Murray, David (1567-1629) (DNB00)

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MURRAY, Sir DAVID (1567–1629), of Gorthy, poet, born in 1567, was the second son of Robert Murray of Abercairny, Perthshire, by a daughter of Murray of Tullibardine, Perthshire. In August 1600 he appears to have been comptroller of the household to James VI (Dalyel, Fragment of Scottish Hist. p. 50) Very learned and accomplished he became gentleman of the bedchamber to Prince Henry with whom he was a favourite and after 1610 was successively groom of the stole and gentleman of the robes (Birch, Life of Henry, Prince of Wales, 1760 p 218) A free gift of 2,000l was bestowed upon him in 1613 and in 1615 he received 5,200l to promote discharge of his (Nichols, Progresses of King James, ii. 374). From Charles I he obtained a charter under the great seal bestowing upon him the estate of Gorthy Perthshire He without an heir in 1629. A portrait by unknown hand is in the National Gallery Edinburgh it has an inscription '1603 Æ. 36, Sir David Murray.' A engraving is given in David Laing's 'Specimen of a proposed Catalogue of a portion the Library at Britwell House,' Edinburgh 1852 and also in Laing's 'Adversaria' (Bannatyne Club). Another portrait is at Abercairny, Perthshire.

In 1611 Murray published in London an octavo volume containing (1) 'The Tragicall Death of Sophonisba,' a long poem in seven line stanzas to which are prefixed two addressed to Prince Henry and (2) 'Cœlia,' in which are included twenty six respectable sonnets a pastoral ballad, 'The Complaint of the Shepheard Harpalus,' and an 'Epitaph on the Death of his Deare Cousin M. Dauid Moray.' The 'Complaint' was published separately in single sheet folio [1620?]. In 'Sophonisba' Murray displays numerous irregularities while occasionally bursting genuine verse Of three introductory to the piece one is by Drayton who his friend's 'strong muse.' Other complimentary verses in the volume are by Simon Grahame [q.v.], and by John Murray (1575-1632) [q.v.] His 'Psalm CIV' was printed in 4to by Andro Hart, Edinburgh, 1615, of this the only extant copy is believed be in the Drummond Collection in the Edinburgh University Library. Murray's Poems were reprinted by the Bannatyne Club in 1823.

[Irving's History of Scotish Poetry A Campbell's Hist of Poetry in Scotland p 1 30 Censura x 373 6 Poems by Sir D Murray Gorthy No 2 of Bannatyne Club Series Douglas's Baronetage of Scotland.]

T. B.