Reay, p. 197.
 Earl of Mar's Journal.
 Earl of Mar's Journal.
 Reay, p. 308.
 Brown's Highlands.
 Mar Papers.
 Reay, p. 309.
 From the MS. letter in the possession of Archibald Macdonald, Esq.
 The agent of the Jacobites in Edinburgh.
 Mar Papers, in the possession of Gibson Craig, Esq.
 Duke of Ormond.
 Lady Nairn.
 The Chevalier.
 The Dutch auxiliaries, to the amount of 6000, demanded by the English government, as accorded by treaty, arrived, to the number of 3000, in the Thames, on the 16th of November, expressly to assist in suppressing the rebellion, and proceeded to Scotland on the 25th. They were afterwards followed by 3000 more, who, being obliged to put in at Harwich, marched on by land. Reay, p. 327.
 The King.
 Lord Grange.
 The following note is annexed to this letter. It is in the hand-writing of Bishop Keith:—"Son of Sir Wm. Douglass, colonel of a regiment, and who had come over with the Prince of Orange to England, and was made Knight and Colonel by the said Prince, as says my Lady Bruce. The story Wm. Erskine, brother to the Earl of Buchan, told me, as the King and he were travelling through France at this period, they saw the Chevalier's picture set up in some of the post-houses, and they were told this was done by the desire of the English Ambassador, who had promised a reward to those who should stop and apprehend the person whom the picture resembled."
 A concealment in the House of Kineil, near Borrostowness.
 The younger brother of the Marquis of Tullibardine, but assuming the forfeited title as head of the house.
 Henry Straiton.
 I have had the advantage of seeing an original crayon portrait of the Chevalier, in the possession of Kirkpatrick Sharpe, Esq., of Edinburgh; also, a miniature painted at Rome, belonging to Mr. Sharpe. In the miniature the eyes are darker, and have more animation than in the crayon drawing. The portrait lately placed at Hampton Court gives a much more pleasing impression of James Stuart than either of these likenesses: the countenance is animated and benevolent.
 "A True Account of the Proceedings at Perth," by a Rebel, supposed to be the Master of Sinclair.
 That portion of the letter only which refers to the Chevalier appears to have been printed. I have given the entire letter from which the account was taken. A portion of this letter is published in Brown's History of the Highlands, vol. iv. p. 332.
 Reay, p. 352.
 MS. Letter in the possession of Alexander Macdonald, Esq., of the Register Office, Edinburgh.
 Mar Papers.
 Thomas Bruce, afterwards Earl of Kincardine.
 The loss of the ship from France.
 An allusion to the Marquis of Huntley and Lord Seaforth.
 Mar Papers.
 Reay, p. 364.
 Flying Post, or the Post Master, for January 28 and 31, 1716.
 Evening Post, Feb. 2, 1716.
 Reay, p. 364.
 Mar Correspondence.
 Probably Wigton.
 Brown's Highlands, vol. iv. p. 337.
 Patten, p. 248.
 Reay, p. 367.
 Lord Mar's Journal.
 A copy is given of the Prince's letter in Dr. Brown's work on the Highlands, vol. iv. p. 340. It is a sort of expostulation with the Duke, but mildly and sensibly expressed. "I fear," he said, alluding to the British people, "they will find yet more than I the smart of preferring a foreign yoke to the obedience they owe me."
 Bolingbroke's Letter to Sir William Wyndham.
 Letter to Sir Wm. Wyndham, p. 139.
 Lockhart, vol. ii. p. 17.
 Lockhart, vol. ii. p. 64.
 Coxe's Papers in the British Museum, MS. 9129. Plut. cxxxviii. II.
 I find that the biographers of Lord Mar, in the short lives given of him, (see Chambers's Scottish Biography, Georgian Era, &c.) have overlooked this correspondence. The letter from Sir Luke Schwaub, in French, with a translation, and the answer of Lord Carteret, in the Coxe Papers, although not exactly relevant to my subject, are interesting. "A thousands thanks," writes the generous Lord Carteret, in reply to Schwaub, "for your private letter, which affords me the means of obviating any calumny against the memory of a person who will always be dear to me." [That is, Lord Sunderland.] "I have shown it to the King, who is entirely satisfied with it." The anxiety on the part of Government to secure the papers of Lord Sunderland, was extreme, and affords a collateral proof of this connivance. The mysterious documents were seized by order of the King, and inspected by Lord Townshend, and not a trace of the correspondence was left when the papers were restored to the family. The seizure occasioned a suit between the executors of the Earl of Sunderland and the two Secretaries of State.—Coxe MSS.
 Hardwicke Papers, vol. ii. p. 252.
 Hardwicke Papers, vol. ii. p. 565.
 Hardwicke Papers, p. 586.
 Hardwicke Papers, vol. ii. p. 600.
 Chambers, art. Erskine.
 From original letters, for which I am indebted to Alexander Macdonald, Esq., of the Register Office, Edinburgh.
 The spelling is preserved as in the original.
 These words were written in the Chevalier's own hand.
 Letters in the possession of A. Macdonald, Esq.
 Lockhart Papers, vol. ii. p. 221.
 Lockhart Papers.
 See various papers in the State Paper Office. Collections for 1722.
 Lockhart, vol. ii. p. 149.
 Id. p. 183.
 Lockhart, vol. ii. p. 198.
 Mr. C. Kirkpatrick Sharpe was good enough to inform me that he had seen some letters on this subject, which exculpated Lady Mary W. Montague. The correspondence was destroyed, but it conveyed to the mind of that accomplished and erudite gentleman, who saw it, the impression that the charge against Lady Mary Wortley was groundless.
JAMES, EARL OF DERWENTWATER.
In the vale of Hexham, on the summit of a steep hill, clothed with wood, and washed at its base by a rivulet, called the Devil's Water, stand the ruins of Dilstone Castle. A bridge of a single arch forms the approach to the castle or mansion; the stream, then mingling its rapid waters with those of the Tyne, rushes over rocks into a deep dell embowered with trees, above a hundred feet in height, and casting a deep gloom over the sounding waters beneath their branches.
Through the arch of the bridge, a mill, an object ever associated with peace and plenty, is seen; and, beyond it, the eye rests upon the bare, dilapidated walls of the castle. Its halls, its stairs, its painted chambers, may still be traced; its broken towers command a view of romantic beauty; but all around it is desolate and ruined, like the once proud and honoured family who dwelt beneath its roof.
This was once the favourite abode of the Ratcliffes, or Radcliffes, supposed to be a branch of the Radcliffes in Lancashire, from whom were, it is said, descended the Earls of Sussex, who became the owners of Dilstone in the days of Queen Elizabeth.
During several generations after the Conquest, a family of the name of Devilstone was in possession of Dilstone, until the time of Henry the Third. The estates then passed to many different owners; the Tynedales, the Crafters, the Claxtons, were successively the masters of the castle; and it was not, according to some accounts, until the tenth year of Queen Elizabeth's reign, that it first owned for its lord one of that unfortunate race to whom it finally belonged, until escheated to the Crown. But certain historians have asserted that, so early as the reign of Henry the Sixth, Dilstone was the seat of Sir Nicholas Radcliffe. At this period, too, other estates were added to those already enjoyed by the Radcliffes. Sir Nicholas married the heiress of Sir John De Derwentwater, to whom had belonged, for several centuries, the manors of Castlerigg and Keswick, and who, since the time of Edward the First, had enjoyed great consideration in the county of Cumberland. This alliance with the Derwentwater family, although it brought to the Radcliffe the possession of a territory, which, for its beauty and value, monarchs might envy, did not for many years, entice them to a removal to the mansion of Castlerigg. That old dwelling-place, a gloomy fortress, among "storm-shaken mountains and howling wildernesses," was far less commodious than the castle at Dilstone, then in great fame from the flourishing monastery which reared its head in the Vale of Hexham. Castlerigg, being, eventually, abandoned by the Radcliffes, went utterly to decay; the materials of the old manor-house are supposed to have been employed in forming a new residence on Lord's Island, in Keswick Lake; and the estate was divided into tenancies, which, in process of time, were infranchised. The ancient demesne of the De Derwentwaters has now passed into the hands of the Trustees of Greenwich Hospital, and the oaks of the park which skirts the lake have of late years supplied much valuable timber.
The family of Radcliffe continued, during several centuries after the intermarriage with the De Derwentwaters, to increase in wealth and importance. It was not, however, ennobled until the reign of James the Second, in 1688, when, in consequence of the eldest son of Sir Francis Radcliffe having married during his father's life time the Lady Mary Tudor, a natural daughter of Charles the Second, by Mistress Mary Davis, Sir Francis was created Earl of Derwentwater, Baron Dilstone, and Viscount Langley. "This alliance to the royal blood," says the biographer of Charles Radcliffe, "gave them a title to match with the noblest families in the kingdom, and was likewise the occasion of that strict attachment which the several branches of the Derwentwater family have inviolably preserved for the line of Stuarts ever since." There was also another reason for this act of royal favour on the one hand, and for this devotion on the other: Sir George Radcliffe, we find by the Macpherson papers, was Governor of James the Second when he was Duke of York, and during the troubles of the Great Rebellion; and, under his care, the young prince remained some time in the city of Oxford.
Whatsoever may be thought of the effect of this connection with royalty, in ennobling an ancient and loyal race, the marriage produced a lasting influence on the fortunes of the family. That they were proud of the alliance appears from the circumstance that the children of that marriage used to wear the prince's feather, that plume which has, since the days of Edward the Black Prince, distinguished the heir apparent to royalty. But the consanguinity in blood to the Stuarts produced another, and a far more serious result. The sons of the Lady Mary Tudor and of Francis, second Earl of Derwentwater, were educated, like brothers, with the son of the abdicated monarch. James Radcliffe, who was born about the year 1692, and who afterwards became Earl of Derwentwater, passed his childhood at St. Germains with his royal namesake, James Stuart. The brother of the Earl, Charles, was also brought up in France; both of these youths, whose fate was afterwards so tragical, were reared in the faith of the Church of Rome, and under the tuition of the Roman Catholic clergy. They thus grew up, without perhaps hearing, certainly without entertaining, a doubt of those rights which they died to assert. "The late Earl of Derwentwater," writes the biographer of Charles Radclyffe, "and his brother Charles were so strongly attached to the Pretender's party, that their advice or consent was not so much as asked in those consultations that were held among the disaffected previous to the Rebellion; neither did the party think it necessary, because they were always sure of them whenever they should come to action."
In 1705, Francis, Earl of Derwentwater, died; and during a season of domestic tranquillity, whilst as yet the Jacobites were full of hopes that the succession would be restored to the Stuart line, his son James succeeded to the Earldom, and to the vast estates which had accumulated to give dignity and influence to rank. Besides the castle of Dilstone and Castlerigg, which Leland, who visited Cumberland in 1539, describes as still being the "head place of the Radcliffes," many other valuable properties, had been gradually added to the patrimonial possessions.
It was the disposition of Lord Derwentwater to employ the advantages of wealth and birth to the benefit of others. He returned to England, English in heart, and became the true model of an English nobleman. "He was a man," said a contemporary writer, "formed by nature to be beloved; for he was of so universal a beneficence, that he seemed to live for others." Residing among his own people, among them he spent his estate, and passed his days in deeds of kindness, and in acts of charity, which regarding no differences of faith as obstacles to the course of that heavenly virtue, were extended alike by this unfortunate nobleman to Protestant and to Roman Catholic. In his days, Dilstone was the scene of an open-hearted hospitality, "which," observes the renegade Jacobite who has chronicled the events of the period, "few in that country do, and none can, come up to." That castle-hall, now ruined and for ever deserted, was thronged by the distressed, who, whether the poor denizens of the place or the wanderer by the way side, found there relief, and went away consoled. The owner of the castle gave bread to thousands, who long remembered his virtues, and mourned his fate. He conciliated the good will of his equals, and disarmed the animosity of those who differed from him in opinion. Beloved, trusted, almost reverenced in the prime of youth, James Earl of Derwentwater held, at the period of the first Rebellion, the enviable position of one whose station was remembered only in conjunction with the higher dignity of virtue. To the solid qualities of integrity, he added a sweetness and courtesy of manner which must have lent to even homely features their usual charm. Blessing and blest, he thus dwelt amid the romantic scenery of the Vale of Hexham.
Lord Derwentwater married Anna Maria, one of the five daughters of Sir John Webb, Baronet of Odstock in Wiltshire. An ancestor of Sir John Webb had first acquired the title in the reign of Charles the First for "his family having both shed their blood in the King's cause, and contributed, as far as they were able, with their purses, in his defence," as is expressed in their patent.
During the reign of Queen Anne, Lord Derwentwater took no part in the various intrigues which were carried on by the Jacobite party. He lived peaceably at Dilstone, where his name was long honoured after the tragical events which hurried him into an early grave had occurred. But this tranquil demeanour does not argue, as it has been supposed, that the early playmate of James had become indifferent to the cause of the Stuarts. The friends of the exiled family founded their hopes of its restoration on the well-known partiality of Queen Anne for her brother, and on the circumstance of her having seen the last of her children consigned to the tomb. There seems no reason to doubt but that, had Anne lived longer, she would have taken measures, in unison with the wishes of the bulk of the nobility, and in conjunction with her confidential ministers, to have placed the Chevalier St. George the next in succession. In this hope, the wishes of the most respectable portion of the Jacobite nobility were tranquillized.
The sudden decease of Queen Anne disconcerted the hopes of those who had been thus waiting for the course of events; and the immediate change of ministry depriving those who were favourable to the house of Stuart of power, the succession of George the First was secured, under the aspect, for a few weeks, of the most perfect national repose. It has been well explained, that, unless some circumstances connected with the birth and education of the Chevalier had favoured the interests of Hanover, a very different result would have appeared. The notion so diligently spread abroad, of a supposititious birth—the foreign education of the young Prince—above all, the pains which had been taken to inculcate in his heart a devotion to the faith of both his parents, were considerations which strongly favoured the accession of the Elector of Hanover.
A year passed away, and that tranquillity was succeeded by an ill-concerted, immature enterprise, headed by a man of every talent except the right sort; and chilled, rather than aided, by the presence of that melancholy exile who presented himself for the first and last time, to sadden by the gloom of his aspect, and the inertness of his measures, the hearts that yearned to welcome him back to Britain.
It was towards the latter end of August, in 1715, in the shire of Perth, that the people first began to assemble themselves in a body, until they marched to a small market town, named Kirk Michael, where the Chevalier was first proclaimed, and his standard set up. Meantime several noblemen and gentlemen, both in England and in Scotland, influenced by the Earl of Mar, began to collect their servants and dependants from different places, and under various pretexts, for their proceedings. There were also measures concerted in London by the Chevalier's friends; and among the more active of the partisans, was a certain Captain Robert Talbot, an Irish officer, who, upon being acquainted with the projected insurrection, took shipping and sailed for Newcastle-upon-Tyne. By this agent, the resolutions which had been adopted by the Jacobites in London were conveyed to their friends in the north of England. This was part of the scheme of the Jacobites; London was the centre of all their conferences, and from the metropolis intelligence was secretly conveyed in various directions: measures were concerted; the parties who were to engage were furnished with means to act, and brought together; letters were carried by private hands to various confederates, and debates and correspondence were carried on some months before the Rebellion actually broke out.
The plot was managed with care and address. The common conveyance of letters was dangerous, and the office of delivering them was undertaken by gentlemen of Jacobite principles, who rode from place to place as travellers, pretending merely that they were viewing the country, and making inquiries to gratify curiosity: these travellers were all Irish and Papists.
Another class of agents, consisting of Mr. Clifton, a brother of Sir Gervase Clifton, and of Mr. Beaumont, both gentlemen of Nottinghamshire, and attended by Mr. Buxton, a clergyman of Derbyshire, rode like gentlemen, with servants, but were armed with swords and pistols. These emissaries also continued moving from place to place, and kept up a constant intercourse between the disaffected parties, until all things were ready for action.
Under these circumstances, Government took a decided step, which, as it turned out, brought the whole concerted plot into action sooner than the confederates had originally intended. Means were taken for the apprehension of several suspected Jacobites. Towards the end of September, Lord Derwentwater, among others, received notice that there was a warrant issued by the Secretary of State to apprehend him, and that messengers were actually arrived at Durham in order to seize his person.
On receiving this information, Lord Derwentwater, who had at that time taken no ostensible part in the consultations of the Jacobites, and who, as it was thought by many who knew him intimately, was undecided whether to join the insurgents or not, adopted the line of conduct most suitable to innocence. He repaired to the house of a neighbouring justice of the peace, whose name has not been given at length and boldly placed himself in his hands. He demanded what were the grounds of his accusation. Unhappily the magistrate's loyalty was not unimpeachable. Had this gentleman been zealously affected to the Government, or had he been a true friend to Lord Derwentwater, he would either have persuaded that nobleman to surrender to the messengers of Government, or he would have detained him, and thus prevented the rash outbreak which afterwards ensued. Such is the opinion of one who knew all the parties concerned in the insurrection well. Such is the statement of Mr. Robert Patten, himself a Jacobite, and chaplain to Mr. Forster. He afterwards turned King's evidence, and received for that treachery, or, as he is pleased to call it, penitence, a suitable remuneration.
Lord Derwentwater unfortunately adopted a course which could but have one termination. He concealed himself from those who were employed to apprehend him. Clear from any direct imputation, had he then given himself up, he would have been released; and he might have been deterred from a participation in the disastrous scenes which ensued. He had now two children, a son and a daughter. He had many valuable considerations to forfeit for the one abstract principle of indefeasible right to the throne. Few men had more to venture. Many of the Jacobites went into the field with tarnished characters, and with ruined fortunes: they might gain,—they could not lose by the perilous undertaking. Amid the bands of high-born and highly principled men who co-operated in both the Rebellions, adventurers would appear, whose previous lives shed dishonour upon any cause; but the irreproachable, the prosperous, the beloved, could desire little more for themselves than what they already possessed: they ventured their rich and glorious barks upon the current; and let those who sully every motive with suspicion, say that there was no virtue, no patriotism, in the Jacobite party.
By his own descendant, Lord Derwentwater is believed to have hesitated upon the verge of his fate, but to have been urged into it by his brother Charles. Young and ardent, courageous even to rashness, the first to offer himself where an enterprise was the most hazardous, seeming to set no value upon his life where glory was to be obtained, the darling of his party, and, to sum up the whole, only twenty-two years of age, Mr. Radcliffe rashly drew his brother into a confederacy, so agreeable to his own ambitious and fearless spirit. But there was another individual on whom the responsibility of that luckless movement in the North must chiefly rest. This was Mr. Thomas Forster the younger, of Etherston in the county of Northumberland, and member for the county. During the first thirty years of his life, this gentleman had scarcely been known beyond the precincts of his paternal estate. He became a member of Parliament, and was drawn into the vortex of party without talents to adorn or judgment to guide his conduct. Although a Protestant, Mr. Forster soon made his house the place of rendezvous for all the non-jurors and disaffected people of the county in which he lived; and he became involved in the dangers of their schemes, almost before he was aware of the perils which he was about to encounter. The party of the Jacobites was composed of very dissimilar materials. Whilst some adopted its projects to retrieve character, or to attain, as they vainly hoped, fortune, whilst others were actuated by genuine motives, there were many who mingled in the mazes of the intricate politics of that day from vanity, and the love of being at the head of faction: such was Forster; and his career was unsatisfactory and inglorious as his character was weak.
A warrant for Mr. Forster's apprehension having been sent forth, he was, like Lord Derwentwater, obliged to fly from place to place, until he arrived at the house of Mr. Fenwick, at Bywell. Lord Derwentwater, meantime, had been secreted under the roof of a man named Lambert, in a cottage, where he had remained in safety. His horses had been seized by one of the neighbouring magistrates, and had been detained in custody for several weeks, pursuant to an order in council; yet, when he had need of them they were returned. "I afterwards asked that lord," Mr. Patten relates, "how he came so quietly by his horses from the justice's possession, whom the believing neighbourhood esteemed a most rigid Whig. I was answered thus, by that lord's repeating a saying of Oliver Cromwell's, 'that he could gain his ends with an ass-load of gold,' and left me to make the application."
Mr. Fenwick, of Bywell, was a secret, though not an avowed Jacobite; and it was soon agreed that at his house should be collected all those who were favourable to the cause. A meeting of the party was accordingly held: it was decided that finding there was now no longer any safety in shifting from place to place, and that since, in a few days they might all be hurried up to London, and secured in prisons, where they might be separately examined, and induced to betray each other;—it was now time to appear boldly in arms, and to show the loyalty of the confederates to King James.
In pursuance of this resolution, the place and hour of meeting were appointed the very next morning; the sixth of October was named, and all were to assemble at Greenrig. Here those who rode from Bywell were met by Mr. Forster, with a party of twenty gentlemen. The meeting might have recalled the days of the Cavaliers: the winding of the river Tyne in the valley; the rural village of Bywell; on the rising ground to the right a ruin, once the fortress of the vale, and held in former times by the Baliols, presented a scene of tranquil beauty, which some who met that day were destined never to look upon again.
The low situation of Greenrig was deemed inconvenient for the purpose of the insurgents, and the party ascended a hill called the Waterfalls, from which they could see the distant country. This spot is thus described: "As you look upon Bywell from the most pleasing point of view, the landskip lies in the following order:—from the road near the front of the river, the ruined piers of a bridge become the front objects; behind which, in a regular cascade, the whole river falls over a wear, extended from bank to bank, in height above eight feet perpendicular; a mill on the right hand, a salmon lock on the left: the tower and the two churches stretch along the banks of the upper basin of the river, with a fine curvature; the solemn ruins of the ancient castle of the Baliols lift their towers above the trees on the right, and make an agreeable contrast with the adjoining mansion-house. The whole background appears covered with wood."
On this height Mr. Forster and his party paused; but they had not been long there before they saw the Earl of Derwentwater, who came that morning from Dilstone, advancing. He was attended by several friends and by all his servants, some mounted on his coach-horses, and all well armed. As they marched through Corbridge, this gallant troop drew their swords. They were reinforced by several other gentlemen at the house of Mr. Errington, where they stopped; and they then advanced to the spot where their friends awaited their approach. They now mustered sixty horse, mostly composed of gentlemen and their attendants. After a short council it was decided that they should proceed towards the river Coquet, to Plainfield: here they were joined by several stragglers: they marched that evening to Rothbury a small market-town, where they remained all night, and continued their march on the following morning, the seventh of October, to Warkworth Castle.
In thus assembling his friends and his tenantry, Lord Derwentwater was not blameless of undue influence and oppression. The instances, indeed, of threats and absolute compulsion being used to augment the forces of the Jacobites, and to draw unwilling dependants into participation, are very numerous; they may be collected from various petitions, borne out by evidence, among the State Papers for 1715 and 1716. It is true that such excuses were certain to be alleged by many persons unjustly; but, where the charges were substantiated, we must with pain confess that the virtues of the Earl of Derwentwater, as well as those of other Jacobites, are sullied by a violent exercise of power over their tenantry. One man, named George Gibson, afterwards, in memorialising Lord Townshend from Newgate, affirms that upon his refusal to carry a message from Lord Derwentwater to Mr. Forster, two days before the insurrection, and returning to his own house instead, he was one night dragged out of bed by seven or eight men, and hurried off to serve in the said insurrection without a single servant of his own attending him. It was proved also, by King's evidence, that the unfortunate man did all in his power to escape from Kelso, and really made the attempt; but it was defeated, for he was ever an object of suspicion to the Earl of Derwentwater and Mr. Forster, whose watchfulness kept him among the rebel troops. Party may do much to blunt the feelings; yet there was too much of what was good in the character of Lord Derwentwater for him, in the solitude of his own prison, not to remember in after days the heavy responsibilities which even by one act of this nature he had incurred, in compelling a man to act against his will and conscience.
Warkworth was probably chosen as a resting-place for the insurgents, on account of its strength. Situated only three-quarters of a mile from the sea, on the river Coquet, over which is thrown a bridge, guarded by a lofty tower, the Castle of Warkworth, which guards the town, commands a view both varied with objects of interest and importance.
From a lofty turret of the castle a great extent of land and ocean is to be seen. The great Tower of the Percys, from which this turret rises, is decorated with the lion of Brabant, and is seated on the brink of a cliff above the town. From this lofty structure the eye, stretching along the coast, may discern the castles of Dunstanbrough and Bamborough: the Fern Islands, dotted upon the face of the waters, the Port of Alemouth, and, at a little distance, the mouth of the river Coquet, with its island and ruined monastery. To the north, a richly cultivated country extends as far as Alnwick; to the south lies a plain, interspersed with villages and woods; the shore, to which it inclines, is indented with many ports and creeks; the smoke rising from many scattered hamlets, and the spires of churches enliven the smiling prospect.
In this secure station the rebels remained for two days; and here Mr. Forster assumed the rank of General of the Forces in the North, a title which had been bestowed on him by the Earl of Mar. On the day after his arrival at Warkworth, Mr. Forster sent Mr. Buxton, who was chaplain to the troops to desire Mr. Ton, the parish clergyman, to pray for the Chevalier as King; and, in the Litany, for Mary, the Queen Mother, and to omit the petition for King George, the Prince and Princess of Wales, &c. Mr. Ton declining to make this alteration, Mr. Buxton took possession of the reading-desk, and performed the service, whilst the deposed clergyman took flight, and, hastening to Newcastle, gave notice there of what had occurred. This was the first place where the Chevalier was prayed for in England; and Mr. Buxton's sermon, observes our historian, "gave mighty encouragement to his hearers, being full of exhortations, flourishing arguments, and cunning insinuations to be hearty in the cause." These incentives were aided by a "comely personage," and considerable eloquence and erudition.
On the following day, after proclaiming James King of England with all due formality and with the sound of trumpet, Mr. Forster attending the ceremony in disguise, the troops marched to Morpeth, their numbers increasing as they went. At Felton Bridge, they were joined by seventy horse, composed of gentlemen from the borders; and by the time they reached Morpeth, their number had augmented to three hundred: these were all horse-soldiers: Mr. Forster refused the foot as auxiliaries, otherwise the increase would have been considerable. The reason assigned for this rejection was the impossibility of supplying the men with arms; but the fairest assurances were given to the friends of the cause that arms and ammunition would soon be procured, and regiments listed forthwith.
The spirits of the Jacobite army were now high; their hopes were raised by the daily increase of their party. Newcastle was their next object, and thither they prepared to march, having first proclaimed the Chevalier,—Mr. Buxton taking upon himself the office of herald. Newcastle was, however, on her defence: the city gates were closed against the troops, and they turned towards Hexham, and thence marched to a moor near Dilstone Castle, and here they halted for some days. This was a feint, as they intended, it is thought, to have surprised the town of Newcastle. But the news they received from that place were far from encouraging. The gentry in the neighbourhood had rallied for its defence; and Lord Scarborough, the lord-lieutenant of the county, had entered the town with a body of men. Still there was a powerful High Church party, who, as the Jacobites hoped, would declare for the Chevalier. It was from Newcastle that Lord Derwentwater had been apprised, in the first instance, that there were messengers sent to apprehend him. The insurgents therefore, continued near Hexham, where they seized on all the horses and arms they could, read prayers in the churches for King James, and proclaimed him in the market-place.
The Earl of Derwentwater had appointed his brother to the command of his troop, whilst Captain Shaftoe was under Mr. Radcliffe. This, in some respects, was an unfortunate step: the young and brave commander had never even seen an army before: he was inexperienced, and ignorant of all military discipline: what he wanted in knowledge, he is said, however, to have made up for by the influence he acquired over his men, and by the power he had of inciting them to great exploits.
Whilst the rebel forces lay at Hexham, they received the intelligence that Lord Kenmure, the Earls of Nithisdale, of Carnwath, and Wintoun, had risen in Nithisdale, and had marched thence to England to join the troops in Northumberland, and had even advanced as far as Rothbury. On the nineteenth of October, Mr. Forster joined the Scottish army at Rothbury, and afterwards marched with an increasing force to Kelso. Here prayers were read in the great kirk by Mr. Buxton; "and I," relates Mr. Patten, "preached on these words, Deut. xxi. 17,—the latter part of the verse: 'The right of the first-born is his.'" The service of the Church of England was then read for the first time on that side of the Tweed.
William Gordon, Viscount Kenmure, had the command of the Jacobite army until they had crossed the Tweed. Like the Earl of Derwentwater, this unfortunate nobleman is declared to have shewn reluctance to take up arms. On having been solicited by the Earl of Mar to command the forces, and assured that he would join him, he at first refused the offer, but had finally acceded, and had set up the standard of the Chevalier at Moffat, in Annandale. The standard was made, for this occasion, by Lady Kenmure, the sister of Robert, sixth Earl of Carnwath. It was very handsome; one side being blue, with the arms of Scotland wrought in gold; on the other side a thistle,—the words so often uttered during the Rebellion, and re-echoed in many a Scottish heart, "No Union," were wrought underneath the thistle. Above it were the words NEMO ME IMPUNE LACESSIT; white pendants were attached to the standard, on which were inscribed—"For our Wronged King and Oppressed Country!" "For our Lives and Liberties!"
But the nobleman who had taken this prominent part in the Rebellion of 1715, although possessed of extraordinary knowledge in politics and civil affairs, was an utter stranger to all military business. His mild temper and his unoffending character inspired compassion for his subsequent fate, but unfitted him for the office of command: his gentler qualities were united, nevertheless, to a resolute and lofty mind. The fate of this nobleman, like that of his most distinguished friends, was a brief tragedy.
Lord Kenmure had a troop of gentlemen with him, the command of which he gave to the Hon. Bazil Hamilton of Beldoun, and a nephew of the Duke of Hamilton.
Among other characters who were conspicuous on this occasion, was the celebrated Brigadier Mackintosh. The sixth regiment, named after the Brigadier as chief of the clan, was commanded by a kinsman. The Brigadier had served in Germany, and had there gained his military rank. Descended from the ancient house of Fife, the chieftain had increased his influence by marrying, while a minor, the heiress of Clanchattan, in right of whom he became chieftain of that clan, comprising many others. His motto, "Touch not the cat without a glove," and the coat-of-arms supported by two wild cats, with a cat for the crest, were not inappropriate. No suspicion had been entertained of Mackintosh's adherence to the Chevalier, with whom he became acquainted abroad, until he actually joined the party.
The Earl of Carnwath, Lord Nairn, Lord Charles Murray, and the Earl of Wintoun, commanded the other Scottish regiments, which were generally better armed than those of the English. The Earl of Derwentwater, and the Lords Widdrington had the two principal English regiments, of which there were four.
On the twenty-fifth of October, the united army of Scots and English left Kelso, and marched to Jedburgh. On their march, some of the Scots, taking umbrage, left the army under the guidance of the Earl of Wintoun; and although that nobleman afterwards returned with his troop, above four hundred Highlanders deserted, and returned to their country.
During the progress of the insurgent forces, there is little reason to conclude that Lord Derwentwater took a very active or important part in the various consultations which were held, always with great disunion, and with a melancholy want of judgment, between the General, Mr. Forster, and his military council. The amiable nobleman appears to have assigned to his less discreet brother the entire guidance of his troop. "His temper and disposition," as he expresses it in his defence, "disposed him to peace. He was totally inexperienced in martial affairs; that he entered upon the undertaking without any previous concert with its chief promoters,—without any preparation of men, horses, and arms, or other warlike accoutrements," was at once an instance of his imprudence and a mitigation of his error. There was, indeed, no doubt but that Lord Derwentwater might have brought many hundreds of his followers to the field, even from one portion of his estate only; for he possessed the extensive lead mines on Alstone Moor, where a large body of men were daily employed, and received from him their sole means of support.
But whether or not this unfortunate nobleman failed in energy or in zeal; whether he entered with his whole heart into the cause of James Stuart; or whether, with the conscientious scruples of a gentle nature, he shrank from involving in the risk of this insurrection the majority of his humble dependants, he acted throughout the whole of this brief campaign with the consideration for others so characteristic of his mind. He truly affirmed on his trial, that no one could charge him with any cruel, severe, or harsh action during his continuance in arms: and his conduct in the last extremity corresponded to his previous forbearance. Such dispositions appear to have been cherished, indeed, by the rest of the Jacobite party. The merciful temper of the Chevalier, and his known aversion to destructive measures, may have had its influence over those who asserted his claims. There was something like the spirit of the cavalier of the Great Rebellion in Mr. Forster's reply to some of his officers, who wished to put down or burn a Presbyterian meetinghouse at Penrith: "It is by clemency, and not by cruelty, that we are to prevail."
After the insurgent troops had marched from place to place for some time, it was decided that the English regiments should recross the border; and after many disputes and much loss of time, they resolved on a march into Lancashire, a country abounding at that time in Roman Catholic gentry, and strongly Jacobite. This decision, like most of the other military movements of the unfortunate Jacobites, was the work of a strong party in the camp, and was founded upon the alleged authority of private letters, which gave the assurance of a general insurrection taking place on the appearance of the insurgent force. The unlucky change of plans superseded a meditated attack upon the town of Dumfries. "Nothing," observes Mr. Patten, "could be a greater token of a complete infatuation,—that Heaven confounded all their devices, and that their destruction was to be of their own working, than their omitting such an opportunity." After a rapid march from Langholm in the west of Scotland, across the borders, and through Penrith, Appleby, and Kendal, to Kirby Lonsdale, the combined force entered the county of Lancaster; and having entered Lancaster without opposition, they resolved to proceed to Preston. It is now that the last disastrous events of Lord Derwentwater's brief career brought to light his excellent qualities, his pure and amiable motives of action. It is not possible to read the account of the battle of Preston, in which he was engaged, without a deep regret for the personal misfortunes of one so young, so well intentioned, and so esteemed, as this ill-fated nobleman.
The forces of the Jacobites amounted, after being joined by a party of volunteers under the Lords Rothes and Torpichen, and since their separation from the Highlanders, to about two thousand men. The foot was commanded by Brigadier Mackintosh; and six hundred Northumbrian and Dumfriesshire horsemen, by Lord Kenmure and Mr. Forster.
On the ninth instant the march to Preston was commenced; the cavalry troops reached that town on the same evening; but the day proving rainy, and the roads heavy, the foot regiments were left at a small market-town called Garstang, half-way between Manchester and Preston. Two troops of Stanhope's dragoons, formerly quartered at Preston, having retired as the rebels approached, the spirits of the Jacobite officers and the ardour of their men were greatly encouraged. On the following day, Thursday the tenth of November, the Chevalier was proclaimed at Preston, and here the rebels were joined by many country gentlemen, their tenants and servants: this was the first accession to the party since their entrance into Lancashire. The new allies were chiefly Roman Catholics, a circumstance which aroused the instinctive dread of the Scottish volunteers to persons of that persuasion. The High Church party hung back from joining the cause. The Roman Catholics began, according to the historian of the Rebellion of 1715, "to show their blind side," being never right hearty for their cause until they are "mellow," as they call it "over a bottle or two."
The town of Preston seated on the river Ribble, was a place from which an enemy might, in the year 1715, have been easily repulsed. About a mile and a half from the town, a bridge over the river offered an admirable stand for a besieged garrison; it might have been so easily barricadoed, that it would have been impracticable to pass that way if the commonest precautions had been adopted. The river in this part was not fordable for a considerable distance on either side of the bridge, and it could have been easily rendered impassable. From the Ribble bridge to the town, the road ran between two steep banks; and this way, or lane, was then so narrow, that in several places two men could not ride abreast. It was here that Oliver Cromwell had met with a famous resistance from the King's forces in 1648, large mill-stones having been rolled down upon him from the rising grounds, so that the republican general was in considerable danger, and he only escaped with life by making his horse plunge into a quicksand.
This lane formed a curious natural outwork; and might easily have been barricadoed, but the deficiencies of Mr. Forster's generalship were fatal to so simple and obvious a plan of defence. He confined his exertions to the town, barricadoed the streets, and posted men in the bye-lanes and houses. The Jacobite troops formed four main barriers: one in the churchyard, commanded by Brigadier Mackintosh. This barrier was to be supported by four noblemen, who, at the head of the volunteer horse, (as in many instances in the army of Charles the First,) composed of gentlemen solely, was planted in the churchyard of Old St. Wilfred, as the parish-church of Preston was then called: their leaders were the Earl of Derwentwater, Lord Kenmure, the Earl of Nithisdale, and the Earl of Wintoun,—a truehearted band as ever braved the terrors of an encounter with their countrymen. At a little distance from the churchyard and at the extremity of a lane leading into the fields, Lord Charles Murray defended another post. The third was at a windmill, and that Colonel Mackintosh was appointed to command. The fourth was in the town.
Lord Derwentwater and his brothers were the objects, even before the action began, of universal approbation. Whatever may have been the real or supposed reluctance of the former to engage in the cause, it vanished as he came into action. There he stood, having stripped off his clothes to his waistcoat, encouraging the men, giving them money to induce them to cast up the trenches, and animating them to a vigorous defence. His brother addressed the soldiers also, and displayed all the ardour of his fearless spirit. "No man of distinction," wrote a Scottish prisoner in the Marshalsea to his friend in the North, "behaved himself better than the Earl of Derwentwater. He kept himself most with the Scots, abundantly exposing himself." But all this was in vain, if we dare to call any manifestations of heroic devotion in vain.
With singular incapacity, Mr. Forster had failed in procuring the necessary intelligence of the movements of the enemy. He had been assured by the Lancashire gentlemen, that General Wills, who headed the King's forces, could not come within forty miles of Preston without their knowledge. On Saturday, the twelfth of November, after he had ordered the forces to march toward Manchester, the intelligence reached him that General Wills had advanced as far as Wigan to attack the rebels. Even at this crisis affairs might have been retrieved: a body of the Jacobites was, indeed, sent forward to defend the Ribble bridge, whilst Mr. Forster went on with a party of horse to reconnoitre. He soon saw the enemy's dragoons; but instead of disputing the bridge, or allowing Colonel Farquharson, belonging to Mackintosh's battalion, to keep the pass, he ordered a retreat to the town. Then all was confusion, slaughter, disgrace. General Wills advanced; he remembered the disaster of Oliver Cromwell; he looked carefully around him, and caused the hedges and fields to be viewed; but no enemy appeared to dispute his progress. The dragoons advanced towards the town; at first, their General conjectured that it must have been abandoned. When he discovered his mistake, he ordered his troops to pass through a gate which leads into the fields at the back of the town, and immediately disposed his forces so as to prevent either a sally or a retreat.
The insurgents, meantime, were prepared to receive him. The ancient church of St. Wilfred, which has since 1814 been replaced by a modern structure, and endowed with another name, that of St. John, must have been shaken to its foundations with the explosion of the cannon, as it was discharged beneath its ancient walls. The besieged formed four main barriers; one a little below the church, commanded by Brigadier Mackintosh: the Earl of Derwentwater and his gallant volunteers were commanded to support that barrier in particular, and here the first attack was made; but it met with so fierce a reception, and such a fire upon the assailants, that the dragoons were obliged to retreat to the entrance of the town. Of this repulse Lord Derwentwater and his youthful brother gained the chief credit. The scene that followed is a detail of fruitless gallantry, and of an agonised but ill-concerted resistance. The fatality which attended the Stuart cause, and which rendered the bloodshed of its gallant champions unavailing to promote it, was here conspicuous. That fatality was doubtless resolvable into a want of common sense, in entrusting the command of the forces into incompetent hands. All night, indeed, the Jacobite forces met their opponents with a determined resistance, that made up, in some measure, for inequality of numbers: the besieged were in many instances sheltered from the enemy's shot, and they had also the advantage on their side of cannon, with which General Wills was not supplied. In the course of that night of horrors, whilst the brave were carried away, mangled or dying, Lord Charles Murray, who was attacked late in the evening, wanted a reinforcement of men. He sent Mr. Patten to the Earl of Derwentwater to ask for aid; it was granted; Mr. Patten passing in safety on account of his black coat, upon which neither party would fire, conducted a troop of fifty volunteers to Lord Charles, who maintained his post, and obliged the enemy to retire with loss. Had it not been for another of Mr. Forster's fatal blunders, the insurgents would still have remained in possession of the town of Preston, which has always, from its commanding situation, been deemed, in all the civil commotions of the kingdom, as a military post of great importance.
All Saturday night, the platoons of the King's forces were incessantly playing upon the insurgents from two principal houses which the besiegers had taken, but few persons of importance were killed. Several houses were set on fire by both parties, but the wind was still, otherwise the inhabitants and the Jacobite troops must have perished in the flames. Towards morning the information arrived in the town through some of the King's soldiers who had been made prisoners, that General Carpenter, with three regiments of dragoons was marching towards Preston, and that he had arrived at Clithero. This intelligence spread great consternation among the Jacobites; and a capitulation began to be mentioned among them; yet it is probable they would still have held out, had not one of the avenues into Preston, by an inexcusable oversight of the Jacobite General, been left unguarded.
It was discovered by some of the King's men that the street leading to Wigan had not been barricadoed. This weak point was thereupon attacked by Lord Forrester, at the head of that brave and old regiment, called Preston's regiment. The assailants marched into a straight passage behind the houses: then Lord Forrester came into the open street, and faced Mackintosh's barrier; there were many shots fired at him, and he was wounded; yet he went back, and lead his men fearlessly into the street, where many of that regiment fell a sacrifice to this dauntless assault. It prevailed; and from that time the fate of the heroes of the churchyard of Preston, of Derwentwater and his noble comrades was determined. But, during that appalling conflict, whilst the blood of the valiant was tinging the streets of Preston, where was the General, who should have shared the dangers with his officers? "I had almost forgot to tell you," writes the plain-spoken Scottish soldier above referred to, "that in the hottest time of our little action, which was about eleven on Saturday night, Lord Charles Murray's men falling short of ammunition, Robertson of Guy, and another gentleman, were sent to the General, Mr. Forster, for a recruit. When they got access, they found him lying in his naked bed, with a sack-posset, and some confections by him; which I humbly judge was not a very becoming posture at that time for a General. He took all along particular care of himself."
Towards morning Mr. Forster in conjunction with Lord Widdrington and Colonel Oxburgh, proposed a capitulation. It was considered, that by submission, terms of mercy might be procured by the insurgent troops. Those who thus argued had had no experience of the temper of those to whom they trusted, or they would have willingly died sword in hand rather than have confided in such slender hopes of clemency. The Earl of Derwentwater was among those who counselled the surrender. From his general character, the reasons which he assigned afterwards in his defence, for such advice, have ever been credited. When the fury of the action was over, the amiable nobleman perceived that it was his duty to coincide in a step by which the lives of his countrymen might be spared: he trusted to the mediation of Colonel Oxburgh, who offered to go to the King's forces, and to request a cessation of arms; and who also promised, by his personal influence, to obtain fair terms of capitulation. As a guarantee for the suspension of hostilities, Lord Derwentwater volunteered to become one of the hostages until the morning, should General Wills require it. It appears that his offer was accepted, and that while the Earl was in the camp of General Wills, he received assurances of King George's being a prince of known clemency,—a virtue which was said to form a distinguishing mark in his character. But Mr. Radcliffe, young and ardent, opposed the capitulation with the vehemence natural to his character. During the whole of the action, he had been in the midst of the fire, and had displayed the utmost intrepidity; and now he declared, that "he would rather die with his sword in his hand, like a man of honour, than be dragged like a felon to the gallows, there to be hanged like a dog." He was, of course, obliged to submit to the majority. The common soldiers joined in his declamations. "Never," writes the Scottish soldier, "was a handful of men more ready to fight than those at Preston." It was with difficulty that the gallant Highlanders could be restrained from sallying forth, with their claymores, at all hazards, upon the enemy. They chafed under the disappointment and humiliation of that day; but all was to little purpose. Perhaps no power of words could express the bitter feelings of that hour better than the homely phrases of an eye-witness of the scene.
"On Sunday, to our surprise, about three in the afternoon," writes the Highlander from his prison, "we saw a drum of the enemy beating a chamade in the street. In an instant we were all called from our posts to the Market-place: the horsemen were ordered to mount. This made us believe the parley had been proposed by General Wills, and that we were to break out and attack them sword in hand,—at least, break through them at that end of the town; but we soon found it was proposed by Mr. Forster, and that there was a cessation till nine next morning, and a capitulation to be made. This was very choaking to us all, but there was no helping of it; for no sooner had we left our posts, than they made themselves master of them, and of our cannon."
Whilst the chamade was beating, Colonel Cotton, sent by General Wills, rode up the street, and alighted at the sign of the Mitre: the firing meantime had not ceased from several of the houses: the common soldiers were ignorant of the real state of the case, and believed that General Wills had sent to offer honourable terms, not knowing that the offer of a capitulation had proceeded from their own party.
Still there were obstacles to the capitulation raised by the Scottish party, who were represented by Brigadier Mackintosh. "He could not," he replied, when urged for his consent, "answer for the Scotch, for they were people of desperate fortunes, and he had been a soldier himself, and knew what it was to be a prisoner at discretion." When this demur was stated to General Wills, "Go back to your people again," was his answer to those who stated it: "I will attack the town, and I will not spare a man of you." At the subsequent trial of the rebels General Wills was able, with truth, to deny the charge of having given his unhappy prisoners any hopes, to induce them to sign the capitulation. "All the terms he offered them," such was his assertion, "was, that he would save their lives from the soldiers till further orders, if they surrendered at discretion: (the meaning of which was, that by the rules of war it was in his power to cut them all to pieces, but he would give them their lives till further orders;) and if they did not comply, he would renew the attack, and not spare a man."
No sooner had the news of the capitulation been bruited about the streets, than it was received with a sorrow and indignation almost past description. Had the unlucky and pusillanimous Mr. Forster appeared at that moment, he "would certainly," as Mr. Patten relates, "have been cut to pieces." Even in his chamber, the General was attacked by his own Secretary, Mr. Murray, and a pistol which was aimed at him only averted by Mr. Patten's hand. The truth is, even Forster's fidelity has been doubted; and subsequently, the mild treatment which he received during his imprisonment, and his escape from prison, have been construed, with what justice it is difficult to say, into a confirmation of this charge.
On the morning after the surrender, the rebels were all made prisoners and disarmed, soon after daybreak. That day, so fatal to the Jacobites of 1715, witnessed also the battle of Sherriff Muir under Lord Mar, and the retaking of the town of Inverness by Lovat. It must have aggravated the regrets of those who then laid down their arms, to see the townspeople of Preston plundered, in despite of every hope to the contrary, by the King's forces, as they dislodged the dejected Jacobites from their quarters. But these irregularities were soon checked.
At last the sound of trumpets and the beating of drums were heard: the two Generals were entering the town in form. They rode into the Market-place, around which the Highlanders were drawn up with their arms. The lords and gentlemen among the rebels were first secured, and placed severally under guard in separate rooms at the inn. Then the poor Highlanders laid down their arms where they stood, and were marched off to the church, under a sufficient guard. Here the thrifty Scots amused themselves by making garments of the linings of the pews, which they ripped off from the seats.
Seven noblemen, besides one thousand four hundred and ninety others, including gentlemen and officers, were taken at Preston. Generally speaking, they were treated well by the military: "The dragoons were civil to us," writes the Highlander, "their officers choosing rather to want beds themselves than we should." At Wigan the prisoners were allowed to commune together, under the inspection of sentinels; and a warm altercation occurred between Lord Widdrington and Brigadier Mackintosh, in the presence of Lord Derwentwater, who took little notice of the Brigadier, but turning to another gentleman, said: "You see what we have brought ourselves to by giving credit to our highborn Tories—to such men as Fenwick, Tate, Green, and Allgood. If you outlive misfortune, and return to live in the North, I desire you never to be seen in converse with such rogues in disguise, who promised to join us, and animated us to rise with them." The gentleman promised that he would observe his Lordship's counsels. "Ah!" said Lord Derwentwater, "I know you to be of an easy temper."
The prisoners were now carried on towards London by easy marches, Mr. Patten accompanying his patron, Mr. Forster. As they went, the undaunted Highlanders called out to the country people who came to gaze at them, "Where are all your high-church Tories? If they would not fight with us, let them come and rescue us." This indiscretion redoubled the vigilance of the watch put upon the rebels. From Daventry to London, Mr. Forster and Mr. Patten were greeted by the common people with encomiums upon a warming-pan, in allusion to the supposed birth of the Pretender. When the prisoners arrived at Barnet, messengers came to meet them, and to pinion their arms with cords,—"More for distinction," adds the subservient Mr. Patten, "than for any pain that attended." Yet the indignity must have been cruelly galling to the highborn and gallant men who were thus mercilessly paraded to their doom amid the cries of the populace.
At Highgate a strong detachment of horse-soldiers and dragoons received the prisoners from Lumley's Horse, which had hitherto guarded them; and now they were separated into pairs, a foot-soldier holding the bridle of each horse; and in this manner the Jacobite peers, Lord Derwentwater among the rest, were conducted to London through "a hedge of a mob," as the Highland soldier declares, hired, as he hints, at Lord Pelham's charge, to muster that day. Cries of "Long live King George!" and "Down with the Pretender!" greeted the ear as they passed on to their several destinations. A Quaker, fixing his eyes on Mr. Patten, and seeing his black dress, remarked, "Friend, thou hast been the trumpeter of rebellion to those men,—thou must answer for them." The moralizer was touched by a grenadier with the butt end of his musket, so that the "spirit fell into the ditch." But the Quaker was not rebuffed. "Friend," he said to the soldier, "thou art, I fear, no true friend to King George."
Even at the last, Mr. Forster had hopes, it is said, of being released by a Tory mob. The Jacobite noblemen had been, indeed, all along misled, or ignorant of the real inclinations of the mass of the people. The dread of what they term "popery" is a deep and engrossing passion in the hearts of the lower and even of the middle classes, and it formed an effectual barrier against the restoration of the Stuarts. The cause of those unfortunate Princes was never, in this country, as it was in Scotland, the cause of the people. The personal attachment of the Highlanders to the ancient race of Stuart, and their devotion to their clan, superseded their religious scruples; but that was not the case in the South.
The Earl of Derwentwater and his brother were consigned to different prisons,—the former to the Tower, the latter to Newgate; a very strict guard was set upon the Earl, and no one was allowed to see him or speak to him.
On the seventh of January, 1716, the case of the seven rebel lords was brought before the House of Commons; and Mr. Lechmere moved that they should not be left to the ordinary method of prosecutions, but should be proceeded against by way of impeachment. In a long and, as far as the report enables a reader to judge, able speech, he referred to the declaration of the Pretender, given under his sign manual and privy seal at Commercy, on the twenty-fifth of October, 1715. "This paper," Mr. Lechmere observed, "which he held in his hand, was sufficient to fire the thoughts of every gentleman there; and the House could do no more than to resent this so far as to make themselves the prosecutors of those who avowed the cause of the Pretender, and set themselves at the head of armies, in the heart of his Majesty's dominions." In conclusion, "he impeached James, Earl of Derwentwater, of high treason, which impeachment he undertook to make good."
Six other members then severally impeached the other six Jacobite lords; and an impeachment was carried up to the Bar of the House of Lords, with an assurance "that articles to make good the charge against the Earl of Derwentwater and the other noblemen would shortly be exhibited."
A committee of the House of Commons, with Mr. Lechmere as their chairman, was therefore formed; and the articles were framed, and read before the Bar of the House of Lords. On the tenth of January the Jacobite lords were summoned to hear the articles of impeachment: a few days were allowed to them to prepare their replies. On the following Saturday, the Earl of Derwentwater was brought by the Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod before the Bar, where he knelt, until told by the Lord Chancellor to rise. He then delivered his answer.
Those who, in perusing the annals of these times, look for strength of character in the state prisoners who were now brought before the tribunal of the House of Lords, or for consistency in those principles which had led them into the field, will be painfully disappointed. In two instances alone was there displayed an undaunted demeanour, and a resolute adherence to the cause which they had avowed; and these were shewn in the subsequent rebellion, by the brave and admirable Lord Balmerino, and by the unfortunate Charles Radcliffe.
The Earl of Derwentwater expressed, in his reply, the "deepest concern and affliction to a charge of so high and heinous a nature as that brought against him." He acknowledged with sorrow that he had been in arms, and did march through and invade several parts of the kingdom; and that he was thereby guilty of the offence whereof he was charged in the articles. "But," he continued, "if any one offence of that kind was ever attended with circumstances which might move compassion, the said Earl hopes he may be entitled to it." He then referred to his peaceable disposition, and pleaded his youth and inexperience; the absence of all malice, of all concerted conspiracy; his having made no warlike preparations. He pleaded also, that he could not be justly reproached with any cruel or harsh conduct while he bore arms: he specified his advice to those with him to submit at Preston, and to trust to the King's mercy. He adduced his anxiety to save the lives of his Majesty's subjects by avoiding further bloodshed, and brought in proof a letter which he had written to those of his own party, conjuring them to capitulate. Under such circumstances, the Earl implored the mediation both of their Lordships and of the Commons for mercy on his behalf, "which will lay him," so he declared in conclusion, "under the highest obligations of duty and affection to his Majesty, and perpetual gratitude to both Houses."
The answer not appearing to the Lords to be sufficiently "express and clear," the Earl was then asked by the Chancellor, whether he meant to plead guilty to the articles of the impeachment. The Earl replied that he did, and that he submitted to the King's mercy. His answer and plea were entered accordingly, and the Earl then withdrew.
On Thursday, February the ninth, the Lords came from their own House into the hall erected in Westminster Hall, to pass sentence upon James, Earl of Derwentwater, and upon the five other noblemen who had pleaded guilty with him; the Earl of Wintoun, who had pleaded not guilty, being reserved for trial.
The Lord High Steward who presided on this occasion was William Earl Cowper, Lord Chancellor, who, for the time of trial, was called "your Grace," and had the privilege of walking uncovered, his train borne, except whilst the commission was read by the Clerk of the Crown.
The usual proclamation rang through the Court, and the Sergeant-at-Arms, saying "Oyez! Oyez! Oyez!" enforced silence. Then another proclamation was made, commanding the Lieutenant of the Tower to bring forth his prisoners to the Bar, and accordingly the six rebel lords were brought to the Bar by the Deputy-Governor of the Tower, having the axe carried before them by the Gentleman Jailer, who stood with it on the left hand of the prisoners, with the edge turned from him. The prisoners after kneeling before the Bar, bowed to his Grace the High Steward, and also to the Peers, whose sad privilege it is to try those of the same rank in the scale of society as themselves, and often, from extensive intermarriages, connected by ties of blood. The articles of impeachment against James Earl of Derwentwater were read, and the prisoner's reply.
He was then asked if he pleaded guilty to the high treason in the said articles of impeachment. His Lordship replied, "I do." He was ordered to withdraw; but was called before the Bar the same day to receive judgment. Upon being asked by the Lord High Steward "Why judgment should not be passed upon him according to law?" the Earl repeated a few circumstances mentioned in his answer to the articles. His voice was scarcely articulate as he proceeded to say, "But the terrors of your Lordship's just sentence, which at once deprive me of my life and estate, and complete the misfortunes of my wife and innocent children, are so heavy upon my mind, I am scarcely able to allege what may extenuate my offence, if any thing may do it." He then again besought of their Lordships the mediation in his behalf.
After the Lords Widdrington, Kenmure, Nithisdale, and Carnwath had been severally addressed, and had replied to the Court, proclamation for silence was again made, and judgment was given. It was prefaced by a long and elaborate address; which, however elegant, however explanatory, however just, it may be considered, was strongly tinctured by the adulatory spirit of the day, and was calculated to wound and to harden the offending prisoners, rather than to unfold with dignity the reasons for condemnation. In conclusion, since nothing could, in the narrowing view of party, be too dictatorial for the unfortunate Jacobites, they were exhorted not to rely any longer on the usual directors of their consciences, but to be assisted by some of the pious and learned divines of the Church of England. This was addressed to men who were, with two exceptions, of the Church of Rome, and whose chief reliance must naturally be upon those of their own persuasion.
The terrible sentence of the law was then recorded. It was that usually given against the meanest offenders in like kind, the most ignominious and painful parts being remitted by the grace of the Crown to persons of quality. Judgment was, however, pronounced, according to the usual form for high treason.
The prisoners were then reconducted to the Tower; the Lord High Steward, standing up uncovered, broke the staff of office, and declared the present commission to be ended. The Peers returned to the House of Lords.
Little is known of the dreary and solemn hours which intervened between the judgment and the execution of the sentence. But one brief expression, in an old newspaper, relative to the young and unhappy Earl of Derwentwater, speaks volumes: "The Earl of Derwentwater is so desponding, that two warders are obliged to sit up with him during the night." He was visited in his prison by Thomas Townshend, Viscount Sydney, then Under Secretary of State for George the First; one of the most amiable men, as well as refined and elegant scholars of the day, and a nobleman whose sensibility and delicacy of feeling, which prevented his taking a share in the more active parts of public business, must have caused an interview with the Earl of Derwentwater to have been deeply touching. The Duke of Roxburgh also visited the condemned nobleman; but no record is left of these communications. The Duke was at that time Keeper of the Privy Seal for Scotland, and Lord-Lieutenant of the counties of Roxburgh and Selkirk. He had recently distinguished himself at Sherriff Muir: he was at this time a young man of twenty-five years of age, and one whom all parties have commended. "Learned, without pedantry, he was, perhaps," says Lockhart of Carnwath, "the best accomplished young man of Europe." To these acquirements were added a singular charm of manner. One can hardly suppose the visits of two such men not to have had their source from some motive of kindness.
To the credit of the House of Lords, an address was voted to the King, petitioning that his Majesty would reprieve such of the rebel lords as deserved his mercy. The royal answer was couched in these terms: that "the King on this, and all occasions, would do what he thought consistent with the dignity of the Crown and the safety of his people." It was unfortunate that, both at this time and in the Rebellion of 1745, there was no Queen Consort. A woman's heart would, one may trust, have pleaded for the young, gallant, and beloved Derwentwater. The English Court was, at that time, insulted by the audacious intrigues of foreign mistresses. These women had no interest in the King's real fame, nor in the national credit. Such was the case in the first Rebellion. In 1745 Queen Caroline, the wife of George the Second, was dead.
Accompanied by two courageous ladies, the young Countess of Derwentwater threw herself at the feet of the King, and implored mercy on her husband. In the House of Commons, the First Lord of the Treasury declared, that he had been offered a bribe of sixty thousand pounds to save Lord Derwentwater. Sir Richard Steele spoke loudly in favour of the condemned lords, but the declaration of Walpole suppressed all hopes of mercy. "He was moved with indignation," he said, "to see that there should be such unworthy members of this great body as to open their mouths, without blushing, in favour of rebels and parricides." He adjourned the House until the first of March, it being understood that the peers would be executed in the mean time. It is some consolation to reflect that the Minister had, on this occasion, only a majority of seven.
At this juncture, when all hope seemed lost, Mary, Dowager Countess of Derwentwater, proffered the following petition in behalf of her sons. One can hardly suppose how it could have been disregarded; but the Monarch had few sympathies with his people of England.
"The humble Petition of Mary Countess of Derwentwater, 1716, to the King's most excellent Majesty, sheweth,
"That the Earl of Derwentwater and Charles Radcliffe (your petitioner's two and only sons) having been unfortunately engaged and surprised into a horrid and open Rebellion against your most sacred Majesty, have surrendered themselves at Preston, and submitted to your Majesty's great clemency and mercy.
"Their crimes are so enormous, that your petitioner can scarce hope for a pardon; yet the greatness of their offence doth not make your petitioner lay aside all hopes of mercy, when your petitioner and they, who are both very young, throw themselves, absolute and entirely, at your Majesty's feet for it; and as they have a just abhorrence and a sincere and true repentance for what is past, so they will give undoubted security and proof of their most dutiful behaviour to your Majesty's Government for the future.
"Wherefore your petitioner most humbly prays that your Majesty will, out of your royal clemency and boundless mercy and compassion, spare the lives of your petitioner's sons, and grant them your most gracious pardon.
"And your petitioner shall ever, as in duty bound, &c."
The petition was unavailing, and the unfortunate young nobleman prepared to meet his doom.
On the twenty-fourth of February, at ten o'clock, the Earl of Derwentwater, with Lord Kenmure, was carried in a hackney-coach from the Tower to the Transport Office in Tower Hill, where there was a room prepared for their reception, hung with black, and a passage or gallery railed in, which led to the place of execution. The scaffold was surrounded with the Guards. Lord Derwentwater suffered first. He was observed to turn very pale as he proceeded through the gallery and ascended the steps; but there was a modest composure observable in his demeanour. He held a book in his hand, from which he read prayers for some time; then, requesting leave of the Sheriffs to read a paper to the people, he went to the rails of the scaffold, and there delivered the following touching and beautiful address, which, how different soever may be the sentiments and opinions with which it is perused, can hardly fail to impress the reader as coming from a conscientious mind:—
"Being in a few minutes to appear before the Tribunal of God, where, though most unworthy, I hope for mercy, which I have not found from men now in power, I have endeavoured to make my peace with His Divine Majesty, by most humbly begging pardon for all the sins of my life; and I doubt not of a merciful forgiveness, through the merits of the passion of my Saviour Jesus Christ; for which end I earnestly desire the prayers of all good Christians.
"After this, I am to ask pardon of those whom I might have scandalized by pleading guilty at my trial. Such as were permitted to come to me, told me that, having been undeniably in arms, pleading guilty was but the consequence of having submitted to mercy, and many arguments were used to prove there was nothing of moment in so doing,—among others, the universal practice of signing leases, whereof the preambles ran in the name of the persons in possession.
"But I am sensible that in this I have made bold with my loyalty, having never owned any other but King James the Third for my lawful King: him I had an inclination to serve from my infancy, and was moved thereto by a natural love I had to his person, knowing him to be capable of making his people happy; and though he had been born of a different religion to mine, I should have done for him all that lay in my power, as my ancestors have done for his predecessors, being thereto bound by the laws of God and man.
"Wherefore, if in this affair I have acted rashly, it ought not to affect the innocent; I intended to wrong nobody, but to serve my King and my country, and that without self-interest,—hoping, by the example I gave, to have induced others to their duty; and God, who sees the secrets of my heart, knows I speak the truth. Some means have been proposed to me for saving my life, which I looked upon as inconsistent with honour and innocence, and therefore I rejected them; for, with God's assistance, I shall prefer any death to the doing a base unworthy action. I only wish now, that the laying down my life might contribute to the service of my King and country, and the re-establishment of the ancient and fundamental constitution of these kingdoms; without which, no lasting peace or true happiness can attend them. Then I should, indeed, part with my life even with pleasure; as it is, I can only pray, that these blessings may be bestowed upon my dear country; and since I can do no more, I beseech God to accept of my life as a small sacrifice to it.
"I die a Roman Catholic: I am in perfect charity with all the world (I thank God for it), even with those of the present Government, who are most instrumental in my death. I freely forgive all such as ungenerously reported false things of me; and hope to be forgiven the trespasses of my youth by the Father of Mercies, into whose hands I commend my soul.
P.S. "If that Prince who now governs had given me my life, I should have thought myself obliged never more to have taken up arms against him."
After delivering this address, the unfortunate nobleman thus spoke to the executioner: "You will find something for you in my pocket [this was two half-guineas], and I have given that gentleman [pointing to a person who held his hat and wig] somewhat more for you. Let me lie down once, to see how the block fits me." This he did. Then, kneeling down again, and uttering a short prayer with the executioner, he arose, and undressed himself for execution, the headsman assisting him. After which, the Earl desired the executioner to take notice, that "when he heard the words 'sweet Jesus!' then he should do his office so soon as he pleased." After which, his Lordship laid himself down on the block, and said, "I forgive my enemies, and hope that God will forgive me;" and then, turning his head up towards the executioner, he exclaimed, "After the third time I cry 'sweet Jesus!' strike then, and do what is most convenient to you."
A solemn and appalling scene then ensued. The voice of Lord Derwentwater was heard to exclaim, and the watchful ear of the executioner caught these words: "Sweet Jesus, receive my spirit; sweet Jesus, be merciful unto me; sweet Jesus"—he seemed to be going on, when the sentence was broken and the voice for ever hushed, the executioner severing his Lordship's head from his body, which he did at one stroke. Then the executioner took up the head, and at the several quarters of the scaffold elevated it with both his hands, crying with a loud voice, "Behold the head of a traitor! God save King George!" When he had done so, the friends of the Earl not being provided with hearse or coffin, Sir John Fryer, the Sheriff, ordered the body to be wrapped in black baize, to be conveyed to a hackney coach, and delivered to his friends, one of whom had wrapped up his head in a handkerchief.
On the day of the execution, Mary, Countess of Derwentwater, accompanied by another female, dressed herself as a fishwoman, and in a cart drove under Temple Bar, having previously bribed some people to throw the head of her lord into her lap, as she passed under the pinnacle on which it was placed.
Various accounts have been given of the interment of the Earl of Derwentwater. He is generally believed to have been buried in the church of St. Giles-in-the-Fields, near the altar. But a popular tradition has found credence, that he was buried at Dilstone. This has arisen from the Jacobite ditty, called "Derwentwater's Good Night," or has probably given origin to that lay, in which the Earl is made to say:—
"Albeit that here in London town It is my fate to die, O carry me to Northumberland, In my father's grave to lie: There chaunt my solemn requiem, In Hexham's holy towers, And let six maids of fair Tynedale, Scatter my grave with flowers."
This is said to have been his last request, but to have been refused, for fear of any popular tumult in the North. Either a pretended burial in the church of St. Giles took place, or the Earl's body was removed, "for it was certainly," says Mr. Hogg, "carried secretly to Dilstone, where it was deposited by the side of the Earl's father, in his chapel." "A little porch before the farm-house of Whitesmocks," adds the same authority, "is pointed out as the exact spot where the Earl's remains rested, avoiding Durham." The coffin is said to have been opened during the present century, and the body of the Earl recognized, both by his appearance of youth, his features, and the suture round his neck. It is seldom satisfactory to state what has no other source than common report. In the North, the aurora borealis is still said to be called "Lord Derwentwater's lights," because, on the night of his execution, it appeared remarkably vivid. It is, any rate, pleasant to reflect, that one who "gave bread to thousands" is remembered by this beautiful appearance in the county which he loved, and where his virtues are remembered and his errors forgotten.
His fate was hard. Let us not, contrary to nature, call up motives of state policy to vindicate the death of this brave and honourable man. The Earl of Derwentwater was one upon whom clemency might safely have been shown. Generous, liberal, sincere, a prince might have relied upon his assurance that, had mercy been shown to him, it would never have been repaid by treachery. His youth and inexperience,—his wife, his children,—should not have been forgotten: nor should it have been forgotten, that the principles of loyalty for which his life was forfeited, have dictated some of the most important services which have been rendered to the state, and have secured the existence of an hereditary government.
Of what the Earl of Derwentwater might have become, in character, in intellect, his early fate has prevented our judging. In person he was noble and elegant; his portraits do not give the impression of that beauty of feature which has been ascribed to him. In character he was irreproachable. He was, in one sense, one of those noblemen of whom it were well for this country to have more: he lived among those from whom he drew his fortunes—their benefactor and their friend.
The widowed Countess of Derwentwater died at Brussels in August, 1723. The descendants of the Earl are now extinct, a son and daughter who survived him having both died. His Lordship's brother married a Scottish peeress, and is the ancestor of the present Earl of Newburgh, the rightful representative of the Earl of Derwentwater.
"The domains of the Derwentwater family in Cumberland are," says Lord Mahon, "among the very few forfeitures of the Jacobites which have never been restored by the clemency of the House of Hanover." In 1788, a clear rent of two thousand five hundred pounds was, however, granted out of these estates to the Newburgh family. "They were first," says the same authority, "settled on Greenwich Hospital, but have since been sold to Mr. Marshall, of Leeds."
The deeds of the Derwentwater estates were preserved in the following manner: "On the night when Preston surrendered, Lord Derwentwater found means," as Mr. Hogg relates, "to send messengers to Capheaton, to prevent the family there from appearing in arms. By his orders, the family papers were removed to Capheaton, and they were laid between two walls and a chimney. A slater employed about the house discovered several chests with the Derwentwater arms engraved on the lids. Being a rigid Presbyterian, he informed old Sir Ambrose Middleton, of Belsay, who being Deputy-Lieutenant for the Duke of Somerset, searched Capheaton for arms, and under that pretence broke open the walls, and found the deeds, from the concealment of which Greenwich Hospital had been put to some difficulties."
Such was the fate of the last memorial of the unfortunate Earl of Derwentwater. It is impossible to help regretting that a name once so honoured should have become extinct; and there appears to be an unaccountable injustice in that oblivion, whilst most of the Scottish forfeited titles have been restored.
 I write it Radcliffe, because the most careful historians and genealogists have given the preference to that mode of spelling the name.
 The fact has been rather surmised than proved.
 Hutchinson's View of Northumberland, vol. i. p. 171.
 Lysons' Magna Britannia, vol. ii. p. 85.
 Burke's Extinct Peerage, art. Radcliffe; also Wood's Peerage, 309. It has been erroneously stated, that Francis Radclyffe himself, who married Mary Tudor, was first ennobled. It was his father, Sir Francis Radclyffe.
 Life of Charles Radcliffe. "By a gentleman of the family, to prevent the public being imposed upon by any erroneous or partial accounts to the prejudice of this unfortunate gentleman." London, 1746.
 Macpherson Papers, vol. ii.
 Patten's Hist. Rebellion, p. 47.
 In personal appearance the Earl is declared to have been distinguished for grace and comeliness. Neither the prints of this nobleman, nor an original picture in the possession of the Earl of Newburgh, at Hassop in Derbyshire, give the impression that the Earl was handsome. Yet he obtained the appellation of "handsome Derwentwater."
 Kimber's Baronetage, vol. i. p. 517.
 Encyclopaedia Metropolitana.
 Id. Annals of George I.
 Patten, p. 3.
 The following is a copy of the warrant, and affords a specimen, which may be novel to some readers, of the form in which such affairs are couched. The original is still preserved by the present Earl of Newburgh, the descendant of Charles Radcliffe. I am indebted to the courtesy of the Earl of Newburgh for permission to copy this document, and also for several particulars concerning the family of Radcliffe, which I have interwoven with this biography:—
"James Stanhope, Esq., one of his Majesty's most Honourable Privy Council, and Principal Secretary of State.
"These are in his Majesty's name, to authorise and require you, taking a constable to your assistance, forthwith to make strict and diligent search in such places as you shall have notice, for the Right Honourable James, Earl of Derwentwater; and him having found, you are to seize and apprehend for suspicion of Treason, and to bring him, together with his papers, before me to be examined concerning the Premisses, and to be further dealt with according to law: for the due execution whereof, all Mayors, Sheriffs, Justices of the Peace, Constables, and all his Majesty's officers, Civil and Military, and loving subjects whom it may concern, are to be aiding and assisting to you as there shall be occasion. And for so doing, this shall be your warrant.
"Given at Whitehall the two-and-twentieth day of September, 1715.
"To Richard Shorman, John Hutching, and John Turner, three of his Majesty's Messengers in Ordinary."
 His pension was raised for his services from fifty to eighty pounds per annum.—See Caledonian Mercury, 1722.
 Patten, p. 19.
 Hutchinson's History of Northumberland, vol. i. p. 131.
 State Papers. Domestic, No. 4, 1716.
 Life of Charles Radcliffe, p. 15.
 Patten, p. 31.
 Patten. Smollett.
 Parliamentary History, 2 Geo. I. vol. vii. p. 269.
 Patten, p. 47.
 Id. p. 65.
 An instance of this spirit is related by Lord Sunderland in the case of a Mr. Crisp, a Lancashire gentleman, who acted with such zeal for the Government during the Rebellion, that he was never able to live in his native country afterwards.—Lord Mahon's History of England since the Peace of Utrecht, vol. i. p. 253.
 Lord Mahon, vol. i. p. 248.
 Patten, p. 79.
 Letter from a Scots Prisoner.—See Weekly Journal, or British Gazette, for 1716.
 Weekly Journal, p. 354.
 Parliamentary History, p. 269.
 Life of Charles Radcliffe, p. 23.
 Patten, p. 96.
 Patten, p. 103.
 Weekly Journal.
 Caledonian Mercury for 1716.
 Earls of Derwentwater, Nithisdale, Carnwath, and Wintoun; Viscount Kenmure, and Lords Widdrington and Nairn.
 State Trials, vol. xv. p. 762.
 Parliamentary History, vol. vii. p. 269.
 State Trials.
 Caledonian Mercury for 1716.
 Beatson's Political Index.
 Douglas's Peerage of Scotland.
 State Trials, vol. xv. p. 802.
 Lord Mahon's History, vol. i. p. 291.
 State Papers, 1716, No. 4; now, for the first time, printed.
 Or rather, a piece of red cloth, which is still preserved at Hassop, the seat of the Earl of Newburgh, the marks of blood being still visible.
 From a tradition current in the descendants of this family.
 Hogg's Jacobite Relics, vol. i. p. 31.
 See Caledonian Mercury, 1723.
THE MASTER OF SINCLAIR.
John Sinclair, called, in compliance with the custom of Scotland in regard to the eldest sons of Barons, the Master of Sinclair, was descended from the ancient family of Saint Clare, in France, on whom lands were bestowed by Alexander the Third of Scotland. In early times, the titles of Earls of Orkney and Caithness had been given to the first settlers of the Saint Clares; and the possession of the islands of Orkney and Shetland had been added to certain royal donations, by a marriage with an heiress of the sirname of Speire. One of the Sinclairs had even borne the dignity of Prince of Orkney; but this distinction was lost by an improvident member of the house of Sinclair, called William the Waster; and the prosperity of his descendants was due only to the favour of James the Sixth, who created Henry Sinclair, of Dysart in Fife, a Baron.
The family continued in honour and estimation, until the subject of this memoir, John, brought upon it disgrace, and incurred to himself lasting self-reproach.
The Master of Sinclair was the eldest son of Henry, seventh Lord Sinclair, and the representative, therefore, of an honourable family. But it was his fate to forfeit his birthright, not so much by his adherence to an ill-fated cause, as by the violence and brutality of his own temper and conduct.
He was, at an early age, engaged in the military profession, and bore the commission of Captain-Lieutenant in Preston's regiment under the great Marlborough. At the battle of Wynendale, fought on the twenty-eighth of September, 1708, the events which stamped the future character of the Master of Sinclair's destiny occurred.
Two brothers of the name of Schaw, Scotchmen, of an ancient race, and ancestors, collaterally, of the present family of Shaw-Stewart of Renfrew, had commissions also in Preston's regiment. These unfortunate young men were of the chief family of the Schaws, or Sauchie, who had flourished since the reign of Robert the Second.
By that singular coincidence which sometimes occurs, and which seems to stamp certain races with misfortune, the Schaws had already been nearly exterminated in feudal times by the violence of a neighbouring clan, the Montgomeries of Skellmorlie; and had been preserved from total destruction by what seemed to human comprehension to be the merest chance. By one of the Montgomeries, the Tower of Greenock was invaded and taken, and the Laird of Schaw and four or five of his sons were put to death. One child, then in his cradle, alone escaped, and grew up to manhood, with the resolution to avenge his father and his brothers rankling at his heart. Accordingly, he collected his friends and dependants, and invested, during a period of repose and security, the house of his enemy. Montgomery, finding his castle attacked, stood forth on the battlements, and, after demanding a parley with the besieger, "Are you not," he cried out, "an ungrateful man to come hither with bow and brand to take the life of the man who made you young laird and auld laird in the same day?" Young Schaw, struck by the argument, drew off his forces, and left the castle of Skellmorlie standing, and its inmates uninjured.
The family of Schaw were zealous Whigs, the father of the two young officers in Preston's regiment having raised a regiment at the time of the Revolution, without any other expense to the Government than that of sergeants and drummers.
The eldest brother, Sir John Schaw, had been an active promoter of the Union; and, upon a threatened invasion of the French, and a consequent alarm of the Jacobites, Sir John had offered to join the army with five or six hundred of his followers. This decided political bias may, perhaps, in some measure, account for the disposition to affront on the side of Sinclair, and the quickness to resent on the other hand, which was shown between the parties.
During the battle of Wynendale, in the midst of the fire, it appeared, in evidence afterwards taken, that Ensign Hugh Schaw, the first of the victims to the Master of Sinclair's wrath, was heard to call out to the Master "to stand upright;" it was afterwards publicly stated by Ensign Hugh Schaw, that he had done so upon seeing Sinclair bow himself down to the ground for a considerable time. This alleged act of cowardice on the part of Sinclair appears, however, not to have really taken place; but it was made the groundwork of a calumnious imputation. It must, however, be acknowledged, that there was nothing in the subsequent conduct of the Master of Sinclair, as far as the battle of Sherriff Muir was concerned, to raise his character as a man of personal bravery.