Laird of a small estate, Will Alexander of Menstrie, poet and tutor, was
a man of modest ambitions. But when James VI learned of his poetic
genius, the king had other plans for him.
In 1603, when James VI of Scotland became James I of England, he
summoned Will to London and commanded him to translate the Psalms for
the new royal version of the Bible in English - which remains the
definitive edition to this day.
At the English court, Will Alexander consorted with the most famous
poets of the age including Shakespeare and Jonson. By the time he died,
the humble Scottish laird had become Earl of Stirling, Viscount of
Canada, Governor of Nova Scotia and Secretary of State for Scotland.
Laced with intrigue and absorbing historical detail, Nigel Tranter
charts the extraordinary rise of William Alexander of Menstrie.