DOUGLAS to Dowsabel

DOUGLAS, divided into The Black Douglases and The Red Douglases.

I. The Black Douglases (or senior branch). Each of these is called “The Black Douglas.”

The Hardy, William de Douglas, defender of Berwick (died 1302).

The Good sir James, eldest son of “The Hardy.” Friend of Bruce. Killed by the Moors in Spain, 1330.

England’s Scourge and Scotland’s Bulwark, William Douglas, knight of Liddeslale. Taken at Neville’s Cross, and killed by William first earl of Douglas, in 1353.

The Flower of Chivalry, William de Douglas, natural son of “The Good sir James” (died 1384).

James second earl of Douglas overthrew Hotspur. Died at Otterburn, 1388. This is the Douglas of the old ballad of Chevy Chase.

Archibald the Grim, Archibald Douglas, natural son of “The Good sir James” (died *).

The Black Douglas, William lord of Nithsdale (murdered by the earl of Clifford, 1390).

Tineman (the loser), Archibald fourth earl, who lost the battles of Homildon, Shrewsbury, and Verneuil, in the last of which he was killed (1424).

William Douglas, eighth earl, stabbed by James II., and then despatched with a battle-axe by sir Patrick Gray, at Stirling, February 13, 1452. Sir Walter Scott alludes to this in The Lady of the Lake.

James Douglas, ninth and last earl (died 1488). With him the senior branch closes.

II. The Red Douglases, a collateral branch.

Bell-the-Cat, the great earl of Angus. He is introduced by Scott in Marmion. His two sons fell in the battle of Flodden Field. He died in a monastery, 1514.

Archibald Douglas, sixth earl of Angus, and grandson of “Bell-the-Cat.” James Bothwell, one of the family, forms the most interesting part of Scott’s Lady of the Lake. He was the grandfather of Darnley, husband of Mary queen of Scots. He died 1560.

James Douglas, earl of Morton, younger brother of the seventh earl of Angus. He took part in the murder of Rizzio, and was executed by the instrument called “the maiden” (1530–1581).

The “Black Douglas,” introduced by sir W. Scott in Castle Dangerous, is “The Gud schyr James.” This was also the Douglas which was such a terror to the English that the women used to frighten their unruly children by saying they would “make the Black Douglas take them.” He first appears in Castle Dangerous as “Knight of the Tomb.” The following nursery rhyme refers to him:—

Hush ye, hush ye, little pet ye;
Hush ye, hush ye, do not fret ye;
The Black Douglas shall not get thee.
   —Sir W. Scott: Tales of a Grandfather, i. 6.

Douglas, a tragedy by J. Home (1757). Young Norval, having saved the life of lord Randolph, is given a commission in the army. Lady Randolph hears of the exploit, and discovers that the youth is her own son by her first husband, lord Douglas. Glenalvon, who hates the new favourite, persuades lord Randolph that his wife is too intimate with the young upstart, and the two surprise them in familiar intercourse in a wood. The youth, being attacked, slays Glenalvon; but is in turn slain by lord Randolph, who then learns that the young man was lady Randolph’s son. Lady Randolph, in distraction, rushes up a precipice and throws herself down headlong, and lord Randolph goes to the war then raging between Scotland and Denmark.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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