The History Of Scotland - Volume 12: From Jacobite Leaders To The End Of Jacobitism - Andrew Lang - ebook

This is volume 12, covering the time from the Jacobite leaders to the end of Jacobitism. In many volumes of several thousand combined pages the series "The History of Scotland" deals with something less than two millenniums of Scottish history. Every single volume covers a certain period in an attempt to examine the elements and forces which were imperative to the making of the Scottish people, and to record the more important events of that time.

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The History Of Scotland – Volume 12

From Jacobite Leaders To The End Of Jacobitism

Andrew Lang


The Jacobite Churchmen And Statesmen. 1704-1735

Life In The Highlands. 1715-1745

Life In The Lowlands. 1700-1745.

The Exiled Court. The Affair Of Porteous. Beginning Of "The 'Forty-Five." 1728-1745.

The Rising Of 1745.

The End Of Jacobitism. 1745-1746.


Jazzybee Verlag Jürgen Beck

86450 Altenmünster, Loschberg 9


ISBN: 9783849604578

[email protected]


IN religious matters the clergy of the suffering Church Episcopal in Scotland were not much more harmonious and peaceful than their wrangling Presbyterian brethren. The last Primate, Archbishop Ross of St. Andrews, died in June 1704, and with him passed away the Primacy and the Metropolitan jurisdiction. The remaining bishops and clergy did not attempt to promote a new Primate: it might have been unsafe, and they had a singular respect for their king, though an exile, a Catholic, and a boy of sixteen. Since Father Innes regarded a promise on James's part to protect the Church of England as "sinful," he probably would not have approved of James if he appointed a Primate over the Episcopal Church of Scotland. These illogical loyalists, the Jacobite clergy, had now a very scant supply of bishops to carry on the Episcopal succession, and deemed it the best plan to consecrate bishops without dioceses. The Episcopal order would be kept up, yet the king's privilege of nominating to vacant sees would remain intact. Sage and Fullarton were consecrated in this irregular fashion: the former had been recommended for the Chair of Divinity in St. Mary's College, St. Andrews, in 1688, but the Revolution came, and in 1696 Sage was obliged to skulk "in the hills of Angus." At the consecration, Bishop Ross of St. Andrews takes the title of " vicar general."

After 1716 Rose was the only survivor of the pre-Revolutionary diocesan bishops, and acted practically, though not in name, as Primate. In 1709 the bishops were recruited by the consecration of Falconer and Christie, the proceedings, as before, being as secret as possible. Sage died in 1711, and Archibald Campbell was consecrated. He was the son of Lord Neil Campbell, and was nephew and companion-in-arms of the Earl of Argyll, executed for rebellion in 1685. His life was spared; he became a Jacobite, was ordained in London, and, after becoming a bishop of the Scottish Church, he remained in England. In London, too, was consecrated (1712) James Gadderar, by the non-juring Hickes, at one time chaplain to the Lauderdale of the Restoration, and Bishops Falconer and Campbell Bishop Rose and the other Scottish bishops approved, and the step tended to merge the Scottish with the non-juring English ecclesiastics. The use of the Prayer-Book, all but extinct among the Episcopalians of the Restoration, was now revived, though it seems to have been disliked by the Lowland Episcopalians of the poorer class. In Aberdeen it was brought into the College Chapel, which Government closed. The book employed was the English Liturgy, not that which Laud vainly attempted to thrust on the Kirk; but Laud's book even now continues to trouble the Scottish Episcopalians. The Liturgy was licensed by the Toleration Act of Queen Anne in cases where the Episcopal ministers took the oaths of Abjuration and Allegiance; but these men were in the minority, especially after the death of Queen Anne, who, at least, was a Stuart. In the Rising of 1715 the Episcopal clergy were notoriously, those of Aberdeenshire were publicly, on the side of James.

In May 1716 King George bade the Scottish judges shut up Episcopal chapels in which he was not prayed for; and the peccant clergy were summoned and commanded to register their letters of Orders. Those who complied continued to officiate. In Aberdeenshire several were deposed by their Presbyteries, and their churches were held against them by armed force. In 1719, while the Abjuration Oath was being softened for Presbyterian acceptance, as we have seen, it was enacted that no Episcopal clergyman should officiate before nine or more persons in addition to those of his own household, unless he took the Abjuration Oath and expressly prayed for King George. The penalty was imprisonment for six months and the shutting up of his chapel. The Act appears not to have been strenuously enforced. The acting Primate, Bishop Rose, one of James's agents, died in March 1720, and was buried in that old church where lie the Logans of Restalrig, a church that the first General Assembly had doomed to destruction as a "monument of idolatry." Rose had kept peace in his day among his brethren, but now there was no surviving diocesan bishop. No bishop had any acknowledged jurisdiction.

Meanwhile the singular Erastianism of the Jacobites, represented by Trustees, a body of men suggested by Lockhart of Carnwath and accepted by James, came into play. Without consulting the king, but confident of his approval, the clergy selected Fullarton to fill the place of Rose, and the bishops were constituted an Episcopal College. Lockhart, writing on April 25, 1720, laid the facts before James for his sanction. He explained that Mr. Archibald Campbell had none of the qualifications needed in a bishop, and by no means all of those desirable in a gentleman; that his consecration had been most imprudent; and that he was now in Edinburgh forming a party and urging "unseasonable doctrines." James should therefore support Fullarton, for whom an income of;ioo a-year had been subscribed. The king, in a letter of grateful courtesy to the bishops (July 2, 1720), approved of their promotion of Fullarton, though circumstances " had not permitted certain forms to be observed," but suggested that, in future, the names of proposed bishops ought to be submitted to himself. " We shall, you may be assured, have all possible regard for your opinion in such cases." There was, however, one candidate whom the king named, Freebairn, who was not very acceptable to the suffering Church. Lockhart remonstrated; Freebairn "was not under any bad character," but his learning and good sense were deemed inadequate by the clergy and laity. Lockhart hoped that in future the king would consult the bishops before making any nomination. 

Here we have, practically, the question which rent the Kirk the question of the patron, the presbytery, and the people. Freebairn's son was then at Rome, and persuaded James that the bishops objected to his exercise of patronage, "which the king took very ill." His shred of prerogative seemed to be at stake among his most devoted subjects. The bishops caused Lockhart to explain, showing that there was no need of hurry, and that they had consulted the king's Trustees, Hamilton, Wigtoun, Kincardine, Balmerino, Dun, Maul, and Paterson, who all agreed that haste was prejudicial (March 27, 1722).  James replied that two of the three bishops nominated by him had been proposed to him "by friends in your party." The bishops, therefore, consecrated Freebairn, with the Rev. Andrew Cant, whose name is singularly unprelatic.

Bishop Falconer made some objections, being " afraid of the rights of the Church "; but Lockhart soothed him with the letter in which the king had expressed his intention not in future to name any candidate without previously consulting the bishops. The plot of Layer and Atterbury at this date (1722) made communication between James and his faithful ones difficult and dangerous. 

Meanwhile the suffering Church was troubled by "Ritualism," a malady most incident to Protestant communions. The English nonjurors, as Lockhart remarks to James (December 7, 1722), had long been at war among themselves "concerning some alterations that some of the number desired in the Liturgy and forms of worship." Both Archibald Campbell and Gadderar, the Scots bishops consecrated in England, were advanced ritualists, as were the Aberdeenshire Episcopal clergy, who had made Campbell their Ordinary. The other bishops resisted this harmonious call: Gadderar acted, for a while, as a kind of suffragan to Campbell, and, in 1725, to Gadderar did Campbell resign, with an irregular reservation in his own favour. All bishops, save Falconer, Gadderar, and Campbell, were opposed to the ritual, the "Usages," which the northern brethren desired to introduce, but, says Lockhart, " the clergy, of all mankind, are most zealous to propagate and advance their own schemes." ong ago Calvin had deemed the schism in the Church of English exiles at Frankfort valde absurdum) considering their rueful circumstances. But, from the case of the Seceders, it really seems as if the clergy make war most fiercely on each other in proportion as their numbers are small and their circumstances exiguous.

Lockhart does not even take the trouble to tell James what particular " usages " his heretical subjects were quarrelling about. They were nearly as important as a point of ritual which excited some of the Seceders, and led to the celebrated Smytonite controversy. The Rev. David Smyton of Kilmaurs, of the Antiburgher branch of the Secession Church, " lifted " the sacred elements before the consecration prayer. Others did not "lift" them till after the consecration prayer. The Synod, being appealed to, exercised unprecedented common -sense, and urged " mutual forbearance " (1782). On May 21, before the session of Kilmaurs, Mr. Smyton emitted a protest against "boundless toleration." In September Mr. Gib also emitted a protest on the other side. Mr. Smyton finally "renounced the authority of the Synod," and the Synod did its best to persuade the laity that there ought to be such a thing as "a forbearing of one another in love" in disputable matters of no importance. 

But a forbearing of one another in love has always been an unpalatable doctrine, and has seemed infinitely less essential to the Christian life than matters like the Usages, the Mixing of Water with the Wine, the Commemoration of the Faithful Departed, the use of the Chrism both in Baptism and Consecration, and similar matters, which now convulsed the Episcopal clergy and congregations. The Usages may have had some support in Laud's amateur Prayer-Book of 1637, but were more confirmed by the example of the advanced ritualistic party among the English Non-jurors led by Collier. Bishop Rose had to them recommended forbearance, but the spirit of Archbishop Leighton is never a practical spirit: men, being reasonable, must and will find a quarrel in a straw. Bishop Falconer found the Usages "apostolical" and "primitive" and "desirable." Lockhart told James that the bishops who, against the majority, favoured the Usages were schismatic, and were injuring the Cause. He attended a meeting of the College of Bishops, who ran at him with the Fathers, just as Whitefield was confronted with the Solemn League and Covenant. Lockhart said that "it was none of his province to judge of such points," that he came there to enjoin unity and harmony in the name of the king. " What reck these brawlers of the name of king?" However, they were quieted for the moment, Lockhart trying to convince them that one or two bishops ought to go with the decision of the College of Bishops. But holy men, as we have seen in so many instances, do not yield to majorities in the Church: theirs is another warrant (December 7, 1722).

Bishop Gadderar went on with the Usages as he pleased in Aberdeenshire; chrisms were more to him than the Rightful Cause, or the king, or the College of Bishops. They were delaying to suspend Gadderar, and hoped that a letter from James might do good: the situation was delicate. Presbyterians might urge that the Episcopalians were rushing to Rome by way of the Usages, and it was not easy for James to forbid them to approach his own Church, not to mention the flagrant " Erastianism" of such a command. Presbyterians would say, "You are only not Papists because you are Erastians," and, again, the Pope might take it ill. As Gadderar's claim to the Bishopric of Aberdeen was of the least regular, the College of Bishops thought of citing him, and, as he would decline to appear, of suspending him. Falconer, in a cryptic way, supported Gadderar. The king answered the request for his intervention in the only possible way. He advised forbearance in love (August 20, 1723). But where was the use of that, asked Lockhart, "seeing both the contending parties pretended they were in the right, and did desire to promote peace and unity, provided their opponents would knock under? " Lockhart had purposely omitted the nature of the details in ritual, lest James should sympathise with the Gadderarenes, which it is not probable that he would have done. On March 18, 1724, James accepted the list of four new bishops sent to him by the College of Bishops, adjuring them to delay the consecration as long as they pleased, "as I am most tender of anything that might in the least disturb your peace, or give our adversaries any handle to exercise new cruelty towards you."

On July 4, 1724, a compromise was made. Gadderar consented not to "mix publicly," and not to refuse the unmixed cup. Laud's Liturgy was permitted by the Primus, and Gadderar promised to introduce no more unaccustomed ancient usages. Gadderar was authorised to act Episcopally as long as he did not claim to do so on Campbell's authority, and the other bishops were not to be understood as approving of "the Mixture." It is to be feared that these men were less earnest than the Seceders, since a noble opportunity for protests and excommunications and schisms was neglected by them. The trouble about patronage, however, remained alive, and the clergy, with many of the gentry of Angus, a shire always Episcopal and Jacobite, opposed the appointment of Dr. Norrie as their bishop, preferring Dr. Rattray. With Panmure, a leading Jacobite, espousing the cause of Rattray, while Strathmore and Gray were for Norrie, the split among the Jacobites was as manifest as in any rural parish of the Kirk. Rattray of Craighall was a man of family and property, but was strong for Gadderar and his ritual, and was regarded, therefore, by the bishops in general as dangerous to the peace of the Church and of the Cause.

After Gadderar's compromise with the bishops about "mixing," Lockhart had been sanguine enough to hope that the bishops "would have lived like brethren not only of the Church, but of affliction." But when Bishop Fullarton took the side of what we may style the party of the popular " call " and the right of the majority of Presbyters in Angus, the fire broke out again. Lockhart was present at the discussion with the College of Bishops as to the claims of the ritualistic Rattray and the anti-ritualistic Norrie, and asked " in whom they thought the power of electing a bishop was lodged? " This was a terrible question to throw into a clerical assembly. Lockhart, of course, cared only for the unity of the Cause, but Panmure blazed up and talked about the Primitive Church. The Dean and Chapter, he said, had the right to elect, but, in the absence of Deans and Chapters, they must look to the example of the Primitive Church, which required the concurrence of the majority of the clergy and the approbation of the people. Gadderar, Fullarton, and Rattray argued on the same side. Lockhart said that this plan was an excellent plan; that he reverenced the ancient Fathers, but did not think them infallible; and that the daily example of discords caused by popular calls among the Presbyterians ought to be a warning.

By law the king could nominate the bishop by a congl tfelire to the Chapter, " who, again, were obliged to elect the very person the king named." In this case the objections to Norrie were frivolous. Norrie ought to be appointed, and there an end to it; and the bishops, except the recalcitrant three, agreed. Here Lockhart committed James against the " Usages," which, as he thought, had a look of Popery, and afforded a handle to the Presbyterians. Norrie was appointed, though Fullarton, as Primus, refused to sign; while " the Presbyterians laughed and rejoiced at these divisions," which were no longer their own exclusive property. Lockhart, therefore, by request of the Trustees of James, wrote to him (December 8, 1724), saying that " the utmost height of party rage " had been attained. The Trustees asked James to write to the College of Bishops to settle no prelate in a diocese till the name had been submitted to himself, with a report on the sentiments of the district. James was mainly occupied, as we shall see later, with appointing Hay as his secretary, and was obliged to announce that he could no longer trust Mar, whose honesty lay under suspicion, nor any who dealt with him. Whether these steps were justified or not we shall later try to discover; but they rent the party politically, no less than the usages, and the question of patronage divided it ecclesiastically.

Two of James's Trustees, Lord Dun and Sir John Erskine, sided with Mar as a kinsman, and the task of Lockhart was difficult or impossible, Mar persuading his friends that he was the victim of false charges by the exiled Atterbury. On March 21, 1725, James wrote to the bishops in the terms suggested by his Trustees, and the question was to provide a successor to Fullarton, now old and infirm, as Bishop of Edinburgh and Primate. Rattray was proposed on one hand, Gillan, a friend of Lockhart, on the other, as successor to Bishop Irvine (December 1725). Lockhart asked James to appoint Gillan to be a bishop, with the assent of the Trustees and several of the bishops, and, personally, thought Gillan the best man for the Primacy, as the bishops were either "hot-headed" or old and infirm. Ecclesiastical strife in Angus was being quieted by Strathmore (April 30, 1726). James, by this advice, wrote to the bishops (May 1, 1726), advising that Duncan or Cant should reside in Edinburgh to do Fullarton's duty. He desired them to consecrate Gillan, and reiterated that they should appoint no bishop to a district without consulting him through his Trustees (July 20, 1726).

Hence came trouble. The suffering Church was divided into the party of Ritualists and friends of popular election of bishops (right of Presbyters with consent of the populace to elect their bishops) on one hand; and of anti-Ritualists, adhering to the king's legal right to send a congé d'etre, on the other hand. The lay Trustees of James sided with the latter party. Mar's faction were with the Ritualists, his kinsfolk and others who could not believe that he had sold Atterbury to the English Government in 1722, and who merely wanted to disturb all James's measures, while Hay, now Jacobite Earl of Inverness, held, as secretary, the post in which Mar had so much distinguished himself. The College of Bishops was mainly anti-ritualistic, and Bishop Miller desired them to imitate the Presbyterian method of censures against Gadderar and Rattray. This Miller, a violent person, wished to succeed Fullarton, and therefore, when Gillan was spoken of as Fullarton's successor, he suddenly felt pricked in conscience as one who, by accepting royal patronage, had betrayed the rights of the Church. For more reputable reasons Bishop Robert Keith was opposed, and helped to organise an agitation against Gillan. A Remonstrance was written on the good old lines of ancient injuries to the power and rights of the Church. Now was the time to regain them, now that King James's " back was at the wa' "! They also accused James of breaking promise when he nominated Gillan (as a bishop not to a district), which he had done by the advice of his lay Trustees. Bishop Duncan severely rebuked the authors of this chivalrous Remonstrance when they showed it to him. If they presented it to the College, he said that he would throw it into the fire, " that it might not in after times appear in judgement against them." The "furiosi" indignantly asked, How would James behave if on the throne, when, as an exile, he had sent a congé d'élire for Gillan, which Lockhart was to present? Lockhart declares that a Mr. Middleton and "his gang," of the Ritualistic party, betrayed to the British Government his channel of correspondence with James. If so, we may admire the frenzy of religious passion.

Lockhart remonstrated with Keith. The conduct of himself and his party was as ungenerous as treasonable. "None would dare own their measures, were the king on the throne. They injured the king much in saying that he had broke his promise, or that Gillan was only recommended by me." He assured Keith that James had no design of making Gillan Bishop of Edinburgh, " except with the previous advice and approbation of the College and presbyters of that diocese." To a proposal by Keith that the whole affair should be referred to Lord Erskine (a Marite) and Mr. James Graham, Lockhart indignantly replied that the king had not fallen so low as to strike a bargain "with a parcel of little factious priests in the diocese of Edinburgh, who, as they were serving the Covenanted cause, should change their black gowns into brown cloaks, and I did not doubt they'd be received into the godly party, unless ecclesiastic had the same fate with State traitors, in being despised by those they served." Lockhart was very well able to find expression for his sentiments. Gillan's consecration was put off lest the Episcopalian friends of spiritual independence should accuse the College of Bishops to the Government. But two other bishops were secretly consecrated, while the "holy tribe," as Lockhart calls them, displayed passionate extremities of rage.

The old storm of Church and State has seldom vexed a smaller area. The instant result was that Lockhart's mode of communicating with James was discovered, and, in February 1727, letters to him from Rome were seized at Leith. In May the Episcopal clergy of Edinburgh elected the worthy Miller as their diocesan, being backed by Gadderar and the Ritualistic party. Corsar, a Jacobite agent, was arrested, apparently by Islay's orders, that Lockhart might be warned of his own peril, so Islay himself informed Lockhart. On Friday, March 17, 1727, Lockhart, having arranged for a ship to meet him on the English north-east coast, left Carnwath in disguise, stayed at Stobo on Tweed, wandered by moorland paths across the Border, reached an honest gentleman's house near Durham, and, setting sail on April 8, arrived at Dort on April 15. Meanwhile a party of the diocese of Edinburgh owned Miller, another faction stood by Freebairn, and both parties in the Church took to consecrating bishops. Miller died in a few months; but the feud survived him, rending the Church Episcopal and Jacobite even as the Church Presbyterian was rent, and yet more bitterly, for the Usages caused far more bitterness than the Smytonite controversy.

Here we may leave the ecclesiastical distresses of the Jacobite party and investigate its secular fortunes, and those of Scotland, after 1720. The machinations of the Jacobites in 1722 were directed towards England, not Scotland, and affected Scotland only in one respect. The conduct of Mar in 1722 caused him to be suspected of the basest villainy: the suspicion, for long scorned by James, made Mar impossible as his Minister so far as the English Jacobites were concerned, and finally compelled the king to appoint new Ministers, Murray and Hay (Jacobite Earls of Dunbar and Inverness). The whole influence of Mar, and of those who believed in his innocence, was directed, or at least was believed to be directed, to the discrediting and ruining of Murray and Hay. The queen, Clementina, was of Mar's party, and conceived, for various feminine reasons which she would never state definitely, a violent hatred of Lord and Lady Inverness. She was backed by the Roman clergy, for the detested Ministers were Protestants; her conduct and her wrongs were buzzed abroad through Europe, and as she was a pretty and charming though apparently hysterical woman, even in Scotland the party sided with her against her husband. Thus from 1722 onwards the Jacobites in England and Scotland were broken, soured, irritable, and helpless.

In Paris, early in 1720, Stair had quarrelled with Law of Lauriston, when in his glory as promoter of the Mississippi scheme. Law, as Craggs wrote to Stair (April 14, 1720), was "in possession of all the money in France," and could put great pressure on England. By May Stair's recall was decided: he was to be succeeded by Sir Robert Button as ambassador to France. It was, therefore, now with Sutton, not Stair, that Mar had to do. He continued to reside near Paris, and protested to Sutton that he was not concerned in Jacobite politics (July 28, 1720). "I know my duty better than not rigorously to observe the engagements I gave upon my being allowed to come into France. Sutton, on July 31, told Craggs that he did not believe in Mar's assurances, and asked how he was to behave to the Earl (Jacobite " Duke "). On October 30, 1720, Sutton writes to Craggs: " I am very certainly assured that Mar complains that the promises which he pretends to have been made him relating to a pension (which I suppose to be the allowance granted by his Majesty to his Lady) are not performed, and declares that in such case he shall look upon himself as disengaged from the parole he has given. I have no orders concerning him." These complaints and threats by Mar are later mentioned.

By February 3, 1721, Mar seems to have succeeded in getting the British Government to allow him his much -desired pension. On that date he wrote to James in Rome, announcing his acceptance of the English offers. He received £3500 a-year, and he states the conditions as merely his ceasing to occupy himself with James's affairs: he had long pleaded fatigue, bad health, and the necessity of seeking a more northern climate than that of Rome. James's reply, writes Dr. Glover, the editor of Atterbury's part in the Stuart MSS., " is indeed remarkable as exhibiting the kindliness of James's disposition, and perhaps more so for the blind confidence he still reposed in Mar, whom he assures at the conclusion that " nothing can alter my sentiments towards you, and that my confidence in your doing your best on all occasions to serve me is entire."

James, in fact, was attached to Mar, and saw in him a man who had lost all for the Cause. He rejoiced in his recovering his fortune, as he rejoiced when Sir James Erskine left his service, receiving a pardon, and returning to Scotland and to his silver mine. It did not occur to James that, in return for £3500 a-year, the English Government expected from Mar distinguished services, as they announced in 1719, when Mar went to Geneva, that they did. The confidence may have been blind, but it was the blindness of a generous nature which thought no evil. Meanwhile Murray, who since Mar left James had been doing his duty, left him in 1721, and went to France, where he had a bitter quarrel with Campbell of Glendaruel. Campbell, "a great friend and creature of Mar," got up an address from the Clans to James against Murray, who was accused of superseding Mar, which was the cause of Murray's dismissal from James's Court (Crawford to Carteret, January 21, 1722). As Mar, on receipt of his pension, was bound to cease to work for James, Mar's jealousy of Murray is not very intelligible. The hatred, however, lasted, and broke up the Jacobite party.

Meanwhile, the extraordinary thing is that Mar remains in Paris, and, in 1722, takes an active part in Jacobite affairs; while one of his letters sent by the common post, contrary to express and distinct orders, is the source from which the guilt of conspiracy was fixed on Bishop Atterbury. It is true that in the Report of the Lord's Committee on Atterbury's case the pension is said to have been stopped. But, even if it were, that did not divert suspicion from Mar. People argued, " He has arranged to have his letter, fixing guilt on Atterbury, intercepted, just that he may win back his pension." Even so, and despite the outcries of Atterbury and the English Jacobites, two years passed before James, without any fracas, quietly dropped Mar. Then broke out all the evil passions of the party, carrying with them Queen Clementina.

The year 1722 saw a long train of gunpowder explode, without harming any one except the Jacobites who laid it. They had a little squadron of three vessels, commanded by Nicholas Wogan, Morgan, and Galway, with another Wogan. These ships, one of which was to have conveyed Charles XII. to Scotland, while another was to have conveyed Ormonde in 1719, cruised about the Mediterranean, "seeking for a mischief" in the Scots phrase. In June 1721 Morgan wrote to Nicholas Wogan that a mischief had been found: Sir Harry Goring, a rich baronet of Sussex, and Dillon in Paris, had a piece of business in hand. It was an original scheme for using a reputable set of smugglers named "The Waltham Blacks." Atterbury had recommended Goring; and Atterbury's secretary, the Rev. George Kelly, a non-juring clergyman, six feet high, with bright blue eyes, was deep in all these schemes of " the young merchants," as Atterbury calls the Wogans, Morgan, and Christopher Layer, a desperately adventurous barrister. This Mr. Layer visited James secretly, at Rome, by a private door and backstair. He brought a list of loyal Norfolk gentlemen, was introduced to Queen Clementina, and obtained the royal pair as sponsors to his child in baptism. Lord North, a distinguished British General in Marlborough's wars, with the Duchess of Ormonde, acted as proxy sponsors, and Layer, pursuing his nursery intrigues, knitted a cabal with Mrs. Hughes, the Welsh nurse of poor little Prince Charles Edward. Layer became acquainted with Lord Orrery and Lord North, two, with Atterbury and Arran, of James's English Trustees. Atterbury distrusted and tried to shake off " the young merchants," but, great and small, they were all in the network of the shifting and kaleidoscopic Jacobite plot, mainly directed by Parson Kelly, for the Bishop was in the worst of health. The Goring smugglers were a "hellish crew," wrote honest Captain Morgan. Ormonde and Dillon were prevented from bringing a considerable mixed invading force, and, early in 1722, the plan was for Ormonde to cause King George's troops to be false to their salt, and thus to do the business with no foreign assistance. Prince Charles, aged two, was to head the Scots!

The plot was revealed, probably by the Abbe Dubois, and news was sent from Paris on April 29, 1722. On May 19 Mr. Kelly was arrested in his rooms in London. For some reason, a Colonel in King George's Guards was with him, but took no part in the affair. Mr. Kelly drew his sword, kept the point facing the messengers, who dared not pass the door, and, with his left hand, burned all his papers in the flame of a candle. One man tried to enter. Kelly lunged at him, and the messenger, as he said, " parried the thrust with the door." But what caused the arrest of Kelly, soon followed by that of Layer, in whose possession was found a sketch for a plot to seize the Tower, the Bank, and the king, and raise the mob? The plot was egregiously absurd, and hinged on the collection of 200 men who should enter the Tower as if relieving guard, and take possession of it. But Lord North's name was implicated, as General, in this crazy design, and a force was camped on Hyde Park to repress an insurrection represented by Layer and by a beery ex-sergeant, Matthew Plunket, whom Layer "encouraged" by occasional gifts of half-a-crown or five shillings.

The arrest of Kelly and of Atterbury was led up to in the following way: the affair is very ramified, and requires close attention. On January 3, 1722, James replied to a memorial received from England. After " unanimous and mature deliberation," his English friends saw the necessity of procuring a sum of money, which, with what he himself could supply, James deemed adequate. He would, in answer to their request, send commissions for North, Lansdowne, Strafford, Arran, brother of Ormonde, and blanks for Colonels, and he wrote to Ormonde, Lansdowne, Dillon, and Mar, who thus must have been intriguing for him in 1721, the year in which he obtained his pension from King George. By March 16, 1722, Mar wrote to James saying that the English Jacobites were unsatisfactory in their replies, and, as to money, did not even promise any. The Five Trustees (in Lockhart's phrase) in England were quarrelling among themselves. Atterbury would, Mar was sure, object to Dr. Freind's part in managing the scheme (March 23). But the circumstances might unite Atterbury and Oxford, who, in Mar's opinion, ought to be at the head of the party in England. As if they had not enough of Oxford in 1714! The "young merchants," the Wogans and the rest, were of undoubted folly, and Atterbury and Oxford were to manage all.

Atterbury, on April 20 (O.S.), wrote to James, Mar, and Dillon, and certainly the letters to Mar and Dillon reached their destinations, and Mar replied to Atterbury. Atterbury had said that it was imperatively necessary to send no letters through the post, especially since the death of Lord Sunderland. This was in the letter to Dillon, with whom Mar was working. To Mar, Atterbury signed himself "T. Illington," to Dillon he signed "T. Jones." Before Atterbury's letters of April 20, O.S., reached their destinations, they had been intercepted and copied for the English Government. They were in cypher, and they were decyphered. Now Dr. Glover, editor of the correspondence, argues that either the decypherers of the English Government were "extremely clever," or that the cypher was betrayed by Mar. He holds to the second opinion, for there are a few variations in the decypherment from the rendering which the key to the cypher would have given, " and these variations are, seemingly, employed with no other view than to keep up the delusion of their having been decyphered without any extraneous assistance." The errors are mere "blinds," and nobody who was clever enough to decypher the rest without a blunder could have been puzzled in the few cases where, for example, "openly" is rendered "out of hand," or an easy word is left a blank.

As to the decyphering, the Lords of the Committee of investigation examined the decypherers, who maintained that their work was honest and unassisted, and that they had previously decyphered letters in a manner proved correct when the Government, later, procured a copy of the Jacobite key. They explained the method of George Kelly's cypher, which was of a naked simplicity. " The further the initial letter of any word is removed from the letter A, the higher the number is: thus "Xerxes" would begin "24." They had decyphered the papers when far remote from each other, and their interpretations had been identical, even when they harmoniously failed in the same simple cases, so it appears. However the letters were decyphered (and there appears to be no valid evidence that the key was betrayed), the letters were not sufficient to convict Atterbury of being T. Illington or T. Jones. They were not written in his hand. But on May 11/22 Mar, signing " lo. Motfield," wrote to Atterbury. He began by acknowledging Atterbury's letter of April 20, O.S. He condoled with him on the loss of his wife (which Atterbury had not mentioned; Mar heard of it from George Kelly), he regretted Atterbury's own " distemper."

These facts proved that T. Illington was a gentleman in bad health, who had just lost his wife. Atterbury, after the facts came out at his trial (for of course Mar's letter to him had been intercepted), interpreted Mar's conduct thus: Mar, in 1724, put into Atterbury's hands a number of letters. Among them, Atterbury declares, were letters to Mar from Carteret. Thence it appeared that "when Mr. Churchill was here" (in Paris), " May 1722, to urge him to discover what he knew of the plot on the account of c the favours conferred on him by King George for some time past (those are the words of the letters written to him by Lord Carteret in his own name, and those of Lord Townshend and Mr. Waipole), it appears, I say, from the very letters he imparted to me, that he had several private meetings with Churchill by himself," of which Atterbury gives proof from the letters. These letters certainly proved deliberately secret meetings between Mar and Churchill.

Further, on the same evidence, Churchill was sent to Mar as soon as Atterbury's letters of April 20 had been decyphered in London. Reaching Paris on May 10, he told Mar (as Mar himself had owned) that the letters had been intercepted. After that, Mar and Churchill had many secret conferences, and Mar wrote (May 11/22) the letter to Atterbury which "owns the receipt of mine, and describes me by my function [Mar had only said, ' You know such things ' religious duties ' much better than I '], the late death of my wife, and a fit of the gout [' distemper ' in Mar], from which I was just recovering, characters that agreed to no other person in the kingdom but myself." Moreover, there was no " colour of business " in Mar's letter. Mar therefore wrote it merely to identify Atterbury, and sent it, which Atterbury had forbidden, by the common post. So Atterbury wrote to James (July 31, 1724). Mar might have replied, " I wrote on May 11/22 in the mere goodness of my heart, and sent the letter by the common post, because it had c no colour of business.' I do not see that when I said you knew better about religious things than I, I pointed you out as Bishop of Rochester. Many people in England are more versed in religion than I, many of them may have just lost their wives, many may also have a ' distemper ' of one kind or another, and many distempered, bereaved, religious people may have written cyphered letters on April 20, O.S."

Unluckily for this defence, which does not improve as it advances, the Lord's Committee, in Atterbury's case, did not take the same view of it, but cited Mar's letter as evidence to prove Atterbury's identity, to prove that he was the conspirator Illington. They said that the religious compliment "seems to point out the character and function of the person addressed," while the Bishop's illness and bereavement coincided. There was plenty of other circumstantial evidence against Atterbury, especially the mention of his lame dog, Harlequin, a present from Mar. Atterbury was most deservedly exiled, and George Kelly lay for many years in the Tower. Thence he escaped in circumstances of pleasing good taste, not breaking his parole, under which he was allowed to take drives for his health, and from 1745 to his death, apparently, he was closely attached to Prince Charles. He is not the dissipated Father Kelly, with whom he is often confused.

The reader has now the opportunity of forming his own opinion as to whether Mar sold Atterbury, or whether, in his writing and posting his letter of May 11/22, 1722, he only displayed the same fatuous heedlessness as he showed in giving to Atterbury, among a mass of Jacobite manuscripts, the letter of Carteret to himself and his notes to Churchill. In either case, after Atterbury's letter of July 31, 1724, to James, the king could not but drop his connection with Mar. If not a traitor, he was inconceivably indiscreet and unsafe. 

In other respects, between 1722 and 1724, Mar absolutely demonstrated that he was either a traitor or incompetent. In 1723, before James had to drop his relations with Mar, that intriguer, in James's own words, "had been, unknown to me, negotiating, with the late Duke of Orleans, a Scheme utterly destructive to our native country. I should think " (James wrote in 1725) "I were not a little failing to our country and to myself did I ever trust or employ anybody who had a share in so base a thing."

Mar's scheme, unknown to James, was drawn up, done into French, and presented through Dillon to the Duke of Orleans. The paper was then conveyed by Lord Southesk, who did not know its contents, to James at Rome. The king was so affected by the plan of Mar's Memorial that he thought it wiser and better never even to acknowledge its receipt, so that there should be no evidence that he had so much as listened to "so base a thing." Had it come out that the plan had been considered by James, he would have been utterly ruined in the esteem of his English friends. Mar's enemies believed that he drew up his Memorial for this very purpose, by way of serving the English Government. This appears far less probable than that he was a foolish and desperate schemer; but it is certain that the author of the proposed plan, the person who brought it into politics by presenting it, without James's knowledge, to the Duke of Orleans, whence it was more likely than not to reach the English Government, could not be retained in office by any prince possessed of reason. With that extraordinary turn for misunderstanding and misrepresenting James, which is part of his misfortunes, Lord Stanhope says, "So far was Mar from recovering James's favour, that this Prince, like all weak men, ran into the opposite extreme, and looked with coldness and distrust on many of his most faithful followers, on account of their personal intimacy with Mar, even where that intimacy had been formed by his own direction, or resulted from his own partiality."

Very slowly, very reluctantly, James's eyes had been opened to the character of Mar, whom the Master of Sinclair had appreciated pretty correctly. He took an English pension; James permitted it and congratulated him. His astounding folly, if not his perfidy, ruined Atterbury, and made all English Jacobites detest Mar. James did not cease to trust till Atterbury, in exile, laid the exact circumstances before him; and then came Mar's scheme, revealed to Orleans before James heard of it, and in itself an ideal example of reckless incompetence. Later, Mar's business was, or was thought to be, to excite faction, to set Queen Clementina against her husband, to irritate the clans, and to traduce the servants, Hay and Murray, whom James now had about him. James's weakness would have lain in not warning his friends against Mar.

The Memorial of Mar, shown to the Duke of Orleans at the end of September 1723 and then forwarded to James at Rome, exists in an abstract by the honest James Edgar, the king's private secretary. The French text, in full, is published by the Hon. Stuart Erskine, and is even more idiotic than Edgar's abstract enables us to understand.

Mar begins by saying that England not unreasonably boasts that she holds the balance of power. They have "greatly diminished the extent of the French Empire" in Marlborough's wars. In a war with Germans anxious to recover Alsace, King George would take part against France. Place James on the English throne, and French interests will be his interests. But, says Mar, it will be objected, Parliament will force him by its capricious humours to side against France. Parliament holds Scotland and .Ireland in subjection, and the English people hate France with an ancient and inveterate hatred. A standing army in England might prove a remedy, but the people would not endure it. The remedy is to restore the liberty of Scotland and Ireland: they, united, will support James against England (of course to the advantage of France). The king will be his own master, "and more than ever obliged to preserve an inviolable union with France." Scotland and Ireland will be attached to the French king as the guardian of their freedom, "and thus these kingdoms will be more useful to him than if one of them was his very own."

(Presbyterian Scotland was not likely to accept abject dependence on idolatrous France: if Mar really believed that, his incapacity was abject.)

With an English king in the position suggested, "France will be for ever free from fear of her old enemies and rivals, the English." To produce these happy results, so welcome to James's English adherents,

(1) France must lend James troops and ships for an invasion, James to pay them for eight days after the landing of the forces in Great Britain, reimbursing all expenses later.

(2) By treaty, to be made before the French leave Great Britain, James must restore Ireland and Scotland to "their ancient liberty."

(3) James must provide France with 5000 Scots troops and 5000 or 10,000 Irish, to be sent back when James demands their services at home.

(4) The treaty shall be ratified by the Parliaments of the three kingdoms before the French invading army returns home. (This is Mar's conception of " a Free Parliament.")

In all this " there is no prejudice to the true liberties or ancient laws of the English people." Little vessels and fishers' boats will carry across the invading army and stores in one night, so that the English fleet, if aware of the design, will be unable to prevent the landing! Even in England the people only wait for a foreign force to rise. Scotland, to a man, is for King James: in three weeks he will be king, in three more Scotland will send an army of 20,000 men into England, where the people are so anxious to be up and doing. In Ireland James's friends, if armed, will not only prevent the English troops from passing into Great Britain, but will send forces to Scotland (why?) and to England. To accomplish these glorious ends, a French army of 6000 men and 20,000 muskets will suffice for England; 2000 men and 15,000 muskets for Scotland (which, to a man, is for James); 4000 men and 15,000 muskets for Ireland. Less will do, if the demand seem too great. Probably such an insane paper of State was never drafted, not to speak of the patriotic design to break the power and ruin the liberties of Britain. Not an English Jacobite but would have fought to the death against this policy.

Mr. Stuart Erskine has written concerning this Memorial of Mar's, "There is absolutely no evidence to show that he [James] did not endorse it." In the nature of things there can be "absolutely no evidence to show that" the Pope or the Archbishop of Canterbury "did not endorse it." There is evidence that James never acknowledged the receipt of the paper. Again, it is argued that a previous proposal of Mar's, "approved by the Prince," "to all practical intents and purposes was precisely the same thing, . . . though" Mar's new Memorial "no doubt exceeded in some measure the principle laid down in " Mar's previous proposals to James of 1721. All that James accepted of Mar's previous suggestions which corresponded to the insensate ideas, of the Memorial was to keep a regular army of 2000 men in Scotland, "model the Highlanders into regiments to the number of 15,000 or 16,000 men," and " make an agreement with the king of France for his entertaining a certain number of Scots troops in his service, which I am persuaded Parliament will approve of." On comparing these statements of James (February 5, 1722) with the French document, we see that Mar's earlier proposals are not "the same thing" as his later Memorial, do not approach being "the same thing," and that James does not even accept in full Mar's earlier proposal as to Scots in French service.

Mar's earlier proposals, of the close of 1721, were concerned solely with Scotland, not with England and Ireland, and did not recommend James's abject subservience to France; nor is a word said about legislation by the English Parliament, the Scots, and the Irish, under the guns of a French invading force. It is admitted by Mar's defender that James "never expressed his approval" of the Memorial " in writing," and, as this is so, we need not seek "evidence to show that he did not endorse it."