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Chapter 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 shewn 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 not 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
* Burnet. Woodrow. Laing.
seemed to have been the crowning measure, as it CHAPTER 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 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 on the diswhere his bigotry to the Roman Catholick religion James. had no share. For it is to be observed, and carefully kept in mind, that the church, of which he not only recommends the support, but which he showed himself ready to maintain, by the most violent means, is the Episcopalian church of the Protestants ; that the test which he enforced at the point of the bayonet was a Protestant test, so much so indeed, that he himself could not take it; and that the more marked character of the conventicles, the objects of his
CHAPTER persecution, was not so much that of hereticks ex
communicated by the Pope, as of dissenters from the church of England, and irreconcileable enemies to the Protestant Liturgy and the Protestant Episcopacy. But he judged the church of England to be a most fit instrument for rendering the monarchy absolute. On the other hand, the Presbyterians were thought naturally hostile to the principles of passive obedience, and to one or other, or with more probability, to both, of these considerations, joined to the natural violence of his temper, is to be referred the whole of his conduct, in this part of his life, which in this view, is rational enough; but on the supposition of his having conceived thus early, the intention of introducing Popery upon the ruins of the church of England, is wholly unaccountable, and no less absurd, than if a general were to put himself to great cost and pains to furnish with ammunition, and to strengthen with fortifications, a place of which he was actually meditating the attack.
The next important observation that occurs, and of his govern- to which even they who are most determined to be
lieve that this Prince had always Popery in view, and held every other consideration as subordinate to that primary object, must nevertheless subscribe, is, that the most confidential advisers, as well as the
On the pri
most furious supporters, of the measures we have re- CHAPTER lated, were not Roman Catholicks. Lauderdale and Queensberry were both Protestants. There is no reason, therefore, to imputeany of James's violence afterwards to the suggestions of his Catholick advisers, since he who had been engaged in the series of measures above related, with Protestant counsellors and coadjutors, had surely nothing to learn from Papists, (whether priests, jesuits, or others,) in the science of tyranny. Lastly, from this account we are enabled on the state to form some notion of the state of Scotland, at a time when the parliament of that kingdom was called to set an example for this, and we find it to have been a state of more absolute slavery than at that time subsisted in any part of Christendom.
The affairs of Scotland being in the state which we Proceedings have described, it is no wonder that the King's letter Parliament. was received with acclamations of applause, and that the parliament opened, not only with approbation of the government, but even with an enthusiastick zeal, to signalize their loyalty, as well by a perfect acquiescence to the King's demands, as by the most fulsome expressions of adulation. “ What Prince in
Europe, or in the whole world,” said the Chancellor Perth,
was ever like the late King, except his present Majesty, who had undergone every trial of prosperity
of the Scotch
" and adversity, and whose unwearied clemency was “ not among the least conspicuous of his virtues? To
advance his honour and greatness, was the duty of all his subjects, and ought to be the endeavour of
their lives without reserve." The Parliament voted an address, scarcely less adulatory than the Chancellor's speech.
“ Max IT PLEASE your SACRED MAJESTY, “ Your Majesty's gracious and kind remembrance " of the services done by this, your ancient kingdom,
to the late King your brother, of ever glorious
memory, shall rather raise in us ardent desires to “ exceed whatever we have done formerly, than “ make us consider them as deserving the esteem
your Majesty is pleased to express of them in
your Letter to us, dated the twenty-eighth of March. - The death of that our excellent Monarch is la
mented by us to all the degrees of grief that are " consistent with our great joy for the succession of
your Sacred Majesty, who has not only continued,
but secured the happiness, which his wisdom, his “ justice, and clemency procured to us: and having " the honour' to be the first Parliament which meets
by your Royal Authority, of which we are very "sensible, your Majesty may be confident, that we