Person    | Male  Born 19/6/1566  Died 27/3/1625

King James I

Categories: Royalty

Countries: Scotland

Born Edinburgh Castle, son of Mary Queen of Scots. By the age of 13 months his father, Darnley had been murdered and his mother forced to abdicate, making him King James VI of Scotland. He had been educated to rule as a monarch with limited power and his Protestant advisors attempted to use him as a puppet king but his Catholic friends worried them so the advisors (possibly encouraged by Elizabeth) imprisoned their king. He escaped, took his country back and decided to rule as absolute monarch, answerable only to God. When Elizabeth sentenced Mary to death James did not plead for his mother’s life too strongly. Even after Mary's execution Elizabeth did not officially recognise James as her successor. At this point you could say that the unicorn of Scotland had been tamed by the English virgin, if you were feeling poetic.

As king of Scotland, James was clever enough to marry and produce an heir and spare, which Elizabeth failed to do. Eventually Elizabeth died and James was invited to take the English throne. He travelled to London with a large entourage and all the pomp he could muster. His vision of Scotland and England uniting as two equal countries into one Great Britain seemed about to come true. However James believed passionately in the divine right of Kings and refused to compromise with the English statesmen. To them London seemed full of powerful Scottish Protestants throwing their weight around. A group including Guy Fawkes decide to do something about it. Ethnic cleansing was their solution - kill off all the Scots in London, starting with the king himself in what became known as the Gunpowder Plot (failed). James had the Union Flag designed but the troubles between Scotland and England were far from over. He commissioned The King James Bible, printed in English in 1611 (but see Queen James Bible where we learn that "King James I was a well-known bisexual").  Died at Theobalds House, Cheshunt.

This section lists the memorials where the subject on this page is commemorated:
King James I

Commemorated ati

Holland House - blue

Holland House was built in 1605 for Sir Walter Cope, a courtier of King James...

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New River mosaic

This mosaic mural is quite a success, with the pair of compasses disgorging t...

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Phineas Pett - Woolwich Town Hall

{Beneath the portrait:} Phineas Pett {Above the portrait:} 1570  1647 {On ...

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Plumber's Apprentice statue

This 7 foot statue was unveiled to mark the completion of the Cannon Street S...

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Stuart House - James I arrives in London

{Inscribed in the bottom left corner:} Kremer 1875

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Whitehall Palace

Whitehall Palace

The palace covered the area approximately bounded by (clockwise) Northumberland Avenue, Victoria Embankment, Derby Gate, Downing Street, Horse Guards Road, The Mall.  The area was already a centre ...

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1 memorial
King Henry VI

King Henry VI

Born Windsor, son of Henry V. King of England 1422 - 1461 and 1470 - 1471. Madness and the Wars of the Roses explain the gap. Also King of France 1422 - 1453. As a child king there were regents unt...

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3 memorials
Queen Elizabeth I

Queen Elizabeth I

Daughter of King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. Born Greenwich Palace.  Succeeded her half-sister Queen Mary I. Reigned: 1553 - 1603.   Never married, no children, so followed by James I. Elizabeth I...

Person, Race Issues, Royalty, Seriously Famous

26 memorials
Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth II

Born 17 Bruton Street, to the Duke and Duchess of York. For information on where she was brought up see Byron Statue. When she was 10 her father became King George VI (on the abdication of his brot...

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King Caedwalla of Wessex

King Caedwalla of Wessex

King of Wessex c.685 - 688 when he abdicated. Through battle he won the territories of Sussex, the Isle of Wight, Surrey and Kent. Probably prompted by a wound, he abdicated and travelled to Rome f...

Person, Royalty, Italy

1 memorial