James I of England

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James VI and I was the King of Scots from 1567 and the King of England and Ireland following the death of his cousin, Elizabeth I in 1603. Following his ascension to the English throne, James based himself in England and although he united the crowns of England and Scotland the two kingdoms remained separate.

Unlike Elizabeth, James fought with Parliament frequently. As a staunch Protestant, he introduced a number of severe laws against Catholics, which was a major factor behind the Gunpowder Plot of 1605 led by Guy Fawkes.

He also commissioned and paid for a new translation of the Bible that became known as the King James Version, which has been profoundly influential ever since. He is also known to have spoken with a speech impediment that caused his words to slur. He never had a bath during his entire reign, and at the very most would moisten the tips of his fingers in a bowl of water. He also ran up huge debts which were left to his son to sort out (unsuccessfully). On receipt of a suitable payment, he granted permission to the English Puritans to found a colony in America, and granted similar pernissions to tobacco companies in a different part of America. Upon his death, his son Charles I ascended to the Throne.

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