When, in the 1580s, the young King James VI of Scotland gathered round him at court in Edinburgh a group of poets, Alexander Montgomerie was the accepted 'maister poete' of this 'Castalian Band'. During the first half of that decade, Montgomerie was granted a pension by the King, and much of his poetry dates from this period. More difficult times followed when Montgomerie lived abroad, and his pension was claimed by someone else. Although his struggle to claim it back inspired a deal of clever poetry, he was not successful in the long legal battle. In 1597 he was outlawed for his part in a Catholic plot, and when he died the following year his Catholicism caused complications over the place of his burial, which remains unknown.