His succession to the throne as a minor caused problems. In 1157 Malcolm was compelled to cede Cumberland and Westmorland to Henry II in exchange for the Earldom of Huntingdon, but there is no suggestion in contemporary sources that he was compromising his kingship in any way by doing so.
Against the wishes of the leading men of his kingdom (who had resented the Anglo-Norman ways of his grandfather David I), Malcolm went to France in 1159 with Henry II of England and was present at the siege of Toulouse.
On his return in 1160, six of his Earls besieged him in Perth Castle, but the clergy intervened and the king and his nobles were reconciled. Malcolm's homage to Henry II in 1163 led to further rebellions by the earls in 1164.
Malcolm died unmarried in Jedburgh on 9 December 1165 at the age of 23 and was buried beside his grandfather in front of the high altar in the Church of the Holy Trinity, Dunfermline.
Image: Engraving of Malcolm IV (right) seated beside David I of Scotland.