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III.

1685.

others

Holland,

Majesty; and the information thus obtained, whatever CHAPTER might be the real and secret causes, furnished a plausible pretence at least for the exercise of royal mercy. Sir Patrick Hume, after having concealed Hume and himself some time in the house, and under the pro- escaped to tection, of Lady Eleanor Dunbar, sister to the Earl of Eglington, found means to escape to Holland, whence he returned in better times, and was created first Lord Hume of Polwarth, and afterward Earl of Marchmont. Fullarton, and Campbell of Auchinbreak, appear to have escaped, but by what means is not known. Two sons of Argyle, John and Charles, and Archibald Campbell, his nephew, were sentenced to death and forfeiture, but the capital part of the sentence was remitted. Thomas Archer, a clergyman, Archer who had been wounded at Muirdyke, was executed, notwithstanding many applications in his favour, among which was one from Lord Drumlanrig, Queensberry's eldest son. Woodrow, who was himself a Presbyterian minister, and though a most valuable and correct historian, was not without a tincture of the prejudices belonging to his order, attributes the unrelenting spirit of the Government in this instance, to their malice against the clergy of his sect. Some of the holy ministry, he observes, as Guthrie at the Restoration, Kidd and Mackail after

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III.

1685.

* But to

Ayloffe executed in England.

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Chapter the insurrections at Pentland and Bothwell-bridge,

and now Archer, were upon every occasion to be
sacrificed to the fury of the persecutors.
him who is well acquainted with the history of this
period, the habitual cruelty of the Government will
fully account for any particular act of severity; and
it is only in cases of lenity, such as that of Cochrane,
for instance, that he will look for some hidden or
special motive.

Ayloffe, having in vain attempted to kill himself, was, like Cochrane, sent to London to be examined. His relationship to the King's first wife might perhaps be one inducement to this measure, or it might be thought more expedient that he should be executed for the Rye-house plot, the credit of which it was a favourite object of the Court to uphold, than for his recent acts of rebellion in Scotland. Upon his examination he refused to give any information, and suffered death upon a sentence of outlawry, which had passed in the former reign. It is recorded, that James interrogated him personally, and finding him sullen, and unwilling to speak, said, Mr. Ayloffe,

you know it is in my power to pardon you, there

fore say that which may deserve it;" to which Ayloffe replied, “ Though it is in your power, it is “ not in your nature to pardon.” This, however,

* Woodrow, 553.

III.

1685.

is one of those anecdotes, which is believed rather CHAPTER on account of the air of nature that belongs to them, than upon any very good traditional authority, and which ought, therefore, when any very material inference, with respect either to fact or character, is to be drawn from them, to be received with great caution.

Rumbold, covered with wounds, and defending Rumbold. himself with uncommon exertions of strength and courage, was at last taken. However desirable it might have been thought, to execute in England a man so deeply implicated in the Rye-house plot, the state of Rumbold's health made such a project impracticable. Had it been attempted, he would probably, by a natural death, have disappointed the views of a government who were eager to see brought to the block, a man whom they thought, or pretended to think, guilty of having projected the assassination of the late and present King. Weakened as he was in body, his mind was firm, his constancy unshaken; and notwithstanding some endeavours that were made by drums, and other instruments, to drown his voice when he was addressing the people from the scaffold, enough has been preserved of what he then uttered, to satisfy us, that his personal courage, the praise of which has not been denied

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III.

1685.

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Chapter him, was not of the vulgar or constitutional kind,

but was accompanied with a proportionable vigour of mind. Upon hearing his sentence, whether in imitation of Montrose, or from that congeniality of character, which causes men in similar circumstances to conceive similar sentiments, he expressed the same wish which that gallant nobleman had done;

he wished he had a limb for every town in ChristenHis denial of dom. With respect to the intended assassination

imputed to him, he protested his innocence, and desired to be believed upon the faith of a dying man; adding, in terms as natural as they are forcibly descriptive of a conscious dignity of character, that he was too well known, for any to have had the imprudence to make such a proposition to him. He concluded with plain, and apparently sincere, delarations of his undiminished attachment to the principles of liberty, civil and religious; denied that he was an enemy to monarchy, affirming, on the contrary, that he considered it, when properly limited, as the most eligible form of government; but that he never could believe that any man was born marked by God above another, " for none comes into the " world with a saddle on his back, neither any " booted and spurred to ride him."*

tion plot,

* Ralph, I. 872.

III.

1685.

by historians,

Except by Ralph, who, with a warmth that does CHAPTER honour to his feelings, expatiates at some length upon the subject, the circumstances attending the overlooked death of this extraordinary man have been little noticed. Rapin, Echard, Kennet, Hume, make

. no mention of them whatever; and yet, exclusively of the interest always excited by any great display of spirit and magnanimity, his solemn denial of the project of assassination imputed to him in the affair of the Rye-house plot, is in itself a fact of great importance, and one which might have been expected to attract, in no small degree, the attention of the historian. That Hume, who has taken some pains in canvassing the degree of credit due to the different parts of the Rye-house plot, should pass it over in silence, is the more extraordinary, because, in the case of the Popish plot, he lays, and justly lays, the greatest stress upon the dying declarations of the sufferers. Burnet adverts, *as well to the peculiar language used by Rumbold, as to his denial of the assassination ; but having before given us to understand, that he believed that no such crime had been projected, it is the less to be wondered at, that he does not much dwell upon this further evidence in favour of his former opinion. Sir John Dalrymple, upon the authority of

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