King James I of England

James VI of Scotland 1567. James I 1603.

Born 1566. Died 1625.

A Contemporary Description





This Kings Character is much easier to take then his Picture, for he

could never be brought to sit for the taking of that, which is the

reason of so few good peeces of him; but his Character was obvious to

every eye.

James Ist

He was of a middle stature, more corpulent through his cloathes then

in his body, yet fat enough, his cloathes ever being made large and

easie, the Doublets quilted for steletto proofe, his Breeches in great

pleites and full stuffed: Hee was naturally of a timorous disposition,

which was the reason of his quilted Doublets: His eyes large, ever

rowling after any stranger came in his presence, insomuch, as many

for shame have left the roome, as being out of countenance: His Beard

was very thin: His Tongue too large for his mouth, which ever made

him speak full in the mouth, and made him drink very uncomely, as if

eating his drink, which came out into the cup of each side of his

mouth: His skin was as soft as Taffeta Sarsnet, which felt so, because

hee never washt his hands, onely rubb’d his fingers ends slightly with

the wet end of a Naptkin: His Legs were very weake, having had (as was

thought) some foul play in his youth, or rather before he was born,

that he was not able to stand at seven years of age, that weaknesse

made him ever leaning on other mens shoulders, his walke was ever

circular …

James I

He was very temperate in his exercises, and in his dyet,

and not intemperate in his drinking; however in his old age, and

_Buckinghams_ joviall Suppers, when he had any turne to doe with

him, made him sometimes overtaken, which he would the very next day

remember, and repent with teares; it is true, he dranke very often,

which was rather out of a custom then any delight, and his drinks were

of that kind for strength, as Frontiniack, Canary, High Country wine,

Tent Wine, and Scottish Ale, that had he not had a very strong brain,

might have daily been overtaken, although he seldom drank at any

one time above four spoonfulls, many times not above one or two…

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