; and by his humble supplication to the King’s Majesty, under his own hand, in March. 

The 19th of April, this year, at Whitehall, died Thomas Sackville, [first] Earl of Dorset, Lord [High] Treasurer of England, suddenly at [the] council table; and in that place succeeded to him, on the 6th day of May thereafter, Robert [Cecil], [first] Earl of Salisbury. 

In this same month, O’Doherty burns the town of Derry, in the province of Ulster, in the kingdom of Ireland; whereof the inhabitants [appeal to Alexander Seton, first Earl Dunfermline,] the Lord Chancellor of Scotland, and he [informed] the King’s Majesty, by his letters of the 28th of April this year. 

The old feuds of blood and slaughter between the Laird of Luss and the Macfarlanes, was, in this month, by the council’s mediation, absolutely submitted to the King’s Majesty’s determination. The Macfarlanes had killed [Sir Alexander Colquhoun] the Laird of Luss’s brother, with many of his friends and followers; casting down some of his houses, cut his woods, spoiled his lands and tenants, for which he had obtained decreets against them for great sums of money, and had declared them rebels by law. 

The 20th of May, at Windsor, in England, this year, George Home, [first] Earl of Dunbar, and Philip Herbert, [fourth earl of Pembroke and first] Earl of Montgomery, were installed [as] Knights of the Garter; and Mr Alexander Hay, secretary of the Scottish affairs, was knighted by his Majesty. 

On this same 20th day of May, there was held a convention of the estates at Edinburgh, about the affairs of the Isles, wherein the estates absolutely refused to give any taxation for that purpose, but condescended to serve his Majesty in that war, conform to the ancient form and laws of the land; which course was not followed. 

Howsoever, the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council took another course to levy 500 men, under the name of a Guard to the King’s Lieutenant, to be designed for that service, by his Majesty, which was [Andrew Stuart] the [second] Lord Ochitree, his Majesty’s controller, to pay them 10,000 merks for the first month’s wages, and the fines of the rebels, to defray the rest of the charges. 

And with all, the Lords of the council did write to his Majesty, entreating him to send 3 or 4 of his ships with all speed to the Isle of Trotternish [Skye]; and to command the captains of them to obey his lieutenant; and the rendezvous of the soldiers to be at Islay. 

In this same month of May, John Buchanan and his wife, Margaret Hertsyde, that had lain long in prison here, for the alleged stealing [of] some of the Queen’s jewels (but the courtiers talked, that it was for revealing some of the Queen’s secrets to the King, which a wise chambermaid would not have done,) was, by a sentence, condemned to perpetual exile in the Islands of Orkney, and declared to be an infamous person, in August, this year. 

The 21st of August, this year, his Majesty, by his letters to the Lords of his privy council, ordains them to require [George Gordon] the Marquis of Huntly, with the Earls of Angus [William Douglas] and Errol [Francis Hay], to re-enter their persons in prison; and that hereafter, they have no release nor liberty, for so much as a day, with[out] his Majesty’s special command. 

In June, this year, the King commands his advocate criminally to pursue Sir Robert Gordon of Lochinvar, was for killing off his own servant, of whom he was too jealous, as being too familiar with his lady [Isabel Ruthven], (which by all was esteemed a most wicked [lie],) and only by him forged to stain the honour of his own lady, to the end he might empty his own bed, to give another room, of less worth than her, of whom he would have been most willingly rid of. 

His Majesty, this same year, did write to the commissioners of burghs [who were] convened at Edinburgh, with Sir John Drummond, that they would inhibit their merchants to give any charitable relief of supply to the banished Scottish ministers that were in the Netherlands; and that they should not make [a] choice of a minister for the Scottish merchants in Campveer; and, lastly, that they take especial notice of the conservator of their privilege, Sir Robert Dennistoun, whom he, by his own experience, had found to be a most faithful servant to himself and to the whole nation. 

The 23rd of June, this year, Thomas Garnet, a Jesuit, was executed at Tyburn, near London, having favour offered him of life, if he would have taken the oath of allegiance, which was proclaimed the 29th of April this same year, to be ministered to all persons that should come from beyond the seas; only to distinguish honest subjects from traitors, and not for any point in religion. All known merchants, and others of honest quality, were exempt from taking this oath. This edict was made by reason that many suspicious persons of base sort came daily from beyond the seas, and refused to take this oath. 

The 14th day of July, this year, James Douglas of [Parkhead] was killed on the [Royal Mile] of Edinburgh, between 6 and 7 hours in the morning, by William Stewart, son to Sir William Stewart, who escaped. 

The General Assembly held this month, ordains [William Douglas] the [tenth] Earl of Angus to be excommunicated; he being since May last a prisoner in Glasgow, as he himself shows his Majesty; by his letters of the 10th of August this year, craving his liberty from prison, and that his Majesty would be pleased to permit him to depart the realm to France. 

In the month of October, this year, Alexander [Seton, first] Earl of Dunfermline, Lord Chancellor of Scotland, by the people of Edinburgh was elected and chosen provost of the said city; of which election the town excuses themselves to his Majesty, as done out of necessity, and for advancement of his Majesty’s service; whereat the King was extremely incensed, and the town, to please his Majesty, was forced in November, following, to elect [again] Sir John Arnot, their provost. 

In November, this same year, [George Gordon] the [first] Marquis of Huntly, and Francis Hay, [ninth] Earl of Erroll, Great Constable of Scotland, for not satisfying the church for their entertaining of mass[-holding] priests and jesuits, and not receiving the sacrament of the Lords supper, were commanded, the one of them [Francis Hay] himself prisoner in the castle of Dumbarton, and the other to Stirling; and the Earl of Angus, who had been long a prisoner in Glasgow for the same [reason], (with his Majesty’s permission) voluntarily exiles himself to France, this same month. 

In this same month of November, James Elphinston, Lord Balmerino, principal secretary of state to his Majesty for the kingdom of Scotland, being this year challenged in England about some letters written by him in his Majesty’s name to Pope Clement [VIII.], before the King did attain the crown of England; but he confessed ([fraudulently], as was though by those that best understood the court, and how matters then went) to liberate the King of such grossness, being examined by some privy councillors of both kingdoms: that in [the year] 1598, he had written to the Pope in his Majesty’s name, for a Cardinal’s hat, to be bestowed on [William] Chisholm, a Scottish man, then Bishop of Vaison in France, brother to the Laird of [Crown lands] in Perthshire; in which letter (he having [obtained] the King’s hand to it) he styles the Pope Beatissime Pater [Holy Father], with other such phrases, which almost wronged the King’s honour and reputation with all the protestant princes and states in Europe. His trial and punishment (he being a Scottish nobleman) was remitted to the Justice of Scotland; and he sent home there under guard, from shire to shire, of all which the King [informs] his privy council of Scotland, the 21st of the month of November, by Spottiswoode, Archbishop of Glasgow. 

After his arrival in Scotland, he was first imprisoned in Edinburgh castle, and from there removed to the Tower of Falkland, and arraigned at St. Andrews in the subsequent year, and sentenced to lose his head; but by the King’s secret commands to [George Home] the [first] Earl of Dunbar, he was again remitted to the custody of [David Murray, first Viscount of Stormont,] the Lord Scone, as a close prisoner, to be kept at Falkland; and from there was [released] and confined to his own house in Angus-shire, and Balmerino in Fifeshire, where he died of a fever and weakness in his stomach, some few months after the death of his arch-enemy and competitor, [Robert] Cecil, [first] Earl of Salisbury, (after whom) if any time he had survived, (as was [said] by them that best knew the King’s mind] he had been in greater credit with his master than ever. 


In January this year, 1609, there was a convention of the estates held at Edinburgh, to which his Majesty sent 27 articles concerning the government of the church and state, here to be treated on; all of which were received except two, which were remitted to the ensuing parliament. From this convention of the estates they sent a letter to his Majesty of humble thanks, for his great care for their [wellbeing] and peace, of the date [the] 28th of this month. 

The Lords of privy council, by their letters of the 16th of February, this year, [gave] his Majesty humble and hearty thanks, for his great favour, respect and love to these of this nation; especially for that sentence pronounced in favours of the [James,] Lord Colville’s grandchild, in the question of post nati [born after], agitate before all the learned judges in England, and [was] decreed by the prime judicatories there. 

Alexander [Seton], [first] Earl of Dunfermline, Lord Chancellor of Scotland, [was] made a privy councillor of England, this year, the 8th of February. 

The Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, by their letters of the 1st of March, this year, entreats his Majesty to adjourn the parliament called to be held in April following, in respect of seed-[sowing] time, until the 24th day of June thereafter; to which his Majesty condescended. 

The 8th of May, this year, the King by his proclamation, prohibits all foreign nations to fish upon any of the coasts of Scotland, England, Ireland, or the Isles adjacent, without [a] special license from the commissioners in that behalf ordained. 

The 29th of June, this year, the parliament formerly adjourned, sat down at Edinburgh, wherein George [Keith], [fifth] Earl Marischal of Scotland, was his Majesty’s commissioner. In this parliament were many acts of great importance concerning both church and state concluded:- 

As, that no nobleman nor [any] other shall send their children [away from] the country, with a [teacher], unless he has the bishop’s testimony of his religion and manners, before he shall [entrust] his child to his education:- 

That the parents of such children [who are] out of the country, who have left the protestant religion, and turned catholic, shall not give their children any maintenance, or acknowledge them [other] than in bringing them back to Scotland; and that the parents enact themselves in the books of privy counsel for this effect:- 

That excommunicated persons shall not enjoy their lands, [homes], offices or possessions:- 

That bishops send the names of excommunicated persons to the Treasurer and Director of the Chancellery:- 

That no-one receive jesuits, seminary priests, sayers of mass, under the privy counsel’s censure, conform to the laws formerly made thereabout: and that all judges of the land, and great and small, profess the reformed protestant religion:- 

The jurisdiction given to the archbishops and bishops about the spiritual judicatories and commissariats:- 

About the establishment of the commissioners and justices of peace, first in this kingdom:- 

About the apparel to be worn by judges, magistrates and churchmen:- 

About the scandalous speeches against the King, his counsellors and noblemen:- 

Ratification of forfeitures of [James,] Lord Maxwell and [Robert Logan,] Laird of Restalrig: with diverse others of less note and consequence, as, namely, of 6 elections of church livings in temporalities to particular men. 

In November, this year, Mr John Fairfoul, minister [of Dunfermline], was punished by the Lords of privy counsel, at his Majesty’s command, for praying for the banished ministers. 


In January this year, 1610, 4 extraordinary Lords were removed from off the Session, and others put in their places. 

In February, this year, [George Gordon,] the [first] Marquis of Huntly, prisoner in Stirling castle, and [Francis Hay,] the [ninth] Earl of Erroll, prisoner in Edinburgh castle, by their letters, humbly beseeches his majesty for some liberty, but in vain; for the King (as the truth was) thought that he could not preserve the public peace better, than by keeping these birds of prey so caged up. 

In June, this year, his Majesty intended to have employed the master of Tullibardine against the Clangregor; but he having drawn up such an extraordinary draught of a commission, that rather [than] his Majesty should condescend to such a [step], the Lords of his privy council, by their letters, humbly entreated the King to take some other course against them, than to give way to that which might alienate the hearts of his best subjects, and wrong his own royal authority so much. 

On Wednesday, the 30th of May, this year, Prince Henry was created Prince of Wales, and 25 knights of the Bath were made at this solemnity, all of them being English, except 5; viz., 

William, Lord Hay, eldest son to Francis, Earl of Erroll;  

John, Lord Erskine, eldest son to John, Earl of Mar;  

Francis Stewart, 2nd son to James, Earl of Moray;  

William Stewart; and   

Edward Bruce. 

In July, this year, the Lords of counsel [appeal to] his Majesty, that they hearing that some pirates were [to the] north [of] the Scottish firth, sent out 3 ships immediately to search them, who found them near the main land of Orkney; with whom they had a bloody fight. One of [the ships] they took of 200 tons, and in her 30 able men, and 4 prisoners; but a pinnace of 100 tons escaped them. The delivered them to the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, who [had cause to] arraign them, and 27 had [a] sentence to be hanged; and amongst them one named Perkins, the other Randel, 3 of them were kept until further trial, and his Majesty’s pleasure was known; for they had revealed some [knowledge] of special men of quality, [who] had received them, to whom they sold their spoils. 

In September, this year, his Majesty sent [Edward Wotton,] the [first] Lord Wotton ambassador to France, to take the oath of that King, [Louis XIII.,] and of [Marie de Medici,] the Queen Regent, his mother, for the observation of the league newly concluded between them; he returned home [on] the 7th of October. 

Sunday, 21st of October, this year, by commission from the King’s Majesty to the Bishops of 



Worcester, and 


they did consecrate in the Bishop of London’s chapel, 

James Spottiswoode, Archbishop of Glasgow; 

Gavin Hamilton, Bishop of Galloway; 

Andrew Lamb, Bishop of Brechin; 

this consecration was performed, mutatis mutandis, [change what needs changing], according to the church of England. 

In this month of December, Henry, Prince of Wales, kept his court in very princely manner, at his house of St. James, near Charing Cross, settled his household, and ordained his officers; the names of the chief were:- 

Of his Highness’ revenues: 

Sir Edward Philips, Chancellor; 

[Sir] Adam Newton, Secretary;  

Sir George Moore, Receiver General;  

Sir William Fleetwood, Surveyor General;  

Sir Augustine Nicolas, Serjeant;  

Mr Thomas Stephens, Attorney;  

Mr Richard Conock, Auditor. 

Of his Highness’ household: 

Sir Thomas Chaloner, Chamberlain;  

Sir Charles Cornwallis, Treasurer:  

Sir John Hollis, Controller  

Sir David Foulis, Cofferer;  

Sir David Murray, Gentleman of his Bed Chamber. 


Thursday the [31st] of January this year, 1611, Thomas Erskine, [first Earl of Kellie,] Viscount Fentoun, Lord Dirletoun, was sworn a privy councillor of England, being then captain of his Majesty’s guard. 

On Easter day, the month of March(?), this year, his Majesty created Sir Robert Carr, [first Earl of Somerset,] at Whitehall, Lord and Viscount of Rochester. 

The 30th of January, this year, died George Home, [first] Earl of Dunbar, Lord Berwick, Treasurer of Scotland, and Knight of the Garter, at Whitehall, and his funeral was solemnly performed at Westminster, in April following, but his corpse was embalmed and coffined in lead, and interred at Dunbar [parish] church in Scotland, under a stately monument. 

In May, this year, a proclamation issued forth at London, after a consultation which his Majesty had had there in the star chamber, with his privy council and judges, about the standard value and preservation of money; and this order, by the said edict, was established, that the  

   Piece of gold, called the Unity, should pass at . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 shillings Sterling.  

   The piece of gold, called the Double Crown, to pass at . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 shillings Sterling.  

   The piece of gold, called the Britain Crown, to pass at . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 shillings 6d.  

   The piece of gold, called the Thistle Crown, to pass at . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 shillings 4d. 06.  

   The piece of gold, called the Half Crown, to pass at . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 shillings 9d.  

   The piece of gold of Scotland, called the 6 Penny piece in England, to passe at . 11 shillings. 

All other pieces of gold, of the coin of any [of the] former Kings of that realm, at this time current, to bear the like increase of price, in proportion with these already specified. 

   Every piece of 30shillings[-worth] to be now current, and to have hereafter [value] throughout Britain, for . . 33s.  

   The 20sh. for . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22sh.  

   The 15sh. for . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16sh. 6d.  

   The 10sh. for . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11sh.  

   The 5sh. for . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5sh. 6d.  

   The 2sh. 6d. for . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2sh. 9d. 

Upon Whitsun Monday, the 13th day of May, at Windsor, Charles, Duke of York, his Majesty’s 2nd son, Thomas Howard, [second] Earl of Arundel, and Robert Carr, Viscount Rochester, were installed Knights of the Garter. 


In March this year, 1612, the French King’s officers [increase] their customs on the Scottish merchants, under [the] pretext that the ancient league between the two nations was not ratified since the death of the late King, Henry [IV.]; of which innovation the burghs of the kingdom did [inform] the King’s Majesty, by their letters of the 25th of this month, and humbly desires that his Majesty would be pleased to write to his ledge ambassador in France, for that effect. 

The 22nd of April, Robert Carr, Viscount Rochester, was sworn a privy councillor of England. 

Thursday the 25th of June, Robert Crichton, [eighth] Lord Sanquhar, was indicted at the court of the King’s Bench, by the great inquest of the county of Middlesex, for counselling, abetting and procuring Robert Carlisle to murder John Turner, a master of fence, who at play had struck out one of the said Lord’s eyes; for which he was convicted and executed, on Monday the 29th of this same month, at Westminster hall gate, and died very penitently. 

In July, this year, the corpse of Mary, Queen of Scotland, was [transferred] from Peterborough to St. Peter’s church at Westminster; and there, in the month of October following, laid under a stately monument built there, where she now rests, by her only son, King James [VI.], and first of Great Britain. 

In the month of July, this same year, the Scottish staple [port] was removed from Middleburg to Campveer, and that by his Majesty’s special recommendation to the burghs of this kingdom. 

Friday the 16th day of October, this year, about 11 o’clock at night, arrived at Gravesend, Frederik [V.] of that name, Count Palatine of the Rhine, Prince Elector, &c., being very princely accompanied. 

The 6th of November, this year, between 7 and 8 o’clock at night, died the famous, hopeful prince, Henry, Prince of Wales, at his court of St. James, (not without suspicion of poison,) but as it then went, of a malignant purple fever. His corpse was magnificently interred at Westminster, in a very solemn funeral, the 7th day of December, this same year: Prince Charles, his only brother, being chief mourner, assisted by the Prince Elector Palatine. This noble prince departed this life about the 18th year of his age, and some 8 months and 17 days more, whose death was lamented by the most generous princes of christendom. 

The 27th day of December, this year, Frederik, Prince Palatine, was betrothed to the Lady Elizabeth, the eldest daughter of Great Britain’s monarch, King James. 


Upon the 14th day of January, this year, James, Marquis of Hamilton, according to his Majesty’s direction, was admitted and sworn a privy councillor of England. 

This same month, there was a complaint [expressed] to the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, and by the whole inhabitants of the coast side of Fife, complaining upon a new imposition laid upon them this year bypast, and put in practise and execution by one Captain Maison, and Englishman; viz., the duty of excise herrings, wherewith they not yet their predecessors were ever at any time formerly burdened; which complaint the Lords of privy council having taken to their consideration, by their decree they did exonerate them from further payment of that duty; because it was by the Lords well understood, that the complainers were not able to bear that burden, and that they had fully resolved to leave that trade rather than be subject [to] the payment of that new exaction. 

In the month of April, this year, Alexander Macleod, brother to [Ruairidh] Macleod of Harris, did apprehend 4 of the principal rebels of Lewis; and was summoned to exhibit them under the pain of treason, before the Lords of his Majesty’s privy Council, before he would do it. 

On Monday the 6th of May, this year, there was a proclamation at Edinburgh cross, discharging the course and passage of all and whatever copper coin, except the proper coin of this kingdom, having course by his Majesty’s warrant, and acts of council. 

The 18th day of this month, [Andrew Stewart] the [third] Lord Ochiltree solemnly, by his great oath, purged himself (in presence of the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council), in being art or part, or any way accessory, to the murder of [James Douglas] the [sixth] Lord Torthorwald’s father [James Douglas]; and so they were reconciled by the Lords, heartily [shake] hands, and mutually embrace one another. 

The 21st day of this month, John, [ninth] Lord Maxwell, of Caerlaverock, was taken from the tolbooth of Edinburgh, to the market cross of the same, where, on a scaffold, he had his head chopped off from his body, for the slaughter of [Sir James] the Laird of Johnstone. 

The Laird of Kilsyth, [Sir William Livingston,] on his Majesty’s letter, is made Vice Chamberlain of Scotland, by act of council, the 18th of May, and sworn a privy councillor. 

The 19th day of this same month, all his Majesty’s lieges are prohibited, by proclamation, to transport out of the kingdom, any iron ore in prejudice of Sir George Hay’s works. 

In the latter end of this same month, the merchant adventurers to Pomerania [part of Poland] and Prussia [part of Germany], did petition the Lords of the privy council, that they would be pleased to write in their favours to [Philipp Julius] the Duke of Wolgast, who had prohibited their trade and traffic in the town of [Königsberg], and in other [of] his territories; for recalling that edict and mandate, which they did effectually; their letters procuring the reopening of that trade to the Scottish traders there. 

The 15th of June, this year, the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, being informed of a very grievous oppression generally committed by the landlords, spiritual and temporal, of the realm, against their tenants, farmers, and labourers of the ground, by exacting of them, without warrant of law, great sums of money for their relief of the taxations imposed upon them. The Lords of privy council, by their proclamation, did strictly inhibit all such burdening of farmers and labourers of the ground with any taxations, in all time coming, under great penalties. 

The 29th of July, this year, Sir John Kerr of Littledean is sentenced and inhibited by the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, for taking and assuming to himself the title of a lord and baron of parliament, (without any warrant or allowance from his Majesty) in all time coming, under the pain to be held and esteemed a usurper of his Majesty’s authority, if hereafter he shall presume to attempt the like. 

On the 15th of September, this year, James Stewart, called of Jerusalem; and Mr Robert Philp, a priest, the one for saying mass, and the other for hearing it, are both of them sentenced (according to the laws of the land) by the justice general, to lose their heads. 

In November, this year, Sir Robert Kerr [first Earl] of Ancram, in presence of the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, demits the captainship of his Majesty’s guard in favour of Sir Andrew Kerr of Oxnam, who was preferred to the same. 

The 1st of December, this year, Robert Erskine, was beheaded at Edinburgh cross, for the practise of poisoning, wherein he was a counsellor and consenter against his own nephews, [John, who died, and Alexander, who survived] the two brothers of the house of Dun, in Forfarshire. 

About this same time, [the Advantage,] a ship of his Majesty’s, 48 guns, of which one Mr Wood was captain, was by negligence blown up in Leith Road by gunpowder, and above 60 men lost in her, and the 63 that escaped with shipped and transported to London. 

Much business, this year, happened about the settling of the children of the Clangregor, whose parents were either executed, killed or banished; and about their education by their landlords, for which the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council took a very pious course. 

This year, the most part of the barns and garners of Dumfries, being full of corn, were burned. It was thought that one Archibald Harris, son to Herries of [Terregles], was the committer of that villainy; but being accused, he appeared before the Lord of privy council, and solemnly cleared himself. Since no evidence could be brought against him to prove him guilty, he was dismissed. 

The 14th of February, being Shrove Sunday, and St, Valentine’s day, was the Lady Elizabeth [Stuart] married to [Frederik V., Elector Palatine,] the Palsgrave, in the chapel at Whitehall; the bridegroom being then attended and accompanied with the nobility and diverse [members] of the gentry of Scotland and England, diverse bishops, with his own nobility and gentry, besides others. The King being there also in person, [Thomas Howard] the [fourteenth] Earl of Arundel bearing the sword, they proceeded from the King’s chamber of presence, and in state and order marched through the great chamber, and so along the old gallery, through the newly built room towards the Banquetting house; and then descended to the lower newly built gallery in the first court that led into the great hall, and from there into the chapel; so [that] many people might well behold them. After them came the bride, led by two bachelors, viz., her brother, Prince Charles, and [Henry Howard] the [first] Earl of Northampton, Lord Privy Seal. She was attired all in white, having a rich crown of gold upon her head; her hair hanging down in tresses at full length, beset with rich pearls and stones; her train supported by 12 virgins in white garments. All the gallant ladies in the court, and many others attended the bride; the Queen was also there in person; the King gave her in marriage; [George Abbot] the Archbishop of Canterbury married them; and [James Montague] the Bishop of Bath preached the bridal sermon; which ended, they returned from church in that same royal order they went, the bride being then led by two married men, viz., [Ludovic Stewart] the [second] Duke of Lennox and [Charles Howard] the [first] Earl of Nottingham, Lord [High] Admiral. The bride and bridegroom, Prince Charles, Count Henrik, with other noblemen, strangers; all the Lords of the privy council, the chief ladies of the court, and others, dined that day in the new large room built for that purpose; which room was adorned with stately hangings, curiously wrought, representing the sea fight between the English and Spanish fleets in, [the year] 1588. 

The tournaments, masks, revels, fireworks and triumphs that were at this marriage, I willingly omit, as not pertinent to an Annal. 

Saturday the 10th of April, the King, Queen, Prince Charles, [Frederik V., Elector Palatine,] Palsgrave and the Lady Elizabeth, went by barge from Whitehall to Greenwich; and the next Tuesday they all accompanied the Palsgrave and the Lady Elizabeth to Rochester, where the next morning they took their leave of the King, Queen and Prince, and then rode thence to Canterbury, and so to Margate, in the Isle of Thanet, where the Lord [High] Admiral in person, with 9 of the King’s ships and pinnaces, attended their coming, to receive them, and convey them and their train over. They embarked on Friday, being St. George’s day, intending to set sail for Flushing, [Netherlands,] but were put back again by contrary winds; on Sunday, about noon, the 25th of April, they embarked and came to Flushing, the 29th of April. The Admiral having brought them to Campveer, in Zealand, then he with the fleet returned to England. 

The King sent with them 4 principal commissioners to conduct them to Bacharach, a city of the Palsgraves; viz., [Ludovic Stewart] the [second] Duke of Lennox, [Thomas Howard the fourteenth Earl of] Arundel, [Robert Sidney] the [first] Viscount Lisle, and [John] Lord Harington, who at the Palsgraves earnest entreaty, did accompany him into his chief city of Heidelberg. 

There was likewise another commission given to the Lord Harington, Mr Henry Marten, his Majesty’s advocate and doctor of law, and Mr Levinus Munck, one of the clerks of the signet, and these were to see the Lady Elizabeth’s jointure, formerly in quantity agreed upon, to be accomplished, and assured in form of law; and possession to be taken according to the same; all which was well performed, to the good content of his Majesty; and in their return homeward, the Lord Harington died at Worms, [Germany,] a city imperial, and his corpse was brought over and interred in England. 

Monday, 25th of October, this year, Sir Edward Coke, knight, Lord Chief Justice of the Court of Common Pleas, was removed to the Court of King’s Bench, and was made Lord Chief Justice of England; and the next day, Sir Henry Hobart, knight, made Lord Chief Justice of the Court of Common Pleas; and Sir Francis Bacon, [first Viscount St. Alban,] the King’s Solicitor, was made the King’s Attorney General; and [Sir] Henry Yelverton, Esquire, was made the King’s Solicitor. 

Thursday the 4th of November, Robert Carr, Viscount Rochester, was created [first] Earl of Somerset, and Baron of Brancepeth; and on the 10th of July, in the following year, was made Lord Chamberlain of the King’s house. 

The 26th of December, this same year, Robert, Earl of Somerset, married the Lady Frances Howard, daughter to [Thomas Howard] the [first] Earl of Suffolk, the divorced wife (by a trick of [resident] domain) of Robert [Devereux], [third] Earl of Essex. This wedding was solemnised at the court, at Whitehall, and was honoured with the royal presence of the King, Queen, and Prince Charles, and most of the nobility. 


The 11th of January this year, 1614, there was a commission of justiciary passed against John and Donald Caddells, two notorious rebels, for slaughter, fire-raising, and other mischief and villanies committed by them, upon Sir John Campbell of Calder, knight; and proclamation was directed, prohibiting any of his Majesty’s subjects [to receive] them, under pain of high treason. 

The 18th of January, this year, Hugh Weir of Cloburn, who was taken out of the town of Edinburgh from his mother’s friends, a young boy of 14 years of age, and carried over to Ireland, and there married [to William Bannatyne] the Laird of Corehouse’s daughter, was, by Sir James Hamilton’s means, apprehended in Ireland, and sent back to Scotland, and presented to the council. He was imprisoned in the tolbooth of Edinburgh, in a room next [to George Weir] the Laird of Blackwood, by whose means the boy was taken away, and sent into Ireland. 

The town of Perth having [pledged] their commonweal for forty thousand merks, and having no means to relieve the same, but by selling a 19 year taking of some part of their commonweal to certain [members] of their townsmen; the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, upon the said town’s humble supplication to them, did intervene their authority, and give their consent to the said taking. 

Patrick [Stewart], [second] Earl of Orkney, being now prisoner in Edinburgh castle, (the revenues of the earldom being sequestrated) upon his petition to the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, has allowed to him, [on] the 28th of this same month, 4 [pounds] Scots per [day]. 

The same day there was a proclamation published, that no-one by the name of Macgregor use or carry any other weapon, except a pointless knife, under the pain of death. 

In February, this year, the Lairds of Gight [George Gordon] and Newton [John Gordon], both Gordons, are sentenced by the Lords of privy council to perpetual exile, during all the days of their lifetime, never to set foot in Scotland, under the pain of death, unless they submit themselves to the orders of the church. 

The Lords of his Majesty’s privy council passed an act of the 3rd of March, this year, upon a motion made by Mr John Spottiswoode, Archbishop of Glasgow, who affirmed his Majesty’s command and his warrant to that effect, which he should produce; ordaining a general celebration of the sacrament of the Lord’s supper, universally through the whole kingdom of Scotland, upon one day, viz., the 24th day of April next to come; the absents are ordained to be noted, and thereafter pursued and punished, according to the laws made thereabout. 

The Lords of secret council, after much tampering with the officers of the mint, ordains 500 stone weight of copper to be coined in Tournois, and to [show] his Majesty’s arms; and that there shall be 25 pennies in the ounce weight. 

The 29th of April, this year, Thomas Johnstone, that abused the Bishop of Brechin, had sentence pronounced against him, conforming to his Majesty’s special direction, to be banished [from] his Majesty’s dominions, and never to return without the same during his lifetime, under the pain of death; likewise to lie in prison in the common jail of Brechin, for the space of 3 months, and to be brought to the market cross of Brechin upon 3 separate market days, and there to be laid in the stocks for certain hours during the time of the market; and that upon every one of those days, he give a public declaration and acknowledgement of the offence committed by him against God, the King’s Majesty and the Bishop; and that he is worthily punished for the same, and that his offence deserved a far more rigorous punishment [than] is inflicted on him. 

About this time, Ronald Oig, who called himself the [bastard] son to Angus McConnell of Dunivaig, surprises the castle of Dunyvaig in Islay, being kept by a garrison of [Andrew Knox] the Bishop of the Isles, and fortifies the same, against his Majesty’s authority. 

The north sea and coasts of Scotland, about this time, were much infested with 8 English pirates; to restrain whom, his Majesty sends down 4 of his royal navy, to be commanded and directed by the Lords of his privy council of Scotland, who this month did provide them with all necessary provisions, also with skillful pilots. 

In May, this same year, Patrick [Stewart], Earl of Orkney, is transported from Edinburgh castle to Dumbarton, and there imprisoned; and Robert Stewart, his [bastard] son, contrary to his oath made to the privy council, departs secretly to Orkney, and becomes the cause of much trouble in these parts. 

This same month of May, 2 of the English pirates were taken in Orkney, and the 2 captains were sent to Edinburgh. 

James Lyon, [bastard] son to the Master of Glamis, for venting some speeches, that he would kill [Patrick Lyon] the Earl of Kinghorn, is sentenced forever to be banished from the kingdom, and not to return under the pain of death; and because he was poor and naked, the Lords ordained the Earl of Kinghorn to give him some money to clothe him, and put him [out of] the country. But the Earl, out of his miserable peevishness, did often and still refuse, at the council’s desire, to give so much as one penny, for which the Lords did repeal their former sentence against James Lyon, and set him at liberty; being enacted under the pain of 10 thousand [pounds] not to wrong the said Earl. 

Angus Oig McConnell, brother to Sir James McConnell, takes the castle of Dunyvaig from Ronald Oig, and would keep the same for his Majesty’s service, as he averred; but being required by the Lords of privy council to deliver it to the Bishop of the Isles, he not only refused so to do, but kills Ronald Oig’s 4 men, keeps himself prisoner, and furnishes the castle with all sorts of ammunition and provision against the state. 

In June, this year, Gavin Drummond of Kildees, kills Mr John Murray in the town of Dunblane, which was like to make a great [feud] between the Murrays and Drummonds; but by the wise providence of his Majesty’s privy council, and the ready obedience of their chiefs to quiet matters for the public peace, business was remitted to an ordinary course of law. 

The 24th of this same month, the 3 sisters [Isobel, Annas, and Helen] of the house of Dun, were sentenced this day to lose their heads at Edinburgh cross, for poisoning their two cousins [John and Alexander], which was accordingly put to execution. 

In this month, Robert Stewart, [bastard] son to the Earl of Orkney, who had come to Orkney, (contrary [to] his faith,) covertly raises soldiers, and surprises the castles of Kirkwall and Birsay, and fortifies the same with all sorts of ammunition, and a garrison, against the King’s authority.    

In the end of this month, some discontents were like to breed a great deal of mischief between the Marquis of Hamilton and the Master of Ogilvy, about the privilege of holding of Bailies courts within the regality of Arbroath; which the Lords of privy council wisely [intervened], by causing them both [to] find surety for keeping the public peace. 

The 24th of July, this year, Robert Douglas, son to the parson of [Lochleven], shoots the laird of Waughton through the hat with a fouling piece, and with that same shot kills Mr Francis [Stewart of] Bothwell dead, and Waughton kills Robert Brown, servant to Mr Richard Douglas, who accompanied Robert Douglas. 

This same day, the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, by their act, ratify the act of the synod of St. Andrews, against drunkards and drunkenness, and ordains the same to be published at all the market crosses of the kingdom. 

At this same time, likewise, the confined ministers of Fife, who opposed the bishops, upon their humble submission, were, at his Majesty’s command, by the privy council released. 

In August, this year, [George Sinclair] the [fifth] Earl of Caithness, by his Majesty’s commission, is sent [as] Lieutenant General to suppress the rebellion in Orkney. He sets sail with 2 ships, well provided, from Leith, the 20th of this month, with all necessities for the wars. 

The whole chiefs of the Isles presented themselves before the Lords of the privy council, and were demitted under [an order] for their yearly appearance in the month of July, forever hereafter, before the said Lords. 

In September, this year, the castle of Kirkwall, in Orkney, was surrendered by Robert [Stewart] the Bastard, and Patrick Halcro, to [George Sinclair] the [fifth] Earl of Caithness, his Majesty’s lieutenant, after it had been long battered with the cannons; and the chief of the rebels were sent to Edinburgh. 

The 26th of October, the Earl of Caithness having performed the service in reducing the rebels of Orkney to his Majesty’s obedience, on his Majesty’s letter to his privy council, is this day admitted and sworn a privy councillor. 

In this same month, commission is granted to [Archibald Campbell] the [seventh] Earl of Argyle, as his Majesty’s lieutenant, and in his absence, to the Laird of Calder, for reducing the rebels of Islay; and Angus Oig, captain of the castle of Dunyvaig, to their obedience, with power to them to raise the inhabitants of the neighbouring islands, with the sheriffdoms of Argyle and Tarbot, for their assistance in the service. 

Sunday, 2nd of January, this year, between the hours of 12 and 1 in the morning, Henry Frederick was at Heidelberg, in Germany, the 1st born son of the high born Princess, the Lady Elizabeth [Stuart], eldest daughter to King James, Great Britain’s monarch. 

Tuesday, 29th of March, this year, Sir Ralph Winwood, knight, Master of Requests, was sworn Principal Secretary of State. 

In July, this year, the King of Denmark, with 3 ships, arrived at Yarmouth, being royally attended with his Lord Chancellor and Admiral of Denmark, with diverse others [of] his officers and servants, and about 20 of his guard. He came from Yarmouth by land, in [a] very private manner, accompanied only [by] the Lord Chancellor and Lord [High] Admiral, not being known by any, until he was in Somerset house, in the Queen’s privy chamber, who was not a little joyful to see her royal brother, whose sudden and unexpected coming was chiefly to see her. He came to England [on] the 20th of July, and departed [from] there [on] the 2nd day of August; and although he stayed [for] a short time there, yet his princely bounty was royal to all persons, according to their degrees, that did him any service or attendance. 

The 26th of October, in the preceding year, their arrived at court, Aleksei Ivanovich Ziuzin, lieutenant of Shatsk, ambassador from Mikhail Fyodorovich [Romanov] Orion[?], the new young Emperor of Russia, unto the King of Great Britain, to congratulate his Majesty, and to desire his continual love and [friendship], and to entreat his Majesty to be [a] mediator for a peace between the said Emperor and [Gustavus Adolphus] the King of Sweden; and that it would please his Majesty to send an ambassador to his master, the Russian Emperor. This ambassador returned in June, this year, and with him Sir John Merrick, sent ambassador from his Majesty to Moscow, very honourably attended. The Russian ambassador was very honourably entertained while he remained in England, and his presents of furs which he gave to the King, Queen and Prince, were graciously accepted. 

Wednesday, the 13th of July, this year, Thomas [Howard], [first] Earl of Suffolk, late Lord Chamberlain of his Majesty’s Household, was made Lord [High] Treasurer of England. 


In the preceding year, 1614, King James and his English council having set out a proclamation, inhibiting any goods either to be imported or exported [from] England, but in English [ships], which moved the French King, in January, this year, to emit an edict, that no goods should be exported or yet imported within his dominions, but in French [ships], to the great prejudice of the merchant estate of the kingdom of Scotland; which edict being complained of by the Scots factors there, to the court of parliament of Paris, as an act of state destructive to the ancient alliance between the two crowns of Scotland and France, inviolably kept these 800 years bypast; and that the French had ever free liberty of trade and traffic in all the ports, havens and places of Scotland; which complaint the said court having taken [in] to their serious consideration, found that the said edict did [in] no way extend towards the subjects of the kingdom of Scotland, their ancient friends and allies; but that they were also free within the realm and dominions of France, as at any time heretofore; and for that effect ordained the court of admiralty to see this sentence put in execution, to the end that no Scotsman receive any prejudice, wrong or displeasure, within any port, haven or harbour belonging to the crown of France, 4th February, 1615. 

The 25th of June, this year the young Laird of Cultmalundie, [Laurence] Bruce, in Perthshire, killed [David] Toshack, Laird of Monyvaird, sister’s son to Sir James Campbell of Lawers, [South Street,] in the town of Perth. Cultmalundie, the committer of the slaughter, fled. 

In this same month of June, Sir James Macdonald, and his accomplices, take the castle of Dunyvaig, in Islay, and kill the captain and soldiers; and so again enter in[to] open rebellion. 

The 20th of July, this year, the Lords Lauderdale [John Maitland], [Thomas] Erskine and [John Maitland] Fleming, with Sir Archibald Napier of Merchiston, were sworn and admitted privy councillors. 

The 17th of January, this year, began a frost, with extreme snow, which continued until the 14th of February, and although the violence of the frost and snow abated some[what], yet it continued still snowing, more or less, until the 7th of March, whereby many cattle perished, as well old and young, and in some places diverse [people] devised snow ploughs to clear the ground and feed cattle. This snow was very dangerous to all travellers. 

Sunday, 23rd of April, this year, George Villiers, Esquire, [first Duke of Buckingham,] was sworn Gentleman of the King’s Bed Chamber, and the next day he was knighted. 

The 29th of June, [James] the Lord Hay [first Earl of Carlisle,] was created Baron Sawley. 

Friday the 30th of June, Sir Robert Dormer, knight and baronet, was created Lord Dormer. 

The 27th of September, died Lady Arabella Stuart, daughter to Charles [Stuart], [first] Earl of Lennox, uncle to King James [VI.], in the Tower of London, and was royally interred at Westminster. 

Monday the 23rd of October, this year, Richard Weston, yeoman, was indicted and condemned in [the] Guildhall, in London, for [the] poisoning of Sir Thomas Overbury, knight, and was executed at Tyburn. 

There was also condemned and executed, this same year, as accessories to the murder of Sir Thomas Overbury, at diverse times, viz., Anna Turner, 9th of November; Sir Gervase Helwys,  Lieutenant of the Tower [of London], 16th of November; and James Franklin, gentleman, the 9th of December. 


In January, this year, the Earl of Argyle, his Majesty’s lieutenant against the rebellious Islanders, having gained from them the castle of Dunyvaig, in Islay; and either taken, expelled, banished or killed the most part of them, and the remnant reduced to his Majesty’s obedience, went up to court to give an account of his service. 

In May, this year, his Majesty gives a patent of the fishing of whales, for 35 years, to Sir George Hay, [first Earl of Kinnoull, Lord Clerk Register,] and Mr Thomas Murray, [Secretary] his servants, who set out 2 ships for that purpose, this year. 

The 19th of September, this year, [Robert] Lord Ker of Cessford was solemnly created [first] Earl of Roxburghe; the solemnity being assisted by [James] the Marquis Hamilton, the Earls of Winton [Robert Seton], Mar [John Erskine], Eglinton [Alexander Montgomerie], Perth [John Drummond], and Tullibardine [William Murray]; the Lords Scone [David Murray], Buccleuch [Walter Scott], [James] Colville, Burghley [Thomas Cecil], and Madderty [James Drummond]. 

In October, this same year, Walter Scott, 2nd son to [Scott of] Harden, was cruelly murdered by [Simon] Scott, Laird of Bonnington, and his brother, the murderers escaped. 

On Friday the 24th of May this year, 1616, Lady Frances [Howard], Countess Somerset, was brought to Westminster Hall, and the next day Robert [Carr], Earl of Somerset, was brought there likewise, and had there several trials by their peers, touching the business of the poisoning of Sir Thomas Overbury, and then returned again to the tower, and there [they] remained. 

In the beginning of this same year, Sir George Villiers, [first Duke of Buckingham,] knight, was made Master of the Horse. 

The 20th of June, this year, the King in person, accompanied with Prince Charles, and the Lords of his privy council, sat in the star chamber, and made an oration to the judges, by way of charge and instruction. 

Sunday the 7th of July, this year, were installed Knights of the Garter, 

Francis [Manners], [sixth] Earl of Rutland, 

Sir George Villiers, Master of the Horse, and Viscount [Villiers]. 

The 9th of July, this year, Sir John Hollis, knight, was created Lord Houghton, and Sir John Roper, Lord Teynham of Teynham, in Kent. 

At Woodstock, on Tuesday the 27th of August, Sir George Villiers, Knight of the Garter and Master of the Horse, was created Lord Whaddon and Viscount Villiers. 

Upon Monday the 4th of November, this year, at Whitehall, Prince Charles was invested and crowned Prince of Wales, by his Majesty. At this solemnity, most of the nobility of the land were present. In honour of this coronation were made 25 knights of the Bath, who performed all their ceremonies in the upper parliament house; and the next Sunday, with magnificence, being bravely mounted, from Westminster rode to Whitehall, where they were knighted by the King’s Majesty, viz., 

James [Howard], Lord Maltravers, 

Algernon, Lord Percy, 

James, Lord Wriothesley, 

Edward, Lord Clinton, 

Edward [Seymour], Lord Beauchamp, 

[John] Lord Barclay, 

[John] Lord Mordaunt, 

Sir Alexander Erskine, 

Sir Henry Howard, 

Sir Edward Sackville, [fourth Earl of Dorset,] 

Sir William Howard, 

Sir Edward Howard, 

Sir Montegue Barley, 

Sir William Stourton, 

Sir Henry Parker, 

Sir Dudley North, 

Sir Spencer Compton, [second Earl of Northampton,] 

Sir William Spencer,  

Sir William Seymour, [second Duke of Somerset,] 

Sir Rowland St. John, 

Sir John Cavendish, 

Sir Thomas Neville, 

Sir John Roper, [Lord Teynham] 

Sir John North, 

Sir Henry Carey, [first Viscount Falkland]. 

Thursday the 7th of November, Thomas [Egerton], Lord Ellesmere, Lord [High] Chancellor of England, was created Viscount Brackley; William, Lord Knollys, was created Viscount Wallingford; and Sir Philip Stanhope, knight, was created Lord Shelford. 

Saturday, 16th of November, Sir Edward Coke, knight, was discharged from his office of Lord Chief Justice of the King’s Bench; and in his place was installed Sir Henry Montagu, [first Earl of Manchester,] knight, the King’s Serjeant at Law. 

Monday the 16th of December, Marco Antonio de Dominis, Archbishop of Split, [Croatia,] in the territory of Venice, was very honourably entertained and received, at Lambeth, by [George Abbot] the Archbishop of Canterbury, with whom he remained, and wrote a brief declaration of his reasons for leaving the Roman kirk, and his native country, which was immediately thereafter published in 8 languages; he was thereafter made Dean of Windsor and Master of the Savoy. 

Monday the 22nd of December, Sir Thomas Edmondes, ambassador [resident] in France, was made Controller of the King’s household; and [Edward] the Lord Wotton was made Treasurer of the King’s household. 


The 27th of February, this year, George, Marquis of Huntly, was admitted and sworn a privy councillor, conforming to the order. 

About this same time, David Lord Carnegie was sworn and admitted a privy councillor, conforming to the order. 

The 4th of March, this year, there was a convention of the4 estates held at Edinburgh, wherein was granted a taxation of 300,000 [pounds] for defraying the charges of his Majesty’s reception and progress in Scotland. 

The 26th of April, this year, the Queen’s Majesty, by her commission under her hand and seal, makes choice of 4 to be of her council, in place of those 4 [lately] deceased, and to be added to the 3 that are alive; 7 in all to manage her whole rents in Scotland, and affairs; 4 of them to be a coram, the Lord [High] Chancellor always being one. The Queen’s councillors were: 

Alexander [Seton] Earl of Dunfermline, Lord [High] Chancellor of Scotland;  

Thomas [Hamilton], Lord Binning, Secretary of Estate;  

Sir George Hay [first Earl of Kinnoull], Clerk of Register;  

Sir Peter Young, [Master Almoner];  

Sir William Oliphant of Newton, his Majesty’s Advocate;  

Sir Alexander Drummond of Midhope, one of the Senators of the College of Justice;  

Sir William Seton of Kylesmure. 

This same year, in May, the 2 Masters of Council, and 4 of Session, has modified to them for fees, by his Majesty’s grant in all times coming, for an earl, at his creation, 120 merks, a viscount 100 merks, a lord 80 merks, and at the dubbing of each knight 20 merks, Scottish money. 

The 3rd of this same month of May, the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council set down orders for taking up of his Majesty’s house, which was appointed to be taken up the 7th of this same month, and that his Majesty’s 6 master households, viz., 

Lord Colvin, 

Lord [Michael Balfour of] Burleigh, 

Sir Michael Elphinston, 

Sir Andrew Melville [of Garnock], 

Sir William Seton [of Kylesmure], and 

Sir James Dundas, 

wait and attend his Majesty of [ser]vices, according to this order; after that Sir James Dundas has ended his 24 hour service, the Lord Colvin again to begin. 

The 2nd of June, this year, there was a proclamation published at the market crosses of all the chief burghs of this kingdom, declaring at length his Majesty’s earnest desire to visit this his ancient kingdom, and the natural longing that his Majesty has had there many years bygone to come here; and how now all the impediments that has hindered his Majesty’s resolution about his here coming being removed, his Majesty has begun and almost accomplished his journey and progress, with most comfortable and happy success. And therefore commanding all his Majesty’s good subjects of this kingdom to be thankful to God for the good success his Majesty has had in his journey; and next to be thankful to his Majesty for the pains and travels he’s taken, in his own person to come to this kingdom, and in manifestation of their thankfulness to his Majesty, to show all tokens of courtesy, cordiality and humanity to the noblemen and others of the kingdom of England that are to come here with his Majesty; and to offer no manner of offense or reproach to them, in word, deed, countenance or otherwise; and that all the subjects of this kingdom contain themselves in quietness and comely society, every one of them with another; and in no way to pursue one another by word or deed, under the pain of death. 

The 28th day of this same month, his Majesty held a parliament at Edinburgh, wherein there was concluded by act, 2 main businesses, viz., about the election of archbishops and bishops; the restitution of chapters, and the plantation of churches; and a ratification of the authority and privileges of the justices of peace and their constables; with diverse other good acts and laws, which are to be read amongst the constitutions of this parliament. 

His Majesty, in his progress this year, came from Berwick to Dunglass, then to Seton, and from it to Edinburgh; he visited Linlithgow, Stirling, Dunfermline, Falkland, Perth, Coupar, St. Andrews, Dundee, Montrose, Paisley, Glasgow, and so returned to England by Dumfries and Carlisle. 

The 20th of August, this year, the Lords Sanquhar, Buccleuch, Cranstoun, Sir John Ker of Jedburgh, Sir Andrew Ker of Oxnam, John Murray for Lochmaben, and William Douglas of Cavers, Sheriff of Teviotdale, landlords of the west and each marches, appeared personally before the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, and acted themselves to make their whole men, tenants and servants answerable and obedient to justice; and that they shall satisfy and redress parties wronged, conforming to the laws and acts of parliament, and general band made in [the year] 1602; this band being the best and most straight band that ever was made in the borders, (which was made by his Majesty’s information and direction,) he being at Dumfries in the year 1602, was then subscribed by a great number of the landlords of the west and middle marches. 

The 10th of September, this year, in presence of the Lords of privy council, his Majesty’s sentence and decree being read concerning all feuds and matters of blood between the Hays and Gordons, (which was submitted to his Majesty,) [George Gordon) the Marquis of Huntly and [Francis Hay, ninth] Earl of Erroll having notice by the Lord Chancellor, that it was first (before all) his Majesty’s pleasure, that they two should [shake] hands, and embrace one another, which by all appearance they very cordially did. 

Sunday the 5th of January, this year, [George] the Lord Viscount Villiers, at Whitehall, was created Earl of Buckingham, and sworn a privy councillor. 

Shrove Tuesday, the 4th of March, many disordered persons, of sundry kinds, spoiled many houses about London, namely, new built houses and play houses. 

The 7th of March, this year, the great seal of England was delivered to Sir Francis Bacon, [first Viscount St. Alban,] knight, the King’s Attorney, who was made Lord Keeper of the Great Seal. 

When Bacon was made Lord Keeper, Sir Henry Yelverton, knight, the King’s Solicitor, was made the King’s Attorney, and Mr Thomas Coventry, Esquire, Recorder of London, was made the King’s Solicitor, and was knighted [on] the 16th of March. 

Sunday, 23rd of March, this year, at Burleigh on the hill, in Rutlandshire, Sir Edward Noel, knight and baronet, was created Lord Noel of Ridlington. 

Tuesday the 4th of November, this year, there arrived at the court, Stepan Ivanovich [Volynski], Lieutenant of Rasco, and Marko Ivanovich Posdeyev, one of the 3 chancellors of Russia, ambassadors to his Majesty, from Mikhail [Fyodorovich Romanov], Emperor of Russia. They had audience the next Sunday, and they and their chief followers were feasted by the King at Whitehall, being 50 in number. Their whole train [numbered] 75. 

Thursday the 6th of November, [James] the Lord Hay married the Lady Lucy [Percy], daughter to [Henry] the [ninth] Earl of Northumberland. 

Monday, 29th of December, this year, Charles Louis, second son to the Lady Elizabeth, was born at Heidelberg, about 4 o’clock in the morning, and was christened in March following. 


The King’s Majesty, in March, this year, commands the Lords of his privy council to interrupt the [Dutch] from fishing in the Scottish seas, within sight of land. 

The 20th of August, this year, Mr Thomas Ross, a brother of the house of [and son to the Laird of] Craigie, in Perthshire, was sentenced by the Justice General to lose his head at the cross of Edinburgh, and thereafter the same head to be affixed on the jail, for proposing certain villainous and opprobrious [ideas] in defamation of his own native country and countrymen, and affixing them on a church door in Oxford, before [a] sermon on a Tuesday, offering them to be publicly disputed, and himself (miserable wretch) to defend them. This sentence was put in[to] execution within 2 days thereafter. 

The 1st of January, this year, being Thursday, George [Villiers], Earl of Buckingham, was created Marquis of Buckingham, at Whitehall. 

Thursday the 8th of January, Sir Robert Naunton, knight, was sworn the King’s Secretary. 

Sunday, the 12th of July, at Oatlands, [Surrey,] Sir Francis Bacon, knight, Lord Chancellor of England, was created Lord Verulam. 

Sunday the 19th of July, in the afternoon, the King took away the staff from [Thomas Howard, first Earl of Suffolk,] the Lord [High] Treasurer. 

This summer the King created 4 Earls: 

[Robert Sidney,] Viscount Lisle was created Earl of Leicester; 

[Spencer] Lord Compton, Earl of Northampton; 

[Robert] Lord Rich, Earl of Warwick; 

[William] Lord Cavendish, Earl of Devonshire; 

and the Marquis of Buckingham’s mother, [Mary Villiers,] Lady to Sir Thomas Compton, was created Countess of Buckingham. 

The 17th of October, this year, Hussein Chiaus, attended with 12 persons, came ambassador from Sultan Osman [II.], the Turkish Emperor; he had [an] audience on Tuesday the 3rd of November. 

About the 28th of October, being Wednesday, Sir Walter Raleigh, having but lately returned from his Guiana voyage, and sacked the town of Santo Tomé, was brought from the Tower to the King’s Bench bar, and by the Lord Chief Justice was asked, what he could say for himself, why he should not suffer execution of death, according to the judgment of death, for his treason in the first year of the King; whereunto he could make no sufficient answer. And from there being carried to the gatehouse, and the next morning about 8 o’clock, he was brought upon a scaffold in the parliament yard, where for more than an hour’s space, he made [varying] speeches, as apologies to [various] imputations formerly laid upon him; and about 9 o’clock his head was struck off. He was a very gallant man, and died resolutely; his head and body were buried at [Elizabeth Throckmorton] his wife’s discretion. 

Immediately after his execution, there was a book published by authority, concerning the manifestation of his offence in the breach of peace with Spain, and his exceeding the tenor of his patent. 

Wednesday, the 18th of November, a blazing star began to be seen in the south east, about 5 o’clock in the morning, the flame and stream thereof inclined towards the west. I cannot but make posterity partaker of the exact description of this so prodigious a star to all Europe, described to King James by a very profound and learned mathematician of this island. 

The motion of this comet, (says he,) from my first observation, was on Wednesday morning, the 18th of November, 1618, to Wednesday the 18th of December; the which whirled about the earth every 24 hours, and declined 12 degrees towards the south, making his [daily route] over that terrestrial circle wherein lies New Guinea, the Isles [of] Timor and Java, in the east; the north part of St. Lawrence, Mozambique in Africa; the middle of Brazil and Peru, in the west. 

About the 22nd of November, it entered the equinoctial plain over the Maluku, Malacca, Sumatra, Abbassia, St. Thomas, Guiana; every day ascending towards our polar arctic; about the 27th, entering the tropic of cancer; afterwards passing over all the regions of the earth, even over the outermost limits of the British empire. 

About the 11th of December, his declination was 81 degrees and a half; and therefore passed over London in the morning, and so hastened more northwards, even as far as the Orkney [Isles]. 

I may not forget, that the comet, in the latter part of his period, was northwest after sunset, which gave to some, not skillful in astronomy, to affirm a second comet; but in the beginning I foretold, (which was no great matter for [me] to do) that is the comet continued a while; it would advance near the tail of Ursa Major. 

He said that this comet was as far above the moon, as the moon is from the earth; and that the comet’s distance from the earth was not less than 2,300,000 English miles; whereas the moon (when she is nearest) is little more than 2,000,000, which is nothing to the sun’s ejaculation of his beams upon the earth, more than 6,900,000 miles. 

The comet’s bulk was at least 1/27 of the whole earth, and not fully twice greater than the moon; but the comet compared to the sun, was scarce 1 to 8000. So little is this great comet in respect [of] that glorious lamp. And yet the sun [is] but a point to the immense sphere of fixed stars; and all this nothing in comparison of that infinite circle, cuius centrum est ubiq: circumferentia nusquam; the centre of whose presence and prescience is everywhere, and his limits nowhere. 

But whatsoever was the material of this comet, howsoever compact and dissolved, I am enforced in conclusion, to lay prostrate at the Almighty’s power; in the [gloriousness] thereof, to admire his wisdom in the motion, and adore his goodness in the present apparition. 

Whatsoever evil this new comet may [predict], the seeing [of] to them that hate us, and the interpretation thereof to our enemies. But whatsoever good it can promise, the God of Heaven (who there placed it) confirm them all to his royal Majesty, and Great Britain’s Monarchy! Amen. 

Since which time, even from the next year after, there began great wars in Germany, between the Emperor and some German Princes, and the Prince of Transylvania; between the King of Denmark and the Emperor; between the King of Sweden and Poland; between the King of Poland and the Turkish; where it please Almighty God to give the King of Poland a great victory, which caused the Turkish to enter in league with the Polish. The French King made a long, fierce and terrible seige upon the city of [La] Rochelle, diverse years; which at length, through extreme famine and misery, yielded unto the King. 

The Emperor made sharp wars in Italy, and won Mantua, and assailed diverse other provinces. The French King taking part with Mantua, invaded Savoy, and made great spoil there. The King of Sweden, with a well-appointed army, stoutly invaded the empire. There also followed, in diverse other places, [varying] attempts, battles, assaults in [various] other provinces, especially between the Turkish and Venetians; between the King of Great Britain and his subjects; the great and cruel massacre of the Scottish and English protestants, by the inhumane and bloody Irish, in Ireland; which unnatural war, in all the 3 kingdoms, after innumerable battles, continues to this day, the 2nd of October, 1648, [without] any appearance of peace. 

The 25th of November, Sir John Digby, knight, Vice-chamberlain to the King, was created Lord Digby of Sherborne, by patent to him and his heirs male. He had been formerly 3 times ambassador to the King of Spain from his Majesty. 

Friday, 27th of November, the Lady Elizabeth, daughter to [Frederik V., Elector Palatine,] the Palsgrave and the Lady Elizabeth Stuart, was born at Heidelberg, between 1 and 2 in the afternoon. 


The 15th of July, this year, died Sir Alexander Drummond of Midhope, one of the Senators of the College of Justice, a very learned judge. 

The 12th of March, this same year, Thomas Erskine, Lord Fentoun, one of the gentlemen of his Majesty’s bed chamber, was created Earl of Kellie. 

And on the 16th of this same month, likewise, Walter; Lord Buccleuch, was created Earl of Buccleuch, and Lord Scott of Branxholme. 

On the 20th of this same month, also, Thomas Hamilton, Lord Binning, Principal Secretary of Scotland, and President of the College of Justice, was created Earl of Melrose. 

In May, this year, William Rigg of Athernie, one of the bailies of Edinburgh, for censuring some of the ministers of Edinburgh, and not communicating conforming to the acts of the assembly of Perth, upon the Bishop’s suggestion, and clamour to the King, he was imprisoned, and [given] a great fine [of 50,000 pounds]. 

In October, this year, Margaret Hertsyde, was [reinstated] and restored to her fame and credit, against the sentence pronounced against her, for stealing the Queen’s jewels; and her processing ordained to be deleted out of the records of the justiciary general. 

This same year, through all this kingdom, there was a voluntary contribution given to the distressed protestants of France (Which Louis [XIII.], there King, prosecuted with fire and sword); it amounted to a great sum of money. 

The 12th of January, this year, the fair banqueting house at Whitehall was burned. 

And about the end of this same January, [George Villiers] the Marquis of Buckingham was made Admiral of England. 

Wednesday, the 17th of February, Sir George Calvert, knight, one of the Clerks of the Council, was sworn Secretary of State. 

Tuesday the second of March, about 3 o’clock in the morning, died Queen Anna, at Hampton Court; and upon Tuesday the 9th of March, her corpse was brought to Denmark House, in the Strand, and there remained until Thursday before Whitsunday, viz., the 13th of May, and then was very royally and solemnly interred in the chapel royal at Westminster. Prince Charles was chief mourner; and [George Abbot] the Archbishop of Canterbury preached the funeral sermon. 

Monday the 3rd of May, one Mr [John] Williams, a barrister of the Middle Temple, was arraigned at the King’s Bench, for libelling and writing of books [Balaam‘s Ass] against the King; and upon Wednesday following, he was hanged and quartered at Charing cross. 

In June, this year, Sir John Villiers, knight, gentleman of the Prince’s Bed Chamber, and brother to George, Marquis of Buckingham, was created Viscount Purbeck. 

The 31st of July, this year, 1619, there was a proclamation published by his Majesty’s special command, for reformation and alteration of [various] coins of gold, with directions therein for weighing the same, and other pieces of gold, thereafter to be coined. The names of the pieces, there weights, remedies and abatements, do follow:- 

  33 shillings.    4 grains and a half.  
  22 shillings.    3 grains.  
In every piece  16 shillings 6 pence.  The abatement  2 grains and a half.  
of gold current  11 shillings. shall not exceed  2 grains.  
  5 shillings 6 pence.    1 grain.  
  2 shillings 9 pence.    [a] half grain.  

And all other pieces of gold hereafter to be coined, which shall be lighter than according to the remedies or abatements, hereafter ensuing, that is to say:-  

  30 shilling.    3 grains.  
In every new piece  20 shilling.  The remedy and   2 grains.  
of gold current for  15 shilling.  abatement shall   1 grain and half.  
  10 shilling.  not exceed  1 grain.  
  5 shilling.    [a] half grain. 


The first tanning of leather in Scotland began this year, by his Majesty’s special direction. The tanned leather, by the Lords of privy council, was ordained to be sealed; and each hide so tanned for the first 21 years, shall pay four shillings, Scottish money, and thereafter but 12 pennies Scots. 

In the month of April, this year, 120 of the broken men of the borders were apprehended by the landlords and wardens of the middle marches, at the command of the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council, and sent to the Bohemian wars, with Colonel Andrew Gray. 

The 10th of this same month, his Majesty’s letter, by which his Majesty was graciously pleased to commit to his dearest son, the Prince, the full administration and government of his own affairs, and living of the principality, was presented this day to the council, and by them allowed, with their earnest wishes and supplications to God, to bless his highness in that government; and that he may imitate his dearest Lord and Father, in the most blessed and happy course of his government. 

His Majesty, the 8th of June, this year, did write to his privy council, commanding them to cause [publication of] a proclamation, and print the same, [regarding] obedience to be given by all his Majesty’s subjects to the acts of the General Assembly of Perth; which command of his Majesty’s, the Lords of [the] secret council having taken to their serious consideration (the acts of the said Assembly being produced to them by the Archbishops of St. Andrews [John Spottiswoode] and Glasgow [James Law]); it was found that only two of the said acts concerned the subjects in their obedience; to wit, the acts about the commemoration of the birth, passion, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ, and sending down of the Holy Ghost, upon the days appointed to that effect; and the repairing to church for hearing of sermon upon these days: and the other act concerning the reverent receiving of the communion with kneeling. The rest of the acts, with these two, concerned the ministers in their obedience. The council ordained 13 shillings 4 pence to be paid by each of the commons that came not to church upon these days; and the ministers to do their duties upon the same, under the pain of the ecclesiatical censures of suspension, deprivation and confinement; and touching geniculation at the receiving of the sacrament, these pains were ordained, by act of council, to be exacted [from] the delinquents, viz., [from] an earl, 100 [pounds] Scottish money, a lord 100 merks, a baron or laird 50 [pounds] and all other persons of whatsoever rank 20 [pounds] toties quoties [as often as necessary], or less, at the discretion of the judges, according to the quality and condition of the offender; which proclamation concerning the premises, was published at Edinburgh cross, by a herald, [on] the 14th day of June. 

Sir Henry Carey, Lord deputy of Ireland, was, [on] the 7th of August, this same year, created Viscount Falkland, and naturalised a Scotsman, by letters patents, bearing date at Newmarket, 7th August, 1620. William, Lord Constable of Halsham, in England, was likewise created Viscount Dunbar, by letters patents, bearing date at Newmarket, the 5th of September this same year, 1620. 

Wednesday the 3rd of April, this year, arrived at London, Count Schwarzenbergberg, ambassador from the Emperor Ferdinand [II.], accompanied with an earl, 6 barons, and 60 others in his train; brave in apparel, and rich in jewels. They were lodged in Denmark House, in the Strand; and on the next Sunday he had audience in the upper parliament house, where he made an excellent oration to his Majesty, signifying the Emperor’s great love and hearty desire of lasting [friendship] with the King of Great Britain, for the universal good of christendom. And upon Sunday the 14th of April, the King feasted [with] him and all his company, in the same place. In the next week thereafter, they returned; and in a few weeks thereafter, Sir Richard Weston, Chancellor of the Exchequer, was by the King sent to Brussels, in Flanders, to meet with others, ambassadors and commissioners of the Emperor, [Philip IV.] the King of Spain and of Isabella, the Infanta. 

Tuesday the 27th of June, this year, Sir Henry Yelverton, knight, the King’s Attorney General, was sequestrated from his office; and the 10th of November next following, he was sentenced in the star chamber to lose his office, to pay 4000 [pounds] sterling, and imprisoned in the Tower during the King’s pleasure, for adding new privileges to the charter of London, without his Majesty’s allowance. 

Monday the 4th of December, this year, Sir Henry Montagu, knight, Lord Chief Justice of the King’s Bench, was made Lord Treasurer of England, at Newmarket; where the King gave him the staff, and created him Lord Montegu, Baron of Kimbolton, and Viscount Mandeville, and not long thereafter, Earl of Manchester. 

Friday, 29th of December, this year, arrived [the Marquis de] Cadenet, [Deputy] of Calais, from the French King, being accompanied with many great marquises and counts; and the next Sunday thereafter, the King gave him [an] audience in the upper parliament house; and on the Thursday thereafter, his Majesty feasted [with] him in the great chamber of the court of requests, both which rooms were very stately adorned with rich hangings. 


The coal masters on both sides of the river Forth, (for the credit of the country and safety of strangers,) trading to them for coal and salt, does freely undertake, in June, this year, to put marks and beacons on all the craigs and blind rocks within the Forth, above Leith road, upon their own charges. 

The 21st of June, this year, the King’s Majesty, upon the humble supplication of the merchants, adventurers to France, in this kingdom, to the Lords of his privy council, and their letter of recommendation to his Majesty, writes to his liege ambassador in France, that he effectively deal with the French King, [so] that the Scottish merchants trading in France, and their factors, may have free trade, as formerly, in his dominions, [without] any harm; and that they may demand their debts, conforming to the laws, notwithstanding of the present troubles between him and those of the reformed religion; which was granted by the French King, (as [he] himself did declare to his Majesty’s ambassador,) for the love he carried to the Scottish nation, the most ancient allies of the French crown. 

In the foresaid month of June, two statesmen of war, in Leith road, set upon a great war ship of Dunkirk, belonging to the King of Spain, and after a long fight, and many men killed and wounded, they forced her to run on[to] the sands at the entry of Leith haven, and thereafter set her on fire, and burned her. She was commanded by Don Pedro de Vanvorne, a Spanish captain. 

The 4th of August, this year, there was a parliament held at Edinburgh, wherein James, Marquis of Hamilton, Earl of Arran and Cambridge, &c., was commissioner; in which parliament, amongst 117 acts and ratifications, these of most importance and greatest concern were:- 

The ratification of the 5 articles of the General Assembly of the Kirk, held at Perth in [the year] 1618. 

Also, about a taxation granted to his Majesty, for assisting his son in law, [Frederik V.] the Prince Elector Palatine, in his wars, of 30 shillings termly, upon the pound land, which amounted to the sum of 400,000 [pounds] Scottish money, payable at 4 terms, and in three years; as also 20 pennies of all annual rents, which extended to above twice as much more; the greatest taxation that ever was granted in Scotland heretofore in any age; with diverse other acts in favour of bishops, merchants, and some for ease of the subjects; as against the immoderate use of banqueting and prodigality in apparel. To this parliament his Majesty did write a very eloquent and loving letter, which I thought not unfitting to be here inserted, that posterity might behold from himself the great care he ever had for the maintenance of the public peace of christendom; and that zeal that the Defender of the Faith did bear to the reformed protestant religion, and the professors of the same. 

   JAMES R.  


   OUR longer exercise in the school of experience nor [than] any Christian prince now living, having teached us, that the licentious life of man doth not breed more new and dangerous diseases in the body, nor [than] his corrupt affections produceth daily new disorders in the state, which more necessarily require speedy cure from the care and wisdom of the prince, nor [than] bodily infirmities need the help of faithful and skilful physicians. We were thereby possessed with an earnest desire and resolution, to have this year, in our own person, kept our parliament in that our kingdom, that so we might have rather seen nor [than] heard the desires of our loving subjects, and they feel the accustomed fruits of our fatherly care of their good. But the combustions of Christendom (to which many, out of cruel and malicious intentions, add oil, and few have either such care or credit for quenching thereof as ourself) have forced us to prefer the necessity of procuring the peace of Europe, and safety of the professions of true religion, mercilesly persecuted by greatest powers, to our own weightiest affairs, and most earnest desires; and, nevertheless, left the progress of disorders, and delay of their redress, might make the disease dangerous, if not desperate, before our being there, (which we undoubtedly intend by God’s grace this next year,) we have directed our right trusty and right well beloved cousin and counsellor, the Marquis of Hamilton, as our commissioner, to supply our absence in this present parliament, which our nobility and council, by their several letters, have earnestly requested us to indict this present year; and have commanded him to signify to you, that the chief cause of his employment, is, to give consent, in our name, to the redress of such disorders as ye shall propone, requiring present reformation; and to declare to you our pleasure anent [concerning] the expeding of such acts, as we (out of our natural and wonted zeal to religion and justice) have thought expedient for good order and policy both in the church and estate. We have also directed him to make known to our estates, the present condition, not only of our own affairs, but also of foreign princes and states, and with what incessant solicitude we have dealt with the ambassadors of neighbour princes and republics resident at our court, to procure free and safe exercise of religion to these that are joined with us in profession of the true gospel, and restitution of their estates, forcibly usurped by their powerful neighbours, and have performed the like offices by our ordinary and extraordinary ambassadors, sent, at our infinite charges, to the most part of the princes and states of Christendom; wherein, albeit conjunction in religion has been our chief respect, yet the distressed estate of our son-in-law, adding an particular interest of nature and honour, has compelled us to bestow excessive sums of money, both for the charges of his maintenance, and of our dearest daughter, and of their many hopeful children, and likewise for the Electrix dowager his mother, since the power of their enemies, having dispossessed them of the greatest part of their patrimony, has forced them, for their safety, to retire to the Low Countries. How extraordinary these burdens are to us, hardly can any man consider; but every man knoweth that it is impossible to bear them, without the large help of faithful subjects well affected to our just courses. It is almost a year since we signified to our nobility and council, the necessity of their supply in this urgent occasion, whose answers, by their letters to be read to you, will express the cause of the delays, and assurance of their affections. We have heard of late, that some, either not well affected to the cause, or ignorant of the true state of affairs, have travelled to possess our people with an opinion, that, since by treves procured by us, the charges of war are diminished, that there is little need of contribution; but faithful subjects will wisely consider how exorbitant our bypast charges have been, and how excessive our debt contracted upon that necessity is, and how it daily grows by the numbers of ambassadors sent by us to all princes, and that the debt must either be repaid, or our credit and honour so wounded, as when we shall have most to do, we shall find no such supply as the surety of our subjects and estates may require. Some there are, that dare say, that we, being in peace with our neighbour princes, have no need to furnish charges to the wars of others, whom we take to be no better than traitors and atheists;1 for since the war doth in a part concern our son-in-law, and our grand-children, we must disclaim nature, if we shall not partake of that war, if, by our mediation, we shall not procure their peace and restitution of their estates: besides, that religion being assaulted by that war, and the wars in France and the Low Countries, must we not confess, that if they continue and grow, nostra agitur tunc res paries cum proximus ardet. Others, more heady, are bold to say, that their contribution would have been more ready, if in time we had embraced the war, who merit no other answer, but dulce bellum inexpertis, et nullum bellum justum nisi quod necessarium; and since peace must be the end of war, princes have ever been thought more wise and just who have entertained peace, and prevented, and in time pacified wars, nor [than] such, as after the desolations of that scourge of God’s wrath have not thought of peace till destruction of men by sword, pest, and famine, the devastations of towns, churches, and whole countries, the violated chastity of women of all sorts and ages, and the blood of sucking babes, had polluted, desolated, and dispeopled the land of men, goods, and all things necessary for human society, and so disabled those brutish princes, born for the mischief of mankind, longer to prosecute the unbridled and unbounded malice of their avaritious and ambitious minds. The last assault given to the good affections of our subjects, is, the representing of the poverty of that our kingdom, and scarcity of monies, whereof we are sorry, and have directed our commissioner to concur with you in the means of remedy thereof, willing you to consider, that it is not so much the importance of the sums which ye are able to contribute that we respect, as the trial of your affections; and that your straining yourselves to your uttermost abilities, may give example to your neighbours of greater wealth to do the like in their due proportion. When ye shall weigh the necessity of the causes of our desires, the importance of the affairs both for religion and state, and shall remember what obligations of retribution are imposed upon you, by our many graces, favours, and liberalities, not only to the most part of all the subjects of that our kingdom in their particular, but to every state and whole body of the kingdom in general, we are confident, that at this occasion (more necessary than any other that ever occurred in our life) ye will increase your wonted contribution as the state of the affairs requires, and as ye are bound to us, who, for your safety and peace, incline to the counsel given by the oracle to Philip of Macedon, to make wars with money, which is rather to prevent and quench wars with great charges, nor [than] unnecessarily maintain it with incomprehensible harms incident to that pest. Many other things, concerning our affairs and your good, are by our direction to be imparted to you by our said commissioner, whom we require you to trust and to respect, as one who being near to our person, and acquainted with our affairs, and good intentions, hath seemed most fit to us for the present charge; and, as by him we shall know your proceedings, we shall remember and reward your duties according to your deservings; which we hope and wish to prove, according to our designs and dealings toward you; and so bid you heartily farewel. 

   Given at our mannor of Theobalds the 13th of July, 1621.* 

I can not forget, how at the riding of this parliament, the noblemen and commissioners were forced to alight from their horses, and save themselves from a fearful tempest of rain, accompanied with fire, thunder and darkness, to the great astonishment of all that were present. This tempest being nowhere else, made the people (for diverse [reasons]) call this the Black Parliament. 

Mr Alexander Simpson, and Mr Andrew Duncan, ministers, who had protested against the ratification of the 5 articles of Perth’s Assembly at this parliament, were, by his Majesty’s commissioner, committed prisoners to Dumbarton castle; but thereafter, on their supplication, by his Majesty’s command to the Lords of his privy council, were released the tenth of October this year. 

In the month of August, this year, there was a voluntary contribution collected through the whole parish churches of this kingdom, for relief of the Scottish prisoners in Tunisia and Algeria; which amounted to a very considerable sum. 

Because there were a new brood and generation of the Clan-gregor risen up, who [have] begun to go in troops and companies [across] the country, armed with offensive weapons, there was a proclamation published, this 28th of August, that none who carry the name Macgregor shall wear any armour, but a pointless knife to eat their meat with, under the pain of death. 

Thursday the 30th of January this year, 1621, the King and Prince, in great state, rode to the parliament house, being accompanied with the bishops and all the nobility. This session held until Tuesday the 27th of March, in which were two subsidies granted, and the parliament was then adjourned until Tuesday the 17th of April. The clergy gave also three subsidies, and the parliament continued until Monday the 4th of June, and was then by commission adjourned until Wednesday the 14th of November, 1621. 

In this parliament Sir Giles Mompesson was sentenced to be degraded, disnobled, and disabled to bear any office in the common weal, for practising [various] abuses, in erecting and setting up new inns and alehouses, and exacting great sums of money [from] the people, by pretence of letters patents granted to him for that purpose; but he suddenly fled the land, and Sir Francis Mitchell, one of his chief agents, was likewise sentenced in the same manner, and to remain perpetually in Finsbury jail; upon whom the sentence of degradation was executed in the King’s Bench before [William Keith] the Earl Marischal, 

Likewise in this parliament, Francis Bacon, Viscount of St. Albans, Lord Chancellor of England, was deposed and committed to the Tower, where he remained prisoner diverse days, and then was enlarged. 

Monday the 18th of June, this year, Doctor [John] Williams, Dean of Westminster, was sworn a privy councillor; and on Tuesday, the 10th of July, he was made Lord Keeper of the Great Seal of England; and after that, Bishop of Lincoln. It was rumoured everywhere, that has too great familiarity with Buckingham’s mother, procured him these great favours and preferments on a sudden. 

This same year, in the beginning of July, [Thomas] the Lord Darcy of Essex, was created Viscount Colchester; and [Henry Carey] Lord Hunsdon, Viscount Rochford; and Sir Lionel Cranfield, of Cranfield, in Bedfordshire. 

Wednesday, 18th of July, Henry [Percy], Earl of Northumberland, was discharged [from] the Tower. 

Upon Michaelmas eve, [Henry Montagu,] Viscount Mandeville, Lord [High] Treasurer of England, surrendered his office to the King, and was made President of the privy council, and the second day thereafter, [Lionel] the Lord Cranfield was made Lord [High] Treasurer. 

The 10th of October, this year, the parliament was adjourned until the 8th of February in the following year; but after by a proclamation, according to the summons thereof, they sat again in parliament upon the 20th day of November, and so continued until the 19th of December this year, and then broke up, of purpose to sit again [on] the 8th of February in the succeeding year. But the 9th of January, the King by proclamation dissolved the parliament, so that in February there was no meeting. 

1  Never was the term ATHEIST so oddly applied. 

* Letter contents taken directly from Dalrymple’s ‘Memorial’s and Letters relating to the History of Britain in the Reign of James the First, published from the Originals,’ pp.81-86. 


The 16th of June this year, 1622, between 6 and 7 [o’clock] in the morning, at Pinkie, in Lothian, died Alexander [Seton], Earl of Dunfermline, Lord Chancellor of Scotland, immediately after whose death, the Great Seal was delivered to the Lords of his Majesty’s privy council. 

Sir George Hay of Kinfauns, knight, [Clerk] of Register, in July this year, is made Lord Chancellor of Scotland, by letters patents, bearing date at Woodstock in England, this same year; and the Earl of Winton, at the delivery up to him of his Majesty’s cachet and great seal, upon his petition to the council, and by his Majesty’s special command, receives ample letters of approbation of his uncle, the late Lord Chancellor’s good and faithful service, which the Lord Chancellor Hay, his successor, did for the first act of his office expedite. 

In November, this year, Sir Archibald Napier of Merchiston, knight, was made Treasurer deputy; and in the month of December gives his oath de fideli [to the] administration, and was likewise, that same day, sworn and admitted a privy councillor. 

This year, likewise, John Murray of Lochmaben, one of his Majesty’s bed-chamber, and keeper of his privy purse, was created Lord Murray of Lochmaben, and Viscount Annand. 

In the month of September this year, 1622, the King made four Earls, viz., James Hay, Lord Viscount Doncaster, was created Earl of Carlisle; [William] the Lord Viscount Feilding was created Earl of Denbigh; and [John] the Lord Digby was created Earl of Bristol, he being then ambassador from his Majesty to the King of Spain, and was sent there this last summer. Also [Lionel] the Lord Cranfield, Lord Treasurer of England, was at this same time created Earl of Middlesex. 

Friday the 29th of November, this year, Sir John Bennett, Judge of the Prerogative Court, was found guilty of bribery and other foul corruptions; and was sentenced in the star chamber to pay 20,000 pounds sterling; and disabled from bearing any office in the commonwealth; and to remain prisoner during the King’s pleasure. His case was 4 whole days in hearing [with]in the star chamber.



In January this year, 1623, [James] Lord Colville takes [a] journey to France, to crave the re-establishment of the Scots Guard and Company of Scotsmen at Arms, according to their first institution, and [Louis XIII.] the French King’s promise often times made to that effect; which negotiation of his, the Lords of privy council earnestly recommends to his Majesty; and that he would be gratuitously pleased, in earnest manner, particularly to recommend the said Lord and his business, not only to his [resident] ambassador in France, but also to the French King himself; which his Majesty willingly performed. 

In February, this year, for the business of the wool, there was a commission given by the estates of the kingdom to 

Ludovick [Stewart], Duke of Lennox and Richmond, 

James, Marquis Hamilton, Earl of Arran and Cambridge &c., 

Thomas [Erskine], Earl of Kellie, Viscount Fentoun, Lord Dirleton,  

James [Hay], Earl of Carlisle, Viscount Doncaster, Lord Sawley,  

Sir Andrew Murray of Balvaird, knight, and to  

Mr Johne Hay, Clerk Depute of Edinburgh, 

to treat with the English commissioners in that business; for England desired that all the wool that was not dropped and made use of within the kingdom, should not be transported and sold to any but to them. This treaty took but small effect, after much tampering made therein by his Majesty, moved thereto by the daily and important clamours of the English. 

The 9th of April, this year, about six in the morning, died Mr Thomas Murray, some 12 days after he was cut of the stone; he was first master, and thereafter secretary to Prince Charles; and because he liked not the Prince’s journey to Spain, nor [his] match with [the] Spanish [Infanta], he was removed from his office of secretary to the Prince, and Sir Francis Cottington was put in his place; a professed Roman, and many hundred degrees inferior to him, both in love and integrity to his master, and honesty to all men; being the Duke of Buckingham’s sworn slave, by whose means he was only preferred, as the only fit man he could pitch on, whose nature and breeding did best agree with the Spanish air. 

In June, this year, died [Sir John] Cockburn of Ormiston, knight, Justice Clerk, and one of the Senators of the College of Justice; and to him, in both his places, succeeded Sir Archibald Napier of Merchiston, Deputy Treasurer. 

Tuesday the 18th of February, this year, Charles, Prince of Wales, being accompanied with George [Villiers], Marquis of Buckingham, Endymion Porter, a groom of the King’s bed chamber, and Sir Francis Cottington, the Prince’s secretary, set forward from Dover, arrived at Boulogne, and from then by Paris, rose post unto Madrid in Spain. 

Sunday the 5th of October, 1623, Prince Charles, with the Duke of Buckingham and their retinue, with 11 of the King’s ships, and 6 merchants, arrived at Portsmouth, about 8 o’clock in the evening. Next day he came to York House, in the Strand, where he dined; and about 11 o’clock he took [a] coach, and went to Royston to the King. That day there was joy in London, and over all places who knew of the Prince’s safe arrival, with the shooting of canons, ringing of bells, and [setting] out bonfires. 

Sunday the 24th* of October, this same year, about 4 o’clock in the afternoon, [Father Drury] a Roman priest preached at Hunsdon house, in the Black Friars, in London, in an upper chamber, where [there] were assembled above 300 men, women and youths; and about the middle of the sermon, a great part of the floor broke and fell down, and all that stood there on. It fell down with such violence, that it broke down the next floor under it; the chief summary thereof was about 24 inches. In which fall were slain the preacher, and almost a hundred of his [audience], and as many more hurt. The next night thereafter, [the Comte de Tillier,] the French ambassador [resident], dwelling in Hunsdon house, buried 47 of them in his court yard and in his garden; the rest were buried in [varying] places, by their friends; and diverse others that were there, and had escaped, perished by [various] accidents within [the] few days after. 

* We have something of a mystery here. Balfour dates the Fatal Vespers event as having occurred on “Sunday the 24 of October, this same zeire (being 1623),” but the 24th of October, 1623 was a Tuesday. This, however, means that the generally accepted date of the 26th of October, would still not be a Sunday, it would be a Thursday. Yet these varying sources concur it was a Sunday. It would either have to have been either the 22nd or the 29th of October, 1623, to have happened on the Sunday. As Balfour was working from original, handwritten, documents and manuscripts back in the 17th century, I’m inclined to believe he mistook the 9 for a 4. Easily done, I’ve been there myself with old newspaper type. I’m unsure of where the consensus it occurred on the 26th originated.



In July this year, 1624, by his Majesty’s special commandment, a proclamation was published at the market cross of Edinburgh, inhibiting all conventicles, and privy meetings in houses by night, for devotion, which is the only introducer of schism, and all sorts of damnable heresies in God’s church. 

I did almost forget, how, on the 25th day of May, this same year, the town of Dunfermline, in Fifeshire, was in four hours space burned. The fire was very fearful and terrible; for in that time the whole body of the town, which did consist of 120 tenements, and 287 families, was burned and consumed. with the whole furniture of the houses, besides the barns about the town, wherein were 500 bols* of [foodstuff]. 

In June, this year, William Rigg [of Athenrie and “ring-leader of the Non-Conformitants”**], one of the bailies of Edinburgh, for being [in opposition to] the church government, and for [frequenting] of privy meetings and conventicles, was committed to prison in the castle of Blackness, fined [50,000 pounds] a great sum of money, and sentenced by the Lords of the privy council, (at his Majesty’s command) forever incapable to bear office in the town of Edinburgh. 

Monday the 16th of February this year, 1624, the King, with the nobility, prepared to go to the parliament; but that morning early died Ludovic Stewart, Duke of Lennox, and Richmond, Lord Stewart of his Majesty’s household, suddenly, at his lodging at the court of Whitehall; whereupon the King deferred his going to the parliament until Thursday the 19th of February, where he made a solemn speech to the barons, knights and burgesses, in which his Majesty expressed the [reasons] of [convening] that parliament; and upon Monday the 19th of April, the corpse of the said Duke with all magnificence, was brought from Ely house, in Holborn, to Westminster abbey, and there honourably interred. 

On Saturday the 29th of May, this year, the English parliament broke up, and was adjourned until the 2nd of November next following. In this parliament, Lionel, Earl of Middlesex, was deposed from his office of Lord Treasurer of England, and sentenced to pay the King 50,000 pounds Sterling, and imprisonment during the King’s pleasure. This parliament granted to the King 3 subsidies and 3 fifteenths; and the clergy gave the King 4 subsidies [to go to war with Spain]. 

Sunday, 21st of November, this year, there was great mirth in London, with bonfires, shooting of ordinance, and ringing of bells, for joy of the conclusion of the treaty of marriage between Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, and Lady [Henrietta Maria], a daughter to the late French King, Henry [IV.], and sister to Louis [XIII.], that now reigned. 

In this same month of November, likewise, there was a great press through the most shires in England, and the city of London, for the levying of 10,000 soldiers. By the end of December, the whole army met, and were assembled at Dover, where Count Mansfield, the appointed general, took their muster, and trained them; and in January thereafter, they were transported to Holland, where the most part of them died miserable with cold and hunger; and these that lived were put in garrison towns. 

The young Duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel, [Christian the Younger] being at Christmas last made Knight of the Garter, went lieutenant general of this army. 

At this time, Sir James Ley, [first Earl of Marlborough,] knight, Lord chief Justice, was made Lord [High] Treasurer of England. 

This same year, John Murray, Viscount of Annand, was created Earl of Annandale, by letters patents, bearing date at Wanstead, in England, 10 November, 1624. 

Near this same time, also, his Majesty created John, Viscount Lauderdale, Earl of Lauderdale, by letters patents, bearing date at Theobalds, in England, 12th November, in [the year] 1624. 

* 1 bol = 4 firlots; 1 firlot = 4 pecks; 1 peck = approx. 12 lbs.; therefore, 1 bol = approx. 192 lbs., with 500 bols being 96,000 lbs. or approx.  43.5 tonnes. 

** ‘History of Scots Affairs,’ vol. III, p. 239 [footnote]. Spalding Club. 


The second of March this year, 1625, died James, Marquis of Hamilton, Lord Stewart of the King’s household, and Knight of the order of the Garter, at Whitehall, in England. His corpse was embalmed, coffined in lead, sent to Scotland, and solemnly interred amongst his predecessors at Hamilton. 

Sunday the 27th of March, this year, in the forenoon, died King James, of most famous and worthy memory, surnamed the King of Peace, honoured and admired by the greatest Kings of the world, for his wisdom and prudent government; not without great and pregnant suspicion of poison. the manner of his death, published to the world by one of the ordinary physicians to his own person, who had served his Majesty in that place some 10 years before, for the reader’s better information, I thought good here to insert. The Duke of Buckingham [George Villiers] (says he) being in Spain advertised by letters how that the King [began] to censure him freely in in his absence; and that many spoke boldly to the King against him; and how the King had intelligence from Spain of his unworthy carriage there; and how the Marquis of Hamilton, upon the sudden news of the Prince’s departure, had nobly reprehended the King for sending the Prince with such a young man, without experience, and in such a private and sudden manner, without acquainting the nobility and council therewith; wrote a very bitter letter to the Lord Marquis of Hamilton; conceived new ambitious courses of his own; and used all the devices he could to disgust the Prince his mind of the match with [the Infanta of] Spain, so far intended by the King; made haste home, where, when he came, he so carried himself, that whatsoever the King commanded in his bed chamber, he controlled in the next chamber; yea, received packets to the King from foreign princes, and dispatched answers without acquainting the King therewith, not in a great time thereafter. Whereat, perceiving the King highly offended, and that the King’s mind was beginning to alter towards him, suffering him to be [challenged] and [ashamed] in his Majesty’s presence; and observing that the King reserved [John Digby] the Earl of Bristol to be a rod for him, urging daily his dispatch for France; and expecting daily [Diego Sarmiento de Acuña] the Count of Gondomar coming to England, in his absence, feared much that Gondomar, who as it seemed was greatly esteemed, and wonderfully credited by the King, would second my Lord of Bristol’s accusations against him. he knew also, that the King had vowed, that in despite of all the devils of hell, he would bring the Spanish match about again; and that [Juan de Mendoza y Velasco] the Marquis [de la Hinojosa] had given the King bad impressions of him, by whose articles of accusation, the King himself had examined some of the nobility and privy council, and found out in the examination, that Buckingham, had said, after his coming from Spain, that the King was an old man, it was now time for him to be at his rest; and to be confined to some park to pass the rest of his time in hunting, and the Prince to be crowned. The more the King urged him to be gone to France, the more shifts he made to stay; for he did evidently see that the King was fully resolved to rid himself of the oppression wherein he held him. 

The King being sick of a [recurring fever], and that in the spring, which was of itself never found deadly, the Duke took his opportunity, when all the King’s doctors of [medicine] were at dinner, upon the Monday before the King died, without their knowledge or consent, offered to the King a white powder to take, which the King a long time refused, but, overcome by his flattering opportunity, at length took it, drunk it in wine, and immediately became worse and worse, falling into many soundings and pains, and violent fluxes of the belly, so tormented, that his Majesty cried out aloud, O this white powder! this white powder! would to God I had never taken it; it will cost me my life. In like manner the Countess of Buckingham, my Lord Buckingham’s mother, upon the Friday thereafter, the physicians being also absent at dinner, and not made acquainted with her doings, applied a plaster to the King’s hart and breast, whereupon his Majesty grew faint, short-breathed, and in great agony. Some of the physicians after dinner returning to see the King, by the offensive smell of the plaster, perceived something to be about the King hurtful to him, and searched what it could be, found it out, and exclaimed, that the King was poisoned. Then Buckingham entering, commanded the physicians out of the room; caused one to be committed prisoner to his own chamber, and another to remove from court; [challenged] others of the King’s servants in the sick King’s own presence, so far that he offered to draw his sword against them in the King’s sight; and Buckingham’s mother, kneeling before the King, with a brazen face cried out, Justice, justice, Sir; I demand justice of your Majesty; the King asking, for what? she answered, for that which their lives [are] no sufficient satisfaction; for saying that my son and I have poisoned your Majesty. Poisoned me, said the King; with that he, turning himself, sounded, and she was removed. The Sunday thereafter the King died; and Buckingham desired the physicians who attended the King to sign with their hand[writing], a testimony that the powder which he gave the King, was a good and safe medicine, which they refused to do. Buckingham’s creatures did spread abroad a rumour in London, that Buckingham was so sorry at the King’s death, that he could have died, that he would have killed himself if they had not hindered him; but in effect he was no more moved than if there had never happened wither sickness or death to the King. One day when the King was in great extremity, he rode post to London, to pursue his sister-in-law to have her stand in sackcloth at Paul’s, for adultery; another time of the King’s agony, he was busy contriving and concluding a marriage for one of his cousins. Immediately after the King’s death, the physician who was commanded to his chamber, was set at liberty with a caveat to hold his peace; the others threatened, if they kept not good tongues in their heads. But in the meantime, the King’s body and head swelled above measure; his hair, with the skin of his head, stuck to the pillow; his nails became loose upon his fingers and toes. 

He departed this life at his Manor of Theobalds. That same afternoon, about 6 o’clock, his son, Prince Charles, was proclaimed King, both at Whitehall and Charing Cross, Cheapside Cross and other places. 

His body was brought from Theobalds on Monday the 4th of April, and came to London about 10 o’clock at night, being met on the way by the nobility and clergy, the Lord Mayor and Aldermen of London, with thousands of torches lighted, and was placed in Denmark house, in the Strand, where the body remained until the funeral day. A pass[ing] character of him ye may take from a country poet of our own, written some years before his death:- 

O virtues pattern, glory of our times, 

Sent of past days to expiate the crimes;  

Great King – but better far than thou art great –  

Whom state not honours, but who honorus state.  

By wonder born, by wonder first install’d,  

By wonder after to new kingdoms call’d;  

Young kept by wonder, near home bred alarms,  

Old saved by wonder, from old traitor’s harms –  

To be for this thy reign, which wonders brings  

A King of wonder, wonder unto Kings. 

As also a more lively one, from a friend, (who was one of his menial servants), who at the close of the Annal of this King’s life, sent me the subsequent character under his hand, and desired me, if I so pleased, to insert the same at the end of King James [VI.] his life and reign, in my Annals; which you may be pleased to overlook, it being a very exact character of that great King. 

One thought on “King James the Sixth (continued) (1604-1625) – Updated, pp.1-107.

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