How Far Do the Sources Suggest That James I's Extravagance Was the Cause of His Financial Troubles?

Topics: Source, James I of England, Start Pages: 2 (717 words) Published: November 26, 2012
How far do the sources suggest that it was James I’s extravagant giving was the cause of his financial problems?

On the face of it the sources seem to disagree on this issue. Sources ten and twelve seem to show that James’ extravagant giving was the cause of his financial problems however source eleven seems to show that it was not James’ extravagant giving that caused his financial problems. In source ten, ‘Matthew Hutton’ states that, “His Majesty’s subjects hear and fear that King James’ heroical and excellent nature is too inclined to giving” and that this will soon ‘exhaust the treasury of his kingdom’, thus implying that James’s extravagant nature was and will be the cause of his financial problems. This is further backed up by source twelve as it states that James ‘is very generous with his gifts’ and that ‘gifts to the scots are causing an incurable leak from the cistern, this is demonstrating how James’ extravagance is causing him financial trouble.

Whereas on the face of it source eleven seems to disagree with the other two sources as it demonstrates how it was not James’ extravagance that was causing him financial trouble. In this source it states that payments to the king, for example taxes are not paid or collected and also ‘The Earl of Dorset’ goes on to say that the fact James I has a family is another reason for his financial trouble. Furthermore as this this is a letter from the ‘Lord Treasurer’ to ‘The Chancellor of the Exchequer’ this is the most reliable source about whether it was James’ extravagance that was causing him financial problems as between them they are the people who look after and maintain the treasury.

However it can be argued that all three sources agree to a large extent that it was not James’ extravagant personality that caused his financial problems. Firstly in source twelve it does not specifically say that he is ‘extravagant’ also at the time it was written, 1604, James the I was not actually in debt and so...
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