Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 50.djvu/34

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.


harm was intended to no one except Rizzio, and that they were acting at the instance of Darnley, who was present, persuaded them to retire to their chambers. He then returned to the queen's chamber, and, being faint, sat down and called for a cup of wine. Then followed the remarkable conversation with the queen detailed at length by Ruthven in his ‘Relation’ (Brit. Mus. MS. Cotton Calig. bk. ix. f. 219, printed in appendix to Keith's History of Scotland and also separately). After the murder, Ruthven, ill though he was, took part with the other conspirators in the deliberations as to the future government of the country. After the arrival of Moray the queen was also persuaded to admit him and Morton into her presence and grant them a promise of pardon; but on the queen's escape to Dunbar they fled into England. While in England Ruthven penned the description of the murder known as the ‘Relation;’ but as it was specially intended for the perusal of Elizabeth, and as a justification of the conspiracy on the only ground that would be acceptable to Elizabeth—that Mary had been unfaithful to her husband—its statements, notwithstanding the graphic ferocity of their tone, are open to suspicion. The excitement of the assassination, followed by a hurried flight into England, brought about a serious reaction in Ruthven's health, and after several months of great weakness he died at Newcastle on 13 June 1566. According to Calderwood he ‘made a Christian end, thanking God for the leisure granted to him to call for mercy’ (History, ii. 317).

By his first wife, Jean or Janet Douglas, natural daughter of Archibald, earl of Angus, he had three sons and two daughters: Patrick, master of Ruthven; William, fourth lord Ruthven and first earl of Gowrie [q. v.]; Alexander; Jean, married first to Henry, second lord Methven, and secondly to Andrew, fifth earl of Rothes; and Isabel, married to James, first lord Colville of Culross. By his second wife, Lady Jane Stewart, eldest daughter of the second earl of Atholl, and married three times previous to her marriage to Ruthven—first to Alexander, master of Sutherland; secondly, to Sir Hugh Kennedy; and thirdly to Henry, lord Methven—he had a son James, who in 1582 had a charter of a part of the barony of Ruthven.

[Histories by Knox, Buchanan, Leslie, Calderwood, and Keith; Cal. State Papers, For. Ser., Reign of Elizabeth; Cal. State Papers, Scottish Ser.; Reg. of Mag. Sig. Scot. 1546–80; Reg. Privy Council of Scotland, vol. i.; Douglas's Scottish Peerage (Wood), i. 662–3.]

T. F. H.

RUTHVEN, PATRICK, Earl of Forth and Brentford (1573?–1651), second son of William Ruthven of Ballindean, Perthshire (great-grandson of William, first lord Ruthven), and Katherine Stewart, daughter of John, lord Stewart of Invermeath, was born about 1573. His name appears in the lists of Swedish captains about 1606–9. He was appointed captain in a regiment of Scots in Sweden, enrolled in 1612; and in 1615, while still captain, he was directed by Gustavus Adolphus to levy one thousand foreign soldiers and conduct them to Narva. In 1616 he was appointed to the command of an East Gothland troop of three hundred men; and having, notwithstanding the proscription of the Ruthven family on account of the Gowrie conspiracy, obtained in June 1618 from James I of England a certificate of gentle descent, he was appointed by Gustavus to the command of a Smaland company of five hundred foot, and shortly afterwards was promoted colonel of a regiment. From this time he distinguished himself in many important engagements, especially at the battle of Dirschau, on 8 Aug. 1627; and on 23 Sept. he received, along with several others, the honour of knighthood from Gustavus Adolphus, in presence of the whole army. He is said to have won the special favour of Gustavus Adolphus mainly by the important services he rendered him through his extraordinary power of withstanding the effects of intoxicating liquor. ‘When the king wanted,’ says Harte, ‘to regale ministers and officers of the adverse party, in order to extract secrets from them in their more cheerful hours, he made Ruthven field-marshal of the bottle and glasses, as he could drink immeasurably and preserve his understanding to the last’ (Harte, Life of Gustavus Adolphus, i. 177). He was present at the capture of Strasburg in 1628, and the battle of Leipzig, 2 Sept. 1631. On the surrender of Ulm, in February 1632, he was appointed commander of the Swedish garrison left to hold it, and shortly afterwards he received the grafschaft or earldom of Kirchberg, near Ulm, worth about 1,800l. a year. In May he was raised to the rank of major-general, and left in Swabia in joint command, with Duke Bernard of Weimar, of eight thousand men. In October he was sent as sergeant-major-general to the Palatine Christian of Birckenfelt, and was present at the capture of Landsberg. In December he was appointed to the joint command, with Colonel Sparruyter, of the forces under General Banier, then incapacitated. He proceeded to England in March 1634 for the purpose of raising new levies (Cal. State Papers, Dom. Ser. 1633–4,