Billeder på siden

Raab, 1664, by the Russians in the Ukraine, and by John Sobieski and his Poles, had relieved the fears of Europe and proved that the Turks were no longer invincible.

"Poland had at one period risen to such importance as to have become the most powerful state of eastern Europe. Her territory had extended from the Baltic to the Black Sea. Memel and Danzic were Polish ports; Prussia tributary to her power; Lithuania, Kieff, Smolensk, and the Ukraine annexed to her territory; Moldavia and Wallachia under her protectorate. From this pre-eminence she had declined, principally from the introduction of the pernicious system of an electoral monarchy, and the increasing license of a factious and turbulent nobility. Under these conditions of decay Russia had begun to regain the old provinces which Poland had wrested from her. But Poland was still a power in Europe. At the time of the death of Feodor, the Hero King, John Sobieski, had already defeated the Turks at Choczim, and in several subsequent campaigns. Two years later Sobieski rendered an inestimable service to civilized Europe. With a comparitively small force he marched to the

relief of Vienna, which was besieged by the Turks and reduced to the last extremities, took advantage of the military incompetence of the vizier, boldly attacked the enormous host of the Turks, and put them to flight with tremendous slaughter. From that moment the Turks have never gained fresh conquests in Europe, but have continually been forced to give up territory formerly won by the Crescent from the Cross. Sweden, by its possession of the whole line of maritime provinces, from the northernmost end of the Gulf of Bothnia to the frontiers of Courland, entirely shut out Russia from the Baltic. Finland, Ingria-the province in which St. Petersburg now stands-Esthonia, and Livonia, were Swedish provinces. Charles XI., who then occupied the throne, was the master of a well-organized and influential state and a powerful and welldisciplined army, fortified with the prestige of his own military success, and of the glories and victories of the great Gustavus Adolphus. Such was the condition of northern and eastern Europe, about the time when, upon the death of Feodor, the new era in Russian history commences."


HEN Elizabeth died, James was the nearest heir to the throne of England, by right of descent from Margaret, elder daughter of Henry VII. But her right had been passed over by Henry VIII., who had in the will, which he was empowered by parliament to make, settled the succession on the heirs of his younger sister, Mary. As it was politically convenient to the English Privy Council that James should succeed Elizabeth on her death, they sent off post haste to summon him to come and take the crown. His questionable right was made good by the voice of the people in his first parliament. He entered London May 6, 1603. Hitherto he had had less money and less power than almost any other prince in Europe; he now became suddenly one of the richest and most powerful among them. This union of the crowns made the third break in the history of Scotland. The gallant struggle for freedom which had drawn forth all the energies of the nation during the past three centuries was now over. now to be united to the powerful neighbor that had so long threatened its independence. The representative of the ancient royal Celtic line, which the national reverence for hereditary royalty had upheld unbroken through the strain of seven long minorities, now became king of the larger and richer kingdom of England, which had been ruled by one foreign dynasty after another ever since the Norman Conquest.

It was

In Scotland the feudal system was still unshaken. To it the great barons owed their power, and the Reformation, which in England had strengthened the crown, had in Scotland only thrown more wealth and more power into the hands of the nobles. Hith

erto the people had been only dependents of the great feudal barons, whose burdens they bore in return for their protection. Immediately after the union of the crowns, the Border laws on each side were repealed, and it was settled that subjects of either country born after the union should no longer be looked on as aliens in the other, but should have the undisputed right of inheriting property in either. A Lord High Commissioner was appointed to represent the king in Scotland, and there was some talk of an union of the parliaments, but it was not carried out.

The great desire of the king was to bring the church of Scotland into conformity with the church of England. To bring this about, he summoned some of the ministers to England, in the hope that he should be able to persuade them to agree with him. Melville, their leader, spoke out so plainly against episcopacy before the bishops in the Privy Council that he was sent to the Tower and finally banished. But the king carried his point, and in 1606 the Estates passed an act for the restoration of the bishops. No acts of church government were in future to be lawful without their consent, and though the General Assembly was still to go on, its power was to be very much lessened. As the old line of Scottish bishops had died out, John Spottiswood, Andrew Lamb, and Gavin Hamilton were consecrated by English bishops at London House to the bishoprics of Glasgow, Brechin, and Galloway.

In the early part of his reign James had tried to do something to improve the state of the Highlands. To this end three new burghs were founded, and the land of all the chiefs who could not show written titles were declared forfeited. The king paid but one visit to Scotland after his accession to the

throne of England. He then gave serious offence by introducing ceremonial vestments at the service in his own chapel. The passing of the "Five Articles" at Perth, allowed the private administration of the sacraments and confirmations.

The poverty of their country and the love of adventure had made the Scots from the earliest times ever ready to seek their fortunes abroad. They had won themselves renown as soldiers or traders in nearly all the countries of the Old World, but they had not as yet any colony of their own in the New one. Hitherto these emigrants, though they were called Scots, had been chiefly Saxons from the Lowlands, but in the beginning of this reign. bodies of Celts had gone back to the original Scotia, and in Ulster, their old home, they won back settlements from the kindred Celtic race who now looked on them as intruders. But while some of the wanderers thus went back to the old country, others were founding a New Scotland beyond the sea. This, the third land to which the wandering people gave its name, was called by the Latin form of the name, Nova Scotia. It was granted by a royal charter to Sir William Alexander, afterwards Earl of Stirling, the projector of this scheme of emigration in 1621. This new settlement was divided into one thousand parts, and every adventurer who was willing to brave the hardships of an uncleared country, and resist the encroachments of the neighboring settlers, was rewarded with the rank and title of baronet. About the same time too the Lowlanders were encouraged to go over to the North of Ireland, and to take up the lands from which the Irish chiefs had been driven. As the soil there was much better than that which they had left, they gladly agreed to the change, and passed over in great numbers, more than ten thousand going in two years.

In 1633 Charles I., who succeeded James, repaired to Scotland and was crowned with immense pomp and circumstance at Holyrood. The vestments that were worn on this occasion gave great offence to the people. Their discontent was increased by an order from the king enjoining their own ministers to wear surplices, and the bishops to wear rochets and sleeves, instead of the Geneva cloak as heretofore.

The discontent and distrust of the people, which had been roused by the introduction of vestments,

by the increase in the number of the bishops, and by the appointment of the primate as chancellor, were now brought to a head by the appearance of a Book of Canons, or rules for the government of the church. This book they were called on to accept in place of the Book of Discipline, on the authority of the king alone, unconfirmed by the Estates, and not long after the king attempted to change their form of worship as well. Through the influence of Laud, archbishop of Canterbury, a liturgy was drawn up on the plan of the first book of Edward VI.. From this liturgy the Scotch clergy were commanded by the king to read prayers in the churches, instead of from the book of Common Order, which was still in general use. These proceedings led to the Liturgy Tumults.

The people thought that to have an English service book forced upon them would be a mark of subjection; and on the day named by the king for bringing it into use, July 16, 1637, when the Dean of Edinburgh tried to read the prayers from it in St. Giles' Church, a riot broke out. Stools and books were thrown at the dean, the archbishop, and the bishop of Edinburgh, who had great difficulty in escaping out of the hands of the mob.

Scotland was now full of trained soldiers just come back from Germany, where they had learnt to fight in the Thirty Years' War, and as plenty of money had been collected among the Covenanters, an army was easily raised. Their banner bore the motto, For Religion, the Covenant, and the Country, and their leader was James Graham, earl of Montrose, one of the most zealous among the champions of the cause. Aberdeen, Huntly's capital, dared make no resistance, for the soldiers occupied the town and the ministers the pulpits, and Montrose brought Huntly himself back to Edinburgh in his train. But in the first brush of actual war the king's party, the Cavaliers, or Malignants as their opponents called them, had the advantage, for they surprised and scattered the Covenanters of the North at the little village of Turriff, which they had made their trysting place. In this action, called the Trot of Turriff, the first blood was shed in the great Civil War.

On August 20, 1640, the Scots crossed the Tweed and entered England, taking Durham, Shields and Tynemouth without a blow. The king was at York. To him they sent eight commissioners from

[ocr errors]

their army.

All their demands were granted; they were promised £300,000 ($1,500,000) to defray the expenses of this war, and then they disbanded. This seeming peace was but the lull before the storm, and, before one year had passed, the English had followed the example set them by the Scots in resisting the unlawful exactions of the king; the Long Parliament had brought his minister Strafford, the chief agent of his despotism, to the scaffold, and had called on the people to arm in defence of their rights and liberties. When the great Civil War began in earnest, each side was eager to secure the help of the fine army which the Scots had at their command. Religious opinion decided the matter. The parliament, which was as much opposed to episcopacy as the Scots were, adopted the solemn League and Covenant, and ordered every one to sign it, and by so doing induced the Scots to join them. The army was raised again, and put under the command of the two Leslies, Alexander, now Earl of Leven, and his nephew David, who soon. proved the better soldier of the two. A second time they entered England, January 19, 1644, and leaving a part of their force to besiege Newcastle marched on into Yorkshire, and joined the troops of the parliament in time to share their victory at Marston Moor. Newcastle was taken by storm, October 10.

Meanwhile Montrose, whose zeal for the Covenant had now changed into zeal for the king, was taking advantage of the absence of the Covenanting force in England to win back the north for Charles with an army of Celts alone. It was the first time that the Highlanders had been turned to account in regular war. Hitherto they had been thought only capable of preying upon one another, but now, under a general who knew how to handle them, they did wonders. The Lowlanders who had hastily mustered to oppose them were beaten at Tippermuir. Montrose then took Perth, marched northward, again defeated the Covenanters, took Aberdeen once more, and held for the king this town which twice before he had held for the Covenant. He then turned to the west, wasted the country of his great enemy Argyle, pounced down upon and scattered the force gathered to oppose his own on the shore of Loch Linnhe; kept his army in the Highlands during the winter, and early in the spring took Dundee. He twice defeated the Cove

nanters in the country north of the Forth, and once south of it at Kilsyth. Thus in a wonderfully short time he won back nearly the whole country for the king. But the secret of his success had lain in the rapid marches and sudden attacks that kept his men busy. When the fighting was over, the Highlanders, as was their wont, went off in large numbers to take home their spoil. In this way his army was diminished. David Leslie, who had been summoned home to oppose him, brought some cavalry from the southern army against his weakened force, and won a complete victory at Philiphaugh, near Selkirk, September 12th, 1645. Montrose retreated with the small remnant that was left to him, but he found it impossible to re-assemble his scattered force. His campaign had lasted little more than a year, and a few months later the king, who had thrown himself on the protection of the Scots army at Newark, ordered him to lay down his arms. Montrose obeyed and left the


While the Scots army was lying before Newark, Charles, whose cause was now nearly hopeless, secretly left Oxford, where he was besieged by the army of the parliament, and sought protection in the camp of the Scots. A few days afterward Newark surrendered, and they returned with the king. to Newcastle. He stayed in their hands eight months. During this time, though they behaved towards him with respect and courtesy, he was really their prisoner, and they were busy treating with the parliament for the terms of his surrender. If he had turned Presbyterian and signed the Covenant, no doubt they would have protected him, but after many arguments with Henderson, a prominent divine of their party, he still remained unconvinced. In the end they agreed to leave England on payment of £400,000 ($2,000,000), arrears of pay, and recrossed the border, leaving their king to the tender mercies of the English parliament.

When a prisoner at Carisbrooke, a few months later, Charles made a secret treaty with the moderate party in Scotland, to the effect that, if they would help him to win back his crown, he would confirm the Covenant, and make a trial of the Presbyterian church in England. The Committee of Estates, in whose hands the government was, raised an army and sent it to England, where it was defeated by

Oliver Cromwell at Preston. The extreme party in Scotland were very wroth against the "Engagers," as they called those who had made this engagement with the king. Argyle, the head of the extreme Covenanters, roused his followers, while from the western Lowlands, just warming up for the Covenant, a body of men led by Lord Eglinton marched on Edinburgh. This was called the Whiggamores' Raid, from "Whig," a word used in the Westland for urging on horses. This was the origin of the word "Whig." Argyle and his party made terms with Cromwell, and formed a new Committee of Estates. Cromwell then marched on Edinburgh, and barred all Engagers from any share in the government. An assembly of divines at Westminster, June 12, 1643, adopted the Covenant, and the Scots in return accepted their directory of public worship.

With the court, sentence, or execution of Charles I., the Scots had nothing whatever to do, and no sooner was the news of the king's death known at Edinburgh, than Charles, his son, was proclaimed king of Great Britain, France, and Ireland.

In the north Montrose made one more effort for the king. With a small army of foreigners which he had gathered on the Continent he landed in Orkney, and from thence passed over to Scotland early in 1650. But his followers were dispersed by a detachment from the Covenanting army. He himself wandered for a while in the Highlands, but was at last taken prisoner, brought to Edinburgh, and hanged there without a trial.

But while the Estates were thus dealing with the leaders of the Malignants, they were busy on their own account treating for the return of Charles. They looked on him as their lawful king, and they were ready to be faithful to him if he would sign the Covenant and promise to submit to the dictates of the assembly. These promises he made, and, before he landed, he signed the Covenant, in July, 1650, while the courtiers whom he had brought with him were nearly all sent away as being either Malignants or Engagers.

No sooner did the news of these doings reach London than Cromwell was sent northward with a large army to put a stop to them. The old hatred of England was rekindled by this invasion, and numbers of recruits flocked round the banner of the Covenant. On September 3d was fought the battle of Dunbar, which proved utterly disastrous

to the Scots. In the meantime Charles was in Dunfermline, in old times the royal city, under a watch that amounted to imprisonment. This life became so distasteful that he escaped, was pursued and brought back. In accordance with ancient usage Charles was crowned at Scone by the Marquis of Argyle.

While Cromwell was occupied in Scotland, the Scots army marched into England taking the king with them. On September 3, 1651, the last battle of the Civil War was fought at Worcester, called by Cromwell "a crowning mercy." The Scots were badly beaten, and compel ed to lay down their arms. Charles escaped to the Continent. His wanderings and his hairbreadth escapes are narrated elsewhere.

The public records deposited in Stirling Castle were sent to the Tower of London. The Regalia, the Honors of Scotland, the Crown, the Sword, and the Sceptre had been taken to Dunnottar, one of the strong fortresses in Scotland, which stood on a ledge of rock overhanging the sea. The castle made a gallant resistance, but was at last obliged to yield, but the Honors were not found in it. They had been taken secretly from the castle by Mrs. Granger, the wife of the minister of the parish. She rode through the camp with the crown on her lap hidden in a bundle of lint, and the sceptre in her hand in the guise of a distaff, with the flax she was spinning wound round. it. She and her husband buried the Honors under the floor of the church, and they kept their secret so well that no one knew what had become of them.


Cromwell, now Lord Protector of England, Scotland, and Ireland, set to work to carry out Edward the First's idea of a legislative union of England and Scotland. This Union was ratified by the Council, in 1654. It was then settled that Scotland should be represented by thirty members in the English parliament. Free-trade was established between the two countries. Great changes were also made in the church government. The assembly was closed, and the power of the churchcourts was done away with. The country was divided into five districts, and the care of providing ministers to the different parishes was laid upon

« ForrigeFortsæt »