James, name of 2 kings of England, Scotland, and Ireland, both belonging to the House of Stuart. James I (1566–1625), became king of Scotland in 1567, when his mother, Mary Queen of Scots, was forced to abdicate. Until 1583, when James turned 17, the country was ruled by regents. James supported Elizabeth I of England and in 1587 accepted the execution of his mother. In 1603 he succeeded Elizabeth, becoming king of England. His early popularity waned as he sought autocratic control over Parliament, bolstered by his belief in the divine right of kings. He sponsored the translation of the Authorized Version of the Bible (1611), also known as the King James Version. His strict anti-Puritan views caused many Puritans to flee to America, where they founded Plymouth Colony (1620). James II(1633–1701), reigned 1685–88. He was the second son of Charles I, successor of James I. During the English civil war he fled to France (1648). He returned to England in 1660, at the time of the Restoration. A Roman Catholic, James II acceded to the throne in 1685, after the death of Charles II. His autocratic methods and pro-Catholic appointments made him unpopular, and in 1688 James II was ousted by William of Orange, his Protestant son-in-law, in what became known as the Glorious Revolution. In 1689 James tried to restore his rule from his base, Ireland, but his forces were defeated in the battle of the Boyne (1690).
See also: England.