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ETHFINE.

BUT now to returne touching the gouernement of the Scotish kingdome, I find that after the
Ethfine succéedeth Mordake. A peaceable prince. deceasse of Mordake last remembred, his nephue named Ethfine, the sonne of the seuenth Eugenius, succeeded in the state; a man naturallie inclined vnto peace and maintenance of iustice. The league which his predecessors Eugenius and Mordake had kept with their neighbors the Britains, Englishmen and Picts, he duelie likewise obserued. His chiefe studie was to purge his realme of all such as were knowen to be open barrettors and offendors in anie wise, against the peace and common quiet of his subiects; so that causing sundrie notable examples of iustice to be executed vpon such euill dooers, he was had in such reuerend dread amongest his subiects, that none of them durst once whisper anie euill of him. Neither had they verelie anie cause so to doo, while he looked to the administration himselfe.

But after he was once fallen into age, he appointed foure péeres in his realme to haue the Foure gouernors vnder the king. chiefe gouernance vnder him; as Donald the treasuror of Argile, Collane of Athole, and Mordake of Galloway his lieutenants, and Conrath the thane of Murrey land. These hauing the procuration of all things touching the gouernement of the realme, vsed not themselues so Uniust gouernement. vprightlie in manie points as they ought to haue doone; but winked now and then at faůlts & trespasses committed by their kinsfolks and alies, permitting the nobilitie to liue according to their old accustomed maner of licentious libertie, to the small ease or commoditie of the other inferiour states. Donald of the westerne Iles, a man of goodlie personage, but of Donald of the Iles mainteineth robbers. disposition inclined to all naughtinesse, mainteined a great number of robbers and spoilers of the countrie, liuing onelie vpon rauine. For looke what they wanted, they would not faile to catch it, if it were in anie place abroad where they might laie hands on it: so that all the The oppression of the commons of Galloway Mordake the kings lieutenant beareth with offendors. husbandmen and commons of Galloway, in which countrie they most haunted, were brought into woonderfull thraldome and miserie.

Neither did Mordake the kings lieutenant there, go about to chastise such insolent misdemenors, either for that he was of Donalds aliance, either else priuie to his dooings, and partaker of the spoile. The people hereby vexed with continuall iniuries, brought manie pitifull complaints before Mordake, who nothing regarded their lamentable sutes and supplications, but the more they complained, the woorse they were handled. Neither was there anie hope of redresse or amendment, till Eugenius the eight was admitted to the kinglie administration after the death of king Ethfine, who in the latter end of his daies continuallie being sicke and diseased, could not attend to take order for the publike gouernement, by reason whereof such wilfull misorders insued. He died in the yeare of our Lord 764, after he had continued his The deceasse of Ethfine. 762. H. B. reigne ouer the Scotishmen the space of thirtie yeares, his bodie being buried in Colmekill with all funerall obsequies.

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