Genethliacum serenissimi Scotiae, Angliae, et Hiberniae principis, IACOBI VI, Mariae Regnae filii (1566)

Patrick Adamson, or Constance/Constantine (1537-1592), was the son of a merchant and was born in Perth. He went to the local grammar school before attending St Andrews as a poor scholar in 1554, where he graduated MA in 1558. Approved by the General Assembly as fit to minister in December 1560 and for a post in Aberdeen in December 1562, he instead took up the ministry at Ceres in Fife at some point in 1563 and then briefly served as the assembly's commissioner to the north-east for the planting of new kirks. Without the assembly's permission, he gave up his work with the kirk in the mid-1560s to further his studies on the Continent and to serve as the tutor of James McGill, the first son of James MacGill of Nether Rankeillour, the clerk register. Adamson studied in Paris, Bourges and elsewhere (the details of his exact itinerary are contested) before returning to Scotland in early 1570. He then resumed his ecclesiastical career, serving at Paisley from 1572 and acting as chaplain to the Regent Morton. However, his relationship with the kirk was forever changed when he accepted the archbishopric of St Andrews in 1576, an act which set him directly at odds with the nascent but growing presbyterian movement spearheaded by Andrew Melville (who himself returned from the Continent in 1574). During the hegemony of Captain James Stewart, earl of Arran (August 1583-November 1585), Adamson served as an apologist and propagandist for the royal government regarding the crown's right to control the church and the divine institution of episcopal church governance. In the winter of 1583 he undertook an extended embassy to London where he attempted to win English support for an episcopal settlement in Scotland, and in 1585 he defended the controversial 'Black Acts' passed by parliament in May 1584 (which suppressed presbyterianism and endorsed the royal supremacy) in his A declaration of the king's majesty's intention and meaning concerning the late acts of parliament. When Arran fell at the end of that year, Adamson's political position was fatally compromised: he was excommunicated by the Fife Synod in 1586 after a highly acrimonious series of debates (led by Andrew and James Melville), suspended from the ministry in 1587, and deposed in 1589. He died in poverty in St Andrews in 1592, and was provided for in his final months by Melville (on Adamson's life, see Henry Arthur Bullen, 'Adamson, Patrick', in L. Stephen et al. (eds), Dictionary of National Biography, 53 vols (London, 1885-1900), vol. 1, pp. 111-15; David Mullan, 'Patrick Adamson', in Episcopacy in Scotland: the History of an Idea, 1560-1638 (Edinburgh, 1986), chapter 4; James Kirk, 'Adamson, Patrick (1537-1592)', ODNB; Alan R. MacDonald, 'Best of enemies: Andrew Melville and Patrick Adamson, c. 1574-1592', in Alasdair A. MacDonald and Julian Goodare (eds), Sixteenth Century Scotland: Essays in Honour of Michael Lynch (Leiden, 2008), pp. 257-276).

Assessments of Adamson have tended to focus solely on his role in church politics in early Jacobean Scotland, but he was also a Latin writer and poet of considerable ability. During his time in France in the 1560s he contributed verses to works by the French humanists Denys Lambin and Adrien Turnébe, and published the poem which follows below (his only contribution to the DPS) under the title Serenissimi ac nobilissimi Scotiae, Angliae, Hyberniae Principis, Henrici Stuardi invictissimi herois, ac Mariae Reginae amplissimae filii genethliacum (Paris, 1566). During his career he also wrote several biblical paraphrases, a Latin version of the Scots Confession of Faith, a versified catechism in four books, and a treatise on the duties of a minister which firmly defends the historical validity of iure divino episcopacy (De Sacro Pastoris Munere), all of which were gathered together and published in 1618 and 1619 by Adamson's son-in-law, Thomas Wilson (for full details, see Green, Scottish Latin Authors, pp. 36-39). Wilson accurately sums up the genethliacum in the dedication to the second edition to Princes Charles, published in Adamson's collected Poemata Sacra (1619) when he notes that Adamson 'asserted your father's rights to the triple crown [of Scotland, England and Ireland]; nay indeed, he presciently foretold in a divine prophecy the peaceful unification of the kingdoms' (Thomas Wilson, 'Inclytissimo, ac nobilissimo heroi, Carolo Walliae Principi, Duci Cornubiae, & c', Poemata Sacra (n. p.) [fo. A2r]: 'ex quo triplicis Coronae jura paterna fidens asseruit, quin etiam pacificam Regnorum coälitionem diuino vaticinio apertè praedixit'.) As Michael Lynch notes, the poem celebrates the (now united) lineages of Mary Queen of Scots and Henry Stewart Lord Darnley, and portrays Mary as 'Arthur, a bringer of the age of gold and fulfiller of the prophecy of Merlin', and as Astraea, the goddess of order. It also foretells the return of a golden age firmly 'in the power of the Stuart family' where 'the Britons, having finished with war, will learn at last to unite in one kingdom'. The poem adopted many of the themes and metaphors used in the sequence of triumphs enacted at Bayonne in June 1565 by Charles IX and Catherine de Medici in their meeting with the emissaries of Philip II of Spain. It also directly anticipated, and possibly contributed to, the motifs used in the triumphal baptismal celebrations for James VI staged at Stirling Castle that took place over 17-19 December 1566 (Michael Lynch, 'Queen Mary's triumph: the baptismal celebrations at Stirling in December 1566', SHR, 69:1 (April 1990): pp. 1-22, esp. p. 13). Adamson was thrown into jail in Paris for the remainder of 1566 due to his perceived assault on the dignity of Elizabeth I as sovereign of England, and it was apparently through Mary's intervention that Adamson was released, perhaps because she enjoyed the stridently pro-Stewart tone of the work. The final stanza of this poem, where Adamson sets out his intention to proclaim the praises of the Stewarts and to earn eternal glory for himself as a result, says much about his view of the potential that a connection to the court had for his future career.

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GENETHLIACUM serenissimi Scotiae, Angliae, et Hiberniae Principis, IACOBI VI, Mariae Reginae filii

1Quale jubar Solis, campis dum surgit Eois, 1
emicat, et tenebris mortalia pectora caecis 2
eripit, et rosea foecundat lampade terras: 3
talis visa 4 tui, princeps, nascentis imago
5Scotorum populis. Sic te commendat avorum
gloria, dum propriis meritis aequabis Olympum.

Iamque adeo passim gravidis pendebat aristis 5
alma Ceres, sterilisque anni jejunia campos
liquerunt, Martemque simul civilibus armis 6
10ardentem, in pacem rerum converterat autor.
Miramur faciles auras, caelique sereni 7
propitium numen, positosque e littore fluctus
aspicimus: vel nunc ferri mollescit in aurum 8
durities, redeuntque iterum Saturnia regna:
15vel magnum Heroem venturum in luminis oras
praesentit Natura parens, qui dicere terris
iura queat, dubiisque orbem componere rebus.

Sic placuit Superis. 9 Genus alto a sanguine Regum
Nympha potens, Scotos Mavortia pectora fraenat
20imperio: quondam thalamo sociata jugali
Francisco Regi: nunc forti pectore et armis
magnanimus tenet Henricus: Regumque potentum
progeniem, Sponsam Regum, Regum esse parentem
Di voluere. Etenim Scotorum fata vetabant, 10
25Quos vis nulla prius, non ipsi evincere ferro
Link to an image of this page  [p14] Romani poterant, quae victis praemia belli
esse solent, unquam externi parere tyranni
imperio: quippe aeternum molimina 11 regni
dum spacium auricomus Titan 12 percurrit Olympi
30et peragit Natura vices, sub gente futura
Stuarda, et Mariae diadema manere nepotes.

Ergo Merlini venit jam carminis aetas, 13
qui senior, fatique Deum non futilis augur,
'Regia Nympha,' inquit, 'Gallorum solvet ab arvis
35et Pelagi permensa vias, ventoque secundo
vecta, Caledonias tandem pertinget ad oras.
Atque illic, virtute patrum fundata resumet
Sceptra sibi: multosque reget feliciter annos.
Illa virum virgo faelicem foedere lecti
40efficiet, sed plus generosa prole beabit.
O quantos animos parvae cunabula molis
pressa tegunt? Cum tu firmis adoleveris annis
parve puer, 14 validis tremefactum classibus aequor
implebis, finesque tui producere regni 15
45fata dabunt, donec defuncti Marte Britanni
addiscent uni tandem coalescere regno.'
Sic cecinit, nec mens illum praesaga fefellit. 16
Nam simul ac Regis nati rumore secundo
fama volans, 17 Regni laetas afflaverat urbes,
50Tueda amnis, si certa fides memorantibus, ille
qui liquido nostros secernit limite fines
parte sui, attonitus rerum novitate, putatur
in fontes rediisse suos: pars altera fertur
Eoo commista mari. 18 Tum protinus alveo
55Tueda pater sicco fluvialia numina Nymphas 19
affatur: 'non has Superi regnator Olympi 20
perpetuas dederat sedes, nec littora nobis
haec semper pulsanda: alio sub sole penates
quaerendi, 21 vel quae hybernas nunc accolit undas
60Vallia, defessos vel quae Cornubia Soles
cernit, et occiduum sese protendit in aequor.
Illic fas nobis placidis decurrere lymphis,
Scotorumque iterum nostris metabimur undis
imperium. Num sic, rerum qui flectit habenas, 22
Link to an image of this page  [p15] 65Iuppiter, et stabili jusserunt numine Parcae.' 23

Ergo tot monitis Angli caelestibus acti 24
deposuere iras animis, ac Regia passim
dona parant; quicquid fulvi cumulaverat auri
regibus Anglorum subjectis Gallia rebus:
70et quaecunque auri peregrinis eruta venis
pondera, et Eoae varios telluris honores, 25
ignotas olim pelagi quaesita per undas 26
Hispanae intulerant taedae. En qui proxima regni
lora tenent proceres, fatis tibi debita Divum
75et sceptrum et diadema ferunt. Sat sanguinis illos
pertaesum externi: numerosi Saxonis armis
libertas oppressa olim: Normannia paenas
satque superque etiam truculento Marte poposcit.
At tibi quem pariter vitreis enutriet ulnis
80alma Thetis, 27 Regni aeternos submittere fasces
gaudent, et solum cathedrae fatalis honore
dignantur. Quos tu placido complectere vultu 28
parve puer, carae quo gaudes oscula matri
jungere, et e mammis stillans educere nectar.

85Neve animo veteris subeant discrimina belli 29
Mortalesque inimicitiae, multoque tuorum,
Martis opus crudele, 30 undantes sanguine campi
non illis impune fuit. Gens ardua bello,
vivida quid possit Scotorum in praelia virtus 31
90sensere, et largo saturarunt sanguine manes. 32
Sat Marti, belloque datum: nunc foedera pacis
laetus ini, ac Regnis tandem praelate Britannis,
Scotum Anglumve tibi nullo discrimine habeto. 33

Dumque haec cura tenet divisos orbe Britannos, 34
95ecce Oratores jam laeta Sabaudia donis
instruit, et Galli delectae corpora pubis
expediunt comiti, quo nec praesentior ullus 35
consilio, aut fulvis quisquam conspectior armis.
Quid memorem gemmas pretiosaque dona metalli, 36
100quas Tagus et dives volvit Pactolus arenas? 37
Quidve Dioneae re feram velamina telae,
Obductasque auro vestes, serpentiaque oris
fila auri, et Phrygio distinctas pollice lanas?
Link to an image of this page  [p16] Qualia si quondam infelix fecisset Arachne, 38
105Pallas vel sese dixisset judice victam.

Erga illos postquam regali Regia luxu 39
accipiet claris majorum ornata triumphis,
Galli oratores, antiquae foedera pacis
sub Carolo percussa petent. Ne sperne rogantes,
110neve illis metuas dextram conjungere dextrae.
Nostra illos juvit virtus, sensitque paratum
non semel auxilium labefactis Gallia rebus.
Illa memor, si forte hostes perjuria gentis
sollicitent, nec jus, nec fas, nec numina curent,
115spectatas vires, atque auxiliaria junget
arma tibi, ut citius possis fraenare rebelles.

Iamque ubi tu caesa firmaris foedera porca, 40
mortales abeant curae, caelestia solum
volve animo. Tum te pura baptismatis unda
120suscipient proceres, ut sacri sanguine fontis
ablutus, priscique exutus labe parentis;
sincera pietate Deum, ceu dogmata verbi
sacra docent, puraeque colas vestigia vitae.

Carpe ergo virtutis iter, foecunda ministrant
125majores exempla tui. Iam facta parentis
cerne oculis, quam sit divinae munere formae 41
praedita, quam pulchrae fulgent in corpore dotes:
quam non mortalis vultus sub judice formae
Priamida, invisos pomi cepisset honores.
130Praecipue quam sit generoso pectore, quamque
Regia, quam casti cingant praecordia mores:
quam sit chara suis, quam juste et legibus aequis
temperet imperium, ac regni moderetur habenas.
Haec tibi sint primis, o Rex excelse, sub annis
135aetatis primaeva tuae. 42 Nunc imbue pectus
nectare caelesti. Nam postquam adoleveris, arma,
arma tibi capienda, 43 quibus, proh tempora, clade
civili, jam dextra rubet. Tu caede madentes
infanda, optata Turcorum strage piabis.

140Ille, tuis atavus Lotarena ex gente, tyrannus
Marte furens, regnum Solymae populatus opimae
abstulit et totum regni jus ponit in armis.
Link to an image of this page  [p17] Sed quid ego tandem tecum privata recordor?
Nonne vides, totum quantis terroribus orbem
145concutit, 44 ut Christum sceleratis obruat armis?
Non illum aeratae turres, non moenia caelo
educta, 45 aut largo fluitantes aequore fossae
arcere, aut tantum possunt cohibere furorem?
Scilicet illi aquilae cedunt et lilia forsan
150aequa nimis, variisque audax Hispania signis,
surgentem poteritne jubis perferre Leonem?
Utque unum possit, nunquid quos Martia gignit
Scotia, tot vim posse putas tolerare leonum?
Illa quidem longo collapsis tempore rebus
155imperii et Franci in Gallos crescentibus armis,
et dum barbaries domitos oppressit Iberos,
et dum praeda fuit peregrinis Anglia terris,
mutaretque suas nimium Germania sedes,
incolumi stetit imperio, regnata per annos
160mille octingentos: sed non sine numine Divum;
ut regnum antiquum, teque inviolata tuorum
majorum series rectorem educeret orbi.

Interea dum nos speratae gloria laudis
laeta manet, Regis nostri celebremus ovantes
165natalem, quo non illuxit pulchrior, ex quo
Leucothoes niveo Titan accensus amore 46
Oceani totis sese perlaverat undis.
Ergo jam festa velentur fronde per urbes 47
et cuncti ducant choreas, et carmina dicant,
170sistra sonent, Lunamque vetent deducere caelo.

Quod si non frustra ludit mihi pectus Apollo,
atque aliquid nostrae possunt in carmine vires,
seu Latio aut Grajo mavis te carmine dici,
tum mea Stuardas laudes, et facta per orbem 48
175musa ferens; postquam memori sacraverit aevo,
176forsitan Arctoum dicent me saecula vatem.

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A birth-poem for the most serene prince of Scotland, England and Ireland, James VI, son of Queen Mary

1Just like the splendour of the sun as it shines forth, when it rises from dawn's fields, and plucks the mortal hearts from blind shadows, and fertilises the lands with its rosy torch: so has the sight of your birth dawned upon the Scottish people, o prince. So the glory of your forefathers commends you, while you will equal heaven in your own right.

7Already now nourishing Ceres is drooping with heavy corn, and the hunger of a barren year is leaving the fields, a and the author of all things is turning war, burning in civil strife, into peace. We marvel at the easy breezes, and the kindly divinity of a beautiful sky, and we see the tide run far out from the shore: either now the hardness of iron softens into gold, and Saturn's kingdom returns once more, or mother nature divined that a great hero would come into the view of our sight, who could pronounce laws upon the earth, and unite the world amid chaotic conditions.

18So it pleases the gods. A powerful nymph, born from the noble bloodline of kings, restrains the war-like breasts of the Scottish people with her rule: once she was joined in matrimonial wedlock to King Francis: b now magnanimous Henry c holds sway with brave heart and arms. The powerful progeny of kings, wife of kings, now the gods wish her to be the mother of kings. And indeed the Scots' destiny would not allow them, whom no force - not even the Romans themselves - d Link to an image of this page  [p14] had been able to overcome with the sword, to submit to the power of a foreign tyrant, which are the usual rewards of war for the conquered. Indeed, as long as the goldern-haired sun runs across the expanse of heaven, and nature drives on the seasons, may the government of the kingdom and the crown always await the descendants of Mary under the Stewart line.

32Therefore soon shall come the age of Merlin's prediction, e aged, and the useful augur of divine prophecies, who said, 'the royal nymph will depart from France's fields, and - brought here by the sea-lanes, carried by a favourable wind - will land at last on Caledonian shores. And there she will resume the rule, established by the virtue of her forefathers: and she will happily reign for many years. That maiden will, from her marriage bed, bring forth a fortunate man, but he will be yet more blessed by his descendants. Oh, what spirits does the covered cradle with its small burden shelter? When you, small boy, grow to adolescence in enduring years, you will fill the agitated sea with mighty vessels, and the fates will grant you to expand the limits of your realm, until at last you learn to unite in one martial realm the defunct British kingdoms.' So he sang, nor did his foreseeing intellect deceive him. For just as rumour of the royal birth, flying on a favourable wind, touched the joyful cities of the kingdom, the River Tweed (if the trustworthiness of those recounting is certain) who divides our realms with his liquid border - astounded by the novelty of events - was thought to recede into his springs: the other part of him was carried into the dawn-mixed sea. Then afterwards father Tweed, speaking to the river spirits and nymphs in his dry cavern, said: 'the ruler of divine heaven has not given these residences for eternity, nor shall we always wash these shores: we must seek our dwellings under another sun, either where Wales now resides in the wintry waves, or where Cornwall observes the tired sun, and extends itself into the setting sea. There we may flow down into placid waters, and again we will measure out the domains of the Scots in the waves. For thus has Jupiter,

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who holds the reins of all things, ordered the Fates with his steadfast divinity.'

66Therefore, compelled by so many warnings from heaven, the English lay aside the anger from their souls, and prepare offerings throughout the kingdom; whatever yellow gold France had piled high when its state was subject to the kings of the English, and whatever pounds of gold dug from foreign seams, and the various honours of the eastern land, which the Spanish pines f had procured and borne across the previously unknown sea. Behold the nobles who wield subordinate power in the kingdom, they bear the crown and sceptre to you that has been promised you by the decree of the gods. They are sick of foreign bloodshed: their liberty was formerly oppressed by the arms of Saxon legions; and even Normandy exacted more than enough penalties in bitter war. But to you, whom mother Thetis g of the green arms will support, they rejoice to submit the fasces h of their kingdom forever to you, and think you alone worthy in glory for the fated seat. Those are the people, tiny boy, and look kindly upon them with the gentle face with which you delight to join kisses to your dear mother, and to draw forth the nectar dripping from her breasts.

85And the cruel business of Mars did not pass without retaliation, so that their spirit was not broken by the dangers of ancient battle, and death-bringing hostility, and fields flowing with so much blood of your people. The shades of the Scots have felt what a race hard in war, and lively courage can do in battle, and have been drenched liberally in blood. Enough has been given to Mars, and to war: now joyfully enter into the covenants of peace, and you who have finally been chosen by the British kingdoms, cherish both Scot and Englishman with no distinction.

94And while this concern occupies the Britons, cut off from the world, i see now! Joyful Sabaudia j furnishes ambassadors with gifts, and the French assemblies prepare the bodies of their elite youth, in whom there is no-one readier with advice, nor anyone more remarkable in golden arms. Should I recall the gems and precious gifts of metal, which the rich sands of the Tagus and Pactolus turn up? k And should I speak of the garments of Dione's cloth, l and the clothes overlaid with gold, and the snaking threads with fringes of gold, and the wools embellished by Phrygian thumb? m Link to an image of this page  [p16]Of such quality that if ever Arachne had made such things, Pallas would have assuredly by her own judgement declared herself defeated. n

106In return, the court, fitted out with the famous triumphs of ancestors, hereafter will receive them in courtly pomp; French ambassadors will seek the treaties of ancient peace hammered out under Charles. o Do not reject those who plead that you not be anxious to join your right hand to their right hand. Our courage has helped them, and France has known aid furnished in uncertain circumstances more than once. Mindful of it, if ever our enemy provokes perfidy in our nation, and the gods attend to neither justice nor law, she will join her tried and tested forces, and her auxiliaries to you, so that you can more quickly subdue the rebels.

117And now, when you have confirmed the treaties with a slaughtered sow, p let mortal concerns be absent; consider heavenly matters alone in your mind. Then the nobles will lift you into the pure baptismal waters, so that cleansed by the blood of the sacred fount, and having cast off the stain of our ancient parent, q with true piety towards God, as the sacred dogmas of the word teach, you will cultivate a path of pure living.

124Thus seize upon the path of virtue; your elders provide copious examples. Now look upon your parent's deeds with your eyes, how possessed she is of the reward of divine beauty, how beautiful the endowments shining forth in her body: as immortal a face that seized, in the son of Priam's judgment of beauty, r the envied honours of the fruit-tree. Especially see how fitted with a noble breast the queen is, and how chaste the behaviour that binds her heart: how dear she is to her own people, and how justly and with equitable laws she tempers her rule, and guides the reins of the kingdom. Let these things be foremost to you, o highest king, under the youthful years of your age. Now fill up your breast with heavenly nectar. For after you have reached manhood, arms, arms must be taken up by you, which (shameful times!) the royal hand reddens with civil slaughter. s You will expiate those soaked with abominable slaughter through the hoped-for destruction of the Turks.

140That man, an ancestor of yours from the race of Lorraine, t a raging tyrant in war, carried off the kingdom of rich Jerusalem after decimating it, and placed every law of the kingdom in arms.Link to an image of this page  [p17] But why do I go over private matters at length with you? Do you not see with what great terror he makes the whole world shake, how he strikes down upon Christ with his accursed arms? Are bronze towers, or battlements stretched up to heaven, or trenches flowing to the broad sea unable to contain him, or to check such rage? I suppose, perhaps, that eagles and lilies yield to him too favourably, and bold Spain, with its various standards, but will he be able to endure the Lion Rampant on its crests? To have mastery over that one lion, do you believe that he is capable of enduring the force of the many lions that warlike Scotland gave birth to? She, indeed, for a long span during the fallen times u - both when the arms of the Frankish empire was rising among the Gauls, and when heathens subjugated the mastered Spaniards, and when England was booty for foreign lands, and Germany changed its seats of power too much - stood with her dominion intact, having reigned for one thousand and eighty years, but not without the goodwill of the gods: so that an ancient kingdom and an unbroken chain of your ancestors could lead you forth, as ruler of the world.

163Meanwhile, while the joyful glory of longed-for praise remains to us, let us celebrate, rejoicing, the birth of our king, in whom no-one more beautiful begins to shine except when the sun, aflame with snow-white love for Leucothea, v washes himself thoroughly with all the ocean's waves. Thus now let feasts be veiled with garlands through the towns, and let everyone lead forth dances, and sing songs, and sound rattles, and forbid the moon to draw down from heaven. w

171Because if Apollo does not deceive my breast in vain, and there is some power in my song, whether you prefer that you are addressed in Latin or Greek song, may my Muse, bearing the praise of the Stewarts and their deeds throughout the world, immortalize them for posterity; perhaps then the ages to come will call me the Prophet of the North.



1: 'solis...jubar': Seneca, Hercules Oetaeus 1289; 'Eois...campis': Seneca, Oedipus 115

2: 'quantum mortalia pectora caecae/ noctis habent!': Ovid, Metamorphoses VI.472

3: 'et rosea sol alte lampade lucens': Lucretius, De Rerum Natura V.610

4: 'talis visa' (in same metrical position): Propertius, Elegies I.3.7, II.29b.29

5: 'gravidis procumbat...aristis': Virgil, Georgics I.111

6: 'civilibus armis' used frequently by Lucan (eg, Bellum Civile VI.299)

7: For this line and next, see Ovid, Heroides XVI.23

8: For this line and next, see Virgil, Eclogues IV:4-10

9: 'sic visum superis': Ovid, Metamorphoses I.366

10: 'fata vetabant (same metrical position): Virgil, Aeneid VIII.398; Ovid, Metamorphoses III.548

11: 'molimina': rare word, used by Ovid, Metamorphoses XV.578; Epistulae ex Ponto I.2.73

12: 'Sol auricomis urgentibus horis': Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica IV.92

13: 'Ultima Cumaei venit iam carminis aetas': Virgil, Eclogues IV.4

14: 'parve puer': Virgil, Eclogues IV.60, 62

15: For this line and next, see Horace, Odes IV.2.38-39

16: 'praesaga...mens': Virgil, Aeneid X.843; Lucan, Bellum Civile VI.414-415, VII.186-187

17: 'fama volans': Virgil, Aeneid XI.139

18: 'Eoo mari': frequently in Pliny, Naturalis Historia (eg VI.82.1)

19: For this line and the preceding, see Livy, Ab Urbe Condita XLIV.32.10.2-11.1

20: Virgil, Aeneid II.779

21: 'atque alio patriam quaerunt sub sole iacentem': Virgil, Georgics II.512

22: 'deus qui flectit habenas': Statius, Silvae V.1.37

23: 'concordes stabili fatorum numine Parcae': Virgil, Eclogues IV.47 (for a variation on this line, see Appendix Virgiliana, Ciris 125)

24: 'caelestibus...monitis': Ovid, Metamorphoses I.396-397, XIV.293

25: 'telluris Eoae': Lucan, Bellum Civile VI.52, VIII.231

26: 'hac dabitur dextra tellus quaesita per undas': Virgil, Aeneid X.650

27: Statius, Achilleis I.893

28: 'placido...vultu': Ovid, Metamorphoses XV.692

29: 'discrimina belli': Lucan, Bellum Civile VIII.389

30: 'grave Martis opus': Virgil, Aeneid VIII.516

31: 'vivida virtus': Virgil, Aeneid V.754, XI.386

32: 'sanguine largo': Virgil, Aeneid XII.721

33: 'Tros Rutulusne fuat, nullo discrimine habebo': Virgil, Aeneid X.108

34: 'et penitus toto divisos orbe Britannos': Virgil, Eclogues I.66. See also d2_RolH_013

35: 'nec enim praesentior illo': Ovid, Metamorphoses III.658

36: Ovid, Heroides XV.74,76; see also d2_MaiT_003, 65

37: Virgil, Aeneid X.142

38: Ovid, Metamorphoses VI.133-134

39: 'at domus interior regali splendida luxu': Virgil, Aeneid I.637

40: 'armati Iovis ante aram paterasque tenentes/ stabant et caesa iungebant foedera porca': Virgil, Aeneid VIII.641

41: 'divinae nuntia formae': Lucretius, De Rerum Natura VI.77

42: 'primaevae flore iuventae': Silius Italicus, Punica XVI.405

43: 'arma capienda' used several times by Livy (eg Ab Urbe Condita XXV.24.7)

44: 'qui nutu concutit orbem': Ovid, Metamorphoses II.849

45: 'educta...moenia': Virgil, Aeneid VI.630-631

46: 'accensus amore' (same metrical position): Ovid, Metamorphoses XI.527

47: 'festa velamus fronde per urbem': Virgil, Aeneid II.249

48: These closing lines echo Virgil, Eclogues VIII.8-9


a: James was born on 19 June 1566, so in the midst of the growth period of the year's harvest.

b: Francis II (1544-1560), who married Mary Stewart in 1558 and who ruled France from 1559 until his death.

c: Henry Stewart, Lord Darnley (1545-1567), Mary's second husband.

d: The same theme is developed at length in the work of Thomas Craig, not least in his own genethliacum to James - see d1_CraT_001.

e: On the prophecies surrounding James' birth (and later his accession to the English throne), see introduction to d1_CraT_004.

f: Pinewood standing metonymically for ships here.

g: Sea-nymph, and mother of Achilles.

h: Fasces: bundles of rods, often with an embedded axe blade, carried by the lictors of ancient Rome to denote the legal power of their magistrate.

i: See note to Latin text.

j: Italy.

k: The Tagus (rio Tajo, or Tejo), and the Pactolus were famed in antiquity for large sedimentary deposits of gold. The Tagus is directly referenced in d1_AndH_001, d1_AytR_001, d1_AytR_003, and d2_RolH_003; the Pactolus in d1_AndH_001 and d2_MaiT_004.

l: Dione was a titaness, and parent of Aphrodite with Zeus - the reference to her cloth is unclear.

m: Phrygia, an ancient region on the western Anatolian plateau, was famed for its textiles.

n: For the story of Pallas and Arachne see d2_MaiT_010.

o: This and what follows refer to the high level of military aid that Scotland provided to Charles VII of France between 1419 and 1424, during the Hundred Years War with England.

p: As a form of propitiatory sacrifice.

q: Eve.

r: A reference to the Judgment of Paris, a contest recounted in Greek mythology (and in Ovid, Heroides V, XVI, and XVII, from where Maitland draws his description) where Paris (the son of Priam) was chosen by Zeus to decide which of the three goddesses - Juno, Minerva, and Aphrodite - was the most beautiful, with the winner receiving a golden apple from the garden of the Hesperides. The contest supposedly contributed indirectly to starting the Trojan War, as Paris' choice of Aphrodite was influenced by her promise to bestow the most beautiful woman in the world (Helen) upon him as a wife. It also earned him the enmity of Juno, who sided with the Greeks in revenge. See also d2_MaiT_001.

s: A possible reference to the Reformation Rebellion of 1559-60, or the Wars of Religion?

t: One would expect the subject of lines 140-162 to be the pope, but they depend on the reader knowing that James was the great-great grandson of René II, Duke of Lorraine (1451-1508; duke from 1473), whose titles included Duke of Bar from 1483 (which was part of the Lorraine patrimony, but technically a principality of the Holy Roman Empire until 1766; this perhaps explains the reference to the submission of the 'eagles') and who also claimed the titles of King of Naples and of Jerusalem after his mother's death in the same year. The crests of Naples and Bar both feature the fleur de lys (presumably the 'lilia' referenced below).

u: Assuming that the period of 1,080 years referred to by Adamson starts in 330BC (when Fergus I was believed to have began his reign), the following series of references would refer to the period around 750AD. This is entirely possible: Charlemagne reigned from the 740s until 814, and by his death the Holy Roman Empire embraced the Frankish kindgoms and much of the German territories previously controlled by nomadic Saxon tribes; Spain, meanwhile, was under Muslim control; and the British isles were subject to Viking raids. However, a similar conflation of events - the Franks invading Gaul, the vandals and Alans invading Spain, and the Goths facing migration from their sedes due to the Rhine freezing over - all took place in the fifth century when the western Roman empire collapsed, and it may be that Adamson is taking this as his starting point for an unbroken era of Scottish rule down to the present day of James' birth.

v: Daughter of Orchamus and sister of Clytia: her love affair with Apollo was so resented by her sister that she told their father, who had Leucothea buried alive. In revenge, Apollo turned Clytia into a plant that always followed the course of the sun (either a heliotrope or a sunflower).

w: ie, to stop the sun from rising and thus 'outshining' James.