Patrick, protomartyr of Scottish Protestantism; b. place unknown, c. 1504; d. St. Andrews, Scotland, Feb. 29, 1528. He was a younger son of Sir Patrick Hamilton of Kincavel, Linlithgow. He was intended for the Church, but it is uncertain whether he was ordained. He studied at the University of Paris and graduated there in 1520. He left Paris in 1523 to study at Louvain. Later that year he returned to Scotland and became a student at St. Andrews University. Hamilton, who was early attracted to Lutheranism, came before Beaton, Archbishop of St. Andrews, because of his heterodox views. Beaton caused him to be formally accused of heresy, and to avoid further trouble, Hamilton fled in the spring of 1527 to Wittenburg, where he met Luther and Melanchthon. Later that year he enrolled at the new university of Marburg and became acquainted with Tyndale. In the autumn he returned to St. Andrews, but, because of his unorthodoxy, he again appeared before Beaton, who, however, dealt leniently with him. But Hamilton proved to be recalcitrant, and a further examination by Beaton on articles of faith eventually led to his condemnation and execution by burning.
Bibliography: p. lorimer, Precursors of Knox: Or, Memoirs of P. Hamilton … (Edinburgh 1857), a scholarly life. j. knox, The Historie of the Reformation of the Church of Scotland …, ed. d. buchanan, 2 pts. (London 1644). j. foxe, Actes and Monuments … (London 1563). j. cunningham, The Church History of Scotland …, 2 v. (2d ed. Edinburgh 1882), old but important.
[j. e. paul]