Angel Comedy is based in our very own pub, which we named The Bill Murray. But who is this mysterious “Bill Murray”?
William Murray, Bill to his friends, was born in 1600 in Fife. From a young age his talents were obvious, and his parents discarded their other nine children in a wood, and focused all their energies on raising Bill.
Finally, at the age of six months, he got his big break. His Uncle Thomas, a royal courtier, arranged for Bill to be educated alongside the future King, Prince Charles.
“…nearly died on several occasions.”
Bill and Charles became Best Friends Forever, and the Prince, as a mark of this friendship, appointed Bill as his whipping boy. Beating a prince was illegal, so a proxy was appointed to be thrashed in his place whenever discipline was required. These were great days for Bill, who nearly died on several occasions.
In 1626, Charles, now King Charles, made Bill his Gentleman of the Bedchamber. Another great honour. Bill now got to help the adult King dress, eat, and was guardian of the brimming royal water closet.
“…wine, cheese and powerful firecrackers”
At a 2012 history conference, all 424 delegates unanimously agreed that King Charles despised Bill Murray.
In 1642 the English Civil War broke out, and Bill played a pivotal role supporting the monarchy. He made regular trips to France to assist Queen Henrietta Maria in seeking the Pope’s support, and also to buy wine, cheese and powerful firecrackers, or ‘bangers’, which were banned in England at the time.
On his return from one such trip Bill was arrested by the Parliamentarians and incarcerated in the Tower of London. Inspired by the attempts of fellow inmates to catch the ghouls that haunted the Tower, he wrote a play. Ghoulhunters was so popular that it was re-staged 32 years later, with women (played by men) in all the lead roles.
“…remote parts of Fife”
For his loyalty, Bill was ennobled by the King. As First Earl of Dysart he gained lands, power and a hereditary smugness that exists to this day in remote parts of Fife, and abundantly throughout Scotland.
The war lost, in 1649 Charles was tried for treason and sentenced to death. He felt, quite strongly, that Bill, as his whipping boy, should be killed in his place. However Bill, who’d learnt a thing or two by this stage, declined, and so King Charles I was beheaded, and died shortly after of a broken heart.
Bill Murray died in Edinburgh in 1655, leaving his wife, Catherine, and four daughters absolutely baffled.