John Bethune, James III or the Royal Parricide: a tragedy or historical Drama, c.1820.

Scope and Content

John Bethune, James III or the Royal Parricide: a tragedy or historical Drama.

p.i [Folded folio sheet bound into the volume(4pp) on this page] an exemplification, in the hand of John Bethune, of an instance of privation of right from his own family circumstances on the death of Henry Bethune with title contested by William Chalmers WS in June 1783, John Bethune being one claimant to the estate of Henry Bethune by right of his mother Janet, full sister to Henry, and Margaret, half sister to Henry and wife to William Chalmers the other claimant. The declaration carries the story to 1819.

pp.v-vii a prefatory letter from John Bethune to Francis Jeffrey esq giving his reasons for writing the play. Signed John Bethune.

p.ix Title page.

p.xi Dramatis personae.

pp.1-7 Historical introduction

pp.1-118 James III or the Royal Parricide: a tragedy or historical Drama. Concerning Archibald Douglas, earl of Angus, in an attempt to revenge the fall of the earl of Arran during the reign of James III.

Administrative / Biographical History

John Bethune appears to have grown up in impoverished cirumstances and spent most of his adult life chasing his inheritance as heir at law to his uncle Henry Bethune. The latter had died unmarried but left his estate to his half-sister as his full sister, John's mother, was deemed incapable, possibly insane. After the half-sister and her husband died, the estate was contested by a number of parties, including John Bethune.


Single item

Access Information

By appointment with the Keeper of Manuscripts. Access to records containing confidential information may be restricted.

Acquisition Information

Formerly in the University Muniment Room.


Call number used to be ms4000

Other Finding Aids

Individual Manuscripts and Small Collections database available as part of Manuscripts Database.

Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Maia Sheridan, Archives Hub project archivist, based on material from the Manuscripts Database

Conditions Governing Use

Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the Keeper of Manuscripts. Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents.

Custodial History

Bookplate of James Maidment.



Personal Names