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as dissent from it, he was, notwithstanding his own nonconformity, most amply entitled. *
Queensberry's administration ensued, in which the maxims that had guided his predecessors were so far from being relinquished, that they were pursued, if possible, with greater steadiness and activity. Lawrie of Blackwood was condemned for having holden intercourse with a rebel, whose name was not to be found in any of the lists of the intercommuned or proscribed ; and a proclamation was issued, threatening all who were in like circumstances with a similar fate. The intercourse with rebels having been in great parts of the kingdom promiscuous and universal, more than twenty thousand persons were objects of this menace. f Fines and extortions of all kinds were employed to enrich the publick treasury, to which, therefore, the multiplication of crimes became a fruitful source of revenue; and lest it should not be sufficiently so, husbands were made answerable, (and that too with a retrospect,) for the absence of their wives from church ; a circumstance which the Presbyterian women's aversion to the episcopal form of worship, had rendered very general. †
+ Burnet. Laing, 132.
This system of government, and especially the rigour with which those concerned in the late insurrections, the excommunication of the King, or the other outrages Declaration of complained of, were pursued and hunted, sometimes nians. by blood-hounds, sometimes by soldiers almost equally savage, and afterwards shot like wild beasts,* drove some of those sectaries who were styled Cameronians, and other proscribed persons, to measures of absolute desperation. They made a declaration, which they caused to be affixed to different churches, importing, that they would use the law of retaliation, and « will,” said they, “ punish as enemies to God, and to the “ covenant, such persons as shall make it their work to imbrue “ their hands in our blood ; and chiefly, if they shall con“ tinue obstinately, and with habitual malice to proceed
against us,” with more to the like effect.* Upon such an occasion, the interference of government became necessary.
The government did indeed interfere, and by a vote of council, ordered, that whoever owned, or refused to disown, the Declaration on oath, should be put to death, in the presence of two witnesses, though unarmed when taken. The execution of this massacre, Massacre of Fain the twelve counties which were principally concerned, was committed to the military, and exceeded, if possible, the order itself. The disowning the Declaration was required to be in a particular form prescribed.
Women, obstinate in their fanaticism, lest female blood should be a stain upon the swords of soldiers engaged in this honourable employment, were drowned. The habitations, as well of those who had fled to save themselves, as of those who suffered, were burnt and destroyed. Such members of the families of the delinquents as were above twelve years old, were imprisoned for the purpose of being afterwards transported. The brutality of the soldiers was such as might be expected from an army let loose from all restraint, and employed to execute the royal justice, as it was called, upon wretches. Graham, who has been mentioned before, and who, under the title of Lord Dundee, a title which was probably conferred upon him by James for these or similar services, was afterwards esteemed such a hero among the Jacobite party, particularly distinguished himself. Of six unarmed fugitives whom he seized, he caused four to be shot in his presence, nor did the remaining two experience any other
mercy from him than a delay of their doom ; and at another time, having intercepted the flight of one of these victims, he had him shown to his family, and then murdered in the arms of his wife! The example of persons of such high rank, and who must be presumed to have had an education in some degree correspondent to their station, could not fail of operating upon men of a lower order in society. The carnage became every day more general and more indiscriminate ; and the murder of peasants
in their houses, or while employed at their usual work in the fields, by the soldiers, was not only nọt reproved or punished, but deemed a meritorious service by their superiors.* The demise of King Charles, which happened about this time, caused no suspension or relaxation in these proceedings, which seemed to have been the crowning measure, as it were, or finishing stroke, of that system, for the steady perseverance in which James so much admired the resolution of his brother.
It has been judged necessary to detail these transac- Observations. , tions, in a manner which may, to some readers, appear an impertinent digression from the narrative in which this history is at present engaged, in order to set in a clearer light, some points of the greatest importance. In the first place, from the summary review of the affairs of Scotland, and from the complacency with which James looks back to his own share of them, joined to the general approbation he expressed of the conduct of the government in that kingdom, we may form a pretty just notion, as well of his maxims of policy, as of his temper and disposition, in matters where his bigotry to the Roman Catholick religion had no share. For it is to be on the disposiobserved, and carefully kept in mind, that the church,
tion of James.
* Burnet. Woodrow. Laing.