Page:A biographical dictionary of eminent Scotsmen, vol 6.djvu/80

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.


450 SIR DAVID LINDSAY.

bility of his family, although probably it may be thought that there was no degra- dation, if indeed it was not a positive honour, to take the personal charge of an infant king. This, however, he seems to have done literally, and as is gathered from passages in his own works, much in the character of a dry nurse. The following are amongst those alluded to. The lines occur in the dedication of his poem entitled the "Dream" to the king:

Quhen thou was young 1 bore thee in my arme, Full tenderlie till thou begouth to gang ; And in thy bed aft happit thee full warme, With lute in hand, sine sweitly to thee sang.

And again at an after period, when complaining of the neglect which he met with at court, he thus reminds the king of the days of his childhood, and of the playful and tender kindnesses which then passed between them :

How as ane chapman beiris his pack, 1 bure thy grace upon my back ; And sometimes strydiinges on my neck, Dansand with mony bend and beck. The first syllabis that thou did mute Was pa, da s\ne, upon the lute ; Then pla\it I twenty springis perquier, Quhiike was great pleasure for to heir ; Fra play thou let me never rest, Bot Gynkertoun thou luifk ay best.

Lindsay's attendance on the young king was not dignified by any charge whatever, connected with his education. His services were entirely of a per- sonal nature, and were only put in requisition when the royal youth returned from " scule." James's education was intrusted to Gavin Dunbar, an eminent and learned prelate, so that, with all Lindsay's genius, he seems not to have been thought competent to this important and honourable trust. That which he fil- led, however, such as it was, he retained till the year 1524, when he was dis- missed from it, by the intrigues of the queen mother, who, aiming at the sole direction of the national affairs during the minority of the king, carefully re- moved from the royal presence all whom she feared might exert an influence over the young monarch inimical to her own views and interests, and amongst that number she seems to have reckoned the poet His dismissal, however, seems by no means to have taken place with the king's consent, although it is evident that he was obliged to submit to it. He was too young to assert his own will in opposition to that of his mother, but he did the next best thing he could for the kind companion of his tender years, he procured a pension to be bestowed upon him, and took especial care of its punctual payment.

On the. king's assuming the reins of government in his own person, and when his will could be no longer opposed, Lindsay was recalled to court, and about 1530, was appointed lyon king at arms, and as a necessary accompani- ment, invested with the honour of knighthood. In the dedication of the " Dream" to the king, already quoted from, and which was written during the time of his banishment from court, although he complains of the treatment which he had received, he not only acquits the king of having any part in inflicting it, but speaks in terms of the wannest gratitude of the kindness of his royal master. He seems, indeed, to have formed a strong personal attachment to the monarch, and there is every reason to believe that it was reciprocal. Lindsay had now begun to make some figure as a poet He had already written the