Leslie or Lesley, John, 1527–96, Scottish bishop, historian, and statesman. After studying in France, he returned (c.1554) to Scotland, where he opposed the Reformation. He became ecclesiastical adviser to Mary Queen of Scots and a member of her privy council and was appointed (1566) bishop of Ross. In 1569 he was made Mary's representative at the court of Elizabeth I of England, but he was arrested (1571) for complicity in the plot to marry the Scottish queen to Thomas Howard, 4th duke of Norfolk. He was released after his full confession and fled to France and then to Rome. An able historian, he left valuable accounts of the Catholic view of the events of his time. His 10-volume Latin history of Scotland (1578) was translated by James Dalrymple (ed. by E. G. Cody, 1888–95).
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