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occasion, resorted to. It was but a few days that the earl of Marr had been at Braemar, when, under the pretext of a great hunting match, he was waited upon by a vast number of gentlemen of quality and interest, * among whom were the marquises of Huntly and Tullibardine; the earls of Nithsdale, Marischal, Traquair, Errol, Southesk, Carnwath, Seaforth, Linlithgow, and others; the viscounts of Kilsyth, Kenmure, Kingston, and Stormont; the lords Rollo, Duffus, Drummond, Strathallan, Ogilvy, and Nairne; a number of gentlemen from the Highlands, Glendaruel, Auldbair, Auchterhouse, Glengary, and the two generals, Hamilton and Gordon, whom, having thus convened, he addressed, in a speech full of insinuations against the protestant succession in general, and against king George in particular; declaring, with a great deal of seeming sorrow, That though he had been instrumental in forwarding the Union in the reign of queen Anne, yet now his eyes were opened, and he would spend his best blood to rid them of that treaty, which he dignified with the epithet
* Hunting, it may be observed, under the feudal system, had much of a military character, and was very often made a pretext for the superior calling out his vassals when he had a very different object in view. Hence, in the act for abolishing ward or military tenures in Scotland, it is enumerated among those services that could no longer be legally required. It was indeed, no uncommon thing for the whole military array of the country to be called out, under the pretence of hunting. Thus we are told by Pitecottie, that, in the year 1528, James V. “made proclamation to all lords, barons, gentlemen, landwardmen, and freeholders, that they should compear at Edinburgh, with a months victuals, to pass with the king, where he pleased to danton the theives of Teviotdale, Annandale, Liddisdale, and other parts of that country; and also warned all gentlemen that had good dogs, to bring them, that he might hunt in the said country as he pleased : the whilk the earl of Argyle, the earl of Huntly, the earl of Athol, and so all the rest of the gentlemen of the Highland did, and brought their hounds with them, in like manner, to hunt with the king as be pleased.
“ The second day of June, the king passed out of Edinburgh to the hunting, with many of the nobles and gentlemen of Scotland with him, to the number of twelve thousand men, and these past to Meggitland, and hounded and hawked all the country and bounds, that is to say, Crainmat, Pappertlaw, St. Marylaws, Carlavirick, Chapel, Ewindoores, and Longhope. I heard say, be slew in these bounds, eighteen score of harts.” Pitscottie's History of Scotland,
cursed, and to render them again a free people. He then enlarged upon the misfortunes that, as a nation, they laboured under; governed by a foreigner, a stranger to the constitution, who gave himself up into the hands of a set of courtiers, who had nothing in view but to strengthen and continue our slavery under a foreign yoke, without any regard to the interest of the people, upon whose civil and religious liberties they were daily making new encroachments.
Thousands, he assured them, were now in league with him to redress their grievances, and restore their lawful king, James VIII., to the throne of his ancestors, by whom alone all their grievances could be truly and completely removed, and from whom he showed letters, written from Lorrain, promising to come over in person and put himself on the valour of his Scotish subjects; and, in the meantime, assuring them that they should have ships, arms, ammunition, and other military stores, with officers and engineers, so soon as it was settled where they should be landed.
The powerful assistance of Louis, the French king, from whom my lord Bolingbroke and the duke of Ormond were just now demanding the necessary supplies, was another topic upon which he largely descanted. England, he affirmed, was to be invaded by a powerful army, under the command of the duke of Berwick, in consequence of which, and the general insurrection that was to be made, it would be impossible for the government to send any troops to Scotland, so that what they aimed at would be easily attained. Money too, he certified them, he was abundantly provided with for discharging the expense of the expedition ; and such supplies as were needful for levying men, paying troops, &c. he hoped regularly to receive, so that no gentleman needed to be under any apprehension, with regard to the subsisting of his men, for that they and the country should be free from all burdens of that kind.
He lastly showed them what he said was his commission as lieutenant-general from king James, who had intrusted him with the sole direction of this important affair. In obedience to this commission, he informed them, that he was soon to
unfurl the royal standard, which, he trusted, would be joyfully attended by all the fencible men in the kingdom.*
When we advert to the high rank, and great antiquity of the family of Marr, the talents which the earl himself possessed, and the station which he had occupied under the late administration, together with the intelligence, the habits, and the prospects of those who were at this time his auditors, we cannot wonder that his speech, though it had been much less eloquent than it really was, proved irresistible. Delighted to think that the destinies of their king, as they called him, and of the kingdom was in their hands, the meanest among them fancied he had a fair chance for, and a just title to at least the second place before the throne, the foundations of which were to be settled by his wise determinations, and its brightest ornaments wrought out by his individual exertions.
The project was received by all with characteristic enthusiasm. But the better, however, to ensure success, each returned for a few days to his estates, to bring over his friends, and draw together his dependants. They were again summoned, on the third of September, to Aboyne, in Aberdeenshire, when, having given directions for the chieftains to draw together their forces without loss of time, Marr returned to Braemar, and, on the sixth of September, 1715, set up there the standard of the chevalier,t declaring him king of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, &c. &c. The same proclamation was made at Kirkmichael on the ninth, and the people summoned to attend his standard, for as yet they did not ex
* Annals of George - I. vol. ii. p 26. Rae's History of the Rebellion, pp. 189, 190. Patten's History of the Rebellion, pp. 151, 153.
+ This standard, supposed to be made by the earl’s lady, was very elegant. The colour was blue, having on one side the Scotish arms wrought in gold, and on the other side the Scotish thistle, with these words underneath, “ No Union,” and on the top the ancient motto, “ Nemo me impune lacessit.” It had pendants of white ribband, one of which had these words written upon it, “ For our wronged king and oppressed country;" the other had, “ For our lives and liberties.” It is reported by Rae that when this standard was first erected, the ornamental ball upon the top fell off, which depressed the spirits of the superstitious Highlanders, who deemed it ominous of misfortune in the cause for which they were now appearing. History of the Rebellion, P. 191.
ceed sixty men, though they have by some been said to be two thousand. From Kirkmichael Marr proceeded to Moulin, a small town in Perthshire. From Moulin he went to Logierait, where his followers were swelled into one thousand men, and by the time he entered Dunkeld to double that number. At the two former of these places the same ceremonial was observed, and James VIII. proclaimed with ludicrous solemnity; he had been by the marquis of Tullibardine proclaimed at Dunkeld previous to Marr's arrival. At Perth he was proclaimed by colonel Balfour and colonel John Hay, brother to the earl of Kinnoul, who with two hundred horse took possession of the town for the earl of Marr. In this enterprise they were powerfully assisted by one hundred and fifty men, introduced into the town by the duke of Atbol, under the pretence of being auxiliaries to assist the inhabitants to defend it against the rebels. No sooner, however, did the rebels make their appearance than these Athol men joined them, in consequence of which the town was an easy conquest, though the earl of Rothes with five hundred men was just at hand, intending to take possession of it for the government. *
James was, in the meantime, proclaimed at Aberdeen, by the earl Marischal, at castle Gordon, by the marquis of Huntly, at Brechin, by the earl of Panmure, at Montrose, by the earl of Southesk, at Dundee, by Graham of Duntroon, who had been by the pretender created viscount of Dundee, and, at Inverness, by brigadier M‘Intosh, at the head of five hundred men, who, finding that important pass without a garrison, took possession of it in name of the pretender, and leaving it to the care of Mackenzie of Coul, repaired to the rebel army.
While Marr was thus diligent for the pretender in the north, he had laid a plot for serving himself more effectually in the south, by securing the castle of Edinburgh, which would at once have given him the command of the kingdom of Scotland. To accomplish this most important purpose, ninety choice men were selected, all gentlemen, under the lord Drummond, who
* Rae's History of the Rebellion, p. 191. Patten's History of the Rebellion, p. 5. Campbell's Life of John, Duke of Argyle, p. 147.