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Tltf^^iafc ' ^-V^-'s^y: 

l^arfaarti College l^tbrarn 


Received I^O^ -W^S. 

Scottish tTeyt Society 




George Buchanan 

EDITn:i) BY 




^rintelr for tfje <%octetg bg 


Cjb^ ^cotti$(|i Cejct ^ocietp. 


The duke OF ARGYLL, K.T. 

The marquis OF LOTHIAN, K.T. 
The earl OF ABERDEEN. 

The marquis OF BUTE, K.T. 
The earl OF ROSEBERY. 

^ The marquis OF LOTHIAN, K.T. 

Professor MASSON, Edinburgh University. 
Lieut.-Colonel a. FERGUSSON. 
Rev. Professor MITCHELL, D.D., St Andrews. 
^NEAS J. G. MACKAY, Esq., LL.D., Advocate. 


JOHN SKELTON, Esq., C.B., LL.D., Advocate. 
J. C. OGILVIE-FORBES, Esq. of Boyndlie. 
THOMAS G. LAW, Esq., Librarian, Signet Library. 

F. J. AMOURS, Esq., Glasgow. 

Sir JAMES D. MARWICK, LL.D., Gla^ow. 
CHARLES B. LOGAN, Esq., Deputy-Keeper of the Signet. 
JAMES MOIR, Esq., M.A., LL.D., Aberdeen. 

G. P. M*NEILL, Esq., Advocate. 

JAMES T. CLARK, Esq. , Keeper of the Advocates* Library. 
THOMAS DICKSON, Esq., LL.D., Register House. 
A. FORBES IRVINE, Esq. of Drum. 


Rev. WALTER GREGOR, M.A., LL.D., Pitsligo, Fraserburgh, 

Aberdeenshire, N.B, 

WILLIAM TRAQUAIR DICKSON, Esq., W.S., II Hill Street, Edinburgh. 



Zbe Scottteb TTeyt Sodetig i-Jic/6'.^ ^c . 











^. tPtinteli tor tje Socfetg 6g 




Ali Rights reserved 




This slender collection contains all that appears to be 
preserved of the writings of George Buchanan in the Scot- 
tish vernacular. With the possible exception of a few 
letters, there is indeed no reason to believe that he left 
any other composition in that language. As it happens, 
however, the three pieces, here brought together for the 
first time, have a peculiar value, both as literature and 
history. The first of these, the " Opinion anent the Refor- 
mation of the Universitie of St Andros," is a document of 
high importance in the history of the reform of secondary 
and university education, necessitated by the Revival of 
learning and the decay of mediaevalism. In the notes to 
this document, it has been my object at once to mark 
Buchanan's debt to the educationists of the Continent, and 
to show the relative value of his " Opinion " in the devel- 
opment of public instruction. The other two pieces, the 
" Admonitioun " and the " Chamaeleon," have also a histori- 


cal value of their own ; but their chief interest lies in the 

fact that they are the finest specimens we possess of 

vernacular Scottish prose. In no other writer, who has 

used the Scottish tongue as his instrument, have we the 

same combination of natural gifts with the disciplined 

skill of the literary artist, which we find in Buchanan. 

I here take the opportunity of thanking Mr David 

Patrick and Mr Archibald Constable for their kindness in 

revising my proofs, and for other assistance rendered in the 

course of my work. 

P. H. B. 

Edinburgh, 1891. 










RANDOLPH, . . . . . .54 




George Buchanan was born on the lands of Moss or Mid- 
Leowen, near the village of Killearn, Stirlingshire, about 
the beginning of February 1 506.^ His father was Thomas 
Buchanan, son and apparent heir of Robert Buchanan, of 
the family of the Buchanans of Drumikill.^ On his father*s 
side Buchanan was connected with the family of Lennox 
— a fact not to be forgotten in view of his subsequent 
relations with Darnley and the Regent Lennox. His 
mother was Agnes Heriot, of the Heriots of Trabroun, 
East Lothian — the same family with which George Heriot, 
the founder of George Heriot's Hospital, claimed kin.* 
A Celt by his father's and a Teuton by his mother's side, 
Buchanan was thus of mixed descent, though his writings 
show that his sympathies were all with the race of his 

^ * Vita sua. * This account of his life, in all probability written by himself, 
is given in Ruddiman*s edition of his works (Edin., 1 715). The references to 
Buchanan's works in this Introduction are to Ruddiman's edition. 

^ Deed now in the possession of H. D. Erskine, Esq. of Cardross. 

' Steven, * History of George Heriot's Hospital ' (Edin., 1859). 


father, and that he deemed the Celts to be the true Scottish 
nation. Gaelic was likewise his mother tongue, and must 
have been his daily speech till his fourteenth year. In his 
* History of Scotland,* written in the last years of his life, 
the introductory chapters show at once his keen interest 
in all questions relating to the Scottish Celts, and his famil- 
iarity with their language, manners, and customs. 

The family had always been poor, and the death of 
Thomas Buchanan at a comparatively early age laid a 
heavy burden on Agnes Heriot, left with five sons and 
three daughters, all young, and all of whom reached ma- 
turity.^ In the Latin sketch of his life the most distin- 
guished of her sons bears testimony to the careful diligence 
with which she discharged her double responsibility. In 
1 5 13 a lease of certain lands near Cardross, Menteith, was 
granted to Agnes Heriot and her sons, Thomas, Patrick, 
Alexander and George.^ Thither, therefore, when George 
was in his seventh year, the family removed, and as the 
lease was renewed in 1531, there Agnes Heriot seems to 
have settled for the rest of her life. 

It is uncertain where George received the elements of 
his education. All that he himself tells us is that he was 
educated in "the schools of his native county."^ At all 
events, by his fourteenth year he had given such proofs 
of his aptitude for study that his mother's uncle, James 
Heriot, determined to send him to the University of Paris.* 
Almost at the time when Buchanan began his studies in 
Paris, Knox proceeded to Glasgow to sit at the feet of 
John Major. Born within a few months of each other, 
the two greatest Scotsmen of the sixteenth century, by 
this very divergence of their paths at the outset of life, 

^ Vita sua. ' Deed now in Cardross Castle. * Vita sua. * Ibid. 


were marked for careers which, in many respects, were to 
be as wide as the poles asunder. 

PARIS — 1520-22. 

On the occasion of this his first visit, Buchanan remained 
two years in Paris ; and his second sojourn, some four years 
later, lasted ten.^ In the development of religious reform 
and of the revival of letters, this period was for France the 
decisive stage in her history. Mainly through the action 
of the Sorbonne and the Parliament of Paris, the opinions 
of Luther were during this period definitively rejected in 
France as a national religion. As those most eager 
for reform in religion were likewise those most eager for 
reform in the methods and subjects of study, the new 
learning fared almost as badly in Paris as the new religion. 
It was in this conflict between the champions of the old 
and the new world that Buchanan during these years in 
Paris acquired that bent of mind which led him, in the first 
place, to choose Latin as his vehicle of expression, and, 
in the second, marks him as emphatically a product of 


the Renaissance rather than the Reformation. 

During the two years he now spent in Paris, Buchanan 
probably lived in private lodgings, and attended the 
public classes of the German Nation, of which as a Scots- 
man he was a member. As these two years in Paris were 
afterwards set to his account at the University of St 
Andrews, he must at once have entered on the course of 
study required for the certificate of Bachelorship in Arts. 
He has himself specified in a single sentence the nature of 
his first studies. " Partly of his own choice," he says, " and 

^ Vita sua. 


partly of compulsion, the writing of Latin verse, then the 
one subject prescribed for boys, made the chief part of his 
literary studies."^ The making of Latin verses had been 
a common exercise throughout the middle ages, and is 
satirised by Erasmus (who had himself been a victim of 
the practice) as the veriest waste of time and brains.^ 
Buchanan, however, took more kindly to the exercise ; 
and in all probability his teachers had themselves learned 
something of the higher ideals in classical study which 
had been proclaimed by the scholars of Italy during the 
previous century. At the end of two years the failure of 
supplies through the death of his uncle, as well as the 
precarious state of his own health, forced him to return to 



On his return Buchanan had to devote almost a year 
to the recovery of his health, probably living with his 
mother on the farm at Cardross. By the autumn of 
1523 his health was so far mended that he joined an ex- 
pedition organised by the Regent Albany against the 
English border. Of this expedition Buchanan has left an 
interesting account in his * History of Scotland.' Beaten 
off from the siege of Wark Castle, the Scottish force re- 
tired amid a snowstorm, " which told heavily on man and 
beast." The sole reason Buchanan gives for joining the 
expedition is that he was desirous of knowing something 
of military affairs. If he had any serious intention of 
choosing a soldier's in preference to a student's life, his 

^ Vita sua. ^ Erasmus, ' Opera,' i. 514 f. (edit. Le Clerc). ^ vita sua. 


experience on this occasion must have convinced him of 
his error. As the result of his hardships as a volunteer, 
he was bedridden for the whole of the ensuing winter. 

Apparently convinced that his true vocation was that of 
the scholar, along with his brother Patrick he entered the 
University of St Andrews in the spring of 1525. He was 
sent there, he tells us, specially to profit by the teaching of 
John Major, who had left Glasgow in 1523. Major was 
the most distinguished literary Scotsman of his generation ; 
but he belonged essentially to an exhausted movement, 
and for youths like Buchanan and Patrick Hamilton he 
was an obscurantist of the most hateful type, the slave of 
effete scholasticism, and the dogged foe of all the new 
lights in learning and religion. In his old age Buchanan 
calls to mind the prelections of Major in the sarcastic sen- 
tence, "that he taught dialectics, or, to speak more truly, 
the art of sophistry." For Buchanan and men of his type. 
Major and the Sorbonne, of which he was the most distin- 
guished champion, were adversaries with whom they well 
knew no truce was possible. If Major and the Sorbonne had 
had their way, Renaissance and Reformation alike would 
have been strangled in their birth. It is only by keeping 
this before us that we appreciate the full significance of 
Buchanan's well-known epigram against his old master. 
We should misunderstand the import of the life-and-death 
struggle between the old and the new order, were we 
to read the lines as the expression of mere personal feel- 
ing. As Luther spoke of Erasmus, and Sir Thomas More 
of Luther, so Buchanan spoke of Major as the immitigable 
antagonist of all that he deemed of the highest value to 
humanity. It was at the Paedagogium, which had been 
the nucleus of the University of St Andrews, that Major 


was now regenting, and there Buchanan now enrolled — 
paying sixpence as his matriculation fee.^ He does not 
appear to have distinguished himself in his new studies, as 
at his graduation in the following October his name ap- 
pears only in the second class. 



Though now Bachelor of Arts, Buchanan, by the laws of 
all the mediaeval universities, had still to take the degree 
of Master before he could be a fully qualified academic 
teacher. To complete his studies, therefore, he once more 
returned to Paris, where, after two years' residence in the 
Scots College, he graduated Master of Arts in 1528. By 
his own account these two years were a prolonged struggle 
with misery. From all we know, indeed, of the colleges of 
Paris, the internal arrangements of even the most richly 
endowed must have been such as to wreck the constitution 
of all but the most robust, and to drive lads of sensitive 
mind to desperation. As one of the minor colleges of the 
university, that of the Scots would be among the least 
generously provided in the matter of food and domestic 
comforts. For Buchanan, therefore, with his susceptible 
temperament and naturally delicate constitution, his life 
in the Scots College must have been intjie highest degree 
uncongenial. But his words imply more than the mere 
hardship of ungenial surroundings — they suggest actual 
want of the bare necessities of life. 

Being now Master of Arts, Buchanan was fully qualified 

^ Others paid eightpence, and in certain cases no fee was paid. The last 
class of students were known as pauperes. 


to act as regent in the university. Accordingly, in the 
following year, we find him on the teaching-staff of one of 
the most flourishing colleges in Paris — that of Ste. Barbe. 
Ste. Barbe had been founded in 1460, and since the date 
of its foundation had been distinguished by the liberal 
character of its teaching. By the beginning of the six- 
teenth century it stood second only to Montaigu College 
as a school of Arts, and it far surpassed that college in its 
generous reception of all the new lights of the time.^ Dur- 
ing the period of Buchanan's residence, its large body 
of teachers represented every shade of opinion in science, 
religion, and philosophy, though its principal, Jacques de 
Gouv^a, was himself the devoutest of Catholics. It is to 
be remembered that Ste. Barbe was almost a solitary in- 
stance of such liberalism in Paris. To the end of the 
sixteenth century the University of Paris remained the 
stronghold of mediaevalism, and it was not till 1600 that 
it formally gave Greek a place in its curriculum of study.^ 

According to the historian of Ste. Barbe, Buchanan de- 
serves a high place in its record by his systematic attempt 
to raise the character of its teaching. There were in all 
fourteen classes in the college in which students were pre- 
pared for the degree in Arts. Latin, however, was the 
main subject taught, and it was one of the Latin classes 
of which he had charge. As the ardent advocate of all 
the new studies, Buchanan (possibly with one or two 
others like-minded with himself) took a step which was 
regarded as little less than revolutionary by the great 
majority of the Paris professors. He discarded Alex- 
andre de Villedieu, the time-honoured grammarian of the 

^ Quicherat, *Histoire de Sainte Barbe,' vol i. p. 152. 

* Crevier, * Histoire de TUniversit^ de Paris/ vol. vii. pp. 64, 65. 


middle ages, and used as the basis of his teaching the 
grammar of the English humanist Thomas Linacre. 
Shortly after leaving Ste. Barbe, Buchanan published a 
Latin translation of Linacre, and accompanied it with a 
dedication to his pupil, the young Earl of Cassilis, which 
brings clearly before us the dogged opposition of Paris to 
all attempts at university reform. 

Of his stay in Ste. Barbe Buchanan has left us a 
memorial in a poem which has at once a biographical 
and a historical interest. The poem is entitled "Quam 
misera sit conditio docentium literas humaniores Lutetiae,"^ 
and is the record of the day's duties of a college regent. 
It is a pitiable picture of the life of pupil and teacher 
alike ; yet from the testimony of other scholars we know 
that it is but a simple transcript of fact During his stay 
in Ste. Barbe Buchanan was assured of the means of sub- 
sistence ; but the necessary inference from this poem is 
that his whole manner of life in that college was the last 
in the world he would have chosen, had another career been 
open to him. 

That he was a person of some note in the university is 
proved by the fact that in June 1529 he was elected procu- 
rator of the German Nation. ^ The office could be held for 
only one month, and it may be regarded as a tribute to 
Buchanan that he was elected four times in succession. 
The duties of the procurator consisted in looking after the 
money affairs of the Nation, in presiding at all its meetings, 
and in reporting its decisions to the general council of 
the university. The official record kept by Buchanan 
still exists in the university archives, and is interesting as 

^ Buchanan, £1^. I. 

2 Archives of the University of Paris, register 16, foL 169 and 170. 


being written in the traditional dog-Latin so far removed 
from the purity of Buchanan's own Latin style. In 1530 
a further honour was conferred on him. At the suggestion 
of his countryman, Robert Wauchope, " that able man, so 
learned in Latin and Greek, Master George Buchanan," 
was unanimously chosen by the German Nation as one of 
the electors of the rector of the university. Buchanan 
was thus in direct course for the rectorship itself ; but his 
known opinions on all the burning questions of the day 
doubtless closed this office against him. During this 
period of his life, as at all others, Buchanan was in the 
habit of writing short epigrams on men and things, which 
made him a marked person wherever he found himself 
In Paris the Sorbonne and its doctors were the special 
butt of his sarcasms, and the Sorbonne was supreme in the 
councils of the university. 



In the closing lines of the poem above mentioned, Buch- 
anan bids farewell to Ste. Barbe, and it was probably in 
1531 that he entered on a new engagement — that of private 
tutor to the Earl of Cassilis, a boy of fifteen or sixteen. 
With Cassilis he returned to Scotland in 1535, and while 
living with his pupil in the country, wrote a poem which 
may be said to have determined his whole future career. 
This was the " Somnium," an imitation, or rather translation, 
of a poem by William Dunbar, in which he keenly satirises 
the Order of Franciscans in Scotland. The Franciscans 
seem to have felt that in Buchanan they had a person to be 
stringently dealt with, and thenceforward they pursued him 


with their deadliest hate. On the expiry of his engage- 
ment with Cassilis, Buchanan had thoughts of once more 
returning to the Continent, but was appointed by the king 
tutor to his natural son, Lord James Stewart (not to be 
confounded with the Lord James Stewart better known as 
the Regent Moray). This engagement is memorable in 
Buchanan's life, as having brought him into direct relation 
with the Court, and as being the occasion of the most 
brilliant of all his satires, the " Franciscanus." The king, 
it appears, had special reasons for displeasure with the 
Franciscans, and at his order the satire was written.^ 
Buchanan was unwilling to give further offence to so 
powerful a body, and with the object of conciliating both 
parties, wrote a " Palinodia." This so-called Palinode was 
in truth more offensive than the "Somnium" itself We 
cannot be surprised, therefore, that the Franciscans were 
more wroth than ever. On the other hand, it was not 
pointed enough to please the king, who demanded a satire 
** which should not merely prick the skin but probe the 
vitals." Accordingly Buchanan began his " Franciscanus,'^ 
the most elaborate of all his poems, and one of the most 
merciless satires against the clergy which even that age 
produced in Scotland. Part of the poem seems to have 
been submitted to the king, and a report of it reached the 
ears of the Franciscans. It was not, however, till Buchanan's 
final return to Scotland, about 1560, that he completed 
the poem, and published it with a dedication to James's 
other natural son, the Regent Moray. 

At this period the spread of the new opinions in religion 
began to excite real alarm in the Church. The year 1539 
especially was one of vigorous action against heretics. " In 

^ Vita sua. 


the beginning of that year," Buchanan tells us, " many sus- 
pected of Lutheranism were seized ; towards the end of Feb- 
ruary five were burned, nine recanted, many were exiled. 
Among the last was George Buchanan, who, while his 
guards were asleep, escaped from the window of his sleep- 
ing apartment."^ Hearing that Cardinal Beaton had 
offered a bribe to the king to put him into his hands, 
Buchanan escaped to England, not, however, without 
sundry serious adventures by the way.^ In England he 
found Henry VHI. burning Catholic and Protestant alike, 
on the same day and in the same fire, and more intent on 
safeguarding his prerogative than advancing pure religion.* 
Two poems written at this period, addressed respectively to 
Henry and his great minister, Thomas Cromwell, prove 
that his fortunes were now at the lowest ebb.* As from 
Henry's indiscriminate dealings Buchanan was in as great 
danger in England as in his own country, he once more 
sought a home in France, first directing his steps to Paris. 
Here, as it happened, his arch-enemy Beaton was at this 
very moment engaged on an embassy, and Buchanan was 
again forced to find a resting-place elsewhere. 


Fortunately, an appointment was now offered him which, 
for the next three years, provided him with a home of 
comparative security. The offer came to him from Andrfe 
de Gouv6a, nephew of Jacques de Gouv6a, Principal of 
Buchanan's old college of Ste. Barbe. A great school had 

^ Rer. Scot. Hist., lib. xiv. p. 277 (Ruddiman's edit., Edin., 1715). 

* Letter of Sir Thomas Randolph to Peter Young (Ruddiman's Buchanan). 

' Vita sua, * Miscell., xiii. ; ibid., xv. 


lately been founded in Bordeaux, to which the most dis- 
tinguished teachers were drawn, as an institution aiming at 
all the new ideals that had come of the revival of letters. 
Andr^ de Gouvea was now at the head of this school, 
known as the College de Guyenne ; and to Buchanan, with 
whom he had doubtless been acquainted in Paris, he offered 
one of two vacancies which had just occurred in his staff. 
Buchanan at once closed with the offer, and for the next 
three years he resided in Gouv^a's college as one of the 
regents engaged in the teaching of Latin. By the arrange- 
ments of the school each regent had charge of a certain 
number of boarders, whose studies he superintended, and 
from whom he received fees in addition to his stated 
salary.^ Among Buchanan's boarders was Montaigne, who 
in after-years recalls with pride that he had Buchanan as 
one of his masters. Montaigne is now a European classic, 
but it is to be remembered that since Montaigne's day 
pupil and master have changed places. For the younger 
Scaliger Montaigne was un ignorant hardiy while Buchanan 
was named with respect by every scholar of Europe. It was 
natural, therefore, that in his garrulous references to himself 
Montaigne should not forget to mention that he had among 
his masters one who, according to the almost unanimous 
opinion of the scholars of the sixteenth century, was " easily 
the first poet of his age." ^ In one of the best known of his 
Essazs, that on the education of children, Montaigne has 
given an interesting sketch of his stay at the College de 
Guyenne, and specially mentions Buchanan, ce grand poete 
Escossois, as one of his pr^cepteurs domestiques. At a later 

^ Gaullieur, *Histoire du Collie de Guyenne' (Paris, 1874). 
* The phrase appears in the title-page of the two editions of Buchanan's para- 
phrase of the Psalms published by Henri and Robert Estienne. 


date he also tells us that he met his old master in the train 
of the Marshal de Brissac, to whose son Buchanan was 
then acting as tutor. In at least two other passages he 
makes reference to him, — once in quoting " Franciscanus," 
and again in contrasting Buchanan's History of Scotland 
with that of Bishop Lesley.^ During his stay in Bordeaux 
Buchanan was also on friendly terms with one of the most 
famous scholars of the time, Julius Caesar Scaliger. Scaliger 
was then residing at Agen, some sixty or seventy miles 
from Bordeaux, and in times of vacation was often visited 
by regents from the college. None of them, it would appear, 
was more welcome than Buchanan, as a poem of Scaliger 
himself records. — The younger Scaliger, it may be said, 
inherited his father's admiration of Buchanan, and paid him 
the magnificent compliment — "Buchananus unus est in 
tota Europa omnes post se relinquens in Latina poesi." ^ 

Buchanan was but one of a large number of regents in 
the school at Bordeaux, but his literary gift made him a 
marked man among his fellows. When the college had 
occasion to give collective expression to its opinions in 
Latin verse, it was to Buchanan that the task was com- 
mitted. Thus in 1539, on the occasion of the Emperor 
Charles V. passing through the city, Buchanan wrote the 
congratulatory poem.^ Again, when supplication was made 
to the chancellor of the kingdom for financial aid to the 
college, Buchanan, in a graceful and dignified ode, gave 
expression to the prayer of his colleagues.* In Bordeaux, 
as elsewhere, Buchanan wrote other pieces, which, as they 
were self-sprung, bear the stamp of his own peculiar char- 
acter and genius. 

^ Essais, liv. iii. chap, x.; liv. iii. chap. vii. 

2 Prima Scaligerana, p. 37. ' Silvae, I. * Miscell., iv. 


It was one of the duties expected of the regents that 
each should once a-year write a Latin play, to be repre- 
sented by the boys. The object of this custom, Buchanan 
tells us, was to wean the pupils from the mediaeval mys- 
teries in which the French above all nations took especial 
delight. It is to be remembered that these mysteries had 
now become such an offence to public morals that the Par- 
liament of Paris finally suppressed them in 1547. In the 
discharge of his task, Buchanan wrote four plays — two be- 
ing simply translations of the " Medea " and the " Alcestis " 
of Euripides. In making these translations, he had the 
intention of benefiting himself as well as his students. In 
the case of the " Medea," at least, he says that he wrote it, 
not with a view to publication, but that in setting himself 
to learn Greek without a teacher, he might in the process 
of translation weigh more carefully the meaning of every 

The other two plays — " Jephthes " and " Baptistes " — are 
original compositions, and were reckoned by Buchanan's 
contemporaries among the most successful efforts of their 
kind. The former, which deals with the story of Jephthah 
and his daughter, is in point of dramatic effect much the 
more striking performance, but the latter has the far 
greater value for Buchanan's biographer. The direct ap- 
plication to Buchanan's own personal fortunes, as well as 
to the burning questions of the day, cannot be mistaken. 
John the Baptist, who aims at the overthrow of effete 
Jewish tradition, is the manifest prototype of men like 
Buchanan himself, who were directing their keenest wea- 
pons against the abuses of the Roman Church ; Malchus, 
the high priest, is Buchanan's own persecutor, Cardinal 
Beaton ; the good-natured but frivolous Herod might stand 


either for James V. of Scotland or Francis I. of France. 
The interest of the drama is further enhanced by the fact 
that John is made the spokesman of those very opinions 
in politics which Buchanan long afterwards expounded in 
his famous tract/ De Jure Regni apud Scotos.' In 1576, 
when he was acting as tutor to James VI., he dedicated 
the "Baptistes" to his pupil in a letter which perfectly 
reveals his real motives in writing the drama. It is worth 
adding that in the critical year 1642, a translation of the 
"Baptistes" was published in England, under the title 
" Tyrannical Government Anatomized ; being the Life and 
Death of John the Baptist." In this case Herod was 
meant to stand for Charles I., Malchus for Archbishop 
Laud, and Herodias for Henrietta Maria.^ 

PARIS — COIMBRA, 1 542-52. 

At the end of 1542 or the beginning of 1543 Buchanan 
left Bordeaux. Even there he had not been safe from the 
persecution of Beaton, who had actually written to^e 
Archbishop of Bordeaux to have him dealt with as a 
heretic. Fortunately the letter had fallen into the hands 
of certain of Buchanan's friends, and the death of James 
V. gave the Cardinal other matters to think of. A plague 
that broke out in Aquitaine about the same time also 
stayed the persecution for heresy, which, especially in Bor- 
deaux itself, had lately become alarming for men of 
Buchanan's ways of thinking.^ He felt, however, that he 
was no longer safe in that city. From a misunderstand- 

^ It is worth noting that Buchanan's ** Jephthes" was played by the scholars 
at Ribe on June 4, 1571 ; and was also represented in Danish, November 19, 
1575, and June 25, 1576. I am indebted for this interesting note to the Rev. 
Dr Gregor. ' GauUieur, p. 153. 



ing of the phrase pr^cepteurs domestiques^ it has been conjec- 
tured that he now became tutor to Montaigne at his coun- 
try house. The true meaning of the expression, however, 
shows that the conjecture is wholly without foundation. 

For the next five years we all but lose sight of him. 
In 1544 he was acting as regent in the College of Car- 
dinal Jean Lemoine, in Paris,^ and in the same year he 
casually mentions in his history that he was in Toulouse.^ 
Besides these two facts, nothing more is known of his 
external life during the whole of this period. As it hap- 
pens, however, he wrote a short poem while in Paris which 
is of more value as a revelation of himself than any other 
production he has left us.^ In general, Buchanan indulges 
in few personal references. Even in the poem which re- 
counts his woes as a regent in Ste. Barbe, he speaks of 
himself rather as a type than an individual. In the poem 
to which we refer, he registers at once his physical and 
his moral habit. He had been at death's door from a 
complication of ailments — gout, stone, dropsy, asthma, and 
racking cough — and is still in doubt if he will eventually 
recover. The first half of the poem is a vivid record of 
his sufferings, and proves that Buchanan must naturally 
have been of feeble constitution, and more or less of an 
invalid all his life. In the second, the touching reference 
to the sympathetic care of his various friends in Paris 
shows us a side of Buchanan which his epigrams and con- 
troversial writings are apt to make us forget. 

As we gather from a poem written afterwards in Portu- 
gal,* Buchanan must have left Paris not later than 1545. 

^ Moreri, * Anti-Baillet, ' torn. i. p. 328. ^ Hist. Rer. Scot, p. 1 1. 

' Eleg. IV., ''Ad Ptolemseum Luxium Tastaeum et Jacobum Tevium, cum 
articulari morbo laboraret." 
^ Silvse III., "Desiderium Lutetise." 


How or where he spent the next three years has not been 
ascertained. When next we hear of him, it is again in 
connection with the great Principal, Andr6 de Gouv^a, who, 
in response to an invitation or rather command of John 
III. in 1547, set out for Portugal to assume the superin- 
tendence of a new college in connection with the lately- 
founded University of Coimbra.^ At this period, Buchanan 
himself tells us, France was fast becoming an impossible 
place for men of peaceful inclinations. The proposal of 
Gouv6a, therefore, that he should accompany him to 
Coimbra, was gladly accepted, and the more so that his 
brother Patrick and several of his former colleagues at 
Bordeaux were among the band of scholars whom Gouv^a 
had chosen as his staff for the new university. At first 
everything went well. Before a year was out, however, 
Gouv^a died, and the university falling under the dominion 
of the Jesuits, the colony of scholars, as sympathisers with 
heresy alike in religious and secular studies, were subjected 
to the most annoying persecution. As the author of 
" Franciscanus," Buchanan was the object of their most 
stringent dealings. Before accepting Gouvea's offer, 
Buchanan had expressly stipulated with the king that 
this satire should not be made ground of offence against 
him. But he was friendless, and his enemies were all- 
powerful. He was accused of having eaten flesh in Lent, 
of having made injurious reflections on the character of 
the monks, and of having in private conversation asserted 
that the authority of St Augustine was on the side of 
heretics. After a year and a halPs petty annoyance, 
Buchanan was shut up in a monastery, in order that he 
might be better instructed in the faith of the Church.^ 

1 Vita sua. 2 Ibid. 


It was during his confinement in the monastery that 
Buchanan mainly wrote the work that, more than any other, 
gained him his European reputation — his metrical para- 
phrase of the Psalms. This was an exercise in which the 
humanists of Buchanan's day eagerly vied with each other, 
as at once a display of their scholarship and an earnest of 
their orthodoxy. Of these innumerable paraphrases, none 
attained so universal acceptance as that of Buchanan. 
With his contemporaries it gained him the title of " the 
first poet of his age " ; it perpetuated his name on the Con- 
tinent for two centuries after his death ; and its use in the 
schools of his native country " gave a vitality to the teach- 
ing of Latin in Scotland it could not easily achieve else- 
where." ^ 

To the period of his stay in Portugal also belongs a 
series of poems of a very different type — ^his erotic verses 
addressed to Leonora. The writing of such verse was the 
almost universal practice of the humanists of the sixteenth 
century, and is to be regarded simply as another proof of 
their slavish worship of antiquity. In Buchanan's case, as, 
indeed, in the case of most of these modem Latin versifiers, 
the licence of expression fairly rivals that of their classical 
prototypes ; but it would be to misunderstand the spirit of 
the sixteenth century to infer from the licence of Buchanan's 
verse that his life was its practical commentary. In a 
poem written in later life he seems to tell us in so many 
words that his Leonoras and Neaeras were mere names on 
which he exercised his fancy.^ 

* Hill Burton, * Scot Abroad,* vol. ii. p. 147. 

2 « Nee Phyllidis me nunc juvat flavam comam 
Prseferre Bacchi crinibus, 
Nee in Nexrae perfidam superbiam 
Saevos iambos stringere." — Iamb. I. 



DE BRISSAC, 1552-61. 

Buchanan left Portugal in 1552, and after a brief sojourn 
in England, once more took up his abode in France. For 
two years he remained in Paris, probably acting as regent 
in the College Boncourt.^ During the following five years, 
the last that he spent on the Continent, he acted as tutor 
to Timoleon du Coss^, son of Charles du Coss6, marshal of 
France, and one of the most distinguished soldiers of 
the age. In this capacity he resided partly in France and 
partly in Italy, attending Du Coss6 in his various campaigns. 
The poem entitled " De Sphaera " is the memorial of this 
engagement. As we now have it, the poem consists of 
five books, the last two being unfinished. Buchanan 
doubtless meant the " De Sphaera " to be the great poetical 
achievement of his life. The poem is in large measure 
merely a paraphrase of a treatise by Joannes de Sacro- 
bosco on the Sphere, which had been a text-book in all 
the schools since the thirteenth century. Buchanan's " De 
Sphaera," however, is not merely a poetical exposition of 
the mediaeval cosmogony, — it is an indignant protest against 
what he deemed the pseudo-science of the time. The epoch- 
making book of Copernicus had been published in 1543; 
but Buchanan, along with all the scholars of his time, 
regarded the new system as unworthy of serious con- 
sideration, and without naming him he contemptuously 
dismisses Copernicus as a charlatan. As the Copernican 
theory was not generally accepted by educated men for 
more than a century after Buchanan wrote his poem, he 

1 Epist. I. 


cannot be fairly charged with undue perversity or obscu- 

Another poem also belongs to this period, which deserves 
mention as containing one of the best known passages in 
all his writings — his " Epithalamion " on the marriage of 
Mary Queen of Scots with the Dauphin of France in 1558. 
The passage is that in which he celebrates, with consider- 
able stretch of poetical fancy, the natural advantages of 
Scotland and the achievements of its people. In addi- 
tion to its real merit as poetry, the lines are interesting as 
clearly showing that for Buchanan the Celts were the true 
Scottish nation. 


The exact date when Buchanan finally returned to Scot- 
land is uncertain. In January 1562, as we learn from a 
letter of Sir Thomas Randolph, Buchanan was in attendance 
on Mary, and daily reading Livy with her.^ In the Register 
of the Privy Council for 1563 there is an entry to the effect 
that Buchanan, along with another, had been appointed 
"to interpreit the writtis producit in proce$ writtin in 
Spainis langage furth of the same in Franche, Latyne, or 
Inglis, that the Quenis grace and Counsale mycht thaireftir 
understand the samyn." For his general services Buchanan 
received a pension of 250 pounds Scots, which in 1564 was 
commuted into an annual grant of 500 pounds Scots from 
the lands of the Abbey of Crossraguel, together with the 
whole temporality of the Abbey as well as the monastic 
buildings. As there were no fewer than four persons in- 

^ This reading of the classics was one of the affectations of ladies of rank 
in Mary's day. 


terested in the abbacy, however, Buchanan profited little 
by the grant, and to the end of his life he was never far 
from actual want. Begging letters in the form of playful 
epigrams, addressed to Mary as well as to the Regents 
Moray and Lennox, prove that, in spite of the honourable 
position he held in the country, his income must have 
been either precarious or insufficient^ 


In 1566, through the patronage of the Earl of Moray, 
Buchanan was appointed Principal of St Leonard's College. 
Of the details of his life in St Andrews, or of the manner in 
which he discharged his duties, nothing has come down to 
us. It is clear, however, that he was held in honour by the 
university, and that his great name as a scholar drew an 
increasing number of students to the college over which he 
presided. For three successive years after his appointment 
he was one of the electors, assessors, and deputies of the 
rector; and in each case his name is entered with the 
addition " Poetarum nostras memoriae facile princeps." He 
was never either rector or dean of the faculty. " It is re- 
markable," says Principal Lee, " that no students are en- 
rolled as belonging to St Leonard's College in 1566 and 

^ **Ad Mariam ScoTiiE Reginam. 

Do quod adest : opto quod abest tibi : dona darentur 

Aurea, sors animo si foret sequa meo. 
Hoc leve si credis, paribus me ulciscere donis : 

Et quod abest, opta tu mihi : da quod adest. " 

"Ad Jacobum Moravi/E Comitem. 

Si magis est, ut Christus ait, donare beatum, 

Quam de munifica dona referre manu : 
Aspice quam foveam tibi : sis ut dando beatus, 

Non renuo fieri, te tribuente, miser." 


1 567, though the numbers both at St Mary's and St Sal- 
vator's are considerable. In 1568 more students entered 
St Leonard's than even St Mary's, which had generally 
been the most numerously attended of all the colleges ; and 
in 1569 the numbers enrolled for the first time in St 
Leonard's were twenty-four, while those of St Mary's were 
only eleven, and those at St Salvator's only eighf It 
seems natural to infer that Buchanan's European reputa- 
tion must explain this prosperity of St Leonard's at the 
expense of its rivals. 

There is abundant evidence to prove that Buchanan was 
keenly interested in the cause of education in Scotland. 
At the Reformation, various abortive schemes were framed 
for the reconstitution of the University of St Andrews, 
and among them is one from the hand of Buchanan him- 
self. The plan of study he sets forth was inadequate even 
for that day in Scotland ; but so many schemes for the 
improvement of the university had already miscarried, that 
only some such modest plan as that of Buchanan had any 
chance of being realised. As it happened, even this scheme 
had no better fortune than those of his predecessors.^ — 
Buchanan was most closely associated with the Univer- 
sity of St Andrews, but more than once he was also the 
prompter of substantial boons in favour of the University 
of Glasgow. A valuable gift of Latin and Greek books 
gave further proof of his interest in the welfare of Glasgow 
College. But the best endeavours of Buchanan in the 
cause of public instruction could bear little fruit at a time 
when the country was torn with civil and religious dissen- 
sions, and its very existence as a nation was at stake. 
His real service to education in Scotland, therefore, is to 

^ See p. 3, below. 


be traced to the indirect influence of his fame as a scholar. 
For fully two centuries after his death, his name and ex- 
ample were the inspiration of such of his countrymen as 
made the career of a scholar the ambition of their life. 



We have seen that, on his return to Scotland, Buchanan 
acted as classical tutor to Mary, and that he received a 
grant for his general services to herself and the Govern- 
ment. While he was thus in daily attendance on Mary, 
he made no concealment of the fact that he was opposed 
to her on all fundamental questions of policy and religion. 
On his arrival in Scotland he had joined the Reformed 
Church as established by the Protestant party ; and from 
1563 he sat for four successive years as a member of the 
General Assembly, and in 1567 as Moderator. As the 
General Assembly and all its deliberations were the special 
aversion of Mary, Buchanan did not consult her favour by 
becoming one of its members. Nevertheless, for the first 
few years after his return from the Continent, he performed 
all those services about the Court which princes in that 
age required of their scholars. He wrote Latin masques 
on the occasion of Court festivities, and he addressed 
poems to Mary in a tone in perfect keeping with the con- 
ventions of the age. 

In December 1566, Buchanan, as poet-laureate of the 
Court, wrote the masque played on the occasion of the 
baptism of James VI. ; but by the events that immediately 
followed — the murder of Darnley and Mary's marriage 
with Bothwell — he was completely alienated from the 


queen, and eventually proved one of the most formidable 
of her adversaries. With many of Mary's own friends, 
and the entire party to which he himself belonged, 
Buchanan was convinced of the queen's guilty share in 
her husband's murder. By all his principles in politics 
and religion, also, he was convinced that it was for the 
best welfare of the country that Mary should not again 
sit upon the throne. When he was invited by the Regent 
Moray, therefore, to act as one of his assistants in placing 
the indictment against Mary before Elizabeth, he could 
not refuse his services to his country. Accordingly, in. 
1568 he accompanied Moray and his fellow-commissioners 
first to York, and afterwards to London. His share in 
the proceedings against Mary was the statement in Latin 
of the various charges against her supplied to him by the 
insurgent leaders. This statement, as written in classical 
Latin, and by a scholar of Buchanan's reputation, made 
the whole tragic story known to educated Europe. Its 
full title, though probably not supplied by Buchanan him- 
self, explains the nature and scope of the indictment, " De 
Maria Scotorum Regina, totaque ejus contra Regem con- 
juratione, foedo cum Bothuelio adulterio, nefaria in mari- 
tum crudelitate et rabie, horrendo insuper et deterrimo 
ejusdem parricidio, plena et tragica plane Historia."^ — 
During his stay in London, Buchanan enjoyed the best 
society the city could then offer. As several of his poems 
show, he was on intimate terms with Elizabeth's great 
minister, Cecil. He also held pleasant intercourse with 
Elizabeth's classical tutor, Roger Ascham, exchanging 
presents and complimentary verses with him. 

^ On the Scots translation of the ' Detectio,' which has been loosely ascribed 
to Buchanan, see note, p. 59. 



In the beginning of 1 569 he returned to Scotland, and 
for a short time resumed his duties as Principal of St 
Leonard's.^ It must have been shortly after his return 
to Scotland that he produced his only two other pieces 
written in the vernacular — * The Admonitioun to the trew 
Lordis' (pp. 18-36) and the *Chamaeleon' (pp. 37-53). To 
the same period, probably, belongs his famous dialogue, 

* De Jure Regni apud Scotos,' an exposition of his political 
creed, and of what he understood to be the constitutional 
relations of prince and people in Scotland. The leading 
motive of the tract is identical with that of Milton in his 

* Defence of the People of England * — ^the justification of 
his countrymen in the eyes of Europe ; and the sum of 
its political teaching is simply that the prince exists by 
the will and for the good of the people. 


During his last years, a charge was committed to 
Buchanan which has given him a place in the traditions 
of his country which he could not have gained by all his 
mastery of classical Latin. In 1570 the Privy Council 
appointed him tutor to the king, then only four years 
of age. As his dedications to "Baptistes," the *De Jure 
Regni,' and his * History of Scotland' show, Buchanan 
had a full sense of the responsibility of his charge. He 
was now in his 64th year, and his infirmities made him 
even older than his years, so that he was not in , all 
respects specially fitted for the task imposed upon him. 

^ Sibbald, ' Commentarius in Vitam Georgii Buchanani/ p. 66. 


From James's fourth to his twelfth year, however, Buchanan 
not only exercised a general superintendence over his 
education, but in certain branches himself gave his pupil 
instruction. How James profited by this instruction is 
proved by the fact that he became "the only English 
prince who has carried to the throne knowledge derived 
from reading or any considerable amount of literature."^ 
On the other hand, his entire line of action, when he 
afterwards came to the throne, was in direct antagonism 
to all his master's principles, alike in politics and religion. 

Besides his post as tutor to James, Buchanan held other 
appointments that made him a person of considerable 
importance in the country. During the brief regency 
of Lennox he was made director of Chancery, and after- 
wards Keeper of the Privy Seal, an office which he held 
till 1578. As Keeper of the Privy Seal he was entitled 
to a seat in Parliament, a privilege of which he seems 
to have availed himself To the Earl of Morton Buchanan 
was not so favourably disposed as to the three previous 
regents, Moray, Lennox, and Mar. With the religious 
party to which he belonged, he disapproved of Morton's 
attitude towards the Church. But his chief ground of 
opposition was the regent's persistent attempt to gain 
possession of the king. It was, indeed, mainly by the 
advice of Buchanan and Alexander Erskine, governor 
of Stirling Castle, that James was induced to support 
the party opposed to Morton, which brought about his 
temporary abdication in March 1578.^ A council of twelve 
was then formed for the direction of the king, Buchanan 
being one of its extraordinary members. The council 

^ Mark Pattison, ' Isaac Casaubon/ p. 296. 
^ Sir James Melville, 'Memoirs.' 


was of short duration, as by April of the same year 
Morton was again in power. During Morton's second 
regency Buchanan still continued in the Privy Council, 
though in 1578 he had resigned the Seal to his nephew, 
Thomas Buchanan. Of the Councils which met during 
Morton's second regency, Buchanan occasionally attended 
the first ; but at the second he seems never to have been 
present. In the first Council, Buchanan, assisted by Peter 
Young, his subordinate in charge of the king, acted as 
interim secretary during the absence of the Commendator 
of Dunfermline on an embassy to England. 

In virtue of his office as tutor to the king, and his 
position as one of the public servants of the country, 
Buchanan was of sufficient consequence to be the object 
of special solicitation, both from England and the Con- 
tinent. In a list sent to Cecil of the Scots whose 
influence it would be well to secure, the name of 
Buchanan occurs with a suggested douceur of £200^ 
which we have no reason to suppose, however, that 
Buchanan ever received. From abroad he received 
letters from the supporters of Henry of Navarre, pray- 
ing his influence in favour of their master, and impress- 
ing upon him the importance of securing an under- 
standing between Scotland and the French Protestants. 


The last and most ambitious work of Buchanan was 
his *Rerum Scoticarum Historia,' in twenty books, that 
all but fills the thicker folio in Ruddiman's edition of 
his works. Written in advanced age and in broken 
health, it affords the most signal proof of Buchanan's 


force of mind and indomitable spirit. As a narrative 
written professedly in imitation of the classical historians, 
its choiceness and vigour of style exacted the admiration 
of Buchanan's contemporaries, and for nearly two hun- 
dred years made Scottish history familiar to Continental 
scholars. Even by students like Archbishop Ussher it 
was regarded as of high historical value, and not till the 
present century did it definitely lose its place as a possible 
presentment of the history of the Scottish nation. Like 
most histories, it is the work of a partisan, and, consciously 
or unconsciously, the political lessons it inculcates are but 
the conclusions of his *De Jure Regni' and "Baptistes." 
For the first half of the sixteenth century, however, its 
importance is still recognised by every competent student 
of Scottish history. 


All through life Buchanan suffered from ill health, and 
more than once he seems to have been at the point of 
death. Naturally of a delicate constitution, his early 
privations, his wandering and precarious life, sowed the 
seeds of the various ailments from which he suffered in 
his advanced years. In Buchanan's century, moreover, 
the conditions of life antedated the advances of age. At 
forty a man was then considered old ; at fifty he was aged.^ 
From the date of his final return to Scotland there were 
protracted periods when all employment was impossible 
for him, and during the last two years of his life he seems 

^ Thus Montaigne, who was naturally of a vigorous constitution, speaks of 
himself at forty as having entered the avenue of old age, when ''what he 
shall be from that time forth will be but a half-existence, and no longer his 
whole self." — Essais, iii. 5. 


to have been all but completely prostrate. To the last, 
however, he retained his clearness and alertness of mind. 
Visiting him in 1581, a year before his death, Andrew 
Melville and his nephew James found him teaching his 
servant the alphabet " I see, sir," said Melville, " yie are 
nocht ydle." " Better this," replied Buchanan, " nor stelling 
sheipe, or sitting ydle, quhilk is as ill."^ Buchanan died 
in Edinburgh on the 28th of September 1582, and so poor 
that the expense of his funeral was defrayed by the city. 
He was buried in the Greyfriars' churchyard, and was fol- 
lowed to the grave " by a great company of the faithful." ^ 
A simple tablet now marks the spot where he is supposed 
to lie ; and at the north-west comer of the church a monu- 
ment was erected in 1878 by David Laing, consisting of a 
pedestal with a bust of life-size. 

During the latter half of the sixteenth century Buchanan 
was unquestionably the most celebrated scholar and man 
of letters then living in Britain. Latin was still the common 
language of Europe, and Buchanan was regarded by his 
contemporaries as at once the rival of Virgil and Livy in 
their own tongue. During the next century, both in Eng- 
land and on the Continent, his fame suffered but little 
diminution, and even into the eighteenth his writings were 
known to all with any pretensions to classical attainments. 
Buchanan's mastery over such a language as Latin is itself 
conclusive proof of the natural vigour of his mind ; but his 
prose and verse alike attest that he had far higher gifts 
than those of the mere assiduous student. Wit, humour, 
imagination, general breadth and sagacity of mind, are 
present in him in such degree as fairly entitles him to 
rank with the highest order of intellects his country has 

1 Mr James Melville's Diary, p. 86 (edit. 1829). » Calderwood. 


produced. His meagre remains in his mother tongue give 
only an imperfect idea of the range and variety of his 
gifts ; yet even in these his manner of handling a half- 
developed language has the unmistakable stamp of the 
master of style. Of all prose writers of the Scots dia- 
lect, Knox alone is to be named with him for vigour 
of thought and incisiveness of phrase ; and in Knox we 
do not find what is ever present in Buchanan — a pre-- 
siding faculty that sees the beginning and the end, and 
subordinates the trivial to the significant, the part to the 





[On the establishment of Protestantism (1560) as the religion of 
the state, the Scottish reformers, in the deadly earnest that char- 
acterised all their action, set about the work of reconstruction in 
the three universities. As the most important of the three, St 
Andrews received their special attention. At the moment of the 
overthrow of the ancient Church, the studies and methods of 
instruction followed in all the three colleges of St Andrews were 
wholly those of mediaevalism. Canon law, the logic and meta- 
physic of the schoolmen, made the staple of the curriculum. Latin 
had a distinct place assigned to it, but it was Latin as understood 
by men like John Major, and not as it had come to be taught by 
the scholars of the renaissance. As we learn from the case of 
Andrew Melville,* also, Greek was still unknown even in St Mary's, 
the most fully equipped of all the three colleges. While the cur- 
riculum was thus antiquated, the overlapping functions of the three 
colleges made impossible the effective and economical organisa- 

* James Melville's Diary, p. 39 (edit. 1842). 



tkm of the imhrersitj. There was do organic connection between 
the colleges, and the various subjects of study were promiscuously 
taught in each. This was, indeed, the case with all the collies 
of the mediaeval universities ; but at St Andrews, where the num- 
ber of collies was so few, and funds were not over-abundant, a 
distinct function for each, and an organic connection between all, 
was imperatively needed in the interests of higher educatioiL 

With the clear sense of the nature of the reforms needed, the 
authors of the * Book of Discipline ' laid it down that the three 
collies at St Andrews should each have a distinct sphere of its 
own : that one should provide a course in philosophy, the second 
a coiuse in law, and the third a course in divinity. Like so many 
other excellent proposals in the ' Book of Discipline,' this proposal 
for the reform of St Andrews was not carried into effect; and, 
during the next few years, the university seems to have lost rather 
than gained in efficiency. By an Act of Parliament (1563), a 
commission was appointed to investigate the state of that univer- 
sity, on the ground that there was " waisting of the patrimony of 
sum of the fundatiounis maid in the CoUegeis of the City of 
Sanctandros and uthers placis within this Realme for the inter- 
tenement of the youth, and that few sciences and speciallie thay 
that ar maist necessaire, that is to say, the toungis and humanitie, 
are in ane part not teichit within the said Citie to the greit detri- 
ment of the haill liegis of the Realme." The most notable among 
the Commissioners were Moray, Maitlandi and Buchanan, and 
they were charged to report the result of their inquiry the follow- 
ing year. This they failed to do, and the only memorial of the 
commission is the scheme for the reconstruction of the three 
colleges here printed, which there is good reason to believe was 
the work of Buchanan himself. The original manuscript in the 
Advocates' Library is endorsed " Mr George Buchanans opinion 
anent the Reformation of the Vniversitie of St Andros, al vrytten 
vith his awin hand vret, 1579." The manuscript is not in 
Buchanan's own hand, and must have been copied at a much 
later date. Besides many errors he has made in his copy, the 
transcriber has further blundered in assigning the original to the 


year 1579. As will be seen, the author of the ' Opinion ' speaks 
of Queen Mary as still upon the throne. The original draft must 
therefore have been made before her abdication in July 1567; 
and it is reasonable to suppose that it embodies the conclusions 
of the Parliamentary Commission of 1563, of which Buchanan was 
a member.* This scheme of university reform certainly bears all 
the marks of Buchanan's authorship. Its clearness and succinct- 
ness, the importance it assigns to classical studies, are precisely 
what we should expect from his own intellectual ideals and the 
sound sense that made the foundation of his character. Moreover, 
in that part of the plan which deals with the College of Humanite 
there seem to be reminiscences of Sainte-Barbe and the College 
de Guyenne, which further stamp it as the production of 

Buchanan's scheme differs materially from that of the * Book of 
Discipline,' but resembles it in so far that it assigns a separate 
function to each of the three colleges. From a modern point of 
view it appears a ludicrously inadequate presentment of the scope 
of a university. In judging its merits, however, we must have 
regard not only to the state of studies at the period, but the 
means at the disposal of those who were most eager for university 
reform. From the confusion of the years that followed the change 
of religion, it was only the most modest schemes of university re- 
construction that had any chance of being carried into effect ; and, 
as it happened, neither the proposals of the authors of the ' Book 
of Discipline,' nor those of Buchanan, nor those of Andrew Mel- 
ville in 1579, were ever realised. 

It has been objected to Buchanan's plan that " its author had 
his attention too exclusively directed to the cultivation of languages 
and humanity." t It may be safely said, however, that in attaching 
the importance he did to humane studies, Buchanan was meeting 
the deepest intellectual need of his age, and that he was in the 

* Another University Commission was appointed by Parliament in 1579. 
The transcriber probably confounded this commission with the previous one, 
Buchanan, it should be said, sat on both commissions. 

t M*Crie, Life of Andrew Melville, pp. 356, 357 (edit. 1856). 


true line of the best thinkers and educationists of the sixteenth 
century. The great work of that century in the development of 
men's minds was to recover language from the corruption into 
which it had fallen in the hands of the later schoolmen. With 
language in the state to which it had come by the middle of the 
fifteenth century, just thinking on any subject whatever was an 
impossibility. In the study of the Latin and Greek classics, there- 
fore, men found the very discipUne they needed to rationalise 
their modes of speech, and so eventually to train them to right 
methods in the general search for truth. It may also be said that 
had Buchanan's ideal of a liberal education taken deeper root in 
Scotland, and the ancient languages come to be studied in the 
spirit which he advocated, the sterile scholasticism which subse- 
quently stunted and distorted the Scottish intellect would at least 
in some degree have been mitigated, and a larger scope ensured 
for the development of the national genius. 

As regards the other subjects (science and divinity) which have 
their place in Buchanan's scheme, they hardly deserved greater 
importance than he assigns them. Science had no considerable 
body of rationally systematised knowledge that demanded a large 
provision in any university. Of the matter of science and the 
methods of its professors we have a shining example in the famous 
Jerome Cardan, who had lately (1552) visited Scotland to try his 
skill on Archbishop Hamilton. Cardan's treatment of his patient, 
his diagnosis of his disease, and the prescription he eventually left 
behind him for its cure, prove very conclusively that the time had 
not yet come when science should reign in the schools. Neither 
did divinity, as understood by the religious bodies which had 
broken with the Church of Rome, deserve a larger place than 
Buchanan saw fit to assign it. For Protestants, much that had 
been required of the mediaeval doctor of theology was no longer 
profitable or necessary. Canon law, the interminable study of 
the mediaeval theologian, had little importance for the, Reformed 
Churches ; and in a Protestant university only those Fathers could 
be read whose writings were supposed to confirm the new doc- 
trines in religion. Church history, it would seem, had not yet 


attained the dignity of a special study, ance Andrew Melville, in 
his elaborate scheme for erecting St Maiy's into a theological 
college,* gives it no place in his canicnlnm. Melville's preposter- 
ous plan, indeed, is itself the best pnx>f that Buchanan was well 
advised in assigning theology the suboxdinate place he did. In 
Melville's theological college there were to be five professors, and 
the course was to be five years. The first professor was to teach 
Hebrew, Chaldee, and Synauc the first year; the second was to 
apply these languages to the critical explanation of the Pentateuch 
and historical books ; the fourth was to compare the Greek Testa- 
ment with the Syriac version ; and the fifth to lecture on systematic 
divinity. When we remember what Biblical ex^esis meant in 
Scotland during the sixteenth century, we at once see that this 
theological course sketched by Melville would have been but the 
continuation of those arid methods and inane discussions of the 
schoolmen, which it had been the mission of the humanists to 
explode. In the interests of theology itself, therefore, at the stage 
which it had then attained, Buchanan's plan was probably the 
most rational that could have been suggested. It would, at least, 
have ensured what even to-day would be no inadequate equipment 
for the minister of any church, — a thorough knowledge of the 
Greek and Latin classics, crowned by a similar knowledge of the 
sovures of his religion. 

Buchanan's ' Opinion ' was first printed by Irving as Appendix 
III. to his 'Memoirs of Buchanan' (edit 181 7). It was aftei^ 
wards (1836) more carefully re-edited for the Bannatyne Club in 
the second volume of their * Miscellany.' The Bannatyne editor 
speaks as if Irving had followed a different original from himself; 
but this must have been an oversight, as Irving expressly says 
(p. 178, note) that he followed the MS. in the Advocates' Library, 
which the later edition also reproduced, only with greater accuracy. 
As far as I am aware, this MS. is the only original text we possess.] 

* Melville's plan embodied the advice of the Parliamentary Commission of 
1579. The character of this plan shows that it was mainly the work of 





The Principal. 
Ane Lectour Publik. 
Vj Regentis. 


The Principal ij. 

The Lectour Public ane. 

The Cuik. 

The Portar. 

The Stewart. 

The Pantriman. 

For the principal and ij fervantis ij quartis of ayl, ij bread, of 
xvj vnce the bread, ane quartar of mouton, or equiualent in fylver, 
or the fifche day, ij f. 


Of mault, xij gallons the bol, . xv btis and ane half. 

In bread of quheit, 6 btis. 

For kytchyn meat, . xxxv this. 

The public lectour j quart of ayl, ane bread and ane half. 

Item half ane quartar of mouton at the principalis table. And 
he be maryit, or hald hous out of the college, that it falbe leful to 
hym to haif ane burdit in the college at the principalis table in his 
place, or ellis the pryce of the buirding abuve ratten. 

Of mault, . . . . vij MLs 3 f. 

In bread, .... 4 btis 2 f. 

In fylver, .... xviij tbs. 

The vj regentis euery man thre chopins of ayl, and xx vnce of 
bread dayly, and amangis thayme ane quartar of mouton and ane 

* These figures refer to the notes at the end of the volume. 


half, or equiualent ; that is, for fifche or flefche on the day v f . ; 
V3. on the fifche day ij course of fifche, and every man ane eg at 
the mailteth, or ane heryng, eftyr the feafon and oportunite. 

Of mault, XXXV Mis. 

Of quheit, . xxii btis, j f. 

Of fylver, . . Ixxxxj pundis v f. 

The cuik, Stewart, portar, and pantriman, ilk ane of thayme ane 
bread, ane pyint of ayl the day, and half ane quartar of mouton, 
or equiualent, amang thayme, ane cours of fyfche at mailteth, xvi d 
the day. 

Of mault, . . . xj btis 2 f. 2 p. 

Of ait meil, . . . xv btis. 

Of fylver, . . xxiiii tbs vi fh. 8 d. 

Wagis of the Personis.2 

The principal ane hundreth pund. 

The publik lectour ane hundreth markis. 

The sex regentis fex scoir of pundis, to be diuidit at the prin- 
cipalis discretion, and paction maid with thayme. 

The cuik and portar xij marks. 

The steuart to be payit be the principal off the profet of the 

For colis, napre, vefchel, and other extraordinaris concerning 
the hal and kitching xl pund ^eirly. 

For reparation of the place xl pund ^eirly. 

Of the quhilk reparation the principal fal geif coumpt jeirly to 
the cenfouris and rectour for the tyme. 

The Hail Soume. 

In drynk of mault . . Ixix btis iij f. ij. pkis. 
In quheit . . . xxxj btis j f. 
In filver . . five hundret xlvij tbs x f x d. 


Item for ilk bursar, fa mony as falbe thocht necessair to be in 
the College of Humanite, ane bread and ane pyint of ayl on the 
day, the fext part of ane quartar of mouton, or the valour thairof. 

The Ordre of the College of Humanite. 

The scholaris that cumis of new fal addrefse thayme to the 
principal, quha fal caufe thayme to compone, and examine 
thayme, and eftyr thair capacite send thayme to ane regent with 
hys signet, and the regent sal writ thayme in hys rol, and assigne 
thayme place in hys classe diuidit in decuriis. 

The baimis of thys college sal heir na other lessons bot thair 
regentis, and the lectour public in humanite sa mony as salbe fund 
able be* the principal And that quhilk is red in thys college sal 
nocht be red in otheris. 

The baimis of thys college sal nother ga furth be themselves 
nor 3it with ane regent without the principalis leif. Al other 
th)mgis partenyng to discipline scolastic to be doin as commodite 
and tyme occurris. 

The nombre of the classis at the leist sex.* 

[T^ VI. aasse.y 

The lawast class is for thayme that suld declin the namis, and 
the verbes actives, passives, and anomales, and eftyr that lear 
Terence and the rudimentis of grammar as followis. Thay sal 
bring to the classe paper and ink, and the regent sal cause thayme 
to writ twa or thre lynis of Terence, tellyng nocht only to thayme 
the lettres and the word but als the accent in sik lasar that the 
baimis may easely writ eftyr his pronunciation. And efter that he 
sal geif the interpretation in Scottis correspondant to the Latin, 
garryng thayme all writ. Syne he sal declair euery word, and 
cause tha)ane to writ severally all the nounes and the verbes that 
be in thair lesson, geif command to lear thayme against the nixt 
lesson, and als bring that lesson quhilk was maid in the classe 
without ony fait writtin. The nomenclatouris to haif charge to 
gather the lessons writtin, euery ane in hys awyne decurio, and 


bring thayme to the regent, and schaw h}nn quha has faltis. And 
geif the regent find fait quhairof the nomenclator has nocht ad- 
vertysit hym, than he sal punyss baith the writar and the nomen- 
clator, to mak thayme mair diligent in tyme to cum. And na 
man sal mend otheris faltis vntil thay cum to the regent. In thys 
classe thay salbe constranit to speik Latin, and dayly to compone 
sum smal th3mg eftyr thair capacite. 

The V. Classe. 

Thys classe sal reid Terence,^ and sum of the maist facil epistles 
of Cicero,' altematim, and als the reulis of grammar assignat to 
thayme, without commentair, bot only the expresse wordis and 
sentence of the reul : and thay sal writ baith Terence and Cicero, 
euery man with hys awyn hand. 

The IV. Classe. 

Thys classe sal reid of Terence and Cicero sum thyng mair than 
the classis onder thayme, and als de constnutione octo partium ; 
and the latter half of the 3eir sal reid sum epistles of Guide, or 
other of hys elegyis, and als writ al thair lessons, except the gram- 
mar, and compone largear themes than the nether classis. And 
al thyr classis salbe vesiit euery quartar of jeir, and promovit hyear 

efter thair mentis. 

The II L Classe. 

Thys classe sal reid the grammar in Grek, the epistles of Cicero, 
and sum of the maist facil orations, with sum buik of Ouide, and 
the quantiteis of syllabes, and sum introduction of rhetorik, and 
sum of the bukis of Linaceris grammar,*^ and salbe mair exercisit 
in composition than the otheris lawar. 

The Secund and Fyrst Class. 

Thyr classis sal reid the rethorikis of Cicero, and hys orationis, 
and for poetis, Virgil, Horace, Ouide, and sum of Homer or 
Hesiode. The auditouris salbe diligently exercisit in verse,® and 
oration, and declamation euery moneth, ilk ane thair cours about. 
Item, generaly disputations to be had euery Satterday fra ane efter 


none to four houris, ane classe aganis ane other, fixing themis al- 
tematim, and syne componing on themis ditit be regentis of other 
classis or other maisters. 

At the end of the ^eir,^ in the moneth of August or thairby, all 
the haill classis sal propone themis oppinly, and affix thayme vpon 
the college wallis, or in the great schol or hallis. The principal 
sal cheis ane certaine of the best of the fyrst classe and secund, 
and send thayme to sum of the honest men of other coUegis, or 
sum other lemit man beyng present for the tyme, and desire that 
he propone thayme ane theme in prose and ane other in verse. 
Thair salbe twa bonnittis proponet ^^ to be given solemnly to the 
twa that makis best composition, with honorable wordis to en- 
courage otheris in tyme to cum to emulation ; and that the honest 
and principal personis of the vniversitie assistand, and exhortyng 
the studentis to be diligent, and raise thair curage. 

Heir efter because the maist part of the countrey will be glaid 
to se thair baimis, and mak thayme clathys, and provid to thair 
necessiteis the rest of the ^eir, thair may be gevin sum vacans on 
to the first day of October,ii on the quhilk day al lessonis begynnis 
againe in al collegis. At the quhilk day naine salbe promovit to 
na classe without he be examinat be the principal and regentis 
committit thairto. 

The principal salbe diligent ^^ that euery regent do hys devtie, 
and that the baimis be obedient, and to that effect mak sum par- 
ticular reulis sik as salbe fund gud be the rectour and censouris 
for peceable governing of the college ; and at the begynning of 
October, the principal sal present befor thayme the said regentis ; 
and geif ony inlak be seiknes or other necessite, he sal present ane 
qualefyit persone to thayme. And geif the principal inlak, ^^ the 
vniversitie and conservatour or hys deputis sal convein, and cheiss 
of the hail vniversitie four of the best qualefyit personis to that 
office, and writ thair names : and eftyr prayer maid, that God of 
his gudenes wald send the sort apon hym that war habliast to 
exerce that estat to hys glore and common weil, ane bame sal 
draw of the four ane, the quhilk salbe principal, and thys to put 
away al deception and ambition. 


The principal sal support the defectis of absens of the public 
reidar and regentis. And siklyk in the principalis absence, euery 
man in hys ordre sal haif hys jurisdiction and correction of the 

The portar sal abyd continualy at the ^et, and receave the prin- 
cipalis signet of tliayme that desiris to pas fiirth. Item, in sommer ^* 
he sal ryng dayly at v houris to the rising ; at sax to the lesson 
public ; before viij, twys to the ordinar lection ; at ten he sal knel ; 
at half houre to xi knel ; at xi rjmg to the dennar ; at grace knel ; to 
repetition eftyr grace ring ; or iij howris ryng twyiss ; at halfe houre 
to five knel ; at v ryng. 

Al the studentis reman)mg in the college salbe distribut be 
chalmeris onder cure of the principal or sum regent or pedagogis ^^ 
lernit and of jugement, quha sal haif cure of thayr studie and dili- 
gens ; bot nocht to reid ony particular lection to thayme, bot to 
cause thayme to geif compt of it that thay reid in the classe. Nor 
^it sal it be leful to the said pedagogis to ding thair disciples, bot 
only to declair the fait to the principal, or to thair regent, and refer 
the punition to thayme. 

In thys college nayne sal persever ^^ regent in humanite abuve 
the space of vij or viij ^eir. 

The thre law classis ^"^ sal nocht be subject to cum to preaching 
or exercise public, except on the Sonday. The other preachyng 
and exercise days, ane regent salbe committit to se that thay be 
dewly exercisit and specialy in leming to writ. 



Ane Principal. 

Ane Reidar in Medicine.^^ 

And Regents iiij. 

The Principal ij. 
The Medicine j. 


The Cuik. 
The Portar. 
The Stewart. 
The Pantriman. 

The Principalis portion and salair as in the College of Humanite. 
The Medicins as the Lectour Public in Humanite. 
The rest vt supra proportionately. 

In bread. 

In drink. 

In sylver. 

The bursaris 12 vt supra, euery ane xvi tbis the jeir, or vt 

For colis, candil, napre, and veschel, xl pund 3eirly. 

For reparation of the place, xl pund 3eirly. 

The hayl subject to compt vt supra. 

The principal to be ane man of iconomie, and sufficient doc- 
trine to supple the regentis absens in redyng in thair seiknes or 
lauful besynes. Item, to haif al sik autorite on regentis, and 
studentis, and servants of the college, and to geif compt to the 
rectour and censoris as forsaid is in the College of Humanite at 
euery visitation. 

The first regent reid the dialectic, analitic, and moralis, in the 
first 3eir and half; and the other ^eir and half, the natural philoso- 
phie, metaphysik, and principis of mathematik. Swa in thre ^eris 20 
thyr regentis sal pas be degreis the hail cours of dialectic, logic, 
physik, and metaphysik; the rest of the tyme to repet and pas 
thair actis. Thay sal reid sik bukis of Aristotil, or other philoso- 
phes as the principal sal praescrive to thayme. 

Na man salbe admittit at the begynning of the jeir to the philo- 
sophie that has nocht passit be the first or second classe of humanite, 
or geif he be ane strangear, be jugit worthy of the first or secund 
classe be trial of composition in verse and prose. 


The Ordre of Redyng. 

Al the regentis sal begyn baith sommer and winther at vi howris 
in the momyng to thair ordinar lessons, and at the begynning sal 
mak ane schort prayer for promotion of lernyng and the estat of 
the common weil. Thay sal reid vnto viij houris, the quhilk being 
strokin, the bel sal ryng to the medicinis lesson, quha sal reid on 
to ix houris ; and fra ix to ten salbe intermission. In the rest of 
the howris thay salbe exercisit in disputyng and reidyng as the 
College of Humanite ; and the regent in euery classe sal cause the 
ane part to disput aganis the other. On Satterday euery classe 
sal propone certaine propositions, quhilk afoir none sal be examinat 
and disput againe be the regentis betuix viij and xj howris ; and 
eftyr none the disciples of the superiour classe sal disput aganis 
the inferiour betwix ane and thre howris. 

The Promotion of thayr Degreis. 

At the end of the first ij 3eiris thay 21 salbe maid bachelaris, quhair 
nocht only thay sal declair publicly quhat thai haif profettit be 
thair industrie and labouris, bot alswa thay sal ansuer priuatly to 
iiij examinatouris, deput be the vniversite, of the dialectic, logic 
and moralis ; and quha beis nocht fund hable, salbe deposit to 
ane lowar classe. And siklik, at the end of the ^eir and half 
foUowyng, to be examinat of the natural philosophie, metaphysik, 
and mathematik. The examinatouris salbe graduat, ane in theol- 
ogie, ane that has red in philosophie, ane of profession of medicine 
passit maister, and ane regent in humanite ; quha, on thair con- 
science, sal declair to the rectour and censouris quha ar worthy 
of promotion or nocht. Efter the quhylk declaration, the rectour 
sal decerne the onworthy to be deposit for tyme convenient to ane 
inferiour classe, swa that na man be admittit to resave degre except 
that he haif promouit in lettres. 

To the banquettis 22 of actis of bachelar and licence the riche sal 
nocht pay abuve xl f, the puir ten f, to augment the common por- 
tion of the college ; swa that the convention of honest men of the 


vniuersitie be with modestie and temperance. Item, sa mony of the 
assistandis to thys act as be graduat in divinite, lawis, or medicine, 
or presently regentis in philosophe or humanite, sal haif for thair 
presens and decoryng of the act, ane pair of gluvis. And the 
principal of the said college sal tak head that thyr thyngis be 
performit, as he wil ansuer to the jugement of the rectour and 

The nombre of bursaris xxiiij, sustenit as is praescrivit in the 
College of Humanite. 

Nayne sal persevere regent in thys college langar than the space 
of twa coursis. 

The medicine sal reid iiij days in the weik, ane hore euery day 
in medicine ; and geif he inlakis, the principal sal deduce sa mekle 
of hys gagis to be vsit to the common profet of the college. 



Ane Principal, to be Reidar in Hebrew. 
Ane Lawer. 


The Principal ij. 

The Lawer j. 





Their expensis vt supra. Vz. the principal as other principalis. 
The lawer 40 Ibis. The cuik, portar, Stewart, and pantriman, vt 
supra. Bursaris xviij of thayme, sex in law and xij in theologie, 
thair expensis vt supra. In thys collegis, because that the 
studentis ar in nombre fewar and of gretar age than in the otheris. 


the principal and lectour in Hebrew may be ane persone; the 
quhilk sal reid iiij days euery weik. 

The Thursday ane student in diuinite sal expone ane pas of the 
Scripture, the space of ane hore ; and that being doin, sal anso' to 
the objections of euery man that pleasis to disput aganis hym the 
space of ane hore and half The principal sal se that gud ordre ^^ 
be kepit in disputing, without superfluite of wordis nothyng par- 
tening to the propos, without dinrie or pertinacite in contention ; 
and that euery auditour in diuinite ansver hys cours about, as salbe 
ordanit by the principal. To speik in the publik exercise, and 
expone the Scripture, sal entice nocht only the auditouris of 
diuinite, sik as salbe thoucht expedient, bot als the regentis in 
other faculteis. 

The lawar sal reid dayly ane hore in law, except on the 

Thair salbe xviij bursaris in thys college; vz. sex in law, and 
xij auditouris in diuinite. 



Ane Rectour. 

The rectour most be ane discreit and grave person, doctor or 
bachelar in the hyear faculteis, or principal of ane college, or 
presently regent in diuinite, law or medicine, of age abuve thretty 
5eris ; and salbe chosin be the hayl graduattis of the vniuersite,^* 
within ane of the thre collegis, the conservatour or hys deput being 
present ; quha sal requir the convention in thair conscience, that 
out of euery college thair be ane chosin, quha sal declair the volis 
of the college faithfully gadderit, and declair hym rectour quha 
has moniast votis, swa that he half nocht been rectour within twa 
jeris afoir. The rectouris tyme to be ane jeir, without continua- 
tion : and geif, be ambition or otherway, the maist part of the 


votis contenew hym, al thayr votis that tendis to continuation, to 
be nul. 

The rectouris office is principaly in keping of the discipline 
scolastic, as in visitation of the collegis twyss or thryis in the jeir, 
to se that the ordre be kepit in teching, in mutations of classis, 
in disputations priuat and publik : item, that the rentis of the 
vniuersite be noct misspendit, that na idle person be haldin on 
the gagis or expensis of the vniuersite, nor onworthy promovit to 
degre, and mak ane registre of al that entres in the nombre of the 
vniuersite, and sal enjoy the priuelege thairof. 


The conservatour of priuilege ^^ most haif autorite to cal befor 
hym al actions or questions movit be thayme of the vniuersite 
aganis ony personis in materis twiching studentis, as being 
studentis ; and hys decreit sal haif redy execution, notwithstand- 
ing ony appellation, without delay or appellation out of the 
vniuersite. Hys gagis to be payit to hym or hys deput of the 
archdenry ; because in tymes by past the archidene, or bischeppis, 
war conservatouris, or sura deput for thayme, and now is raison- 
able that thay susteine the samyn charge. 

The thesaurar salbe chosin anis in the jeir, the samyn day that 
the censouris beis chosin, and sal geif compt at the jeris end to 
the censouris the day afor the cheising of the new censouris. 

The salair of the rectour, thesaurar, and censoris, to be payit of 
the casualiteis of the vniuersite, as it that cumis of the entres of 
the studentis in the rectouris bukis, and of the degreis. Als the 
beddel to be payit of the samyn. The gagis of the rectour, cen- 
souris, thesaurair, and beddel, and als al thyr casualiteis, to be sa 
moderat that thay be nocht excessiue in na qualite. 

Item, that the Quenis grace, and lordis of the parlement, be 
requirit to pas ane act that thre jeris efter the performing of thys 
reformation, na man be providit to susteine office of preachour or 
techour in the kyrk, except thay haif beine dewly graduat in the 



The Rental of St Leonardis College. 

In sylver, . 



Ait meil, , 

132 tbis. 2 f. 4 d. 
2 chald. 12 btis. 
13 chald. 11 btis. 2 £ 2 p. 
8 ch. 8 Wis. 

In sylver, 
Qwheit, . 

Sanct Salvatouris, al being fre. 

642 tbis. 
3 ch. 13 btis. 
8 ch. 2 btis. 
19 ch. 3 btis. 

The New College, al being fre. 

In sylver, besyid Tannadyss quhen it sal vaik, 

510 tbis. 

Qwheit, ..... 

3 ch. 8 btis 

^ear, .*••.. 

6 ch. 

xxLlS, •.•••. 

S ch. 

The Hayl Soume. 

In sylver, 

. 1284 tbis. 2 f. 4 d. 

Qwheit, . 

10 ch. I btis. 


27 ch. 13 btis. 2 f. 2 p. 

Ait meil, . 

8 ch. 


24 ch. 3 b. [8 btis] 





[Though first printed in 1571, the * Admonitioun ' must have been 
written early in the preceding year. Two passages in the tract 
enable us approximately to fix the date of its composition. In 
one of these passages reference is made to the assassination of 
John Wood, secretary to the lately murdered Regent Moray. As 
Wood was assassinated on the 15th April 1570 (Pitcaim, * Criminal 
Trials,' p. 170), the * Admonitioun ' could not have been out of 
Buchanan's hands till after that date. In the other passage 
Buchanan seems to imply that Elizabeth had not yet carried out 
her purpose of sending an invading force into Scotland. But such 
a force actually entered Scotland under the Earl of Sussex at the 
end of April 1570. It would seem, therefore, that this pamphlet 
of Buchanan must have been written between the 15th April and 
the end of that month. 

The * Admonitioun,' like the * Chamseleon,' had its origin in the 
critical state of affairs that followed the murder of the Regent 

* I should perhaps say that in the introduction to the different pieces of 
Buchanan, I have occasionally repeated what I have said in my life of that 




crew Lorclis itiaintenaris of Iuftice»and 

obedieacc to the Kiqgis Grace* 

M. G. B. 



AKNO. Da M. D. LXXh 


Moray. Two parties, the one aiming at the restoration of Mary, 
the other at a regency during the minority of her son James, tore 
the country in twain. When Buchanan wrote his * Admonitioun,' 
Scotland was without even a nominal head, since Lennox was not 
chosen to the regency till June 1570, and Mary was a prisoner in 
England. It was out of this state of afifairs (in the most literal 
sense a state of anarchy) that Buchanan spoke in his *Admoni- 

In the * Admonitioun ' Buchanan's main contention is that in 
the safety of the young king lies the only hope for liberty and 
religion in Scotland ; and the object of this pamphlet is to place 
before James's supporters (especially the Protestant lords) the 
national ruin that must follow the defeat of their cause. The 
great enemies they have to fear are the Hamiltons, whose triumph 
would only bring disaster to king and country alike. To make 
this contention good, he sketches at length the history of that 
family through the last half-century, and proves that its action 
all along had known but one motive — the acquisition of the 
crown for the head of their house. By religion and politics 
alike Buchanan was opposed to the aims of the house of Hamil- 
ton, and his feelings were whetted by the long-standing feud 
between them and the house of Lennox. The Hamiltons had 
but lately murdered the statesman whom Buchanan had admired 
most, the Regent Moray ; they had taken an active part in the 
murder of Damley; it was through them that Darnley's father 
had been so long exiled from Scotland ; and it was one of their 
house who had brutally slain the grandfather of Darnley after hp 
had surrendered himself a prisoner of war. 

Editions of the * Admonitioun.' 

1. Ane Admonitioun direct to the trew Lordis Maintenaris of 
Justice, and Obedience to the Kingis Grace. M. G. B. Imprentit 
at Striviling be Robert Lekprevik. Anno. do. mdlxxi. 

2. Another edition by Lekprevik in same year. In this edition 
a paragraph beginning '* The third conspiracie " was added. Many 


words are also spelt differently, and in a manner that curiously 
illustrates the uncertain orthography of the period. 

3. A third edition was " imprinted at London by John Daye, 
according to the Scotish copie " (1571, 8vo). 

4. Ruddiman, *Buchanani Opera' (Edin., 17 15). The *Ad- 
monitioun' appears in Ruddiman's first volume. He professes 
to have followed Lekprevik's edition, and " to have compared it 
with a MS. copy carefully transcribed from one in the Cotton 
Library." * Ruddiman's reprint, however, is simply a somewhat 
Anglicised reproduction of Lekprevik's first edition. 

Irving (* Memoirs of Buchanan,' p. 154, ed. 1817) has the 
following interesting note regarding Ruddiman's publication of 
the * Admonitioun ' : "It is a curious anecdote, for which I am 
indebted to Sir William Hamilton, Bart., that the * Admonitioun ' 
was actually printed for Ruddiman's edition, and, from some 
prudential considerations on the part of the editor or publisher, 
was afterwards suppressed. A copy of the first volume of that 
edition which belonged to Ruddiman himself, and which is now 
in the possession of Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe, Esq., has the 
* Admonitioun ' inserted before the * Chamseleon.' " 

In all the copies of Ruddiman's edition of Buchanan that I 
have seen, except one in the possession of my friend Mr David 
Patrick, the * Admonitioun ' appears. Burmann, in his edition 
of Buchanan (Lugd. Bat., 1725), prints the *Chamaeleon' but not 
the * Admonitioun.' 

5. The Harleian Miscellany (1747). The *Admoi\itioun' ap- 
pears in vol. iii. The text is that of Ruddiman. 

6. Irving, 'Memoirs of Buchanan' (Edin., 181 7). Irving re- 
produces Lekprevik's second edition in Appendix II. 

7. The Works of Mr George Buchanan in the Scottish Lan- 
guage, containing the Chamaeleon, a satire against the Laird of 
Lidingtone, and Ane Admonitioun to the true Lords, maintainars 

* Ruddiman rightly conjectured that this MS. had " been transcribed by an 
English hand." It is, in fact, an Anglicised version of the original Scots. For 
the purpose of collation, therefore, it is of little value. 


of Justice and Obedience to the King's Grace (Edinburgh : printed 
and published by David Webster, Horse Wynd, 1823). 
Webster also follows Lekprevik's second edition. 

The text of the * Admonitioun ' here produced is that of a MS. 
among the State Papers (Scotland, Elizabeth, vol. xvii. No. 24), 
which has been copied for the first time for the present volume. 
In all probability this MS. is a first draft of the pamphlet sent 
by Buchanan to Cecil immediately on its completion. That it is 
an early draft is proved by the fact that it does not contain the 
paragraph beginning " The third conspiracie," which was added in 
the second edition. From both of Lekprevik's editions it also dif- 
fers in the addition and omission of many phrases, and even whole 
sentences. A comparison of the two texts shows that, in almost 
every case where they differ, the advantage is with the MS. in 
vigour and directness of expression. From a philological point 
of view, also, the MS. possesses greater interest, as its language 
is purer than that of either of Lekprevik's editions. It should be 
added that the marginal comments in the original are in Cecil's 


It may seame to jour 11. that I melling w* hie materis of govern- 
ing of comoun weill pas myne estait being of sa meane qualitie 
and for^ettis my devoir geving to the counsale to the wysest of 
this realme. No*yeles seing the miserie sa greit apperand and ye 
calamitie sa neir approcheand I tho* it lesse fait to incur the 
cryme of surmonting my priuat estait nor ye blame of neglecting 
ye publict dangeare. Thairfoir I chosit rather to underly ye 
opinioun of presumptioun in speking than of tressoun in silence 
And specialie in sic thingis as seme pntlie to redound to 

* State Papers, Scotland, Eliz., vol. xvii. No. 24. Endorsed as above. 


ppetuall schame of 50^ 1. distructioun of this royall estait and 
rewyne of ye haill comoun weill of Scotland. On this considera- 
tioun I haif tane at yis tyme on hand to aduerteis ^our hono"^ of 
sic thingis as I tho* to ptene bay* to 50^ 1. in speciall and in 
generall to ye haill comunitie of yis realme in punitioun of trato^ 
pacificatioun of troubles amangis o^ selffis and continewatioun of 
peace w* o^ ny*bouris / Of the quhilk I haif tane the travell to 
wryte and remittis the jugement to 50ur discretioun having yat 
hoip at ye leist yat gif my wit and foirsicht can not satisfie 50W 
my gude will sail not displeis 50W of the quhilk aduertisement 
the sumar is this^^ 

First to considder how godlie is ye actioun that ^e haif tane on 
hand to writ The defence of ^our king ane Innocent pupill the 
establissing of religioun punitioun of thevis and tratouris man- 
teinance of peace and quietnes amangis pur selffis and w* fora)aie 

Nixt to remembir how ^e haue vindicat this realme out of 
thraldome of strangearis^* out of domestik tyranne and out of ane 
publict dishonour anentis all forayne nationis quhair we wer 
altogidder estemit ane people murtherare of kingis impacient of 
lawis and magistrattis in respect of ye murthour of ye lait king 
Henry w*in ye wallis of ye principall towne the greittest of ye 
nobilitie being piit w* ye Quene for ye tyme And how eftir jour 
power 5e tryit out ane pt of ye cheif tratouris frome amangis ye 
trew subjectis and constranit strangearis to prays eftirwart als 
mekill jour justice as yai had afoir condampnit Wrangusle joiir 

Item remembir howfar in doing the samyn je haif obleist jour 
selffis befoir ye haill warld to continew in yatilk vertew of justice 
and quhat blame je sail incur gif je be inconstant for all men 
can beleif no vther gif ye tyme following be not conforme to ye 
bipast) Bot that nowther honour nor comoun weill stent jow 
up than bot rather sum pticular respect of jour propir and prevat 
comoditie / 

Alswa considder how mony gentill and honest meanys je haif 
socht in tyme bipast to cans ye king be knawlegeit and ye cuntre 


put at rest And how unproffittabill hes bene jour honestie in 
treating jour valiant courage in weare / jour merciful! hartis in 
victorie jour clemency in punissing and facilitie in reconcilia- 
tioun. Quhilk thingis all testifeis sufficientlie that je estemit na 
man ennemy yat wald leif in peace under ye kingis authoritie 
That je wer neuir desyrous of blude geir nor honour of sic as 
wald not rather in making of troubill and seditioun declair 
yame selffis ennemeis to God and ye kingis grace nor leif in 
concord and amytie w' y"^ ny'bouris under ye correctioun of 
justice ^3 

And sien je can nowther bow thair obstinat hicht w* pacience 
nor mease 27 thair stubburne hartis w' gentilnes nor satisfie y*^ 
Immoderat desyris vy'^wayis than w' y« kingis blude and 50' 1. 
distructioun of religioun banyssing of justice and fre pmissioun 
of crueltie and disordo"^ quhat kynd of medecine is not onelie 
meit bot als necessarie for mending of sic ane maladie jour 
wisdomes may easelie considder ^^ 

And to ye effect yat je may ye bettir understand yis necessitie 
of medecine Remember quhat kynd of people thay ar yat professis 
yame selffis in deid / and dissimulis in word to be ennemeis to 
God and to justice and to jow becaus je manteine ye kingis 
actioun / 

Sum of yame ar counsalouris of ye kingis slauchter Sum con- 
voyaris of him to ye scamles that slew his guidschir banissit his 
fader and not satisfiit to haif slane him murtherit crueUie this 
kingis regent and now sekis his awin saikles blude that yai may 
fulfill being kingis yat crueltie and avarice quhilk yai begouth to 
exercise in tyme of yair governing. / Otheris ar yat being allyat 
or neir of kin to the Hamiltonis thinkis to be pticipant of all yair 
prosperitie and successe ^:> Otheris yat being giltie of ye kingis 
deid socht be all maner possibill to put doun ye joung king that 
he sould not rest to revenge his faderis deid The quhilk thay 
tho* could not be man: easelie done than bringing hame ye 
queue w* sic ane husband ^^ as outher for auld hatrent or for 
new couatise wald des" ye first degre of successioun to his 
awin blude ^o 


Sum vtheris are practizit in casting* of courtis revolting of estait- 
tis and weare ciuile and ar becum richar than euir yai hopit And 
becaus yai haif fund ye practice sa gude in tyme bipast now yai 
seik alwayis to continew it And having anys gustit how gude 
fischeing it is in drumly Watter thay can on na maner laif ye 
craft. / 

Otheris ar of yat factioun sum papistis sum fenjeit protestantis 
yat hes na god bot geir and desyris agane ye papistrie / Not for 
luif yai beir to it (for yai ar scomaris of all religioun) bot hoping 
promotioun of ydill belleis to benefices and lamentis yis piit estait, 
quhair as yai say ministeris gettis all and leavis na thing to gude 
fallowis And to yis intent yai mak yame to set up ye quenis au- 
thoritie Sum are als yat under cullour of yat name thinkis to evade 
punitioun of auld faltis and to haif licence in tyme to cum to op- 
presse y' ny*bouris feblar yan yai / Now I leif to ^our cojecture 
quhat frute is to be hopit of ane assemble of sic men as ar to- 
gidder menswome to god to y^ king and for ye maist pt of un- 
saciabill gredines intoUerabill arrogance w*out fay* in promeis 
mesour in covatise / petie to ye inferiour, obedience to ye supe- 
riour in peace desyrous of troubill in Weare thrusty of blude 
nurissaris of thevis rasaris of rebellioun counsalo^s of tratouris / 
inuentaris of tressoun / w* hand reddy to murtho' / mynd to dis- 
saif hart void of trewth / and full of fellony toung trampit in dis- 
sait^^ and speche tending to fals practije w*out veritie. Be quhilk 
proprieteis and mony vther yat I omit as knawin to all men ^e yat 
knawis yair begynning progresse and haill lyfF may easelie remem- 
ber to quhome yis generall speking pteins in speciall And als it is 
not unknawin to sic as knawis ye psonis how yai ar mellit w* god- 
les papistes harlat protestantis comon brybouris halie in word 
hypocretis in hart proud contempnars or machiavell^^ mokkaris 
of all religioun and vertew. 

It is als necess" to jo'l. to understand yair pretens" that gif it 
be ane thing yat may stand w* ye tranquillitie of yis comoun weill 
50^ L may in sum pt rather condiscend to yair inordinat lust nor 
put ye haill estait in hazard of ane battell. 

* Eascing. 


First it is not honour richesse nor authoritie yat yai stryve for / 
For yai haif had and hes and als may haif in tyme to cum sic part 
of all thay thingis as ane priuat man may haif in yis realme not 
being chargeabill to ye cuntre or not suspectit to ane king and 
assurit of his awin estait / 

It is not ye deliuerance of ye quene yat yai seik / as yair 
doingis contrair to yair word testifiis manifestlie. For gif yai 
wald haif hir deliuerit thay wald haif procurit be al maner pos- 
sibill the quene of inglandis fauour and support in quhais power 
the haill recoverance standis onelie / and not ofFendit hir sa heichlie 
as yai haif done and dois dalie in pticipatioun of ye conspyrit 
tressoun to put hir grace not onelie out of hir estait bot out of yis 
lyflf present nor in ressetting and mainteining of hir rebellis^^ con- 
trair to promeis and solemnit contract of pacificatioun betuix yir twa 
realmis nor ^it haif hundit furth proude and incircumspect joung 
men to herry slay burne and tak presonaris in hir realme and use 
crueltie not onelie vsit in weare bot detestabill to all barbary in 
slaying of presonaris and breking of promesse to miserabill catives 
ressauit anys to yair mercy ^^ 

And all yis wes done be comandement of sic as sayis yat yai 
seik the quenis deliuerance and reprochit to yame be ye doaris 
of yir mischevis saying yat yai had enterit yame in dangeare and 
not supportit in mister^^ samekill as to cum and ly in Lauder and 
luke fra yame quhairby apperis yair maist hie tresoun agains ye 
quene pretending hir authoritie and stopping hir libertie / quhilk 
as euerie man may se cleirlie thay socht as ye man yat socht his 
wyff drownit in ane river agains ye watter^^^o 

It is not ye quenis authoritie yat yai wald set up in hir absens. 
For gif yat were yair intentioun / quhome could yai place in it mair 
firiendlike to hir yan hir onelie sone or quhat gouernour may be 
put to him or lieutenent to hir less suspect nor sic men as hes na 
pretens of successioun to ye croun nor ony hoip of proffeit of yair 
deceis or yai yat euir hes bene trew to kingis afoir him / sould 
yai not be preferrit to his patemall ennemeis and to slayaris of his 
father and soUicitars of strangearis to seik his innocent blude. / 

Quhat yan sail we think yat yir men seik under pretens of ye 


quenis authoritie seing yat yai can not nor will not bring hame 
the quene to set up in it nor suffer hir sone to brouke it / I 
traist it is not vneasie to psave be yair haill progresse alsweill 
now presentlie as in tyme bipast that yai meane na vyer thing bot 
ye deid of ye king and quene of Scotland to set up ye hamiltonis 
authoritie to ye quhilk yai haif aspyrit be craftie meanys yir Ivij 
5eris bipast and seing yat yair intent succedit not be craft Now 
yai follow ye samyn trade conioin)nig to falsheid oppin wickitnes. / 

57. yer. And yat ^e may se quhat meanys yai haue vsit yir Ivij ^eris 

bipast to set up be craft yis authoritie yat yai seik now be violence 
force and tressoun I will call to ^our memory sum of yair prac- 
ti3is quhilk mony of 50W may remembir als weill as I. / 

Jacob. 4. First eftir ye deid ^ of King James ye fourt Johnne Duke of 

jo€sdx.Aib: Albany chosin be ye nobilitie to governe in ye kingis lesse aige 
The hamiltonis thinking yat he had bene als wickit as yai and 
sould to his awin avancement put doun ye king being of tendir 
aige for yat tyme and leif allane be ye deceis of his brother, and 
yat yai wald easelie get y' hand be3ond ye duke being ane stran- 
geare and w*out successioun of his body Thay held yame quiet 
for ane seasoun weaning yat vther menis actioun sould be y' 

Bot seing yat ye Duke as a prince bayth wyis and vertuous to 
bring him self out of all sic suspitioun put four lordis of ye maist 
trew and famous of Scotland in yat tyme to attend on ye kingis 
grace the erll of merschell-<^t\it lordis erskin ruthuen and borthuik 
The hamiltonis being out of hoip of ye kingis putting doun be 
ye Duke of Albany and out of credeit to do him harme be yame 
selffis maid ane conspiracy w* certane lordis to put ye said Duke 
out of authoritie and tak it on yame selffis and all thingis put 

X. Conspyr- in y' power thay my* vse ye king and realme at yair awin ple*^ 

acy of y* , 

hanuiM. to yat effect yai tuke ye castell of Glasgow and maid yair ane 
assemblie of yair factioun The quhilk wes dissoluit be ye haistie 
cuming of ye Duke of Albany w* ane army / for feir of ye quhilk 
ye erll of arrane cheif of yat cumpany fled to his wyffis brother 
ye lord Hume being yan out of court 

ye ha. ' The secund conspyracy wes eftir ye Dukis last departing ye 


foirsaide lordis na mair attending on ye king It wes devysit be 
^^ James Hamiltoun bastard sone to ye said erll of arrane to slay sr jamU 
ye king being in his hous besyde ye abbay of Halieruidhous. 
The quhilk conspiracy eftir mony ^eris revelit the said S^ James 
suflferit deid for it^^ 

This conspiracy not being execute S*" James pseverit in his 
evill intentioun and be secreit meanis in Court socht alwayis yat 
ye king sould not marie and for laik of his successioun ye hamil- 
tonis my* cum to y'^ intentioun. For ye king wes ^oung abill of 
his psoun and reddy to aventure him self to all hazard bay* be 
sey and be land in doun putting of thevis and upsetting of justice. 
The Hamiltonis lukit ay quhen seiknes or sum vyer rekles aven- 
ture or excesse of travell sould cut him of w*out childrene. 

And destitute of yis hoip first S^ James stoppit ye kingis meting 
w* his vncle ye king of england quha at yat tyme having bot ane 
dochter wes willing to haif mareit hir w* ye king of Scotland 
and to haif enterit him at yat present tyme in possessioun of ye 
Duchie of ^ork and eftir his deceis maid him king of ye haill 
yle Bot S' James euir having ee to his awin scope hinderit yis 
purpose be sum of ye kingis familiar s'^uandis yat he had practisit 
be giftis and principally be ye bischope of sanctandrois y«/«tf j 
betoun vncle to ye Duke of chestellaraultis moder and greit vncle 
to S'^ James wyfF and rasit sic suspitionis betuix ye king and 
his vncle that bro* bay* ye realmis in greit besines.^^ 

This propose as said is put abak the king seing yat his am- 
bassado" furtherit not at his plesure determinat to go be sey to 
france him self in psoun And S'^ James Hamiltoun psevering in 
his formair intentioun went w* him to hinder his manage in all 
maner yat he my* and to yat effect the king sleping in ye schip 
w*out ony necessitie nother constraint be wynd nor weddir / S'^ 
James causit ye marinaris to tume saill of ye west coist of ingland 
bakwart and landit in galloway verie miscontent w* S^ James and 
maister Dauid Paintar^^ principall causaris of his returning As 
diuers yat wes in ye schip ^it leving can report. And fra that 
tyme furth ye king having tryit out S'^ James pretens and psavit 
his unfay*full dealing evir disfauourit him and to his greit Dis- 


Erie of ples"^ fauourit opinlie ye erll of lennox and his freindis in his 
absence The quhilk erll pretendit ane ry* to ye haill lordschip 
of Arane the pfit erll for yat tyme being knawin to be bastard 
and als being in recent memory how S^ James Hamiltoun had 
cruellie slane at linly*quow Johnne erll of levenax^^ to ye greit 
displesr of ye king and als of ye erll of Arane fader to S' James 
and vncle to ye said erll of Levanax cumin be comandement of 
ye king to linly*quow 

Sa ye king understanding as said is the prevat practise of S'^ 
James in keping him vnmareit haistit ye mair emistlie to marie 
to yat effect yat successioun my* put ye hamiltonis out of hoip 
of y*" intent and him out of ye dangeare of ye hamiltonis And 
howbeit S'^ James to mak him self clene of yat suspitioun socht 
mony diuers wayis to ye distructioun of his brother ye erll of 
arrane ^it could he neuir conqueis ye kingis fauo'^ untill finalie 
he wes executit for treasoun and tuke ane miserabill end conforme 
to his vngodlie lyff ^'^-o 

The king at last deceissit and leving ane dochter of sex dayis 
auld the Hamiltonis tho* all to be thairs. For ye erll of arane 
an 3oung man of small wit and greit inconstancy wes set furth be 
sum nobles of ye realme and sum of ye kingis familiar s^uandis 
for they tho*^ him mair toUerabill than ye cardinall Betoun quha 
be ane fals instruments^ had taken ye suppreme authoritie to 

The Duke namyt gouernour be ane prevat factioun and fauourit 
be samony as professit ye trew religioun of chryst, becaus he wes 
belevit yan to be of ye samyn / howbeit he wes gentill of nature / 
jit his freindis for ye maist pt wer gredy bay* of geir and blude 
and gevin to injustice quhair gayne followit Thair wes in his 
t3ane na thing bot weir oppressioun and brybing specialie of his 
callit brother ye bischop of Sanctandrois so yat all ye estates wer 
wery of him and dischargeit ye said gouernour of his office befoir 
ye tyme and chargeit w* it ane woman strangeare^^ 

In ye begyning of his government the queue and hir moder 
wer kepit be him rather lyke presonaris than princessis Bot jit 
yat incomoditie wes cause of preserving of the quenis lyfF he be- 


leving to marie hir on his sone Bot fra ye erll of Levenax had 
deliuerit yame out of yat captiuitie and ye nobilitie had refusit to 
mary hir on his sone / howbeit he left his formair freindis and 
come to ye quene and for hir pies*' abjurit his religioun ^^ in ye 
gray freris of sterling 5^^ could he neuir cum agane to his 
cleaming of ye croun quhilk he had lang socht plie be fauour of 
sic of ye nobilitie as wer allyat w* him partlie be distructioun of 
ancient houss* yat my* haif put impediment to his vnressonabill 

To yat effect ye erll of levenax being put furth of ye realme he 
tho* ye erll of Angus to be ye principall yat my* resist him and 
having enterit in ward S'^ George Dowglas to extinguishe the haill 
hous at anys he send for ye said erll on freindlie maner and put 
him in presoun as enemy w*out eny just occasioun and had be- 
hedit yame bay* had not ye any ving of ye inglis army *^ stayit his 

And seing yat he durst not put yame doun be tyranne he 
oflferit yame and yair freindis to ye swerd of ye ennemy and eftir 
ye first charge of ye inglis hors men ressauit ye Dowglas reddy to 
ressaue ane vyer charge that yai my* ye mair easelie be slane thay 
standing in battell and fechting to pres^ue ye Duke he in ye se- 
cund battell fled but strakis to tyne yame And sa yir nobill men 
safar as lay in him wer slane and pres'uit be ye prouidence of 

The 30ung quene being in hir motheris keping seing he my* 
not put hir doun nor marie hir at his pies*' he consentit to offer ^^ 
hir to ye stormes of ye sey and dangeare of ennemeis and sauld 
hir as ane sclave in france for ye duchie of chestellarault ye 
quhilk he broukis in name as ye croun of Scotland in fantasy and 
ressauit sic pryce for hir as tresoun and perjurie yat ye selling of 
fre psonis sould be recompensit w* Bot ^it ye covatise of the 
croun yat he had sauld ceissit not heir for afoir hir returning hame 
out of france at ye troubles yat began to represse ye insolence of 
frenchemen and tyranne agains ye religioun how mony meanis 
the hamiltonis socht to haif depriuit hir of all ry* and translatit 
ye croun to yame selffis is knawin bay* to ingland and Scotland. 


Als eftir ye arryving of ye quene in Scotland scho seking ane 
querrell agains ye said Duke and sum vyer lordis under pretens* 
yat yai had conspyrit agains hir for ye religioun the Dukis 
freinds left him all becaus ye rest of ye lordis wald no* consent 
to put doun ye quene or derogat hir of hir authoritie in ony 

And a lyttil befoir yat ye caus of his conspiracy w* ye erll of 
boithuile to slay ye erll of murray in falkland ^^ wes na vther bot 
becaus yat ye said erll of murray leving thay could nowther do 
ye said quene harme in hir psoun nor diminishe hir authoritie 
nor constrayne hir to mary at yair pies" and to hir vttir disples*'^ 

Eftir yat ye quene had mareit w* yair auld ennemy and wes w* 
chyld the gude bischop of sanctandrois first callit cunynghame and 
estemit coowane and syne avowit hamiltoun not onelie conspirit 
w* ye erll boithuile ye kingis deid bot come w* ye quene to glas- 
gow convoyit ye king to ye place of his murthour / ludgeit as he 
did seildom afoir quhair he my* psave ye pies" of yat crueltie w* 
all his sensis and help ye murtheraris gif mister had bene and 
send four of his s'^uandis to execute ye murthour and watchit all 
ye ny* thinking lang to haif ye joy of ye approcheing of ye croun ^^ 
to y' hous* And sa greit hoip mellit w* ambitioun inflamit his 
hart for ye kingis deceis yat he w*in schort t)niie belevit fermelie 
his callit brother to be king and he the said bischop to be to him 
as curatour and gouemour during all ye tyme of his nonwit 
quhilk had bene ane bettir terme nor Witsonday and m'^times 
For he belevit yat ye erll boithuile sould distroy ye king and not 
suffer him to prosper to revenge his faderis deid and precede his 
baimis in successioun of ye croun And the prince put doun ye 
bischop tho* easie to put doun ye quene and ye erll boithuile 
haitit alreddy of ye people and yat he my* easelie try ye con- 
spiracie as being on ye counsall of it Or gif yai wald slay ye erll 
boithuille and spair ye quene Thay wer in hoip yat scho sould 
mary Johnne Hamiltoun ye Dukis sone quhome w* mery lukis 
and gentill contenance (as scho could weill do) scho enterit in ye 
gayme of ye glaiks ** and causit ye rest of ye hamiltonis to fon for 


Bot eftir yat ye erll boithuile had refusit battell at carbarryhill 
and ye quene come to ye lordis the hamiltonis fosterit yair vane 
hoip w* ane mery dreame that being deliuerit of ye quene scho 
sould beir na ma childrene to debar yame fra ye croun and yat 
yai my* half ane reddie way to calumpniat ye regent for distroy- 
ing of ye quene and sa to be deliuerit of all yair ennemeis at 

Bot seing yat ye quene wes kepit thay blamit opinlie ye regent 
yat reservit ye quene in stoir in dispyte of yame as yai said 
(schawand y' wickit mynd to hir be unreverent langaige) to be 
ane stude to cast ma folis ^ And ^it for all that nane of yame wald 
cum to ye pliament to further yair des" w* ane vote allanerlie 
bot lay abak to keip yame selffis in libertie to reprove all yat sould 
be done in yat conventioun^^ 

And gif scho be ony way wer put to fredome yai my* help hir 
to put doun ye lordis yat wald not put hir doun in fauour of 

This intentioun of thairs wes manifestlie schawin quhen ye quene 
being kepit in lochlevin be comandement of ye haill pliament wes 
brocht out be conspiracy of sum prevat men and specialie be ye 
hamiltonis Thay assemblit all y' forces to put doun ye 50ung 
king and lordis obedient to him Thay schew yair evill will towart 
ye lordis in bringing w* yame greit apparell of cordis to murther 
yame in maist vyle fassoun toward ye king in keping of ye 
watter of forth yat he sould not eschaip y' cruell handis being 
assurit gif he come in ye quene of inglandis power yat of hir 
accustumat clemency and kyndnes of blude scho wald not 
abandoun him to y'^ vnmercifuU mercy experimentit alreddy in 
his fader-^^ 

And seing yat ye prouidence of god had closit ye dur to all 
yair wickitnes at thay tymes yai haif neuir ceissit sensyne to seik 
ennemeis to his grace in all strange nationis And psaving yat all 
vyer princes gaif yame fair wordis except ye quenis grace of 
ingland yat understude yair fals and tressonabill dealing than 
yai turnit yair hatrent agains hir and enterit in conspiracie w* sum 
trato" of yat natioun *^ yat wer als evill myndit to ye quenis majestie 


of ingland as yai wer to ye king of Scotland. This is nowther 
dreamit in ane wardrob nor hard throw ane boir bot ane trew 
narrative of quhilk the memory is logit in bay* scottis and 
inglismenis hartis. Be ye quhilk and diuers vyeris conspiracies 
omittit for ye cause of breuite ^e may understand ye hamiltonis 
pretens^ yis Ivij ^eris and mair-o 

Eftir samony wayis socht be yame to distroy ye ry* successioun 
and plant yame selffis in yat rowme seing yat all yair practisis 
could not avale and yair forces wer not sufficient thay socht to 
augment yair factioun adjon)aig to yame all yat wer pticipant of 
o^ kingis slauchter and had conspyrit ye queue of inglandis deid. 
And to ye effect yat yai my* bettir cum to yair wickit purpose 
thay in ane maner displayit ane baner to assembill togidder all 
kynd of wickit men as papistes / renegat protestantis thevis tra- 
touris and oppin oppresso" and murtheraris. 

As to y'^ adherentis in Scotland I neid not to expreme y^ names 
nor qualiteis of ye conspiratouris of ingland for yai are weill knawin 
to 30^ 1: 5 it I can no* overpasse w* silence the cheif conspiratour 
chosin be yame to be king of Scotland I meanej'^ Duke of Nor- 
ffolk in quhilk act ^e may se thryst of 3our blude blindit yame 
agains all y'^ natioun for yai chesit ye principall ennemy of ye 
religioun of chryst in yis ile accumpaneit w* filthie ydolataris the 
principall enemy of ye nobilitie of Scotland / as his bage beris 
witnes ^ / quha sould haif spilt ye rest of ye nobill blude of Scotland 
in peace / quhilk his foirbearis could no* spill in weare / the prin- 
cipall ennemy to y' house for euir under tyrantis yai yat hes 
nerrest clame to ye croun ar nearest to dangearis. 5^^ ^^^^ thing 
wes yat my* haif comouit yame in ane factioun qualiteis comoun 
to yame bay* / as arrogance crueltie dissimulatioun and here- 
tabill tressoun in bay* ye houss* ^^ agains yair lauchfuU princes ^*:» 

And ^it for all this could yir men cuming to yair cruell intent be 
satisfiit be spoyling of 3our geir as yai did quhen yai wer placeit 
in supreme authoritie / or be making of 30W sclavis as yai did in 
selling of yair queue howbeit ye inhumanitie wer greit jit it wer 
not in supreme degre of crueltie. Bot it is na moderat nor toUer- 
abill thing yat yai seik. It is ye blude first of jour innocent king 


being in sic aige as hes bene pres'^uit be wyld beistis nixt ye blude 
of all his trew s^uandis and subjectis indifferentlie. 

For quhat defence can be in nobilitie or authoritie agains yame 
yat hes murtherit ane king and sekis strangearis to murthour ane 
vther quhome sail thay spair for vertew or innocency yat laitlie 
murtherit ye regent and ^it kepis ye murtherare in y^ cumpany or 
quha wilbe owersene for law degre or basse estait be yame yat 
fetcheit men out of teviot daill to fyfF to slay master Johnne Wod^^ 
for na vyer cause bot for being ane gude s'^uand to ye croun and 
yat he had espyit out sum of yair practisis --0 

Gif yis unsaciabill thrist of blude my* be imputit to hasty anger 
or ony suddane motioun yat causis men sumtyme to forget y^ dewtie 
yair my* be sum hoip yat sic ane passioun overpassit yai wald w* 
tyme remembir yame selffis and eftir yair power amend faltis bipast 
or at ye leist abstene in tyme to cum Bot yair is na sic humani- 
tie in yair nature nor pitie in yair hartis for not content w* ane 
kingis blude thay gaip for his sonnis murthour not satisfiit to haif 
slane ye regent thay keip ye murtherare sum tyme in yair cumpany ^^ 
sumtyme in ye Dukis hous in Arrane maist lyke as thinking gif 
yai honourit not ye doar yai sould not be knawin as counsallouris 
of ye deid and wald tyne ye gloir of yat nobill act And ^it w* all 
this thay ar not content onelie to manteine scottis tratouris bot 
als yai ressave inglis tratouris and settis up ane sanctuary of tres- 
soun ane refuge of ydolatre and receptacle of thevis and mur- 
theraris ^^ 

And albeit ye blude of kingis and regentis about y"^ hartis ay 
wirking the lust of fresche blude in y^ appetytis gevis yame littill 
rest bot rather makis dalie and hourlie new prouocatioun the lytill 
space of rest yat crueltie gevis yame thay spend in devysing of 
generall inquietnes throw ye haill realme And not content of it yat 
yame selffis may still reif and brybe thay set out y' ratches^^ on euery 
syde one of yame ye clan chattan and grantis ane vyer clangregour 
ane vyer bukclewch and faimyhirst ane vyer Johnnestonis and 
armistrangis ^^ And thay yat wald seame haliest amangis yame 
schew planelie ye affectioun yat yai had to banneis peace and 
steir up troubles quhen yai bendit all yair fyve wittis to stop ye 



regent to gang first north and syne sowth to puneis thift and op- 
pressioun. And quhen yai saw yair counsall wes not authorisit in 
geving impunitie to disordour thay spendit it in putting doun of 
him yat wald haif put all in gude ordour ^d 

Thair is ane kynd of yair thevis evin odious to mair gentill 
thevis quhilk spoylis trauellaris cadgearis and chepmen be ye way 
and ransoms puyr men about glasgow for xx s be heade This vyce 
can not proceid of vengeance bot rather of lust and pies*' in wick- 
itnes This kynd of men dois not onelie dishonour to nobilitie in 
stealing and to thevis in purspyking bot als to ye haill natioun of 
Scotland geving opinioun to strangearis that ye scottis be of sa 
law courage yat men amangis yame dar aspyre to the hieast estait 
of kingdome yet hes rankit yame selffis in ye lawest ordour of 
knaves ^^ 

Now my lordis ^e may considder how yai yat slayis sa cruellie 
kingis and yair lieutenentis wilbe mercifull to 30W And quhen yai sa 
haif put 30W doun yat cravis ye vengeance of ye kingis blude how 
few dar crave justice of ^our slauchter / ^e may se how cruell yai 
wilbe in oppressioun of ye puyr having cuttit of 30W quhilk being 
of maist nobill and potent houss of yis realme sufferis euerie pt of 
yis cuntre to be war nor ye out His and not onelie yir purspykaris 
of cliddis dale to exercise thift and reif as ane craft bot fosters and 
autorises amangis 30W ye cheif counsaloris of all misordour as ane 
edder in ^our bosum / 

Of all this 3e can lay ye wyte on na man vther bot ^our 
selffis that hes sufficient power to represse y'^ insolency and 
proudnes having in ^our hand the samyn wand yat 5e chastysit 
yame w* afoir. For ^e haif ^our protectour ye samyn god yis 
3eir yat wes ye 3eir bipast. 5^ haif ^our trew freindis and sub- 
jectis yat wer w* 30W afou:. 5^ ar deliuerit of dissimulat breth- 
rene yat had y'^ bodies w* 50W and hartis w* ^our enemeis / that 
subscriuit w* 50W and tuke remissioun of 30^ aduersaries that 
stude w* 30W in battell louking for occasioun to betray 30W had 
not God bene ^our protectour ^e haif ane greit nowmer of new 
freindis alienat frome thame for y' manifest iniquitie in deid / 
doubilness in word and tressoun in hart. ^^ haif of ye samyn 


ennemeis yat ^e had yan samony as hes y'^ hartis indurit / and yair 
mynd bent agains god and lauchfuU magistrattis : ^e haif ye samyn 
actioun yat ^e . . . had yan accumulat w* recent murtho'^ and tres- 
soun to provoke ye yre of god agains yame and howfar he hes 
blindit yame blind men may se That having sa evill ane 
actioun and sa mony ennemeis at hayme ^it be bunding out of 
small tratouris of y'^ wickit conspiracy evin men execrabill to y'^ 
parentis quhilk amangis vtheris thay haif spoylit be bunding out I 
say of sic psonis yai haif provoked the quenis grace of ingland to 
seik vengeance of yair untrewth anentis hir^o 

The quhilk vengeance justice and honour craivis of hir sa in- 
stantlie that scho can not chese bot to psew yame untill scho gif 
exempill unto vtheris that gif yai will not respect vertew ^it for 
feir of punitioun yai salbe content to leif in peace w* y^ ny*bouris. 
Quhairin scho hes als renewit the memorie of hir experimentit 
liberalitie and tendir luif to yis natioun seking on hir propir 
chargeis and travell of hir subjectis the punitioun of. sic as we on 
o'^ chargeis sould haif punissit I meane not onelie of o' tratouris 
bot als of ressettaris of hir tratouris And doing yis scho sekis 
pacificatioun amangis yame yat violat peace w*out prouocatioun 
and severis fra ye saikles in punissing / sic ar gilty in ofFenceing 
And as scho kepis peace and justice amangis hir subjectis in 
ingland / ofTeris on being requirit support to ye samyn in scot- 
land. And prevenis ye wicked consellis of sic as provokis inglis- 
men and solistis frensche men to cum in yis realme to that fyne 
yat yir twa nationis enterit in barres ye ane agains ye vther Thay 
may saciat yair cruell hartis of blude yair obstinat will of ven- 
geance thair botumles couatise of spoyle and thift. / 

Thairfoir seing yat god hes swa blindit 30ur ennemeis wittis my 
lordis be in gude hoip yat he sail als cast the spreit of feir and 
disparatioun in yair indurit hartis and prosper ^our gude actioun 
to ye quhilk he confortis w* his reddy help exhortis 50W be his 
word and constranis 50W be ye devoir of 50ur estait and necessitie 
of pres'^uing of ^our lyfT and honour^ 

For promeis being neglectit ayth violat subscriptioun set at 
nocht yair is na mid way left bot owther to do or suffer / And' 



seing yat bay^ ar miserabill amang sic as sould be freinds ^it better 
it is to slay justlie nor be slayne wranguslie. for ye executioun 
of justice in punissing the wickit is apprevit be god and man and 
sleuthfulnes in defence of justice can not be excusit of tressoun^^ 

And besyde yat god schawis him self sa mercyfull and liberall 
to 50W in sending 50W freindis be procuring of ^our ennemeis als 
ye psonis maist recomendit of god cravis ye samyn / for saikles 
blude oppressioun of ye puyr and ye fatherles cr3as continewalie 
to ye hevin for ane vengeance, the quhilk god comittis to 5our 
handis as to his lieutenentis and speciall officiaris in yat part And 
evin as he rewardis fayth and diligence in obedience of his etemall 
will sa he will not neglect sleuthfull negligens in executioun of 
his comandiment 

Thairfoir my lordis as ^e wald yat god sould remember on 50W 
and on ^our posteritie quhen yai sail call on him in y' necessitie 
remembir on ^our king and on my lord regentis pupillis ^ comittit 
to 30W in tutele be ye devoir of 30ur office anentis psonis yat ar 
not in power nor aige to help yame selffis and ar recomendit 
speciallie to all cristianis be god in his haly scripturis. Defend sic 
innocent creaturis as dependis onelie under god upoun 50^ mercy 
and humanitie fra ye crueltie of unmercifull wolffis and neglect 
not ye occasioun nor refuse not ye help send to 30W be god bot 
recognosce thankfullie his fauour towardis 30W that causis ^our 
ennemeis to procure 30W help. Neglect not ye offer of freindis 
in dreid gif 5e lat slip yis occasioun ^e sail crave it in vane in 30^ 
necessitie Think it na les providence of 30ur hevinlie fader than 
gif he had send 30W ane legioun of angellis to ^our defence And 
remember yat he schew him self neuir mair freindfull and succura- 
bill to na people yan he hes done to 50W and traist weill gif ^e 
will pseveir in obedience and recognosce his manifold graces he 
will multiply his benefites to 30W and 50ur posteritie and sail neuir 
leave 30W untill 3e forget him first. / 



[The * Chamseleon ' had its origin in the same set of circumstances 
as the ' Admonitioun ' — the anarchy begotten of the internecine 
strife between the king's and the queen's parties. In the 'Ad- 
monitioun ' Buchanan has set himself to show that the family of 
Hamilton was a standing danger to the wellbeing of the country. 
The * Chamseleon' is directed against Maitland of Lethington, 
whose policy since the fall of Mary had been steadily, though 
stealthily, directed against the party to which Buchanan belonged. 
In Buchanan's view of the best interests of the country, Maitland's 
conduct was utterly inexplicable, save on the supposition of sheer 
factiousness or shameless love of intrigue. It was owing to him 
more than any one else that Mary's party still made head in 
Scotland, and thus prevented a firm government from being set 
up, which, working in union with England, should present a 
common front against the great Catholic powers of Europe. In 
this belief, and under the conviction that Maitland was privy to 
the plot for the assassination of Moray, he wrote the * Chamseleon,' 
and drew a portrait of Lethington with just that amount of truth 
and caricature which would make him at once odious and ridic- 
ulous in the eyes of his countrymen. Lethington's career certainly 
lends itself easily enough to such treatment At one time or other 


he had worked in concert with all the leading persons in the 
country, and his contemporaries are hardly to be blamed if they 
failed to discover in his tortuous policy the unwavering purpose 
of the true patriot and great statesman. The pamphlet is a 
satire, yet it expresses Buchanan's serious judgment on the char- 
acter and career of Lethington. In his History, Buchanan, like 
Knox, speaks favourably of Maitland's early promise; but like 
Knox also, he came to regard him as the most sinister figure 
of his day in Scotland.* In the nineteenth book of his History, 
written several years after the * Chamseleon,' Buchanan deliber- 
ately repeated the most serious charges brought against Maitland 
in that pamphlet. The * Chamseleon,' therefore, like the 'Ad- 
monitioun,' is not to be regarded as a mere pasquinade, but as 
the humorous presentment of that interpretation of Maitland 
which appeared most natural to men of such diverse types as 
Buchanan and Knox, and to the party in the nation which they 

The * Chamseleon ' was only one amongst many similar attacks 
on Maitland by the pamphleteers who supported the party of the 
young king against his mother. Thus we have a ballad entitled 
" The Cruikit leidis the Blinde," a satire on Maitland's influence 

* Knox speaks thus favourably of Maitland in 1559 : ** Few dayis befoir oure 
first defait, which was upon Alhallow Evin, Williame Maitland of Lethington 
younger, Secreattar to the Quene (Mary of Lorraine), perceaving him self not 
onlye to be suspected as one that favored our parte, bot also to stand in danger 
of his lyifF, yf he should remane amangis sa ungodlie a cumpany ; for quhen- 
soevir materis came in questioun, he spaired not to speik his conscience ; whiche 
libertie of toung, and gravitie of judgement, the Frenche did heyghlie dis- 
daine." — Laing, 'Works of Knox,' vol. i. p. 463. On the other hand, at a 
later date, Knox does not scruple more than once to call him ''the author of 
all the mischief* that had ensued since Mary's return from France — Laing*s 
'Knox,' vol. ii. pp. 459, 460. In the following sentence we have Buchanan's 
opinion of Maitland's talents and early promise. The sentence refers to the 
period immediately subsequent to Mary's arrival in Scotland. "Consilio in 
primis utebatur" (he is speaking of Moray) "Gulielmi Msetellani, adolescentis 
summo ingenio, quique magna jam dederat praeclarse indolis experimenta, 
magnamque in posterum expectationem concitarat." — * Rerura Scoticarum 
Historia,* p. 333 (edit. Rudd.) Elsewhere he also calls him "juvenis summo 
ingenio et eiiiditione" — ib., p. 321. These are Buchanan's only direct com- 
mendations of Maitland. It will be seen that he does not commit himself so 
far as Knox with regard to his personal character. 


over the lords who favoured Mary ; and another, " The Bird in the 
Cage," * a nickname, as we learn from Richard Bannatyne's use 
of it, which must have been generally applied to Maitland. In 
truth, from all the literature of the period, — letters, ballads, and 
serious histories, — we gain the same impression of the mingled 
wonder, hatred, contempt, and vague uneasiness with which 
Lethington inspired his countrymen. The name " Mitchell 
Wylie"t which they applied to him expresses the instinct by 
which they saw in him a type essentially distinct from anything 
with which they were familiar in Scotland. 

The ' Chamseleon,' like the * Admonitioun,* was written in 1570, J 
though much later in the year. From the references to Maitland's 
doings "in Dunkeld, in Athol, in Strathbogie, in Braidalbane, and 
elles quhair," we gather that it could not have been out of 
Buchanan's hands till the beginning of 1571 (present reckoning); 
and an interesting passage in Richard Bannatyne's * Memoriales ' 
proves that it was not sent to the press till the April of that 
year : "This nycht (14th of April) at ewin, about xj houris, captane 
Meluine comes vnto Robert Lekprevickis hous, and focht him 
(as he had done twyfe of befoir), and louket all the hous for the 
Camelione, which the Secretar fearit that he had prentit ; bot he, 
beand wairned befoir, escapit, and went out of his hous with 
sic thingis as he feared sould have hurt him, gif thai had bein 

Maitland had certainly excellent reason for alarm at the pros- 
pect of being made the butt of Buchanan's sarcasms. He must 
have known Buchanan's fame as one of the most formidable satir- 
ists of the age ; and as he was himself a scholar, he must have 
read Buchanan's epigrams and the notorious " Franciscanus," one 
of the most brilliant pasquinades ever written against the ancient 

* These ballads are mentioned in Thorpe, * Calendar of State Papers* 

t There was a double play in the name. It was a corruption of Mackiavelli, 
with the additional sting implied in the term IVylie (wily). 

t This is the date of the MS. in the Cotton Library, on which all the texts of 
the * Chamaeleon ' are based. 

§ Richard Bannatyne, * Memoriales,' p. no (Ban. Club edit.) 


Church. Moreover, what Buchanan might write would not, like 
the other broadsheets which issued from the press of Lekprevik, 
be the mere birth of a day. It would be read beyond the bounds 
of Scotland, might possibly be turned into Latin as the work of 
one of the most famous scholars of his day, and posterity would 
see him in whatever guise Buchanan's wit might choose to present 
him. We can understand Maitland*s eagerness, therefore, to pre- 
vent the *Chamseleon' from seeing the light. His interference 
with Lekprevik so far served its object that the pamphlet actually 
remained in manuscript till 1710. Few of his contemporaries, 
therefore, would have the opportunity of laughing over a picture 
of him, of which even his temporary allies would recognise the 
essential likeness. Unfortunately for Maitland's subsequent repu- 
tation, however, Camden had seen the ' Chamseleon,' and indicates 
its purport in his 'Annals';* and as Buchanan reiterates his 
charges in his own ' History,' Maitland had the double ill-luck of 
presenting the same lineaments alike to English and Scottish his- 
torians who followed Camden and Buchanan. 

Editions of the * CHAMiELEON.' 

1. The 'Chamseleon' appears to have been first printed in the 
'Miscellanea Antiqua' (London, 1710). It forms the third piece 
in the collection, and is entitled "The Chamaeleon, or Crafty 
Statesman, in a Character of Mr Maitland of Lethington, Secre- 
tary of Scotland " : by Mr George Buchanan. 

The editor does not state what text he followed. Though his 
own text, however, is completely anglicised, he in all probability 
followed the MS. in the Cotton Library. 

2. Ruddiman, 'Buchanani Opera* (Edin. 1715). As there were 

* "Lidingtonius Letham missus, vi morbi, nee sine suspicione veneni expiravit, 
vir inter Scotos maximo renim usu, et ingenio splendidissimo, si minus versa- 
tili : quo nomine G. Buchananus aemulus eum viventem scripto quodam, cui 
' Chamaeleon ' titulum fecit, ut chamseleonte mutabiliorem depinxit, nee non 
ut Regis avise, matri, Moravio, ipsique Regi et patriae hostem versicolorem 
aeerrime perstrinxit." — 'Annales Rerum Anglicarum et Hibemiearum, regnante 
Elizabetha/ Part II., ad annum 1573. 


no "prudential considerations" to restrain Ruddiman from. print- 
ing the ' Chamseleon,' it appears in all the copies of his edition of 
' Buchanan.' Of his text of the * Chamaeleon * he says : " We have 
followed that copy in the Cotton Library, as we find it transcribed 
by the ingenious Mr David Crauford of Drumsoy, late Historio- 
grapher for Scotland, in the valuable Collections he gave to the 
Lawyers Library at Edinburgh; and have rather chosen to pre- 
serve the obsolete words and old way of spelling than to change 
either, as has been lately done in an edition of it printed at Lon- 
don, anno 1710;* being persuaded that though these alterations 
might make it more agreeable to modem ears, yet the more curious 
will be better pleased to see it in the very same dress in which it 
came from the author." 

In spite of what Ruddiman here says, he has (following Craw- 
ford's transcription) in some points deviated from the spelling of 
the original MS. In certain cases, though not fi*equently, he 
gives modem spellings instead of those of the Cotton MS. ; and 
here and there he has words which have been erroneously copied. 

3. Burmann, 'Buchanani Opera '(Lugd. Bat., 1725). Burmann 
printed the * Chamaeleon * along with the other works of Buclianan, 
simply reproducing the text of Ruddiman. 

4. "Chamaeleon redivivus: or Nathaniel's character revers'd." 
A satire written by Mr George Buchanan against the Laird of 
Lidingtone. Extracted formerly from the Manuscript in the Cot- 
ton Library, and afterwards printed at London, Edinburgh, and 
Leiden j now carefully reprinted, and most humbly inscribed to a 
learned C k of T C of E . Printed in the year 


From the ironical dedication to this edition, it would seem that 
the editor was a minister of the Church of Scotland who had 
been unsuccessful in an application to the Court of Teinds, and 
sought his revenge on the Clerk of the Court by the suggestion of 
a parallel between him and Buchanan's ' Chamaeleon.' 

The text is that of Ruddiman. 

5. Irving, * Memoirs of Buchanan * (edit. 181 7), Appendix II. 

* Ruddiman refers to the edition in the 'Miscellanea Antiqua * above specified. 


Irving states that he reprinted the 'Chdmaeleon* from Ruddiman. 

6. * Miscellanea Scotica,' vol. ii. (Glasgow, 1818). "Chamae- 
leon," written by Mr George Buchanan against the Laird of Led- 
ingtone ; from the manuscript in the Cotton Library. 

Though the title indicates that this edition was printed from the 
MS. in the Cotton Library, this is not the case, as its text is 
simply that of Ruddiman. 

7. * The Works of Mr George Buchanan in the Scottish Lan- 
guage,' containing the Chamseleon ; a satire against the Laird of 
Lidingtone, and Ane Admonitioun to the trew Lords main- 
tainars of Justice and Obedience to the King's Grace (Edin- 
burgh: printed and published by David Webster, Horse Wynd, 

Webster's text is that of Ruddiman. 

In the present reproduction of the * Chamaeleon,' the text of 
Ruddiman was first copied, and afterwards collated with the Cot- 
ton MS., which, as our sole authority, has in every case been 
followed. The MS. in the Advocates' Library, as Ruddiman 
informs us, is simply a transcription of the Cotton MS. made by 
David Crawford.] 


Thair is a certane kynd of beist callit chamseleon, engend[erit 
in] sic cuntreis as ye sone hes mair strenth in yan in this yle of 
Brettane the quhilk albeit it be small of corporance noghtyeless 
it is of ane strange nature the quhilk makis it to be na les celebrat 
and spoken of than sum beastis of greittar quantitie. The pro- 
prietie is marvalous for quhat thing euir it be applicat to it semis 
to be of the samyn cullour and imitatis all hewis except onelie 
the quhyte and reid and for y[is caus] ancient writtaris com- 
mounlie comparis it to ane flatterare quhilk [imitatis] all ye haill 

* Cotton MSS., Caligula, c. iii. f. 274. Endorsed as above. 


maneris of quhome he fen5eis him self to be freind to [except] 
quhyte quhilk is takin to be ye symbol! and tokin gevin com- 
mounlie in diuise of colouris to signifie sempilnes and loyaltie 
and reid signifying manli[nes] and heroyicall courage. This ap- 
plicatioun being so usit ^it perad[venture] mony that hes nowther 
sene ye said beist, nor na perfyte protraict of it [wald] beleif sic 
thing not to be trew. I will y'fore set furth schortlie ye [descrip]- 
tioun of sic ane monsture not lang ago engendrit in Scotland in 
ye cuntre of Lowthiane not far frome Hadingtoun, to yat effect 
yat ye forme knawin, the moist pestiferas nature of ye said 
monsture may be moir easelie evitit : for yis monstre being vnder 
coverture [of a] manis figure, may easeliar endommage and wersid 
be eschapit than gif it wer moir deforme and strange of face, 
behaviour, schap and memberis. Praying ye reidar to apardoun 
the febilnes of my waike spreit and engyne, gif it can not expreme 
perfytelie ane strange [creature] maid be nature, other willing to 
schaw hir greit strenth or be [sum] accident tumit be force frome 
ye commoun trade and course. This monstre being engendrit 
vnder ye figure of a man chyld first h[ad] ane proprietie of nature, 
flattering all manis Ee* and sensis yat beheld it, so yat ye commoun 
peiple wes in gude hoip of greit vertu[s] to prosper with ye tyme 
in it ; other ferdar seing of greit harme[sj ^nd dampnage to cum 
to all yat sould be familiarlie acquentit wi[th it]. This monsture 
promovit to sic maturitie of aige as it could easelie flatter and 
imitat euery manis countenance, speche and fassoun, and subtill 
to draw out ye secreittis of euery manis mynd, and depravat the 
counsellis to his awin propir gayne enterit in ye court of Scotland 
ye . . . and having espyit out not onelie factiouns bot singular a' 
personis, addressit the self in ye begyning to James ef[ter] erll of i 
Murray, and Gilbert yan erll of Cassillis men excellent in the :' 
tyme, in all vertuus perteining to ane nobill man and speciall in^ 
lufe of the commoun welth of yair cuntre: and seing yat his* 
nature could not bow to imitat in veritie but onelie to contrafat 
fen^eitlie ye gudnes of yir two personis, nor jit change yame to 
his nature thocht expedient to leane to yame for a tyme, and 

* The capital letter appears in the MS. 


clym up be yair branches to hiear degre, as ye wod bind clymeth 
on ye oik and syne with tyme distroyis ye tre yat it wes supportit 
be. So he having cum to sum estimatioun throw banting of yir 
nobill lordis (quha wer yan estemit of euery man as yair vertuus 
meritit) wes sone be gud report of yame and ane fen^eit gudnes 
in him self put in credeit with ye quene regent, verelie ane nobill 
lady and of greit prudence ^ bot ^it could not espy ye gilt vyces 
vnder cuUour of vertew hid in ye said monster, specialie being 
clokit be fauour of ye two foirsaid lordis, in quhais company hir 
g[race] wald neuir have belevit yat sic ane pestilent venu could 
haue bene hyd. The first experience the said quene had of him 
wes in sending him to France for certane bissines occurrent for 
ye tyme quhair he did his commissioun sa weill to his awin inten- 
tion, and sa far frome ye quenis mynd, that he dissauit ye cardinall 
of Lorayne quha ontill yat day thocht him self not onelie auld 
practicien bot als maister ^ea doctour subtilis in sic materis of 
negociatioun. His fals dealing being sone persavit and he greitlie 
hatit 5it scho being ane lady of greit prudence could not defend 
hir self from subtilltie, bot within schort tyme be meanis of sic as 
belevit him to be yair freind he crap in credence agane be ane 
other dur, and vnder ane other cuUour bot ^it could not so weill 
as he wald invent new falshead because of ye auld suspitioun and 
being of auld suspectit sone persavit, and in dangerie to be taken 
reid hand and puneist efter his meritis he fled out of Leyth and 
coverit himself with ye cloik of religioun sa lang as it could seme 
bot neuir sa closse bot he keepit ane refuge to sum sanctuarie of 
ye Papistis, gif ye court had changeit as to ye bischoppis of Sanct- 
androis and Glasgow, and vyeris diuerse quhais caussis wer in 
his protectioun and yairfoir ye haly Doctour Cranstoun ^^ depertit 
to him largelie of ye spoyle of Sanct Saluatouris College, and wes 
manteinit be Chamseleon aganis all law and ressoun ; besyde yat 
he wes ane man contaminat in all kynd of vycis. How far afoir 
ye cuming hame of ye quene ye kingis moder he wes contrary to 
all hir actiouns and fauourabill to hir aduersaries and incl3mit to 
hir depriuatioun, it is notourlie knawin bayth in Ingland and 
Scotland to sic as mellit yan with ye affairis of ye estait in bayth 


ye realmis. Efter ye quenis cuming hame he enterit schortlie 
(be changeing of cullouris and turning out ye other syde of his 
cloik) and halding him be ye branches of ye erll of Murray and 
for ane tyme applying him to ye quenis G. heir, that he allone 
wes hard in all secreit materis casting of lytill and lytill ye erle 
of Murray, and thinking yat he wes Strang enewch to stand by 
himself, on leaning to ye [erle] of Murray. And because ye erll 
of Murray plesit not mony [interprysis] of mariage than attemptit, 
as with ye princes of Spayne, with ye d[uke] of Anjow, with ye 
empriouris brother, the said Chamseleon applyit himself to all 
yir parteis, and changeing hew as the quene sweyit ye ballance 
of hir mynd and foUowit ye appetyte of hir lust. And [at lang] 
the quene be avyis of hir oncles, devysit to destroy ye erl of 
Mu[rray]^ thinking him to be ane greit brydill to refrane hir 
appetitis, and [impediment] to leif at libertie of hir plessure ; not 
yat euir he usit ony violence anentis hir, bot yat his honestie wes 
sa greit that scho wes esch[amit] to attempt ony thing indecent 
in his presence. Scho yan being deliberat to distroy him be ye 
erll of Huntlie, went to the nor[th] and he in hir cumpany ; and 
howbeit ye tressoun was oppynnit [planelie], and Johnne Gordoun 
lying not far of ye town (Aberdeen) with a greit power, and ye 
erl of Murray expresslie ludgeit in ane hous separate fra all uyer 
habitatioun and his deid be diuerse wayis socht ; this Chamseleon 
quhether of sempilnes or for layk of foirsicht or for bauldnes of 
courage, I refer to euery manis conscience [that] doith knaw him 
he alone could se no tressoun, could feare no d[angear], and wald 
neuir beleif yat ye erll of Huntlie wald take on hand sic ane 
interpryis: howbeit yair wes gevin aduertisement of it [out] of 
Ingland and France, l[ette]res taken declarand it and ye mater 
manif[est] befoir all menis Ene. It wer to lang to reherse and 
not verie ne[cessar] for ye p[rese]nt it being knawin to sa mony 
quhat diverse purposis wer tane, qf at dangearis eschapit all ye 
tyme of yat voyage, ontill the quenet^ ome to Aberdene agane and 
how miraculous wes ye victorie : bo^ane thing is not to be pre- 
termittit, that ye said Chamseleon w< ane of ye reddiest to gnaw 
ye bainis of ye deed, to spoyle ye qwyk and mak his proffeit at 


yat marcat. Efter this the oursey trafficque of mariage growing 

cauld, the said Chamseleon going in Ingland, delt sa betuix ye 

Protestantis and Papistes that he changeit dailie colouris sumt3rme 

flattering ye ane, sumtyme ye other, and making euery ane of 

yame beleif that he laubourit onelie for yame ; and amangis other 

thingis be ane prevy intelUgence with ye quene and verie few of 

ye nobilitie, practizpt] ye mariage of ye quene and Henry Lord 

Demlie, of ye quhilk he maid neuir ye erll of Murray prevy, vntill 

all wes endit. Howbeit ye erll of Murray did neuir thinge nor 

tuke neuir propose without his advise and counsale. Heir ye 

mater quhilk he had raschelpe] brocht on, wes neir ye poynt. 

Seing yat ye quene of Ingland disagreit with it for certane re- 

spectis, and ye lordis of Scotland for ye caus of ye religioun. To 

ye manteinance of ye quhilk thay desyrit ane promeis of ye quene 

and ye said Lord Demlie. The Chamseleon in secreit flatterit ye 

quene and opinlie tuke the colour of ye religioun and at ye lang 

(seing my lord of Murray for being precise and plane in all doingis 

cast out of court) cled himself onelie in ye quenis colouris vntill 

yat Dauid prevalit aganis him and had in a maner ye haill credeit 

of all wechtie materis. At yis poynt thinking him self in werse 

caise yan he belevit, socht to mak ane other change of court, and 

set vp new play agane, awaytit on the court sumpart disgracit, 

louking for sum new cuUour to apply him self to. In jds mene 

tyme ye quene seking to move sum thing in ye religioun, maid 

ane qwerrell aganis certane lordis of the principallis of Scotland, 

the quhilkis, albeit yat ane ressonabill power faillit yame not, and 

yat ye fauour of ye cuntre wes for yame, ^it to schaw yair inno- 

cency quhen yai could not brek ye quenis obstinat mynd of yair 

distructioun be prayer and soUicitacioun of freindis thay left ye 

cuntre and went in Ingland, ^it Chamseleon held ye small grip 

yat he had in court secunding to Dauid. In yis menetyme ye 

parliament set to forfalt sic lordis as had fled in Ingland, except 

ye duke quha did be intercessioun of siluer by his remissioun fra 

Dauid. The rest of ye lordis quhilk were of wisdome or estima- 

tioun, partlie requirit be ye king quha wes in na credeit in respect 

of Dauid, partlie for yair awin libertie conspyrit ye deid of ye said 


Dauid, and executit the same. Chamseleon cheifest ennemy to 
Dauid eftir the kingis grace, .^it not being advertisit be the lordis 
of yair interpryise and suspectit of the quene, knawing his dowbil- 
nes, quhyther for verie feare or preparing ane entre to ye quenis 
fauour, fled as vtheris did : and eftir lang fetchis brocht agane to 
ye court, kest clene fra him all colouris of ye kingis and cled him 
agane in ye quenis colouris, and wes ane of ye principal instru- 
mentis that nurissit dissensioun betuix hir and ye king : the quhilk 
practize howbeit he wald haue dissimulatit, sum tyme brak out 
with him ; as to ane nobill woman praying God to gif ye king and 
ye quene grace to aggre, he answerit, God let yame neuir aggre : 
ifor yay leving in dissensioun, he thocht yat his dowbilnes could 
not be espyit out. And yan seing ye Erll Bothuile cum in credeit 
he flatterit him and evin as yai aggreit in all poyntis to put doun 
ye king, seing yat he prospering yai could haue na lyfF, sa eftir ye 
king deid, the Erll Boithuile, having in yat practize knawin his 
falset, and fearing his inconstancy and desyring to be deliuerit of 
sic an witnes socht his deid : and he having na refuge in ye quene 
for ye samyn cause tuke for a [tyme] ye erll of Mortonis colouris 
and being borne furth be him ag[ains] ... ye erll boithuiles 
power and hatrent sa lang as he wes in fear . . . vnder ye erll of 
Mortonis wingis and ye feir past schew him[self] ye said erllis 
ennemy and having no sufficient cans, nor appe[arand] indice of 
separatioun of cumpany and kyndnes he fen^eit yat ye [said] erll 
of Mortoun had conspyrit his deid, to be execute be sum of ye 
erllis freindis and to prove ye said conspiracy allegit ane fam[ous] 
witnes (maiorem omni exceptione) the nobill and vertuus Lady 
Gy[ltoun].^7 Now to retume agane to our propose efter ye deid 
of ye kin[g] devysit be him executit be ye erll Boithuile, for feir 
of ye sa[id] erll he lurkit a quhile out of court vntill ye tyme ye 
quene at Carberrie [Hill] come to ye lordis, and ye Erll Boithuile, 
fled to Dunbar. Than [he] come to parliament and with sum 
otheris participant of the kingis sl[aughter] wald haif had ye quene 
slane be act of parliament; and not finding mony consenting 
yairto and specialie ye erll of Murray yan c[hosen] regent being 
in ye contrair, he soUicitat some previe men [to] gar hang hir on 


hir bed with hir awin belt, that be yat way he and his partinaris 
in ye kingis murthour mycht be deliuerit of an witnesse ; knawing 
Weill ye quenis nature, yat quhen sho wes misscontent of ony man 
scho wald tell all sic secreittis as scho [did] knaw of him. This 
propose not proceeding as he desyrit, he t[umit] him first in 
flattering with ye quene and send to hir being in Lo[ch]levin, 
ane picture of ye deliuerance of ye lyoun by ye mouse ; and nixt 
tumit his haill wit to ye distruction of ye erll of Murray thinking 
yat ye wickit could not profFeit greitlie so iust a man having ye 
supreme power and als seing yat ye quenis craftines wes abill at 
ye lang to ouerthraw ye erll of Murrays sempilnes. So he bendit 
all his wittis to ye said erllis eversioun and ye quenis restitutioun 
and procedit in yis caise, partlie be making ane factioun of ye 
counsalleris, and partakeris of ye kingis murthoure of men lycht 
of fantase and covatous of geir partlie be corrupting of my lord 
of Murrayis freindis and seruandis and travellit principallie with 
ye laird of Grange, thinking yat it sould be ane greit strenth to 
ye factioun to haue ye castell of Edinburgh at yair command. 
The regent being diuers tymes aduertisit of yir practizis wes of 
so upricht nature yat he wald beleif na thing of ony yat he had 
takin in freindschip, quhilk he wald not haif done him self; and 
als mony of ye factioun in ye begyning thocht it had bene bot 
ane ligue defensive aganis ye power of ye greate, that is accus- 
tumat to ouerthraw the small in tyme of troubill. 

In yis menetyme come ye deliuerance of ye quene out of 
Lochlevin, the quhilk he wes not ignorant of, and specialie be ye 
meanis of his cousing Johnne Hamiltoun of ye Cochuoch (al. 
Coheugh): ^it he tareit with ye regent to keip ane cullour of 
honestie and yat with ye quenis consent quha had gevin him 
and diuerse otheris yat wer in my lord of Murrayis cumpany fre 
remissioun for all bipast. 

Bot ye battele chansing vyerwayis yan he desyrit and belevit 
5it he persistit in his propose to distroy ye regent not opinlie bot 
be secreit meanis as being sent diuerse tymes to commoun with 
ye Lord Flemyng euir did ye contrair of ye propose yat he wes 
send for and euir tendit to hald ye cuntre in vnquietnes ; and in 


all assembleis for appointment, tendit to haue all bipast remittit 
to keip ay thevis and revaris in courage and to abase ye hartis 
of trew subiectis yat sould haif na hoip of redresse of wrangis 
done to yame be ye kingis rebellis. Eftir yat be ye diligence 
and wisdome of ye regent the cuntre wes brocht to sum stay, and 
iustice lyke to haif ye over hand, the kingis rebellis purchessit at 
ye queue of Inglandis handis yat scho sould considder ye greit 
wrangis [as yai said] done to hir nixt nychtbour, being nixt of 
blude to hir, and other be hir requeist or puissance caus hir be 
restorit agane to her former authoritie. The quenis maiestie of 
Ingland having ^it no les regaird to iustice nor to consanguinitie, 
desyrit sum of ye principallis of ye nobilitie to repair to hir or hir 
deputtis for thlr requeistis and compla3mtis ; and my lord deliberat 
to go in persoun ^ wes in doubt, having ellis enterit in sum sus- 
picions of 3ris Chamseleon quhethir he sould tak him with him 
self, or leif him beheind : for taking him he doubtit not bot he 
wald hinder ye actioun in all maner possibill, and leaving him 
behind that following his naturall complexioun he wald troubill 
ye cuntre, in sic maner yat it sould not be easelie in long tyme 
brocht to rest agane. At lang having deliberat to take him with 
him, and perswadit him bayth be giftis of landis and money, he 
fand to be trew in deid all yat he suspectit afoir ; ffor euery nycht 
in a maner he co[mmun]icat all yat wes amangis vs with sum of 
our aduersaries and armit yame sa far as he could agane ye said 
regent Bot ye force of ye ressonis and cleimes of ye haill de- 
ductioun of ye caus yat my lord regent vsit, wes sa perswasive to 
ye auditouris yat be Chamseleonis aduertisement the kingis mother 
dischargeit hir commiss[ioune]rs to proceid forther and differrit to 
ane mair commodious tyme for hir : ffor it wes weill knawin to 
hir yat ye quenis maiestie of Ingland and hir counsall had allowit 
ye said regentis procedingis ; and ye ambassadour of Spa3me seing 
ye horribill cryme sa abhominabill to all honest men refusit to 
speik ane word in ye mater, and ye Frensche ambas[sadour] 
excusit him self that he spak be command of [his] maister. 

In yis menetyme** the said Chamseleonis secreit practize with 
the d[uke of] Norfifolk suspectit afoir begouth to brek out be 


sum letters of Mai[ster] Johnne Lesleis callit bischop of Ross 
and als be ye duke himself [P^^ ^ ^^^P ^^ manage of ye Scottis 
queue be yame, the quhilk practi3e wes handiUit smnpart putdug 
feir to ye r^ent yat he could not re[tume] in Scotland with his 
lyff without ye dukis &uour, be ressoun of gre[it] preparationis 
yat wes maid aganis ye r^ent on bayth ye bordouris of Scotland 
and Ingland : partlie be tempting of ye said regentis mynd, [quha] 
answerit to ye duke of Norfifolk, TTuif he wald he glad that ye 
q\uene\ recognoscing hir fait and repenting^ sauld mary any gude 
Christian [man] of nobill house. The rumour of jris dealing wes 
sa opinlie spo[ken] in ye court of Ingland, yat ye quenis maiestie 
wes constrainit to wryte to hir lieutenentis to mak ye regent be 
put sauf in Scot[land] and so he wes without any recontre, bot 
of ye erll of Westmureland not far frome Durame quho seing ye 
regentis cumpany and ryd[ing] throw yame thocht not best to 
matche with yame. The next asse[mble] wes at Glasgow quhair 
ye Hamiltonis bragging, bot could not be [party], be meanis of 
him and otheris yair fauouraris with ye regent wer ressauit to sic 
an appointment as wes greitlie to yair avantage and ye said 
regentis disadvantage. And quhen yai sould haif gevin plegis 
to performe ye said appointment as wes compromittit, thay did 
bot seke delay; and so ye principallis of yame [wer] committit 
to ward in ye castell of Edinburgh. The haill mater wes secreitlie 
handillit be the Chamaeleon. The quhilk handilling apperit more 
planelie at an conventioun at Sanctandrois ; quhair yair wes twa 
headis principallie disputit: first, Gif the erll of Huntly sould haif 
genef\at\ remissioun for all reif and oppressioun done be him and his 
freindis in all tymes bipast \ or, gif ye kingis actioun pardonit^ prevat 
men sould haue actioun to crave thair awin geir : nixt, Gif ye erll 
of Huntleis haill assistaris sould be comprehendit in ane remissioun 
with him. The quhilk twa headis ye Chamaeleon and his com- 
plices preassit emistly be all meanis to be ressauit, as said is, 
and yat not without hoisting of Franche men and Spanzaris and 
mony vther inconvenientis ; and all yis done to disscourage ye 
kingis trew liegis, and lychtning ye hartis of rebellis in hoip of 
impunitie of all wrongis yat yai sould do in tyme to cum, and to 


hald ye haill cuntre in rebellioun and inquietnes to consume at 
ye lang ye regent quhilk yai knew to be p[uir] of substance and 
liberall of courage. And ^it wer not yir thingis mair subtilly 
devysed, nor yai wer constantly resistit be ye regent and his trew 
counsall. And seing yat yai could not cum to yair propose this 
way, thay causit new articles to be devysit in Ingland, twiching 
ye quenis cuming hame : to ye quhilk albeit yair wes sufficient 
answer maid in London, ^it for ye samyn cause wes devysit ane 
assemble of lordis in Sanct Johnestoun, with ane additioun of 
ane commissioun of diuorcement of ye Erll Boithuile and the 
queue, and to ye effect of ye haill, mony writtingis [wer] purchessit 
of boith wyse men and greit men of Ingland. Schawing planelie 
yat it wes ane foly to Scotland to presse to resist ye marriage 
betuix ye queue and duke of Norffolk; ffor it wes devysit be 
sic wisdome and to be executit with sic force as Scotland wes 
not abill to resist ; and not without consent of ye quenis maiestie 
of Ingland. Heir, albeit Chamseleon and all his quhelpis ragit 
neuir sa fast the contrait wes concludit and schawen to the quenis 
grace of Ingland be Alexander Hume gentilman of my lord 
regentis hous. And becaus the quenis maiestie wes not fully 
satisfeit at yat tyme, ane vther convocatioun wes haldin at 
Struieling, to ye quhilk the Chamseleon assurit of my lord regentis 
clemencie and proude in his awin consait bot fearing for his 
dementis eftir sum dubitatioun come to Struieling and wes in 
doubt not without cause. For about yis tyme my lord regent, 
aduertissit yat ye Hamiltonis had decretit to murthour him he 
schew bayth ye taill and the authour to ye Chamseleon, of ye 
quhilk Chamseleon reprovit vehemently ye Hamiltonis that could 
not keip yair counsall mair secreit and yis aduertising being 
schawin be sum of ye Hamiltonis to my lord regent, ^it he 
sufferit pacientlie. At Sterling ye articles being declared at 
greittar lenth, the Chamseleon wes attecheit be iustice and 
chargeit of ye kingis murthour the quhilk greivit him havelie, 
and preissit at my lord regentis hand ye cryme to be changeit, 
and he to be accusit of ye troubles lyke to ryise in Ingland and 
Scotland throuch ye forspoken mariage ; for he thocht yat matter 


to be consaiut and devysit sa sabstandallie, yat nowdier f<xce nor 
wit could mak impediment to ye performance of it, and bdevit 
suirlie yat sic ane cryme sonld redouid to his grdt prayse and 
opinioun of wisdome. This not obtenit he obtenit aganis all ye 
said r^entis freindis will, to be send to ward in ye castell of 
Edinbmgfa quhair he wrocht aganis ye nature of ye Chanueleon, 
fTor he changeit the greitar part of yame of ye castell to his colour 
sa Weill, yat ye conspiracy of ye regentis deid lang afoir consavit 
wes yan brocht to effect Eftir ye quhilk he wrocht be sic meanys 
yat he perswadit ye haill lordis yzn p[rese]nt in Edinburgh to be 
enlargit of his ward, vnder promeise to compeir and answer to ye 
cryme of ye kingis murthoure layd to his charge, at sic day as he 
sould be callit, and vnder hoip to be ane gude instrument of con- 
cord amangis ye lordis and ane day prolongit to sik of ye Hamil- 
tonis as wald purge yame selffis of ye murthour of ye regent vnto 
ye first day of Maii : bot sone being adioinit with vther of his 
factioun he changeit yat colour, and perswadit vtheris complices 
of ye murthour for feare and sum sempill personis be ane fals col- 
our of profFeit, to convene to ane schorter day, viz. : ye tent day of 
Apryle, assuring yame yat ye castell as it wes being thairz [stc], and 
ye toun als (for ye capitane of ye castell wes podrest [j^]),^ that 
yis rumour sould caus mony to convene to yame and yair aduer- 
saris disgracit sould half na place to convene togidder; and yat. 
ye quene of Ingland troublit alreddy with ciuile warre at hame 
mycht ye mair easelie condiscend to yat syde wrait to hir letteres 
partlie flattering partlie threatning and to schaw hir yair greit 
power send ane roll of ye lordis of yair syde quhairin wes com- 
prehendit sum lordis neutrallis and mony of y' aduersaries, be- 
leving yat leyis maid in Scotland could not be tryit in Lundoun. 
And seing yat ye toun of Edinburgh could not be perswadit to 
rebell with yame, and yat ye cuntre convenit not as yai hopit 
and ye breking [of] ye bordouris succedit not to yair proffeit, the 
moist part flittit camp and went to Lynlythquow, and yair set 
furth yair proclamatioun dytit be Chamseleon (as wes afoir ye erll 
of Westmurelandis secund proclamatioun) and yairby set vp ye 
quenis authoritie quhairof he (tareing in ye castell of Edinburgh) 


kepit him self dene, as Pilat wesching his handis of ye dead of 
Chryst. And sens that tym^ as afoir yis gude subiect and seruand 
to ye kingis g[race] confortit with counsale and conveying* out of 
ye cuntre ye rebellis of Ingland the sam3m being ennemeis to ye 
king of Scotland and prattit proudlie vantyng yat his pen sould 
be worth ten thowsand men and threatnit schamefnllie (gif he 
had reservit any schame) the quenis maiestie of Ingland with 
wordis of quhilk ye memory sould be rather abolissit be pvnitioun 
of him yan rehersit for yair impudency ; and fearit not to mak sa 
oppin a leye to nobillmen of Ingland as yat ye kingis trew subiectis 
acknawlegeing his authoritie wer not abill to assembill togidder 
fyve hundreth hors, quhair yai saw within four dayis moir yan 
fyve thowsand assemblit out of [ane] cornar of Scotland. And 
ay sensyne he hes bene at all convocatiouns of the kingis professit 
ennemeis in Scotland in Dunkeld, in Ath[ol], in Strathbogy, in 
Braidalbin, and other quhair, and kepis contrebank to Mr Johnne 
Leslie of Kingusie, in all directionis to put ye king out of his 
estait, his realme and at lenth out of yis erdlie lyff. 

Now, I pray 50W espy out quhat proffeit ye queue, our kingis 
moder, sail gadder of him yat hes bene (as scho knawis) sa often- 
tymes traitour to hir moder, to hir selfe, to hir sone, to hir brother, 
and to hir cuntre. Scho will be exemplis considder yat how mony 
colouris yat euir yis Chamseleon change, that it can neuir aganis 
ye nature of it, tume perfytelie quhyte. 


Respice finem, 

Respice funem. 


* In MS. altered to conveyed. 




[As the better half of Buchanan's life was spent abroad, the persons 
with whom he corresponded on his return to Scotland were mainly 
foreigners ; and his correspondence was, therefore, necessarily in 
Latin, the European language of the time. Of his letters in Latin 
we possess only fourteen, though we know from himself that his 
correspondence was voluminous ; and of those in the vernacular, 
only two, both addressed to Sir Thomas Randolph, Elizabeth's 
agent at the Court of Mary. Randolph is a well-known figure in the 
Scottish annals of the period. With Buchanan, for whose char- 
acter and genius he had the highest admiration, he was on terms 
of intimate friendship. From the fact that Randolph, in writing to 
Buchanan, addresses him as " my good Maister," and on another 
occasion styles him " my Maister," Ruddiman drew the inference 
that Randolph had at one time been the pupil of Buchanan.* In 
the usage of the period, however, the expression does not imply 
Ruddiman's conclusion ; t and other facts prove that the. relation 

* Ruddiman, * Buchanan! Opera,* vol. i. (* Georgii Buchanan! vita ab ipso 
scripta biennio ante mortem/ p. i.) 

t Thus Andrew Melville speaks of Buchanan as his ''master,** though 
Buchanan was never actually his teacher. M'Crie, ' Life of Andrew Melville/ 
p. 7 (edit. 1856). The expression simply implied that the person so addressed 
was more advanced in years, and was superior in learning. 


could hardly have existed. From Anthony Wood we learn that 
Randolph studied at Oxford, that he became principal of Broad- 
gate Hall (afterwards Pembroke College) in 1549, an office which 
he held for three years, and that he was subsequently engaged in 
various embassies to Scotland, France, and Russia. As Buchanan 
was on the Continent from 1539 to 1561, it does not appear from 
this account of Randolph when he could have had Buchanan for 
his teacher. But a sentence of one of Randolph's letters from the 
Scottish Court (30th January 1561-62) seems clearly to imply 
that he had but lately made the acquaintance of Buchanan. The 
sentence, as has already been said, is further interesting as con- 
taining the first notice of Buchanan after his final return to Scot- 
land. "Ther is with the queue," he writes, "one called Mr 
George Buchanan, a Scottische man, verie well lemed, that was 
the schollemaster vnto Monsr. de Brisack's sone, very godlye and 
honest." On the 7th April of the same year Randolph also 
writes : " The queen readeth daily after her dinner, instructed by 
a learned man Mr George Buchannan, somewhat of Lyvie." From 
the shade of expression in these references to Buchanan, we may 
conclude that the friendship between him and Randolph dated 
from the return of Buchanan to Scotland. Randolph's single 
letter to Buchanan may also be given here as illustrating Buch- 
anan's two letters to himself. 


I am not (my good Maister) a little beholdinge vnto yow, for 
your late remembraunce both of me and my sonne, by your prettie 
and fyne Devyse to make him reade before he knowe or handle 
his Booke. Howe he will prove leamid heirafter, I knowe not, 
but far vnlyke to resemble him from whome he taketh the Patteme, 
that, longe before my Boyes yeares, farre passid many in leaminge 
and Judgement, wherof such encrease ensueth, as in this Age is 
wonderfuU, and amongst Princes most rare. I looke not for the 
lyke in myne, but shall thinke myselfF happie yf he resemble yours 
in on Poynt of a Nomber that in him more brightly shyne then 


Julium sidus lunas \sic\ inter minores. That your worthie and noble 
kinge in so short Tyme is become so skillful, not a little is to be 
attributed to the great Diligence and lore of his Maisters, who 
besydes the gifles of Nature, have addid as muche as by Art could 
be devised. In this, my good Maister, consistith your Prayse, 
and in this shall your Fame remayne immortall, though many other 
thinges in this World haue made yow famous for ever. I leave to 
speake of many thinges donne in your Lyfe, great Prayse worthie, 
but howe well I lyke of the last little Treatise, * De Jure Regni,' 
that lately come into the World, I cannot say as I thinke. This 
puttith me in Mynd of many thinges more great Prayse worthie 
donne by yow, especially the * Historie of our Whole Isle,' wherin 
I may justly complayne of you, my good Maister, that I shall not 
have so much as a sight therof, before myne Eyes be cleane shutt 
vp, that nowe ar become for Age very dymme. What makith yow 
to doubt to let it come fourthe, a spectacle vnto the World, no 
lesse famous than Apelles^ Table was, and as voydQ of ComptroUe- 
ment as his Worke was, howe curiouse soeuer the Souter would 
seme to be ? I pray yow deferre no more Tyme ; at the least let 
vs knowe what yow mynd to doe with it, and employ my Labor, 
and charge me so farre as you please, that shortly we may enjoy 
our longe desyrid Hope in a Matter of so great Weight. Wherin 
yow will I am euer at your Command. And so, my good Maister, 
I hartely take my Leave. At Londatiy the 15th of March 1579. 
Your verie lovinge and assured Frende at Commande 

Tho. Randolphe. 

I send vnto you two lyttle Books for two that I suppose came 
to me from you. Your * De Regno ' is greatly desyered amonge 

The original of the first of the following letters is in the British 
Museum (Lansdowne MSS., 15-24). It was first printed by 
M'Crie in his Appendix to the * Life of Andrew Melville.' A 
facsimile of this letter was published in ' Facsimiles of National 
Manuscripts of Scotland ' (vol. iii.. No. LXVL), where it is errone- 


ously stated to be addressed to Sir William Cecil.* The second 
letter appears in Ruddiman's general preface to his edition of 
Buchanan. A copy of the original was supplied to him by a 
person whom he styles " Randolphus Thoresbius Anglus, R.S.S."] 

To his singular freynd M. Randolph maister of postis to the 
queinis g. of Ingland. In London. 

I resauit twa pair of lettres of you sens my latter wryting to 
you. wyth the fyrst I resavit Marinus [sic] Scotus,*^ of quhylk I 
thank you greatly, and specialy that your inglessmen ar fund liars 
in thair cronicles allegyng on hym sic thyngs as he never said. I 
haif beyne vexit wyth seiknes al the tyme sens, and geif I had 
decessit ye suld haif lesit bath thankis and recompens, now I 
most neid thank you, bot geif wear brekks vp of thys foly laitly 
done on the border, than I wyl hald the recompense as Inglis 
geir, bot gif peace foUowis and nother ye die seik of manage or 
of the twa symptomes following on manage quhylks ar jalozie and 
cuccaldry, and the gut cary not me away, I most other find sum 
way to pay or ceise kyndnes or elHs geifing vp kyndnes pay zow w* 
evil wordis, and geif thys fasson of dealing pleasit me I haif reddy 
occasion to be angry with you that haif wissit me to be ane kentys 
man, quylk in a maner is ane centaure half man, half beast.^^ 
and yit for ane certaine consideration I wyl pas over that iniury, 
imputyng it erar to your new foly, than to aid wysdome. for geif 
ye had beine in your ry* wyt ye being anis escapit the tempestuous 
stermes and naufrage of manage had never enterit agane in the 
samyng dangeris. for I can not tak you for ane Stoik philosopher^ 
havinge ane head inexpugnable w* the frenetyk tormetis of Jalozie 
or ane cairless [margiUy skeptik] hart that taks cuccaldris as thyng 
indifferent In thys caise I most neidis praefer the rude Scottis 
wyt of capitane Cocbume to your inglis solomonical sapience, 
quhylk wery of ane wyfe deliuerit hir to the queyne againe, bot 
you deliuerit of ane wyfe castis your self in the samyn nette, et 
ferre poies dotninam saluis tot resiibus uilam, and so capitane 

* The editor of the Nat. MSB. draws attention to this mistake. 


Cocbume is in better case than you for his seiknes is in the feitte 
and zowris in the heid. I pray you geif I be out of purpose thynk 
not that I suld be maryit. bot rather consider your awyn danger- 
ouse estait of the quhylk the speking as [sic] thus troublit my braine 
and put me safar out of the way. As to my occupation at thys 
present tyme, I am besy w* our story of Scotland to purge it of 
sum Inglis lyis and Scottis vanite. as to maister knoks his historic 
is in hys freindis handis, and thai ar in c5sultation to mitigat sum 
part the acerbite of certaine wordis and sum taintis quhair in he 
has followit to muche su of your inglis writaris as M. hal ef suppil- 
atorem eius Graftone, &c.^^ As to M. beza I fear y* eild quhylk 
has put me from verses making sal deliure him sone a Scabie 
poetica, quhylk war ane great pitye for he is ane of the most 
singular poetes that has beine thys lang tyme. as to your great 
prasyng gevin to me in your Ire [letter] geif ye scome not I thank 
you of luif and kyndnes towart me bot I am sorie of your corrupt 
iugement. heir I wald say mony iniuries to you war not yat my 
gut comandis me to cesse and I wyl als spair mater to my nixt 
writings. Fairweal and god keip you. at Sterling the siext of 

Be youris at al a powe[r ?] G. Buchanan. 

To Maister Randolf Squiar, Maister of Postes to the 

Quenis Grace of Ingland. 

Maister, I haif resavit diverse letters frome you, and yit I have 
ansourit to naine of thayme ; of the quhylke albeit I haif mony 
excusis, as age, forgetfulnes, besines, and disease, yit I wyl use 
nane as now, except my sweimess, and your gentilnes ; and geif 
ye thynk nane of theise sufficient, content you with ane confession 
of the fait, w*out fear of punitioun to follow on my onkindnes. As 
for the present, I am occupiit in writyng of our historic, being 
assurit to content few, and to displease mony thar throw. As to 
the end of it, yf ye gett it not or thys winter be passit, lippin not 
for it, nor nane other writyngs from me. The rest of my occupa- 
tion is wyth the gout, quhilk haldis me besy both day and ny*. 


And quhair ye say ye half not lang to lyif, I traist to god to go 
before yow, albeit I be on fut, and ye ryd the post ; praying you 
als not to dispost my hoste at New werk, Jone of Kelsterne. Thys 
I pray you, partly for his awyne sake, quhame I tho* ane gud 
fellow, and partly at request of syk as I dar no* refuse. And 
thus I tak my leif shortly at you now, and my lang leif quhen God 
pleasis, committing you to the protection of the almyHy. At 
Sterling xxv. day of August, 1577. 
Yours to command w* service, G. Buchanan. 


The Scots translation of the * Detectio Marise Reginse,' published 
by Lekprevik in 1572, has sometimes been loosely assigned to 
Buchanan himself For this there is no authority whatever ; and 
both Ruddiman and Irving considered it the work of another 
hand.* The translation itself, indeed, bears evidence that 
Buchanan could not have been its author. In several passages 
the translator has missed the meaning of the original, and in a 
manner that could not have happened to Buchanan himself One 
instance may be considered ^o decide the question. Both in his 
'History of Scotland ' and in the * Detectio ' Buchanan several times 
uses the word iibelius, and always uses it in the sense of placard,^ 
But in the only passage where it was possible for the translator to 
miss the meaning, he has rendered it buik,X On the other hand, 
where the context kept him from error, he has rightly rendered 
Buchanan's meaning. As being a translation, from the Latin, the 
syntactical structure of the sentences resembles that of Buchanan's 
vernacular writings ; but its circumlocution of phrase is far removed 
from his terse directness of expression. 

* Ruddiman, 'Buchanani Opera,' vol. i. p. xix; Irving, 'Memoirs of 
Buchanan,' p. 152 (note). 

t *Rer. Scotic. Hist.,' p. 354; 'Detectio Mariae Reginae,' pp. 6, 8 (Rud- 

t ' Detectio Marise Reginae,* p. 6. 




^ The College of Humanite, As will be seen, Buchanan's Col- 
lege of Humanite was simply what we should now describe as a 
combined elementary and secondary school. Such schools, aiming 
at the liberal education of the whole community, were the dis- 
tinctive growth of the Revival of Learning. We have ample evi- 
dence, indeed, that the mediaeval Church was very far from neglect- 
ing the general interests of education ; but the idea of public in- 
struction, equally within the reach of every section of society, was 
incompatible with the civil and religious principles on which mediae- 
valism was based. By the very conditions of feudalism and papal 
supremacy under which the mediaeval nations developed, the liberal 
education of the laity was neither necessary, nor, at the same time, 
desirable, in the interests either of the Church or of secular princes. 
With the Renaissance, however, came other ideals of the ends of 
human society. There was no theme on which the humanists better 
loved to descant than the dignity of human nature and the glory ot 
free institutions. It was the necessary result of their new conception 
of life, which came of their study of antiquity, that the dissemination 
no less than the acquisition of knowledge was the passion of the 
scholars of the sixteenth century. The humanists who remained 
within the ancient Church were as deeply moved by this passion as 
those who left it. Gouvda, Budd, Erasmus, were as eager in the cause 
of popular education as Melanchthon, or Buchanan, or Jean Sturm. 
Such schools as those of Bordeaux and Ntmes, founded by Catholic 
•communities under the influence of the new studies, were in every 
regard as nobly conceived as those of Strassburg and Geneva.* 

* For the history of the great schools of Bordeaux, Nlmes, and Strassbui^gf, see 
•Gaullieur, 'Histoire du College de Guyenne' (Paris, 1874); Gaufr^, 'Claude 


The history of secondary schools during the sixteenth century has 
a special interest and special instruction for ourselves at the present 
moment The opening of that century saw a revolution to which we 
have the exact counterpart in the history of the last twenty or thirty 
years. The attitude of the humanist to the scholastic theology is pre- 
cisely the attitude of the modem man of science to the literary tradition 
that has come to us from the Renaissance. The confusion that now 
exists as to the aims and methods of secondary education is due to 
causes precisely similar to those which were at work during the first 
half of the sixteenth century. In both periods a revolution, intellectual, 
social, and religious, has necessitated a new departure in public in- 
struction to meet the new conditions of national life. As we are now 
groping towards a system which shall best meet these conditions, so 
the educationists of the sixteenth century gradually felt their way to 
that conception of liberal study which became the European tradition 
for the succeeding three centuries. 

Buchanan's scheme for the College of Humanite embodies the high- 
est conception of secondary education to which men had risen by the 
. middle of the sixteenth century. The plan of study he has sketched 
is virtually that of all the great Continental schools that had been 
founded during the previous thirty or forty years. From the very out- 
set of the intellectual revolution there had been but one mind among 
the men of the new order as to what should be the basis of all instruc- 
tion. A familiar knowledge of Latin was the only key to the stores of 
human wisdom, as its acquisition afforded the only training fitted to 
ensure a capacity for sound thinking and adequate expression. Till 
past the middle of the century, moreover, it was the fixed conviction 
of the generality of scholars that sooner or later Latin must displace 
all the vernacular languages, and that the sooner the time came the 
better, in the highest interests of humanity. All the great schools^ 
therefore, founded during this period, were virtually founded for the 
teaching of the Latin language and the Latin literature. 

But while there was this unanimity regarding the matter taught^ 
there was the greatest difference of opinion as to the best methods 
of teaching it. The numerous Latin grammars of the period were a 
source of endless distraction to those engaged in the practical work 
of teaching, and sufficiently prove the unsettled views that prevailed. 
In Scotland, indeed, the number of Latin grammars became such a 
stone of stumbling, that, by the express commandment of Government, 
a committee of four scholars, with Buchanan as pi;esident, was ap- 
pointed to consider the difficulty. As the result of their deliberations, 
three of their number compiled a new grammar.* But j^ojt even their 


Baduel et la R^forme des Etudes au xvi« si^cle ' (Paris, 1880) ; and Charles 
Schmidt, * La Vie et les Travaux de Jean Sturm * (Strassburg, 1855). 
* Buchanan was intrusted with the section on prosody. 



repute as scholars and the authority of Government could ensure its 
general acceptance, and the difficulty continued as before. The order 
in which the Latin authors should be studied was also a subject of 
contention, and rival scholars discussed the question with the zeal and 
bitterness of contemporary theologians. Further sources of disagree- 
ment were the age at which the pupils should begin their studies, 
their graduation into classes, and the number of years these studies 
should continue. By the date that Buchanan drafted his scheme, 
however, a general concurrence of opinion appears to have been 
reached, and his scheme may be regarded as registering the opinion 
of the best educational authorities on the aims and methods of second- 
ary instruction. All the great schools above mentioned — Bordeaux, 
Nimes, Strassburg, and Geneva — were organised on lines virtually 
identical with those laid down by Buchanan. In all of them we have 
the fundamental conception of a combined primary and secondary 
school affiliated to a school for higher studies, and in all of them the 
curriculum was practically the same. As throwing an interesting 
light on the proposals of Buchanan, some account may here be given 
of the educational arrangements in Geneva, which some four years 
previously (1559) had been completed mainly under the auspices of 
Calvin and Beza. Though the closest relations existed at this time 
between Scotland and Geneva, however, the similarity between the 
scheme of Buchanan and that of the Genevan reformers is no proof 
that Buchanan took Geneva as his model.''^ As has been said, the 
experience of the last fifty years had led those interested in public 
instruction to certain well-defined conceptions, which were generally 
accepted as at once most practicable and most expedient 

Shortly after its adoption of the Reformed religion, the citizens of 
Geneva had founded (1536) a college, which should preclude the 
necessity of sending their sons elsewhere for their higher education. 
From the programme of the college, published a year after its founda- 
tion,t we gather that it was meant to fulfil the function at once of a 
primary and secondary school, and a university. For various reasons, 
the new college failed in its object, and the youth of Geneva still con- 
tinued to go elsewhere for their higher studies. Not, indeed, till 1559 
was the education of the town placed on that footing which eventually 
made her one of the great schools of Europe. In that year, by the 
common action of the pastors and magistrates, the Academy of Geneva 
was founded to supply a complete course of elementary, secondary, 
and university education.! The new academy was to consist of a 

* It is sometimes said that the Academy of Geneva was based on the model of 
Sturm's Academy at Strassburg. But the former was founded nine years before the 

f This programme will be found in Herminjard, * Correspondance des R^forma- 
teurs dans les pays de langue fran9aise/ vol. iv. pp. 455-460. 

t Promulgatio legum Academiae Genevensis. 



gymnasium, or, as it is otherwise termed in the statutes, schola privata^ 
and the academy proper, also designated schola publica. The gym- 
nasium corresponded precisely to Buchanan's College of Humanite. 
Instead of Buchanan's six classes there were seven ; but the authors 
read and the order in which they were taken were in each case virtu- 
ally the same. Similarly^ the schola publica was the exact counterpart 
of Buchanan's two colleges of Philosophy and Divinity. Its five pro- 
fessors were intrusted with the teaching of Greek, Hebrew, Arts (i>., 
philosophy), medicine, and law — ^the only difference thus being that 
Greek is specially mentioned as a subject of study in the upper school.* 
While Buchanan's scheme, however, remained a dead letter, the 
Academy of Geneva became the great school of Protestant Europe. 
But the very success of the Genevan academy proves that had 
Buchanan's scheme taken practical shape, the scheme itself was well 
fitted to meet the educational requirements of the time. 

2 Wagis of the Persoms, The authors of the * First Book of Dis- 
cipline ' fixed 200 pounds Scots as the annual salaries of the heads of 
colleges. Generally, the salaries they propose are higher than those 
here set down by Buchanan. In Geneva the professors were paid at 
the same rate as the pastors — 280 Genevese florins per annum. 

^ Portionistis, These were students who boarded with the principal 
or some one of the regents, to whom they paid a stipulated fee for 
their board and education. The term was adopted from the colleges 
of the University of Paris, where they were also known as convicteurs. 
The portionists are, of course, to be distinguished from the bursars of 
the college. — Quicherat, * Sainte-Barbe,' vol. i. p. 74. 

* The nombre of the classis at the leist sex, Mark Pattison (* Life 
of Casaubon,' p. 12) speaks of "the universally received division of 
seven classes" as prevalent at this period. The truth is that the 
number of classes seems simply to have varied with the prosperity of 
the school. Sturm thought that nine was the ideal number; Elie 
Vinet, ten. At the school of Nimes eight was the number of classes 
proposed ('Gaufr^s,' p. 41); in the College de Guyenne the number 
was at one time ten, at another twelve, 

^ The VL Classe, The work of the corresponding class in the 
Gymnasium at Geneva is thus prescribed : " In hac classe, prima et 
simplicissima rudimenta declinationum et conjugationum primis sex 
mensibus proponuntor. Reliquis autem sex mensibus partium ora- 
tionis et eorum quae eis attribuuntur rudis explicatio familiariter pro- 
ponitor ita ut cum Latinis Gallica comparent, adjunctis Latinae linguae 

* The reading of Greek is implied, if not specially mentioned, in Buchanan's plan 
of the College of Divinite. It should be said that professors of law and medicine 
in the Academy of Geneva were not actually appointed till 1565, a year after Calvin's 
death. The year of the foundation of the Academy, a doctor of medicine was 
allowed to read lectures '' sans toutefois qu'on lui bailie gpago^l^' — A. Roget, ' Histoire 
du Peuple de Geneve/ tome cinqui^me, sS^^ livraison, pi a^ 


exercitationibus puerilibus. Ibidem pueri in pingendis literis confir- 
mantor et Latino sermoni assuescunto. 

® Thys classe sal reid Terence, In Geneva the Eclogues of Virgil 
were the first classical Latin read. Buchanan follows his old college 
of Guyenne. " Octavo ordini, sui sunt libri destinati, unus ex selectis 
epistolis Ciceronis; alter ex aliquot scenis Terentii." — Louis Masse- 
bieau, * Schola Aquitanica, Programme d'^tudes du College de Guy- 
enne au xvi« si^cle,' p. 16. 

^ Linaceris grammar, Buchanan's pwn Latin translation of Linacre 
is probably meant. See Introduction, pp. xiii, xiv. 

* The auditouris salbe diligently exercisit in verse^ &c. Part of the 
programme of the first class in Geneva was as follows : " Stylum dili- 
genter exercento. Declamationes binas singulis mensibus, ita ut 
diximus, diebus Mercurii habento." 

^ At the end of the J^r, &c. " Singulis annis, tribus ante Cal. Mail 
hebdomadibus, publicum thema Gallicum in aula communi ab aliquo 
ex publicis professoribus vicissim hora duodecima proponitor, quod 
singuli per classes distributi, pro suo quisque captu excipiant." — * Pro- 
mulgatio legum Academiae Genevensis.* 

^^ Thair salbe twa bonnittis proponet^ &c. The same custom 
prevailed in the College de Guyenne. "Omnes autem postquam 
recitaverunt, consurg^nt agonothetae ; et stantes, conferunt inter se, 
ac disceptant, qui utroque in genere orationis antecellunt. Duo 
denique ex omnibus victores declarantur : praemioque decoratur 
uterque pileo scholastico." — Massebieau, p. 34. 

"^ Thair may be gevin sum vacans, &c. Tempore vindemiae vacatio 
ab omnibus praelectionibus toti scholae per tres hebdomadas conce- 
ditor. — * Prom. Leg. Acad. Gen.' 

"^ The principal salbe diligent^ &c. " [Ludimagistri] munus esto, 
praeter ordinariam suae classis procurationem, in collegarum mores 
ac diligentiam inspicere," &c. — * Prom. Leg. Acad. Gen.* 

^ And geif the principal inlak. The method of choosing a prin- 
cipal was somewhat different at Geneva. The election of Beza, the 
first principal of the Academy, is thus described in the preamble to 
the statutes : " Postea confessionis formulam in quam public! omnes 
auditores jurarent, et jusjurandum solenne, quod concipere Rectorem 
et omnes utriusque scholae (privatae videlicet ac publicae) doctores 
oporteret, recensuit Denique a Ministrorum coUegio electum, ab 
amplissimo vero Senatu designatum Theodorum Bezam, unum ex 
verbi Ministris, scholae Rectorem." The other teachers were ap- 
pointed in the same way. 

" Item^ in sommer^ &c. " Diebus Lunae, Martis, Jovis, et Veneris, 
scholastic! aestate, hora sexta matutina ; hyeme, septima, in suum 
quisque auditorium conveniunto." — 'Prom. Leg. Acad. Gen.' 

^^ Pedagogis* These were very much what we now understand 
by private tutors. The College de Guyenne had a special statute 


prescribing the duties of these pedagogues. It will be seen that 
Buchanan had probably this statute in his mind when he laid down 
his directions regarding their proper functions. ** Paedagogi pueros 
suos in officio contineant, nee tamen caedant, ne a litteris absterrean- 
tur : sed si quid dignum poenae commiserint, de hoc ad nos, aut 
aliquem ex prseceptoribus referant. Nihil praelegant, nihil discendum 
praescribant, nisi quod ipsis in gymnasio praelectum fuerit. Sic enim 
puerorum ingenio plerique misere confundunt, onerant, obruunt, et 
quod gravius est ferendum, quod a doctis praeceptoribus aedificatum 
fuerat, illi destruunt." — Massebieau, p. 40. 

^^ In thys college nayne sal persever^ &c. In the colleges of the 
mediaeval universities the regents in Arts or Humanity were them- 
selves supposed to be preparing for the higher faculties of law, medi- 
cine, or theology. That a regent should delay eight years before 
entering one of these faculties, therefore, was proof of idleness or 

1^ The thre law classis. I.e., the sixth, fifth, and fourth classes. 

^® The College of Philosophie. As has been said, Buchanan's 
College of Philosophie was represented in Geneva by one side of the 
schola publica. In the Guyenne school, also, its ten classes were sup- 
plemented by a two years' course in philosophy. In the case of all 
three, the subjects of study were practically the same. 

^^ Ane Reidar in Medicine, As will be seen from the curriculum 
of the college prescribed below, medicine appears to have been in- 
cluded in "natural philosophie." 

20 Swa in thre ^ris, &c. In Ste. Barbe, as in the other colleges of 
the University of Paris, the course in philosophy lasted three years ; 
in the College de Guyenne, as was stated above, only two. — Quicherat, 
* Sainte-Barbe,* vol i. p. 232. 

21 At the end of the first ij yiriSy &c. The probationary term for 
bachelorship in the mediaeval universities was three years; but the 
sixteenth century saw frequent departures from the letter of tradi- 
tional statutes. In Glasgow University, towards the end of the fif- 
teenth century, a year and a half was fixed as the minimum term of 
study required for the diploma of bachelor. — * Munimenta Almae Uni- 
versitatis Glasguensis,' vol. ii. p. 27. 

22 To the banquettiSy &c. The ordinances in this paragraph only 
prescribed what was customary in all the universities. Thus we find 
these statutes early in the history of the University of Glasgow : 
"Item statutum est et ordinatum quod determinantes in facultate 
arcium dent cuilibet magistrorum et invitatorum per eos unum par 
chirothecarum precii iiij denariorum ad minus." " Item statutum et 
ordinatum est quod in aula magistral! si Episcopus Glasguensis 
presens fuerit aut aliquis magnus prelatus habeat unum birretum 
bonum precii X solidorum / presidens et rector universitatis similiter 
decanus facultatis quilibet regentium et unusquisquis j^mptatorum 


habeat birretum precii V solidorum ad minus. Alii autem magistri 
invitati per eos habeant chirothecas iiij denariorum ut supra." — * Mun. 
Glasg. Univ.,' vol. ii. p. 18. 

^ The principal sal se that gud ordre^ &c. This injunction was 
not unnecessary, as the scholastic disputations at the universities often 
led to the most unseemly exhibitions. Occasionally, indeed, the furi- 
ous disputants would settle the point at discussion with their fists. 
Glareanus, in a letter to Erasmus, thus describes a disputation he 
saw at the Sorbonne in 15 17: " Fui adeo nuper in disputatione Sor- 
bonica, ubi egregios plausus, tanquam theatrum esset Pompeii, audivi. 
Non cohibui, immo cohibui risum, sed magna difficultate ; at illic 
ridebat nemo : erat enim tum pugna magna de lana caprina. Porro 
irascebantur non parum Adae, primo parenti nostro, quod mala, non 
pyra, comedisset, convitiisque vix abstinebant superciliosi homines. 
Vicit tandem theologica gravitas stomachum, evasitque bonis avibus 
Adam absque vulnere." — Erasmi Epp., edit Le Clerc, p. 1621. In the 
Geneva statutes there are injunctions to the same effect as Buchanan's. 

^ And salbe chosin be the hay I universitie. As is mentioned above, 
the rector of the Genevan Academy was chosen by the pastors and 
appointed by the magistrates. The mode of election proposed by 
Buchanan was that of the mediaeval universities. This difference in 
the mode of electing the rector reminds us that in the Genevan insti- 
tution we have simply an upper and a lower school, while the aim of 
Buchanan was the establishment of a university. Another distinction 
was that at Geneva no degrees were conferred. 

^ The conseruatour of priuilegey &c. The University of Paris 
had its Conservator of Royal Privileges and its Conservator of Apos- 
tolical Privileges. The former was first appointed in 1200, on the 
occasion of certain privileges granted to the university by Philip 
Augustus. It was the function of the second official to guard the 
privileges granted to the university by the various popes. — Crevier, 
'Histoire de I'Universitd de Paris,' vol. i. pp. 281, 361. 


^ Thraldome of strangearis. The strangers were the French intro- 
duced into Scotland by Mary of Guise, and who quitted the country 
according to the terms of the Treaty of Edinburgh (1560). 

27 Mease (otherwise written meis^ mese)=\.o mitigate, calm, allay. 
Cf. Douglas's * Virgil,' 14, 52. The form ameise is also found (Barbour, 
xvi. 134). Jamieson finds a cognate in Ger. massen, 

^ Sic ane husband. The Duke of Norfolk, with whom many of 
Mary's friends, both in England and Scotland, were desirous that she 
should form an alliance. 

2^ Toung trampit in dessait^^ steeped in deceit. Trampit is evi- 
dently the French trempi. 

^ Machiavell. This epithet was now in common use in Scotland. 
Richard Bannatyne applies it to Maitland of Lethington. See p. 39 

5^ Mainteining of hir rebellis. The Earls of Westmoreland and 
Northumberland are specially meant They had sought refuge in 
Scotland (1569) after an abortive Catholic rebellion in England. 

^ il/w/^r=want, necessity. According to Jamieson, mister in this 
sense is cognate to Dan. mister, Skeat thinks it the same as mister 
= craft, or art, from Fr. mestier^ Lat. ministerium, 

^ His wyffdrownity &c. This story of the wife who even in death 
showed her perverse disposition by thwarting the laws of nature is 
found in the folk-lore of every country. 

^ First eftirye deid, &c. The account of the policy of the Hamil- 
tons that follows was afterwards reproduced by Buchanan in his 
* Rerum Scoticarum Historia,' lib. xiv. Pinkerton, Tytler, and other 
writers brought a general charge of inaccuracy against this portion of 
Buchanan's History. Professor Brewer, however, on the authority of 
the State Papers of Henry VIII., is able to say that "Buchanan's 
information for this portion of his History was evidently derived from 
trustworthy sources" (* Reign of Henry VIII.,' vol. i. p. 557). 

^ Dauid Paintar, James V.'s well-known Secretary of State, 


made Bishop of Ross in 1545. Buchanan appears to be our only 
authority for the incident here related ; but there is no reason to doubt 
the accuracy of his report. 

^ Had cruellie slam at linly*quow Johnne erll of levenax. Ham- 
ilton slew Lennox on the spot, after he had surrendered himself a 
prisoner of war. 

^ Ane miserabill end conforme to his vngodlie lyff, Hamilton was 
executed in 1540 on a charge of conspiracy to assassinate the king. — 
* Acts of the Parliament of Scotland,* vol. ii. p. 423. 

^ Quha be ane fals instrument. Buchanan repeats this charge in 
his History (p. 281), and Knox also tells the same story ('Works,' vol. 
i. p. 93, Laing's edit.) What is supposed to be the forged instrument 
has lately been found among the Hamilton Papers. The editor re- 
gards the forgery as incontestable (*Hist. Man. Commission '—the 
Manuscripts of the Duke of Hamilton, pp. 205-220). 

^ Abjurit his religioun^ &c. Compare Knox, ' History ' (vol. i. p. 
109, Laing's edit.) 

^ Had not ye arryving of ye inglis army^ &c. The reference is to 
the Earl of Hertford's famous invasion of 1544. Angus was one of 
Henry VIII.'s "assured Scots." 

*^ He consentit to offer^ &c. James, Earl of Arran, was created 
Duke of Chitellerault the same day (8th February 1547-8) that the 
marriage of Mary and the Dauphin of France was ratified at Stirling 
by the Government of the Regency. 

^ To slay ye erll of murray in falkland, Buchanan repeats this 
charge in his History (pp. 334, 335). Compare Knox, * History' (pp. 

^ To half ye joy of ye approcheing of ye croun. Compare Buch- 
anan, * History,* p. 352, where he brings the same charge against the 
Archbishop of St Andrews. 

** Enterit in ye gayme of ye glcdks, Jamieson defines glaikis as 
the act of jilting. The meaning seems to be that Mary played the 
coquette with Hamilton. Glaiks is used in a somewhat different 
sense in Lyndsay's line, " I se thay haif playit me the glaiks." — ' Ane 
Satyre of the thrie Estates,' line 1878. 

^ To fan for faynnes^Xo play the fool through the manifest eager- 
ness of their desire. In Middle English,yi?«»^«=to act foolishly. 

^ Ane stude to cast ma folis. Under the word stud, Skeat gives 
stod-mere from the * Ancren Riwle.' Cf. German stute, a mare. The 
expression reminds us of Henry VIII.'s description of Anne of Cleves 
as " a great Flanders mare." 

47 lyt sum trato^ of yat natioun. The Duke of Norfolk, and the 
Earls of Northumberland and Westmoreland, as already mentioned. 

^ As his bage beris witnes. Buchanan here refers to the part of 
the Norfolk arms consisting of a demi-lion rampant, pierced through 
the mouth by an arrow, within a double tressure. 


^ Heretahill tressoun in bay* ye houss^- Beginning with the Earl 
of Surrey, who commanded at Flodden, five members of the House of 
Howard were attainted during the first half of the sixteenth century : 
the Duke of Norfolk, of whom Buchanan speaks, made the sixth* 

^ To slay master Johnne Wod, Wood was secretary to the Regent 
Moray. He was assassinated by Arthur Forbes of Reres on the 15th 
April 1570. 

^1 Tkay keip ye murtherare sum tyme in yair cumpany. In proof 
of this statement Tytler refers to a MS. in the State Paper Ofl&ce, 
entitled " Information anent the Punishment of the Regent's Murder." 
Tytler, * History of Scotland,' vol. iii. p. 320 (edit. 1873). 

^2 Ratches, The word is not given by Jamieson, but it is evidently 
cognate with reachy rax, ratcheU &c. 

® My lord regentis pupillis. The Regent Moray left two daughters, 
Elizabeth and Margaret. The former married James Stuart, eldest 
son of Sir James Stuart, Lord Doune, who in her right became second 
Earl of Moray. The younger daughter married Francis, ninth Earl of 


As I have said in the Introduction to the Admonitioun, the text here 
given differs gpreatly from both of Lekprevik's editions. To exhibit 
all the variations, indeed, would be virtually to reproduce all three 
texts. As it is of interest, however, to see the nature of the alterations 
made, either by Buchanan himself, or, at least as we may suppose, 
under his superintendence, a few examples are here given to show the 
variations between the MS. and Lekprevik's second edition. 

Page 21 (above). MS. hie, Lek. heichj weill, welthesj devoir, dewtiej 
apperand, appeiring; approcheand, approchingj surmonting, sur- 
mounting; chosit, chesitj in sic thingis, of sic thingis; as seme, as 
euin seme. 

Page 22. Rewyne, ruynej weill, welth; tane, takinj ptene, appertenej 
comunitie, commodities o^selfRs, ^r sel^sy remittis, do remit y having 
yat hoip at ye leist, hoiping at leist; gif, althochtj can, sallj that, 
quhilkj nixt to, item; out of thraldome,^^w the thraldome; tyranne, 
tyrannie; ane, a; anentis, in the sight of; wer, being; magistrattis, 
magistratis; how efter Jour, be y>ur; and constranit, wer constranit; 
wrangusle, wrangfully ; samyn, same; haif, haue; yatilk, the same; 
vther, vtherwyse; not, nocht; bipast, tyme past; -wtiW, welth; respect 
of 3our propir and prevat comoditie, tending to y>ur priuate com- 
modities; considder, remember; meanys, meanis; tyme bipast, tymes 
past; knawlegeit, acknawledgit. 


Page 23. Valiant, vailyand; mercifull hartis, mercyfulnes; puniss- 
ing, punischings all testifeis, witnessisj gprace, maiestie; your Ini' 
moderat, thairinordinat; vy'wayis, vtherwysej banyssing, banisching; 
disorder, misordourj understand, cosidderj dissimulis, dissemblisj 
scamles, sckamblesj guidschir, grandschirj half, hauej banissit, 
banischit; him, him self; his awin saikles blude> his awin bludej of 
ye kingis deid, of King Henryis deith. 

Page 24. 'RtvoXiingy reuoluing; ^xi^^tsx^^beraissingofciuileweir; 
haif, hauej bipast, past; on na maner, be na maner; yai male yame to, 
theywald; twdA^, eschaips punitioun, punischeTnenly asartogidder, oj 
for ye maistpartj ^tXxt, pieties thevis, thift; vther yat I omit, vtheris 
thairunto ioynitj knawis, vnderstandis ; pteins, appertenisj hazard, 

In Lekprevik's second edition a paragraph giving an account of a 
third conspiracy was inserted. It is as follows : " The third conspir- 
acie (yat come to our knawledge) was, that the kingis grace ryding oft 
tymes betuix Striuiling and the Downe of Menteeth, to veseit ane 
gentill woma of his motberis, making residence in the Downe : and 
comounly accumpanyit with ane or twa hors be nicht, the said Schir 
James proponit to certane gentil men ye slauchter of him, and assayit 
it not, because ye executaris wald tak na thing on hand without him 
self had bene present." 

In many cases entire passages are recast in the second edition, as 
the following example will show. The passage in the MS. (p. 32, 
above), beginning, " 3it I can no^ overpasse w* silence the cheif con- 
spiratour," in Lekprevik runs as follows : *' Jit ane I can not ouerpas, 
being ye cheif conspiratour chosin be thame to be King of Scotland 
and Ingland, I mene the Duke of Norfolk, in quhilk acte we may se 
how ye thrist of Jour blude blindit thame agains thair awin vtilitie. 
First yai cheisit the principall enemie of the religioun of Christ in this 
ile, accumpanyit with vther fylthie idolateris, to change the stait of 
the kirk in baith realmes be cutting of the twa princes : seing that 
thair authoritie standing, ye conspiratouris could not cum to thair 
intent. Nixt thay respectit in that proude t3rrane, the vertewis that 
wer commoun to him and thame, as arrogancie, crueltie, dissimula- 
tioun and tressoun. For euin as Jai had this lang tyme in Scotland 
socht the deith of thair richteous prince : sa he in Ingland following 
the trade of his antecessouris, diuers t3nnes attempting tressoun, wald 
haue put downe the queue of Ingland. Heir alswa apperis the Ham- 
miltounis crueltie agains the nobilitie of thair awin natioun, in seiking 
thair professit and perpetuall enemie of Scotland (as his badge beiris 
witnes) quha sould haue spilt the rest of the noble blude of Scotland 
in peice, yat his atecessouris could not spill in weir : be quhilk elec- 
tioun, being assurit that na Scottis hart can luif thame, sa can they 
luif nane of jow, aganis quhom, yai haue vsit sa mony tressonabill 


" Verelie am nohill lady and of greit prudence. As the following 
sentence shows, Buchanan thought more favourably of Mary of 
Lorraine than Knox, who had, indeed, personal reasons for disliking 
her : '^ Erat enim singulari ingenio praedita, et animo ad aequitatem 
admodum propenso: gentesque ferocissimas et extremos insularum 
cultores virtute et consilio pacaverat*' — * Rer. Scotic. Hist,' p. 324. 

^ Ye haly Doctour Cranstoun, William Cranston, Principal of St 
Salvator's College. At the Reformation, he, along with most of the 
regents in that college, adhered to the old religion, and gave up his 
appointment— Lyon, * History of St Andrews,' vol. i. p. 317. 

*• The quene be avyis of hir oncles, devysit to destroy ye erl of 
Mt^rray\ Compare *Rer. Scotic. Hist,' pp. 340, 341. 

^ The nobill and vertuus Lady Gj\ltoun\. Buchanan designates 
thus ironically the notorious Lady Grizzell Sempill, the avowed 
mistress of John Hamilton, Archbishop of St Andrews, by whom 
she had several children. On the 26th November 1561, the Town 
Council of Edinburgh ordained "actis'to be set furth, charging 
Grizzell Simpill Lady Stanehous adulterar, to remuif her self furth 
of the toun betuix and Mununday nixt, under the panys contenit in 
the proclamation set furth aganis adulteraris." 

^ And my lord deliberat to go in persoun, &c. The reference is to 
the mission of Moray, in October 1568, to lay before the Commis- 
sioners of Elizabeth the indictment against Mary. As Buchanan was 
one of those who accompanied Moray, he here speaks from direct 
personal knowledge. In his History he afterwards repeated his 
charges against Maitland. The corresponding passage in the History 
is as follows : " Igitur, cum decretum est Legatos mittere ; nee satis 
conveniret, qui mitterentur, primoribus id onus recusantibus, tandem 
ipse Prorex, se iturum professus, comites elegit; unum quidem 
renitentem, ac prope invitum, Gulielmum Maetellanum. Hominem 
enim factiosum, et quem jam in Reginae partes inclinatum videbat, 


parum tutum arbitrabatur, in tarn dubio regni statu, domi relinquere. 
Itaque, magnis et pollicitationibus et praemiis, ut una secum proficis- 
ceretur, pellexit ; nee dubitabat, quin animum avarum donis aut vin- 
ceret aut inflecteret" — * Rer. Scotic. Hist.,* p. 372. 

* Inyis menetyme, &c. Compare * History/ p. 373. 

^ For ye capitane of ye castell wes podrest Sir William Kirkaldy 
of Grange, who was provost of Edinburgh, 1569-70. 


^ Wytk the fyrst Iresavit Marinus (sic) Scotus, &c. With this 
passage compare what Buchanan says of Mariano in his History : 
" Testesque ejus sentential laudant multos scriptores Anglos ig^obiles, 
quibus ut facilius crederemus, Marianum Scotum, fama illustri horn* 
inem, adjiciunt Qua de re lectorem admonendum putavi, nusquam 
in eo Marian! codice, qui est in Germania editus, ullam prorsus esse 
mentionem. Ipsi vero an alium habeant, ab eo qui publice legitur, 
Marianum, aut interpolatum, aut a se confictum, eum velim proferant" 
— * Rer. Hist Scotic.,* p. 97. There was another contemporary of the 
name of Marianus, but he wrote on religious, not historical subjects. 

^ Ane kentys man, guy Ik in a maner is ane centaur e half man, half 
beast. The reference is to the curious belief prevalent in the middle 
ages that the men of Kent were bom with tails. The origin of the 
myth, according to Lambard, is as follows : The men of Strood or 
Stroud, in Kent, warmly took sides with Henry II. in his quarrel with 
Thomas Becket, and, on Becket's visiting their village, they showed 
their feeling by cutting off the tail of his horse. Thenceforward, 
according to the legend, all the descendants of those who insulted the 
saint, and even of their kinsmen, were bom with tails. — Lambard, 
'The Peregrination of Kent,' p. 431 (Lond. 1576). Fynes Monyson, 
however, gives a very different explanation. "The Kentish men of 
old," he says, " were said to have tails because, trafficking in the Low 
Countries, they never paid full pa3rments of what they did owe, but still 
left some part unpaid." — * Itinerary,' 3, 53, 149 (1617). The same story 
of the tailed men of Kent is told in connection with Augustine. 

^ As M, hal et suppilatorem eius Graf tone, Buchanan uses the 
same phrase in his History. *' Hoc loco, scriptores Angli, et in primis 
Eduardus Hallus, et ejus suppilator Graftonus." — * Rer. Scotic. Hist,* 
p. 194. 



Volumes for 1883-84: — 
I. The KINGIS QUAIR. Edited by the Rev. W. W. Skeat, Cambridge. 

II. The poems OF WILLIAM DUNBAR. Edited by John Small, M.A., 
F.S.A. Scot. Part I. 

IIL Ane Treatise Callit The COURT OF VENUS. Edited by the Rev. 
Walter Gregor, M.A., LL.D. 

Volumes for 1884-85 ; — 

I. The poems OF WILLIAM DUNBAR. Edited by John Small, M.A., 
F.S.A. Scot. Part II. 

from the original Latin by Father James Dalrymple. Edited by the Rev. 
Father E. G. Cody, O.S.B. Part I. 

III. BLIND HARRY'S WALLACE. Edited by James Moir, M.A. Part I. 

Volumes for 1885-86 : — 

I. BLIND HARRY'S WALLACE. Edited by James Moir, M.A. Part I L 
II. SIR TRISTREM. With Introduction, Notes, and Glossary. By G. P. 
McNeill, Advocate. 

III. The poems OF ALEXANDER MONTGOMERIE. Edited by James 
Cranstoun, LL.D. Part I. 

Volumes for 1886-87 :— - x^ 

I. The poems OF ALEXANDER. MONTGOMERIE. By James Cranstoun, V 
LL.D. Part II. 


Rev. Professor Mitchell, D.D.,'St Andrews. 

Volumes for 1887-88 :— 
I. LEGENDS OF THE SAINTS. By the Rev. W. M. Metcalfe, Paisley. Part L 
III. WINZETS WORKS. Vol. I. By the Rev. J. King Hewison, Rothesay. 

Volumes for 1888-89 :-— 

I. THE POEMS OF WILLIAM DUpJbaR. Introduction. By M, J. G. 

Mackay, LL.D. Part III. 
II. BLIND HARRY'S WALLACE. Introduction, Notes, and Glossary. 
By James Moir, M.A. Part III. 

III. LEGENDS OF THE SAINTS. By Rev. W. M. Metcalfe. Part II. 

Volumes for 1889-90 : — 

by James Cranstoun, LL.D. Part I. 
III. The poems OF WILLIAM DUNBAR. Containing first portion of Notes. 
By Rev. W. Gregor, LL.D. Part IV. 

Volumes for 1890-91: — 

I. WINZETS WORKS. Vol. II. Notes and Glossary. By Rev. J. King 
II. LEGENDS OF THE SAINTS. By Rev. W. M. Metcalfe. Part III. 
by James Cranstoun, LL.D. Part II. 

Volumes for 1891-92 : — 
I. LEGENDS OF THE SAINTS. By Rev. W. M. Metcalfe. Part IV. 


Ytnf. POEMS \W WILUAW pUNBAft. ?»ii V. Conijiklkii wf «otB* 
and GU)«SAitv. By Rer. W. Chesor, LL.D. And Ai'iixnix, by JiS^ 
J, 0. MaCKAV. LL.1). ' Unttufrtn. 

[a hook, (5f the AUJTERATIVK I'OKMH tJK HCOn^ANO: iwn- 
teinmg Goi.aOH'W Atvu Gi^wakb, KAut' Cod.^Kak. Iti'Xii Otr 'itis 

rjOWLAT, T«F. AW!0'VI» or ArTHURK (livo Wxla givWl), TltB PVlTVJ. 

^ SwE'i'it SiiSAM. By V. J. AMouiu, Glfl-fiow. yrtlfuft-as. 

— 'I)mw(lis.D*v'->'riifi TiiVs.CliVi--inxtt for tuub CATiiiii.i'jifs'Sft, 

^ Uy WjLLlAMTOUQil, M,A. 

tSlH SKVKN SAGES, By John Uoi.i.ami. Edii«i t-j lit VAUHUARits, 

fcELLENDEN'S TRANSLATION 0]-> LIVV, Ut-io the tiiivuiJUE MS. 
Ulihcilo unimblWidl, IvUtviJ l>y J. C, Q()ii.vTit-l-\>KBi^s uf Bpyndlii:. 

SUiTH, Autlior uf 'The OA}^ ut Jiitnut iiJj., i^SS-ija-' 


EdiwdljyjAWes CBASSKiUS, LUD, Purl 111. NoTKS aiul GuWMAKir. 

ll.*;OKNDS OP TIIK SAINTS. Pmi V. Nbiia ana\,