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knew the temper and avarice of Morton, the Lord Somerville, being prepared timely in the morning, waited upon the Regent with his principal advocate, and informed him of the case, of course without any result. On taking leave, however, he drew out his purse on the pretext of giving a fee to the doorkeeper, and left it, as if unconsciously, upon the table. He went quickly down stairs, and took no notice of the Regent's still crying after him, My Lord, you have forgot your purse.' Whereupon the Regent sent a man after him to desire that he would return and breakfast with him, which accordingly the Lord Somerville did, knowing weel that his project had taken effect.'
Nor was it safe to criticise such proceedings :
'Twa poets of Edinburgh, remarking some of Morton's sinistrous dealing, did publish the same to the people by a famous libel written against him; and Morton, hearing of this, causit the men to be brought to Stirling, where they were convict for slandering ane of the King's councillors, and were there baith hangit. .
Which was thought a precedent, never one being hanged for the like before.' +
Nor (to go back for a few years) could the pulpit protect those who took upon them to rebuke the sins of the Regent:
There was ane minister [named Robert Waugh] hangit in Leith (and borne to the gibbet, because he was birsit (bruised) with the boots). The principal cause was that he said to the Earl of Morton, that he defended ane unjust cause, and that he wald repent when nae time was to repent. And when he was required by whom he was commanded to say the same, he answered and said : “By the haly spreit.” In the same year, Mr. Andrew Douglas, minister of Dunglass, was first tortured, and then hanged, for publicly rebuking Morton on account of his living with the widow of Captain Cullen.'1
But there were men whom this tyranny could not daunt. Regent Morton said to Andrew Melville, “There will never be quietness in this country till half-a-dozen of you be hangit or banishit the country.' Tush, sir,' says Mr. Andrew, I have been ready to give my life where it was not half sae weel wared [expended] at the pleasure of my God. I lived out of your country ten years as weel as in it. Let God be glorified : it will not lie in your power to hang or exile his truth.' And King James was obliged to endure language from the pulpit such as would never have been tolerated by Morton.
We must not, however, commit the error of supposing, as Mr. Buckle apparently does, that there was nothing but wickedness and violence in those days. Hear Home of Godscroft's description of his father:
* Chambers, i. p. 115.
4. Ibid., p. 126.
Ibid., p. 79.
§ Ibid., p. 96.
• David Home of Wedderburn was a man remarkable for piety and probity, ingenuity (candour), and integrity; neither was he altogether illiterate, being well versed in the Latin tongue. He had the Psalms, and particularly some short sentences of them, always in his mouth ; such as: “It is better to trust in the Lord than in the princes of the earth :” “ Our hope ought to be placed in God alone.” He particularly delighted in the 146th Psalm, and sung it whilst he played on the harp with the most sincere and unaffected devotion. He was strictly just, utterly detesting all manner of fraud. I remember, when a conversation happened among some friends about prudence and fraud, his son George happened to say that it was not unlawful to do a good action, and for a good end, although it might be brought about by indirect methods, and that this was sometimes necessary. “ What," says he, “ George, do you call ane indirect way? It is but fraud and deceit covered under a specious name, and never to be admitted or practised by a good man.
.." He himself always acted on this principle, and was so strictly just, and so little desirous of what was his neighbour's, that, in the time of the civil wars, when Alexander, his chief, was forfeit for his defection from the queen's party, he might have had his whole patrimony, and also the abbacy of Coldingham, but refused both the one and the other.
· David's first wife, of the Johnstons of Elphinston, in Haddingtonshire, was a paragon of benevolence. She not only supplied the poor bountifully, but often gave large help to superior people who had fallen back in the world. She would give the clothes of her own children to clothe the naked and friendless. Yet, such was her good management, that she left at her death 3000 merks in gold—“ a great sum in those days." ' Everything in the family had a splendid appearance; and this she affected in compliance to her husband's temper. As she was herself, so she instructed her children in the fear of God, and in everything that was good and commendable. To sum up her whole character, she obtained from all the appellation of the Good Lady Wedderburn.'
Hugh Rose of Kilravock, another worshipful country gentleman, being asked by King James 'How he could live amongst such ill turbulent neighbours ?' made this reply,—That they were the best neighbours he could have, for they made him thrice a day go to God upon his knees, when, perhaps, otherways he would not have gone once.'
We will not follow Mr. Buckle through his angry denunciation of the spiritual tyranny which prevailed during the seventeenth century. It is well known how the Kirk domineered when it had the upper hand, and also what heroic constancy it displayed when cruelly oppressed by the Government; but we cannot help remarking the indiscriminate animosity with which Mr. Buckle seizes hold of everything which is alleged
* The Family of Kilravock, Spalding Club, 4to., Edinburgh, 1848.
against anybody, without the slightest balancing of authorities or regard to the principles of historical evidence.
In spite of the Troubles which greatly retarded the growth of the national wealth, the principles of the Reformed Religion took firm root, education became more general, and the Revolution of 1688 found Scotland a very different country from what it had been when the Reformation commenced. Not that the Revolution itself made Scotland free, as some suppose ; for, notwithstanding the celebrated Claim of Right (April, 1689), many persons were imprisoned for long periods without being brought to trial; and there is a shocking instance of cruelty in the case of Henry Neville Payne, an English Roman Catholic gentleman, who was seized in Scotland as accessary to the Jacobite plot of Montgomery and Fergusson. This unhappy man was thrice put to the torture (twice under instructions signed by the King and countersigned by the Earl of Melville), his tormentors being of opinion that they could not preserve life and have gone further ;' yet he confessed nothing. Still, notwithstanding repeated demands for trial, and petitions for mercy on his part, Payne was kept in durance more or less severe, year after year, until ten had elapsed.*
The Union was reckoned in Scotland so questionable a measure that Dr. Robertson, nearly ninety years after, was scrupulous in giving any opinion with respect to it, but agreed with Dr. Somerville that it was effected against the sense of the nation. Upon the latter gentleman's saying
that it might naturally have been expected that the scanty representation from Scotland would be absorbed in the mass of the English representation, especially in any question of conflicting interest between the two countries, he (Robertson) said that this was the more to be feared on account of the disadvantages under which our members suffered immediately after the Union. The want of the English language, and their uncouth manners, were much against them. None of them were men of parts, and they never opened their lips but on Scottish business, and then said little. The late Lord Onslow said to him, “Dr. Robertson, they were oddlooking, dull men. I remember them well; there were no Sir Gilbert Elliots and Mr. Oswalds among them.” The Principal added, from himself, that Sir David Dalrymple, grandfather of the present Lord Hailes, and Mr. Murray, a brother of Lord Mansfield, who afterwards joined the Pretender in 1715, were the first able men, as representatives, sent from Scotland after the Union. Of the last he spoke in terms of high commendation as a man of great abilities, an eloquent speaker, and one who had had the advantage of an English education.
* Chambers, iii., p. 40. Vol. 110.-No. 219.
I said that I thought John Duke of Argyle was an exception to the censure he had expressed. He replied that he referred to members of the House of Commons; that the Duke of Argyle had attended theatres, and read plays much, forming his style upon them, and was a polished rather than able speaker.' *
Among the more modern works illustrating the condition of Scotland during the century which succeeded the Revolution, we may mention Mr. Dennistoun's Memoirs of Sir Robert Strange and Andrew Lumisden, † Lord Cockburn's Memorials of his Times, and the Autobiographies of Carlyle and Somerville.
Dr. Carlyle was born in 1722, and lived to the age of fourscore years. He was present at some of the most striking scenes depicted by Sir Walter Scott in the Heart of Mid-Lothian.' He saw the escape of Robertson from the church and the execution of Wilson, when Porteous caused the soldiers to fire upon the people; he witnessed the orgies of the notorious Lovat and the equally unprincipled Grange, who divided his time between demonology, debauchery, and fanaticism, while his wife was wandering an insane beggar among the poor 'cottars of St. Kilda, whither he had forcibly deported her without being called in question by any one. Carlyle had often heard from Colonel Gardiner's own lips (in terms, by the way, not fully coinciding with the narrative of Doddridge) the story of his conversion. He was one of the famous Edinburgh volunteers who did not repulse the Highland army when it came to occupy the town; but to make amends for this, he assisted to drink up the Burgundy of a neighbour at Preston-pans in all haste, as it would otherwise have fallen into the hands of the Highlanders. He missed seeing the battle at the place just mentioned, owing to the early hour and the extreme rapidity with which it was begun and ended ; but he saw all the operations which preceded or followed it. His description reads like a chapter of Waverley.' He knew John Wilkes during his student-life at Leyden ; saw Chatham, in insolent grandeur, schooling the House of Commons; Bute in his precarious premiership, and the second Pitt in his secure and lofty ascendency. He was well acquainted with Smollett both in his earlier and his later years, accompanied John Home in his visit to London with the tragedy of Douglas' in his pocket; heard judgment given in the House of Lords in the celebrated Douglas cause. He was in habits of intimacy with Hume, Robertson, Adam Smith, Ferguson, and all the most distinguished men of Scotland, and he played a distinguished part in leading the General Assembly of the Kirk at a time when its
* Somerville, p. 270.
† Two vols. 12mo., London, 1855. 8vo., Edinburgh, 1856.
proceedings were of considerable importance. He appears to have been a man of large sympathies, of a fearless and independent character, and an acute observer. Those who imagine, because Boswell has so much to say about Johnson, that the two passed a great portion of their lives together, have assumed, from the incidents which they find recorded under the title of · Autobiography of Dr. Alexander Carlyle,' that his whole life was passed amidst such scenes as he describes. But in this they forget the very end and purpose of the book, as well as the author's own title, which his editor has somewhat arbitrarily discarded. “Having observed,' says Dr. Carlyle, in the very first sentence of his book, how carelessly, and consequently how falsely, history is written, I have long resolved to note down certain facts within my own knowledge, under the title of Anecdotes and Characters of the Times, that may be subservient to a future historian, if not to embellish his page, yet to keep him within the bounds of truth and certainty.' Dr. Carlyle left his work incomplete, the pen having,' says Mr. Burton, literally dropped from the dying author's hand.' It is exceedingly unfair to conclude that he could not have been a worthy parish clergyman because in this fragment he has not obtruded parish matters upon his readers, but has confined himself to recording those episodes which were very far from constituting the daily routine of his life. He was distinguished for his eloquence in the pulpit, and his standard of clerical character and duty was lofty and pure.* Amidst all the controversies in which he was engaged, his personal and pastoral conduct were never for a moment reflected
More than this, though plainly not a faultless man, he was respected and esteemed, to his dying day, by many of those who themselves possessed the highest titles to respect.
Dr. Somerville, on the other hand [born 1741, died 1830], was of a retiring and quiet disposition, and his Memoirs of my own Life and Times' refer more distinctly to the hallowed duties in which his mind and affections were engaged; but his pen obtained for him a creditable place in historical literature, and it was his lot to be familiarly acquainted with many of the most eminent of his countrymen, from Sir Gilbert Elliot, one of the acutest intellects of the last century, down to Sir Walter Scott. He was the father of the late Dr. William Somerville, an eminent public servant, who will long be remembered for the extent and variety of his attainments and for his kind
* See a Sermon preached by him in 1767; printed in the second volume of “The Scotch Preacher; a Collection of Sermons by some of the most eminent Ministers of the Church of Scotland:' 4 vols. 12mo., 2nd ed., Edinburgh, 1789.