Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 54.djvu/386

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Stillington
Stirling
379

March 1478 Stillington was imprisoned in the Tower (Bentley, Excerpta Historica, p. 354), and on 20 June following received a pardon for some words which he had uttered prejudicial to the king and his state, of which he afterwards cleared himself before the council (Fœdera, xii. 66). Commines (v. ch. 18, vi. ch. 9) relates that for some offence Stillington was imprisoned by Edward IV, and had to pay a round sum for his ransom. The same author relates that the bishop had married Edward to a lady before the marriage with Elizabeth Woodville, and afterwards revealed the secret to Richard, duke of Gloucester. Buck, in his ‘History of Richard III,’ relates the same story, and gives the lady's name as Eleanor Talbot, stating that the bishop, under pressure from the lady's family, informed Gloucester, and hence fell into disgrace with the king (Kennett, Hist. of England, i. 562, 565). There is probably some truth in the story, and Stillington's action may have been due to enmity for the Woodvilles (Gairdner, Richard III, pp. 113–16).

After the death of Edward IV, Stillington gave his support to Richard of Gloucester, and drew up the bill declaring the invalidity of the marriage of Edward IV to Elizabeth Woodville [see Elizabeth, (1437?–1492)]. It is possible that this circumstance is the basis of Commines' story that Stillington had himself celebrated the previous marriage (Ramsay, ii. 488). Stillington took part in Richard's coronation, when he performed the ceremony of hallowing the king and queen. On the accession of Henry VII he naturally fell into disgrace, and on 22 Aug. 1485 a warrant was issued for his arrest. Five days later he was already in prison at York, ‘sore crased by reason of his trouble and carying’ (Drake, Eboracum, p. 122). He, however, obtained a full pardon on 22 Nov. (Campbell, Materials for Hist. of Henry VII, i. 172), and when the act declaring Edward IV's children bastards was repealed, the king refused to call him to account for his share in its composition. Nevertheless, he was deprived of the deanery of St. Martin, mention being made in the act of the ‘horrible and haneous offences ymagined and donne’ by him against the king (Rot. Parl. vi. 292). Stillington took part in the rebellion of Lambert Simnel [q. v.], and on its failure sought refuge at Oxford. At first the university refused to surrender him, but on pressure yielded to the king (Maxwell-Lyte, Hist. Univ. Oxford, pp. 369–71). Stillington was taken to Windsor in October 1487, and kept prisoner there till his death early in May 1491. He was buried at Wells Cathedral in a chapel which he had built there. During the reign of Edward IV he had founded the college of St. Andrew, Nether Acaster, on property which belonged to his father (Rot. Parl. vi. 256). Commines relates that Stillington had a son whom Richard III designed to marry to his niece Elizabeth, afterwards queen of Henry VII; but the young man, being captured off the coast of Normandy by the French, died in prison at Paris (Memoires, vi. ch. 9).

[Wharton's Anglia Sacra, i. 574–5; William of Worcester, pp. 783, 787, 792, ap. Letters and Papers illustrative of reign of Henry VI; Le Neve's Fasti Eccl. Angl. i. 141, 160, 167, ii. 340, 635, iii. 185, 223, 451; Foss's Judges of England; Cussans's Lives of Bishops of Bath and Wells; other authorities quoted.]

C. L. K.

STIRLING. [See also Sterling.]

STIRLING, Earl of. [See Alexander, Sir William, 1567?-1640.]

STIRLING, JAMES (1692–1770), mathematician, commonly called ‘The Venetian,’ born at Garden, Stirlingshire, in 1692, was the third son of Archibald Stirling of Garden by his second wife, Anna, daughter of Sir Alexander Hamilton of Hoggs, near Linlithgow. Stirling was educated at Glasgow University and afterwards proceeded to Balliol College, Oxford, whence he matriculated on 18 Jan. 1710–11. In 1715, however, he was expelled from the university for corresponding with members of the Keir and Garden families who were noted Jacobites, and had been accessory to the ‘Gathering of the Brig of Turk’ in 1708. He made his way to Venice and employed himself in the study of mathematics. The vicinity of Padua gave him the opportunity of acquiring the friendship of Nicolas Bernoulli (1687–1759), who was mathematical professor in the university there. In 1717 he published ‘Lineæ Tertii Ordinis Newtonianæ’ (Oxford, 8vo), which was intended to supplement Newton's ‘Enumeratio Linearum Tertii Ordinis;’ it supplied four additional varieties to Newton's seventy-two forms of the cubic curve. In 1718 he communicated to the Royal Society, through Sir Isaac Newton, a paper entitled ‘Methodus Differentialis Newtoniana illustrata’ (Phil. Trans. xxx. 1050). Having discovered the trade secrets of the glass-makers of Venice, he returned home about 1725 from dread of assassination, and with the help of Sir Isaac Newton established himself in London. In December of the year following he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society, and remained a member until 1754. He lived for ten years in London, corresponding with various mathe-