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Stuart dynasty

(43) Page 23 - Two succesive regents, and one great monarch --- Robert, Duke of Albany, 1406-1419

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(43) Page 23 - Two succesive regents, and one great monarch --- Robert, Duke of Albany, 1406-1419
( 23 )
Robert, Duke of Albany, 1406-1419 ;
Murdoch, Duke of Albany, 1419-1424;
James I., 1424-1437.
It remains uncertain whether the elder branch of the Stuart
dynasty was or was not at this period in danger of succumb-
ing to a kindred usurpation to that which had taken place in
England when Henry IV., by popular favour and as the result
of an insurrection which ushered in the fifteenth century,
became King of England. Robert, Duke of Albany, in com-
plete possession of power, might find specious excuses for
holding the same when he scanned the horizon of Scottish
politics ; to say nothing of the example afforded him by the
success of Henry IV. in elevating a third branch of the
Plantagenets over the second, when the nation had rejected
the first of that name.
In Scotland the executive Government needed a strong
arm to guide its course, and the heir was a prisoner in
England ; the Duke of Albany being helpless to deliver him,
in spite of all that has been written to the contrary. For in
the year 1413, a negotiation was set on foot for the deliver-
ance of the King, and a safe-conduct granted by the new
English sovereign Henry V. (for Henry IV. had passed away
on March 20, 1413), to live commissioners from Scotland so
that they might remain in England to treat. But these
efforts proved ineffectual.*
That the Regent must have been cognisant of such action
is shown by the commanding position he held in the Govern-
ment : and the fact that the English did in 1415, in exchange
for Hotspur, release Albany's son, Murdoch — a prisoner of
less importance than the King of Scotland — by no means
warrants the common assumption that the Regent was privy
to his sovereign's continued detention in a foreign country.
* Henry's ' History of Great Britain,' second edition, vol. ix. p. 297 ;
Dr. Henry quotes Rymer, vol. is. p. 5.

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