King James I Biography

(King of Scotland)

Birthday: June 19, 1566 (Gemini)

Born In: Edinburgh Castle, Scotland

King James VI of Scotland and King James I of England was celebrated for eliminating years of strife in England as well as in Scotland, by maintaining peace within and outside both the kingdoms. He was also a literary enthusiast and his court consisted of some of the greatest literary figures of all times, including William Shakespeare, John Donne, Ben Jonson, and Sir Francis Bacon. His political accomplishments were not much in comparison to his predecessor, Queen Elizabeth I, but whatever little he did, he made sure that his kingdoms were at peace. According to some historians, he was a success in Scotland and a partial failure in England, but some others are of belief that he enjoyed a favorable position in the both the kingdoms. Though his empires did not flourish (economically) much under him, his people lived in tranquility with no wars or battles to disrupt their lives. Also, his low taxation policy had earned the love and respect of his countrymen. James was a scholarly man and all his life he patronized arts, music and literature. His translation of Bible is considered the best by many people and also bears his name, ‘King James Bible’. He was also extremely religious and to promote his religious views he propagandized the church by publishing sermons and writing books on sovereignty and divinity. Scroll down to know more about him.

Quick Facts

British Celebrities Born In June

Also Known As: James VI and I, James Charles Stuart

Died At Age: 58


Spouse/Ex-: Anne of Denmark

father: Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley

mother: Mary, Mary, Queen of Scots, Queen of Scots

siblings: Earl of Moray (half brother), James Stewart

children: Charles I of England, Duke of Kintyre, Elizabeth Stuart, Henry Frederick, Margaret Stuart, Mary Stuart, Prince of Wales, Queen of Bohemia, Robert Stuart, Sophia Stuart

Born Country: England

Emperors & Kings British Men

Died on: March 27, 1625

place of death: Theobalds House, England

  • 1

    What was King James I known for in terms of literature?

    King James I is best known for commissioning the translation of the Bible into English, which resulted in the King James Version (KJV), one of the most widely read and influential versions of the Bible in history.

  • 2

    What impact did King James I have on the British monarchy?

    King James I succeeded Elizabeth I to the English throne, uniting the crowns of England and Scotland. His reign marked the beginning of the Stuart period in British history.

  • 3

    How did King James I's religious beliefs influence his rule?

    King James I believed in the Divine Right of Kings, a belief that monarchs receive their power directly from God. This belief influenced his rule and his efforts to centralize power within the monarchy.

  • 4

    What was the Gunpowder Plot and how did it involve King James I?

    The Gunpowder Plot was a failed assassination attempt on King James I and the English Parliament in 1605 by a group of Catholic conspirators led by Guy Fawkes. The plot aimed to blow up the House of Lords during the State Opening of Parliament.

  • 5

    What was King James I's approach to witchcraft and witch trials?

    King James I was known for his strong belief in witchcraft and personally wrote a book called "Daemonologie" in which he discussed witches and their supposed practices. This belief led to an increase in witch trials during his reign.

Childhood & Early Life
James was born to Mary, Queen of the Scots, and Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley, her second husband.
His father was murdered in 1567 and his mother was forced to renounce her powers in favor of her son and let her illegitimate half-brother, James Stewart, Earl of Moray act as a regent.
The infant prince was only thirteen months old when he was crowned the King of Scotland on 29 July 1567.
As a young boy, he was tutored by poet George Buchanan, under whom he became an accomplished scholar.
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Accession & Reign
In 1576, James became the titular ruler of Scotland and gained complete control of the throne in 1581.
Under the Treaty of Berwick, he and Queen Elizabeth I of England became allies and the following year his mother, who was imprisoned, was put to death.
In 1603, after the death of Queen Elizabeth I, he was declared the King of the joint kingdom of England and Ireland. Later, He moved to London from Scotland.
His accession was however not welcomed by a group of Catholics as he was a Protestant. Their dissatisfaction kept rising and were incensed when he passed a law according which people who did not attend the Protestant church were to be charged heavy fines.
In 1605 he was attacked by a small group of Catholics in the famous ‘Gunpower Plot’ in which the conspirators had planned to blow up the House of Lords by planting barrels of gunpowder underground. However, the plan failed and many of the plotters were either killed during imprisonment or executed.
James visited Scotland in 1617, after thirteen years of accession to throne in England, even though had he had promised that he would pay regular visits. He was succeeded by his son Charles I after his death.
Major Works
In the 1580s and 1590s, at the age of 18 the king promoted literature in Scotland and was also part of the literary and art group Scottish Jacobean court poets. He participated in the major literary and art activities of his time and has been credited by the Scots for influencing the English Renaissance poetry and drama.
Wars and feuds were at bay and England was at peace, under the reign of James. He brought an end to the ongoing Anglo–Spanish War and attempted to curtail the long term hatred between the two kingdoms by signing a peace treaty.
Personal Life & Legacy
James had a marriage by proxy with Anne of Denmark, younger daughter of King Frederick II of Denmark in August 1589. They were legally married on 23 November.
The couple had three children; Henry Frederick, who died in 1612 at the age of 18, Elizabeth, who became the queen of Bohemia; and Charles, his heir.
In 1619, Anne passed away and the king never married again. At the age of fifty, he began to suffer from arthritis and was also found to have developed kidney stones. Before his death, his arthritis took a toll on his health, often losing consciousness and later he suffered a stroke. A severe bout of dysentery took his life and his body was put to rest in Westminster Abbey.
Upon his death his son Charles was crowned the King of England and Scotland.
Facts About King James I

King James I of England was an accomplished scholar, fluent in multiple languages including Latin, Greek, and French.

He was a prolific writer and published works on diverse subjects such as theology, witchcraft, and poetry.

King James I had a keen interest in the arts and was a patron of William Shakespeare's acting company, the King's Men.

He was known for his fondness of hunting and spent a great deal of time in the countryside pursuing this leisure activity.

See the events in life of King James I in Chronological Order

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