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Lindsay, Sir David

Sir David Lindsay (both: lĬn´zē), c.1490–c.1555, Scottish poet. He was a courtier and diplomat by profession. As a writer he was a harsh satirist and moralist who directed most of his invective against the Roman Catholic Church. He never formally left the church, but his exposure of its abuses gives him a place second only to that of John Knox in bringing about the Scottish Reformation. Lindsay's verse is sometimes rich and elevated, sometimes coarsely realistic; his literary technique is frequently made secondary to satirical or didactic themes. In his Testament and Complaynt of Our Soverane Lordis Papyngo (1538) the king's parrot censures certain birds of prey—the clergy of the feathered world—for their hypocrisy and avarice. His long morality play, Ane Pleasant Satyre of the Thrie Estaitis (produced 1540), contains attacks on political abuses. Among Lindsay's other notable works are The Dreme, The Historie and Testament of Squyer Meldrum, and The Monarchie.

See edition of his works by D. Hamer for the Scottish Texts Society (4 vol., 1931–36, repr. 1972).

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Lindsay of the Mount, Sir David

Lindsay of the Mount, Sir David (c.1486–1555). The most important Scottish Renaissance poet, Lindsay was extremely popular in the 16th cent. A Fife laird, from 1508 he was a courtier closely associated with the future James V (1513–42), a herald from 1530, and Lyon king-of-arms from 1542. His numerous works deal extensively with the need for good government and religious reform. In The Testament of the Papyngo (1530) Lindsay provides moral advice to James V and his court, and attacks clerical abuses. Ane Satyre of the Thrie Estatis (1552) calls for the estates to serve the commonweal during the minority of Mary, queen of Scots (1542–67). The Monarche (1554) develops earlier calls for religious reform into strong anti-papalism through a description of corruption at the papal court. Such themes make Lindsay an important source for the political, religious, and cultural issues of Renaissance and Reformation Scotland.

Roland Tanner

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