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Title: History of Civilization in England, Vol. 3 of 3
Author: Buckle, Henry Thomas
Language: English
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*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "History of Civilization in England, Vol. 3 of 3" ***

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                        CIVILIZATION IN ENGLAND.

                          HENRY THOMAS BUCKLE.

                           IN THREE VOLUMES.
                                VOL. III.

                             _NEW EDITION._

                            60 YORK STREET.

                     ANALYTICAL TABLE OF CONTENTS.

                               CHAPTER I.



  Scotland and Spain are very dissimilar in regard to loyalty           1

  But are very similar in regard to superstition                        4

  The Scotch unite liberality in politics with illiberality in
  religion. This is the largest and most important fact in their
  history; and the rest of the Volume will be occupied in
  investigating its causes                                              5

  Influence of physical geography                                     5-7

  Roman invasion of Scotland                                          7-9

  Irish invasion of Scotland                                            9

  Norwegian invasion of Scotland                                    11-12

  English invasion of Scotland                                      12-17

  The injury which these invasions inflicted upon Scotland
  stopped the growth of towns, and thereby favoured the power of
  the nobles                                                           18

  The power of the nobles was still further favoured by the
  physical structure of the country                                 19-20

  And by the weakness of the Crown                                  20-21

  Hence their authority had, before the close of the fourteenth
  century, become enormous. The Crown, completely overshadowed
  by them, could derive no aid from the citizens, because, owing
  to the circumstances just mentioned, there were no cities         21-23

  For, industry was impossible, and the commonest arts were
  unknown                                                           23-26

  Evidence of the scanty population of the Scotch towns             26-30

  They were too feeble and insignificant to elect their own
  magistrates                                                       32-33

  The municipal element being thus imperfect, the only ally,
  which the Crown could possibly find, was the Church               34-35

  Hence, a coalition between the kings and the clergy against
  the nobles                                                           34

  The clergy were the only body who could withstand the nobles.
  Causes of the great influence of the clergy                       35-44

                               CHAPTER II.


  Early in the fifteenth century, the alliance between the Crown
  and the Church against the nobles, became obvious                    45

  James I. attacked the nobles, and favoured the Church; hoping
  thereby to establish the supremacy of the throne                  46-47

  But his policy failed, because it was opposed by the operation
  of general causes                                                 47-48

  Besides failing, it produced his own destruction                     49

  Power of the Douglases, who were at the head of the southern
  nobility                                                          49-50

  James II. murdered the chiefs of that family                      51-52

  The Crown, in its efforts against the nobles, was encouraged
  by the clergy; and before the middle of the fifteenth century,
  the Church and the aristocracy were completely estranged from
  each other                                                        52-54

  James III., like James II. and James I., allied himself with
  the clergy against the nobles                                     55-56

  Their power, however, was too deeply rooted to be shaken; and
  in 1488, they put the king to death                                  55

  Still, and notwithstanding these successive failures,
  James IV. followed the same policy as his predecessors               56

  So did James V. Consequently the nobles imprisoned him, and
  ejected the clergy from all offices in the state                     57

  In 1528, James V. escaped; the Crown and the Church regained
  the ascendant, and the principal nobles were banished                58

  From this moment, the nobles hated the Church more than ever.
  Their hatred brought about the Reformation                        58-59

  Active measures of the government against the nobles              60-61

  The nobles revenged themselves by becoming Reformers                 62

  James V., on the other hand, threw himself entirely into the
  arms of the Church                                                62-63

  As the nobles took the opposite side, and as the people had no
  influence, the success or failure of the Reformation in
  Scotland was simply a question of the success or failure of
  the aristocratic power                                            65-68

  In 1542, the nobles openly refused obedience to James V.; and
  their treatment of him at this critical period of his life,
  broke his heart                                                   68-69

  Directly he died, they regained authority. The clergy were
  displaced, and measures favourable to Protestantism were
  adopted                                                           69-72

  In 1546, Cardinal Beaton was assassinated, and Knox began
  his career                                                        74-75

  Subsequent proceedings of Knox                                    76-77

  While Knox was abroad, the nobles established the Reformation        78

  He returned to Scotland in 1559, by which time the struggle
  was nearly over                                                      79

  In 1559, the queen regent was deposed; the nobles became
  supreme; and, in 1560, the Church was destroyed                   80-84

  Immediately this revolution was completed, the nobles and the
  preachers began to quarrel about the wealth of the Church            84

  The nobles, thinking that they ought to have it, took it into
  their own hands                                                   85-88

  Thereupon, the Protestant preachers said that the nobles were
  instigated by the devil                                           88-90

  Morton, who was at the head of the nobility, became enraged at
  the proceedings of the new clergy, and persecuted them            91-92

  A complete rupture between the two classes                           93

  The clergy, finding themselves despised by the governing
  class, united themselves heartily with the people, and
  advocated democratic principles                                      93

  In 1574, Melville became their leader. Under his auspices, that
  great struggle began, which never stopped until, sixty years
  later, it produced the rebellion against Charles I.                  94

  The first manifestations of this rebellious spirit was the
  attack on the bishops                                                94

  In 1575, the attack began. In 1580, episcopacy was abolished      96-97

  But the nobles upheld that institution, because they loved
  inequality for the same reasons which made the clergy love
  equality                                                         97-100

  Struggle between the upper classes and the clergy respecting
  episcopacy                                                      100-103

  In 1582, James VI. was imprisoned; and his captivity was
  justified by the clergy, whose democratic principles were now
  openly proclaimed                                               103-104

  Violent language used by the clergy against the king and
  against the nobles                                              104-109

  Their leader, Melville, personally insulted the king, and they
  were probably privy to the Gowrie conspiracy in 1600                110

  Still, the clergy, notwithstanding the indecency of their
  conduct, conferred the greatest of all boons upon Scotland, by
  keeping alive and nurturing the spirit of liberty               111-114

                              CHAPTER III.


  In 1603, the King of Scotland became also King of England, and
  determined to use his new resources in curbing and chastising
  the Scotch clergy                                               115-122

  His cruel treatment of them                                     122-124

  In 1610, James, backed by the power of England, forced
  episcopacy upon Scotland. Courts of High Commission were also
  set up                                                          125-127

  Tyrannical conduct of the bishops                               127-129

  Meanwhile, a reaction was preparing                             129-132

  In 1637, the reaction declared itself, and, in 1638, the
  bishops were overthrown                                         132-133

  The movement being essentially democratic, could not stop
  there, but quickly spread from the Church to the State. In
  1639, war was made upon Charles I. by the Scotch, who, having
  defeated the king, sold him to the English, who executed him    134-136

  The Scotch, before they would crown Charles II., compelled him
  to humble himself, and to confess his own errors and the
  errors of his family                                            136-137

  But, after Charles II. mounted the throne of England, he
  became powerful enough to triumph over the Scotch. He availed
  himself of that power to oppress Scotland even more
  grievously than his two predecessors had done                   137-140

  Happily, however, the spirit of liberty was strong enough to
  baffle his attempts to establish a permanent despotism              140

  Still, the crisis was terrible, and the people and their
  clergy were exposed to every sort of outrage                    141-146

  Now, as before, the bishops aided the government in its
  efforts to enslave Scotland. Being hated by the people, they
  allied themselves with the Crown, and displayed the warmest
  affection towards James II., during whose reign cruelties
  were perpetrated worse than any previously known                147-150

  In 1688, another reaction, in which the Scotch again freed
  themselves from their oppressors                                    151

  The only powerful friends of this bad government were the
  Highlanders                                                         151

  Reasons which induced the Highlanders to rebel in favour of
  the Stuarts                                                     151-153

  The Highland rebellions of 1715 and 1745 were not the result
  of loyalty                                                      153-159

  After 1745, the Highlanders sank into complete insignificance,
  and the progress of Scotland was uninterrupted                      159

  Beginning of the trading spirit                                 160-161

  Connexion between the rising of the trading spirit and the
  abolition, in 1748, of hereditary jurisdictions                 161-162

  The abolition of these jurisdictions was a symptom of the
  declining power of the Scotch nobles, but not a cause of it         161

  One cause of the decline of their power was the union with
  England, in 1707                                                162-167

  Another cause was the failure of the Rebellion of 1745              167

  The nobles being thus weakened, were, in 1748, easily deprived
  of their right of jurisdiction. In this way, they lost the
  last emblem of their old authority                              169-170

  This great democratic and liberating movement was aided by the
  growth of the mercantile and manufacturing classes              171-172

  And their growth was itself assisted by the Union with England      172

  Evidence of the rapid progress of the industrious classes in
  the first half of the eighteenth century                        173-183

  During the same period, a new and splendid literature arose in
  Scotland                                                        183-184

  But, unfortunately, this literature, notwithstanding its bold
  and inquisitive spirit, was unable to diminish national
  superstition                                                    184-186

  It is the business of the historian to ascertain the causes of
  its failure. If he cannot do this, he cannot understand the
  history of Scotland                                                 186

  The first and most essential quality of an historian, is a
  clear perception of the great scientific doctrine of Law. But
  whoever seeks to apply this doctrine to the whole course of
  history, and to elucidate, by its aid, the march and theory of
  affairs, is met by obstacles which no single mind can remove    186-190

                               CHAPTER IV.


  The rest of the Volume will be occupied with a still closer
  investigation of the double paradox presented by the history
  of Scotland; namely, 1st, that the same people should be
  liberal in politics, and illiberal in religion; and, 2nd, that
  the free and sceptical literature which they produced in the
  eighteenth century, should have been unable to lessen their
  religious illiberality                                              191

  Their religious illiberality was the result of the immense
  power possessed by their clergy in the seventeenth century.
  The causes of that power will be examined in the present
  chapter                                                             192

  The failure of their literature in diminishing this
  illiberality during the eighteenth century, was the result of
  the peculiar method of the inquiry adopted by the Scotch
  philosophers. The causes of the universal diffusion of that
  method, the nature of the method, and the consequences of it,
  will be examined in the next chapter, which will conclude the
  Volume                                                          192-193

  Circumstances in the seventeenth century favourable to the
  influence of the Scotch clergy                                  193-197

  While the English war against Charles I. was essentially
  political, the Scotch war against him was essentially
  religious                                                       197-200

  Though this was the effect of Scotch superstition, it was also
  a cause of its further progress                                 201-202

  Hence, in the seventeenth century, secular interests were
  neglected, and theological ones became supreme. Illustration
  of this, from the zeal of the people to hear sermons of
  inordinate frequency and of terrible length; so that they
  passed the greater part of their lives in what were
  erroneously termed religious exercises                          203-206

  The clergy availed themselves of these habits to extend and
  consolidate their own authority                                 205-206

  Their great engine of power was the Kirk-Session. Tyranny of
  the Kirk-Sessions                                               206-210

  Monstrous pretensions of the clergy                             210-212

  Cases in which it was believed that these pretensions were
  upheld and vindicated by miracles                               212-220

  The clergy, becoming elated, indulge in language of
  extraordinary arrogance                                         221-227

  They asserted that miracles were wrought in their behalf, and
  often on their persons                                          228-229

  Effect of these proceedings upon the Scotch mind                230-232

  The clergy, to intimidate the people, and bring them
  completely under control, advocated horrible notions
  concerning evil spirits and future punishments                  232-243

  With the same object they propounded notions more horrible
  still, respecting the Deity, whom they represented as a cruel,
  passionate, and sanguinary Being                                245-252

  They moreover declared that harmless and even praiseworthy
  actions were sinful, and would provoke the Divine wrath         251-262

  To prevent such imaginary sins, the clergy made arbitrary
  regulations, and punished those who disobeyed them, sometimes
  by flogging, and sometimes by branding with hot irons, and
  sometimes in other ways                                         262-263

  Specimens of the sins which the clergy invented                 264-268

  The result was, that all mirth, all innocent gaiety, all
  demonstrations of happiness, and nearly all physical
  enjoyments, were destroyed in Scotland                          268-269

  Hence, the national character was mutilated. For, the
  pleasures of the body are, in our actual condition, as
  essential a part of the great scheme of life, and are as
  necessary to human affairs, as are the pleasures of the mind    269-271

  But the clergy, by denouncing these pleasures of the senses,
  do what they can, in every country, to diminish the total
  amount of happiness of which humanity is susceptible, and
  which it has a right to enjoy                                   271-275

  In no Protestant country have the clergy pushed these narrow
  and unsocial tenets so far as in Scotland                       275-276

  Indeed, in some respects, the Scotch clergy were more ascetic
  than those of any branch of the Catholic Church, except the
  Spanish; since they attempted to destroy the affections, and
  to sever the holiest ties of domestic love                      276-279

                               CHAPTER V.


  The Scotch philosophical literature of the eighteenth century,
  was a reaction against the theological spirit of the
  seventeenth                                                         281

  But the peculiarity of the philosophy which now arose, is
  that, instead of being an inductive philosophy, it was a
  deductive one                                                   281-282

  This is well worthy of notice; because the inductive method
  being essentially anti-theological, it might have been
  expected that the opponents of the theological spirit would
  have followed that method                                       282-284

  The truth, however, was, that the theological spirit had taken
  such hold of the Scotch mind, that it was impossible for the
  inductive method to gain a hearing                              284-289

  Hence, the secular philosophy of the eighteenth century,
  though new in its results, was not new in the method by which
  those results were obtained      289

  In this respect, Scotland is similar to Germany, but
  dissimilar to England                                           289-290

  Summary of the most important distinctions between induction
  and deduction                                                       291

  The whole of the Scotch philosophy, physical as well as
  metaphysical, is deductive                                          291

  Hutcheson's philosophy                                          292-304

  Its results and tendency                                        292-299

  Its method                                                      299-304

  Adam Smith's philosophy                                         304-330

  His _Theory of Moral Sentiments_ and his _Wealth of
  Nations_ are different parts of one subject. To understand
  either, we must study both                                      304-305

  His deductive method depended upon a suppression of premisses   304-309

  Account of his _Theory of Moral Sentiments_                     309-314

  Account of his _Wealth of Nations_                              314-330

  Hume's philosophy                                               331-349

  His want of imagination                                         331-332

  Importance and novelty of his doctrines                         333-337

  His method was eminently deductive; and he, like Adam Smith,
  cared little for experience                                     337-341

  Hence, his injustice to Bacon, whose method was diametrically
  opposed to his own                                              338-339

  His _Natural History of Religion_                               342-348

  Comparison between the method of this work, and the method
  employed by Cudworth                                                348

  Reid's philosophy                                               349-361

  His timidity made him look at the practical tendency of
  speculative doctrines, instead of confining himself to the
  question of their truth or falsehood                            349-354

  But a philosopher should deem it his business to ascertain
  new truths, without regard to their consequences                349-350

  Reid attacked Hume's method, because he disliked the results
  to which that method had led                                    354-355

  And yet, in raising his own philosophy, he followed the very
  same method himself                                             355-359

  Estimate of the value of what Reid effected                     359-360

  Opposition between the method of Reid and that of Bacon         360-361

  In physical philosophy, the deductive method was equally
  prevalent in Scotland                                          361-seq.

  The laws of heat                                                    362

  Indestructibility of force. Interchange of forces               362-365

  Black's philosophy                                              367-377

  His theory of latent heat prepared the way for subsequent
  discoveries                                                     367-371

  His method was deductive, and does not come under any of the
  rules of the Baconian philosophy                                371-372

  He reasoned from his principles speculatively, instead of
  occupying himself with a long course of experiments             372-377

  To do this was to indulge the imagination, which is deemed
  dangerous by the inductive school of English physicists. But,
  in the pursuit of truth, we need all our powers; and the
  advance of physical science is retarded by our neglect of the
  imaginative and emotional faculties                             377-382

  Black, therefore, did immense service by giving free scope, to
  the imagination. The same plan was pursued by his successor,
  Leslie                                                              383

  Leslie's philosophy of heat                                     383-388

  He derived great aid from poetry                                    385

  And was unjust to Bacon, whose inductive views he disliked          388

  Hutton's geological philosophy                                  388-402

  Fire and water are the two causes which have altered, and are
  still altering, the crust of the earth. The supposition that
  volcanic action was formerly more powerful than at present, is
  quite consistent with the doctrines of an unbroken sequence of
  events, and of the uniformity of natural laws                   388-390

  The action of fire and water on the crust of the earth, may be
  studied deductively, by computing separately the probable
  operation of each. Or they maybe studied inductively, by
  observing their united effects, and rising from the effects to
  the causes; while the deductive plan is to descend from the
  causes to the effects                                           390-391

  Of these two methods, the English followed the inductive; the
  Scotch and Germans followed the deductive                           391

  English geology founded by William Smith                        391-393

  German geology founded by Werner                                393-395

  Scotch geology founded by Hutton                                    396

  The English observed effects in order to ascertain causes. The
  Germans, assuming water to be the cause, reasoned from it to
  the effects. The Scotch, assuming heat to be the cause, made
  its principles the first step in their argument                 391-396

  Reasons which made the Scotch geologists argue from the
  principles of heat, instead of, like the German geologists,
  arguing from the principles of water                                396

  Though Hutton founded the theory of metamorphic rocks, and
  ascribed such immense importance to heat, he would not take
  the trouble of examining a single region of active volcanos,
  where he might have seen those very operations of nature,
  respecting which he speculated                                      398

  But, by a deductive application of the principles unfolded by
  Black, he arrived at a conclusion concerning the consolidation
  of strata by heat                                               399-400

  That conclusion was entirely speculative, and unsupported by
  experience                                                          399

  Though experiment might perhaps verify it, no one had yet made
  the trial; and Hutton was too averse to the inductive method
  to undertake the investigation himself                          400-401

  Sir James Hall afterwards took the matter up, and empirically
  verified the great idea which Hutton had propounded             401-402

  Watt's invention of the steam-engine, and discovery of the
  composition of water                                            402-406

  Contrast between the method by which he, as a Scotchman,
  discovered the composition of water, and the opposite method
  by which the Englishman, Cavendish, made the same discovery at
  the same time                                                   404-406

  Nature of the evidence of the supposed difference between the
  organic and inorganic world. Life is probably a property of
  all matter                                                      406-410

  Assuming, however, for the purposes of classification, that
  the organic world is fundamentally different from the
  inorganic, we may divide organic science into physiology and
  pathology                                                       410-412

  The two great Scotch pathologists are Cullen and John Hunter.
  Hunter, having a larger mind than Cullen, was also a
  physiologist                                                        412

  Account of Cullen's philosophy                                  413-427

  His love of theory                                                  413

  Theory, though necessary in science, is dangerous in practice   414-416

  Difference between the science of pathology and the art of
  therapeutics                                                    417-418

  Comparison between the method of Cullen's pathology and the
  method employed by Adam Smith                                   417-419

  Cullen's theory of the solids                                  420-seq.

  He refused to inquire into the truth of the principles from
  which he argued                                                 421-422

  His conclusions, like his premisses, represent only a part of
  the truth, and were extremely one-sided. Still, their value
  is unquestionable, forming, as they did, a necessary part of
  the general progress                                            423-424

  His theory of fever                                             424-426

  His nosology                                                    426-427

  The philosophy of John Hunter                                   428-458

  His grandeur, and, unfortunately, his obscurity of language     428-430

  In his mind, the inductive and deductive methods struggled for
  mastery. Their conflict oppressed him. This is one of the
  causes of the darkness of his thoughts and consequently of his
  style                                                           429-432

  His natural disposition was towards deduction                       432

  But circumstances made him inductive, and he collected facts
  with untiring industry                                          432-434

  By this means he made a large number of curious physiological
  discoveries                                                     434-436

  He traced the history of the red globules of the blood, and
  arrived at the conclusion that their function is to strengthen
  the system rather than to repair it                             436-437

  Long after his death, this inference was corroborated by the
  progress of miscroscopical and chemical researches. It was
  especially corroborated by Lecanu's comparison of the blood in
  different sexes, and in different temperaments.                     439

  Hunter's inquiries concerning the movements of animals and
  vegetables                                                      439-441

  He recognized the great truth that the sciences of the
  inorganic world must be the foundation of those of the organic      443

  His object was, to unite all the physical sciences, in order
  to show that, the operations of nature being always uniform,
  regularity prevails even amidst the greatest apparent
  irregularity                                                    443-444

  Hence, aiming chiefly at a generalization of irregularities,
  his favourite study was pathology                                   444

  In his pathological inquiries, he took into account the
  malformations of crystals                                           445

  As a physiologist, he was equalled or excelled by Aristotle;
  but as a pathologist, he is unrivalled for the grandeur of his
  views                                                           446-447

  In pathology, his love of deduction was more obvious than in
  physiology                                                          447

  His pathological speculations respecting the principles of
  action and the principles of sympathy                           448-452

  But his English contemporaries, being eminently inductive, so
  disliked his method, that he exercised scarcely any influence
  over them                                                           453

  This is the more observable, because his discoveries
  respecting disease have caused him to be recognized as the
  founder of modern surgery, and the principal author of the
  doctrines now taught in the medical profession                  454-457

  Such were the great results achieved by Scotchmen in the
  eighteenth century. Difference between this splendid
  literature and the wretched productions of the Scotch mind in
  the seventeenth century.                                        458-460

  Notwithstanding this difference, the deductive method was
  supreme in both centuries                                           461

  The deductive method strikes the senses less than the
  inductive. Hence, induction being more accessible to average
  understandings, is more popular than deduction. Hence, too,
  the teachings of an inductive philosophy are more likely to
  affect national character than the teaching of a deductive
  philosophy                                                      461-464

  Theology forms the only exception to this rule                  464-465

  The Scotch literature of the eighteenth century, being
  essentially deductive, was, on that account, unable to affect
  the nation. It was, therefore, unable to weaken national
  superstition                                                    465-469

  Superstition and religious illiberality still existing in
  Scotland                                                        469-471

  The notions countenanced there respecting the origin of
  epidemics. Correspondence which, in consequence of those
  notions, took place, in 1853, between the Scotch Church and
  the English Government                                          471-476

  These superstitions are eminently irreligious, and are
  everywhere becoming effaced, as physical science advances.
  Nothing else can touch them. Hence the gradual liberation of
  the human mind from the slavish and unmanly fears by which it
  has long been oppressed                                         476-482


                               CHAPTER I.


In the preceding view of the rise and decay of Spain, I have sought to
exhibit the successive steps by which what was formerly one of the
greatest nations of the earth, was broken, and cast down from its high
estate. As we look back on that scene, the picture is, indeed, striking.
A country rich in all natural productions, inhabited by a brave, a loyal,
and a religious people, removed, too, by its geographical position from
the hazards of European revolutions, did, by the operation of those
general causes which I have indicated, suddenly rise to unparalleled
grandeur; and then, without the occurrence of any new combination, but by
a mere continuance of the same causes, fall with an equal velocity. Yet,
these vicissitudes, strange and startling as they appear, were perfectly
regular. They were the legitimate consequence of a state of society, in
which the spirit of protection had reached its highest point, and in
which, every thing being done for the people, nothing was done by the
people. Whenever this happens, there may be great political progress, but
there can be no really national progress. There may be accessions of
territory, and vast increase of fame and of power. There may be
improvements in the practice of administration, in the management of
finances, in the organization of armies, in the art and theory of war, in
the tricks of diplomacy, and in those various contrivances by which one
nation is able to outwit and insult another. So far, however, from this
benefiting the people, it will injure them in two different ways. In the
first place, by increasing the reputation of the ruling classes, it
encourages that blind and servile respect which men are too apt to feel
for those who are above them, and which, wherever it has been generally
practised, has been found fatal to the highest qualities of the citizen,
and therefore to the permanent grandeur of the nation. And, in the second
place, it multiplies the resources of the executive government, and thus
renders the country unable, as well as unwilling, to correct the errors
of those who are at the head of affairs. Hence, in Spain, as in all
countries similarly circumstanced, it was at the very moment when things
were most prosperous at the surface, that they were most rotten at the
foundation. In presence of the most splendid political success, the
nation hastened to its downfall, and the crisis was fast approaching, in
which, the whole edifice being overturned, nothing would be left, except
a memorable warning of the consequences which must ensue, when the
people, giving themselves up to the passions of superstition and loyalty,
abdicate their own proper functions, forego their own responsibility,
renounce their highest duties, and degrade themselves into passive
instruments to serve the will of the Church and the throne.

Such is the great lesson taught by the history of Spain. From the history
of Scotland, we may gather another lesson, of a different, and yet of a
similar, kind. In Scotland, the progress of the nation has been very
slow, but, on the whole, very sure. The country is extremely barren; the
executive government has, with rare exceptions, been always weak; and the
people have never been burdened with those feelings of loyalty which
circumstances had forced upon the Spaniards. Certainly, the last charge
that will be brought against the Scotch, is that of superstitious
attachment to their princes.[1] We, in England, have not always been very
tender of the persons of our sovereigns, and we have occasionally
punished them with what some consider excessive severity. With this, we
have been frequently taunted by the more loyal nations of the Continent;
and, in Spain in particular, our conduct has excited the greatest
abhorrence. But, if we compare our history with that of our northern
neighbours, we must pronounce ourselves a meek and submissive people.[2]
There have been more rebellions in Scotland than in any other country;
and the rebellions have been very sanguinary, as well as very numerous.
The Scotch have made war upon most of their kings, and put to death many.
To mention their treatment of a single dynasty, they murdered James I.
and James III. They rebelled against James II. and James VII. They laid
hold of James V., and placed him in confinement. Mary, they immured in a
castle, and afterwards deposed. Her successor, James VI., they
imprisoned; they led him captive about the country, and on one occasion
attempted his life. Towards Charles I., they showed the greatest
animosity, and they were the first to restrain his mad career. Three
years before the English ventured to rise against that despotic prince,
the Scotch boldly took up arms, and made war on him. The service which
they then rendered to the cause of liberty it would be hard to overrate;
but the singular part of the transaction was, that having afterwards got
possession of the person of Charles, they sold him to the English for a
large sum of money, of which they, being very poor, had pressing need.
Such a sale is unparalleled in history; and although the Scotch might
have plausibly alleged that this was the only gain they had derived, or
ever could derive, from the existence of their hereditary prince, still
the event is one which stands alone; it was unprecedented; it has never
been imitated; and its occurrence is a striking symptom of the state of
public opinion, and of the feelings of the country in which it was

  [1] One of their own historians complacently says, 'but the Scots were
      seldom distinguished for loyalty.' _Laing's History of Scotland_,
      vol. iii. p. 199, edit. 1819. See also p. 366. To the same effect,
      Brodie (_History of the British Empire_, Edinburgh, 1822, vol. i. p.
      388): 'The little respect paid to royalty is conspicuous in every
      page of Scottish history.' Or, as Wilkes expressed himself in the
      House of Commons, 'Scotland seems, indeed, the natural _foyer_ of
      rebellion, as Egypt is of the plague.' _Parliamentary History_, vol.
      xix. p. 810, London, 1814; and Nimmo (_History of Stirlingshire_,
      Edinburgh, 1777, p. 219): 'Never was any race of monarchs more
      unfortunate than the Scottish. Their reigns were generally turbulent
      and disastrous, and their own end often tragical.'

  [2] Indeed, a well-known Scotchman of the seventeenth century,
      scornfully says of the English, 'such is the obsequiousness, and
      almost superstitious devotion of that nation towards their prince.'
      _Baillie's Letters_, vol. i. p. 204, edit. Laing, Edinburgh, 1841.
      This, however, was written in 1639, since which we have effectually
      wiped off that reproach. On the other hand, an English writer of
      the seventeenth century, indignantly, though with evident
      exaggeration, imputes to the Scotch that 'forty of their kings have
      been barbarously murdered by them; and half as many more have
      either made away with themselves, for fear of their torturing of
      them, or have died miserably in strait imprisonment.' _Account of
      Scotland in_ 1670, in _Harleian Miscellany_, vol. vi. p. 140, edit.
      Park, 4to, 1810. Compare two curious passages in _Shields' Hind let
      loose_, 1687, pp. 8, 9, 15.

While, however, in regard to loyalty, the opposition between Scotland and
Spain is complete, there is, strange to say, the most striking similarity
between those countries in regard to superstition. Both nations have
allowed their clergy to exercise immense sway, and both have submitted
their actions, as well as their consciences, to the authority of the
Church. As a natural consequence, in both countries, intolerance has
been, and still is, a crying evil; and in matters of religion, a bigotry
is habitually displayed, discreditable indeed to Spain, but far more
discreditable to Scotland, which has produced many philosophers of the
highest eminence, who would willingly have taught the people better
things, but who have vainly attempted to remove from the national mind
that serious blemish which mars its beauty, and tends to neutralize its
many other admirable qualities.

Herein lies the apparent paradox, and the real difficulty, of Scotch
history. That knowledge should not have produced the effects which have
elsewhere followed it; that a bold and inquisitive literature should be
found in a grossly superstitious country, without diminishing its
superstition; that the people should constantly withstand their kings,
and as constantly succumb to their clergy; that while they are liberal in
politics, they should be illiberal in religion; and that, as a natural
consequence of all this, men who, in the visible and external department
of facts and of practical life, display a shrewdness and a boldness
rarely equalled, should nevertheless, in speculative life, and in matters
of theory, tremble like sheep before their pastors, and yield assent to
every absurdity they hear, provided their Church has sanctioned it; that
these discrepancies should coexist, seems at first sight a strange
contradiction, and is surely a phenomenon worthy of our careful study. To
indicate the causes of this anomaly, and to trace the results to which
the anomaly has led, will be the business of the remaining part of this
volume; and although the investigation will be somewhat lengthy, it will
not, I hope, be considered prolix, by those who recognise the importance
of the inquiry, and are aware how completely it has been neglected, even
by those who have written most fully on the history of the Scottish

In Scotland, as elsewhere, the course of events has been influenced by
its physical geography; and by this I mean, not only its own immediate
peculiarities, but also its relation to adjoining countries. It is close
to Ireland; it touches England; and by the contiguity of the Orkney and
Shetland Isles, it was eminently exposed to the attacks of that great
nation of pirates, which for centuries inhabited the Scandinavian
peninsula. Considered merely by itself, it is mountainous and sterile;
nature has interposed such obstacles, that it was long impossible to open
regular communications between its different parts, which, indeed, in
regard to the Highlands, was not effected till after the middle of the
eighteenth century.[3] Finally, and this, as we shall presently see, was
a matter of great importance, the most fertile land in Scotland is in the
south, and was, therefore, constantly ravaged by the English borderers.
Hence, the accumulation of wealth was hindered; the growth of towns was
discouraged, by the serious hazards to which they were liable; and it was
impossible to develop that municipal spirit, which might have existed, if
the districts most favoured by nature had been situated in the north of
Scotland, instead of in the south. If the actual state of things had been
reversed, so that the Highlands were in the south,[4] and the Lowlands in
the north, it can hardly be doubted, that, after the cessation in the
thirteenth century of the great Scandinavian invasions, the most fertile
parts of Scotland, being comparatively secure, would have been the seat
of towns, which the active spirit of the people would have caused to
prosper, and the prosperity of which would have introduced a new element
into Scotch affairs, and changed the course of Scotch history. This,
however, was not to be; and, as we have to deal with events as they
actually are, I will now endeavour to trace the consequences of the
physical peculiarities which have just been noticed; and by coördinating
their results, I will, so far as I am able, show their general meaning,
and the way in which they have shaped the national character.

  [3] In England, the travelling was bad enough; in Scotland, it was far
      worse. Morer, stating what he saw in 1689, says 'Stage-coaches they
      have none; yet there are a few Hackney's at Edinburgh, which they
      may hire into the country upon urgent occasions. The truth is, the
      roads will hardly allow 'em those conveniences, which is the reason
      that their gentry, men and women, chuse rather to use their horses.'
      _Morer's Account of Scotland_, London, 1702, p. 24.

      As to the northern parts, we have the following account, written in
      Inverness, between 1726 and 1730. 'The Highlands are but little
      known even to the inhabitants of the low country of Scotland, for
      they have ever dreaded the difficulties and dangers of travelling
      among the mountains; and, when some extraordinary occasion has
      obliged any one of them to such a progress, he has, generally
      speaking, made his testament before he set out, as though he were
      entering upon a long and dangerous sea-voyage, wherein it was very
      doubtful if he should ever return.' _Letters from a Gentleman in the
      North of Scotland_, edit. London, 1815, vol. i. p. 4. Between 1720
      and 1730, military roads were cut through parts of the Highlands,
      but they were 'laid down by a practical soldier, and destined for
      warlike purposes, with scarcely any view towards the ends for which
      free and peaceful citizens open up a system of internal transit,'
      _Burton's History of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 255. See also _Chalmers'
      Caledonia_, vol. ii. p. 36. This is confirmed by the fact, that even
      between Inverness and Edinburgh, 'until 1755, the mail was conveyed
      by men on foot.' Account of Inverness-shire, in _M^cCulloch's
      British Empire_, London, 1847, vol. i. p. 299; to which I may add,
      that in _Anderson's Essay on the Highlands_, Edinburgh, 1827, pp.
      119, 120, it is stated, that 'A postchaise was first seen in
      Inverness itself in 1760, and was, for a considerable time, the only
      four-wheeled carriage in the district.' As to the communications in
      the country about Perth, see _Penny's Traditions of Perth_, pp. 131,
      132, Perth, 1836; and as to those from Aberdeen to Inverness, and
      from Aberdeen to Edinburgh, see _Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen_, vol.
      ii. pp. 269, 270, London, 4to, 1818.

      The history of the improvement of the roads during the latter half
      of the eighteenth century, has never been written; but it is of the
      greatest importance for its intellectual results, in causing
      national fusion, as well as for its economical results, in helping
      trade. Some idea may be formed of the extraordinary energy displayed
      by Scotland in this matter, by comparing the following passages:
      _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. ii. pp. 494, 865, 939, vol. iii. pp.
      599, 799; _Crawfurd's History of the Shire of Renfrew_, part ii. pp.
      128, 160; _Irving's History of Dumbartonshire_, pp. 245, 246;
      _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 109, 210,
      367, 430, 496; vol. ii. p. 498; vol. iii. pp. 331, 352, 353; vol.
      iv. p. 313; vol. v. pp. 128, 234, 235, 315, 364, 365; vol. vi.
      pp. 107, 154, 180, 458; vol. vii. pp. 135, 251, 275, 299, 417; vol.
      viii. pp. 81, 243, 344, 345, 541; vol. ix. pp. 414, 530; vol. x.
      pp. 221, 237, 238, 466, 618; vol. xi. pp. 127, 380, 418, 432, 522,
      541; vol. xii. p. 59; vol. xiii. pp. 42, 141, 488, 542, 663; vol.
      xiv. pp. 217, 227, 413, 443, 466, 506; vol. xv. pp. 54, 88, 276;
      vol. xvi. p. 120; vol. xvii. pp. 5, 267, 297, 377, 533; vol. xviii.
      p. 309; vol. xx. p. 156.

  [4] I use the word Highlands, in the common, though improper, sense of
      including all Scotland from the Pentland Firth to the beginning of
      the mountains, a few miles north of Glasgow, Stirling, Perth, and
      Dundee. All such distinctions are necessarily somewhat vague,
      because the boundaries of nature are never clearly marked. Compare
      _Macky's Scotland_, p. 124, London, 1732, with _Anderson's Guide to
      the Highlands_, Edinburgh, 1847, pp. 17, 18.

The earliest fact with which we are acquainted respecting the history of
Scotland, is the Roman invasion under Agricola, late in the first
century. But neither his conquests, nor those of his successors, made
any permanent impression. The country was never really subjugated, and
nothing was effected except a military occupation, which, in spite of the
erection of numerous forts, walls, and ramparts, left the spirit of the
inhabitants unbroken. Even Severus, who, in the year 209, undertook the
last and most important expedition against Scotland, does not appear to
have penetrated beyond the Firth of Moray;[5] and directly he retired,
the natives were again in arms, and again independent. After this,
nothing was attempted upon a scale large enough to give a chance of
success. Indeed, the Romans, far from being equal to such an effort, were
themselves deteriorating. In their best days, their virtues were the
virtues of barbarians, and even those they were now about to lose. From
the beginning, their scheme of life was so one-sided and imperfect, that
the increase of wealth, which improves the civilization of really
civilized countries, was to the Romans an irreparable mischief; and they
were corrupted by luxury, instead of being refined by it. In our time, if
we compare the different nations of Europe, we find that the richest are
also the most powerful, the most humane, and the most happy. We live in
that advanced state of society, in which wealth is both the cause and the
effect of progress, while poverty is the fruitful parent of weakness, of
misery, and of crime. But the Romans, when they ceased to be poor, began
to be vicious. So unstable was the foundation of their greatness, that
the very results which their power produced, were fatal to the power
itself. Their empire gave them wealth, and their wealth overthrew their
empire. Their national character, notwithstanding its apparent strength,
was in truth of so frail a texture, that it was ruined by its own
development. As it grew, it dwarfed. Hence it was, that, in the third and
fourth centuries, their hold on mankind visibly slackened. Their
authority being undermined, other nations, of course, stepped in; so that
the inroads of those strange tribes which came pouring from the north,
and to whose appearance the final catastrophe is often ascribed, were at
best the occasion, but by no means the cause, of the fall of the Roman
Empire. Towards that great and salutary event, every thing had long been
pointing. The scourgers and oppressors of the world, whom a false and
ignorant sympathy has invested with noble qualities which they never
possessed, had now to look to themselves; and when, after receding on all
sides, they, in the middle of the fifth century, withdrew their forces
from the whole of Britain, they merely executed a movement, which a train
of circumstances, continued through several generations, had made

  [5] Browne (_History of the Highlands_, vol. i. p. 33) says that 'he
      traversed the whole of North Britain, from the wall of Antoninus to
      the very extremity of the island.' The same thing is stated in
      _Pennant's Scotland_, vol. i. p. 90. Neither of these writers quote
      their authority for this; but they probably relied on a passage in
      _Buchanan's Rerum Scoticarum Historia_, lib. iv. p. 94. 'Neque tamen
      desideratis quinquaginta millibus (ut scribit Dion) prius ab
      inc[oe]pto destiterunt, quam ad finem insulæ penetrassent.' I
      believe, however, that Scotch antiquaries are now agreed that this
      is wrong, as Chalmers was one of the first to perceive. See his
      _Caledonia_, vol. i. p. 187; a very valuable and learned, but
      unhappily ill-arranged, book, and written in a style which is
      absolutely afflicting. See also _Irving's History of
      Dumbartonshire_, 4to, 1860, p. 14.

It is at this point that we begin to discern the operation of those
physical and geographical peculiarities which I have mentioned as
influencing the fortunes of Scotland. The Romans, gradually losing
ground, the proximity of Ireland caused repeated attacks from that
fertile island, whose rich soil and great natural advantages gave rise to
an exuberant, and therefore a restless, population. An overflow, which,
in civilized times, is an emigration, is, in barbarous times, an
invasion. Hence the Irish, or Scotti as they were termed, established
themselves by force of arms in the west of Scotland, and came into
collision with the Picts, who occupied the eastern part. A deadly
struggle ensued, which lasted four centuries after the withdrawal of the
Romans, and plunged the country into the greatest confusion. At length,
in the middle of the ninth century, Kenneth M'Alpine, king of the
Scotti, gained the upper hand, and reduced the Picts to complete
submission.[6] The country was now united under one rule; and the
conquerors, slowly absorbing the conquered, gave their name to the whole,
which, in the tenth century, received the appellation of Scotland.[7]

  [6] The history of Scotland, in this period, is in great confusion, and
      perhaps will never be recovered. For the statements made in the
      text, I have chiefly used the following authorities: _Fordun's
      Scotichronicon_, vol. i.; _Buchanan's Rerum Scoticarum Historia_,
      lib. v. pp. 121-132, and the beginning of the sixth book. Also
      various parts of _Bede_; _Pinkerton's Enquiry into the Early History
      of Scotland_; _Chalmers' Caledonia_; the first volume of _Browne's
      History of the Highlands_; and, above all, Mr. Skene's acute and
      learned work on the Highlanders. In the last-named book, the western
      boundary of the Picts is traced with great ingenuity, though perhaps
      with some uncertainty. _Skene's Highlanders of Scotland_, vol. i.
      pp. 26-33, London, 1837.

  [7] Here, again, we are involved in doubt; it being uncertain when the
      name Scotia was first applied to Scotland. The date, therefore,
      which I have given, is only intended as an approximative truth. In
      arriving at it, I have compared the following different, and often
      conflicting, passages: _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. i. p. 339.
      _Browne's History of the Highlands_, vol. i. p. 34. _Pinkerton's
      Enquiry into the Early History of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 253, 254,
      vol. ii. pp. 151, 228, 237, 240. _Spottiswoode's History of the
      Church of Scotland_, edit. Russell, 1851, vol. i. p. 16, note,
      where, however, Pinkerton's authority is appealed to for an
      assertion which he did not make. _Skene's Highlanders_, vol. i. pp.
      45, 61, 244. _Anderson's Prize Essay on the Highlands_, p. 34.

But the kingdom was to have no rest. For, in the mean time,
circumstances, which it would be tedious to relate, had raised the
inhabitants of Norway to be the greatest maritime power in Europe. The
use which that nation of pirates made of their strength, forms another
and a very important link in the history of Scotland, and moreover
illustrates the immense weight, which, in an early period of society,
should be assigned to mere geographical considerations. The nearest land
to the centre of the long coast of Norway is the Shetland Isles, whence
it is an easy sail to the Orkneys. The northern pirates naturally seized
these small, but, to them, most useful islands, and, as naturally, made
them intermediate stations, from which they could conveniently pillage
the coasts of Scotland. Being constantly reinforced from Norway, they, in
the ninth and tenth centuries, advanced from the Orkneys, made permanent
settlements in Scotland itself, and occupied not only Caithness, but also
great part of Sutherland. Another body of them got possession of the
Western Islands; and as Skye is only separated from the mainland by a
very narrow channel, these pirates easily crossed over, and fixed
themselves in Western Ross.[8] From their new abodes, they waged
incessant and destructive war against every district within their reach;
and, keeping a large part of Scotland in constant alarm, they, for about
three centuries, prevented the possibility of its social improvement.
Indeed, that unhappy country was never free from the dangers of Norwegian
invasion, until the failure of the last great attack, in 1263, when Haco
left Norway with a prodigious armament, which he further strengthened by
reinforcements from the Orkneys and Hebrides. Scotland could offer but
little resistance. Haco, with his allies, sailed along the western coast
to the Mull of Kentire, wasted the country with fire and sword, took
Arran and Bute, entered the Firth of Clyde, suddenly fell upon Loch
Lomond, destroyed all the property on its shores and on its islands,
ravaged the whole county of Stirling, and threatened to descend with all
his force upon Ayrshire. Fortunately, the inclemency of the weather broke
up this great expedition, and scattered or destroyed the entire fleet.[9]
After its dispersal, the course of affairs in Norway prevented the
attempt from being renewed; and danger from that quarter being over, it
might have been hoped that Scotland would now enjoy peace, and would have
leisure to develop the natural resources which she possessed,
particularly those in the southern and more favoured districts.

  [8] _Pinkerton's Enquiry into the Early History of Scotland_, vol. i.
      pp. 136, 317, vol. ii. pp. 179, 298. _Skene's Highlanders_, vol. i.
      pp. 90, 91, 94, 106, 114, 258, 259. _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. i.
      pp. 340-347.

  [9] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 38-54. The account in
      _Hollinshead's Scottish Chronicle_, vol. i. pp. 399-403, ascribes
      too much to the prowess of the Scotch, and too little to the
      elements which dispersed the fleet. Compare _Irving's History of
      Dumbartonshire_, second edition, 4to, 1860, pp. 48, 49.

This, however, was not to be. For, scarcely were the attacks from Norway
at an end, when those from England began. Early in the thirteenth
century, the lines of demarcation which separated Normans from Saxons,
were, in our country, becoming so obliterated, that in many cases it was
impossible to distinguish them.[10] By the middle of the same century,
the two races were fused into one powerful nation; and, as that nation
had a comparatively feeble neighbour, it was certain that the stronger
people would try to oppress the weaker.[11] In an ignorant and barbarous
age, military success is preferred to all other kinds of fame; and the
English, greedy for conquest, set their eyes upon Scotland, which they
were sure to invade at the first opportunity. That Scotland was near,
made it tempting; that it was believed to be defenceless, made the
temptation irresistible. In 1290, Edward I. determined to avail himself
of the confusion into which Scotland was thrown by disputes respecting
the succession of the crown. The intrigues which followed, need not be
related; it is enough to say, that, in 1296, the sword was drawn, and
Edward invaded a country which he had long desired to conquer. But he
little recked of the millions of treasure, and the hundreds of thousands
of lives, which were to be squandered, before that war was over.[12] The
contest that ensued was of unexampled length and severity; and in its sad
course, the Scotch, notwithstanding their heroic resistance, and the
victories they occasionally gained, had to endure every evil which could
be inflicted by their proud and insolent neighbour. The darling object of
the English, was to subjugate the Scotch; and if anything could increase
the disgrace of so base an enterprise, it would be that, having
undertaken it, they ignominiously failed.[13] The suffering, however, was
incalculable, and was aggravated by the important fact, that it was
precisely the most fertile part of Scotland which was most exposed to the
English ravages. This, as we shall presently see, produced some very
curious results on the national character; and for that reason, I will,
without entering into many details, give a slight summary of the more
immediate consequences of this long and sanguinary struggle.

  [10] _Buckle's History of Civilization_, vol. ii. pp. 116, 117.

  [11] In _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 18, 'the early part
       of the reign' of Alexander III. is indicated as the period in which
       'the first approaches were made towards the great plan for the
       reduction of Scotland, by the English.' Alexander III. came to the
       throne in 1249. Earlier, the feeling was very different. Thus, late
       in the twelfth century, 'the two nations, according to Fordun,
       seemed one people; Englishmen travelling at pleasure through all
       the corners of Scotland (?); and Scotchmen in like manner through
       England.' _Ridpath's Border History_, p. 76. Compare _Dalrymple's
       Annals of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 158. At that time, England, being
       weak, was peaceably disposed.

  [12] An old Scotch writer says, with some exaggeration, 'The year 1296,
       at which tyme, the bloodyest and longest warr that ever was betwixt
       two nationes fell out, and continued two hundreth and sextie years,
       to the undoeing and ruineing of many noble families, with the
       slaughter of a million of men.' _Somerville's Memorie of the
       Somervilles_, vol. i. p. 61.

  [13] See some just and biting remarks in _Hume's History of the House
       of Douglas_, vol. i. p. 85.

In 1296, the English entered Berwick, the richest town Scotland
possessed, and not only destroyed all the property, but slew nearly all
the inhabitants.[14] They then marched on to Aberdeen and Elgin; and so
completely desolated the country, that the Scotch, flying to the
mountains, and stripped of their all, had no resource left but to wage
from their native fastnesses a war similar to that which their savage
ancestors, twelve centuries earlier, had conducted against the
Romans.[15] In 1298, the English again broke in, burnt Perth and St.
Andrews, and ravaged the whole territory south and west.[16] In 1310,
they invaded Scotland by the eastern march, and carrying off such
provisions as were left, caused so terrible a dearth, that the people
were forced to feed on horses and other carrion.[17] All over southern
Scotland, both east and west, the inhabitants were now reduced to a
horrible condition, being for the most part houseless and starved. In
1314, made desperate by their state, they rallied for a moment, and, in
the battle of Bannockburn, gloriously defeated their oppressors. But
their unrelenting enemy was at hand, and pressed them so hard, that, in
1322, Bruce, in order to baffle an English invasion, was obliged to lay
waste all the districts south of the Firth of Forth; the people taking
refuge, as before, in the mountains.[18] This time, therefore, when
Edward II. reached Edinburgh, he plundered nothing, because, the country
being a desert, there was nothing to plunder; but, on his return, he did
what he could, and meeting with some convents, which were the only signs
of life that he encountered, he fell upon them, robbed the monasteries of
Melrose and Holyrood, burnt the abbey of Dryburgh, and slew those monks
who, from age or disease, were unable to escape.[19] In 1336, the next
king, Edward III., equipped a numerous army, devastated the Lowlands,
and great part of the Highlands, and destroyed every thing he could find,
as far as Inverness.[20] In 1346, the English overran the districts of
Tweeddale, the Merse, Ettrick, Annandale, and Galloway;[21] and in 1355,
Edward, in a still more barbarous inroad, burnt every church, every
village, and every town he approached.[22] And scarcely were these
frightful losses somewhat repaired, when another storm burst upon the
devoted land. In 1385, Richard II. traversed the southern counties to
Aberdeen, scattering destruction on every side, and reducing to ashes the
cities of Edinburgh, Dunfermline, Perth, and Dundee.[23]

  [14] 'Anno gratiæ MCCXCVI. tertio kalendas Aprilis, villa et castro de
       Berevvico, per magnificum regem Angliæ Eadvvardum captis, omnes
       ibidem inuentos Angli gladio occiderunt, paucis exceptis, qui ipsam
       villam postmodum abiurar[=u]t.' _Flores Historiarum per Matthæum
       Westmonasteriensem collecti_, Lond. 1570, folio, lib. ii. p. 403.
       'Atque modo prædicto villâ captâ, civibus prostratis, rex Angliæ
       prædictus nulli ætati parcens aut sexui, duobus diebus rivulis de
       cruore occisorum fluentibus, septem millia et quingentas animas
       promiscui sexûs jusserat, in sua tyrannide desæviens, trucidari.'
       _Fordun's Scotichronicon, curâ Goodall_, Edinb. 1775, folio, vol.
       ii. pp. 159, 160. 'Secutus Rex cum peditum copiis miserabilem omnis
       generis cædem edit.' _Buchanan's Rerum Scoticarum Historia_,
       Abredoniæ, 1762, lib. viii. p. 200. 'They left not one creature
       alive of the Scotish blood within all that toune.' _Hollinshead's
       Scottish Chronicle_, Arbroath, 1805, 4to, vol. i. p. 418. In 1286,
       that is, only ten years earlier, 'No other part of Scotland, in
       point of commercial importance, came near to a comparison with
       Berwick.' _Macpherson's Annals of Commerce_, London, 4to, 1805,
       vol. i. p. 446. Such were the brutal crimes of our wretched and
       ignorant ancestors.

  [15] 'The Scots assembled in troops and companies, and betaking
       themselves to the woods, mountains, and morasses, in which their
       fathers had defended themselves against the Romans, prepared for a
       general insurrection against the English power.' _Scott's History
       of Scotland_, London, 1830, vol. i. p. 70. Elgin appears to have
       been the most northern point of this expedition. See _Tytler's
       History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 119, and _Chalmers' Caledonia_,
       vol. i. p. 657. The general results are summed up by Buchanan:
       'Hanc stragem ex agrorum incultu consecuta est fames, et famem
       pestis, unde major quàm è bello clades timebatur.' _Rerum
       Scoticarum Historia_, lib. viii. p. 203.

  [16] 'The army then advanced into Scotland by moderate marches, wasting
       and destroying every thing on their way.' ... 'A party of Edward's
       army, sent northwards, wasted the country, and burnt Perth and
       Saint Andrews.' _Ridpath's Border History_, pp. 146, 147.

  [17] 'The king entered Scotland by the eastern march with a great army.'
       ... 'There was this year so terrible a dearth and scarcity of
       provisions in Scotland, arising from the havoc of war, that many
       were obliged to feed on the flesh of horses and other carrion.'
       _Ibid._ pp. 164, 165. See also _Fordun's Scotichronicon_, vol. ii.
       pp. 242, 243. 'Quo anno, propter guerrarum discrimina, tanta erat
       panis inopia et victualium caristia in Scotia, quòd in plerisque
       locis, compellente famis necessitate, multi carnibus equorum et
       aliorum pecorum immundorum vescebantur.'

  [18] Bruce 'carefully laid the whole borders waste as far as the Firth
       of Forth, removing the inhabitants to the mountains, with all their
       effects of any value. When the English army entered, they found a
       land of desolation, which famine seemed to guard.' _Scott's History
       of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 145. See also _Buchanan's Rerum Scoticarum
       Historia_, lib. viii. p. 218.

  [19] 'Eadwardus, rex Angliæ, intravit Scotiam cum magno exercitu equitum
       et peditum, ac navium multitudine copiosa, duodecimo die mensis
       Augusti, et usque villam de Edinburgh pervenit.' ... 'Spoliatis
       tamen tunc in reditu Anglorum et prædatis monasteriis Sanctæ Crucis
       de Edinburgh et de Melros, atque ad magnam desolationem perductis.
       In ipso namque monasterio de Melros dominus Willelmus de Peblis,
       ejusdem monasterii Prior, unus etiam monachus tunc infirmus, et duo
       conversi cæci effecti, in dormitorio eorundem ab eisdem Anglis sunt
       interfecti, et plures monachi lethaliter vulnerati. Corpus
       Dominicum super magnum altare fuit projectum, ablatâ pixide
       argenteâ in quâ erat repositum. Monasterium de Driburgh igne
       penitùs consumptum est et in pulverem redactum. Ac _alia pia loca
       quamplurima_ per prædicti regis violentiam ignis flamma consumpsit:
       quod, Deo retribuente, eisdem in prosperum non cessit.' _Fordun's
       Scotichronicon_, vol. ii. p. 278. 'In redeundo sacra juxta ac
       prophana spoliata. Monasteria Driburgum et Mulrossia etiam cæsis
       monachis infirmioribus, qui vel defectu virium, vel senectutis
       fiducia soli remanserant, incensa,' _Buchanan's Rerum Scoticarum
       Historia_, lib. viii. p. 219.

  [20] _Fordun's Scotichronicon_, vol. ii. pp. 322, 323. _Dalrymple's
       Annals_, vol. ii. pp. 232, 447. _Scott's History of Scotland_,
       vol. i. pp. 187, 188.

  [21] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 451.

  [22] _Dalrymple's Annals_, vol. ii. p. 288. _Fordun's Scotichronicon_,
       vol. ii. pp. 352-354.

  [23] 'Rex Angliæ, Richardus secundus ægrè ferens Scotos et Francos tam
       atrociter terram suam deprædare, et municipia sua assilire et ad
       terram prosternere, exercitum collegit grandem, et intravit
       Scotiam, ætate tunc novemdecim annorum, in multitudine superba
       progrediens, omnia circumquaque perdens, et nihil salvans; templa
       Dei et sanctuaria religiosorum monasteria viz. Driburgh, Melros et
       Newbottel, ac nobilem villam de Edinburgh, cum ecclesia Sancti
       Ægidii ejusdem, voraci flammâ incineravit; et, destructione
       permaximâ factâ per eum in Laudonia, ad propria sine damno
       repatriavit' _Fordun's Scotichronicon_, vol. ii. p. 401. 'En ce
       séjour que le roi Richard fit en Haindebourch les Anglois coururent
       tout le pays d'environ et y firent moult de desrois; mais nullui
       n'y trouvèrent; car tout avoient retrait ens ès forts, et ens ès
       grands bois, et là chassé tout leur bétail.' ... 'Et ardirent les
       Anglois la ville de Saint-Jean-Ston en Ecosse, où la rivière du Tay
       cuert, et y a un bon port pour aller partout le monde; et puis la
       ville de Dondie; et n'épargnoient abbayes ni moûtiers; tout
       mettoient les Anglois en feu et en flambe; et coururent jusques à
       Abredane les coureurs et l'avant-garde.' _Les Chroniques de
       Froissart_, edit. Buchon, vol. ii. pp. 334, 335, Paris, 1835. See
       also, on this ruffianly expedition, _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. ii.
       pp. 592, 593, and _Buchanan's Rerum Scoticarum Historia_, lib. ix.
       p. 253: 'Nulli loco, neque sacro, neque profano, nulli homini, qui
       modò militari esset ætate, parcebat.'

By these disasters, the practice of agriculture was every where
interrupted, and in many places ceased for several generations.[24] The
labourers either fled, or were murdered; and there being no one to till
the ground, some of the fairest parts of Scotland were turned into a
wilderness, overgrown with briers and thickets. Between the invasions, a
few of the inhabitants, taking courage, issued from the mountains, and
raised wretched huts in the place of their former abodes. But, even then,
they were pursued to their very doors by wolves, searching for food, and
maddened with hunger. If they escaped from these famished and ferocious
animals, they and their families were exposed to a danger still more
horrible. For, in those terrible days, when famine stalked abroad,
despair perverted the souls of men, and drove them to new crime. There
were cannibals in the land; and we have it on contemporary authority,
that a man and his wife, who were at length brought to justice, subsisted
during a considerable period on the bodies of children, whom they caught
alive in traps, devouring their flesh, and drinking their blood.[25]

  [24] 'Agriculture was ruined; and the very necessaries of life were lost,
       when the principal lords had scarcely a bed to lye on.' _Chalmers'
       Caledonia_, vol. ii. p. 142. See also, in p. 867 of the same volume
       of this learned work, some curious extracts from Scotch charters
       and other sources, illustrating the horrible condition of the
       country. And on the difficulty of obtaining food, compare _Fordun's
       Scotichronicon_, vol. ii. pp. 242, 324; _Dalrymple's Annals_, vol.
       i. p. 307, vol. ii. pp. 238, 330; and _Tytler's History of
       Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 94.

  [25] Notices of Scotch cannibals will be found in _Lindsay of
       Pitscottie's Chronicles of Scotland_, edit. 1814, vol. i. p. 163;
       and in _Hollinshead's Scottish Chronicle_, 4to, 1805, vol. ii. pp.
       16, 99. In _Fordun's Scotichronicon_, vol. ii. p. 331, the
       following horrible account is given: it refers to the neighbourhood
       of Perth in the year 1339: 'Tota illa patria circumvicina eo
       tempore in tantum fuit vastata, quòd non remansit quasi domus
       inhabitata, sed feræ et cervi de montanis descendentes circa villam
       sæpiùs venabantur. Tanta tunc temporis facta est caristia, et
       victualium inopia, ut passim plebicula deficeret, et tanquam oves
       herbas depascentes, in foveis mortua reperirentur. Prope illinc in
       abditis latitabat quidam robustus rusticus, Crysticleik nomine, cum
       viragine sua, qui mulierculis et pueris ac juvenibus insidiabantur,
       et, tanquam lupi eos strangulantes, de ipsorum carnibus

Thus the fourteenth century passed away. In the fifteenth century, the
devastations of the English became comparatively rare; and although the
borders were the scene of constant hostilities,[26] there is no instance,
since the year 1400, of any of our kings invading Scotland.[27] An end
being put to those murderous expeditions, which reduced the country to a
desert, Scotland drew breath, and began to recover her strength.[28] But,
though the material losses were gradually repaired; though the fields
were again cultivated, and the towns rebuilt, there were other
consequences, which were less easy to remedy, and from whose effects the
people long smarted. These were inordinate power of the nobles, and the
absence of the municipal spirit. The strength of the nobles, and the
weakness of the citizens, are the most important peculiarities of
Scotland during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries; and they, as I am
about to show, were directly encouraged by the ravages committed by the
English troops. We shall, moreover, see that this combination of events
increased the authority of the clergy, weakened the influence of the
intellectual classes, and made superstition more prevalent than it would
otherwise have been. It is in this way, that in Scotland, as in all other
countries, every thing is linked together; nothing is casual or
accidental; and the whole march of affairs is governed by general causes,
which, owing to their largeness and remoteness, often escape attention,
but which, when once recognized, are found to be marked by a simplicity
and uniformity, which are the invariable characteristics of the highest
truths that the mind of man has reached.

  [26] Even when the two nations were at peace, the borderers were at war.
       See _Ridpath's Border History_, pp. 240, 308, 394; and for other
       evidence of this chronic anarchy, compare _Hollinshead's Scottish
       Chronicle_, vol. ii. p. 30. _Lesley's History of Scotland_, pp. 40,
       52, 67. _Sadler's State Papers_, vol. i. pp. 300, 301, 444, 449.
       _State Papers of the Reign of Henry VIII._, 4to, 1836, vol. iv. pp.
       366, 370, 569, 570, vol. v. pp. 17, 18, 161. _Historie of James the
       Sext_, pp. 21, 91, 146.

  [27] In 1400, Henry IV. made 'the last invasion which an English monarch
       ever conducted into Scotland.' _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol.
       ii. p. 406. It is said, however, that it was not till the reign of
       Elizabeth than an English sovereign 'had the policy to disavow any
       claim of sovereignty over Scotland.' _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. i.
       p. 650.

  [28] But very slowly. Pinkerton (_History of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 166,
       167) says: 'The frequent wars between Scotland and England, since
       the death of Alexander III., had occasioned to the former country
       the loss of more than a century in the progress of civilization.
       While in England, only the northern provinces were exposed to the
       Scotish incursions, Scotland suffered in its most civilized
       departments. It is apparent that in the reign of Alexander III.,
       the kingdom was more abundant in the useful arts and manufactures,
       than it was in the time of Robert III.'

The first circumstance favourable to the authority of the nobles, was the
structure of the country. Mountains, fens, lakes, and morasses, which
even the resources of modern art have only recently made accessible
supplied the great Scottish chieftains with retreats, in which they could
with impunity defy the power of the crown.[29] The poverty of the soil
also, made it difficult for armies to find means of subsistence; and from
this cause alone, the royal troops were often unable to pursue the
lawless and refractory barons.[30] During the fourteenth century,
Scotland was constantly ravaged by the English; and in the intervals of
their absence, it would have been a hopeless undertaking for any king to
try to repress such powerful subjects, since he would have had to march
through districts so devastated by the enemy, that they no longer yielded
the common necessaries of life. Besides this, the war with the English
lessened the authority of the crown, absolutely as well as relatively.
Its patrimony, lying in the south, was incessantly wasted by the
borderers, and before the middle of the fourteenth century, greatly
deteriorated in value.[31] In 1346, David II. fell into the hands of the
English, and during his captivity of eleven years, the nobles carried all
before them, and affected, says an historian, the style and title of
princes.[32] The longer the war with England continued, the more these
consequences were felt; so that before the close of the fourteenth
century, a few of the leading Scotch families had raised themselves to
such preëminence, that it was evident, either that a deadly struggle must
ensue between them and the crown, or else that the executive government
would have to abdicate its most essential functions, and leave the
country a prey to these headstrong and ferocious chiefs.[33]

  [29] Owing to this, their castles were, by position, the strongest in
       Europe; Germany alone excepted. Respecting their sites, which were
       such as to make them in many instances almost unassailable, see
       _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. ii. pp. 122, 406, 407, 918, 919, vol.
       iii. pp. 268, 269, 356-359, 864; _Pennant's Scotland_, vol. i. pp.
       175, 177; _Sinclair's Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 169, vol. vii. p.
       510, vol. xi. pp. 102, 212, 407, 408, vol. xii. pp. 25, 58, vol.
       xiii. p. 598, vol. xv. p. 187, vol. xvi. p. 554, vol. xviii. p.
       579, vol. xix. p. 474, vol. xx. pp. 56, 312; _Macky's Scotland_,
       pp. 183, 297; and some good remarks in _Nimmo's History of
       Stirlingshire_, p. 56. Neither England, nor France, nor Italy, nor
       Spain, afforded such immense natural advantages to their

  [30] 'By retiring to his own castle, a mutinous baron could defy the
       power of his sovereign, it being almost impracticable to lead an
       army through a barren country, to places of difficult access to a
       single man.' _History of Scotland_, book i. p. 59, in _Robertson's
       Works_, edit. London, 1831. Notwithstanding the immense materials
       which have been brought to light since the time of Robertson, his
       _History of Scotland_ is still valuable; because he possessed a
       grasp of mind which enabled him to embrace general views, that
       escape ordinary compilers, however industrious they may be.

  [31] 'The patrimony of the Crown had been seriously dilapidated during
       the period of confusion which succeeded the battle of Durham,'
       _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 86.

  [32] 'During the long captivity of David,' the nobles had been completely
       insubordinate, and 'affected the style and title of princes,'
       _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 85. See also, on the
       state of the barons under David II., _Skene's Highlanders_,
       vol. ii. pp. 63-67.

  [33] In 1299, 'a superior baron was in every respect a king in
       miniature.' _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 150. In
       1377, 'the power of the barons had been decidedly increasing since
       the days of Robert the First,' p. 332. And, by 1398, it had risen
       still higher, p. 392.

At this crisis, the natural allies of the throne would have been the
citizens and free burgesses, who in most European countries were the
eager and resolute opponents of the nobles, whose licentious habits
interfered not only with their trade and manufactures, but also with
their personal liberty. Here again, however, the long war with England
was favourable to the aristocracy of Scotland. For, as the invaders
ravaged the southern parts of Scotland, which were also the only
tolerably fertile parts, it was impossible that towns should flourish in
the places which nature had appointed for them. There being no large
cities, there was no asylum for the citizens, and there could be no
municipal spirit. There being no municipal spirit, the crown was deprived
of that great resource, which enabled the English kings to curtail the
power of the nobles, and to punish a lawlessness which long impeded the
progress of society.

During the middle ages, the Scotch towns were so utterly insignificant,
that but few notices have been preserved of them; contemporary writers
concentrating their attention upon the proceedings of the nobles and
clergy. Respecting the people, who found shelter in such miserable cities
as then existed, our best accounts are very imperfect; it is, however,
certain that, during the long English wars, the inhabitants usually fled
at the approach of the invaders, and the wretched hovels in which they
lived were burned to the ground.[34] Hence the population acquired a
fluctuating and vagabond character, which prevented the formation of
settled habits of industry, and thus took away one reason which men have
for congregating together. This applied more especially to the southern
Lowlands; for the north, there were other evils equally threatening. The
ferocious Highlanders, who lived entirely by plunder, were constantly at
hand; and to them were not unfrequently added the freebooters of the
Western Isles. Any thing which bore even the semblance of wealth, was an
irresistible excitement to their cupidity. They could not know that a man
had property, without longing to steal it; and, next to stealing, their
greatest pleasure was to destroy.[35] Aberdeen and Inverness were
particularly exposed to their assaults; and twice during the fifteenth
century, Inverness was totally consumed by fire, besides having to pay at
other times a heavy ransom, to save itself from a similar fate.[36]

  [34] On this burning of Scotch towns, which appears to have been the
       invariable practice of our humane forefathers, see _Chalmers'
       Caledonia_, vol. ii. pp. 592, 593; _Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen_,
       vol. i. pp. 18, 27, 375, vol. ii. p. 304; _Mercer's History of
       Dunfermline_, pp. 55, 66; _Sinclair's Scotland_, vol. v. p. 485,
       vol. x. p. 584, vol. xix. p. 161; _Ridpath's Border History_,
       pp. 147, 221, 265.

  [35] A curious description of them is given in a Scotch statute, of the
       year 1597. 'They hawe lykwayis throche thair barbarus inhumunitie
       maid and presentlie makis the saidis hielandis and Iles qlk are
       maist c[=o]modious in thame selwes alsueill be the ferteillitie of
       the ground as be riche fischeingis altogidder vnproffitabill baithe
       to thame selffis and to all vthuris his hienes liegis within this
       realme; Thay nathair intertening onie ciuill or honest societie
       amangis thame selffis neyther, zit admittit vtheris his hienesse
       lieges to trafficque within thair boundis vithe saiftie of thair
       liues and gudes; for remeid quhairof and that the saidis
       inhabitantis of the saidis hilandeis and Iles may the better be
       reduced to ane godlie, honest, and ciuill maner of living, it is
       statute and ordanit,' &c. _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_,
       vol. iv. p. 138, edit. folio, 1816.

       These little peculiarities of the Highlanders remained in full
       force until about the middle of the eighteenth century, as will
       appear in the course of this history. But without anticipating what
       will be narrated in a subsequent chapter, I will merely refer the
       reader to two interesting passages in _Pennant's Scotland_, vol. i.
       p. 154, and in _Heron's Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 218, 219; both of
       which illustrate the state of things a little before 1745.

  [36] Inverness was burned in 1429. _Gregory's History of the Western
       Highlands_, p. 36; and again in 1455, _Buchanan's Rerum Scoticarum
       Historia_, lib. xi. p. 322. 'The greatest part' of it was also
       burned in 1411. See _Anderson on the Highlands_, Edinb. 1827,
       p. 82.

       Aberdeen, being richer, was more tempting, but was likewise more
       able to defend itself. Still, its burgh records supply curious
       evidence of the constant fear in which the citizens lived, and of
       the precautions which they took to ward off the attacks, sometimes
       of the English, and sometimes of the clans. See the _Council
       Register of Aberdeen_ (published by the Spalding Club, Aberdeen,
       1844-1848, 4to), vol. i. pp. 8, 19, 60, 83, 197, 219, 232, 268,
       vol. ii. p. 82. The last entry, which is dated July 31, 1593,
       mentions 'the disordourit and lawles helandmen in Birss,
       Glentanner, and their about, nocht onlie in the onmerciful
       murthering of men and bairnis, bot in the maisterfull and violent
       robbing and spulzeing of all the bestiall, guidis, and geir of a
       gryt pairt of the inhabitantis of theas boundis, rasing of gryt
       hairschip furth of the samen, being committit to ewous and nar this
       burgh, within xx mylis theirunto, deuysit and ordanit for
       preservation of this burgh and inhabitantis theirof, fra the
       tyrannous invasion of the saidis hieland men, quha has na respect
       to God nor man; that the haill inhabitantis of this burgh,
       fensiball persones als weill onfrie as frie, salbe in reddiness
       weill armit for the defence of this burgh, thair awin lyvis, gudis,
       and geir, and resisting and repressing of the said heland men, as
       occasioun salbe offered, at all tymes and houris as thay salbe
       requirt and chargit.'

       Even in 1668 we find complaints that Highlanders had forcibly
       carried off women from Aberdeen or from its neighbourhood. _Records
       of the Synod of Aberdeen_, p. 290. Other evidence of their attacks
       in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, may be seen in
       _Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen_, vol. i. p. 133; _Spalding's History
       of the Troubles_, vol. i. pp. 25, 217; _Extracts from the
       Presbytery Book of Strathbogie_, pp. 62, 73.

Such insecurity[37] both on the north and on the south, made peaceful
industry impossible in any part of Scotland. No where could a town be
built, without being in danger of immediate destruction. The consequence
was, that, during many centuries, there were no manufactures; there was
hardly any trade; and nearly all business was conducted by barter.[38]
Some of the commonest arts were unknown. The Scotch were unable to make
even the arms with which they fought. This, among such a warlike people,
would have been a very profitable labour; but they were so ignorant of
it, that, early in the fifteenth century, most of the armour which they
wore was manufactured abroad, as also were their spears, and even their
bows and arrows; and the heads of these weapons were entirely imported
from Flanders.[39] Indeed, the Flemish artizans supplied the Scotch with
ordinary farming implements, such as cart-wheels and wheel-barrows,
which, about the year 1475, used to be regularly shipped from the Low
Countries.[40] As to the arts which indicate a certain degree of
refinement, they were then, and long afterwards, quite out of the
question.[41] Until the seventeenth century, no glass was manufactured in
Scotland,[42] neither was any soap made there.[43] Even the higher class
of citizens would have deemed windows absurd in their wretched
abodes;[44] and as they were alike filthy in their persons as in their
houses, the demand for soap was too small to induce any one to attempt
its manufacture.[45] Other branches of industry were equally backward. In
1620, the art of tanning leather was for the first time introduced into
Scotland;[46] and it is stated, on apparently good authority, that no
paper was made there until about the middle of the eighteenth

  [37] Even Perth ceased to be the capital of Scotland, because 'its
       vicinity to the Highlands' made it dangerous for the sovereign to
       reside there. _Lawson's Book of Perth_, p. xxxi.

  [38] On the prevalence of barter and lack of specie, in Scotland, see the
       _Spalding Club Miscellany_, vol. iv. pp. lvii.-lx., Aberdeen, 1849,
       4to. In 1492, the treasury of Aberdeen was obliged to borrow 4_l._
       16_s._ Scots. _Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen_, vol. i. p. 61.
       Compare _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. x. p.
       542. Fynes Moryson, who was in Scotland late in the sixteenth
       century, says, 'the gentlemen reckon their revenues not by rents of
       money, but by chauldrons of victuals.' _Moryson's Itinerary_, part
       iii. p. 155, London, folio, 1617; a rare and extremely curious
       book, which ought to be reprinted. A hundred years after Moryson
       wrote, it was observed that, 'in England, the rents are paid in
       money; in Scotland, they are, generally speaking, paid in kind, or
       victual, as they call it.' _De Foe's History of the Union_, p. 130.

  [39] In the reign of James I. (1424-1436), 'It appears that armour, nay
       spears, and bows and arrows, were chiefly imported.' ... 'In
       particular, the heads of arrows and of spears seem to have been
       entirely imported from Flanders,' _Pinkerton's History of
       Scotland_, vol. i. p. 163. We learn from Rymer's _F[oe]dera_, that,
       in 1368, two Scotchmen having occasion to fight a duel, got their
       armour from London. _Macpherson's Annals of Commerce_, vol. i.
       p. 575.

  [40] From the _Bibel of English Policy_, supposed to have been written in
       the reign of Edward IV., we learn that 'the Scotish imports from
       Flanders were mercery, but more haberdashery, cart-wheels, and
       wheel-barrows,' _Pinkerton's History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 408.
       In _Mercer's History of Dunfermline_, p. 61, we are told that, in
       the fifteenth century, 'Even in the best parts of Scotland, the
       inhabitants could not manufacture the most necessary articles.
       Flanders was the great mart in those times, and from Bruges
       chiefly, the Scots imported even horse-shoes, harness, saddles,
       bridles, cart-wheels, and wheel-barrows, besides all their mercery
       and haberdashery.'

  [41] Aberdeen was, for a long period, one of the most wealthy,
       and, in some respects, the most advanced, of all the Scotch cities.
       But it appears, from the council-registers of Aberdeen, that, 'in
       the beginning of the sixteenth century, there was not a mechanic in
       the town capable to execute the ordinary repairs of a clock,'
       _Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen_, vol. i. p. 99. On the Scotch clocks
       in the middle of the sixteenth century, compare Mr. Morley's
       interesting _Life of Cardan_, London, 1854, vol. ii. p. 128. Cardan
       was in Scotland in 1552.

  [42] About 1619, Sir George Hay 'set up at the village of Wemyss, in
       Fife, a small glass-work, being the first known to have existed
       amongst us.' _Chambers' Annals_, vol. i. p. 506. See also p. 428.

  [43] 'Before this time, soap was imported into Scotland from foreign
       countries, chiefly from Flanders.' _Ibid._, vol. i. p. 507, under
       the year 1619, where mention is made of the manufactory set up at
       Leith. 'The sope-workes of Leith' are noticed in 1650, in
       _Balfour's Annales_, vol. iv. p. 68.

  [44] Ray, who visited Scotland in 1661, says, 'In the best Scottish
       houses, even the king's palaces, the windows are not glazed
       throughout, but the upper part only; the lower have two wooden
       shuts or folds to open at pleasure and admit the fresh air.' ...
       'The ordinary country-houses are pitiful cots, built of stone, and
       covered with turves, having in them but one room, many of them no
       chimneys, the windows very small holes and not glazed.' _Ray's
       Itineraries_, p. 153, edited by Dr. Lankester, London, 1846. 'About
       1752, the glass window was beginning to make its appearance in the
       small farm-houses.' _Brown's History of Glasgow_, vol. ii. p. 265,
       Edinburgh, 1797.

  [45] In 1650, it was stated of the Scotch, that 'many of their women are
       so sluttish, that they do not wash their linen above once a month,
       nor their hands and faces above once a year.' _Whitelock's
       Memorials_, p. 468, London, 1732, folio. Six or seven years after
       this, a traveller in Scotland says, 'the linen they supplied us
       with, were it not to boast of, was little or nothing different from
       those female complexions that never washed their faces to retain
       their christendom.' _Franck's Northern Memoirs_, edit. Edinburgh,
       1821, p. 94. A celebrated Scotchman notices, in 1698, the uncleanly
       habits of his countrymen, but gives a comical reason for them;
       since, according to him, they were in a great measure caused by the
       position of the capital. 'As the happy situation of London has been
       the principal cause of the glory and riches of England, so the bad
       situation of Edinburgh has been one great occasion of the poverty
       and uncleanliness in which the greater part of the people of
       Scotland live.' _Second Discourse on the Affairs of Scotland_, in
       _Fletcher of Saltoun's Political Works_, p. 119, Glasgow, 1749.
       Another Scotchman, among his reminiscences of the early part of the
       eighteenth century, says, that 'table and body linen [were] seldom
       shifted.' _Memoires by Sir Archibald Grant of Monymusk_, in
       _Spalding Club Miscellany_, vol. ii. p. 100, Aberdeen, 1842, 4to.
       Finally, we have positive proof that in some parts of Scotland,
       even at the end of the eighteenth century, the people used, instead
       of soap, a substitute too disgusting to mention. See the account
       communicated by the Rev. William Leslie to Sir John Sinclair, in
       _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. ix. p. 177,
       Edinburgh, 1793.

  [46] _Chambers' Annals_, vol. i. p. 512.

  [47] A paper-mill was established near Edinburgh in 1675; but 'there is
       reason to conclude this paper-mill was not continued, and that
       paper-making was not successfully introduced into Scotland till the
       middle of the succeeding century.' _Chambers' Annals_, vol. ii. p.
       399. I have met with so many proofs of the great accuracy of this
       valuable work, that I should be loath to question any statement
       made by Mr. Chambers, when, as in this case, I have only my memory
       to trust to. But I think that I have seen evidence of paper being
       successfully manufactured in Scotland late in the seventeenth
       century, though I cannot recall the passages. However, Arnot, in
       his _History of Edinburgh_, p. 599, edit. 4to, says, 'About forty
       years ago, printing or writing paper began to be manufactured in
       Scotland. Before that, papers were imported from Holland, or
       brought from England,' As Arnot's work was printed in 1788, this
       coincides with Mr. Chambers' statement. I may add, that, at the end
       of the eighteenth century, there were 'two paper-mills near Perth.'
       _Heron's Journey through Scotland_, vol. i. p. 117, Perth, 1799;
       and that, in 1751 and 1763, the two first paper-mills were erected
       north of the Forth. _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_,
       vol. ix. p. 593, vol. xvi. p. 373. Compare _Lettice's Letters from
       Scotland in 1792_, p. 420.

In the midst of such general stagnation, the most flourishing towns were,
as may be easily supposed, very thinly peopled. Indeed, men had so little
to do, that if they had collected in large numbers, they must have
starved. Glasgow is one of the oldest cities in Scotland, and is said to
have been founded about the sixth century.[48] At all events, in the
twelfth century, it was, according to the measure of that age, a rich and
prosperous place, enjoying the privilege of holding both a market and a
fair.[49] It had also a municipal organization, and was governed by its
own provosts and baillies.[50] Yet, even this famous town had no kind of
trade before the fifteenth century, when the inhabitants began to cure
salmon, and export it.[51] That was the only branch of industry with
which Glasgow was acquainted. We need not, therefore, be surprised at
hearing, that so late as the middle of the fifteenth century, the entire
population did not exceed fifteen hundred persons, whose wealth consisted
of some small cattle, and a few acres of ill-cultivated land.[52]

  [48] 'This city was founded about the sixth century.' _M'Ure's History of
       Glasgow_, edit. 1830, p. 120. Compare _Denholm's History of
       Glasgow_, p. 2, Glasgow, 1804.

  [49] In 1172, a market was granted to Glasgow; and in 1190, a fair. See
       the charters in the Appendix to _Gibson's History of Glasgow_, pp.
       299, 302, Glasgow, 1777.

  [50] 'By the sale of land made by Robert de Mythyngby to Mr. Reginald de
       Irewyne, A.D. 1268, it is evident that the town was then governed
       by provosts, aldermen, or wardens, and baillies, who seem to have
       been independent of the bishop, and were possessed of a common
       seal, distinct from the one made use of by the bishop and chapter.'
       _Gibson's History of Glasgow_, p. 72.

  [51] 'A Mr. William Elphinston is made mention of as the first promoter
       of trade in Glasgow, so early as the year 1420; the trade which he
       promoted was, in all probability, the curing and exporting of
       salmon.' _Gibson's History of Glasgow_, p. 203. See also _M'Ure's
       History of Glasgow_, p. 93.

  [52] Gibson (_History of Glasgow_, p. 74), with every desire to take a
       sanguine view of the early state of his own city, says, that, in
       1450, the inhabitants 'might perhaps amount to fifteen hundred;'
       and that 'their wealth consisted in a few burrow-roods very
       ill-cultivated, and in some small cattle, which fed on their

Other cities, though bearing a celebrated name, were equally backward at
a still more recent period. Dunfermline is associated with many historic
reminiscences; it was a favourite residence of Scotch kings, and many
Scotch parliaments have been held there.[53] Such events are supposed to
confer distinction; but the illusion vanishes, when we inquire more
minutely into the condition of the place where they happened. In spite of
the pomp of princes and legislators, Dunfermline, which at the end of the
fourteenth century was still a poor village, composed of wooden huts,[54]
had, by the beginning of the seventeenth century, advanced so slowly that
its whole population, including that of its wretched suburbs, did not
exceed one thousand persons.[55] For a Scotch town, that was a
considerable number. About the same time, Greenock, we are assured, was a
village consisting of a single row of cottages, tenanted by poor
fishermen.[56] Kilmarnock, which is now a great emporium of industry and
of wealth, contained, in 1668, between five and six hundred
inhabitants.[57] And, to come down still lower, even Paisley itself, in
the year 1700, possessed a population which, according to the highest
estimate, did not amount to three thousand.[58]

  [53] 'Dunfermline continued to be a favourite royal residence as long as
       the Scottish dynasty existed. Charles I. was born here; as also his
       sister Elizabeth, afterwards Queen of Bohemia, from whom her
       present Majesty is descended; and Charles II. paid a visit to this
       ancient seat of royalty in 1650. The Scottish parliament was often
       held in it.' _M'Culloch's Geographical Dictionary_, London, 1849,
       vol. i. p. 723. Compare _Mercer's History of Dunfermline_, 1828,
       pp. 56, 58, and _Chalmers' History of Dunfermline_, 1844, p. 264.

  [54] In 1385, it was 'only a sorry wooden village, belonging to the
       monastery.' _Mercer's History of Dunfermline_, p. 62.

  [55] See 'Ms. Annals,' in _Chalmers' History of Dunfermline_, p. 327. In
       1624, we learn from _Balfour's Annales_, edit. 1825, vol. ii. p.
       99, that 'the quholl bodey of the towne, which did consist of 120
       tenements, and 287 families was brunt and consumed.'

  [56] 'Greenock, which is now one of the largest shipping towns in
       Scotland, was, in the end of the sixteenth century, a mean fishing
       village, consisting of a single row of thatched cottages, which was
       inhabited by poor fishermen.' _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. iii.
       p. 806, 4to, 1824.

  [57] In May 1668, Kilmarnock was burnt; and 'the event is chiefly worthy
       of notice as marking the smallness of Kilmarnock in those days,
       when as yet, there was no such thing as manufacturing industry in
       the country. A hundred and twenty families speaks to a population
       of between five and six hundred.' _Chambers' Annals_, Edinburgh,
       1858, vol. ii. p. 320. In 1658, their houses are described by an
       eye-witness as 'little better than huts.' _Franck's Northern
       Memoirs_, reprinted Edinburgh, 1821, p. 101.

  [58] 'Betwixt two and three thousand souls,' _Denholm's History of
        Glasgow_, p. 542, edit. Glasgow, 1804.

Aberdeen, the metropolis of the north, was looked up to as one of the
most influential of the Scotch towns, and was not a little envied during
the Middle Ages, for its power and importance. These, however, like all
other words, are relative, and mean different things at different
periods. Certainly, we shall not be much struck by the magnitude of that
city, when we learn, from calculations made from its tables of mortality,
that so late as 1572, it could only boast of about two thousand nine
hundred inhabitants.[59] Such a fact will dispel many a dream respecting
the old Scotch towns, particularly if we call to mind that it refers to a
date, when the anarchy of the Middle Ages was passing away, and Aberdeen
had for some time been improving. That city--if so miserable a collection
of persons deserves to be termed a city--was, nevertheless, one of the
most densely peopled places in Scotland. From the thirteenth century to
the close of the sixteenth, no where else were so many Scotchmen
assembled together, except in Perth, Edinburgh, and possibly in Saint
Andrews.[60] Respecting Saint Andrews, I have been unable to meet with
any precise information;[61] but of Perth and Edinburgh, some particulars
are preserved. Perth was long the capital of Scotland, and after losing
that preëminence, it was still reputed to be the second city in the
kingdom.[62] Its wealth was supposed to be astonishing; and every good
Scotchman was proud of it, as one of the chief ornaments of his
country.[63] But, according to an estimate recently made by a
considerable authority in these matters, its entire population, in the
year 1585, was under nine thousand.[64] This will surprise many readers;
though, considering the state of society at that time, the real wonder
is, not that there were so few, but that there were so many. For,
Edinburgh itself, notwithstanding the officials and numerous hangers-on,
which the presence of a court always brings, did not contain, late in the
fourteenth century, more than sixteen thousand persons.[65] Of their
general condition, a contemporary observer has left us some account.
Froissart, who visited Scotland, and records what he saw, as well as what
he heard, gives a lamentable picture of the state of affairs. The houses
in Edinburgh were mere huts, thatched with boughs; and were so slightly
put together, that when one of them was destroyed, it only took three
days to rebuild it. As to the people who inhabited these wretched hovels,
Froissart, who was by no means given to exaggeration, assures us, that
the French, unless they had seen them, could not have believed that such
destitution existed, and that now, for the first time, they understood
what poverty really was.[66]

  [59] In 1572, the registers of Aberdeen show that seventy-two deaths
       occurred in the year. An annual mortality of 1 in 40 would be a
       very favourable estimate; indeed, rather too favourable,
       considering the habits of the people at that time. However,
       supposing it to be 1 in 40, the population would be 2880; and if,
       as I make no doubt, the mortality was more than 1 in 40, the
       population must of course have been less. Kennedy, in his valuable,
       but very uncritical, work, conjectures that 'one fiftieth part of
       the inhabitants had died annually;' though it is certain that there
       was no town in Europe any thing like so healthy as that. On this
       hypothesis, which is contradicted by every sort of statistical
       evidence that has come down to us, the number would be 72 × 50 =
       3600. See _Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen_, vol. i. p. 103, London,
       1818, 4to.

  [60] 'St. Andrews, Perth, and Aberdeen, appear to have been the three
       most populous cities before the Reformation.' _Lawson's Roman
       Catholic Church in Scotland_, 1836, p. 26. The same assertion is
       made in _Lyon's History of St. Andrews_, 1843, vol. i. p. 2. But
       neither of these writers appear to have made many researches on the
       subject, or else they would not have supposed that Aberdeen was
       larger than Edinburgh.

  [61] I have carefully read the two histories of St. Andrews, by Dr.
       Grierson and by Mr. Lyon, but have found nothing in them of any
       value concerning the early history of that city. Mr. Lyon's work,
       which is in two thick volumes, is unusually superficial, even for a
       local history; and that is saying much.

  [62] 'Of the thirteen parliaments held in the reign of King James I.,
       eleven were held at Perth, one at Stirling, and one at Edinburgh.
       The National Councils of the Scottish clergy were held there
       uniformly till 1459. Though losing its pre-eminence by the
       selection of Edinburgh as a capital, Perth has uniformly and
       constantly maintained the second place in the order of burghs, and
       its right to do so has been repeatedly and solemnly acknowledged.'
       _Penny's Traditions of Perth_, Perth, 1836, p. 231. See also p.
       305. It appears, however, from Froissart, that Edinburgh was deemed
       the capital in the latter half of the fourteenth century.

  [63] I find one instance of its being praised by a man who was not a
       Scotchman. Alexander Necham 'takes notice of Perth in the following
       distich, quoted in Camden's Britannia:

       Transis ample Tai, per rura, per oppida, per Perth:
       Regnum sustentant illius urbis opes.

       Thus Englished in Bishop Gibson's Translations of Camden's Book:

       'Great Tay, through Perth, through towns, through country flies:
       Perth the whole kingdom with her wealth supplies.'

       _Sinclair's Scotland_, vol. xviii. p. 511.

  [64] 1427 × 6 = 8562, the computed population in 1584 and 1585, exclusive
       of the extraordinary mortality caused by the plague. _Chambers'
       Annals of Scotland_, 1858, vol. i. p. 158.

  [65] 'The inhabitants of the capital, in the reign of Robert II., hardly
       exceeded sixteen thousand.' _Pinkerton's History of Scotland_,
       vol. i. p. 152.

  [66] When the French arrived in Edinburgh, the Scotch said, '"Quel diable
       les a mandés? Ne savons-nous pas bien faire notre guerre sans eux
       aux Anglois? Nous ne ferons jà bonne besogne tant comme ils soient
       avec nous. On leur dise que ils s'en revoisent, et que nous sommes
       gens assez en Escosse pour parmaintenir notre guerre, et que point
       nous ne voulons leur compagnie. Ils ne nous entendent point, ni
       nous eux; nous ne savons parler ensemble; ils auront tantôt riflé
       et mangé tout ce qui est en ce pays: ils nous feront plus de
       contraires, de dépits, et de dommages, si nous les laissons
       convenir, que les Anglois ne feroient si ils s'étoient embattus
       entre nous sans ardoir. Et si les Anglois ardent nos maisons, que
       peut il chaloir? Nous les aurons tantôt refaites à bon marché, nous
       n'y mettons au refaire que trois jours, mais que nous ayons quatre
       ou six estaches et de la ramée pour lier par dessus."'

       'Ainsi disoient les Escots en Escosse à la venue des seigneurs de
       France,' ... 'Et quand les Anglois y chevauchent ou que ils y vont,
       ainsi que ils y ont été plusieurs fois, il convient que leurs
       pourvéances, si ils veulent vivre, les suivent toujours au dos; car
       on ne trouve rien sur le pays: à grand'peine y recuevre-l'en du fer
       pour serrer les chevaux, ni du cuir pour faire harnois, selles ni
       brides. Les choses toutes faites leur viennent par mer de Flandre,
       et quand cela leur défaut, ils n'ont nulle chose. Quand ces barons
       et ces chevaliers de France qui avoient appris ces beaux hôtels à
       trouver, ces salles parées, ces chasteaux et ces bons mols lits
       pour reposer, se virent et trouvèrent en celle povreté, si
       commencèrent à rire et à dire: "En quel pays nous a ci amenés
       l'amiral? Nous ne sçumes oncques que ce fût de povreté ni de dureté
       fors maintenant."' _Les Chroniques de Froissart_, edit. Buchon,
       Paris, 1835, vol. ii. pp. 314, 315. 'The hovels of the common
       people were slight erections of turf, or twigs, which, as they were
       often laid waste by war, were built merely for temporary
       accommodation. Their towns consisted chiefly of wooden cottages,'
       ... 'Even as late as 1600, the houses of Edinburgh were chiefly
       built of wood.' _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. i. p. 802. Another
       account, written in 1670, says, 'The houses of the commonalty are
       very mean, mudwall and thatch, the best; but the poorer sort live
       in such miserable huts as never eye beheld.' ... 'In some parts,
       where turf is plentiful, they build up little cabbins thereof, with
       arched roofs of turf, without a stick of timber in it; when the
       house is dry enough to burn, it serves them for fuel, and they
       remove to another.' _Harleian Miscellany_, vol. vi. p. 139, 4to,

After this period, there was, no doubt, considerable improvement; but it
was very slow, and even late in the sixteenth century, skilled labour was
hardly known, and honest industry was universally despised.[67] It is
not, therefore, surprising, that the citizens, poor, miserable, and
ignorant, should frequently purchase the protection of some powerful
noble by yielding to him the little independence that they might have
retained.[68] Few of the Scotch towns ventured to elect their chief
magistrate from among their own people; but the usual course was, to
choose a neighbouring peer as provost or baillie.[69] Indeed, it often
happened that his office became hereditary, and was looked upon as the
vested right of some aristocratic family.[70] To the head of that family,
every thing gave way. His authority was so incontestable, that an injury
done even to one of his retainers was resented, as if it had been done to
himself.[71] The burgesses who were sent to parliament, were completely
dependent on the noble who ruled the town. Down to quite modern times,
there was in Scotland no real popular representation. The so-called
representatives were obliged to vote as they were ordered; they were, in
fact, delegates of the aristocracy; and as they possessed no chamber of
their own, they sat and deliberated in the midst of their powerful
masters, by whom they were openly intimidated.[72]

  [67] 'Our manufactures were carried on by the meanest of the people, who
       had small stocks, and were of no reputation. These were, for the
       most part, workmen for home-consumpt, such as masons,
       house-carpenters, armourers, blacksmiths, taylors, shoemakers, and
       the like. Our weavers were few in number, and in the greatest
       contempt, as their employments were more sedentary, and themselves
       reckoned less fit for war, in which all were obliged to serve, when
       the exigencies of the country demanded their attendance.' _The
       Interest of Scotland Considered_, Edinburgh, 1733, p. 82. Pinkerton
       (_History of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 392), referring to the Sloane
       manuscripts, says, 'The author of an interesting memoir concerning
       the state of Scotland about 1590, observes, that the husbandmen
       were a kind of slaves, only holding their lands from year to year;
       that the nobility being too numerous for the extent of the country,
       there arose too great an inequality of rank and revenue; and there
       was no middle station between a proud landholder and those who,
       having no property to lose, were ready for any tumult. A rich
       yeomanry, numerous merchants and tradesmen of property, and all the
       denominations of the middle class, so important in a flourishing
       society, were long to be confined to England.' Thirteen years
       later, we are told that the manufactures of Scotland 'were confined
       to a few of the coarsest nature, without which the poorest nations
       are unable to subsist.' _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. p.
       7, under the year 1603.

  [68] Thus, for instance, 'the town of Dunbar naturally grew up under the
       shelter of the castle of the same name.' ... 'Dunbar became the
       town, in demesn, of the successive Earls of Dunbar and March,
       partaking of their influences, whether unfortunate or happy.'
       _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. ii. p. 416. 'But when the regal
       government became at any time feeble, these towns, unequal to their
       own protection, placed themselves under the shelter of the most
       powerful lord in their neighbourhood. Thus, the town of Elgyn found
       it necessary, at various periods between the years 1389 and 1452,
       to accept of many charters of protection, and discharges of taxes,
       from the Earls of Moray, who held it in some species of vassalage.'
       _Sinclair's Scotland_, vol. v. p. 3. Compare _Pinkerton's History
       of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 396; and two letters, written in 1543 and
       1544, by the magistrates of Aberdeen, to the Earl of Huntly, and
       printed in the _Council Register of Aberdeen_, vol. i. pp. 190,
       201, Aberdeen, 1844, 4to. They say to him, 'Ye haf our band as
       protectour to wss.'

  [69] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 225. See also p. 131;
       and _Pinkerton's History of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 179. Sometimes
       the nobles did not leave to the citizens even the appearance of a
       free election, but fought it out among themselves. An instance of
       this happened at Perth, in 1544, 'where a claim for the office of
       provost was decided by arms, between Lord Ruthven on the one side,
       supported by a numerous train of his vassals, and Lord Gray, with
       Norman Leslie, master of Rothes, and Charteris of Kinfauns, on the
       other.' _Tytler_, vol. iv. p. 323.

  [70] For illustrations of this custom, see _Hollinshead's Scottish
       Chronicle_, vol. ii. p. 230. _Brown's History of Glasgow_, vol. ii.
       p. 154. _Denholm's History of Glasgow_, p. 249. _Mercer's History
       of Dunfermline_, p. 83.

  [71] 'An injury inflicted on the "man" of a nobleman was resented as
       much as if he himself had been the injured party.' _Preface to the
       Council Register of Aberdeen_, vol. i. p. xii.

  [72] See, in _Macaulay's History of England_, vol. i. p. 93, 1st edit., a
       spirited description of Scotland in 1639. 'The parliament of the
       northern kingdom was a very different body from that which bore the
       same name in England.' ... 'The three estates sat in one house. The
       commissioners of the burghs were considered merely as retainers of
       the great nobles,' &c. To come down much later, Lord Cockburn gives
       a terrible account of the state of things in Scotland in 1794, the
       year in which Jeffrey was called to the bar. 'There was then, in
       this country, no popular representation, no emancipated burghs, no
       effective rival of the established church, no independent press, no
       free public meetings, and no better trial by jury, even in
       political cases (except high treason), than what was consistent
       with the circumstances, that the jurors were not sent into court
       under any impartial rule, and that, when in court, those who were
       to try the case were named by the presiding judge. The Scotch
       representatives were only forty-five, of whom thirty were elected
       for counties, and fifteen for towns. Both from its price and its
       nature (being enveloped in feudal and technical absurdities), the
       elective franchise in counties, where alone it existed, was far
       above the reach of the whole lower, and of a great majority of the
       middle, and of many even of the higher, ranks. There were probably
       not above 1500 or 2000 county electors in all Scotland; a body not
       too large to be held, hope included, in government's hands. The
       return, therefore, of a single opposition member was never to be
       expected.' ... 'Of the fifteen town members, Edinburgh returned
       one. The other fourteen were produced by clusters of four or five
       unconnected burghs electing each one delegate, and these four or
       five delegates electing the representative. Whatever this system
       may have been originally, it had grown, in reference to the people,
       into as complete a mockery as if it had been invented for their
       degradation. The people had nothing to do with it. It was all
       managed by town-councils, of never more than thirty-three members;
       and every town-council was self-elected, and consequently
       perpetuated its own interests. The election of either the town or
       the county member was a matter of such utter indifference to the
       people, that they often only knew of it by the ringing of a bell,
       or by seeing it mentioned next day in a newspaper; for the farce
       was generally performed in an apartment from which, if convenient,
       the public could be excluded, and never in the open air.'
       _Cockburn's Life of Jeffrey_, Edinburgh, 1852, vol. i. pp. 74-76.
       On the state of Scotch representation between this and the Reform
       Bill, compare _Irving's History of Dumbartonshire_, 4to, 1860, pp.
       275, 276, with _Moore's Memoirs_, edited by Lord John Russell, vol.
       iv. p. 268, vol. vi. p. 163, London, 1853-4.

Under these circumstances, it would have been idle for the crown to have
expected aid from a body of men who themselves had no influence, and
whose scanty privileges existed only on sufferance. But there was another
class, which was extremely powerful, and to which the Scotch kings
naturally turned. That class was the clergy; and the interest which both
parties had in weakening the nobles, caused a coalition between the
church and the throne, against the aristocracy. During a long period, and
indeed until the latter half of the sixteenth century, the kings almost
invariably favoured the clergy, and increased their privileges in every
way they could. The Reformation dissolved this alliance, and gave rise to
new combinations, which I shall presently indicate. But while the
alliance lasted, it was of great use to the clergy, by imparting to their
claims a legitimate sanction, and making them appear the supporters of
order and of regular government. The result, however, clearly proved that
the nobles were more than equal to the confederacy which opposed them.
Indeed, looking at their enormous power, the only wonder is, that the
clergy could have prolonged the contest as they did; since they were not
actually overthrown until the year 1560. That the struggle should have
been so arduous, and should have extended over so considerable a period,
is what, on a superficial view, no one could have expected. The reason of
this, I shall now endeavour to explain; and I shall, I trust, succeed in
proving, that in Scotland there was a long train of general causes, which
secured to the spiritual classes immense influence, and which enabled
them, not only to do battle with the most powerful aristocracy in Europe,
but to rise up, after what seemed their final defeat, fresh and vigorous
as ever, and eventually to exercise, as Protestant preachers, an
authority nowise inferior to that which they had wielded as Catholic

Of all Protestant countries, Scotland is certainly the one where the
course of affairs has for the longest period been most favourable to the
interests of superstition. How these interests were encouraged during the
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, I shall hereafter relate. At
present, I purpose to examine the causes of their early growth, and to
show the way in which they were not only connected with the Reformation,
but gave to that great event some peculiarities which are extremely
remarkable, and are diametrically opposed to what happened in England.

If the reader will bear in mind what I have elsewhere stated,[73] he will
remember that the two principal sources of superstition are ignorance and
danger; ignorance keeping men unacquainted with natural causes, and
danger making them recur to supernatural ones. Or, to express the same
proposition in other words, the feeling of veneration, which, under one
of its aspects, takes the form of superstition, is a product of wonder
and of fear;[74] and it is obvious that wonder is connected with
ignorance, and that fear is connected with danger.[75] Hence it is, that
whatever in any country increases the total amount of amazement, or
whatever in any country increases the total amount of peril, has a direct
tendency to increase the total amount of superstition, and therefore to
strengthen the hands of the priesthood.

  [73] _History of Civilization_, vol. i. pp. 125-129, 373-380.

  [74] _History of Civilization_, vol. ii. p. 171.

  [75] We must discriminate between wonder and admiration. Wonder is the
       product of ignorance; admiration is the product of knowledge.
       Ignorance wonders at the supposed irregularities of nature; science
       admires its uniformities. The earlier writers rarely attended to
       this distinction, because they were misled by the etymology of the
       word 'admiration.' The Romans were very superficial thinkers upon
       all matters except jurisprudence; and their blundering use of
       'admirari' gave rise to the error, so common among our old writers,
       of 'I admire,' instead of 'I wonder.'

By applying these principles to Scotland, we shall be able to explain
several facts in the history of that country. In the first place the
features of its scenery offer a mark contrast to those of England, and
are much more likely, among an ignorant people, to suggest effective and
permanent superstitions. The storms and the mists, the darkened sky
flashed by frequent lightning, the peals of thunder reverberating from
mountain to mountain, and echoing on every side, the dangerous
hurricanes, the gusts sweeping the innumerable lakes with which the
country is studded, the rolling and impetuous torrent flooding the path
of the traveller and stopping his progress, are strangely different to
those safer and milder phenomena, among which the English people have
developed their prosperity, and built up their mighty cities. Even the
belief in witchcraft, one of the blackest superstitions which has ever
defaced the human mind, has been affected by these peculiarities; and it
has been well observed, that while, according to the old English creed,
the witch was a miserable and decrepit hag, the slave rather than the
mistress of the demons which haunted her, she, in Scotland, rose to the
dignity of a potent sorcerer, who mastered the evil spirit, and, forcing
it to do her will, spread among the people a far deeper and more lasting

  [76] 'Our Scottish witch is a far more frightful being than her
       supernatural coadjutor on the south side of the Tweed. She
       sometimes seems to rise from the proper sphere of the witch, who is
       only the slave, into that of the sorcerer, who is master of the
       demon.' ... 'In a people so far behind their neighbours in domestic
       organization, poor and hardy, inhabiting a country of mountains,
       torrents, and rocks, where cultivation was scanty, accustomed to
       gloomy mists and wild storms, every impression must necessarily
       assume a corresponding character. Superstitions, like funguses and
       vermin, are existences peculiar to the spot where they appear, and
       are governed by its physical accidents.' ... 'And thus it is that
       the indications of witchcraft in Scotland are as different from
       those of the superstition which in England receives the same name,
       as the Grampian Mountains from Shooter's Hill or Kennington
       Common.' _Burton's Criminal Trials in Scotland_, vol. i. pp.
       240-243. This is admirably expressed, and exhausts the general view
       of the subject. The relation between the superstition of the Scotch
       and the physical aspects of their country is also touched upon,
       though with much inferior ability, in _Brown's History of the
       Highlands_, vol. i. p. 106, and in _Sinclair's Scotland_, vol. iv.
       p. 560. Hume, in his _Commentaries on the Laws of Scotland_, vol.
       ii. p. 556, has an interesting passage on the high pretensions of
       Scotch witchcraft, which never degenerated, as in other countries,
       into a mere attempt at deception, but always remained a sturdy and
       deep-rooted belief. He says, 'For among the many trials for
       witchcraft which fill the record, I have not observed that there is
       even one which proceeds upon the notion of a vain or cheating art,
       falsely used by an impostor to deceive the weak and credulous.'
       Further information respecting Scotch witchcraft will be found in
       _Mackenzie's Criminal Laws of Scotland_, Edinburgh, folio, 1699,
       pp. 42-56; _Correspondence of Mrs. Grant of Laggan_, London, 1844,
       vol. iii. pp. 186, 187; _Southey's Life of Bell_, London, 1844,
       vol. i. p. 52; _Vernon Correspondence_, edited by James, London,
       1841, vol. ii. p. 301; _Weld's History of the Royal Society_,
       London, 1848, vol. i. p. 89; _Letters from a Gentleman in the North
       of Scotland_, edit. 1815, vol. i. pp. 220, 221; _The Spottiswoode
       Miscellany_, vol. ii. p. 41, Edinburgh, 1845; _Lyon's History of
       St. Andrews_, Edinburgh, 1843, vol. ii. pp. 56, 57. The work of
       James I., and that of Sir Walter Scott, need hardly be referred to,
       as they are well known to every one who is interested in the
       history of witchcraft; but Pitcairn's _Criminal Trials_, though
       less read, are, in every respect, more valuable, on account of the
       materials they contain for a study of this department of Scotch

Similar results were produced by the incessant and sanguinary wars to
which Scotland was exposed, and especially by the cruel ravages of the
English in the fourteenth century. Whatever religion may be in the
ascendant, the influence of its ministers is invariably strengthened by a
long and dangerous war, the uncertainties of which perplex the minds of
men, and induce them, when natural resources are failing, to call on the
supernatural for help. On such occasions, the clergy rise in importance;
the churches are more than usually filled; and the priest, putting
himself forward as the exponent of the wishes of God, assumes the
language of authority, and either comforts the people under their losses
in a righteous cause, or else explains to them that those losses are sent
as a visitation for their sins, and as a warning that they have not been
sufficiently attentive to their religious duties; in other words, that
they have neglected rites and ceremonies, in the performance of which the
priest himself has a personal interest.

No wonder, therefore, that in the fourteenth century, when the sufferings
of Scotland were at their height, the clergy flourished more than ever;
so that as the country became poorer, the spiritual classes became richer
in proportion to the rest of the nation. Even in the fifteenth, and first
half of the sixteenth century, when industry began somewhat to advance,
we are assured that notwithstanding the improvement in the position of
laymen, the whole of their wealth put together, and including the
possessions of all ranks, was barely equal to the wealth of the
Church.[77] If the hierarchy were so rapacious and so successful during
a period of comparative security, it would be difficult to overrate the
enormous harvest they must have reaped in those earlier days, when danger
being much more imminent, hardly any one died without leaving something
to them; all being anxious to testify their respect towards those who
knew more than their fellows, and whose prayers could either avert
present evil, or secure future happiness.[78]

  [77] Pinkerton (_History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 414) says that, in the
       reigns of James II. and James III., 'the wealth of the Church was
       at least equivalent to that of all the lay interest.' See also
       _Life of Spottiswoode_, p. liii., in vol. i. of his _History of the
       Church of Scotland_. 'The numerous devices employed by
       ecclesiastics, both secular and regular, for enriching the several
       Foundations to which they were attached, had transferred into their
       hands more than half of the territorial property of Scotland, or of
       its annual produce.'

       In regard to the first half of the sixteenth century, it is stated
       by a high authority, that, just before the Reformation, 'the full
       half of the wealth of the nation belonged to the clergy.' _M'Crie's
       Life of Knox_, p. 10. And another writer says, 'If we take into
       account the annual value of all these abbeys and monasteries, in
       conjunction with the bishoprics, it will appear at once that the
       Scottish Catholic hierarchy was more munificently endowed,
       considering the extent and resources of the kingdom, than it was in
       any other country in Europe.' _Lawson's Roman Catholic Church in
       Scotland_, p. 22. See also, respecting the incomes of the Scotch
       bishops, which, considering the poverty of the country, were truly
       enormous, _Lyon's History of St. Andrews_, Edinburgh, 1843, vol. i.
       pp. 97, 125.

  [78] 'They could employ all the motives of fear and of hope, of terror
       and of consolation, which operate most powerfully on the human
       mind. They haunted the weak and the credulous; they besieged the
       beds of the sick and of the dying; they suffered few to go out of
       the world without leaving marks of their liberality to the Church,
       and taught them to compound with the Almighty for their sins, by
       bestowing riches upon those who called themselves his servants.'
       _History of Scotland_, book ii. p. 89, in _Robertson's Works_,
       London, 1831. It is interesting to observe the eagerness with which
       the clergy of one persuasion expose the artifices of those of
       another. By comparing their different statements, laymen gain an
       insight into the entire scheme.

Another consequence of these protracted wars was, that a more than
ordinary proportion of the population embraced the ecclesiastical
profession, because in it alone there was some chance of safety: and the
monasteries in particular were crowded with persons who hoped, though
frequently in vain, to escape from the burnings and slaughterings to
which Scotland was exposed. When the country, in the fifteenth century,
began to recover from the effects of these ravages, the absence of
manufactures and of commerce, made the Church the best avenue to
wealth;[79] so that it was entered by peaceful men for the purpose of
security, and by ambitious men as the surest means of achieving

  [79] Pinkerton observes, under the year 1514, that 'ecclesiastical
       dignities presented almost the only path to opulence.' _History of
       Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 123.

Thus it was, that the want of great cities, and of that form of industry
which belongs to them, made the spiritual classes more numerous than they
would otherwise have been; and what is very observable is, that it not
only increased their number, but also increased the disposition of the
people to obey them. Agriculturists are naturally, and by the very
circumstances of their daily life, more superstitious than manufacturers,
because the events with which they deal are more mysterious, that is to
say, more difficult to generalize and predict.[80] Hence it is, that, as
a body, the inhabitants of agricultural districts pay greater respect to
the teachings of their clergy than the inhabitants of manufacturing
districts. The growth of cities has, therefore, been a main cause of the
decline of ecclesiastical power; and the fact that, until the eighteenth
century, Scotland had nothing worthy of being called a city, is one of
many circumstances which explain the prevalence of Scotch superstition,
and the inordinate influence of the Scotch clergy.

  [80] _Buckle's History of Civilization_, vol. i. pp. 376-380.

To this, we must add another consideration of great moment. Partly from
the structure of the country, partly from the weakness of the Crown, and
partly from the necessity of being constantly in arms to repel foreign
invaders, the predatory habits incidental to an early state of society
were encouraged, and consequently the reign of ignorance was prolonged.
Little was studied, and nothing was known. Until the fifteenth century,
there was not even an university in Scotland, the first having been
founded at St. Andrews in 1412.[81] The nobles, when they were not making
war upon the enemy, occupied themselves in cutting each other's throats,
and stealing each other's cattle.[82] Such was their ignorance, that,
even late in the fourteenth century, there is said to be no instance of a
Scotch baron being able to sign his own name.[83] And as nothing
approaching to a middle class had been yet formed, we may from this gain
some idea of the amount of knowledge possessed by the people at
large.[84] Their minds must have been immersed in a darkness which we can
now barely conceive. No trades, or arts, being practised which required
skill, or dexterity, there was nothing to exercise their intellects. They
consequently remained so stupid and brutal, that an intelligent observer,
who visited Scotland in the year 1360, likens them to savages, so much
was he struck by their barbarism and their unsocial manners.[85] Another
writer, early in the fifteenth century, uses the same expression; and
classing them with the animals which they tended, he declares that
Scotland is fuller of savages than of cattle.[86]

  [81] Arnot (_History of Edinburgh_, p. 386) says, that the University of
       St. Andrews was founded in 1412; and the same thing is stated in
       _Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen_, vol. ii. p. 83. Grierson, in his
       _History of St. Andrews_, Cupar, 1838, p. 14, says, 'In 1410, the
       city of St. Andrews first saw the establishment of its famous
       university, the most ancient institution of the kind that exists in
       Scotland;' but, at p. 144 of the same work, we are told, that the
       charter, 'constituting and declaring it to be a university,' is
       'dated at St. Andrews, the 27th of February, 1411.' See also
       _Lyon's History of St. Andrews_, vol. i. pp. 203-206, vol. ii. p.
       223. At all events, 'at the commencement of the fifteenth century,
       no university existed in Scotland; and the youth who were desirous
       of a liberal education were under the necessity of seeking it
       abroad.' _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. i. p. 211. The charter
       granted by the Pope, confirming the university, reached Scotland in
       1413. _Lawson's Roman Catholic Church in Scotland_, Edinburgh,
       1836, p. 12.

  [82] Those were times, when, as a Scotch lawyer delicately expresses
       himself, 'thieving was not the peculiar habit of the low and
       indigent, but often common to them with persons of rank and landed
       estate.' _Hume's Commentaries on the Law of Scotland_, 4to, 1797,
       vol. i. p. 126. The usual form of robbery being cattle-stealing, a
       particular name was invented for it; see p. 148, where we learn
       that it 'was distinguished by the name of Hership or Herdship,
       being the driving away of numbers of cattle, or other bestial, by
       the masterful force of armed people.'

  [83] Tytler, who was a great patriot, and disposed to exaggerate the
       merit of everything which was Scotch, does nevertheless allow that,
       "from the accession of Alexander III. to the death of David II.
       (_i.e._ in 1370), it would be impossible, I believe, to produce a
       single instance of a Scottish baron who could sign his own name."
       _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 239, 240. Early in the
       sixteenth century, I find it casually mentioned, that 'David
       Straiton, a cadet of the house of Laureston,' ... 'could not read.'
       _Wodrow's Collections_, vol. i. pp. 5, 6. The famous chief, Walter
       Scott of Harden, was married in 1567; and 'his marriage contract is
       signed by a notary, because none of the parties could write their
       names.' _Chambers' Annals_, vol. i. p. 46. Crawfurd (_History of
       Renfrew_, part iii. p. 313) says: 'The modern practice of
       subscribing names to writes of moment was not used in Scotland till
       about the year 1540;' but he forgets to tell us why it was not
       used. In 1564, Robert Scot of Thirlstane, 'ancestor of Lord
       Napier,' could not sign his name. See _Pitcairn's Criminal Trials
       in Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 394.

  [84] A Scotchman, of considerable learning, says: 'Scotland was no less
       ignorant and superstitious at the beginning of the fifteenth
       century, than it was towards the close of the twelfth.'
       _Dalrymple's Annals of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 428.

  [85] 'Et sont ainsi comme gens sauvages qui ne se savent avoir ni de
       nulli accointer.' _Les Chroniques de Froissart_, edit. Buchon,
       Paris, 1835, vol. ii. p. 315.

  [86] 'Plus pleine de sauvagine que de bestail.' _Hist. de Charles VI, par
       Le Laboureur_, quoted in _Pinkerton's History of Scotland_, vol. i.
       p. 149.

By this combination of events, and by this union of ignorance with
danger, the clergy had, in the fifteenth century, obtained more influence
in Scotland than in any other European country, Spain alone excepted. And
as the power of the nobles had increased quite as rapidly, it was natural
that the Crown, completely overshadowed by the great barons, should turn
for aid to the Church. During the fifteenth century, and part of the
sixteenth, this alliance was strictly preserved;[87] and the political
history of Scotland is the history of a struggle by the kings and the
clergy against the enormous authority of the nobles. The contest, after
lasting about a hundred and sixty years, was brought to a close in 1560,
by the triumph of the aristocracy, and the overthrow of the Church. With
such force, however, had the circumstance just narrated, engrained
superstition into the Scotch character, that the spiritual classes
quickly rallied, and, under their new name of Protestants, they became as
formidable as under their old name of Catholics. Forty-three years after
the establishment of the Reformation in Scotland, James VI. ascended the
throne of England, and was able to array the force of the southern
country against the refractory barons of the northern. From that moment
the Scotch aristocracy began to decline; and the equipoise to the clergy
being removed, the Church became so powerful, that, during the
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, it was the most effectual obstacle
to the progress of Scotland; and even now it exercises a sway which is
incomprehensible to those who have not carefully studied the whole chain
of its antecedents. To trace with minuteness the long course of affairs
which has led to this unfortunate result, would be incompatible with the
object of an Introduction, whose only aim it is to establish broad and
general principles. But, to bring the question clearly before the mind of
the reader, it will be necessary that I should give a slight sketch of
the relation which the nobles bore to the clergy in the fifteenth and
sixteenth centuries, and of the way in which their relative positions,
and their implacable hatred of each other, brought about the Reformation.
By this means, we shall perceive, that the great Protestant movement,
which, in other countries, was democratic, was in Scotland aristocratic.
We shall also see, that, in Scotland, the Reformation, not being the work
of the people, has never produced the effects which might have been
expected from it, and which it did produce in England. It is, indeed, but
too evident, that, while in England Protestantism has diminished
superstition, has weakened the clergy, has increased toleration, and, in
a word, has secured the triumph of secular interests over ecclesiastical
ones, its result in Scotland has been entirely different; and that, in
that country, the Church, changing its form, without altering its
spirit, not only cherished its ancient pretensions, but unhappily
retained its ancient power; and that, although that power is now
dwindling away, the Scotch preachers still exhibit, whenever they dare,
an insolent and domineering spirit, which shows how much real weakness
there yet lurks in the nation, where such extravagant claims are not
immediately silenced by the voice of loud and general ridicule.

  [87] Occasionally, we find evidence of it earlier, but it was hardly
       systematic. Compare _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 66,
       with _Dalrymple's Annals_, vol. i. pp. 72, 110, 111, 194, vol. iii.
       p. 296; _Nimmo's History of Stirlingshire_, p. 88; _Chalmers'
       History of Dunfermline_, pp. 133, 134.

                               CHAPTER II.


Early in the fifteenth century, the alliance between the Crown and the
Church, and the determination of that alliance to overthrow the nobles,
became manifest. Indications of this may be traced in the policy of
Albany, who was Regent from 1406 to 1419, and who made it his principal
object to encourage and strengthen the clergy.[88] He also dealt the
first great blow upon which any government had ventured against the
aristocracy. Donald, who was one of the most powerful of the Scottish
chieftains, and who, indeed, by the possession of the Western Isles, was
almost an independent prince, had seized the earldom of Ross, which, if
he could have retained, would have enabled him to set the Crown at
defiance. Albany, backed by the Church, marched into his territories, in
1411, forced him to renounce the earldom, to make personal submission,
and to give hostages for his future conduct.[89] So vigorous a proceeding
on the part of the executive, was extremely unusual in Scotland;[90] and
it was the first of a series of aggressions, which ended in the Crown
obtaining for itself, not only Ross, but also the Western Isles.[91] The
policy inaugurated by Albany, was followed up with still greater energy
by James I. In 1424, this bold and active prince procured an enactment,
obliging many of the nobles to show their charters, in order that it
might be ascertained what lands they held, which had formerly belonged to
the Crown.[92] And, to conciliate the affections of the clergy, he, in
1425, issued a commission, authorizing the Bishop of Saint Andrews to
restore to the Church whatever had been alienated from it; while he at
the same time directed that the justiciaries should assist in enforcing
execution of the decree.[93] This occurred in June; and what shows that
it was part of a general scheme is, that in the preceding spring, the
king suddenly arrested, in the parliament assembled at Perth, upwards of
twenty of the principal nobles, put four of them to death, and
confiscated several of their estates.[94] Two years afterwards, he, with
equal perfidy, summoned the Highland chiefs to meet him at Inverness,
laid hands on them also, executed three, and imprisoned more than forty,
in different parts of the kingdom.[95]

  [88] 'The Church was eminently favoured by Albany.' _Pinkerton's History
       of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 86. But Pinkerton misunderstands his
       policy in regard to the nobles.

  [89] _Skene's Highlanders_, vol. ii. pp. 72-74; _Browne's History of the
       Highlands_, vol. i. p. 162, vol. iv. pp. 435, 436.

  [90] Chalmers (_Caledonia_, vol. i. pp. 826, 827), referring to the state
       of things before Albany, says, 'There is not a trace of any attempt
       by Robert II. to limit the power of the nobles, whatever he may
       have added, by his improvident grants, to their independence. He
       appears not to have attempted to raise the royal prerogative from
       the debasement in which the imprudence and misfortunes of David II.
       had left it.' And, of his successor, Robert III., 'So mild a
       prince, and so weak a man, was not very likely to make any attempt
       upon the power of others, when he could scarcely support his own.'

  [91] In 1476, 'the Earldom of Ross was inalienably annexed to the Crown;
       and a great blow was thus struck at the power and grandeur of a
       family which had so repeatedly disturbed the tranquillity of
       Scotland.' _Gregory's History of the Western Highlands_, Edinburgh,
       1836, p. 50. In 1493, 'John, fourth and last Lord of the Isles, was
       forfeited, and deprived of his title and estates.' _Ibid._ p. 58.

  [92] As those who held crown lands were legally, though not in reality,
       the king's tenants, the act declared, that 'gif it like the king,
       he may ger s[=u]monde all and sindry his tenand at lauchfull day
       and place to schawe thar chartis.' _The Acts of the Parliament of
       Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 4, § 9, edit. folio, 1814.

  [93] 'On the 8th June, 1425, James issued a commission to Henry, bishop
       of St. Andrews, authorising him to resume all alienations from the
       Church, with power of anathema, and orders to all justiciaries to
       assist.' This curious paper is preserved in Harl. Ms. 4637, vol.
       iii. f. 189. _Pinkerton's History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 116.
       Archbishop Spottiswoode, delighted with his policy, calls him a
       'good king,' and says that he built for the Carthusians 'a
       beautiful monastery at Perth, bestowing large revenues upon the
       same.' _Spottiswoode's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i.
       p. 113. And Keith assures us that, on one occasion, James I. went
       so far as to give to one of the bishops 'a silver cross, in which
       was contained a bit of the wooden cross on which the apostle St.
       Andrew had been crucified.' _Keith's Catalogue of Scotch Bishops_,
       Edinburgh, 1755, 4to, p. 67.

  [94] Compare _Balfour's Annales_, vol. i. pp. 153-156, with _Pinkerton's
       History_, vol. i. pp. 113-115. Between these two authorities there
       is a slight, but unimportant, discrepancy.

  [95] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. pp. 95-98; _Skene's
       Highlanders_, vol. ii. p. 75; and an imperfect narrative in
       _Gregory's History of the Western Highlands_, p. 35.

By these measures, and by supporting the Church with the same zeal that
he attacked the nobles, the king thought to reverse the order of affairs
hitherto established, and to secure the supremacy of the throne over the
aristocracy.[96] But herein, he overrated his own power. Like nearly all
politicians, he exaggerated the value of political remedies. The
legislator and the magistrate may, for a moment, palliate an evil; they
can never work a cure. General mischiefs depend upon general causes, and
these are beyond their art. The symptoms of the disease they can touch,
while the disease itself baffles their efforts, and is too often
exasperated by their treatment. In Scotland, the power of the nobles was
a cruel malady, which preyed on the vitals of the nation; but it had long
been preparing; it was a chronic disorder; and, having worked into the
general habit, it might be removed by time, it could never be diminished
by violence. On the contrary, in this, as in all matters, whenever
politicians attempt great good, they invariably inflict great harm.
Over-action on one side produces reaction on the other, and the balance
of the fabric is disturbed. By the shock of conflicting interests, the
scheme of life is made insecure. New animosities are kindled, old ones
are embittered, and the natural jar and discordance are aggravated,
simply because the rulers of mankind cannot be brought to understand,
that, in dealing with a great country, they have to do with an
organization so subtle, so extremely complex, and withal so obscure, as
to make it highly probable, that whatever they alter in it, they will
alter wrongly, and that while their efforts to protect or to strengthen
its particular parts are extremely hazardous, it does undoubtedly possess
within itself a capacity of repairing its injuries, and that to bring
such capacity into play, there is merely required that time and freedom
which the interference of powerful men too often prevents it from

  [96] Tytler (_History of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 126), under the year
       1433, says: 'In the midst of his labours for the pacification of
       his northern dominions, and his anxiety for the suppression of
       heresy, the king never forgot his great plan for the diminution of
       the exorbitant power of the nobles.' See also p. 84. 'It was a
       principle of this enterprising monarch, in his schemes for the
       recovery and consolidation of his own power, to cultivate the
       friendship of the clergy, whom he regarded as a counterpoise to the
       nobles.' Lord Somerville (_Memorie of the Somervilles_, vol. i. p.
       173) says, that the superior nobility were 'never or seldome called
       to counsell dureing this king's reign.'

Thus it was in Scotland, in the fifteenth century. The attempts of James
I. failed, because they were particular measures directed against general
evils. Ideas and associations, generated by a long course of events, and
deeply seated in the public mind, had given to the aristocracy immense
power; and if every noble in Scotland had been put to death, if all their
castles had been razed to the ground, and all their estates confiscated,
the time would unquestionably have come, when their successors would have
been more influential than ever, because the affection of their retainers
and dependents would be increased by the injustice that had been
perpetrated. For, every passion excites its opposite. Cruelty to-day,
produces sympathy to-morrow. A hatred of injustice contributes more than
any other principle to correct the inequalities of life, and to maintain
the balance of affairs. It is this loathing at tyranny, which, by
stirring to their inmost depth the warmest feelings of the heart, makes
it impossible that tyranny should ever finally succeed. This, in sooth,
is the noble side of our nature. This is that part of us, which, stamped
with a godlike beauty, reveals its divine origin, and, providing for the
most distant contingencies, is our surest guarantee that violence shall
never ultimately triumph; that, sooner or later, despotism shall always
be overthrown; and that the great and permanent interests of the human
race shall never be injured by the wicked counsels of unjust men.

In the case of James I., the reaction came sooner than might have been
expected; and, as it happened in his lifetime, it was a retribution, as
well as a reaction. For some years, he continued to oppress the nobles
with impunity;[97] but, in 1436, they turned upon him, and put him to
death, in revenge for the treatment to which he had subjected many of
them.[98] Their power now rose as suddenly as it had fallen. In the south
of Scotland, the Douglases were supreme,[99] and the earl of that family
possessed revenues about equal to those of the Crown.[100] And, to show
that his authority was equal to his wealth, he, on the marriage of James
II., in 1449, appeared at the nuptials with a train composed of five
thousand followers.[101] These were his own retainers, armed and resolute
men, bound to obey any command he might issue to them. Not, indeed, that
compulsion was needed on the part of a Scotch noble to secure the
obedience of his own people. The servitude was a willing one, and was
essential to the national manners. Then, and long afterwards, it was
discreditable, as well as unsafe, not to belong to a great clan; and
those who were so unfortunate as to be unconnected with any leading
family, were accustomed to take the name of some chief, and to secure his
protection by devoting themselves to his service.[102]

  [97] Compare _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. ii. p. 263, with _Buchanan's
       Rerum Scoticarum Historia_, lib. x. p. 286.

  [98] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. pp. 157, 158.

  [99] Lindsay of Pitscottie (_Chronicles_, vol. i. p. 2) says, that
       directly after the death of James I., 'Alexander, Earle of Douglas,
       being uerie potent in kine and friendis, contemned all the kingis
       officeris, in respect of his great puissance.' The best account I
       have seen of the rise of the Douglases is in Chalmers' learned, but
       ill-digested, work, _Caledonia_, vol. i. pp. 579-583.

  [100] In 1440, 'the chief of that family had revenues perhaps equivalent
        to those of the Scottish monarch.' _Pinkerton's History of
        Scotland_, vol. i. p. 192.

  [101] 'It may give us some idea of the immense power possessed at this
        period by the Earl of Douglas, when we mention, that on this
        chivalrous occasion, the military suite by which he was
        surrounded, and at the head of which he conducted the Scottish
        champions to the lists, consisted of a force amounting to five
        thousand men.' _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 215.
        The old historian of his family says: 'He is not easy to be dealt
        with; they must have mufles that would catch such a cat. Indeed,
        he behaved himself as one that thought he would not be in danger
        of them; he entertained a great family; he rode ever well
        accompanied when he came in publick; 1000 or 2000 horse were his
        ordinary train.' _Hume's History of the House of Douglas_, vol. i.
        pp. 273, 274, reprinted Edinburgh, 1743.

  [102] In the seventeenth century, 'To be without a chief, involved a kind
        of disrepute; and those who had no distinct personal position of
        their own, would find it necessary to become a Gordon or a
        Crichton, as prudence or inclination might point out.' _Burton's
        Criminal Trials in Scotland_, vol. i. p. 207. Compare _Pitcairn's
        Criminal Trials in Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 250, on 'the protective
        surname of Douglas;' and _Skene's Highlanders_, vol. ii. p. 252,
        on the extreme importance attached to the name of Macgregor.

What the Earl of Douglas was in the south of Scotland, that were the
Earls of Crawford and of Ross in the north.[103] Singly they were
formidable; united they seemed irresistible. When, therefore, in the
middle of the fifteenth century, they actually leagued together, and
formed a strict compact against all their common enemies, it was hard to
say what limit could be set to their power, or what resource remained to
the government, except that of sowing disunion among them.[104]

  [103] 'Men of the greatest puissance and force next the Douglases that
        were in Scotland in their times.' _Hume's History of the House of
        Douglas_, vol. i. p. 344. The great power of the Earls of Ross in
        the north, dates from the thirteenth century. See _Skene's
        Highlanders_, vol. i. pp. 133, 134, vol. ii. p. 52.

  [104] In 1445, the Earl of Douglas concluded 'ane offensiue and defensiue
        league and combinatione aganist all, none excepted, (not the king
        himselue), with the Earle of Crawfurd, and Donald, Lord of the
        Isles; wich was mutually sealled and subscriued by them three, the
        7 day of Marche.' _Balfour's Annales_, vol. i. p. 173. This
        comprised the alliance of other noble families. 'He maid bandis
        with the Erle of Craufurd, and with Donald lorde of the Ylis, and
        Erle of Ross, to take part every ane with other, and with dyvers
        uther noble men also.' _Lesley's History of Scotland_, from 1436
        to 1561, p. 18.

But, in the mean time, the disposition of the nobles to use force against
the Crown, had been increased by fresh violence. Government, instead of
being warned by the fate of James I., imitated his unscrupulous acts, and
pursued the very policy which had caused his destruction. Because the
Douglases were the most powerful of all the great families, it was
determined that their chiefs should be put to death; and because they
could not be slain by force, they were to be murdered by treachery. In
1440, the Earl of Douglas, a boy of fifteen, and his brother, who was
still younger than he, were invited to Edinburgh on a friendly visit to
the king. Scarcely had they arrived, when they were seized by order of
the chancellor, subjected to a mock trial, declared guilty, dragged to
the castle-yard, and the heads of the poor children cut off.[105]

  [105] An interesting account of this dastardly crime is given in _Hume's
        History of the House of Douglas_, vol. i. pp. 274-288, where
        great, but natural, indignation is expressed. On the other hand,
        Lesley, bishop of Ross, narrates it with a cold-blooded
        indifference, characteristic of the ill-will which existed between
        the nobles and the clergy, and which prevented him from regarding
        the murder of two children as an offence. 'And eftir he was set
        doun to the burd with the governour, chancellour, and otheris
        noble men present, the meit was sudantlie removed, and ane bullis
        heid presented, quhilk in thay daies was ane signe of executione;
        and incontinent the said erle, David his broder, and Malcolme
        Fleming of Cummernald, wer heidit before the castell yett of
        Edenburgh.' _Lesley's History_, p. 16.

Considering the warm feelings of attachment which the Scotch entertained
for their chiefs, it is difficult to overrate the consequences of this
barbarous murder, in strengthening a class it was hoped to intimidate.
But this horrible crime was committed by the government only, and it
occurred during the king's minority: the next assassination was the work
of the king himself. In 1452, the Earl of Douglas[106] was, with great
show of civility, requested by James II. to repair to the court then
assembled at Stirling. The Earl hesitated, but James overcame his
reluctance by sending to him a safeconduct with the royal signature, and
issued under the great seal.[107] The honour of the king being pledged,
the fears of Douglas were removed. He hastened to Stirling, where he was
received with every distinction. The evening of his arrival, the king,
after supper was over, broke out into reproaches against him, and,
suddenly drawing his dagger, stabbed him. Gray then struck him with a
battle-axe, and he fell dead on the floor, in presence of his sovereign,
who had lured him to court, that he might murder him with impunity.[108]

  [106] The cousin of the boys who were murdered in 1440. See _Hume's
        History of the House of Douglas_, vol. i. pp. 297, 816.

  [107] 'With assurance under the broad seal.' _Hume's House of Douglas_,
        vol. i. p. 351. See also _Nimmo's History of Stirlingshire_,
        Edinb. 1777, pp. 246, 322, 323.

  [108] _Hume's House of Douglas_, vol. i. pp. 351-353. The king 'stabbed
        him in the breast with a dagger. At the same instant Patrick Gray
        struck him on the head with a pole-ax. The rest that were
        attending at the door, hearing the noise, entred, and fell also
        upon him; and, to show their affection to the king, gave him every
        man his blow after he was dead.' _Compare Lindsay of Pitscottie's
        Chronicles of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 103. 'He strak him throw the
        bodie thairwith; and thairefter the guard, hearing the tumult
        within the chamber, rusched in and slew the earle out of hand.'

The ferocity of the Scotch character, which was the natural result of the
ignorance and poverty of the nation, was, no doubt, one cause, and a very
important one, of the commission of such crimes as these, not secretly,
but in the open light of day, and by the highest men in the State. It
cannot, however, be denied, that another cause was, the influence of the
clergy, whose interest it was to humble the nobles, and who were by no
means scrupulous as to the means that they employed.[109] As the Crown
became more alienated from the aristocracy, it united itself still closer
with the Church. In 1443, a statute was enacted, the object of which was,
to secure ecclesiastical property from the attacks made upon it by the
nobles.[110] And although, in that state of society, it was easier to
pass laws than to execute them, such a measure indicated the general
policy of the government, and the union between it and the Church.
Indeed, as to this, no one could be mistaken.[111] For nearly twenty
years, the avowed and confidential adviser of the Crown was Kennedy,
bishop of Saint Andrews, who retained power until his death, in 1466,
during the minority of James III.[112] He was the bitter enemy of the
nobles, against whom he displayed an unrelenting spirit, which was
sharpened by personal injuries; for the Earl of Crawford had plundered
his lands, and the Earl of Douglas had attempted to seize him, and had
threatened to put him into irons.[113] The mildest spirit might well have
been roused by this; and as James II., when he assassinated Douglas, was
more influenced by Kennedy than by any one else, it is probable that the
bishop was privy to that foul transaction. At all events, he expressed no
disapprobation of it; and when, in consequence of the murder, the
Douglases and their friends rose in open rebellion, Kennedy gave to the
king a crafty and insidious counsel, highly characteristic of the cunning
of his profession. Taking up a bundle of arrows, he showed James, that
when they were together, they were not to be broken; but that, if
separated, they were easily destroyed. Hence he inferred, that the
aristocracy should be overthrown by disuniting the nobles, and ruining
them one by one.[114]

  [109] In _Nimmo's History of Stirlingshire_, pp. 99, 100, the alienation
        of the nobles from the Church is dated 'from the middle of the
        fifteenth century;' and this is perhaps correct in regard to
        general dislike, though the movement may be clearly traced fifty
        years earlier.

  [110] See _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 33, edit.
        folio, 1814; respecting the 'statute of haly kirk quhilk is
        oppressit and hurt.'

  [111] In 1449, James II., 'with that affectionate respect for the clergy,
        which could not fail to be experienced by a prince who had
        successfully employed their support and advice to escape from the
        tyranny of his nobles, granted to them some important privileges.'
        _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 226. See also p. 309.
        Among many similar measures, he conceded to the monks of Paisley
        some important powers of jurisdiction that belonged to the Crown.
        Charter, 13th January, 1451-2, in _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. iii.
        p. 823.

  [112] _Pinkerton's History of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 188, 209, 247, 254.
        _Keith's Catalogue of Scotch Bishops_, p. 19. _Ridpath's Border
        History_, p. 298. _Hollinshead's Scottish Chronicle_, vol. ii. p.
        101. In _Somerville's Memorie of the Somervilles_, vol. i. p. 213,
        it is stated, under the year 1452, that fear of the great nobles
        'had once possest his majestie with some thoughts of going out of
        the countrey; but that he was perswaded to the contrary by Bishop
        Kennedie, then Archbishop of Saint Andrewes, whose counsell at
        that tyme and eftirward, in most things he followed, which at
        length proved to his majesties great advantage.' See also
        _Lesley's History_, p. 23. 'The king wes put to sic a sharp point,
        that he wes determinit to haif left the realme, and to haif passit
        in Fraunce by sey, were not that bischop James Kennedy of St.
        Androis causit him to tarrye.'

  [113] 'His lands were plundered by the Earl of Crawford and Alexander
        Ogilvie of Inveraritie, at the instigation of the Earl of Douglas,
        who had farther instructed them to seize, if possible, the person
        of the bishop, and to put him in irons.' Memoir of Kennedy, in
        _Chambers' Lives of Scotchmen_, vol. iii. p. 307, Glasgow, 1834.
        'Sed Kennedus et ætate, et consilio, ac proinde auctoritate
        cæteros anteibat. In eum potissimum ira est versa. Crafordiæ comes
        et Alexander Ogilvius conflato satis magno exercitu, agros ejus in
        Fifa latè populati, dum prædam magis, quam causam sequuntur, omni
        genere cladis in vicina etiam prædia grassati, nemine congredi
        auso pleni prædarum in Angusiam revertuntar. Kennedus ad sua arma
        conversus comitem Crafordiæ disceptationem juris fugientem diris
        ecclesiasticis est prosecutus.' _Buchanan_, _Rerum Scoticarum
        Historia_, lib. xi. p. 306.

  [114] 'This holie bischop schew ane similitud to the king, quhilk might
        bring him to experience how he might invaid againes the Douglass,
        and the rest of the conspiratouris. This bischop tuik furth ane
        great scheife of arrowes knitt togidder werrie fast, and desired
        him to put thame to his knie, and break thame. The king said it
        was not possible, becaus they war so many, and so weill fastened
        togidder. The bischop answeired, it was werrie true, bot yitt he
        wold latt the king sea how to break thame: and pulled out on be
        on, and tua be tua, quhill he had brokin thame all; then said to
        the king, "Yea most doe with the conspiratouris in this manner,
        and thair complices that are risen againes yow, quho are so many
        in number, and so hard knit togidder in conspiracie againes yow,
        that yea cannot gett thame brokin togidder. Butt be sick pratick
        as I have schowin yow be the similitud of thir arrowes, that is to
        say, yea must conqueis and break lord by lord be thamselffis, for
        yea may not deall with thame all at once."' _Lindsay of
        Pitscottie's Chronicles of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 172, 173.

In this he was right, so far as the interests of his own order were
concerned; but, looking at the interest of the nation, it is evident that
the power of the nobles, notwithstanding their gross abuse of it, was, on
the whole, beneficial, since it was the only barrier against despotism.
The evil they actually engendered, was indeed immense. But they kept off
other evils, which would have been worse. By causing present anarchy,
they secured future liberty. For, as there was no middle class, there
were only three orders in the commonwealth; namely, government, clergy,
and nobles. The two first being united against the last, it is certain
that if they had won the day, Scotland would have been oppressed by the
worst of all yokes, to which a country can be subjected. It would have
been ruled by an absolute king and an absolute Church, who, playing into
each other's hands, would have tyrannized over a people, who, though
coarse and ignorant, still loved a certain rude and barbarous liberty,
which it was good for them to possess, but which, in the face of such a
combination, they would most assuredly have forfeited.

Happily, however, the power of the nobles was too deeply rooted in the
popular mind to allow of this catastrophe. In vain did James III. exert
himself to discourage them,[115] and to elevate their rivals, the
clergy.[116] Nothing could shake their authority; and, in 1482, they,
seeing the determination of the king, assembled together, and such was
their influence over their followers, that they had no difficulty in
seizing his person, and imprisoning him in the Castle of Edinburgh.[117]
After his liberation, fresh quarrels arose;[118] and in 1488, the
principal nobles collected troops, met him in the field, defeated him,
and put him to death.[119] He was succeeded by James IV., under whom the
course of affairs was exactly the same; that is to say, on one side the
nobles, and on the other side the Crown and the Church. Every thing that
the king could do to uphold the clergy, he did cheerfully. In 1493, he
obtained an act to secure the immunities of the sees of Saint Andrews and
of Glasgow, the two most important in Scotland.[120] In 1503, he procured
a general revocation of all grants and gifts prejudicial to the Church,
whether they had been made by the Parliament or by the Council.[121] And,
in 1508, he, by the advice of Elphinston, bishop of Aberdeen, ventured on
a measure of still greater boldness. That able and ambitious prelate
induced James to revive against the nobility several obsolete claims, by
virtue of which the king could, under certain circumstances, take
possession of their estates, and could, in every instance in which the
owner held of the Crown, receive nearly the whole of the proceeds during
the minority of the proprietor.[122]

  [115] 'He wald nocht suffer the noblemen to come to his presence, and to
        governe the realme be thair counsell.' _Lesley's History of
        Scotland_, p. 48. 'Wald nocht use the counsall of his nobilis.' p.
        55. 'Excluding the nobility.' _Hume's History of the House of
        Douglas_, vol. ii. p. 33. 'The nobility seeing his resolution to
        ruin them.' p. 46. 'Hes conteming his nobility.' _Balfour's
        Annales_, vol. i. p. 206.

  [116] Also to aggrandize them. See, for instance, what 'has obtained the
        name of the golden charter, from the ample privileges it contains,
        confirmed to Archbishop Shevez by James III. on 9th July 1480.'
        _Grierson's History of Saint Andrews_, p. 58, Cupar, 1838.

  [117] 'Such was the influence of the aristocracy over their warlike
        followers, that the king was conveyed to the castle of Edinburgh,
        without commotion or murmur.' _Pinkerton's History of Scotland_,
        vol. i. p. 308.

  [118] 'The king and his ministers multiplied the insults which they
        offered to the nobility.' ... 'A proclamation was issued,
        forbidding any person to appear in arms within the precincts of
        the court; which, at a time when no man of rank left his own house
        without a numerous retinue of armed followers, was, in effect,
        debarring the nobles from all access to the king.' ... 'His
        neglect of the nobles irritated, but did not weaken them.'
        _History of Scotland_, book i. p. 68, in _Robertson's Works_,
        edit. London, 1831.

  [119] _Balfour's Annales_, vol. i. pp. 213, 214; Buchanan, _Rerum
        Scoticarum Historia_, lib. xii. p. 358. Lindsay of Pitscottie
        (_Chronicles_, vol. i. p. 222) says: 'This may be ane example to
        all kingis that cumes heirefter, not to fall from God.' ... 'For,
        if he had vsed the counsall of his wyse lordis and barrones, he
        had not cum to sick disparatioun.'

  [120] _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, folio, 1814, vol. ii.
        p. 232. 'That the said abbaceis confirmit be thame sall neid na
        prouisioun of the court of Rome.'

  [121] _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 240; and the
        summary of the statute (p. 21), 'Revocation of donations,
        statutis, and all uthir thingis hurtand the croune or hali kirk.'
        In the next year (1504), the king 'greatly augmented' the revenues
        of the bishoprick of Galloway. _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. iii. p.

  [122] _Pinkerton's History of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 63; _Calderwood's
        History of the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. viii. p. 135, edit. Wodrow
        Society, Edinburgh, 1849. The latter authority states, that 'The
        bishop devysed wayes to King James the Fourth, how he might
        attaine to great gaine and profit. He advised him to call his
        barons and all those that held any lands within the realme, to
        show their evidents by way of recognition; and, if they had not
        sufficient writings for their warrant, to dispone upon their lands
        at his pleasure; for the which advice he was greatlie hated. But
        the king, perceaving the countrie to grudge, agreed easilie with
        the possessors.'

To make such claims was easy; to enforce them was impossible. Indeed, the
nobles were at this time rather gaining ground than losing it; and,
after the death of James IV., in 1513, they, during the minority of James
V., became so powerful, that the regent, Albany, twice threw up the
government in despair, and at length abandoned it altogether.[123] He
finally quitted Scotland in 1524, and with him the authority of the
executive seemed to have vanished. The Douglases soon obtained possession
of the person of the king, and compelled Beaton, archbishop of Saint
Andrews, the most influential man in the Church, to resign the office of
chancellor.[124] The whole command now fell into their hands; they or
their adherents filled every office; secular interests predominated, and
the clergy were thrown completely into the shade.[125] In 1528, however,
an event occurred by which the spiritual classes not only recovered
their former position, but gained a preëminence, which, as it turned out,
was eventually fatal to themselves. Archbishop Beaton, impatient at
proceedings so unfavourable to the Church, organized a conspiracy, by
means of which James effected his escape from the Douglases, and took
refuge in the castle of Stirling.[126] This sudden reaction was not the
real and controlling cause, but it was undoubtedly the proximate cause,
of the establishment of Protestantism in Scotland. For, the reins of
government now passed into the hands of the Church; and the most
influential of the nobles were consequently persecuted, and some of them
driven from the country. But, though their political power was gone,
their social power remained. They were stripped of their honours and
their wealth. They became outcasts, traitors, and beggars. Still, the
real foundation of their authority was unshaken, because that authority
was the result of a long train of circumstances, and was based on the
affections of the people. Therefore it was, that the nobles, even those
who were exiled and attainted, were able to conduct an arduous, but
eventually a successful, struggle against their enemies. The desire of
revenge whetted their exertions, and gave rise to a deadly contest
between the Scotch aristocracy and the Scotch Church. This most
remarkable conflict was, in some degree, a continuation of that which
began early in the fifteenth century. But it was far more bitter; it
lasted, without interruption, for thirty-two years; and it was only
concluded by the triumph of the nobles, who, in 1560, completely
overthrew the Church, and destroyed, almost at a blow, the whole of the
Scotch hierarchy.

  [123] The Regency of Albany, little understood by the earlier
        historians, has been carefully examined by Mr. Tytler, in whose
        valuable, though too prolix, work, the best account of it will be
        found. _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 98-160,
        Edinburgh, 1845. On the hostility between Albany and the nobles,
        see _Irving's History of Dumbartonshire_, p. 99; and, on the
        revival of their power in the north, after the death of James IV.,
        see _Gregory's History of the Western Highlands_, pp. 114, 115.

  [124] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 180-182: 'Within a
        few months, there was not an office of trust or emolument in the
        kingdom, which was not filled by a Douglas, or by a creature of
        that house.' See also pp. 187, 194; and _Keith's Catalogue of
        Scotch Bishops_, pp. 22, 23. Beaton, who was so rudely
        dispossessed of the chancellorship, that, according to Keith, he
        was, in 1525, obliged 'to lurk among his friends for fear of his
        life,' is mentioned, in the preceding year, as having been the
        main supporter of Albany's government; 'that most hath favoured
        the Duke of Albany.' _State Papers of the Reign of Henry VIII._,
        vol. iv. p. 97, 4to, 1836.

  [125] The complete power of the Douglases lasted from the cessation of
        Albany's regency to the escape of the king, in 1528. _Keith's
        History of the Affairs of Church and State in Scotland_, edit.
        Edinburgh, 1835, vol. i. pp. 33-35. Compare _Balfour's Annales_,
        vol. i. p. 257. 'The Earle of Angus violentley takes one him the
        gouerniment, and retanes the king in effecte a prisoner with him;
        during wich tyme he, the Earle of Lennox, and George Douglas, his
        auen brother, frely disposses vpone all affaires both of churche
        and staite.'

  [126] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 195, 196. The curious
        work, entitled _A Diurnal of Occurrents_, p. 10, says, 'In the
        zeir of God 1500, tuantie aucht zeiris, the kingis grace by slicht
        wan away fra the Douglassis.' From Stirling, he repaired to
        Edinburgh, on 6th July 1528, and went to 'the busshop of Sainct
        Andros loegeing.' See a letter written on the 18th of July 1528,
        by Lord Dacre to Wolsey, in _State Papers of Henry VIII._, vol.
        iv. p. 501, 4to, 1836. Compare a proclamation on 10th September
        1528, in _Pitcairn's Criminal Trials in Scotland_, vol. i. part i.
        pp. 138*, 139*, Edinburgh, 4to, 1833. I particularly indicate
        these documents, because Lindsay of Pitscottie (in his _Chronicles
        of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 335) erroneously places the flight of
        James in 1527; and he is generally one of the most accurate of the
        old writers, if indeed he be the author of the work which bears
        his name.

The events of this struggle, and the vicissitudes to which, during its
continuance, both parties were exposed, are related, though somewhat
confusedly, in our common histories: it will be sufficient if I indicate
the salient points, and, avoiding needless detail, endeavour to throw
light on the general movement. The unity of the entire scheme will thus
be brought before our minds, and we shall see, that the destruction of
the Catholic Church was its natural consummation, and that the last act
of that gorgeous drama, so far from being a strained and irregular
sequence, was in fit keeping with the whole train of the preceding plot.

When James effected his escape in 1528, he was a boy of sixteen, and his
policy, so far as he can be said to have had any mind of his own, was of
course determined by the clergy, to whom he owed his liberty, and who
were his natural protectors. His principal adviser was the Archbishop of
Saint Andrews; and the important post of chancellor, which, under the
Douglases, had been held by a layman, was now conferred on the Archbishop
of Glasgow.[127] These two prelates were supreme; while, at the same
time, the Abbot of Holyrood was made treasurer, and the Bishop of Dunkeld
was made privy seal.[128] All nobles, and even all followers, of the
house of Douglas, were forbidden to approach within twelve miles of the
court, under pain of treason.[129] An expedition was fitted out, and sent
against the Earl of Caithness, who was defeated and slain.[130] Just
before this occurred, the Earl of Angus was driven out of Scotland, and
his estates confiscated.[131] An act of attainder was passed against the
Douglases.[132] The government, moreover, seized, and threw into prison,
the Earl of Bothwell, Home, Maxwell, and two Kerrs, and the barons of
Buccleuch, Johnston, and Polwarth.[133]

  [127] _State Papers of Henry VIII._, vol. iv. p. 501.

  [128] 'Archibald was depryvit of the thesaurarie, and placit thairin
        Robert Cairncorse, abbot of Halyrudhous. And als was tane fra the
        said Archibald the privie seill, and was givin to the bischope of
        Dunkell.' _A Diurnal of Occurrents_, p. 11.

  [129] Tytler (_History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 196) says: 'His first
        act was to summon a council, and issue a proclamation, that no
        lord or follower of the house of Douglas should dare to approach
        within _six_ miles of the court, under pain of treason.' For this,
        no authority is cited; and the historian of the Douglas family
        distinctly states, 'within _twelve_ miles of the king, under pain
        of death.' _Hume's House of Douglas_, vol. ii. p. 99. See also
        _Diurnal of Occurrents_, p. 10: 'that nane of thame nor thair
        familiaris cum neir the king be tuelf myllis.' The reason was,
        that 'the said kingis grace haid greit suspicioun of the temporall
        lordis, becaus thaj favourit sum pairt the Douglassis.' _Diurnal_,
        p. 12.

  [130] 'The Erle of Caithnes and fyve hundreth of his men wes slayne and
        drownit in the see.' _Lesley's History of Scotland_, p. 141.

  [131] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 203, 204.

  [132] _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 324, edit.
        folio, 1814.

  [133] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 207.

All this was vigorous enough, and was the consequence of the Church
recovering her power. Other measures, equally decisive, were preparing.
In 1531, the king deprived the Earl of Crawford of most of his estates,
and threw the Earl of Argyle into prison.[134] Even those nobles who had
been inclined to follow him, he now discouraged. He took every
opportunity of treating them with coldness, while he filled the highest
offices with their rivals, the clergy.[135] Finally, he, in 1532, aimed
a deadly blow at their order, by depriving them of a large part of the
jurisdiction which they were wont to exercise in their own country, and
to the possession of which they owed much of their power. At the
instigation of the Archbishop of Glasgow, he established what was called
the College of Justice, in which suits were to be decided, instead of
being tried, as heretofore, by the barons, at home, in their castles. It
was ordered that this new tribunal should consist of fifteen judges,
eight of whom must be ecclesiastics; and to make the intention still more
clear, it was provided that the president should invariably be a

  [134] _Tytler_, vol. iv. p. 212.

  [135] 'His preference of the clergy to the temporal lords disgusted these
        proud chiefs.' _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 230.
        See also p. 236. His reasons are stated by himself, in a curious
        letter, which he wrote so late as 1541, to Henry VIII. 'We
        persaif,' writes James, 'be zoure saidis writingis yat Ze ar
        informyt yat yair suld be sum thingis laitlie attemptat be oure
        kirkmen to oure hurte and skaith, and contrar oure mynde and
        plesure. We can nocht understand, quhat suld move Zou to beleif
        the samyn, assuring Zou _We have nevir fund bot faithfull and trew
        obedience of yame at all tymes_, nor yai seik nor attemptis
        nouthir jurisdictioun nor previlegijs, forthir nor yai have usit
        sen the first institutioun of the Kirk of Scotland, quhilk We may
        nocht apoun oure conscience alter nor change in the respect We
        have to the honour and faith of God and Halikirk, and douttis na
        inconvenient be yame to come to Ws and oure realme yerthrou; for
        sen the Kirk wes first institute in our realme, the stait yairof
        hes nevir failzeit, bot _hes remanyt evir obedient to oure
        progenitouris, and in our tyme mair thankefull to Ws, nor evir yai
        wer of before_.' This letter, which, in several points of view, is
        worth reading, will be found in _State Papers of Henry VIII._,
        vol. v. pp. 188-190, 4to, 1836.

  [136] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 212, 213, and _Arnot's
        History of Edinburgh_, 4to, 1788, p. 468: 'fifteen ordinary
        judges, seven churchmen, seven laymen, and a president, whom it
        behoved to be a churchman.' The statute, as printed in the folio
        edition of 1814 (_Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. ii.
        p. 335) says 'xiiij psouñs half sp[=u]ale half temporall wt ane
        president.' Mr. Lawson (_Roman Catholic Church in Scotland_,
        Edinburgh, 1836, p. 81) supposes that it was the Archbishop of St.
        Andrews who advised the erection of this tribunal.

This gave the finishing touch to the whole, and it, taken in connexion
with previous measures, exasperated the nobles almost to madness. Their
hatred of the clergy became uncontrollable; and, in their eagerness for
revenge, they not only threw themselves into the arms of England, and
maintained a secret understanding with Henry VIII., but many of them went
even further, and showed a decided leaning towards the principles of the
Reformation. As the enmity between the aristocracy and the Church grew
more bitter, just in the same proportion did the desire to reform the
Church become more marked. The love of innovation was encouraged by
interested motives, until, in the course of a few years, an immense
majority of the nobles adopted extreme Protestant opinions; hardly caring
what heresy they embraced, so long as they were able, by its aid, to
damage a Church from which they had recently received the greatest
injuries, and with which they and their progenitors had been engaged in a
contest of nearly a hundred and fifty years.[137]

  [137] Keith, who evidently does not admire this part of the history of
        his country, says, under the year 1546, 'Several of our nobility
        found it their temporal interest, as much as their spiritual, to
        sway with the new opinions as to religious matters.' _Keith's
        Affairs of Church and State_, vol. i. pp. 112, 113. Later, and
        with still more bluntness: 'The noblemen wanted to finger the
        patrimony of the kirkmen.' vol. iii. p. 11.

In the mean time, James V. united himself closer than ever with the
hierarchy. In 1534, he gratified the Church, by personally assisting at
the trial of some heretics, who were brought before the bishops and
burned.[138] The next year, he was offered, and he willingly accepted,
the title of Defender of the Faith, which was transferred to him from
Henry VIII.; that king being supposed to have forfeited it by his
impiety.[139] At all events, James well deserved it. He was a stanch
supporter of the Church, and his privy-council was chiefly composed of
ecclesiastics, as he deemed it dangerous to admit laymen to too large a
share in the government.[140] And, in 1538, he still further signalized
his policy, by taking for his second wife Mary of Guise; thus
establishing an intimate relation with the most powerful Catholic family
in Europe, whose ambition, too, was equal to their power, and who made it
their avowed object to uphold the Catholic faith, and to protect it from
those rude and unmannerly invasions which were now directed against it in
most parts of Europe.[141]

  [138] 'In the month of August (1534), the bishops having gotten fitt
        opportunitie, renewed their battell aganest Jesus Christ. David
        Stratilon, a gentelman of the House of Lawrestoune, and Mr. Norman
        Gowrlay, was brought to judgement in the Abby of Halyrudhouse. The
        king himself, all cloathed with reid, being present, grait pains
        war taken upon David Stratoun to move him to recant and burn his
        bill; bot he, ever standing to his defence, was in end adjudged to
        the fire. He asked grace at the king. The bishops answred
        proudlie, that "the king's hands war bound, and that he had no
        grace to give to such as were by law condemned." So was he, with
        Mr. Norman, after dinner, upon the 27th day of Agust, led to a
        place beside the Rude of Greenside, between Leth and Edinbrug, to
        the intent that the inhabitants of Fife, seeing the fire, might be
        striken with terrour and feare.' _Pitcairn's Criminal Trials in
        Scotland_, vol. i. part i. p. 210*. Also _Calderwood's History of
        the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 106, 107.

  [139] 'It appears, by a letter in the State-paper Office, that Henry
        remonstrated against this title being given to James.' _Tytler's
        History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 223. See also p. 258.

  [140] In 1535, 'his privy council were mostly ecclesiastics.' _Ibid._
        vol. iv. p. 222. And Sir Ralph Sadler, during his embassy to
        Scotland in 1539-40, writes: 'So that the king, as far as I can
        perceive, is of force driven to use the bishops and his clergy as
        his only ministers for the direction of his realm. They be the men
        of wit and policy that I see here; they be never out of the king's
        ear. And if they smell any thing that in the least point may touch
        them, or that the king seem to be content with any such thing,
        straight they inculk to him, how catholic a prince his father was,
        and feed him both with fair words and many, in such wise as by
        those policies they lead him (having also the whole governance of
        his affairs) as they will.' _State Papers and Letters of Sir Ralph
        Sadler_, Edinb., 1809, 4to, vol. i. p. 47.

  [141] _State Papers of Henry VIII._, vol. v. p. 128. _A Diurnal of
        Occurrents_, p. 22. The Reverend Mr. Kirkton pronounces that the
        new queen was 'ane egge of the bloody nest of Guise.' _Kirkton's
        History of the Church of Scotland_, edited by Sharpe, Edinburgh,
        1817, 4to, p. 7.

This was hailed by the Church as a guarantee for the intentions of the
king. And so indeed it proved to be. David Beaton, who negotiated the
marriage, became the chief adviser of James during the rest of his reign.
He was made Archbishop of Saint Andrews in 1539,[142] and, by his
influence, a persecution hotter than any yet known, was directed against
the Protestants. Many of them escaped into England,[143] where they
swelled the number of the exiles, who were waiting till the time was ripe
to take a deadly revenge. They, and their adherents at home, coalesced
with the disaffected nobles, particularly with the Douglases,[144] who
were by far the most powerful of the Scotch aristocracy, and who were
connected with most of the great families, either by old associations, or
by the still closer bond of the interest which they all had in reducing
the power of the Church.[145]

  [142] 'At his return home, he was made coadjutor, and declared future
        successor to his uncle in the primacy of St. Andrews, in which see
        he came to be fully invested upon the death of his uncle the next
        year, 1539.' _Keith's Catalogue of Scotch Bishops_, pp. 23, 24.

  [143] _M'Crie's Life of Knox_, p. 20. _Spottiswoode's History of the
        Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 139. _Lawson's Roman Catholic
        Church in Scotland_, p. 178. _Wodrow's Collections upon the Lives
        of the Reformers_, vol. i. p. 100.

  [144] Tytler (_History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 241) says, that the
        cruelties of 1539 forced 'many of the persecuted families to
        embrace the interests of the Douglases.'

  [145] It is asserted of the Douglases, that, early in the sixteenth
        century, their 'alliances and power were equal to one-half of the
        nobility of Scotland.' _Brown's History of Glasgow_, vol. i. p. 8.
        See also, on their connexions, _Hume's House of Douglas_, vol. i.
        pp. xix. 252, 298, vol. ii. p. 293.

At this juncture, the eyes of men were turned towards the Douglases, whom
Henry VIII. harboured at his court, and who were now maturing their
plans.[146] Though they did not yet dare to return to Scotland, their
spies and agents reported to them all that was done, and preserved their
connexions at home. Feudal covenants, bonds of manrent, and other
arrangements, which, even if illegal, it would have been held disgraceful
to renounce, were in full force; and enabled the Douglases to rely with
confidence on many of the most powerful nobles, who were, moreover,
disgusted at the predominance of the clergy, and who welcomed the
prospect of any change which was likely to lessen the authority of the

  [146] Henry VIII., 'in the year 1532, sought it directly, among the
        conditions of peace, that the Douglas, according to his promise,
        should be restored. For King Henry's own part, he entertained them
        with all kind of beneficence and honour, and made both the Earl
        and Sir George of his Privy Council.' _Hume's History of the House
        of Douglas_, vol. ii. pp. 105, 106. James was very jealous of any
        communication taking place between the Douglases and his other
        subjects; but it was impossible for him to prevent it. See a
        letter which he wrote to Sir Thomas Erskine (in _Miscellany of the
        Spalding Club_, vol. ii. p. 193, Aberdeen, 1842, 4to), beginning,
        'I commend me rycht hartly to yow, and weit ye that it is murmuryt
        hyr that ye sould a spolkyn with Gorge and Archebald Dougles in
        Ingland, quhylk wase again my command and your promys quhan we
        departyt.' See also the cases of Lady Trakware, John Mathesone,
        John Hume, and others, in _Pitcairn's Criminal Trials in
        Scotland_, vol. i. part i. pp. 161*, 177*, 202*, 243*, 247*.

  [147] 'The Douglases were still maintained with high favour and generous
        allowances in England; their power, although nominally extinct,
        was still far from being destroyed; their spies penetrated into
        every quarter, followed the king to France, and gave information
        of his most private motions; their feudal covenants and bands of
        manrent still existed, and bound many of the most potent nobility
        to their interest; whilst the vigour of the king's government, and
        his preference of the clergy to the temporal lords, disgusted
        these proud chiefs, and disposed them to hope for a recovery of
        their influence from any change which might take place.' _Tytler's
        History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 229, 230. These bonds of
        manrent, noticed by Tytler, were among the most effective means by
        which the Scotch nobles secured their power. Without them, it
        would have been difficult for the aristocracy to have resisted the
        united force of the Crown and the Church. On this account, they
        deserve special attention. Chalmers (_Caledonia_, vol. i. p. 824)
        could find no bond of manrent earlier than 1354; but in Lord
        Somerville's _Memorie of the Somervilles_, edit. Edinburgh, 1815,
        vol. i. p. 74, one is mentioned in 1281. This is the earliest
        instance I have met with; and they did not become very common till
        the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Compare _Hume's History of
        the House of Douglas_, vol. ii. p. 19. _Somerville's Memorie of
        the Somervilles_, vol. i. p. 234. _Pitcairn's Criminal Trials in
        Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 83. _Irving's History of Dumbartonshire_,
        pp. 142, 143. _Skene's Highlanders_, vol. ii. p. 186. _Gregory's
        History of the Western Highlands_, p. 126. _Kennedy's Annals of
        Aberdeen_, vol. i. p. 55. _Miscellany of the Spalding Club_, vol.
        ii. pp. cvi. 93, 251, vol. iv. pp. xlviii. 179. As these covenants
        were extremely useful in maintaining the balance of power, and
        preventing the Scotch monarchy from becoming despotic, acts of
        parliament were of course passed against them. See one in 1457,
        and another in 1555, respecting 'lige' and 'bandis of manrent and
        mantenance,' in _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, folio,
        1814, vol. ii. pp. 50, 495. Such enactments being opposed to the
        spirit of the age, and adverse to the exigencies of society,
        produced no effect upon the general practice, though they caused
        the punishment of several individuals. Manrent was still frequent
        until about 1620 or 1630, when the great social revolution was
        completed, by which the power of the aristocracy was subordinated
        to that of the Church. Then, the change of affairs effected,
        without difficulty, and indeed spontaneously, what the legislature
        had vainly attempted to achieve. The nobles, gradually sinking
        into insignificance, lost their spirit, and ceased to resort to
        those contrivances by which they had long upheld their order.
        Bonds of manrent became every year less common, and it is doubtful
        if there is any instance of them after 1661. See _Chalmers'
        Caledonia_, vol. iii. pp. 32, 33. It is, however, so dangerous to
        assert a negative, that I do not wish to rely on this date, and
        some few cases may exist later; but if so, they are very few, and
        it is certain that, speaking generally, the middle of the
        seventeenth century is the epoch of their extinction.

With such a combination of parties, in a country where, there being no
middle class, the people counted for nothing, but followed wherever they
were led, it is evident that the success or failure of the Reformation in
Scotland was simply a question of the success or failure of the nobles.
They were bent on revenge. The only doubt was, as to their being strong
enough to gratify it. Against them, they had the Crown and the Church. On
their side they had the feudal traditions, the spirit of clanship, the
devoted obedience of their innumerable retainers, and, what was equally
important, that love of names, and of family associations, for which
Scotland is still remarkable, but which, in the sixteenth century,
possessed an influence difficult to exaggerate.

The moment for action was now at hand. In 1540, the government,
completely under the control of the clergy, caused fresh laws to be
enacted against the Protestants, whose interests were by this time
identical with those of the nobles. By these statutes, no one, even
suspected of heresy, could for the future hold any office; and all
Catholics were forbidden to harbour, or to show favour to, persons who
professed the new opinions.[148] The clergy, now flushed with conquest,
and greedy for the destruction of their ancient rivals, proceeded to
still farther extremities. So unrelenting was their malice, that, in that
same year, they presented to James a list containing the names of upwards
of three hundred members of the Scotch aristocracy, whom they formally
accused as heretics, who ought to be put to death, and whose estates they
recommended the king to confiscate.[149]

  [148] _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 370, 371. 'That
        na mañ quhats[=u]euir stait or conditiouñ he be luge
        ressauve cherish nor favor ony heretike.' ... 'And alswa that na
        persouñ that hes bene suspectit of heresie howbeit thai be
        ressauit to p[=e]nance and grace sall in this realme exers haif
        nor brouk ony honest estait degre office nor judicato^r sp[=u]all
        nor t[=e]porale in burgh nor w^tout nor na salbe admittit to be
        of ou[/r] counsale.'

  [149] Lindsay of Pitscottie (_Chronicles_, vol. ii. p. 383) says, that
        they 'devysed to put ane discord and variance betwixt the lordis
        and gentlmen with thair prince; for they delaited, and gave vp to
        the king in writt, to the number of thrittie scoir of earles,
        lordis, and barrones, gentlmen and craftismen, that is, as thei
        alledgit, wer all heretickis, and leived not after the Pope's
        lawis, and ordinance of the hollie kirk; quhilk his grace sould
        esteme as ane capitall cryme, to ony man that did the same' ...
        'all thair landis, rentes, guidis, and geir apperteanis propperlie
        to your grace, for thair contempt of our hollie father the Pope,
        and his lawis, and high contempt of your grace's authoritie.' This
        document was found among the king's papers after his death, when
        it appeared that, of the six hundred names on the list, more than
        three hundred belonged to the principal nobility: 'Eum timorem
        auxerunt codicilli post regis interitum reperti, e quibus supra
        trecentorum è prima nobilitate nomina continebantur.' _Buchanan_,
        _Rerum Scoticarum Historia_, lib. xv. p. 424. Compare _Sadler's
        State Papers_, 1809, vol. i. p. 94; and _Watson's Historicall
        Collections of Ecclesiastick Affairs in Scotland_, 1657, p. 22.
        According to Watson, it 'was called the bloudy scroll.'

These hot and vindictive men little knew of the storm which they were
evoking, and which was about to burst on their heads, and cover them and
their Church with confusion. Not that we have reason to believe that a
wiser conduct would have ultimately saved the Scotch hierarchy. On the
contrary, the probability is, that their fate was sealed; for the general
causes which governed the entire movement had been so long at work, that,
at this period, it would have been hardly possible to have baffled them.
But, even if we admit as certain, that the Scotch clergy were doomed, it
is also certain that their violence made their fall more grievous, by
exasperating the passions of their adversaries. The train, indeed, was
laid; their enemies had supplied the materials, and all was ready to
explode; but it was themselves who at last applied the match, and sprung
the mine to their own destruction.

In 1542, the nobles, seeing that the Church and the Crown were bent on
their ruin, took the most decisive step on which they had yet ventured,
and peremptorily refused to obey James in making war upon the English.
They knew that the war in which they were desired to participate had been
fomented by the clergy, with the twofold object of stopping all
communication with the exiles, and of checking the introduction of
heretical opinions.[150] Both these intentions they resolved to
frustrate, and, being assembled on the field, they declared with one
voice that they would not invade England. Threats and persuasions were
equally useless. James, stung with vexation, returned home, and ordered
the army to be disbanded. Scarcely had he retired, when the clergy
attempted to rally the troops, and to induce them to act against the
enemy. A few of the peers, ashamed at what seemed a cowardly desertion of
the king, appeared willing to march. The rest, however, refused; and,
while they were in this state of doubt and confusion, the English, taking
them unawares, suddenly fell upon their disorderly ranks, utterly routed
them, and made a large number prisoners. In this disgraceful action, ten
thousand Scotch troops fled before three hundred English cavalry.[151]
The news being brought to James, while he was still smarting from the
disobedience of the nobles, was too much for his proud and sensitive
mind. He reeled under the double shock; a slow fever wasted his strength;
he sunk into a long stupor; and, refusing all comfort, he died in
December 1542, leaving the Crown to his infant daughter, Mary, during
whose reign the great contest between the aristocracy and the Church was
to be finally decided.[152]

  [150] In the autumn of 1542, James 'was encouraged by the clergy to
        engage in a war against King Henry, who both assured him of
        victory, since he fought against an heretical prince, and advanced
        an annuity of 50,000 crowns for prosecuting the war.' _Crawfurd's
        History of the Shire of Renfrew_, 1782, 4to, part i. p. 48.
        Compare, in _State Papers of Henry VIII._, vol. v. p. 154, a
        letter written, in 1539, by Norfolk to Cromwell: 'By diverse other
        waies I am advertised that the clergie of Scotlande be in such
        feare that their king shold do theire, as the kinges highnes hath
        done in this realme, that they do their best to bring their master
        to the warr; and by many waies I am advertised that a great parte
        of the temporaltie there wold their king shold followe our
        insample, wich I pray God yeve hym grace to come unto.' Even after
        the battle of Solway, the policy of the clergy was notoriously the
        same. 'And undoubtedlie, the kyrkemen labor, by all the meanes
        they can, to empeche the unitie and establishment of thiese two
        realmes; uppon what groundes ye can easelie conjecture.' Letter
        from Sadler to Parr, dated Edinburgh, 27th March 1543, in _State
        Papers of Henry VIII._, vol. v. p. 271, 4to, 1836.

  [151] 'Ten thousand Scottish troops fled at the sight of three hundred
        English cavalry, with scarce a momentary resistance.' _Tytler's
        History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 264.

  [152] The best account of these events will be found in _Tytler's
        History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 260-267. I have also consulted
        _Ridpath's Border History_, pp. 372, 373. _Hollinshead's Scottish
        Chronicle_, vol. ii. pp. 207-209. _Lesley's History_, pp. 163-166.
        _Lindsay of Pitscottie's Chronicles_, vol. ii. pp. 399-406.
        _Calderwood's History of the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. i. pp.
        145-152. _Buchanan_, _Rerum Scoticarum Historia_, lib. xiv. pp.
        420, 421.

The influence of the nobles was increased by the death of James V., and
yet more by the bad repute into which the clergy fell for having
instigated a war, of which the result was so disgraceful.[153] Their
party was still further strengthened by the exiles, who, as soon as they
heard the glad tidings, prepared to leave England.[154] Early in 1543,
Angus and Douglas returned to Scotland,[155] and were soon followed by
other nobles, most of whom professed to be Protestants, though, as the
result clearly proved, their Protestantism was inspired by a love of
plunder and of revenge. The late king had, in his will, appointed
Cardinal Beaton to be guardian of the queen, and governor of the
realm.[156] Beaton, though an unprincipled man, was very able, and was
respected as the head of the national church; he being Archbishop of St.
Andrews, and primate of Scotland. The nobles, however, at once arrested
him,[157] deprived him of his regency, and put in his place the Earl of
Arran, who, at this time, affected to be a zealous Protestant, though, on
a fitting occasion, he afterwards changed his opinions.[158] Among the
supporters of the new creed, the most powerful were the Earl of Angus
and the Douglases. They were now freed from a prescription of fifteen
years; their attainder was reversed, and their estates and honours were
restored to them.[159] It was evident that not only the executive
authority, but also the legislative, had passed from the Church to the
aristocracy. And they, who had the power, were not sparing in the use of
it. Lord Maxwell, one of the most active of their party, had, like most
of them, in their zeal against the hierarchy, embraced the principles of
the Reformation.[160] In the spring of 1543, he obtained the sanction of
the Earl of Arran, the governor of Scotland, for a proposal which he made
to the Lords of the Articles, whose business it was to digest the
measures to be brought before Parliament. The proposal was, that the
people should be allowed to read the Bible in a Scotch or English
translation. The clergy arrayed all their force against what they
rightly deemed a step full of danger to themselves, as conceding a
fundamental principle of Protestantism. But all was in vain. The tide had
set in, and was not to be turned. The proposition was adopted by the
Lords of the Articles. On their authority, it was introduced into
Parliament. It was passed. It received the assent of the government; and,
amid the lamentations of the Church, it was proclaimed, with every
formality, at the market-cross of Edinburgh.[161]

  [153] 'This defeat being so very dishonourable, especially to the
        clergy, who stirred up the king to that attempt, and promised him
        great success from it; and there being such a visible evidence of
        the anger of God, fighting by his providence against them, all men
        were struck with fear and astonishment; the bishops were ashamed
        to show their faces for a time.' _Stevenson's History of the
        Church of Scotland_, reprinted, Edinburgh, 1840, p. 30.

  [154] We may readily believe the assertion of an old chronicler, that
        'the nobilitie did not greatlie take his death grievouslie,
        because he had fined manie, imprisoned more, and caused no small
        few (for avoiding his displeasure) to flie into England, and
        rather to commit themselves to the enemie than to his anger.'
        _Hollinshead's Scottish Chronicle_, vol. ii. p. 210.

  [155] _Hume's History of the House of Douglas_, vol. ii. p. 111.

  [156] It has been often said, that this will was forged; but for such an
        assertion I cannot find the slightest evidence, except the
        declaration of Arran (_Sadler's State Papers_, Edinburgh, 1809,
        vol. i. p. 138), and the testimony, if testimony it can be called,
        of Scotch historians, who do not profess to have examined the
        handwriting, and who, being themselves Protestants, seem to
        suppose that the fact of a man being a cardinal, qualifies him for
        every crime. There is no doubt that Beaton was thoroughly
        unprincipled, and therefore was capable of the forgery. Still, we
        have no proof; and the will is such as we might have expected from
        the king. In regard to Arran, his affirmation is not worth the
        paper it is written on: for he hated Beaton; he was himself very
        unscrupulous; and he succeeded to the post which Beaton had to
        vacate on the ground that the will was forged. If such
        circumstances do not disqualify a witness, some of the
        best-established principles of evidence are false. The reader who
        cares to look further into this subject, may compare, in favour of
        the will being forged, _Buchanan_, _Rerum Scoticarum Historia_,
        lib. xv. p. 422, Abredoniæ, 1762; _Knox's History of the
        Reformation_, edit. Laing, Edinburgh, 1846, vol. i. pp. 91, 92;
        _Irving's History of Dumbartonshire_, second edition, 4to, 1860,
        p. 102; and, in favour of its being genuine, _Lyon's History of
        St. Andrews_, Edinburgh, 1843, vol. i. pp. 304, 305. Some other
        writers on the subject leave it doubtful: _Tytler's History of
        Scotland_, 1845, vol. iv. p. 274; _Lawson's Roman Church in
        Scotland_, 1836, p. 99; and a note in _Keith's Church and State in
        Scotland_, 1844, vol. i. p. 63.

  [157] On the 26th of January 1542-3, 'the said cardinall was put in
        pressoune in Dalkeith.' _A Diurnal of Occurrents_, p. 26. See
        also, respecting his imprisonment, a letter written, on the 16th
        of March, by Angus and Douglas, in _State Papers of Henry VIII._,
        vol. v. p. 263. He was then in 'firmance.'

  [158] His appointment was confirmed by Parliament on the 12th of March.
        _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 411: 'tuto^r
        lau^tfull to the quenis grace and gounour of this realme.' He
        excluded the clergy from power. On 20th March, in the same year,
        Sir Ralph Sadler writes to Henry VIII., that Sir George Douglas
        'brought me into the council-chamber, where I found a great number
        of noblemen and others at a long board, and divers standing, but
        _not one bishop nor priest among them_. At the upper end of the
        board sat the governour.' _Sadler's State Papers_, vol. i. p. 78.

  [159] _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 415, 419, 424,
        423*; and _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 285.

  [160] 'Had become a convert to its doctrines.' _Tytler's Hist. of
        Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 286. But he, as well as the other nobles,
        neither knew nor cared much about doctrines; and he was, moreover,
        very venal. In April 1543, Sir Ralph Sadler writes to Henry VIII.:
        'And the lord Maxwell told me apart, "That, indeed, he lacked
        silver, and had no way of relief but to your majesty;" which he
        prayed me to signify unto the same. I asked him what would relieve
        him? and he said, 300_l._; "for the which," he said, "as your
        majesty seemed, when he was with your grace, to have him in more
        trust and credit than the rest of your majesty's prisoners, so he
        trusted to do you as good service as any of them; and amongst them
        they will do you such service, as, if the war succeed, ye shall
        make an easy conquest of this realm; as _for his part he shall
        deliver into your hands, at the entry of your army, the keys of
        the same on the west marches, being all the strongholds there in
        his custody_." I offered him presently to write to my lord of
        Suffolk for 100_l._ for him if he would; but he said, "he would
        stay till he heard again from your majesty in that behalf."'
        _Sadler's State Papers_, vol. i. p. 165.

  [161] _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 415, 425.
        _Sadler's State Papers_, vol. i. p. 83. Knox, in his _History of
        the Reformation_ (edit. Laing, vol. i p. 100), archly says, 'The
        cleargy hearto long repugned; butt in the end, convicted by
        reassonis, _and by multitud of votes in thare contrare_, thei also
        condiscended; and so, by Act of Parliament, it was maid free to
        all man and woman to reid the Scriptures in thair awin toung, or
        in the Engliss toung; and so war all Actes maid in the contrair

Scarcely had the nobles thus attained the upper hand, when they began to
quarrel among themselves. They were resolved to plunder the Church; but
they could not agree as to how the spoil should be shared. Neither could
they determine as to the best mode of proceeding; some being in favour of
an open and immediate schism, while others wished to advance cautiously,
and to temporize with their opponents, that they might weaken the
hierarchy by degrees. The more active and zealous section of the nobles
were known as the English party,[162] owing to their intimate connexion
with Henry VIII., from whom many of them received supplies of money. But,
in 1544, war broke out between the two countries, and the clergy, headed
by Archbishop Beaton, roused, with such success, the old feelings of
national hatred against the English, that the nobles were compelled for a
moment to bend before the storm, and to advocate an alliance with France.
Indeed, it seemed for a few months as if the Church and aristocracy had
forgotten their old and inveterate hostility, and were about to unite
their strength in one common cause.[163]

  [162] Or, as Keith calls them, 'English Lords.' _History of the Affairs
        of Church and State in Scotland_, vol. i. p. 80.

  [163] In May 1544 the English attacked Scotland, _Tytler's History_,
        vol. iv. p. 316; and in that same month, the 'Anglo-Scottish
        party' consisted only of the Earls of Lennox and of Glencairn,
        since even 'Angus, George Douglas, and their numerous and powerful
        adherents, joined the cardinal.' p. 319. As to the part taken by
        the Scotch clergy, see, in _Sadler's State Papers_, vol. i. p.
        173, a letter to Henry VIII., written on the 1st of May 1543: 'And
        as to the kirk-men, I assure your majesty they seek the war by all
        the means they can, and do daily entertain the noblemen with money
        and rewards to sustain the wars, rather than there should be any
        agreement with your majesty; thinking, verily, that if peace and
        unity succeed, that they shall be reformed, and lose their glory,
        which they had rather die, and put all this realm in hazard, than
        they would forego.' See also p. 184, note.

This, however, was but a passing delusion. The antagonism between the two
classes was irreconcilable.[164] In the spring of 1545, the leading
Protestant nobles formed a conspiracy to assassinate Archbishop
Beaton,[165] whom they hated more than any one else, partly because he
was the head of the Church, and partly because he was the ablest and most
unscrupulous of their opponents. A year, however, elapsed before their
purpose could be effected; and it was not till May 1546, that Lesley, a
young baron, accompanied by the Laird of Grange, and a few others, burst
into Saint Andrews, and murdered the primate in his own castle.[166]

  [164] Buchanan records a very curious conversation between the regent and
        Douglas, which, as I do not remember to have met with elsewhere, I
        shall transcribe. The exact date of it is not mentioned, but, from
        the context, it evidently took place in 1544 or 1545. 'Ibi cum
        Prorex suam deploraret solitudinem, et se a nobilitate derelictum
        quereretur, Duglassius ostendit "id ipsius culpa fieri, non
        nobilium, qui et fortunas omnes et vitam ad publicam salutem
        tuendam conferrent, quorum consilio contempto ad sacrificulorum
        nutum circumageretur, qui foris imbelles, domi seditiosi,
        omniumque periculorum expertes alieni laboris fructu ad suas
        voluptates abuterentur. Ex hoc fonte inter te et proceres facta
        est suspitio, quæ (quòd neutri alteris fidatis) rebus gerendis
        maxime est impedimento."' _Rerum Scoticarum Historia_, lib. xv. p.
        435. Buchanan was, at this time, about thirty-eight years old; and
        that some such conversation as that which he narrates actually
        took place, is, I think, highly probable, though the historian may
        have thrown in some touches of his own. At all events, he was too
        great a rhetorician to invent what his contemporaries would deem
        unlikely to happen; so that, from either point of view, the
        passage is valuable as an evidence of the deep-rooted hostility
        which the nobles bore towards the Church.

  [165] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 337. 'The plot is
        entirely unknown either to our Scottish or English historians; and
        now, after the lapse of nearly three centuries, has been
        discovered in the secret correspondence of the State-paper
        Office.' The first suggestion of the murder was in April 1544. See
        _State Papers of Henry VIII._, vol. v. p. 377, and the end of the
        Preface to vol. iv. But Mr. Tytler and the editor of the _State
        Papers_ appear to have overlooked a still earlier indication of
        the coming crime, in _Sadler's Papers_. See, in that collection,
        vol. i. p. 77, a conversation, held in March 1543, between Sir
        Ralph Sadler and the Earl of Arran; Sadler being conducted by the
        Earl of Glencairn. On that occasion, the Earl of Arran used an
        expression concerning Beaton, the meaning of which Sir Ralph
        evidently understood. '"By God," quoth he, "he shall never come
        out of prison whilst I may have mine own will, _except it be to
        his farther mischief_." I allowed the same well' (replied Sadler),
        'and said, "It were pity, but he should receive such reward as his
        merits did require."'

  [166] _State Papers of Henry VIII._, vol. v. p. 560. _A Diurnal of
        Occurrents_, p. 42. _Calderwood's History of the Kirk of
        Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 221-223. Lindsay of Pitscottie
        (_Chronicles_, vol. ii. p. 484) relates a circumstance respecting
        the murder, which is too horrible to mention, and of which it is
        enough to say, that it consisted of an obscene outrage committed
        on the corpse of the victim. Though such facts cannot now be
        published, they are so characteristic of the age, that they ought
        not to be passed over in complete silence.

The horror with which the Church heard of this foul and barbarous
deed,[167] maybe easily imagined. But the conspirators, nothing daunted,
and relying on the support of a powerful party, justified their act,
seized the castle of Saint Andrews, and prepared to defend it to the
last. And in this resolution they were upheld by a most remarkable man,
who now first appeared to public view, and who, being admirably suited to
the age in which he lived, was destined to become the most conspicuous
character of those troublous times.

  [167] Respecting which, two Scotch Protestant historians have expressed
        themselves in the following terms: 'God admonished men, by this
        judgement, that he will in end be avenged upon tyranns for their
        crueltie, howsoever they strenthen themselves.' _Calderwood's
        History of the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 224. And, whoever
        considers all the circumstances, 'must acknowledge it was a
        stupendous act of the judgment of the Lord, and that the whole was
        overruled and guided by Divine Providence.' _Stevenson's History
        of the Church and State of Scotland_, p. 38.

That man was John Knox. To say that he was fearless and incorruptible,
that he advocated with unflinching zeal what he believed to be the truth,
and that he devoted himself with untiring energy to what he deemed the
highest of all objects, is only to render common justice to the many
noble attributes which he undoubtedly possessed. But, on the other hand,
he was stern, unrelenting, and frequently brutal; he was not only callous
to human suffering, but he could turn it into a jest, and employ on it
the resources of his coarse, though exuberant, humour;[168] and he loved
power so inordinately, that, unable to brook the slightest opposition, he
trampled on all who crossed his path, or stood even for a moment in the
way of his ulterior designs.

  [168] Even the editor of _M'Crie's Life of Knox_, Edinburgh, 1841,
        p. xxxv., notices 'the ill-timed merriment he displays in relating
        the foul deed' of Beaton's murder.

The influence of Knox in promoting the Reformation, has indeed been
grossly exaggerated by historians, who are too apt to ascribe vast
results to individual exertions; overlooking those large and general
causes, in the absence of which the individual exertion would be
fruitless. Still, he effected more than any single man;[169] although the
really important period of his life, in regard to Scotland, was in and
after 1559, when the triumph of Protestantism was already secure, and
when he reaped the benefit of what had been effected during his long
absence from his own country. His first effort was a complete failure,
and, more than any one of his actions, has injured his reputation. This
was the sanction which he gave to the cruel murder of Archbishop Beaton,
in 1546. He repaired to the Castle of Saint Andrews; he shut himself up
with the assassins; he prepared to share their fate; and, in a work which
he afterwards wrote, openly justified what they had done.[170] For this,
nothing can excuse him; and it is with a certain sense of satisfied
justice that we learn, that, in 1547, the castle being taken by the
French, Knox was treated with great severity, and was made to work at the
galleys, from which he was not liberated till 1549.[171]

  [169] Shortly before his death, he said, with honest and justifiable
        pride, 'What I have bene to my countrie, albeit, this vnthankfull
        aige will not knowe, yet the aiges to come wilbe compelled to bear
        witnes to the treuth.' _Bannatyne's Journal_, Edinburgh, 1806. p.
        119. Bannatyne was Knox's secretary. It is to be regretted that no
        good life of Knox should have yet been published. That by M'Crie
        is an undistinguishing and injudicious panegyric, which, by
        provoking a reaction of opinion, has damaged the reputation of the
        great reformer. On the other hand, the sect of Episcopalians in
        Scotland are utterly blind to the real grandeur of the man, and
        unable to discern his intense love of truth, and the noble
        fearlessness of his nature.

  [170] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 374, 375. _M'Crie's
        Life of Knox_, pp. 27, 28. _Lawson's Roman Catholic Church in
        Scotland_, p. 154. _Presbytery Displayed_, 1663, 4to, p. 28.
        _Shields' Hind let loose_, 1687, pp. 14, 39, 638. In his _History
        of the Reformation_, edit. Laing, vol. i. pp. 177, 180, he calls
        it a 'godly fact,' and says, 'These ar the workis of our God;'
        which, in plain language, is terming the Deity an assassin. But,
        bad as this is, I agree with M'Crie, that there is no trustworthy
        evidence for deeming him privy to the murder. Compare, however, _A
        Diurnal of Occurrents_ p. 42, with _Lyon's History of St.
        Andrews_, vol. ii. p. 364.

  [171] _M'Crie's Life of Knox_, pp. 38, 43, 350. _Argyll's Presbytery
        Examined_, 1848, p. 19.

During the next five years, Knox remained in England, which he quitted in
1554, and arrived at Dieppe.[172] He then travelled abroad; and did not
revisit Scotland till the autumn of 1555, when he was eagerly welcomed by
the principal nobles and their adherents.[173] From some cause, however,
which has not been sufficiently explained, but probably from an
unwillingness to play a subordinate part among those proud chiefs, he, in
July 1556, again left Scotland, and repaired to Geneva, where he had been
invited to take charge of a congregation.[174] He stayed abroad till
1559, by which time the real struggle was almost over; so completely had
the nobles succeeded in sapping the foundations of the Church.

  [172] _M'Crie's Life of Knox_, pp. 44, 71.

  [173] _Ibid._ p. 99. As to the nobles, who received him, and heard him
        preach, see p. 102.

  [174] 'Influenced by motives which have never been fully comprehended, he
        departed to Geneva, where, for a time, he became pastor of a
        Protestant congregation.' _Russell's History of the Church in
        Scotland_, 1834, vol. i. p. 193. M'Crie, who sees no difficulty,
        simply says, 'In the month of July 1556, he left Scotland, and,
        having arrived at Dieppe, he proceeded with his family to Geneva.'
        _Life of Knox_, p. 107.

For, the course of events having been long prepared, was now rapid
indeed. In 1554, the queen dowager had succeeded Arran as regent.[175]
She was that Mary of Guise whose marriage with James V. we have noticed
as one of the indications of the policy then prevailing. If left alone,
she would probably have done little harm;[176] but her powerful and
intolerant family exhorted her to suppress the heretics, and, as a
natural part of the same scheme, to put down the nobles. By the advice of
her brothers, the Duke of Guise and the Cardinal of Lorraine, she, in
1555, proposed to establish a standing army, to supply the place of the
troops, which consisted of the feudal barons and their retainers. Such a
force, being paid by the Crown, would have been entirely under its
control; but the nobles saw the ulterior design, and compelled Mary to
abandon it, on the ground that they and their vassals were able to defend
Scotland, without further aid.[177] Her next attempt was to consolidate
the interests of the Catholic party, which she effected, in 1558, by
marrying her daughter to the dauphin. This increased the influence of the
Guises,[178] whose niece, already queen of Scotland, would now, in the
ordinary course of affairs, become queen of France. They urged their
sister to extreme measures, and promised to assist her with French
troops. On the other hand, the nobles remained firm, and prepared for the
struggle. In December 1557, several of them had drawn up a covenant,
agreeing to stand by each other, and to resist the tyranny with which
they were threatened.[179] They now took the name of Lords of the
Congregation, and sent forth their agents to secure the subscriptions of
those who wished for a reformation of the Church.[180] They, moreover,
wrote to Knox, whose style of preaching, being very popular, would, they
thought, be useful in stirring up the people to rebellion.[181] He was
then in Geneva, and did not arrive in Scotland till May 1559,[182] by
which time the result of the impending contest was hardly doubtful, so
successful had the nobles been in strengthening their party, and so much
reason had they to expect the support of Elizabeth.

  [175] Knox, in his savoury diction, likens her appointment to putting a
        saddle on the back of a cow. 'She maid Regent in the year of God
        1554; and a croune putt upone hir head, als seimlye a sight (yf
        men had eis), as to putt a sadill upone the back of ane unrewly
        kow.' I copy this passage from Mr. Laing's excellent edition of
        _Knox's History of the Reformation_, vol. i. p. 242; but in
        _Watson's Historicall Collections of Ecclesiastick Affairs in
        Scotland_, 1657, p. 73, there is a slightly different version.
        '"As seemly a sight," saith John Knox, in the new gospel language,
        "as to put the saddle upon the back of an unruly _sow_."'

  [176] The Duke of Argyll, in his _Presbytery Examined_, p. 9, calls her
        'ambitious and intriguing.' Not only, however, is she praised by
        Lesley (_History_, pp. 289, 290), which might have been expected,
        but even Buchanan does justice to her, in a passage unusually
        gracious for so Protestant and democratic a writer. 'Mors ejus
        varie mentes hominum affecit. Nam et apud quosdam eorum, quibuscum
        armis contendit, non mediocre sui desiderium reliquit. Erat enim
        singulari ingenio prædita, et animo ad æquitatem admodum
        propenso.' _Buchanan_, _Rerum Scoticarum Historia_, lib. xvi. p.

  [177] _History of Scotland_, book ii. p. 91, in Robertson's Works, 1831.
        _Tytler's History_, vol. v. pp. 22, 23. It appears, from Lesley
        (_History_, pp. 254, 255), that some of the nobles were in favour
        of this scheme, hoping thereby to gain favour. 'Albeit sum of the
        lordis of the nobilitie for pleasour of the quene seamed to aggre
        thairto for the tyme, yit the barronis and gentill men was nathing
        content thairwith' ... 'affirming that thair foirfatheris and
        predicessouris had defendit the samyn' (_i.e._ the realm) 'mony
        hundreth yeris, vailyeantlie with thair awin handis.'

  [178] 'It completed the almost despotic power of the house of Guise.'
        _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. v. p. 27.

  [179] This covenant, which marks an important epoch in the history of
        Scotland, is dated 3rd of December 1557. It is printed in
        _Stevenson's History of the Church of Scotland_, p. 47; in
        _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. i. pp. 326, 327; and in
        _Knox's History of the Reformation_, vol. i. pp. 273, 274.

  [180] In 1558, 'the lords of the congregation had sent agents through
        the kingdom to solicit the subscriptions of those who were
        friendly to a reformation.' _Stephen's History of the Church of
        Scotland_, London, 1848, vol. i. p. 58.

  [181] Keith (_Affairs of Church and State in Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 82)
        calls him 'a trumpeter of rebellion,' which he undoubtedly was,
        and very much to his credit too, though the courtly bishop imputes
        it to him as a fault. The Scotch, if it had not been for their
        rebellious spirit, would long since have lost their liberties.

  [182] 'He sailed from Dieppe on the 22nd of April 1559, and landed
        safely at Leith in the beginning of May.' _M'Crie's Life of Knox_,
        p. 139. Knox himself says, 'the secound of Maij.' _History of the
        Reformation_, edit. Laing, vol. i. p. 318. 'He was called home by
        the noblemen that enterprised the Reformation.' _Spottiswoode's
        History of the Church of Scotland_, edit. Russell, vol. ii.
        p. 180.

Nine days after Knox entered Scotland, the first blow was struck. On the
11th of May 1559, he preached in Perth. After the sermon, a tumult arose,
and the people plundered the churches and pulled down the
monasteries.[183] The queen-regent, hastily assembling troops, marched
towards the town. But the nobles were on the alert. The Earl of Glencairn
joined the congregation with two thousand five hundred men; and a treaty
was concluded, by which both sides agreed to disarm, on condition that no
one should be punished for what had already happened.[184] Such, however,
was the state of the public mind, that peace was impossible. In a few
days, war again broke out; and this time the result was more decisive.
The Lords of the Congregation mustered in great force. Perth, Stirling,
and Linlithgow, fell into their hands. The queen-regent retreated before
them. She evacuated Edinburgh; and, on the 29th of June, the Protestants
entered the capital in triumph.[185]

  [183] _Penny's Traditions of Perth_, p. 310. _Knox's History of the
        Reformation_, vol. i. pp. 321-323. _Lyon's History of St.
        Andrews_, vol. i. p. 329; and a spirited narrative in _Buchanan's
        Rerum Scoticarum Historia_, lib. xvi. pp. 471, 472. Some
        interesting circumstances are also preserved in _Lesley's
        History_, pp. 271, 272; but, though Lesley was a contemporary, he
        erroneously places the riot in 1558. He, moreover, ascribes to
        Knox language more inflammatory than that which he really used.

  [184] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. v. pp. 59, 62, 63. Of the
        Earl of Glencairn, Chalmers (_Caledonia_, vol. iii. p. 485) says,
        that he was a 'religious ruffian, who enjoyed pensions from Henry
        VIII., for injuring the country of his birth, and benefits.' This,
        besides being ungrammatical, is foolish. Glencairn, like the other
        aristocratic leaders of the Reformation, was, no doubt, influenced
        by sordid motives; but, so far from injuring his country, he
        rendered it great service.

  [185] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. v. pp. 64-73.

All this was done in seven weeks from the breaking out of the first riot.
Both parties were now willing to negotiate, with the view of gaining
time; the queen-regent expecting aid from France, the Lords expecting it
from England.[186] But the proceedings of Elizabeth being tardy, the
Protestants, after waiting for some months, determined to strike a
decisive blow before the reinforcements arrived. In October, the
principal peers, headed by the Duke of Chastelherault, the Earl of Arran,
the Earl of Argyle, and the Earl of Glencairn, assembled at Edinburgh. A
great meeting was held, of which Lord Ruthven was appointed president,
and in which the queen-regent was solemnly suspended from the government,
on the ground that she was opposed to 'the glory of God, to the liberty
of the realm, and to the welfare of the nobles.'[187]

  [186] It is stated of the queen-regent, that, in July 1559, 'shee had
        sent alreadie to France for more men of warr.' See the curious
        pamphlet entitled 'A Historie of the Estate of Scotland, from July
        1558 to April 1560,' in _Miscellany of the Wodrow Society_, p. 63,
        Edinburgh, 1844. All sorts of rumours were circulated; and a
        letter, dated 12th October 1559, says, 'Summe thinke the regent
        will departe secretlie. Summe that she will to Ynchkeith, for that
        three shippes are a preparing. Summe saye that she is verie sicke.
        Summe saye the devill cannot kill her.' _Sadler's State Papers_,
        vol. i. p. 499.

  [187] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. v. p. 104. This was on the
        22nd of October 1559. Compare _Sadler's State Papers_, vol. i. p.
        512. 'This Mondaye, the 22 of October, was the douagier deprived
        from her authoritie by commen consent of all lords and barons here
        present.' On this occasion, 'Johne Willocke,' the preacher,
        delivered himself of a discourse in favour of her deposition.
        Among other arguments, he said, 'that in deposing of princes, and
        these that have beene in authoritie, God did not alwayes use his
        immediat power, but sometimes he used other meanes, which his
        wisdome thought good, and justice approved. As by Asa, He removed
        Maacha, his owne mother, from honour and authoritie, which before
        she had used; by Jehu He destroyed Joram, and the whole posteritie
        of Achab.' _Therefore_ 'he (the orator) could see no reasoun why
        they, the borne counsellers, the nobilitie and barons of the
        realme, might not justlie deprive her from all regiment.'
        _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. i. pp. 540, 541; and
        _Knox's History of the Reformation_, vol. i. pp. 442, 443.

In the winter, an English fleet sailed into the Frith, and anchored near
Edinburgh.[188] In January 1560, the Duke of Norfolk arrived at Berwick,
and concluded, on the part of Elizabeth, a treaty with the Lords of the
Congregation, by virtue of which the English army entered Scotland on the
2nd of April.[189] Against this combination, the government could effect
nothing, and in July, was glad to sign a peace, by which the French
troops were to evacuate Scotland, and the whole power of administration
was virtually consigned to the Protestant Lords.[190]

  [188] The _Diurnal of Occurrents_, pp. 55, 272, says, that the fleet
        arrived on 24th of January, 1559-60; 'aucht greit schippis of
        Ingland in the raid of Leith.' And a letter (in _Sadler's State
        Papers_, vol. i. p. 697) dated the 23rd of January, says, 'the
        shippes arrived yesterdaye in the Frythe to the nomber of ix. or
        x., as yet, and the remanent followith.' The date, therefore, of
        the 10th of January, given in a note to _Keith's Church and State
        in Scotland_, vol. i. p. 255, is evidently erroneous. Important as
        the event was, its exact date is not mentioned either by Tytler
        (_History of Scotland_, vol. v. pp. 114, 115), or by Chalmers
        (_Caledonia_, vol. ii. p. 631).

  [189] _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. ii. p. 632. _Knox's History of the
        Reformation_, vol. ii. p. 57. The Berwick treaty, in February, is
        printed in _Keith's Church and State in Scotland_, vol. i. pp.
        258-262. So great was the influence of the nobles, that the
        English troops were well received by the people, in spite of the
        old and bitter animosity between the two nations. 'Especially in
        Fyfe they were thankfully receaved, and well entreated, with such
        quietnes and gentle entertainement betwixt our nation and them, as
        no man would have thought that ever there had beine any variance.'
        _A Historie of the Estate of Scotland_, from 1558 to 1560, in
        _Miscellany of the Wodrow Society_, p. 78.

  [190] 'Vpoun the vi. day of Julij, it wes concludit and finallie endit
        betuix the saids ambassatouris, tuitching all debaittis,
        contraversies and materis concernyng the asseiging of Leith,
        depairting of the Frenchemen thairfra, and randering of the same;
        and the said peax daitit this said day.' _A Diurnal of
        Occurrents_, pp. 277, 278. See also p. 60; and _Keith's Affairs of
        Church and State in Scotland_, vol. i. p. 295.

The complete success of this great revolution, and the speed with which
it was effected, are of themselves a decisive proof of the energy of
those general causes by which the whole movement was controlled. For more
than a hundred and fifty years, there had been a deadly struggle between
the nobles and the Church: and the issue of that struggle, was the
establishment of the Reformation, and the triumph of the aristocracy.
They had, at last, carried their point. The hierarchy was overthrown, and
replaced by new and untried men. All the old notions of apostolic
succession, of the imposition of hands, and of the divine right of
ordination, were suddenly discarded. The offices of the Church were
performed by heretics, the majority of whom had not even been
ordained.[191] Finally, and to crown the whole, in the summer of the same
year, 1560, the Scotch parliament passed two laws, which utterly
subverted the ancient scheme. By one of these laws, every statute which
had ever been enacted in favour of the Church, was at once repealed.[192]
By the other law, it was declared that whoever either said mass, or was
present while it was said, should, for the first offence, lose his goods;
for the second offence be exiled; and, for the third offence, be put to

  [191] 'That Knox himself was in priest's orders, is a fact which his
        biographer, the late Dr. M'Crie, has placed beyond dispute; and
        some of the other leaders were also priests; but the greater
        number of the preachers, and all those who subsequently became
        ministers, were totally without any orders whatever, not even such
        as the superintendents could have given them; for their own
        supposed call, the election of the people, and the _civil_
        ceremony of induction to the living, was all that was then "judged
        necessary."' _Stephen's History of the Church of Scotland_, 1848,
        vol. i. pp. 145, 146. 'A new-fashioned sort of ministry, unknown
        in the Christian Church for all preceding generations.' _Keith's
        Church and State in Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 204. Compare _Argyll's
        Presbytery Examined_, pp. 34-36.

  [192] 'The thre estaitis of parliament hes [=a]nullit and declarit all
        sik actes maid in tymes bipast not aggreing w^t goddis word and
        now contrair to the confessiouñ of oure fay^t according to the
        said word publist in this parliament. Tobe of nane avale force nor
        effect. And decornis the said actis and every ane of thame tu haue
        na effect nor strenth in tyme to cum.' _Acts of the Parliament of
        Scotland_, 1814, folio, vol. ii. p. 535. This was on 24th August

  [193] 'That na maner of person nor personis say mess nor zit heir mess
        nor be pñt thairat vnder the pane of confiscatiouñ of all
        thair gud movable and vnmovable and pvneissing of thair bodeis at
        the discretiouñ of the magistrat within quhais jurisdictiouñ
        sik personis happ[=y]nis to be apprehendit ffor the first falt:
        Banissing of the Realme for the secund falt, and justifying to the
        deid for the thrid falt.' _Ibid._, 24th August 1560, vol. ii. p.

Thus it was, that an institution, which had borne the brunt of more than
a thousand years, was shivered, and fell to pieces. And, from its fall,
great things were augured. It was believed, that the people would be
enlightened, that their eyes were opening to their former follies, and
that the reign of superstition was about to end. But what was forgotten
then, and what is too often forgotten now, is, that in these affairs
there is an order and a natural sequence, which can never be reversed.
This is, that every institution, as it actually exists, no matter what
its name or pretences may be, is the effect of public opinion far more
than the cause; and that it will avail nothing to attack the institution,
unless you can first change the opinion. In Scotland, the Church was
grossly superstitious; but it did not, therefore, follow, that to
overthrow the establishment, would lessen the evil. They who think that
superstition can be weakened in this way, do not know the vitality of
that dark and ill-omened principle. Against it, there is only one weapon,
and that weapon is knowledge. When men are ignorant, they must be
superstitious; and wherever superstition exists, it is sure to organize
itself into some kind of system, which it makes its home. If you drive it
from that home, it will find another. The spirit transmigrates; it
assumes a new form; but still it lives. How idle, then, is that warfare
which reformers are too apt to wage, in which they slay the carcass, and
spare the life! The husk, forsooth, they seek out and destroy; but within
that husk is a seed of deadly poison, whose vitality they are unable to
impair, and which, shifted from its place, bears fruit in another
direction, and shoots up with a fresh, and often a more fatal,

The truth is, that every institution, whether political or religious,
represents, in its actual working, the form and pressure of the age. It
may be very old; it may bear a venerated name; it may aim at the highest
objects: but whoever carefully studies its history, will find that, in
practice, it is successively modified by successive generations, and
that, instead of controlling society, it is controlled by it. When the
Protestant Reformation was effected, the Scotch were excessively
ignorant, and, therefore, in spite of the Reformation, they remained
excessively superstitious. How long that ignorance continued, and what
its results were, we shall presently see; but before entering into that
inquiry, it will be advisable to trace the immediate consequences of the
Reformation itself, in connexion with the powerful class by whose
authority it was established.

The nobles, having overthrown the Church, and stripped it of a large part
of its wealth, thought that they were to reap the benefit of their own
labour. They had slain the enemy, and they wished to divide the
spoil.[194] But this did not suit the views of the Protestant preachers.
In their opinion, it was impious to secularize ecclesiastical property,
and turn it aside to profane purposes. They held, that it was right,
indeed, for the lords to plunder the Church; but they took for granted
that the proceeds of the robbery were to enrich themselves. They were the
godly men; and it was the business of the ruling classes to endow them
with benefices, from which the old and idolatrous clergy were to be

  [194] As Robertson says, in his measured, and somewhat feeble, style,
        'Among the Scottish nobility, some hated the persons, and others
        coveted the wealth, of the dignified clergy; and by abolishing
        that order of men, the former indulged their resentment, and the
        latter hoped to gratify their avarice.' _History of Scotland_,
        book iii. p. 116, in _Robertson's Works_, edit. 1831. The
        contemporary narrative, in _A Diurnal of Occurrents_, p. 269,
        sounds much more vigorous to my ear. 'In all this tyme' (1559),
        'all kirkmennis goodis and geir wer spoulzeit and reft fra thame,
        in euerie place quhair the samyne culd be apprehendit; for euerie
        man for the maist pairt that culd get any thing pertenyng to any
        kirkmen, thocht the same as wele won geir.'

  [195] 'Knox never dreamed that the revenues of the Church were to be
        secularized; but that he and his colleagues were simply to remove
        the old incumbents, and then take possession of their benefices.'
        _Stephen's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 106.
        'The ecclesiastical revenues, which they never contemplated for a
        moment were to be seized by the Protestant nobility.' _Lawson's
        Roman Catholic Church in Scotland_, p. 233.

In accordance with these opinions, Knox and his colleagues, in August
1560, presented a petition to Parliament, calling on the nobles to
restore the Church property which they had seized, and to have it
properly applied to the support of the new ministers.[196] To this
request, those powerful chiefs did not even vouchsafe a reply.[197] They
were content with matters as they actually stood, and were, therefore,
unwilling to disturb the existing arrangement. They had fought the fight;
they had gained the victory, and shared the spoil. It was not to be
supposed that they would peaceably relinquish what they had won with
infinite difficulty. Nor was it likely that, after being engaged in an
arduous struggle with the Church for a hundred and fifty years, and
having at length conquered their inveterate enemy, they should forego the
fruits of their triumph for the sake of a few preachers, whom they had
but recently called to their aid; low-born and obscure men, who should
rather deem it an honour that they were permitted to associate with their
superiors in a common enterprise, but were not to presume on that
circumstance, nor to suppose that they, who only entered the field at the
eleventh hour, were to share the booty on anything approaching to terms
of equality.[198]

  [196] Compare _Knox's History of the Reformation_, vol. ii. pp. 89-92,
        with _M'Crie's Life of Knox_, p. 179. Of this document, M'Crie
        says, 'There can be no doubt that it received the sanction, if it
        was not the composition, of the Reformer.' ... 'It called upon
        them' (the nobles) 'to restore the patrimony of the Church, of
        which they had unjustly possessed themselves.'

  [197] 'Making no answer to the last point.' _Spottiswoode's History of
        the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 327. 'Without taking any
        notice.' _Keith's Affairs of Church and State_, vol. i. p. 321.

  [198] 'They viewed the Protestant preachers as low-born individuals, not
        far raised above the condition of mechanics or tradesmen, without
        influence, authority, or importance.' _Lawson's Roman Catholic
        Church in Scotland_, p. 251. 'None were more unmercifull to the
        poore ministers than they that had the greatest share of the kirk
        rents.' _Calderwood's History of the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. ii.
        p. 42.

But the aristocracy of Scotland little knew the men with whom they had to
deal. Still less, did they understand the character of their own age.
They did not see that, in the state of society in which they lived,
superstition was inevitable, and that, therefore, the spiritual classes,
though depressed for a moment, were sure speedily to rise again. The
nobles had overturned the Church; but the principles on which Church
authority is based, remained intact. All that was done, was to change the
name and the form. A new hierarchy was quickly organized, which succeeded
the old one in the affections of the people. Indeed, it did more. For,
the Protestant clergy, neglected by the nobles, and unendowed by the
state, had only a miserable pittance whereupon to live, and they
necessarily threw themselves into the arms of the people, where alone
they could find support and sympathy.[199] Hence, a closer and more
intimate union than would otherwise have been possible. Hence, too, as we
shall presently see, the Presbyterian clergy, smarting under the
injustice with which they were treated, displayed that hatred of the
upper classes, and that peculiar detestation of monarchical government,
which they showed whenever they dared. In their pulpits, in their
presbyteries, and in their General Assemblies, they encouraged a
democratic and insubordinate tone, which eventually produced the happiest
results, by keeping alive, at a critical moment, the spirit of liberty;
but which, for that very reason, made the higher ranks rue the day, when,
by their ill-timed and selfish parsimony, they roused the wrath of so
powerful and implacable a class.

  [199] In 1561, 'Notwithstanding the full establishment of the
        Reformation, the Protestant ministers were in a state of extreme
        poverty, and dependent upon the precarious assistance of their
        flocks.' _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. v. p. 207. Compare a
        letter, written by Knox, in 1566, 'on the extreame povertie
        wherein our ministers are brought.' _Knox's History of the
        Reformation_, vol. ii. p. 542.

The withdrawal of the French troops, in 1560, had left the nobles in
possession of the government;[200] and it was for them to decide to what
extent the Reformed clergy should be endowed. The first petition,
presented by Knox and his brethren, was passed over in contemptuous
silence. But the ministers were not so easily put aside. Their next step
was, to present to the Privy Council what is known as the First Book of
Discipline, in which they again urged their request.[201] To the tenets
contained in this book, the council had no objection; but they refused to
ratify it, because, by doing so, they would have sanctioned the principle
that the new church had a right to the revenues of the old one.[202] A
certain share, indeed, they were willing to concede. What the share
should be, was a matter of serious dispute, and caused the greatest
ill-will between the two parties. At length, the nobles broke silence,
and, in December 1561, they declared that the Reformed clergy should only
receive one-sixth of the property of the Church; the remaining
five-sixths being divided between the government and the Catholic
priesthood.[203] The meaning of this was easily understood, since the
Catholics were now entirely dependent on the government, and the
government was, in fact, the nobles themselves, who were, at that period,
the monopolizers of political power.

  [200] 'The limited authority which the Crown had hitherto possessed, was
        almost entirely annihilated, and the aristocratical power, which
        always predominated in the Scottish Government (?), became supreme
        and incontrollable.' _Russell's History of the Church in
        Scotland_, 1834, vol. i. p. 223.

  [201] See the _First Book of Discipline_, reprinted in _A Compendium of
        the Laws of the Church of Scotland_, part i., second edition,
        Edinburgh, 1837. They summed up their requests in one
        comprehensive passage (p. 119), that 'the haill rentis of the Kirk
        abusit in Papistrie sal be referrit againe to the Kirk.' In
        another part (p. 106), they frankly admit that, 'we doubt not but
        some of our petitions shall appeare strange unto you at the first

  [202] 'The form of polity recommended in the First Book of Discipline
        never obtained the proper sanction of the State, chiefly in
        consequence of the avarice of the nobility and gentry, who were
        desirous of securing to themselves the revenues of the Church.'
        _Miscellany of the Wodrow Society_, p. 324. See also _Argyll's
        Presbytery Examined_, p. 26. Many of the nobles, however, did sign
        it (_Knox's History of the Reformation_, vol. ii. p. 129); but,
        says Spottiswoode (_History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p.
        373), 'Most of those that subscribed, getting into their hands the
        possessions of the Church, could never be induced to part
        therewith, and turned greater enemies in that point of church
        patrimony than were the papists, or any other whatsoever.'

  [203] _M'Crie's Life of Knox_, p. 204. _Knox's History of the
        Reformation_, vol. ii. pp. 298-301, 307-309. _Buchanan's Rerum
        Scoticarum Historia_, lib. xvii. p. 500. The nominal arrangement,
        which was contrived with considerable art, was, that one-third of
        the church revenues should be divided into two parts; one part for
        the government, and another part for the preachers. The remaining
        two-thirds were gravely assigned to the Catholic priesthood, who,
        at that very moment, were liable, by Act of Parliament, to the
        penalty of death, if they performed the rites of their religion.
        Men, whose lives were in the hands of the government, were not
        likely to quarrel with the government about money matters; and the
        result was, that nearly every thing fell into the possession of
        the nobles.

Such being the case, it naturally happened, that, when the arrangement
was made known, the preachers were greatly moved. They saw how
unfavourable it was to their own interests, and, therefore, they held
that it was unfavourable to the interests of religion. Hence, in their
opinion, it was contrived by the devil, whose purposes it was calculated
to serve.[204] For, now, they who travailed in the vineyard of the Lord,
were to be discouraged, and were to suffer, in order that what rightly
belonged to them might be devoured by idle bellies.[205] The nobles might
benefit for a time, but the vengeance of God was swift, and would most
assuredly overtake them.[206] From the beginning to the end, it was
nothing but spoliation. In a really Christian land, the patrimony of the
Church would be left untouched.[207] But, in Scotland, alas! Satan had
prevailed,[208] and Christian charity had waxen cold.[209] In Scotland,
property, which should be regarded as sacred, had been broken up and
divided; and the division was of the worst kind, since, by it, said Knox,
two-thirds are given to the devil, and the other third is shared between
God and the devil. It was as if Joseph, when governor of Egypt, had
refused food to his brethren, and sent them back to their families with
empty sacks.[210] Or, as another preacher suggested, the Church was now,
like the Maccabees of old, being oppressed, sometimes by the Assyrians,
and sometimes by the Egyptians.[211]

  [204] 'The Ministeris, evin in the begynnyng, in publict Sermonis
        opponed thame selves to suche corruptioun, for thei foir saw the
        purpose of the Devill.' _Knox's History of the Reformation_,
        vol. ii. p. 310.

  [205] 'For it seemeth altogether unreasonable that idle belleis sail
        devoure and consume the patrimonie of the Kirk, whill the
        faithfull travellers in the Lord's vineyarde suffer extreme
        povertie, and the needie members of Christ's bodie are altogether
        neglected.' _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. ii. pp. 484,
        485. This was in 1569; and, in 1571, the celebrated Ferguson, in
        one of his sermons, declared that the holders of church property,
        most of whom were the nobility, were 'ruffians.' See an extract
        from his sermon, in _Chalmers' History of Dunfermline_, p. 309,
        Edinburgh, 1844. 'For this day Christ is spuilzeit amang us, quhil
        y^t quhilk aucht to mantene the Ministerie of the Kirk and the
        pure, is geuin to prophane men, flattereris in court, ruffianes,
        and hyrelingis.'

  [206] In September 1571, John Row 'preiched, wha in plane pulpet
        pronounced to the lordis, for thair covetusnes, and becaus they
        wold not grant the just petitiones of the Kirk, Godis heastie
        vengeance to fall upon them; and said, moreover, "I cair not, my
        lordis, your displeasour; for I speik my conscience befoir God,
        wha will not suffer sic wickitnes and contempt vnpunished."'
        _Bannatyne's Journal_, edit. Edinburgh, 1806, p. 257.

  [207] In 1576, the General Assembly declared, that their right to 'the
        patrimonie of the Kirk' was 'ex jure divino.' _Acts of the General
        Assemblies of the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 360, Edinburgh,
        1839, 4to. More than a hundred years later, a Scotch divine
        evinces how deeply the members of his profession felt this
        spoliation of the Church, by going out of his way to mention it.
        See _Jacob's Vow, by Dr. John Cockburn_, Edinburgh, 1696, pp. 422,
        423, 425. But this is nothing in comparison to a recent writer,
        the Reverend Mr. Lyon, who deliberately asserts that, because
        these and similar acts occurred in the reign of Mary, therefore
        the queen came to a violent end; such being the just punishment of
        sacrilege. 'The practice' (of saying masses for the dead) 'ceased,
        of course, at the Reformation; and the money was transferred by
        Queen Mary to the civil authorities of the town. This was,
        undoubtedly, an act of sacrilege; for, though sacrificial masses
        for the dead was an error, yet the guardians of the money so
        bequeathed, were under an obligation to apply it to a sacred
        purpose. This, and other sacrilegious acts on the part of Mary, of
        a still more decided and extensive character, have been justly
        considered as the cause of all the calamities which subsequently
        befell her.' _History of St. Andrews, by the Rev. C. J. Lyon,
        M.A., Presbyter of the Episcopal Church, St. Andrews_, Edinburgh,
        1843, vol. i. p. 54. Elsewhere (vol. ii. p. 400) the same divine
        mentions, that the usual punishment for sacrilege is a failure of
        male issue. 'The following examples, selected from the diocese of
        St. Andrews, according to its boundaries before the Reformation,
        will corroborate the general doctrine contended for throughout
        this work, that sacrilege has ever been punished in the present
        life, and _chiefly_ by the failure of male issue.' The italics are
        in the text. See also vol. i. p. 118. For the sake of the future
        historian of public opinion, it may be well to observe, that the
        work containing these sentiments is not a reprint of an older
        book, but was published for the first time in 1843, having
        apparently been just written.

  [208] 'The General Assemblie of the Kirk of Scotland, convenit at
        Edinburgh the 25 of December 1566, to the Nobilitie of this Realme
        that professes the Lord Jesus with them, and hes renouncit that
        Roman Antichryst, desyre constancie in faith, and the spirit of
        righteous judgement. Seeing that Sathan, be all our negligence,
        Right Honourable, hes so farre prevailit within this Realme within
        these late dayes, that we doe stand in extream danger, not only
        _to lose our temporall possessions_, but also to be depryvit of
        the glorious Evangell,' &c. _Keith's Church and State_, vol. iii.
        pp. 154, 155.

  [209] In 1566, in their piteous communication to the English bishops and
        clergy, they said 'The days are ill; iniquitie abounds; Christian
        charity, alas, is waxen cold.' _Acts and Proceedings of the
        General Assemblies of the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 87,
        Edinburgh, 1839, 4to.

  [210] 'I see twa partis freely gevin to the Devill, and the thrid maun be
        devided betwix God and the Devill: Weill, bear witnes to me, that
        this day I say it, or it be long the Devill shall have three
        partis of the thrid; and judge you then what Goddis portioun
        shallbe.' ... 'Who wold have thought, that when Joseph reulled
        Egypt, that his brethren should have travailled for vittallis, and
        have returned with empty seckis unto thair families? Men wold
        rather have thought that Pharao's pose, treasure, and garnallis
        should have bene diminished, or that the houshold of Jacob should
        stand in danger to sterve for hungar.' _Knox's History of the
        Reformation_, vol. ii. pp. 310, 311.

  [211] In May 1571, 'This Sonday, Mr. Craig teiched the 130 Psalme; and,
        in his sermond, he compared the steat of the Kirk of God in this
        tovne vnto the steat of the Maccabeis; wha were oppressed sumtymes
        by the Assyrianis and sumtymes by the Egiptianis.' _Bannatyne's
        Journal_, p. 150.

But neither persuasions nor threats[212] produced any effect on the
obdurate minds of the Scotch nobles. Indeed, their hearts, instead of
being softened, became harder. Even the small stipends, which were
allotted to the Protestant clergy, were not regularly paid, but were
mostly employed for other purposes.[213] When the ministers complained,
they were laughed at, and insulted, by the nobles, who, having gained
their own ends, thought that they could dispense with their former
allies.[214] The Earl of Morton, whose ability, as well as connexions,
made him the most powerful man in Scotland, was especially virulent
against them; and two of the preachers, who offended him, he put to
death, under circumstances of great cruelty.[215] The nobles, regarding
him as their chief, elected him Regent in 1572;[216] and, being now
possessed of supreme power, he employed it against the Church. He seized
upon all the benefices which became vacant, and retained their profits in
his own hands.[217] His hatred of the preachers passed all bounds. He
publicly declared, that there would be neither peace nor order in the
country, until some of them were hung.[218] He refused to sanction the
General Assemblies by his presence; he wished to do away with their
privileges, and even with their name; and with such determination did he
pursue his measures, that, in the opinion of the historian of the Scotch
Kirk, nothing but the special interference of the Deity could have
maintained its existing polity.[219]

  [212] The first instance I have observed of any thing like menace, is in
        1567, when 'the Assembly of the Church being convened at
        Edinburgh,' admonished all persons 'as well noblemen as barons,
        and those of the other Estates, to meet and give their personal
        appearance at Edinburgh on the 20th of July, for giving their
        advice, counsel, and concurrence in matters then to be proponed;
        especially for purging the realm of popery, the establishing of
        the policy of the Church, and _restoring the patrimony thereof to
        the just possessors_. Assuring those that should happen to absent
        themselves at the time, due and lawful advertisement being made,
        that they should be reputed hinderers of the good work intended,
        and as _dissimulate professors be esteemed unworthy of the
        fellowship of Christ's flock.' Spottiswoode's History of the
        Church of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 64. This evidently alludes to the
        possibility of excommunicating those who would not surrender to
        the Protestant preachers, the property stolen from the Catholic
        Church; and, in 1570, we find another step taken in the same
        direction. Under that year, the following passage occurs in _Acts
        and Proceedings of the General Assemblies of the Kirk of
        Scotland_, vol. i. p. 181. 'Q. If those that withold the duty of
        the Kirk, _wherethrough Ministers want their stipends_, may be
        excommunicate? A. All things beand done that the civill ordour
        requyres of them that withhaldis the duetie of the Kirk, quherby
        Ministers wants their stipends; _the Kirk may proceed to
        excommunication, for their contempt_.'

  [213] In 1526, 'the poore ministers, exhorters, and readers, compleaned
        at church assembleis, that neither were they able to live upon the
        stipends allowed, nor gett payment of that small portioun which
        was allowed.' _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. ii. p. 172.
        Compare _Acts of the General Assemblies_, 1839, 4to, vol. i. p.
        53; 'To requyre payment to ministers of there stipends for the
        tyme by past, according to the promise made.' This was in December
        1564. In December 1565, the General Assembly said (p. 71), 'that
        wher oft and divers tymes promise hes bein made to us, that our
        saids brethren, travelers and preachers in the Kirk of God, sould
        not be defraudit of their appointit stipends, neither zet in any
        wayes sould be molestit in their functioun; zet nottheless
        universallie they want ther stipends appointit for diverse tymes
        by past.' On the state of things in 1566, see 'The Supplication of
        the Ministers to the Queen,' in _Knox's History of the
        Reformation_, vol. ii. p. 529. See also, in the _Miscellany of the
        Spalding Club_, vol. iv. pp. 92-101, Aberdeen, 1849, 4to, a letter
        written by John Erskine in December 1571, especially p. 97; 'the
        gretest of the nobilitie haifing gretest rentis in possessione,
        and plaicet of God in maist hie honouris, ceasis nocht, maist
        wiolentlie blindit with awarice, to spoilye and draw to thame
        selfis the possessiones of the Kirk.'

  [214] 'The ministers were called proud knaves, and receaved manie
        injurious words from the lords, speciallie from Morton, who ruled
        all. He said, he sould lay their pride, and putt order to them.'
        _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. iii. pp. 137, 138. This
        was in 1571.

  [215] _Chambers' Annals of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 79, 80.

  [216] 'The nobilitie wnderwrittin convenit in Edinburgh, and chesit and
        electit James erle of Mortoun regent.' _A Diurnal of Occurrents_,
        p. 320.

  [217] In 1573, 'when any benefeces of Kirk vaikit, he keapit the proffet
        of thair rents sa lang in his awin hand, till he was urgit be the
        Kirk to mak donatioun tharof, and that was not gevin but proffeit
        for all that.' _The Historie and Life of King James the Sext_,
        edit. Edinburgh, 1825, 4to, p. 147. Even in 1570, when Lennox was
        regent, 'the Earle of Mortoun was the chiefe manager of every
        thing under him;' and was 'master of the church rents,' and made
        'gifts of them to the nobility.' _Wodrow's Collections upon the
        Lives of the Reformers of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. part i.
        pp. 27, 126, Glasgow, 1834, 4to.

  [218] 'During all these Assembleis and earnest endeavoures of the
        brethrein, the regent was often required to give his presence to
        the Assemblie, and further the caus of God. He not onlie refused,
        but threatned some of the most zealous with hanging, alledging,
        that otherwise there could be no peace nor order in the countrie.'
        _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. iii. pp. 393, 394. 'Uses
        grait thretning against the maist zelus breithring, schoring to
        hang of thame, utherwayes ther could be na peace nor ordour in the
        countrey.' _The Autobiography and Diary of James Melvill_, edited
        by R. Pitcairn, Edinburgh, 1842, pp. 59, 60.

  [219] 'He mislyked the Generall Assembleis, and would have had the name
        changed, that he might take away the force and priviledge thereof;
        and no questioun he had stayed the work of policie that was
        presentlie in hands, if God had not stirred up a factioun against
        him.' _Calderwood's History of the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. iii. p.
        396. See also _The Autobiography of James Melvill_, p. 61.

The rupture between Church and State was now complete. It remained to be
seen, which was the stronger side. Every year, the clergy became more
democratic; and, after the death of Knox, in 1572, they ventured upon a
course which even he would hardly have recommended, and which, during the
earlier period of the Reformation, would have been impracticable.[220]
But, by this time, they had secured the support of the people; and the
treatment they were receiving from the government, and from the nobles,
embittered their minds, and drove them into desperate counsels. While
their plans were yet immature, and while the future was looming darkly
before them, a new man arose, who was well qualified to be their chief,
and who at once stepped into the place which the death of Knox left
vacant. This was Andrew Melville, who, by his great ability, his boldness
of character, and his fertility of resource, was admirably suited to be
the leader of the Scottish Church in that arduous struggle in which it
was about to embark.[221]

  [220] 'During the two years following the death of Knox, each day was
        ripening the more determined opposition of the Church. The breach
        between the clergy with the great body of the people, and the
        government or higher nobility, was widening rapidly.' _Argyll's
        Presbytery Examined_, p. 70.

  [221] 'Next to her Reformer, who, under God, emancipated her from the
        degrading shackles of papal superstition and tyranny, I know no
        individual from whom Scotland has received such important
        services, or to whom she continues to owe so deep a debt of
        national respect and gratitude, as Andrew Melville.' _M'Crie's
        Life of Andrew Melville_, vol. ii. p. 473, Edinburgh, 1819. His
        nephew, himself a considerable person, says, 'Scotland receavit
        never a graitter benefit at the hands of God nor this man.' _The
        Autobiography of James Melvill_, p. 38.

In 1574, Melville, having completed his education abroad, arrived in
Scotland.[222] He quickly rallied round him the choicest spirits in the
Church; and, under his auspices, a struggle began with the civil power,
which continued, with many fluctuations, until it culminated, sixty years
later, in open rebellion against Charles I. To narrate all the details of
the contest, would be inconsistent with the plan of this Introduction;
and, notwithstanding the extreme interest of the events which now ensued,
the greater part of them must be omitted; but I will endeavour to
indicate the general march, and to put the reader in possession of such
facts as are most characteristic of the age in which they occurred.

  [222] He left Scotland in 1564, at the age of nineteen, and returned 'in
        the beginning of July 1574, after an absence of ten years from his
        native country.' _M'Crie's Life of Andrew Melville_, vol. i. pp.
        17, 57. See also _Scot's Apologetical Narration of the State of
        the Kirk of Scotland_, edit. Wodrow Society, p. 34; and _Howie's
        Biographia Scoticana_, p. 111, Glasgow, 1781.

Melville had not been in Scotland many months, before he began his
opposition, at first by secret intrigues, afterwards with open and avowed
hostility.[223] In the time of Knox, episcopacy had been recognized as
part of the Protestant Church, and had received the sanction of the
leading Reformers.[224] But that institution did not harmonize with the
democratic spirit which was now growing up. The difference of ranks
between the bishops and the inferior clergy was unpleasant, and the
ministers determined to put an end to it.[225] In 1575, one of them,
named John Dury, was instigated, by Melville, to bring the subject before
the General Assembly at Edinburgh.[226] After he had spoken, Melville
also expressed himself against episcopacy; but, not being yet sure of the
temper of the audience, his first proceedings were somewhat cautious.
Such hesitation was, however, hardly necessary; for, owing to the schism
between the Church and the upper classes, the ministers were becoming the
eager enemies of those maxims of obedience, and of subordination, which
they would have upheld, had the higher ranks been on their side. As it
was, the clergy were only favoured by the people; they, therefore, sought
to organize a system of equality, and were ripe for the bold measures
proposed by Melville and his followers. This was clearly shown, by the
rapidity of the subsequent movement. In 1575, the first attack was made
in the General Assembly at Edinburgh. In April 1578, another General
Assembly resolved, that, for the future, bishops should be called by
their own names, and not by their titles.[227] The same body also
declared, that no see should be filled up, until the next Assembly.[228]
Two months afterwards, it was announced that this arrangement was to be
perpetual, and that no new bishop should ever be made.[229] And, in 1580,
the Assembly of the Church at Dundee, pulling the whole fabric to the
ground, unanimously resolved that the office of bishop was a mere human
invention; that it was unlawful; that it must be immediately done away
with; and that every bishop should at once resign his office, or be
excommunicated if he refuse to do so.[230]

  [223] He appears to have first set to work in November 1574. See
        _Stephen's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 261,
        London, 1848.

  [224] 'The compilers of the Book of Discipline' (_i.e._ the First Book,
        in 1560) 'were distinguished by prelatical principles to the end
        of their days.' ... 'That Knox himself was no enemy to prelacy,
        considered as an ancient and apostolical institution, is rendered
        clear by his "Exhortation to England for the speedy embracing of
        Christ's Gospel."' _Russell's History of the Church in Scotland_,
        1834, vol. i. p. 240. 'The associates of Knox, it is obvious, were
        not Presbyterians, and had no intention of setting up a system of
        parity among the ministers of their new establishment.' p. 243.
        See also p. 332. Even in 1572, the year of Knox's death, I find it
        stated that 'the whole Diocie of Sanct Andrews is decerned be the
        Assembly to pertain to the Bishop of the same.' _Acts and
        Proceedings of the General Assemblies of the Kirk of Scotland_,
        vol. i. p. 264, 4to. 1839. The Scotch Presbyterians have dealt
        very unfairly with this part of the history of their Church.

  [225] Some little time after this, David Fergusson, who died in 1598,
        and was minister at Dunfermline, said very frankly to James VI.,
        'Yes, Sir, ye may have Bishops here, but _ye must remember to make
        us all equall_; make us all Bishops, els will ye never content
        us.' _Row's History of the Kirk of Scotland from 1558 to 1637_,
        edit. Wodrow Society, p. 418. Compare _Calderwood's History of the
        Kirk_, vol. iv. p. 214: in 1584 'these monstruous titles of
        superioritie.' In 1586, 'that tyrannicall supremacie of bishops
        and archbishops over ministers.' p. 604.

  [226] 'He stirred up John Dury, one of the ministers of Edinburgh, in an
        Assembly which was then convened, to propound a question touching
        the lawfulness of the episcopal function, and the authority of
        chapters in their election. He himself, as though he had not been
        acquainted with the motion, after he had commended the speaker's
        zeal, and seconded the purpose with a long discourse of the
        flourishing estate of the church of Geneva, and the opinions of
        Calvin and Theodore Beza concerning church government, came to
        affirm, "That none ought to be esteemed office-bearers in the
        Church whose titles were not found in the book of God. And, for
        the title of bishops, albeit the same was found in Scripture, yet
        was it not to be taken in the sense that the common sort did
        conceive, there being no superiority allowed by Christ amongst
        ministers,"' &c. _Spottiswoode's History of the Church of
        Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 200. See also _Acts of the General
        Assemblies_, vol. i. p. 331, where it appears that six bishops
        were present on this memorable occasion. The question raised was,
        'Whither if the Bischops, as they are now in the Kirk of Scotland,
        hes thair function of the word of God or not, or if the Chapiter
        appointit for creating of them aucht to be tollerated in this
        reformed Kirk.' p. 340.

  [227] 'It was ordained, That Bischops and all vthers bearand
        Ecclesiasticall functioun, be callit bethair awin names, or
        Brethren, in tyme comeing.' _Acts of the General Assemblies of the
        Kirk of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 404.

  [228] 'Therfor the Kirk hes concludit, That no Bischops salbe electit or
        made heirafter, befor the nixt Generall Assemblie.' _Ibid._
        vol. ii. p. 408.

  [229] 'Anent the Act made in the last Assemblie, the 28 of Aprile 1578,
        concerning the electioun of Bischops, suspendit quhill this
        present Assemblie, and the farther ordour reservit thereto: The
        General Assemblie, all in ane voyce, hes concludit, That the said
        act salbe extendit for all tymes to come, ay and quhill the
        corruptioun of the Estate of Bischops be alluterlie tane away.'
        _Ibid._ vol. ii. p. 413.

  [230] 'Forsameikle as the office of a Bischop, as it is now vsit, and
        commounly takin within this realme, hes no sure warrand,
        auctoritie, nor good ground out of the (Book and) Scriptures of
        God; but is brocht in by the folie and corruptions of (men's)
        invention, to the great overthrow of the Kirk of God: The haill
        Assemblie of the Kirk, in ane voyce, after libertie givin to all
        men to reason in the matter, _none opponing themselves in
        defending the said pretendit office_, Finds and declares the
        samein pretendit office, vseit and termeit, as is above said,
        vnlaufull in the selfe, as haveand neither fundament, ground nor
        warrant within the word of God: and ordaines, that all sick
        persons as bruiks, or sall bruik heirafter the said office, salbe
        chargeit simpliciter to demitt, quyt and leave of the samein, as
        ane office quhervnto they are not callit be God; and siclyke to
        desist and cease from all preaching, ministration of the
        sacraments, or vsing any way the office of pastors, quhill they
        receive _de novo_ admission from the Generall Assemblie, vnder the
        paine of excommunicatioun to be denuncit agains them; quherin if
        they be found dissobedient, or contraveine this act in any point,
        the sentence of excommunicatioun, after dew admonitions, to be
        execute agains them.' _Acts of the General Assemblies_, vol. ii.
        p. 453.

The minister and the people had now done their work, and, so far as they
were concerned, had done it well.[231] But the same circumstances which
made them desire equality, made the upper classes desire inequality.[232]
A collision, therefore, was inevitable, and was hastened by this bold
proceeding of the Church. Indeed, the preachers, supported by the people,
rather courted a contest, than avoided it. They used the most
inflammatory language against episcopacy; and, shortly before abolishing
it, they completed, and presented to Parliament, the Second Book of
Discipline, in which they flatly contradicted what they had asserted in
their First Book of Discipline.[233] For this, they are often taunted
with inconsistency.[234] But the charge is unjust. They were perfectly
consistent; and they merely changed their maxims, that they might
preserve their principles. Like every corporation, which has ever
existed, whether spiritual or temporal, their supreme and paramount
principle was to maintain their own power. Whether or not this is a good
principle, is another matter; but all history proves that it is an
universal one. And when the leaders of the Scotch Church found that it
was at stake, and that the question at issue was, who should possess
authority, they, with perfect consistency, abandoned opinions that they
had formerly held, because they now perceived that those opinions were
unfavourable to their existence as an independent body.

  [231] As Calderwood triumphantly says, 'the office of bishops was
        damned.' _History of the Kirk_, vol. iii. p. 469. 'Their whole
        estat, both the spirituall and civill part, was damned.' p. 526.
        James Melville (_Autobiography_, p. 52) says that, in consequence
        of this achievement, his uncle Andrew 'gatt the nam of [Greek:
        episkopomastix], _Episcoporum exactor_, the flinger out of

  [232] Tytler (_History of Scotland_, vol. vi. p. 302) observes that,
        while 'the great body of the burghers, and middle and lower
        classes of the people,' were Presbyterians, 'a large proportion of
        the nobility supported episcopacy.' Instead of 'a large
        proportion,' he would not have been far wrong, if he had said
        'all.' Indeed, 'Melville himself says the whole peerage was
        against him.' _Stephen's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol.
        i. p. 269. Forbes ascribes the aristocratic movement against
        presbytery to 'godles atheists,' who insisted 'that there could be
        nothing so contrair to the nature of a monarchie,' &c., 'than that
        paritie of authoritie in pastours.' _Forbes_, _Certaine Records
        touching the Estate of the Kirk_, p. 349, edit. Wodrow Society.
        See also p. 355. 'That Democratie (as they called it) whilk
        allwayes behoved to be full of sedition and troubble to ane
        Aristocratie, and so in end to a Monarchie.' The reader will
        observe this important change in the attitude of classes in
        Scotland. Formerly, the clergy had been the allies of the crown
        against the nobles. Now, the nobles allied themselves with the
        crown against the clergy. The clergy, in self-defence, had to ally
        themselves with the people.

  [233] On the difference between the two productions, there are some
        remarks worth looking at, in _Argyll's Presbytery Examined_, 1848,
        pp. 38-43. But this writer, though much freer from prejudice than
        most Presbyterian authors, is unwilling to admit how completely
        the Second Book of Discipline contradicts the First.

  [234] By the Scotch episcopalians.

When the First Book of Discipline appeared, in 1560, the government was
in the hands of the nobles, who had just fought on the side of the
Protestant preachers, and were ready to fight again on their side. When
the Second Book of Discipline appeared, in 1578, the government was still
held by the nobles; but those ambitious men had now thrown off the mask,
and, having effected their purpose in destroying the old hierarchy, had
actually turned round, and attacked the new one. The circumstances having
changed, the Church changed with them; but in the change there was
nothing inconsistent. On the contrary, it would have been the height of
inconsistency for the ministers to have retained their former notions of
obedience and of subordination; and it was perfectly natural that, at
this crisis, they should advocate the democratic idea of equality, just
as before they had advanced the aristocratic idea of inequality.

Hence it was, that, in their First Book of Discipline, they established a
regularly ascending hierarchy, according to which the general clergy owed
obedience to their ecclesiastical superiors, to whom the name of
superintendents was given.[235] But, in the Second Book of Discipline,
every vestige of this was swept away; and it was laid down in the
broadest terms, that all the preachers being fellow-labourers, all were
equal in power; that none had authority over others; and that, to claim
such authority, or to assert preëminence, was a contrivance of man, not
to be permitted in a divinely constituted Church.[236]

  [235] See the _First Book of Discipline_, reprinted in the first volume
        of _A Compendium of the Laws of the Church of Scotland_, 2d edit.,
        Edinburgh, 1837. The superintendents were 'to set, order, and
        appoint ministers,' p. 61; and it would seem (p. 88) that no
        minister could be deposed without the consent of his
        superintendent; but this could hardly be intended to interfere
        with the supreme authority of the General Assembly. See also the
        summary, p. 114, where it is said of the superintendents, that 'in
        thair visitatioun thei sal not onlie preiche, but als examine the
        doctrine, life, diligence, and behavior of the ministeris,
        reideris, elderis, and deaconis.' According to Spottiswoode
        (_History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 167), 'the
        superintendents held their office during life, and their power was
        episcopal; for they did elect and ordain ministers, they presided
        in synods, and directed all church censures, neither was any
        excommunication pronounced without their warrant.' See further, on
        their authority, _Knox's History of the Reformation_, vol. ii. p.
        161. 'That punyschment suld be appointed for suche as dissobeyid
        or contemned the superintendentes in thair functioun.' This was in
        1561; and, in 1562, 'It was ordained, that if ministers be
        disobedient to superintendents in anything belonging to
        edification, they must be subject to correction.' _Acts of the
        General Assemblies of the Kirk_, vol. i. p. 14. Compare p. 131:
        'sick things as superintendents may and aught decyde in their
        synodall conventiouns.'

  [236] 'For albeit the Kirk of God be rewlit and governit be Jesus Christ,
        who is the onlie King, hie Priest, and Heid thereof, yit he useis
        the ministry of men, as the most necessar middis for this
        purpose.' ... 'And to take away all occasion of tyrannie, he
        willis that they sould rewl with mutuall consent of brether and
        _equality of power_, every one according to thair functiones.'
        _Second Book of Discipline_, in _A Compendium of the Laws of the
        Church of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 126, 127. 'As to Bischops, if the
        name [Greek: episkopos] be properly taken, _they ar all ane with
        the ministers_, as befoir was declairit. For it is _not a name of
        superioritie and lordschip_, bot of office and watching.' p. 142.
        To understand the full meaning of this, it should be mentioned,
        that the superintendents, established by the Kirk in 1560, not
        unfrequently assumed the title of 'Lordship,' as an ornament to
        the extensive powers conferred upon them. See, for instance, the
        notes to _Wodrow's Collections upon the Lives of the Reformers of
        the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. part ii. p. 461. But, in the
        Second Book of Discipline, in 1578, the superintendents are, if I
        rightly remember, not even once named.

The government, as may be supposed, took a very different view. Such
doctrines were deemed, by the upper classes, to be anti-social, and to be
subversive of all order.[237] So far from sanctioning them, they
resolved, if possible, to overthrow them; and, the year after the General
Assembly had abolished episcopacy, it was determined that, upon that very
point, a trial of strength should be made between the two parties.

  [237] Just as in England, we find that the upper classes are mostly
        Episcopalians; their minds being influenced, often unconsciously,
        by the, to them, pleasing spectacle of an inequality of rank,
        which is conventional, and does not depend upon ability. On the
        other hand, the strength of the Dissenters lies among the middle
        and lower classes, where energy and intellect are held in higher
        respect, and where a contempt naturally arises for a system,
        which, at the mere will of the sovereign or minister of the day,
        concedes titles and wealth to persons whom nature did not intend
        for greatness, but who, to the surprise of their contemporaries,
        have greatness thrust upon them. On this difference of opinion in
        Scotland, corresponding to the difference of social position, see
        the remarks on the seventeenth century, in _Hume's Commentaries on
        the Law of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 544, Edinburgh, 1797, 4to.

In 1581, Robert Montgomery was appointed archbishop of Glasgow. The
ministers who composed the chapter of Glasgow refused to elect him;
whereupon the Privy Council declared that the King, by virtue of his
prerogative, had the right of nomination.[238] All was now confusion and
uproar. The General Assembly forbad the archbishop to enter
Glasgow.[239] He refused to obey their order, and threw himself upon the
support of the Duke of Lennox, who had obtained the appointment for him,
and to whom he, in return, had surrendered nearly all the revenues of the
see, reserving for himself only a small stipend.[240] This was a custom
which had grown up within the last few years, and was one of many
contrivances by which the nobles plundered the Church of her

  [238] Record of Privy Council, in _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. i.
        p. 267. 'The brethrein of Glasgow were charged, under paine of
        horning, to admitt Mr. Robert Montgomrie.' _Calderwood's History
        of the Kirk_, vol. iii. p. 596.

  [239] 'Charges the said Mr. Robert to continue in the ministrie of the
        Kirk of Striveling,' &c. _Acts of the General Assemblies_, vol.
        ii. p. 547. This was in October 1581; the Record of the Privy
        Council was in April 1582. Moysie, who was a contemporary, says
        that, in March 1581, 2, not only the dean and chapter, but all the
        clergy (the 'haill ministrie') declared from the pulpit that
        Montgomery's appointment 'had the warrand of the deuill and not of
        the word of God, bot wes damnit thairby.' _Moysie's Memoirs_,
        Edinburgh, 1830, 4to, p. 36.

  [240] 'The title whereof the said duke had procured to him, that he,
        having the name of bishop, and eight hundred merks money for his
        living and sustentatioun, the whole rents, and other duteis of the
        said benefice, might come to the duke's utilitie and behove.'
        _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. iv. p. 111. See also p.

  [241] _Scot's Apologetical Narration of the State of the Kirk_, pp. 24,
        25. _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. iii. p. 302.
        _Wodrow's Collections upon the Lives of the Reformers_, vol. i.
        part i. p. 206. _Lyon's History of St. Andrews_, vol. i. p. 379.
        _Gibson's History of Glasgow_, p. 59. _Hume's History of the House
        of Douglas_, vol. ii. pp. 216, 217. _Chalmers' Caledonia_,
        vol. iii. p. 624.

This, however, was not the question now at issue.[242] The point to be
decided was one, not of revenue, but of power. For the clergy knew full
well, that if they established their power, the revenue would quickly
follow. They, therefore, adopted the most energetic proceedings. In April
1582, the General Assembly met at St. Andrews, and appointed Melville as
Moderator.[243] The government, fearing the worst, ordered the members,
on pain of rebellion, to take no steps respecting the archbishopric.[244]
But the representatives of the Church were undaunted. They summoned
Montgomery before them; they ratified the sentence by which he had been
suspended from the ministry; and they declared that he had incurred the
penalties of despotism and of excommunication.[245]

  [242] 'But the Church passing this point' (_i.e._ the simony) 'made
        quarrel to him for accepting the bishopric.' _Spottiswoode's
        History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 282.

  [243] _Acts of the General Assemblies of the Kirk_, vol. ii. p. 548.

  [244] 'A messenger-at-arms entered the house, and charged the moderator
        and members of the assembly, on the pain of rebellion, to desist
        from the process.' _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. i. p. 268.

  [245] 'The Assemblie and brether present, after voteing in the said
        matter, depryvit the said Mr. Robert from all functioun of the
        Ministrie in the Kirk of God, dureing the will of the Kirk of God;
        and farther, descernit the fearefull sentence of excommunicatioun
        to be pronuncit against him in the face of the haill Assemblie, be
        the voyce and mouth of the Moderatour present; to the effect,
        that, _his proud flesh being cast into the hands of Satan_, he may
        be win againe, if it be possible, to God; and the said sentence
        (to) be intimat be every particular minister, at his awin
        particular kirk, solemnelie in the first sermoun to be made be
        them, after thair returning.' _Acts of the General Assemblies of
        the Kirk_, vol. ii. p. 562.

A sentence of excommunication was, in those days, so ruinous, that
Montgomery was struck with terror at the prospect before him. To avoid
the consequences, he appeared before the Assembly, and solemnly promised
that he would make no further attempt to possess himself of the
archbishopric.[246] By doing this, he probably saved his life; for the
people, siding with their clergy, were ripe for mischief, and were
determined, at all hazards, to maintain what they considered to be the
rights of the Church, in opposition to the encroachments of the State.

  [246] _Ibid._, vol. ii. p. 565. Calderwood (_History of the Kirk_,
        vol. iii. p. 604) says, 'After long reluctatioun, at lenth he

The government, on the other hand, was equally resolute.[247] The Privy
Council called several of the ministers before them; and Dury, one of the
most active, they banished from Edinburgh.[248] Measures still more
violent were about to be taken, when they were interrupted by one of
those singular events which not unfrequently occurred in Scotland, and
which strikingly evince the inherent weakness of the Crown,
notwithstanding the inordinate pretensions it commonly assumed.

  [247] M'Crie (_Life of Melville_, vol. i. p. 274) says, 'In all these
        contendings, the ministers had no countenance or support from any
        of the nobility.' It would have been strange if they had, seeing
        that the whole movement was essentially democratic.

  [248] Melville's _Autobiography_, p. 129. _Calderwood's History of the
        Kirk_, vol. iii. p. 620. _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. i.
        p. 270.

This was the Raid of Ruthven, which happened in 1582, and in consequence
of which the person of James VI. was held in durance for ten months.[249]
The clergy, true to the policy which now governed them, loudly approved
of the captivity of the king, and pronounced it to be a godly act.[250]
Dury, who had been driven from his pulpit, was brought back to the
capital in triumph;[251] and the General Assembly, meeting at Edinburgh,
ordered that the imprisonment of James should be justified by every
minister to his own congregation.[252]

  [249] He was seized in August 1582, and was let loose again in June 1583.
        _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. vi. pp. 321, 360. It is a
        pity that this valuable, and really able, work should be so
        superficial in regard to the ecclesiastical affairs of Scotland.
        Mr. Tytler appears not to have studied at all the proceedings of
        the presbyteries, or even of the General Assemblies; neither does
        he display any acquaintance with the theological literature of his
        country. And yet, from the year 1560 to about 1700, these sources
        disclose more of the genuine history of the Scotch people than all
        other sources put together.

  [250] 'The pulpit resounded with applauses of the godly deed.' _Arnot's
        History of Edinburgh_, p. 37.

  [251] 'As he is comming from Leith to Edinburgh, upon Tuisday the 4th of
        September, there mett him at the Gallow Greene two hundreth men of
        the inhabitants of Edinburgh. Their number still increased, till
        he came within the Neather Bow. There they beganne to sing the 124
        Psalme, "Now may Israel say," &c, and sang in foure parts, knowne
        to the most part of the people. They came up the street till they
        came to the Great Kirk, singing thus all the way, to the number of
        two thowsand. They were muche moved themselves, and so were all
        the beholders. The duke was astonished, and more affrayed at that
        sight than at anie thing that ever he had seene before in
        Scotland, and rave his beard for anger.' _Calderwood's History of
        the Kirk_, vol. iii. pp. 646, 647.

  [252] _Acts of the General Assemblies_, vol. ii. pp. 595, 596. This was
        ordered by the General Assembly which met at Edinburgh on the 9th
        of October 1582, p. 585. See also _Watson's Historicall
        Collections of Ecclesiastick Affairs in Scotland_, p. 192,
        'requiring the ministers in all their churches to commend it unto
        the people.'

In 1583, the king recovered his liberty, and the struggle became more
deadly than ever; the passions of both parties being exasperated by the
injuries each had inflicted on the other. The Ruthven conspiracy, having
been declared treason, as it undoubtedly was, Dury preached in its
favour, and openly defended it; and although, under the influence of
momentary fear, he afterwards withdrew what he had said,[253] it was
evident, from other circumstances, that his feelings were shared by his
brethren.[254] A number of them being summoned before the king for their
seditious language, bad him take heed what he was about, and reminded him
that no occupant of the throne had ever prospered after the ministers had
begun to threaten him.[255] Melville, who exercised immense influence
over both clergy and people, bearded the king to his face, refused to
account for what he had delivered in the pulpit, and told James that he
perverted the laws both of God and of man.[256] Simpson likened him to
Cain, and warned him to beware of the wrath of God.[257] Indeed, the
spirit now displayed by the Church was so implacable, that it seemed to
delight in venting itself in the most repulsive manner. In 1585, a
clergyman, named Gibson, in a sermon which he preached in Edinburgh,
denounced against the king the curse of Jeroboam, that he should die
childless, and that his race should end with him.[258] The year after
this happened, James, finding that Elizabeth was evidently determined to
take his mother's life, bethought him of what was valued in that age as
an unfailing resource, and desired the clergy to offer up prayers on
behalf of Mary. This, they almost unanimously refused.[259] And not only
did they abstain from supplication themselves, but they resolved that no
one else should do what they had declined. The archbishop of Saint
Andrews being about to officiate before the king, they induced a certain
John Cowper to station himself in the pulpit beforehand, so as to exclude
the prelate. Nor was it until the captain of the guard threatened to pull
Cowper from the place he had usurped, that the service could go on, and
the king be allowed to hear his own mother prayed for, in this sad crisis
of her fate, when it was still uncertain whether she would be publicly
executed, or whether, as was more generally believed, she would be
secretly poisoned.[260]

  [253] _Spottiswoode's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. ii.
        p. 308.

  [254] James, after his escape, 'convocat all his peaceabill Prelatis and
        Nobles, and thair he notefeit unto thayme the greif that he
        consavit of his unlaughfull detentioun the yeir bygayne, and
        tharefore desyrit thame to acknawlege the same; and thay be thair
        generall voittis decernit the rayd of Ruthven to be manifest
        treasoun. The Ministers on the uther part, perswadit the people
        that it was a godly fact, and that whasoever wald not allow
        thareof in his hart, was not worthie to be estemit a Christien.'
        _The Historie of King James the Sext_, p. 202, published by the
        Bannatyne Club, Edinburgh, 1825, 4to.

  [255] 'Disregard not our threatening; for there was never one yet in this
        realm, in the place where your grace is, who prospered after the
        ministers began to threaten him.' _Tytler's History of Scotland_,
        vol. vi. p. 364. See also, in _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_,
        vol. v. pp. 540, 541, a letter from one of the clergy in Fife,
        addressed to the king, in 1597. 'And now, Sir, lett me be free
        with you in writting other men's reports, and that of the wisest
        politicians. They say, our bygane historeis report, and experience
        teacheth, that _raro et fere nunquam_ has a king and a prince
        continued long together in this realme; for _Filius ante diem
        patrios inquirit in annos_. And they say, Sir, farther, that
        whatsoever they were of your Majestie's predecessors in
        governement that oppouned themselves directlie or indirectlie to
        God's ordinance in his Kirk, it has beene their wracke and
        subversioun in the end. I might herein be more particular; but I
        leave it to your Majestie's owne grave and modest consideratioun,
        for it concerneth you most neere.'

  [256] 'Saying, "He perverted the laws both of God and man."'
        _Spottiswoode's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. ii.
        p. 309. Also _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. vi. p. 371.

  [257] 'Mr. Patrick Simson, preaching before the king upon Gen. iv. 9,
        "The Lord said to Cain, Where is Abel, thy brother?" said to the
        king, before the congregation, "Sir, I assure you, in God's name,
        the Lord will ask at you where is the Earl of Moray, your
        brother?" The king replyed, before all the congregation, "Mr.
        Patrik, my chalmer doore wes never steeked upon you: ye might have
        told me anything ye thought in secret." He replyed, "Sir, the
        scandall is publict."' _Row's History of the Kirk_, p. 144.
        'Having occasion, _anno_ 1593, to preach before the king, he
        publicly exhorted him to beware that he drew not the wrath of God
        upon himself in patronizing a manifest breach of divine laws.'
        _Howie's Biographia Scoticana_, p. 120.

  [258] 'Saying, "That Captain James, with his lady Jesabel, and William
        Stewart (meaning the colonel), were taken to be the persecutors of
        the Church; but that now it was seen to be the king himself,
        against whom he denounced the curse that fell on Jeroboam--that he
        would die childless, and be the last of his race."'
        _Spottiswoode's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. ii.
        p. 335.

  [259] 'The king, perceiving by all these letters, that the death of his
        mother was determined, called back his ambassadors, and at home
        gave order to the ministers to remember her in their public
        prayers, which they denied to do.' ... 'Upon their denial, charges
        were directed to command all bishops, ministers, and other
        office-bearers in the Church to make mention of her distress in
        their public prayers, and commend her to God in the form
        appointed. But of all the number only Mr. David Lindsay at Leith
        and the king's own ministers gave obedience.' _Spottiswoode's
        History of the Church_, vol. ii. pp. 355, 356. 'They, with only
        one exception, refused to comply.' _Russell's History of the
        Church in Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 23. Compare _Watson's Historicall
        Collections of Ecclesiastick Affairs in Scotland_, p. 208; and
        _Historie of James the Sext_, p. 225.

  [260] 'They stirred up Mr. John Cowper, a young man not entered as yet in
        the function, to take the pulpit before the time, and exclude the
        bishop. The king coming at the hour appointed, and seeing him in
        the place, called to him from his seat, and said, "Mr. John, that
        place is destined for another; yet since you are there, if you
        will obey the charge that is given, and remember my mother in your
        prayers, you shall go on." He replying, "that he would do as the
        Spirit of God should direct him," was commanded to leave the
        place: and making as though he would stay, the captain of the
        guard went to pull him out; whereupon he burst forth in these
        speeches: "This day shall be a witness against the king in the
        great day of the Lord:" and then denouncing a wo to the
        inhabitants of Edinburgh, he went down, and the bishop of St.
        Andrews entering the pulpit did perform the duty required.'
        _Spottiswoode's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. ii. p.
        356. 'The Kingis Majestie, to testifie his earnest and naturall
        affection to his mother, causit pray for hir oppinly efter him
        selff; quhairvpone arrose a great dissensioun betuix sum of the
        ministrie and his Majestie, namely the ministrie of Edinburgh.
        Quhairvpone the king appoynted Patrik, archbischop of St. Androis
        to teache, bot he wes preuented be Mr. John Covpar minister, quho
        come befoir and filled the pulpit. And as the said Mr. John wes
        beginnand the prayer, the Kingis Majestie commandit him to stay:
        so as Mr. John raschit michtely vpone the pulpit, saying, "This
        day sail bear witnes aganis yow in the day of the lord: woe be to
        ye Edinburgh, for the last of xi plaiges salbe the worst."'
        _Moysie's Memoirs_, p. 59.

In 1594, John Ross stated in the pulpit, that the advisers of the king
were all traitors, and that the king himself was likewise a traitor. He
was also a rebel and a reprobate. That such should be the case, was not
surprising, considering the parentage of James. For, his mother was a
Guise, and a persecutor of the saints. He avoided open persecution, and
spoke them fair; but his deeds did not correspond to his words; and, so
great was his dissimulation, that he was the most arrant hypocrite then
living in Scotland.[261]

  [261] See _The Historie of King James the Sext_, pp. 316-318, from 'a
        just copie of his sermon' supplied by Ross himself. 'His text was
        upon the 6 chapter of the Prophet Jeremias, verse 28. "Brethren,
        we have manie, and almaist innumerable enormiteis in this cuntrie
        to be lamentit, as the misgovernement of our king be sinistrous
        counsall of sum particular men. They ar all rebellious traitors,
        evin the king the maist singular person, and particularlie everie
        estait of the land." ... "Our king in sindrie poyntis hes bene
        rebellious aganis the Majestie of God." ... "To this howre, we gat
        never gude of the Guysien blude, for Queyne Marie his mother was
        an oppin persecutor of the sanctis of God, and althoght the king
        be not an oppin persecutor, we have had many of his fayre wordis,
        wharein he is myghtie aneugh, bot for his gude deiddis, I commend
        me to thayme." ... "Admit, that our king be a Christien king, yit
        but amen dement, he is a reprobat king. Of all the men in this
        nation, the king himself is the maist fynest, and maist
        dissembling hypocreit."' A very short notice of this sermon is
        given by Calderwood (_History of the Kirk_, vol. v. p. 299), who
        probably had not seen the original notes.

In 1596, David Black, one of the most influential of the Protestant
ministers, delivered a sermon, which made much noise. He said, in his
discourse, that all kings were children of the devil; but that in
Scotland the head of the court was Satan himself. The members of the
council, he added, were cormorants, and the lords of the session
miscreants. The nobility had degenerated: they were godless; they were
dissemblers; they were the enemies of the Church. As to the queen of
England, she was nothing but an atheist. And as to the queen of Scotland,
all he would say was, that they might pray for her if they list, and
because it was the fashion to do so; but that there was no reason for
it, inasmuch as no good would ever come from her to them.[262]

  [262] The accusation, which was fully proved, was, that 'he had
        publictlie sayd in pulpit, that the papist erles wes come home be
        the kingis knavledge and consent, quhairin his Hienes treacherie
        wes detectit; that all kingis war deuilis and come of deuilis;
        that the deuill wes the head of the court and in the court; that
        he pray it for the Queine of Scotland for the faschione, because
        he saw na appearance of guid in hir tyme,' _Moysie's Memoirs_, p.
        128. 'Having been heard to affirm, that the popish lords had
        returned into the country by the king's permission, and that
        thereby the king had discovered the "treacherous hypocrisy of his
        heart" that "all kings were the devil's bairns, and that the devil
        was in the court, and the guiders of it." He was proved to have
        used in his prayer these indecent words, when speaking of the
        queen, "We must pray for her for fashion's sake; but we might as
        well not, for she will never do us any good," He called the queen
        of England an atheist, and the Lords of Session _bribers_; and
        said that the nobility at large "were degenerate, godless,
        dissemblers, and enemies to the church."' _Grierson's History of
        Saint Andrews_, p. 30, Cupar, 1838. Among the charges against him
        were, 'Fourthly, that he had called the queen of England an
        atheist. Fifthly, that he had discussed a suspension granted by
        the lords of session in pulpit, and called them miscreants and
        bribers. Sixthly, that, speaking of the nobility, he said they
        were "degenerated, godless, dissemblers, and enemies to the
        church." Likewise, speaking of the council, that he had called
        them "holiglasses, cormorants, and men of no religion."'
        _Spottiswoode's History of the Church_, vol. iii. p. 21.

For preaching this sermon, Black was summoned by the privy-council. He
refused to attend, because it was for a spiritual tribunal, and not for a
temporal one, to take notice of what was uttered in the pulpit. The
Church, to be sure, he would obey; but, having received his message from
God, he was bound to deliver it, and it would be a dereliction of duty,
if he were to allow the civil power to judge such matters.[263] The
king, greatly enraged, ordered Black to be cast into prison; and it is
difficult to see what other course was open to him; though it was certain
that neither this, nor any measure he could adopt, would tame the
indomitable spirit of the Scotch Church.[264]

  [263] See the original papers on 'The Declinatour of the King and
        Counsel's Judicatour in Maters Spirituall, namelie in Preaching of
        the Word,' in _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. v. pp.
        457-459, 475-480. Tytler (_History of Scotland_, vol. vii. pp.
        326-332) has given extracts from them, and made some remarks on
        their obvious tendency. See also on the Declinature of
        Jurisdiction claimed by the Scotch Church, _Hallam's
        Constitutional History_, 4th edit. 1842, vol. ii. p. 461; and
        _Mackenzie's Laws and Customs of Scotland in Matters Criminal_,
        Edinburgh, 1699, folio, pp. 181, 182.

  [264] M'Crie, in his _Life of Melville_, vol. ii. pp. 70 seq., has given
        an account of the punishment of Black, but, as usual, conceals the
        provocation; or, at least, softens it down until it hardly becomes
        a provocation. According to him, 'David Black had been served with
        a summons to answer before the privy council for certain
        expressions used by him in his sermons.' Certain expressions,
        indeed! But why name the penalty, and suppress the offence? This
        learned writer knew perfectly well what Black had done, and yet
        all the information bestowed on the reader is a note at p. 72,
        containing a mutilated extract from Spottiswoode.

In December the same year, the Church proclaimed a fast; and Welsh
preached in Edinburgh a sermon, with the view of rousing the people
against their rulers. The king, he told his audience, had formerly been
possessed by a devil, and that devil being put out, seven worse ones had
come in its place. It was, therefore, evident that James was demented,
and it became lawful to take the sword of justice from his hands; just as
it would be lawful for servants or children to seize the head of their
family, if it had pleased heaven to afflict him with madness. In such
case, the preacher observed, it would be right to lay hold of the madman,
and to tie him hand and foot, that he might do no further harm.[265]

  [265] 'Saying, "He was possessed with a devil; that one devil being put
        out, seven worse were entered in place; and that the subjects
        might lawfully rise, and take the sword out of his hand:" which he
        confirmed by the example of a father that falling into a frenzy,
        might be taken by the children and servants of the family, and
        tied hand and foot from doing violence.' _Spottiswoode's History
        of the Church of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 34. See also _Arnot's
        History of Edinburgh_, pp. 46, 47.

The hatred felt by the clergy was at this period so bitter, and the
democratic spirit in them so strong,[266] that they seemed unable to
restrain themselves; and Andrew Melville, in an audience with the king,
in 1596, proceeded to personal insults, and, seizing him by the sleeve,
called him God's silly vassal.[267] The large amount of truth contained
in this bitter taunt, increased its pungency. But the ministers did not
always confine themselves to words.[268] Their participation in the
Ruthven conspiracy is unquestionable; and it is probable that they were
privy to the last great peril to which James was exposed, before he
escaped from that turbulent land, which he was believed to govern.
Certain it is, that the Earl of Gowrie, who, in 1600, entrapped the king
into his castle in order to murder him, was the hope and the mainstay of
the Presbyterian clergy, and was intimately associated with their
ambitious schemes.[269] Such, indeed, was their infatuation on behalf of
the assassin, that, when his conspiracy was defeated, and he himself
slain, several of the ministers propagated a report that Gowrie had
fallen a victim to the royal perfidy, and that, in point of fact, the
only plot which ever existed was one concocted by the king, with fatal
art, against his mild and innocent host.[270]

  [266] This did not escape the attention of the English government; and
        Elizabeth, who was remarkably well informed respecting Scotch
        affairs, wrote to James, in 1590, a warning, which was hardly
        necessary, but which must have added to his fears. 'And lest fayre
        semblance, that easely may begile, do not brede your ignorance of
        suche persons as ether pretend religion or dissemble deuotion, let
        me warne you that ther is risen, bothe in your realme and myne, a
        secte of perilous consequence, suche as wold have no kings but a
        presbitrye, and take our place while the inioy our privilege, with
        a shade of Godes word, wiche none is juged to folow right without
        by ther censure the be so demed. Yea, looke we wel unto them.'
        _Letters of Elizabeth and James VI._, edited by John Bruce, Camden
        Society, 1849, 4to, p. 63.

  [267] The Reverend James Melville, who was present at the scene,
        describes it with exuberant delight. 'To the quhilk, I beginning
        to reply, in my maner, Mr. Andro doucht nocht abyd it, bot brak af
        upon the king in sa zealus, powerfull, and unresistable a maner,
        that whowbeit the king used his authoritie in maist crabbit and
        colerik maner, yit Mr. Andro bure him down, and outtered the
        Commission as from the mightie God, calling the king bot "God's
        sillie vassall:" and taking him be the sleive,' &c. _Autobiography
        and Diary of James Melvill_, p. 370. See also _Shields' Hind let
        loose_, 1687, p. 52; and _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. ii.
        p. 66.

  [268] In 1593, 4, some of them formed a plot to seize him. See the
        evidence from the State-paper Office, in _Tytler's History of
        Scotland_, vol. vii. p. 249, edit. Edinburgh, 1845.

  [269] 'He was the darling hope of the Presbyterian party.' _Ibid._,
        vol. vii. p. 410.

  [270] 'Gowry's conspiracy was by them charged on the king, as a
        contrivance of his to get rid of that earl.' _Burnet's History of
        his own Time_, edit. Oxford, 1823, vol. i. p. 31. See also
        _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. vii. pp. 439, 440; and on the
        diffusion of 'this absurd hallucination,' see The _Spottiswoode
        Miscellany_, vol. ii. p. 320, Edinburgh, 1845.

An absurdity of this sort[271] was easily believed in an ignorant, and,
therefore, a credulous, age. That the clergy should have propagated it,
and that in this, as in many other cases, they should have laboured with
malignant industry to defame the character of their prince,[272] will
astonish no one who knows how quickly the wrath of the Church can be
roused, and how ready the spiritual classes always are to cover, even
with the foulest calumny, those who stand in their way. The evidence
which has been collected, proves that the Presbyterian ministers carried
their violence against the constituted authorities of the state, to an
indecent, if not to a criminal, length; and we cannot absolve them from
the charge of being a restless and unscrupulous body, greedy after power,
and grossly intolerant of whatever opposed their own views. Still, the
real cause of their conduct was, the spirit of their age, and the
peculiarities of their position. None of us can be sure that, if we were
placed exactly as they were placed, we should have acted differently.
Now, indeed, we cannot read of their proceedings, as they are recorded in
their own Assemblies, and by the historians of their own Church, without
an uneasy feeling of dislike, I had almost said of disgust, at finding
ourselves in presence of so much of superstition, of chicanery, of low,
sordid arts, and yet, withal, of arrogant and unbridled insolence. The
truth, however, is, that in Scotland, the age was evil, and the evil
rose to the surface. The times were out of joint, and it was hard to set
them right. The long prevalence of anarchy, of ignorance, of poverty, of
force, of fraud, of domestic tumult, and of foreign invasion, had reduced
Scotland to a state which is scarcely possible for us to realize.
Hereafter, I shall give some evidence of the effect which this produced
on the national character, and of the serious mischief which it wrought.
In the mean time, we should, in fairness to the Scotch clergy, admit that
the condition of their country affords the best explanation of their
conduct. Everything around them was low and coarse; the habits of men, in
their daily life, were violent, brutal, and utterly regardless of common
decency; and, as a natural consequence, the standard of human actions was
so depressed, that upright and well-meaning persons did not shrink from
doing what to us, in our advanced state of society, seems incredible. Let
us, then, not be too rash in this matter. Let us not be too forward in
censuring the leading actors in that great crisis through which Scotland
passed, during the latter half of the sixteenth century. Much they did,
which excites our strongest aversion. But one thing they achieved, which
should make us honour their memory, and repute them benefactors of their
species. At a most hazardous moment, they kept alive the spirit of
national liberty.[273] What the nobles and the crown had put in peril,
that did the clergy save. By their care, the dying spark was kindled into
a blaze. When the light grew dim, and flickered on the altar, their hands
trimmed the lamp, and fed the sacred flame. This is their real glory, and
on this they may well repose. They were the guardians of Scotch freedom,
and they stood to their post. Where danger was, they were foremost. By
their sermons, by their conduct, both public and private, by the
proceedings of their Assemblies, by their bold and frequent attacks upon
persons, without regard to their rank, nay, even by the very insolence
with which they treated their superiors, they stirred up the minds of
men, woke them from their lethargy, formed them to habits of discussion,
and excited that inquisitive and democratic spirit, which is the only
effectual guarantee the people can ever possess against the tyranny of
those who are set over them. This was the work of the Scotch clergy; and
all hail to them who did it. It was they who taught their countrymen to
scrutinize, with a fearless eye, the policy of their rulers. It was they
who pointed the finger of scorn at kings and nobles, and laid bare the
hollowness of their pretensions. They ridiculed their claims, and jeered
at their mysteries. They tore the veil, and exposed the tricks of the
scene which lay behind. The great ones of the earth, they covered with
contempt; and those who were above them, they cast down. Herein, they did
a deed which should compensate for all their offences, even were their
offences ten times as great. By discountenancing that pernicious and
degrading respect which men are too apt to pay to those whom accident,
and not merit, has raised above them, they facilitated the growth of a
proud and sturdy independence, which was sure to do good service at a
time of need. And that time came quicker than any one had expected.
Within a very few years, James became master of the resources of England,
and attempted, by their aid, to subvert the liberties of Scotland. The
shameful enterprise, which he began, was continued by his cruel and
superstitious son. How their attempts failed; how Charles I., in the
effort, shipwrecked his fortune, and provoked a rebellion, which brought
to the scaffold that great criminal, who dared to conspire against the
people, and who, as the common enemy and oppressor of all, was at length
visited with the just punishment of his sins, is known to every reader of
our history. It is also well known, that, in conducting the struggle, the
English were greatly indebted to the Scotch, who had, moreover, the merit
of being the first to lift their hand against the tyrant. What, however,
is less known, but is undoubtedly true, is, that both nations owe a debt
they can never repay to those bold men who, during the latter part of the
sixteenth century, disseminated, from their pulpits and Assemblies,
sentiments which the people cherished in their hearts, and which, at a
fitting moment, they reproduced, to the dismay, and eventually to the
destruction, of those who threatened their liberties.

  [271] See a good note in _Pitcairn's Criminal Trials in Scotland_,
        vol. ii. p. 179, Edinburgh, 1833, 4to. Compare _Lawson's Book of
        Perth_, Edinburgh, 1847, p. xxxix.

  [272] Their language, and their general bearing, so enraged James, as to
        extort from him a passionate declaration, in 1592, that 'it would
        not be weill till noblemen and gentlemen gott licence to breake
        ministers' heads.' _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. v.
        p. 148.

  [273] 'At the period of which we speak' (about the year 1584) 'the
        pulpit was, in fact, the only organ by which public opinion was,
        or could be, expressed; and the ecclesiastical courts were the
        only assemblies in the nation which possessed anything that was
        entitled to the name of liberty or independence. Parliament had
        its business prepared to its hand, and laid before it in the shape
        of acts which required only its assent. Discussion and freedom of
        speech were unknown in its meetings. The courts of justice were
        dependent on the will of the sovereign, and frequently had their
        proceedings regulated, and their decisions dictated, by letters or
        messages from the throne. It was the preachers who first taught
        the people to express an opinion on the conduct of their rulers;
        and the assemblies of the Church set the earliest example of a
        regular and firm opposition to the arbitrary and unconstitutional
        measures of the court.' _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. i.
        p. 302.

                               CHAPTER III.


Scarcely had James mounted the throne of England, when he began
seriously, and on a large scale, to attempt to subjugate the Scotch
Church, which, as he clearly saw, was the principal obstacle that stood
between him and despotic power. While he was merely King of Scotland, he
made several efforts, which were constantly baffled; but now that he
wielded the vast resources of England, the victory seemed easy.[274] As
early as 1584, he had gained a temporary triumph, by forcing many of the
clergy to recognize episcopacy.[275] But that institution was so
repugnant to their levelling and democratic principles, that nothing
could overcome their abhorrence of it;[276] and, completely overawing the
king, they compelled him to give way, and to retrace his steps. The
result was, that, in 1592, an Act of Parliament was passed, which
subverted the authority of the bishops, and established Presbyterianism;
a scheme based on the idea of equality, and, therefore, suited to the
wants of the Scotch Church.[277]

  [274] Lord Dartmouth says (Note in _Burnet's History of his own Time_,
        vol. i. p. 15): 'The Earl of Seafield told me that King James
        frequently declared that he never looked upon himself to be more
        than King of Scotland in name, till he came to be King of England;
        but now, he said, one kingdom would help him to govern the other,
        or he had studied kingcraft to very little purpose from his cradle
        to that time.' Compare _Burnet's Memoirs of the Dukes of
        Hamilton_, Oxford, 1852, p. 36. 'No sooner was he happily settled
        on the throne of England, but he went more roundly to work.'

  [275] Compare _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. vi. p. 430, with
        _Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 303, § 20;
        also the Act (p. 293, § 4), likewise in 1584, limiting the power
        of the General Assemblies. James, who flattered himself that he
        had now settled everything, signalized his triumph by personally
        abusing the clergy; 'calling them lownes, smaicks, seditious
        knaves, and so furth.' See a letter, dated 2nd of January 1585-6,
        in _Miscellany of the Wodrow Society_, p. 438, Edinburgh, 1844.

  [276] 'Bishops were alwayes looked at with a frown.' _Kirkton's History
        of the Church of Scotland_, p. 129.

  [277] See this remarkable statute, in _Acts of the Parliaments of
        Scotland_, vol. iii. pp. 541, 2. As some of the historians of the
        Scotch Church have greatly misrepresented it, I will quote that
        part which expressly repeals the Act of 1584, in favour of the
        bishops. 'Item oure said souerane lord and estaittis of Parliament
        foirsaid, abrogatis cass and anullis the xx act of the same
        pliam[=e]t haldin at Edinburgh the said zeir 1584 zeiris granting
        c[=o]missioun to bishoppis and vtheris iuges constitute in
        ecclesiastical causs To ressaue his hienes presentatioun to
        benefices, To gif collatioun thairvpoun and to put ordo^r in all
        causs ecclesiasticall qlk his Maiestie and estaittis foirsaid
        declairis to be expyrit in the self and to be null in tyme cuming
        and of nane availl force nor effect.'

To this statute, James had assented with the greatest reluctance.[278]
Indeed, his feeling respecting it was so strong, that he determined, on
the first opportunity, to procure its repeal, even if he used force to
effect his purpose. The course he adopted, was characteristic both of the
man and of the age. In December 1596, one of those popular tumults arose
in Edinburgh, which are natural in barbarous times, and which, under
ordinary circumstances, would have been quelled, and nothing more thought
of it.[279] But James availed himself of this, to strike what he deemed a
decisive blow. His plan was nothing less than to turn into the capital of
his own monarchy, large bodies of armed and licensed banditti, who, by
threatening to plunder the city, should oblige the clergy and their
flocks to agree to whatever terms he chose to dictate. This magnanimous
scheme was well worthy of the mind of James, and it was strictly
executed. From the north, he summoned the Highland nobles, and from the
south, the border barons, who were to be accompanied by their fierce
retainers,--men who lived by pillage, and whose delight it was to imbrue
their hands in blood. At the express command of James, these ferocious
brigands, on the 1st of January 1597, appeared in the streets of
Edinburgh, gloating over the prospect before them, and ready, when their
sovereign gave the word, to sack the capital, and raze it to the
ground.[280] Resistance was hopeless. Whatever the king demanded, was
conceded; and James supposed that the time was now come, in which he
could firmly establish the authority of the bishops, and, by their aid,
control the clergy, and break their refractory spirit.[281]

  [278] 'The King repented after that he had agreed unto it.' _Calderwood's
        History of the Kirk_, vol. v. p. 162. But this gives a faint idea
        of his real feelings. It is perhaps hardly necessary to adduce
        evidence of the opinions entertained on this point, by a prince,
        one of whose favourite sayings was, 'No Bishop, no King.' The
        reader will, however, find, in the _Clarendon State Papers_ (vol.
        ii. p. 260 Oxford, 1773, folio), a letter from Charles I., which
        is worth looking at, because it frankly avows that James, in
        loving episcopacy and hating presbyterianism, was actuated rather
        by political motives than by religious ones. Charles writes: 'The
        prudentiall part of any consideration will never be found opposit
        to the conscientious, nay heere, they go hand in hand; for
        (according to lawyers lodgique) show me any president where ever
        Presbiteriall government and Regall was together, without
        perpetuall rebellions. _Which was the cause that necessitated the
        King, my Father, to change that governement in Scotland._' Compare
        what is said by a Scotch Presbyterian of the seventeenth century,
        in _Biographies edited for the Wodrow Society_ by the Rev. W. K.
        Tweedie, Edinburgh, 1845, vol. i. p. 13. 'The reason why King
        James was so violent for bishops was neither their divine
        institution (which he denied they had), nor yet the profit the
        Church should reap by them (for he knew well both the men and
        their communications), but merely because he believed they were
        useful instruments to turn a limited monarchy into absolute
        dominion, and subjects into slaves, the design in the world he
        minded most.'

  [279] 'Had it not been laid hold of by designing politicians as a handle
        for accomplishing their measures, it would not now have been known
        that such an event had ever occurred.' _M'Crie's Life of
        Melville_, vol. ii. p. 85. 'Harmless as this uproar was, it
        afforded the court a pretext for carrying into execution its
        designs against the liberties and government of the Church.'
        p. 89.

  [280] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. vii. pp. 342-345.
        _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. v. pp. 514, 515, 530,

  [281] 'Intimidated by these menaces, and distressed at the loss of the
        courts of justice, they came to the resolution of making surrender
        of their political and religious liberties to the king.' _M'Crie's
        Life of Melville_, vol. ii. p. 92. This is said of the magistrates
        of Edinburgh. Among other threats, one was, the 'razing and
        ploughing of Edinburgh, and sowing it with salt.' _Wodrow's Life
        of Bruce_, p. 48, prefixed to _Bruce's Sermons_, edited by the
        Rev. William Cunningham, Edinburgh, 1843. On this occasion,
        Elizabeth wrote a letter to James, which is printed in _Letters of
        Queen Elizabeth and James VI._, 1849, 4to, pp. 120, 121.

In this undertaking, three years were consumed. To insure its success,
the king, supported by the nobles, relied, not only on force, but also on
an artifice, which now seems to have been employed for the first time.
This was, to pack the General Assemblies, by inundating them with
clergymen drawn from the north of Scotland, where, the old clannish and
aristocratic spirit being supreme, the democratic spirit, found in the
south, was unknown. Hitherto, these northern ministers had rarely
attended at the great meetings of the Church; but James, in 1597, sent
Sir Patrick Murray on a special mission to them, urging them to be
present, in order that they might vote on his side.[282] They, being a
very ignorant body, knowing little or nothing of the questions really at
issue, and being, moreover, accustomed to a state of society in which
men, notwithstanding their lawlessness, paid the most servile obedience
to their immediate superiors, were easily worked upon, and induced to do
what they were bid. By their help, the crown and the nobles so
strengthened their party in the General Assembly, as to obtain in many
instances a majority; and innovations were gradually introduced,
calculated to destroy the democratic character of the Scotch Church.[283]

  [282] _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. ii. p. 100. Scot (_Apologetical
        Narration of the State of the Kirk_, p. 88) says, 'Sir Patrick
        Murray, the diligent apostle of the North, made their acquaintance
        with the King.' Also, _The Autobiography and Diary of James
        Melville_, p. 403.

  [283] _Tytler's History of Scotland_, vol. vii. pp. 350, 359. But by far
        the best account of the influence of these northern clergy will be
        found in _M'Crie's Life of Melville_ (vol. ii. pp. 100-105, 109,
        131, 152), drawn, in several instances, from manuscript
        authorities. Compare _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. v.
        p. 625.

In 1597, the movement began. From then, until 1600, successive Assemblies
sanctioned different changes, all of which were marked by that
aristocratic tendency which seemed about to carry everything before it.
In 1600, the General Assembly met at Montrose; and government determined
on making a final effort to compel the Church to establish an episcopal
polity. Andrew Melville, by far the most influential man in the Church,
and the leader of the democratic party, had been elected, as usual, a
member of the Assembly; but the king, arbitrarily interposing, refused to
allow him to take his seat.[284] Still, neither by threats, nor by force,
nor by promises, could the court carry their point. All that they
obtained was, that certain ecclesiastics should be allowed to sit in
parliament; but it was ordered that such persons should every year lay
their commissions at the feet of the General Assembly, and render an
account of their conduct. The Assembly was to have the power of deposing
them; and, to keep them in greater subjection, they were forbidden to
call themselves bishops, but were to be content with the inferior title
of Commissioners of the Church.[285]

  [284] This is related by his nephew, James Melville. 'Mr. Andro Melvill
        come to the Assembly, by Commissoune of his Presbytrie, but wes
        commandit to keip his ludgeing; quho, being callit to the King in
        private, and demandit, Quhy he wes so trublesume as to come to the
        Assembly being dischairgit? He answerit, He had a calling in the
        Kirk of God, and of Jesus Chryst, the King of kings, quhilk he
        behovit to dischairge at all occasiounes, being orderlie callit
        thairto, as he wes at this tyme; and that for feir of a grytter
        punischment then could any earthly King inflict.' _The
        Autobiography and Diary of James Melvill_, p. 542.

  [285] As, owing to the passions of the rival classes, every step of this
        part of Scotch history is the subject of angry controversy, and as
        even Mr. Tytler (_History of Scotland_, vol. vii. p. 360) asserts
        that 'the final establishment of Episcopacy' took place at the
        Assembly of Montrose, in 1600. I subjoin a few extracts from the
        enactments of that Assembly, in order that the reader may judge
        for himself, and may test the accuracy of what I have stated in
        the text. 'Concerning the maner of choosing of him that sall have
        vote in Parliament in name of the Kirk: It is condiscendit vpon,
        that _he sall first be recommendit be the Kirk to his Majestie_;
        and that the Kirk sall nominat sixe for every place that sall have
        neid to be filled, of quhom his Majestie sall choose ane, of quhom
        he best lykes; and his Majestie promises, obleises, and binds
        himselfe to choose no vther but ane of that number: And in cace
        his Majestie refuses the haill vpon ane just reason of ane
        insufficiency, and of greater sufficiencie of vthers that are not
        recommendit, the Kirk sall make ane new recommendatioun of men
        according to the first number, of the quhilk, ane salbe chosin be
        his Majestie without any farther refuisall or new nominatioun; and
        he that salbe chosin be his Majestie, salbe admittit be the
        Synods.' _Acts of the General Assemblies of the Kirk of Scotland_,
        vol. iii. p. 954. 'As to the cautions to keip him, that sall have
        vote in Parliament, from corruptiouns: They be these following:
        1. _That he presume not, at any tyme, to propone at Parliament,
        Counsell or Conventioun, in name of the Kirk, any thing without
        expresse warrand and directioun from the Kirk_, and sick things as
        he sall answer (for) to be for the weill of the Kirk, vnder the
        paine of depositioun from his office.' ... 2. 'He sall be bound at
        every Generall Assemblie, to give ane accompt anent the discharge
        of his commissioun sen the Assemblie gangand befor; _and sall
        submitt himselfe to thair censure, and stand at thair
        determinatioun quhatsumever, without appellatioun; and sall seik
        and obtain ratificatioun of his doings at the said Assemblie,
        vnder the paine of infamie and excommunicatioun_.' ... 6. 'In the
        administration of discipline, collatioun of benefices,
        visitatioun, and all vther points of ecclesiasticall government,
        he sall neither vsurpe nor acclaime to himselfe _any power or
        jurisdictioun farther than any vther of the rest of his breither_,
        unlesse he be imployit be his breither, vnder the paine of
        deprivatioun.' p. 955. 'Anent his name that for the Kirk sall
        (have) vote in Parliament: It is advyseit, be vniforme consent of
        the haill brether, that he salbe callit Commissioner of such a
        place.' p. 956. 'Therfor the Generall Assemblie having reasonit at
        length the said questioun, tuiching the continuance of him that
        sall have vote in Parliament, after votting of the same, finds and
        decernes, that _he sall annuatim give count of his commission
        obtainit from the Assemblie, and lay downe the samein at thair
        feitt_, to be continuit or alterit therfra be his Maiestie and the
        Assemblie, as the Assemblie, with consent of his Maiestie, sall
        think most expedient for the weill of the Kirk.' p. 959.

After sustaining this repulse, James seems to have been disheartened; as
he made no further effort, though he still laboured underhand at the
restoration of episcopacy.[286] If he had persevered, it might have cost
him his crown. For, his resources were few; he was extremely poor;[287]
and recent events had shown that the clergy were stronger than he had
supposed. When he thought himself most sure of success, they had
subjected him to a mortifying defeat; and this was the more remarkable,
as it was entirely their own work; they being by this time so completely
separated from the nobles, that they could not rely upon even a single
member of that powerful body.

  [286] 'While James remained in Scotland, the scheme of introducing
        episcopacy, though never lost sight of, was cautiously
        prosecuted.' _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. ii. p. 178.

  [287] James, during the whole of his reign, was chiefly dependent on the
        money which Elizabeth gave him, and which she dealt out rather
        niggardly. Such were his necessities, that he was forced to pawn
        his plate, and, even then, he was often unable to defray his
        ordinary household expenses. See _Tytler's History of Scotland_,
        vol. vi. pp. 265, 266, 272, vol. vii. pp. 158, 378-380.
        _Miscellany of the Spalding Club_, vol. ii. pp. xlv. 114.
        _Gregory's History of the Western Highlands_, pp. 241, 277. See
        also a clamorous begging-letter from James to Elizabeth, written
        in 1591, in _Letters of Queen Elizabeth and James VI._, 1849, 4to,
        pp. 68, 69. In 1593, she apologizes for sending him only a small
        sum: 'The small token you shall receave from me I desire yt may
        serve to make you remember the tyme and my many weighty affaires,
        wich makes it les than else I would, and I dowt nothing but when
        you heare all, yow will beare with this.' p. 84. A letter from
        James Hudson, written about the year 1591, states that 'both the
        king's table and queen's had like to have been unserved by want;
        and that the king had nothing he accounted certain to come into
        his purse, but what he had from the Queen of England.' _Ridpath's
        Border History_, p. 465, Berwick, 1848, 4to.

While affairs were in this state, and while the liberties of Scotland, of
which the Church was the guardian, were trembling in the balance,
Elizabeth died, and the King of Scotland became also King of England.
James at once determined to employ the resources of his new kingdom to
curb his old one. In 1604, that is, only the year after his accession to
the English throne, he aimed a deadly blow at the Scotch Church, by
attacking the independence of their Assemblies; and, by his own
authority, he prorogued the General Assembly of Aberdeen.[288] In 1605,
he again prorogued it; and, to make his intentions clear, he, this time,
refused to fix a day for its future meeting.[289] Hereupon, some of the
ministers, deputed by presbyteries, took upon themselves to convene it,
which they had an undoubted right to do, as the act of the king was
manifestly illegal. On the day appointed, they met in the session-house
of Aberdeen. They were ordered to disperse. Having, as they conceived, by
the mere fact of assembling, sufficiently asserted their privileges, they
obeyed. But James, now backed by the power of England, resolved that they
should feel the change of his position, and, therefore, of theirs. In
consequence of orders which he sent from London, fourteen of the clergy
were committed to prison.[290] Six of them, who denied the authority of
the privy-council, were indicted for high treason. They were at once put
upon their trial. They were convicted. And sentence of death was only
deferred, that the pleasure of the king might first be taken, as to
whether he would not be satisfied with some punishment that fell short of
sacrificing the lives of these unhappy men.[291]

  [288] _Laing's History of Scotland_, edit. 1819, vol. iii. p. 28.
        _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. vi. pp. 264, 323.
        _Bower's History of the University of Edinburgh_, vol. i. p. 175,
        Edinburgh, 1817. _Stevenson's History of the Church of Scotland_,
        p. 88.

  [289] 'Adde thereunto, that the letter of the commissioner and last
        moderator, conteaned no certane tyme nor day whereto the said
        Assemblie sould be prorogued; so that it imported a casting loose
        and deserting, yea, and tyning of the possessioun of our
        Assemblie; than the which what could be more dangerous to the
        libertie and freedom of the Kirk of Jesus Christ, at suche a tyme,
        namelie of the treatie of the Unioun, when all the estates of the
        realme, and everie particular are zealous and carefull of their
        rights and possessiouns?' _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_,
        vol. vi. pp. 309, 310.

  [290] See a list of them in _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. vi.
        p. 347, where the fourteen names are preserved with pious care.

  [291] _Pitcairn's Criminal Trials in Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 494-502.
        _Forbes' Certaine Records touching the Estate of the Kirk_, edit.
        Wodrow Society, Edinburgh, 1846, pp. 463-496. 'Delayed the giving
        forth of the sentence of condemnation till the King's mind were
        further knowne.' See also _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol.
        vi. pp. 434, 449. When they were found guilty, 'the peiple said,
        "Certainely this wes a worke of darknes, to mak Chrystis faithfull
        Ministeres tratouris to the King! God grant he be niver in greater
        dangeris nor off sic traitouris."' _Melvill's Autobiography and
        Diary_, p. 626.

Their lives, indeed, were spared; but they were subjected to a close
imprisonment, and then condemned to perpetual exile.[292] In other parts
of the country, similar measures were adopted. Nearly all over Scotland,
numbers of the clergy were either imprisoned or forced to fly.[293]
Terror and proscription were universal. Such was the panic, that it was
generally believed that nothing could prevent the permanent establishment
of despotism, unless there were some immediate and providential
interference on behalf of the Church and the people.[294]

  [292] _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. ii. pp. 207, 208. _Pitcairn's
        Criminal Trials_, vol. ii. p. 504. In connexion with these
        transactions, a letter is preserved in the Winwood Papers, which
        is much too curious to be passed over in silence. It is addressed
        by the Earl of Salisbury to Sir Charles Cornwallis, and is dated
        12th September 1605. Salisbury, who was then at the head of
        affairs, writes, 'True it is that his Majestie seeking to _adorne
        that kingdome of Scotland with Prelates as they are in England_,
        some of the Ministers have spurned against it; and althouge his
        Majestie had ever warranted their calling of General Assemblies
        upon no other condition, then that they should make him
        acquainted, receive his warrant, and a commissioner for his
        Majestie resident in their councells, yet have they (followed with
        some poor plebecall numbers) presumed to hold their General
        Assemblies in some parte of the Realme contrarie to his
        commandement. Whereupon his Majestie hath shewed himself
        displeased, and cyted divers of them before his councell,' &c.
        _Memorials of Affairs of State, from the Papers of Sir Ralph
        Winwood_, London, 1725, folio, vol. ii. p. 132. And yet the man
        who could write such nonsense as this, and who could only see, in
        the great democratic movement of the Scotch mind, a disinclination
        to the _adornment_ of episcopacy, was deemed one of the most
        eminent statesmen of his time, and his reputation has survived
        him. If great statesmen discern so little of what is before them
        and around them, we are tempted to inquire, how much confidence
        ought to be placed in the opinions of those average statesmen by
        whom countries are ruled. For my own part, I can only say, that I
        have had occasion to read many thousand letters written by
        diplomatists and politicians, and I have hardly ever found an
        instance of one of them who understood the spirit and tendency of
        the age in which he lived.

  [293] 'Ministers in all parts of the country were thrown into prison, or
        declared rebels, and forced to abscond.' _M'Crie's Life of
        Melville_, vol. ii. p. 250. Liberty of speech was so completely
        suppressed, that, in 1605, when the most zealous and intelligent
        clergy were banished, 'a strait command' (was) 'gevin to
        magistrats, and uther officiers of burrowis, that in cace any
        preacher sould speik opinlie aganis that baneisment, or for
        defence or mentenence of that assemblie, or pray publiklie for
        ther saiftie, that they sould be noted and manifested to the
        secret counsell, and corrected for their fault.' _The Historie of
        King James the Sext_, p. 380.

  [294] See an eloquent and touching passage, in _Calderwood's History of
        the Kirk_, vol. vi. pp. 696, 697.

Nor can it be denied that there were plausible grounds for these
apprehensions. The people had no friends except among the clergy, and the
ablest of the clergy were either in prison or in exile.[295] To deprive
the Church entirely of her leaders, James, in 1606, summoned to London,
Melville and seven of his colleagues, under pretence of needing their
advice.[296] Having got possession of their persons, he detained them in
England.[297] They were forbidden to return to Scotland; and Melville,
who was most feared, was committed to custody. He was then imprisoned in
the Tower, where he remained four years, and from which he was only
liberated on condition of living abroad, and abandoning altogether his
native country.[298] The seven ministers who had accompanied him to
London were also imprisoned; but, being considered less dangerous than
their leader, they, after a time, were allowed to return home. The nephew
of Melville was, however, ordered not to travel more than two miles from
Newcastle; and his six companions were confined in different parts of

  [295] 'The godliest, wisest, learnedest, and most zealous men of the
        ministrie in Scotland, were either banished, warded, or detained
        in Ingland, of purpose that they might not be a lett to the grand
        designe in hand.' _Row's History of the Kirk_, p. 238.

  [296] _Scot's Apologetical Narration of the State of the Kirk_, pp. 164,
        165. Compare _The Autobiography and Diary of James Melvill_,
        pp. 642-645.

  [297] 'Quhen we wer gone out of the Palice a lytle way towards
        Kingstoune, Mr. Alexander Hay sendis back for us, and withall, in
        the Uttir Court, reidis to us a chairge from the King not to
        returne to Scotland, nor to com neire the King, Quein, nor Prince
        their Courtis, without a speciall calling for and licence.'
        _Melvill's Autobiography_, p. 661.

  [298] _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. ii. pp. 246, 252, 260, 337-339,
        403, 407-411, 414. This truly great and fearless man died in
        exile, in 1622. p. 458.

  [299] _Melvill's Autobiography and Diary_, p. 709. _Scot's Apologetical
        Narration_, p. 194. _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. ii. pp. 252,
        253, 267, 268.

Everything now seemed ripe for the destruction of those ideas of equality
of which, in Scotland, the Church was the sole representative. In 1610, a
General Assembly was held at Glasgow; and, as the members of it were
nominated by the crown,[300] whatever the government wished was conceded.
By their vote, episcopacy was established, and the authority of the
bishops over the ministers was fully recognized.[301] A little earlier,
but in the same year, two courts of High Commission were erected, one at
Saint Andrews, and one at Glasgow. To them, all ecclesiastical courts
were subordinate. They were armed with such immense power, that they
could cite any one they pleased before them, could examine him respecting
his religious opinions, could have him excommunicated, and could fine or
imprison him, just as they thought proper.[302] Finally, and to complete
the humiliation of Scotland, the establishment of episcopacy was not
considered complete, until an act was performed, which nothing but its
being very ignominious, could have saved from being ridiculed as an idle
and childish farce. The archbishop of Glasgow, the bishop of Brechin, and
the bishop of Galloway, had to travel all the way to London, in order
that they might be touched by some English bishops. Incredible as it may
appear, it was actually supposed that there was no power in Scotland
sufficiently spiritual to turn a Scotchman into a prelate. Therefore it
was, that the archbishop of Glasgow and his companions performed what was
then an arduous journey to a strange and distant capital, for the sake of
receiving some hidden virtue, which, on their return home, they might
communicate to their brethren. To the grief and astonishment of their
country, these unworthy priests, abandoning the traditions of their
native land, and forgetting the proud spirit which animated their
fathers, consented to abjure their own independence, to humble themselves
before the English Church, and to submit to mummeries, which, in their
hearts, they must have despised, but which were now inflicted upon them
by their ancient and inveterate foes.[303]

  [300] 'Royal missives were sent to the presbyteries, nominating the
        individuals whom they should chuse as their representatives to
        it.' _M'Crie's Life of Melville_, vol. ii. pp. 387, 388. On the
        character of its members, compare _Wodrow's History of the
        Sufferings of the Church of Scotland_, edit. Glasgow, 1838, vol.
        i. p. 256. _Stevenson's History of the Church of Scotland_, pp.
        320, 321. _Crookshank's Church of Scotland_, Edinburgh, 1812, vol.
        i. p. 28; and _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. vii.
        pp. 97, 98.

  [301] _Acts of the General Assemblies of the Kirk_, vol. iii. pp. 1096,
        1097. The Assembly even forbad the democratic notion of equality
        to be advocated. See p. 1101. 'Because it is vncivill that laws
        and constitutiouns, either Civill or Ecclesiasticall, being anes
        establischit and in force, by publick and opin consent, sould be
        controllit and callit in questioun by any person: therfor, it is
        statute by vniforme consent of this haill Assemblie, that none of
        the Ministrie either in pulpitt in his preaching, or in the
        publick exercise, speake and reason against the acts of this
        present Assemblie, nor dissobey the same, vnder the paine of
        deprivatioun, being tryit and convict thereof; and _speciallie,
        that the questioun of equalitie and inequalitie in the Kirk, be
        not treattit in pulpitt vnder the said paine_.'

  [302] Mr. Russell (_History of the Church in Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 88),
        misled, probably, by a passage in _Spottiswoode's History of the
        Church_, vol. iii. p. 210, says, 'A Court of High Commission was
        instituted.' But it is certain that there were two such courts;
        one for the diocese of Saint Andrews, and one for that of Glasgow.
        See the 'commissioun givin under the great seale to the two
        archbishops,' dated 15th of February 1610, in _Calderwood's
        History of the Kirk_, vol. vii. pp. 57-62. See also p. 210. They
        were not united till December 1615. See _Scot's Apologetical
        Narration of the State of the Kirk_, pp. 218, 239; and
        _Crookshank's History of the Sufferings of the Church of
        Scotland_, vol. i. p. 28. By the royal commission, these despotic
        tribunals were authorized (_Calderwood_, vol. vii. p. 59) 'to call
        before them at suche tymes and places as they salle thinke meete,
        anie person or persons dwelling and remaining within their
        provinces respective above writtin of St. Andrews or Glasgow, or
        within anie dioceis of the same, being offenders ather in life or
        religioun, whom they hold anie way to be scandalous, and that they
        take tryell of the same; and if they find them guiltie and
        impenitent, refusing to acknowledge their offence, they sall give
        command to the preacher of that parish where they dwell, to
        proceed with sentence of excommunication against them; which, if
        it be protracted, and their command by that minister be not
        presentlie obeyed, they sall conveene anie suche minister before
        them, and proceed in censuring of him for his disobedience, ather
        by suspensioun, deprivatioun, or wairding, according as in their
        discretioun they sall hold his obstinacie and refuse of their
        directioun to have deserved. And further, to fyne at their
        discretiouns, imprisoun, or warde anie suche persoun, who being
        convicted before them, they sall find upon tryell to have deserved
        anie suche punishment.' Hereupon, Calderwood justly remarks, p.
        62: 'This commissioun and executioun thereof, as it exalted the
        aspyring bishops farre above any prelat that ever was in Scotland,
        so it putt the king in possessioun of that which he had long tyme
        hunted for; to witt, of the royall prerogative, and absolute power
        to use the bodeis and goods of the subjects at pleasure, without
        forme or processe of the commoun law, even then when the Lower
        Hous in England was compleaning in their parliament upon the
        injurie therof. So our bishops were fitt instruments to overthrow
        the liberteis both of the Kirk and countrie.'

  [303] See _Stevenson's History of the Church of Scotland_, p. 93, and
        _Kirkton's History_, p. 15. Kirkton indignantly says, that James
        'perswaded a few unworthy men to perjure themselves, and after
        their episcopall consecration by the English bishops in England,
        to exercise that odious office in Scotland against their own oath
        and the consciences of their brethren.' Compare the contemptuous
        notice, in _Row's History of the Kirk_, p. 283, on the 'anoynting
        of oyle and other ceremonies,' and on 'the foolish guyses in it.'
        Indeed, on this subject, every Scotch writer who cared for the
        liberty of his country, expressed himself either with contempt or

We may easily imagine what would be the future conduct of men, who,
merely for their own aggrandizement, and to please their prince, could
thus renounce the cherished independence of the Scotch Church. They who
crouch to those who are above them always trample on those who are below
them. Directly they returned to Scotland, they communicated the
consecration they had received in England to their fellow-bishops,[304]
who were of the like mould to themselves, in so far as all of them aided
James in his attempt to subjugate the liberties of their native country.
Being now properly ordained, their spiritual life was complete; it
remained for them to secure the happiness of their temporal life. This
they did, by gradually monopolizing all authority, and treating with
unsparing severity those who opposed them. The fall triumph of the
bishops was reserved for the reign of Charles I., when a number of them
obtained seats in the privy-council, where they behaved with such
overbearing insolence, that even Clarendon, notwithstanding his
notorious partiality for their order, censures their conduct.[305] In the
time, however, of James I., they carried nearly everything before
them.[306] They deprived the towns of their privileges, and forced them
to receive magistrates of their own choosing.[307] They accumulated
wealth, and made an ostentatious display of it; which was the more
disgraceful, as the country was miserably poor, and their fellow-subjects
were starving around them.[308] The Lords of the Articles, without whose
sanction no measure could be presented to parliament, had been hitherto
elected by laymen; but the bishops now effected a change, by virtue of
which the right of nomination devolved on themselves.[309] Having thus
gained possession of the legislature, they obtained the enactment of
fresh penalties against their countrymen. Great numbers of the clergy
they suspended; others they deprived of their benefices; others they
imprisoned. The city of Edinburgh, being opposed to the rites and
ceremonies lately introduced, and being, like the rest of the country,
hostile to episcopacy, the bishops fell on it also, displaced several of
its magistrates, seized some of the principal citizens, and threatened to
deprive it of the courts of justice, and of the honour of being the seat
of government.[310]

  [304] Calderwood, with ill-suppressed bitterness, says, 'efter the same
        maner that they were consecrated themselfs, _als neere as they
        could imitate_.' _History of the Kirk_, vol. vii. p. 152. Compare
        _Wodrow's Collections_, vol. i. part i. p. 293. 'The Bishops
        ordeaned in England keeped as near the manner taken with
        themselves there as they could.'

  [305] 'Some of them, by want of temper, or want of breeding, did not
        behave themselves with that decency in their debates, towards the
        greatest men of the kingdom, as in discretion they ought to have
        done, and as the others reasonably expected from them.'
        _Clarendon's History of the Rebellion_, edit. Oxford, 1843, p. 35.
        In 1633, 'nine of them were privy councillors;' and 'their pride
        was cried out upon as unsupportable.' _Burnet's Memoirs of the
        Dukes of Hamilton_, p. 38. Sir John Scot imputes to them
        'insolence, pride, and avarice.' _Scot's Staggering State of the
        Scots Statesmen_, Edinburgh, 1754, p. 41. See also _Spalding's
        History of the Troubles_, vol. i. pp. 46, 47, Edinburgh,
        1828, 4to.

  [306] So early as 1613, a letter from James Inglish (preserved in
        _Wodrow's Collections_, vol. ii. part i. p. 110, Glasgow, 1845,
        4to) complains that 'the libertys of the Lord's Kirk are greatly
        abridged by the pride of Bishops, and their power daily increases
        over her.' Civil rights were equally set at nought by the bishops;
        and, among other enactments which they obtained, one was, 'that no
        man should be permitted to practise or profess any physic, unless
        he had first satisfied the bishop of the diocese touching his
        religion.' _Spottiswoode's History of the Church of Scotland_,
        vol. iii. p. 236. This at once gave them the control of the whole
        medical profession.

  [307] 'Not satisfied with ruling the church-courts, they claimed an
        extensive civil authority within their dioceses. The burghs were
        deprived of their privileges, and forced to receive such
        magistrates as their episcopal superiors, in concert with the
        court, were pleased to nominate.' ... 'Archbishop Gladstanes, in a
        letter to the King, June the 9th 1611, says: "It was your pleasure
        and direction, that I sould be possessed with the like privileges
        in the electione of the magistrats there (in St. Andrews), as my
        lord of Glasgow is endued with in that his city. Sir, whereas they
        are troublesome, I will be answerable to your Majesty and Counsell
        for them, after that I be possessed of my right." Ms. in Bibl.
        Jurid. Edin. M. 6, 9. n^o. 72.' _M'Crie's Life of Melville_,
        vol. ii. p. 422.

  [308] And their prodigality was equal to their rapacity. When Archbishop
        Gladstanes died, in 1615, it was ascertained that,
        'notwithstanding of the great rent of his bishoprick, he died in
        the debt of twentie thowsand pounds.' _Calderwood's History of the
        Kirk_, vol. vii. p. 197. See also p. 303. Also the case of the
        Bishop of Galloway, who died in 1619, and of whom Calderwood says
        (_History of the Kirk_, vol. vii. p. 350), 'It is thought, that if
        just calculation were made of the commoditie extorted by him
        through his diocie, by advice of his two covetous counsellours,
        Andro Couper, his brother, and Johne Grilmour, wrytter in
        Edinburgh, for his use and theirs, by racting of rents, getting of
        grassoumes, setting of tacks, of teithes, and other like meanes,
        wold surmount the soume of an hundreth thousand merks, or, in the
        opinion of others, almost the double; so that manie within that
        diocie, and the annexed prelacies, sall hardlie recover their
        estates in their time.' Compare _Stevenson's History of the
        Church_, pp. 212, 392.

  [309] On this change, which was completed in 1621, see _Laing's History
        of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 88; _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_,
        vol. vii. p. 490; and _Baillie's Letters and Journals_, vol. i.
        p. 486, edit. Laing, Edinburgh, 1841.

  [310] _Calderwood's History of the Kirk_, vol. vii. pp. 472-474, 507,
        509, 511, 517-520, 530-543, 549-553, 566, 567, 614, 621. _Laing's
        History of Scotland_, vol. iii. pp. 90, 91. Laing, very unjustly,
        accuses the bishops of being so merciful as to disapprove of some
        of these transactions. But whoever has read much of the Scotch
        literature of the seventeenth century, will cheerfully exonerate
        the bishops from a charge, which they would themselves have
        repelled, and to which they are nowise amenable.

In the midst of all this, and while things seemed to be at their worst, a
great reaction was preparing. And the explanation of the reaction is to
be found in that vast and pregnant principle, on which I have often
insisted, but which our common historians are unable to understand;
namely, that a bad government, bad laws, or laws badly administered, are,
indeed, extremely injurious at the time, but can produce no permanent
mischief; in other words, they may harm a country, but can never ruin it.
As long as the people are sound, there is life, and while there is life,
there will be reaction. In such case, tyranny provokes rebellion, and
despotism causes freedom. But if the people are unsound, all hope is
gone, and the nation perishes. In both instances, government is, in the
long run, inoperative, and is nowise responsible for the ultimate result.
The ruling classes have, for the moment, immense power, which they
invariably abuse, except when they are restrained, either by fear, or by
shame. The people may inspire them with fear; public opinion may inspire
them with shame. But whether or not that shall happen, depends on the
spirit of the people, and on the state of opinion. These two
circumstances are themselves governed by a long chain of antecedents,
stretching back to a period, always very distant, and sometimes so remote
as to baffle observation. When the evidence is sufficiently abundant,
those antecedents may be generalized; and their generalization conducts
us to certain large and powerful causes, on which the whole movement
depends. In short periods, the operation of these causes is
imperceptible, but in long periods, it is conspicuous and supreme; it
colours the national character; it controls the great sweep and average
of affairs. In Scotland, as I have already shown, general causes made the
people love their clergy, and made the clergy love liberty. As long as
these two facts coëxisted, the destiny of the nation was safe. It might
be injured, insulted, and trampled upon. It might be harmed in various
ways; but the greater the harm, the surer the remedy, because the higher
the spirit of the country would be roused. All that was needed was, a
little more time, and a little more provocation. We, who, standing at a
distance, can contemplate these matters from an elevation, and see how
events pressed on and thickened, cannot mistake the regularity of their
sequence. Notwithstanding the apparent confusion, all was orderly and
methodical. To us, the scheme is revealed. There is the fabric, and it is
of one hue, and one make. The pattern is plainly marked, and fortunately
it was worked into a texture, whose mighty web was not to be broken,
either by the arts, or the violence, of designing men.

It was, therefore, of no avail that tyranny did her utmost. It was of no
avail that the throne was occupied by a despotic and unscrupulous king,
who was succeeded by another, more despotic and more unscrupulous than
himself. It was of no avail that a handful of meddling and intrusive
bishops, deriving their consecration from London, and supported by the
authority of the English church, took counsel together, and conspired
against the liberties of their native land. They played the part of spies
and of traitors, but they played it in vain. Yet, everything that
government could give them, it gave. They had the law on their side, and
they had the right of administering the law. They were legislators,
councillors, and judges. They had wealth; they had high-sounding titles;
they had all the pomp and attributes for which they bartered their
independence, and with which they hoped to dazzle the eyes of the vulgar.
Still, they could not turn back the stream; they could not even stop it;
they could not prevent it from coming on, and swallowing them up in its
course. Before that generation passed away, these little men, big though
they were in their own conceit, succumbed, and fell. The hand of the age
was upon them, and they were unable to resist. They were struck down, and
humbled; they were stripped of their offices, their honours, and their
splendour: they lost all which minds like theirs hold most dear. Their
fate is an instructive lesson. It is a lesson, both to the rulers of
nations, and to those who write the history of nations. To rulers, in so
far as it is one of many proofs how little they can do, and how
insignificant is the part which they play in the great drama of the
world. To historians, the result should be especially instructive, as
convincing them that the events on which they concentrate their
attention, and which they believe to be of supreme importance, are in
reality of trifling value, and, so far from holding the first rank, ought
to be made subservient to those large and comprehensive studies, by whose
aid alone, we can ascertain the conditions which determine the tread and
destiny of nations.

The events that now happened in Scotland, may be quickly told. The
patience of the country was well-nigh exhausted, and the day of reckoning
was at hand.[311] In 1637, the people began to rise. In the summer of
that year, the first great riot broke out in Edinburgh.[312] The flame
quickly spread, and nothing could stop it. By October, the whole nation
was up, and an accusation was preferred against the bishops, which was
signed by nearly every corporation, and by men of all ranks.[313] In
November, the Scotch, in defiance of the Crown, organized a system of
representation of their own, in which every class had a share.[314] Early
in 1638, the National Covenant was framed; and the eagerness with which
it was sworn to, showed that the people were determined, at all hazards,
to vindicate their rights.[315] It was now evident that all was over.
During the summer of 1638, preparations were made, and, in the autumn,
the storm broke. In November, the first General Assembly seen in Scotland
for twenty years, met at Glasgow.[316] The Marquis of Hamilton, the
king's commissioner, ordered the members to separate.[317] They
refused.[318] Nor would they disband, until they had done the work
expected from them.[319] By their vote, the democratic institution of
presbyteries was restored to its old power; the forms of consecration
were done away with; the bishops were degraded from their functions, and
episcopacy was abolished.[320]

  [311] In October 1637, Baillie, who was carefully watching the course of
        affairs, writes, 'No man may speak any thing in publick for the
        king's part, except he would have himself marked for a sacrifice
        to be killed one day. I think our people possessed with a bloody
        devill, farr above any thing that ever I could have imagined,
        though the masse in Latine had been presented.' And, in a
        postscript, dated 3rd October, he adds: 'My fears in my former
        went no farther then to ane ecclesiastik separation, but now I am
        more affrayit for a bloudie civill warr.' _Baillie's Letters and
        Journals_, edit. Laing, Edinburgh, 1841, vol. i. pp. 23, 25.

  [312] _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 131. _Chambers'
        Annals_, vol. ii. pp. 101-104. _Spalding's History of the Troubles
        in Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 47, 48.

  [313] 'The accusation, among themselves a bond of union, and to their
        enemies a signal of hostility, was subscribed by the nobility, the
        gentry, the clergy, and afterwards by all ranks, and almost by
        every corporation in the kingdom.' _Laing's History of Scotland_,
        vol. iii. p. 137.

  [314] _Ibid._, vol. iii. p. 138.

  [315] 'It was signed by a large majority of the people, in a paroxysm of
        enthusiasm beyond all example in our history.' _Chambers' Annals_,
        vol. ii. p. 105. Kirkton, who was a contemporary, says, 'And
        though only eleven private men (and some of them very
        inconsiderable) had the boldness first to begin this work, without
        ever asking leave of king or council, yet was it very quickly
        taken by all the people of Scotland, with hands lifted up in most
        solemn manner.' _Kirkton's History of the Church of Scotland_, p.
        33. Lord Somerville, taking a somewhat different view of affairs,
        remarks, that 'the generalitie of the natione entered into a
        hellish covenant, wherein they mutually obleidged themselves to
        extirpate episcopacy, and to defend each other against all
        persones whatsoever, noe not excepting the persone of his sacred
        majestie; but upon conditiones of ther oune frameing.'
        _Somerville's Memorie of the Somervilles_, vol. ii. p. 187.

  [316] There had been no General Assembly since 1618. _Argyll's
        Presbytery Examined_, p. 102; and the _Spottiswoode Miscellany_,
        vol. i. p. 88. But 'the provincial synods, presbyteries, and
        sessions still remained, and in these, good men mutually comforted
        one another.' _Stevenson's History of the Church of Scotland_,
        p. 162.

  [317] 'The assembly went on at such a rate, that the marquis judged it
        no longer fit to bear with their courses.' _Burnet's Memoirs of
        the Dukes of Hamilton_, p. 128. 'In end, seeing nothing said in
        reason did prevail, he, in his majesty's name, dissolved the
        assembly, and discharged their further proceeding under pain of
        treason.' p. 135.

  [318] _Stevenson's History of the Church of Scotland_, p. 310.

  [319] 'Notwithstanding the Proclamation, the Assembly presently
        thereafter met, and sat daily for divers weeks, until they had
        done their affairs, and were themselves pleas'd to dissolve.'
        _Guthry's Memoirs_, p. 41, edit. London, 1702.

  [320] _Acts of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland_, from
        1638 to 1842, Edinburgh, 1843, pp. 9-18. _Stevenson's History of
        the Church of Scotland_, pp. 332, 338.

Thus, the bishops fell, even more rapidly than they had risen.[321] As,
however, their fall was merely a part of the democratic movement,
matters could not stop there.[322] Scarcely had the Scotch expelled their
bishops, when they made war upon their king. In 1639, they took up arms
against Charles. In 1640, they invaded England. In 1641, the king, with
the hope of appeasing them, visited Scotland, and agreed to most of their
demands. It was too late. The people were hot, and a cry for blood had
gone forth. War again broke out. The Scotch united with the English, and
Charles was every where defeated. As a last chance, he threw himself upon
the mercy of his northern subjects,[323] But his offences were of that
rank and luxuriant growth, that it was impossible to forgive them.
Indeed, the Scotch, instead of pardoning him, turned him to profit. He
had not only trampled on their liberties, he had also put them to an
enormous expense. For the injury, he could offer no adequate atonement;
but the expense they had incurred, might be defrayed. And as it is an old
and recognized maxim, that he who cannot pay with his purse, shall pay
with his body, the Scotch saw no reason why they should not derive some
advantage from the person of their sovereign, particularly as, hitherto,
he had caused them nothing but loss and annoyance. They, therefore, gave
him up to the English, and, in return, received a large sum of money,
which they claimed as arrears due to them for the cost of making war on
him.[324] By this arrangement, both of the contracting parties benefited.
The Scotch, being very poor, obtained what they most lacked. The
English, a wealthy people, had indeed to pay the money, but they were
recompensed by getting hold of their oppressor, against whom they
thirsted for revenge; and they took good care never to let him loose,
until they had exacted the last penalty of his great and manifold

  [321] See, on their fall, some highly characteristic remarks in
        _Baillie's Letters and Journals_, vol. i. p. 168. In 1639, Howell
        writes from Edinburgh, 'The Bishops are all gone to wrack, and
        they have had but a sorry funeral; the very name is grown so
        contemptible, that a black dog, if he hath any white marks about
        him, is called _Bishop_. Our Lord of Canterbury is grown here so
        odious, that they call him commonly in the pulpit, the Priest of
        Baal, and the Son of Belial.' _Howell's Letters_, edit. London,
        1754, p. 276.

  [322] 'That people, after they had once begun, pursued the business
        vigorously, and with all imaginable contempt of the government.'
        _Clarendon's History of the Rebellion_, p. 45. Now, for the first
        time, the English government began to tremble. On 13th December
        1639, Secretary Windebank writes, 'His Majesty near these six
        weeks last past hath been in continual consultations with a select
        Committee of some of his Council (of which I have had the honour
        to be one), how to redress his affairs in Scotland, the fire
        continuing there, and growing to that danger, that _it threatens
        not only the Monarchical Government there, but even that of this
        kingdom_.' _Clarendon State Papers_, vol. ii. p. 81, Oxford, 1773,
        folio. This is the earliest intimation I have met with of Charles
        and his advisers being aware of their real peril. But though the
        king was capable of fear, he was incapable of compunction. There
        is no evidence on record, to show that he even felt remorse for
        having planned and executed those arbitrary and unprincipled
        measures, by which he inflicted immense misery upon Scotland and
        England, but more especially upon Scotland.

  [323] 'The kinge was now so waik, haueing nether toune, fort, nor armie,
        and Oxford being a waik and onfortified toune, from whence he
        looked daylie to be taken perforce, he therefor resolues to cast
        himself into the arms of the Scots; who, being his natine people,
        and of late so ongratfullie dealt with by the Inglish, he hoped
        their particular credit, and the credit of the wholl natione
        depending thereupon, they would not baslie rander him to the
        Inglish.' _Gordon's Britane's Distemper_, p. 193, published by the
        Spalding Club, Aberdeen, 1844, 4to.

  [324] That it may not be supposed, that, as an Englishman, I
        misrepresent this transaction by looking at it from an English
        point of view, I will merely quote what Scotch writers have said
        respecting it. 'Giveing up the king to the will and pleasure of
        the English parliament, that soe they might come by ther money.'
        _Somerville's Memorie of the Somervilles_, vol. ii. p. 366. 'The
        Scots sold their unfortunate king, who had fled to them for
        protection, to the commissioners of the English Parliament, for
        200,000_l._ sterling.' _Lyon's History of St. Andrews_, vol. ii.
        p. 38. 'The incident itself was evidence of a bargain with a _quid
        pro quo_.' _Burton's History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 493. 'The
        sale of the king to the parliament.' _Napier's Life of Montrose_,
        Edinburgh, 1840, p. 448. 'The king was delivered up, or rather
        sold, to the parliament's commissioners.' _Brown's History of
        Glasgow_, vol. i. p. 91. 'Their arrears were undoubtedly due; the
        amount was ascertained before the dispute concerning the disposal
        of his person, and the payment was undertaken by the English
        parliament, five months previous to the delivery, or surrender of
        the king. But the coincidence, however unavoidable, between that
        event and the actual discharge and departure of their army, still
        affords a presumptive proof of the disgraceful imputation of
        having sold their king; "as the English, unless previously assured
        of receiving his person, would never have relinquished a sum so
        considerable as to weaken themselves, while it strengthened a
        people with whom such a material question remained to be
        discussed."' _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. pp. 369,

  [325] A letter from Sir Edw. Hyde to Lord Hatton, dated April 12, 1649
        (in the _Clarendon State Papers_, vol. ii. p. 479, Oxf. 1773,
        fol.), says of Charles II., that the Scotch 'sold his father to
        those who murdered him.' But this is not true. Charles I., though
        certainly bought by the English, was not murdered by them. He was
        tried in the face of day; he was found guilty; he was executed.
        And most assuredly never did a year pass, without men far less
        criminal than he, suffering the same fate. Possibly, they are
        right who deem all capital punishment needless. That, however, has
        never been proved; and if this last and most terrible penalty is
        ever to be exacted, I cannot tell where we should find a more
        fitting subject to undergo it, than a despot who seeks to
        subjugate the liberties of the people over whom he is called to
        rule, inflicts cruel and illegal punishment on those who oppose
        him, and, sooner than renounce his designs, engages in a civil
        war, setting fathers against their children, disorganizing
        society, and causing the land to run with blood. Such men are
        outlaws; they are the enemies of the human race; who shall wonder
        if they fall, or, having fallen, who shall pity them?

After the execution of Charles I., the Scotch recognized his son as his
successor. But before they would crown the new king, they subjected him
to a treatment which hereditary sovereigns are not much accustomed to
receive. They made him sign a public declaration, expressing his regret
for what had happened, and acknowledging that his father, moved by evil
counsels, had unjustly shed the blood of his subjects. He was also
obliged to declare, that by these things he felt humbled in spirit. He
had, moreover, to apologize for his own errors, which he ascribed partly
to his inexperience, and partly to the badness of his education.[326] To
evince the sincerity of this confession, and in order that the confession
might be generally known, he was commanded to keep a day of fasting and
humiliation, in which the whole nation would weep and pray for him, in
the hope that he might escape the consequences of the sins committed by
his family.[327]

  [326] The declaration was signed by Charles on the 16th August 1650. An
        abridgment of it is given in _Balfour's Annales of Scotland_, vol.
        iv. pp. 92-94; but the entire document is preserved by Sir Edward
        Walker. See _Journal of Affairs in Scotland_, in _Walker's
        Historical Discourses_, London, folio, 1705, pp. 170-176. In it
        Charles is made to state that, 'though his Majesty as a dutiful
        son be obliged to honour the memory of his Royal Father, and have
        in estimation the person of his Mother; yet doth he desire to be
        deeply humbled and afflicted in spirit before God, because of his
        Father's hearkening unto and following evil councils, and his
        opposition to the work of reformation, and to the solemn league
        and covenant by which so much of the blood of the Lord's people
        hath been shed in these kingdoms.' He went on to say, that though
        he might palliate his own misconduct by pleading 'his education
        and age,' he thinks it better to 'ingeniously acknowledge all his
        own sins and the sins of his father's house.' Burnet (_History of
        his own Time_, vol. i. p. 97) says of this declaration: 'In it
        there were many hard things. The king owned the sin of his father
        in marrying into an idolatrous family: he acknowledged the
        bloodshed in the late wars lay at his father's door: he expressed
        a deep sense of his own ill education,' &c.

  [327] In reference to this event the following entry occurs in Lamont's
        Journal: '1650, Dec. 22.--The fast appointed by the commission of
        the kirke to be keiped througe the kingdome before the
        coronatione, was keiped att Largo the forsaide day by Mr. Ja.
        Magill; his lecture, Reu. 3. from v. 14 to the end of the chapt.;
        his text Reu. 2. 4, 5. Vpon the Thursday following, the 26 of this
        instant, the fast was keiped in likemaner; his lecture 2. Chro. 29
        to v. 12; his text 2. Chron. 12, 12. The causes of the first day
        (not read) was, the great contempt of the gospell, holden forth in
        its branches; of the second day (which were read), the sinns of
        the king, and of his father's house, where sundry offences of K.
        James the 6 were aknowledged, and of K. Charles the 1, and of K.
        Ch. the 2, nowe king.' _The Diary of Mr. John Lamont of Newton_,
        p. 25, Edinburgh, 1830, 4to. See also _Baillie's Letters and
        Journals_, vol. iii. p. 107; _Nicoll's Diary_, Edinburgh, 4to,
        1836, p. 38; _Row's Continuation of Blair's Autobiography_, edit.
        Wodrow Society, p. 255; _Bower's History of the University of
        Edinburgh_, vol. i. p. 253; _Presbytery Book of Strathbogie_,
        edit. Spalding Club, p. 169; and, above all, the _Registers of the
        Presbytery of Lanark_, published by the Abbotsford Club,
        Edinburgh, 1839, 4to, pp. 88, 89.

The spirit, of which acts like these are but symptoms, continued to
animate the Scotch during the rest of the seventeenth century. And
fortunately for them it did so. For, the reigns of Charles II. and James
II. were but repetitions of the reigns of James I. and Charles I. From
1660 to 1688, Scotland was again subjected to a tyranny, so cruel, and
so exhausting, that it would have broken the energy of almost any other
nation.[328] The nobles, whose power had been slowly but constantly
declining,[329] were unable to resist the English, with whom, indeed,
they rather seemed willing to combine, in order that they might have a
share in plundering and oppressing their own country.[330] In this, the
most unhappy period through which Scotland had passed since the
fourteenth century, the government was extremely powerful; the upper
classes, crouching before it, thought only of securing their own safety;
the judges were so corrupt, that justice, instead of being badly
administered, was not administered at all;[331] and the parliament,
completely overawed, consented to what was termed the recissory act, by
which, at a single stroke, all laws were repealed which had been enacted
since 1633; it being considered that those twenty-eight years formed an
epoch of which the memory should, if possible, be effaced.[332]

  [328] Wodrow, who had before him the records of the Privy Council,
        besides other evidence now lost, says, that the period from 1660
        to 1688 was 'a very horrid scene of oppression, hardships, and
        cruelty, which, were it not incontestably true, and well vouched
        and supported, could not be credited in after ages.' _Wodrow's
        History of the Church of Scotland from the Restoration to the
        Revolution_, vol. i. p. 57. And the Reverend Alexander Shields,
        quaintly, but truly, observes, 'that the said Government was the
        most untender, unpeaceable, tyrannical, arbitrary and wicked, that
        ever was in Scotland in any age or period.' _Shields' Scots
        Inquisition_, Edinburgh, 1745, p. 24.

  [329] When James I. ascended the throne of England, 'the principal
        native nobility' accompanied him; and 'the very peace which ensued
        upon the union of the crowns, may be considered as the
        commencement of an era in which many of our national strongholds
        were either transformed into simple residences or utterly
        deserted.' _Irving's History of Dumbartonshire_, 4to, 1860, pp.
        137, 166. The nobles 'had no further occasion to make a figure in
        war, their power in vassalage was of little use, and their
        influence of course decayed. They knew little of the arts of
        peace, and had no disposition to cultivate them.' _The Interest of
        Scotland Considered_, Edinburgh, 1733, p. 85. Under Charles I.,
        the movement continued; 'which fell out, partly through the
        giddiness of the times, but more by the way his Majesty had taken
        at the beginning of his reign; at which time he did recover from
        divers of them their hereditary offices, and also pressed them to
        quit their tithes (which formerly had kept the gentry in a
        dependance upon them), whereby they were so weaken'd that now when
        he stood most in need of them (except the chief of the clans) they
        could command none but their vassals.' _Guthry's Memoirs_, edit.
        1702, pp. 127, 128. Then came the civil wars, and the rule of
        Cromwell, during which they suffered both in person and in
        property. Compare _Chambers' Annals_, vol. ii. p. 225, with
        _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. pp. 515, 516. In 1654,
        Baillie writes (_Letters and Journals_, vol. iii. p. 249): 'Our
        nobilitie, weell near all, are wracked.' In 1656, 'Our nobles
        lying up in prisons, and under forfaultries, or debts, private or
        publict, are for the most part either broken or breaking.'
        _Ibid._, p. 317. And, in 1658, the same observer writes (vol. iii.
        p. 387): 'Our noble families are almost gone: Lennox hes little in
        Scotland unsold; Hamilton's estate, except Arran and the Baronrie
        of Hamilton, is sold; Argyle can pay little annuelrent for seven
        or eight hundred thousand merks; and he is no more drowned in debt
        than publict hatred, almost of all, both Scottish and English; the
        Gordons are gone; the Douglasses little better; Eglintoun and
        Glencairn on the brink of breaking; many of our chief families
        estates are cracking; nor is there any appearance of any human
        relief for the tyme.'

        The result of all this is thus described by Wodrow, under the year
        1661: 'Our nobility and gentry were remarkably changed to the
        worst: it was but few of such, who had been active in the former
        years, were now alive, and those few were marked out for ruin. A
        young generation had sprung up under the English government,
        educated under penury and oppression; their estates were under
        burden, and many of them had little other prospect of mending
        their fortunes, but by the king's favour, and so were ready to act
        that part he was best pleased with.' _Wodrow's History of the
        Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 89.

  [330] 'At the Restoration, Charles II. regained full possession of the
        royal prerogative in Scotland; and the nobles, whose estates were
        wasted, or their spirit broken, by the calamities to which they
        have been exposed, were less able and less willing than ever to
        resist the power of the crown. During his reign, and that of James
        VII., the dictates of the monarch were received in Scotland with
        most abject submission. The poverty to which many of the nobles
        were reduced, rendered them meaner slaves and more intolerable
        tyrants than ever. The people, always neglected, were now odious,
        and loaded with every injury, on account of their attachment to
        religious and political principles, extremely repugnant to those
        adopted by their princes.' _Robertson's History of Scotland_, book
        viii. pp. 257, 258.

  [331] A writer of great authority, speaking of the time of William III.,
        says: 'It is scarcely possible to conceive how utterly polluted
        the fountain of justice had become during the two preceding
        reigns. The Scottish bench had been profligate and subservient to
        the utmost conceivable extent of profligacy and subserviency.'
        _Burton's History of Scotland_, from 1689 to 1748, London, 1853,
        vol. i p. 72. See also vol. ii. p. 37; and _Brown's History of
        Glasgow_, vol. i. p. 194, Glasgow, 1795.

  [332] _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 10. _Baillie's Letters
        and Journals_, vol. iii. p. 458. As few persons take the trouble
        to read Scotch Acts of Parliament, I will extract from this one,
        its most argumentative passage. 'And forasmuch as now it hath
        pleased Almighty God, by the power of his oune right hand, so
        miracoulously to restore the Kings Maiestie to the Government of
        his Kingdomes, and to the exercise of his Royall power and
        Soveranity over the same: The estates of Parlia^t doe conceave
        themselffs obleidged in dischairge of ther duetie and conscience
        to God and the Kings Maiestie, to imploy all their power and
        interest for vindicateing his Maiesties Authority from all these
        violent invasions that have been made upon it; And so far as is
        possible to _remove out of the way every thing that may retaine
        any remembrance of these things_ which have been so enjurious to
        his Màtie and his Authority, so prejudiciall and dishonourable to
        the kingdome, and distructive to all just and true interests
        within the same.' ... 'Not to retaine any remembrance thairof, but
        that the same shall be held in _everlasting oblivion_.' _Acts of
        the Parliaments of Scotland_, vol. vii. p. 87, edit. folio, 1820.
        The date of this Act is 28th March 1661.

But, though the higher ranks ignominiously deserted their post, and
destroyed the laws which upheld the liberties of Scotland, the result
proved that the liberties themselves were indestructible. This was
because the spirit remained, by which the liberties had been won. The
nation was sound at the core; and while that was the case, legislators
could, indeed, abolish the external manifestations of freedom, but could
by no means touch the causes on which the freedom depended. Liberty was
prostrate, but yet it lived. And the time would surely come, when a
people, who loved it so dearly, would vindicate their rights. The time
would come, when, in the words of the great poet of English liberty, the
nation would rouse herself like a strong man after sleep, and, shaking
her invincible locks, would be as an eagle muing her mighty youth,
kindling her undazzled eyes at the midday beam, and purging and unscaling
her sight at the heavenly fountain; while the timorous birds of her evil
destiny, loving the twilight, should flutter about, amazed at what she

Still, the crisis was sad and dangerous. The people, deserted by every
one except their clergy, were ruthlessly plundered, murdered, and hunted,
like wild-beasts, from place to place. From the tyranny of the bishops,
they had so recently smarted, that they abhorred episcopacy more than
ever; and yet that institution was not only forced upon them, but
government put at its head Sharp, a cruel and rapacious man, who, in
1661, was raised to the archbishopric of St. Andrews.[333] He set up a
court of ecclesiastical commission, which filled the prisons to
overflowing; and when they would hold no more, the victims were
transported to Barbadoes, and other unhealthy settlements.[334] The
people, being determined not to submit to the dictation of government
respecting their religious worship, met together in private houses; and,
when that was declared illegal, they fled from their houses to the
fields. But there, too, the bishops were upon them.[335] Lauderdale, who,
for many years, was at the head of affairs, was greatly influenced by the
new prelates, and aided them with the authority of the executive.[336]
Under their united auspices, a new contrivance was hit upon; and a body
of soldiers, commanded by Turner, a drunken and ferocious soldier, was
let loose upon the people.[337] The sufferers, galled to madness, rose
in arms. This was made the pretence, in 1667, for fresh military
executions, by which some of the fairest parts of western Scotland were
devastated, houses burned, men tortured, women ravished.[338] In 1670, an
act of parliament was passed, declaring that whoever preached in the
fields without permission should be put to death.[339] Some lawyers were
found bold enough to defend innocent men, when they were tried for their
lives; it was therefore determined to silence them also, and, in 1674, a
great part of the Faculty of Advocates was expelled from Edinburgh.[340]
In 1678, by the express command of government, the Highlanders were
brought down from their mountains, and, during three months, were
encouraged to slay, plunder, and burn at their pleasure, the inhabitants
of the most populous and industrious parts of Scotland. For centuries,
the bitterest animosity had existed between the Highlanders and
Lowlanders; and now these savage mountaineers were called from their
homes, that they might take full revenge. And well they glutted their
ire. During three months, they enjoyed every license. Eight thousand[341]
armed Highlanders, invited by the English government, and receiving
beforehand an indemnity for every excess,[342] were left to work their
will upon the towns and villages of Western Scotland. They spared neither
age nor sex. They deprived the people of their property; they even
stripped them of their clothes, and sent them out naked to die in the
fields. Upon many, they inflicted the most horrible tortures. Children,
torn from their mothers, were foully abused; while both mothers and
daughters were subjected to a fate, compared to which death would have
been a joyful alternative.[343]

  [333] He was made 'primate' in 1661, but did not arrive in Scotland till
        April 1662. _Wodrow's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i.
        pp. 236, 247; and _Nicoll's Diary_, pp. 363, 364. 'That he was
        decent, if not regular, in his deportment, endued with the most
        industrious diligence, and not illiterate, was never disputed;
        that he was vain, vindictive, perfidious, at once haughty and
        servile, rapacious and cruel, his friends have never attempted to
        disown.' _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 98, 99. The
        formal establishment of episcopacy was in the autumn of 1661, as
        we learn from an entry in Lamont's Diary. '1661. Sept. 5 being
        Thursday, (the chancelour, Glencairne, and the E. of Rothes,
        haueing come downe from court some dayes before,) the cownsell of
        state satt att Edb., and the nixt day, being Fryday, they caused
        emitte and be proclaimed ouer the Crosse, a proclamation in his
        Maj. name, for establishing Episcopacie againe in the church of
        Scotlande; which was done with great solemnitie, and was
        afterwarde printed. _All persons, wither men or weomen, were
        discharged to speake against that office, under the paine of
        treason._' _The Diary of Mr. John Lamont_, p. 140. This, as we
        learn from another contemporary, was on account of 'the Kinges
        Majestie having stedfastlie resolvit to promove the estait, power,
        and dignitie of Bischops, and to _remove all impedimentes contrary
        thairto_.' _Nicoll's Diary_, 4to, p. 353; on 21st November 1661.
        This curious diary, written by John Nicoll, and extending from
        1650 to 1667, was printed at Edinburgh, in 1836, by the Bannatyne
        Club, and is now not often met with.

  [334] _Wodrow's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 383,
        390-395. _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 38: 'A court
        of ecclesiastical commission was procured by Sharp.' See also p.
        41: 'Under the influence of Sharp and the prelates, which
        Lauderdale's friends were unable to resist, the government seemed
        to be actuated by a blind resentment against its own subjects.'
        Compare _Burnet's History of his own Time_, vol. i. p. 365. 'The
        truth is, the whole face of the government looked liker the
        proceedings of an inquisition than of legal courts; and yet Sharp
        was never satisfied.' Another contemporary, Kirkton, says of these
        Commissioners: 'For ought I could hear, never one appeared before
        them that escapt without punishment. Their custom was without
        premonition or lybell, to ask a man a question, and judge him
        presently, either upon his silence or his answer.' ... 'They many
        times doubled the legal punishment; and not being satisfied with
        the fyne appointed by law, they used to add religation to some
        remote places, or deportation to Barbadoes, or selling into
        slavery.' _Kirkton's History of the Church of Scotland_, p. 206.
        See also _Naphtali, or the Wrestlings of the Church of Scotland_,
        1667, pp. 126-130. But as particular cases bring such matters more
        clearly before the mind, I will transcribe, from _Crookshank's
        History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 154, the sentences
        pronounced on a single occasion by this episcopal court. 'The
        treatment of some of the parishioners of Ancrum is not to be
        omitted. When their excellent minister, Mr. Livingstone, was taken
        from them, one Mr. James Scot, who was under the sentence of
        excommunication, was presented to that charge. On the day fixed
        for his settlement, several people did meet together to oppose it;
        and particularly a country woman, desiring to speak with him in
        order to dissuade him from intruding himself upon a reclaiming
        people, pulled him by the cloak, intreating him to hear her a
        little; whereupon he turned and beat her with his staff. This
        provoked two or three boys to throw a few stones, which neither
        touched him nor any of his company. However, it was presently
        looked upon as a treasonable tumult, and therefore the sheriff and
        justices of the peace in that bounds fined and imprisoned some of
        these people, which, one would think, might atone for a crime of
        this nature. But the high-commission, not thinking that
        sufficient, ordered those criminals to be brought before them.
        Accordingly, the four boys and this woman, with two brothers of
        hers of the name of Turnbull, were brought prisoners to Edinburgh.
        The four boys confessed, that, upon Scot's beating the woman, they
        had thrown each his stone. The commissioner told them that hanging
        was too good for them. However, the sentence of this merciless
        court only was, that they should be scourged through the city of
        Edinburgh, burnt in the face with a hot iron, and then sold as
        slaves to Barbadoes. The boys endured their punishment like men
        and Christians, to the admiration of multitudes. The two brothers
        were banished to Virginia; and the woman was ordered to be whipped
        through the town of Jedburgh. Burnet, bishop of Glasgow, when
        applied to that she might be spared lest she should be with child,
        mildly answered, That he would make them claw the itch out of her

  [335] They were invested with such immense power, that 'the old set of
        bishops made by the parliament, 1612, were but pigmies to the
        present high and mighty lords.' _Wodrow's History of the Church of
        Scotland_, vol. i. p. 262. See also, at p. 286, the remarks of
        Douglas: 'It is no wonder then the complaint against their bishops
        be, that their little finger is thicker than the loins of the

  [336] In 1663, Middleton was dismissed; and was succeeded by Lauderdale,
        who 'was dependent upon the prelates, and was compelled to yield
        to their most furious demands.' _Laing's History of Scotland_,
        vol. iv. p. 33. 'The influence, or rather the tyranny, which was
        thus at the discretion of the prelates, was unlimited; and they
        exercised it with an unsparing hand.' _Bower's History of the
        University of Edinburgh_, vol. i. p. 284.

  [337] 'Sir James Turner, that commanded them, was naturally fierce, but
        was mad when he was drunk; and that was very often.' _Burnet's
        History of his own Time_, vol. i. p. 364. Kirkton (_History of the
        Church_, p. 221) says: 'Sir James Turner hade made ane expedition
        to the west countrey _to subdue it to the bishops_, in the year
        1664; another in the year 1665; and a third in the year 1666; and
        this was the worst.' Full particulars will be found in _Wodrow's
        History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 373-375, 411, vol.
        ii. pp. 8, 17, vol. iii. pp. 264, 265. 'This method of dragooning
        people to the church, as it is contrary to the spirit of
        Christianity, so it was a stranger in Scotland, till Bishop Sharpe
        and the prelates brought it in.' vol. i. p. 401.

        Sir James Turner, whose Memoirs, written by himself, were not
        published till thirty years ago, relates an anecdote of his own
        drunkenness in a strain of maudlin piety well worthy of his
        career. _Turner's Memoirs of his own Life_, Edinburgh, 1829, 4to,
        pp. 42, 43. At p. 206, this impudent man writes: 'And yet I
        confesse, my humour never was, nor is not yet, one of the calmest;
        when it will be, God onlie knoues; yet by many sad passages of my
        life, I know that _it hath beene good for me to be afflicted_.'
        Perhaps, however, he may take the benefit of his assertion (p.
        144), 'that I was so farre from exceeding or transgressing my
        commission and instructions, that I never came the full length of
        them.' Considering the cruelties he committed, what sort of
        instructions could his superiors have given to him?

  [338] 'Sir James Turner lately had forced Galloway to rise in arms, by
        his cruelty the last and former years; but he was an easy master,
        compared with General Dalziel, his ruffians, and Sir William
        Bannatyne, this year.' _Wodrow's Church of Scotland_, vol. ii. p.
        62. Dalziel 'cruelly tortured whom he would.' p. 63. One woman 'is
        brought prisoner to Kilmarnock, where she was sentenced to be let
        down to a deep pit, under the house of the dean, full of toads and
        other vile creatures. Her shrieks thence were heard at a great
        distance.' p. 64. Two countrymen were 'bound together with cords,
        and hanged up by their thumbs to a tree, there to hang all night.'
        _Ibid._ Sir William Bannatyne's soldiers seized a woman, 'and
        bound her, and put lighted matches betwixt her fingers for several
        hours; the torture and pain made her almost distracted; she lost
        one of her hands, and in a few days she died.' _Ibid._
        'Oppressions, murders, robberies, rapes.' p. 65. 'He made great
        fires, and laid down men to roast before them, when they would
        not, or could not, give him the money he required, or the
        information he was seeking.' p. 104. See also _Crookshank's
        History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 204-207. The
        History is based upon Wodrow's great work, but contains many facts
        with which Wodrow was unacquainted. See _Crookshank_, vol. i. p.
        11. Respecting the outrages in 1667, there are some horrible
        details in a book published in that very year, under the title of
        _Naphtali, or the Wrestlings of the Church of Scotland_. See,
        especially, the summary at p. 174: 'wounding, beating, stripping
        and imprisoning mens persons, violent breaking of their houses
        both by day and night, and beating and wounding of wives and
        children, ravishing and deflowring of women, forcing wives and
        other persons by fired matches and other tortures to discover
        their husbands and nearest relations, although it be not within
        the compass of their knowledge, and driving and spoiling all their
        goods that can be carried away, without respect to guilt or

  [339] 'That whosoever without licence or authoritie forsaid shall preach,
        expound Scripture, or pray at any of these meetings in the ffeild,
        or in any house wher ther be moe persons nor the house contains,
        so as some of them be without doors (which is hereby declared to
        be a feild conventicle), or who shall convocat any number of
        people to these meetings, shall be punished with death and
        confiscation of ther goods.' _Acts of the Parliaments of
        Scotland_, vol. viii. p. 9, edit. 1820, folio. This was on the
        13th August 1670.

  [340] The immediate pretence being, to do away with appeals. See
        _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 72-74.

  [341] 'Savage hosts of Highlanders were sent down to depopulate the
        western shires, to the number of ten or eleven thousand, who acted
        most outrageous barbarities, even almost to the laying some
        counties desolate.' _A Cloud of Witnesses for the Royal
        Prerogatives of Jesus Christ_, edit. Glasgow, 1779, p. 18. But
        most authorities state the number to have been eight thousand. See
        _Kirkton's History_, p. 386; _Arnot's History of Edinburgh_, p.
        154; _Burnet's History of his own Time_, vol. ii. p. 134;
        _Denholm's History of Glasgow_, p. 67; and _Life and Sufferings of
        John Nisbet_, in _Select Biographies_, published by the Wodrow
        Society, vol. ii. p. 381. Chalmers, however, in his _Caledonia_,
        vol. iii. p. 592, says 10,000.

  [342] 'They were indemnified against all pursuits, civil and criminal,
        on account of killing, wounding, apprehending, or imprisoning,
        such as should oppose them.' _Crookshank's History of the Church
        of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 337, 338.

  [343] Short and imperfect notices of this 'Highland Host,' as it was
        called at the time, may be found in _Kirkton's History_, pp.
        385-390, and in _Crookshank's History_, vol. i. pp. 354, 355. But
        the fullest account of the enormities committed by these
        barbarians, is in Wodrow's great work, collected from authentic
        and official documents. See his _History of the Church of
        Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 375-413, 421-432, vol. iii. pp. 76, 79,
        486. They were provided beforehand with implements of torture.
        'They had good store of iron shackles, as if they were to lead
        back vast numbers of slaves, and thumb-locks, as they call them'
        (_i.e._ thumb-screws), 'to make their examinations and trials
        with.' vol. ii. p. 389. 'In some places they tortured people, by
        scorching their bodies at vast fires, and other wise,' vol. ii. p.
        422. Compare _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 88.
        'Neither age nor sex was exempt from outrage, and torture was
        freely employed to extort a confession of hidden wealth.' And, at
        p. 91, 'The Highlanders, after exacting free quarters, and wasting
        the country for three months, were dismissed to their hills with
        impunity and wealth.'

It was in this way, that the English government sought to break the
spirit, and to change the opinions, of the Scotch people. The nobles
looked on in silence, and, so far from resisting, had not even the
courage to remonstrate. The parliament was equally servile, and
sanctioned whatever the government demanded. Still, the people were firm.
Their clergy, drawn from the middle classes, clung to them; they clung to
their clergy, and both were unchanged. The bishops were hated as allies
of the government, and were with reason regarded as public enemies. They
were known to have favoured, and often to have suggested, the atrocities
which had been committed;[344] and they were so pleased with the
punishment inflicted upon their opponents, that no one was surprised,
when, a few years later, they, in an address to James II., the most cruel
of all the Stuarts, declared that he was the darling of heaven, and hoped
that God might give him the hearts of his subjects, and the necks of his

  [344] 'Indeed, the whole of the severity, hardships, and bloodshed from
        this year' (1661), 'until the revolution, was either actually
        brought on by the bishops, procured by them, or done for their
        support.' _Wodrow's History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p.
        223. 'It was our prelates who pushed the council to most of their
        severities.' p. 247. 'The bishops, indeed, violently pushed
        prosecutions.' _Crookshank's History of the Church_, vol. i.
        p. 298. In 1666, 'As to the prelates, they resolved to use all
        severities, and to take all imaginable cruel and rigorous ways and
        courses, first against the rest of the prisoners, and then against
        the whole west of Scotland.' _Row's Continuation of Blair's
        Autobiography_, pp. 505, 506, edit. Edinburgh, 1848. This
        interesting work is edited by Dr. M'Crie, and published by the
        Wodrow Society.

  [345] In 1688, 'the bishops concurred in a pious and convivial address to
        James, as the darling of heaven, that God might give him the
        hearts of his subjects and the necks of his enemies.' _Laing's
        History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 193.

The character of the prince, whom the bishops thus delighted to honour,
is now well understood. Horrible as were the crimes which had been
perpetrated, they were surpassed by what occurred, when he, in 1680,
assumed the direction of affairs.[346] He had worked himself to that
pitch of iniquity, as to derive actual enjoyment from witnessing the
agonies of his fellow-creatures. This is an abyss of wickedness, into
which even the most corrupt natures rarely fall. There have been, and
always will be, many men who care nothing for human suffering, and who
will inflict any amount of pain, in order to gain certain ends. But to
take delight in the spectacle, is a peculiar and hideous abomination.
James, however, was so dead to shame, that he did not care even to
conceal his horrible tastes. Whenever torture was inflicted, he was sure
to be present, feasting his eyes, and revelling with a fiendish joy.[347]
It makes our flesh creep to think that such a man should have been the
ruler of millions. But what shall we say to the Scotch bishops, who
applauded him, of whose conduct they were daily witnesses? Where can we
find language strong enough to stigmatize those recreant priests, who,
having passed years in attempting to subjugate the liberties of their
country, did, towards the close of their career, and just before their
final fall, band together, and employ their united authority, as
ministers of a holy and peaceful religion, to stamp with public approval,
a prince, whose malignant cruelty made him loathed by his contemporaries,
and whose revolting predilections, unless we ascribe them to a diseased
brain, are not only a slur upon the age which tolerated them, but a
disgrace to the higher instincts of our common nature?

  [346] 'After the Duke of York came down in October'(1680), 'the
        persecution turned yet more severe.' _Wodrow's History of the
        Church of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 225. 'Persecution and tyranny,
        mainly promoted by the Duke of York's instigation.' _Shields' Hind
        let loose_, p. 147. 'Immediately upon his mounting the throne, the
        executions and acts prosecuting the persecution of the poor
        wanderers, were more cruel than ever.' p. 200.

  [347] This was well known in Scotland; and is evidently alluded to by a
        writer of that time, the Rev. Alexander Shields, who calls James,
        not a man, but a monster. See _Shields' Hind let loose_, 1687, p.
        365. 'This man, or monster rather, that is now mounted the
        throne.' And a monster surely he was. Compare _Crookshank's
        History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 66, where it is
        mentioned that, when Spreul was tortured, 'the Duke of York was
        pleased to gratify his eyes with this delightful scene.' Also,
        _Wodrow's History_, vol. iii. p. 253, and _Laing's History of
        Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 116. According to Burnet, 'the duke's
        pleasure at witnessing human agony was a cold, and, as it were, a
        speculative pleasure, as if he were present for the purpose of
        contemplating some curious experiment. But James was so excitable
        a man, that this is hardly likely. At all events, the remarks of
        Burnet have a painful interest for those who study these dark,
        and, as we may rejoice to think, these very rare, forms of human
        malignity.' 'When any are to be struck in the boots, it is done in
        the presence of the council; and upon that occasion, almost all
        offer to run away. The sight is so dreadful, that without an order
        restraining such a number to stay, the board would be forsaken.
        But the duke, while he had been in Scotland, was so far from
        withdrawing, that he looked on all the while with an unmoved
        indifference, and _with an attention, as if he had been to look on
        some curious experiment_. This gave a terrible idea of him to all
        that observed it, as of a man that had no bowels nor humanity in
        him.' _Burnet's History of his own Time_, vol. ii. pp. 416, 417.

So utterly corrupt, however, were the ruling classes in Scotland, that
such crimes seem hardly to have excited indignation. The sufferers were
refractory subjects, and against them every thing was lawful. The usual
torture, which was called the torture of the boots, was to place the leg
in a frame, into which wedges were driven, until the bones were
broken.[348] But when James visited Scotland, an opinion began to grow
up, that this was too lenient, and that other means must be devised. The
spirit which he communicated to his subordinates, animated his immediate
successors, and, in 1684, during his absence, a new instrument was
introduced, termed the thumbikins. This was composed of small steel
screws, arranged with such diabolical art, that not only the thumb, but
also the whole hand, could be compressed by them, producing pain more
exquisite than any hitherto known, and having, moreover, the advantage of
not endangering life; so that the torture could be frequently repeated on
the same person.[349]

  [348] Shields (_A Hind let loose_, p. 186) describes the boots, as 'a
        cruel engine of iron, whereby, with wedges, the leg is tortured,
        until the marrow come out of the bone.' Compare _Naphtali, or the
        Wrestlings of the Church of Scotland_, 1667, p. 268: 'the
        extraordinary compression both of flesh, sinews, and bones, by the
        force of timber wedges and hammer.'

  [349] In 1684, Carstairs was subjected to this torture. See his own
        account, in a letter printed in _Wodrow's History of the Church of
        Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 96-100. He writes (p. 99): 'After this
        communing, the king's smith was called in, to bring in a new
        instrument to torture by the thumbkins, that had never been used
        before. For whereas the former was only to screw on two pieces of
        iron above and below with finger and thumb, these were made to
        turn about the screw with the whole hand. And under this torture,
        I continued near an hour and a half.' See also the case of Spence,
        in the same year, in _Burnet's History of his own Time_, vol. ii.
        p. 418. 'Little screws of steel were made use of, that screwed the
        thumbs with so exquisite a torment, that he sunk under this; for
        Lord Perth told him, they would screw every joint of his whole
        body, one after another, till he took the oath.' Laing (_History
        of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 143) says, 'the thumbikins; small screws
        of steel that compressed the thumb and the whole hand with an
        exquisite torture;' an invention brought by Drummond and Dalziel
        from Russia. For other notices, see _Fountainhall's Notes of
        Scottish Affairs_ from 1680 till 1701, Edinburgh, 4to, 1822, pp.
        41, 97, 101; _Bower's History of the University of Edinburgh_,
        vol. ii. p. 30; _Crookshank's History of the Church of Scotland_,
        vol. ii. p. 192; _A Cloud of Witnesses for the Royal Prerogatives
        of Jesus Christ_, edit. Glasgow, 1779, p. 371; and _Life of Walter
        Smith_, p. 85, in the second volume of _Walker's Biographia
        Presbyteriana_, Edinburgh, 1827.

After this, little more need be said.[350] From the mere mention of such
things, the mind recoils with disgust. The reader of the history of that
time sickens and faints at the contrivances by which these abject
creatures sought to stifle public opinion, and to ruin, for ever, a
gallant and high-spirited people. But now, as before, they laboured in
vain. More yet was, however, to be borne. The short reign of James II.
was ushered in by an act of singular barbarity. A few weeks after this
bad man came to the throne, all the children in Annandale and Nithsdale,
between the ages of six and ten, were seized by the soldiers, separated
from their parents, and threatened with immediate death.[351] The next
step was, to banish, by wholesale, large numbers of adults, who were
shipped off to unhealthy settlements; many of the men first losing their
ears, and the women being branded, some on the hand, some on the
cheek.[352] Those, however, who remained behind, were equal to the
emergency, and were ready to do what remained to be done. In 1688, as in
1642, the Scotch people and the English people united against their
common oppressor, who saved himself by sudden and ignominious flight. He
was a coward as well as a despot, and from him there was no further
danger. The bishops, indeed, loved him; but they were an insignificant
body, and had enough to do to look to themselves. His only powerful
friends were the Highlanders. That barbarous race thought, with regret,
of those bygone days when the government had not only allowed them, but
had ordered them, to plunder and oppress their southern neighbours. For
this purpose, Charles II. had availed himself of their services; and it
could hardly be doubted, that if the Stuart dynasty were restored, they
would be again employed, and would again enrich themselves by pillaging
the Lowlanders.[353] War was their chief amusement; it was also their
livelihood; and it was the only thing that they understood.[354] Besides
this, the mere fact that James no longer possessed authority,
wonderfully increased their loyalty towards him. The Highlanders
flourished by rapine, and traded in anarchy.[355] They, therefore, hated
any government which was strong enough to punish crime; and the Stuarts
being now far away, this nation of thieves loved them with an ardour
which nothing but their absence could have caused. From William III.,
they feared restraint; but the exiled prince could do them no hurt, and
would look on their excesses as the natural result of their zeal. Not
that they cared about the principle of monarchical succession, or
speculated on the doctrine of divine right.[356] The only succession that
interested them, was that of their chiefs. Their only notion of right,
was to do what those chiefs commanded. Being miserably poor,[357] they,
in raising a rebellion, risked nothing except their lives, of which, in
that state of society, men are always reckless. If they failed, they
encountered a speedy, and, as they deemed it, an honourable death. If
they succeeded, they gained fame and wealth. In either case, they were
sure of many enjoyments. They were sure of being able, for a time at
least, to indulge in pillage and murder, and to practise, without
restraint, those excesses which they regarded as the choicest guerdon of
a soldier's career.

  [350] 'In 1684, the Scottish nation was in the most distressing and
        pitiable situation that can be imagined.' ... 'The state of
        society had now become such, that, in Edinburgh, attention to
        ordinary business was neglected, and every one was jealous of his
        neighbour.' _Bower's History of the University of Edinburgh_,
        vol. i. p. 307.

  [351] 'Upon the 10th of March, all freeholders, heritors, and gentlemen
        in Nithsdale and Annandale, and, I suppose, in most other shires
        of the kingdom, but I name those as being the scene of the
        severities now used, were summoned to attend the king's standard;
        and the militia in the several shires were raised. Wherever
        Claverhouse came, he resolved upon narrow and universal work. He
        used to set his horse upon the hills and eminences, and that in
        different parties, that none might escape; and there his foot went
        through the lower, marshy, and mossy places, where the horse could
        not do so well. The shire he parcelled out in so many divisions,
        and six or eight miles square would be taken in at once. In every
        division, the whole inhabitants, men and women, young and old,
        without distinction, were all driven into one convenient place.'
        ... 'All the children in the division were gathered together by
        themselves, under ten years, and above six years of age, and a
        party of soldiers were drawn out before them. Then they were bid
        pray, for they were going to be shot. Some of them would answer,
        Sir, we cannot pray.' ... 'At other times, they treated them most
        inhumanly, threatening them with death, and at some little
        distance would fire pistols without ball in their face. Some of
        the poor children were frighted almost out of their wits, and
        others of them stood all out with a courage perfectly above their
        age. These accounts are so far out of the ordinary way of mankind,
        that I would not have insert them, had I not before me several
        informations agreeing in all these circumstances, written at this
        time by people who knew the truth of them.' _Wodrow's History of
        the Church of Scotland_, vol. iv. pp. 255, 256.

  [352] 'Numbers were transported to Jamaica, Barbadoes, and the North
        American settlements; but the women were not unfrequently burnt in
        the cheek, and the ears of the men were lopt off, to prevent, or
        to detect, their return,' _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iv.
        p. 162. 'Great multitudes banished,' _Wodrow's History of the
        Church_, vol. iv. p. 211. In July 1685, 'the men are ordered to
        have their ears cropt, and the women to be marked in their hand.'
        p. 217. 'To have the following stigma and mark, that they may be
        known as banished persons if they shall return to this kingdom,
        _viz._ that the men have one of their ears cut off by the hand of
        the hangman, and that the women be burnt by the same hand on the
        cheek with a burned iron.' p. 218. These are extracts from the
        proceedings of the privy-council.

  [353] 'James II. favoured the Highland clans,' Note in _Fountainhall's
        Scottish Affairs_ from 1680 till 1701, p. 100. He could hardly do
        otherwise. The alliance was natural, and ready-made for him.

  [354] Except robbing, which, however, in one form or other, is always a
        part of war. In this, they were very apt. Burnet (_History of his
        own Time_, vol. i. p. 67) pithily describes them as 'good at
        robbing;' and Burton (_Lives of Lovat and Forbes_, p. 47) says,
        'To steal even vestments was considerably more creditable than to
        make them.' Otherwise, they were completely absorbed by their
        passion for war. See _Thomson's Memoirs of the Jacobites_,
        vol. ii. pp. 175, 176, London, 1845.

  [355] 'Revenge was accounted a duty, the destruction of a neighbour a
        meritorious exploit, and rapine an honourable employment.'
        _Browne's History of the Highlands_, vol. iv. p. 395. 'The spirit
        of rivalry between the clans kept up a taste for hostility, and
        converted rapine into a service of honour.' _Thomson's Memoirs of
        the Jacobites_, vol. ii. p. 229.

  [356] Hence, looking, as they did, merely at the physical qualities of
        individuals, the appearance of the Pretender in 1715 disgusted
        them, notwithstanding his splendid lineage. See some excellent
        remarks in _Burton's History of Scotland_, from 1689 to 1748,
        London, 1853, vol. ii. pp. 198, 199. At p. 383, Mr. Burton justly
        observes, that 'those who really knew the Highlanders were aware
        that the followers were no more innate supporters of King James's
        claim to the throne of Britain, than of Maria Theresa's to the
        throne of Hungary. They went with the policy of the head of the
        clan, whatever that might be; and though upwards of half a
        century's advocacy of the exiled house' (this refers to the last
        rebellion in 1745) 'had made Jacobitism appear a political creed
        in some clans, it was among the followers, high and low, little
        better than a nomenclature, which might be changed with
        circumstances.' Since Robertson, Mr. Burton and Mr. Chambers are,
        I will venture to say, the two writers who have taken the most
        accurate and comprehensive views of the history of Scotland.
        Robertson's History stops short where the most important period
        begins; and his materials were scanty. But what he effected with
        those materials was wonderful. To my mind, his History of Scotland
        is much the greatest of his works.

  [357] A curious description of their appearance, given by the _Derby
        Mercury_ in 1746 (in _Thomson's Memoirs of the Jacobites_, vol.
        iii. p. 115), may be compared with the more general statement in
        _Anderson's Prize Essay on the Highlands_, Edinburgh, 1827, p.
        128. 'Cattle were the main resources of the tribe--the acquisition
        of these the great object of their hostile forrays. The precarious
        crops gave them wherewithal to bake their oaten cakes, or distil
        their ale or whisky. When these failed, the crowded population
        suffered every extreme of misery and want. At one time in
        particular, in Sutherland, they were compelled to subsist on broth
        made of nettles, thickened with a little oatmeal. At another,
        those who had cattle, to have recourse to the expedient of
        bleeding them, and mixing the blood with oatmeal, which they
        afterwards cut into slices and fried.'

So far, therefore, from wondering at the rebellions of 1715 and
1745,[358] the only wonder is, that they did not break out sooner, and
that they were not better supported. In 1745, when the sudden appearance
of the rebels struck England with terror, and when they penetrated even
to the heart of the kingdom, their numbers, even at their height,
including Lowland and English recruits, never reached six thousand men.
The ordinary amount was five thousand;[359] and they cared so little
about the cause for which they professed to fight, that, in 1715, when
they numbered much stronger than in 1745, they refused to enter England,
and make head against the government, until they were bribed by the
promise of additional pay.[360] So, too, in 1745, after they had won the
battle of Preston-pans, the only result of that great victory was, that
the Highlanders, instead of striking a fresh blow, deserted in large
bodies, that they might secure the booty they had obtained, and which
alone they valued. They heeded not whether Stuart or Hanoverian gained
the day; and at this critical moment, they were unable, says the
historian, to resist their desire to return to their glens, and decorate
their huts with the spoil.[361]

  [358] Several writers erroneously term them 'unnatural.' See, for
        instance, _Rae's History of the Rebellion_, London, 1746, pp. 158,
        169: and _Home's History of the Rebellion_, London, 1802, 4to,
        p. 347.

  [359] 'When the rebels began their march to the southward, they were not
        6000 men complete,' _Home's History of the Rebellion in the Year
        1745_, 4to, p. 137. At Stirling, the army, 'after the junction was
        made, amounted to somewhat more than 9000 men, the greatest number
        that Charles ever had under his command,' p. 164. But the actual
        invaders of England were much fewer. 'The number of the rebels
        when they began their march into England was a few above 5000
        foot, with about 500 on horseback.' _Home_, p. 331. Browne
        (_History of the Highlands_, vol. iii. p. 140) says: 'When
        mustered at Carlisle, the prince's army amounted only to about
        4500 men;' and Lord George Murray states that, at Derby, 'we were
        not above five thousand fighting men, if so many.' _Jacobite
        Memoirs of the Rebellion of 1745_, edited by Robert Chambers,
        Edinburgh, 1834, p. 54. Another writer, relying mainly on
        traditional evidence, says, 'Charles, at the head of 4000
        Highlanders, marched as far as Derby.' _Brown's History of
        Glasgow_, vol. ii. p. 41, Edinburgh, 1797. Compare _Johnstone's
        Memoirs of the Rebellion_, 3rd edit., London, 1822, pp. xxxvii.
        xxxviii. 30-32, 52. Johnstone says, p. 60, 'M. Patullo, our
        muster-master, reviewed our army at Carlisle, when it did not
        exceed four thousand five hundred men.' Afterwards, returning to
        Scotland, 'our army was suddenly increased to eight thousand men,
        the double of what it was when we were in England.' p. 111.

  [360] 'Orders were given to proceed in the direction of Carlisle, and
        recall the detachment sent forward to Dumfries. The Highlanders,
        still true to their stagnant principles, refused obedience.' ...
        'Pecuniary negotiations were now commenced, and they were offered
        sixpence a day of regular pay--reasonable remuneration at that
        period to ordinary troops, but to the wild children of the
        mountain a glittering bribe, which the most steady obstinacy would
        alone resist. It was partly effective.' _Burton's History of
        Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 168. 'And from this day, the Highlanders
        had sixpence a head per day payed them to keep them in good order
        and under command.' _Patten's History of the late Rebellion_,
        London, 1717, p. 73. See also, on the unwillingness of the
        Highlanders to enter England, _Rae's History of the Rebellion_,
        London, 1746, 2d edit. pp. 270, 271. Browne says (_History of the
        Highlands_, vol. ii. pp. 300, 304): 'The aversion of the
        Highlanders, from different considerations, to a campaign in
        England, was almost insuperable;' but 'by the aid of great
        promises and money, the greater part of the Highlanders were
        prevailed upon to follow the fortunes of their commander.'

  [361] 'Few victories have been more entire. It is said that scarcely two
        hundred of the infantry escaped.' ... 'The Highlanders obtained a
        glorious booty in arms and clothes, besides self-moving watches,
        and other products of civilisation, which surprised and puzzled
        them. Excited by such acquisitions, a considerable number could
        not resist the old practice of their people to return to their
        glens, and decorate their huts with their spoil.' _Burton's
        History of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 465. Compare _Home's History of
        the Rebellion_, p. 123. This was an old practice of theirs, as
        Montrose found out, a century earlier, 'when many of the
        Highlanders, being loaded with spoil, deserted privately, and soon
        after returned to their own country.' _Wishart's Memoirs of the
        Marquis of Montrose_, Edinburgh, 1819, p. 189. So, too, Burnet
        (_Memoirs of the Dukes of Hamilton_, p. 272): 'Besides, any
        companies could be brought down from the Highlands might do well
        enough for a while, but no order could be expected from them, for
        as soon as they were loaded with plunder and spoil, they would run
        away home to their lurking holes, and desert those who had trusted
        them.' See also p. 354. A more recent writer, drawing a veil over
        this little infirmity, remarks, with much delicacy, that 'the
        Highlanders, brave as they were, had a custom of returning home
        after a battle.' _Thomson's Memoirs of the Jacobites_, London,
        1845, vol. i. p. 122. Not unfrequently they first robbed their
        fellow-soldiers. In 1746, Bisset writes: 'The Highlanders, who
        went off after the battel, carried off horses and baggage from
        their own men, the Lowlanders.' _Diary of the Reverend John
        Bisset_, in _Miscellany of the Spalding Club_, vol. i. p. 377,
        Aberdeen, 1841, 4to.

There are, indeed, few things more absurd than that lying spirit of
romance, which represents the rising of the Highlanders as the outburst
of a devoted loyalty. Nothing was further from their minds than this. The
Highlanders have crimes enough to account for, without being burdened by
needless reproach. They were thieves and murderers; but that was in their
way of life, and they felt not the stigma. Though they were ignorant and
ferocious, they were not so foolish as to be personally attached to that
degraded family, which, before the accession of William III., occupied
the throne of Scotland. To love such men as Charles II. and James II.,
may, perhaps, be excused as one of those peculiarities of taste of which
one sometimes hears. But to love all their descendants; to feel an
affection so comprehensive as to take in the whole dynasty, and, for the
sake of gratifying that eccentric passion, not only to undergo great
hardships, but to inflict enormous evil upon two kingdoms, would have
been a folly as well as a wickedness, and would convict the Highlanders
of a species of insanity alien to their nature. They burst into
insurrection, because insurrection suited their habits, and because they
hated all government and all order.[362] But, so far from caring for a
monarch, the very institution of monarchy was repulsive to them. It was
contrary to that spirit of clanship to which they were devoted; and, from
their earliest childhood, they were accustomed to respect none but their
chiefs, to whom they paid a willing obedience, and whom they considered
far superior to all the potentates of the earth.[363] No one, indeed, who
is really acquainted with their history, will think them capable of
having spilt their blood on behalf of any sovereign, be he whom he might;
still less can we believe that they would quit their native land, and
undertake long and hazardous marches, with the object of restoring that
corrupt and tyrannical dynasty, whose offences smelt to heaven, and whose
cruelties had, at length, kindled the anger even of humble and
meek-minded men.

  [362] 'Whoever desired, with the sword, to disturb or overturn a fixed
        government, was sure of the aid of the chiefs, because a settled
        government was ruinous to their power, and almost inimical to
        their existence. The more it cultivated the arts of peace, and
        throve on industrially created well-being, the more did it drive
        into an antagonist position a people who did not change their
        nature, who made no industrial progress, and who lived by the
        swords which acquired for them the fruits of other men's industry.
        With their interests, a peaceful, strong government was as
        inconsistent as a well-guarded sheepfold with the interest of
        wolves.' _Burton's History of Scotland_, vol. i. pp. 105, 106.
        'The Highlanders, in all reigns, have been remarkable for
        disturbing the established government of Scotland by taking up
        arms on every invasion for the invaders.' _Marchant's History of
        the present Rebellion_, London, 1746, p. 18. See also _Macky's
        Journey through Scotland_, London, 1732, p. 129; and a short, but
        very curious, account of the Highlanders, in 1744, in _The
        Miscellany of the Spalding Club_, vol. ii. pp. 87-89.

  [363] An observer, who had excellent opportunities of studying their
        character between the rebellion of 1715 and that of 1745, writes,
        'The ordinary Highlanders esteem it the most sublime degree of
        virtue to love their chief, and pay him a blind obedience,
        although it be in opposition to the government, the laws of the
        kingdom, or even to the law of God. He is their idol; and as _they
        profess to know no king but him_ (I was going farther), so will
        they say, they ought to do whatever he commands, without inquiry.'
        _Letters from a Gentleman in the North of Scotland_, edit. London,
        1815, vol. ii. pp. 83, 84. 'The Highlanders in Scotland are, of
        all men in the world, the soonest wrought upon to follow their
        leaders or chiefs into the field, having a wonderful veneration
        for their Lords and Chieftains, as they are called there: _Nor do
        these people ever consider the validity of the engaging cause_,
        but blindly follow their chiefs into what mischief they please,
        and that with the greatest precipitation imaginable.' _Patten's
        History of the Rebellion_, London, 1717, p. 151. 'The power of the
        chiefs over their clans was the true source of the two rebellions.
        The clansmen cared no more about the legitimate race of the
        Stuarts, than they did about the war of the Spanish succession.'
        ... 'The Jacobite Highland chiefs ranged their followers on the
        Jacobite side--the Hanoverians ranged theirs on the side of
        government. Lovat's conduct was a sort of _experimentum crucis_;
        he made his clan Hanoverian in one rebellion, and Jacobite in
        another.' _Burton's Lives of Lovat and Forbes_, p. 150. Compare
        the change of side of the Mackintoshes, in _Browne's History of
        the Highlands_, vol. ii. p. 285. Even so late as the American war,
        the sovereign was deemed subordinate to the chief. 'One Captain
        Frazer from the northern district, brought down a hundred of his
        clan, all of the name of Frazer. Few of them could understand a
        word of English; and the only distinct idea they had of all the
        mustering of forces which they saw around them, was that they were
        going to fight for King Frazer and George ta Three.' _Penny's
        Traditions of Perth_, pp. 49, 50, Perth, 1836.

The simple fact is, that the outbreaks of 1715 and 1745 were, in our
country, the last struggle of barbarism against civilization. On the one
side, war and confusion. On the other side, peace and prosperity. These
were the interests for which men really fought; and neither party cared
for Stuarts or for Hanoverians. The result of such a contest in the
eighteenth century, could hardly be doubtful. At the time, the
rebellions caused great alarm, both from their suddenness, and from the
strange and ferocious appearance of the Highland invaders.[364] But the
knowledge we now possess, enables us to see, that, from the beginning,
success was impossible. Though the government was extremely remiss, and,
notwithstanding the information it received, allowed itself on both
occasions to be taken by surprise, there was no real danger.[365] The
English, not being particularly enamoured either with the Highlanders or
with the Stuarts, refused to rise;[366] and it cannot be seriously
supposed, that a few thousand half-naked banditti had it in their power
to prescribe to the people of England what sovereign they should obey,
and under what sort of government they should live.

  [364] Which gave rise to a report that they were cannibals. 'The late
        Mr. Halkston of Rathillet, who had been in this expedition' (the
        Rebellion of 1745), 'told Mr. Young that the belief was general
        among the people of England, that the Highlanders ate children.'
        _Johnstone's Memoirs of the Rebellion_, 3rd edit. London, 1822,
        p. 101. Such a rumour, notwithstanding its absurdity, was made
        somewhat plausible by the revolting conduct of the Highlanders in
        the first rebellion of 1715, when they committed, in the Lowlands,
        horrible outrages on corpses which they dug up. See the
        contemporary evidence, in _Correspondence of the Rev. Robert
        Wodrow_, published by the Wodrow Society, vol. ii. pp. 86, 87, 93.
        'They have even raised up some of my Lord Rothes's children and
        mangled their dead bodies' ... 'till the stench put them away.' In
        1745, they signalized their entrance into England in the following
        manner. 'The rebels, during their stay in Carlisle, committed the
        most shocking detestable villanies; for, not contented with
        robbing families of their most valuable effects, they scrupled not
        to act their brutal insolence on the persons of some young ladies,
        even in the presence of their parents. A gentleman, in a letter to
        his friend in London, writes thus: "That, after being in a manner
        stripped of every thing, he had the misery to see three of his
        daughters treated in such a manner that he could not relate it."'
        _Marchant's History of the present Rebellion_, London, 1746,
        pp. 181, 182.

  [365] Even when they had penetrated to Derby, the best informed of their
        own party despaired of success. See the Jacobitical account in
        _The Lockhart Papers_, London, 4to, 1817, vol. ii. p. 458: 'The
        next thing to be considered of, was what was now to be done; they
        were now at Derby, with an army not half the number of what they
        were reported to be, surrounded in a manner with regular troops
        on all sides, and more than double their number. To go forward,
        there was no encouragement, for their friends (if they had any)
        had kept little or no correspondence with them from the time they
        entered England.' The Chevalier de Johnstone, who took an active
        part in the Rebellion, frankly says, 'If we had continued to
        advance to London, and had encountered all the troops of England,
        with the Hessians and Swiss in its pay, there was every
        appearance of our being immediately exterminated, without the
        chance of a single man escaping.' _Johnstone's Memoirs of the
        Rebellion in 1745 and 1746_, p. 79.

  [366] Lord George Murray, the commander-in-chief in 1745, was unwilling
        to advance far south of Carlisle, 'without more encouragement from
        the country than we had hitherto got.' See his own account, in
        _The Jacobite Memoirs of the Rebellion of 1745_, edited by R.
        Chambers, Edinburgh, 1834, p. 48. But his prudent advice was
        overruled. The Highlanders pressed on; and that happened, which
        any one, tolerably acquainted with England, might have foreseen.
        Johnstone (_Memoirs of the Rebellion_, p. 70) says, 'In case of a
        defeat in England, no one in our army could by any possibility
        escape destruction, as the _English peasants were hostile towards
        us in the highest degree_; and, besides, the army of Marshal Wade
        was in our rear, to cut us off from all communication with
        Scotland.' And at p. 81, 'In every place we passed through, we
        found the English very ill disposed towards us, except at
        Manchester, where there appeared some remains of attachment to the
        house of Stuart.' The champion of arbitrary power would find a
        different reception now, in that magnificent specimen of English
        prosperity, and of true, open-mouthed, English fearlessness. But a
        century ago, the men of Manchester were poor and ignorant; and the
        statement of Johnstone respecting them is confirmed by Home, who
        says, 'At Manchester, several gentlemen, and about 200 or 300 of
        the common people, joined the rebel army; _these were the only
        Englishmen (a few individuals excepted) who joined Charles in his
        march through the country of England_.' _Home's History of the
        Rebellion in 1745_, London, 1802, 4to, p. 145. In 1715, the
        English equally held back, except at Manchester. See _Patten's
        History of the late Rebellion_, London, 1717, pp. 89, 108.

After 1745, there was no further interruption. The interests of
civilization, that is, the interests of knowledge, of liberty, and of
wealth, gradually assumed the upper hand, and reduced men like the
Highlanders to utter insignificance. Roads were cut through their
country; and, for the first time, travellers from the south began to
mingle with them in their hitherto inaccessible wilds.[367] In those
parts, the movement was, indeed, very slow; but, in the Lowlands, it was
much more rapid. For, the traders and inhabitants of towns were now
becoming prominent, and their authority helped to neutralize the old
warlike and anarchical habits. Towards the end of the seventeenth
century, a taste for commercial speculation sprung up, and a large amount
of the energy of Scotland was turned into this new channel.[368] Early in
the eighteenth century, the same tendency was displayed in literature;
and works on mercantile and economical subjects became common.[369] A
change in manners was also perceptible. About this period, the Scotch
began to lose something of that rugged ferocity which had distinguished
them of old. This improvement was evinced in several ways; one of the
most remarkable being an alteration, which was first observed in 1710,
when it was noticed that men were leaving off armour, which had hitherto
been worn by every one who could afford it, as a useful precaution in a
barbarous, and therefore a warlike society.[370]

  [367] The establishment of roads caused great displeasure. Pennant, who
        visited Scotland in 1769, says, 'These publick works were at first
        very disagreeable to the old chieftains, and lessened their
        influence greatly: for by admitting strangers among them, their
        clans were taught that the Lairds were not the first of men.'
        _Pennant's Tour in Scotland_, 4th edit. Dublin, 1775, vol. i.
        p. 204. Towards the end of the eighteenth century, this feeling
        began to die away. 'Till of late, the people of Kintail, as well
        as other Highlands, had a strong aversion to roads. The more
        inaccessible, the more secure, was their maxim.' _Sinclair's
        Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. vi. p. 244, Edinburgh,

  [368] 'Soon after the establishment of the revolution settlement, the
        ardent feelings of the Scottish people were turned out of their
        old channels of religious controversy and war in the direction of
        commercial enterprise.' _Burton's Criminal Trials in Scotland_,
        vol. i. p. 104. Compare _Burnet's History of his own Time_, vol.
        iv. pp. 286, 287, 418; and the note (at p. 419): 'The lords and
        commons of Scotland were then desirous of getting into trade.'
        This is under the year 1699. In 1698, Fletcher of Saltoun writes:
        'by no contrivance of any man, but by an unforeseen and unexpected
        change of the genius of this nation, all their thoughts and
        inclinations, as if united and directed by a higher power, seemed
        to be turned upon trade, and to conspire together for its
        advancement.' _First Discourse on the Affairs of Scotland_, in
        _Fletcher of Saltoun's Political Works_, Glasgow, 1749, p. 57. At
        this, the clergy were uneasy. In 1709, the Reverend Robert Wodrow
        expresses an opinion, in one of his letters, that 'the sin of our
        too great fondness for trade, to the neglecting of our more
        valuable interests, I humbly think will be written upon our
        judgment.' _Wodrow's Correspondence_, Edinburgh, 1842, 8vo, vol.
        i. p. 67. In the same year, some ships being taken by the French,
        part of the loss fell upon Glasgow. Thereupon, Wodrow writes:
        'It's said that in all there is about eighty thousand pound
        sterling lost there, whereof Glasgow has lost ten thousand pound.
        I wish trading persons may see the language of such a Providence.
        I am sure the Lord is remarkably frouning upon our trade, in more
        respects than one, since it was put in the room of religion, in
        the late alteration of our constitution.' _Wodrow's Analecta_,
        vol. i. p. 218, 4to, published by the Maitland Club.

  [369] Laing (_History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 296), under the year
        1703, says: 'Ever since the projected settlement at Darien, the
        genius of the nation had acquired a new direction; and as the
        press is the true criterion of the spirit of the times, the
        numerous productions on political and commercial subjects, with
        which it daily teemed, had supplanted the religious disputes of
        the former age.' Unfortunately for Scotland, they were by no means
        supplanted. Still, the movement was great, and not to be mistaken.

  [370] 'It was only in 1710, that they began to throw off their armour,
        and allow the soldier to merge into the quiet and industrious
        craftsman.' _Penny's Traditions of Perth_, p. 335, Perth, 1836.
        This particularly applies to the citizens of Perth.

To trace the general progress in its various parts, or even to indicate
the immediate consequences, would require a separate volume. One of the
results is, however, too conspicuous to be passed over in silence, though
it does not deserve all the importance that has been attached to it. This
is, the abolition of hereditary jurisdictions, which, after all, was but
a symptom of the great movement, and not a cause of it; being itself due,
partly to the growth of the industrial spirit, and partly to that
diminution of the power of the aristocracy, which had been visible as
early as the beginning of the seventeenth century. During many ages,
certain persons of noble birth had enjoyed the privilege of trying
offences, and even of inflicting capital punishment, simply because their
ancestors had done so before them; the judicial power being, in fact,
part of their patrimony, and descending to them like the rest of their
property.[371] An institution of this sort, which made a man a judge,
not because he was apt for the office, but because he was born under
particular circumstances, was a folly which the revolutionary temper of
the eighteenth century was not likely to spare. The innovating spirit for
which that age was remarkable, could hardly fail to attack so
preposterous a custom; and its extinction was facilitated, both by the
decline of the nobles who possessed the privilege, and by the rise of
their natural opponents, the trading and commercial classes. The decay of
the Scotch nobility, in the eighteenth century, may be traced to two
special causes, in addition to those general causes, which were weakening
the aristocracy nearly all over Europe. With the general causes, which
were common to England and to most parts of the Continent, we are not now
concerned. It is enough to say, that they were entirely dependent on that
advance of knowledge, which, by increasing the authority of the
intellectual class, undermines, and must eventually overthrow, mere
hereditary and accidental distinctions. But those causes which were
confined to Scotland, had a more political character, and though they
were purely local, they harmonized with the whole train of events, and
ought to be noticed, as links of a vast chain, which connects the present
state of that singular country with its past history.

  [371] On these 'hereditary or proprietary jurisdictions,' which conferred
        the right, or, I would rather say, the power, of putting people to
        death, see _Burton's History of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 425, vol.
        ii. p. 402. The technical term for so monstrous a privilege, was
        the right 'of pit and gallows.' _Pitcairn's Criminal Trials in
        Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 94; and _Mackenzie's Laws and Customs of
        Scotland in Matters Criminal_, pp. 70, 100, 187, 210. This meant,
        that men were to be hung, and women to be drowned. See also
        _Arnot's History of Edinburgh_, p. 224; _Fountainhall's Notes of
        Scottish Affairs_, p. 139; _Hume's History of the House of
        Douglas_, vol. i. p. 346; _Lettice's Scotland_, p. 271;
        _Sinclair's Scotland_, vol. i. p. 417, vol. iv. p. 478, vol. vi.
        pp. 195, 258, vol. viii. pp. 129, 348, vol. xiii. p. 563,
        vol. xiv. p. 34, vol. xvii. pp. 442, 600, vol. xviii. p. 473.

The first cause was the union of Scotland with England, in 1707, which
struck a heavy blow at the Scotch aristocracy. By it, the legislature of
the smaller country was absorbed in that of the larger, and the
hereditary legislators suddenly sunk into insignificance. In the Scotch
parliament, there were a hundred and forty-five peers, all of whom,
except sixteen, were, by the Act of Union, deprived of the power of
making laws.[372] These sixteen were sent off to London, and took their
seats in the House of Lords, of which they formed a small and miserable
fraction. On every subject, however important to their own country, they
were easily outvoted; their manners, their gesticulations, and
particularly their comical mode of pronouncing English, were openly
ridiculed;[373] and the chiefs of this old and powerful aristocracy found
themselves, to their utter amazement, looked on as men of no account, and
they were often obliged to fawn and cringe at the levee of the minister,
in order to procure a place for some needy dependent. Their friends and
relations applied to them for offices, and generally applied in vain.
Indeed, the Scotch nobles, being very poor, wanted for themselves more
than the English government was inclined to give, and, in the eagerness
of their clamour, they lost both dignity and reputation.[374] They were
exposed to mortifying rebuffs, and their true position being soon known,
weakened their influence at home, among a people already prepared to
throw off their authority. To this, however, they were comparatively
indifferent, as they looked for future fortune, not to Scotland, but to
England. London became the centre of their intrigues and their
hopes.[375] Those who had no seat in the House of Lords, longed to have
one, and it was notorious, that the darling object of nearly every Scotch
noble was to be made an English peer.[376] The scene of their ambition
being shifted, they were gradually weaned from their old associations.
Directly this was apparent, the foundation of their power was gone. From
that moment, their real nationality vanished. It became evident that
their patriotism was but a selfish passion. They ceased to love a country
which could give them nothing, and, as a natural consequence, their
country ceased to love them.

  [372] Laing (_History of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 345) says, that in 1706,
        'the commons in the Scottish parliament were 160; the peers 145.'
        Of these peers, the Treaty of Union declared that 'sixteen shall
        be the number to sit and vote in the House of Lords.' _De Foe's
        History of the Union between England and Scotland_, London, 1786,
        4to, pp. 205, 538. The English House of Lords consisted of 179
        members. See _The Lockhart Papers_, London, 1817, 4to, vol. i. pp.
        343, 547. It was impossible to mistake the result of this sweeping
        measure, by which, as was said at the time, 'Scotland was to
        retrench her nobility.' _De Foe's History of the Union_, p. 495.
        Compare p. 471: 'The nobility being thereby, as it were, degraded
        of their characters.' In 1710, a Scotchman writes in his journal:
        'It was one of the melancholyest sights to any that have any sense
        of our antient Nobility, to see them going throu for votes, and
        making partys, and giving their votes to others who once had their
        oun vote; and I suspect many of them reu the bargain they made, in
        giving their oun pouer away.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. i. p. 308.

  [373] The Scotch, consequently, became so eager to do away with this
        source of mirth, that even as late as the year 1761, when the
        notorious lecturer, Sheridan, visited Edinburgh, 'such was the
        rage for speaking with an English accent, that more than three
        hundred gentlemen, among whom were the most eminent in the country
        for rank and learning, attended him.' _Ritchie's Life of Hume_,
        London, 1807, p. 94. It was, however, during about twenty years
        immediately after the Union, that the Scotch members of
        Parliament, both Lords and Commons, were most jeered at in London,
        and were treated with marked disrespect, socially and politically.
        Not only were they mocked and lampooned, but they were also made
        tools of. In September 1711, Wodrow writes (_Analecta_, vol. i. p.
        348, 4to, 1842): 'In the beginning of this (month), I hear a
        generall dissatisfaction our Nobility, that wer at last
        Parliament, have at their treatment at London. They complean they
        are only made use of as tools among the English, and cast by when
        their party designes are over.' The next year (1712), the Scotch
        members of the House of Commons met together, and expressed their
        'high resentment of the uncivil, haughty treatment they mett with
        from the English.' _The Lockhart Papers_, London, 1817, 4to, vol.
        i. p. 417. See, further, _Burton's History of Scotland_, vol. ii.
        p. 27. 'Without descending to rudeness, the polished
        contemporaries of Wharton and St. John could madden the sensitive
        and haughty Scots by light shafts of raillery, about their
        pronunciation or knowledge of parliamentary etiquette.' Some
        curious observations upon the way in which the Scotch pronounced
        English, late in the seventeenth century, will be found in
        _Morer's Short Account of Scotland_, London, 1702, pp. 13, 14. The
        author of this book was chaplain to a Scotch regiment.

  [374] Among many illustrations with which contemporary memoirs abound,
        the following is by no means the worst. Burnet, as a Scotchman,
        thinks proper to say that those of his countrymen who were sent to
        parliament, 'were persons of such distinction, that they very well
        deserved' the respect and esteem with which they were treated. To
        which, Lord Dartmouth adds: 'and were very importunate to have
        their deserts rewarded. A Scotch earl pressed Lord Godolphin
        extremely for a place. He said there was none vacant. The other
        said, his lordship could soon make one so, if he pleased. Lord
        Godolphin asked him, if he expected to have any body killed to
        make room? He said, No; but Lord Dartmouth commonly voted against
        the court, and every body wondered that he had not been turned out
        before now. Lord Godolphin told him, he hoped his lordship did not
        expect that he should be the person to propose it; and advised him
        never to mention it any more, for fear the queen should come to
        hear of it; for if she did, his lordship would run great risk
        never to have a place as long as she lived. But he could not
        forbear telling every where, how ill the lord treasurer had used
        him.' _Burnet's History of his own Time_, vol. v. p. 349, Oxford,
        1823. Compare the account, in 1710, in _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol.
        i. p. 293. 'Argyle is both picked (_i.e._ piqued) at Marlburrou,
        and his brother Yla, for refusing him a regiment; and Godolphin
        should have said to the queen that my Lord Yla was not to be
        trusted with a regiment! The Earl of Marr was one of the greatest
        cronnies Godolphine had, till the matter of his pension, after the
        Secretary office was taken from him, came about. Godolphine caused
        draw it during pleasure; Marr expected it during life, which the
        Treasurer would not yield to, and therefore they brake.' The
        history of the time is full of these wretched squabbles, which
        show what the Scotch nobles were made of. Indeed, their rapacity
        was so shameless, that, in 1711, several of them refused to
        perform their legislative duties in London, unless they received
        some offices which they expected. 'About the midle of this moneth,
        I hear ther was a meeting of severall of our Scots Peers, at the
        Viscount of Kilsyth's, where they concerted not to goe up to this
        parliament till peremptorly writ for; and (also) some assurance be
        given of the places they were made to hope for last session and
        have missed.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. i. p. 365. In 1712, the
        same Scotchman writes (_Analecta_, vol. ii. p. 8): 'Our Scots
        Peers' secession from the House of Peers makes much noise; but
        they doe not hold by it. They sometimes come and sometimes goe,
        and _they render themselves base in the eyes of the English_.' See
        also a letter 'concerning the Scots Peerage,' in _Somers' Tracts_,
        vol. xii. p. 607, edit. Scott, London, 1814, 4to.

  [375] A Scotch writer, twenty years after the Union, says: 'Most of our
        gentlemen and people of quality, who have the best estates in our
        country, live for the most part at London.' _Reasons for improving
        the Fisheries and Linen Manufacture of Scotland_, London, 1727, p.
        22. I do not know who wrote this curious little treatise; but the
        author was evidently a native of Scotland. See p. 25. I have,
        however, still earlier evidence to adduce. A letter from Wodrow,
        dated 9th of August 1725, complains of 'the general sending our
        youth of quality to England:' and a letter to him, in 1716,
        describes the Anglicizing process going on among the Scotch
        aristocracy, only nine years after the Union. 'Most of our Lords
        and others here do so much depend on the English for their posts,
        and _seeking somewhat or other_, that their mouths are almost
        quite stopped; and really _most of them go into the English way in
        all things_.' _Wodrow's Correspondence_, vol. ii. p. 196, vol.
        iii. p. 224. The Earl of Mar lost popularity in Scotland, on
        account of the court he paid to Lord Godolphin; for, he 'appears
        to have passed much more time in intrigues in London than among
        the gardens of Alloa.' _Thomson's Memoirs of the Jacobites_, vol.
        i. p. 36. Even Earl Ilay, in his anxiety to advance himself at the
        English court, 'used to regret his being a Scots peer, and to wish
        earnestly he was a commoner.' _Letters of Lord Grange_, in _The
        Miscellany of the Spalding Club_, vol. iii. p. 39, Aberdeen, 4to,

  [376] Indeed, their expectation ran so high, as to induce a hope, not
        only that those Commissioners of the Union who were Scotch peers
        should be made English ones, but that 'the whole nobility of
        Scotland might in time be admitted.' _Laing's History of
        Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 346. Compare _The Lockhart Papers_, vol. i.
        pp. 298, 343: 'the Scots Peerage, many of whom had been bubled
        with the hopes of being themselves created British Peers.' Also
        _The Gordon Letters_, in _The Miscellany of the Spalding Club_,
        vol. iii. pp. 227, 228.

Thus it was that this great tie was severed. In this, as in all similar
movements, there were, of course, exceptions. Some of the nobles were
disinterested, and some of their dependents were faithful. But, looking
at the Lowlands as a whole, there can be no doubt that, before the middle
of the eighteenth century, that bond of affection was gone, which, in
former times, made tens of thousands of Scotchmen ready to follow their
superiors in any cause, and to sacrifice their lives at a nod. That
spirit, which was once deemed ardent and generous, but which a deeper
analysis shows to be mean and servile, was now almost extinct, except
among the barbarous Highlanders, whose ignorance of affairs long
prevented them from being influenced by the stream of events. That the
proximate cause of this change was the Union, will probably be denied by
no one who has minutely studied the history of the period. And that the
change was beneficial, can only be questioned by those sentimental
dreamers, with whom life is a matter rather of feeling than of judgment,
and who, despising real and tangible interests, reproach their own age
with its material prosperity, and with its love of luxury, as if they
were the result of low and sordid desires unknown to the loftier temper
of bygone days. To visionaries of this sort, it may well appear that the
barbarous and ignorant noble, surrounded by a host of devoted retainers,
and living with rude simplicity in his own dull and wretched castle,
forms a beautiful picture of those unmercenary and uncalculating times,
when men, instead of seeking for knowledge, or for wealth, or for
comfort, were content with the frugal innocence of their fathers, and
when, protection being accorded by one class, and gratitude felt by the
other, the subordination of society was maintained, and its different
parts were knit together by sympathy, and by the force of common
emotions, instead of, as now, by the coarse maxims of a vulgar and
selfish utility.

Those, however, whose knowledge gives them some acquaintance with the
real course of human affairs, will see that in Scotland, as in all
civilized countries, the decline of aristocratic power forms an essential
part of the general progress. It must, therefore, be esteemed a fortunate
circumstance, that, among the Scotch, where that power had long been
enormous, it was weakened in the eighteenth century, not only by general
causes, which were operating elsewhere, but also by two smaller and more
special causes. The first of these minor causes was, as we have just
seen, the Union with England. The other cause was, comparatively
speaking, insignificant, but still it produced decided effect,
particularly in the northern districts. It consisted in the fact, that
some of the oldest Highland nobles were concerned in the rebellion of
1745, and that, when that rebellion was put down, those who escaped from
the sword were glad to save their lives by flying abroad, leaving their
dependents to shift for themselves.[377] They became attached to the
court of the Pretender, or, at all events, intrigued for him. That,
indeed, was their only chance, their estates at home being forfeited. For
nearly forty years, several great families were in exile, and although,
about 1784, they began to return,[378] other associations had been formed
during their absence, and new ideas had arisen, both in their own minds,
and in the minds of their retainers. A fresh generation had grown up, and
fresh influences had been brought to bear. Strangers, with whom the
people had no sympathy, had intruded upon the estates of the nobles, and
though they might receive obedience, it was an obedience unaccompanied by
deference. The real reverence was gone; the homage of the heart was no
more. And as this state of things lasted for about forty years, it
interrupted the whole train of thought; and the former habits were so
completely broken, that, even when the chiefs were restored to their
forfeited honours, they found that there was another part of their
inheritance which they were unable to recover, and that they had lost for
ever that unreserved submission, which, in times of yore, had been
willingly paid to their fathers.[379]

  [377] The Chevalier de Johnstone, in his plaintive remarks on the battle
        of Culloden, says: 'The ruin of many of the most illustrious
        families in Scotland immediately followed our defeat.'
        _Johnstone's Memoirs of the Rebellion in 1745_, p. 211. He, of
        course, could not perceive that, sad as such ruin was to the
        individual sufferers, it was an immense benefit to the nation. Mr.
        Skene, referring to the year 1748, says of the Highlanders: 'their
        long-cherished ideas of clanship gradually gave way under the
        absence and ruin of so many of their chiefs.' _Skene's
        Highlanders_, vol. i. p. 147.

  [378] 'About 1784, the exiled families began to return.' _Penny's
        Traditions of Perth_, p. 41. See also _Macpherson's Annals of
        Commerce_, vol. iv. p. 53. In 1784, 'a bill passed the Commons
        without opposition,' to restore the 'Forfeited Estates' in the
        north of Scotland. See _Parliamentary History_, vol. xxiv. pp.
        1316-1322. On that occasion, Fox said (p. 1321) the proprietors
        'had been sufficiently punished by forty years' deprivation of
        their fortunes for the faults of their ancestors.'

  [379] Dean Ramsay, in his _Reminiscences_ (5th edit. Edinburgh, 1859,
        p. 57), notices that, owing to 'transfers of property and
        extinction of old families in the Highlands, as well as from more
        general causes,' the old clannish affection 'is passing away.' But
        this intelligent observer has not indicated the connexion between
        so important a fact and the Rebellion of 1745. In 1792, Heron
        writes: 'The prejudices of clanship have almost died away.' ...
        'The dependents of the family of Kenmure are still attached to its
        representative with much of that affection and respect with which
        the tribes of the Highlands have _till lately_ been accustomed to
        adhere to their lord.' _Heron's Journey through the Western
        Counties of Scotland_, 2nd edit. Perth, 1799, vol. i. p. 248,
        vol. ii. p. 154. See also the remarks made, in the same year, in
        _Lettice's Letters on a Tour through various parts of Scotland_,
        London, 1794, p. 340. To trace the movement back still further,
        Pennant writes, in 1769: 'But in many parts of the Highlands,
        their character begins to be more faintly marked; they mix more
        with the world; and _become daily less attached to their chiefs_.'
        ... 'During the feudal reign, their love for their chieftain
        induced them to bear many things, at _present intolerable_.' These
        two important passages are in the 4th edition of _Pennant's Tour
        in Scotland_, vol. i. p. 194, vol. ii. p. 307, Dublin, 1775. They
        prove that, twenty-four years after the Rebellion of 1745, the
        decay of affection was so manifest, as to strike a candid and
        careful, but by no means philosophic, observer. For Pennant to
        have discerned these changes, they must already have risen to the
        surface. Other and corroborative evidence will be found in
        _Sinclair's Account of Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 545, Edinburgh,
        1792; and vol. iii. pp. 377, 437, vol. xiii. p. 310, vol. xv.
        p. 592, vol. xx. p. 33.

Owing to these circumstances, the course of affairs in Scotland, during
the eighteenth century, and especially during the first half of it, was
marked by a more rapid decline of the influence of the higher ranks than
was seen in any other country. It was, therefore, an easy task for the
English government to procure a law, which, by abolishing hereditary
jurisdictions, deprived the Scotch aristocracy, in 1748, of the last
great ensign of their power.[380] The law, being suited to the spirit of
the times, worked well; and in the Highlands, in particular, it was one
immediate cause of the establishment of something like the order of a
settled state.[381] But in this instance, as in every other, the real
and overruling cause is to be found in the condition of the surrounding
society. A few generations earlier, hardly any one would have thought of
abolishing these mischievous jurisdictions, which were then deemed
beneficial, and were respected, as belonging to the great families by
natural and inalienable right. Such an opinion was the inevitable result
of the state of things then existing. This being the case, it is certain
that, if the legislature had, at that time, been so rash as to lay its
hand on what the nation respected, popular sympathy would have been
aroused, and the nobles would have been strengthened by what was intended
to weaken them.[382] In 1748, however, matters were very different.
Public opinion had changed; and this change of opinion was not only the
cause of the new law, but was the reason of the new law being effective.
And so it always is. They, indeed, whose knowledge is almost confined to
what they see passing around them, and who, on account of their
ignorance, are termed practical men, may talk as they will about the
reforms which government has introduced, and the improvement to be
expected from legislation. But whoever will take a wider and more
commanding view of affairs, will soon discover that such hopes are
chimerical. They will learn that lawgivers are nearly always the
obstructors of society, instead of its helpers; and that, in the
extremely few cases in which their measures have turned out well, their
success has been owing to the fact, that, contrary to their usual custom,
they have implicitly obeyed the spirit of their time, and have been, as
they always should be, the mere servants of the people, to whose wishes
they are bound to give a public and legal sanction.

  [380] _Burton's History of Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 535-537. _Struthers'
        History of Scotland_, Glasgow, 1828, vol. ii. pp. 519-525.

  [381] Macpherson (_Annals of Commerce_, vol. iii. p. 259) says, 'This
        excellent statute may not unfitly be termed a new magna charta to
        the free people of Scotland.'

  [382] I cannot, therefore, agree with Macpherson, who asserts, in his
        valuable work, that the abolition of these jurisdictions 'should
        undoubtedly have been made an essential preliminary of the
        consolidating union of the two kingdoms of England and Scotland,
        concluded forty years before.' _Macpherson's Annals of Commerce_,
        vol. iii. p. 257. Compare _De Foe's History of the Union between
        England and Scotland_, pp. 458, 459, London, 1786, 4to.

Another striking peculiarity of Scotland, during the remarkable period
we are now considering, was the sudden rise of trading and manufacturing
interests. This preceded, by a whole generation, the celebrated statute
of 1748, and was one of the causes of it, in so far as it weakened the
great families, against whom that statute was directed. The movement may
be traced back, as I have already noticed, to the end of the seventeenth
century, and it was in active operation before the first twenty years of
the eighteenth century had passed away. A mercantile and money-making
spirit was diffused to an extent formerly unknown, and men becoming
valued for their wealth as well as for their birth, a new standard of
excellence was introduced, and new actors appeared on the scene.
Heretofore, persons were respected solely for their parentage; now they
were also respected for their riches. The old aristocracy, made uneasy by
the change, did every thing they could to thwart and discourage these
young and dangerous rivals.[383] Nor can we wonder at their feeling
somewhat sore. The tendency which was exhibited, was, indeed, fatal to
their pretensions. Instead of asking who was a man's father, the question
became, how much he had got. And certainly, if either question is to be
put, the latter is the more rational. Wealth is a real and substantial
thing, which ministers to our pleasures, increases our comfort,
multiplies our resources, and not unfrequently alleviates our pains. But
birth is a dream and a shadow, which, so far from benefiting either body
or mind, only puffs up its possessor with an imaginary excellence, and
teaches him to despise those whom nature has made his superiors, and who,
whether engaged in adding to our knowledge or to our wealth, are, in
either case, ameliorating the condition of society, and rendering to it
true and valuable service.

  [383] In 1740, 'the rising manufacturing and trading interests of the
        country' were 'looked down upon and discouraged by the feudal
        aristocracy.' _Burton's Lives of Lovat and Forbes_, p. 361.

This antagonism between the aristocratic and trading spirit, lies in the
nature of things, and is essential, however it may be disguised at
particular periods. Therefore it is, that the history of trade has a
philosophic importance in reference to the progress of society, quite
independent of practical considerations. On this account I have called
the attention of the reader to what otherwise would be foreign to the
objects of the present Introduction; and I will now trace, as briefly as
possible, the beginning of that great industrial movement, to the
extension of which the overthrow of the Scotch aristocracy is to be
partly ascribed.

The Union with England, which was completed in 1707, produced immediate
and striking effects on trade. Its first effect was, to throw open to the
Scotch a new and extensive commerce with the English colonies in America.
Before the Union, no goods of any kind could be landed in Scotland from
the American plantations, unless they had first been landed in England,
and paid duty there; nor even, in that case, might they be conveyed by
any Scotch vessel.[384] This was one of many foolish regulations by which
our legislators interfered with the natural course of affairs, and
injured the interests of their own country, as well as those of their
neighbours. Formerly, however, such laws were considered to be extremely
sagacious, and politicians were constantly contriving protective schemes
of this sort, which, with the best intentions, inflicted incalculable
harm. But if, as seems probable, one of their objects, in this instance,
was to retard the improvement of Scotland, they were more than usually
successful in effecting the purpose at which they aimed. For, the whole
of the western coast, being cut off from direct intercourse with the
American colonies, was debarred from the only foreign trade it could
advantageously follow; since the European ports lay to the east, and
could not be reached by the inhabitants of Western Scotland without a
long circumnavigation, which prevented them from competing, on equal
terms, with their countrymen, who, sailing from the other side, were
already near the chief seats of commerce. The consequence was, that
Glasgow and the other western ports remained almost stationary; having
comparatively few means of gratifying that enterprising spirit, which
rose among them late in the seventeenth century, and not daring to trade
with those prosperous colonies which were just before them across the
Atlantic, but from which they were entirely excluded by the jealous
precautions of the English parliament.[385]

  [384] 'Whereas Scotland had, before this, prohibited all the English
        woollen manufactures, under severe penalties, and England, on the
        other hand, had excluded the Scots from trading with Scots ships
        to their colonies in America, directly from Scotland, and had
        confiscated even their own English ships trading to the said
        colonies from England, if navigated or manned with above one-third
        Scots seamen,' &c. _De Foe's History of the Union_, p. 603. In
        1696, the wise men in our English Parliament passed a law, 'that
        on no pretence whatever any kind of goods from the English
        American plantations should hereafter be put on shore, either in
        the kingdoms of Ireland or Scotland, without being first landed in
        England, and having also paid the duties there, under forfeiture
        of ship and cargo.' _Macpherson's Annals of Commerce_, vol. ii.
        p. 684. Certainly, the more a man knows of the history of
        legislation, the more he will wonder that nations should have been
        able to advance in the face of the formidable impediments which
        legislators have thrown in their way.

  [385] 'A spirit for commerce appears to have been raised among the
        inhabitants of Glasgow between the periods of 1660 and 1707, when
        the union with England took place.' ... But, 'whatever their trade
        was, at this time, it could not be considerable; the ports to
        which they were obliged to trade, lay all to the eastward; the
        circumnavigation of the island would, therefore, prove an almost
        insurmountable bar to the commerce of Glasgow; the people upon the
        east coast, from their situation, would be in possession of almost
        the whole commerce of Scotland.' _Gibson's History of Glasgow_,
        p. 205, Glasgow, 1777.

When, however, by the Act of Union, the two countries became one, these
precautions were discontinued, and Scotland was allowed to hold direct
intercourse with America and the West India Islands. The result which
this produced on the national industry, was almost instantaneous, because
it gave vent to a spirit which had begun to appear among the people late
in the seventeenth century, and because it was aided by those still more
general causes, which, in most parts of Europe, predisposed that age to
increased industry. The west of Scotland, being nearest to America, was
the first to feel the movement. In 1707, the inhabitants of Greenock,
without the interference of government, imposed on themselves a voluntary
assessment, with the object of constructing a harbour. In this
undertaking, they displayed so much zeal, that, by the year 1710, the
whole of the works were completed; a pier and capacious harbour were
erected, and Greenock was suddenly raised from insignificance to take an
important part in the trade of the Atlantic.[386] For a while, the
merchants were content to carry on their traffic with ships hired from
the English. Soon, however, they became bolder; they began to build on
their own account; and, in 1719, the first vessel belonging to Greenock
sailed for America.[387] From that moment, their commerce increased so
rapidly, that, by the year 1740, the tax which the citizens had laid on
themselves sufficed, not only to wipe off the debt which had been
incurred, but also to leave a considerable surplus available for
municipal purposes.[388] At the same time, and by the action of the same
causes, Glasgow emerged from obscurity. In 1718, its enterprising
inhabitants launched in the Clyde the first Scotch vessel which ever
crossed the Atlantic; thus anticipating the people of Greenock by one
year.[389] Glasgow and Greenock became the two great commercial outlets
of Scotland, and the chief centres of activity.[390] Comforts, and,
indeed, luxuries, hitherto only attainable at enormous cost, began to be
diffused through the country. The productions of the tropics could now be
procured direct from the New World, which, in return, offered a rich and
abundant market for manufactured goods. This was a further stimulus to
Scotch industry, and its effects were immediately apparent. The
inhabitants of Glasgow, finding a great demand among the Americans for
linen, introduced its manufacture into their city in 1725, whence it
extended to other places, and, in a short time, gave employment to
thousands of workmen.[391] It is also from the year 1725, that Paisley
dates its rise. So late as the beginning of the eighteenth century, this
rich and prosperous city was still a straggling village, containing only
a single street.[392] But, after the Union, its poor, and hitherto idle,
inhabitants began to be moved by the activity which they saw on every
side. Gradually, their views expanded; and the introduction among them,
in 1725, of the manufacture of thread, was the first step in that great
career in which they never stopped, until they had raised Paisley to be a
vast emporium of industry, and a successful promoter of every art by
which industry is nurtured.[393]

  [386] 'The importance of the measure induced the inhabitants of Greenock
        to make a contract with the superior, by which they agreed to an
        assessment of 1_s._ 4_d._ sterling on every sack of malt, brewed
        into ale, within the limits of the town; the money so levied to be
        applied in liquidating the expence of forming a proper harbour at
        Greenock. The work was begun at the epoch of the Union, in 1707;
        and a capacious harbour, containing upwards of ten Scottish acres,
        was formed by building an extensive circular pier, with a straight
        pier, or tongue, in the middle, by which the harbour was divided
        into two parts. This formidable work, the greatest of the kind, at
        that time, in Scotland, incurred an expence of more than 100,000
        marks Scots.' _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. iii. p. 807, London,
        1824, 4to. _In M'Culloch's Geographical and Statistical
        Dictionary_, London, 1849, vol. i. p. 930, it is stated, that 'the
        inhabitants took the matter (1707) into their own hands, and
        agreed with their superior to assess themselves at a certain rate,
        to build a proper pier and harbour. The work was finished in 1710,
        at an expence of 5,555_l._'

  [387] 'The trade of Greenock has kept pace with the improvements made on
        its harbour. The union of the kingdoms (1707) opened the colonies
        to the enterprising inhabitants of this town, and generally of the
        west of Scotland; but it was not till 1719 that the first vessel
        belonging to Greenock crossed the Atlantic.' _M'Culloch's
        Geographical and Statistical Dictionary_, vol. i. p. 930.

  [388] 'Such was the effect of the new harbour in increasing the trade,
        and the population, of the town, that the assessment, and port
        dues, cleared off the whole debt before 1740, and left, in that
        year, a clear surplus of 27,000 marks Scots, or 1,500_l._
        sterling.' _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. iii. p. 807. 'After the
        Union, however, the trade of the port increased so rapidly, that,
        in the year 1740, the whole debt was extinguished, and there
        remained a surplus, the foundation of the present town's funds, of
        27,000 marks.' _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol.
        v. p. 576, Edinburgh, 1793.

  [389] 'By the Union, however, new views were opened up to the merchants
        of the city; they thereby obtained the liberty of a free commerce
        to America and the West Indies, from which they had been before
        shut out; they chartered English vessels for these voyages, having
        none at first fit for the purpose; sent out cargoes of goods for
        the use of the colonies, and returned home laden with tobacco. The
        business doing well, vessels were built belonging to the city, and
        in the year 1718, the first ship, the property of Glasgow, crossed
        the Atlantic.' _Denholm's History of Glasgow_, p. 405, 3rd edit.
        Glasgow, 1804. Brown (_History of Glasgow_, vol. ii. p. 330,
        Edinburgh, 1797) says, that the Glasgow merchants 'chartered
        Whitehaven ships for many years:' but that, 'in 1716, a vessel of
        sixty tons burden was launched at Crawford's dike, being the first
        Clyde ship that went to the British Settlements in America with
        goods and a supercargo.' But this date is probably two years too
        early. Mr. M'Culloch, in his excellent _Geographical and
        Statistical Dictionary_, London, 1849, vol. ii. p. 659, says: 'But
        for a while, the merchants of Glasgow, who first embarked in the
        trade to America, carried it on by means of vessels belonging to
        English ports; and it was not till 1718 that a ship built in
        Scotland (in the Clyde), the property of Scotch owners, sailed for
        the American colonies.' Gibson, also (_History of Glasgow_, 1777,
        p. 206), says: 'In 1718, the first vessel of the property of
        Glasgow crossed the Atlantic.' And, to the same effect,
        _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. v. p. 498,
        Edinburgh, 1793.

  [390] The progress was so rapid, that, in a work printed in 1732, it is
        stated, that 'this city of Glasgow is a place of the greatest
        trade in the kingdom, especially to the Plantations; from whence
        they have twenty or thirty sail of ships every year, laden with
        tobacco and sugar; an advantage this kingdom never enjoyed till
        the Union. They are purchasing a harbour on the Frith, near
        Alloway, to which they have but twelve miles by land; and then
        they can re-ship their sugars and tobacco, for Holland, Germany,
        and the Baltick Sea, without being at the trouble of sailing round
        England or Scotland.' _Macky's Journey through Scotland_, pp. 294,
        295, 2nd edit. London, 1732. The first edition of this book was
        also printed in 1732. See _Watt's Bibliotheca Britannica_, vol. i.
        p. 631 m., Edinburgh, 1824, 4to.

  [391] Gibson, who was a Glasgow merchant, says, in his _History of
        Glasgow_, p. 236, 'that the commerce to America first suggested
        the idea of introducing manufactures into Glasgow, is to me very
        evident; and that they were only attempted to be introduced about
        the year 1725 is apparent.' Denholm (_History of Glasgow_, p. 412)
        says: 'The linen manufacture, which began here in the year 1725,
        was, for a long time, the staple, not only of this city, but of
        the west of Scotland.' Compare _Heron's Journey through the
        Western Counties of Scotland_, Perth, 1799, vol. ii. p. 412.

  [392] 'Consisting only of one principal street about half a mile in
        length.' _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. vii.
        p. 62. But the local historian mentions, with evident pride, that
        this one street contained 'handsome houses.' _Crawfurd's History
        of the Shire of Renfrew_, part iii. p. 305, edit. Paisley, 1782,

  [393] _Denholm's History of Glasgow_, pp. 546, 547; and _Sinclair's
        Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. vii. pp. 62-64. See also,
        on the rise of Paisley, _Heron's Journey through the Western
        Counties of Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 399, 400; _Pennant's Tour in
        Scotland_, vol. ii. p. 144; and _Crawfurd's History of the Shire
        of Renfrew_, part iii. p. 321. At an earlier period, Paisley was
        famous in a different way. In the middle ages it swarmed with
        monks. Keith (_Catalogue of Scotch Bishops_, p. 252, Edinburgh,
        1755, 4to) tells us that, 'it formerly was a Priory, and
        afterwards changed into an Abbey of Black Monks.'

Nor was it merely in the west, that this movement was displayed. In
Scotland generally, the spirit of trade became so rife, that it began to
encroach on the old theological spirit, which had long been supreme.
Hitherto, the Scotch had cared for little except religious polemics. In
every society, these had been the chief subjects of conversation; and on
them, men had wasted their energies, without the least benefit either to
themselves or to others. But, about this time it was observed, that the
improvement of manufactures became a common topic of discourse.[394] Such
a statement, made by a well-informed writer, who witnessed what he
relates, is a curious proof of the change which was beginning, though
very faintly, to steal over the Scotch mind. It shows that there was, at
all events, a tendency to turn aside from subjects which are inaccessible
to our understanding, and the discussion of which has no effect except to
exasperate those who dispute, and to make them more intolerant than ever
of theological opinions different from their own. Unhappily, there were,
as I shall presently point out, other causes at work, which prevented
this tendency from producing all the good that might have been expected.
Still, so far as it went, it was a clear gain. It was a blow to
superstition, inasmuch as it was an attempt to occupy the human mind with
mere secular considerations. In a country like Scotland, this alone was
extremely important. We must also add, that, though it was the effect of
increased industry, it, as often happens, reacted upon, and
strengthened, its cause. For, by diminishing, however little, the
inordinate respect formerly paid to theological pursuits, it was, in the
same proportion, an inducement to ambitious and enterprising men to
abstain from those pursuits, and to engage in temporal matters, where
ability, being less fettered by prejudice, has more scope, and enjoys
more freedom of action. Of those men, some rose to the first rank in
literature; while others, taking a different but equally useful turn,
became as eminent in trade. Hence, Scotland, during the eighteenth
century, possessed, for the first time, two powerful and active classes,
whose aim was essentially secular--the intellectual class, and the
industrial class. Before the eighteenth century, neither of these classes
exercised an independent sway, or could, indeed, be said to have a
separate existence. The intellect of the country was absorbed by the
church; the industry of the country was controlled by the nobles. The
effect which this change produced on the literature of Scotland will be
traced in the last chapter of the present volume. Its effect on industry
was equally remarkable, and, for the well-being of the nation, was
equally valuable. But it does not possess that general scientific
interest which belongs to the intellectual movement; and I shall,
therefore, in addition to the evidence already given, confine myself to a
few more facts illustrative of the history of Scotch industry down to the
middle of the eighteenth century, by which time there was no longer any
doubt that the flood of material prosperity had fairly set in.

  [394] The author of _The Interest of Scotland Considered_, Edinburgh,
        1733, says (p. xvi.) that since 1727, 'we have happily turned our
        eyes upon the improvement of our manufactures, which is now a
        common subject in discourse, and this contributes not a little to
        its success.'

During the seventeenth century, the only Scotch manufacture of any
importance was that of linen, which, however, like every other branch of
industry, was very backward, and was exposed to all sorts of
discouragement.[395] But, after the Union, it received a sudden impetus,
from two causes. One of these causes, as I have already noticed, was the
demand from America, consequent upon the trade of the Atlantic being
thrown open. The other cause was, the removal of the duty which England
had imposed upon the importation of Scotch linen. These two
circumstances, occurring nearly at the same time, produced such effect on
the national industry, that De Foe, who had a wider knowledge of the
details of trade than any man of that age, said that it seemed as if, for
the future, the Scotch poor could never lack employment.[396]
Unfortunately, this was not the case, and never will be, until society is
radically changed. But the movement which provoked so bold a remark from
so cautious an observer as De Foe, must have been very striking; and we
know, from other sources, that, between 1728 and 1738, the manufacture of
linen for exportation alone was more than doubled.[397] After that
period, this and other departments of Scotch industry advanced with a
constantly accelerating speed. It is mentioned, by a contemporary who was
likely to be well informed, that, between 1715 and 1745, the trade and
manufactures of Scotland increased more than they had done for ages
before.[398] Such a statement, though valuable as corroborating other
evidence, is too vague to be entirely relied on; and historians, who
usually occupy themselves with insignificant details about courts and
princes and statesmen, desert us in matters which are really important,
so that it is now hardly possible to reconstruct the history of the
Scotch people during this, the first epoch of their material prosperity.
I have, however, gathered a few facts, which appear to rest on good
authority, and which supply us with something like precise information as
to dates. In 1739, the manufacture of linen was introduced into
Kilbarchan,[399] and, in 1740, into Arbroath.[400] From the year 1742,
the manufactures of Kilmarnock date their rise.[401] In 1748, the first
linen was manufactured in Cullen;[402] and in the same year in
Inverary.[403] In 1749, this great branch of industry and source of
wealth was established, on a large scale, in Aberdeen;[404] while, about
1750, it began to diffuse itself in Wemyss, in the county of Fife.[405]
These things happening, within eleven years, in parts of the country so
distant from each other, and so totally unconnected, indicate the
existence of general causes, which governed the whole movement; though in
this, as in all instances, every thing is popularly ascribed to the
influence of a few powerful individuals. We have, however, other proofs
that the progress was essentially national. Even in Edinburgh, where
hitherto no claims had been respected except those of the nobles or
clergy, the voice of this new trading interest began to be heard. In that
poor and warlike capital, a society was now first established for the
encouragement of manufactures; and we are assured that this was but a
single manifestation of the enthusiasm which was generally felt on the
subject.[406] Coinciding with this movement, and indeed forming part of
it, we can discern the earliest symptoms of a monied class, properly so
called. In 1749, there was established, at Aberdeen, the first county
bank ever seen in Scotland; and, in the very same year, a similar
establishment was formed at Glasgow.[407] These represented the east and
the west, and, by the advances which they were able to make, each
assisted the trade of its own district. Between eastern and western
Scotland, the intercourse, as yet, was difficult and costly. But this
likewise was about to be remedied by an enterprise, the mere conception
of which would formerly have excited ridicule. After the Union, the idea
arose of uniting the east with the west by a canal, which should join the
Forth to the Clyde. The plan was deemed chimerical, and was abandoned. As
soon, however, as the manufacturing and commercial classes had gained
sufficient influence they adopted it, with that energy which is
characteristic of their order, and which is more common among them than
among any other rank of society. The result was, that, in 1768, the great
work was fairly begun;[408] and the first step was taken towards what, in
a material point of view, was an enterprise of vast importance, but, in a
social and intellectual point of view, was of still superior value,
inasmuch as, by supplying a cheap and easy transit through the heart of
the most populous part of Scotland, it had a direct tendency to make
different districts and different places feel that each had need of
others, and thus encouraging the notion that all belonged to one common
scheme, it assisted in diminishing local prejudice and assuaging local
jealousy; while, in the same proportion, by enticing men to move out of
the narrow circle in which they had habitually lived, it prepared them
for a certain enlargement of mind, which is the natural consequence of
seeing affairs under various aspects, and which is never found in any
country in which the means of travelling are either very hazardous or
very expensive.

  [395] Morer, who was in Scotland in 1688 and 1689, says: 'But that which
        employs great part of their land is hemp, of which they have
        mighty burdens, and on which they bestow much care and pains to
        dress and prepare it for making their linen, the most noted and
        beneficial manufacture of the kingdom.' _Morer's Short Account of
        Scotland_, London, 1702, pp. 3, 4.

  [396] 'The duties upon linen from Scotland being taken off in England,
        made so great a demand for Scots linen more than usual, that it
        seemed the poor could want no employment.' _De Foe's History of
        the Union between England and Scotland_, p. 604. Compare
        _Macpherson's Annals of Commerce_, vol. ii. p. 736: 'a prodigious
        vent, not only in England, but for the American plantations.' This
        concerns a later period.

  [397] 'The surplus of linen made above the consumption, was, in 1728,
        2,183,978 yards; in 1738, 4,666,011.' _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol.
        i. p. 873. On the increase between 1728 and 1732, see the Table in
        _The Interest of Scotland Considered_, Edinburgh, 1733, p. 97. In
        a work published in 1732, it is stated that 'they make a great
        deal of linnen all over the kingdom, not only for their own use,
        but export it to England, and to the Plantations. In short, the
        women are all kept employ'd, from the highest to the lowest of
        them.' _Macky's Journey through Scotland_, London, 1732, p. 271.
        This refers merely to the women of Scotland, whom Macky represents
        as much more industrious than the men.

  [398] In 1745, Craik writes to Lord Nithisdale, 'The present family have
        now reigned over us these thirty years, and though during so long
        a time they may have fallen into errors, or may have committed
        faults, (as what Government is without?) yett I will defy the most
        sanguine zealot to find in history a period equal to this in which
        Scotland possessed so uninterrupted a felicity, in which liberty,
        civil and religious, was so universally enjoyed by all people of
        whatever denomination--nay, by the open and avowed ennemys of the
        family and constitution, or a period in which all ranks of men
        have been so effectually secured in their property. Have not
        trade, manufactures, agriculture, and the spirit of industry in
        our country extended themselves further during this period and
        under this family than for ages before?' _Thomson's Memoirs of the
        Jacobites_, London, 1845, vol. ii. pp. 60, 61.

  [399] _Crawfurd's History of the Shire of Renfrew_, part ii. p. 114.

  [400] _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. vii. p. 341,
        compared with vol. xii. pp. 176, 177.

  [401] _Chalmers' Caledonia_, vol. iii. p. 483.

  [402] _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. xii. p. 145.

  [403] _Ibid._ vol. v. p. 297.

  [404] _Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen_, vol. ii. pp. 199, 200.

  [405] _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. xvi. p. 520:
        'About the year 1750.' I need hardly say, that some of these
        dates, depending upon tradition, are given by the authors

  [406] 'Betwixt the year 1750 and 1760, a great degree of patriotic
        enthusiasm arose in Scotland to encourage arts and manufactures;
        and the _Edinburgh Society_ was established in 1755 for the
        express purpose of improving these.' _Bower's History of the
        University of Edinburgh_, vol. iii. pp. 126, 7.

  [407] 'The first county-bank that anywhere appeared, was the Aberdeen
        Bank, which was settled in 1749: it was immediately followed by a
        similar establishment in Glasgow during the same year.' _Chalmers'
        Caledonia_, vol. iii. p. 9, 4to, 1824. Kennedy (_Annals of
        Aberdeen_, 4to, 1818, vol. ii. p. 195) says: 'Banking was
        originally projected in Aberdeen about the year 1752, by a few of
        the principal citizens who were engaged in commerce and
        manufactures. They commenced business, upon a limited scale, in an
        office on the north side of the Castle Street, issued notes of
        hand, of five pounds and of twenty shillings sterling, and
        discounted bills and promissory notes, for the accommodation of
        the public.' It is uncertain if Chalmers knew of this passage; but
        he was a more accurate writer than Kennedy, and I, therefore,
        prefer his authority. Besides, Kennedy vaguely says, 'about the
        year 1752.'

  [408] 'After having been frequently proposed, since the Union, this
        canal was at length begun in 1768, and finished in 1790. The trade
        upon it is already great, and is rapidly increasing.' _Sinclair's
        Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 279, 280,
        Edinburgh, 1792. See also vol. xii. p. 125; _Irving's History of
        Dumbartonshire_, 1860, 4to, p. 247; and an interesting
        contemporary notice in _Nimmo's History of Stirlingshire_,
        Edinburgh, 1777, pp. 468-481. In 1767, Watt was employed as a
        surveyor. See _Muirhead's Life of Watt_, 2nd edit. London, 1859,
        p. 167.

Such was the state of Scotland towards the middle of the eighteenth
century; and surely a fairer prospect was never opened to any country.
The land was at peace. It had nothing to fear, either from foreign
invasion, or from domestic tyranny. The arts, which increase the comfort
of man, and minister to his happiness, were sedulously cultivated; wealth
was being created with unexampled speed, and the blessings which follow
in the train of wealth were being widely diffused; while the insolence of
the nobility was so effectually curbed, that industrious citizens could,
for the first time, feel their own independence, could know that what
they earned, that likewise they should enjoy, and could hold themselves
erect, and with a manly brow, in the presence of a class before whom they
had long crouched in abject submission.

Besides this, a great literature now arose, a literature of rare and
surpassing beauty. To narrate the intellectual achievements of the Scotch
during the eighteenth century, in a manner at all commensurate with their
importance, would require a separate treatise, and I cannot now stop even
to mention what all educated persons are at least partly acquainted with;
each student recognizing the value of what was done in his own pursuit.
In the last chapter of this volume, I shall, however, attempt to give
some idea of the general results considered as a whole; at present, it is
enough to say, that in every branch of knowledge this once poor and
ignorant people produced original and successful thinkers. What makes
this the more remarkable, is its complete contrast to their former state.
Down even to the beginning of the eighteenth century, Scotland could only
boast of two authors whose works have benefited mankind. They were
Buchanan and Napier. Buchanan was the first political writer who held
accurate views respecting government, and who clearly defined the true
relation between the people and their rulers. He placed popular rights on
a solid basis, and vindicated, by anticipation, all subsequent
revolutions. Napier, equally bold in another department, succeeded, by a
mighty effort of genius, in detecting, and pushing to its extreme
consequence, a law of the progression of numbers, which is so simple and
yet so potent, that it unravels the most tedious and intricate
calculations, and, thus economizing the labours of the brain, has saved
an enormous and incalculable waste. These two men were, indeed, great
benefactors of their species; but they stand alone, and if all the other
authors Scotland produced down to the close of the seventeenth century
had never been born, or if, being born, they had never written, society
would have lost nothing, but would be in exactly the same position as it
now is.

Early, however, in the eighteenth century, a movement was felt all over
Europe, and in that movement Scotland participated. A spirit of inquiry
was abroad, so general and so searching, that no country could entirely
escape from its action. Sanguine men were excited, and even grave men
were stirred. It seemed as if a long night were about to close. Light
broke forth where before there was nothing but darkness. Opinions which
had stood the test of ages were suddenly questioned; and in every
direction doubts sprung up, and proofs were demanded. The human mind,
waxing bold, would not be satisfied with the old evidence. Things were
examined at their foundation, and the basis of every belief was jealously
scrutinized. For a time, this was confined to the higher intellects; but
soon the movement spread, and, in the most advanced countries, worked
upon nearly all classes. In England and in France, the result was
extremely beneficial. It might have been hoped, that in Scotland
likewise, the popular mind would gradually have become enlightened. But
not so. Time rolled on; one generation succeeded another; the eighteenth
century passed away; the nineteenth century came; and still the people
made no sign. The gloom of the middle ages was yet upon them. While all
around was light, the Scotch, enveloped in mist, crept on, groping their
way, dismally and with fear. While other nations were shaking off their
old superstitions, this singular people clung to theirs with undiminished
tenacity. Now, indeed, their grasp is gradually slackening, but with
extreme slowness, and threatening reactions frequently appear. This, as
it always has been, and still is, the curse of Scotland, so also is it
the chief difficulty with which the historian of Scotland has to contend.
Everywhere else, when the rise of the intellectual classes, and that of
the trading and manufacturing classes, have accompanied each other, the
invariable result has been, a diminution of the power of the clergy, and,
consequently, a diminution of the influence of superstition. The
peculiarity of Scotland is, that, during the eighteenth century, and even
down to the middle of the nineteenth century, the industrial and
intellectual progress has continued without materially shaking the
authority of the priesthood.[409] Strange and unequal combination! The
country of bold and enterprising merchants, of shrewd manufacturers, of
far-seeing men of business, and of cunning artificers; the country, too,
of such fearless thinkers as George Buchanan, David Hume, and Adam Smith,
is awed by a few noisy and ignorant preachers, to whom it allows a
license, and yields a submission, disgraceful to the age, and
incompatible with the commonest notions of liberty. A people, in many
respects very advanced, and holding upon political subjects enlightened
views, do, upon all religious subjects, display a littleness of mind, an
illiberality of sentiment, a heat of temper, and a love of persecuting
others, which shows that the Protestantism of which they boast has done
them no good; that, in the most important matters, it has left them as
narrow as it found them; and that it has been unable to free them from
prejudices which make them the laughing-stock of Europe, and which have
turned the very name of the Scotch Kirk into a by-word and a reproach
among educated men.

  [409] I will quote, in a single passage, the opinions of an eminent
        German and of an eminent Scotchman. 'Dr. Spurzheim, when he last
        visited Scotland, remarked that the Scotch appeared to him to be
        the most priest-ridden nation in Europe; Spain and Portugal not
        excepted. _After having seen other countries, I can understand the
        force of this observation._' _Notes on the United States of North
        America by George Combe_, vol. iii. p. 32, Edinburgh, 1841.

I shall now endeavour to explain how all this arose, and how such
apparent inconsistencies are to be reconciled. That they may be
reconciled, and that the inconsistencies are merely apparent and not
real, will be at once admitted by whoever is capable of a scientific
conception of history. For, in the moral world, as in the physical world,
nothing is anomalous; nothing is unnatural; nothing is strange. All is
order, symmetry, and law. There are opposites, but there are no
contradictions. In the character of a nation, inconsistency is
impossible. Such, however, is still the backward condition of the human
mind, and with so evil and jaundiced an eye do we approach the greatest
problems, that not only common writers, but even men from whom better
things might be hoped, are on this point involved in constant confusion,
perplexing themselves and their readers by speaking of inconsistency, as
if it were a quality belonging to the subject which they investigate,
instead of being, as it really is, a measure of their own ignorance. It
is the business of the historian to remove this ignorance, by showing
that the movements of nations are perfectly regular, and that, like all
other movements, they are solely determined by their antecedents. If he
cannot do this, he is no historian. He may be an annalist, or a
biographer, or a chronicler, but higher than that he cannot rise, unless
he is imbued with that spirit of science which teaches, as an article of
faith, the doctrine of uniform sequence; in other words, the doctrine
that certain events having already happened, certain other events
corresponding to them will also happen. To seize this idea with firmness,
and to apply it on all occasions, without listening to any exceptions, is
extremely difficult, but it must be done by whoever wishes to elevate the
study of history from its present crude and informal state, and do what
he may towards placing it in its proper rank, as the head and chief of
all the sciences. Even then, he cannot perform his task unless his
materials are ample, and derived from sources of unquestioned
credibility. But if his facts are sufficiently numerous; if they are very
diversified; if they have been collected from such various quarters that
they can check and confront each other, so as to do away with all
suspicion of their testimony being garbled; and if he who uses them
possesses that faculty of generalization, without which nothing great can
be achieved, he will hardly fail in bringing some part of his labours to
a prosperous issue, provided he devotes all his strength to that one
enterprise, postponing to it every other object of ambition, and
sacrificing to it many interests which men hold dear. Some of the most
pleasurable incentives to action, he must disregard. Not for him, are
those rewards which, in other pursuits, the same energy would have
earned; not for him, the sweets of popular applause; not for him, the
luxury of power; not for him, a share in the councils of his country; not
for him, a conspicuous and honoured place before the public eye. Albeit
conscious of what he could do, he may not compete in the great contest;
he cannot hope to win the prize; he cannot even enjoy the excitement of
the struggle. To him, the arena is closed. His recompense lies within
himself, and he must learn to care little for the sympathy of his
fellow-creatures, or for such honours as they are able to bestow. So far
from looking for these things, he should rather be prepared for that
obloquy which always awaits those, who, by opening up new veins of
thought, disturb the prejudices of their contemporaries. While ignorance,
and worse than ignorance, is imputed to him, while his motives are
misrepresented, and his integrity impeached, while he is accused of
denying the value of moral principles, and of attacking the foundation of
all religion, as if he were some public enemy, who made it his business
to corrupt society, and whose delight it was to see what evil he could
do; while these charges are brought forward, and repeated from mouth to
mouth, he must be capable of pursuing in silence the even tenor of his
way, without swerving, without pausing, and without stepping from his
path to notice the angry outcries which he cannot but hear, and which he
is more than human if he does not long to rebuke. These are the
qualities, and these the high resolves, indispensable to him, who, on the
most important of all subjects, believing that the old road is worn out
and useless, seeks to strike out a new one for himself, and, in the
effort, not only perhaps exhausts his strength, but is sure to incur the
enmity of those who are bent on maintaining the ancient scheme
unimpaired. To solve the great problem of affairs; to detect those
hidden circumstances which determine the march and destiny of nations;
and to find, in the events of the past, a key to the proceedings of the
future, is nothing less than to unite into a single science all the laws
of the moral and physical world. Whoever does this, will build up afresh
the fabric of our knowledge, re-arrange its various parts, and harmonize
its apparent discrepancies. Perchance, the human mind is hardly ready for
so vast an enterprise. At all events, he who undertakes it will meet with
little sympathy, and will find few to help him. And let him toil as he
may, the sun and noontide of his life shall pass by, the evening of his
days shall overtake him, and he himself have to quit the scene, leaving
that unfinished which he had vainly hoped to complete. He may lay the
foundation; it will be for his successors to raise the edifice. Their
hands will give the last touch; they will reap the glory; their names
will be remembered when he is forgotten. It is, indeed, too true, that
such a work requires, not only several minds, but also the successive
experience of several generations. Once, I own, I thought otherwise.
Once, when I first caught sight of the whole field of knowledge, and
seemed, however dimly, to discern its various parts and the relation they
bore to each other, I was so entranced with its surpassing beauty, that
the judgment was beguiled, and I deemed myself able, not only to cover
the surface, but also to master the details. Little did I know how the
horizon enlarges as well as recedes, and how vainly we grasp at the
fleeting forms, which melt away and elude us in the distance. Of all that
I had hoped to do, I now find but too surely how small a part I shall
accomplish. In those early aspirations, there was much that was fanciful;
perhaps there was much that was foolish. Perhaps, too, they contained a
moral defect, and savoured of an arrogance which belongs to a strength
that refuses to recognize its own weakness. Still, even now that they are
defeated and brought to nought, I cannot repent having indulged in them,
but, on the contrary, I would willingly recall them, if I could. For,
such hopes belong to that joyous and sanguine period of life, when alone
we are really happy; when the emotions are more active than the judgment;
when experience has not yet hardened our nature; when the affections are
not yet blighted and nipped to the core; and when the bitterness of
disappointment not having yet been felt, difficulties are unheeded,
obstacles are unseen, ambition is a pleasure instead of a pang, and the
blood coursing swiftly through the veins, the pulse beats high, while the
heart throbs at the prospect of the future. Those are glorious days; but
they go from us, and nothing can compensate their absence. To me, they
now seem more like the visions of a disordered fancy, than the sober
realities of things that were, and are not. It is painful to make this
confession; but I owe it to the reader, because I would not have him to
suppose that either in this, or in the future volumes of my History, I
shall be able to redeem my pledge, and to perform all that I promised.
Something, I hope to achieve, which will interest the thinkers of this
age; and something, perhaps, on which posterity may build. It will,
however, only be a fragment of my original design. In the two last
chapters I have attempted, and in the two next chapters I shall still
further attempt, to solve a curious problem in the history of Scotland,
which is intimately connected with other problems of a yet graver import:
but though the solution will, I believe, be complete, the evidence of the
solution will, most assuredly, be imperfect. I regret to add, that such
imperfection is henceforth an essential part of my plan. It is essential,
because I despair of supplying those deficiencies in my knowledge, of
which I grow more sensible in proportion as my views become more
extensive. It is also essential, because, after a fair estimate of my own
strength, of the probable duration of my life, and of the limits to which
industry can safely be pushed, I have been driven to the conclusion, that
this Introduction, which I had projected as a solid foundation on which
the history of England might subsequently be raised, must either be
greatly curtailed, and consequently shorn of its force, or that, if not
curtailed, there will hardly be a chance of my being able to narrate,
with the amplitude and fulness of detail which they richly deserve, the
deeds of that great and splendid nation with which I am best acquainted,
and of which it is my pride to count myself a member. It is with the
free, the noble, and the high-minded English people, that my sympathies
are most closely connected; on them my affections naturally centre; from
their literature, and from their example, my best lessons have been
learnt; and it is now the most cherished and the most sacred desire of my
heart, that I may succeed in writing their history, and in unfolding the
successive phases of their mighty career, while I am yet somewhat equal
to the task, and before my faculties have begun to dwindle, or the power
of continuous attention has begun to decay.

                               CHAPTER IV.


The remaining part of this volume, I purpose to devote to an attempt to
unravel still further that two-fold paradox, which forms the prominent
peculiarity of the history of Scotland. The paradox consists, as we have
seen, in the fact, first, that the same people have long been liberal in
politics, and illiberal in religion; and, secondly, that the brilliant,
inquisitive, and sceptical literature which they produced in the
eighteenth century, was unable to weaken their superstition, or to instil
into them wiser and larger maxims on religious matters. From an early
period, there were, as I have endeavoured to show, many circumstances
which predisposed the Scotch to superstition, and, so far, had a general
connexion with the subject before us. But the remarkable phenomenon with
which we are immediately concerned, may, I think, be traced to two
distinct causes. The first cause was, that, for a hundred and twenty
years after the establishment of Protestantism, the rulers of Scotland
either neglected the Church or persecuted it, thereby driving the clergy
into the arms of the people, from whom alone they could obtain sympathy
and support. Hence an alliance between the two parties, more intimate
than would otherwise have been possible; and hence, too, the rise of that
democratic spirit which was the necessary consequence of such an union,
and which the clergy encouraged, because they were opposed and thwarted
by the upper classes. So far, the result was extremely beneficial, as it
produced a love of independence and a hatred of tyranny, which, twice
during the seventeenth century, saved the country from the yoke of a
cruel despotism. But these very circumstances, which guarded the people
against political despotism, exposed them all the more to ecclesiastical
despotism. For, having no one to trust except their preachers, they
trusted them entirely and upon all subjects. The clergy gradually became
supreme, not only in spiritual matters, but also in temporal ones. Late
in the sixteenth century, they had been glad to take refuge among the
people; before the middle of the seventeenth century, they ruled the
people. How shamefully they abused their power, and how, by encouraging
the worst kind of superstition, they prolonged the reign of ignorance,
and stopped the march of society, will be related in the course of this
chapter; but, in fairness to them, we ought to acknowledge, that the
religious servitude into which the Scotch fell during the seventeenth
century, was, on the whole, a willing one, and that, mischievous as it
was, it had at least a noble origin, inasmuch as the influence of the
Protestant clergy is mainly to be ascribed to the fearlessness with which
they came forward as leaders of the people, at a period when that post
was full of danger, and when the upper classes were ready to unite with
the crown in destroying the last vestiges of national liberty.

To trace the operation of this cause of Scotch superstition, will be the
business of the present chapter; while, in the next and concluding
chapter, I shall examine the other cause, which I have as yet hardly
mentioned. This latter inquiry will involve some considerations
respecting the philosophy of method, still imperfectly appreciated among
us, and on which the history of the Scotch mind will throw considerable
light. For, it will appear, that, during the eighteenth century, the
ablest Scotchmen, with hardly an exception, adopted a method of
investigating truth, which cut them off from the sympathies of their
countrymen, and prevented their works from producing the effect which
they might otherwise have done. The result was, that though a very
sceptical literature was produced, scepticism made no progress, and
therefore superstition was undiminished. The highly-educated minds,
indeed, were affected; but they formed a class apart, and there were no
means of communication between them and the people. That this was owing
to the method which literary men employed, I hope to prove in the next
chapter; and if I succeed in doing so, it will be evident, that I have
been guilty of no exaggeration in terming this the second great cause of
the prolongation of Scotch superstition, since it was sufficiently
powerful to prevent the intellectual classes from exercising their
natural functions as the disturbers of old opinions.

We have already seen, that almost immediately after the Reformation,
ill-feeling arose between the upper classes and the spiritual leaders of
the Protestant church, and that this ill-feeling increased until, in
1580, it vented itself by the abolition of episcopacy. This bold and
decisive measure made the breach irreparable. The preachers had now
committed themselves too far to recede, even if they had desired to do
so; and from that moment, uniting themselves heartily with the people,
they took up a position which they have never since abandoned. During the
remaining twenty-three years that James was in Scotland, they were
occupied in exciting the people against their rulers; and as they became
more democratic, so did the crown and nobles grow more hostile, and
display, for the first time, a disposition to combine together in defence
of their common interests. In 1603, James ascended the throne of England,
and the struggle began in earnest. It lasted, with few interruptions,
eighty-five years, and, during its continuance, the Presbyterian clergy
never wavered; they were always steady to the good cause; always on the
side of the people. This greatly increased their influence; and what
favoured it still more was, that, besides being the champions of popular
liberty, they were also the champions of national independence. When
James I. and the two Charles's attempted to force episcopacy upon
Scotland, the Scotch rejected it, not only because they hated the
institution, but also because they looked on it as the mark of a foreign
domination, which they were determined to resist. Their nearest and most
dangerous enemy was England; and they spurned the idea of receiving
bishops who must, in the first instance, be consecrated in London, and
who, it was certain, would never have been admitted into Scotland unless
England had been the stronger country. It was, therefore, on patriotic,
as well as religious, grounds, that the Scotch clergy, during the
seventeenth century, struggled against episcopacy;[410] and when they
overthrew it, in 1638, their bold and determined conduct associated, in
the popular mind, the love of country with the love of the church.
Subsequent events strengthened this association.[411] In 1650, Cromwell
invaded Scotland, overthrew the Scotch in the battle of Dunbar, and
intrusted to Monk the task of curbing their spirit, by building
fortresses, and establishing a long chain of military posts.[412] The
nation, cowed and broken, gave way, and, for the first time for three
centuries, felt the pressure of a foreign yoke. The clergy alone remained
firm.[413] Cromwell, who knew that they were the chief obstacle to
completing his conquest, hated them, and did every thing he could to ruin
them.[414] But their power was too deeply seated to be shaken. From their
pulpits, they continued to influence and animate the people. In face of
the invaders, and in spite of them, the Scotch church continued to hold
its General Assemblies, until the summer of 1653. Then, indeed, they had
to yield to brute force; and the people, to their unutterable grief,
beheld the venerated representatives of the Scotch kirk driven from their
place of meeting by English soldiers, and led like criminals through the
streets of Edinburgh.[415]

  [410] In 1638, one of the most eminent of the Scotch clergy writes: 'Our
        maine feare' is 'to have our religion lost, our throats cutted,
        our poore countrey made ane English province, to be disposed upon
        for ever hereafter at the will of a Bishope of Canterburie.'
        _Baillie's Letters and Journals_, vol. i. p. 66. Compare p. 450.
        'This kirk is a free and independant kirk, no less then the
        kingdom is a free and independant kingdom; and as our own Patriots
        can best judge what is for the good of the kingdom, so our own
        Pastors should be most able to judge what form of worship
        beseemeth our Reformation, and what serveth most for the good of
        the People.' Two generations later, one of the most popular
        arguments against the Union was, that it might enable the English
        to force episcopacy upon Scotland. See _De Foe's History of the
        Union between England and Scotland_, pp. 222, 284, 359. 'The
        danger of the Church of Scotland, from the suffrages of English
        bishops,' &c.

  [411] The hatred which the Scotch naturally felt against the English for
        having inflicted so much suffering upon them, was intense about
        the middle of the seventeenth century, notwithstanding the
        temporary union of the two nations against Charles. In 1652, 'the
        criminal record is full of cases of murder of English soldiers.
        They were cut off by the people whenever a fitting opportunity
        occurred, and were as much detested in Scotland as the French
        soldiers were in Spain during the Peninsular war.' _The
        Spottiswoode Miscellany_, vol. ii. p. 98, Edinburgh, 1845. See
        also p. 167: 'a nationall quarrell, and not for the Stuarts.'

  [412] _Browne's History of the Highlands_, vol. ii. pp. 75-77: 'the
        English army was augmented to twenty thousand men, and citadels
        erected in several towns, and a long train of military stations
        drawn across the country to curb the inhabitants.'

  [413] Clarendon, under the year 1655, says, 'Though Scotland was
        vanquished, and subdued, to that degree, that there was no place
        nor person who made the least show of opposing Cromwell; who, by
        the administration of Monk, made the yoke very grievous to the
        whole nation; yet the preachers kept their pulpit license; and,
        more for the affront that was offered to presbytery, than the
        conscience of what was due to majesty, many of them presumed to
        pray for the king; and generally, though secretly, exasperated the
        minds of the people against the present government.' _Clarendon's
        History of the Rebellion_, p. 803.

  [414] And, what they must have felt very acutely, he would not go to hear
        them preach. A writer of that time informs us that, even in 1648,
        when Cromwell was in Edinburgh, 'he went not to their churches;
        but it is constantle reported that ewerie day he had sermons in
        his oune ludginge, himself being the preacher, whensoewer the
        spirit came upon him; which took him lyk the fitts of an ague,
        somtyms twise, sometyms thryse in a day.' _Gordon's Britane's
        Distemper_, p. 212. In 1650, according to another contemporary,
        'he made stables of all the churches for hes horsses quhersoeuer
        he came, and burned all the seatts and pewes in them; riffled the
        ministers housses, and distrayed ther cornes.' _Balfour's Annales
        of Scotland_, vol. iv. p. 88. The clergy, on the other hand,
        employing a resource with which their profession has always been
        familiar, represented Cromwell as opposing Providence, because he
        was opposing them. Rutherford (_Religious Letters_, reprinted
        Glasgow, 1824, p. 346) says, that he fought 'against the Lord's
        secret ones;' and Row (_Continuation of Blair's Autobiography_, p.
        335), under the year 1658, triumphantly observes: 'In the
        beginning of September this year, the Protector, that old fox,
        died. It was observed, as a remarkable cast of divine providence,
        that he died upon the 3d of September, which he, glorying of
        routing of our armies at Dunbar and Worcester on that day, used to
        call _his day_. On that same very day the Just Judge called him to
        an account,' &c.

  [415] See contemporary notices of this, in _Nicoll's Diary_, p. 110; and
        in _The Diary of Mr. John Lamont of Newton_, pp. 56, 57. But the
        best account is that given by Baillie, in a letter to Calamy,
        dated Glasgow, 27th July 1653. He writes: 'That on the 20th of
        July last, when our Generall Assemblie was sett in the ordinarie
        tyme and place, Lieutenant-Colonell Cotterall besett the church
        with some rattes of musqueteirs and a troup of horse; himself
        (after our fast, wherein Mr. Dickson and Mr. Dowglas had two
        gracious sermons) entered the Assemblie-house, and immediately
        after Mr. Dickson the Moderator his prayer, required audience;
        wherein he inquired, If we did sitt there by the authority of the
        Parliament of the Commonwealth of England? or of the
        Commanders-in-chiefe of the English forces? or of the English
        Judges in Scotland? The Moderator replyed, That we were ane
        Ecclesiasticall synod, ane Spirituall court of Jesus Christ, which
        medled not with anything Civile; that our authoritie wes from God,
        and established by the lawes of the land yet standing unrepealed;
        that, by the Solemn League and Covenant, the most of the English
        army stood obliedged to defend our Generall Assemblie. When some
        speeches of this kind had passed, the Lieutenant-Colonell told us,
        his order was to dissolve us; whereupon he commanded all of us to
        follow him, else he would drag us out of the rowme. When we had
        entered a Protestation of this unheard-of and unexampled violence,
        we did ryse and follow him; he ledd us all through the whole
        streets a myle out of the towne, encompassing us with
        foot-companies of musqueteirs, and horsemen without; all the
        people gazing and mourning as at the saddest spectacle they had
        ever seen. When he had ledd us a myle without the towne, he then
        declared what further he had in commission, That we should not
        dare to meet any more above three in number; and that against
        eight o'clock to-morrow, we should depart the towne, under paine
        of being guiltie of breaking the publick peace: And the day
        following, by sound of trumpet, we were commanded off towne under
        the paine of present imprisonment. Thus our Generall Assemblie,
        the glory and strength of our Church upon earth, is, by your
        souldiarie, crushed and trod under foot, without the least
        provocatione from us, at this time, either in word or deed.'
        _Baillie's Letters and Journals_, vol. iii. pp. 225, 226.

Thus it was that in Scotland, after the latter part of the sixteenth
century, every thing tended to increase the reputation of the clergy, by
raising them to the foremost rank among the defenders of their country.
And it was but natural that the spiritual classes, finding themselves in
the ascendant, should conduct the contest according to views habitual to
their profession, and should be anxious for religious advantages, rather
than for temporal benefits. The war which the Scotch waged against
Charles I. partook more of the character of a crusade than any war ever
carried on by a Protestant nation.[416] The main object was, to raise up
presbyters, and to destroy bishops. Prelacy was the accursed thing, and
that must be rooted out at every hazard. To this, all other
considerations were subordinate.[417] The Scotch loved liberty, and hated
England. Yet, even these two passions, notwithstanding their strength,
were as nothing, in comparison with their intense desire to extend and to
propagate, if need be at the point of the sword, their own Presbyterian
polity. This was their first and paramount duty. They fought, indeed, for
freedom, but, above all, they fought for religion. In their eyes, Charles
was the idolatrous head of an idolatrous church, and that church they
were resolved to destroy. They felt that their cause was holy, and they
went forth full of confidence, convinced that the sword of Gideon was
drawn on their side, and that their enemies would be delivered up to

  [416] In August 1640, the army marched into England; and 'it was very
        refreshfull to remark, that after we came to ane quarter at night,
        there was nothing almost to be heard throughout the whole army but
        singing of Psalms, prayer, and reading of Scripture by the
        souldiers in their severall hutts.' _Select Biographies_, edited
        by Mr. Tweedie for the Wodrow Society, vol. i. p. 163. 'The most
        zealous among them boasted, they should carry the triumphant
        banners of the covenant to Rome itself.' _Arnot's History of
        Edinburgh_, p. 124. In 1644, the celebrated divine, Andrew Cant,
        was appointed by the Commissioners of the General Assembly, 'to
        preach at the opening of the Parliament, wherein he satisfied
        their expectation fully. For, the main point he drove at in his
        sermon, was to state an opposition betwixt King Charles and King
        Jesus (as he was pleased to speak) and upon that account to press
        resistance to King Charles for the interest of King Jesus. It may
        be wondered that such doctrine should have relish'd with men
        brought up in the knowledge of the Scriptures; and yet, such was
        the madness of the times, that none who preach'd in public since
        the beginning of the Troubles, had been so cried up as he was for
        that sermon.' _Guthry's Memoirs_, pp. 136, 137.

  [417] 'The rooting out of prelacy and the wicked hierarchy therein so
        obviously described, is the main duty.' _Naphtali, or the
        Wrestlings of the Church of Scotland_, pp. 53, 54. This refers to
        the Covenant of 1643. So, too, the continuator of _Row's History
        of the Kirk_, p. 521, says, under the year 1639, that the object
        of the war was, 'to withstand the prelaticall faction and
        malignant, countenanced by the kinge in his owne persone.' Compare
        the outbreak of the Reverend Samuel Rutherford, against 'the
        accursed and wretched prelates, the Antichrist's first-born, and
        the first fruit of his foul womb.' _Rutherford's Religious
        Letters_, p. 179.

The rebellion, therefore, against Charles, which, on the part of the
English, was essentially secular,[418] was, on the part of the Scotch,
essentially religious. This was because with us, the laymen were stronger
than the clergy; while with them, the clergy were stronger than the
laymen. In 1643, both nations having united against the king, it was
thought advisable that an intimate alliance should be concluded; but, in
the negotiations which followed, it is noticed, by a contemporary
observer, that though the English merely wished for a civil league, the
Scotch demanded a religious covenant.[419] And as they would only
continue the war on condition that this was granted, the English were
obliged to give way. The result was the Solemn League and Covenant, by
which what seemed a cordial union was effected between the two
countries.[420] Such a compact was, however, sure to be short-lived, as
each party had different objects; the aim of the English being
political, while that of the Scotch was religious. The consequences of
this difference were soon apparent. In January 1645, negotiations having
been opened with the king, commissioners met at Uxbridge, with the view
of concluding a peace. The attempt failed, as might have been expected,
seeing that, not only were the pretensions of the king irreconcilable
with those of his opponents, but that the pretensions of his opponents
were irreconcilable with each other. At Uxbridge, during the conferences,
the Scotch expressed their readiness to concede to him what he required,
if he would gratify them in regard to the Church; while the English,
occupying themselves with civil and political questions, cared less, says
Clarendon, for what concerned the Church than for anything else.[421] A
better illustration could hardly be found of the secular character of the
English rebellion, as compared with the spiritual character of the Scotch
rebellion. Indeed, the Scotch, so far from concealing this, boasted of
it, and evidently thought that it proved how superior they were to their
worldly-minded neighbours. In February 1645, the General Assembly issued
an address to the nation, including not only those who were at home, but
also those who served in armies out of Scotland. In this document, which,
proceeding from such a quarter, necessarily exercised great influence,
political considerations, as having to do merely with the temporal
happiness of men, are treated as insignificant, and almost despicable.
That Rupert was defeated, and that York and Newcastle were taken, were
but trifling matters. They were only the means of accomplishing an end,
and that end was the reformation of religion in England, and the
establishment there of the pure Presbyterian polity.[422]

  [418] Our civil war was not religious; but was a struggle between the
        Crown and the Parliament. See a note in _Buckle's History of
        Civilization_, vol. i. p. 359.

  [419] In September 1643, Baillie, writing an account of the proceedings
        of the Westminster Assembly in the preceding month, says, 'In our
        committees also we had hard enough debates. The English were for a
        civill League, we for a religious Covenant.' Letter to Mr. William
        Spang, dated 22nd September 1643, in _Baillie's Letters and
        Journals_, vol. ii. p. 90.

  [420] 'The Solemn League and Covenant,' which 'is memorable as the first
        approach towards an intimate union between the kingdoms, but,
        according to the intolerant principles of the age, a federal
        alliance was constructed on the frail and narrow basis of
        religious communion.' _Laing's History of Scotland_, vol. iii. pp.
        258, 259. The passage, however, which I have quoted, in the last
        note, from Baillie, shows that England was not responsible for the
        intolerant principles, or, consequently, for the narrow basis.

  [421] The Chancellor of Scotland 'did as good as conclude "that if the
        king would satisfy them in the business of the Church, they would
        not concern themselves in any of the other demands."' ... 'And it
        was manifest enough, by the private conferences with other of the
        commissioners, that the parliament took none of the points in
        controversy less to heart, or were less united in, than in what
        concerned the Church.' _Clarendon's History of the Rebellion_,
        edit. Oxford, 1843, p. 522. See also p. 527: 'that the Scots would
        insist upon the whole government of the Church, and in all other
        matters would defer to the king.'

  [422] See this extraordinary document in _Acts of the General Assembly of
        the Church of Scotland from 1638 to 1842_, pp. 122-128, Edinburgh,
        1843. It is entitled 'A solemne and seasonable warning to the
        noblemen, barons, gentlemen, burrows, ministers, and commons of
        Scotland; as also to armies without and within this kingdom.' In
        it (p. 123) occurs the following passage: 'And for our part, our
        forces sent into that kingdom, in pursuance of that Covenant, have
        been so mercifully and manifestly assisted and blessed from heaven
        (though in the mids of many dangers and distresses, and much want
        and hardship), and have been so farre instrumentall to the foyling
        and scattering of two principall armies; first, the Marquesse of
        Newcastle his army; and afterwards Prince Rupert's and his
        together; and to the reducing of two strong cities, York and
        Newcastle, that we have what to answer the enemy that reproacheth
        us concerning that businesse, and that which may make iniquitie it
        self to stop her mouth. But which _is more unto us than all
        victories or whatsomever temporall blessing_, the reformation of
        religion in England, and uniformity therein between both kingdoms
        (a principal end of that Covenant), is so far advanced, that the
        English Service-Book with the Holy-Dayes and many other ceremonies
        contained in it, together with the Prelacy, the fountain of all
        these, are abolished and taken away by ordinance of parliament,
        and a directory for the worship of God in all the three kingdoms
        agreed upon in the Assemblies, and in the Parliaments of both
        kingdoms, without a contrary voice in either; the government of
        the kirk by congregational elderships, classical presbyteries,
        provincial and national assemblies, is agreed upon by the Assembly
        of Divines at Westminster, which is also voted and concluded in
        both Houses of the Parliament of England.'

A war, undertaken with such holy objects, and conceived in so elevated a
spirit, was supposed to be placed under the immediate protection of the
Deity, on whose behalf it was carried on. In the language of the time, it
was a war for God, and for God's church. Every victory that was obtained,
was the result, not of the skill of the general, nor of the valour of
the troops, but was an answer to prayer.[423] When a battle was lost, it
was either because God was vexed at the sins of the people,[424] or else
to show them that they must not trust to the arms of the flesh.[425]
Nothing was natural; all was supernatural. The entire course of affairs
was governed, not by their own antecedents, but by a series of miracles.
To assist the Scotch, winds were changed, and storms were lulled. Such
intelligence as was important for them to receive, was often brought by
sea; and, on those occasions, it was expected that, if the wind were
unfavourable, Providence would interfere, would shift it from one quarter
to another, and, when the news had safely arrived, would allow it to
return to its former direction.[426]

  [423] In 1644, 'God ansuered our Wednesday's prayers: Balfour and Waller
        had gotten a glorious victorie over Forth and Hopton, and routed
        them totallie, horse and foot.' _Baillie's Letters and Journals_,
        vol. ii. p. 155. In the same year, thanksgivings being offered at
        Aberdeen for the victory of Leslie over Rupert, 'oure minister Mr.
        William Strathauchin declairit out of pulpit that this victory wes
        miraculous, wrocht by the fynger of God.' _Spalding's History of
        the Troubles_, vol. ii. p. 254. In 1648, the Commissioners of the
        General Assembly, in an address to the Prince of Wales, stated
        that the Deity had been 'fighting for his people;' meaning by his
        people, the Scotch people. They added, that the fact of their
        enemies having been repulsed, was a proof of 'how sore the Lord
        hath been displeased with their way.' _Clarendon State Papers_,
        vol. ii. p. 424, Oxford, 1773, folio.

  [424] Two Scotch notices are now before me of the fatal battle of Dunbar.
        According to one, the defeat was intended to testify against 'the
        great sin and wickedness' of the people. _Naphtali, or the
        Wrestlings of the Church of Scotland_, p. 75. According to the
        other, it was owing to the anger of the Deity at the Scotch
        showing any favour to the partizans of Charles. For, says the
        Reverend Alexander Shields, 'both at that time, and since that
        time, the Lord never countenanced an expedition where that
        malignant interest was taken in unto the state of the quarrel.
        Upon this, our land was invaded by Oliver Cromwell, who defeat our
        army at Dunbar, where the anger of the Lord was evidently seen to
        smoke against us, for espousing that interest.' _Shields' Hind let
        loose_, p. 75. These opinions were formed after the battle. Before
        the battle, a different hypothesis was broached. Sir Edward
        Walker, who was in Scotland at the time, tells us, that the clergy
        assured the people that 'they had an army of saints, and that they
        could not be beaten.' _Journal of Affairs in Scotland in 1650_, in
        _Walker's Historical Discourses_, London, 1705, folio, p. 165.

  [425] 'Each new victory of Montrose was expressly attributed to the
        admonitory "indignation of the Lord" against his chosen people for
        their sin, in "trusting too much to the arm of flesh."' _Napier's
        Life of Montrose_, Edinburgh, 1840, p. 283. Compare _Guthrie's
        Considerations contributing unto the Discovery of the Dangers that
        threaten Religion_, pp. 274, 275, reprinted Edinburgh, 1846.
        Guthrie was at the height of his reputation in the middle of the
        seventeenth century. Lord Somerville says of the Scotch, when they
        were making war against Charles I., that it was 'ordinary for
        them, dureing the wholl tyme of this warre, to attribute ther
        great successe to the goodnesse and justice of their cause, untill
        Divyne Justice trysted them with some crosse dispensatione, and
        then you might have heard this language from them, that it pleased
        the Lord to give his oune the heavyest end of the tree to bear,
        that the saints and people of God must still be sufferers while
        they are here away; that that malignant party was God's rod to
        punish them for their unthankfullnesse,' &c. _Somerville's Memorie
        of the Somervilles_, vol. ii. pp. 351, 352.

  [426] Baillie mentions, in 1644, an instance of these expectations being
        fulfilled. He says (_Letters and Journals_, vol. ii. p. 138),
        'These things were brought in at a very important nick of time, by
        God's gracious providence: Never a more quick passage from Holy
        Island to Yarmouth in thirtie houres; they had not cast anchor
        halfe an houre till the wind turned contrare.' Compare p. 142: 'If
        this were past, we look for a new lyfe and vigoure in all
        affaires, especiallie if it please God to send a sweet northwind,
        carrying the certain news of the taking of Newcastle, which we
        dailie expect.'

It was in this way that, in Scotland, every thing conspired to strengthen
that religious element which the force of circumstances had, at an early
period, made prominent, and which now threatened to absorb all the other
elements of the national character. The clergy were supreme; and habits
of mind natural and becoming to themselves, were diffused among all
classes. The theories of a single profession outweighed those of all
other professions; and not only war, but also trade, literature, science,
and art, were held of no account unless they ministered to the general
feeling. A state of society so narrow and so one-sided, has never been
seen in any other country equally civilized. Nor did there appear much
chance of abating this strange monopoly. As the seventeenth century
advanced, the same train of events was continued; the clergy and the
people always making common cause against the crown, and being, by the
necessity of self-preservation, forced into the most intimate union with
each other. Of this, the preachers availed themselves to strengthen their
own influence; and for upwards of a century their exertions stopped all
intellectual culture, discouraged all independent inquiry, made men in
religious matters fearful and austere, and coloured the whole national
character with that dark hue, which, though now gradually softening, it
still retains.

The Scotch, during the seventeenth century, instead of cultivating the
arts of life, improving their minds, or adding to their wealth, passed
the greater part of their time in what were called religious exercises.
The sermons were so long and so frequent, that they absorbed all leisure,
and yet the people were never weary of hearing them. When a preacher was
once in the pulpit, the only limit to his loquacity was his strength.
Being sure of a patient and reverential audience, he went on as long as
he could. If he discoursed for two hours without intermission, he was
valued as a zealous pastor, who had the good of his flock at heart; and
this was about as much as an ordinary clergyman could perform, because,
in uttering his sentiments, he was expected to display great vehemence,
and to evince his earnestness by toiling and sweating abundantly.[427]
This boundary was, however, often passed by those who were equal to the
labour; and Forbes, who was vigorous as well as voluble, thought nothing
of preaching for five or six hours.[428] But, in the ordinary course of
nature, such feats were rare; and, as the people were in these matters
extremely eager, an ingenious contrivance was hit upon whereby their
desires might be satisfied. On great occasions, several clergymen were
present in the same church, in order that, when one was fatigued, he
might leave the pulpit, and be succeeded by another, who, in his turn,
was followed by a third; the patience of the hearers being apparently
inexhaustible.[429] Indeed, the Scotch, by the middle of the seventeenth
century, had grown accustomed to look up to their minister as if he were
a god, and to dwell with rapture upon every word that dropt from his
lips. To hear a favourite preacher, they would incur any fatigue, and
would undertake long journeys without sleep or food.[430] Their power of
attention was marvellous. The same congregation would sometimes remain
together for ten hours, listening to sermons and prayers, interspersed
with singings and readings.[431] In an account of Scotland in 1670, it is
stated that, in a single church in Edinburgh, thirty sermons were
delivered every week.[432] Nor is this at all unlikely, considering the
religious enthusiasm of the age. For, in those times, the people
delighted in the most harassing and ascetic devotions. Thus, for
instance, in 1653, when the sacrament was administered, they pursued the
following course. On Wednesday, they fasted, and listened to prayers and
sermons for more than eight hours. On Saturday they heard two or three
sermons; and on Sunday, the number of sermons was so great that they
stayed in church more than twelve hours; while, to conclude the whole,
three or four additional ones were preached on Monday by way of

  [427] No one, perhaps, carried this further than John Menzies, the
        celebrated professor of divinity at Aberdeen. 'Such was his
        uncommon fervour in the pulpit, that, we are informed, he "used to
        change his shirt always after preaching, and to wet two or three
        napkins with tears every sermon."' Note in _Wodrow's
        Correspondence_, vol. ii. p. 222. James Forbes, also, was 'an able
        and zealous preacher, who after every sermon behooved to change
        his shirt, he spoke with such vehemency and sweating.' _Select
        Biographies_, published by the Wodrow Society, vol. i. p. 333.
        Lord Somerville, who wrote in 1679, mentions 'their thundering
        preachings.' _Memorie of the Somervilles_, vol. ii. p. 388. A
        traditionary anecdote, related by the Dean of Edinburgh, refers to
        a later period, but is characteristic of the class. 'Another
        description I have heard of an energetic preacher more forcible
        than delicate--"Eh, our minister had a great power o' watter, for
        he grat, and spat, and swat like mischeef."' _Reminiscences of
        Scottish Life and Character_, by E. B. Ramsay, Dean of Edinburgh,
        p. 201.

  [428] He 'was a very learned and pious man; he had a strange faculty of
        preaching five or six hours at a time.' _Burnet's History of his
        own Time_, vol. i. p. 38. Even early in the eighteenth century,
        when theological fervour was beginning to decline, and sermons
        were consequently shorter, Hugh Thomson came near to Forbes. 'He
        was the longest preacher ever I heard, and would have preached
        four (or) five hours, and was not generally under two hours; that
        almost every body expected.' ... 'He was a piouse good man, and a
        fervent affectionat preacher, and, when I heard him, he had a vast
        deal of heads, and a great deal of matter, and generally very good
        and practicall, but very long.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. iv.
        p. 203.

  [429] In 1653, Lamont casually mentions, in his journal, that 'the one
        came doune from the pulpit and the other went vp, in the tyme that
        the psalme after the first sermon was singing, so that ther was no
        intermission of the exercise, nether were the peopell dismissed
        till both sermons were ended.' _The Diary of Mr. John Lamont of
        Newton_, p. 58. Burnet (_History of his own Time_, vol. i. p. 92)
        says, 'I remember in one fast day there were six sermons preached
        without intermission. I was there myself, and not a little weary
        of so tedious a service.'

  [430] When Guthrie preached at Fenwick, 'his church, although a large
        country one, was overlaid and crowded every Sabbath-day, and very
        many, without doors, from distant parishes, such as Glasgow,
        Paisley, Hamilton, Lanerk, Kilbryde, Glasford, Strathaven,
        Newmills, Egelsham and many other places, who hungered for the
        pure gospel preached, and got a meal by the word of his ministry.
        It was their usual practice to come to Fenwick on Saturday, and to
        spend the greatest part of the night in prayer to God, and
        conversation about the great concerns of their souls, to attend
        the public worship on the Sabbath, to dedicate the remainder of
        that holy day in religious exercises, and then to go home on
        Monday the length of ten, twelve or twenty miles without grudging
        in the least at the long way, want of sleep or other refreshments;
        neither did they find themselves the less prepared for any other
        business through the week.' _Howie's Biographia Scoticana_, 2nd
        edit., Glasgow, 1781, p. 311. One woman went forty miles to hear
        Livingstone preach. See her own statement, in _Wodrow's Analecta_,
        vol. ii. p. 249.

  [431] Spalding gives the following account of what happened at Aberdeen
        in 1644. 'So heir in Old Abirdene, upone the sevint of July, we
        had ane fast, entering the churche be nyne houris, and continewit
        praying and preiching whill tua houris. Efter sermon, the people
        sat still heiring reiding whill efternone's sermon began and
        endit, whiche continewit till half hour to sex. Then the prayer
        bell rang to the evening prayeris, and continewit whill seven.'
        _Spalding's History of the Troubles_, vol. ii. p. 244, edit.
        Edinburgh, 1829, 4to. See also p. 42: 'the people keipit churche
        all day.' This was also at Aberdeen, in 1642.

  [432] 'Out of one pulpit now they have thirty sermons per week, all
        under one roof.' _A Modern Account of Scotland_, in _The Harleian
        Miscellany_, vol. vi. p. 138, edit. Park, London, 1810, 4to.

  [433] 'But where the greatest part was more sound, they gave the
        sacrament with a new and unusual solemnity. On the Wednesday
        before, they held a fast day, with prayers and sermons for about
        eight or ten hours together: on the Saturday they had two or three
        preparation sermons: and on the Lord's day they had so very many,
        that the action continued above twelve hours in some places: and
        all ended with three or four sermons on Monday for thanksgiving.'
        _Burnet's History of his own Time_, vol. i. p. 108.

Such eagerness, and yet such patience, indicate a state of society
altogether peculiar, and for which we find no parallel in the history of
any civilized country. This intense desire to hear whatever the preachers
had to say, was, in itself, a homage of the most flattering kind, and was
naturally accompanied by a belief that they were endowed with a light
which was withheld from their less gifted countrymen. It is not
surprising that the clergy, who, at no period, and in no nation, have
been remarkable for their meekness, or for a want of confidence in
themselves, should, under circumstances so eminently favourable to their
pretensions, have been somewhat elated, and should have claimed an
authority even greater than that which was conceded to them. And as this
is intimately connected with the subsequent history of Scotland, it will
be necessary to collect some evidence respecting their conduct, which
will have the further advantage of exhibiting the true character of
spiritual domination, and of showing how it works, not only on the
intellectual, but also on the practical, life of a people.

According to the Presbyterian polity, which reached its height in the
seventeenth century, the clergyman of the parish selected a certain
number of laymen on whom he could depend, and who, under the name of
elders, were his councillors, or rather the ministers of his authority.
They, when assembled together, formed what was called the Kirk-Session,
and this little court, which enforced the decisions uttered in the
pulpit, was so supported by the superstitious reverence of the people,
that it was far more powerful than any civil tribunal. By its aid, the
minister became supreme. For, whoever presumed to disobey him was
excommunicated, was deprived of his property, and was believed to have
incurred the penalty of eternal perdition.[434] Against such weapons, in
such a state of society, resistance was impossible. The clergy interfered
with every man's private concerns, ordered how he should govern his
family, and often took upon themselves the personal control of his
household.[435] Their minions, the elders, were everywhere; for each
parish was divided into several quarters, and to each quarter one of
these officials was allotted, in order that he might take special notice
of what was done in his own district.[436] Besides this, spies were
appointed, so that nothing could escape their supervision.[437] Not only
the streets, but even private houses, were searched, and ransacked, to
see if any one was absent from church while the minister was
preaching.[438] To him, all must listen, and him all must obey. Without
the consent of his tribunal, no person might engage himself, either as a
domestic servant, or as a field labourer.[439] If any one incurred the
displeasure of the clergy, they did not scruple to summon his servants
and force them to state whatever they knew respecting him, and whatever
they had seen done in his house.[440] To speak disrespectfully of a
preacher was a grievous offence;[441] to differ from him was a
heresy;[442] even to pass him in the streets without saluting him, was
punished as a crime.[443] His very name was regarded as sacred, and not
to be taken in vain. And that it might be properly protected, and held in
due honour, an Assembly of the Church, in 1642, forbad it to be used in
any public paper unless the consent of the holy man had been previously

  [434] 'The power of those kirk-sessions, which are now private
        assemblages, in whose meetings and proceedings the public take no
        interest whatever, is defined to be the cognizance of parochial
        matters and cases of scandal; but in the sixteenth and seventeenth
        centuries, especially during the Covenanting reign of terror after
        the outbreak of the Civil War against Charles I., the
        kirk-sessions of Scotland were the sources of excessive tyranny
        and oppression--were arbitrary, inquisitorial, and revengeful, to
        an extent which exceeds all belief. It is truly stated by the
        author of the "Memoirs of Locheill"--"Every parish had a tyrant,
        who made the greatest Lord in his district stoop to his authority.
        The kirk was the place where he kept his court; the pulpit his
        throne or tribunal from whence he issued out his terrible decrees;
        and twelve or fourteen sour ignorant enthusiasts, under the title
        of Elders, composed his council. If any, of what quality soever,
        had the assurance to disobey his orders, the dreadful sentence of
        excommunication was immediately thundered out against him, his
        goods and chattels confiscated and seized, and he himself being
        looked upon as actually in the possession of the devil, and
        irretrievably doomed to eternal perdition."' Introduction to _The
        Kirk-Session Register of Perth_, in _The Spottiswoode Miscellany_,
        vol. ii. pp. 229-230, Edinburgh, 1845. In regard to the perdition
        which the sentence of excommunication was supposed to involve, one
        of the most influential Scotch divines of that time merely
        expresses the prevailing notion, when he asserts, that whoever was
        excommunicated was thereby given up to Satan. 'That he who is
        excommunicated may be truly said to be delivered to Sathan is
        undeniable.' _Gillespie's Aaron's Rod Blossoming, or the Divine
        Ordinance of Church Government Vindicated_, 1646, 4to, p. 239.
        'Excommunication, which is a shutting out of a Church-member from
        the Church, whereby Sathan commeth to get dominion and power over
        him.' _Ibid._ p. 297. 'Sure I am an excommunicate person may truly
        be said to be delivered to Sathan.' p. 424.

  [435] Clarendon, under the year 1640, emphatically says (_History of the
        Rebellion_, p. 67), 'The preacher reprehended the husband,
        governed the wife, chastised the children, and insulted over the
        servants, in the houses of the greatest men.' The theory was, that
        'ministers and elders must be submitted unto us as fathers.'
        _Shields' Enquiry into Church Communion_, 2nd edit., Edinburgh,
        1747, p. 66. In the middle of the seventeenth century, one of the
        most famous of the Scotch preachers openly asserted the right of
        his profession to interfere in family matters, on the ground that
        such was the custom in the time of Joshua. 'The Ministers of God's
        house have not only the ministry of holy things, as Word and
        Sacraments, committed to their charge, but also the power of
        ecclesiastical government to take order with scandalous offences
        within the familie; both these are here promised to Joshua and the
        Priests.' _Hutchison's Exposition of the Minor Prophets_, vol.
        iii. p. 72, London, 1654. In 1603, the Presbytery of Aberdeen took
        upon themselves to order that every master of a house should keep
        a rod, that his family, including his servants, might be beaten if
        they used improper language. 'It is concludit that thair salbe in
        ewerie houss a palmar.' _Selections from the Records of the Kirk
        Session, Presbytery, and Synod of Aberdeen_, printed for the
        Spalding Club, 4to, Aberdeen, 1846, p. 194. It also appears
        (p. 303) that, in 1674, the clergyman was expected to exercise
        supervision over all visitors to private houses; since he ought to
        be informed, 'iff ther be anie persone receaved in the familie
        without testimoniall presented to the minister.'

  [436] In 1650, it was ordered, 'That everie paroche be divydit in
        severall quarteris, and each elder his owne quarter, over which he
        is to have speciall inspectioun, and that everie elder visit his
        quarter once everie month at least, according to the act of the
        Generall Assemblie, 1649, and in thair visitatioun tak notice of
        all disorderlie walkeris, especiallie neglectouris of God's
        worship in thair families, sueareris, haunteris of aill houses,
        especiallie at vnseasonable tymes, and long sitteris thair, and
        drinkeris of healthis; and that he dilate these to the Sessioun.'
        _Selections from the Minutes of the Synod of Fife_, printed for
        the Abbotsford Club, Edinburgh, 1837, 4to, p. 168. 'The elders
        each one in his own quarter, for trying the manners of the
        people.' _The Government and Order of the Church of Scotland_,
        Edinburgh, 1690, p. 14. This scarce little volume is reprinted
        from the edition of 1641. See the advertisement at the beginning.

  [437] In 1652, the Kirk-Session of Glasgow 'brot boyes and servants
        before them, for breaking the Sabbath, and other faults. They had
        clandestine censors, and gave money to some for this end.'
        _Wodrow's Collections_, vol. ii. part ii. p. 74, Glasgow, 1848,

  [438] 'It is thocht expedient that ane baillie with tua of the sessioun
        pas throw the towne everie Sabboth day, and nott sic as thay find
        absent fra the sermones ather afoir or efter none; and for that
        effect that thay pas and _sersche sic houss as they think maist
        meit_, and pas athort the streittis.' _Selections from the Records
        of the Kirk Session, Presbytery, and Synod of Aberdeen_, p. 26.
        'To pas throw the towne to caus the people resort to the hering of
        the sermones.' p. 59. 'Ganging throw the towne on the ordinar
        preiching dayes in the weik, als weill as on the Saboth day, to
        caus the people resort to the sermones.' p. 77. See also p. 94;
        and _Wodrow's Collections_, vol. ii. part ii. p. 37: 'the Session
        allous the searchers to go into houses and apprehend absents from
        the kirk.'

  [439] 'Another peculiarity was the supervision wielded over the movements
        of people to such a degree that they could neither _obtain lodging
        nor employment_ except by a licence from the Kirk-Session, or, by
        defying this police court, expose themselves to fine and
        imprisonment.' _Lawson's Book of Perth_, p. xxxvii. Edinburgh,

  [440] In 1652, Sir Alexander Irvine indignantly writes, that the
        presbytery of Aberdeen, 'when they had tried many wayes, bot in
        vaine, to mak probable this their vaine imaginatione, they, at
        lenthe, when all other meanes failed thame, by ane unparalelled
        barbaritie, enforced my serwandis to reweall upon oathe what they
        sawe, herd, or knewe done within my house, beyond which no
        Turkische inquisitione could pase.' _The Miscellany of the
        Spalding Club_, vol. iii. p. 206, Aberdeen, 1846, 4to.

  [441] In 1656, a servant was ordered to be brought before the
        Kirk-Session of Aberdeen 'for her rayleing againest Mr. Andrew
        Cant, minister, in saying that becaus the said Mr. Andrew spak
        againest Yuill, he spak lyke ane old fool.' _Selections from the
        Records of the Kirk Session, Presbytery, and Synod of Aberdeen_,
        p. 138. In 1642, the Presbytery of Lanark had up a certain James
        Baillie, because he stated the extremely probable circumstance,
        'that two fooles mett togither, when the Minister and his sone
        mett togither.' _Selections from the Registers of the Presbytery
        of Lanark_, printed for the Abbotsford Club, Edinburgh, 1839, 4to,
        p. 30.

  [442] In 1644, 'If you dissent from them in a theological tenet, it is
        heresy.' _Presbytery Displayed_, 1644, p. 39, reprinted London,
        1663, 4to. In 1637, 'If ye depart from _what I taught you in a
        hair-breadth_ for fear or favour of men, or desire of ease in this
        world, I take heaven and earth to witness, that ill shall come
        upon you in end.' _Rutherford's Religious Letters_, p. 116. In
        1607, 'Mr. William Cowper, Minister, complained upon Robert Keir
        that he had disdainfully spoken of his doctrine. The (Kirk)
        Session ordained him to be warned to the morrow.' _Lawson's Book
        of Perth_, p. 247.

  [443] In 1619, a man was summoned before the Kirk-Session of Perth,
        because, among other things, he would not perform 'that civil duty
        of salutation, as becomes him to his pastor;' but 'passed by him
        without using any kind of reverence.' _The Chronicle of Perth_,
        Edinburgh, 1831, 4to, p. 80. The complaint was preferred by the
        minister himself. Indeed, the Scotch clergy took these things so
        much to heart, that they set up a theory to the effect that
        whoever showed them any disrespect, was prompted thereto by Satan.
        'It is Satan's great engine to draw men to contemne God and his
        word, under pretext of disrespect and prejudice against the
        Messengers only.' ... 'It may let us see their guilt who despise
        most eminent ordinary Messengers.' _Hutcheson's Exposition of the
        Minor Prophets_, vol. i. pp. 205, 233.

  [444] The General Assembly of Saint Andrews, in 1642, passed 'an act
        against using ministers' names in any of the public papers,
        without their own consent.' _Stevenson's History of the Church of
        Scotland_, p. 503.

These and similar proceedings, being upheld by public opinion, were
completely successful. Indeed, they could hardly have been otherwise,
seeing that it was generally believed that whoever gainsaid the clergy,
would be visited, not only with temporal penalties, but also with
spiritual ones. For such a crime, there was punishment here, and there
was punishment hereafter. The preachers willingly fostered a delusion by
which they benefited. They told their hearers, that what was spoken in
the pulpit was binding upon all believers, and was to be regarded as
immediately proceeding from the Deity.[445] This proposition being
established, other propositions naturally followed. The clergy believed
that they alone were privy to the counsels of the Almighty, and that, by
virtue of this knowledge, they could determine what any man's future
state would be.[446] Going still further, they claimed the power, not
only of foretelling his future state, but also of controlling it; and
they did not scruple to affirm that, by their censures, they could open
and shut the kingdom of heaven.[447] As if this were not enough, they
also gave out that a word of theirs could hasten the moment of death, and
by cutting off the sinner in his prime, could bring him at once before
the judgment-seat of God.[448]

  [445] 'Directions for a believer's walk, given by Christ's ministers from
        his word, are his own, and are accounted by him as if he did
        immediately speak them himself.' _Durham's Exposition of the Song
        of Solomon_, p. 102. I quote from the Glasgow reprint of 1788.
        That my references may be easily verified, and any error, if error
        there be, detected, I mention that the exact edition used will, in
        every case, be found specified in the List of Authors at the
        beginning of this work. But, if it will give the reader any
        additional confidence, I will venture to observe, that I am always
        scrupulously careful in reference to quotations, having looked out
        each passage afresh, as the sheets came from the printers hands.
        Some of the circumstances narrated in this chapter are so
        monstrous, that I hope to be excused in saying that I have taken
        all possible pains to secure their literal accuracy.

  [446] 'Yea, such was their arrogance, that, as if they had been privy to
        the councils of God, or the dispensers of his vengeance to the
        world, they presumed to pronounce upon their future state, and
        doomed them, both body and soul, to eternal torments.' _Wishart's
        Memoirs of the Marquis of Montrose_, p. 237. 'Ye heard of me the
        whole counsel of God. _Rutherford's Religious Letters_, p. 16. 'I
        am free from the blood of all men; for I have communicated to you
        the whole counsel of God.' _Ibid._ p. 191. 'This is the great
        business of Gospel Ministers, to declare the whole counsel of
        God.' _Halyburton's Great Concern of Salvation_, p. 4. 'Asserting
        that he had declared the whole counsel of God, and had keeped
        nothing back.' _Life of the Rev. A. Peden_, p. 41, in vol. i. of
        _Walker's Biographia Presbyteriana_.

  [447] 'The power of the keys is given to the Ministers of the church,
        wherewith not only by the preaching of the word, but also to
        church censures (sic) they open and shut the kingdom of heaven.'
        _Dickson's Truth's Victory over Error_, p. 282. 'To preach the
        Word, impugne, rebuik, admonishe, exhort and correct, and that
        under no less paine then casting both bodie and soull into
        eternall hell's fire.' _Forbes' Certaine Records touching the
        Estate of the Kirk_, p. 519. 'The next words, "Whatsoever ye shall
        bind on Earth shall be bound in Heaven," being spoken to the
        Apostles, and in them to other Ministers of Jesus Christ.'
        _Gillespie's Aaron's Rod Blossoming_, p. 366. 'The keys of the
        kingdom of Heaven' ... 'are committed and intrusted to the pastors
        and other ruling officers of the Church.' _Ibid._ p. 260.

  [448] 'Gird up the loins of your mind, and make you ready for meeting
        the Lord; I have often summoned you, and now I summon you again,
        to compear before your Judge, to make a reckoning of your life.'
        _Rutherford's Religious Letters_, p. 235. 'Mr. Cameron, musing a
        little, said, "You, and all who do not know my God in mercy, shall
        know him in his judgments, which shall be sudden and surprising in
        a few days upon you; and I, as a sent servant of Jesus Christ,
        whose commission I bear, and whose badge I wear upon my breast,
        give you warning, and leave you to the justice of God."
        Accordingly, in a few days after, the said Andrew, being in
        perfect health, took his breakfast plentifully, and before he rose
        fell a-vomiting, and vomited his heart's blood in the very vessel
        out of which he had taken his breakfast; and died in a most
        frightful manner.' _Howie's Biographia Scoticana_, p. 406.

Utterly horrible as such a pretension now appears, it was made, not only
with impunity, but with advantage; and numerous instances are recorded,
in which the people believed that it was strictly enforced. The
celebrated John Welsh, sitting one night at table, round which a party
were assembled at supper, began to discourse to the company respecting
the state of their souls. Those who were present listened with humility;
but to this general feeling there was one exception. For, it so happened
that a Roman Catholic was in the room, and he, of course, disagreed with
the opinions expressed by the Presbyterian divine. If he had been a
cautious man, he would have kept his disagreement to himself; but being a
hot-headed youth, and being impatient at seeing a single person engross
the conversation, he lost his temper, and not only ridiculed Welsh, but
actually made faces at him. Thereupon, Welsh charged the company to take
heed, and see what the Lord was about to do to him who mocked. Scarcely
had this threat been uttered, when it was carried into execution. He who
had dared to jest at the minister, suddenly fell, sank under the table,
and died there in presence of the whole party.[449]

  [449] 'Sitting at supper with the Lord Ochiltree (who was uncle to
        Mr. Welsh's wife), as his manner was, he entertained the company
        with godly and edifying discourse, which was well received by all
        the company save only one debauched Popish young gentleman, who
        sometimes laughed, and sometimes mocked and made faces; whereupon
        Mr. Welsh brake out into a sad abrupt charge upon all the company
        to be silent, and observe the work of the Lord upon that profane
        mocker, which they should presently behold; upon which immediately
        the profane wretch sunk down and died beneath the table, but never
        returned to life again, to the great astonishment of all the
        company.' _History of Mr. John Welsh, Minister of the Gospel at
        Ayr_, in _Select Biographies_, vol. i. p. 29. 'Mr. Welsh being by
        the Captaine, set at the upper end, intertained the company with
        grave and edifying discourse which all delighted to hear, save
        this young Papist, who, with laughter and derision, laboured to
        silence him, which was little regarded by Mr. Welsh. But after
        supper, while the guests sate a little, this youth stood up at the
        lower end of the table, and while Mr. Welsh proceeded from grave
        to gracious entertainment of his company, the youth came to that
        height of insolence as with the finger to point at him and with
        the face to make flouting grimaces, whereby he grieved the holy
        man, so as on a suddain he was forced to a silence. The whole
        company, who had heard him with delight, were silent with him.
        Within a little, Mr. Welsh, as moved by the spirit of God, broke
        forth into these words: "Gentlemen, the spirit of God is provoked
        against us, and I shall intreat you not to be afraid to see what
        God shall do among you before you rise from the table, for he will
        smite some of you with death before you go hence." All were
        silently astonished, waiting to see the issue with fear. And while
        every man feared himselfe, except the insolent youth, he fel down
        dead suddenly at the foot of the table to shew the power of God's
        jealousie against the mockers of his Spirit and the offers of his
        grace.' _Fleming's Fulfilling of the Scripture_, pp. 374, 375.

This happened early in the seventeenth century, and being bruited abroad,
it became a great terror to all evil-doers. But, after a time, its effect
appears to have been weakened; since another man was equally rash some
forty or fifty years afterwards. It seems that a Scotch clergyman of
considerable repute, Mr. Thomas Hog, was, like Welsh, sitting at supper,
when it so chanced that the servants forgot to lay the knives. Mr. Hog,
thinking the opportunity a favourable one, observed that such
forgetfulness was of little moment, and that, while we thought so much of
our comforts here, it was far more necessary to consider our condition
hereafter. A gentleman present, amused, either by the manner of Mr. Hog,
or by the skill with which he introduced the topics of his own
profession, was unable to restrain himself, and burst out into a violent
fit of laughter. The minister, however, was not to be checked, and he
continued after such a fashion, that the laughter was repeated louder
than ever. At length Mr. Hog turned round, and told his merry comrade
that very shortly he should seek for mercy, but find it not. That same
night, the scoffer was taken ill, and in great alarm sent for Mr. Hog. It
was, however, useless. Before the clergyman could reach his room, the
sinner was lying dead, a lost and ruined man.[450]

  [450] 'When they sat doun to supper, it seems, knives were forgote; and
        when the servant was rebuked, Mr. Hogg said, there was noe matter,
        for he had one in his pocket, and it was a necessary companion for
        a travailer; and, as his use was upon evry thing, he took occasion
        to raise a spirituall discourse from it: "If we wer soe carefull
        about accommodations in our way here, what care should we take in
        our spirituall journey!" and the like; at which the factour takes
        a kink of laughing. Mr. Hogg looked at him with a frown, and went
        on in his discourse. Within a little, at somewhat or other, he
        laughed out yet louder, and Mr. Hogg stoped a litle, and looked
        him very stern in the face, and went on in his discourse, upon the
        free grace of God; and, at some expression or other, the man fell
        a laughing and flouting very loud: Upon which Mr. Hogg stoped, and
        directed his discourse to him, to this purpose: "Alace!" sayes he,
        "my soul is afflicted to say what I must say to you, sir, and I am
        constrained and pressed in spirit to say it, and cannot help it.
        Sir, you nou dispise the grace of God, and mock at it; but I tell
        you, in the name of the Lord, that the time is coming, and that
        very shortly, when you (will) seek ane offer of grace, but shall
        not find it!" Upon which the man arose, laughing and flouting, and
        went to his room. After he was away, the lady asked Mr. Hogg, What
        he thought would come upon him? He answered, he kneu noe more then
        he had said, and that he was constrained and oblidged to say it
        against his inclination; and he could not accompt for some of
        these impressions he sometimes felt, and after Providences would
        clear, and that shortly; but what it was, when, or where, he kneu
        not. The man told some of the servants that a phanatick Minister
        had been pronouncing a curse on him, but he did not value him nor
        it either. After Mr. Hogg had been somtime with the lady, he went
        to his room; and after he had, as he used to doe, spent some time
        in prayer, he putt off his cloaths, and just as he was stepping
        into his bedd, a servant comes and knocks at the dore and cryes,
        "For the Lord's sake, Mr. Hogg, come doun staires, presently, to
        the factour's room!" He put on his cloaths, as quickly as
        possible, and came doun, but the wretch was dead before he reached
        him!' _Analecta, or Materials for a History of Remarkable
        Providences, mostly relating to Scotch Ministers and Christians_,
        by the Rev. Robert Wodrow, vol. i. pp. 265, 266. Compare _The Life
        of Mr. Thomas Hog_, in _Howie's Biographia_, p. 543, where a
        version is given, slightly different, but essentially the same.

Nor was it merely in private houses that such examples were made.
Sometimes the clergyman denounced the offender from the pulpit, and the
punishment was as public as the offence. It is said that Gabriel Semple,
when preaching, had a strange habit of putting out his tongue, and that
this excited the mirth of a drunken man, who went into the church, and,
by way of derision, put out his tongue also. But, to his horror, he
found that, though he could put it out, he could not draw it in again.
The result was, that the tongue stiffened; it lost all sensibility;
and, paralysis coming on, the man died a few days after his

  [451] 'He tells me, that when in the South country, he heard this story,
        which was not doubted about Geddart' (i.e. Jedburgh): 'Mr. Gabriel
        Semple had gote a habite, when speaking and preaching, of putting
        out his tongue, and licking his lipps very frequently. Ther was a
        fellou that used to ape him, in a way of mock; and one day, in a
        druken caball, he was aping him and putting out his tongue; and it
        turned stiffe and sensless, and he could not drau it in again, but
        in a feu dayes dyed. This accompt is soe odd, that I wish I may
        have it confirmed from other hands.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. ii.
        p. 187.

Occasionally, the penalty was less severe, though the miracle was equally
conspicuous. In 1682, a certain woman took upon herself to scold the
famous divine, Peden, who was justly regarded as one of the great lights
of the Scotch Church. 'I wonder,' said that eminent man, 'I wonder your
tongue is not sore with so much idle clatter.' She indignantly replied,
that she had never suffered, either from a sore tongue, or from a sore
mouth. He told her that she soon would. And the consequence of his saying
so was, that her tongue and gums swelled to that degree, that for some
days she was unable to take her usual food.[452]

  [452] 'About the same time, wading Douglas-water very deep,' (he) 'came
        to a house there; the good wife of the house insisted (as most
        part of women do not keep a bridle-hand) in chiding of him; which
        made him to fret, and said, I wonder that your tongue is not sore
        with so much idle clatter. She said, I never had a sore tongue nor
        mouth all my days. He said, It will not be long so. Accordingly,
        her tongue and gooms swelled so, that she could get no meat taken
        for some days.' _Account of the Life and Death of Mr. Walter
        Smith_, p. 93, in vol. ii. of _Walker's Biographia Presbyteriana_.

She escaped with her life; others were more sharply handled. A clergyman
was interrupted in the midst of his sermon by three gentlemen leaving the
church. It is not stated that there was any thing offensive in their
manner; but their object in going was to amuse themselves at some fair or
race, and the minister, no doubt, thought that they should have been
content with the gratification of hearing him. At all events, he was
dissatisfied, and, after the sermon was over, he censured their conduct,
and threatened them with the divine displeasure. His words were
remembered, and, to the awe of his parishioners, every tittle was
fulfilled. Of the three gentlemen, all died violent deaths; one of them
broke his neck by falling from his horse, and another was found in his
room with his throat cut.[453]

  [453] 'I hear from Lady Henriett Campbell, who was present at a
        Communion at Jeddart (Jedburgh), some years before Mr. Gabriel
        Semple's death, that, either on the fast day, or Saturnday, ther
        wer three gentlmen either in the parish or noturely knouen
        thereabout, who rose in the time of the last sermon, and with
        their servants went out of (the church), either to some fair or
        some race, not farr off. After sermon, when Mr. Semple rose to
        give the ordinary advertisments, he began with taking nottice of
        this, and said, he had remarked three gentlmen rise in time of
        sermon, and contemptuously and boldly leave God's service to goe
        to a fair, or race, as he supposed; but sayes, "It's born in upon
        me, and I am perswaded of it, the Lord will not suffer them to goe
        off time, without some remarkable judgment, and I am much mistaken
        if the most part that have seen them committ the sin, will not
        hear of the punishment of such open despite to the ordinances of
        Christ." This peremptoryness did very much surprize Lady
        H(enriett), and coming home from sermon with my Lord Lothian and
        his Lady, in coach, she expressed her surprize at it. My Lord
        Lothian said, "The Minister is a man of God, and I am perswaded
        not one word of his will fall to the ground!" Within some feu
        moneths, my Lord or my Lady, writing to Lady H(enriett), signifyed
        to her, that one of these gentlmen was found in his room, (if I
        forgett not), with his throat cutt; and a second, being drunk,
        fell off his horse, and broke his neck; and some while after, shee
        heard the third had dyed some violent death.' _Wodrow's Analecta_,
        vol. i. pp. 344, 345.

Cases of this sort were frequent during the seventeenth century; and as
in that credulous age they were firmly believed and widely circulated,
the power of the clergy was consolidated by them. The Laird of Hilton
once ventured to pull a minister out of a pulpit which was not his own,
and into which he had unlawfully intruded. 'For the injury you have done
to the servant of God,' cried the enraged preacher, 'you shall be brought
into this church like a sticked sow.' And so indeed he was. Yet a little
while, and Hilton became entangled in a quarrel, was run through the
body, and his corpse, still bleeding, was carried into the very church
where the outrage had been committed.[454]

  [454] 'In the time of sermon, the Laird of Hiltoun comes in, and charges
        him in the midst of his work, to come out of (the) pulpite, in the
        king's name. Mr. Douglasse refused; whereupon the Laird comes to
        the pulpit, and pulls him out by force! When he sau he behoved to
        yeild, he said, "Hiltoun, for this injury you have done to the
        servant of God, knou what you are to meet with! In a litle time
        you shall be brought into this very church, like a sticked sou!"
        And in some litle time after, Hilton was run throu the body, and
        dyed by, if I mistake not, Annandale's brother, either in a douell
        or a drunken toilzie, and his corpes wer brought in, all bleeding,
        into that church. "Touch not mine annoynted, and doe my prophets
        noe harm!"' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. ii. p. 154. In the same work
        (vol. iv. p. 268) the Reverend Mr. Wodrow writes, that he had been
        subsequently informed, 'that the story is very true about the
        denuntiation upon the Laird of Hiltoun, as I have (I think)
        published it; and ther is a man yet alive who was witness to it,
        and in the church at the time.'

Even when a clergyman was in prison, he retained the same power. His
authority was delegated to him from on high, and no temporal misfortune
could curtail it. In 1673, the Reverend Alexander Peden, when in
confinement, heard a young girl laughing at him outside the door of his
room, while he was engaged in those vociferous devotions for which he was
celebrated. The mirth of the poor child cost her dear. Peden denounced
against her the judgment of God. In consequence of that denunciation, the
wind blew her from a rock on which she was walking, and swept her into
the sea, where she was quickly drowned.[455]

  [455] 'While prisoner in the Bass, one Sabbath morning, being about the
        publick worship of God, a young lass, about the age of thirteen or
        fourteen years, came to the chamber-door, mocking with loud
        laughter: He said, Poor thing, thou mocks and laughs at the
        worship of God; but ere long, God shall write such a sudden,
        surprising judgment on thee, that shall stay thy laughing, and
        thou shalt not escape it. Very shortly thereafter, she was walking
        upon the rock, and there came a blast of wind, and sweeped her off
        the rock into the sea, where she was lost.' _Life and Death of Mr.
        Alexander Peden_, p. 43, in vol. i. of _Walker's Biographia
        Presbyteriana_. See also _Howie's Biographia Presbyteriana_,
        p. 487.

Sometimes the vengeance of the clergy extended to the innocent offspring
of the man who had offended them. A certain minister, whose name has not
been preserved, met with opposition in his parish, and fell into
pecuniary and other difficulties. He applied for aid to a trader, who,
being wealthy, ought, he thought, to afford him assistance. The trader,
however, thought otherwise, and refused. Upon this, the clergyman
declared that God would visit him. The result was, that his business not
only declined, but his mind became impaired, and he died an idiot. He had
two sons and two daughters. Both his sons went mad. One of his daughters,
likewise, lost her reason. The other daughter being married, even her
husband became destitute, and the children of that marriage became
beggars, that the heinous crime might be visited to the third

  [456] 'He (Mr. Fordyce, in Aberdeen) tells me this following accompt,
        which he had from personall observation: When he lived near
        Frazerburge, in the North, there was a minister settled there,
        _jure devoluto_, the toun being biggotted against Presbytery to a
        pitch, and only two or three that had any seeming liking that way.
        After the Minister is setled, he expected much encouragement from
        one Ougstoun, I think his name was, who had professed much respect
        for him in that way. A while after, in some difficulty, the
        Minister came to him, and desired his countenance and assistance
        in the difficulty. He at first put the Minister off with delay:
        and within a litle plainly mocked him, and would doe nothing. The
        Minister came from him to my informer, who lived a litle from the
        place, and gave him ane account (of) what had befallen him, and
        said, "I expected much from that man, and reaconed upon his help
        and assistance, in soe comfortless a setlement as I have ventured
        on; and he has not only disappointed me, but mocked me!" And the
        Minister was like to sink under the thoughts of this carriage; and
        after some silence, he said, very peremptorly, "I am much
        mistaken, yea, I'le say it, God hath sent me, and spoken by me.
        God will visite that man, and something more than ordinary will
        befall him and his!" My informer was very much stunned and greived
        at such a peremptory declaration. However, it was accomplished, to
        my informer's personall knowledge. The man was a trader, who was
        very rich, worth near four or five thousand pounds sterling in
        stock. He had two sons and two daughters. Within some litle time,
        one of his sons turned distracted, and I think continues soe
        still. The other son, in some distemper, turned silly, and litle
        better, and dyed. His daughters, one was maryed, and her husband
        lost all his stock at sea, twice or thrice; his goodfather stocked
        him once or twice, and all was still lost, and they and their
        children are miserable. The other daughter fell into a distemper,
        wherein she lost her reason. The man himself, after that time,
        never throve; his means wasted away insensibly; and throu all
        things, he fell under melancholy, and turned silly, and dyed
        stupide. All this fell out in some feu years after what passed
        above; and my relator kneu all this particularly, and had occasion
        to be upon the man's bussiness and affairs.' _Wodrow's Analecta_,
        vol. ii. pp. 175, 176. See also, in another work by this eminent
        Scotch divine, an account of what happened, when 'a rash young
        man' having destroyed the property of a clergyman, named Boyd, 'it
        was observed that that family did never thrive afterwards, but
        were in a decaying condition till they are reduced almost to
        nothing.' _Wodrow's Collections upon the Lives of Ministers of the
        Church of Scotland_, vol. ii. part. i. p. 215.

To prosecute a minister, or even to assert one's rights against him
before a civil tribunal, was not only a hazard, but a certain ruin. About
the year 1665, James Fraser was sued in a court of law for a large sum of
money, said to be due from his father's estate. As usually happens in
these cases, the party sued, considered that he was unjustly treated, and
that his opponent had no right to make the claim. So far, all was
natural. But the peculiarity was, that Fraser, against whom the action
was brought, was a young man preparing for the ministry, and, therefore,
under the immediate protection of Providence. Such an one was not to be
vexed with impunity; and we are assured by Fraser himself that God
specially interposed to prevent his ruin; that one of his opponents was
made unable to appear in court, and that the Lord, laying his hand upon
the others, put them to death, in order that every obstacle might be at
once removed.[457]

  [457] See Fraser's Life of Himself, in vol. ii. of _Select Biographies_,
        edited by the Rev. W. K. Tweedie. 'Nothing now remained of all my
        father's great fortune but a small wadset of sixteen chalders,
        liferented likewise by my mother. And about the same time a new
        (though an unjust) adversary charges both her and me for 36,000
        merks, and a reduction of our rights; so that our whole livelihood
        was either gone or at the stake. For four years did this adversary
        vex us, and was like to have undone us as to our temporal
        condition, had not the Lord prevented.' p. 196. 'I, ignorant what
        defences to make, had in my company a registrate horning, which I
        accidentally and without premeditation (God putting it in my mind
        at the same time) did cast in, by which he, being the king's
        rebel, was incapacitate from pursuing me. And the Lord so ordered
        it that he never after compeared to trouble me, by which means I
        was delivered from a loss and a fashery, and had but one court to
        wait upon.' p. 202. 'My condition during this time was a wrestling
        condition with the sons of Zeruiah that were too strong for me;
        little or no overcoming, yet violent wrestling.' ... 'For I
        humbled myself under the sense of the calamities of our family,
        and my own particular wants; I besought him to keep us from utter
        destruction. And the Lord was pleased to hear; _he destroyed by
        death my chief adversaries_, I found shifts to pay my many petty
        debts, gained our law-action, and was restored to some of my
        ancient possessions again.' pp. 227, 228.

While stories of this sort were generally believed, it was but natural
that an opinion should grow up that it was dangerous to meddle with a
minister, or in any way to interfere with his conduct.[458] The clergy,
intoxicated by the possession of power, reached to such a pitch of
arrogance, that they did not scruple to declare, that whoever respected
Christ, was bound, on that very account, to respect them.[459] They
denounced the judgments of God upon all who refused to hear the opinions
they propounded in their pulpits.[460] Nor did this apply merely to
persons who usually formed their audience. Such was their conceit, and so
greedy were they after applause, that they would not allow even a
stranger to remain in their parish, unless he, too, came to listen to
what they chose to say.[461] Because they had adopted the Presbyterian
polity, they asserted that the Almighty had never failed to punish every
one who tried to supersede it;[462] and as this was the perfection of the
church, those who were blind to its merits, were given over to wrath, and
were, indeed, the slaves of Satan.[463] The clergy, who held this
language respecting their opponents, exhausted the choicest epithets of
praise on themselves, and on their own pursuits. When one of them got
into the pulpit, or took a pen in his hand, he seemed as if he could not
find words strong enough to express his sense of the surpassing
importance of that class of which he was himself a member.[464] They
alone knew the truth; they alone were able to inform and enlighten
mankind. They had their instruction direct from heaven; they were, in
fact, the ambassadors of Christ; from him they received their
appointment; and since no one else could reward them, so no one else had
a right to rule them.[465] As they were messengers sent by the Almighty,
they were rightly termed angels, and it was the duty of the people to
listen to their minister, as if he really were an angel who had descended
upon earth.[466] His parishioners, therefore, were bound, not only to
acknowledge him and provide for him, but also to submit to him.[467]
Indeed, no one could refuse obedience, who considered who the clergy
were, and what functions they performed. Besides being ambassadors and
angels, they were watchmen, who spied out every danger, and whose
sleepless vigilance protected the faithful.[468] They were the joy and
delight of the earth. They were musicians, singing the songs of
sweetness; nay, they were sirens, who sought to allure men from the evil
path, and save them from perishing.[469] They were chosen arrows, stored
up in the quiver of God.[470] They were burning lights and shining
torches. Without them, darkness would prevail; but their presence
illumined the world, and made things clear.[471] Hence they were called
stars, which title also expressed the eminence of their office, and its
superiority over all others.[472] To make this still more apparent,
prodigies were vouchsafed, and strange lights might occasionally be seen,
which, hovering round the form of the minister, confirmed his
supernatural mission.[473] The profane wished to jest at these things,
but they were too notorious to be denied; and there was a well-known
case, in which, at the death of a clergyman, a star was miraculously
exhibited in the firmament, and was seen by many persons, although it was
then midday.[474]

  [458] 'So hazardous a thing it is to meddle with Christ's sent
        servants.' _Life of Mr. William Guthrie, Minister at Fenwick_, by
        the Rev. William Dunlop, reprinted in _Select Biographies_, vol.
        ii. p. 62. To arrest a clergyman on a civil or criminal process,
        was an act full of danger, inasmuch as the Deity would hardly fail
        to avenge it. This applied even to the officers who executed the
        arrest, as well as to him by whom it was ordered. See, for
        instance, _Some Remarkable Passages of the Life and Death of Mr.
        John Semple, Minister of the Gospel_, p. 171 (in _Walker's
        Biographia Presbyteriana_, vol. i.). 'Some time thereafter, he gat
        orders to apprehend Mr. Semple; he intreated to excuse him, for
        Mr. Semple was the minister and man he would not meddle with; for
        he was sure, if he did that, some terrible mischief would suddenly
        befal him. Mr. Arthur Coupar, who was Mr. Semple's precentor, told
        these passages to a Reverend Minister in the church, yet alive,
        worthy of all credit, who told me.' Durham boasts that, 'when
        Ministers have most to do, and _meet with most opposition_, God
        often furnisheth them accordingly with more boldnesse, gifts, and
        assistance than ordinary. Christ's witnesses are a terrible party;
        for as few as these witnesses are, none of their opposits do gain
        at their hand; _whoever hurteth them shall in this manner be
        killed_. Though they be despicable in sackcloth, yet _better
        oppose a king in his strength, and giving orders from his throne
        covered in cloath of state, than them_: though they may burn some
        and imprison others, yet their opposers will pay sickerly for it.
        This is not because of any worth that is in them, or for their own
        sake; But 1. for His sake and for His authority that sendeth them.
        2. for the event of their word, which will certainly come to
        passe, and that more terribly, and as certainly, as ever any
        temporall judgement was brought on by Moses or Elias.' _Durham's
        Commentarie upon the Book of the Revelation_, p. 416.

  [459] 'These who are trusted by Christ to be keepers of the vineyard,
        and his ministers, ought also to be respected by the people over
        whom they are set; and Christ allows this on them. Where Christ is
        respected and gets his due, there the keepers will be respected
        and get their due.' _Durham's Exposition of the Song of Solomon_,
        pp. 450, 451. Fergusson complacently says, that to affront a
        clergyman by not believing his statement, or 'message,' as he
        terms it, is a 'dishonour done to God.' _Fergusson's Exposition of
        the Epistles of Paul_, p. 422.

  [460] 'As it is true concerning vs, that necessitie lyeth vpon vs to
        preach, and woe will bee to vs if wee preach not; so it is true
        concerning you, that a necessitie lyeth vpon you to heare, and
        _woe will be to you if you heare not_.' _Cowper's Heaven Opened_,
        p. 156.

  [461] The following order was promulgated by the Kirk-Session of Aberdeen
        on the 12th July 1607. 'The said day, in respect it wes delatit to
        the sessioun that thair is sindrie landvart gentillmen and vtheris
        cum to this towne, quha mackis thair residence thairin, and
        resortis not to the preching nather on Saboth nor vlk dayes;
        thairfor, it is ordanit that thrie elderis of everie quarter
        convene with the ministrie in the sessioun hous, immediatlie efter
        the ending of the sermone on Tuysday nixt, and thair tak vp the
        names of the gentillmen and vtheris skipperis duelling in this
        burgh, quha kepis nocht the Kirk, nor resortis not to the hering
        of Godis word; and thair names being taken vp, ordains ane off the
        ministeris, with a baillie, to pas vnto thame and admoneis thame
        to cum to the preichingis, and keip the Kirk, vthervayes to remowe
        thame aff the towne.' _Selections from the Records of the Kirk
        Session, Presbytery, and Synod of Aberdeen_, p. 58. It was not
        enough to go occasionally to church; the attendance must be
        regular; otherwise the clergy were dissatisfied, and punished the
        delinquents. In the Presbytery Book of Strathbogie it is recorded
        that, on the 29th September 1649, 'Mr. Johne Reidfurd being posed
        quhat diligence he had vsed to the Lady Frendraught, reported,
        shoe had hard three sermons, and so, as he thought, shoe intended
        to continow ane hearer. The bretheren, considering her long
        continowed contumacie and delay of her process, by _heiring a
        sermon now and then_, thought not _that kind of heiring
        satufactorie_, quherfor Mr. Robert Watson, and Mr. Robert Irving,
        ver ordained to goe with Mr. Johne Reidfurd, and requyre the said
        Lady to subscryv the Covenant, quherby shoe might testifie her
        conformitie vith the Kirk of Scotland, quhilk, if shoe refused,
        the said Mr. Johne vas ordained to pronounce the sentence of
        excommunicatioun against hir before the Provinciall Assemblie, as
        he vold be answerable therto.' _Extracts from the Presbytery Book
        of Strathbogie_, p. 115. Neither distance, nor illness, might be
        pleaded as a valid excuse. Under no circumstances, would the
        preachers tolerate the affront of any one displaying an
        unwillingness to hear their sermons. In 1650, 'compeired the Lord
        Oliphant, being summondit for not keeping his parish kirk of
        Abercherdour, vho declared his inabilitie of bodie many tymes, and
        the want of houses for accommodating him and his familie so farr
        distant from the same, vas the onlie caus, quhilk he promised to
        amend in tym comming. Mr. John Reidfurd ordained to report the
        same to the presbytrie, and vpon his continowed absence, to
        processe him.' _Presbytery Book of Strathbogie_, p. 149. See more
        on this subject in _Registers of the Presbytery of Lanark_, pp. 5,
        33, 67; _Minutes of the Presbyteries of St. Andrews and Cupar_,
        pp. 67, 68, 90, 153; _Minutes of the Synod of Fife_, pp. 18, 55,
        132; and _Spalding's History of the Troubles_, vol. ii. p. 57.
        Spalding also mentions (p. 114) that at Aberdeen, in 1643, the
        clergy discoursed every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, in the
        afternoon; on which occasions, 'the people is compellit to attend
        their Lectureis, or ther cryit out against.'

  [462] 'And it may be truly said, as the Church of Scotland hath had no
        detractors, but such as were ignorant of her, or misinformed about
        her, or whom faction, partiality, prejudice, wickedness, or love
        of unlawful liberty did inspire; so no person or party hath
        endeavoured hithertil to root out Presbytery, but the Lord hath
        made it a burdensome stone unto them.' _Naphtali_, sig. B 2 rev.
        'The Lord's wrath shall so meet his enemies in the teeth,
        wheresoever they turn, that they shall be forced to forsake their
        pursuing of the Church.' _Dickson's Explication of the First Fifty
        Psalms_, p. 115.

  [463] 'The true children of the Kirk are indeed the excellent ones of
        the earth, and princes indeed, wherever they live, in comparison
        of all other men who are but the beastly slaves of Satan.'
        _Dickson's Explication of the First Fifty Psalms_, p. 312. Another
        high authority carefully identifies 'the true religion' with 'the
        true presbyterial profession.' See _An Enquiry into Church
        Communion by Mr. Alexander Shields, Minister of the Gospel at
        Saint Andrews_, p. 126. His remark applies to the 'Burgess-oaths.'

  [464] Fergusson gives an ingenious turn to this, and says that it was
        their duty to praise their own profession, not for their own sake,
        but for the sake of others. 'It is the duty of Christ's ministers
        to commend and magnify their office, not for gaining praise and
        esteem to themselves, 2 Cor. iii. 1, but that the malice of Satan
        and his instruments may be hereby frustrated, 2 Cor. xi. 12, who
        labours to bring that sacred calling into contempt; that so it may
        have the less of success upon people's hearts.' _Fergusson's
        Exposition of the Epistles of Paul_, p. 180.

  [465] 'Neither is there any mediate authoritie betweene the Lord and his
        ambassadours, in the affaires of their message; he only sendeth
        them; he alone gives them to be pastors and doctors, etc.; he
        alone shall judge them; he alone shall reward them; to him alone
        they must give an accompt of their dispensation; and he himselfe
        alone doth immediatlie rule them by his spirit and word.' _Forbes'
        Certaine Records touching the Estate of the Kirk_, p. 435. In
        reference to these amazing pretensions, the Scotch clergy were
        constantly terming themselves the ambassadors of the Deity;
        thereby placing themselves infinitely above all other men. See,
        for instance, _Durham's Commentarie upon the Book of the
        Revelation_, pp. 86, 100, 160. _Durham's Law Unsealed_, pp. 85,
        96. _Halyburton's Great Concern of Salvation_, p. 402.
        _Fergusson's Exposition of the Epistles of Paul_, pp. 17, 273.
        _Shields' Enquiry into Church Communion_, p. 72. _Binning's
        Sermons_, vol. ii. p. 118, vol. iii. p. 178. _Abernethy's Physicke
        for the Soule_, p. 122. _Monro's Sermons_, p. 207. _Gillespie's
        Aaron's Rod Blossoming_, pp. 240, 413. _Cowper's Heaven Opened_,
        p. 166. _Rutherford's Free Disputation against Pretended Liberty
        of Conscience_, p. 41. _Dickson's Truth's Victory over Error_, p.
        274. _Gray's Great and Precious Promises_, pp. 50, 74. _Fleming's
        Fulfilling of the Scripture_, p. 429. _Cockburn's Jacob's Vow, or
        Man's Felicity and Duty_, p. 401. _Hutcheson's Exposition of the
        Book of Job_, pp. 461, 479.

  [466] 'Ministers are called Angels, because they are God's Messengers,
        intrusted by Him with a high and heavenly imployment; and it is a
        title that should put Ministers in mind of their duty, to do God's
        will on earth as the Angels do it in heaven, in a spiritual and
        heavenly way, cheerfully, willingly and readily: and it _should
        put people in mind of their duty, to take this word off Ministers
        hands, as from Angels_.' _Durham's Commentarie upon the Book of the
        Revelation_, p. 496. 'Therefore are Ministers called Angels, and
        Angels, Ministers,' p. 596. Cockburn says that this is the reason
        why 'we should behave ourselves decently and reverently' in
        church; 'for if the presence of Kings overawe us, how much more
        should the presence of God and Angels.' _Cockburn's Jacob's Vow,
        or Man's Felicity and Duty_, p. 356. Another Scotch divine asserts
        that he and his brethren are able to instruct the angels, and free
        them from their ignorance. See the audacious passage in
        _Fergusson's Exposition of the Epistles of Paul_, p. 180: '_This
        may commend the ministers of the gospel not a little unto men_,
        and beget reverence in them towards the same, that even the
        blessed angels are in some sort bettered by it, and that it is
        therefore respected by them: for Paul commendeth his office from
        this, that by occasion thereof "unto the principalities and
        powers, was made known the manifold wisdom of God." Though angels
        be most knowing creatures, as enjoying the immediate sight and
        presence of God, Matt. xviii. 10, yet _they are ignorant of some
        things, which, by God's way of dispensing the Gospel to his
        church, they come to a more full knowledge off_.' After this, it
        is a slight matter to find Monro insisting that 'the people should
        consider our character as the most difficult and most sacred.'
        _Monro's Sermons_, p. 202.

  [467] 'He is obliged to minister unto them in the gospel; and they are
        obliged to submit to him, strengthen him, acknowledge him,
        communicate to him in all good things, and to provide for him,'
        &c. _Durham's Commentarie upon the Book of the Revelation_, p. 90.
        That the clergy are 'rulers and governors,' and that their
        business is 'ruling and watching over the flock,' is likewise
        affirmed in _Gillespie's Aaron's Rod Blossoming_, pp. 172, 313.
        Compare _The Correspondence of the Rev. Robert Wodrow_, vol. i. p.
        181: 'rule over the people and speak the word;' and _Rutherford's
        Free Disputation against Pretended Liberty of Conscience_, p. 41:
        'the commanding power in the Ambassadour of Christ.' See also the
        'reverential estimation' inculcated in _Boston's Sermons_, p. 186.

  [468] 'Called watchmen by a name borrowed from the practice of centinels
        in armies or cities.' They are 'Satan's greatest eyesores.'
        _Hutcheson's Exposition of the Minor Prophets_, vol. ii. p. 158,
        vol. iii. p. 208. 'They being made watchmen, do thereby become the
        butt of Satan's malice.' ... 'The Enemy's principal design is sure
        to be against the watchman, because he prevents the surprising of
        his people by Satan,' at least 'tis his business to do so.'
        _Halyburton's Great Concern of Salvation_, p. 24. Compare
        _Guthrie's Considerations contributing unto the Discovery of the
        Dangers that threaten Religion_, p. 259; _Fergusson's Exposition
        of the Epistles of Paul_, pp. 97, 106; _Durham's Exposition of the
        Song of Solomon_, pp. 278, 443, and _Wodrow's Correspondence_,
        vol. i. pp. 84, 244.

  [469] One of the most popular of the Scotch preachers in the seventeenth
        century, actually ranks himself, in this respect, as doing the
        same work as the Son of God. 'Christ and his ministers are the
        musicians that do apply their songs to catch men's ears and
        hearts, if so be they may stop their course and not perish. These
        are blessed syrens that do so.' _Binning's Sermons_, vol. iii. p.

  [470] Rutherford terms himself, 'a chosen arrow hid in his quiver.'
        _Howie's Biographia Scoticana_, p. 230. To read the coarse
        materialism contained in this and other extracts, will, I know,
        shock, and so far offend, many pure and refined minds, whose
        feelings I would not needlessly wound. But no one can understand
        the history of the Scotch intellect, who refuses to enter into
        these matters; and it is for the reader to choose whether or not
        he will remain ignorant of what I, as an historian, am bound to
        disclose. His remedy is easy. He has only either to shut the book,
        or else to pass on at once to the next chapter.

  [471] 'The Lord calleth men to be preachers, and hath them in his hand
        as starres, holding them out sometime to one part of the world,
        and sometime to another, that we may communicate light to them
        that are sitting in darkness.' _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 360.

  [472] 'Ministers are called Stars, for these reasons: I. To signifie and
        point out the eminence and dignity of the office, that it is a
        glorious and shineing office. II. To point out what is the
        especiall end of this office; It is to give light: as the use of
        Stars is to give light to the world; so it's Ministers main
        imployment to shine and give light to others; to make the world,
        which is a dark night, to be lightsome.' _Durham's Commentarie
        upon the Book of the Revelation_, p. 43. See also pp. 151, 368;
        and _Dickson's Truth's Victory over Error_, p. 176.

  [473] The Rev. James Kirton says of the Rev. John Welsh, that some one
        who observed him walking, 'saw clearly a strange light surround
        him, and heard him speak strange words about his spiritual joy.'
        _Select Biographies_, edited by the Rev. W. K. Tweedie, vol. i.
        p. 12. But more than this remains to be told. The hearts of the
        Scotch clergy were so lifted up with pride, that they
        believed--horrible to relate--that they had audible and verbal
        communications from the Almighty God, which bystanders could hear.
        One of these stories, relating also to Welsh, will be found, as
        tradition handed it down, in _Howie's Biographia Scoticana_,
        p. 148. I cannot quote such blasphemy; and those who doubt my
        statement had better refer to the second edition of Howie's work,
        published at Glasgow in 1781. It may probably be met with in the
        British Museum.

  [474] 'Mr. Johne M'Birnie at Aberdeen, (but first at the South Ferrie,
        over aganis the Castell of Broughtie,) a most zealous and painfull
        pastor, a great opposer of hierarchie. He was a shyning torch and
        a burning starre; wherefore the Lord miraculouslie made, at his
        death, a starre to appeare in heaven at the noonetyde of the day;
        whilk many yit alive testifies that they did evidentlie see it (at
        Whitsunday 1609).' _Row's History of the Kirk of Scotland_,
        p. 421.

Nor was this to be regarded as a solitary occurrence. On the contrary, it
usually happened, that when a Scotch minister departed from this life,
the event was accompanied by portents, in order that the people might
understand that something terrible was going on, and that they were
incurring a serious, perhaps an irretrievable, loss. Sometimes the
candles would be mysteriously extinguished, without any wind, and without
any one touching them.[475] Sometimes, even when the clergyman was
preaching, the supernatural appearance of an animal would announce his
approaching end in face of the congregation, who might vainly mourn what
they were unable to avert.[476] Sometimes the body of the holy man would
remain for years unchanged and undecayed; death not having the power over
it which it would have had over the corpse of a common person.[477] On
other occasions, notice was given to him of his death, years before it
occurred;[478] and, to strike greater awe into the public mind, it was
remarked, that when one minister died, others were taken away at the same
time, so that, the bereavement being more widely felt, men might, by the
magnitude of the shock, be rendered sensible of the inestimable value of
those preachers whose lives were happily spared.[479]

  [475] Mr. James Stirling, minister of Barony, Glasgow, writes respecting
        his father, Mr. John Stirling, minister at Kilbarchan, that the
        'day he was burryed ther wer two great candles burning in the
        chamber, and they did go out most surprisingly without any wind
        causing them to go out.' _Analecta, or Materials for a History of
        Remarkable Providences_, by the Rev. Robert Wodrow, vol. iii.
        p. 37.

  [476] 'This night, Glanderston told me, that it was reported for a truth
        at Burroustoness, that about six weeks since Mr. David Williamson
        was preaching in his own church in Edinburgh, and in the midle of
        the sermon, a ratton came and sat doun on his Bible. This made him
        stope; and after a little pause, he told the congregation that
        this was a message of God to him, and broke off his sermon, and
        took a formall fareweel of his people, and went home, and
        continoues sick.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. i. p. 12.

  [477] 'The same person' (_i.e._ the Rev. Mr. White) 'adds, that some
        years ago, when Mr. Bruce's grave was opened, to lay in his
        grandchild, his body was almost fresh and uncorrupted, to the
        great wonder of many; and if I right remember, the grave was again
        filled up, and another made. The fresh body had no noisome smell.
        It was then nearly eighty years after he was buried. My informer
        was minister of Larbert when this happened.' _Wodrow's Life of
        Bruce_, p. 150, prefixed to _Bruce's Sermons_.

  [478] 'He' (John Lockhart) 'tells me Mr. Robert Paton, minister at
        Barnweel, his father-in-lau, had a particular for-notice, seven or
        eight years before, of his death: That he signifyed so much to my
        informer.' ... 'When my informer came, he did not apprehend any
        hazard, and signifyed so much to his father-in-lau, Mr. Paton. He
        answered, 'John, John, I am to dye at this time; and this is the
        time God warned me of, as I told you.' In eight or ten dayes he
        dyed. Mr. Paton was a man very much (beloved) and mighty in
        prayer.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. iii. p. 451. Compare the case
        of Henderson (in _Wodrow's Correspondence_, vol. iii. p. 33),
        where the notice was much shorter, but 'all fell out as he had

  [479] 'Generally, I observe that Ministers' deaths are not single, but
        severall of them together.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. iii. p. 275.

It was, moreover, generally understood, that a minister, during his abode
in this world, was miraculously watched over and protected. He was
peculiarly favoured by angels, who, though they did good offices to all
members of the true church, were especially kind to the clergy;[480] and
it was well known, that the celebrated Rutherford, when only four years
old, having fallen into a well, was pulled out by an angel, who came
there for the purpose of saving his life.[481] Another clergyman, who was
in the habit of oversleeping himself, used to be roused to his duty in
the morning, by three mysterious knocks at his door, which, if they did
not produce a proper effect, were repeated close to his bed. These knocks
never failed on Sunday, and on days when he had to administer the
communion; and they lasted during the whole of his ministry, until he
became old and infirm, when they entirely ceased.[482]

  [480] The Rev. William Row (in his _Continuation of Blair's
        Autobiography_, p. 153) says, 'Without all doubt, though it cannot
        be proven from Scripture, that every one has a tutelar angel, yet
        it is certain that the good angels do many good offices to the
        people of God, _especially to his ministers and ambassadors_,
        which we do not see, and do not remark or know.'

  [481] 'Mr. James Stirling, and Mr. Robert Muir, and severall others in
        the company, agreed on this accompt of Mr. Rutherford. When about
        four years old, he was playing about his father's house, and a
        sister of his, somewhat older than he, with him. Mr. Rutherford
        fell into a well severall fathoms deep, and not full, but faced
        about with heuen stone, soe that it was not possible for any body
        to get up almost, far less a child. When he fell in, his sister
        ran into the house near by, and told that Samuell was fallen into
        the well; upon which his father and mother ran out, and found him
        sitting on the grasse beside the well; and when they asked him,
        Hou he gote out? he said, after he was once at the bottome, he
        came up to the tope, and ther was a bonny young man pulled him out
        by the hand. Ther was noe body near by at the time; and soe they
        concluded it was noe doubt ane angell. The Lord had much to doe
        with him.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. i. p. 57. See also vol. iii.
        pp. 88, 89, where this circumstance is again mentioned as 'a
        tradition anent him' in the place of his birth.

  [482] 'Mr. William Trail, minister at ****, tells me that his father,
        Mr. William Trail, minister at Borthwick, used every morning, when
        he had publick work on his hand, to hear three knocks at his
        chamber dore; and if, throu wearynes, or heaviness, he did sitt
        these, ther wer ordinarily three knocks at his bed-head, which he
        never durst sitt, but gott up to his work. This was ordinarily
        about three in the morning. This, at first, in his youth, frighted
        him; but at lenth it turned easy to him, and he believed these
        knocks and awaknings proceed from a good art. That these never
        failed him on Sabbaths and at Communions, when he was obliged to
        rise early: That when he turned old and infirm, towards the close
        of his dayes, they intirely ceased and left him.' _Wodrow's
        Analecta_, vol. ii. p. 307. This work, in four quarto volumes, is
        invaluable for the history of the Scotch mind; being a vast
        repertory of the opinions and traditions of the clergy, during the
        seventeenth, and early part of the eighteenth, century. Wodrow was
        a man of ability, certainly above the average; his honesty is
        unimpeachable, as the jealous scrutiny which the episcopalians
        have made of his great work on the History of the Church of
        Scotland, decisively proves; and he was in the constant habit of
        personal and epistolary communication with the leading characters
        of his age. I have, therefore, freely used his _Analecta_; also
        his _Collections upon the Lives of Ministers_, which is likewise
        in four quarto volumes; and his _Correspondence_, in three thick
        octavo volumes. It would be difficult to find a more competent
        witness respecting the sentiments of his ecclesiastical brethren.
        It would be impossible to find a more candid one.

By the propagation of these and similar stories, in a country already
prepared for their reception, the Scotch mind became imbued with a belief
in miraculous interposition, to an extent which would be utterly
incredible if it were not attested by a host of contemporary and
unimpeachable witnesses. The clergy, partly because they shared in the
general delusion, and partly because they derived benefit from it, did
every thing they could to increase the superstition of their countrymen,
and to familiarize them with notions of the supernatural world, such as
can only be paralleled in the monastic legends of the middle ages.[483]
How they laboured to corrupt the national intellect, and how successful
they were in that base vocation, has been hitherto known to no modern
reader; because no one has had the patience to peruse their interminable
discourses, commentaries, and the other religious literature in which
their sentiments are preserved. As, however, the preachers were, in
Scotland, more influential than all other classes put together, it is
only by comparing their statements with what is to be found in the
general memoirs and correspondence of the time, that we can at all
succeed in reconstructing the history of a period, which, to the
philosophic student of the human mind, is full of great, though
melancholy, interest. I shall, therefore, make no apology for entering
into still further details respecting these matters; and I hope to put
the reader in possession of such facts as will connect the past history
of Scotland with its present state, and will enable him to understand why
it is, that so great a people are, in many respects, still struggling in
darkness, simply because they still live under the shadow of that long
and terrible night, which for more than a century, covered the land. It
will also appear, that their hardness and moroseness of character, their
want of gaiety, and their indifference to many of the enjoyments of life,
are traceable to the same cause, and are the natural product of the
gloomy and ascetic opinions inculcated by their religious teachers. For,
in that age, as in every other, the clergy, once possessed of power,
showed themselves harsh and unfeeling masters. They kept the people in a
worse than Egyptian bondage, inasmuch as they enslaved mind as well as
body, and not only deprived men of innocent amusements, but taught them
that those amusements were sinful. And so thoroughly did they do their
work, that, though a hundred and fifty years have elapsed since their
supremacy began to wane, the imprint of their hands is everywhere
discernible. The people still bear the marks of the lash; the memory of
their former servitude lives among them; and they crouch before their
clergy as they did of old, abandoning their rights, sacrificing their
independence, and yielding up their consciences, to the dictates of an
intolerant and ambitious priesthood.

  [483] In illustration of this, a volume might be filled with extracts
        from the writings of the Scotch divines of the seventeenth
        century. The following passage is, perhaps, as good as any. 'Yea,
        it can hardly be instanced any great change, or revolution in the
        earth, which hath not had some such extraordinary herald going
        before. Can the world deny how sometimes these prodigious signes
        have been shaped out to point at the very nature of the stroke
        then imminent, by a strange resemblance to the same, such as a
        flaming sword in the air, the appearance of armies fighting even
        sometimes upon the earth, to the view of many most sober and
        judicious onlookers, also showers of blood, the noise of drummes,
        and such like, which are known usually to go before warr and
        commotions.' _Fleming's Fulfilling of the Scripture_, 1681,
        p. 216.

Of all the means of intimidation employed by the Scotch clergy, none was
more efficacious than the doctrines they propounded respecting evil
spirits and future punishment. On these subjects they constantly uttered
the most appalling threats. The language, which they used, was calculated
to madden men with fear, and to drive them to the depths of despair. That
it often had this consequence, and produced most fatal results, we shall
presently see. And, what made it more effectual was, that it completely
harmonized with those other gloomy and ascetic notions which the clergy
inculcated, and according to which, pleasures being regarded as sinful,
sufferings were regarded as religious. Hence that love of inflicting
pain, and that delight in horrible and revolting ideas, which
characterized the Scotch mind during the seventeenth century. A few
specimens of the prevailing opinions will enable the reader to understand
the temper of the time, and to appreciate the resources which the Scotch
clergy could wield, and the materials with which they built up the fabric
of their power.

It was generally believed, that the world was overrun by evil spirits,
who not only went up and down the earth, but also lived in the air, and
whose business it was to tempt and hurt mankind.[484] Their number was
infinite, and they were to be found at all places and in all seasons. At
their head was Satan himself, whose delight it was to appear in person,
ensnaring or terrifying every one he met.[485] With this object, he
assumed various forms. One day, he would visit the earth as a black
dog;[486] on another day, as a raven;[487] on another, he would be heard
in the distance, roaring like a bull.[488] He appeared sometimes as a
white man in black clothes;[489] and sometimes he came as a black man in
black clothes, when it was remarked that his voice was ghastly, that he
wore no shoes, and that one of his feet was cloven.[490] His stratagems
were endless. For, in the opinion of divines, his cunning increased with
his age; and having been studying for more than five thousand years, he
had now attained to unexampled dexterity.[491] He could, and he did,
seize both men and women, and carry them away through the air.[492]
Usually, he wore the garb of laymen, but it was said, that, on more than
one occasion, he had impudently attired himself as a minister of the
gospel.[493] At all events, in one dress or other, he frequently appeared
to the clergy, and tried to coax them over to his side.[494] In that, of
course, he failed; but, out of the ministry, few, indeed, could withstand
him. He could raise storms and tempests; he could work, not only on the
mind, but also on the organs of the body, making men hear and see
whatever he chose.[495] Of his victims, some he prompted to commit
suicide,[496] others to commit murder.[497] Still, formidable as he was,
no Christian was considered to have attained to a full religious
experience, unless he had literally seen him, talked to him, and fought
with him.[498] The clergy were constantly preaching about him, and
preparing their audience for an interview with their great enemy. The
consequence was, that the people became almost crazed with fear. Whenever
the preacher mentioned Satan, the consternation was so great, that the
church resounded with sighs and groans.[499] The aspect of a Scotch
congregation in those days, is, indeed, hard for us to conceive. Not
unfrequently the people, benumbed and stupefied with awe, were rooted to
their seats by the horrible fascination exercised over them, which
compelled them to listen, though they are described as gasping for
breath, and with their hair standing on end.[500] Such impressions were
not easily effaced. Images of terror were left on the mind, and followed
the people to their homes, and in their daily pursuits. They believed
that the devil was always, and literally, at hand; that he was haunting
them, speaking to them, and tempting them. There was no escape. Go where
they would, he was there. A sudden noise, nay, even the sight of an
inanimate object, such as a stone, was capable of reviving the
association of ideas, and of bringing back to the memory the language
uttered from the pulpit.[501]

  [484] Durham, after mentioning 'old abbacies or monasteries, or castles
        when walls stand and none dwelleth in them,' adds, 'If it be
        asked, If there be such a thing, as the haunting of evill spirits
        in these desolate places? We answer 1. That there are evill
        spirits rangeing up and down through the earth is certain, even
        though hell be their prison properly, yet have they a sort of
        dominion and abode both in the earth and air; partly, as a piece
        of their curse, this is laid on them to wander; partly as their
        exercise to tempt men, or bring spirituall or temporall hurt to
        them,' &c. _Durham's Commentarie upon the Book of the Revelation_,
        p. 582. So, too, Hutcheson (_Exposition of the Book of Job_, p.
        9): 'We should remember that we sojourn in a world where Devils
        are, and do haunt among us;' and Fleming (_Fulfilling of the
        Scripture_, p. 217): 'But the truth itself is sure, that such a
        party is at this day, encompassing the earth, and trafficking up
        and down there, to prove which by arguments were to light a candle
        to let men see that it is day, while it is known what _ordinary
        familiar converse many have therewith_.' One of their favourite
        abodes was the Shetland Islands, where, in the middle of the
        seventeenth century, 'almost every family had a Brouny or evil
        spirit so called.' See the account given by the Rev. John Brand,
        in his work entitled _A Brief Description of Orkney, Zetland,
        Pightland-Firth, and Caithness_, pp. 111, 112, Edinburgh, 1701.

  [485] 'There is not one whom he assaulteth not.' _Abernethy's Physicke
        for the Soule_, p. 101. 'On the right hand and on the left.'
        _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 273. Even early in the eighteenth
        century, the 'most popular divines' in Scotland, affirmed that
        Satan 'frequently appears clothed in a corporeal substance.'
        _Memoirs of Charles Lee Lewes, written by Himself_, vol. iii.
        pp. 29, 30, London, 1805.

  [486] 'This night James Lochheid told me, that last year, if I mistake
        not, at the Communion of Bafrou, he was much helped all day. At
        night, when dark somewhat, he went out to the feilds to pray; and
        a terrible slavish fear came on him, that he almost lost his
        senses. Houever, he resolved to goe on to his duty. By (the time)
        he was at the place, his fear was off him; and lying on a
        knou-side, a black dogg came to his head and stood. He said he
        kneu it to be Satan, and shooke his hand, but found nothing, it
        evanishing.' ... 'Lord help against his devices, and strenthen
        against them!' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. i. p. 24. The _Registers
        of the Presbytery of Lanark_, p. 77, contain a declaration, in
        1650, that 'the devill appeared like a little whelpe,' and
        afterwards, 'like a brown whelpe.'

  [487] The celebrated Peden was present when 'there came down the
        appearance of a raven, and sat upon one man's head.' ...
        Thereupon, 'going home, Mr. Peden said to his land-lord, I always
        thought there was Devilry among you, but I never thought that he
        did appear visibly among you, till now I have seen it. O, for the
        Lord's sake quit this way,' _The Life and Death of Mr. Alexander
        Peden, late Minister of the Gospel at New Glenluce in Galloway_,
        pp. 111, 112, in vol. i. of _Walker's Biographia Presbyteriana_.

  [488] 'I heard a voice just before me on the other side of the hedge,
        and it seemed to be like the groaning of an aged man. It continued
        so some time. I knew no man could be there; for, on the other side
        of the hedge, where I heard the groaning, there was a great stank
        or pool. I nothing doubted but it was Satan, and I guessed his
        design; but still I went on to beg the child's life. At length he
        roared and made a noise like a bull, and that very loud. From all
        this I concluded, that I had been provoking God some way or other
        in the duty, and that he was angry with me, and had let the enemy
        loose on me, and might give him leave to tear me in pieces. This
        made me intreat of God, to shew me wherefore he contended, and
        begged he would rebuke Satan. The enemy continued to make a noise
        like a bull, and seemed to be coming about the hedge towards the
        door of the summer-seat, bellowing as he came along.' _Stevenson's
        Rare, Soul-Strengthening, and Comforting Cordial for Old and Young
        Christians_, p. 29. This book was published, and prepared for the
        press, by the Rev. William Cupples. See Mr. Cupples' letter at the

  [489] In 1684, with 'black cloaths, and a blue band, and white
        handcuffs.' _Sinclair's Satan's Invisible World Discovered_, p. 8.

  [490] 'He observed one of the black man's feet to be cloven, and that the
        black man's apparel was black, and that he had a blue band about
        his neck, and white hand-cuffs, and that he had hoggers upon his
        legs without shoes; and that the black man's voice was hollow and
        ghastly.' _Satan's Invisible World Discovered_, p. 9. 'The devil
        appeared in the shape of a black man,' p. 31. See also _Brand's
        Description of Orkney_, p. 126: 'all in black.'

  [491] 'The acquired knowledge of the Devill is great, hee being an
        advancing student, and still learning now above five thousand
        yeares.' _Rutherford's Christ Dying and Drawing Sinners to
        Himselfe_, p. 204. 'He knowes very well, partly by the quicknesse
        of his nature, and partly by long experience, being now very neere
        six thousand yeeres old.' _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 219. 'Hee,
        being compared with vs, hath many vantages; as that he is more
        subtill in nature, being of greater experience, and more ancient,
        being now almost sixe thousand yeeres old.' _Ibid._ p. 403. 'The
        diuell here is both diligent and cunning, and (now almost of sixe
        thousand yeeres) of great experience.' _Abernethy's Physicke for
        the Soule_, p. 142. 'Satan, such an ingenious and experimented
        spirit.' _Binning's Sermons_, vol. i. p. 67. 'His great sleight
        and cunning.' _Ibid._ p. 110. Other eulogies of his skill may be
        seen in _Fergusson's Exposition of the Epistles of Paul_, p. 475;
        and in _Fleming's Fulfilling of the Scripture_, p. 45. A
        'minister,' whose name is not mentioned, states that he is 'of an
        excellent substance, of great natural parts, long experience, and
        deep understanding.' _Sinclair's Satan's Invisible World
        Discovered_, p. 78.

  [492] In Professor Sinclair's work (_Satan's Invisible World
        Discovered_, p. 141), we find, in 1684, 'an evident instance, that
        the devil can transport the bodies of men and women through the
        air. It is true, he did not carry her far off, but not for want of
        skill and power.' Late in the seventeenth century, it was
        generally believed that one of Satan's accomplices was literally
        'strangled in his chair by the devil, least he should make a
        confession to the detriment of the service.' _Crawfurd's History
        of the Shire of Renfrew_, part iii. p. 319.

  [493] See the account of a young preacher being deceived in this way, in
        _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. i. pp. 103, 104. The Rev. Robert Blair
        detected the cheat, and 'with ane awful seriousness appearing in
        his countenance, began to tell the youth his hazard, and that the
        man whom he took for a Minister was the Divel, who had trepanned
        him, and brought him into his net; advised him to be earnest with
        God in prayer, and likewise not to give way to dispair, for ther
        was yet hope.' The preacher had, on this occasion, been so far
        duped as to give the devil 'a written promise' to do whatever he
        was requested. As soon as the Rev. Mr. Blair ascertained this
        fact, he took the young man before the Presbytery, and narrated
        the circumstance to the members. 'They were all strangely affected
        with it, and resolved unanimously to dispatch the Presbitry
        business presently, and to stay all night in town, and on the
        morrow to meet for prayer in one of the most retired churches of
        the Presbitry, acquainting none with their business, (but) taking
        the youth alongst with them, whom they keeped alwise close by
        them. Which was done, and after the Ministers had prayed all of
        them round, except Mr. Blair, who prayed last, in time of his
        prayer there came a violent rushing of wind upon the church, so
        great that they thought the church should have fallen down about
        their ears, and with that the youth's paper and covenant' (_i.e._
        the covenant which he had signed at the request of Satan) 'droops
        down from the roof of the church among the Ministers.'

  [494] 'The devil strikes at them, that in them he may strike at the
        whole congregation.' _Boston's Sermons_, p. 186. Fleming
        (_Fulfilling of the Scripture_, p. 379) gives an account of his
        appearing to one of the Scotch clergy. Compare _Wodrow's
        Analecta_, vol. iv. p. 110. In 1624, Bruce writes, 'I heard his
        voice as vively as ever I heard any thing, not being sleeping, but
        waking.' _Life of Bruce_, p. 8, prefixed to _Bruce's Sermons_. The
        only remedy was immediate resistance. 'It is the duty of called
        ministers to go on with courage in the work of the Lord,
        notwithstanding of any discouragement of that kind, receiving
        manfully the first onset chiefly of Satan's fury, as knowing their
        ceding to him will make him more cruel.' _Fergusson's Exposition
        of the Epistles of Paul_, p. 74. In the seventeenth century, the
        Scotch clergy often complimented each other on having baffled him,
        and thereby put him in a passion. Thus, in 1626, Dickson writes to
        Boyd: 'The devil is mad against you, he fears his kingdom.' _Life
        of Robert Boyd, in Wodrow's Collections upon the Lives of
        Ministers_, vol. ii. part i. p. 238. See also pp. 165, 236.

  [495] 'He can delude ears, eyes, &c., either by misrepresenting external
        objects, or by inward disturbing of the faculties and organes,
        whereby men and women may, and do often, apprehend that they hear,
        see, &c. such and such things, which, indeed, they do not.'
        _Durham's Commentarie upon the Book of the Revelation_, p. 128.
        'Raise tempests.' _Binning's Sermons_, vol. i. p. 122. 'His power
        and might, whereby through God's permission, he doth raise up
        storms, commove the elements, destroy cattle,' &c. _Fergusson's
        Exposition of the Epistles of Paul_, p. 264. 'Hee can work
        curiously and strongly on the walls of bodily organs, on the shop
        that the understanding soule lodgeth in, and on the necessary
        tooles, organs, and powers of fancie, imagination, memory,
        humours, senses, spirits, bloud,' &c. _Rutherford's Christ Dying_,
        p. 212. Semple, giving notice of his intention to administer the
        sacrament, told the congregation 'that the Devil would be so
        envious about the good work they were to go about, that he was
        afraid he would be permitted to raise a storm in the air with a
        speat of rain, to raise the waters, designing to drown some of
        them; but it will not be within the compass of his power to drown
        any of you, no not so much as a dog.' _Remarkable Passages of the
        Life and Death of Mr. John Semple_, _Minister of the Gospel_, pp.
        168, 169, in vol. i. of _Walker's Biographia Presbyteriana_.

  [496] _Sinclair's Satan's Invisible World Discovered_, p. 137. _Memoirs
        of the Life and Experiences of Marion Laird of Greenock, with a
        Preface by the Rev. Mr. Cock_, pp. 43, 44, 45, 84, 85, 172, 222,

  [497] 'I shall next show how the murderer Satan visibly appeared to a
        wicked man, stirred him up to stab me, and how mercifully I was
        delivered therefrom.' _The Autobiography of Mr. Robert Blair,
        Minister of St. Andrews_, p. 65. See also _Fleming's Fulfilling of
        the Scripture_, pp. 379, 380.

  [498] 'One Mr. Thomas Hogg, a very popular presbyterian preacher in the
        North, asked a person of great learning, in a religious
        conference, whether or not he had seen the Devil? It was answered
        him, "That he had never seen him in any visible appearance."
        "Then, I assure you," saith Mr. Hogg, "that you can never be happy
        till you see him in that manner; that is, until you have both a
        personal converse and combat with him."' _Scotch Presbyterian
        Eloquence_, pp. 28, 29.

  [499] 'Ye go to the kirk, and when ye hear the devil or hell named in
        the preaching, ye sigh and make a noise.' _The Last and Heavenly
        Speeches of John, Viscount Kenmure_, in _Select Biographies_,
        vol. i. p. 405.

  [500] Andrew Gray, who died in 1656, used such language, 'that his
        contemporary, the foresaid Mr. Durham, observed, That many times
        he caused the very hairs of their head to stand up.' _Howie's
        Biographia Scoticana_, p. 217. James Hutcheson boasted of this
        sort of success. 'As he expressed it, "I was not a quarter of ane
        hour in upon it, till I sau a dozen of them all gasping before
        me." He preached with great freedome _all day_, and fourteen or
        twenty dated their conversion from that sermon.' _Wodrow's
        Analecta_, vol. i. p. 131. When Dickson preached, 'many were so
        choaked and taken by the heart, that through terrour, the spirit
        in such a measure convincing them of sin, in hearing of the word
        they have been made to fall over, and thus carried out of the
        church.' _Fleming's Fulfilling of the Scripture_, p. 347. There
        was hardly any kind of resource which these men disdained.
        Alexander Dunlop 'entered into the ministry at Paislay, about the
        year 1643 or 1644.' ... 'He used in the pulpit, to have a kind of
        a groan at the end of some sentences. Mr. Peebles called it a holy
        groan.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. iii. pp. 16, 21.

  [501] A schoolmaster, recording his religious experiences (_Wodrow's
        Analecta_, vol. i. p. 246), says: 'If any thing had given a knock,
        I would start and shiver, the seeing of a dogg made me affrayed,
        the seeing of a stone in the feild made me affrayed, and as I
        thought a voice in my head saying, "It's Satan."'

Nor is it strange that this should be the case. All over Scotland, the
sermons were, with hardly an exception, formed after the same plan, and
directed to the same end. To excite fear, was the paramount object.[502]
The clergy boasted, that it was their special mission to thunder out the
wrath and curses of the Lord.[503] In their eyes, the Deity was not a
beneficent being, but a cruel and remorseless tyrant. They declared that
all mankind, a very small portion only excepted, were doomed to eternal
misery. And when they came to describe what that misery was, their dark
imaginations revelled and gloated at the prospect. In the pictures which
they drew, they reproduced and heightened the barbarous imagery of a
barbarous age. They delighted in telling their hearers, that they would
be roasted in great fires, and hung up by their tongues.[504] They were
to be lashed with scorpions, and see their companions writhing and
howling around them.[505] They were to be thrown into boiling oil and
scalding lead.[506] A river of fire and brimstone, broader than the
earth, was prepared for them;[507] in that, they were to be immersed;
their bones, their lungs, and their liver, were to boil, but never be
consumed.[508] At the same time, worms were to prey upon them; and while
these were gnawing at their bodies, they were to be surrounded by devils,
mocking and making pastime of their pains.[509] Such were the first
stages of suffering, and they were only the first. For the torture,
besides being unceasing, was to become gradually worse. So refined was
the cruelty, that one hell was succeeded by another; and, lest the
sufferer should grow callous, he was, after a time, moved on, that he
might undergo fresh agonies in fresh places, provision being made that
the torment should not pall on the sense, but should be varied in its
character, as well as eternal in its duration.[510]

  [502] Only those who are extensively read in the theological literature
        of that time, can form an idea of this, its almost universal
        tendency. During about a hundred and twenty years, the Scotch
        pulpits resounded with the most frightful denunciations. The sins
        of the people, the vengeance of God, the activity of Satan, and
        the pains of hell, were the leading topics. In this world,
        calamities of every kind were announced as inevitable; they were
        immediately at hand; that generation, perhaps that year, should
        not pass away without the worst evils which could be conceived,
        falling on the whole country. I will merely quote the opening of a
        sermon which is now lying before me, and which was preached, in
        1682, by no less a man than Alexander Peden. 'There is three or
        four things that I have to tell you this day; and the first is
        this, A bloody sword, a bloody sword, a bloody sword, for thee, O
        Scotland, that shall reach the most part of you to the very heart.
        And the second is this, Many a mile shall ye travel in thee, O
        Scotland! and shall see nothing but waste places. The third is
        this, The most fertile places in thee, O Scotland! shall be waste
        as the mountain tops. And fourthly, The women with child in thee,
        O Scotland! shall be dashed in pieces. And fifthly, There hath
        been many conventicles in thee, O Scotland! but ere it be long,
        God shall have a conventicle in thee, that shall make thee
        Scotland tremble. Many a preaching hath God wared on thee, O
        Scotland! but ere it be long God's judgments shall be as frequent
        in Scotland as these precious meetings, wherein he sent forth his
        faithful servants to give faithful warning in his name of their
        hazard in apostatizing from God, and in breaking all his noble
        vows. God sent out a Welsh, a Cameron, a Cargill, and a Semple to
        preach to thee; but ere long God shall preach to thee by a bloody
        sword.' _Sermons by Eminent Divines_, pp. 47, 48.

  [503] To 'thunder out the Lord's wrath and curse.' _Durham's Commentarie
        upon the Book of the Revelation_, p. 191. 'It is the duty of
        Ministers to preach judgments.' _Hutcheson's Exposition on the
        Minor Prophets_, vol. i. p. 93. 'If ministers when they threaten
        be not the more serious and fervent, the most terrible threatening
        will but little affect the most part of hearers.' _Fergusson's
        Exposition of the Epistles of Paul_, p. 421.

  [504] The clergy were not ashamed to propagate a story of a boy who, in
        a trance, had been mysteriously conveyed to hell, and thence
        permitted to revisit the earth. His account, which is carefully
        preserved by the Rev. Robert Wodrow (_Analecta_, vol. i. p. 51)
        was, that 'ther wer great fires and men roasted in them, and then
        cast into rivers of cold water, and then into boyling water;
        others hung up by the tongue.'

  [505] 'Scortched in hell-fire and hear the howling of their
        fellow-prisoners, and see the ugly devils, the bloody scorpions
        with which Satan lasheth miserable soules.' _Rutherford's Christ
        Dying_, pp. 491, 492.

  [506] 'Boiling oil, burning brimstone, scalding lead.' _Sermons by
        Eminent Divines_, p. 362.

  [507] 'A river of fire and brimstone broader than the earth.'
        _Rutherford's Religious Letters_, p. 35. 'See the poor wretches
        lying in bundles, boiling eternally in that stream of brimstone.'
        _Halyburton's Great Concern of Salvation_, p. 53.

  [508] 'Tongue, lungs, and liver, bones and all, shall boil and fry in a
        torturing fire.' _Rutherford's Religious Letters_, p. 17. 'They
        will be universal torments, every part of the creature being
        tormented in that flame. When one is cast into a fiery furnace,
        the fire makes its way into the very bowels, and leaves no member
        untouched: what part then can have ease, when the damned swim in a
        lake of fire burning with brimstone?' _Boston's Human Nature in
        its Four-fold State_, p. 458.

  [509] 'While wormes are sporting with thy bones, the devils shall make
        pastime of thy paines.' _Abernethy's Physicke for the Soule_, p.
        97. 'They will have the society of devils in their torments, being
        shut up with them in hell.' _Boston's Human Nature in its
        Four-fold State_, p. 442. 'Their ears filled with frightful
        yellings of the infernal crew.' _Ibid._ p. 460.

  [510] This fundamental doctrine of the Scotch divines is tersely summed
        up in _Binning's Sermons_, vol. iii. p. 130: 'You shall go out of
        one hell into a worse; eternity is the measure of its continuance,
        and the degrees of itself are answerable to its duration.' The
        author of these sermons died in 1653.

All this was the work of the God of the Scotch clergy.[511] It was not
only his work, it was his joy and his pride. For, according to them, hell
was created before man came into the world; the Almighty, they did not
scruple to say, having spent his previous leisure in preparing and
completing this place of torture, so that, when the human race appeared,
it might be ready for their reception.[512] Ample, however, as the
arrangements were, they were insufficient; and hell, not being big enough
to contain the countless victims incessantly poured into it, had, in
these latter days, been enlarged.[513] There was now sufficient room. But
in that vast expanse there was no void, for the whole of it reverberated
with the shrieks and yells of undying agony.[514] They rent the air with
horrid sound, and, amid their pauses, other scenes occurred, if possible,
still more excruciating. Loud reproaches filled the ear: children
reproaching their parents, and servants reproaching their masters. Then,
indeed, terror was rife, and abounded on every side. For, while the child
cursed his father, the father, consumed by remorse, felt his own guilt;
and both children and fathers made hell echo with their piercing screams,
writhing in convulsive agony at the torments which they suffered, and
knowing that other torments more grievous still were reserved for

  [511] And, according to them, the barbarous cruelty was the natural
        result of His Omniscience. It is with pain, that I transcribe the
        following impious passage. 'Consider, Who is the contriver of
        these torments. There have been some very exquisite torments
        contrived by the wit of men, the naming of which, if ye understood
        their nature, were enough to fill your hearts with horror; but
        _all these fall as far short of the torments ye are to endure, as
        the wisdom of man falls short of that of God_.' ... '_Infinite
        wisdom has contrived that evil_.' _The Great Concern of Salvation,
        by the late Reverend Mr. Thomas Halyburton_, edit. Edinburgh,
        1722, p. 154.

  [512] 'Men wonder what he could be doing all that time, if we may call
        it time which hath no beginning, and how he was employed.' ...
        'Remember that which a godly man answered some wanton curious wit,
        who, in scorn, demanded the same of him--"He was preparing hell
        for curious and proud fools," said he.' _Binning's Sermons_,
        vol. i. p. 194.

  [513] 'Hell hath inlarged itselfe.' _Abernethy's Physicke for the
        Soule_, p. 146.

  [514] 'Eternal shriekings.' _Sermons by Eminent Divines_, p. 394.
        'Screakings and howlings.' _Gray's Great and Precious Promises_,
        p. 20. 'O! the screechs and yels that will be in hell.' _Durham's
        Commentarie upon the Book of the Revelation_, p. 654. 'The
        horrible scrieches of them who are burnt in it.' _Cowper's Heaven
        Opened_, p. 175.

  [515] 'When children and servants shall go, as it were, in sholes to the
        Pit, cursing their parents and their masters who brought them
        there. And parents and masters of families shall be in multitudes
        plunged headlong in endless destruction, because they have not
        only murdered their own souls, but also imbrued their hands in the
        blood of their children and servants. O how doleful will the
        reckoning be amongst them at that day! When the children and
        servants shall upbraid their parents and masters. "Now, now, we
        must to the Pit, and we have you to blame for it; your cursed
        example and lamentable negligence has brought us to the Pit."' ...
        'And on the other hand, how will the shrieks of parents fill every
        ear? "I have damn'd myself, I have damn'd my children, I have
        damn'd my servants. While I fed their bodies, and clothed their
        backs, I have ruined their souls, and brought double damnation on
        myself."' _Halyburton's Great Concern of Salvation_, pp. 527, 528.
        See this further worked out in _Boston's Human Nature in its
        Four-fold State_, pp. 378, 379: 'curses instead of salutations,
        and tearing of themselves, and raging against one another, instead
        of the wonted embraces.'

Even now such language freezes the blood, when we consider what must have
passed through the minds of those who could bring themselves to utter it.
The enunciation of such ideas unfolds the character of the men, and lays
bare their inmost spirit. We shudder, when we think of the dark and
corrupted fancy, the vindictive musings, the wild, lawless, and uncertain
thoughts which must have been harboured by those who could combine and
arrange the different parts of this hideous scheme. No hesitation, no
compunction, no feelings of mercy, ever seem to have entered their
breasts. It is evident, that their notions were well matured; it is
equally evident, that they delighted in them. They were marked by a unity
of conception, and were enforced with a freshness and vigour of language,
which shows that their heart was in their work. But before this could
have happened, they must have been dead to every emotion of pity and
tenderness. Yet, they were the teachers of a great nation, and were, in
every respect, the most influential persons in that nation. The people,
credulous and grossly ignorant, listened and believed. We, at this
distance of time, and living in another realm of thought, can form but a
faint conception of the effect which these horrible conceits produced
upon them. They were convinced that, in this world, they were incessantly
pursued by the devil, and that he, and other evil spirits, were
constantly hovering around them, in bodily and visible shape, tempting
them, and luring them on to destruction. In the next world, the most
frightful and unheard-of punishments awaited them; while both this world
and the next were governed by an avenging Deity, whose wrath it was
impossible to propitiate. No wonder that, with these ideas before them,
their reason should often give way, and that a religious mania should set
in, under whose influence they, in black despair, put an end to their

  [516] William Vetch, 'preaching in the town of Jedburg to a great
        congregation, said, "There are two thousand of you here to day,
        but I am sure fourscore of you will not be saved;" upon which,
        three of his ignorant hearers being in despair, despatch'd
        themselves soon after.' _Scotch Presbyterian Eloquence_, p. 23.
        See also the life, or rather panegyric, of Vetch in _Howie's
        Biographia Scoticana_, where this circumstance is not denied, but,
        on the contrary, stated to be no 'disparagement to him,' p. 606.
        The frame of mind which the teachings of the clergy encouraged,
        and which provoked self-murder, is vividly depicted by Samuel
        Rutherford, the most popular of all the Scotch divines of the
        seventeenth century. 'Oh! hee lieth down, and hell beddeth with
        him; hee sleepeth, and hell and hee dreame together; hee riseth,
        and hell goeth to the fields with him; hee goes to his garden,
        there is hell.' ... 'The man goes to his table, O! hee dare not
        eat, hee hath no right to the creature; to eat is sin and hell; so
        hell is in every dish. To live is sinne, _hee would faine chuse
        strangling_; every act of breathing is sin and hell. Hee goes to
        church, there is a dog as great as a mountaine before his eye:
        Here be terrors.' _Rutherford's Christ Dying_, 1647, 4to, pp. 41,
        42. Now, listen to the confessions of two of the tortured victims
        of the doctrines enunciated by the clergy; victims who, after
        undergoing ineffable agony, were more than once, according to
        their own account, tempted to put an end to their lives. 'The
        cloud lasted for two years and some months.' ... 'The arrows of
        the Almighty did drink up my spirits; night and day his hand lay
        heavy upon me, so that even my bodily moisture was turned into the
        drought of summer. When I said sometimes that my couch would ease
        my complaint, I was filled with tossings to the dawning of the
        day.' ... 'Amidst all my downcastings, I had the roaring lion to
        grapple with, who likes well to fish in muddy waters. He strongly
        suggested to me that I should not eat, because I had no right to
        food; or if I ventured to do it, the enemy assured me, that the
        wrath of God would go down with my morsel; and that I had
        forfeited a right to the divine favour, and, therefore, had
        nothing to do with any of God's creatures.' ... 'However, so
        violent were the temptations of the strong enemy, that I
        frequently forgot to eat my bread, and durst not attempt it; and
        when, through the persuasion of my wife, I at any time did it, the
        enemy through the day did buffet me in a violent way, assuring me
        that the wrath of God had gone over with what I had taken.' ...
        'The enemy after all did so pursue me, that he violently suggested
        to my soul, that, some time or other, God would suddenly destroy
        me as with a thunderclap: which so filled my soul with fear and
        pain, that, every now and then, I looked about me, to receive the
        divine blow, still expecting it was a coming; yea, many a night I
        durst not sleep, lest I had awakened in everlasting flames.'
        _Stevenson's Rare Cordial_, pp. 11-13. Another poor creature,
        after hearing one of Smiton's sermons, in 1740, says, 'Now, I saw
        myself to be a condemned criminal; but I knew not the day of my
        execution. I thought that there was nothing between me and hell,
        but the brittle thread of natural life.' ... 'And in this dreadful
        confusion, I durst not sleep, lest I had awakened in everlasting
        flames.' ... 'And Satan violently assaulted me to take away my own
        life, seeing there was no mercy for me.' ... 'Soon after this, I
        was again violently assaulted by the tempter to take away my own
        life; he presented to me a knife therewith to do it; no person
        being in the house but myself. The enemy pursued me so close, that
        I could not endure so much as to see the knife in my sight, but
        laid it away.' ... 'One evening, as I was upon the street, Satan
        violently assaulted me to go into the sea and drown myself; it
        would be the easiest death. Such a fear of Satan then fell upon
        me, as made my joints to shake, so that it was much for me to walk
        home; and when I came to the door, I found nobody within; I was
        afraid to go into the house, lest Satan should get power over me.'
        _Memoirs of the Life and Experiences of Marion Laird of Greenock_,
        pp. 13, 14, 19, 45, 223, 224.

Little comfort, indeed, could men then gain from their religion. Not only
the devil, as the author of all evil, but even He whom we recognise as
the author of all good, was, in the eyes of the Scotch clergy, a cruel
and vindictive being, moved with anger like themselves. They looked into
their own hearts, and there they found the picture of their God.
According to them, He was a God of terror, instead of a God of love.[517]
To Him they imputed the worst passions of their own peevish and irritable
nature. They ascribed to Him, revenge, cunning, and a constant
disposition to inflict pain. While they declared that nearly all mankind
were sinners beyond the chance of redemption, and were, indeed,
predestined to eternal ruin, they did not scruple to accuse the Deity of
resorting to artifice against these unhappy victims; lying in wait for
them, that He might catch them unawares.[518] The Scotch clergy taught
their hearers, that the Almighty was so sanguinary, and so prone to
anger, that He raged even against walls and houses and senseless
creatures, wreaking His fury more than ever, and scattering desolation on
every side.[519] Sooner than miss His fell and malignant purpose, He
would, they said, let loose avenging angels, to fall upon men and upon
their families.[520] Independently of this resource, He had various ways
whereby He could at once content Himself and plague His creatures, as was
particularly shown in the devices which He employed to bring famine on a
people.[521] When a country was starving, it was because God, in His
anger, had smitten the soil, had stopped the clouds from yielding their
moisture, and thus made the fruits of the earth to wither.[522] All the
intolerable sufferings caused by a want of food, the slow deaths, the
agony, the general misery, the crimes which that misery produced, the
anguish of the mother as she saw her children wasting away and could give
them no bread, all this was His act, and the work of His hands.[523] In
His anger, He would sometimes injure the crops by making the spring so
backward, and the weather so cold and rainy, as to insure a deficiency in
the coming harvest.[524] Or else, he would deceive men, by sending them a
favourable season, and, after letting them toil and sweat in the hope of
an abundant supply, He would, at the last moment, suddenly step in, and
destroy the corn just as it was fit to be reaped.[525] For, the God of
the Scotch Kirk was a God who tantalized His creatures as well as
punished them; and when He was provoked, He would first allure men by
encouraging their expectations, in order that their subsequent misery
might be more poignant.[526]

  [517] Binning says, that 'since the first rebellion' (that is, the fall
        of Adam), 'there is nothing to be seen but the terrible
        countenance of an angry God.' _Binning's Sermons_, vol. iii.
        p. 254.

  [518] 'He will, as it were, lie in wait to take all advantages of
        sinners to undo them.' _Hutcheson's Exposition on the Minor
        Prophets_, vol. i. p. 247.

  [519] 'His wrath rages against walls, and houses, and senselesse
        creatures more now then at that time' (_i.e._ at the time when the
        Old Testament was written). 'See what desolation he hath wrought
        in Ireland, what eating of horses, of infants, and of killed
        souldiers, hath beene in that land, and in Germany.' _Rutherford's
        Free Disputation against Pretended Liberty of Conscience_,
        pp. 244, 245.

  [520] 'Albeit there were no earthly man to pursue Christ's enemies; yet
        avenging angels, or evil spirits shall be let forth upon them and
        their families to trouble them.' _Dickson's Explication of the
        First Fifty Psalms_, p. 229.

  [521] 'God hath many wayes and meanes whereby to plague man, and _reach
        his contentments_.' _Hutcheson's Exposition on the Minor
        Prophets_, vol. i. p. 286. 'God hath variety of means whereby to
        plague men, and to bring upon them any affliction he intendeth
        against them; and particularly he hath several wayes whereby to
        bring on famine. He can arme all his creatures to cut off men's
        provision, one of them after another; he can make the change of
        aire, and small insects do that worke when he pleaseth.' _Ibid._,
        vol. i. p. 422. The same divine, in another elaborate treatise,
        distinctly imputes to the Deity a sensation of pleasure in
        injuring even the innocent. 'When God sends out a scourge, of
        sword, famine, or pestilence, suddenly to overthrow and cut people
        off, not only are the wicked reached thereby (which is here
        supposed), but even the innocent, that is such as are righteous
        and free of gross provocations; for, in any other sense, none are
        innocent, or free of sin, in this life. Yea, further, in trying of
        the innocent by these scourges, _the Lord seems to act as one
        delighted with it_, and little resenting the great extremities
        wherewith they are pressed.' _Hutcheson's Exposition of the Book
        of Job_, 1669, folio, p. 123. Compare p. 359. 'It pleaseth the
        Lord to exercise great variety in afflicting the children of men,'
        &c. But, after all, mere extracts can give but a faint idea of the
        dark and malignant spirit which pervades these writings.

  [522] 'The present dearth and famine quhilk seases vpon many, quhairby
        God his heavie wrath is evidentlie perceaved to be kindlit against
        vs.' _Selections from the Minutes of the Synod of Fife_, p. 98.
        'Smiting of the fruits of the ground.' _Hutcheson's Exposition on
        the Minor Prophets_, vol. i. p. 277. 'Makes fruits to wither.'
        _Ibid._, vol. ii. p. 183. 'Hee restraines the clouds, and bindeth
        up the wombe of heaven, in extreme drought.' _Rutherford's Christ
        Dying_, p. 52. 'Sometime hee maketh tho heauen aboue as brasse,
        and the earth beneath as iron; so that albeit men labour and sow,
        yet they receiue no increase: sometime againe hee giues in due
        season the first and latter raine, so that the earth renders
        abundance, but the Lord by blasting windes, or by the caterpillar,
        canker-worme and grasse-hopper doth consume them, who come out as
        exacters and officers sent from God to poind men in their goods.'
        _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 433.

  [523] 'Under the late dearth this people suffered greatly, the poor were
        numerous, and many, especially about the town of Kilsyth, were at
        the point of starving; yet, as I frequently observed to them, I
        could not see any one turning to _the Lord who smote them_, or
        crying to him because of their sins, while _they howled upon their
        beds for bread_.' _Robe's Narratives of the Extraordinary Work of
        the Spirit of God_, p. 68.

  [524] _Nicoll's Diary_, pp. 152, 153. Much rain in the autumn, was 'the
        Lord's displeasure upon the land.' _Minutes of the Presbyteries of
        Saint Andrews and Cupar_, p. 179.

  [525] 'Men sweat, till, sow much, and the sun and summer, and clouds,
        warme dewes and raines smile upon cornes and meddowes, yet God
        steppeth in betweene the mouth of the husbandman and the sickle,
        and blasteth all.' _Rutherford's Christ Dying_, p. 87. Compare
        _Baillie's Letters_, vol. iii. p. 52, on the 'continuance of very
        intemperate rain upon the corns,' as one of the 'great signs of
        the wrath of God.'

  [526] 'When the Lord is provoked, he can not only send an affliction,
        but so order it, by faire appearances of a better lot, and
        heightening of the sinners expectation and desire, as may make it
        most sad.' _Hutcheson's Exposition on the Minor Prophets_,
        vol. iii. pp. 9, 10.

Under the influence of this horrible creed, and from the unbounded sway
exercised by the clergy who advocated it, the Scotch mind was thrown into
such a state, that, during the seventeenth, and part of the eighteenth,
century, some of the noblest feelings of which our nature is capable, the
feelings of hope, of love, and of gratitude, were set aside, and were
replaced by the dictates of a servile and ignominous fear. The physical
sufferings to which the human frame is liable, nay, even the very
accidents to which we are casually exposed, were believed to proceed, not
from our ignorance, nor from our carelessness, but from the rage of the
Deity. If a fire chanced to break out in Edinburgh, the greatest alarm
was excited, because it was the voice of God crying out against a
luxurious and dissolute city.[527] If a boil or a sore appeared on your
body, that, too, was a divine punishment, and it was more than doubtful
whether it might lawfully be cured.[528] The small-pox, being one of the
most fatal as well as one of the most loathsome of all diseases, was
especially sent by God; and, on that account, the remedy of inoculation
was scouted as a profane attempt to frustrate His intentions.[529] Other
disorders, which, though less terrible, were very painful, proceeded from
the same source, and all owed their origin to the anger of the
Almighty.[530] In every thing, His power was displayed, not by increasing
the happiness of men, nor by adding to their comforts, but by hurting and
vexing them in all possible ways. His hand, always raised against the
people, would sometimes deprive them of wine by causing the vintage to
fail;[531] sometimes, would destroy their cattle in a storm;[532] and
sometimes, would even make dogs bite their legs when they least expected
it.[533] Sometimes, He would display His wrath by making the weather
excessively dry;[534] sometimes, by making it equally wet.[535] He was
always punishing; always busy in increasing the general suffering, or, to
use the language of the time, making the creature smart under the
rod.[536] Every fresh war was the result of His special interference; it
was not caused by the meddling folly or insensate ambition of statesmen,
but it was the immediate work of the Deity, who was thus made responsible
for all the devastations, the murders, and other crimes more horrible
still, which war produces.[537] In the intervals of peace, which, at that
period, were very rare, He had other means of vexing mankind. The shock
of an earthquake was a mark of His displeasure;[538] a comet was a sign
of coming tribulation;[539] and when an eclipse appeared, the panic was
so universal, that persons of all ranks hastened to church to deprecate
His wrath.[540] What they heard there, would increase their fear, instead
of allaying it. For the clergy taught their hearers, that even so
ordinary an event as thunder, was meant to excite awe, and was sent for
the purpose of showing to men with how terrible a master they had to
deal.[541] Not to tremble at thunder, was, therefore, a mark of impiety;
and, in this respect, man was unfavourably contrasted with the lower
animals, since they were invariably moved by this symptom of divine

  [527] In 1696, there was a fire in Edinburgh; whereupon Moncrief, in his
        sermon next day, 'told us, "That God's voice was crying to this
        city, and that he was come to the very ports, and was crying over
        the walls to us; that we should amend our ways, lest he should
        come to our city, and consume us in a terrible manner." I cannot
        tell what this Dispensation of Providence wrought on me,' &c.
        _Memoirs or Spiritual Exercises of Elizabeth West, written by her
        own Hand_, pp. 41, 42. See also, at pp. 122, 123, the account of
        another conflagration, where it is said, 'there was much of God to
        be seen in this fire.' Compare a curious passage in _Calderwood's
        History of the Kirk of Scotland_, vol. vii. pp. 455, 456.

  [528] The Rev. James Fraser had a boil, and afterwards a fever. 'During
        this sickness he miraculously allayed the pain of my boil, and
        speedily, and that without means, cured it; for however I bought
        some things to prevent it, yet, looking on it as a punishment from
        God, I knew not if I could be free to take the rod out of his
        hand, and to counterwork him.' _Memoirs of the Rev. James Fraser
        of Brea, Minister of the Gospel at Culross, written by Himself_,
        in _Select Biographies_, vol. ii. p. 223. Durham declaims against
        'Sinful shunning and shifting off suffering;' and Rutherford says,
        'No man should rejoice at weakness and diseases; but I think we
        may have a sort of gladness at boils and sores, because, without
        them, Christ's fingers, as a slain Lord, should never have touched
        our skin.' _Durham's Law Unsealed_, p. 160; _Rutherford's
        Religious Letters_, p. 265. I do not know what effect these
        passages may produce upon the reader; but it makes my flesh creep
        to quote them. Compare _Stevenson's Rare, Soul-strengthening, and
        Comforting Cordial_, p. 35.

  [529] It was not until late in the eighteenth century, that the Scotch
        clergy gave up this notion. At last, even they became influenced
        by the ridicule to which their superstition exposed them, and
        which produced more effect than any argument could have done. The
        doctrines, however, which they and their predecessors had long
        inculcated, had so corrupted the popular mind, that instances
        will, I believe, be found even in the nineteenth century, of the
        Scotch deeming precautions against small-pox to be criminal, or,
        as they called it, flying in the face of Providence. The latest
        evidence I can at this moment put my hand on, is in a volume
        published in 1797. It is stated by the Rev. John Paterson, that,
        in the parish of Auldearn, in the county of Nairn, 'Very few have
        fallen a sacrifice to the small-pox, though the people are in
        general averse to inoculation, from the general gloominess of
        their faith, which teaches them, that all diseases which afflict
        the human frame are instances of the Divine interposition, for the
        punishment of sin; any interference, therefore, on their part,
        they deem an usurpation of the prerogative of the Almighty.'
        _Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. xix. p. 618,
        Edinburgh, 1797. See also vol. xiv. p. 52, Edinburgh, 1795. This
        is well said. No doubt, so abject, and so pernicious, a
        superstition among the people, was the result of 'the general
        gloominess of their faith.' But the Rev. John Paterson has
        forgotten to add, that the gloominess of which he complains, was
        in strict conformity with the teachings of the most able, the most
        energetic, and the most venerated of the Scotch clergy. Mr.
        Paterson renders scant justice to his countrymen, and should
        rather have praised the tenacity with which they adhered to the
        instructions they had long been accustomed to receive.

  [530] The Rev. John Welsh, when suffering from a painful disorder, and
        also from other troubles, writes: 'My douleurs ar impossible to
        expresse.' ... 'It is the Lord's indignation.' See his letter, in
        _Miscellany of the Wodrow Society_, vol. i. p. 558. See also
        _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 128. A pain in one's side was the
        work of 'the Lord' (_Memoirs of Marion Laird_, p. 95); so was a
        sore throat (_Wast's Memoirs_, p. 203); and so was the fever in
        pleurisy. _Robe's Narratives of the Extraordinary Work of the
        Spirit of God_, p. 66.

  [531] In January 1653, 'This tyme, and mony monethis befoir, thair wes
        great skairshtie of wynes. In this also appered Godis justice
        toward this natioun for abusing of that blissing many yeiris
        befoir.' _Nicoll's Diary_, p. 105.

  [532] This idea was so deeply rooted, that we actually find a public
        fast and humiliation ordered, on account of 'this present uncouth
        storme of frost and snaw, quhilk hes continewit sa lang that the
        bestiall ar dieing thik fauld.' _Records of the Kirk Session,
        Presbytery, and Synod of Aberdeen_, p. 82.

  [533] 'There was a dog bit my leg most desperately. I no sooner received
        this, but I saw the hand of God in it.' _Wast's Memoirs_, p. 114.

  [534] 'The evident documentis of Goddis wrath aganes the land, be the
        extraordinarie drouth.' _Records of the Kirk Session, Presbytery,
        and Synod of Aberdeen_, p. 78.

  [535] 'The hynous synnes of the land produced much takines of Godis
        wraith; namelie, in this spring tyme, for all Februar and a great
        pairt of Marche wer full of havie weittis.' _Nicoll's Diary_,
        p. 152.

  [536] _Halyburton's Great Concern of Salvation_, p. 85. _Fleming's
        Fulfilling of the Scripture_, pp. 101, 149, 176. _Balfour's _,
        vol. i. p. 169. _Boston's Sermons_, p. 52. _Boston's Human Nature
        in its Four-fold State_, pp. 67, 136. _Memoirs of Marion Laird_,
        pp. 63, 90, 113, 163. _Hutcheson's Exposition of the Book of Job_,
        pp. 62, 91, 140, 187, 242, 310, 449, 471, 476, 527, 528.

  [537] 'War is one of the sharp scourges whereby God punisheth wicked
        nations; and it cometh upon a people, not accidentally, but _by
        the especial providence of God_, who hath peace and war in his own
        hand.' _Hutcheson's Exposition on the Minor Prophets_, vol. ii.
        p. 3. In 1644, 'Civill war wracks Spaine, and lately wracked
        Italie: it is coming by appearance shortlie upon France. The just
        Lord, who beholds with patience the wickednesse of nations, at
        last _arises in furie_.' ... 'The Swedish and Danish fleets, after
        a hott fight, are making for a new onsett: great blood is feared
        shall be shortly shed there, both by sea and land. The _anger of
        the Lord_ against all christendome is great.' _Baillie's Letters
        and Journals_, vol. ii. pp. 190, 223.

  [538] 'Earthquakes, whereby God, when he is angry, overthrows and
        overturns very mountains.' _Hutcheson's Exposition of the Book of
        Job_, p. 114. 'The ministris and sessioun convening in the
        sessioun hous, considdering the fearfull erthquak that wes
        yisternicht, the aucht of this instant, throughout this haill
        citie about nine houris at evin, to be a document that God is
        angrie aganes the land and aganes this citie in particular, for
        the manifauld sinnis of the people,' &c. _Records of the Kirk
        Session, Presbytery, and Synod of Aberdeen_, p. 64.

  [539] 'Whatever natural causes may be adduced for those alarming
        appearances, the system of comets is yet so uncertain, and they
        have so frequently preceded desolating strokes and turns in public
        affairs, that they seem designed in providence to stir up sinners
        to seriousness. Those preachers from heaven, when God's messengers
        were silenced, neither prince nor prelate could stop.' _Wodrow's
        History of the Church of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 421.

  [540] 'People of all sortes rane to the churches to deprecat God's
        wrath.' _Balfour's Annales_, vol. i. p. 403. This was in 1598.

  [541] 'By it, he manifests his power and shows himself terrible.'
        _Durham's Commentarie upon the Book of the Revelation_, p. 33.
        Compare _Row's History of the Kirk_, p. 333; and a passage in
        _Laird's Memoirs_, p. 69, which shows how greedily their credulous
        hearers imbibed such notions: 'There were several signal evidences
        that the Lord's righteous judgments were abroad in the earth;
        great claps of thunder,' &c.

  [542] 'The stupidity and senselessnesse of man is greater than that of
        the brute creatures, which are all more moved with the thunder,
        then the hearts of men for the most part.' _Dickson's Explication
        of the First Fifty Psalms_, p. 193. Hutcheson makes a similar
        remark concerning earthquakes. 'The shaking and trembling of
        insensible creatures, when God is angry, serves to condemn men,
        who are not sensible of it, nor will stoop under his hand.'
        _Hutcheson's Exposition of the Book of Job_, p. 115.

These visitations, eclipses, comets, earthquakes, thunder, famine,
pestilence, war, disease, blights in the air, failures in the crops, cold
winters, dry summers, these, and the like, were, in the opinion of the
Scotch divines, outbreaks of the anger of the Almighty against the sins
of men; and that such outbreaks were incessant is not surprising, when we
consider that, in the same age, and according to the same creed, the most
innocent, and even praiseworthy, actions were deemed sinful, and worthy
of chastisement. The opinions held on this subject are not only curious,
but extremely instructive. Besides forming an important part of the
history of the human mind, they supply decisive proof of the danger of
allowing a single profession to exalt itself above all other professions.
For, in Scotland, as elsewhere, directly the clergy succeeded in
occupying a more than ordinary amount of public attention, they availed
themselves of that circumstance to propagate those ascetic doctrines,
which, while they strike at the root of human happiness, benefit no one
except the class which advocates them. That class, indeed, can hardly
fail to reap advantage from a policy, which, by increasing the
apprehensions to which the ignorance and timidity of men make them too
liable, does also increase their eagerness to fly for support to their
spiritual advisers. And the greater the apprehension, the greater the
eagerness. Of this, the Scotch clergy, who were perfect masters of their
own art, were well aware. Under their influence, a system of morals was
established, which, representing nearly every act as sinful, kept the
people in perpetual dread, lest unwittingly they were committing some
enormous offence, which would bring upon their heads a signal and
overwhelming punishment.

According to this code, all the natural affections, all social pleasures,
all amusements, and all the joyous instincts of the human heart were
sinful, and were to be rooted out. It was sinful for a mother to wish to
have sons;[543] and, if she had any, it was sinful to be anxious about
their welfare.[544] It was a sin to please yourself, or to please others;
for, by adopting either course, you were sure to displease God.[545] All
pleasures, therefore, however slight in themselves, or however lawful
they might appear, must be carefully avoided.[546] When mixing in
society, we should edify the company, if the gift of edification had been
bestowed upon us; but we should by no means attempt to amuse them.[547]
Cheerfulness, especially when it rose to laughter, was to be guarded
against; and we should choose for our associates grave and sorrowful men,
who were not likely to indulge in so foolish a practice.[548] Smiling,
provided it stopped short of laughter, might occasionally be allowed;
still, being a carnal pastime, it was a sin to smile on Sunday.[549] Even
on week-days, those who were most imbued with religious principles hardly
ever smiled, but sighed, groaned, and wept.[550] A true Christian would
be careful, in his movements, to preserve invariable gravity, never
running, but walking soberly, and not treading out in a brisk and lively
manner, as unbelievers are wont to do.[551] So, too, if he wrote to a
friend, he must beware lest his letter should contain any thing like
jocoseness; since jesting is incompatible with a holy and serious

  [543] Lady Colsfeild 'had born two or three daughters, and was sinfully
        anxious after a son, to heir the estate of Colsfeild.' _Wodrow's
        Analecta_, vol. iii. p. 293.

  [544] Under the influence of this terrible creed, the amiable mother of
        Duncan Forbes, writing to him respecting his own health and that
        of his brother, speaks 'of my sinful God-provoking anxiety, both
        for your souls and bodies.' _Burton's Lives of Lovat and Forbes_,
        p. 724. The theological theory, underlying and suggesting this,
        was, that 'grace bridles these affections.' _Boston's Human Nature
        in its Four-fold State_, p. 184. Hence its rigid application on
        days set apart for religious purposes. The Rev. Mr. Lyon (_History
        of Saint Andrews_, vol. i. p. 458) mentions that some of the
        Scotch clergy, in drawing up regulations for the government of a
        colony, inserted the following clause: 'No husband shall kiss his
        wife, and no mother shall kiss her child on the Sabbath day.'

  [545] 'The more you please yourselves and the world, the further you are
        from pleasing God.' _Binning's Sermons_, vol. ii. p. 55. Elsewhere
        (vol. ii. p. 45): 'Amity to ourselves is enmity to God.'

  [546] 'Pleasures are most carefully to be auoided: because they both
        harme and deceiue.' _Abernethy's Physicke for the Soule_, p. 251.
        At p. 268, the same authority says, 'Beate downe thy body, and
        bring it to subiection by abstaining, not only from vnlawfull
        pleasures, but also from lawfull and indifferent delights.'

  [547] According to _Hutcheson's Exposition of Job_, p. 6, 'there is no
        time wherein men are more ready to miscarry, and discover any
        bitter root in them, then when they are about the liberal use of
        the creatures, and amidst occasions of mirth and cheerfulness.'
        How this doctrine ripened, cannot be better illustrated than from
        the sentiments entertained, so late as the early part of the
        eighteenth century, by Colonel Blackader, a Scotch officer, who
        was also an educated man, who had seen much of the world, and
        might, to some degree, be called a man of the world. In December
        1714, he went to a wedding, and, on his return home, he writes: 'I
        was cheerful, and perhaps gave too great a swing to raillery, but
        I hope not light or vain in conversation. I desire always to have
        my speech seasoned with salt, and ministering profit to the
        hearers. Sitting up late, and merry enough, though I hope
        innocent; but I will not justify myself.' _The Life and Diary of
        Lieut.-Col. J. Blackader, by Andrew Crichton_, p. 453. On another
        occasion (p. 511), in 1720, he was at an evening party. 'The young
        people were merry. I laid a restraint upon myself for fear of
        going too far, and joined but little, only so as not to show
        moroseness or ill-breeding. We sat late, but the conversation was
        innocent, and no drinking but as we pleased. However, much time is
        spent; which I dare not justify. _In all things we offend._' At p.
        159, he writes, 'I should always be mixing something that may
        edify in my discourse;' and, says his biographer (p. 437),
        'Conversation, when it ceased to accomplish this object, he
        regarded as _degenerating into idle entertainment_, which ought to
        be checked rather than encouraged.'

  [548] 'Frequent the gravest company, and the fellowship of those that are
        sorrowfull.' _Abernethy's Physicke for the Soule_, p. 416. Compare
        the attacks on 'too much carnal mirth and laughter,' in _Durham's
        Law Unsealed_, p. 323; in _Fleming's Fulfilling of the Scripture_,
        p. 226; and in _Fergusson's Exposition of the Epistles of Paul_,
        p. 227. See also _Gray's Spiritual Warfare_, p. 42. Cowper says,
        'Woe be unto them that now laugh, for assuredly they shall weepe,
        the end of their joy shall be endleese mourning and gnashing of
        teeth, they shall shed tears abundantly with Esau, but shall find
        no place for mercy.' _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 271. Hutcheson,
        in a train of unusual liberality, permits occasional laughter. He
        says, 'There is a faculty of laughing given to men, which
        certainly is given for use, at least at sometimes; and diversions
        are sometime needfull for men who are serious and employed in
        weighty affairs.' ... 'And particularly, laughter is sometimes
        lawful for magistrates and others in publick charge, not only that
        they may recreate themselves, but that, thereby, and by the like
        insinuating carriage, they may gain the affection of the people.'
        _Hutcheson's Exposition of the Book of Job_, edit. folio, 1669,
        pp. 389, 390.

  [549] In 1650, when Charles II. was in Scotland, 'the clergy reprehended
        him very sharply, if he smiled on those days' (Sundays).
        _Clarendon's History of the Rebellion_, book xiii. p. 747, edit.
        Oxford, 1843.

  [550] It is said of Donald Cargill, that, 'his very countenance was
        edifying to beholders; often sighing with deep groans.' _A Cloud
        of Witnesses for the Royal Prerogatives of Jesus Christ_, p. 423.
        The celebrated James Durham was 'a person of the utmost gravity,
        and scarce smiled at anything.' _Howie's Biographia Scoticana_, p.
        226. Of Livingston, we are told 'that he was a very affectionate
        person, and weeped much; that it was his ordinary way, and might
        be observed almost every Sabbath, that when he came into the
        pulpite he sate doun a litle, and looked first to the one end of
        the kirk, and then to the other; and then, ordinarly, the tear
        shott in his eye, and he weeped, and oftimes he began his preface
        and his work weeping.' _Wodrow's Analecta_, vol. ii. p. 249. James
        Alexander 'used to weep much in prayer and preaching; he was every
        way most savoury.' _Ibid._, vol. iii. p. 39. As to the Rev. John
        Carstairs, 'his band in the Sabbath would have been all wett, as
        if it had been douked, with tears, before he was done with his
        first prayer.' p. 48. Aird, minister of Dalserf, 'weeping much'
        (_Ibid._, vol. iii. p. 56), 'Mr. James Stirling tells me he was a
        most fervent, affectionat, weeping preacher.' p. 172; and the Rev.
        Alexander Dunlop was noted for what was termed 'a holy groan,'
        vol. iii. p. 21. See also, on weeping as a mark of religion,
        _Wast's Memoirs_, pp. 83, 84; and _Robe's Narrative of the
        Extraordinary Work of the Spirit of God_, pp. 21, 31, 75, 150. One
        passage from the most popular of the Scotch preachers, I hesitate
        as to the propriety of quoting; but it is essential that their
        ideas should be known, if the history of Scotland is to be
        understood. Rutherford, after stating whom it is that we should
        seek to imitate, adds: 'Christ did never laugh on earth that we
        read of, but he wept.' _Rutherford's Christ Dying_, 1647, 4to, p.
        525. I publish this with no irreverent spirit; God forbid that I
        should. But I will not be deterred from letting this age see the
        real character of a system which aimed at destroying all human
        happiness, exciting slavish and abject fear, and turning this
        glorious world into one vast theatre of woe.

  [551] 'Walk with a sober pace, not "tinkling with your feet."' _Memoirs
        of the Rev. James Fraser, written by Himself_, in _Select
        Biographies_, vol. ii. p. 280. 'It is somewhat like this, or less
        than this, which the Lord condemneth, _Isa._ iii. 16, 'Walking
        and mincing, or tripping and making a tinkling with their feet.'
        What is that but disdaining the grave way of walking, to affect
        an art in it? as many do now in our days; and shall this be
        displeasing to the Lord, and not the other? seeing he loveth, and
        is best pleased with, the native way of carrying the body.'
        _Durham's Law Unsealed_, p. 324. 'The believer hath, or at least
        ought to have, and, if he be like himself, will have, a well
        ordered walk, and will be in his carriage stately and princely.'
        _Durham's Exposition of the Song of Solomon_, p. 365.

  [552] 'At home, writing letters to a friend. My vein is inclined to jest
        and humour. The letter was too comical and jocose; and after I had
        sent it away, I had a check that it was too light, and jesting
        foolishly. I sent and got it back, and destroyed it. My temper
        goes too far that way, and I ought to check it, and be more on my
        guard, and study edification in every thing.' _Crichton's Life and
        Diary of Blackader_, pp. 536, 537. Even amongst young children,
        from eight years old and upwards, toys and games were bad; and it
        was a good sign when they were discarded. 'Some very young, of
        eight and nine years of age, some twelve and thirteen. They still
        inclined more and more to their duty, so that they meet three
        times a day, in the morning, at night, and at noon. Also they have
        forsaken all their childish fancies and plays; so these that have
        been awakened are known by their countenance and conversation,
        their walk and behaviour.' _Robe's Narratives of the Extraordinary
        Work of the Spirit of God_, pp. 79, 80.

It was, moreover, wrong to take pleasure in beautiful scenery; for a
pious man had no concern with such matters, which were beneath him, and
the admiration of which should be left to the unconverted.[553] The
unregenerate might delight in these vanities, but they who were properly
instructed, saw Nature as she really was, and knew that as she, for about
five thousand years, had been constantly on the move, her vigour was
well-nigh spent, and her pristine energy had departed.[554] To the eye
of ignorance, she still seemed fair and fresh; the fact, however, was,
that she was worn out and decrepit; she was suffering from extreme old
age; her frame, no longer elastic, was leaning on one side, and she soon
would perish.[555] Owing to the sin of man, all things were getting
worse, and nature was degenerating so fast, that already the lilies were
losing their whiteness, and the roses their smell.[556] The heavens were
waxing old;[557] the very sun, which lighted the earth, was becoming
feeble.[558] This universal degeneracy was sad to think of; but the
profane knew it not. Their ungodly eyes were still pleased by what they
saw. Such was the result of their obstinate determination to indulge the
senses, all of which were evil; the eye being, beyond comparison, the
most wicked. Hence, it was especially marked out for divine punishment;
and, being constantly sinning, it was afflicted with fifty-two different
diseases, that is, one disease for each week in the year.[559]

  [553] 'To the unmortified man, the world smelleth like the garden of
        God' ... 'the world is not to him an ill-smelled stinking corps.'
        _Rutherford's Christ Dying_, p. 498. But those who were properly
        mortified, knew that 'the earth is but a potter's house' (_Ibid._,
        p. 286); 'an old thred-bare-worn case' (_Ibid._, p. 530); a 'smoky
        house' (_Rutherford's Religious Letters_, p. 100); a 'plaistered,
        rotten world' (_Ibid._, p. 132); and 'an ashy and dirty earth'
        (_Ibid._, p. 169). 'The earth also is spotted (like the face of a
        woman once beautifull, but now deformed with scabs of leprosie)
        with thistles, thornes, and much barren wilderness.' _Cowper's
        Heaven Opened_, p. 255.

  [554] 'Wearinesse and motion is laid on Moon and Sunne, and all
        creatures on this side of the Moon. Seas ebbe and flow, and that's
        trouble; winds blow, rivers move, heavens and stars these five
        thousand yeares, except one time, have not had sixe minutes rest.'
        ... 'The Sunne that never rests, but moves as swiftly in the night
        as in the day.' _Rutherford's Christ Dying_, pp. 12, 157. 'This is
        the world's old age; it is declining; albeit it seem a fair and
        beautiful thing in the eyes of them who know no better, and unto
        them who are of yesterday and know nothing, it looks as if it had
        been created yesterday; yet the truth is, and a believer knows, it
        is near the grave.' _Binning's Sermons_, vol. iii. p. 372.

  [555] 'This, then, I say, is the state all things ye see are in,--it is
        their old age. The creation now is an old rotten house that is all
        dropping through and leaning to the one side.' _Binning's
        Sermons_, vol. iii. p. 398.

  [556] 'The lilies and roses, which, no doubt, had more sweetnesse of
        beauty and smell, before the sin of man made them vanity-sick.'
        _Rutherford's Christ Dying_, p. 185.

  [557] 'The heavens that are supposed to be incorruptible, yet they wax
        old as doth a garment.' _Binning's Sermons_, vol. i. p. 95.

  [558] 'The neerer the sun drawes to the end of his daily course, the
        lesse is his strength, for we see the Sunne in the evening decayes
        in heat; so it is, the longer by reuolution he turnes about in his
        sphere, he waxes alway the weaker; and, to vse the similitude of
        the holy spirit, as a garment the older it groweth becomes the
        lesse beautifull.' _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 255.

  [559] 'It is so delicate by nature, that since it was the first sense
        that offended, it is, aboue all the rest, made subject (as a
        condigne punishment) to as many maladies, as there are weekes in a
        yeere.' _Abernethy's Physicke for the Soule_, p. 501. The Scotch
        divines were extremely displeased with our eyes. Rutherford
        contemptuously calls them 'two clay windows.' _Rutherford's Christ
        Dying_, p. 570. Gray, going still further, says, 'these cursed
        eyes of ours.' _Gray's Great and Precious Promises_, p. 53.

On this account, it was improper to care for beauty of any kind; or, to
speak more accurately, there was no real beauty. The world afforded
nothing worth looking at, save and except the Scotch Kirk, which was
incomparably the most beautiful thing under heaven.[560] To look at that
was a lawful enjoyment, but every other pleasure was sinful. To write
poetry, for instance, was a grievous offence, and worthy of especial
condemnation.[561] To listen to music was equally wrong; for men had no
right to disport themselves in such idle recreation. Hence the clergy
forbade music to be introduced even during the festivities of a
marriage;[562] neither would they permit, on any occasion, the national
entertainment of pipers.[563] Indeed, it was sinful to look at any
exhibition in the streets, even though you only looked at it from your
own window.[564] Dancing was so extremely sinful, that an edict,
expressly prohibiting it, was enacted by the General Assembly, and read
in every church in Edinburgh.[565] New Year's Eve had long been a period
of rejoicing in Scotland, as in other parts of Europe. The Church laid
her hands on this also, and ordered that no one should sing the songs
usual on that day, or should admit such singers into his own private

  [560] 'The true visible Kirk where God's ordinances are set up, as he
        hath appointed, where his word is purely preached, is the most
        beautifull thing under heaven.' _Dickson's Explication of the
        First Fifty Psalms_, p. 341.

  [561] I have one very late, and, on that account, very curious, instance
        of the diffusion of this feeling in Scotland. In 1767, a vacancy
        occurred in the mastership of the grammar-school of Greenock. It
        was offered to John Wilson, the author of 'Clyde.' But, says his
        biographer, 'the magistrates and minister of Greenock thought fit,
        before they would admit Mr. Wilson to the superintendance of the
        grammar school, to stipulate that he should abandon "the profane
        and unprofitable art of poem-making."' _Lives of Eminent Scotsmen
        by the Society of Ancient Scots_, 1821, vol. v. p. 169.

  [562] 'Sept. 22. 1649.--The quhilk day the Sessioune caused mak this
        act, that ther sould be no pypers at brydels, and who ever sould
        have a pyper playing at their brydell on their mariage day, sall
        loose their consigned money, and be farder punisched as the
        Sessioune thinks fitt.' _Extracts from the Registers of the
        Presbytery of Glasgow, and of the Kirk Sessions of the Parishes of
        Cambusnethan Humbie and Stirling_, p. 34. This curious volume is a
        quarto, and without date; unless, indeed, one of the title-pages
        is wanting in my copy.

  [563] See the Minutes of the Kirk Session of Glasgow, in _Wodrow's
        Collections upon the Lives of Ministers_, vol. ii. part ii. p. 76;
        also the case of 'Mure, pyper,' in _Selections from the Minutes of
        the Presbyteries of Saint Andrews and Cupar_, p. 72.

  [564] This notion lingered on, probably to the beginning of this
        century; certainly to late in the last. In a work published in
        Scotland in 1836, it is stated, that a clergyman was still alive,
        who was 'severely censured,' merely because, when Punch was
        performing, 'the servant was sent out to the showman to request
        him to come below the windows of her master's house, that the
        clergyman and his wife might enjoy the sight.' _Traditions of
        Perth by George Penny_, Perth, 1836, p. 124.

  [565] '17 Feb. 1650. Ane act of the commissioun of the Generall Assemblie
        wes red in all the churches of Edinburgh dischargeing promiscuous
        dansing.' _Nicoll's Diary_, p. 3. See also _Acts of the General
        Assembly of the Church of Scotland_, 1638-1842, p. 201; _Register
        of the Kirk Session of Cambusnethan_, p. 35; _Minutes of the
        Presbyteries of St. Andrews and Cupar_, pp. 55, 181; _Minutes of
        the Synod of Fife_, pp. 150, 169, 175; and a choice passage in _A
        Collection of Sermons by Eminent Divines_, p. 51.

  [566] See _Selections from the Records of the Kirk Session, Presbytery,
        and Synod of Aberdeen_, pp. 77, 78, forbidding any one to 'giwe
        ony meatt or drink to these sangsteris or lat thame within thair
        houss.' The singers were to be 'put in prisoun.'

At the christening of a child, the Scotch were accustomed to assemble
their relations, including their distant cousins, in whom, then as now,
they much abounded. But this caused pleasure, and pleasure was sinful. It
was, therefore, forbidden; the number of guests was limited; and the
strictest supervision was exercised by the clergy, to prevent the
possibility of any one being improperly happy on such occasions.[567]

  [567] In 1643 the Presbytery of St. Andrews ordered that 'because of the
        great abuse that is likewayes among them by conveening multitudes
        at baptismes and contracts, the ministers and sessions are
        appointed to take strict order for restraineing these abuses, that
        in number they exceid not sixe or seven. As also ordaines that the
        hostlers quho mak such feists salbe censured by the sessions.'
        _Minutes of the Presbyteries of St. Andrews and Cupar_, p. 11. See
        also _Records of the Kirk Session, Presbytery, and Synod of
        Aberdeen_, pp. 109, 110, complaining of the custom 'that everie
        base servile man in the towne, when he has a barne to be baptesed,
        invitis tuelff or sextene persones to be his gossopes and
        godfatheris to his barne,' &c.; and enacting 'that it shall not be
        lesume to any inhabitant within this burt quhasoever, to invite
        any ma persones to be godfatheris to thair barne in ony tyme
        cumming bot tua or four at the most, lyk as the Kirk officier is
        expresslie commandit and prohibitt that from hence furth he tak vp
        no ma names to be godfatheris, nor giwe any ma vp to the redar bot
        four at the most, vnder all hiest censure he may incur be the
        contrairie, and this ordinance to be intimat out of pulpitt, that
        the people pretend no ignorance thairof.'

Not only at baptisms, but also at marriages, the same spirit was
displayed. In every country, it has been usual to make merry at
marriages; partly from a natural feeling, and partly, perhaps, from a
notion that a contract so often productive of misery, might, at all
events, begin with mirth. The Scotch clergy, however, thought otherwise.
At the weddings of the poor, they would allow no rejoicing;[568] and at
the weddings of the rich, it was the custom for one of them to go for the
express purpose of preventing an excess of gaiety. A better precaution
could hardly be devised; but they did not trust exclusively to it. To
check the lusts of the flesh, they, furthermore, took into account the
cookery, the choice of the meats, and the number of the dishes. They
were, in fact, so solicitous on these points, and so anxious that the
nuptial feast should not be too attractive that they fixed its cost, and
would not allow any person to exceed the sum which they thought proper
to name.[569]

  [568] They forbade music and dancing; and they ordered that not more
        than twenty-four persons should be present. See the enactment, in
        1647, respecting 'Pennie bryddells,' in _Minutes of the
        Presbyteries of St. Andrews and Cupar_, p. 117. In 1650, 'The
        Presbyterie being sadly weghted with the report of the
        continwance, and exhorbitant and unnecessarly numerous confluences
        of people at pennie brydles, and of inexpedient and wnlawfull
        pypeing and dancing at the same, so scandalous and sinfull in this
        tyme of our Churches lamentable conditioun; and being apprehensive
        that ministers and Kirk Sessiouns have not bein so vigilant and
        active (as neid werre), for repressing of these disorders, doe
        therfor most seriously recommend to ministers and Kirk Sessiouns
        to represse the same.' _Ibid._ pp. 169, 170. See, further,
        _Registers of the Presbytery of Lanark_, p. 29; and _Extracts from
        the Presbytery Book of Strathbogie_, pp. 4, 144.

  [569] See two curious instances of limitation of price, in _Irving's
        History of Dumbartonshire_, p. 567; and in _Wodrow's Collections
        upon the Lives of Ministers_, vol. ii. part ii. p. 34.

Nothing escaped their vigilance. For, in their opinion, even the best man
was, at his best time, so full of turpitude, that his actions could not
fail to be wicked.[570] He never passed a day without sinning, and the
smallest sin deserved eternal wrath.[571] Indeed, every thing he did was
sinful, no matter how pure his motives.[572] Man had been gradually
falling lower and lower, and had now sunk to a point of debasement, which
made him inferior to the beasts that perish.[573] Even before he was
born, and while he was yet in his mother's womb, his guilt began.[574]
And when he grew up, his crimes multiplied thick and fast; one of the
most heinous of them being the practice of teaching children new
words,--a horrible custom, justly visited by divine wrath.[575] This,
however, was but one of a series of innumerable and incessant offences;
so that the only wonder was, that the earth could restrain herself at the
hideous spectacle which man presented, and that she did not open her
mouth, as of old, and swallow him even in the midst of his
wickedness.[576] For, it was certain, that in the whole creation, there
was nothing so deformed and monstrous as he.[577]

  [570] 'What a vile, haughty, and base creature he is--how defiled and
        desperately wicked his nature--how abominable his actions; in a
        word, what a compound of darkness and wickedness he is--a heap of
        defiled dust, and a mass of confusion--a sink of impiety and
        iniquity, _even the best of mankind_, those of the rarest and most
        refined extraction, _take them at their best estate_.' _Binning's
        Sermons_, vol. ii. p. 302. Compare _Boston's Human Nature in its
        Four-fold State_, pp. 26, 27.

  [571] 'The least sin cannot but deserve God's wrath and curse eternally.'
        _Dickson's Truth's Victory over Error_, p. 71. 'All men, even the
        regenerate, sin daily.' _Ibid._ p. 153.

  [572] 'Our best works have such a mixture of corruption and sin in them,
        that they deserve his curse and wrath.' _Ibid._ p. 130.

  [573] 'But now, falling away from God, hee hath also so farre degenerated
        from his owne kind, that he is become inferiour to the beasts.'
        _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 251. 'O! is not man become so brutish
        and ignorant, that he may be sent unto the beasts of the field to
        be instructed of that which is his duty?' _Gray's Spiritual
        Warfare_, p. 28. 'Men are naturally more bruitish than beasts
        themselves.' _Boston's Human Nature in its Four-fold State_,
        p. 58. 'Worse than the beast of the field.' _Halyburton's Great
        Concern of Salvation_, p. 71.

  [574] 'Infants, even in their mother's belly, have in themselves
        sufficient guilt to deserve such judgments;' _i.e._ when women
        with child are 'ript up.' _Hutcheson's Exposition on the Minor
        Prophets_, vol. i. p. 255.

  [575] 'And in our speech, our Scripture and old Scots names are gone out
        of request; instead of _Father_ and _Mother_, _Mamma_ and _Papa_,
        training children to speak nonsense, and what they do not
        understand. These few instances, amongst many that might be given,
        are additional causes of God's wrath.' _The Life and Death of Mr.
        Alexander Peden, late Minister of the Gospel at New Glenluce, in
        Galloway_, in _Walker's Biographia Presbyteriana_, vol. i. p. 140.

  [576] 'Yea, if the Lord did not restraine her, shee would open her mouth
        and swallow the wicked, as she did Corah, Dathan, and Abiram.'
        _Cowper's Heaven Opened_, p. 257. Compare _Hutcheson's Exposition
        on the Minor Prophets_, vol. i. p. 507.

  [577] 'There is nothing so monstrous, so deformed in the world, as man.'
        _Binning's Sermons_, vol. i. p. 234. 'There is not in all the
        creation such a miserable creature as man.' _Ibid._ vol. iii. p.
        321. 'Nothing so miserable.' _Abernethy's Physicke for the Soule_,
        p. 37.

Such being the case, it behoved the clergy to come forward, and to guard
men against their own vices, by controlling their daily actions, and
forcing them to a right conduct. This they did vigorously. Aided by the
elders, who were their tools and the creatures of their power, they, all
over Scotland, organized themselves into legislative bodies, and, in the
midst of their little senate, they enacted laws which the people were
bound to obey. If they refused, woe be to them. They became unruly sons
of the Church, and were liable to be imprisoned, to be fined, or to be
whipped,[578] or to be branded with a hot iron,[579] or to do penance
before the whole congregation, humbling themselves, bare-footed, and
with their hair cut on one side,[580] while the minister, under pretence
of rebuking them, enjoyed his triumph.[581] All this was natural enough.
For the clergy were the delegates of heaven, and the interpreters of its
will. They, therefore, were the best judges of what men ought to do; and
any one whom they censured was bound to submit with humility and

  [578] 'December 17th, 1635. Mention made of a correction house, which
        the Session ordeans persons to be taken to, both men and women,
        and appoints them to be whipt every day during the Session's
        will.' _Wodrow's Collections upon the Lives of Ministers_, vol.
        ii. part ii. p. 67.

  [579] On the 22nd October 1648, the Kirk Session of Dunfermline ordered
        that a certain Janet Robertson 'shall be cartit and scourged
        through the town, and markit with an hot iron.' _Chalmers' History
        of Dunfermline_, p. 437.

  [580] 'As they punish by pecuniary fines, so corporally too, by
        imprisoning the persons of the delinquents, using them
        disgracefully, carting them through cities, making them stand in
        logges, as they call them, pillaries (which in the country
        churches are fixed to the two sides of the main door of the Parish
        Church), cutting the halfe of their hair, shaving their beards,
        &c., and it is more than ordinary, by their "original" and "proper
        power," to banish them out of the bounds and limits of the parish,
        or presbytery, as they list to order it.' _Presbytery Displayd_,
        p. 4.

  [581] The Scotch clergy of the seventeenth century were not much given
        to joking; but on one of these occasions a preacher is said to
        have hazarded a pun. A woman, named Ann Cantly, being made to do
        penance, 'Here' (said the minister), 'Here is one upon the stool
        of repentance, they call her _Cantly_; she saith herself, she is
        an honest woman, but I trow _scantly_.' _Scotch Presbyterian
        Eloquence_, p. 125. From what I have read of Scotch theology, I
        can bear testimony to the accuracy of this book, so far as its
        general character is concerned. Indeed, the author, through fear
        of being entirely discredited, has often rather understated his

  [582] As Durham says, in his _Exposition of the Song of Solomon_,
        p. 451, 'It is no burden to an honest believer to acknowledge
        Christ's ministers, to obey their doctrine, and submit to their

The arbitrary and irresponsible tribunals, which now sprung up all over
Scotland, united the executive authority with the legislative, and
exercised both functions at the same time. Declaring that certain acts
ought not to be committed, they took the law into their own hands, and
punished those who had committed them. According to the principles of
this new jurisprudence, of which the clergy were the authors, it became a
sin for any Scotchman to travel in a Catholic country.[583] It was a sin
for any Scotch innkeeper to admit a Catholic into his inn.[584] It was a
sin for any Scotch town to hold a market either on Saturday or on Monday,
because both days were near Sunday.[585] It was a sin for a Scotch woman
to wait at a tavern;[586] it was a sin for her to live alone;[587] it was
also a sin for her to live with unmarried sisters.[588] It was a sin to
go from one town to another on Sunday, however pressing the business
might be.[589] It was a sin to visit your friend on Sunday;[590] it was
likewise sinful either to have your garden watered,[591] or your beard
shaved.[592] Such things were not to be tolerated in a Christian land. No
one, on Sunday, should pay attention to his health, or think of his body
at all. On that day, horse-exercise was sinful;[593] so was walking in
the fields, or in the meadows, or in the streets, or enjoying the fine
weather by sitting at the door of your house.[594] To go to sleep on
Sunday, before the duties of the day were over, was also sinful, and
deserved church censure.[595] Bathing, being pleasant as well as
wholesome, was a particularly grievous offence; and no man could be
allowed to swim on Sunday.[596] It was, in fact, doubtful whether
swimming was lawful for a Christian at any time, even on week-days, and
it was certain that God had, on one occasion, shown His disapproval, by
taking away the life of a boy while he was indulging in that carnal

  [583] A man, named Alexander Laurie, was brought before the Kirk Session
        of Perth, 'and being inquired by the minister if, in his last
        being out of this country, he had been in Spain, answered that he
        was in Portugal, but was never present at mass, neither gave
        reverence to any procession, and that he was never demanded by any
        concerning his religion. The said Alexander being removed and
        censured, it was thought good by the (Kirk) Session that he should
        be admonished not to travel in these parts again, except that they
        were otherwise reformed in religion.' _Extracts from the
        Kirk-Session Register of Perth_, in _The Spottiswoode Miscellany_,
        vol. ii. p. 274. Still earlier, that is, in 1592, the clergy
        attempted to interfere even with commerce, 'allegeing that the
        marchands could not mak vayage in Spayne without danger of their
        sawlis, and tharefore willit thayme in the nayme of God to
        absteyne.' _The Historie of King James the Sext_, p. 254.

  [584] See the case of Patrick Stewart, and Mr. Lawson's note upon it, in
        _Lawson's Book of Perth_, p. 238. In this instance, the 'Roman
        Catholic gentleman' had been excommunicated, which made matters
        still worse.

  [585] The Presbytery of Edinburgh, 'by their transcendent sole
        authority, discharged any market to be kept on Monday; the reason
        was, because it occasioned the travelling of men and horse the
        Lord's-day before, which prophaned the Sabbath.' _Presbytery
        Displayd_, p. 10. In 1650, Saturday was also taken in by another
        ecclesiastical senate. 'The Presbyterie doe appoint the severall
        brethren in burghes, to deale with such as have not changed ther
        Mondayes and Satterdayes mercats to other dayes of the weeke, that
        they may doe the same _primo quoque tempore_.' _Minutes of the
        Presbyteries of St. Andrews and Cupar_, p. 53.

  [586] In 1650, 'For "the down-bearing of sin," women were not allowed to
        act as waiters in taverns, but "allenarly men-servands and boys."'
        _Chambers' Annals_, vol. ii. p. 196. This order 'wes red and
        publictlie intimat in all the kirkis of Edinburgh.' _Nicoll's
        Diary_, p. 5.

  [587] 'Forsameikle as dilatation being made, that Janet Watson holds an
        house by herself where _she may give occasion of slander_,
        therefore Patrick Pitcairn, elder, is ordained to admonish her in
        the session's name, either to marry, or then pass to service,
        otherwise that she will not be suffered to dwell by herself.'
        _Kirk-Session Records of Perth_, in _The Chronicle of Perth_,
        p. 86.

  [588] 'Ordains the two sisters, Elspith and Janet Stewart, that they be
        not found in the house again with their sister, but every one of
        them shall go to service, or where they may be best entertained
        without slander, under the penalty of warding their persons and
        banishment of the town.' _Kirk-Session Register_, in _Lawson's
        Book of Perth_, p. 169.

  [589] 'Compeirit William Kinneir, and confest his travelling on the
        Sabbath day, which he declairit was out of meer necessitie,
        haveing two watters to croce, and ane tempestuos day, quhilk
        moowit him to fear that he wold not get the watters crost, and so
        his credit might faill. He was sharpelie admonished, and promist
        newer to doe the lyke again.' _Selections from the Records of the
        Kirk-Session of Aberdeen_, p. 136.

  [590] 'Compearit Thomas Gray, and confest that one Sunday in the
        morning, he went to Culter to visit a friend, and stayed thair all
        night. The sessioune warnit him, _apud acta_, to the next day, and
        appointed Patrick Gray, his master, to be cited to the next day,
        to give furder informatioune in the matter. (Sharply rebuked
        before the pulpit.)' _Selections from the Records of the
        Kirk-Session of Aberdeen_, p. 146.

  [591] 'It was reported that Margaret Brotherstone did water her kaill
        wpon the Sabbath day, and thairwpon was ordained to be cited.' ...
        'Compeired Margaret Brotherstone, and confessed her breach of
        Sabbath in watering of her kaill, and thairwpon ordained to give
        evidence in publick of her repentance the next Lord's day.'
        _Extracts from the Register of the Kirk-Session of Humbie_, p. 42.

  [592] Even so late as the middle of the eighteenth century, 'clergymen
        were sometimes libelled' ... 'for shaving' on Sunday. _Sinclair's
        Statistical Account of Scotland_, vol. xvi. p. 34, Edinburgh,
        1795. At an earlier period, no one might be shaved on that day.
        See _The Spottiswoode Miscellany_, vol. ii. p. 276; and _Lawson's
        Book of Perth_, pp. 224, 225.

  [593] 'Compeired John Gordon of Avachie, and confessed that he had
        transgressed in travailing on the Sabbath day with horse, going
        for a milston. Referred to the session of Kinor for censure.'
        _Extracts from the Presbytery Book of Strathbogie_, p. 236. See
        also the case mentioned in _Letters from a Gentleman in the North
        of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 172; 'This riding on horseback of a
        Sunday was deemed a great scandal.'

  [594] In 1647, the punishment was ordered of whoever was guilty of
        'sitting or walking idle upon the streetes and feildes' on Sunday.
        _Selections from the Minutes of the Synod of Fife_, p. 152. In
        1742, 'sitting idle at their doors' and 'sitting about doors' was
        profane. _Robe's Naratives of the Extraordinary Work of the Spirit
        of God_, pp. 109, 110. In 1756, at Perth, 'to stroll about the
        fields, or even to walk upon the inches, was looked upon as
        extremely sinful, and an intolerable violation of the fourth
        commandment.' _Penny's Traditions of Perth_, p. 36.

  [595] In 1656, 'Cite Issobell Balfort, servand to William Gordone,
        tailyeor, beeing found sleeping at the Loche side on the Lord's
        day in tyme of Sermon.' _Selections from the Records of the
        Kirk-Session of Aberdeen_. p. 137. It was a sin even for children
        to feel tired of the interminable sermons which they were forced
        to hear. Halyburton, addressing the young people of his
        congregation, says, 'Have not you been glad when the Lord's day
        was over; or, at least, _when the preaching was done_, that ye
        might get your liberty. Has it not been a burden to you, to sit so
        long in the church? Well, _this is a great sin_.' See this
        noticeable passage, in _Halyburton's Great Concern of Salvation_,
        p. 100.

  [596] In 1719, the Presbytery of Edinburgh indignantly declares, 'Yea,
        some have arrived at that height of impiety, as not to be ashamed
        of washing in waters, and swimming in rivers upon the holy
        Sabbath.' _Register of Presbytery of Edinburgh, 29th April 1719_,
        in _Arnot's History of Edinburgh_, p. 204.

  [597] So late as 1691, the Kirk-Session of Glasgow attempted to prevent
        all boys from swimming, whatever the day might be. But as the
        Church was then on the decline, it was necessary to appeal to the
        civil authority for help. What the result was, I have not been
        able to ascertain. There is, however, a curious notice, in
        _Wodrow's Collections upon the Lives of Ministers_, vol. ii. part
        ii. p. 77, stating that, on 'August 6th, 1691, the Session
        recommends it to the magistrates to think on some overtures for
        discharging boyes from swimming, in regard one was lately lost.' I
        have met with other evidence respecting this; but I cannot
        remember the passages.

That it was a sin to cleanse one's body, might, indeed, have been taken
for granted; seeing that the Scotch clergy looked on all comforts as
sinful in themselves, merely because they were comforts.[598] The great
object of life was, to be in a state of constant affliction.[599]
Whatever pleased the senses, was to be suspected.[600] A Christian must
beware of enjoying his dinner; for none but the ungodly relished their
food.[601] By a parity of reasoning, it was wrong for a man to wish to
advance himself in life, or in any way to better his condition.[602]
Either to make money, or to save it, was unsuited to Christians; and even
to possess much of it was objectionable, because it not only ministered
to human pleasures, but encouraged those habits of foresight and of
provision for the future, which are incompatible with complete
resignation to the Divine will. To wish for more than was necessary to
keep oneself alive, was a sin as well as a folly, and was a violation of
the subjection we owe to God.[603] That it was contrary to His desire,
was, moreover, evident, from the fact that He bestowed wealth liberally
upon misers and covetous men; a remarkable circumstance, which, in the
opinion of Scotch divines, proved that He was no lover of riches,
otherwise He would not give them to such base and sordid persons.[604]

  [598] The Rev. James Fraser says, 'The world is a dangerous thing and a
        great evil, and the comforts of it a hell.' _Select Biographies_,
        vol. ii. p. 220. Compare _Gray's Spiritual Warfare_, p. 22.

  [599] 'It is good to be continually afflicted here.' _Select
        Biographies_, vol. ii. p. 220. Gray, advocating the same doctrine,
        sums up his remarks by a suggestion, that, 'I think David had
        never so sweet a time as then, when he was pursued as a partridge
        by his son Absalom.' _Gray's Great and Precious Promises_, p. 14.

  [600] 'Suspect that which pleaseth the senses.' _Abernethy's Physicke
        for the Soule_, p. 63.

  [601] Durham, in his long catalogue of sins, mentions as one, 'the
        preparing of meat studiously, that is, when it is too riotously
        dressed, for pleasing men's carnal appetite and taste, or palate,
        by the fineness of it, and other curiosities of that kind.'
        _Durham's Law Unsealed_, p. 333. See also p. 48, on
        'palate-pleasers;' and Dickson's opinion of the 'rarest dishes and
        best meats.' _Dickson's Explication of the Psalms_, p. 84.
        According to another of the Scotch divines, whoever makes one good
        meal and has enough left for a second, is in imminent peril. 'He
        that is full, and hath enough to make him fuller, will easily deny
        God, and be exalted against him: his table shall be a snare to his
        body, and a snare to his soule.' _Abernethy's Physicke for the
        Soule_, p. 421.

  [602] For, says Abernethy (_Physicke for the Soule_, p. 488), 'men are
        loth to lend their eare to the Word, when they abound in
        prosperity.' So, too, Hutcheson, in his _Exposition of the Book of
        Job_, p. 387: 'Such is the weakness even of godly men, that they
        can hardly live in a prosperous condition, and not be overtaken
        with some security, carnal confidence, or other miscarriage.'

  [603] See this theory worked out in _Cockburn's Jacob's Vow, or Man's
        Felicity and Duty_, pp. 71-75. He says, 'And certainly to crave
        and be desirous of more than what is competent for the maintenance
        and support of our lives, is both inconsistent with that
        dependence and subjection we owe to God, and doth also bespeak a
        great deal of vanity, folly, and inconsiderateness.' Boston,
        striking at the very foundation of that practice of providing for
        the future, which is the first and most important maxim in all
        civil wisdom, and which peculiarly distinguishes civilized nations
        from barbarians, asks his hearers, 'Why should men rack their
        heads with cares how to provide for to-morrow, while they know not
        if they shall then need anything?' _Boston's Human Nature in its
        Four-fold State_, p. 300. Hutcheson thinks that those who are
        guilty of such impious prudence, deserve to be starved. 'When men
        are not content with food and rayment, but would still heap up
        more, it is just with God to leave them not so much as bread; and
        to suffer men to have an evil eye upon them, and to pluck at them,
        even so long as they have meat.' _Hutcheson's Exposition of the
        Book of Job_, p. 296. Binning, going still further, threatens
        eternal ruin. 'Ye may have things necessary here,--food and
        raiment; and if ye seek more, if ye will be rich, and will have
        superfluities, then ye shall fall into many temptations, snares,
        and hurtful lusts which shall drown you in perdition.' _Binning's
        Sermons_, vol. iii. p. 355.

  [604] 'If God loved riches well, do ye think he would give them so
        liberally, and heap them up upon some base covetous wretches?
        Surely no.' _Binning's Sermons_, vol. iii. p. 366. Gray, in his
        zeal against wealth, propounds another doctrine, which I do not
        remember to have seen elsewhere. He says, 'All that the owner of
        riches hath, is, the seeing of them; which a man, who is a passer
        by, may likeways have, though he be not possessor of them.'
        _Gray's Spiritual Warfare_, p. 128. I hope that the reader will
        not suspect me of having maliciously invented any of these
        passages. The books from which they are quoted, are, with only two
        or three exceptions, all in my library, and may be examined by
        persons who are curious in such matters.

To be poor, dirty, and hungry, to pass through life in misery, and to
leave it with fear, to be plagued with boils, and sores, and diseases of
every kind, to be always sighing and groaning, to have the face streaming
with tears, and the chest heaving with sobs, in a word, to suffer
constant affliction, and to be tormented in all possible ways; to undergo
these things was deemed a proof of goodness, just as the contrary was a
proof of evil. It mattered not what a man liked; the mere fact of his
liking it, made it sinful. Whatever was natural, was wrong. The clergy
deprived the people of their holidays, their amusements, their shows,
their games, and their sports; they repressed every appearance of joy,
they forbade all merriment, they stopped all festivities, they choked up
every avenue by which pleasure could enter, and they spread over the
country an universal gloom.[605] Then, truly, did darkness sit on the
land. Men, in their daily actions and in their very looks, became
troubled, melancholy, and ascetic. Their countenance soured, and was
downcast. Not only their opinions, but their gait, their demeanour, their
voice, their general aspect, were influenced by that deadly blight which
nipped all that was genial and warm. The way of life fell into the sear
and yellow leaf; its tints gradually deepened; its bloom faded, and
passed off; its spring, its freshness, and its beauty, were gone; joy and
love either disappeared or were forced to hide themselves in obscure
corners, until at length the fairest and most endearing parts of our
nature, being constantly repressed, ceased to bear fruit, and seemed to
be withered into perpetual sterility.

  [605] 'The absence of external appearances of joy in Scotland, in
        contrast with the frequent holidayings and merry-makings of the
        continent, has been much remarked upon. We find in the records of
        ecclesiastical discipline clear traces of the process by which
        this distinction was brought about. To the puritan kirk of the
        sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, every outward demonstration
        of natural good spirits was a sort of sin, to be as far as
        possible repressed.' ... 'The whole sunshine of life was, as it
        were, squeezed out of the community.' _Chambers' Annals of
        Scotland_, vol. i. p. 336, vol. ii. p. 156.

Thus it was, that the national character of the Scotch was, in the
seventeenth century, dwarfed and mutilated. With nations, as with
individuals, the harmony and free development of life can only be
attained by exercising its principal functions boldly and without fear.
Those functions are of two kinds; one set of them increasing the
happiness of the mind, another set increasing the happiness of the body.
If we could suppose a man completely perfect, we should take for granted
that he would unite these two forms of pleasure in the highest degree,
and would extract, both from body and mind, every enjoyment consistent
with his own happiness, and with the happiness of others. But, as no such
character is to be found, it invariably occurs, that even the wisest of
us are unable to hold the balance; we, therefore, err, some in
over-indulging the body, some in over-indulging the mind. Comparing one
set of indulgences with the other, there can be no doubt that the
intellectual pleasures are, in many respects, superior to the physical;
they are more numerous, more varied, more permanent, and more ennobling;
they are less liable to cause satiety in the individual, and they produce
more good to the species. But for one person who can enjoy intellectual
pleasures, there are at least a hundred who can enjoy physical pleasures.
The happiness derived from gratifying the senses, being thus diffused
over a wider area, and satisfying, at any given moment, a greater number
of persons than the other form of happiness is capable of, does, on that
account, possess an importance which many who call themselves
philosophers are unwilling to recognize. Too often have philosophic and
speculative thinkers, by a foolish denunciation of such pleasures, done
all in their power to curtail the quantity of happiness of which humanity
is susceptible. Forgetting that we have bodies as well as minds, and
forgetting, too, that in an immense majority of instances the body is
more active than the mind, that it is more powerful, that it plays a more
conspicuous part, and is fitted for greater achievements, such writers
commit the enormous error of despising that class of actions to which
ninety-nine men out of every hundred are most prone, and for which they
are best fitted. And for committing this error they pay the penalty of
finding their books unread, their systems disregarded, and their scheme
of life adopted, perhaps, by a small class of solitary students, but shut
out from that great world of reality for which it is unsuited, and in
which it would produce the most serious mischief.

If, then, we review the history of opinion in connexion with the history
of action, we may probably say, that the ascetic notions of philosophers,
such, for instance, as the doctrines of the Stoics, and similar theories
of mortification, have not worked the harm which might have been
expected, and have not succeeded in abridging, to any perceptible extent,
the substantial happiness of mankind. There are, I apprehend, two reasons
why they have failed. In the first place, these philosophers have, with
hardly an exception, had little real acquaintance with human nature, and
have, therefore, been unable to touch those chords, and appeal to those
hidden motives, by influencing which one man gains over another to his
side. And, in the second place, they, fortunately for us, have never
possessed authority, and have, therefore, been unable either to enforce
their doctrine by penalties, or to recommend it by rewards.

But, though philosophers have failed in their effort to lessen the
pleasures of mankind, there is another body of men, who, in making the
same attempt, have met with far greater success. I mean, of course, the
theologians, who, considered as a class, have, in every country and in
every age, deliberately opposed themselves to gratifications which are
essential to the happiness of an overwhelming majority of the human race.
Raising up a God of their own creation, whom they hold out as a lover of
penance, of sacrifice, and of mortification, they, under this pretence,
forbid enjoyments which are not only innocent, but praiseworthy. For,
every enjoyment by which no one is injured, is innocent; and every
innocent enjoyment is praiseworthy, because it assists in diffusing that
spirit of content and of satisfaction which is favourable to the practice
of benevolence towards others. The theologians, however, for reasons
which I have already stated, cultivate an opposite spirit, and, whenever
they have possessed power, they have always prohibited a large number of
pleasurable actions, on the ground that such actions are offensive to the
Deity. That they have no warrant for this, and that they are simply
indulging in peremptory assertions on subjects respecting which we have
no trustworthy information, is well known to those who, impartially, and
without preconceived bias, have studied their arguments, and the evidence
which they adduce. On this, however, I need not dilate; for, inasmuch as
men are, almost every year, and certainly every generation, becoming more
accustomed to close and accurate reasoning, just in the same proportion
is the conviction spreading, that theologians proceed from arbitrary
assumptions, for which they have no proof, except by appealing to other
assumptions, equally arbitrary and equally unproven. Their whole system
reposes upon fear, and upon fear of the worst kind; since, according to
them, the Great Author of our being has used His omnipotence in so cruel
a manner as to endow his creatures with tastes, instincts, and desires,
which He not only forbids them to gratify, but which, if they do gratify,
shall bring on themselves eternal punishment.

What the theologians are to the closet, that are the priests to the
pulpit. The theologians work upon the studious, who read; the clergy act
upon the idle, who listen. Seeing, however, that the same man often
performs both offices, and seeing, too, that the spirit and tendency of
each office are the same, we may, for practical purposes, consider the
two classes as identical; and, putting them together, and treating them
as a whole, it must be admitted by whoever will take a comprehensive view
of what they have actually done, that they have been, not only the most
bitter foes of human happiness, but also the most successful ones. In
their high and palmy days, when they reigned supreme, when credulity was
universal and doubt unknown, they afflicted mankind in every possible
way; enjoining fasts, and penances, and pilgrimages, teaching their
simple and ignorant victims every kind of austerity, teaching them to
flog their own bodies, to tear their own flesh, and to mortify the most
natural of their appetites. This was the state of Europe in the middle
ages. It is still the state of every part of the world where the
priesthood are uncontrolled. Such ascetic and self-tormenting observances
are the inevitable issue of the theological spirit, if that spirit is
unchecked. Now, and owing to the rapid march of our knowledge, it is
constantly losing ground, because the scientific and secular spirit is
encroaching on its domain. Therefore, in our time, and especially in our
country, its most repulsive features are disguised, and it is forced to
mask its native ugliness. Among our clergy, a habit of grave and decent
compromise has taken the place of that bold and fiery war which their
predecessors waged against a sensual and benighted world. Their threats
have perceptibly diminished. They now allow us a little pleasure, a
little luxury, a little happiness. They no longer tell us to mortify
every appetite, and to forego every comfort. The language of power has
departed from them. Here and there, we find vestiges of the ancient
spirit; but this is only among uneducated men, addressing an ignorant
audience. The superior clergy, who have a character to lose, are grown
cautious; and, whatever their private opinion may be, they rarely venture
on those terrific denunciations with which their pulpits once resounded,
and which, in times of yore, made the people shrink with fear, and
humbled every one except him by whom the denunciation was uttered.

Still, though much of this has vanished, enough remains to show what the
theological spirit is, and to justify a belief, that nothing but the
pressure of public opinion prevents it from breaking out into its former
extravagance. Many of the clergy persist in attacking the pleasures of
the world, forgetting that, not only the world, but all which the world
contains, is the work of the Almighty, and that the instincts and
desires, which they stigmatise as unholy, are part of his gifts to man.
They have yet to learn, that our appetites, being as much a portion of
ourselves as any other quality we possess, ought to be indulged,
otherwise the whole individual is not developed. If a man suppresses part
of himself, he becomes maimed and shorn. The proper limit to
self-indulgence is, that he shall neither hurt himself nor hurt others.
Short of this, everything is lawful. It is more than lawful; it is
necessary. He who abstains from safe and moderate gratification of the
senses, lets some of his essential faculties fall into abeyance, and
must, on that account, be deemed imperfect and unfinished. Such an one is
incomplete; he is crippled; he has never reached his full stature. He may
be a monk; he may be a saint; but a man he is not. And now, more than
ever, do we want true and genuine men. No previous age has had so much
work to do, and, to accomplish that work, we need robust and vigorous
natures, whose every function has been freely exercised without let or
hindrance. Never before, was the practice of life so arduous; never were
the problems presented to the human mind so numerous, or so complicated.
Every addition to our knowledge, every fresh idea, opens up new
difficulties, and gives birth to new combinations. Under this accumulated
pressure, we shall assuredly sink, if we imitate the credulity of our
forefathers, who allowed their energies to be cramped and weakened by
those pernicious notions, which the clergy, partly from ignorance, and
partly from interest, have, in every age, palmed on the people, and have,
thereby, diminished the national happiness, and retarded the march of
national prosperity.

In the same way, we constantly hear of the evils of wealth, and of the
sinfulness of loving money; although it is certain that, after the love
of knowledge, there is no one passion which has done so much good to
mankind as the love of money. It is to the love of money that we owe all
trade and commerce; in other words, the possession of every comfort and
luxury which our own country is unable to supply. Trade and commerce have
made us familiar with the productions of many lands, have awakened
curiosity, have widened our ideas by bringing us in contact with nations
of various manners, speech, and thought, have supplied an outlet for
energies which would otherwise have been pent up and wasted, have
accustomed men to habits of enterprise, forethought, and calculation,
have, moreover, communicated to us many arts of great utility, and have
put us in possession of some of the most valuable remedies with which we
are acquainted, either to save life or to lessen pain. These things we
owe to the love of money. If theologians could succeed in their desire to
destroy that love, all these things would cease, and we should relapse
into comparative barbarism. The love of money, like all our appetites, is
liable to abuse; but to declaim against it as evil in itself, and, above
all, to represent it as a feeling, the indulgence of which provokes the
wrath of God, is to betray an ignorance, natural, perhaps, in former
ages, but shameful in our time, particularly when it proceeds from men
who give themselves out as public teachers, and profess that it is their
mission to enlighten the world.

Injurious, however, as all this is to the best interests of society, it
is nothing in comparison with the doctrines formerly advocated by the
Scotch divines. What their ideas were, I have shown from their own
sermons, the reading of which has been the most painful literary task I
ever undertook, since, in addition to the narrowness and the dogmatism
which even the best of such compositions contain, there is, in these
productions, a hardness of heart, an austerity of temper, a want of
sympathy with human happiness, and a hatred of human nature, such as have
rarely been exhibited in any age, and, I rejoice to think, have never
been exhibited in any other Protestant country. These things, I have
resuscitated from the oblivion in which they had long been buried, partly
because it was necessary to do so in order to understand the history of
the Scotch mind, and partly because I desired to show what the tendency
of theologians is, when that tendency is uncontrolled. Protestants,
generally, are too apt to suppose that there is something in their creed
which protects them against those hurtful extravagances which have been,
and, to a certain extent, still are, practised in the Catholic Church.
Never was a greater mistake. There is but one protection against the
tyranny of any class; and that is, to give that class very little power.
Whatever the pretensions of any body of men may be, however smooth their
language, and however plausible their claims, they are sure to abuse
power, if much of it is conferred on them. The entire history of the
world affords no instance to the contrary. In Catholic countries, France
alone excepted, the clergy have more authority than in Protestant
countries. Therefore, in Catholic countries, they do more harm than in
Protestant countries, and their peculiar views are developed with greater
freedom. The difference depends, not on the nature of the creed, but on
the power of the class. This is very apparent in Scotland, where the
clergy, being supreme, did, Protestants though they were, imitate the
ascetic, the unsocial, and the cruel doctrines, which, in the Catholic
Church, gave rise to convents, fastings, scourgings, and all the other
appliances of an uncouth and ungenial superstition.

Indeed, the Scotch divines, in some of their theories, went beyond any
section of the Catholic Church, except the Spanish. They sought to
destroy, not only human pleasures, but also human affections. They held
that our affections are necessarily connected with our lusts, and that we
must, therefore, wean ourselves from them as earthly vanities.[606] A
Christian had no business with love or sympathy. He had his own soul to
attend to, and that was enough for him. Let him look to himself. On
Sunday, in particular, he must never think of benefiting others; and the
Scotch clergy did not hesitate to teach the people, that on that day it
was sinful to save a vessel in distress, and that it was a proof of
religion to leave ship and crew to perish.[607] They might go; none but
their wives and children would suffer, and that was nothing in comparison
with breaking the Sabbath. So, too, did the clergy teach, that on no
occasion must food or shelter be given to a starving man, unless his
opinions were orthodox.[608] What need for him to live? Indeed, they
taught that it was a sin to tolerate his notions at all, and that the
proper course was, to visit him with sharp and immediate punishment.[609]
Going yet further, they broke the domestic ties, and set parents against
their offspring. They taught the father to smite the unbelieving child,
and to slay his own boy sooner than allow him to propagate error.[610] As
if this were not enough, they tried to extirpate another affection, even
more sacred and more devoted still. They laid their rude and merciless
hands on the holiest passion of which our nature is capable, the love of
a mother for her son. Into that sanctuary, they dared to intrude; into
that, they thrust their gaunt and ungentle forms. If a mother held
opinions of which they disapproved, they did not scruple to invade her
household, take away her children, and forbid her to hold communication
with them.[611] Or if, perchance, her son had incurred their displeasure,
they were not satisfied with forcible separation, but they laboured to
corrupt her heart, and harden it against her child, so that she might be
privy to the act. In one of these cases, mentioned in the records of the
church of Glasgow, the Kirk-Session of that town summoned before them a
woman, merely because she had received into her house her own son, after
the clergy had excommunicated him. So effectually did they work upon her
mind, that they induced her to promise, not only that she would shut her
door against her child, but that she would aid in bringing him to
punishment. She had sinned in loving him; she had sinned, even, in giving
him shelter; but, says the record, 'she promised not to do it again, and
to tell the magistrates when he comes next to her.'[612]

  [606] 'A Christian should mortifie his affections, which are his
        predominant lusts, to which our affections are so much joined, and
        our soul doth so much go out after.' _Gray's Spiritual Warfare_,
        p. 29. 'That blessed work of weaning of affections from all things
        that are here.' _Gray's Great and Precious Promises_, p. 86.

  [607] 'One of our more northern ministers, whose parish lies along the
        coast between Spey and Findorn, made some fishermen do penance for
        sabbath-breaking, in going out to sea, though purely with
        endeavour to save a vessel in distress by a storm.' _Letters from
        a Gentleman in the North of Scotland_, vol. i. p. 173.

  [608] 'The master of a family may, and ought to, deny an act of humanity
        or hospitality to strangers that are false teachers.'
        _Rutherford's Free Disputation against Pretended Liberty of
        Conscience_, p. 176. 'The Holy Ghost forbiddeth the master of
        every Christian family to owne a hereticke as a guest.' _Ibid._,
        p. 219. See also p. 235.

  [609] 'We hold that tolleration of all religions is not farre from
        blasphemy.' _Rutherford's Free Disputation against Pretended
        Liberty of Conscience_, p. 20. 'If wolves be permitted to teach
        what is right in their own erroneous conscience, and there be no
        "Magistrate to put them to shame," _Judg._ xviii. 7, and no King
        to punish them, then godlinesse and all that concernes the first
        Table of the Law must be marred.' _Ibid._, p. 230. 'Wilde and
        atheisticall liberty of conscience,' p. 337. 'Cursed toleration,'
        p. 400. See also, in the same work (pp. 110, 244), Rutherford's
        remarks on the murder of Servetus. In 1645, Baillie, who was then
        in London, writes, 'The Independents here plead for a tolleration
        both for themselfes and other sects. My Dissuasive is come in time
        to doe service here. We hope God will assist us to remonstrate the
        wickedness of such an tolleration.' And on account of the
        Independents wishing to show common charity towards persons who
        differed in opinions from themselves, Baillie writes next year
        (1646), 'The Independents has the least zeale to the truth of God
        of any men we know.' _Baillie's Letters and Journals_, vol. ii.
        pp. 328, 361. Blair, who was in London in 1649, was sorely vexed
        with 'the most illegal, irreligious, and wicked proceedings and
        actings of the sectarian army;' one of their crimes being the
        attempt 'to ruin religion by their toleration.' _Continuation of
        the Autobiography of Mr. Robert Blair, Minister of St. Andrews_,
        p. 213. For other evidence of this persecuting spirit, see
        _Dickson's Truth's Victory over Error_, pp. 159, 163, 199-202;
        _Abernethy's Physicke for the Soule_, p. 215; _Durham's Exposition
        of the Song of Solomon_, p. 147; _Durham's Commentarie upon the
        Book of the Revelation_, pp. 141, 143, 330; and _Shields' Hind let
        loose_, p. 168.

  [610] 'A third benefit (which is a branch of the former), is zeal in the
        godly against false teachers, who shall be so tender of the truth
        and glory of God, and the safety of the Church (all which are
        endangered by error), that it shall overcome natural affection in
        them; so that parents shall not _spare their own children_, being
        seducers, but shall either by an heroick act (such as was in
        Phinehas, _Numb._ XXV. 8), _themselves judge him worthy to die,
        and give sentence and execute it_, or cause him to be punished, by
        bringing him to the Magistrate,' &c.... 'The toleration of a false
        religion in doctrine or worship, and the exemption of the
        erroneous from civil punishment, is no more lawful under the New
        Testament than it was under the Old.' _An Exposition of the
        Prophecie of Zechariah_, in _Hutcheson's Exposition on the Minor
        Prophets_, vol. iii. p. 203, 8vo. 1654.

  [611] _Selections from the Registers of the Presbytery of Lanark_,
        pp. x. 33, 56, 63, 65, 73.

  [612] I copy the exact words from _Wodrow's Collections upon the Lives
        of Ministers of the Church of Scotland_, vol. ii. part ii. p. 71.
        An order had been previously obtained from the government,
        'requiring the magistrates to expell furth of the Toun all
        excomunicated persons.'

She promised not to do it again. She promised to forget him, whom she had
born of her womb and suckled at her breast. She promised to forget her
boy, who had ofttimes crept to her knees, who had slept in her bosom, and
whose tender frame she had watched over and nursed. All the dearest
associations of the past, all that the most exquisite form of human
affection can give or receive, all that delights the memory, all that
brightens the prospect of life, all vanished, all passed away from the
mind of this poor woman, at the bidding of her spiritual masters. At one
fell swoop, all were gone. So potent were the arts of these men, that
they persuaded the mother to conspire against her son, that she might
deliver him up to them. They defiled her nature, by purging it of its
love. From that day her soul was polluted. She was lost to herself, as
well as lost to her son. To hear of such things is enough to make one's
blood surge again, and raise a tempest in our inmost nature. But to have
seen them, to have lived in the midst of them, and yet not to have
rebelled against them, is to us utterly inconceivable, and proves in how
complete a thraldom the Scotch were held, and how thoroughly their minds,
as well as their bodies, were enslaved.

What more need I say? What further evidence need I bring to elucidate the
real character of one of the most detestable tyrannies ever seen on the
earth? When the Scotch Kirk was at the height of its power, we may search
history in vain for any institution which can compete with it, except the
Spanish Inquisition. Between these two, there is a close and intimate
analogy. Both were intolerant, both were cruel, both made war upon the
finest parts of human nature, and both destroyed every vestige of
religions freedom. One difference, however, there was, of vast
importance. In political matters, the Church, which was servile in Spain,
was rebellious in Scotland. Hence the Scotch always had one direction in
which they could speak and act with unrestrained liberty. In politics,
they found their vent. There, the mind was free. And this was their
salvation. This saved them from the fate of Spain, by securing to them
the exercise of those faculties which otherwise would have lain dormant,
if, indeed, they had not been entirely destroyed by that long and
enfeebling servitude in which their clergy retained them, and from which,
but for this favourable circumstance, no escape would have been open.

                                CHAPTER V.


To complete the history and analysis of the Scotch mind, I have now to
examine the peculiar intellectual movement which appeared in the
eighteenth century, and which, for several reasons, deserves careful
attention. It was essentially a reaction against that theological spirit
which predominated during the seventeenth century. Such a reaction would
hardly have been possible, except for the fact which I have already
noticed, namely, that the political activity which produced the rebellion
against the Stuarts, saved the Scotch mind from stagnating, and prevented
that deep slumber into which the progress of superstition would naturally
have thrown it. The long and stubborn conflict with a despotic
government, kept alive a certain alertness and vigour of understanding,
which survived the struggle that gave it birth. When the contest was
ended, and peace was restored, the faculties which, for three
generations, had been exercised in resisting the executive authority,
sought other employment, and found another field in which they could
disport themselves. Hence it was, that the boldness which, in the
seventeenth century, was practical, became, in the eighteenth century,
speculative, and produced a literature, which attempted to unsettle
former opinions, and to disturb the ancient landmarks of the human mind.
The movement was revolutionary, and bore the same relation to
ecclesiastical tyranny, which the previous movement had borne to
political tyranny. But this new rebellion had one striking
characteristic. In nearly every other country, when the intellect has
fairly arrayed itself against the exclusive pretensions of the Church,
it has happened that the secular philosophy, which has been engendered,
has been an inductive philosophy, taking for its basis individual and
specific experience, and seeking, by that means, to overthrow the general
and traditional notions, on which all church power is founded. The plan
has been, to refuse to accept principles which could not be substantiated
by facts; while the opposite and theological plan is, to force the facts
to yield to the principles. In the former case, experience precedes
theory; in the latter case, theory precedes experience, and controls it.
In theology, certain principles are taken for granted; and, it being
deemed impious to question them, all that remains for us is to reason
from them downwards. This is the deductive method. On the other hand, the
inductive method will concede nothing, but insists upon reasoning
upwards, and demands that we shall have the liberty of ascertaining the
principles for ourselves. In a complete scheme of our knowledge, and when
all our resources are fully developed and marshalled into order, as they
must eventually be, the two methods will be, not hostile, but
supplementary, and will be combined into a single system. At present,
however, we are very far from such a result; and not only is every mind
more prone to one method than to another, but we find, historically, that
different ages and different countries have been characterised by the
extent to which one of these two schemes has predominated; and we also
find, that a study of this antagonism is the surest way of understanding
the intellectual condition of any period.

That the inductive philosophy is even more marked by its secular
tendencies than by its scientific ones, will be evident to whoever
observes the epochs in which it has been most active, and has possessed
most adherents. Of this, the history of the French mind, in the
eighteenth century, affords a good instance, where, after the death of
Louis XIV., we may clearly trace the connexion between the growth of the
inductive method, and the subsequent overthrow of the Gallican Church. In
England, too, the rise of the Baconian philosophy, with its determination
to subordinate ancient principles to modern experience, was the heaviest
blow which has ever been inflicted on the theologians, whose method is to
begin, not with experience, but with principles, which are said to be
inscrutable, and which we are bound to believe without further
difficulty. And I need hardly remind the reader, that scarcely was that
philosophy established among us, when it produced those bold inquiries
which quickly ended in the downfall of the English Church under Charles
I. From that terrible defeat, our clergy did, for a time, partly rally;
but as their apparent success, in the reign of Charles II., was owing to
political changes, and not to social ones, they were unable to recover
their hold over society, and, unless the nation should retrograde, there
is no possibility that they ever should recover it. Over the inferior
order of minds, they still wield great influence; but the Baconian
philosophy, by bringing their favourite method into disrepute, has sapped
the very base of their system. From the moment that their mode of
investigation was discredited, the secret of their power was gone. From
the moment that men began to insist on inquiring into the validity of
first principles, instead of accepting them without inquiry, and humbly
submitting to them as matters of faith and of necessary belief; from that
moment, the theologians, driven from one post to another, and constantly
receding before the pressure of advancing knowledge, have been forced to
abandon entrenchment after entrenchment, until what they have retained of
their former territory is hardly worth the struggle. As a last resource,
they, at the close of the eighteenth century, determined to use the
weapons of their opponents; and Paley and his successors, enlarging the
scheme which Ray and Derham had feebly sketched, endeavoured, by a
skilful employment of the inductive method, to compensate their party for
the failure of the deductive one. But their project, though ably
conceived, has come to naught. It is now generally admitted, that nothing
can be made of it, and that it is impossible to establish the old
theological premises by a chain of inductive reasoning. Respecting this,
the most eminent philosophers agree with the most eminent theologians;
and, since the time of Kant in Germany, and of Coleridge in England,
none of our ablest men, even among divines themselves, have recurred to a
plan which Paley, indeed, pursued with vigour, but of which our
Bridgewater Treatises, our Prize-Essays, and such schoolboy productions,
are poor and barren imitations.[613] No great thinkers now follow this
course in matters of religion. On the contrary, they prefer the safer, as
well as the more philosophic, method, of dealing with these subjects on
transcendental grounds, frankly confessing that they elude the grasp of
that inductive philosophy which, in the department of science, has
achieved such signal triumphs.

  [613] Of course, I say this merely in reference to their theological
        bearings. Some of the Bridgewater Treatises, such as Bell's,
        Buckland's, and Prout's, had great scientific merit at the time of
        their appearance, and may even now be studied with advantage; but
        the religious portion of them is pitiable, and shows either that
        their heart was not in their work, or else that the subject was
        too wide for them. At all events, it is to be hoped that we shall
        never again see men of equal eminence hiring themselves out as
        paid advocates, and receiving fees to support particular opinions.
        It is truly disgraceful that such great speculative questions,
        instead of being subjected to fair and disinterested argument,
        with a view of eliciting the truth, should be turned into a
        pecuniary transaction, in which any one of much money and little
        wit, can bribe as many persons as he likes, to prejudice the
        public ear in favour of his own theories.

The opposition of these two methods, and the inapplicability of the
inductive method to theological pursuits being thus apparent, it is not
strange that the Scotch should have adopted one of the methods with great
zeal, and to the almost complete exclusion of the other. Scotland, being
essentially theological, followed the theological plan. The intellectual
history of that country, in the seventeenth century, is almost entirely
the history of theology. With the single exception of Napier, who was
born in the middle of the sixteenth century, all the most vigorous
thinkers were divines. In physical science, scarcely anything was
done.[614] There was no poetry, no drama, no original philosophy, no
fine compositions, no secular literature, now worth reading.[615] The
only men of real influence were the clergy. They governed the nation and
the pulpit was the chief engine of their power. From the pulpit, they
moved all classes and all sorts intellects; the highest as well as the
lowest. There, they instructed them, and threatened them; saying whatever
they liked, and knowing that what they said would be believed.[616] But
all their sermons, and all their controversial writings, are eminently
deductive; not of them attempts an inductive argument. The idea of such a
thing never entered their heads. They assumed the truth of their own
religion and moral notions, most of which they had borrowed from
antiquity; they made those notions the major premises of their
syllogisms, and from them they reasoned downwards till they obtained
their conclusions. They never suspected that premises, taken from ancient
times might be the result of the inductions of those times and that, as
knowledge advanced, the inductions might need revising. They assumed,
that God has given us first principles, and that He, having revealed them
it would ill become us to scrutinize them. That He had revealed them,
they took for granted, and deemed it unnecessary to prove.[617] Their
method being entirely deductive, all they were concerned with was to
beware that no error crept in between the premises and the conclusions.
And this part of their task they accomplished with great ability. They
were acute dialecticians, and rarely blundered in what is termed the
formal part of logic. In dealing with their premises after they obtained
them, they were extremely skilful; how they obtained them, they were very
heedless. That was a point they never examined with anything approaching
to impartiality. According to their method, all that was requisite was,
to draw inferences from what had been supernaturally communicated. On the
other hand, the inductive method would have taught them that the first
question was, whether or not they had been supernaturally communicated?
They, as deductive reasoners, assumed the very preliminaries which
inductive reasoners would have disputed. They proceeded from generals to
particulars, instead of from particulars to generals. And they would not
allow either themselves or others to sift the general propositions, which
were to cover and control the particular facts. It was enough for them
that the wider propositions were already established, and were to be
treated according to the rules of the old and syllogistic logic. Indeed,
they were so convinced of the impropriety of the inductive method, that
they did not hesitate to assert, that it was by means of the syllogism
that the Deity communicated His wishes to man.[618]

  [614] 'It is humiliating to have to remark, that the notices of comets
        which we derive from Scotch writers down to this time (1682)
        contain nothing but accounts of the popular fancies regarding
        them. Practical astronomy seems to have then been unknown in our
        country; and hence, while in other lands, men were carefully
        observing, computing, and approaching to just conclusions
        regarding these illustrious strangers of the sky, our diarists
        could only tell us how many _yards_ long they seemed to be, what
        _effects_ were apprehended from them in the way of war and
        pestilence, and how certain pious divines "improved" them for
        spiritual edification. Early in this century Scotland had produced
        one great philosopher, who had supplied his craft with the
        mathematical instruments by which complex problems, such as the
        movement of comets, were alone to be solved. It might have been
        expected that the country of Napier, seventy years after his time,
        would have had many sons capable of applying his key to such
        mysteries of nature. But no one had arisen--nor did any rise for
        fifty years onward, when at length Colin Maclaurin unfolded in the
        Edinburgh University the sublime philosophy of Newton. There could
        not be a more expressive signification of the character of the
        seventeenth century in Scotland. Our unhappy contentions about
        external religious matters had absorbed the whole genius of the
        people, rendering to us the age of Cowley, of Waller, and of
        Milton, as barren of elegant literature, as that of Horrocks, of
        Halley, and of Newton, was of science.' _Chambers' Domestic Annals
        of Scotland_, vol. ii. pp. 444, 445.

  [615] 'Thus, during the whole seventeenth century, the English were
        gradually refining their language and their taste; in Scotland,
        the former was much debased, and the latter almost entirely lost.'
        _History of Scotland_, book viii., in _Robertson's Works_, p. 260.

        'But the taste and science, the genius and the learning of the
        age, were absorbed in the gulph of religious controversy. At a
        time when the learning of Selden, and the genius of Milton,
        conspired to adorn England, the Scots were reduced to such writers
        as Baillie, Rutherford, Guthrie, and the two Gillespies.' _Laing's
        History of Scotland_, vol. iii. p. 510. 'From the Restoration down
        to the Union, the only author of eminence whom Scotland produced
        was Burnet.' _Ibid._, vol. iv. p. 406.

        'The seventeenth century, fatal to the good taste of Italy, threw
        a total night over Scotland.' ... 'Not one writer who does the
        least credit to the nation flourished during the century from 1615
        to 1715, excepting Burnet, whose name would, indeed, honour the
        brightest period. In particular, no poet whose works merit
        preservation arose. By a singular fatality, the century which
        stands highest in English history and genius, is one of the
        darkest in those of Scotland.' _Ancient Scotish Poems, edited by
        John Pinkerton_, vol. i. pp. iii. iv., London, 1786.

  [616] Ray, who visited Scotland in 1661, could not suppress a little
        professional envy, when he saw how much higher ecclesiastics were
        rated there than in England. He says, 'the people here frequent
        their churches much better than in England, and have their
        ministers in more esteem and veneration.' _Ray's Memorials, edited
        by Dr. Lankester for the Ray Society_, p. 161.

  [617] 'Believing ignorance is much better than rash and presumptuous
        knowledge. Ask not a reason of these things, but rather adore and
        tremble at the mystery and majesty of them.' _Binning's Sermons_,
        vol. i. p. 143. Even Biblical criticism was prohibited; and
        Dickson says of the different books of the Bible, 'We are not to
        trouble ourselves about the name of the writer, or time of writing
        of any part thereof, especially because God of set purpose
        concealeth the name sundry times of the writer, and the time when
        it was written.' _Dickson's Explication of the Psalms_, p. 291.

  [618] 'Christ from heaven proposeth a syllogism to Saul's fury.'
        _Rutherford's Christ Dying_, p. 180. 'The conclusion of a
        practical syllogism, whereby the believer concluded from the
        Gospel that he shall be saved.' _Durham's Law Unsealed_, p. 97.
        'All assurance is by practical syllogism, the first whereof must
        needs be a Scripture truth.' _Gray's Precious Promises_, p. 139.

It was naturally to be expected, that the clergy, holding these views
respecting the best means of arriving at truth, should do all in their
power to bring over the nation to their side, and should labour to make
their own method of investigation entirely supersede the opposite method.
Nor was this a very difficult task. The prevailing credulity was one
great point in their favour, inasmuch as it made men more willing to
accept propositions than to scrutinise them. When the propositions were
accepted, nothing was left but to reason from them; and the most active
intellects in Scotland, being constantly engaged in this process,
acquired complete mastery over it, and the dexterity they displayed
increased its repute. Besides this, the clergy, who were its zealous
champions, had monopolized all the sources of education, both public and
private. In no other Protestant country, have they exercised such control
over the universities; not only the doctrines taught, but also the mode
of teaching them, being, in Scotland, placed under the supervision of the
Church.[619] This power they, of course, used to propagate their own plan
of obtaining truth; and, as long as their power remained undiminished, it
was hardly possible that the opposite, or inductive, plan should gain a
hearing. Over grammar-schools, the clergy possessed an authority fully
equal to that which they had in the universities.[620] They also
appointed and removed, at their own pleasure, teachers of every grade,
from village schoolmasters to tutors in private families.[621] In this
way, each generation, as it arose, was brought under their influence, and
made subject to their notions. Taking the mind of Scotland while it was
young and flexible, they bent it to their own method. Hence, that method
became supreme; it reigned every where; not a voice was lifted up against
it; and no one had an idea that there was more than one path by which
truth could be reached, or that the human understanding was of any use,
except to deal deductively with premisses, which were not to be
inductively examined.

  [619] Bower (_History of the University of Edinburgh_, vol. i. p. 217)
        says, 'The history of the universities and of the church is, in
        modern Europe, and perhaps in every other civilized portion of the
        globe, very nearly connected. They are more nearly connected in
        Scotland than in any other civilized country called Protestant;
        because the General Assembly have the legal power of inquiring
        into the economy of the institutions, both as it respects the mode
        of teaching, and the doctrines, whether religious, moral, or
        physical, which are taught.' Spalding, under the year 1639, gives
        an instance of the power of the General Assembly in 'the College
        of Old Aberdeen.' _Spalding's History of the Troubles_, vol. i. p.
        178. See also, on the authority exercised by the General Assembly
        over the universities, a curious little book, called _The
        Government and Order of the Church of Scotland_, Edinburgh, 1690,
        p. 25.

  [620] In 1632, the 'ministers' of Perth were greatly displeased because
        John Row was made master of the grammar-school without their
        consent. _The Chronicle of Perth_, p. 33, where it is stated that,
        consequently, 'thair wes much outcrying in the pulpett.'

  [621] See, for instance, _Minutes of the Presbyteries of St. Andrews and
        Cupar_, pp. 66, 83, 84, 118. One of the entries is, that in
        January 1648, 'The Presbyterie ordained that all young students,
        who waittes on noblemen or gentlemen within thir bounds, aither to
        teach ther children, or catechise and pray in ther families, to
        frequent the Presbyterie, that the brether may cognosce what they
        ar reading, and what proficiencie they make in ther studies, and
        to know also ther behaviour in the said families, and of their
        affectione to the Covenant and present religione.' p. 118. Compare
        _Selections from the Registers of the Presbytery of Lanark_,
        pp. 56, 65.

The inductive or analytic spirit being thus unknown, and the deductive or
synthetic spirit being alone favoured, it happened that, when, early in
the eighteenth century, the circumstances already mentioned gave rise to
a great intellectual movement, that movement, though new in its results,
was not new in the method by which the results were obtained. A secular
philosophy was, indeed, established, and the ablest men, instead of being
theological, became scientific. But so completely had the theological
plan occupied Scotland, that even philosophers were unable to escape from
its method, and, as I am about to show, the inductive method exercised no
influence over them. This most curious fact is the key to the history of
Scotland in the eighteenth century, and explains many events which would
otherwise appear incompatible with each other. It also suggests an
analogy with Germany, where the deductive method has, for a long period,
been equally prevalent, owing to precisely the same causes. In both
countries, the secular movement of the eighteenth century was unable to
become inductive; and this intellectual affinity between two such
otherwise different nations, is, I have no doubt, the principal reason
why the Scotch and German philosophies have so remarkably acted and
reacted upon each other; Kant and Hamilton being the most finished
specimens of their intercourse. To this, England forms a complete
contrast. For more than a hundred and fifty years after the death of
Bacon, the greatest English thinkers, Newton and Harvey excepted, were
eminently inductive; nor was it until the nineteenth century that signs
were clearly exhibited of a counter-movement, and an attempt was made to
return in some degree to the deductive method.[622] This we are, in many
respects, justified in doing, because, in the progress of our knowledge,
we have, by a long course of induction, arrived at several conclusions
which we may safely treat deductively; that is to say, we may make them
the major premisses of new arguments. The same process has been seen in
France, where the exclusively inductive philosophy of the eighteenth
century preceded a partial resuscitation of deductive philosophy in the
nineteenth century. In Scotland, however, there have been no such
vicissitudes. In that country, men have always been deductive; even the
most original thinkers being unable to liberate themselves from the
universal tendency, and being forced to accept a method which time had
consecrated, and which was interwoven with all the associations of the
national mind.

  [622] This I have already touched upon in the first volume, pp. 808,
        809. Hereafter, and in my special history of the English mind, I
        shall examine it carefully and in detail. The revival of the old
        logic is a great symptom of it. Works like those of Whately, De
        Morgan, and Mansel, could not have been produced in tho eighteenth
        century, or, at all events, if by some extraordinary combination
        of events they had been produced, they would have found no
        readers. As it is, they have exercised a very extensive and very
        salutary influence; and, although Archbishop Whately was not well
        acquainted with the history of formal logic, his exposition of its
        ordinary processes is so admirably clear, that he has probably
        contributed more than any other man towards impressing his
        contemporaries with a sense of the value of deductive reasoning.
        He has, however, not done sufficient justice to the opposite
        school, and has, indeed, fallen into the old academical error of
        supposing that all reasoning is by syllogism. We might just as
        well say that all movement is by descent.

To understand the investigation into which we are about to enter, the
reader must firmly seize, and keep before his eyes, the essential
difference between deduction, which reasons from principles, and
induction, which reasons to principles. He must remember, that induction
proceeds from the smaller to the greater; deduction, from the greater to
the smaller. Induction is from particulars to generals, and from the
senses to the ideas; deduction is from generals to particulars, and from
the ideas to the senses. By induction, we rise from the concrete to the
abstract; by deduction, we descend from the abstract to the concrete.
Accompanying this distinction, there are certain qualities of mind,
which, with extremely few exceptions, characterize the age, nation, or
individual, in which one of these methods is predominant. The inductive
philosopher is naturally cautious, patient, and somewhat creeping; while
the deductive philosopher is more remarkable for boldness, dexterity, and
often rashness. The deductive thinker invariably assumes certain
premisses, which are quite different from the hypotheses essential to the
best induction. These premisses are sometimes borrowed from antiquity;
sometimes they are taken from the notions which happen to prevail in the
surrounding society; sometimes they are the result of a man's own
peculiar organization; and sometimes, as we shall presently see, they are
deliberately invented, with the object of arriving, not at truth, but at
an approximation to truth. Finally, and to sum up the whole, we may say
that a deductive habit, being essentially synthetic, always tends to
multiply original principles or laws; while the tendency of an inductive
habit is to diminish those laws by gradual and successive analysis.

These being the two fundamental divisions of human inquiry, it is surely
a most remarkable fact in the history of Scotland, that, during the
eighteenth century, all the great thinkers belonged to the former
division, and that, in the very few instances of induction which their
works contain, it is evident, from the steps they subsequently took, that
they regarded such inductions as unimportant in themselves, and as only
valuable in so far as they supplied the premisses for another and
deductive investigation. As the various departments of our knowledge have
never yet been co-ordinated and treated as a whole, probably no one is
aware of the universality of this movement in Scotland, and of the extent
to which it pervaded every science, and governed every phase of thought.
To prove, therefore, the force with which it acted, I now purpose to
examine its working in all the principal forms of speculation, whether
physical or moral, and to show that in each the same method was adopted.
In doing this, I must, for the sake of clearness, proceed according to a
natural arrangement of the different topics; but I will, whenever it is
possible, also follow the chronological order in which the Scotch mind
unfolded itself; so that we may understand, not only the character of
that remarkable literature, but likewise the steps of its growth, and the
astonishing vigour with which it emancipated itself from the shackles
which superstition had imposed.

The beginning of the great secular philosophy of Scotland is undoubtedly
due to Francis Hutcheson.[623] This eminent man, though born in Ireland,
was of Scotch family, and was educated in the University of Glasgow,
where he received the appointment of Professor of Philosophy in the year
1729.[624] By his lectures, and by his works, he diffused a taste for
bold inquiries into subjects of the deepest importance, but concerning
which it had previously been supposed nothing fresh was to be learned;
the Scotch having hitherto been taught, that all truths respecting our
own nature, which were essential to be known, had been already revealed.
Hutcheson, however, did not fear to construct a system of morals
according to a plan entirely secular, and no example of which had been
exhibited in Scotland before his time. The principles from which he
started, were not theological, but metaphysical. They were collected from
what he deemed the natural constitution of the mind, instead of being
collected, as heretofore, from what had been supernaturally communicated.
He, therefore, shifted the field of study. Though he was a firm believer
in revelation, he held that the best rules of conduct could be
ascertained without its assistance, and could be arrived at by the
unaided wit of man; and that, when arrived at, they were, in their
aggregate, to be respected as the Law of Nature.[625] This confidence in
the power of the human understanding was altogether new in Scotland, and
its appearance forms an epoch in the national literature. Previously, men
had been taught that the understanding was a rash and foolish thing,
which ought to be repressed, and which was unfit to cope with the
problems presented to it.[626] Hutcheson, however, held that it was quite
able to deal with them, but that, to do so, it must be free and
unfettered. Hence, he strenuously advocated that right of private
judgment which the Scotch Kirk had not only assailed, but had almost
destroyed. He insisted that each person had a right to form his opinion
according to the evidence he possessed, and that, this right being
inalienable, none but weak minds would abstain from exercising it.[627]
Every one was to judge according to his own light, and nothing could be
gained by inducing men to profess sentiments contrary to their
convictions.[628] So far, however, was this from being understood, that
we found all the little sects quarrelling among themselves, and abusing
each other, merely because their views were different. It was strange to
hear how the professors of one creed would stigmatize the professors of
other creeds as idolatrous, and would demand that penalties should be
inflicted on them. In point of fact, all had much that was good; and
their only real evil was, this love of persecution.[629] But the vulgar
deemed every one a heretic who did not believe what they believed; and
this way of thinking had been too much countenanced by the clergy, many
of whom felt their vanity offended at the idea of laymen pretending to be
wiser than their spiritual teachers, and venturing to disagree with what
they said.[630]

  [623] See a letter from Sir James Mackintosh to Parr, in _Mackintosh's
        Memoirs_, London, 1835, vol. i. p. 334. 'To Hutcheson the taste
        for speculation in Scotland, and all the philosophical opinions
        (except the Berkleian Humism) may be traced.' M. Cousin (_Histoire
        de la Philosophie_, première série, vol. iv. p. 35, Paris, 1846)
        observes, that before Hutcheson 'il n'avait paru en Ecosse ni un
        écrivain ni un professeur de philosophie un peu remarquable.'

  [624] _Tytler's Memoirs of Kames_, Edinburgh, 1814, vol. i. p. 223.
        _Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. iii. London, 1755, 4to.

  [625] 'The intention of Moral Philosophy is to direct men to that course
        of action which tends most effectually to promote their greatest
        happiness and perfection; as far as it can be done by observations
        and conclusions discoverable from the constitution of nature,
        without any aids of supernatural revelation: these maxims or rules
        of conduct are therefore reputed as laws of nature, and the system
        or collection of them is called the LAW OF NATURE.' _Hutcheson's
        Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 1.

  [626] 'The natural understanding is the most whorish thing in the
        world.' ... 'The understanding, even in the search of truth
        amongst the creatures, is a rash, precipitate, and unquiet thing.'
        _Rutherford's Christ Dying_, p. 181. 'Innocent Adam,' indeed, says
        Boston, 'Innocent Adam had a stock of gracious abilities, whereby
        he might have, by the force of moral considerations, brought
        himself to perform duty aright. But where is that with us?'
        _Boston's Sermons_, p. 65.

  [627] 'A like natural right every intelligent being has about his own
        opinions, speculative or practical, to judge according to the
        evidence that appears to him. This right appears from the very
        constitution of the rational mind, which can assent or dissent
        solely according to the evidence presented, and naturally desires
        knowledge. The same considerations show this right to be
        unalienable: it cannot be subjected to the will of another: though
        where there is a previous judgment formed concerning the superior
        wisdom of another, or his infallibility, the opinion of this
        other, to a weak mind, may become sufficient evidence. As to
        opinions about the Deity, religion, and virtue, this right is
        further confirmed by all the noblest desires of the soul; as there
        can be no virtue, but rather impiety in not adhering to the
        opinions we think just, and in professing the contrary.'
        _Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. pp. 295, 296. See also
        vol. ii. p. 311. 'Every rational creature has a right to judge for
        itself in these matters: and as men must assent according to the
        evidence that appears to them, and cannot command their own assent
        in opposition to it, this right is plainly unalienable.'

  [628] 'Thus no man can really change his sentiments, judgments, and
        inward affections, at the pleasure of another, nor can it tend to
        any good to make him profess what is contrary to his heart.'
        _Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. pp. 261, 262.

  [629] 'Arians and Socinians are idolaters and denyers of God, say the
        orthodox. They retort upon the orthodox, that they are Tritheists;
        and so do other sects; and thus they spirit up magistrates to
        persecute. While yet it is plain that in all these sects there are
        all the same motives to all social virtues from a belief of a
        moral providence, the same acknowledgments that the goodness of
        God is the source of all the good we enjoy or hope for, and the
        same gratitude and resignation to him recommended. Nor do any of
        their schemes excite men to vices, except that horrid tenet, too
        common to most of them, the right of persecuting.' _Hutcheson's
        Moral Philosophy_, vol. ii. p. 316. See also vol. i. p. 160; and
        _Hutcheson's Inquiry into our Ideas of Beauty and Virtue_, London,
        1738, p. 283.

  [630] 'We all know the notions entertained by the vulgar concerning all
        hereticks; we know the pride of schoolmen and many ecclesiasticks;
        how it galls their insolent vanity that any man should assume to
        himself to be wiser than they in tenets of religion by differing
        from them.' _Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 167.

Such large views of liberty were far in advance of the country in which
they were propounded, and could exercise no influence, except over a few
thinking men. These, and similar doctrines, were, however, repeated by
Hutcheson, in his lectures, every year.[631] And strange, indeed, they
must have seemed. To those who received them, they were utterly
subversive of the prevailing theological spirit, which regarded
toleration as impious, and which, seeking to confine the human mind
within the limits of foregone conclusions, deemed it a duty to chastise
those who overstepped them. In opposition to this, Hutcheson let in the
elements of inquiry, of discussion, and of doubt. There is also another
point in which his philosophy is memorable, as the beginning of the great
rebellion of the Scotch intellect. We saw, in the last chapter, how
successfully the teachers of the people had inculcated doctrines of the
darkest asceticism, and how naturally those doctrines had arisen out of
the enormous authority possessed by the Church. Against such notions,
Hutcheson set his face strenuously. He rightly supposed, that an
admiration of every kind of beauty, so far from being sinful, is
essential to a complete and well-balanced mind; and the most original
part of his philosophy consists of the inquiries which he made into the
working and origin of our ideas on that subject. Hitherto, the Scotch
had been taught that the emotions which beauty excites, were owing to the
corruption of our nature, and ought to be repressed. Hutcheson, on the
other hand, insisted that they were good in themselves; that they were
part of the general scheme of human affairs, and that they deserved a
special and scientific study.[632] And with such skill did he investigate
them, that, in the opinion of one of the highest living authorities, he
is the originator of all subsequent inquiries into these matters; his
being the first attempt to deal with the subject of beauty in a broad and
comprehensive spirit.[633]

  [631] 'As he had occasion every year in the course of his lectures to
        explain the origin of government, and compare the different forms
        of it, he took peculiar care, while on that subject, to inculcate
        the importance of civil and religious liberty to the happiness of
        mankind.' _Leechman's Life of Hutcheson_, p. xxxv., prefixed to
        Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy.

  [632] 'The ideas of beauty and harmony, like other sensible ideas, are
        necessarily pleasant to us, as well as immediately so.'
        _Hutcheson's Inquiry into our Ideas of Beauty and Virtue_, p. 11.
        'Our sense of beauty seems designed to give us positive pleasure.'
        p. 71. 'Beauty gives a favourable presumption of good moral
        dispositions.' p. 257. 'But it is plain we have not in our power
        the modelling of our senses or desires, to form them for a private
        interest; they are fixed for us by the Author of our nature,
        subservient to the interest of the system; so that each individual
        is made, previously to his own choice, a member of a great body,
        and affected with the fortunes of the whole; or at least of many
        parts of it; nor can he break himself off at pleasure.'
        _Hutcheson's Essay on the Passions_, pp. 105, 106.

  [633] 'Fille de la scholastique, la philosophie moderne est demeurée
        longtemps étrangère aux grâces, et les _Recherches_ d'Hutcheson
        présentent, je crois, le premier traité spécial sur le beau, écrit
        par un moderne. Elles ont paru en 1725. Cette date est presque
        celle de l'avénement de l'esthétique dans la philosophie
        européenne. L'ouvrage du père André, en France, est de 1741, celui
        de Baumgarten, en Allemagne, est de 1750. Ce n'est pas un petit
        honneur à Hutcheson d'avoir le premier soumis l'idée du beau à une
        analyse méthodique et régulière.' _Cousin, Histoire de la
        Philosophie_, première série, vol. iv. p. 84.

Not only in speculative views, but also in practical recommendations,
Hutcheson displayed the same tendency; every where endeavouring to break
down that gloomy fabric which superstition had built up.[634] His
predecessors, and, indeed, nearly all his contemporaries who exercised
much influence, represented pleasure as immoral, and opposed themselves
to the fine arts, which they considered dangerous, as ministering to our
pleasures, and thereby distracting our minds from serious concerns.
Hutcheson, however, declared that the fine arts were to be cherished;
for, he said, they are not only agreeable, but also reputable, and to
employ our time with them is honourable.[635] That such is the case is
obvious enough to us, but it was long, indeed, since similar language had
been heard in Scotland from a great public teacher, and it was completely
opposed to the prevailing notions. But Hutcheson went even further. Not
content with raising his voice in favour of wealth,[636] which the Scotch
clergy stigmatized as one of the most pernicious and carnal of all
things, he fearlessly asserted that all our natural appetites are lawful,
and that the gratification of them is consistent with the highest
virtue.[637] In his eyes, they were lawful, because they were natural;
while, according to the theological theory, their being natural made them
unlawful. And here lies the fundamental difference between the practical
views of Hutcheson and those previously received. He, like every great
thinker since the seventeenth century, loved human nature, and respected
it; but he neither loved nor respected those who unduly trammelled it,
and thereby weakened its vigour, as well as impaired its beauty. He
placed more confidence in mankind, than in the rulers of mankind. The
Scotch divines, who preceded him, were the libellers of their species;
they calumniated the whole human race. According to them, there was
nothing in us but sin and corruption; and, therefore, all our desires
were to be checked. It is the peculiar glory of Hutcheson, that he was
the first man in Scotland who publicly combated these degrading notions.
With a noble and lofty aim did he undertake his task. Venerating the
human mind, he was bent on vindicating its dignity against those who
disputed its titles. Unhappily, he could not succeed; the prejudices of
his time were too strong. Still, he did all that was in his power. He
opposed the tide which he was unable to stem; he attacked what it was
impossible to destroy; and he cast from his philosophy, with vehement
scorn, those base prejudices, which, by aspersing all that is great and
magnanimous, had long blinded the eyes of their contemporaries, and, by
bringing into fresh prominence the old and mischievous dogma of moral
degeneracy, had represented our nature as a compound of vices, and had
been unable to see how many virtues we really possess, how much of the
spirit of self-sacrifice, and of free disinterested benevolence has
always existed; how much of good even the worst of us retain; and how,
among the ordinary and average characters of whom the world is composed,
the desire of benefiting others is more frequent than the desire of
hurting them, kindness is more common than cruelty, and the number of
good deeds does, on the whole, far outweigh the number of bad ones.[638]

  [634] In his _Inquiry into Beauty and Virtue_, p. 107, he so completely
        opposed the prevailing notions, as to assert that 'our perception
        of pleasure is necessary, and nothing is advantageous or naturally
        good to us, but what is apt to raise pleasure, mediately, or
        immediately.' Compare what he says at p. 91 respecting
        'superstitious prejudices against actions apprehended as offensive
        to the Deity.'

  [635] 'Hence a taste for the ingenious arts of musick, sculpture,
        painting, and even for the manly diversions, is reputable.'
        _Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 83. At p. 129 he says,
        that in them 'our time is agreeably and honourably employed.' See
        also vol. ii. p. 115.

  [636] 'Wealth and power are truly useful, not only for the natural
        conveniences or pleasures of life, but as a fund for good
        offices.' _Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 104. Compare
        _Hutcheson on Beauty and Virtue_, pp. 93-95; and his _Essay on the
        Passions and Affections_, pp. 8, 9, 99. 'How weak also are the
        reasonings of some recluse moralists, who condemn in general all
        pursuits of wealth or power, as below a perfectly virtuous
        character; since wealth and power are the most effectual means,
        and the most powerful instruments, even of the greatest virtues,
        and most generous actions.'

  [637] 'The chief happiness of any being must consist in the full
        enjoyment of all the gratifications its nature desires and is
        capable of.' _Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 100. 'The
        highest sensual enjoyments may be experienced by those who employ
        both mind and body vigorously in social virtuous offices, and
        allow all the natural appetites to recur in their due seasons.' p.
        121. 'Nay, as in fact it is for the good of the system that every
        desire and sense natural to us, even those of the lowest kinds,
        should be gratified as far as their gratification is consistent
        with the nobler enjoyments, and in a just subordination to them;
        there seems a natural notion of _right_ to attend them all.' pp.
        254, 255.

  [638] ''Tis pleasant to observe how those authors who paint out our
        nature as a compound of sensuality, selfishness, and cunning,
        forget themselves on this subject in their descriptions of youth,
        when the natural temper is less disguised than in the subsequent
        parts of life. 'Tis made up of many keen, inconstant passions,
        many of them generous; 'tis fond of present pleasure, but 'tis
        also profusely kind and liberal to favourites; careless about
        distant interests of its own; full of confidence in others;
        studious of praise for kindness and generosity; prone to
        friendships, and void of suspicion.' _Hutcheson's Moral
        Philosophy_, vol. ii. p. 11. 'Men are often subject to anger, and
        upon sudden provocations do injuries to each other, and that only
        from self love without malice; but the greatest part of their
        lives is employed in offices of natural affection, friendship,
        innocent self love, or love of a country.' _Hutcheson's Essay on
        the Passions_, pp. 97, 98. And at p. 165: 'There are no doubt many
        furious starts of passion, in which malice may seem to have place
        in our constitution; but how seldom and how short, in comparison
        of years spent in fixed kind pursuits of the good of a family, a
        party, a country?' ... 'Here men are apt to let their imaginations
        run out upon all the robberies, piracies, murders, perjuries,
        frauds, massacres, assassinations, they have ever either heard of,
        or read in history; thence concluding all mankind to be very
        wicked; as if a court of justice were the proper place for making
        an estimate of the morals of mankind, or an hospital of the
        healthfulness of a climate. Ought they not to consider that the
        number of honest citizens and farmers far surpasses that of all
        sorts of criminals in any state; and that the innocent or kind
        actions of even criminals themselves, surpass their crimes in
        numbers? That it is the rarity of crimes, in comparison of
        innocent or good actions, which engages our attention to them, and
        makes them be recorded in history; while incomparably more honest,
        generous, domestic actions are overlooked, only because they are
        so common; as one great danger, or one month's sickness, shall
        become a frequently repeated story, during a long life of health
        and safety.'

Thus much as to the tendency of Hutcheson's philosophy.[639] We have now
to ascertain his method, that is to say, the plan which he adopted in
order to obtain his results. This is a very important part of our present
inquiry; and we shall find that, in the study of moral philosophy, as in
the study of all subjects not yet raised to sciences, there are not only
two methods, but that each method leads to different consequences. If we
proceed by induction, we arrive at one conclusion; if we proceed by
deduction, we arrive at another. This difference in the results, is
always a proof that the subject, in which the difference exists, is not
yet capable of scientific treatment, and that some preliminary
difficulties have to be removed, before it can pass from the empirical
stage into the scientific one. As soon as those difficulties are got rid
of, the results obtained by induction, will correspond with those
obtained by deduction; supposing, of course, that both lines of argument
are fairly managed. In such case, it will be of no importance whether we
reason from particulars to generals, or from generals to particulars.
Either plan will yield the same consequences, and this agreement between
the consequences, proves that our investigation is, properly speaking,
scientific. Thus, for instance, in chemistry, if, by reasoning
deductively from general principles, we could always predict what would
happen when we united two or more elements, even supposing those elements
were new to us; and if, by reasoning inductively from each element, we
could arrive at the same conclusion, one process would corroborate the
other, and, by their mutual verification, the science would be complete.
In chemistry, we cannot do this; therefore, chemistry is not yet a
science, although, since the introduction into it, by Dalton, of the
ideas of weight and number, there is every prospect of its becoming one.
On the other hand, astronomy is a science, because, by employing the
deductive weapon of mathematics, we can compute the motions and
perturbations of bodies; and, by employing the inductive weapon of
observation, the telescope reveals to us the accuracy of our previous,
and, as it were, foregone, inferences. The fact agrees with the idea; the
particular event confirms the general principle; the principle explains
the event; and their unanimity authorizes us to believe that we must be
right, since, proceed as we may, the conclusion is the same; and the
inductive plan, of striking averages, harmonizes with the deductive plan,
of reasoning from ideas.

  [639] In 1731, Wodrow, who was the last really great specimen of the old
        Presbyterian divines, and who was not a little shocked at the
        changes he saw going on around him, writes: 'When Dr. Calamy heard
        of Mr. Hutcheson's being called to Glasgow, he smiled, and said, I
        think to Thomas Randy, that he was not for Scotland, as he thought
        from his book; and that he would be reckoned there as unorthodox
        as Mr. Simson. The Doctor has a strange way of fishing out privat
        storyes and things that pass in Scotland.' _Wodrow's Analecta_,
        vol. iv. p. 227. It is interesting to compare with this, the
        remarks which that worldly-minded clergyman, the Rev. Alexander
        Carlyle, has made upon Hutcheson. See _Carlyle's Autobiography_,
        Edinburgh, 1860, 2d edit. pp. 82-85.

But, in the study of morals there is no such harmony. Partly from the
force of prejudice, and partly from the complexity of the subject, all
attempts at a scientific investigation of morals have failed. It is not,
therefore, surprising that, in this field, the inductive inquirer arrives
at one conclusion, and the deductive inquirer at another. The inductive
inquirer endeavours to attain his object by observing the actions of men,
and subjecting them to analysis, in order to learn the principles which
regulate them. The deductive inquirer, beginning at the other end,
assumes certain principles as original, and reasons from them to the
facts which actually appear in the world. The former proceeds from the
concrete to the abstract; the latter, from the abstract to the concrete.
The inductive moralist looks at the history of past society, or at the
condition of the present, and takes for granted that the first step is,
to assemble the facts, and then to generalize them. The deductive
inquirer, using the facts rather to illustrate his principles, than to
suggest them, appeals, in the first place, not to external facts, but to
internal ideas, and he makes those ideas the major premiss of a
syllogistic argument. Both parties agree, that we have the power of
judging some actions to be right, and others to be wrong. But as to how
we get that power, and as to what that power is, they are at utter
variance. The inductive philosopher says, that its object is happiness,
that we get it by association, and that it is due to the action and
reaction of social causes, which are susceptible of analysis. The
deductive philosopher says, that this power of distinguishing between
right and wrong, aims, not at happiness, but at truth; that it is
inherent, that it cannot be analyzed, that it is a primary conviction,
and that we may assume it and reason from it, but can never hope to
explain it by reasoning to it.

It requires but a slight acquaintance with the works of Hutcheson to see
that he belongs to the latter of these two schools. He assumes, that all
men have what he terms a moral faculty, which, being an original
principle, does not admit of analysis.[640] He further assumes, that the
business of this faculty is to regulate all our powers.[641] From these
two assumptions, he reasons downwards to the visible facts of our
conduct, and deductively constructs the general scheme of life. His plan
being entirely synthetic, he depreciates the analytic method, and
complains of it as an artful attempt to diminish the number of our
perceptive powers.[642] The truth is, that every such diminution would
have taken away some of his original principles, and would thereby have
prevented him from using them as the major premisses of separate
arguments. And if you deprive a deductive reasoner of his major
premisses, you leave him nothing on which to stand. Hutcheson, therefore,
like all the philosophers of his school, was extremely jealous of the
invasions of the inductive spirit, with its constant tendency to attack
convictions supposed to be primary, and seek to resolve them into their
elements. He repulsed such encroachments upon his major premisses,
because the power and beauty of his method were displayed in reasoning
from the premisses, and not in reasoning to them. According to him, the
moral faculty, and the authority which it exercised, were impervious to
analysis; it was impossible to track them higher, or to resolve them into
simpler constituents; and it was in vain that many attempted to refer
them to circumstances external to themselves, such as education, custom,
or the association of ideas.[643]

  [640] In his _Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 52, he calls it 'an original
        determination or sense in our nature, not capable of being
        referred to other powers of perception.'

  [641] 'This moral sense from its very nature appears to be designed for
        regulating and controlling all our powers.' _Hutcheson's Moral
        Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 61.

  [642] See, in his _Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 79, his complaint
        against those who 'would reduce all our perceptive powers to a
        very small number, by one artful reference or another.'

  [643] ''Tis in vain here to alledge instruction, education, custom, or
        association of ideas, as the original of moral approbation.'
        _Hutcheson's Moral Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 57. Compare his work on
        _Beauty and Virtue_, p. 84.

Hence, the judgments which men pass upon the conduct of others, or of
themselves, are, in their origin, altogether inexplicable; each judgment
being merely a different form of one great moral faculty. Inasmuch,
however, as that faculty escapes observation, and is only known by its
results, it is evident that, for all purposes of reasoning, the judgments
must be deemed primary, and arguments are to be constructed from them, as
if they were the ultimate and highest conditions of our nature. In this
way, Hutcheson was led to that love of multiplying original principles,
which Sir James Mackintosh has justly noticed as a characteristic of his
philosophy, and, after him, of the Scotch philosophy in general;[644]
though the distinguished author of this remark has failed to perceive
that such characteristic was but a single part of a far larger scheme,
and was intimately connected with those habits of deductive thought which
a long train of preceding circumstances had indelibly imprinted on the
Scotch mind.

  [644] 'To him may also be ascribed that proneness to multiply ultimate
        and original principles in human nature, which characterised the
        Scottish School till the second extinction of a passion for
        metaphysical speculation in Scotland.' _Mackintosh's Dissertation
        on Ethical Philosophy_, edit. Whewell, Edinburgh, 1837, p. 208.

In Hutcheson, the tendency was so strong, as to make him believe, that,
by arguing from a certain number of original principles, he could
construct the theory and explain the march of human affairs, with little
or no aid from the experience of the past, or, indeed, of the present.
His views, for instance, respecting the nature and objects of
legislation, criminal, as well as civil, might have been written by a
recluse who had never quitted his hermitage, and whose purity was still
unsoiled by the realities of the world. Starting from the so-called
nature of things, his first steps were ideal, and from them he sought to
advance to the actual. In his account of the duties of life, as they
existed before the power of government was consolidated, he quotes no
evidence to show what really happened among barbarous tribes who were in
that state; but he contents himself with deductive inferences from the
principles he had previously laid down.[645] Difficult questions relating
to the laws of property, are treated in the same manner; that is to say,
the conclusions respecting them are arrived at on speculative grounds,
and not by comparing how the different enactments have worked in
different countries.[646] Experience is either shut out, or made
subordinate to theory; and facts are adduced to illustrate the inference,
but not to suggest it. So, too, the proper relation between the people
and their rulers, and the amount of liberty which the people should
possess, instead of being inductively generalized from an historical
inquiry into the circumstances which had produced most happiness, might,
in the opinion of Hutcheson, be ascertained by reasoning from the nature
of government, and from the ends for which it was instituted.[647]

  [645] See his ingenious chapter, entitled 'A deduction of the more
        special laws of nature and duties of life, previous to civil
        government, and other adventitious states.' _Moral Philosophy_,
        vol. i. p. 227; and compare vol. ii. pp. 294-309, 'How civil power
        is acquired.'

  [646] See, for example, his remarks on 'the right of possession.' _Moral
        Philosophy_, vol. i. p. 344; on 'rights by mortgage,' p. 350; and
        on inheritance, p. 356.

  [647] In his _Moral Philosophy_, vol. ii. pp. 346, 347, he sums up a
        long argument on 'the nature of civil laws,' by saying: 'Thus the
        general duties of magistrates and subjects are discoverable from
        the nature of the trust committed to them, and the end of all
        civil power.'

The next great attempt to study the actions of men scientifically, and to
generalize the principles of their conduct without the intervention of
supernatural ideas, was made by Adam Smith, who, in 1759, published his
_Theory of Moral Sentiments_, and, in 1776, his _Wealth of Nations_. To
understand the philosophy of this, by far the greatest of all the Scotch
thinkers, both works must be taken together, and considered as one;
since they are, in reality, the two divisions of a single subject. In
the _Moral Sentiments_, he investigates the sympathetic part of human
nature; in the _Wealth of Nations_, he investigates its selfish part. And
as all of us are sympathetic as well as selfish; in other words, as all
of us look without as well as within, and as this classification is a
primary and exhaustive division of our motives to action, it is evident,
that if Adam Smith had completely accomplished his vast design, he would
at once have raised the study of human nature to a science, leaving
nothing for subsequent inquirers except to ascertain the minor springs of
affairs, all of which would find their place in this general scheme, and
be deemed subordinate to it. In his attempt to perform this prodigious
task, and to traverse the enormous field which he saw lying before him,
he soon perceived that an inductive investigation was impossible, because
it would require the labour of many lives even to assemble the materials
from which the generalization was to be made. Moved by this reflection,
and, probably, moved still more by the intellectual habits which
prevailed around him, he resolved on adopting the deductive method
instead of the inductive; but, in seeking for the premisses from which he
was to reason, and on which his structure was to be built, he resorted to
a peculiar artifice, which is perfectly valid, and which he had an
undoubted right to employ, though, to make it available, requires such
delicate tact, and involves so many refinements, that extremely few
writers have used it with effect on social questions either before or

The plan to which I allude is, that when any subject becomes unmanageable
by the inductive method, whether from the impossibility of experimenting
upon it, or from its extreme natural complexity, or from the presence of
immense and bewildering details collected around it, we may, in all such
cases, make an imaginary separation of inseparable facts; and reason upon
trains of events which have no real and independent existence, and which
are nowhere to be found except in the mind of the inquirer. A result
obtained in this way, cannot be strictly true; but, if we have reasoned
accurately, it will be as near truth as were the premisses from which we
started. To make it perfectly true, we must confront it with other
results, which we have arrived at in a similar way, and from the same
subject. These separate inferences may eventually be coördinated into a
single system; so that, while each inference contains only an imperfect
truth, the whole of the inferences, when put together, will contain
perfect truth.

Such hypothetical arguments are evidently based upon an intentional
suppression of facts; and the artifice is necessary, because, without the
suppression, the facts would be unmanageable. Each argument leads to a
conclusion which approximates to truth; hence, whenever the premisses are
so comprehensive as almost to exhaust the facts to which they refer, the
conclusion will be so near to complete truth as to be of the greatest
value, even before it is coördinated with other conclusions drawn from
the same department of inquiry.

Geometry exhibits the most perfect example of this logical stratagem. The
object of the geometrician is, to generalize the laws of space; in other
words, to ascertain the necessary and universal relations of its various
parts. Inasmuch, however, as space would have no parts unless it were
divided, the geometrician is forced to assume such a division; and he
takes the simplest possible form of it, a division by lines. Now, a line
considered as a fact, that is, as it is found in the actual world, must
always have two qualities, length and breadth. However slight these
qualities may be, every line has them both. But if the geometrician took
both into consideration, he would find himself in the presence of a
problem too complicated for the resources of the human understanding to
deal with; or, at all events, too complicated for the present resources
of our knowledge. He, therefore, by a scientific artifice, deliberately
strikes off one of these qualities, and asserts that a line is length
without breadth. He knows that the assertion is false, but he also knows
that it is necessary. For, if you deny it, he can prove nothing. If you
insist upon his letting into his premisses the idea of breadth, he is
unable to proceed, and the whole fabric of geometry falls to the ground.
Since, however, the breadth of the faintest line is so slight as to be
incapable of measurement, except by an instrument used under the
microscope, it follows that the assumption, that there can be lines
without breadth, is so nearly true, that our senses, when unassisted by
art, cannot detect the error. Formerly, and until the invention of the
micrometer, in the seventeenth century, it was impossible to detect it at
all. Hence, the conclusions of the geometrician approximate so close to
truth, that we are justified in accepting them as true. The flaw is too
minute to be perceived. But that there is a flaw, appears to me certain.
It appears certain, that whenever something is kept back in the
premisses, something must be wanting in the conclusion. In all such
cases, the field of inquiry has not been entirely covered; and part of
the preliminary facts being suppressed, it must, I think, be admitted,
that complete truth is unattainable, and that no problem in geometry has
yet been exhaustively solved.[648]

  [648] That is, so far as the facts are concerned. Geometry, considered
        in the most elevated manner, rests on ideas, and from that point
        of view is impregnable, unless the axioms can be overthrown. But
        if geometricians will insist on having definitions as well as
        axioms, they gain, no doubt, increased clearness, but they lose
        something in accuracy. I apprehend that, without definitions,
        geometry could not be a science of space, but would be a science
        of magnitudes, ideally conceived and consequently as pure as
        ratiocination could make it. This does not touch the question as
        to the empirical origin of the axioms.

Still, the amazing triumphs effected in this branch of mathematics, show
how powerful a weapon that form of deduction is, which proceeds by an
artificial separation of facts, in themselves inseparable. So little,
however, is the philosophy of the method understood, that when, late in
the eighteenth century, political economy assumed a scientific form, many
persons, who were otherwise well instructed, reproached its cultivators
with their hard-heartedness; such objectors being unable to see, that the
science could not be constructed if it were necessary to take in the
whole range of generous and benevolent affections. The political
economist aims at discovering the laws of wealth, which are far too
complicated to be studied under every aspect. He, therefore, selects one
of those aspects, and generalizes the laws as they are exhibited in the
selfish parts of human nature. And he is right in doing so, simply
because men, in the pursuit of wealth, consider their own gratification
oftener than the gratification of others. Hence, he, like the
geometrician, blots out one part of his premisses, in order that he may
manipulate the remaining part with greater ease. But we must always
remember, that political economy, though a profound and beautiful
science, is only a science of one department of life, and is founded upon
a suppression of some of the facts in which all large societies abound.
It suppresses, or, what comes to the same thing, it ignores, many high
and magnanimous feelings which we could ill afford to lose. We are not,
therefore, to allow its conclusions to override all other conclusions. We
may accept them in science, and yet reject them in practice. Thus, the
political economist, when confining himself to his own department, says,
with good reason, that it is both absurd and mischievous for government
to undertake to supply the working-classes with employment. This
assertion, he, as a political economist, can prove; and yet,
notwithstanding its scientific truth, it may be practically right for a
government to do the exact opposite. It may be right for a government to
supply the employment, when the people are so ignorant as to demand it,
and when, at the same time, they are so powerful as to plunge the country
into anarchy if the demand is refused. Here, the view of the politician
takes in all the premisses of which the political economist had only
taken in a portion. In the same way, as a matter of economic science, it
is wrong for any one to relieve the poor; since nothing is better
established, than that to relieve poverty increases it, by encouraging
improvidence. But, in spite of this, the antagonistic principle of
sympathy will come into play, and will, in some minds, operate with such
force, as to make it advisable, that he who feels it should give alms,
because, if he abstains from giving them, the violence which he does to
his own nature may inflict more mischief on himself, than his bestowal of
charity would inflict on the general interests of society.

It will not, I hope, be considered that, in these remarks, I have
digressed from the main argument of the present chapter, since, although,
in making them, I have aimed at clearing up a general question respecting
the nature of scientific proof, I have only done so with the more
particular object of illustrating the philosophy of Adam Smith, and of
explaining the method which that most profound and original thinker
pursued. We shall now be able to see how entirely his plan was deductive,
and what a peculiar form of deduction it was. In his two great works, he
first lays down certain ideas, and from them he marches on to the facts
of the external world. And, in each work, he reasons from only part of
his premisses; supplying the other part in the other work. None of us are
exclusively selfish, and none of us are exclusively sympathetic. But Adam
Smith separates in speculation qualities which are inseparable in
reality. In his _Moral Sentiments_, he ascribes our actions to sympathy;
in his _Wealth of Nations_, he ascribes them to selfishness. A short view
of these two works will prove the existence of this fundamental
difference, and will enable us to perceive that each is supplementary to
the other; so that, in order to understand either, it is necessary to
study both.

In the _Theory of Moral Sentiments_, Adam Smith lays down one great
principle from which he reasons, and to which all the others are
subordinate. This principle is, that the rules which we prescribe to
ourselves, and which govern our conduct, are solely arrived at by
observing the conduct of others.[649] We judge ourselves, because we had
previously judged them. Our notions are obtained from without, and not
from within. If, therefore, we lived entirely alone, we could have no
idea of merit or demerit, and it would be impossible for us to form an
opinion as to whether our sentiments were right or wrong.[650] To acquire
this knowledge, we must look abroad. Inasmuch, however, as we have no
direct experience of what other persons actually feel, we can only gain
the information by conceiving what we should feel if we were in their
place.[651] Hence, all men are, in imagination, constantly changing
situations with others; and though the change is ideal, and lasts but for
a moment, it is the foundation of that great and universal impulse which
is called Sympathy.[652]

  [649] 'Our continual observations upon the conduct of others, insensibly
        lead us to form to ourselves certain general rules concerning what
        is fit and proper either to be done or to be avoided.' ... 'It is
        thus that the general rules of morality are formed. They are
        ultimately founded upon experience of what, in particular
        instances, our moral faculties, our natural sense of merit and
        propriety, approve or disapprove of. We do not originally approve
        or condemn particular actions; because, upon examination, they
        appear to be agreeable or inconsistent with a certain general
        rule. The general rule, on the contrary, is formed by finding from
        experience that all actions of a certain kind, or circumstanced in
        a certain manner, are approved of or disapproved of.' _Smith's
        Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. i. pp. 219, 220. At p. 153: 'We
        either approve or disapprove of our own conduct according as we
        feel that, when we place ourselves in the situation of another
        man, and view it, as it were, with his eyes and from his station,
        we either can or cannot entirely enter into and sympathize with
        the sentiments and motives which influenced it.'

  [650] 'Were it possible that a human creature could grow up to manhood
        in some solitary place, without any communication with his own
        species, he could no more think of his own character, of the
        propriety or demerit of his own sentiments and conduct, of the
        beauty or deformity of his own mind, than of the beauty and
        deformity of his own face.' _Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiments_,
        vol. i. p. 154. 'Our first moral criticisms are exercised upon the
        characters and conduct of other people.' p. 156.

  [651] 'As we have no immediate experience of what other men feel, we can
        form no idea of the manner in which they are affected, but by
        conceiving what we ourselves should feel in the like situation.'
        _Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. i. p. 2.

  [652] 'That imaginary change of situation, upon which their sympathy is
        founded, is but momentary.' _Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiments_,
        vol. i. p. 21. Compare vol. ii. p. 206.

By proceeding from these premisses, a vast number of social phenomena may
be explained. We naturally sympathize with joy more than with
sorrow.[653] Hence, that admiration for prosperous and successful
persons, which is quite independent of any benefit we expect from them;
and hence, too, the existence of different ranks and of social
distinctions, all of which emanate from the same source.[654] Hence,
also, the feeling of loyalty, which is a product, not of reason, nor of
fear, nor of a sense of public convenience, but rather of sympathy with
those above us, begetting an extraordinary compassion for even their
ordinary sufferings.[655] Custom and fashion play a great part in the
world, but they owe their origin entirely to sympathy;[656] and so do the
various systems of philosophy which have flourished at different times,
the disagreement between which depends on the fact, that each philosopher
has sympathized with different ideas, some sympathizing with the notion
of fitness or congruity, some with that of prudence, some with that of
benevolence, and every one developing the conception paramount in his own
mind.[657] To sympathy, again, we must ascribe the establishment of
rewards and punishments, and the whole of our criminal laws, none of
which would have existed but for our disposition to sympathize with those
who either do good or suffer harm; for the circumstance of society being
protected by penal laws, is a subsequent and subordinate discovery,
which confirms our sense of their propriety, but did not suggest it.[658]
The same principle causes the difference of character exhibited by
different classes, such as the irritability of poets, compared with the
coolness of mathematicians;[659] it likewise causes that social
difference between the sexes, which makes men more remarkable for
generosity, and women for humanity.[660] All these results illustrate the
workings of sympathy, and are the remote, but still the direct,
operations of that principle. Indeed, we can trace to it some of the
minutest divisions of character; pride and vanity, for instance, being
dependent on it, although those two passions are often confused together,
and are sometimes strangely blended in the same mind.[661]

  [653] 'I will venture to affirm that, when there is no envy in the case,
        our propensity to sympathize with joy is much stronger than our
        propensity to sympathize with sorrow.' _Smith's Theory of Moral
        Sentiments_, vol. i. p. 58. 'It is because mankind are disposed to
        sympathize more entirely with our joy than with our sorrow, that
        we make parade of our riches, and conceal our poverty.' p. 65.

  [654] 'Upon this disposition of mankind to go along with all the
        passions of the rich and the powerful, is founded the distinction
        of ranks, and the order of society. Our obsequiousness to our
        superiors more frequently arises from our admiration for the
        advantages of their situation, than from any private expectations
        of benefit from their good will.' _Smith's Theory of Moral
        Sentiments_, vol. i. p. 69. See also vol. ii. p. 72.

  [655] See the striking remarks in _Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. i.
        p. 70-72.

  [656] _Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. ii. pp. 23 seq.

  [657] _Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. ii. pp. 131-244. This sketch of
        the different systems of philosophy is perhaps the ablest part of
        the book, notwithstanding two or three errors which it contains.

  [658] _Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. i. pp. 89, 92, 115,
        116. The utmost which he will concede to the notion of social
        convenience, is that 'we frequently have occasion to confirm our
        natural sense of the propriety and fitness of punishment, by
        reflecting how necessary it is for preserving the order of
        society.' p. 122.

  [659] _Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. i. pp. 172-174.

  [660] 'Humanity is the virtue of a woman, generosity of a man. The fair
        sex, who have commonly much more tenderness than ours, have seldom
        so much generosity.' _Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol.
        ii. p. 19. Sufficient facts have not yet been collected to enable
        us to test the truth of this remark, and the loose experience of
        individual observers is worth very little on so wide a subject.
        Still, I venture to doubt the truth of Adam Smith's distinction. I
        suspect that women are, on the whole, more generous than men, as
        well as more tender. But to establish a proposition of this sort,
        would require the most extensive research, made by a careful and
        analytic mind; and, at present, there is not even any tolerably
        good work on the mental characteristics which distinguish the
        sexes, and there never will be one until physiology is united with

  [661] _Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. ii. pp. 115-122.

Sympathy, then, is the main-spring of human conduct. It arises, not so
much from witnessing the passions of other persons, as from witnessing
the situation which excites those passions.[662] To this single process
we are indebted, not only for the highest principles, but also for the
deepest emotions. For, the greatest affection of which we are capable, is
merely sympathy fixed into habit; and the love which exists between the
nearest relations, is not inherent, but is derived from this mighty and
controlling principle, which governs the whole course of affairs.[663]

  [662] 'Sympathy, therefore, does not arise so much from the view of the
        passion, as from that of the situation which excites it.' _Smith's
        Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. i. p. 6.

  [663] 'What is called affection, is, in reality, nothing but habitual
        sympathy.' _Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. ii. p. 63.
        'In some tragedies and romances, we meet with many beautiful and
        interesting scenes, founded upon what is called the force of
        blood, or upon the wonderful affection which near relations are
        supposed to conceive for one another, even before they know that
        they have any such connection. This force of blood, however, I am
        afraid, exists nowhere but in tragedies and romances.' p. 66.

By this bold hypothesis, Adam Smith, at one stroke, so narrowed the field
of inquiry, as to exclude from it all considerations of selfishness as a
primary principle, and only to admit its great antagonist, sympathy. The
existence of the antagonism, he distinctly recognizes. For, he will not
allow that sympathy is in any way to be deemed a selfish principle.[664]
Although he knew that it is pleasurable, and that all pleasure contains
an element of selfishness, it did not suit the method of his philosophy
to subject the principle of sympathy to such an inductive analysis as
would reveal its elements. His business was, to reason from it, and not
to it. Concentrating his energy upon the deductive process, and
displaying that dialectic skill which is natural to his countrymen, and
of which he himself was one of the most consummate masters the world has
ever seen, he constructed a system of philosophy, imperfect indeed,
because the premisses were imperfect, but approaching truth as closely as
it was possible for any one to do who abstained from giving due
consideration to the selfish part of human nature. Into the workings of
its sympathetic part, he looked with a minuteness, and he reasoned from
it with a subtlety, which make his work the most important that has ever
been written on this interesting subject. But, inasmuch as his plan
involved a deliberate suppression of preliminary and essential facts, the
results which he obtained do not strictly correspond to those which are
actually observed in the world.[665] This, however, as I have shown, is
not a valid objection; since such discrepancy between the ideal and the
actual, or between the abstract and the concrete, is the necessary
consequence of that still early condition of our knowledge, which forces
us to study complicated questions piecemeal, and to raise them to
sciences by separate and fragmentary investigations.

  [664] 'Sympathy, however, cannot, in any sense, be regarded as a selfish
        principle.' _Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. ii. p. 206. In
        vol. i. p. 9, he complains of 'those who are fond of deducing all
        our sentiments from certain refinements of self-love.'

  [665] This is noticed by Sir James Mackintosh, whose sketch of Adam Smith
        is hasty, and somewhat superficial, but who, nevertheless, truly
        observes, that Smith 'has exposed himself to objections founded on
        experience, to which it is impossible to attempt any answer.'
        _Mackintosh's Dissertation on Ethical Philosophy_, pp. 239, 240.
        See also a letter from Hume to Adam Smith, in _Burton's Life and
        Correspondence of Hume_, vol. ii. p. 60.

That Adam Smith saw this necessity, and that his seeing it was the cause
of the method he pursued, is evident from the fact, that in his next
great work he followed the same plan, and, though he argued from new
premisses, he carefully avoided arguing from any of the old ones.
Convinced that, in his theory of morals, he had reasoned as accurately as
possible from the principles supplied by sympathy, his capacious and
insatiable mind, deeming that nothing had been done while aught remained
to do, urged him to pass on to the opposite passion of selfishness, and
treat it in the same manner, so that the whole domain of thought might be
covered. This he did in his _Wealth of Nations_, which, though even a
greater work than his _Moral Sentiments_, is equally one-sided, in
reference to the principles which it assumes. It assumes that selfishness
is the main regulator of human affairs, just as his previous work had
assumed sympathy to be so. Between the two works there elapsed an
interval of seventeen years; the _Wealth of Nations_ not being published
till 1776. But what shows that to their author both were part of a single
scheme, is the notable circumstance, that, so early as 1753, he had laid
down the principles which his later work contains.[666] This was while
his former work was still in meditation, and before it had seen the
light. It is, therefore, clear, that the study which he made, first of
one passion, and then of its opposite, was not a capricious or accidental
arrangement, but was the consequence of that vast idea which presided
over all his labours, and which, when they are rightly understood, gives
to them a magnificent unity. And a glorious object of ambition it was.
His aspiring and comprehensive genius, sweeping the distant horizon, and
taking in the intermediate space at a glance, sought to traverse the
whole ground in two separate and independent directions, indulging the
hope, that, by supplying in one line of argument the premisses which were
wanting in the other, their opposite conclusions would be compensatory
rather than hostile, and would serve as a broad and permanent basis on
which one great science of human nature might be safely built.

  [666] 'Mr. Smith's political lectures, comprehending the fundamental
        principles of his "Inquiry," were delivered at Glasgow as early as
        the year 1752 or 1753.' _Dugald Stewart's Life of Adam Smith_,
        p. lxxviii., prefixed to _Smith's Posthumous Essays_, London, 4to,

The _Wealth of Nations_ is, as I have elsewhere observed,[667] probably
the most important book which has ever been written, whether we consider
the amount of original thought which it contains, or its practical
influence. Its practical recommendations were extremely favourable to
those doctrines of freedom which the eighteenth century ushered in; and
this secured to them an attention which otherwise they would not have
received. While, therefore, the _Wealth of Nations_ was the proximate
cause of a great change in legislation,[668] a deeper analysis will show,
that the success of the book, and, consequently, the alteration of the
laws, depended upon the operation of more remote and general causes. It
must also be confessed, that those same causes predisposed the mind of
Adam Smith to the doctrines of liberty, and gave him a sort of prejudice
in favour of conclusions which limited the interference of the
legislator. Thus much he borrowed from his age; but one thing he did not
borrow. His wide and organizing mind was all his own. This would have
made him great under any circumstances; to make him powerful, required a
peculiar conjunction of events. That conjunction he enjoyed, and he
turned it to good account. The influence of his contemporaries was enough
to make him liberal; his own capacity was enough to make him
comprehensive. He had, in a most remarkable degree, that exuberance of
thought, which is one of the highest forms of genius, but which leads
those who possess it into distant excursions, which, though they have one
common aim, are often stigmatized as digressions, simply because they who
criticize are unable to discern the great principle which pervades the
whole, and unites the various parts into a single scheme. This has been
especially the case with Adam Smith, whose immortal work has often been
exposed to such shallow objections. And certainly, the _Wealth of
Nations_ displays a breadth of treatment which those who cannot
sympathize with, are very likely to ridicule. The phenomena, not only of
wealth, but also of society in general, classified and arranged under
their various forms; the origin of the division of labour, and the
consequences which that division has produced; the circumstances which
gave rise to the invention of money, and to the subsequent changes in its
value; the history of those changes traced in different ages, and the
history of the relations which the precious metals bear to each other; an
examination of the connection between wages and profits, and of the laws
which govern the rise and fall of both; another examination of the way in
which these are concerned, on the one hand, with the rent of land, and,
on the other hand, with the price of commodities; an inquiry into the
reason why profits vary in different trades, and at different times; a
succinct, but comprehensive, view of the progress of towns in Europe
since the fall of the Roman Empire; the fluctuations, during several
centuries, in the prices of the food of the people, and a statement of
how it is, that, in different stages of society, the relative cost of
land and of meat varies; the history of corporation laws and of municipal
enactments, and their bearing on the four great classes of apprentices,
manufacturers, merchants, and landlords; an account of the immense power
and riches formerly enjoyed by the clergy, and of the manner in which, as
society advances, they gradually lose their exclusive privileges; the
nature of religious dissent, and the reason why the clergy of the
established Church can never contend with it on terms of equality, and,
therefore, call on the State to help them, and wish to persecute when
they cannot persuade; why some sects profess more ascetic principles, and
others more luxurious ones; how it was, that, during the feudal times,
the nobles acquired their power, and how that power has, ever since, been
gradually diminishing; how the rights of territorial jurisdiction
originated, and how they died away; how the sovereigns of Europe obtained
their revenue, what the sources of it are, and what classes are most
heavily taxed in order to supply it; the cause of certain virtues, such
as hospitality, flourishing in barbarous ages, and decaying in civilized
ones; the influence of inventions and discoveries in altering the
distribution of power among the various classes of society; a bold and
masterly sketch of the peculiar sort of advantages which Europe derived
from the discovery of America and of the passage round the Cape; the
origin of universities, their degeneracy from their original plan, the
corruption which has gradually crept over them, and the reason why they
are so unwilling to adopt improvements, and to keep pace with the wants
of the age; a comparison between public and private education, and an
estimate of their relative advantages;--these, and a vast number of other
subjects, respecting the structure and development of society, such as
the feudal system, slavery, emancipation of serfs, origin of standing
armies, and of mercenary troops, effects produced by tithes, laws of
primogeniture, sumptuary laws, international treaties concerning trade,
rise of European banks, national debts, influence of dramatic
representations over opinions, influence of foreign travels over
opinions, colonies, poor-laws,--all topics of a miscellaneous character,
and many of them diverging from each other,--all are fused into one great
system, and irradiated by the splendour of one great genius. Into that
dense and disorderly mass, did Adam Smith introduce symmetry, method, and
law. At his touch, anarchy disappeared, and darkness was succeeded by
light. Much, of course, he took from his predecessors, though nothing
like so much as is commonly supposed. On this sort of borrowing, the best
and strongest of us are dependent. But, after making every possible
allowance for what he gathered from others, we must honestly say, that no
single man ever took so great a step upon so important a subject, and
that no single work which is now preserved, contains so many views, which
were novel at the time, but which subsequent experience has ratified.
What, however, for our present purpose, is most important to observe, is,
that he obtained these results by arguing from principles which the
selfish part of human nature exclusively supplied, and that he omitted
those sympathetic feelings of which every human being possesses at least
some share, but which he could not take into consideration, without
producing a problem, the number of whose complications it would have been
hopeless to unravel.

  [667] _History of Civilization_, vol. i. p. 214.

  [668] 'Perhaps the only book which produced an immediate, general, and
        irrevocable change in some of the most important parts of the
        legislation of all civilized states.' _Mackintosh's Ethical
        Philosophy_, p. 232. But this is too strongly expressed, as the
        economical history of France and Germany decisively proves.

To avoid, therefore, being baffled, he simplified the problem, by erasing
from his view of human nature those premisses which he had already
handled in his _Theory of Moral Sentiments_. At the beginning of the
_Wealth of Nations_, he lays down two propositions: 1st, that all wealth
is derived, not from land, but from labour; and 2d, that the amount of
the wealth depends, partly on the skill with which the labour is
conducted, and partly on the proportion between the number of those who
labour and the number of those who do not labour. The rest of the work,
is an application of these principles, to explain the growth and
mechanism of society. In applying them, he everywhere assumes, that the
great moving power of all men, all interests, and all classes, in all
ages, and in all countries, is selfishness. The opposite power of
sympathy he entirely shuts out; and I hardly remember an instance in
which even the word occurs in the whole course of his work. Its
fundamental assumption is, that each man exclusively follows his own
interest, or what he deems to be his own interest. And one of the
peculiar features of his book is, to show that, considering society as a
whole, it nearly always happens that men, in promoting their own
interest, will unintentionally promote the interest of others. Hence, the
great practical lesson is, not to restrain selfishness, but to enlighten
it; because there is a provision in the nature of things, by which the
selfishness of the individual accelerates the progress of the community.
According to this view, the prosperity of a country depends on the amount
of its capital; the amount of its capital depends on the habit of saving,
that is, on parsimony, as opposed to generosity; while the habit of
saving is, in its turn, governed by the desire we all feel of bettering
our condition,--a desire so inherent in our nature, that it comes with us
from the womb, and only leaves us in the grave.[669]

  [669] 'Parsimony, and not industry, is the immediate cause of the
        increase of capital. Industry, indeed, provides the subject which
        parsimony accumulates; but whatever industry might acquire, if
        parsimony did not save and store up, the capital would never be
        the greater.' ... 'But the principle which prompts to save, is the
        desire of bettering our condition; a desire which, though
        generally calm and dispassionate, comes with us from the womb, and
        never leaves us till we go into the grave.' _Smith's Wealth of
        Nations_, book ii. chap. iii. pp. 138, 140, edit. Edinb. 1839.

This constant effort of every man, to better his own condition, is so
salutary, as well as so powerful, that it is often capable of securing
the progress of society, in spite of the folly and extravagance of the
rulers of mankind.[670] If it were not for this propensity, improvement
would be impossible. For human institutions are constantly stopping our
advance, by thwarting our natural inclinations.[671] And no wonder that
this should be the case, seeing that the men who are at the head of
affairs, and by whom the institutions are contrived, have, perhaps, a
certain rough and practical sagacity; but being, from the narrowness of
their understandings, incapable of large views, their councils are
determined by those mere casual fluctuations which alone they are able to
perceive.[672] They do not see that we have prospered, not on account of
their enactments, but in the teeth of them; and that the real cause of
our prosperity is the fact that we enjoy undisturbed the fruit of our own
labour.[673] Whenever this right is tolerably secure, every man will be
bent on procuring for himself either present enjoyment or future profit;
and if he does not aim at one of these objects, he is void of common
understanding.[674] If he possess capital, he will probably aim at both,
but, in doing so, he will never consider the interest of others; his sole
motive will be his own private profit.[675] And it is well that such
should be the case. For, by thus pursuing his personal interest, he aids
society more than if his views were generous and exalted. Some people
affect to carry on trade for the good of others; but this is mere
affectation, though, to say the truth, it is an affectation not very
common among merchants, and many words are not needed to dissuade them
from so foolish a practice.[676]

  [670] 'The uniform, constant, and uninterrupted effort of every man to
        better his condition, the principle from which public and
        national, as well as private, opulence is originally derived, is
        frequently powerful enough to maintain the natural progress of
        things towards improvement, in spite both of the extravagance of
        government and of the greatest errors of administration. Like the
        unknown principle of animal life, it frequently restores health
        and vigour to the constitution, in spite not only of the disease,
        but of the absurd prescriptions of the doctor.' _Wealth of
        Nations_, book ii. chap. iii. p. 141. 'The natural effort of every
        individual to better his own condition, when suffered to exert
        itself with freedom and security, is so powerful a principle, that
        it is alone, and without any assistance, not only capable of
        carrying on the society to wealth and prosperity, but of
        surmounting a hundred impertinent obstructions with which the
        folly of human laws too often encumbers its operations.' Book iv.
        chap. v. p. 221.

  [671] See an admirable passage, p. 156, too long to quote, beginning,
        'If human institutions had never thwarted those natural
        inclinations,' &c.

  [672] 'That insidious and crafty animal, vulgarly called a statesman or
        politician, whose councils are directed by the momentary
        fluctuations of affairs.' _Wealth of Nations_, book iv. chap. ii.
        p. 190.

  [673] 'That security which the laws in Great Britain give to every man,
        that he shall enjoy the fruits of his own labour, is alone
        sufficient to make any country flourish, notwithstanding these and
        twenty other absurd regulations of commerce.' _Wealth of Nations_,
        book iv. chap. v. p. 221.

  [674] 'In all countries where there is a tolerable security, every man
        of common understanding will endeavour to employ whatever stock he
        can command, in procuring either present enjoyment or future
        profit.' _Wealth of Nations_, book ii. chap. i. p. 115.

  [675] 'The consideration of his own private profit is the sole motive
        which determines the owner of any capital to employ it either in
        agriculture, in manufactures, or in some particular branch of the
        wholesale or retail trade.' _Wealth of Nations_, book ii. chap. v.
        p. 154.

  [676] 'By pursuing his own interest, he frequently promotes that of the
        society more effectually than when he really intends to promote
        it. I have never known much good done by those who affected to
        trade for the public good. It is an affectation, indeed, not very
        common among merchants, and very few words need be employed in
        dissuading them from it.' _Wealth of Nations_, book iv. chap. ii.
        p. 184.

In this way, Adam Smith completely changes the premisses which he had
assumed in his earlier work. Here, he makes men naturally selfish;
formerly, he had made them naturally sympathetic.[677] Here, he
represents them as pursuing wealth for sordid objects, and for the
narrowest personal pleasures; formerly he represented them as pursuing it
out of regard to the sentiments of others, and for the sake of obtaining
their sympathy.[678] In the _Wealth of Nations_, we hear no more of this
conciliatory and sympathetic spirit; such amiable maxims are altogether
forgotten, and the affairs of the world are regulated by different
principles. It now appears that benevolence and affection have no
influence over our actions. Indeed, Adam Smith will hardly admit common
humanity into his theory of motives. If a people emancipate their slaves,
it is a proof, not that the people are acted on by high moral
considerations, nor that their sympathy is excited by the cruelty
inflicted on these unhappy creatures. Nothing of the sort. Such
inducements to conduct are imaginary, and exercise no real sway. All that
the emancipation proves, is, that the slaves were few in number, and,
therefore, small in value. Otherwise, they would not have been

  [677] In his _Theory of Moral Sentiments_, vol. i. p. 21, he says that
        mankind are 'naturally sympathetic.'

  [678] 'Nay, it is chiefly for this regard to the sentiments of mankind,
        that we pursue riches and avoid poverty.' _Theory of Moral
        Sentiments_, vol. i. p. 66. 'To become the natural object of the
        joyous congratulations and sympathetic attentions of mankind, is,
        in this manner, the circumstance which gives to prosperity all its
        dazzling splendour.' p. 78.

  [679] 'The late resolution of the Quakers in Pennsylvania, to set at
        liberty all their negro slaves, may satisfy us that their number
        cannot be very great. Had they made any considerable part of their
        property, such a resolution could never have been agreed to.'
        _Wealth of Nations_, book iii. chap. ii. p. 159.

So, too, while in his former work, he had ascribed the different systems
of morals to the power of sympathy, he, in this work, ascribes them
entirely to the power of selfishness. He observes, that, among the lower
ranks of society, dissipation is more fatal to individuals, than it is
among the higher ranks. The extravagance which dissipation produces, may
injure the fortune of a wealthy man, but the injury is usually capable of
being repaired, or, at all events, he can indulge his vices for years
without completely destroying his fortune, and without bringing himself
to utter ruin. To the labourer, a similar indulgence would be fatal in a
single week; it would not merely reduce him to beggary, and perhaps send
him to jail, but it would destroy his future prospects, by taking away
that character for sobriety and regularity on which his employment
depends. Hence, the better class of common people, guided by their
interest, look with aversion on excesses which they know to be fatal;
while the upper ranks finding that a moderate amount of vice hurts
neither their purse nor their reputation consider such license to be one
of the advantages which their fortune confers, and they value, as one of
the privileges belonging to their station, the liberty of indulging
themselves without being censured. Therefore it is, that they who dissent
from the established Church have a purer system of morals, or, at all
events, an austerer one, than they who agree with it. For, new religious
sects usually begin among the common people, the thinking part of whom
are, by their interest, driven to strict views of the duties of life.
Consequently, the advocates of the new opinion profess a similar
strictness, seeing that it is the surest means of increasing their
proselytes. Thus it is that sectaries and heretics, governed by interest
rather than by principle, adopt a code of morals which is suited to their
own purpose, and the rigidity of which is strongly contrasted with the
laxer code of more orthodox believers.[680] Owing to the operation of the
same principle, we also find, that, among the orthodox themselves, the
clergy embrace a stricter system of morals in countries where church
benefices are nearly equal than they do in countries where the benefices
are very unequal. This is because, when all the benefices are nearly
equal, none can be very rich, and, consequently, even the most
conspicuous among the clergy will have but small incomes. But a man who
has little to spend can have no influence, unless his morals are
exemplary. Having no wealth to give him weight the vices of levity would
make him ridiculous. To avoid contempt, and also to avoid the expense
which a looseness of conduct occasions, and which his narrow
circumstances cannot afford, he has but one remedy, and that remedy he
adopts. He retains his influence, and saves his pocket, by protesting
against pleasures which he cannot conveniently enjoy; in this, as in all
other cases, pursuing that plan of life which his own interest urges him
to follow.[681]

  [680] 'In every civilized society, in every society where the
        distinction of ranks has once been completely established, there
        have been always two different schemes or systems of morality
        current at the same time; of which the one may be called the
        strict or austere; the other the liberal, or, if you will, the
        loose system. The former is generally revered and admired by the
        common people; the latter is commonly more esteemed and adopted by
        what are called the people of fashion. The degree of
        disapprobation with which we ought to mark the vices of levity,
        the vices which are apt to arise from great prosperity, and from
        the excess of gaiety and good humour, seems to constitute the
        principal distinction between those two opposite schemes or
        systems. In the liberal, or loose system, luxury, wanton, and even
        disorderly mirth, the pursuit of pleasure to some degree of
        intemperance, the breach of chastity, at least in one of the two
        sexes, provided they are not accompanied with gross indecency, and
        do not lead to falsehood and injustice, are generally treated with
        a good deal of indulgence, and are easily either excused or
        pardoned altogether. In the austere system, on the contrary, these
        excesses are regarded with the utmost abhorrence and detestation.
        The vices of levity are always ruinous to the common people, and a
        single week's thoughtlessness and dissipation is often sufficient
        to undo a poor workman for ever, and to drive him, through
        despair, upon committing the most enormous crimes. The wiser and
        better sort of the common people, therefore, have always the
        utmost abhorrence and detestation of such excesses, which their
        experience tells them are so immediately fatal to people of their
        condition. The disorder and extravagance of several years, on the
        contrary, will not always ruin a man of fashion; and people of
        that rank are very apt to consider the power of indulging in some
        degree of excess, as one of the advantages of their fortune; and
        the liberty of doing so without censure or reproach, as one of the
        privileges which belong to their station. In people of their own
        station, therefore, they regard such excesses with but a small
        degree of disapprobation, and censure them either very slightly or
        not at all.

        'Almost all religious sects have begun among the common people,
        from whom they have generally drawn their earliest as well as
        their most numerous proselytes. The austere system of morality
        has, accordingly, been adopted by those sects almost constantly,
        or with very few exceptions; for there have been some. It was the
        system by which they could best recommend themselves to that order
        of people, to whom they first proposed their plan of reformation
        upon what had been before established. Many of them, perhaps the
        greater part of them, have even endeavoured to gain credit by
        refining upon this austere system, and by carrying it to some
        degree of folly and extravagance; and this excessive rigour has
        frequently recommended them, more than any thing else, to the
        respect and veneration of the common people.' ... 'In little
        religious sects, accordingly, the morals of the common people have
        been almost always remarkably regular and orderly; generally much
        more so than in the established church. The morals of those little
        sects, indeed, have frequently been rather disagreeably rigorous
        and unsocial.' _Wealth of Nations_, book v. chap. i. pp. 332, 333.

  [681] 'Where the church benefices are all nearly equal, none of them can
        be very great; and this mediocrity of benefice, though it may, no
        doubt, be carried too far, has, however, some very agreeable
        effects. Nothing but exemplary morals can give dignity to a man of
        small fortune. The vices of levity and vanity necessarily render
        him ridiculous, and are, besides, almost as ruinous to him as they
        are to the common people. In his own conduct, therefore, he is
        obliged to follow that system of morals which the common people
        respect the most. He gains their esteem and affection, by that
        plan of life which his own interest and situation would lead him
        to follow.' _Wealth of Nations_, book v. chap. i. p. 340.

In these striking generalizations, which, though they contain a large
amount of truth, are far from containing the whole truth, no room is left
for the magnanimous parts of our nature to act; but the system of morals,
prevailing at any one time or in any one class, is solely ascribed to the
dictates of unalloyed selfishness. Adam Smith, by reasoning from this
principle, with that exquisite subtlety which characterized his mind,
explains many other circumstances which society presents, and which at
first sight appear incongruous. According to the old notions, which,
indeed, are not yet quite extinct, those who received wages were under a
personal obligation to those who paid them; that is to say, they were
under a moral obligation, over and above the obligation of performing
certain services. It was believed that a master could not only select
what servants he chose, but could pay them what he chose; or, at all
events, that it was the will of the masters, considered as a body, which
fixed the usual and average rate of wages.[682] The lower classes were,
therefore, much indebted to the higher ones for giving them so much as
they did; and it was incumbent upon all persons, who received wages, to
take them with humble thankfulness, and with a feeling of gratitude, on
account of the favour bestowed upon them by the generosity of their

  [682] Besides the evidence supplied by economical treatises, the laws in
        our statute-book, respecting wages, show the general conviction,
        that their rate could be fixed by the upper classes.

This doctrine, so convenient to the upper classes of society, and so
natural to the universal ignorance which formerly prevailed on these
matters, began to be shaken by the speculative thinkers of the
seventeenth century; but it was reserved for the eighteenth century to
overthrow it, by letting in the great idea of necessity, and proving,
that the rate of wages established in a country, was the inevitable
consequence of the circumstances in which that country was placed, and
had no connexion with the wishes of any individual, or, indeed, with the
wishes of any class. To all instructed persons, this is now a familiar
truth. Its discovery has excluded the notion of gratitude from the
pecuniary relation between employers and employed, and has made known
that servants or workmen who receive wages, have no more reason to be
grateful than those who pay them. For, no choice having been exercised in
fixing the wages, no favour can be conferred in their payment. The whole
process is compulsory, and is the result of what had previously happened.
Scarcely had the eighteenth century passed away, when this most important
discovery was completed. It was decisively proved, that the reward of
labour depends solely on two things; namely, the magnitude of that
national fund out of which all labour is paid, and the number of the
labourers among whom the fund is to be divided.

This vast step in our knowledge is due, mainly, though not entirely, to
Malthus, whose work on Population, besides marking an epoch in the
history of speculative thought, has already produced considerable
practical results, and will probably give rise to others more
considerable still. It was published in 1798; so that Adam Smith, who
died in 1790, missed what to him would have been the intense pleasure of
seeing how, in it, his own views were expanded rather than corrected.
Indeed, it is certain, that without Smith there would have been no
Malthus; that is, unless Smith had laid the foundation, Malthus could not
have raised the superstructure. It was Adam Smith, who, far more than any
other man, introduced the conception of uniform and necessary sequence
into the apparently capricious phenomena of wealth, and who studied those
phenomena by the aid of principles, of which selfishness alone supplied
the data. According to his view, the employers of labour have, as
employers, no benevolence, no sympathy, no virtue of any kind. Their sole
aim is, their own selfish interest. They are constantly engaged in a
tacit, if not in an open, combination, to prevent the lower ranks from
being benefited by a rise of wages; and they sometimes combine for the
purpose even of depressing those wages below their actual rate.[683]
Having no bowels, they think only of themselves. The idea of their
wishing to mitigate the inequalities of fortune, is to be exploded as one
of the chimeras of that protective spirit, which imagined that society
could not go on, unless the richer classes relieved the poorer ones, and
sympathized with their troubles. This antiquated notion is further
rebutted by the fact, that wages are always higher in summer than in
winter, although the expenses which a labourer incurs in winter, being
heavier than in summer, he ought, on principles of common humanity, to
receive more money during the more expensive season.[684] In the same
way, in years of scarcity, the dearness of food causes many persons to go
to service, in order to support their families. The masters, instead of
charitably paying such servants more on account of the unfortunate
position in which they are placed, avail themselves of that position to
pay them less. They make better terms for themselves; they lower wages
just at the moment when sympathy for misfortune would have raised them;
and, as they find that their servants, besides being worse remunerated,
are, by poverty, made more submissive, they consider that scarcity is a
blessing, and that dear years are to be commended as more favourable to
industry than cheap ones.[685]

  [683] 'We rarely hear, it has been said, of the combinations of masters,
        though frequently of those of workmen. But whoever imagines, upon
        this account, that masters rarely combine, is as ignorant of the
        world as of the subject. Masters are always and every where in a
        sort of tacit, but constant and uniform, combination, not to raise
        the wages of labour above their actual rate. To violate this
        combination is every where a most unpopular action, and a sort of
        reproach to a master among his neighbours and equals. We seldom,
        indeed, hear of this combination, because it is the usual, and,
        one may say, the natural state of things which nobody ever hears
        of. Masters, too, sometimes enter into particular combinations to
        sink the wages of labour even below this rate.' _Wealth of
        Nations_, book i. chap. viii. p. 28.

  [684] 'First, in almost every part of Great Britain, there is a
        distinction, even in the lowest species of labour, between summer
        and winter wages. Summer wages are always highest. But, on account
        of the extraordinary expense of fuel, the maintenance of a family
        is most expensive in winter. Wages, therefore, being highest when
        this expense is lowest, it seems evident that they are not
        regulated by what is necessary for this expense, but by the
        quantity and supposed value of the work.' _Wealth of Nations_,
        book i. chap. viii. p. 31.

  [685] 'In years of scarcity, the difficulty and uncertainty of
        subsistence make all such people eager to return to service. But
        the high price of provisions, by diminishing the funds destined
        for the maintenance of servants, disposes masters rather to
        diminish than to increase the number of those they have.' ...
        'Masters of all sorts, therefore, frequently make better bargains
        with their servants in dear than in cheap years, and find them
        more humble and dependent in the former than in the latter. They
        naturally, therefore, commend the former as more favourable to
        industry.' _Wealth of Nations_, book i. chap. viii. p. 35.

Adam Smith, therefore, though he failed in grasping the remote cause of
the rate of wages, clearly saw that the approximate cause was, not the
generosity of human nature, but its selfishness, and that the question
was one of supply and demand; each side striving to extract as much as
possible from the other.[686] By the aid of the same principle, he
explained another curious fact, namely, the extravagant rewards bestowed
on some of the most despicable classes of society, such, for instance, as
opera-dancers, who always receive enormous pay for insignificant
services. He observes, that one of the reasons why we pay them so highly,
is, because we despise them. If to be a public dancer were a creditable
occupation, more persons would be brought up to it, and the supply of
public dancers becoming greater, competition would lower their wages. As
it is, we look on them disdainfully. By way of compensating the disdain,
we have to bribe them largely to induce them to follow their
pursuit.[687] Here we see, that the reward which one class bestows on
another, instead of being increased by sympathy, is increased by scorn;
so that the more we contemn the tastes and the way of life of our
fellow-creatures, the more liberal we are in recompensing them.

  [686] 'The workmen desire to get as much, the masters to give as little,
        as possible. The former are disposed to combine in order to raise,
        the latter in order to lower, the wages of labour.' _Wealth of
        Nations_, b. i. c. viii. p. 27.

  [687] 'It seems absurd at first sight, that we should despise their
        persons, and yet reward their talents with the most profuse
        liberality. While we do the one, however, we must of necessity do
        the other. Should the public opinion, or prejudice, ever alter
        with regard to such occupation, their pecuniary recompense would
        quickly diminish. More people would apply to them, and the
        competition would quickly reduce the price of their labour. Such
        talents, though far from being common, are by no means so rare as
        imagined. Many people possess them in great perfection, who
        disdain to make this use of them; and many more are capable of
        acquiring them, if any thing could be made honourably by them.'
        _Wealth of Nations_, book i. ch. x. p. 44.

Passing to another, and somewhat different, class, Adam Smith threw new
light on the cause of that hospitality for which the clergy were famous
during the Middle Ages, and for the magnificence of which they have
received great praise. He shows that, although they undoubtedly relieved
a large amount of distress, this is not to be ascribed to them as a
merit, since it resulted from the peculiarity of their position, and
since, moreover, they did it for their own advantage. In the Middle Ages,
the clergy possessed enormous wealth, and their revenues were mostly
paid, not in money, but in kind, such as corn, wine, and cattle. Trade
and manufactures being hardly known, the clergy could find no use for
these commodities except to feed other people. By employing them in that
way, they benefited themselves in the most effectual manner. They gained
a reputation for extensive charity; they increased their influence; they
multiplied the number of their adherents; and they not only advanced
themselves to temporal power, but they secured to their spiritual threats
a respect, which, without this contrivance, it would have been impossible
for them to obtain.[688]

  [688] 'Over and above the rents of those estates, the clergy possessed
        in the tithes a very large portion of the rents of all the other
        estates in every kingdom of Europe. The revenues arising from both
        those species of rents were, the greater part of them, paid in
        kind, in corn, wine, cattle, poultry, &c. The quantity exceeded
        greatly what the clergy could themselves consume; and there were
        neither arts nor manufactures, for the produce of which they could
        exchange the surplus. The clergy could derive advantage from this
        immense surplus in no other way than by employing it, as the great
        barons employed the like surplus of their revenues, in the most
        profuse hospitality, and in the most extensive charity. Both the
        hospitality and the charity of the ancient clergy, accordingly,
        are said to have been very great.' ... 'The hospitality and
        charity of the clergy, too, not only gave them the command of a
        great temporal force, but increased very much the weight of their
        spiritual weapons. Those virtues procured them the highest respect
        and veneration among all the inferior ranks of people, of whom
        many were constantly, and almost all occasionally, fed by them.'
        _Wealth of Nations_, book v. chap. i. p. 336.

The reader will now be able to understand the nature of that method of
investigation which is adopted in the _Wealth of Nations_, and of which I
have given more instances than I should otherwise have done, partly
because the question of philosophic method lies at the very root of our
knowledge, and partly because no attempt has hitherto been made to
analyze the intellect of Adam Smith, by considering his two great works
as the opposite, but yet the compensatory, parts of a single scheme. And,
as he is by far the greatest thinker Scotland has produced, I need hardly
apologize, in a history of the Scotch mind, for devoting so much
attention to his system, and endeavouring to examine it at its base. But,
having done so, it would be a needless prolixity to treat with equal
fulness the productions of those other eminent Scotchmen who lived at the
same time, and nearly all of whom pursued a method essentially, though
not entirely, the same; that is to say, they preferred the deductive
process of reasoning from principles, to the inductive process of
reasoning to them. In that peculiar form of deduction which consists in a
deliberate suppression of part of the principles, Adam Smith stands
alone. For, though others attempted to follow that plan, they did so
irregularly, and at intervals, and did not, like him, see the importance
of keeping close to their method, and of invariably abstaining from
letting into the premisses of their arguments, considerations which would
complicate the problem that they wished to solve.

Among the contemporaries of Adam Smith, one of the first, in eminence, as
well as in reputation, is David Hume. His views respecting political
economy were published in 1752,[689] that is, the very year in which Adam
Smith taught the principles subsequently unfolded in the _Wealth of
Nations_. But Hume, though a most accomplished reasoner, as well as a
profound and fearless thinker, had not the comprehensiveness of Adam
Smith, nor had he that invaluable quality of imagination without which no
one can so transport himself into past ages as to realize the long and
progressive movements of society, always fluctuating, yet, on the whole,
steadily advancing. How unimaginative he was, appears, not only from the
sentiments he expressed, but likewise from many traits in his private
life.[690] It appears, also, in the very colour and mechanism of his
language; that beautiful and chiselled style in which he habitually
wrote, polished as marble, but cold as marble too, and wanting that fiery
enthusiasm and those bursts of tempestuous eloquence, which, ever and
anon, great objects naturally inspire, and which rouse men to their
inmost depths. This it was, which, in his _History of England_,--that
exquisite production of art, which, in spite of its errors, will be
admired as long as taste remains among us,--prevented him from
sympathizing with those bold and generous natures, who, in the
seventeenth century, risked their all to preserve the liberty of their
country. His imagination was not strong enough to picture the whole of
that great century, with its vast discoveries, its longings after the
unknown, its splendid literature, and what was better than all these, its
stern determination to vindicate freedom, and to put down tyranny. His
clear and powerful understanding saw these things separately, and in
their various parts, but could not fuse them into a single form, because
he lacked that peculiar faculty which assimilates the past to the
present, and enables the mind to discern both with almost equal ease.
That Great Rebellion, which he ascribed to the spirit of faction, and the
leaders of which he turned into ridicule, was but the continuation of a
movement which can be clearly traced to the twelfth century, and of which
such events as the invention of printing, and the establishment of the
Reformation, were merely successive symptoms. For all this, Hume cared
nothing. In regard to philosophy, and in regard to the purely speculative
parts of religious doctrines, his penetrating genius enabled him to
perceive that nothing could be done, except by a spirit of fearless and
unrestrained liberty. But this was the liberty of his own class; the
liberty of thinkers, and not of actors. His absence of imagination
prevented him from extending the range of his sympathy beyond the
intellectual classes, that is, beyond the classes of whose feelings he
was directly cognizant. It would, therefore, appear, that his political
errors were due, not, as is commonly said, to his want of research, but
rather to the coldness of his temperament.[691] It was this which made
him stop where he did, and which gave to his works the singular
appearance of a profound and original thinker, in the middle of the
eighteenth century, advocating practical doctrines, so illiberal, that,
if enforced, they would lead to despotism, and yet, at the same time,
advocating speculative doctrines, so fearless and enlightened, that they
were not only far in advance of his own age, but have, in some degree,
outstripped even the age in which we live.

  [689] _Burton's Life of Hume_, vol. i. p. 354.

  [690] See Mr. Burton's valuable _Life of Hume_, Edinburgh, 1846, vol. i.
        pp. 58, 267, vol. ii. pp. 14, 134.

  [691] What confirms me in this view, is the fact, that the older Hume
        grew, and the more he read on history, the more he became imbued
        with these errors; which would not have been the case if the
        errors had, as many of his critics say, been the result of an
        insufficient acquaintance with the evidence. Mr. Burton, by
        comparing the different editions of his _History of England_, has
        shown that he gradually became less favourable to popular liberty;
        softening, or erasing, in later editions, those expressions which
        seemed favourable to freedom. _Burton's Life of Hume_, vol. ii.
        pp. 74-77. See also pp. 144, 434. In his _Own Life_, p. xi (in
        vol. i. of _Hume's Works_ Edinb. 1826), he says: 'In a hundred
        alterations, which farther study, reading, or reflection engaged
        me to make in the reigns of the two first Stuarts, I have made all
        of them invariably the Tory side.' In one of his essays, he
        observes (_Philosophical Works_, vol. iv. p. 172) that 'there is
        no enthusiasm among philosophers;' a remark perfectly true, so far
        as he was concerned, but very unjust towards the class of men to
        whom it refers.

Among his speculative views, the most important are his theory of
causation as discarding the idea of power, and his theory of the laws of
association. Neither of these theories are, in their primary conception,
quite original, but his treatment made them as valuable as if they had
been entirely his own. His theory of miracles, in connexion, on the one
hand, with the principles of evidence, and, on the other hand, with the
laws of causation, is worked out with consummate skill, and, after having
received the modifications subsequently imposed by Brown, has now become
the foundation on which the best inquirers into these matters take their
stand.[692] His work on the principles of morals, by generalizing the
laws of expediency, prepared the way for Bentham, who afterwards
incorporated with them an estimate of the more remote consequences of
human actions; Hume, having chiefly confined himself to their more
immediate consequences. The doctrine of utility was common to each; but
while Hume applied it mainly to the individual, Bentham applied it to the
surrounding society. Though Bentham was more comprehensive, yet Hume,
having come first, was more original. The praise of originality must also
be accorded to his economical theories, in which he advocated those
principles of free trade, which politicians began to adopt many years
after his death.[693] In opposition to the notions then prevailing, he
distinctly asserted, that all commodities, though apparently bought by
money, are in reality bought by labour.[694] Money, therefore, is not the
subject of commerce, and is of no use except to facilitate it.[695]
Hence, it is absurd for a nation to trouble itself about the balance of
trade, or to make regulations to discourage the exportation of the
precious metals.[696] Neither does the average rate of interest depend on
their scarcity or abundance, but upon the operation of more general
causes.[697] As a necessary consequence of these positions, Hume inferred
that the established policy was wrong, which made trading states look
upon each other as rivals, while, in point of fact, the question, if
considered from a certain height, was one, not of rivalry, but of
coöperation; every country being benefited by the increasing wealth of
its neighbours.[698] Those who know the character of commercial
legislation, and the opinions of even the most enlightened statesmen a
century ago, will consider these views as extremely remarkable to have
been propounded in the year 1752. But what is more remarkable still, is,
that their author subsequently detected the fundamental error which Adam
Smith committed, and which vitiates many of his conclusions. The error
consists in his having resolved price into three components, namely,
wages, profit, and rent; whereas it is now known that price is a compound
of wages and profit, and that rent is not an element of it, but a result
of it. This discovery is the corner-stone of political economy; but it is
established by an argument so long and so refined, that most minds are
unable to pursue it without stumbling, and the majority of those who
acquiesce in it are influenced by the great writers to whom they pay
deference, and whose judgment they follow. It is, therefore, a striking
proof of the sagacity of Hume, that in an age when the science was but
dawning, and when he could receive little help from his predecessors, he
should have discovered a mistake of this sort, which lies so far beneath
the surface. Directly the _Wealth of Nations_ appeared, he wrote to Adam
Smith, disputing his position that rent is a part of price;[699] and this
letter, written in the year 1776, is the first indication of that
celebrated theory of rent, which, a little later, Anderson, Malthus, and
West, saw, and imperfectly developed, but which it was reserved for the
genius of Ricardo to build up on a broad and solid foundation.

  [692] Brown, in his great work,--one of the greatest which this century
        has produced,--candidly confesses that his own book is 'chiefly
        reflective of the lights, which he' (Hume) 'has given.' _Brown's
        Inquiry into the Relation of Cause and Effect_, London, 1835, p.
        253. See also p. vii.

  [693] While the politicians of his own time despised his views, the
        politicians of our time seem inclined to overrate them. Lord
        Brougham, for instance, in his Life of Hume, says, of his
        political economy, 'Mr. Hume is, beyond all doubt, the author of
        the modern doctrines which now rule the world of science.'
        _Brougham's Works_, Glasgow, 1856, vol. ii. p. 176. But so far
        from this being the case, the science of political economy has,
        since the time of Hume, received such additions, that if that
        illustrious philosopher were to rise from the dead, he would
        hardly be able to recognize it. To him, many of its largest and
        most fundamental principles were entirely unknown. Hume knew
        nothing of the causes which govern the accumulation of wealth, and
        compel that accumulation to proceed with different speed in
        different states of society; a fruitful and important study almost
        entirely neglected until entered upon by Rae. Neither did Hume
        know anything of the law of the ratio between population and
        wages; nor of the ratio between wages and profits. He even
        supposes (_Philosophical Works_, vol. iii. p. 299, Edinburgh,
        1826) that it is possible for the labouring classes by combination
        'to heighten their wages;' and again (p. 319) that the richer a
        nation is, and the more trade it has, the easier it will be for a
        poor country to undersell its manufactures, because the poor
        nation enjoys the advantage of a 'low price of labour.' Elsewhere,
        he asserts that coin can be depreciated without raising prices,
        and that a country, by taxing a foreign commodity, could increase
        its own population. 'Were all our money, for instance, recoined,
        and a penny's worth of silver taken from every shilling, the new
        shilling would probably purchase every thing that could have been
        bought by the old; the prices of every thing would thereby be
        insensibly diminished; foreign trade enlivened; and domestic
        industry, by the circulation of a great number of pounds and
        shillings, would receive some increase and encouragement.'
        _Philosophical Works_, vol. iii. p. 324. 'A tax on German linen
        encourages home manufactures, and thereby multiplies our people
        and industry.' p. 365. These are cardinal errors, which go to the
        very root of political economy; and when we fairly estimate what
        has been done by Malthus and Ricardo, it will be evident that
        Hume's doctrines do not 'rule the world of science.' This is no
        disparagement of Hume, who, on the contrary, effected wonderful
        things, considering the then state of knowledge. The mistake is,
        in imagining that such a rapidly advancing science as political
        economy can be governed by doctrines propounded more than a
        century ago.

  [694] 'Every thing in the world is purchased by labour, and our passions
        are the only causes of labour.' _Essay I. on Commerce, in Hume's
        Philosophical Works_, vol. iii. p. 294. Hence, he saw the fallacy
        of the assertion of the French economists, 'that all taxes fall
        ultimately upon land.' p. 388.

  [695] 'Money is not, properly speaking, one of the subjects of commerce,
        but only the instrument which men have agreed upon to facilitate
        the exchange of one commodity for another.' _Essay on Money in
        Philosophical Works_, vol. iii. p. 317. 'It is, indeed, evident
        that money is nothing but the representation of labour and
        commodities, and serves only as a method of rating or estimating
        them.' p. 321.

  [696] See _Essay V. on the Balance of Trade_, in _Hume's Philosophical
        Works_, vol. iii. pp. 348-367.

  [697] _Hume's Philosophical Works_, vol. iii. pp. 333-335. Even now, a
        knowledge of this truth is so little diffused, that, lately, when
        Australia and California began to yield immense quantities of
        gold, a notion was widely circulated that the interest of money
        would consequently fall; although nothing can be more certain than
        that if gold were to become as plentiful as iron, the interest of
        money would be unaffected. The whole effect would fall upon price.
        The remarks on this subject in _Ritchie's Life of Hume_, London,
        1807, pp. 332, 333, are interesting, as illustrating the slow
        progress of opinion, and the difficulty which minds, not specially
        trained, experience when they attempt to investigate these

  [698] 'Nothing is more usual, among states which have made some advance
        in commerce, than to look on the progress of their neighbours with
        a suspicious eye, to consider all trading states as their rivals,
        and to suppose that it is impossible for any of them to flourish,
        but at their expense. In opposition to this narrow and malignant
        opinion, I will venture to assert, that the increase of riches and
        commerce in any one nation, instead of hurting, commonly promotes
        the riches and commerce of all its neighbours.' ... 'I go farther,
        and observe, that where an open communication is preserved among
        nations, it is impossible but the domestic industry of every one
        must receive an increase from the improvements of the others.'
        _Essay on the Jealousy of Trade_, in _Hume's Philosophical Works_,
        vol. iii. pp. 368, 369.

  [699] This letter, which I have referred to in my first volume, p. 229,
        was published, for, I believe, the first time, in 1846, in
        _Burton's Life and Correspondence of Hume_, vol. ii. p. 486. It
        is, however, very difficult to determine what Adam Smith's opinion
        really was upon this subject, and how far he was aware that rent
        did not enter into price. In one passage in the _Wealth of
        Nations_ (book i. chap. vi. p. 21) he says of wages, profit, and
        rent, 'in every society, the price of every commodity finally
        resolves itself into some one or other, or all of those three
        parts; and _in every improved society, all the three enter, more
        or less, as component parts, into the price of the far greater
        part of commodities_.' But in book i. chap. xi. p. 61, he says,
        'High or low wages and profit are the causes of high or low price;
        high or low rent is the effect of it.' This latter opinion we now
        know to be the true one; it is, however, incompatible with that
        expressed in the first passage. For, if rent is the effect of
        price, it cannot be a component of it.

It is very observable, that Hume and Adam Smith, who made such immense
additions to our knowledge of the principles of trade, had no practical
acquaintance with it.[700] Hume had, at an early period of his life, been
in a mercantile house; but he threw up that employment in disgust, and
buried himself in a provincial town, to think, rather than to
observe.[701] Indeed, one of the capital defects of his mind, was a
disregard of facts. This did not proceed, as is too often the case, from
that worst form of moral obliquity, an indifference to truth; since he,
on the contrary, was an ardent lover of it, and was, moreover, a man of
the purest and most exemplary character, utterly incapable of falsehood,
or of prevarication of any kind.[702] In him, a contempt for facts was
merely the exaggerated result of a devotion to ideas. He not only
believed, with perfect justice, that ideas are more important than facts,
but he supposed that they should hold the first place in the order of
study, and that they should be developed before the facts are
investigated. The Baconian philosophy, which, though it allows a
preliminary and tentative hypothesis, strongly insists upon the necessity
of first collecting the facts, and then proceeding to the ideas, excited
his aversion; and this, I have no doubt, is the reason why he, who was
usually so lenient in his judgments, and was so keen an admirer of
intellectual greatness is, nevertheless, grossly unfair towards Bacon,
with whose method it was impossible for him to sympathize, though he
could not deny its utility, in physical science.[703] If Hume had
followed the Baconian scheme, of always rising from particulars to
generals, and from each generalization to that immediately above it, he
would hardly have written one of his works. Certainly, his economical
views would never have appeared, since political economy is as
essentially a deductive science as geometry itself.[704] Reversing the
inductive process, he was in favour of beginning with what he termed
general arguments, by which he hoped to demonstrate the inaccuracy of
opinions which facts were supposed to have proved.[705] He did not stop
to investigate the facts from which the inference had been drawn, but he
inverted the order by which the inference was to be obtained. The same
dislike to make the facts of trade the basis of the science of trade, was
displayed by Adam Smith, who expresses his want of confidence in
statistics, or, as it was then termed, political arithmetic.[706] It is,
however, evident, that statistical facts are as good as any other facts,
and, owing to their mathematical form, are very precise.[707] But when
they concern human actions, they are the result of all the motives which
govern those actions; in other words, they are the result, not merely of
selfishness, but also of sympathy. And as Adam Smith, in the _Wealth of
Nations_, dealt with only one of these passions, namely, selfishness, he
would have found it impossible to conduct his generalization from
statistics, which are necessarily collected from the products of both
passions. Such statistical facts were, in their origin, too complex to be
generalized; especially as they could not be experimented upon, but could
only be observed and arranged. Adam Smith, perceiving them to be
unmanageable, very properly rejected them as the basis of his science,
and merely used them by way of illustration, when he could select what he
liked. The same remark applies to other facts which he drew from the
history of trade, and, indeed, from the general history of society. All
of these are essentially subsequent to the argument. They make the
argument more clear, but not more certain. For, it is no exaggeration to
say, that, if all the commercial and historical facts in the _Wealth of
Nations_ were false, the book would still remain, and its conclusions
would hold equally good, though they would be less attractive. In it,
every thing depends upon general principles, and they, as we have seen,
were arrived at in 1752, that is, twenty-four years before the work was
published in which those principles were applied. They must, therefore,
have been acquired independently of the facts which Adam Smith,
subsequently incorporated with them, and which he learnt during that long
period of twenty-four years. And the ten years which he employed in
composing his great work, were not spent in one of those busy haunts of
men, where he might have observed all the phenomena of industry, and
studied the way in which the operations of trade affect human character,
and are affected by it. He did not resort to one of those vast marts and
emporiums of commerce, where the events were happening which he was
seeking to explain. That was not his method. On the contrary, the ten
years, during which he was occupied in raising to a science the most
active department of life, were passed in complete seclusion in
Kirkaldy, his quiet little birthplace.[708] He had always been remarkable
for absence of mind, and was so little given to observation, as to be
frequently oblivious of what was passing around him.[709] In that
obliviousness, he, amid the tranquil scenes of his childhood, could now
indulge without danger. There, cheered, indeed, by the society of his
mother, but with no opportunity of observing human nature upon a large
scale, and far removed from the hum of great cities, did this mighty
thinker, by the force of his own mind, unravel the numerous and
complicated phenomena of wealth, detect the motives which regulate the
conduct of the most energetic and industrious portion of mankind, and lay
bare the schemes and the secrets of that active life from which he was
shut out, while he, immured in comparative solitude, was unable to
witness the very facts which he succeeded in explaining.

  [700] Hence, when the _Wealth of Nations_ appeared, one of our wise men
        gravely said that 'Dr. Smith, who had never been in trade, could
        not be expected to write well on that subject, any more than a
        lawyer upon physic.' See _Boswell's Life of Johnson_, edit.
        Croker, 1848, p. 478, where this remark is ascribed to Sir John

  [701] 'He was sent to a mercantile house at Bristol in 1734; but he
        found the drudgery of this employment intolerable, and he retired
        to Rheims.' _Brougham's Life of Hume_, Glasgow, 1856, p. 169. See
        also _Ritchie's Life of Hume_, p. 6. In _Roberts' Memoirs of
        Hannah More_, 2d ed. 1834, vol. i. p. 16, it is said that 'two
        years of his life were spent in a merchant's counting-house in
        Bristol, whence he was dismissed on account of the promptitude of
        his pen in the correction of the letters intrusted to him to
        copy.' The latter part of this story is improbable; the former
        part is certainly incorrect; since Hume himself says, 'In 1734, I
        went to Bristol, with some recommendations to eminent merchants,
        but _in a few months_ found that scene totally unsuitable to me. I
        went over to France, with a view of prosecuting my studies in a
        country retreat.' _Own Life_, p. v.

  [702] What Sir James Mackintosh says of him is only a faint echo of the
        general voice of his contemporaries. 'His temper was calm, not to
        say cold; but though none of his feelings were ardent, all were
        engaged on the side of virtue. He was free from the slightest
        tincture of malignity or meanness; his conduct was uniformly
        excellent.' _Mackintosh's Memoirs_, vol. ii. p. 162. A greater
        than Mackintosh, and a man who knew Hume intimately, expresses
        himself in much warmer terms. 'Upon the whole,' writes Adam
        Smith,--'Upon the whole, I have always considered him, both in his
        lifetime and since his death, as approaching as nearly to the idea
        of a perfectly wise and virtuous man as perhaps the nature of
        human frailty will permit.' _Hume's Philosophical Works_, vol. i.
        p. xxv. Some notices of Hume will be found in an interesting work
        just published. _Autobiography of Alexander Carlyle_, Edinburgh,
        1860, pp. 272-278. But Carlyle, though a man of considerable
        practical skill, was incapable of large views, and was, therefore,
        unable, I will not say to measure, but even to conceive, the size
        of such an understanding as that possessed by David Hume. Of his
        want of speculative power, a decisive instance appears in his
        remarks on Adam Smith. He gravely says (_Autobiography_, p. 281),
        'Smith's fine writing is chiefly displayed in his book on _Moral
        Sentiments_, which is the pleasantest and most eloquent book on
        the subject. His _Wealth of Nations_, from which he was judged to
        be an inventive genius of the first order, is tedious and full of
        repetition. His separate essays in the second volume have the air
        of being occasional pamphlets, without much force or
        determination. On political subjects, his opinions were not very
        sound.' It is rather too much when a village-preacher writes in
        this strain of the greatest man his country has ever produced.

  [703] He speaks of him in the following extraordinary terms. 'If we
        consider the variety of talents displayed by this man; as a public
        speaker, a man of business, a wit, a courtier, a companion, an
        author, a philosopher; he is justly the object of great
        admiration. If we consider him merely as an author and
        philosopher, the light in which we view him at present, though
        very estimable, _he was yet inferior to his contemporary Galileo,
        perhaps even to Kepler_.' ... 'The national spirit which prevails
        among the English, and which forms their great happiness, is the
        cause why they bestow on all their eminent writers, and on Bacon
        among the rest, such praises and acclamations as may often appear
        partial and excessive.' _Hume's History of England_, vol. vi. pp.
        194, 195, London, 1789.

  [704] See the note in vol. i. p. 250, of _Buckle's History of

  [705] Thus, for instance, in his remarkable _Essay on the Balance of
        Trade_, he says (_Philosophical Works_, vol. iii. p. 349), 'Every
        man who has ever reasoned on this subject, has always _proved his
        theory, whatever it was, by facts and calculations_, and by an
        enumeration of all the commodities sent to all foreign kingdoms;'
        therefore (p. 350), 'It may here be proper to form a general
        argument to prove the impossibility of this event, so long as we
        preserve our people and our industry.'

  [706] 'I have no great faith in political arithmetic.' _Wealth of
        Nations_, book iv. chap. v. p. 218.

  [707] Indeed, the only possible objection to them is that the language
        of their collectors is sometimes ambiguous; so that, by the same
        return, one statistician may mean one thing, and another
        statistician may mean something quite different. This is well
        exemplified in medical statistics; whence several writers,
        unacquainted with the philosophy of scientific proof, have
        supposed that medicine is incapable of mathematical treatment. In
        point of fact, however, the only real impediment is the shameful
        state of clinical and pathological terminology, which is in such
        confusion as to throw doubt upon all extensive numerical
        statements respecting disease.

  [708] 'Upon his return to England in the autumn of 1766, he went to
        reside with his mother at his native town of Kirkaldy, and
        remained there for ten years. All the attempts of his friends in
        Edinburgh to draw him thither were vain; and from a kind and
        lively letter of Mr. Hume upon the subject, complaining that,
        though within sight of him on the opposite side of the Frith of
        Forth, he could not have speech of him, it appears that no one was
        aware of the occupations in which those years were passed.'
        _Brougham's Life of Adam Smith_, p. 189. Occasionally, however, he
        saw his literary friends. See _Dugald Stewart's Biographical
        Memoirs_, p. 73, Edinb. 1811, 4to.

  [709] 'He was certainly not fitted for the general commerce of the
        world, or for the business of active life. The comprehensive
        speculations with which he had been occupied from his youth, and
        the variety of materials which his own invention constantly
        supplied to his thoughts, rendered him habitually inattentive to
        familiar objects and to common occurrences; and he frequently
        exhibited instances of absence, which have scarcely been surpassed
        by the fancy of La Bruyère.' _Stewart's Biographical Memoirs_, p.
        113. See also _Ramsay's Reminiscences_, 5th edit. Edinb. 1859, p.
        236. Carlyle, who knew him well, says, 'he was the most absent man
        in company that I ever saw, moving his lips, and talking to
        himself, and smiling, in the midst of large companies.'
        _Autobiography of the Rev. Alexander Carlyle_, 2nd edit. Edinb.
        1860, p. 279.

The same determination to make the study of principles precede that of
facts, is exhibited by Hume in one of his most original works, the
_Natural History of Religion_. In reference to the title of this
treatise, we must observe that, according to the Scotch philosophers, the
natural course of any movement is by no means the same as its actual
course. This discrepancy between the ideal and the real, was the
unavoidable result of their method.[710] For, as they argued deductively
from fixed premisses, they could not take into account the perturbations
to which their conclusions were liable, from the play and friction of the
surrounding society. To do that, required a separate inquiry. It would
have been needful to investigate the circumstances which caused the
friction, and thus prevented the conclusions from being, in the world of
fact, the same as they were in the world of speculation. What we call
accidents, are constantly happening, and they prevent the real march of
affairs from being identical with the natural march. And, as long as we
are unable to predict those accidents, there will always be a want of
complete harmony between the inferences of a deductive science and the
realities of life; in other words, our inferences will tend towards
truth, but never completely attain it.[711]

  [710] A Scotch philosopher of great repute, but, as it appears to me, of
        ability not quite equal to his repute, has stated very clearly and
        accurately this favourite method of his countrymen. 'In examining
        the history of mankind, as well as in examining the phenomena of
        the material world, when we cannot trace the process by which an
        event _has been_ produced, it is often of importance to be able to
        show how it _may have been_ produced by natural causes.' ... 'To
        this species of philosophical investigation, which has no
        appropriated name in our language, I shall take the liberty of
        giving the title of _Theoretical_ or _Conjectural History_; an
        expression which coincides pretty nearly in its meaning with that
        of _Natural History_ as employed by Mr. Hume, and with what some
        French writers have called Histoire Raisonnée.' _Dugald Stewart's
        Biographical Memoirs_, pp. 48, 49. Hence (p. 53), 'in most cases,
        it is of more importance to ascertain the progress that is most
        simple, than the progress that is most agreeable to fact; for,
        paradoxical as the proposition may appear, it is certainly true,
        that _the real progress is not always the most natural_. It may
        have been determined by particular accidents, which are not likely
        again to occur, and which cannot be considered as forming any part
        of that general provision which nature has made for the
        improvement of the race.'

  [711] Part of this view is well expressed in _Hume's Treatise of Human
        Nature_, book iii. part ii. 'This, however, hinders not but that
        philosophers may, if they please, extend their reasoning to the
        supposed _state of nature_; provided they allow it to be a mere
        philosophical fiction, which never had, and never could have, any
        reality.' ... 'The same liberty may be permitted to moral, which
        is allowed to natural philosophers; and 'tis very usual with the
        latter to consider any motion as compounded and consisting of two
        parts separate from each other, though, at the same time, they
        acknowledge it to be in itself uncompounded and inseparable.'
        _Philosophical Works_, vol. ii. p. 263.

With peculiar propriety, therefore, did Hume term his work a _Natural
History of Religion_. It is an admirable specimen of the deductive
method. Its only fault is that he speaks too confidently of the accuracy
of the results to which, on such a subject, that method could attain. He
believed, that, by observing the principles of human nature, as he found
them in his own mind, it was possible to explain the whole course of
affairs, both moral and physical.[712] These principles were to be
arrived at by experiments made on himself; and having thus arrived at
them, he was to reason from them deductively, and so construct the entire
scheme. This he contrasts with the inductive plan, which he calls a
tedious and lingering process; and while others might follow that slow
and patient method of gradually working their way towards first
principles, his project was, to seize them at once, or, as he expresses
himself, not to stop at the frontier, but to march directly on the
capital, being possessed of which, he could gain an easy victory over
other difficulties, and could extend his conquests over the
sciences.[713] According to Hume, we are to reason, not in order to
obtain ideas, but we are to have clear ideas before we reason.[714] By
this means, we arrive at philosophy; and her conclusions are not to be
impugned, even if they do happen to clash with science. On the contrary,
her authority is supreme, and her decisions, being essentially true, must
always be preferred to any generalization of the facts which the external
world presents.[715]

  [712] And, conversely, that whatever was 'demonstratively false,' could
        'never be distinctly conceived by the mind.' _Philosophical
        Works_, vol. iv. p. 33. Here, and sometimes in other passages,
        Hume, though by no means a Cartesian, reminds us of Descartes.

  [713] 'Here, then, is the only expedient from which we can hope for
        success in our philosophical researches, _to leave the tedious,
        lingering method_, which we have hitherto followed, and instead of
        taking now and then a castle or a village on the frontier, to
        march up directly to the capital, or centre of these sciences, to
        human nature itself; which, being once masters of, we may every
        where else hope for an easy victory. From this station we may
        extend our conquests over all those sciences which more
        immediately concern human life, and may afterwards proceed, at
        leisure, to discover more fully those which are the objects of
        pure curiosity.' _Hume's Philosophical Works_, vol. i. p. 8. See
        also, in vol. ii. pp. 73, 74, his remarks on the way 'to consider
        the matter _à priori_.'

  [714] 'No kind of reasoning can give rise to a new idea, such as this of
        power is; but wherever we reason, we must antecedently be
        possessed of clear ideas, which may be the objects of our
        reasoning.' _Hume's Philosophical Works_, vol. i. p. 217. Compare
        vol. ii. p. 276, on our arriving at a knowledge of causes 'by a
        kind of taste or fancy.' Hence, the larger view preceding the
        smaller, and being essentially independent of it, will constantly
        contradict it; and he complains, for instance, that 'difficulties,
        which seem unsurmountable in theory, are easily got over in
        practice.' vol. ii. p. 357; and again, in vol. iii. p. 326, on the
        effort needed to 'reconcile reason to experience.' But, after all,
        it is rather by a careful study of his works, than by quoting
        particular passages, that his method can be understood. In the two
        sentences, however, just cited, the reader will see that theory
        and reason represent the larger view; while practice and
        experience represent the smaller.

  [715] ''Tis certainly a kind of indignity to philosophy, whose sovereign
        authority ought every where to be acknowledged, to oblige her on
        every occasion to make apologies for her conclusions, and justify
        herself to every particular art and science, which may be offended
        at her. This puts one in mind of a king arraigned for high treason
        against his subjects.' _Hume's Philosophical Works_, vol. i.
        pp. 318, 319.

Hume, therefore, believed that all the secrets of the external world are
wrapped up in the human mind. The mind was not only the key by which the
treasure could be unlocked; it was also the treasure itself. Learning and
science might illustrate and beautify our mental acquisitions, but they
could not communicate real knowledge; they could neither give the prime
original materials, nor could they teach the design according to which
those materials must be worked.

In conformity with these views, the _Natural History of Religion_ was
composed. The object of Hume in writing it, was, to ascertain the origin
and progress of religious ideas; and he arrives at the conclusion, that
the worship of many Gods must, every where, have preceded the worship of
one God. This, he regards as a law of the human mind, a thing not only
that always has happened, but that always must happen. His proof is
entirely speculative. He argues that the earliest state of man is
necessarily a savage state; that savages can feel no interest in the
ordinary operations of nature, and no desire to study the principles
which govern those operations; that such men must be devoid of curiosity
on all subjects which do not personally trouble them; and that,
therefore, while they neglect the usual events of nature, they will turn
their minds to the unusual ones.[716] A violent tempest, a monstrous
birth, excessive cold, excessive rain, sudden and fatal diseases, are the
sort of things to which the attention of the savage is confined, and of
which alone he desires to know the causes. Directly he finds that such
causes are beyond his control, he reckons them superior to himself, and,
being incapable of abstracting them, he personifies them; he turns them
into deities; polytheism is established; and the earliest creed of
mankind assumes a form which can never be altered, as long as men remain
in this condition of pristine ignorance.[717]

  [716] 'A barbarous, necessitous animal (such as a man is on the first
        origin of society), pressed by such numerous wants and passions,
        has no leisure to admire the regular face of nature, or make
        inquiries concerning the cause of those objects to which, from his
        infancy, he has been gradually accustomed. On the contrary, the
        more regular and uniform, that is the more perfect, nature
        appears, the more is he familiarized to it, and the less inclined
        to scrutinize and examine it. A monstrous birth excites his
        curiosity, and is deemed a prodigy. It alarms him from its
        novelty, and immediately sets him a trembling, and sacrificing,
        and praying. But an animal complete in all its limbs and organs is
        to him an ordinary spectacle, and produces no religious opinion or
        affection. Ask him whence that animal arose? He will tell you,
        from the copulation of its parents. And these, whence? From the
        copulation of theirs. A few removes satisfy his curiosity, and set
        the objects at such a distance that he entirely loses sight of
        them. Imagine not that he will so much as start the question,
        whence the first animal, much less whence the whole system, or
        united fabric of the universe arose. Or, if you start such a
        question to him, expect not that he will employ his mind with any
        anxiety about a subject so remote, so uninteresting, and which so
        much exceeds the bounds of his capacity.' _Natural History of
        Religion_, in _Hume's Philosophical Works_, vol. iv. p. 439. See
        also pp. 463-465.

  [717] 'By degrees, the active imagination of men, uneasy in this
        abstract conception of objects, about which it is incessantly
        employed, begins to render them more particular, and to clothe
        them in shapes more suitable to its natural comprehension. It
        represents them to be sensible, intelligent beings like mankind;
        actuated by love and hatred, and flexible by gifts and entreaties,
        by prayers and sacrifices. Hence the origin of religion. And hence
        the origin of idolatry, or polytheism.' _Hume's Philosophical
        Works_, vol. iv. p. 472. 'The primary religion of mankind arises
        chiefly from an anxious fear of future events,' p. 498.

These propositions, which are not only plausible, but which are probably
true, ought, according to the inductive philosophy, to have been
generalized from a survey of facts; that is, from a collection of
evidence respecting the state of religion and of the speculative
faculties among savage tribes. But this, Hume abstains from doing. He
refers to none of the numerous travellers who have visited such people;
he does not, in the whole course of his work, mention even a single book
where facts respecting savage life are preserved. It was enough for him,
that the progress from a belief in many Gods to a belief in one God, was
the natural progress; which is saying, in other words, that it appeared
to his mind to be the natural progress.[718] With that, he was satisfied.
In other parts of his essay, where he treats of the religious opinions
of the ancient Greeks and Romans, he displays a tolerable, though by no
means remarkable, learning; but the passages which he cites, do not refer
to that entirely barbarous society in which, as he supposes, polytheism
first arose. The premisses, therefore, of the argument are evolved out of
his own mind. He reasons deductively from the ideas which his powerful
intellect supplied, instead of reasoning inductively from the facts which
were peculiar to the subject he was investigating.

  [718] '_It seems certain, that, according to the natural progress of
        human thought_, the ignorant multitude must first entertain some
        grovelling and familiar notion of superior powers, before they
        stretch their conception to that perfect Being who bestowed order
        on the whole frame of nature. _We may as reasonably imagine, that
        men inhabited palaces before huts and cottages_, or studied
        geometry before agriculture, as assert that the Deity appeared to
        them a pure spirit, omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent,
        before he was apprehended to be a powerful though limited being,
        with human passions and appetites, limbs and organs. The mind
        rises gradually from inferior to superior. By abstracting from
        what is imperfect, it forms an idea of perfection; and slowly
        distinguishing the nobler parts of its own frame from the grosser,
        it learns to transform only the former, much elevated and refined,
        to its divinity. Nothing could disturb this _natural progress of
        thought_, but some obvious and invincible argument, which might
        immediately lead the mind into the pure principles of theism, and
        make it overleap, at one bound, the vast interval which is
        interposed between the human and the Divine nature. But though I
        allow, that the order and frame of the universe, when accurately
        examined, affords such an argument, yet _I can never think_ that
        this consideration could have an influence on mankind, when they
        formed their first rude notions of religion.' _Natural History of
        Religion_, in _Philosophical Works_, vol. iv. p. 438.

Even in the rest of his work, which is full of refined and curious
speculation, he uses facts, not to demonstrate his conclusions, but to
illustrate them. He, therefore, selected those facts which suited his
purpose, leaving the others untouched. And this, which many critics would
call unfair, was not unfair in him; because he believed, that he had
already established his principles without the aid of those facts. The
facts might benefit the reader, by making the argument clearer, but they
could not strengthen the argument. They were more intended to persuade
than to prove; they were rather rhetorical than logical. Hence, a critic
would waste his time if he were to sift them with a minuteness which
would be necessary, supposing that Hume had built an inductive argument
upon them. Otherwise, without going far, it might be curious to contrast
them with the entirely different facts which Cudworth, eighty years
before, had collected from the same source, and on the same subject.
Cudworth, who was much superior to Hume in learning, and much inferior to
him in genius,[719] displayed, in his great work on the _Intellectual
System of the Universe_, a prodigious erudition, to prove that, in the
ancient world, the belief in one God was a prevailing doctrine. Hume, who
never refers to Cudworth, arrives at a precisely opposite conclusion.
Both quoted ancient writers; but while Cudworth drew his inferences from
what he found in those writers, Hume drew his from what he found in his
own mind. Cudworth, being more learned, relied on his reading; Hume,
having more genius, relied on his intellect. Cudworth, trained in the
school of Bacon, first collected the evidence, and then passed the
judgment. Hume, formed in a school entirely different, believed that the
acuteness of the judge was more important than the quantity of the
evidence; that witnesses were likely to prevaricate; and that he
possessed, in his own mind, the surest materials for arriving at an
accurate conclusion. It is not, therefore, strange, that Cudworth and
Hume, pursuing opposite methods, should have obtained opposite results,
since such a discrepancy is, as I have already pointed out, unavoidable,
when men investigate, according to different plans, a subject which, in
the existing state of knowledge, is not amenable to scientific treatment.

  [719] Not that he was by any means devoid of genius, though he holds a
        rank far below so great and original a thinker as Hume. He had,
        however, collected more materials than he was able to wield; and
        his work on the _Intellectual System of the Universe_, which is a
        treasure of ancient philosophy, is badly arranged, and, in many
        parts, feebly argued. There is more real power in his posthumous
        treatise on _Eternal and Immutable Morality_.

The length to which this chapter has already extended, and the number of
topics which I have still to handle, will prevent me from examining, in
detail, the philosophy of Reid, who was the most eminent among the
purely speculative thinkers of Scotland, after Hume and Adam Smith,
though, in point of merit, he must be placed far below them. For, he had
neither the comprehensiveness of Smith, nor the fearlessness of Hume. The
range of his knowledge was not wide enough to allow him to be
comprehensive; while a timidity, almost amounting to moral cowardice,
made him recoil from the views advocated by Hume, not so much on account
of their being false, as on account of their being dangerous. It is,
however, certain, that no man can take high rank as a philosopher, who
allows himself to be trammelled by considerations of that kind. A
philosopher should aim solely at truth, and should refuse to estimate the
practical tendency of his speculations. If they are true, let them stand;
if they are false, let them fall. But, whether they are agreeable or
disagreeable, whether they are consolatory or disheartening, whether they
are safe or mischievous, is a question, not for philosophers, but for
practical men. Every new truth which has ever been propounded, has, for a
time, caused mischief; it has produced discomfort, and often unhappiness,
sometimes by disturbing social or religious arrangements, and sometimes
merely by the disruption of old and cherished associations of thought. It
is only after a certain interval, and when the framework of affairs has
adjusted itself to the new truth, that its good effects preponderate; and
the preponderance continues to increase, until, at length, the truth
causes nothing but good. But, at the outset, there is always harm. And,
if the truth is very great, as well as very new, the harm is serious. Men
are made uneasy; they flinch; they cannot bear the sudden light; a
general restlessness supervenes; the face of society is disturbed, or
perhaps convulsed; old interests, and old beliefs, are destroyed, before
new ones have been created. These symptoms are the precursors of
revolution; they have preceded all the great changes through which the
world has passed; and while, if they are not excessive, they forebode
progress, so if they are excessive, they threaten anarchy. It is the
business of practical men to moderate such symptoms, and to take care
that the truths which philosophers discover, are not applied so rashly as
to dislocate the fabric, instead of strengthening it. But the philosopher
has only to discover the truth, and promulgate it; and that is hard work
enough for any man, let his ability be as great as it may. This division
of labour, between thinkers and actors, secures an economy of force, and
prevents either class from wasting its power. It establishes a difference
between science, which ascertains principles, and art, which applies
them. It also recognizes, that the philosopher and the practical man,
having each a separate part to play, each is, in his own field, supreme.
But it is a sad confusion for either to interfere with the other. In
their different spheres, both are independent, and both are worthy of
admiration. Inasmuch, however, as practical men should never allow the
speculative conclusions of philosophers, whatever be their truth, to be
put in actual operation, unless society is, in some degree, ripe for
their reception; so, on the other hand, philosophers are not to hesitate,
and tremble, and stop short in their career, because their intellect is
leading them to conclusions subversive of existing interests. The duty of
a philosopher is clear. His path lies straight before him. He must take
every pains to ascertain the truth; and, having arrived at a conclusion,
he, instead of shrinking from it because it is unpalatable, or because it
seems dangerous, should on that very account, cling the closer to it,
should uphold it in bad repute, more zealously than he would have done in
good repute; should noise it abroad far and wide, utterly regardless what
opinions he shocks, or what interests he imperils; should, on its behalf,
court hostility and despise contempt, being well assured, that, if it is
not true, it will die, but that, if it is true, it must produce ultimate
benefit, albeit unsuited for practical adoption by the age or country in
which it is first propounded.

But Reid, notwithstanding the clearness of his mind and his great powers
of argument, had so little of the real philosophic spirit, that he loved
truth, not for its own sake, but for the sake of its immediate and
practical results. He himself tells us, that he began to study
philosophy, merely because he was shocked at the consequences at which
philosophers had arrived. As long as the speculations of Locke and of
Berkeley were not pushed to their logical conclusions, Reid acquiesced in
them, and they were good in his eyes.[720] While they were safe and
tolerably orthodox, he was not over-nice in inquiring into their
validity. In the hands of Hume, however, philosophy became bolder and
more inquisitive; she disturbed opinions which were ancient, and which it
was pleasant to hold; she searched into the foundation of things, and by
forcing men to doubt and to inquire, she rendered inestimable service to
the cause of truth. But this was precisely the tendency at which Reid was
displeased. He saw that such disturbance was uncomfortable; he saw that
it was hazardous; therefore, he endeavoured to prove that it was
groundless. Confusing the question of practical consequences with the
totally different question of scientific truth, he took for granted that,
because to his age the adoption of those consequences would be
mischievous, they must be false. To the profound views of Hume respecting
causation, he gravely objects, that if they were carried into effect, the
operation of criminal law would be imperilled.[721] To the speculations
of the same philosopher concerning the metaphysical basis of the theory
of contracts, he replies, that such speculations perplex men, and weaken
their sense of duty; they are, therefore, to be disapproved of, on
account of their tendency.[722] With Reid, the main question always is,
not whether an inference is true, but what will happen if it is true. He
says, that a doctrine is to be judged by its fruits;[723] forgetting that
the same doctrine will bear different fruits in different ages, and that
the consequences which a theory produces in one state of society, are
often diametrically opposed to those which it produces in another. He
thus made his own age the standard of all future ones. He also trammelled
philosophy with practical considerations; diverting thinkers from the
pursuit of truth, which is their proper department, into the pursuit of
expediency, which is not their department at all. Reid was constantly
stopping to inquire, not whether theories were accurate, but whether it
was advisable to adopt them; whether they were favourable to patriotism,
or to generosity, or to friendship;[724] in a word, whether they were
comfortable, and such as we should at present like to believe.[725] Or
else, he would take other ground, still lower, and still more unworthy of
a philosopher. In opposing, for instance, the doctrine, that our
faculties sometimes deceive us,--a doctrine which, as he well knew, had
been held by men whose honesty was equal to his own, and whose ability
was superior to his own,--he does not scruple to enlist on his side the
prejudices of a vulgar superstition; seeking to blacken the tenet which
he was unable to refute. He actually asserts, that they who advocate it,
insult the Deity, by imputing to the Almighty that He has lied. Such
being the consequence of the opinion, it of course follows that the
opinion must be rejected without further scrutiny, since, to accept it,
would produce fatal results on our conduct, and would, indeed, be
subversive of all religion, of all morals, and of all knowledge.[726]

  [720] 'I once believed this doctrine of ideas so firmly, as to embrace
        the whole of Berkeley's system in consequence of it; till, finding
        other consequences to follow from it, which gave me more
        uneasiness than the want of a material world, it came into my mind
        more than 40 years ago, to put the question, What evidence have I
        for this doctrine that all the objects of my knowledge are ideas
        in my own mind? From that time to the present, I have been
        candidly and impartially, as I think, seeking for the evidence of
        this principle but can find none, excepting the authority of
        philosophers.' _Reid's Essays on the Powers of the Human Mind_,
        edit. Edinburgh, 1808, vol. i. p. 172. And, in a letter which he
        wrote to Hume in 1763, he, with a simple candour which must have
        highly amused that eminent philosopher, confesses that 'your
        system appears to me not only coherent in all its parts, but
        likewise justly deduced from principles commonly received among
        philosophers; principles which I never thought of calling in
        question, until the conclusions you draw from them in the
        "Treatise on Human Nature" made me suspect them.' _Burton's Life
        and Correspondence of Hume_, vol. ii. p. 155.

  [721] 'Suppose a man to be found dead on the high-way, his skull
        fractured, his body pierced with deadly wounds, his watch and
        money carried off. The coroner's jury sits upon the body, and the
        question is put, What was the cause of this man's death, was it
        accident, or _felo de se_, or murder by persons unknown? Let us
        suppose an adept in Mr. Hume's philosophy to make one of the jury,
        and that he insists upon the previous question, whether there was
        any cause of the event, or whether it happened without a cause.'
        _Reid's Essays on the Powers of the Mind_, vol. ii. p. 286.
        Compare vol. iii. p. 33: 'This would put an end to all
        speculation, as well as to all the business of life.'

  [722] 'The obligation of contracts and promises is a matter so sacred,
        and of such consequence to human society, that speculations which
        have a _tendency to weaken that obligation_, and to perplex men's
        notions on a subject so plain and so important, ought to _meet
        with the disapprobation of all honest men_. Some such
        speculations, I think, we have in the third volume of Mr. Hume's
        "Treatise of Human Nature," and in his "Enquiry into the
        Principles of Morals;" and my design in this chapter is, to offer
        some observations on the nature of a contract or promise, and on
        two passages of that author on this subject. I am far from saying
        or thinking, that Mr. Hume meant to weaken men's obligations to
        honesty and fair dealing, or that he had not a sense of these
        obligations himself. It is not the man I impeach, but his
        writings. Let us think of the first as charitably as we can, while
        we freely examine the import and _tendency_ of the last.' _Reid's
        Essays on the Powers of the Mind_, vol. iii. p. 444. In this, as
        in most passages, the italics are my own.

  [723] 'Without repeating what I have before said of causes in the first
        of these Essays, and in the second and third chapters of this, I
        shall here mention some of the consequences that may be justly
        deduced from this definition of a cause, that we may judge of it
        by its fruits.' _Reid's Essays_, vol. iii. p. 339.

  [724] 'Bishop Berkeley surely did not duly consider that it is by means
        of the material world that we have any correspondence with
        thinking beings, or any knowledge of their existence, and that by
        depriving us of the material world, he deprived us at the same
        time of family, friends, country, and every human creature; of
        every object of affection, esteem or concern, except ourselves.
        The good bishop surely never intended this. He was too warm a
        friend, too zealous a patriot, and too good a Christian to be
        capable of such a thought. _He was not aware of the consequences
        of his system_' (poor, ignorant Berkeley), 'and therefore they
        ought not to be imputed to him; but we must impute them to the
        system itself. It stifles every generous and social principle.'
        _Reid's Essays_, vol. ii. pp. 251, 252.

  [725] In his _Essays_, vol. i. p. 179, he says of Berkeley, one of the
        deepest and most unanswerable of all speculators, 'But there is
        one _uncomfortable consequence_ of his system which he seems not
        to have attended to, and from which it will be found difficult, if
        at all possible, to guard it.'

  [726] 'This doctrine is dishonourable to our Maker, and lays a foundation
        for universal scepticism. It supposes the Author of our being to
        have given us one faculty on purpose to deceive us, and another by
        which we may detect the fallacy, and find that he imposed upon
        us.' ... 'The genuine dictate of our natural faculties is the
        voice of God, no less than what he reveals from heaven; and to say
        that it is fallacious, is to impute a lie to the God of truth.'
        ... 'Shall we impute to the Almighty what we cannot impute to a
        man without a heinous affront? Passing this opinion, therefore, as
        shocking to an ingenuous mind, and, in its consequences,
        subversive of all religion, all morals, and all knowledge,' &c.
        _Reid's Essays_, vol. iii. p. 310. See also vol. i. p. 313.

In 1764, Reid published his _Inquiry into the Human Mind_; and in that,
and in his subsequent work, entitled _Essays on the Powers of the Mind_,
he sought to destroy the philosophy of Locke, Berkeley, and Hume. And as
Hume was the boldest of the three, it was chiefly his philosophy which
Reid attacked. Of the character of this attack, some specimens have just
been given; but they rather concern his object and motives, while what we
have now to ascertain is, his method, that is, the tactics of his
warfare. He clearly saw, that Hume had assumed certain principles, and
had reasoned deductively from them to the facts, instead of reasoning
inductively from the facts to them. To this method, he strongly, and
perhaps fairly, objects. He admits that Hume had reasoned so accurately,
that if his principles were conceded, his conclusions must likewise be
conceded.[727] But, he says, Hume had no right to proceed in such a
manner. He had no right to assume principles, and then to argue from
them. The laws of nature were to be arrived at, not by conjecturing in
this way, but by a patient induction of facts.[728] Discoveries depended
solely on observation and experiment; and any other plan could only
produce theories, ingenious, perhaps, and plausible, but quite
worthless.[729] For, theory should yield to fact, and not fact to
theory.[730] Speculators, indeed, might talk about first principles, and
raise a system by reasoning from them. But, the fact was, that there was
no agreement as to how a first principle was to be recognized; since a
principle which one man would deem self-evident, another would think it
necessary to prove, and a third would altogether deny.[731]

  [727] 'His reasoning appeared to me to be just; there was, therefore, a
        necessity to call in question the principles upon which it was
        founded, or to admit the conclusion.' _Reid's Inquiry into the
        Human Mind_, p. v. 'The received doctrine of ideas is the
        principle from which it is deduced, and of which, indeed, it seems
        to be a just and natural consequence.' p. 53. See also _Reid's
        Essays_, vol. i. pp. 199, 200, vol. ii. p. 211.

  [728] 'The laws of nature are the most general facts we can discover in
        the operations of nature. Like other facts, they are not to be hit
        upon by a happy conjecture, but justly deduced from observation.
        Like other general facts, they are not to be drawn from a few
        particulars, but from a copious, patient, and cautious induction.'
        _Reid's Inquiry into the Human Mind_, pp. 262, 263.

  [729] 'Such discoveries have always been made by patient observation, by
        accurate experiments, or by conclusions drawn by strict reasoning
        from observations and experiments; and such discoveries have
        always tended to refute, but not to confirm, the theories and
        hypotheses which ingenious men had invented.' _Reid's Essays_,
        vol. i. p. 46.

  [730] 'This is Mr. Hume's notion of a cause.' ... 'But theory ought to
        stoop to fact, and not fact to theory.' _Reid's Essays_, vol. iii.
        p. 276.

  [731] 'But yet there seems to be great difference of opinions among
        philosophers about first principles. What one takes to be
        self-evident, another labours to prove by arguments, and a third
        denies altogether.' _Reid's Essays_, vol. ii. p. 218. 'Mr. Locke
        seems to think first principles of very small use.' p. 219.

The difficulties of deductive reasoning are here admirably portrayed. It
might have been expected, that Reid would have built up his own
philosophy according to the inductive plan, and would have despised that
assumption of first principles, with which he taunts his opponents. But
it is one of the most curious things in the history of metaphysics, that
Reid after impeaching the method of Hume, follows the very same method
himself. When he is attacking the philosophy of Hume, he holds deduction
to be wrong. When he is raising his own philosophy, he holds it to be
right. He deemed certain conclusions dangerous, and he objects to their
advocates, that they argued from principles, instead of from facts: and
that they assumed themselves to be in possession of the first principles
of truth, although people were not agreed as to what constituted a first
principle. This is well put, and hard to answer. Strange, however, to
say, Reid arrives at his own conclusions, by assuming first principles to
an extent far greater than had been done by any writer on the opposite
side. From them, he argues; his whole scheme is deductive; and his works
scarcely contain a single instance of that inductive logic, which, when
attacking his opponents, he found it convenient to recommend. It is
difficult to conceive a better illustration of the peculiar character of
the Scotch intellect in the eighteenth century, and of the firm hold,
which, what may be called, the anti-Baconian method, had upon that
intellect. Reid was a man of considerable ability, of immaculate honesty,
and was deeply convinced that it was for the good of society that the
prevailing philosophy should be overthrown. To the performance of that
task, he dedicated his long and laborious life; he saw that the
vulnerable point of the adverse system was its method; he indicated the
deficiencies of that method, and declared, perhaps wrongly, but at all
events sincerely, that it could never lead to truth. Yet, and
notwithstanding all this, such was the pressure of the age in which he
lived, and so completely did the force of circumstances shape his
understanding, that, in his own works, he was unable to avoid that very
method of investigation which he rebuked in others. Indeed, so far from
avoiding it, he was a slave to it. The evidence of this I will now give,
because, besides its importance for the history of the Scotch mind, it is
valuable as one of many lessons, which teach us how we are moulded by the
society which surrounds us; how even our most vigorous actions are
influenced by general causes of which we are often ignorant, and which
few of us care to study; and, finally, how lame and impotent we are,
when, as individuals, we try to stem the onward current, resisting the
great progress instead of aiding it, and vainly opposing our little
wishes to that majestic course of events, which admits of no
interruption, but sweeps on, grand and terrible, while generation after
generation passes away, successively absorbed in one mighty vortex.

Directly Reid, ceasing to refute the philosophy of Hume, began to
construct his own philosophy, he succumbed to the prevailing method. He
now assures us, that all reasoning must be from first principles, and
that, so far from reasoning to those principles, we must at once admit
them, and make them the basis of all subsequent arguments.[732] Having
admitted them, they become a thread to guide the inquirer through the
labyrinth of thought.[733] His opponents had no right to assume them, but
he might do so, because to him they were intuitive.[734] Whoever denied
them, was not fit to be reasoned with.[735] Indeed, to investigate them,
or to seek to analyze them, was wrong as well as foolish, because they
were part of the constitution of things; and of the constitution of
things no account could be given, except that such was the will of

  [732] 'All reasoning must be from first principles; and for first
        principles no other reason can be given but this, that, by the
        constitution of our nature, we are under a necessity of assenting
        to them.' _Reid's Inquiry_, p. 140. 'All reasoning is from
        principles.' ... 'Most justly, therefore, do such principles
        disdain to be tried by reason, and laugh at all the artillery of
        the logician when it is directed against them.' p. 372. 'All
        knowledge got by reasoning must be built upon first principles.'
        _Reid's Essays_, vol. ii. p. 220. 'In every branch of real
        knowledge there must be first principles, whose truth is known
        intuitively, without reasoning, either probable or demonstrative.
        They are not grounded on reasoning, but all reasoning is grounded
        on them.' p. 360.

  [733] 'For, when any system is grounded upon first principles, and
        deduced regularly from them, we have a thread to lead us through
        the labyrinth.' _Reid's Essays_, vol. ii. p. 225.

  [734] 'I call these "first principles," because they _appear to me_ to
        have in themselves an intuitive evidence which _I cannot resist_.'
        _Reid's Essays_, vol. iii. p. 375.

  [735] 'If any man should think fit to deny that these things are
        qualities, or that they require any subject, _I leave him to enjoy
        his opinion, as a man who denies first principles, and is not fit
        to be reasoned with_.' _Reid's Essays_, vol. i. p. 38.

  [736] 'No other account can be given of the constitution of things, but
        the will of Him that made them.' _Reid's Essays_, vol. i. p. 115.

As Reid obtained his first principles with such ease, and as he carefully
protected them by forbidding any attempt to resolve them into simpler
elements, he was under a strong temptation to multiply them almost
indefinitely, in order that, by reasoning from them, he might raise a
complete and harmonious system of the human mind. To that temptation he
yielded with a readiness, which is truly surprising, when we remember how
he reproached his opponents with doing the same thing. Among the numerous
first principles which he assumes, not only as unexplained, but as
inexplicable, are the belief in Personal Identity;[737] the belief in the
External World;[738] the belief in the Uniformity of Nature;[739] the
belief in the Existence of Life in Others;[740] the belief in
Testimony;[741] also in the power of distinguishing truth from
error,[742] and even in the correspondence of the face and voice to the
thoughts.[743] Of belief generally, he asserts that there are many
principles,[744] and he regrets that any one should have rashly attempted
to explain them.[745] Such things are mysterious, and not to be pried
into. We have also other faculties, which being original and
indecomposable, resist all inductive treatment, and can neither be
resolved into simpler elements, nor referred to more general laws. To
this class, Reid assigns Memory,[746] Perception,[747] Desire of
Self-Approbation,[748] and not only Instinct, but even Habit.[749] Many
of our ideas, such as those concerning Space and Time, are equally
original;[750] and other first principles there are, which have not been
enunciated, but from which we may reason.[751] They, therefore, are the
major premisses of the argument; no reason having yet been given for
them, they must be simple; and not having yet been explained, they are,
of course, inexplicable.[752]

  [737] _Reid's Essays_, vol. i. pp. 36, 37, 340, 343, vol. ii. p. 245.

  [738] _Reid's Essays_, vol. i. pp. 115, 116, 288-299, vol. ii. p. 251.

  [739] Or, as he expresses it, 'our belief of the continuance of the laws
        of nature.' _Reid's Inquiry_, pp. 426-435; also his _Essays_, vol.
        i. p. 305, vol. ii. p. 268.

  [740] _Reid's Essays_, vol. ii. p. 259.

  [741] _Reid's Inquiry_, p. 422; and his _Essays_, vol. ii. p. 266.

  [742] 'Another first principle is, "That the natural faculties by which
        we distinguish truth from error are not fallacious."' _Reid's
        Essays_, vol. ii. p. 256.

  [743] 'Another first principle I take to be, "That certain features of
        the countenance, sounds of the voice, and gestures of the body,
        indicate certain thoughts and dispositions of mind."' _Reid's
        Essays_, vol. ii. p. 261. Compare his _Inquiry_, p. 416.

  [744] 'We have taken notice of several original principles of belief in
        the course of this inquiry; and when other faculties of the mind
        are examined, we shall find more, which have not occurred in the
        examination of the five senses.' _Reid's Inquiry_, p. 471.

  [745] 'And if no philosopher had attempted to define and explain belief,
        some paradoxes in philosophy, more incredible than ever were
        brought forth by the most abject superstition, or the most frantic
        enthusiasm, had never seen the light.' _Reid's Inquiry_, p. 45.

  [746] _Reid's Essays_, vol. i. p. 329, 334, vol. ii. p. 247.

  [747] _Reid's Essays_, vol. i. pp. 9, 71, 303, 304.

  [748] _Reid's Essays_, vol. ii. p. 60.

  [749] 'I see no reason to think, that we shall ever be able to assign
        the physical cause, either of instinct, or of the power of habit.
        Both seem to be parts of our original constitution. Their end and
        use is evident; but we can assign no cause of them, but the will
        of Him who made us.' _Reid's Essays_, vol. iii. p. 119.

  [750] 'I know of no ideas or notions that have a better claim to be
        accounted simple and original, than those of space and time.'
        _Reid's Essays_, vol. i. p. 354.

  [751] 'I do not at all affirm that those I have mentioned are all the
        first principles from which we may reason concerning contingent
        truths. Such enumerations, even when made after much reflection,
        are seldom perfect.' _Reid's Essays_, vol. ii. p. 270.

  [752] 'Why sensation should compel our belief of the present existence of
        the thing, memory a belief of its past existence, and imagination
        no belief at all, _I believe no philosopher can give a shadow of
        reason_, but that such is the nature of these operations. They are
        all simple and original, and _therefore inexplicable_ acts of the
        mind.' _Reid's Inquiry_, p. 40. 'We can _give no reason_ why the
        retina is, of all parts of the body, the only one on which
        pictures made by the rays of light cause vision; and _therefore we
        must resolve this solely into a law of our constitution_' p. 258.

All this is arbitrary enough. Still, in justice to Reid, it must be said,
that, having made these assumptions, he displayed remarkable ability in
arguing from them, and that, in attacking the philosophy of his time, he
subjected it to a criticism, which has been extremely serviceable. His
lucidity, his dialectic skill, and the racy and masculine style in which
he wrote, made him a formidable opponent, and secured to his objections
a respectful hearing. To me, however, it appears, that notwithstanding
the attempts, first of M. Cousin, and afterwards of Sir William Hamilton,
to prop up his declining reputation, his philosophy, as an independent
system, is untenable, and will not live. In this I may be mistaken; but
what is quite certain is, that nothing can be more absurd than to
suppose, as some have done, that he adopted the inductive, or, as it is
popularly called, Baconian method. Bacon, indeed, would have smiled at
such a disciple, assuming all sorts of major premisses, taking general
principles for granted with the greatest recklessness, and reserving his
skill for the task of reasoning from propositions for which he had no
evidence, except that on a cursory, or, as he termed it, a common-sense,
inspection, they appeared to be true.[753] This refusal to analyze
preconceived notions, comes under the head of what Bacon stigmatized as
the _anticipatio naturæ_, and which he deemed the great enemy of
knowledge, on account of the dangerous confidence it places in the
spontaneous and uncorrected conclusions of the human mind. When,
therefore, we find Reid holding up the Baconian philosophy, as a pattern
which it behoves all inquirers to follow;[754] and when we, moreover,
find Dugald Stewart, who, though a somewhat superficial thinker, was, at
all events, a careful writer, supposing that Reid had followed it,[755]
we meet with fresh proof of how difficult it was for Scotchmen of the
last age to imbibe the true spirit of inductive logic, since they
believed, that a system which flagrantly violated its rules, had been
framed in strict accordance with them.

  [753] In a recent work of distinguished merit, an instance is given of
        the loose manner in which he took for granted that certain
        phenomena were ultimate, in order that, instead of analyzing them,
        he might reason from them. 'Dr. Reid has no hesitation in classing
        the voluntary command of our organs, that is, the sequence of
        feeling and action implied in all acts of will, among instincts.
        The power of lifting a morsel of food to the mouth, is, according
        to him, an instinctive or pre-established conjunction of the wish
        and the deed; that is to say, the emotional state of hunger,
        coupled with the sight of a piece of bread, is associated, through
        a primitive link of the mental constitution, with the several
        movements of the hand, arm, and mouth, concerned in the act of
        eating. _This assertion of Dr. Reid's may be simply met by
        appealing to the facts._ It is not true that human beings possess,
        at birth, any voluntary command of their limbs whatsoever. A babe
        of two months old cannot use its hands in obedience to its
        desires. The infant can grasp nothing, hold nothing, can scarcely
        fix its eyes on anything.' ... 'If the more perfect command of our
        voluntary movements implied in every art be an acquisition, so is
        the less perfect command of these movements that grows upon a
        child during the first year of life.' _Bain on the Senses and the
        Intellect_, London, 1855, pp. 292, 293.

  [754] See _Reid's Inquiry_, pp. 436, 446, as well as other parts of his
        works: see also an extract from one of his letters to Dr. Gregory,
        in _Stewart's Biographical Memoirs_, p. 432.

  [755] 'The idea of prosecuting the study of the human mind on a plan
        analogous to that which had been so successfully adopted in
        physics by the followers of Lord Bacon, if not first conceived by
        Dr. Reid, was, at least, first carried successfully into execution
        in his writings.' _Stewart's Biographical Memoirs_, p. 419. 'The
        influence of the general views opened in the _Novum Organon_, may
        be traced in almost every page of his writings; and, indeed, the
        circumstance by which they are so strongly and characteristically
        distinguished, is that they exhibit the first systematical attempt
        to exemplify, in the study of human nature, the same plan of
        investigation which conducted Newton to the properties of light,
        and to the law of gravitation.' p. 421. From this passage one
        might hazard a supposition that Dugald Stewart did not understand
        Bacon much better than he did Aristotle or Kant. Of the two last
        most profound thinkers, he certainly knew little or nothing,
        except what he gathered secondhand. Consequently, he underrates

Leaving mental philosophy, I now come to physical science, in which, if
anywhere, we might expect that the inductive plan would predominate, and
would triumph over the opposite, or deductive, one. How far this was the
case, I will endeavour to ascertain, by an examination of the most
important discoveries which have been made by Scotchmen concerning the
organic and inorganic world. And, as my object is merely to indicate the
turn and character of the Scotch mind, I shall avoid all details
respecting the practical effects of those discoveries, and shall confine
myself to such a narration as will exhibit their purely scientific
aspect, so as to enable the reader to understand what additions were
made to our knowledge of the laws of nature, and in what way the
additions were made. The character of each discovery, and its process,
will be stated, but nothing more. Neither here, nor in any part of this
Introduction, do I pretend to investigate questions of practical utility,
or to trace the connexion between the discoveries of science and the arts
of life. That I shall do in the body of the work itself, where I hope to
explain a number of minute social events, many of which are regarded as
isolated, if not incongruous. For the present, I solely aim at those
broad principles, which, by marking out the epochs of thought, underlie
the whole fabric of society, and which must be clearly apprehended before
history can cease to be a mere empirical assemblage of facts, of which
the scientific basis being unsettled, the true order and coherence must
be unknown.

Among the sciences which concern the inorganic world, the laws of heat
occupy a conspicuous place. On the one hand, they are connected with
geology, being intimately allied, and, indeed, necessarily bound up, with
every speculation respecting the changes and present condition of the
crust of the earth. On the other hand, they touch the great questions of
life, both animal and vegetable; they have to do with the theory of
species, and of race; they modify soil, food, and organization; and to
them we must look for valuable help towards solving those great problems
in biology, which, of late years, have occupied the attention of the
boldest and most advanced philosophers.

Our present knowledge of the laws of heat, may be briefly stated as
branching into five fundamental divisions. These are: latent heat;
specific heat; the conduction of heat; the radiation of heat; and,
finally, the undulatory theory of heat; by which last, we are gradually
discarding our old material views, and are accustoming ourselves to look
upon heat as simply one of the forms of force, all of which, such as
light, electricity, magnetism, motion, gravitation, and chemical
affinity, are constantly assuming each other's shape, but, in their total
amount, are incapable either of increase or of diminution.[756] This
grand conception, which is now placing the indestructibility of force on
the same ground as the indestructibility of matter, has an importance far
above its scientific value, considerable as that undoubtedly is. For, by
teaching us, that nothing perishes, but that, on the contrary, the
slightest movement of the smallest body, in the remotest region, produces
results which are perpetual, which diffuse themselves through all space,
and which, though they may be metamorphosed, cannot be destroyed, it
impresses us with such an exalted idea of the regular and compulsory
march of physical affairs, as must eventually influence other and higher
departments of inquiry. Our habits of thought are so connected and
interwoven, that notions of law and of the necessary concatenation of
things, can never be introduced into one field of speculation, without
affecting other fields which lie contiguous to it. When, therefore, the
modern doctrine of conservation of force,[757] becomes firmly coupled
with the older doctrine of conservation of matter, we may rest assured
that the human mind will not stop there, but will extend to the study of
Man, inferences analogous to those already admitted in the study of
Nature. Having once recognized that the condition of the material
universe, at any one moment, is simply the result of every thing which
has happened at all preceding moments, and that the most trivial
disturbance would so violate the general scheme, as to render anarchy
inevitable, and that, to sever from the total mass even the minutest
fragment, would, by dislocating the structure, bury the whole in one
common ruin, we, thus admitting the exquisite adjustment of the different
parts, and discerning, too, in the very beauty and completeness of the
design, the best proof that it has never been tampered with by the
Divine Architect, who called it into being, in whose Omniscience both
the plan, and the issue of the plan, resided with such clearness and
unerring certainty, that not a stone in that superb and symmetrical
edifice has been touched since the foundation of the edifice was laid,
are, by ascending to this pitch and elevation of thought, most assuredly
advancing towards that far higher step, which it will remain for our
posterity to take, and which will raise their view to so commanding a
height, as to insure the utter rejection of those old and eminently
irreligious dogmas of supernatural interference with the affairs of life,
which superstition has invented, and ignorance has bequeathed, and the
present acceptance of which betokens the yet early condition of our
knowledge, the penury of our intellectual resources, and the inveteracy
of the prejudices in which we are still immersed.

  [756] The theory of the indestructibility of force has been applied to
        the law of gravitation by Professor Faraday, in his _Discourse on
        the Conservation of Force_, 1857; an essay full of thought and
        power, and which should be carefully studied by every one who
        wishes to understand the direction which the highest speculations
        of physical science are now taking. I will quote only one passage
        from the opening, to give the reader an idea of its general scope,
        irrespective of the more special question of gravitation. 'The
        progress of the strict science of modern times has tended more and
        more to produce the conviction that force can neither be created
        nor destroyed; and to render daily more manifest the value of the
        knowledge of that truth in experimental research.' ... 'Agreeing
        with those who admit the conservation of force to be a principle
        in physics, as large and sure as that of the indestructibility of
        matter, or the invariability of gravity, I think that no
        particular idea of force has a right to unlimited or unqualified
        acceptance, that does not include assent to it.'

  [757] As an illustration of this doctrine, I cannot do better than quote
        the following passage from one of the most suggestive and clearly
        reasoned books which has been written in this century by an
        English physicist: 'Wave your hand; the motion which has
        apparently ceased, is taken up by the air, from the air by the
        walls of the room, &c., and so by direct and reacting waves,
        continually comminuted, but never destroyed. It is true that, at a
        certain point, we lose all means of detecting the motion, from its
        minute subdivision, which defies our most delicate means of
        appreciation, but we can indefinitely extend our power of
        detecting it accordingly as we confine its direction, or increase
        the delicacy of our examination. Thus, if the hand be moved in
        unconfined air, the motion of the air would not be sensible to a
        person at a few feet distant; but if a piston of the same extent
        of surface as the hand be moved with the same rapidity in a tube,
        the blast of air may be distinctly felt at several yards'
        distance. There is no greater absolute amount of motion in the air
        in the second than in the first case, but its direction is
        restrained, so as to make its means of detection more facile. By
        carrying on this restraint, as in the air-gun, we get a power of
        detecting the motion, and of moving other bodies at far greater
        distances. The puff of air which would in the air-gun project a
        bullet a quarter of a mile, if allowed to escape without its
        direction being restrained, as by the bursting of a bladder, would
        not be perceptible at a yard's distance, though the same absolute
        amount of motion be impressed on the surrounding air.' _Grove's
        Correlation of Physical Forces_, London, 1855, pp. 24, 25. In a
        work now issuing from the press, and still unfinished, it is
        suggested, with considerable plausibility, that Persistence of
        Force would be a more accurate expression than Conservation of
        Force. See Mr. Herbert Spencer's _First Principles_, London, 1861,
        p. 251. The title of this book gives an inadequate notion of the
        importance of the subjects with which it deals, and of the reach
        and subtlety of thought which characterize it. Though some of the
        generalizations appear to me rather premature, no well-instructed
        and disciplined intellect can consider them without admiration of
        the remarkable powers displayed by their author.

It is, therefore, natural, that the physical doctrine of
indestructibility applied to force as well as to matter, should be
essentially a creation of the present century, notwithstanding a few
allusions made to it by some earlier thinkers, all of whom, however,
groped vaguely, and without general purpose. No preceding age was bold
enough to embrace so magnificent a view as a whole, nor had any preceding
philosophers sufficient acquaintance with nature to enable them to defend
such a conception, even had they desired to entertain it. Thus, in the
case now before us, it is evident, that while heat was believed to be
material, it could not be conceived as a force, and therefore no one
could grasp the theory of its metamorphosis into other forces; though
there are passages in Bacon which prove that he wished to identify it
with motion. It was first necessary to abstract heat into a mere property
or affection of matter, and there was no chance of doing this until heat
was better understood in its immediate antecedents, that is, until, by
the aid of mathematics, its proximate laws had been generalized. But,
with the single exception of Newton, whose efforts, notwithstanding his
gigantic powers, were, on this subject, very unsatisfactory, and who,
moreover, had a decided leaning towards the material theory, no one
attempted to unravel the mathematical laws of heat till the latter half
of the eighteenth century, when Lambert and Black began the career which
Prevost and Fourier followed up. The mind, having been so slow in
mastering the preliminaries and outworks of the inquiry, was not ripe for
the far more difficult enterprise of idealizing heat itself, and so
abstracting it, as to strip it of its material attributes, and leave it
to nothing but the speculative notion of an immaterial force.

From these considerations, which were necessary to enable the reader to
appreciate the value of what was done in Scotland, it will be seen how
essential it was that the laws of the movement of heat should be studied
before its nature was investigated, and before the emission theory could
be so seriously attacked as to allow of the possibility of that great
doctrine of the indestructibility of force, which, I make no doubt, is
destined to revolutionize our habits of thought, and to give to future
speculations a basis infinitely wider than any previously known. In
regard to the movements of heat, we owe the laws of conduction and of
radiation chiefly to France and Geneva, while the laws of specific heat,
and those of latent heat, were discovered in Scotland. The doctrine of
specific heat, though interesting, has not the scientific importance
which belongs to the other departments of this great subject; but the
doctrine of latent heat is extremely curious, not only in itself, but
also on account of the analogies it suggests with various branches of
physical inquiry.

What is termed latent heat, is exhibited in the following manner. If, in
consequence of the application of heat, a solid passes into a liquid, as
ice, for instance, into water, the conversion occupies a longer time than
could be explained by any theory which had been propounded down to the
middle of the eighteenth century. Neither was it possible to explain how
it is, that ice never rises above the temperature of 32° until it is
actually melted, no matter what the heat of the adjacent bodies may be.
There were no means of accounting for these circumstances. And though
practical men, being familiar with them, did not wonder at them, they
caused great astonishment among thinkers, who were accustomed to analyze
events, and to seek a reason for common and every-day occurrences.

Soon after the middle of the eighteenth century, Black, who was then one
of the professors in the University of Glasgow, turned his attention to
this subject.[758] He struck out a theory which, being eminently
original, was violently attacked, but is now generally admitted. With a
boldness and reach of thought not often equalled, he arrived at the
conclusion, that whenever a body loses some of its consistence, as in the
case of ice becoming water, or water becoming steam, such body receives
an amount of heat which our senses, though aided by the most delicate
thermometer, can never detect. For, this heat is absorbed; we lose all
sight of it, and it produces no palpable effect on the material world,
but becomes, as it were, a hidden property. Black, therefore, called it
latent heat, because, though we conceive it as an idea, we cannot trace
it as a fact. The body is, properly speaking, hotter; and yet its
temperature does not rise. Directly, however, the foregoing process is
inverted, that is to say, directly the steam is condensed into water, or
the water hardened into ice, the heat returns into the world of sense; it
ceases to be latent, and communicates itself to the surrounding objects.
No new heat has been created; it has, indeed, appeared and disappeared,
so far as our senses are concerned; but our senses were deceived, since
there has, in truth, been neither addition nor diminution.[759] That
this remarkable theory paved the way for the doctrine of the
indestructibility of force, will be obvious to whoever has examined the
manner in which, in the history of the human mind, scientific conceptions
are generated. The process is always so slow, that no single discovery
has ever been made, except by the united labours of several successive
generations. In estimating, therefore, what each man has done, we must
judge him, not by the errors he commits, but by the truths he propounds.
Most of his errors are not really his own. He inherits them from his
predecessors; and if he throws some of them off, we should be grateful,
instead of being dissatisfied that he has not rejected all. Black, no
doubt, fell into the error of regarding heat as a material substance,
which obeys the laws of chemical composition.[760] But this was merely an
hypothesis, which was bequeathed to him, and with which the existing
state of thought forced him to encumber his theory. He inherited the
hypothesis, and could not get rid of his troublesome possession. The real
service which he rendered is, that, in spite of that hypothesis, which
clung to him to the last, he, far more than any of his contemporaries,
contributed towards the great conception of idealizing heat, and thus
enabled his successors to admit it into the class of immaterial and
supersensual forces. Once admitted into that class, the list of forces
became complete; and it was comparatively easy to apply to the whole body
of force, the same notion of indestructibility, which had previously been
applied to the whole body of matter. But it was hardly possible to effect
this object, while heat stood, as it were, midway between force and
matter, yielding opposite results to different senses; amenable to the
touch, but invisible to the eye. What was wanting, was to remove it
altogether out of the jurisdiction of the senses, and to admit that,
though we experience its effects, we can only conceive its existence.
Towards accomplishing this, Black took a prodigious stride. Unconscious,
perhaps, of the remote tendency of his own labours, he undermined that
doctrine of material heat, which he seemed to support. For, by his
advocacy of latent heat, he taught that its movements constantly baffle,
not only some of our senses, but all of them; and that, while our
feelings make us believe that heat is lost, our intellect makes us
believe that it is not lost. Here, we have apparent destructibility, and
real indestructibility. To assert that a body received heat without its
temperature rising, was to make the understanding correct the touch, and
defy its dictates. It was a bold and beautiful paradox, which required
courage as well as insight to broach, and the reception of which marks an
epoch in the human mind, because it was an immense step towards
idealizing matter into force. Some, indeed, have spoken of invisible
matter; but that is a contradiction in terms, which will never be
admitted, as long as the forms of speech remain unchanged. Nothing can be
invisible, except force, mind, and the Supreme Cause of all. We must,
therefore, ascribe to Black the signal merit that he first, in the study
of heat, impeached the authority of the senses, and thereby laid the
foundation of every thing which was afterwards done. Besides the relation
which his discovery bears to the indestructibility of force, it is also
connected with one of the most splendid achievements effected by this
generation in inorganic physics; namely, the establishment of the
identity of light and heat. To the senses, light and heat, though in some
respects similar, are in most respects dissimilar. Light, for instance,
affects the eye, and not the touch. Heat affects the touch, but, under
ordinary circumstances, does not affect the eye. The capital difference,
however, between them is, that heat, unlike light, possesses the property
of temperature; and this property is so characteristic, that until our
understandings are invigorated by science, we cannot conceive heat
separated from temperature, but are compelled to confuse one with the
other. Directly, however, men began to adopt the method followed by
Black, and were resolved to consider heat as supersensual, they entered
the road which led to the discovery of light and heat being merely
different developments of the same force. Ignoring the effects of heat on
themselves, or on any part of the creation, which was capable of feeling
its temperature, and would therefore be deceived by it, nothing was left
for them to do, but to study its effects on the inanimate world. Then,
all was revealed. The career of discovery was fairly opened; and
analogies between light and heat, which even the boldest imagination had
hardly suspected, were placed beyond a doubt. To the reflection of heat,
which had been formerly known, were now added the refraction of heat, its
double refraction, its polarization, its depolarization, its circular
polarization, the interference of its rays, and their retardation; while,
what is more remarkable than all, the march of our knowledge on these
points was so swift, that before the year 1836 had come to a close, the
chain of evidence was completed by the empirical investigations of Forbes
and Melloni, they themselves little witting that every thing which they
accomplished was prepared before they were born, that they were but the
servants and followers of him who indicated the path in which they trod,
and that their experiments, ingenious as they were, and full of resource,
were simply the direct practical consequence of one of those magnificent
ideas which Scotland has thrown upon the world, and the memory of which
is almost enough so to bribe the judgment, as to tempt us to forget,
that, while the leading intellects of the nation were engaged in such
lofty pursuits, the nation itself, untouched by them, passed them over
with cold and contemptuous indifference, being steeped in that deadening
superstition, which turns a deaf ear to every sort of reason, and will
not hearken to the voice of the charmer, charm he never so wisely.

  [758] He was appointed professor in 1756; and 'it was during his
        residence in Glasgow, between the years 1759 and 1763, that he
        brought to maturity those speculations concerning the combination
        of heat with matter, which had frequently occupied a portion of
        his thoughts.' _Thomson's History of Chemistry_, vol. i. pp. 319,

  [759] _Black's Lectures on Chemistry_, vol. i. pp. 116, 117; and in
        various places. Dr. Robison, the editor of these Lectures, says,
        p. 513, 'Nothing could be more simple than his doctrines of latent
        heat. The experience of more than a century had made us consider
        the thermometer as a sure and accurate indicator of heat, and of
        all its variations. We had learned to distrust all others. Yet, in
        the liquefaction and vaporization of bodies, we had proofs
        uncontrovertible of the entrance of heat into the bodies. And we
        could, by suitable processes, get it out of them again. Dr. Black
        said that it was concealed in them,--_latent_,--it was as much
        concealed as carbonic acid is in marble, or water in zeolite,--it
        was concealed till Dr. Black detected it. He called it Latent
        Heat. He did not mean by this term that it was a different kind of
        heat from the heat which expanded bodies, but merely that it was
        concealed from our sense of heat, and from the thermometer.' See
        also p. xxxvii.: 'Philosophers had long been accustomed to
        consider the thermometer as the surest means for detecting the
        presence of heat or fire in bodies, and they distrusted all

  [760] 'Fluidity is the consequence of a certain combination of calorific
        matter with the substance of solid bodies,' &c. _Black's
        Lectures_, vol. i. p. 133. Compare p. 192, and the remarks in
        _Turner's Chemistry_, 1847, vol. i. p. 31, on Black's views of the
        'chemical combination' of heat. Among the backward chemists, we
        still find traces of the idea of heat obeying chemical laws.

By thus considering the descent and relationship of scientific
conceptions, we can alone understand what we really owe to Black's
discovery of latent heat. In regard to the method of the discovery,
little need be said, since every student of the Baconian philosophy must
see, that the discovery was of a kind for which none of the maxims of
that system had provided. As latent heat escapes the senses, it could not
obey the rules of a philosophy, which grounds all truth on observation
and experiment. The subject of the inquiry being supersensual, there was
no scope for what Bacon called crucial experiments and separations of
nature. The truth was in the idea; experiments, therefore, might
illustrate it, might bring it up to the surface, and so enable men to
grasp it, but could not prove it. And this, which appears on the very
face of the discovery, is confirmed by the express testimony of Dr.
Thomson, who knew Black, and was, indeed, one of the most eminent of his
pupils. We are assured by this unimpeachable witness, that Black, about
the year 1759 began to speculate concerning heat; that the result of
those speculations was the theory of latent heat; that he publicly taught
that theory in the year 1761; but that the experiments which were
necessary to convince the world of it were not made till 1764,[761]
though, as I need hardly add, according to the inductive method, it was a
breach of all the rules of philosophy to be satisfied with the theory
three years before the experiments were made, and it was a still greater
breach, not only to be satisfied with it, but to have openly promulgated
it as an original and unquestionable truth, which explained, in a new
manner, the economy of the material world.

  [761] 'So much was he convinced of this, that he taught the doctrine in
        his lectures in 1761, before he had made a single experiment on
        the subject.' ... 'The requisite experiments were first attempted
        by Dr. Black in 1764.' _Thomson's History of Chemistry_, vol. i.
        p. 324. See also pp. 319, 320; and on the history of the idea in
        Black's mind as early as the year 1754, see the interesting
        extracts from his note-books in Robison's appendix to _Black's
        Lectures_, vol. i pp. 525, 526.

        The statement of Dr. Thomson refers to the completion, or last
        stage, of the discovery, namely the vaporific combination of heat.
        But from a letter which Black wrote to Watt in 1780 (_Muirhead's
        Life of Watt_, London, 1859, p. 303), it appears that Thomson has
        even understated the question, and that Black, instead of first
        teaching his theory in 1761, taught it three years earlier, that
        is, _six_ years before the decisive experiments were made. 'I
        began,' writes Black, 'to give the doctrine of latent heat in my
        lectures at Glasgow in the winter 1757-58, which, I believe, was
        the first winter of my lecturing there; or if I did not give it
        that winter, I certainly gave it in the 1758-59; and I have
        delivered it every year since that time in my winter lectures,
        which I continued to give at Glasgow until winter 1766-67, when I
        began to lecture in Edinburgh.'

The intellect of Black belonged to a class, which, in the eighteenth
century, was almost universal in Scotland, but was hardly to be found in
England, and which, for want of a better word, we are compelled to call
deductive, though fully admitting that even the most deductive minds have
in them a large amount of induction, since, indeed, without induction,
the common business of life could not be carried on. But for the purposes
of scientific classification, we may say, that a man or an age is
deductive, when the favourite process is reasoning from principles
instead of reasoning to them, and when there is a tendency to underrate
the value of specific experience. That this was the case with the
illustrious discoverer of latent heat, we have seen, both from the nature
of the discovery, and from the decisive testimony of his friend and
pupil. And a further confirmation may be found in the circumstance, that,
having once propounded his great idea, he, instead of instituting a long
series of laborious experiments, by which it might be verified in its
different branches, preferred reasoning from it according to the general
maxims of dialectic; pushing it to its logical consequences, rather than
tracking it into regions where the senses might either confirm or refute
it.[762] By following this process of thought, he was led to some
beautiful speculations, which are so remote from experience, that even
now, with all the additional resources of our knowledge, we cannot tell
whether they are true or false. Of this kind were his views respecting
the causes of the preservation of man, whose existence would, he thought,
be endangered, except for the power which heat possesses of lying latent
and unobserved. Thus, for example, when a long and severe winter was
followed by sudden warmth, it appeared natural that the ice and snow
should melt with corresponding suddenness; and if this were to happen,
the result would be such terrible inundations, that it would be hardly
possible for man to escape from their ravages. Even if he escaped, his
works, that is, the material products of his civilization, would perish.
From this catastrophe, nothing saves him but the latent power of heat.
Owing to this power, directly the ice and snow begin to melt at their
surface, the heat enters their structure, where a large part of it
remains in abeyance, and thus losing much of its power, the process of
liquefaction is arrested. This dreadful agent is lulled, and becomes
dormant. It is weakened at the outset of its career, and is laid up, as
in a storehouse, from which it can afterwards emerge, gradually, and with
safety to the human species.[763]

  [762] And he distinctly states that, even in other matters, when he did
        make experiments, their object was to confirm theory, and not to
        suggest it. Thus, to give one of many instances, in his
        _Lectures_, vol. i. p. 354, he says, respecting salts, 'When we
        examine the solidity of this reasoning by an experiment, _we have
        the pleasure to find facts agree exactly with the theory_.'

  [763] See a good summary of this idea in _Black's Lectures on
        Chemistry_, vol. i. p. 118. Contrasting his theory of heat with
        that previously received, he says, 'But, were the ice and snow to
        melt as suddenly as they must necessarily do, were the former
        opinion of the action of heat in melting them well founded, the
        torrents and inundations would be incomparably more irresistible
        and dreadful. They would tear up and sweep away every thing, and
        that so suddenly, that mankind should have great difficulty to
        escape from their ravages.'

In this way, as summer advances, a vast magazine of heat is accumulated,
and is preserved in the midst of water, where it can do man no injury,
since, indeed, his senses are unable to feel it. There the heat remains
buried, until, in the rotation of the seasons, winter returns, and the
waters are congealed into ice. In the process of congelation, that
treasury of heat, which had been hidden all the summer, reappears; it
ceases to be latent; and now, for the first time, striking the senses of
man, it tempers, on his behalf, the severity of winter. The faster the
water freezes, the faster the heat is disengaged; so that, by virtue of
this great law of nature, cold actually generates warmth, and the
inclemency of every season, though it cannot be hindered, is softened in
proportion as the inclemency is more threatening.[764]

  [764] 'Dr. Black quickly perceived the vast importance of this
        discovery; and took a pleasure in laying before his students a
        view of the extensive and beneficial effects of this habitude of
        heat in the economy of nature. He made them remark how, by this
        means, there was accumulated, during the summer season, a vast
        magazine of heat, which, by gradually emerging, during
        congelation, from the water which covers the face of the earth,
        serves to temper the deadly cold of winter. Were it not for this
        quantity of heat, amounting to 145 degrees, which emerges from
        every particle of water as it freezes, and which diffuses itself
        through the atmosphere, the sun would no sooner go a few degrees
        to the south of the equator, than we should feel all the horrors
        of winter.' _Robison's Preface to Black's Lectures_, vol. i.
        p. xxxviii.

Thus, again, inasmuch as heat becomes latent, and flies from the senses,
not only when ice is passing into water, but also when water is passing
into steam, we find in this latter circumstance, one of the reasons why
man and other animals can live in the tropics, which, but for this, would
be deserted. They are constantly suffering from the heat which is
collected in their bodies, and which, considered by itself, is enough to
destroy them. But this heat causes thirst, and they consequently swallow
great quantities of fluid, much of which exudes through the pores of the
skin in the form of vapour. And as, according to the theory of latent
heat, vapour cannot be produced without a vast amount of heat being
buried within it, such vapour