King James I of England & VI of Scotland


Birthdate: June 19, 1566 in Edinburgh Castle, Scotland

Died: March 27, 1625

Son of Mary (Queen of Scots) and Henry Stewart (Duke of Albany)

King James VI of Scotland and I of England

Young Life

James was born on June 16, 1566.  At thirteen months old, James was crowned the King of the Scots.  James' mother, Mary, had remarried and the new couple decided to murder James' father, Henry,  in 1567, shortly after James was born.  After the murder, Mary and her new husband, Patrick Hepburn of Bothwell, fled to England where she became imprisoned and left James behind.  While she was imprisoned, she was sentenced to death as a result of being charged of supporting a Catholic plot to overthrow the English Queen Elizabeth. Once Mary was beheaded, Patrick fled to Denmark and was confined.

James never really new his parents as he was being cared for by many different families.  James spent a lot of his time a lone and away from everyone.  He had a personal tutor that helped him with his studies, George Buchanan.  

As James was growing up, he was mainly around men.  Ladies were rarely around the young king. He grew up quite lonely and unloved.  James had violence and anger issues.

Young King James

Esme' Stuart of Scotland

Since James was practically around men throughout his childhood, he became fascinated with Esme' Stuart, James' cousin.  When James was 13, Esme' arrived from Scotland and James immediately had a crush on him. The young king wrote many love poems toward Esme' and the love he had for him.  

Esme' took great political power in Scotland.   Many Scottish nobles didn't like his influences that much and decided to target the young king as they kidnapped him in August 1582.

James was extremely humiliated and missed his crush.  After 10 months, James managed to slip away and escape.  

Esme' died in France and was replaced in 1585. James desired the new ruler, Patrick of Gray.

Esme' Stuart

Princess Anne of Denmark

After talking to the English Queen Elizabeth.  James decided to put his desires for men aside and decided to propose to Princess Anne of Denmark. He used his talents of written poems to impress her.

When she was not able to return home after the weather had delayed her sail back to Scotland, King James decided to go after her and rescue her.  His journey took 6 months to complete and he was shocked to see that the throne was still safe upon his arrival back to Scotland.  

James started to imagine his love with his young teenage bride as they shared interests and she would have the characteristics that he lacked.  

The couple went through 9 pregnancies but only 3 survived the childbirth; Henry Fredrick, Elizabeth, and Charles.

Princess Anne of Denmark

On the Throne

Since James didn't have the storybook childhood, his rule was influenced by fear.  He ruled Scotland as a shrewd monarch and proved that he was a tougher ruler than the people realized.   In August 1600, James was supposedly attacked and following his attack, he killed two brothers that belongs to the family that had kidnapped him in 1582.

On March 23, 1603, the English Queen Elizabeth died and once James learned about her death, he left Edinburgh, Scotland and reached London by May 7th.  Soon after his family joined him in London.  Once August came around, James and Anne were crowned as the new rulers of England.  James then became King James the First of England.  

In 1604, James made peace with Spain and managed to maintain the peace for a long time.  

He tried to relax the laws against the Catholics and was opposed by Parliament.  King James became one of the most intellectual rulers Britain had ever had.  James published a few books that contained philosophical musings and advice.  

King James in his Parliament Outfit

KJV of the Bible

In 1611, King James wanted their to be a new English translation of the Bible.  Since the translation process was supervised by King James, the King James Version of the Bible was published.  

It was the most used version of the Bible throughout English history and is still used today in traditional churches.

KJV Bible

Works Cited

"James I | Biography - King of England and Scotland." Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, n.d. Web. 10 Mar. 2015.

BBC News. BBC, n.d. Web. 13 Mar. 2015.

Infoplease. Infoplease, n.d. Web. 13 Mar. 2015.

"Biography of King James I & VI of England and Scotland." Biography of King James I & VI of England and Scotland. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Mar. 2015.

Comment Stream