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Kennedy, James

Kennedy, James (d. 1465). Provided to the bishopric of Dunkeld by his uncle, James I (1437). Support of Queen Joan in James II's minority, and opposition to the Basle conciliarists, enabled his promotion to bishop of St Andrews (1440). His foundation of St Salvator's College at St Andrews (1450) is his most enduring legacy. His political career was less successful than many historians have believed. He supported the wrong faction in the 1440s, and in the 1450s, despite receiving considerable patronage, particularly the ‘Golden Charter’ (1452), he held no governmental office. Abroad on James II's death (1460), Kennedy was overlooked in Mary of Gueldres's distribution of minority government offices. He was upset, and managed to undermine the queen's policies by a campaign of black propaganda and misogyny, based on his parliamentary popularity. He finally gained possession of James III on her death (December 1463), and acted as royal guardian until his death in May 1465.

Roland Tanner

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