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a man of genuis and enterprize, a native of France. A stranger to the manners, the laws and the language of the people over whom he was called to rule, he acted rather as a viceroy of the French king, than the governor of Scotland. When James had attained his thirteenth year, Albany retired to France; and the nobles agreed that the king should assume the government, with the assistance of eight counsellors, among whom was the earl of Angus, who soon got the whole authority into his own hands. James was continually surrounded by the earl's spies and confidants, who closely watched his motions; he, however, eluded all their vigilance, and, escaping from Falkland, fled to the castle of Stirling, the residence of the queen, his mother, and the only place of strength in the kingdom which was not in the hands of the Douglasses. The nobles soon appeared at Stirling, and the court of James was presently filled by persons of the first distinction. In a parliament held soon after, Angus and his adherents were attainted, and he was at length obliged to fly to Eng land for refuge. James had now not only the name, but the authority o. a king. His understanding was good, and his person graceful; but his education had been neglected. He, however, formed a plan for humbling the power of the nobles, more profound and more systematic than any of his predecessors. The Scottish monarchs had the sole right of nomination to vacant bishoprics and abbeys; and James naturally concluded, that men who expected preferment from his favour, would be willing to merit it by promoting his designs. Happily for him, the nobles had not yet recovered the blow which fell on their order at Flodden, and James treated them with coldness and reserve. Those offices which, from long posses sion, they considered as appropriated to their order, were bestowed on ecclesiastics, who alone possessed his confidence, together with a few gentlemen of inferior rank. These ministers were chosen with judgment; and Cardinal Beaton was a man of superior genius. However, a false step which they took, presented to the nobles an advantage which they did not fail to improve.
Henry VIII. of England, uncle to James, proposed a personal interview with him at York, with a view 10 induce him to throw off his allegiance to the pope; and James acceptel the invitation. . By the persuasion of his ministers, however, James bioke his agreement with Henry, who, in expectation of meeting him, had already come to York; and that haughty monarch resented the affront, by declaring war against Scotland. James was now obliged to have recourse to his nobles for the defence of his do. minions. At his command they assembled their followers, it is true, but with the same dispositions which had animated their ancestors in the reign of James III. The king, perceiving their designs, disbanded the army, and retired into the heart of the kingdom. Impatience, indignation, and resentment against the nobles, filled his bosom by turns. He becaine pensive, sullen, and retired. In order to revive his spirits, an inroad on the western border was concerted by his minister, who prevailed upon the barons in the neighbouring provinces, to raise as many troops as were thought necessary, and to enter England. But nothing could remove the king's aversion to his nobility, or diminish his jealousy of their power. He would not even trust them with the command of the forces which they had assembled, but appointed Oliver Sinclair, his favourite, to that post. As might have been foreseen, Sinclair no sooner appeared to take upon him the dignity conferred, thar an universal mutiny took place in the army. Five hundred English, who happened to be drawn up in sight, taking advantage of this disorder, attacked the Scots; when hatred to the king, and contempt for his general, produced an effect to which there is no parallel in history. Ten thousand men fled before an army so vastly inferior, without striking a blow. About thirty were killed, above a thousand wein taken prisoners, and among them one hundred and sixty persons of condy
tion. The small number of the English prevented their taking more pris oners. As sooner as this affair reached the king, all the violent passions which are the enemies of life preyed on his mind; the deepest melancholy and despair succeeded to the furious transports of his rage. Death re. lieved him front his anxiety ; but whether from the diseases of his mind, or by poison, is not sufficiently ascertained. It took place in December, 1542.
THE REIGN OF MARY.-HOUSE OF STUART. A. D. 1543.Mary, only child of James V. and Mary of Guise, who was born only a few days before the death of her father, succeeded to the crown. The situation in which he left the kingdom, and the perils to be apprehended from a lengthened regency, alarmed all ranks of men with the prospect of a turbulent and disastrous reign. Cardinal Beaton, who for many years had been considered as prime minister, was the first that claimed the high dignity of regent; in support of his pretensions, he produced a will, which he himself had forged in the name of the late king, and, without any other right, instantly assumed the title of regent. He hoped, by the assistance of the clergy, the countenance of France, the connivance of the queen-dowager, and the support of the whole popish faction, to hold by force what he had seized on by fraud. But Beaton had enjoyed power too long to be a favourite of the nation. James Hamilton, earl of Arran, the next heir to the queen, was called forth, by the general voice of the nation, to take upon himself the high office; and the nobles, who were assembled for that purpose, unanimously proclaimed him regent. Arran had scarcely taken possession of his new dignity, when a negotiation was opened with England, which gave rise to events of the most fatal consequence to himself, and to the kingdom. This negotiation embraced a proposal from Henry, of the marriage of Edward, his only son, with the young queen of Scots. All those who feared the cardinal, or who desired a change in religion, were pleased with the idea of an alliance that would afford protection to the doctrine which they had embraced, as well as to their own persons, against the rage of that powerful and haughty prelate. The designs which Henry had formed upon Scotland, were ob. vious from the marriage which he had proposed, and he had not dexterity enough to disguise them. He demanded that the young queen should be put under his care, and the government of the kingdom placed in his hands during her minority. The Scotch parliament consented to a treaty of marriage and of union, but upon terms somewhat more equal. · The Scots agreed to send their sovereign into England as soon as she had attained the age of ten years, and to deliver six persons of the first rank, to be kept as hostages by, Henry till the queen's arrival at his court. On the side of Henry, it was agreed that the queen should continue to reside in Scotland, and himself remain excluded from any share in the government of the kingdom. The cardinal complained loudly that the regent had be trayed the kingdom to its most inveterate enemies, and sacrificed its hon our to his own ambition; he lamented to see an ancient kingdom consent. ing to its own servitude, and descending into the ignominious station of a provir.ce, and in one hour, by the weakness or treachery of one man, sur, rendering everything for which the Scottish nation had struggled and fought during so many ages. These remonstrances of the cardinal were not without effect, and the whole nation declared against the allaince which had been concluded. Argyll, Huntley, Bothwell, and other powerful barons, declared openly against the alliance with England; by their as
sistance the cardinal seized on the persons of the young queen and her mother.
On the 25th of August, 1543, the regent ratified the treaty with Henry, and proclaimed the cardinal, who still continued to oppose it, an enemy to his country. On the 3d of September, he secretly withdrew from Edina burgh, and had an interview with the cardinal at Callandar, where he not only renounced the friendship of England, and declared for the interests of France, but also changed his sentiments concerning religion, and publicly renounced the doctrine of the reformers in the Franciscan church a Sterling. The cardinal was now in possession of everything his ambition could desire, and exercised all the authority of a regent, without the envy and opprobrium attached to the name. Henry VIII. was not of a temper to bear tamely the indignity with which he had been treated both by the regent and the parliament of Scotland, and determined on invading that country. The earl of Hertford had the command of the army destined for the enterprise, and landed it, without opposition, a few miles above Leith. He marched directly for Edinburgh, which city he entered May 3d, 1544. After plundering the adjacent country, he set fire to both these towns ; then putting his booty on board the fleet, reached the English borders in safety. Peace followed soon after; but Cardinal Beaton had previously been murdered by the means of Norman Leslie, eldest son of the earl of Rothes, whom the cardinal had treated not only with injustice, put contempt. The prelate resided at that time in the castle of St. Andrew's, which he had fortified at a great expense, and, in the opinion of the age, had rendered it impregnable. His retinue was numerous, the town at his devotion, and the neighbouring country full of his dependents. In this situation Leslie, with fifteen others, undertook to surprise his castle; and assassinate him; and their success was equal to the boldness of the attempt. May 20th, 1546, early in the morning, they seized on the gate of the castle, which was open for the accommodation of the workmen who were employed in finishing the fortifications; and having placed sentries at the door of the cardinal's apartment, they awakened his domestics one by one, and turning them out of the castle, they murdered him without offering violence to any other person, thereby delivering their country from a man whose pride was insupportable, and whose cruelty and cun. ning were great checks to the reformation. The death of Beaton was fatal to the catholic religion, and to the French interest in Scotland. The regent threatened vengeance, but the threat was as impotent as it was unwise. The death of Henry VIII., which happened January 28th, 1547, blasted the hopes of the conspirators, by whom they were supported both with money and provisions. Henry II. of France, sent powerful succours to the regent, under the command of Leon Strozzi ; and the conspirators, after a short resistance, syrrendered, with the assurance of their lives, and were sent prisoners to France. The castle, the monument of Beaton's power and vanity, was demolished in obedience to the canon law, which denounces its anathemas even against the house in which the sacred blood of a cardinal happens to be shed, and ordains it to be laid in ashes.
Edward VI. was now king of England, and the earl of Hertford, now duke of Somerset, and protector of the kingdom, entered Scotland at the head of eighteen thousand men; at the same time a fleet of sixty ships appeared on the coast, to second his land forces. The Scots had for some time seen this storm gathering, and were prepared for it. Their army was almost double that of the enemy, and posted to the greatest ad. vantage on a rising ground above Musselburg, not far from the banks of the Esk. Confident of success, they attacked the English, under the duke of Somerset, near Pinkey, September 10th, 1547, who, taking advantage of their impetuous haste, routed them with considerable loss. The encounter in the field was not long, but the pursuit was continued for some