William Ruthven, 1st Earl of Gowrie
Life and career
Raid of Ruthven
In 1582 Ruthven devised and undertook the Raid of Ruthven - a plot to seize the fifteen-year-old James VI during the king's visit to his home at Hunting-tower Castle. Ruthven was the last-known custodian of the silver casket that contained the Casket Letters; letters said to have been written by Mary, Queen of Scotland, whose third husband was James Hepburn, 4th Earl of Bothwell.
William was detained and beheaded for high treason, all his honors were forfeited. He was executed in May 1584. Following his execution, his lands were divided among the king's favourites.
A letter produced in the posthumous trial of Robert Logan of Restalrig in 1609 referred to William as Greysteil, a character in a popular poem of his time noted for his strength and sinister powers.
Marriage and children
William Ruthven was married twice: first to Dorothea Stewart, the oldest daughter of Henry Stewart, 1st Lord Methven; and later to Janet Stewart, daughter of John Stewart, 2nd Earl of Atholl.
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
- "William Ruthven (c.1541 - 1584)". geni.com. Retrieved 15 February 2014.
- Bowes Correspondence, Surtees Society, (1942), 236–7, Robert Bowes to Francis Cunningham, 8 November 1582.
- Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland, vol. iv, p.422.
- "Ruthven, William (1541?–1584)". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.
|Peerage of Scotland|
|New creation||Earl of Gowrie