Yonge, James (d. p.1425), a Dublin notary of Anglo-Irish extraction, possibly related to the William Yonge who was archdeacon of Meath 1417–37, was commissioned by James Butler (qv), 4th earl of Ormond, to compose a new version of the ‘Secreta secretorum’ during Ormond's first term as lieutenant of Ireland. The ‘Secreta’ was thought to be the advice given by Aristotle to Alexander the Great, and copies appear in the later middle ages in most major languages. Yonge used an Anglo-French version of the ‘Secreta’ compiled by Joffroi de Waterford (qv) in the fourteenth century as his exemplar but, according to Ormond's wishes, translated the work into English. While Yonge's version, interesting in itself as an early example of the use of Hiberno-English, followed the general outline of the ‘Secreta’, he freely adapted the material, using events from Irish history (including events from Ormond's first lieutenancy) to illustrate his points, and added large sections dealing with medical lore.
Yonge continued to be a supporter of Ormond and was imprisoned in Trim castle by the pro-Talbot faction (January–October 1423) before being moved to Dublin. One of Ormond's first acts during his second lieutenancy was to pardon Yonge on 10 May 1425. Several manuscripts of Yonge's work have survived in the British Library, Lambeth Palace, and the Bodleian library.