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Here vatebing high the least alarms, 

lliy rough, rude fortress gleams afar, 
lake some bold veteran grey in arms, 

And marked with many a seamy scar; 
The ponderous wall and masc^ bar, 

Grim rising o'er the rugged rock, 
Have oft withstood assailing war. 

And oft repelled the SnTader^s stroke. — ^BuBFB. 





•« TO 










HADDXHaxoN, M»y Ist, 1859. 






Th« OasUe— Desoriptioii ci its raini— .Gaijxi Douglas, the poet— Origin 
of the Fftmily of Dunbar, • . . • • 9 


Tlie Earia of Dunbar— Histoiy of Cospatrick, the first Earl—The 
second, third, fourth, fifth, and sixth Earls— Royal tournament at 
Haddington, ..••... 14 


Patrick, seventh Earl of Dunbar— Thomas the Rhymer— The Ptophecy 
•—Death of Alexander ni., 22 


Patrick, eighth Earl of Dunbar and March — Blockade of the Castle- 
Edward I., invader— Battle of I>unbar-<Sir William Wallace's 
combat with the Earl of Dunbar — ^The Wallace monument, • 27 


Patrick, ninth Earl of Dunbar — ^Battle of Bannockbum — Edward 
escapes to Dunbar — ^Battle of Duplin— Death of Randolph, Earl of 
Moray — ^Defeat of Sir John Crab and his Flemish squadron — 
Siege of Berwick— Battle of HalidonhiU— Edward's retreat— Earl 
of Dunbar joins the Bradan interest, . • . • 87 


Grand siege of the Castle— JOefended by '* Black Agnes," Countess of 
March — ^Winton*s account of the siege — King David Bruce — ^Battle 
of Durham — Berwick taken by Douglas — Pilgrimage to the tomb 
of Becket, ... . . . • 4S 




George, tenth Earl of Dunbar — Border forays — A&tkj at Bozburgh 
fair — Hotspur — Peath of Douglas — ^BatUe of Otterbom, 56 


Lady Elizabeth Dunbar — Betrothed to the Dnke of Rothsay— The 
duke starved to death — Fast Castle taken — Dunbar burnt, . 64 


George, eleventh Earl of Dunbar^ Created Earl of Buchan— Assaasina- 
tion of James L, . . . . . 73 


Duke of Albany — Earl of Mar assassinated — Albany escapes to Dun- 
bar — Siege of Dunbar — Sea-fight — Sir Andrew Wood of Largo 
victorious — Battle of Flodden — Sir Anthony D' Arcy slain — Dunbar 
garrisoned by Erenchmen, . . . . .78 


Queen Mary — ^Dunbar burnt — Invasion of Scotland — Siege of Had- 
dington — Skii^niabes with the EngHsh^-The Man with the Two 
Heads — Governor cf Kaddington taken — Flight of Queen Mary to 
Dunbar — ^Demolition of tbo Castle, .... 88 


Destruction of the monasteries^Forts of Dunglas, Eyemouth, and 
Luffiiess, destroyed — Queen Mary marries Damley — ^Murder of 
Rizzio — Murder of Damley — ^The Queen carried to Dunbar — Mar- 
riage with BothwelU-Fhght of Bothwell— Battle of Carbeny-hill, 114 


OUver CromweU^Battle of DoonhiU— Paasage of the Peaae Bridge- 
General Monk, ....... 136 

Notes— Cromwell's Correspondence from Danbar, . . 143 


Hie Rebellion — Battle of Prestonpans — Defeat of the King's troops- 
Death of Colonel Gardiner—Flight of General Cope — Paul Jobm — 
Captain Fall, 156 



The volunteers — ^The camp — ^The barracks — The false alarm — Napoleon 
— George lV".*s visit to Scotland — Queen Victoria's visit — The 
BuBsian war — Militia artillery, . . . .172 

NoTE.^ General Don's instructionB to the Yeomanry and volunteer 
corps, . . . . . . • • 186 



Monastic antiquities — Red Friars — Carmelites — Maison de Dieu-- 
St Baldred — The collegiate church — New church — The moiiunc-.. 
— Prelatic proceedings — Pillar of repentance— Religious Mystent. 
^^Dissenters — ^Free church, . , . . ioc. 


The churchyard — ^Resurrection men— Ancient and modem epitaphs, 211 


Ministers of Dunbar — ^The schools an^ schoolmasters— Parochial and 
charity schools — ^Bursaries, ..... 214 



The Parish — ^Agriculture — ^Ploughgates — ^Fairs — ^Table of Population — 
Longevity, ....... 229 

Th«tx>wn — Charters— The port — Annual revenue— Water — Gas, . 240 


The Congress— Burgh politics in 1 737-— Burgh reform— Memben ol 
Parliament, ..... . 240 



ThbCabtlb, ••••••• Vigngtte* 

FbbbChubob. • • . • • • • 811 




Hie poit->FlBh«rie0~Harboi]r and shipping— Victor Haibour— Cvo- 
tom-houae— Barometer for fishermdn, . . . • 262 


Shipwrecks-^Fox man-of-war-^PaUaB and Nymph frigaiea— Hie life- 
boat-r^ohn and Agnee of Newcastle — ^The Czar of Leith— IKaasteni 
of a nights— The Valentine of Bostock—Flood oi the Tyne— Fall of 
East LintGn bridge — Drowning of the Wilson family — Melancholy 
fate of Lieutenant Wylde and ooast-goard men — Smuggling S e a 
plimderera — Shipping, ...... 276 


IVade of tiie bnigk—Baidah-Stamp and Tax Office^Post-offic^— 
Libraries — Printing — ^Public institntionB — ^Friendly Bocieties — ^Free 
liasonzy — Charities — Parochial Board — Roads — StageKSoachea-— 
The railway — ^ViSages — ^Belhayen — ^West Bams — ^Brick and tile- i 

worica—East Lothian uid Berwickshire Yeomanry — ^Execution for 
Mntiny^ ......•• 806 





There was a day when thou wert young and proud. 
Banners on high and battles passed below ; • *» 

But they who fought are in a bloody shroud, 
And those which Waved are shredless dust ere now. 
And thy bleak battlements shall bear no future blow. 



DuNBAE Castle stands a short distance north from the town in 
a situation peculiarly wild, and romantic. It is founded upon a 
reef of rocks that project into the sea ; and which, in many places, 
rise like bastions thrown up by nature to guard these stern re- 
mains of feudal grandeur against the power of the waves, that 
yet force their way through rugged caverns and fissures in the 
Btone, and, with a thundering noise, wash its dark foundations. 

The ]3ody of the building measures about one hundred and 
sixty-five feet from east to west ; and, in some places, two hun- 
dred and seven feet from north to south. The south battery, 
which Grose supposes to have been the. citadel or keep, is situated 
on a detached perpendicular rock, onljr accessible on one sidey 
seventy-two feet high, and ij^ connected to the main part of the 
castle by a passage of masol^ry, measuring sixty-nine feet. The 
interior of the citadel measures fifty-four by sixty within the walls^ 
Its shape is octagon£d^ Five of the gun-ports remain, whieh beac 


10 HISTORY OF DUNBAE. [a. D. 1369, 

the correct traditionary name of the " arrow holes." They measure 
four feet at the mouth, and only sixteen inches at the nether end. 
The buildings are arched, and extend eight feet from the outer 
walls, and look into an open court, whence tjiey derive their light. 

About the middle of the fortress part of a wall remains, through 
which there is a gateway, surmounted with armorial bearings. 
This gate seems to have led to the principal apartments. In the 
centre are the arms of George, eleventh Earl of Dunbar, who 
succeeded his father in 1369 ; and who, besides the earldom of 
Dunbar and March, inherited the lordship of Annandale and the 
Isle of Man from his heroic mother. These must have been 
placed there after his succeeding to the estates, as he was the first 
who assumed the arms sculptured over the centre of the gateway ; 
a large triangular shield, with a lion rampanty within a border 
charged with eight roses. This shield is adorned with a helmet, 
and for crest a horse's head bridled. On the right are the arms 
of the Braces, and on the left those of the Isle of Man. Grose 
also notices the arms of Scotland ; but the coats are defaced by 
time and the storm. 

The towers had commimication with the sea, and dip low in 
many places. North-east from the front of the castle a large 
natural cavern extends, chiefly of black-stone, which, in the mind's 
eye, appears like the mouth of Acheron — a place that leads to 
melancholy streams. This spot is supposed to have formed part 
of the dungeon where prisoners were confined ;* which, Pennant 

♦ Gravin Douglas, Bishop of Dunkeld, probably conceived his description 
of the allegorical poem of King Hart's Castle when a prisoner in this dreary 
place in 1515. 

" So strong this king him thought his castel stnde, • 

With mony toure and turrat crounit hie ; 
About the wall there ran ane water voud, 
. Blak, stinkand, sour, and salt as is the sey ; 
That on the wallis whiskit, gre by gre, 
Rolding to ryis the castell to oonf oimd ; 
Bot thai within maid sa grit melodie, 
That for their reird thai micht not heir the sound.'* 
But however dreary the castle might be to the poetical bishop, it appears 
from the concluding lines of the stanza, that " it was merry in the hall when 
beards wag'd all," to the earl's vassals. 

1497.] THE CASTLB. 11 

robserves, " the assistaQce of a little art had rendered a secure but 
' infernal prison ;" but as it has a communication with a rocky 
fclet from the sea on the west, it is most likely that it was 
the dark postern through which Sir Alexander Ramsay of Dal- 
housie, and his brave followers, entered with a supply of provisions 
to the besieged in 1338 ; a place also well suited for securing the 
boats of the garrison. 

That the castle was invulnerable as a place of strength, is proved 
from the various sieges that it sustained ; that it was also distin- 
guished as a place of security, is established from the following 
fact : In 1497, Ferquhard Maduit«eh of that Ilk, a bold and dar- 
ing man, and the chief of ^ powerful clan, who, along with Ken- 
neth Mackenzie of Kintail, had been guilty of some lawless prac- 
tices in his neighbourhood, was apprehended at Inverness, by 
order of James IV., and sent prisoner to the castle of Edinburgh, 
whence he effected his escape. Being retaken in the Torwood, in 
Stirlingshire, he was sent to Dunbar, where he remained confined 
till after the battle of ilodden in 1513, and died in the year fol- 
lowing ; evincing, that though " rings o' aim, and bolts o' steel," 
might be broken, that the fastnesses of this stronghold were not 
so easily overcome.* 

The castle is built with a red stone, similar to what is found in 
the quarries of the neighbourhood. Large masses of the walls, 
which have fallen beneath the weight of time, appear to be vitri- 
fied or run together. 

The rocks on which the castle is situated, are of a darkish col- 
our, intersected with red and white veins, similar to Lammer Crag 
and the isle on which Dunbar Battery is built. Part of the foun- 
dation of a fort, which was begun in 1560, for the purpose of ac- 
commodating a French garrison, may be traced, extending one 
hundred and thirty-six feet in front of the castle. This building, 
however, was interrupted in its progress^ and demolished by act 
of parliament. 

* It was probably during bis imprisonment, that Macintosh wrote a ge- 
nealo^cal history of his family, tracing their descent from the Earl of Fife 
down to 1496. 



In the north-west part of the ruins, an apartment, about twelve 
feet square, i^d nearly inaccessible in the present day, tradition ^ 
denominates the apartment of Queen Mary. A 

In 1801, the workmen, in levelling some ground in front of the 
Earl of Lauderdale's house, discovered a cemetery or burial place, i 
containing a quantity of human bones of various ages, and a ( 
number of stone balls of different sizes, some of them as large as 
the shot used for twenty-four pounders ; and, lately, four iron- 
balls were found, as large as that used for thirty-six pounders, in 
an apartment on the south-east site of the castle. 

The time of the erection of Dunbar Castle cannot be precisely 
ascertained, but it was evidently built by the Rets at an ^arly 
period of the Christian era. When these adventurers emigrated 
from Gfermany, they fixed their dominion in the Lofltiansy from 
which the latter acquired the name of Pictland. While the 
Scots delighted in hunting and war, the Rets, skilled in the arts 
which have contributed to the comforts of life, began to build 
houses and cultivate the ground. As a matter of necessity, their 
first consideration would be to build fortresses, to defend them 
^m the aggressions of the Scots, Saxons, and Britons ; and as 
Dunbar was stampt by nature a place of strength, and hung on 
the borders of the hostile country of the Saxons, in Berwickshire, 
it is probable that a fort was built here in the fifth century, if not 
at a still earlier period. 

Betwixt the year 835-9, Kenneth I. of Scotland, having totally 
defeated the Rets in a pitched battle, extirpated the inhabit- 
ants, and seizing, the country divided it amongst his nobles. 
The fortress, styled the Castle of Dunbar, was awarded to Bar, 
a valiant captain of the Scots, whose counsel and service had 
materially assisted in the subjugation of the conquered nation : 
hence, according to HoHnshed, it was called Dunbar ; i, e. the 
Castle of Bar.* 

* Chabnen, the learned author of " Caledonia^" supposeB Ihm-har in 
the BritiBh, and Dunbar in the Gaelic, to signify the fort on the height, top, 
or extremity ; and Lord Hailes translates it, the top-cliff. In relation to the 
tonnination twn, frequently mentioned in the names of places, Gibson, in his 

961.] TBS CASTtB. 13 

n i^i^'y» y «^»'»'^«Ky>»W f. »'«^ix»fc><i^<^^^»V»i^s^w«>l^.^»XM*»j^»DM^I»»^^Mi»ii.«,.,l niPi 

Bar was a person of cooaiderable consequence in the army. 
3fore acquiring the Hctish castle of Dunbar, he led the advanced 
[vision at the battle of Scoon, when Drusken, king of the Picts, 
"^t^fma slain, and his followers nearly extirpated. 
^ The next act of Kenneth, after destroying the Pictish people, 
P and partitioning the country, was to change the names of the 
. places ; so that were we even in possession of records anterior to 
835, it would not be easy to recognise the features of Dunbar be- 
fore this period. 

Holinshed farther informs us, on the authority of Boece, that 
a noble house or family had descended &om this officer, and bore 
his 1<^^ appellation ; accordingly, in 961, we find the men of 
Lothian, under the Captains Dunbar and Grsame, discomfiting the 
Danes on itVe fields of Cullen; and, in 1005, we meet with 
Patrick de Dunbar, under Malcolm II., engaged against the 
Danish invaders in the north at Murthlakc, a town of Mar, where, 
in the brunt of the battle, along with Kenneth thane of the Isles, 
and Grim thane of Strathem, he was slain. 

Here closes all that we have been able to glean of the history 
of the first family of the surname of Dunbar. It appears that 
Patrick, Thane of Lothian, had no issue, for Malcolm IIL be- 
stowed the manor of Dunbar, and other lands in the neighbour- 
hood, on Cospatrick,* the expatriated Earl of Northumberland, 
as will be noticed in the following chapter. 

Begulffi Generales to the Saxon Chronicle, supposes tmv to be derived from 
dim, moTis, as towns of old were built on mountains. This, however, doe9 
apply either to our Hadtyntun or Derletun, wh^oh, like Goldsmith's villus 
of " Auburn," are the loveliest of the plain. 

*' In Ford, in Ham, in Ley, and Tun, 

The most of English surnames run." — YvB&rEaAS. 

* Cospatrick, or, as he is sometimes styled, Qospati^ck, seems a contrac' 
tion of Comes Patricius. — Sir W, 8coU, 

. r 



Into the kinrick of Beahn, 
There winn'd a lord of that reahn : 
He was the greatest of renown, 
Except the king that wore the crown. 

History or Sib Gbet-Stbsl. 


CosPATBicK, the father of the noble family of Dunbar, was the 
son of Maldred, the son of Crinan, by Algatha, daughter and 
heiress of Uthred prilice of Northumberland, by Elgiva, daughter 
of Ethelrid king of England. 

After the conquest of England by William the Norman, in 
1066, Cospatrick and Merleswain, with other nobles of the highest 
rank in the north of England, consulting their own liberty and 
safety, fled to Scotland, canying with them Edgar AtheHng, the 
heir of the Saxon line, his mother Algatha, with his sisters Mar- 
garet and Christina, and sheltered themselves under the hospi- 
tality of Malcolm III. 

In 1069, Cospatrick accompanied Edgar into England; and, 
assisted by the Danes, joined by forces of Scotland, took the city 
and .castle of York, and put the garrison to the sword ; but the 
same year, after being deserted by the Danes, and the resources 
of the Scots exhausted, he submitted to the English. William 
incensed, however, at the repeated insurrections of the fierce 
hordes of the north, seized the sword and the brand, and laid 
waste their country from York to Durham. 

In a legend, which Simeon of Durham, or Turgot, relates on 
this occasion, Cospatrick is charged with having advised the flight 
of the bishop and his clergy, and with having taken advantage of 
their absence by canying off the precious ornaments of their 
ehurcL An ancient priest of Durham, one of the company who 

1072.] THK EABU5 OF DUNBAR. 15 

fled to Holy Island, told Tuigot a dream, in which he beheld a 
great Northumbrian baron, who had maltreated Bishop Egelwin 
and his company in their flight, suffering the torments of hell ; 
and, in the same dream, he had heard St Outhbert denouncing 
woe against the Earl for his sacrilege on the church. The inspira- 
tion of this dream was read, by the sudden death of the person 
who was seen in the fieiy abyss ; and when Turgot rdated this 
stoiy to Cospatrick, after his retreat to Scotland, the Earl was 
seized with such horror, that he immediately set out on a pilgrim- 
age on his naked feet to the Holy Isle ; seeking forgiveness from 
the saint by prayers and gifts. Turgot adds, that Cospatrick, 
* after his impious conduct, was neyer in the- same honourable state 
as before ; but was expelled from his earldom, and, during the 
length of his life, underwent other privations. 

But scarcely had the conqueror retired from the Northumbrian 
territories, when Malcolm enterii^ En^and by way of Cumber- 
land, made great devastations along the course of the Tees ; and 
while Malcolm was thus employed, Cospatrick ravaged Cumber- 
land ; and, returning with great spoils, shut himself up in Bam- 
borough's " towers, which shade the wave-worn steep." 

Cospatrick now claimed the earldom of Northumberland in 
light of his ancestors ; and purchased the King's confirmation of 
his title with a great simi of money.; but, in 1072, William, after 
his return from an expedition against Scotland, deprived Cos- 
patrick of his earldom, under pretence that he had instigated and 
assisted the murderers of Cuming the former governor, as ako 
those who had destroyed the Normans at Yofk. The expatriated 
Earl again sought refuge in Scotland ; but as peace had just been 
concluded with England, he was necessitated to repair to Flan- 
ders. On his return, which soon took place, Makolm Canmore 
bestowed on him the manor of Dunbar, and many Mr lands in 
the Merse and Lothian. 

Cospatrick next signalised himself in an expedition against a 
formidable banditti, which infested the south-east borders of 
Scotland. Having attacked them, he cdew six hundred, hanged 

16 * HISTOKT OF mnTBAlL [1115, 

eighty, and presented the head of their commander to the THng • 
who, to reward his valour, created, him Earl of the Merse, or 
March ; and the lands of Cockbumspath were bestowed on him, 
by the singular tenure of clearing East Lothian and the Merse of 
robbers, and on bearing a banner whereon the bloody head of a 
felon was painted.* 

Besides these lands of the Merse and Lothian, his posterity 
possessed the barony of Bengeley in Northumberland, '' on the 
service of being in-borough and out-borough between England and 
Scotland," saith Camden ; '^ or to observe the ingress or egress of 
those who travelled between the two kingdoms." 

This illustrious person died towards the conclusion of the 
eleventh century; and was buried in the church of Norham, 
which his posterity were bound to secure. He had three sons, 
Dolfyn, Cospatrick, and Waldeve. 

Cospatrick, second son to his predecessor, succeeded his father 
in his Scottish property, while his brothers were provided for in 
Cumberland ; and is only noted as enjoying the favour of the 
court. He witnessed the foundation charter of Scone by Alexan- 
der I. in 1115 ; and, in 1116, the inquisition made by David, 
Prince of Cumberland, into the possessions of the church of 
Glasgow, had, among other witnesses, Cospatricius, frater Dol- 
phini, and Waldef, frater suus. He also witnessed the foundation 
of a charter of Holyroodhouse by David L in 1 1 28. His rank of 
Earl is now ascertained; for in 1130, in a donation granted to 
the Prior and convent of Durham, and to the Monks of Colding- 
ham, of the church and town of Edrehame and town of Nisbet,^ 
he is designed, " Cospatricius Comes, frater Dilfun." The dona- 
tion to Coldingham was confirmed by David on the 16th August 
1139, on which day, as a striking proof of the mutabiKty of 
human affiurs, Earl Cospatrick died.t 

* Groee's Seots Aiiti(|uitieB, toL u hotd Hailet anudden tius to be a 

f See ChalmeniV Oaledooia, tqL ii. p. 499, and Wood's Douglas Peer- 
•ge, voL ii. p. 16t. 




Gospatrick, second Earl of Dunbar, on succeeding his father, 
confirmed his liberalities ; but having neglected to endow the 
monks of Melrose, they withheld that immortality which th0 
notice of their chronicle was supposed to confer. 

Under the designation of Cospatricius Comes, filius Cospatricii, 
this earl witnessed a charter of David I. to the monastery of 
Newbottle in 1140. To the opulent mitre-crowned monastery of 
Kelso he gave the patronage of the churches of Home, Lambden, 
and Greenlaw ; and to the church of St Nicholas of Home, he 
gave the donation of a caracute of land. He died in 1147, leav- 
ing four sons : Gospatrick, Edward, Edgar ; and Uchtred, the 
supposed ancestor of the family of Dundas. 

Gospatrick, third Earl of Dunbar, was still more munificent to 
the church than his father. He founded two Cistertian nunneries ; 
first, the nunnery of Goldstream, to which he gave half of the 
church of Layvel, and some lands in Layvel and Birghame ; and, 
secondly, a nunnery at Eccles, which he largely endowed. Besides 
these he confirmed to the nunnery of Coldstream, the church of 
Hirsel, with a caracute of land, that had been given to him by 
Derder his countess. He had two sons : Waldeve, his successor, 
and Patrick, who inherited the manor of Greenlaw, and was an- 
cestor of the Earls of Home. 

Waldeve, fourth earl of Dunbar, succeeded his father in 1166, 
when he confirmed the donations of the churches of Layvel and ' 
Whitechester to the nuns; and, on the Scottish nobility and 
clergy, with a loyalty unbecoming their dignity, agreeing to pur- 
chase the king's liberation at the expense of the independency of 
the nation, he was engaged with other Scottish nobles as a host- 
age. He died in 1182, leaving by Alina, his countess, Patrick 
and Constantine ; the latter of whom is mentioned with his 
brother in a donation to the monastery of Coldingham. 

Waldeve was succeeded by Patrick fifth Earl of Dunbar, on 
whom William I., in 1184, perhaps in gratitude for the services 
of his father, bestowed Ada, one of his, natural daughters, in mar- 
riage. About the end of the twelfth century, he held the offices 


18 HISTORY OF DITirBAB. [1214. 

m*mm m mmm^» * ^ ■ »^ — t-h'^M- M -M-h' M - y -w-W'U'tf^JX, i_ i j 


of justiciary of Lothian and keeper of Berwick ;* and, in 1200, he 
attended William the Lion to lincoln, when he did homage t to 
John for hia lands in England ; but, in 1214, the castle of Dun- 
bar, along with the kingdom, incurred the vengeance of the 
English prince. To retaliate the inroads made by Alexander into 
England, John invaded Scotland with a powerful army. After 
burning Roxburgh he took the town and castle of Berwick, where 
the most barbarous cruelties were perpetrated in search of money 
and chattels ; and the current report was that Jews were employed 
to assist in torturing the inhabitants to reveal where their treasure 
was hid. Advancing into Lothian, in 1216, he burned Dunbar 
and Haddington, with several places of smaller note. " We will 
smoke, we will smoke," said he, " the little red fox out of his 
covert," apparently alluding to the king being a " yellow-haired 
laddie." Meanwhile Alexander had concentrated his forces on 
the river Esk, near Fentland, and John, either not wishing to risk 
a general engagement, or because his army could not subsist in a 
desolated country,- retreated eastward, plundered the abbey of 
Coldingham, burned Berwick ; and, like another Nero, disgraced 
majesty by exulting over the flames of the mansions which had 
sheltered him. He attempted the fortress of Dunbar ; but finding 
it impregnable, he laid waste the country to the walls of Hadding- 
ton, which, being built with wood, was speedily reduced to a 
smouldering pile of ruins. In the interim, Alexander had ad- 
vanced as far as Bichmond, and received the submission of the 
inhabitants of Durham, and returning through Westmoreland and 
Cumberland, " sweeping their flocks and herds, came like a torrent 
down upon the plain :" — ^the Highlanders, to whom the Chronicle 
of Melrose gives the name of Scots, acting with the same ferocity 
as the mercenaries of John. 

♦ Chalmers's Cal. ii, 240. In 1199, when the bridge of Benvick was 
carried away by a flox>d, King William directed a precept to the E&rl of 
Dmibar, his custos of Berwick, to rebuild it. 

f The right of homage, by the feudal custom, was, that the Tassal should 
throw himself on his knees ; should put his joined hands between those of 
his superior ; and, in that posture, swear fealty to him. — Hume's Eng. vol. i. 



In 1218, Earl Patrick founded a monastery of Eed Friars in 
Dunbar, which is more particularly noticed in our Ecclesiastical 
department ; while his countess, Ada, founded a Cistertian nun- 
nery at St Bothans. To the monks of Kelso he granted the cha- 
pel of Halyburton, and a caracute of land in Bothkilsheals, with 
common pasturage between that place and the Scalingas (moun- 
tain pasture) of his men of Pinkerton ; — ^to the monks of Melrose 
he gave all the arable land of Sorrowlesfield on the Leader ; and 
to the canons of Dryburgh the lands of Elvinsley, and two 
bovates of land in Ersildun.* 

When the papal legate had settled the controversies subsisting 
between Alexander and Henry, the former received in marriage 
Joan, sister to the latter, on which occasion Patrick accompanied 
the king to York as a witness to the matrimonial contract. This 
took place in 1221 ; and, in 1231, when this munificent noble- 
man was stricken in years, with a viiew to part with the world 
in good fellowship, and, that 

'' Like the Boman in the capitol, 

He might adjust his mantle ere he fell/' ^ 

he invited his children, relations, and neighbours, to spend the 
festivities of Christmas at the castle of Dunbar. On the expiry of 
four days, he sent for his relation the Abbot of Melrose ; and 
having bade his guests and the world a long and last adieu, he 
received extreme imction agreeably to the forms of the Romish 
church, and afterwards assumed the monastic habit. 

This venerable person enjoyed the earldom fifty years, and died 
in 1232, when he was buried among the holy sisters in the con- 
vent church of Eccles, which his grandfather had founded. By 
his countess Ada, who died in 1200, he had two sons and a 
daughter : Patrick, who succeeded him, and William, (who, in a 
donation granted to the monastery of Kelso in 1241, is designated 
filius Comitis Patricii: he died in 1253 ; and Ada, who got from 

* " The monks of Melrose loved gude kail 
On Fridays, when they fasted ; 
Nor wanted ^ey gude beef and ale 
As hxLg sm their neighbours lasted." — Old Ballad. 


her father the lands of Home, and was married, first, to a gentleman 
of the name of Courtenay Jjy whom she had no issue ; and, next to 
her cousin, William, son of Patrick, before mentioned, who, assum- 
ing the name of Home from his wife's estate, laid the foundation 
of that border clan.* 

Patrick, sixth Earl of Dunbar, succeeded his father in 1231, at 
the age of forty-six. Like his predecessors he courted the favour of 
the church, and granted a messuage in the burgh of Dunbar 
to the monks of Drybui^h ; and to the canons of the same 
place, an annuity of a mark of silver in support of their church, 
on condition that they offered prayers for the safety of the souls 
of King William, of his own father and mother, and of his wife ; 
while to the monks of Melrose he renounced his claim to some 
disputed marches in lower Lauderdalct 

In 1235, Patrick took the field in an expedition against the 
Galwegians. The Scottish army under the command of Patrick 
earl of Dunbar, together with Adam, abbot of Melrose, and Gilbert, 
a monk of that convent, (lately made Bishop of Galloway,) routed 
the rebellious Galwegians with great slaughter, which led to tran- 
quillity in the kingdom, and restored the daughters of Alan to 
their father's domains. 

The Earl of Dunbar a<x;ompanied Alexander II. to York, and 
was a witness and guarantee of his treaty with Henry II. in 
1237. In 1242 an unfortunate occurrence took place, upon which 
the Earl of Dunbar and other noblemen demanded justice of their 
prince. At a royal tournament held at Haddington, the young 

* In 1240, the bones of the Abbots of Meh-ose, that lay in the entrance 
of the chapter-house, were taken up, and more decently buried in the eastern 
part of the chapter-house ; aH, excepting the bones of St Walter, whose se- 
pulehre was opened, and his body found crumbled to dust. Those who were 
present carried off some of the small bones. One of the company was Wil- 
liam, son to the Earl of Dimbar, and nephew to the king, a knight of great 
fame. He begged, and obfained one of the Saint's teeth, by which he is said 
to have wrought many cures ! — Grose's Scots Antiquities, vol. i. p. 122. 

f An extensive forest anciently occupied the whole country lying north- 
ward of the Tweed, between the rivers Gala and Leader. The ancient do- 
mains of the Earls of Dunbar and March, lay on the east of this wild object 
of frequent contest. — Chalmers's Caledonia, vol. ii. p. 124. 


Earl of Athol, overthrew Walter, the chief of the family of the 
Bissets. To revenge this affront, the same night the lodgings of 
the Earl were set on fire, and he, with several of his friends, was 
either slain or burnt to death. The king endeavom^ed in vain to 
bring this atrocious assault to regular trial, as the combination of 
the Cumings and other nobles against the Bissets was so strong, 
On this occasion, the Earl of Dunbar, (whom Lord Hailes calls 
the most powerful baron of the southern districts,) put himself at 
the head of the nobles who demanded retribution. 

Shortly after this affair the Earl of Dunbar was sent to subdue 
the rebellious Thane of Argyle, who annoyed the people on the 
borders of his territories. Patrick reduced the Thane to so such 
extremity, that he was glad to sue for forgiveness from his prince,, 
with a cord tied round his neck in token of submission. 

The Earl of Dunbar held the first rank among the twenty-four 
barons who guaranteed the treaty of peace with England in 1244 ; 
but he had not long enjoyed his peerage, when he was destined 
to fall a martyr to one of the fanatical expeditions of that ag|e&. 
At the council of 'Lyons, held by Innocent IV,, for the purpose of* 
excommunicating Ferdinand II. from the crown of Sicily, a cru- 
sade was decreed for the quixotic purpose of recovering the Holy 
Land from the infidels, to be headed by Louis IX. of France.. 
Alexander sent several chosen bands to assist his ally in this mad 
adventure, under the command of the Earl of Dunbar, Lindsay 
of Glen^k, and Stewart of Dundonald, whom HoHnshed charao' 
terises as captains c^ gi^eat wisdom, and of experience in jQ^ats o£ 
chivalry. Patrick, however, was not destined to return ; for he 
died in 1248, at the siege of Damietta in Egypt.* 

On his marriage with Euphemia, daughter of Walter, high 
steward of Scotland, to him the lands of Krkenside in Lauder- 
dale was awarded. 

* Previous to his departure, in 1247, it is said, that he sold his equicium 
or stud, which he kept in the Leader haughs, to the Monks of Melrose, to 
defray the expense of his journey ; but, as his opulence is unquestionable, it 
is evident, that he sold his stud, to avoid keeping an unnecessary establuih- 
ment in Ms absence. 

2^2 HISTORY or DUNBAR. [1248. 

»,i «» ii»i«»^^^>/V/»<««WV%/S<'»VI^»W» <»<^ »^»^ ■M " l^-i>^«Oi''>'^i> 


The king of Norse, in summer tyde, 

Puft up with power and micht, 
Landed in fair Scotland the yle, 

With mony a hardy knicht. 
The tydings to our gude Scots king 

Came as be sat at dyne, 
With noble chiefs in braif array, 
Drinking the blude-reid wine. 



Patrick, seventh Earl of Dunbar, suceeded his father in 1 248, 
In 1249, he did homage for his lands in England to Henry III. ; 
and during the turbulent minority of Alexander III. he was one 
of the chiefe of the English faction. The youth of the prince, 
(who, on his accession to the crown, was only nine years of age,) 
aflforded room for intrigue among those nobles who contended for 
the mastery. The Cumings were at the head of a powerful party, 
with their friends Boss and Baliol as nominal Regents, while the 
Earls of Dunbar, Strathem and Carrick, were at the head of the 
English faction. To propitiate Henry, the marriage between the 
Scottish prince and his daughter was soon consolidated ; but new 
grievances arose. The young Queen especially, complained of her 
aolitary confinement in the castle of Edinburgh, where she was 
debarred the embraces of her husband ! Henry, who wished if 
possible to reconcile parties, and to obtain milder treatment for 
his daughter, despatched ambassadors to the Scottish court ; but 
while the regents were their associates, the Cumings prepared to 
hold a parliament at Stirling, the Earl of Dunbar suddenly sur- 
prised the castle of Edinbuigh, and delivered the royal pair from 
their confinement. The obnoxious party was now removed from 
their offices in the state, and the Earl of Dunbar and his confede- 


rates were constituted regents of the kingdom, and guardians of 
their youthful sovereigns.* 

This regency was however dissolved in 1253, and the Cumings 
again got possession of the king and queen. In the new regency 
the Earl of Dunbar had no place ; but, in 1260, he was one of 
the Scottish nobles who demanded, and received security from 
Henry to deliver the Scottish queen and her infant at her father's 

In 1263, Earl Patrick, who had hitherto been actively employ- 
ed in the field of politics, was seized with the pious spirit of his 
predecessors, and founded a monastery for Carmelites or White 
Friars in Dunbar, which we will have occasion to notice in the 
Ecclesiastical portion of this volume. 

The same year, the Danes and Norwegians, taking advantage 
of a famine in England and Scotland, arrived before the town of 
Ayr on the first of August, with a fleet of a hundred and sixty 
ships. Having subdued the isles of Arran and Bute, they took 
the castle of Ayr, and proceeded on their victorious march, when 
Alexander, with an army of 40,000 men, opposed their progress 
in the vicinity of Largs. A desperate conflict ensued, in which 
the invaders were completely routed. The left division, consist- 
ing of the men of Lothian, Fife, the Merse, Berwick and Stirling, 
was led on by the Earl of Dunbar, who was severely wounded in 
the encounter. % So decisive was this victory, that it was the last 
time that those Gauls of the thirteenth century disturbed our 
" chiefs in braif array, drinking the blude-red wine." 

Patrick next accompanied the Earls of Athol and Carrick to 
subdue the Western Isles to the allegiance of the crown ; and^ 
in 1266, when Magnus of Norway ceded the Isle of Man and the 
Hebrides to the Scottish king, he had the honour to append his 
seal to the treaty ; and, further, in 1281, when, in consequence of 
a diminution of the royal family of Scotland, a marriage was con- 

* Ridpath-s Bord. Hist. p. 145. f Chalmers' CaU vol. ii. 243. 
t Holinshed's Chron. Maitlttnd's Hist. vol. i. 392. 


eluded between the infants Margaret of Scotland and Eric of 
Norway, he, with his son, was among the nobles, who swore that 
that the marriage-contract should be fulfilled ; and, in 1284, the 
Earl of Dunbar was second in the list of thirteen earls, who signed 
a requisition on the marriage of Alexander III. 

Thomas Lermont of Ersildun (Eariston), the celebrated bard 
and prophet, (commonly called The Rhymer), visited Dunbar in 
1285, and foretold to the Earl the sudden death of Alexander 
III., who was killed by a fall from his horse on the sands of 

We are circumstantially informed by Bower,* that, on the night 
preceding the King's death, Thomas having arrived at the castle 
•of Dimbar, was interrogated by the Earl, in the jocular manner he 
wont to assume with the prophet, if to-morrow should produce 
any remarkable event, to which the bard, while " coming events 
cast their shadows before," replied, in the mystical language of 
prophecy : " Alas for to-morcow, a day of calamity and misery ! 
Before the twelfth hour shall be heard a blast so vehement, that 
it shall exceed those of every former period. A blast which will 
strike the nations with amazement, — shall reduce those who hear 
it to a state of insensibility, — shall humble what is proud, and 
what is fierce shall level with the ground ! The sorest wind and 
tempest that ever was heard of in Scotland." After this predic- 
tion, which was left to be fulfilled either -by accident or the 
weather, Thomas retired 

Next day, the Earl and his companions having continued in 
watch till the ninth hour, without- discovering any unusual appear- 
ance in the elements, began to doubt the prescient powers of the 
soothsayer, to whom it was imagined, the " sunset of life had 
given mystical lore," and having ordered him into their presence 
upbraided him as an impostor, and hastened to enjoy their wonted 
repast ; but his lordship had scarcely placed himself at table, and 
the hand of the dial pointed to the hour of noon, when an ex- 

* Walter Bower, abbot of St Colm, was bom at Haddington in 1385, He 
was the continuator of Fordun as writer of the ScoticJuronUon. 

1285.] TH02iA8 TAB BHYMSB. 25 

press^ covered with foam^ appeared at the castle-gate, demanding 
an audience. On being interrogated, he exclaimed : ^' I do in- 
deed bring news ; but of a lamentable kind, to be deplored by the 
whole realm of Scotland, Alas ! our renowned king, has ended 
his fair life at Kinghom." " This," cried the prophet, gathering 
himself up in the spirit of conscious veracity, " this is the scathful 
wind and dreadful tempest, which shall blow such a calamity and 
trouble to the whole state of the whole realm of Scotland." 

The messenger paused, while the Earl and his companions, 
rousing themselves as from a dream, beat their breasts in the 
agony of despair, and acknowledged that the prediction of the 
Rhymer had been too fatally verified.* 

On the unfortunate death of Alexander, it was found necessary 
that the administration of public affairs should be vested in six 
guardians while Margaret remained in Norway, or until the Queen- 
dowager, who was then endervte, should bequeath an heir to the 
crown. The latter hope failed ; upon which, the infant daughter 
of Eric was hailed Queen of Scotland. A powerful party of the 
nobles were, however, avdrse to a female administration ; and as 
the Earl of Dunbar had married the daughter of the competitoi: 
Bruce, we need not be surprised that, with his three sons, he 
associated himself to support that interest. He did not survive 
to witness the desolating scenes that were destined to fall on his 
devoted country, but departed life's vicissitudes* stage, about the 
advanced age of seventy-six years, in 1289. 

By Christian, only daughter of Robert Bruce, he had three 
sons — Patrick, John, and Alexander.t 

The following prophecy Mr Pinkerton supposes to have been 
delivered to " Black Agnes" to Thomas the Rhymer; J but Sir 

* Holinshed. Irving's Lives Scots Poets, vol. i. 229. 

■f* Wood's Douglas Peerage, vol. ii. 169. 

X The Earls of Dunbar were principal proprietors of £rsildun,(now called 
Earlston,) a village near Melrose, from the twelfth century till 1435. These 
opulent barons granted various portions of their domain of Ersildun to 
several tenants in fee, among the most remarkable of which was Thoma« 
the Rhyme?;'. — Chalmer's Caledonia, vol. ii. 383, 


Walter Scott proves that the Rhymer was dead when the heroic 
countess held hercastle with so much glory. It might, however, have 
been delivered to her predecessor when the Bard visited Dunbar. 

La CouNTESSB DE DoNBAB demcmde a Thomas db Essedoune, quant al 
guerre d'Eacooe prendreit fyn. EylV a rqxmndy, et dyt ; — 

« When man is made a kyng of a capped man. 

When man is lever other menes th3rng than his owen. 

When londe is forest, and forest is field. 

When hares kendles o' the her* ston. 

When Wyt and Willie weres togedere. 

When men makes stables of kjrkes ; and steles castles with styes. 

When Bokesboroughe nys no burgh, and market is at Forwyleye. 

When the aide is gan,^ant the newe is come that done noht. 

When Bamboume is donged with dede men. 

When men leades men in ropes to buyen and to sellen. 

When a quarter of whaty whete is chaunged for a colt of ten markes. 

When prude prikes, and pees is leyd in prisoun. 

When a Scot may ne hym hide ase hare in forme, that the English 

ne shall hym fynde. 
When rycht and wronge astente the togedere. 
When laddes weddeth lovedies. 
When Scottes fleu so faste, that, for faute of ship, hy drowneth him- 


When shall this be ? 

Nouther in thine tyme ne in mine ; 
Ah comen, ant gone, 

Within twenty winter ant one.** 

Finkerton's Antient Scots Poems, who quotes MS. Harleian Library. 

The oldest Scottish song, which has yet been discovered, is an 

affectionate monody on the death of Alexander, preserved by 

Winton, one of the fathers of our authentic Scottish history : — 

Qhen Alysandyr, oure kyng, was dede, 
That Scotland led in luwe and le. 
Away wes sons of ale and brede. 
Of wyne and wax, of gamyn and gle. 
Oure gold was changyd into lede. — 
Christ bom in-to virgynyte, 
Succour Scotland, and remede, 
That stiad is in perplexyte. 

Wyntowne's Chronicle, rol. i. p. 401. 



A consaill cryit, yaim thocht it was ye best, 
In Sanct Jhonstoime yat it suld haldyn be, 
Assemblit yar Clerk, Barown, and Bowrugie, 
Bot Corspatrick wald nocht cum at yair c3q, 
Baid in Dunbar, and maid scorn at yaim all. 

Henbt thb Minbtbbl, Book Tiii. 


Patbigk, eight Earl of Dunbar and March, (sumamed Black- 
beard,) succeeded to the honours and possessions of his father at 
the mature age of forty-seven. He was immediately called into 
public exertion j and appeared at the parliament of Brigham in 
1290, for the purpose of betrothing the Princess Margaret to the 
son of Edward I. ; where he is called Comes de Marchia, beiiig 
the first time the Earls of Dunbar are designated by this title. 
But their hopes were disappointed by the death of the young 
queen on her voyage to Scotland. 

No sooner had the news reached that country than several com- 
petitors laid claim to the crown ; amongst whom was the Earl 
of Dunbar, as the great grandson of Ada, ^daughter of William 
the lion. The others were, Eric king of Norway, (as heir to his 
daughter the late infant queen) ; Florence earl of Holland ; Wil- 
liam de Vescy, Eobert de Pynkeny, Nicholas de Soules, Patrick 
Galythly, Koger de Mandeville, John Hastings, William de Eos, 
John Comyn, John Baliol, Robert Bruce ; and Edward I. of Eng- 
land.* The competitors submitted their respective claims to the 
English monarch, and as, doubtless, a matter of necessity, bowed 
to his decision. He awarded the disputed sceptre to his favourito 
Baliol, whom he considered the most convenient tool 

* Maitland^B Hist. Scotland, p. 414. 


In 1294, Edward having summoned the Earl of Dunbar, and 
other Scottish nobles, who had estates in England, to assist him 
in the recovery of Gascony from Philip, Baliol, who, on this oc- 
casion, seemed inclined to conciliate the wishes of the nation, evaded 
the demands of the English monarch ; but the Earls of Dunbar 
and Angus, Eobert Bruce, the elder ; and Bruce, Earl of Carrick, 
swayed by private revenge rather than their country's weal, 
swore fealty to Edward at Werk, on the 25th March 1296. 
on this submission the Earl of Dunbar had his forfeited lands and 
tenements in England restored. 

Edward, with a powerful army, proceeded to Scotland, and the 
town and castle of Berwick speedily surrendered to his arms. 
But while the Earl of Dunbar, with the Braces and ttieir adher- 
ents aided the English, his heroic countess, as wishing to play a 
double game at " catch the king," still retained the castle of Dun- 
bar, and delivered it to the leaders of the Scottish army. On the 
approach of the enemy, they exultingly spread their banners, and, 
in allusion to the dress of the English exclaimed : " Come hither, 
ye long-tailed hounds, and we will cut off your tails for you I" 
This bravado, however, was unhappily changed on the defeat of 
their countrymen. 

Edward despatched the Earl of Warrene with 12,000 men to 
lay siege to Dunbar, which was defended by the flower of the 
Scottish nobility.* But the garrison were so much reduced, that 
they begged a cessation of hostilities for three days, in order that 
they might have time to inform Baliol of their situation. 

The Scots, sensible of the importance of this fortress, which, if 
taken, laid their country open tb the enemy, advanced with their 
main army, under the- command of the Earls of Buchan, Lennox, 
and Mar, to its relief. This formidable army, which consisted of 
40,000 men, was seen the third day after the message was sent 
to Bailol, " clade m burning arms," descending from the high 
pastoral ridges of the Lammermoors, near Dunbar, t 

• Hume's England, vol. ii. 

t One of the MSS. of Fordun says, that this battle was fought near 
Spot. — Ridpath^B Border Hist. 


Warrene, undaunted by the superior numbers of the Scots, left 
part of his army to blockade the castle while he hastened to meet 
them. The English descending into a valley, (probably Oswal- 
dean, a glen near Spot,) before they could reach the Scots, the 
latter sent up a loud shout of exultation, and caused their horns 
to be sounded ; but when Warrene emerged from^ the glen, and 
advanced undismayed against their formidable front, the undis- 
ciplined troops fled before him, and were pursued with great 
slaughter as far as Selkirk forest. The loss of the Scots on this 
fatal occasion was estimated at no less than 20,000 men, of which 
10,000 were slain.* To account for this unusual slaughter, it 
was thought that the Earls of Athol and Mar, who were of the 
Brucian party, purposely abandoned the field to Edward, while it 
was reported that Bniee, in consequence of a secret conference 
before the battle, had influenced his Mends in the Scottish army 
to flee on their closing with the enemy ; by which means their 
brethren were so disconcerted, that they threw away their wea- 
pons, and were easily vanquished. ^ 

Next day, Edward, with the main body of the English army, 
reached Dunbar, and compelled the garrison to surrender. Among 
the prisoners taken in the castle, were the Earls of Boss, Athol, 
and Monteith ; the Barons John Cumyn, William St Clair, Bich- 
ard Seward and John Mowbray ; besides these, thirty-one knights, 
one hundred esquires, and the two clerks, John de Somerville and 
William de St Clair, were also taken, and sent into close confine- 
ment to different castles in Englandt 

♦ Sir Patrick Grahomeof ElincardinefeU inthis battle, 28th April, 1296 
where he m ain t ai ne d his station, and died applauded by his enemies, a goodly 
knight, aJl dressed in harness meet. — Lord Hailes' Annals, vol. i. 261. 

Sir David Grahame of Dundafi^ his father, witnessed a donation to 
Patrick, Earl of March, to the Monastery of Coldingham in 1260. 

t Foidim says, that many knights and barons fled from the battle to the 
castle of Dunbar, but were delivered by the treachery of Bichard Seward, 
the keeper, to slaughter. He adds that Edward caused them all immedi- 
ately to be put to different kinds of deaths. But this last circumstance is 
extremely improbable, and does not agree with what the same author else- 
where states m his verses on the battle, (vol. ii. 166.) where he says, the 
captives were imprisoned. — Bidpath's Border History, p. 199. 

30 HI8T0BY OF DTTKBAR. [1296. 

Edward pursued his victorious march, and, having crossed the 
Forth, the town of Perth, and the castles of Dundee, Forfar, 
Brechin and Montrose, speedily surrendered to his arms. Terri- 
fied into submission by this rapid success, Baliol, with the nobles 
attached to him, hastened to appease the wrath of the English 
despot; and, a few days afterwards, at Kincardine, made an 
absolute surrender of the crown and kingdom which he so un- 
worthily held.* 

Happily, at this critical period, when monarchy seemed extin- 
guished in Scotland, a spark rising slowly in the Ysle of Eller- 
slie, grew brighter and brighter, till it roused, like a flash from 
heaven, the expiring embers of the counties liberty. The fire of 
freedom expanded in the breast of Wallace, who took up arms to 
vindicate his country's honour and redress its wrongs, and after 
some partial successes, he was elected warden by a majority of his 

* In the battle fought by Edward at Dunbar, the Scots by an impetuous 
imprudence, similar to what they afterwards exhibited in Cromwell's time, 
and nearly on the same ground, near Doonhill, in leaving the heights, where 
they had the advantage of the English army, lost a great number of men. 
The invaders thus got a double revenge for the taunting rhyme of the defen- 
ders of Berwick. 

" Thus scattered Scottis 
Hold I for rootis. 

Of wrenches unaware ; 
Early in a momyng. 
In an evyle tyding, 
Went ye fro Dunnbarre.'* 

After the battle of Dunbar, according to Langtoft, following up their sar- 
casm, the *' Inglis rymed thus : 

" Oure fote folk put thaim in the polk, andnakned ther nages, 
Bi no way herd I nevir say of prester pages, 
Purses to pike, robis to rike, and in dike tham schoone, 
Thou wiflin Scotte of Abrethin, kotte is thi home." 

The above verses were evidently intended as a retort courteous, for the 
following Scots sarcasm on the English monarch : 

" Weened Kyng Edwarde, with his lange shankes, — [sumamed 
To have gete Berwyke, al our unthankes ; LangshcmkaJ] 

Gas [gar] pikes hym, 
And after gar dikes, hym." 

This rhyme, in which the similarity of the language to the preceding is 
conspicuous, is quoted by Bitson from the Harleian MS. 

1297.] WALLA.CE. 31 

^^i^S^^^i^i^^ reserved for posterity to appr^ate his 

character. Those in the Brucian interest watched the motions of 
Wallace with suspidon^ and the Earl of Dunbar absolutely refused 
to attend a meeting of the estates at St Johnston. Notwithstand- 
ing the Estates promised to foigive what was past, on the interfer- 
ence of Wallace^ it is said of the Earl^ that 

<< Xiicthly he leuch, in scorn as it had been. 

And said he had sic message seldom seen, 

That Wallace now as Govemonr sail xyng. 

Here is gret faute of a gude priuoe or king ; 

That King of Kyll I can nocht nndeistand. 

Of him I held never a fur of land ; 

That Bachiller Trowis, for fortoun schawis her quhell, 

Tharwith to lest, it sail nocht lang be weill ; 

Bot to you lords, and ye wiU understand, 

I make you wyss, I aw to mak na band, 

Als fre, I am in this regioun to ryng 

Lord of mine awne, as ever were prince or king ; 

In Ingland als gret part of land I half, 

Ma rent thairof thair will no man me craif . 

What wiU you mai, I warn you I am free, 

For your sumounds ye get na mair of me." 

Hbnbt's Wallace, Book viii. 

In this arrogant and ironical reply, (observes the euridite Tytler,) 
the Earl scarcely exaggerated his own power. He held one of the 
largest, and, from its situation, one of the most important districts 
in Scotland. Besides his almost impregnable castle of Dunbar 
his dominion on the borders between the two kingdoms were pro- 
tected by a chain of seven fortalices, which, from the warlike vigi- 
lance vdth which they were garrisoned and kept in repair, went 
by the familiar name of his Seven War-Steeds;* and the passes 
communicating between his territory and the two countries on 
either side, were of such a nature, as to be easily held by inferior 

* Of these we may instance Fast Castle, Colbrand's-path Tower, Hailes 
Castle, Whittingham fortalice, and Stanypeth Tower, Innerwick, Thornton, 
and Dunglas Castles, devolved to Lord Home, and afterwards to a branch 
of the ducal family of Hamilton, ancestors of the Earls of Haddington. 

32 HISTORY OF DtmSAR. [1298- 

numbers against a far superior force ; so, that it was cnrrenldy 
reported that Earl Patrick held the keys of England at his girdle. 
The patriot-hero could not brook the taunting epithet of King 
of Kyle, and, as Dunbar had despised his friendship, he vowed 
that one of the two should die ; and, therefore, with two hundred 
men, went in pursuit of the haughty baron. Wallace was joined 
by Robert Lauder at Musselburgh, and afterwards by Crystal of 
Seton. They were met at East Linton by Squire Lyle, who in- 
formed them that the Earl had made his gathering at Cockbums- 
path, and was on his march to Dunbar.* Lauder was in a huny 
to get thither ; but Wallace, with all the dif&dence of a great 
man, thus compliments Patrick: 

" We may at layaar ride, 
With yone power he thinkis bckrgane to bide ; 
And of athing ye sail weill understand 
A hardier lord is nocht into Scotland ; 
Micht he be made trew stedfaat tfll a king, 
Be wit and force he can do meiklil thing ; 
Bot wilfully he likis to tyne himselL" 

* In Henry the Minstrel's " Actis and Deidis of Wallace," Squire Lyle is 
noticed as a person well acquainted with East Lotl^ian, and who was of ma- 
terial importance to the patriot-chief, when in pursuit of the Earl of Dunbar 
in 1297: 

" A sqneir Lyll, yat weill yat cuntrie knew, 
With twentye men to Wallace couth persew, 
Besyd Lintoim." — Book viii. line 71. 

Squire Lyle, and Lauder (ancestor to the Landers of the Bass,) were thus 
Tewarded for their services : 

" Stantoun he gaiff to Lawder in hys wage. 

Ye knycht Wallangf aucht it in heretage. 

Yane Brygeane Cruik J he gaiff Lyall § yat was wycht."— 

Book viii. line 419. 
tSirAymerVallance. J Bridge-end Crook. § Sir Walter Lyle of DuohaL 

I have traced a tradition in allusion to Squire Lyle, which I shall introduce 
to the reader. Friar-Dykes in Lanunermoor, an old monastic establish- 
ment, was the residence of a parson who was one day called to vritness the 
private execution of a heretic at PopiL He was accompanied by his servant, 
who, by means of an aperture in the wall was an eyewitness to the horrible 


Wallace encountered Patrick in a field near Innerwick, where 
the latter had assembled nine hundred men. The patriot-hero 
with half that number, compelled the Earl, after a terrible conflict, 
to retreat to Cockbumspath, while he fell back on Dunbar ; but, 
finding the castle without provisions, and the garrison wede away 
with their lord, he gave it in charge to Crystal of Seton, and went 
in pursuit of the fugitives. 

In the meantime the Earl of Dunbar had gone to Northumber- 
land to solicit the aid of the Bishop of Durham ; but his osten- 
sible reason, says the Minstrel, was " to bring the Bruce free to 
his native land." Vessels were immediately sent from the North- 
umbrian Tyne to blockade Dunbar, and cut off supplies from 
the followers of Wallace, while the Earl, with 20,000 men, has- 
tened to retake his fortress. 

In the interim the champion of Scotland had repaired to the 
west in quest of succour, and, returning by Yester, he was joined 
by Hay and his chosen cavalry. With 5000 men he marched to 

deed. On their way homewards the servant told his master what he had 
seen, expecting that he would shudder at the relation, and simply enquired 
the crime for which the culprit had suffered. The priest was agitated, and 
said, that next morning his domestic should return with a letter to enquire 
into the circumstance. Meantime Robert Lyle, the laird of Stanypeth 
Tower, who had been distiurbed in his sleep by fearful dreams, arose, buck- 
led on his armour, and sallied forth, as he was directed in his vision, to the 
head of the Winding Howe. After cursing the folly of that belief, which had 
brought him to the spot at such an early hour, he was on the point of retiring, 
when, in the weather-gloom or twilight, he discovered a figure approaching on 
the verge of the hill. The Laird of Stanypeth hailed the stranger, and de- 
manded the purport of his journey. He proved to be the servant of the par- 
son of Friar-Dykes, who was on his way to Popil with the aforesaid letter, 
of which the Laird demanded an immediate perusal. Being answered in 
the negative, he swore that he would run the servant through the body with 
his sword unless that he complied with the request. Seeing resistance hope- 
less, the afl5ighted domestic delivered up his charge. The letter stated 
" that as the bearer had confessed having seen the execution of the heretic 
it was necessary, to prevent the stigma of murder attaching itself to the 
chin-ch by his report, tJiat he also shomd immediately be put to death f" Tlie 
coiuier was thunderstruck at this intelligence ; and, while he tore his death- 
warrant piecemeal, was glad to accept of the proffered protection of the 
Laird of Stanypeth by entering his service. [This trswiition I inserted in 
the Bei'wick and Kelso Wardei'.] 



the support of Seton, while the Hahop of Durham, who had re- 
mained at Norham with Bruce, came to the assistance of Dunbar, 
and riding through Lammermoor, threw himself into an ambush 
near Spott-moor. By this unexpected movement, WaUaoe was 
completely hemmed in, when Seton fortunately came to his relief. 
The two armies closed in mortal strife. The Scots pushed on so 
furiously against the southrons in the bloody game, that they were 
just about to fly, but Patrick was 

" Sa cruell of inteBt, 
That all his host tuk of hun hardSment ;" and 
** Throuch his awne hand he put mony to pam.** 

The desperate valour of Wallace, the Ramsays,and the Grahams, 
was of little avail against the superior force of the English; so 
that when the ambuscade of Bishop Beik appeared, they were on 
the point of retiring. Dunbar singled out Wallace amidst the 
throng, and 

" Hereat the plait with his scharp gromidyn daiff 
Throuch all the stuff, and woundit him sum deiU." 

The hero returning the blow with sevenfold vengeance, dove 
down Maitland, who had thrown himself between the two adver- 
saries. Wallace's horse was killed under him, and he was now 
on foot, dealing destruction to his enemies, when 

" Erie Patrick than, that had gret craft in war. 
With spears ordand guid[ Wallace doun to bear ;* 

But five hundred resolute warriors rescued their champion, and 
the war-worn armies were glad to retire. 

The same night, Wallace traversed Lammermoor in quest of 
the retreating host, while Bishop Beik, Earl Patrick, and Bruce, 
fled to Norham. On his return, the champion, still mindful of 
the odium attached to his name by the Earl of Dunbar, 

" Passit, with mony awfuU men, 
On Patrickis land, and waistit wonder fast, 
Tuk out guids, and places doun thai cast ; 
His steads, sewin, that Mete Hamys was call'd, 
Wallace gert break the burly biggings bauld, 

1304.] WALLAGS. 35 

^aith in the Merae, and als in Lothiane, 
Except Dunbar, standand he leavit nane."* 

A short peace was concluded with England, in 129 7, when Earl 
Patrick, (says the Minstrel,) having ceased to pay allegiance to 
Edward, held his lands of the Scottish crown, and was favourably 
received by Wallace. But at this time he wavered ; for, in 1299, 
the king granted him £200 sterling, partly m money, and partly 
in provisions, for supplying his castle with militaiy stores. 

In 1304, the Earl of Dunbar was one of the ten representatives 
chosen at Perth to appear at Westminster, for the purpose of set- 
tling the police and government of Scotland ; but, failing to appear, 
Monteith, (the base betrayer of Wallace,) was substituted in his 

After the barbarous beheadment of Scotland's " great patriot- 
hero, ill-requited chief," by Edward, at Towerhill, where every 
cruel indignity was shewn to a fallen foe, Eobert Bruce laid 
aside the selfish caution that had so long tarmshed his actions, 
and threw himself on the bosom of his coimtiy, which was ready 
to receive him as her approved sovereign. His first object was to 
subdue the Galwegians, who were still under the influence of 
Baliol. The Earl of Bichmond, with a great army, was despatch- 
ed to arrest his progress, while special orders were sent to the 
Earl of Dunbar, and other Scottish nobles, (the courtiers of Eng- 
land,) to assist the guardian in this expedition. It does not ap- 
pear, however, that the Earl of Dunbar obeyed these orders ; and, 
in like manner, in 1308, when ^e Earl of Dunbar and his youth- 
ful son Patrick, were suAmoned to support the falling interest of 
the English monarch in Scotland, this summons was treated with 
similar contempt. The blood of Wallace had not been shed in 
vain; for when Earl Patrick saw that the basis of the Champion's 
ambition was a real love to his country and the Brucian interest, 
he was not backward to join the cause of freedom. With his 

* Bidpath sapposes Metehamys, or Methamis, to signify bound or mark, 
£rom Meith or Meth ; and as ham in the Anglo Saxon signifies a house, it is 
probable that ^ sewin Mete Hamys" signifies the seven March hamlets or 


country he was " entwined forever — ^buttoo late;" for, in 1309, 
he bad adieu to the troublous scenes of human life, at the age of 
sixty-six. By his wife, Marjoiy Comyn, daughter of Alexander, 
Earl of Buchan, he left one son. 


The bugle ne'er sung to a braver knight, 
Than Wallace of EldersUe. — Campbell. 
After the lapse of 550 years, tardy justice is about to be done to Scot- 
land's " great patriot hero, iU-requitted chief." A " national Wallace Meet- 
ing," was held at Stirling, on Tuesday, 24th June, 1856, (the anniversary of 
the decisive battle of Bs^ockbum,) at which the Earl of Elgin and Kincar- 
dine, K. T., presided, for the purpose of raising a fund to erect a monument 
in memory of " his country's saviour," the chsunpion of Scotland's indepen- 
dence, who despite King Edward's power, bribes, and the pussilanimity of 
the nobles, paved the way at Stirling bridge for the never-to-be-forgotten day 
of The Bruce's victory at Bannockbum. 

In noticing this event, we must do honour to a patriotic nobleman. Thd 
late Earl of Buchan manifested his taste and public spirit by a variety of 
classic ornaments around the sylvan scenes of Dryburgh Abbey, (where re- 
pose the ashes of Sir Walter Scott,) by erecting a collossal statue of Sir 
William Wallace, and a Grecian temple to the memory of Thomson, the poet. 
The greatest and best of public men have been traduced by their emissa- 
ries, it need not, therefore, excite surprise that Wallace, (says Dr Jamieson,) 
had always been spoken of, by the English, as a leader of banditti. Lang- 
toft calls him, " William WaJeis that maister was of theves :" and they re- 
presented him as a sort of Kobin Hood, who had established his authority in 
the woods of Scotland, in the same manner as the King of merry Sherwood" 
had done in the forest of that name. When Gospatrick, therefore, calls 
Wallace " King of Kyll," we may suppose that he tauntingly means " King 
• of the Forest," as Kyle, as well as Carrick, in Ayrshire, are derived from 
the Celtic words, CoiUe and Carraig, the former signifying a woody district, 
and the latter the rocky portion of the countr}'. But in regard to comparing 
the Knight of EUerslie to Robin Hoo4> ^^i ^^ Huntington, with his squire 
Littlejo£ji, or to a Rob Boy, is absurd. W^^ce had a different game to 
play than the deer-stealer of Sherwood forest. That Wallace was hunted as 
an outlaw was too truly verified. Many remote and romantic spots in the 
country bear the name of Wallace's cave or hole ; and here we need but refer 
to the Garleton hills near Haddington. The truth was that Wallace " stal- 
wart and strong," trusting to his single arm, often brought himself into diffi- 
culties by his reckless bravery, and was glad to escape through stratage ; 
but woe to them who bearded the lion in his den ! 

At Wallace' name, what Scottish blood 
But boils up in a spring-tide flood ? 
Oft have our fathers fearless strode 

By Wallace' side, 
StiU pressing onward, red-wat shod, 
Or glorious died. — Burns. 




NoVs the day, and noVs the hour I 
See the front of battle lower ! 
See approach proud Edward's power. 
Chains and slayiBrj. — Bubns. 

The patriot Tell — ^the Bruce of Bannockbum 1 



Patrick^ ninth Earl of Donbar and March, succeeded hn fiEither 
in 1309, at the age of twenty-four, and is first noticed in histoiy 
as surety for the Earl of Slrathem. 

As Berwick was still in the possession of the enemy, there 
were necessarily many English partisans in the Merse, who were 
reduced to great distress by the partial successes of the Brudan 
party ; while they were exposed to the " insolence of oflSce" in 
the persons of the English authorities. The Earl of Dunbar and 
Sir Adam Gordon were delegated to. the court of England, to 
solicit assistance and relief. Edward immediately ordered their 
grievances to be redressed ; and, glad of the pretext, promised to 
be at Berwick by mid-summer in the ensuing year, with an army 
well calculated to overawe the refractory to obedience. 

This was indeed a pretext but too plausible and fatal. In 
1314, Edward assembled forces from all quarters. He enlisted 
troops from Elanders and other foreign coimtries ; he invited over 
numbers of the disorderly Irish, and joined to them a body of 
Welsh; and, assembling the whole military force of England, 
marched to the frontiers with an army, which amounted to 
100,000 men.* 

* Hume's England, vol. ii. p. 14. 

38 HISTOEY OF DUXBA». [1315. 

These delegates, however, were unintentionally the means, in 
the hand of providence, of securing the freedom of their country. 
This immense armament, which was accompanied with all the 
pageantry of a Persia© camp, and with bards to celebrate victories 
before they were achieved, melted like the pillars of an icy palace 
on the immortal plain of Bannockbum ; and Eklward, after seeing 
his army nearly annihilated, fled with a body of horse to Berwick. 
Sir James Douglas, with 400 chosen horsemen, intercepted the 
royal fugitive, who was fortunate to shelter himself in the castle 
of Dunbar. Here he was received " full gently," and by means 
of a fishing boat, coasted along the shore till he reached the 
towers of Bamborough. This was truly honourable, for Patrick 
must have had it in his thoughts at that time the making of peace 
with his native monarch, and could not be ignorant how easily 
and advantageously he might have done so, by detaining in custody 
the person of the King of England.* 

After this signal defeat, which secured the independence of 
Scotland, the Earl of Dunbar made peace with his cousin, King 
Robert L, and was present at Ayr, on the 26th April, 1315, 
when the succession to the crown of Scotland was settled on Bruce 
and his heirs male.t 

To atone for his youthfdl errors, Earl Patrick, in 1318, by his 
intelligence and efforts, assisted in retaking Berwick from the 
English, at which time he was Sheriff of Lothian ; and, in 1322, 
he concurred with those nobles, who transmitted an energetic 
epistle to Pope John, asserting the independence of their country. J 

In 1331 peace was restored to the sister nations ; but their 
tranquillity was often interrupted by the claims of those rival 
chieftains, who had possessions on the borders. The Bishop of 
Durham preferred a complaint to the Scottish regency against the 
Earl of Dunbar for infraction of the late treaty. The prelate 

* Scott's Provincial Antiquities, vol. ii, p. 149. 

t In the ninth year of Edward's reign, Henry Percy obtained a grant of 
the fees in Northumberland, which the Earl had forfeited. 

I Douglas's Peerage, vol. ii. Chalmers's CaledonlAi vol. U. p. 247. 

1332.] THK fcARLS OF DUICBAR. 39 

alleged tliat the village of Upsetlington, situated on the Scottish 
side of the river Tweed, west of Norham, was part of the right of 
the church of St Cuthbert or see of Durham. This place had 
fallen into the hands of Bruce during the war ; but, after several 
requisitions, had been restored to its clerical owners. The Earl 
of Dunbar, however, in despite of this arrangement, had seized 
the place and issues thereof, and violently prevented the Bishop 
from enjoying them. Edward now interfered, and sent letters to 
King David, (a minor,) his guardian and the Earl, demanding re- 
stitution. The Bishop again complained to Edward, on being 
summoned to attend the Scottish parliament at Scone, to shew 
how and for what service he claimed the lands of Upsetlington. 
The King of England complained of this summons as being dero- 
gatory both to him and to the church, and requested that David 
would restrain his ministers from disturbing the Bishop in his 
possessions, which appears to have been compUed with.* 

In 1332, many of the En^^bh nobility, who had imaginary 
claims to estates and honours in Scotland, were men of the first 
rank and influence ; and taking advantage of that perilous period, 
(the minority of a prince,) meditated a descent upon the king- 
dom. At this critical moment Bandolph, Earl of Moray, the in- 
defatigable Eegent, died at Musselburgh ; and Donald, Earl of 
Mar, and Patrick, Earl of Dunbar and March, were appointed, 
by the assembly of the estates at Perth, joint guardians in his 
stead ; the former over the north side of the Forth, and the latter 
over the south, t 

Lord Henry Beaumont, brother to the Bishop of piirham, is 
celebrated as the mover of this enterprize. While an exile in 
France, he is supposed to have concerted this plan with Edward 
Baliol, in order to recover the sceptre which the father of the 
latter had so impotently wielded. The King of England, who 
wished to make it appear that he stood aloof in the transaction, 
discouraged any hostile attack on Scotland through the marches 
of his kingdom. Accordingly, the associated Barons collected a 

* Ridpath'B Bolder Hist. p. 20S. f Holinshed's Chron. Vol. i. 

40 HI8T0BT OF DUNBAS. [1532. 

fleet of ships at Eavenspar, near the mouth of the Humber, and 
sailing thence, entered the Frith of Forth on the last day of July, 
and disembarked at Kinghom. A body of Scots, under Sir Alex- 
ander Seton opposed their landing, but were defeated, and their 
leader slain. This was the beginning of a series of victories. The 
conquerors advanced through Dunfermline towards Perth. In 
the neighbourhood, on the moor of Duplin, a great army was 
assembled by the Earl of Mar, to arrest their progress. The in- 
vaders, though joined by some of their Scottish friends after the 
affair at Kinghom, had scarcely increased to 4000 men ; but the 
traitor. Sir Alexander Murray, (who was the tool of Baliol,) hav- 
ing affixed a pole at the ford of the river Earn, the English crossed 
it secretly during the night, and coming suddenly on the Scottish 
camp, put them to the sword. Surprise, consternation, and confu- 
sion, seized the Scottish host ; and the chieftains, rushing preci- 
pitately to repel the aggressors, were slain amidst heaps of their 
followers. The Earl of Mar was slain in his tent. Among " an 
undistmguished multitude," fell Thomas Randolph, the young 
Earl of Moray, (brother to the Countess of Dunbar;) Murdack^ 
Earl of Monteith, and Eobert Bruce, Earl of Carrick. Duncan, 
Earl of Fife was taken prisoner, while Jbhe conquerors proceeding 
to Perth, the town surrendered without resistance. 

On this fatal night the Earl of Dunbar and Lord Archibald 
Douglas were at Ochterarder, a few miles from the scene of battle. 
They speedily advanced to Perth, which was strongly fortified by 
the enemy. Meanwhile, Sir John Crab, who, by command of the 
Earl of Dunbar, had sailed from Berwick with a squadron of ten 
Flemish ships, for the purpose of intercepting the fleet of the Eng- 
lish invaders, which had sailed for the Tay, suffered a complete 
defeat, whereby their supply of provisions was cut off, and they 
were reduced to the necessity of raising the siege. The Earl of 
Dunbar and Lord Archibald Douglas concluded a truce with 
Baliol till the 2nd February 1333, while the infant Bruce had to 
retire from the storm, and seek shelter and protection in the vallies 
of France, under the fostering care of Sir Malcolm Fleming. 

1333.] ftlEGrtfi Olf BEBWICK. 41 

Baliol, elated by this train of unexpected successes, assumed 
the name of Conqueror, and was crowned at Scone, by Duncan, 
Earl of Fife, and the Bishop of Bunkeld, while the clergy and 
barons of that district assisted in the solemnity. 

The imaginary conqueror having imprudently dismissed the 
greater part of his English followers, was, notwithstanding the 
trace, suddenly attacked near Arran by Sir Archibald Douglas 
and other chieftains of that party. His army was routed : he was 
chased into England ; and thus lost his kingdom by a revolution 
as sudden as that by which it was obtained.* 
• The King of England, who was now ready to prosecute those 
measures for the subjugation of Scotland, which at first he seemed 
ashamed to avow, readily prepared to reinstate Baliol in the posses- 
sion of the crown. Accordingly, with a formidable army, he pro- 
ceeded to the frontiers for that purpose. As the brunt of the war 
was expected to fall upon Berwick, Douglas, the regent, placed a 
strong garrison for the defence of that place under the command 
of Sir William Keith, while the defence of the castle was entrust- 
ed to the Earl of Dunbar.t 

Edward remained for the space of a month before Berwick ; 
but finding from the strength of the garrison, and their resolute 
defence of the place, that it could not be soon taken, he led part 
of his army into Scotland, On his return he foimd that Berwick 
fitill held out ; but being, reinforced by a fresh body of troops, he 
renewed the siege with redoubled vigour. The garrison being at 
length reduced to great extremity for want of provisions, on the 
15th July, a capitulation was subscribed betwixt the English 
monarch on the one hand, and Patrick Earl of Dunbar, and Sir 
WHliam Keith on the other. The features of this agreement 
were, that the town and castle should be delivered to Edward on 
the 20th, if not previously relieved by a general engagement. 
This preceded the battle of Halidonhill only a few days, where 
the Scots were totally defeated, upon which the town and castle 
surrendered. After this fatal overthrow, the Scottish nobles had 
* Hume's England, f tlidpath's Border History. 

2. F 

42 HISTORY O? PXJJfBAR. [1334. 

no immediate resource but subi^ission ; and before Edward left 
Berwick, he received the fealty of the Earl of Dunbar with severaj 
others of the nobility. On this occasion Earl Patrick and Lord 
Henry Percy were appointed joint wardens of all the country 
south of the Porth.* 

The castle of Dunbar, which had been dismantled and razed to 
the ground on the approach of the English, was now rebuilt a^ 
the EarFs own expense^ fpr the purpose of maintainii^g an Eng^ 
lish garrison. 

The Earl of Dunbar attended the parliament held at Edinburgh 
in Eebruary 1334, when Baliol ceded Berwick, Dunbar, Boxburgh, 
and Edinburgh, and all the south-east counties of Scotland, to b^ 
annexed for ever to the English domains.t But the English 
forces were no sooner withdrawn, than the Scots again revolted 
from the unfortunate Baliol, and returned to their former aUegi-* 
ance. Earl Patrick retired into the Highlands to join the fiienda 
of Bruce ; and, in April 1335, attended the parliament held by. 
the Kegent at Dairsie in Fife. { The same year, when Edward, 
III. and Baliol made another descent on Scotland, the Earl of, 
Dunbar cut off a. body of s^x^hers on their return southward ; and 
he afterwards assisted the Earl of Moray in defeating the Count -^ 
of Namiir on the Borough-moor of Edinburgh. 

The Earl of Dunbar, along with S^ William Douglas, accom> , 
panied the guardian, Sir Andrew Murray, for the purpose of res- 
cuing th? lady of the latter, who was besieged by the Earl of Athol. 
in the castle of Kildrummy. They were met by the enemy in the 
forest of Kilblain, and were on the point of falling before superior 
numbers, when a sortie from the castle recovered their scattered . 
forces, slew the Earl of Athol, and completely routed his adher- 

* Bic^ath's Border Hist. 310. f Hume's Eoglaad, ii. 
} Douglas' Peerage^ v6l. ii. 

1337.] BLACK AGNES. 43 

i-n- i i- i tnfv i - I - 11 1 --— »- , ---- ^- ....- -»«»«»«■■ .i».»»»>«^<«^»o^.j 


dnce more unto the breMsh, defer Mends t once more^ 


Or fill the wall up with our F4nglTBh deftd. 

Hang out our banner on the outward wall ; 

The ciy is still, " They come !** Our castle's strength 

Will ItUigh a siege to soom. — SHAKS^saB. 


At this period the castle of Dunbar was a' great annoyance to the 
Ei^glish subjects in the Scottish territory, The excursions of the 
garrison along the fruitful coast, rendered the public road betwixt 
Berwick and Edinburgh unsafe for travellers, while its port of 
Lammer Haven, under the shelter of the fortress, " grim rising 
o'er the rugged rock/' a^brded a convenient and safe reception for 
aids and supplies from France, and other places on the continent : 
Hence the reductiod of this stronghold became of great moment 
to Edward, on the certain prospect of an immediate war with 

ij3L January 1337, William Montague, Earl of SaHsbury, to- 
gether with the Earl of Arundel, to whom the Kin^had lefb^the 
chief ctimmind of the forces in Scotland, attempted this ent(2i(prise 
with a large army. At tliis important crisis, the Earl of Dunbar 
wis eiiployed with the Guardian in reducing the fortresses* iii the 
north; so that the defence of this fortress devolved upom the. 
CpuiitesS, a lady who, from the darkpess of her complexion,, 
was commoiily called Black Agnes; ahdt by whose vigOaat and 
patriotic conduct has immortalized her name. 

Agnes, Countess of Dunbar, was daughter of the celebrated 
Thomas Bandolph^ Earl of Moray, and sister to the Earl of that 


name who fell at Duplin ; and of his successor who was made pri- 
soner in the affray with Count Namur, and who was at this time 
a prisoner in England. These circumstances inspired sentiments 
of resentment against the English Ia the breast of our heroine^ 
which neither the strategems of art could surprise, nor the terrors 
of danger dismay. The castle, which was newly fortified, from ita 
situation on rocks nearly surrounded by the sea, was deemed im- 
pregnable. But against the natural strength of the fortress we 
must bring the most consummate generals of the age. Arundel 
was afterwards constable at the battle of Creasy, and SaKsbury 
commanded the rear at the battle of Poictiers, while the besiegers 
were the chosen troops that had been victorious in the late in^ 

" And do they come T Black Agnes cried. 
Nor storm, nor midnight stops our foes ; 

Well, then, the battle's chance be tried, 
The Thistle shall <mt-th>om the Rose. 

** She spake, and started from her bed, 

And cased her lovely Ihnbs in mail ; 
The helmet on her coat-hlach head, 

Sluiced o'er her eyes, — an iron veil ? 

"^ In her fair hand she grasped a spear, 

A baldrick o'er her shoulders flung, 
While loud the bugle-note of war, 

From Dunbar's cavem'd echoes rung." 

Black Aonss : a Poem.* 

During the siege, Agnes performed all the duties of a bold and 

vigilant commander. When the battering engmes of the English 

hurled stones or leaden balls against the battlements, she, as in 

scorn, ordered one of her maids, splendidly dressed, to wipe off, 

with a dean white handkerchief, the marks of the stroke. The 

castle continued to " laugh a siege to scorn," when the Earl of 

Salisbury, with vast labour, brought that enormous machine, the 

* This poem I picked up at York, in a bookseller's shop, near the rener^ 
able Minster, on uie tower of which I spent an agreeable hoiu*, gazing on 
those vast Ridings, ae large as some of the German principalities. 


iow, to bear against the walls ; but, like the Eomaa darts at the 
siege of Jotapata, it rung harmless against the rock. 

The Countess, who awaited the approach of this new engine of 
destruction, being full of taunts, exclaimed : 

** Bewiire Montagow, 

For faraow shall thy sow !" *' 

(meaning the men within it,) when a large fragment of the rock 
was hurled from the battlements, and crushed the cover to pieces, 
with the poor little pigs, (as Major cails them,) who were lurking 
under it. And although there is no royal r#ad to poetry, upon 
the authority of this couplet, Bitson has admitted Agnes into the 
company of the Scottish poets ! 

The following is an account of the siege, by AndbewWyitton, canon regu- 
lar of St Andrews, and prior of Lochleven, who flourished about 1360. Rude 
as his couplets may appear to the admirers of Friar William Dimbar and Sir 
David Lindsay, his pages are much prized by the learned for the prospects 
of society which they represent, and the early circumstances of history they 
record. As Wynton lived at a time within the memory of man when the 
si^e of the castle took place, his information must have been gathered from 

oral sources. 

" Of the Amege of Dukbaeb, 
Where the Couinixss vftu mee whd ware : 

' ^' ^' ^R)^^^^^^ William Montague, that sua (conaequtntly) 
[1836- (SS) Had tane the m^ge, in hy gret ma 
Xooo.j ^^^ ^ mekil and right stalwart engine. 

And up smartly gert dress it : syne 

They warpit at the wall gret stanes 

Baith hard and heavy for the nanys, {purpose} 

But that nane merryng to them made. 

And alsua when they castyne had, 

With a towel, a damiselle 

Arrayed jollily and well, 

Wippit the wall, that they micht see 

To gerethem mair annoyed be. 

__« i . . 

, * The Sow was a military engine, resembling the Boman testudo. It was 
formed of wood, covered with hides, and. mounted on wheels, when, being 
rolled forward to' the foot of the besieged wall, it served as a shed or cover 
to d^end the miners, or those who wrought the battering ram, from the 
stones and arrows of the garrison. — Border Minstrelsy, vol. i. 40. 

46 BISTOBT or DUKBAB. [133S. 

Few of the xssailants were Me to retnm to their treachea. 
Elndiog the arts of forcible imd open assault miavailing, Saliabnry 
next attempted to gahi the castle by treachery. Means were em- 
plc^ed to bribe the porter who bod chaise of the gate. This he 

There, at die siege, mill long thej laj, 
Bat there litUa vantage get tiief ; 
For vhen (be bjrkkyne wald, or assaO, 
The; tint the iiuu«( of th^ travaile. 
And •■ the; bjgeryd there a' day, 
Of a greatBhot I dwU yoo wj. 
For that the; bwi (rf it tBclj, 
I here to ;ou rehearse will I. 

William of SpeoB peroit a Blaeowne, (hlazimtd Arntarial btaringi) 
And tliro' three faulds of Awb;Tchowne, {habtrgioa) ■ 
And the Actowne f through the third pi;. 
And the arrow in Hie bodie, 
While of that d;iit tbere dead he la;; 
And then Uie Montagu gan sa;, 
" This IB aae of m; Lad;'B pinnii, 
Her amouris thus, till m; heart riDniB." 
HVbile that the id^e vas there on the wiwi. 
Hen sajia there f^ tair jnperdyis. 
For Lawi«nae of Prestoim, .that then 
Holdin ane at the wichteet men. 
That was insll Scotland that tide, 
A rout of Inglianen saw ride, 
tiiat nsmed gude men and worth;. 
And were arrayed right richly ; 
He, with as few folk, as they wer^ 
On them assembled he there ; 
But, at the assembling, he was there, 
Intil the mouth stricken with a spear. 
While it up in the bamys ran ; 
Tm a dike he withdrew him than, 
And died ; for nae mur live he micht. 
His men his death perceived noucht ;- 

JoiUed covering for the body made of i^ong leather. 

1:338. BXmm OF THX CAfSTLB. 47 

agreed to, do ; hjat disclosed the tranaaction to the CounteseL 
Salisbiuy^ at the head c^ 4 choaea party, eoanmanded this enteiv 
yme in person, and fou&dr the gate» open to receiye him. The 
officiousness- €£ John C<^>elaiMi> one of his attendants, saved the 


While they thorn YBnqiiuh'd utterly. 

And with their f aes faucht stoutly, 

Thus was this gude man brought till «ndy 

That was licht greatly to commend. . / 

Of gret wirschipe (man&oo(2);a0d gret.bownte (ffocdnetif, 

His saul be aye in saftie. 

Sir William als of; GabtQwa 
Of Keith, that was of, gude renown^ i 

Met Bichard Talboli^y the^way. 
And set him to sa hard asfUky, 
That to a hirk he gert him gae^ 
And close there defence to ma ; 
But he assailed there sa fast, . 
That him be-hov'd treat 'at the bst^ . 
And twa thousand po^ndtp pay, 
And left hostage, and ^enthiB ^^y. 

The Montagu was yet lyatid^ 
Sieging Dunbare with ^tabKavihand ; . 
And twa gallies of Grenoa had he^ 
For till assiege it by^the sea. 
And as he thus assiegend lay» 
He was set intil hard assi^y ; 
For he had purchafied him covyn (teertt c^eemenf) 
Of ane of them, that wer« th^vein,. 
That he should l^ye open the yets 
And certain term till him.tiien set 
To come ; but they therein halily 
Were wamit of itprlyUy- 
He came, and the yet open faad. 
And wald have gane in. foot steppaad ; 
But John of Cowpland, thai was then 
But a right poor pimple man, 
Shut him off, back, an<l in m gane, 
The Portcullis came down on ane ; 
And spared Montagu, thereout 
They ctyed> with a sturdy shout^ 

48 HISTORY OF DUlfBAB. [133S. 

the general fiDm the snare. Copeland hastily passed before the 
Earl, the portcullis was let down, and the tnisfey squire^ mistaken 
for hia lord, remained a prisoner. Agnes, who from the southern 


A M<mtaga for ev&nnaar T* 
Then with the folk that he had tfaere^ 
He turned to his Herbery, 
And let him japyt folfybjr. 

Syne Alexander, the Bomsay, 
That trowed and thought, that liiey 
That were asdeged in Dunbar, 
At great distress or misdnef were ; 
That in an evening.frae the Bmb, 
With a few folk that with him was. 
Toward Dmibar, iatil a boat, 
He held all privily his gate ; 
And by the gallies all ^jlj 
He gat with his company. . 
The lady, and all, that were there, 
Of his coming well comfort were : 
He issued in the morning in hy. 
And with the wachls sturdily. 
Made ane apart, and stout melle. 
And but tynsel entered he. 

While Montagu was there lyand. 
The King Edward of England 
Purchased him help, alyawns, 
For he wald amowe were in France ; 
And for the Montagu he sends ; 
For he cowth (bring) nae thing till end 
For owtyn hun, for that time he 
Was maist of his counsel pxivie. 
When he had heard the king's bidding 
He removed, but mair dwdling, 
When he, I trow, had lying there 
A quarter of a year and mair. 

Of this assiege in their hethyn^ (derum)] 
The English oysid to make luurping 
" I vow to God, she makes gret stere 
The Scottish wonche ploddere, (Jlghier) 
Come I aire, come I late, 
I fand Al^KOT at the yate.*" 

WrinowKiA CBaoKiJUL; Book viii. eap. 98* 


tower observed the event, cried to Salisbury jeeringly, " Adieu, 
Monsieur Montague ; I intended that you should have supped 
with us, and assisted in defending this fortress against the robbers 
of England." 

Thus unsuccessful in their attempts, the assailants turned the 
siege into a blockade, and closely environed the castle by sea and 
land. Amongst the ships were two large Genoese gallies, com- 
manded by John Dona and Nicholas Fiesca. But famine was 
threatening to effect what force and art could not achieve. In conse- 
quence of the protracted siege the garrison was reduced to the ut- 
most extremities for want of provisions ; this intelligence reached 
Sir Alexander Kamsay, a bold and enterprising oiEcer, who having 
procured a light vessel with a supply of provisions and military 
stores, sailed in a dark night, with forty chosen companions, from 
the contiguous rock of the Bass, and, eluding the vigilance of the 
enemy, he entered the castle by a postern next the sea, and 
brought relief and refreshment to the desponding soldiers. Next 
morning, Kamsay made a smart sortie on the besiegers, killing 
and surprising them at their posts, and taking many prisoners ; 
and the same night he completed the glory of his stratagem, by 
passing from the castle in the same manner, and with the same 
safety, with which he had entered. 

The English having vigorously prosecuted the siege for six 
weeks, were compelled to abandon this hopeless enterprise.* Be- 
sides the commanders of the army, there were present on this oc- 
casion, the Earl of Gloucester, Lords Percy and Neville. Holin- 
shed asserts that Edward was present himself. At all events, he 
spent some days at Berwick at that period, and if he was not 
present, at least gave orders to abandon the siege of Dunbar. 

While the Coimtess thus gallantly defended her husband*s 
" strong-housef" at Dunbar, he was emplsgred along with the 

* Salisbury even consented to a cessation of arms, and departing into the 
south, intrusted the care of the Borders to Eobert Manners, William Heron, 
and other Northumbrian barons. , 

•f Often 00 called in Records of these times. — Ridpath. 


50 HISTOBT 07 DUU BAS. [1339. 


guardian, Sir William Douglas, and other loyal nobles, in reduc- 
ing the fortresses on the other side of the Forth. After defeatmg 
a great body of Englishmen at Panmure, they took the castles of 
St Andrews and Leuchars, and the tower of Falkland, and des- 
troyed them : the castle of Cupar alone resisted their utmost 
efforts. In March, they reduced the castle of Bothwell, while 
this extraordinary success is ascribed to the use of machines sent 
over from France, accompanied by French engineers.* 

The failure of the English at Dunbar led to important conse- 
quences. It encouraged Sir Andrew Murray to lay siege to 
Stirling, and essentiaJly contributed to animate the courage, im- 
prove the union, and augment the numbers of the Brucian party. 

In 1339, the Earl of Dunbar assissted Lord Robert Stewart, 
who was elected guardian on the death of Murray, in the reduc- 
tion of Perth, and led the second division of the army. 

The Scots during the year 1340, made several successful inroads 
into England, in which Sir Alexander Ramsay, who had brought 
such timeous succour to Dunbar at the late siege, particularly dis- 
tinguished himself. A party, however, headed by the Earls of 
Dunbar and Sutherland was less successful ; for they were routed 
by Lord Grey and Sir Robert Manners, assisted by John Cope- 
land and the ganison of Roxburgh. 

Edward having again entered Scotland with a powerful army, 
the Scots were induced to sue for a truce for the space of six 
months. On this occasion, there was a safe-conduct, dated West- 
minster, 24th March 1342, granted to the Earl of Dunbar and 
others, to visit any place in England or Scotland under the King's 
authority, to treat with him for a final peace ; but what was de- 
termined in consequence of this meeting is not related. 

David Bruce, who had reached his seventeenth year, returned 
with his consort j5-om France ; and the Earl of Dunbar now at- 
tended his youthful monarch as assiduously as a counsellor, as he 
had formerly acted daringly for him as a soldier. He was witness 
to many ch«Lrters granted by David at this turbulent period. 

* Fordun says, that the Governor prevailed in the siege of the fortreflsef 
mentioned, by the dread of a certain engine, called JBowtwr, — Kidpath, 


In 1343, in a skirmish near Berwick, Lord Kalph Neville wai 
taken prisoner, and sent to Dunbar j whence he was speedily 

In 1346, while the King of England was engaged at the siege 
of Calais, David Bruce thought it a favourable opportunity to aid 
his ally the King of France. Entering Northumberland at the 
head of 50,000 men, he carried his ravages to the gates of Dur- 
ham ; but Queen PhiUppa, assembling a body of troops, intrusted 
the command to Lord Percy, and met him at Neville's Cross, 
near that city. The Scottish army formed into one line. The 
High Steward of Scotland and the Earl of Dimbar commanded 
the right, the Earls of Moray and Douglas the left ; while David, 
-mih some French auxiliaries, and the flower of his nobility, sup- 
ported the centre. The English archers began the battle- with 
showers of arrows on the left, which galled the right division so 
severely, that the body under the Earl of Dunbar charging, plied 
their broad-swords and battle-axes so dexterously^, that they drove 
the bowmen back upon the party commanded by Percy, and oc-» 
casioned great confusion and disorder. At this critical period, 
Baliol advanced upon the Earl with a large body of horse ; and 
not only supported the archers who had given way, but obliged the 
party under the High Steward and the Earl of Dunbar to sound 
a retreat, which they effected with inconsiderable loss. The Eng- 
lish now pressed upon the division commanded by David in 
person, who refused to quit the field ; while his followers ashamed 
to forsake their prince, formed a phalanx around him, and fought 
valiantly, till not above eighty of them remained.* 

* We cannot ayoid quoting the following descriptive lines from " Mar- 
mion," in which the position of King David is vividly sketched, although 
he happily escaped the fate of James 1 V. 

'* The English shafts in voUies hail'd. 
In headlong charge their horse assail'd ; 
Front, flank, and rear, the squadrons Sweep, 
To break the Scottish circle deep. 
That fought around their King ; 
But yet, though thick the shafts as snow, 
Thou^ charging knights like whirlwinds go, 


52 HlftTORT OF DUKBAS. [1346. 

The king at length overpowered, surrendered to John Copeland, 
after having knocked out two of that gentleman's teeth with his 
gauntlet. The remaining division of the Scots, commanded by 
Moray and Douglas, intimidated by the fate of their companions, 
was soon routed. Moray was slain in the field, Douglas was 
taken prisoner, and few of their followers escaped. This battle 
took place, 17th October 1346. 

Amongst the nobles who fell in the field of Durham, was 
Thomas, Earl of Moray, brother to the heroic Countess of Dun- 
bar. As he had no male issue, Agnes became sole possessor 
of his vast estates ; and her husband assumed the additional title 
of Earl of Moray. Besides the earldom of Moray, the Earl of 
Dunbar and his Countess obtained the Isle of Man, the lordship 
of Annandale, the baronies of Morton and Tibbers in Nithsdale, of 
Morthingtoun and Longformacus, and the manor of Dunse in 
Berwickshire ; with Mochrum in Galloway, Cunmock in Ayrshire, 
and Blantyre in Clydesdale. 

,. But " the gallant knights had left their monarch bound ;'* for 
Scotland again deprived of its regal ruler by the captivity of its 
sovereign, the guardianship devolved on Bobert the High Steward; 
who, with the Earl of Dunbar, had returned in safety from the 
tented field, not without suspicion of having deserted the Kjng ; 
which, with more credibility, maybe imputed to the Steward, who 
was heir-apparent to the crown. 

Unbroken was the ring ; 
The stubborn spear-men still made good 
Their dark impenetrable wood. 
Each stepping where his comrade stood, 

The instant that he fell. 
No thought was there of dastard flight ; 
Link'd in the serried phalanx tight, 
Groom fought like noble, squire like knight. 

As fearl^sly and well ; 
Till utter darkness closed the wing 
O'er their iJiin host and wounded king, 
Then did their loss the Scottish know. 
Their king, their lords, and mightiest low. 
To town and tower, to down and dale. 
To tell red Flodden'a dismal tale." — Scott. 

1355.] SIEGE OF BERWICK. 53 

After the surrender of Calais^ a truce was agreed on between 
the kings of France and England, in which the Scots were mcluded. 
During this peace the Earl of Dunbar busied himself, without 
effect, to obtain the liberation of David, offering his son and heir 
as an hostage, which evidently exculpates him from the blame of 
having forsaken the king. 

In 1355, the truce, which had been prolonged for eight years, 
expired ; when the Scots, exasperated that Edward would not 
listen to any proposals for the liberation of their king, had already 
commenced their destructive inroads into Northumberland. The 
Earl of Dunbar and Lord William Douglas having united their 
forces for this purpose, despatched Sir William Ramsay of Dal- 
housie with an advanced party to destroy the populous village of 
Norham and the country a(Jjacent, which he effected ; and, in 
order to inveigle a large body of the enemy, who were approach- 
in the pursuit, he retreated, with a great booty of cattle^feo Nisbet- 
moor in Berwickshire. The main body of the Scots, who waited 
in ambush, with their French auxiliaries, rushed upon the Eng- 
lish, and completely routed them after a gallant resistance. 

Encouraged by this success, a scheme was formed for the re- 
covery of Berwick. The Earl of Angus in concert with the Earl 
of Dunbar, having collected a number of ships, filled them with 
chosen warriors ; and, in a dark night, passed over to the north 
side of the Tweed ; thence they moved unobserved to the foot of 
the walls of Berwick, and, by the dawn of next morning, the 
town was in their possession. In this assault the English lost two 
knights, and the Scots no fewer than six ; while the whole wealth 
of the town feU a prey to the victors. 

But this acquisition was of short duration. Edward III., who 
had just landed from Calais, crowned with victory, thought the 
place of so much importance, that he was there with his army by 
the 14th January 1356 ; and, as the castle was still in the hands 
of the English, the Scots, on his approach, applied the torch to 
the town, and abandoned it to the invader. 

In 1357, the Earl of Dunbar was one of the plenipotentiaries 
who met at Berwick, to adjust the liberation of King David. It 



was one of the articles of the treaty, that David should deliver 
up to the king of England twenty hostages, heirs of the chief 
families in the kingdom ; the principal of whom were, the sons of 
Robert, Steward of Scotland, of the Earls of Dunbar, Sutherland, 
&c. ; and that three out of eight of the principal nobles of the 
kingdom, (amongst whom is mentioned the Earl of Dunbar,) 
should also enter themselves hostages on the delivering up of the 
king, not to be relieved otherwise than by others of the same num- 
ber supplying their place.* 

As some difficulty occurred in paying the King's ransom, 
(100,000 merks sterling yearly, during ten years,) the Earl of 
Dunbar thrice visited the court of England, in 1358, to adjust 
matters; and, again, in 1359 and 1360, asafe-<;onduct was granted 
him to treat with the English on certain articles respecting David 

To reward his services, he obtained many favours from his ran- 
flomed prince : he was granted a legal right to assume the earldom 
of Moray, and to receive what it had yielded in rent and profit 
from 1346 to 1360 ; he obtained a grant of all the castle-wards 
within his own lands, during life ; and a pension of £40 sterling, 
(dated 3d July 1362,) during the king's pleasure; and his town 
of Dunbar was erected into a royal burgh, while, on the other 
hand, Edward III. resented the hostile conduct of the border 
chieftain, by granting some of his estates to strangers. 

It was fashionable at that period to make pilgrimages to the 
tomb of Becket. In' 1362-63, and again in 1366, the Earl of 
Dunbar joined the vast swarms that visited the sacred fane of 
Canterbury. These devotional longings, which were often used 
for political purposes, have famished subject matter to Chaucer, 
one of the earliest English poets, in his admirable tale of '^ The 

After a life spent amidst the din of arms and alternate strife, 
the Earl of Dunbar seems to have subsided into the calm of piety.- 
In May 1367, he confirmed to the monks of Coldingham, by a 

• DougW Peerage, ii. f ChatoierB* Caledonia^ ii. 

1368.] TBTB EABL3 OF DUNBAR. 55 

charter to the prior and convent of Durham, the manors of Eder- 
ham and Nisbet, with the church of Ederham and Nisbet. TMu 
confirmation was witnessed by his relation, George de Dunbar, 
Alexander Ricklynton,* constable of Dunbar ; Eobert Lecke, his 
steward ; while his wife Agnes, Countess of Dunbar and Moray, 
ratified the whole, which was confirmed by David in the August 

The Earl was again called on, to assist at a convention, for pre- 
serving the peace of the Borders j and in June 1368, the king was 
advised by the parliament of Scone, to consult the Earls of Dunbar 
and Douglas on the security of the eastern marches. This appears 
to have been the last public service that Earl Patrick performed. 
Wearied with the toils of active life, at the advanced age of 
eighty-four, he bade adieu to the tented field and the gaudy court, 
and resigned his earldom and estates to his eldest son George. 
His death must have taken place betwixt this period and 1371, as 
he was not present at the coronation of Robert II., which took 
place in that year. 

By his heroic lady, Agnes, daughter of Thomas Randolph, Earl 
of Moray, regent of Scotland, he had issue as follows : George, 
tenth Earl of March; John, Earl of Moray; Lady Margaret, mar- 
ried to William, first Earl of Douglas : Lady Agnes,t married to 
James Douglas, Lord Dalkeith : and Lady Elizabeth, married to 
John Maitland of Lethington, J ancestor of the Earls of Lauderdale. 

* In 1364, the Earl of Dunbar granted to Alexander Ricklynton, who had 
been his armiger for twenty years, half of the lands of East Spott, with the 
tenandries within Whitsome in Berwickshire, which Sir Patrick Ramsay had 
resigned in the Earl's court at Whitldngham. This grant was confirmed by 
Bavid II. Rycklynton offered his adorations at the tomb of Becket in 1365, 
with six horsemen in his suite. In 1368, the Earl also made a munificent 
grant to his al/ammts John de Hepburn. — Robertson's Index. Ohalmer'a 
Caledonia, ii. 

t Lady Agnes Dunbar got as her marriage portion from her broth®*, the 
lands of Moidington in Berwickshire, confinned by Robert II., 6th Decem- 
ber 1372 ; Whittingham, in the county of Haddington ; and L.lOO worth 
of land in the Isle of Man. — Douglas' Peerage, vol. ii. 

t When the second Earl of Lauderdale was created Duke, he chose for 
his second title that of Marquis of March, to indicate hit descent from the 
Barlfl of March and Dunbar. 



It fell upon the Lammas tide, 

When the muir-men win their hay, 
The doughiy Earl of Douglas rode 

Into England to catch a prey. — Old Ballad. 

For why ? sufficeth them to know 

The good old rule, the simple plan ; 
That they should take who have the power. 

And they should keep who can. — ^Woedsworth. 


George, the first of that name, and tenth Earl of Dunbar and 
March, when he succeeded his father in 1369, was twenty-nine or 
thirty years of age. From the vast possessions he inherited both 
from his father and heroic mother, he became one of the most 
powerful nobles of southern Scotland, the rival of the Douglasses, 
whom, the author of Caledonia observes, he surpassed in the 
antiquity of his house, and the splendour of his descent. 

On the death of David II. in 1370, William, Earl of Douglas, 
laid claim to the crown in right of Baliol and Cuming, in opposi- 
tion to Robert Stewart, who had been legally settled heir to the 
throne. But when he found that the Earls of Dunbar and Moray 
were not inclined to support this usurpation, he abandoned the 
enterprize ; they having declared for Stewart, who was descended 
from Robert Bruce by the female side.* 

In 1371, the Earl was present at Scone, when the Earl of Car- 
rick was proclaimed the heir of Robert ; and, in 1372, the Earls 
of Dunbar and Douglas, who were joint wardens of the marches, 
made an explanatory agreement with the Bishop of Durham and 
Henry Percy, in regard to the more regular payment of King 
David's ransom. 

* Holinshed's Chromicle, 


An affiray happened at this time, which marks the ungovern- 
able temper Gi the border chieftains, " with whom revenge was 
virtue." At a fair, held at Roxburgh in August, to which multi- 
tudes resorted from both kingdoms, one of the household servant* 
of the Earl of Dunbar was slain by the English. The Earl ap- 
plied to Lord Percy, warden of the opposite Marches, for redress ; 
but as no satisfactory answer was returAed, a cruel mode of reta- 
liation was adopted. On the return of Roxburgh fair, in the 
following year. Earl George and his brother the Earl of Moray, 
accompanied by their friends and followers, attacked the town by 
surprise, put the English to death, and applying the torch to the 
houses, carried off the spoil in triumph. The southerns immedi- 
ately foUowed up this inroad by ravagiBg the adjoining lands of 
Sir John Gordon, who promptly made repayment in kind. This 
led to a more serious invasion ; for to avenge these losses and in- 
sults. Lord Percy entered Scotland with 7000 men, and encamped 
near Dunse ; but his farther progress was happily stopt by a 
simple expedient adopted by the peasantry in the neighbourhood. 
They made use of a kind of rattle, composed of dried skins, dis- 
tended round ribs of wood, fiUed with pebbles, and fixed on long 
poles for the purpose of frightening the deer and wild cattle from 
their com. These bags, when vigorously shaken, made a hideous 
noise. A number of these machines being placed on the adjacent 
hills during the night startled the English horses, which, breaking 
away from their keepers, became the prey of the Scots. The 
army being awakened by this strange noise, and finding them- 
selves deprived both of their horses and beasts of burden, retreated 
on foot towards the Tweed with the greatest trepidation, leaving 
their baggage behind them.* 

Nothing material occurred during the few remaining years of 
the reign of Edward III. ; but, on the accession of Richard 11.^ 
the flame which the Borderers had roused at the tryst of Rox- 
burgh was destined to be rekindled. Percy, who was now created 

* Ridpath's Border Hiat. 

,55^ HISTORY OF DUKBAB. , [1380. 

Earl of Nortliiimberland, entered Scotland with 10,000 men ; 
and, for the space of three days, ravaged the lands of the Earl of 
Dunbar: — ^thus evincuig, that the two wardens, placed there for 
the peace of others, were continually engaged in broils of their 
'own. The respective governments were now compelled to inter- 
fere ; and commissioners were appointed for the purpose of quiet- 
ing these disorders, and making reparation for their mutual inju- 
ries. But on the night before the feast of St Andrew, about the 
time these negotiations should have begun, the castle of Berwick 
was suddenly surprised, by seven desperate fellows fix)m the Scot- 
tish border. This new breach of the peace was complained of to 
the Earl of Dunbar, who, however, disclaimed all knowledge of 
the transaction.* 

At the period of 1380, the Scots gained considerable advan- 
tages on the western borders, partly owing to a want of circum- 
spection in those who had the administration of affairs during the 
minority of their King. This probably induced John^ Duke of 
Lancaster, the king's uncle, and chief of the English regency, to 
come north at the head of a great army, vested with powers to 
treat with the King of Scotland, and to regulate Border differ- 
ences. Accordingly, the Earls of Dunbar and Douglas, and Lord 
Galloway, (then wardens of the Marches,) accompanied by the 
Bishops of Glasgow and Dunkeld, met the Duke at Berwick ; but 
arrangements were postponed till the 12th June, in order that the 
Earl of Carrick, eldest son of Robert IL, might be present at the 
conference. This congress again met at Abchester, near Ayton, 
on the days appointed ; and, on the 18th, a truce was concluded 
between the rival parties to continue till Candlemas 1384.t 

During the truce. Earl Greorge, with other Scottish nobles, per- 
formed a pilgrimage to the Ssdnt of Canterbury. J These pious 
rambles were as usual followed by bloody encounters ; for scarcely 
had the truce expired, when the Scots took the castle of Loch- 
maben. This turned the attention of the English to the security 

* Kidpath's Border Hut. f Ibid. } Chalmeni' Caledoniis li. 


of Roxburgh ; and^ while the Baron of Graystock, with his furni- 
ture and family, proceeded with a convoy of ammunition and pro- 
vision for its relief, the Earl of Dunbar " o'ertook the spoil- 
encumbered foe/' and, with his baggs^e^ led the baron captive to 
the castle of Dunbar.* 

In fulfilment of the treaty between the French and Scots in 
1385, John de Yienne, the French admiral, arrived in Scotland 
with 2000 auxiliaries and 50,000 livres. The money was distri- 
buted among the nobility ; and of this filthy lucre. Earl George 
pocketed 4000 livres, and the Earl of Douglas 7000.t 

Meanwhile, to disconcert the designs of the Scots and their 
allies, Richard II. entered Scotland at the head of a powerful 
army. The Scots, who knew that their strength lay in their 
secret ambushes, fled before the invaders ; and Richard, harassed 
by their flying parties, found himself surrounded by famine in a 
deserted land. After setting fire to Edinburgh and the beautiful 
abbey of Melrose, and committing other devastations, he retraced 
his steps homeward, like a destructive volcano rettinung to its 
inflammable source. 

During the English invasion, the Earls of Fife, Dunbar and 
Douglas, crossing the western border with an army of 50,000 
men, plundered and laid waste the countiy to the precincts of 
Newcastle. They also took the castles of Wark, Ford, and Corn- 
hill ; and were on the eve of proceeding to the reduction of Rox- 
burgh, when disputes arising between them and their auxiliaries 
respecting the right of conquest, they abandoned this enterprise. 

Hostilities were continued on the borders till the middle of the 
summer of the following year, when a truce was concluded at 
Billymyre in Berwickshire, between the Earls of Dunbar and 
Douglas on the one hand, and Lord Neville on the other. 

But these truces were, as usual, " like angel-visits, short and 
far between." The Scots, in 1387, made another successful in- 
road over the western inarch. At tins time, however, the Earl 

* Bidpatb's Border Hist. f Chalmen* Caledonia, ii. 

60 HI8T0BY OF DUNBAB. [1388. 


of Dunbar seems to have been at peace with his neighbours ;. for, 
towards the end of the year, he obtained a safe-conduct from the 
English king, who allowed him to enter his territories with a 
hundred horsemen in his train, and to remain for the space of 
six months.* 

In a parliament assembled by Bobert 11. at Aberdeen, in 1388, 
it was decreed, that a powerful army should invade the English 
borders to retaliate some ravages which had been lately commit- 
ted in Berwickshire. James, Earl of Douglas, with the Earl of 
Dunbar and his brother the Earl of Moray, invaded Northum- 
berland and Durham with 3000 men ; while the Earls of Fife 
and Strathem, (the king's sons,) entered Cumberland with a still 
more numerous host.t 

Douglas, having penetrated to Newcastle, encamped in the 
neighbourhood, where Henry Percy (sumamed Hotspur,) " whose 
spirit lent a fire^ even to the dullest peasant in his camp," lay in 
garrison. Percy, willing to shew some proof of his personal 
prowess, challenged Douglas to single combat. In the first en- 
eounter the English knight was unhorsed, and had been taken 
prisoner, but for the timely interference of the garrison. Douglas 
carried off Percy's lance with the pennon attached to it, and, 
waving it on high, swore that he would carry it home to Scotland 
as a trophy of victory. 

" That furiotrs Scot, 

The bloody Bouglas, whose well-labotirmg sword 

Had three tiines slain the appearance of the king." — Shakafpere* 

Burning with revenge, Hotspur and his brother Balph, imm 
diately collected an army thrice as numerous as the Scots, anc 
taking the benefit of a moonlight march, suddenly attacked then 
in their camp at Otterbum, This assault came like a thunders- 
bolt. The Earls of Douglas, Dunbar and Moray, who were sitting 
at supper in a tent, had scarcely time to reachtheir armour. $ 

* Ridpath's Border Hist. f Holinsh©d*8 Chron. 
t Heron's Hist, Scotland. 

1388.] DOtroLAs slain. 61 

The action, which was Icmg and doubtful, was fought with un* 
common gallantly on both sides. At one moment, the Scots 
giving way, the English had nearly penetrated to the Scottish 
standards, when Fatvck Hepburn,'^ with his son and company, 
coming up gallantly supported the falling battalions. The Earl 
of Dosgks now approaching, armed with a ponderous mace, and 
'accompanied only by his chaplam and two squires, rushed into 
the thickest ranks of the en^ny, and, after prodigies of valour, 
fell covered with wounds. He desired his followers, who had 
come to his rescue, to conceal his death, and avenge his fall. 
^' Idle like my forefathers," said the expiring chief, '^ in a field 
of battle, and not on a bed of sickness. Conceal my death, de- 
fend my standard, and avenge my falL It is an old prophecy, 
that a dead man shaU gain a field, and I hope it will be accom- 
plished this night." t 

The Scots having again raised the standard of their faUen com- 
i^ander, shouted, " A Douglas ! a Douglas !" and rushed on with 
redoubled vigour to the conflict. The fight continued with great 
obstinacy tiU the morning, when the Englidi were completely 

* Holinshed gives the following account of the origin of the Hepbums : 
In the reign of David II. a gentleman of that name, an Englishman^ on be- 
ing taken prisoner by the S^ts, was present while the Earl of Dunbar was 
exercising a young gelding. The animal proving restive, the Earl was in 
imminent danger of his life, when Hepburn leaping forwfluxl, boldly seized 
the bridle rein, and held the animal tiU the Earl aSghted. In reward for 
this essential service, the Earl gave Hepburn certain lands in Xiothian. 

This afterwards powerful f^nily in East Lothian, were usually in close 
alHance with the Homes of Berwickshire. The chief of the clan Hepbiun, 
was Lord of BaileB : a. family whioh terminated in the too famous Earl of 

f Border Minstrelsy, vol. i. 

One circumstance connected with the death of Douglas is too charac? 
ieristic of the times to be on^tted. His chaplain, a priest of the name of 
Limdie, had followed him to the war, and fought during the whole battle at 
his side. When his body was discovered, thui warrior-clerk was found be* 
striding his dying master, wielding his battle axe, and defending him from 
injury. He became afterwards Archdeacon of North Berwick. — ^Froissart's 
Chrxndcle, par Buchon, vol. xi. 

l^ A Douglas dead I his name has won the field."— Houx. 

63 HISirORT OF BTTKBAK. [1388« 

routed, and the two Perdes taken prisoners.* On this signal 
defeat, the Northumbrians retired ; but the Bishop of Durham, 
who had arrived too late at Newcastle to join the army of Percy, 
now advanced with fresh forces. The Sco^, who were encum- 
bered with their prisoners, were placed in imminent danger in the 
event of a rencounter with the enemj ; but still flushed with 
victory, they prepared to meet them, and, according to John 
Major, were encouraged with these memorable words of the Earl 
of Dunbar : — 

^^ We have this night, most noble Scots, sustained the chief 
heat and force of the battle ; we have overthrown the youth and 
strength of Northumberland, with their two princes ; for which 
there is no cause why we, after such honour obtained against 
those valiant princes^ should now fear this silly priest. Truly 
there remaineth nothing now for us, but that eveiy one of us ^ve 
but two strokes ; because the leader will fly at the third, and all 
the flock will follow : since tl^ie shepherd being stricken, the sheep 
will be dispersed. But if they shall so long contend with us, 
that, (as Qod most rightly forbid,) we chance to be overcome, 
then shall we most shamefully lose the gloiy, which we before 
have honourably gained by this night's travail But contraiy, if 
we be men, and put on us such valiant hearts, (as the preserva- 
tion of honour requireth,) we shall easily teach this mitred priest, 
that it had been far more honouf to him, safety to his, and most 
commodity to them all, that he had remained at home, with rods 
to correct unbridled and negligent scholars, than with swords to 
enter battle against grown and beaxd^d soldiers." 

Having thus spoken, the Scots who remained securely entrench- 
ed in their encampment, agreeably to a preconcerted plan, set up 
a loud shout with their favourite war-h^rns, which being echoed 
among the hills, made the English bellieve their army consider* 
ably strengthened, upon which the Bishop retired, without 


* Harding sajB, that Hotspur was taken at Bimbar : 

" Henry was taken there anone. 
To Dunbar led, for whom was made great moae.* 

1389.] BOBSBT IIL 63 

attempting the rescue of the Ferdes. This battle was fought in 
August 1388. 

It was fortunate f6r the Scots^ that the command of them now 
devolved on the Earl of Dunbar^ the most prudent general of his 
age. As his circumspection constantly predominated over his 
courage, he was almost always successful in his various battles. 
The Earl of Dunbar conducted his army with the prisoners to the 
the Tweed ; carrying the adored remains of the gallant Douglas to 
Melrose, the sacred cemeteiy of his valiant fEunily. 

Hostilites continued on the Borders till peace was concluded 
at Lelinghen between England and France, in 1389, in which 
jftie Scots were as usual included. Bobert, King of Scotland, died 
in the following year, and was sacceeded by his eldest son John 
Earl of Cariick, who, on aso^ndiog the throne, assumed the name 
of Bobert IIL But fte turbulent chie& of the Borders, not suffi- 
ciently checked by the supreme authority, and wanting their 
brutal occupution of war, plunged again into scenes of faction and 
sedition at home. 

It was probably the result of some quarrel with the adminis- 
tration, though the particulars are not known, that induced the 
two great border keroes, the Earls of Dunbar and Douglas to 
enter at this time into treaties with the King of England, for 
^ving and receiving aid ; and by which they were engaged to pay 
him certain services during their lives. The commission issued 
to negociate such treaties is stUl extant, though it is not known 
how it terminated. But the fiefs of the feudal nobility had long 
become hereditary in Europe ; so that a baron who had incurred 
the displeasure of his sovereign, no longer run the risk of being 
stript at random of his honours and possessions. 



To fair Lincluden's haly cells, 

Fu' dowie, 111 repair : 
There peace wi' gentle patience dwells^ 

Nae deadly feuds are tkere. 
With tears ill wither every chann. 

Like draps o' baleful yew. 
And wall the beauty that could harm 

A knicht sae brave and tme; — G. K. Shabfe, Esq. 


In 1399, the Earl of Dunbar, who now ranked among the first of 
the Scottish nobles, and was about to be united with the royal 
family by the ties of blood, was doomed to experience a cruel 
domestic affliction. His daughter, Elizabeth, had been betrothed 
to David, the young Duke of Eothsay, son and heir to the king. 
On the faith of the prince, who had given' a bond, under seal, to 
perform the espousals, the Earl had advanced a considerable por- 
tion of his daughter's matrimonial settlement. 

Archibald, Earl of Douglas, (sumamed the Grim,) jealous of the 
advantages which this marriage promised to bestow on a family, 
whose pre-eminence in the state already rivalled his own, pro- 
tested against the alliance, which had not obtained the sanction 
of the parliament ; and, in the meantime, by his intrigues at 
court, through the influence of the Duke of Albany, who entirely 
governed the affairs of his weak brother, he had the contract be- 
tween the Duke of Rothsay and Elizabeth Dunbar cancelled, and 
his own daughter substituted in her place. The marriage of 
David with Marjory Douglas, was therefore] celebrated in the 
church of Bothwell, in February 1400, while Elizabeth Dunhsix, 


the grandson of the heroic Agnes, was doomed to hide her dis- 
appointed loves in a cheerless cloister, and, like the Eloisa of 


** Warm in youth, to bid the world farewell.** 

Her noble parent, however, was not so easily appeased. He 
hastened into the presence of the king to demand reparation for 
his child ; or, at least, that he should be reimbursed for that part 
of her dowiy which had been advanced. These remonstrances 
were in vain; upon which the Earl of Dunbar withdrew from the 
feithless court, and entering into a revengeful correspondence with 
Henry IV., requested that Lord Fumeval or the Earl of West- 
moreland might be sent to the Marches, to confer with h\m on 
the subject. As a proof of the splendour of the baron's retinue, 
he further requested a safe-conduct, to endure whUe the feast of 
the nativity of St John the Baptist lasted, for '^ one hundred 
knights and squires, and servants, gudes, horse and harness, as 
well within walled town as without ;" and he goes on to say : 
" Excellent prince, since that I claim to be of kin to you ; and 
it, per adventure, be nought known on your part, I shew it to 
your lordship by this my letter, that if dame Alice de Beaumont 
was your grandam, dame Marjory Comyn, her fiill sidter, was my 
grandam on the other side, so that I am but of the fourth degree 
of kin to you, the which in old time was called near."* 

Henry invited Earl George to England, and appointed the Earl 
of Westmoreland and the Abbot of Alnwick to treat with hiTTi hi 
March, 1400. Leaving the castle of Dunbar in charge of hia 
nephew, Maitland of Lethington, he repaired to England in the 
month of July. By an indenture drawn up by Westmoreland, 
the Earl obliged himself to renounce all homage, fealty, and ser- 
vice to " Robert, pretended king of Scotland," before the 23d 
August current, in consideration of which, the king, within that' 

* Pinkerton's History of Scotland, vol. i., p. 449 .—This letter is dated, 
*' Castle of Dunbar, 18th February, 1400." It appears that the Latin and 
French languages were the court style of writing at this period, for the Earl 
observes : — " Marvel thee not, that I write my letters in English, for thatr 
ia more clear to my understanding than Latin or French.** 


6(y HISTOBY OP DtJNBAR. [1400. 

period, or two days after, engaged to grant by his letters patent, 
to Ea,rl George, his wife, and their heirs male, the castle and lord- 
ship of Somcrton in Lincolnshire, and an assignment on the cus- 
toms of St Botolph, to the amoimt of 500 merks a-year, and 
also the manor of Clippeston, in the forest of Sherwood, during 
his life. In retiim for this grant, he obliged himself to perform 
liege homage and fealty to the English monarch ; and if within 
fomteen days from that agreement Henry should enter Scotland, 
liis son Garvin was to be sent as an hostage to the court of Eng- 
land. It was further stipulated, that, from the date of this 
contract, the subjects of the King of England should support hia 
lordship in the hour of need ; and, in like manner, that they should 
be supported by him, and be received into his castle of Dunbar or 
other fortresses ; and, on the other hand, that the men of the 
Earl of Dunbar should be sent, when necessary, to supply the 
garrisons of the castles of the English king in Scotland, and be 
received and supported as loyal subjects.* 

Robert, who was not ignorant of these transaction, despatched 
young Douglas to Dunbar ; and !Maitland surrendered the castle 
on the first summons. This second injury was irreparable. The 
Earl on his return, finding his principal place of strength in the 
hands of the son of his rival, vrithdrew into England with his 
wife, family, and followers, meditating scenes of deep revolt and 

The Scottish king, who now dreaded the intrigues of the injured 
baron, despatched a herald with letters of forgiveness ; wherein 
he not only offered pardon for past offences, but redress for the 
wrongs he had sustained. Finding this offer spumed, he next 
demanded the English prince to send the rebel out of his domi- 
nions ; but Henry, sensible of his lordship's importance, rejected 
these remonstrances, and prepared for war.t 

In 1401, the Earl of Dunbar and the celebrated Hotspur en- 
tered Lothian by way of Pople, at the head of the Northumbrian 
yeojianry ; and, advancing to the borders of the Tyne, laid siege 

• Ridpath's Border Hist. f Holinshed's Chronicle. 


1402;] HENRY rv. invabes Scotland. ^ 

to the castle of Hailes, wliich sucxjessfully sustained their attack. 
Burning the villages of Hailes, Traprene, and Merkhill, they 
encamped at (east) Linton and Preston (kirk), on the northern 
side of the river,* Young Douglas having mustered his warriors 
at Edinburgh, went in pursuit of the invaders, while they, alarmed 
at the approach of superior numbers, made a precipitate retreat 
to Cockbunispath, and left their baggage and booty behind them. 
The Scots pursued them to the gates of Berwick, made a great 
slaughter amongst the fugitives, and brought away the spear and 
banner of Sir Thomas Talbot as a trophy of victory, f 

In 1402, Henry was so vrcll pleased with the Earl of Dunbar's 
conduct in the late inroad, that he gave orders to the Avardens of 
the English marches to admit Earl George, his men, and subjects, 
into the castles, ibi-tres;:ies, and walled towns in England ; and, 
in the spring of this year, a pension of £400 was granted him 
during the continuance of the war with Scotland, on condition 
that he provided twelve men at arms, and twenty archers with 
horses, to serve against Eobert. The Earl's son Gawin, was also 
received into the service of the English monarch, with a pension 
of L.40 per annum. 

Shortly after, Henry invaded Scotland with a powerful army, 
but behaved with great clemency to the inhabitants. He seemed 
rather inclined to impress them with a terror of his power than 
to make them feel the force of his arms. While at Haddington 
apartments were assigned him in the Nunnery, and in return he 
bounteously rewarded the holy sisterhood, and caused their pre- 
cincts to be respected. 

Those who wept over the fate of Elizabeth Dunbar will now 
listen to the silent but sure retribution of heaven. Kothsay, the 
young and profligate Rothsay ! also fell a prey to the perfidy of 
his uncle. Having committed some youthful indiscretion, his 
father permitted the Duke of Albany to jjlace him in confinement. 
This monster, accompanied by young Douglas, seized the prince 
when on his way to St Andrews, and, with a strong guard, drag- 

♦ Holinched's Chronicle, f Chalmers' Caledonia; ii.-^Heron's Eist. 

68 filStORT Ot DUKBAIL [1402* 

P^0^^^0^ ^ m0m0'*^m 

ged him to the tower of Falkland* He was here lodged in a 
small chamber, under the care of two wretches, who were bribed 
to report that he died of dysentery ; but the opinion prevailed, 
that he was starved to death at the instigation of his ambitious 
uncle. For some time a woman found means to convey meal to 
the prisoner through a crevice in the floor ; while another, by- 
means of a reed, fed him with milk from her breasts ; but they 
were both discovered and despatched* Thus destitute of all sus- 
tenance, he is said to have gnawed his own fingers, and was lefb 
in this horrible manner to perish by hunger * 

The Earl of Dunbar did not remain inactive ; but, in conjunc- 
tion with Lord Percy, continually harassed the Scottish borders. 
Archibald, Earl of Douglas, who had now the direction of military 
aflfeirs in that quarter, sent forth parties, imder different leaders, 
to repel and retaliate these wasteful inroads. The first of these 
enterprises was conducted by Thomas Halyburton of Dirleton, 
who, after having ravaged the country near Bamburgh, returned 
laden with spoil* Patrick Hepburn, younger of Hailes, conducted 
the next inroad, but was not so fortunate ; for, having penetrated 
farther into England, and acquired great booty, he was suddenly 
attacked at West Nisbet, in Berwickshire, by the Earl of Dunbar, 
who lay in wait with a body of Northumbrians. Victory was 
awhile doubtful; but George Dunbar, coming to his father's 
assistance with a troop of thirty horses, determined it in favour 
of the latter. Hepburn and some of his followers were slain; 
while John and Thomas Halyburton, John and William Cockbum, 
and Eobert Lauder of the Bass, with many others, were taken 

Douglas, who now held the castles of Dunbar and Edinburgh, 
and had the military force of the Borders at his command, was 
not slow to avenge this disaster. About the middle of August, 
he invaded England with an army of ten or twelve thousand men, 
Mid penetrated to Newcastle. Apprised of this movement, the 

* HoUnBhed's Chronicle.. 



Earls of Dunbar and Novthumberland^ vnth. Hotspur and other 
barons and knights, assembled their forces, and met Douglas 
about a mile from Wooler, posted on the hill of Halidon. With 
difficulty the Earl of Dunbar prevented the impetuous Hotspur 
from rushing, at the head of his spearmen, on the enemy. Agree- 
ably to the counsel of the circumspect Earl, the English archers 
with their longbows began to gall the Scots at a distance, while 
the latter, whose bows were short, and within the range of the 
enemy, were annoyed with terrible effect. The Scottish chief. 
Sir John Swinton, unable longer to bear this passive slaughter, 
called upon his fellow soldiers to follow him down the declivity 
against the enemy. At that moment, Adam Gordon of Gordon 
hitherto the mortal foe of Swinton, kneeling before his adversaiy, ' 
entreated forgiveness, and, with sympathetic enthusiasm, requested 
the honour of knighthood fjN>m his hands. After this extraordi- 
nary reconciliation, the two knights, with an hundred men, closed 
in combat with the English, but were speedily destroyed, and the 
Scots completely routed. The fugitives were pursued to the 
Tweed, and many ignorant of the fords were drowned ; while 
Douglas, who had lost an eye, was taken prisoner.* 

The Earl of Dunbar and Lord Percy, wishing to follow up 
their successes, immediately assaulted the castle of Cocklaw in 
Teviotdale; but the gallant garrison effectually resisted their 
attempts, and obtained a truce of fifty days.t 

After the battle of Halidon, in 1403, Henry addressed con- 
gratulary letters to the Earl of Dunbar, the Percies, and others • 
and particularly insisted that they should not ransom or dismiss 
any of their prisoners without his express permission. This pro- 
hibition provoked a resentment which had been gathering be- 
twixt the Percies and their sovereign, Miat now broke out into 
open rebellion, under the pretence of advancing Mortimer, the 
English Earl of March, to the throne j while the Earl of Douglas 
on condition of obtaining his liberty and the town of Berwick, 
joined the rebel corps. 

* Bidpath's Border HH— Heron*» Scot, f Holinihed* 


?0 HISTOEY OP DU17BAS. ' [1405. 

^^%>^ '<^p»'VV'N<'<tr%i'^y^^ 

Chagriiied at seeing the sons of his rivals, Douglas and Albany 
so soon released, the Earl of Dunbar forsook the rebellious chiefe, 
and fied to the court of Homy. He was next engaged at the 
battle of Shrewsbury, where Hotspur was slain, and the unfor* 
tunate Douglas figain taken prisoner. As these successes of the 
king were, in a great measure, attributed to the Earl of Dunbar 
and his son, Henry bestowed on them ample rewards."^*' 

Earl George now supplicated the English parliament to restore 
hini his estates in the event of their being conquered ; but though 
the army penetrated to Innerwick, in East Lothian, they made 
little progress iji subduing the earldom of March and Dunbar.t 

The Earl of Dunbar, who had materially assisted in quashing 
the rebellion of the Percies at Shrewsbury, now incurred the ven- 
geance of the followers of that powerful family. In a letter from 
the Countess of Dunbar to Henry IV. she laments the misfortunes 
her family had endured since they left Scotland ; and although 
surrounded by the pestilence, they were afraid to retire to the 
castle of Colbrandspath on account of the Northunribrians.i 

In 1405, while Lord George Dunbar held the castle of Col- 
brandspath as lieutenant, Christal, a shipmaster, and seven 
jnarincs, when employed in providing victuals for the garrison, 
were attacked by two officers with an armed force, from the gar- 
rison of Berwick, who seized their ships, cargoes, and men, and 
carried them thither. § An order from the king, (dated Pomfret 

♦ Ridpath's Border Hist. — Holinshed. f Chalmers* Cal. toI. ii. 

I This letter was written in French. After a prefatory address of the 
most fulsome adulation, the Countess states tlie distress she and her Lord 
Baron lay imder from the debt they had incuiTed since they were expelled 
from their country ; that the plague was so prevalent and mortal, that she 
looked upon nothing but for death in its most fearful sha]ies ; that by no 
treaty could they gain Ubertjtfrom their enemies to retire to Colbrandespatii 
tiU the mortality ceased ; that, since the death of ^ir Jlenry Percy, they 
were much annoyed by the malice shewn to them by his followers, while 
the retainers of the Earl of Douglas equally harassed them on the other 
side, by maldng prisoners of their people ; and she concludes by requesting 
Hcmy might order such remedy as the bearer would suggest by word of 
mouth. — Pinkerton's Scot. vol. i. p. 450. 

§ Ridpath's Border Hist» 


Castle, August 22nd,) commands John Topcliff, sergeant-at-arms, 
to compel the offenders to make restitution for the injury they 
had committed.* 

In 1407, the Earl of Dunbar had a dispute with the Dean and 
Chapter of Lincoln about tithes. This occasioned the murder of 
John Bleswell at Nanneby, by a party of men ; for which his 
lordship obtained a pardon from Henry, dated May 10th. 

But Earl George began once more to sigh for the " shade of 
the elm, and the sound of the reed," in his native land. Through 
the mediation of Walter Halyburton of Dirleton, who was married 
to the governor's daughter, a reconciliation was effected in 1409 ; 
yet Douglas would not consent to his lordship's restoration, till 
he had obtained the castle of Lochmaben and the lordship of 
Annandale, in lieu of the castle of Dunbar and earldom of March, 
which he then possessed. Albany, accordingly, granted a charter' 
of Lochmaben and Annandale to Douglas and his heirs male ; 
which failing, the estates were to revert to George and his suc- 
cessors. The Earl returned to Scotland, and, t)n the 8th June," 
witnessed a charter of Halyburton's at Dirleton. 

Hostilities continuing, in 1410, Patrick, second son of the Earl 
of Dunbar, with a hundred brave followers, took Fast Castle, and 
captured Thomas Holden, the governor, who had long infested the 
country bj'- Ids pillaging excursions. Shortly after this affair, 
Gawin Dunbar, in conjunction with William Douglas of Drum- 
lanrig, levelled the bridge of Hoxburgh, and plundered and burnt 
the town.* 

In 1411, the Earls of Dunbar and Douglas, and seven others,' 
were appointed to meet the English commissioners at Hauden- 
stauk, to negociate a truce ; and, m 1414, we find the son of the 
former, Sir Patrick Dunbar of Beil, among the commissioners who 
concluded a further treaty of peace, in which France was includ- 
ed ; and in an armistice with the latter country in the following 
year, the Earl of Dunbar, with the Lords of Man and of the Isles, 
are comprehended as the allies of that power. 

* ChaJmers' Caledonia; vol. u. — Holinshed's Ghron, vol. ii. 


In 1417, the Scots, under the Duke of Albany, having defeated 
a body of the English in the neighbourhood of Boxburgh, the go^ 
Temor pursued his success ; but as an immense army was ap« 
proaching, the Earls of Dunbar and Douglas prevailed on him 
to retreat ; and the English did not think it prudent to follow. 

At this period, Sir Eobert Umfranville, governor of Berwick, 
made great devastations on the eastern marches, and burnt the 
market-town of Dunbar, and other places on the Borders ; but 
" the aged hero comes forth on his staff, and his grey hairs glitter 
in the beam," — a contagious fevered closed the chequered life of 
George, Earl of Dunbar, at the advanced age of eighty-two. 

By Christian, daughter of Sir William Seton of Seton, he had 
six sons and two daughters, as follows : Qeorge eleventh Earl of 
Dunbar and March ; Gawin, Colin, Patrick Dunbar of Beil,* 
John, Sir David Dunbar of Cockbum ;f also Lady Elizabeth, 
who was betrothed to the Duke of Bothsay ; and Lady Janet, 
married first to John, Lord Seton, and next to Sir Adam John- 
ston of Johnston. 

* Sir Patrick Dunbar of Beil was taken prisoner at the battle of Hali- 
don. He was a hostage for James I. in England, (26th July 1426,) when 
a safe-conduct was granted to his wife and rocor servants to repair thither. 
He was ambassador with his brother, Geoi^, to England, in 1429. Two 
charters of George de Dunbar, Barl of March, to Patrick Dunbar of Beil, 
knight, of several lands in Berwickshire, were confirmed, 24th April 1462, 
by James II. His son, Hugh Dunbar, sold the lands of Beil, in East Loth- 
ian, and the Mill of Mersington, in Berwickshire, to Bobert Lauder o£ 
Edrington, 18th September, 14d9.-~DougW Peerage, vol. ii. 

f Sir David Dunbar of Cockbum was the first who came to the assist- 
ance of James I. when attacked by his assassins in 1437. A charter was 
granted 7th February 1425-6, ratifying the donation, which the deceased 
George Dunbar, Earl of March, and George Dunbar, now Earl of March, 
made to David Dunbar, son of the said deceased Geotge, of the lands of 
Cockbum and Brighame. i^is only daughter, MarioUi^ married AlozandeTy 
oeoond Earl of Crawford, — Douglas* Peerage; voL ii« 



Tis no land of thine, 
Thy place is fill'd, thy sceptre wrung from thee, 
Thy balm washt off ^herewith thou wast anointed ; 
No bending knee will call thee Caesar now, 
No humble suitors press to speak for right : 
No, not a n^ui oomes for redress to thee. 

King Henby VI. 



George, eleventh earl of Dunbar and March,* succeeded hiai 
father about the mature age of fifty. He was lieutenant of the 
castle of Cockbumspath, as already noticed, in 1405, and was 
engaged in various public transactions during the last years of 
his father's life. In 1390, he obtained from Kobert II. a grant 
of his ward-relief and marriage for the earldom of March and 
lordship of Annandale ; and he acted as a commissioner for 
liberating Murdac, son of the regent Albany, in 1411 and 1415.t 

In 1427, the Earls of Dunbar and Douglas obtained a truce 
from Henry in London for two years, which Umfranville had 

The Scots, on the death of Eobert, Duke of Albany, began to 
turn their wishes to their captive prince, who was still retained 
in England ; upon which, the Earl of Dunbar and his brother 
accompanied the embassy sent to negotiate the liberation of the 
king. As the regent of Scotland earnestly seconded this object, 
it was soon concluded; and James I., on thfe stipulation of 
L.40,000, was restored to the throne of his ancestors. { 

* He was designed Earl of March and Dunbar, Lord Annandale and 
Man ; aM^ hk charter, penes Comitem de Mortomi, to the abbacy of Mel- 
rose. — Niabet^s Heraldry. 

t Dougltw* Peer. ii. — Chal. Cal. ii. + Hume's Eng. 

3 K 


In 1424, Earl George was one of the conservators of the 
seven-year's truce, and had the honour to meet the king and his 
young consort at Durham on their return to Scotland."^ He 
was also present at the coronation at Scone, on the 21st May ; 
and, with several eminent nobles, was knighted on that joyous 

But clouds were gathering over the family of Dunbar which 
were never to be dispelled. In 1425, the Earls of Dunbar and 
Douglas, with the Duke of Albany and twenty other barons, 
were suddenly arrested and placed in confinement. The cause 
of this decisive measure is thus explicitly stated : — 

During James's captivity in England, the rapacity of the 
Oovemor's family and other nobles, who had shared the spoils of 
the crown, had nearly alienated the royal domains ; and when 
the noisy acclamations that welcomed the prince's return home 
began to subside, he foimd himself on the throne of an im- 
poverished nation. It was in vain that taxes were levied to 
defray the national expenditure, while the resources of the 
countiy were locked up and monopolized by a corrupt adminis- 
tration. Matters having therefore reached this neqessitous 
crisis, a parliament, assembled at Perth, adopted this bold and 
e£fective measure. Albany and his sons, with his father-in-law, 
the Earl of Lennox, were consigned to the axe of the executioner, 
while the Earl of Dunbar, and most of the other barons, whose 
guilt was less apparent, were set at liberty.;}: 

The royal confidence being restored, the Earl of Dunbar was 
employed in negotiating temporary truces with England ; and 
officiated as sponsor for James II. at Holyroodhouse, October 

In 1435, the Earl of Dunbar and his son Patrick visited 
England ; and on the 25th Januaiy ensuing, they had a safe- 
conduct granted them, to continue in force for a year. The 

* Eidpath's Bord. Hist, f Chal. Cal. ii. 
i Holinshed's Chron. — Heron's Scot. § Chal. Cal. ii. 


motive of this yisit to the English court is not known 3 but it 
was highly imprudent. The slumbering jealousies of James, who 
had already struck a blow at the power of the barons, were 
easily awakened ; and he at length formed the bold plan of 
seizing the estates and fortresses of a family which for ages had 
.been the most powerful and most opulent on the Scottish bor- 
ders. The Earl of Dunbar was arrested and imprisoned in th6 
castle of Edinburgh, while the Earl of Angus, Chancellor 
.Chrichton, and Adam Hepburn of Hailes, were despatched 
with letters to the keeper of the castle of Dimbar, who imme- 
diately surrendered it to the king's authority, and Hepburn was 
left constable of this important fortress. 

In a parliament assembled at Perth, on the 10th January 
1434^, George was accused, not for any treason committed by 
himself, but for holding his earldom and estates, which had been 
forfeited by his father's tergiversation. " In vain did he plead," 
says Kobert Douglas, *' that his father had been pardoned and 
restored by Albany ; " it was answered, " that a forfeiture in- 
curred for treason could not be pardoned by a regent ; " and the 
parliament, in compliance with this reasoning, having heard Sir 
George Dunbar, knight, on his part, adjudged, " that, in conse- 
quence of the attainder of George de Dunbar, formerly Earl of 
March and Lord of Dunbar, every right both of property and 
possession in all and each of those estates in the earldom of 
March and lordship of Dunbar, and all other lands which he held 
of our said lord the King, with all and each of their appurten- 
ances, did and does exclusively belong and appertaiil to our lord 
the King." Thus it was found that the earldom and estates of 
the Earl of Dunbar were now vested in the crown. 

These hardh proceedings may safely be attributed to an envious 
ministry. James could not soon forget the interest the Earl of 
Dunbar had taken in his liberation ; and according to Fordun, 
he created him Earl of Buchan, as some atonement for this cruel 
decision ; or, as it was otherwise said, he had an assignment on 
the earldom of Buchan, which being found inadequate, on the 

76 HISTORY OF DUNBAlt. [\4tH7. 

death of James, 400 merks yearly were granted out of his an- 
cient inheritance till James 11. came to the crown. 

There was little policy in thus removing this illustrious noble- 
man from the borders. He was certainly a severe check on the 
the Douglasses, who seem to have contributed to his overthrow, 
and whose family soon proved an ungovernable burden to the 

After this reverse, the earl and his son retired with their 
families to England, to hide their former splendour in ebscurity* 
By a charter granted in 1457, it appears that Patrick Dunbar, 
son of George, Earl of March, possessed the lands and barony of 
Kilconquhar, in Fife, which being held under the bishop of St 
Andrews, were not involved in the forfeiture to the king. 

The Earl of Dunbar is supposed to have been twice married. 
By his first wife, Beatrix, he had a son, the before-mentioned 
Patrick ; and, in 1421, he obtained a dispensation for his espou- 
sals with Halysie, daughter of the late William de Haya, knight. 
Lord of Vhestyr, permitting him to marry) notwithstanding 
they were related in the fourth degree of consanguinity, and 
Beatrix, his first wife, was in the second degree of consanguinity 
to this lady. But whether this last marriage took place is un- 
certain, as Alicia, daughter of Sir WiQiam Hay of Yester, mar- 
ried Sir Gilbert Hay of Errol. 

James I. was destined to fall the victim of those nobles who 
had planned the destruction of this potent family. On the 
nigjit of the 21st February, Stewart and Graham, with seven of 
their accomplices, forced their way into the king's apartment in 
his favourite Carthusian monastery at Perth. Having slain 
Straiton, the only domestic in waiting, they burst into James's 
chamber, while he sat at supper, and assassinated him before 
the queen. Her majesty, who had vainly interposed herself to 
the murderers' daggers, was wounded in the scuffle. Sir David 
Dunbar (brother to the earl), on receiving intelligence, hastened 
from the town, and in his attempt to rescue the king, and in- 

14S1J EARL Ot" DUNBAR* 71 

tercept the retreat of the assassins, he was severely wounded in 
the arm, and left for dead on the floor. 

The last exploit we have to record of this now subdued family 
happened in 1446 ; when Jane Seymour, the que^en-mother, 
flying during the tumult raised by the barons to Dunbar Castle, 
now held by Sir Patridk Hepburn, Archibald Dunbar took the 
castle of Hailes, and put the garrison to the sword.* 

Patrick Dunbar, son and heir of the last Earl of Dunbar, pos- 
sessed the fearony of Kilconquhar in Fife. His charter runs 
thus: — "Patricii Dunbar, filii et herede Georgii Comitis de 
March, terrarum baronise de Kilconquhar, cirta annum 1457." 
These lands were enjoyed by his posterity for several generations, 
till the last of them dying in the reign of Queen Mary, left their 
inemory but a name, and their grandeur but a dream. 

* Lindsay's Chroh. 

78 mSTOBT OF DUHBAB. [1471. 


Ah me ! I see the ruin of m j house ; 
The tiger now hath seized the gentle hind. 
Insulting tyranny b^;ins to jut 
Upon the innocent and awless throne. 




For some time, the estates of Dunbar and March, now vested 
in the crown, were held by the Homes and Hepbums conjunctly, 
as stewards. In 1448, the Earl of Northumberland invaded 
the eastern borders, and burnt and ravaged Dunbar.* On the 
death of the queen-mother, Hepburn delivered up the castle to 
the king.t 

The lordship of Dunbar was bestowed by James IL on his 
«econd son, Alexander, Duke of Albany, in his infancy. After 
the marriage of James III. in 1471, the duke, his brother, is in- 
troduced to us, by the Chronicler of Pitscottie, " as one well- 
proportioned in all his members ; yet he was broad-faced, red- 
nosed, great-eared, and of very awful countenance, when he 
pleased to shew himself to his unfriends." This amiable person- 
age was also " very wise and manly," and loved nothing so well 
AS able men and good horses ; '^ and was held in such esti- 
mation by the lords and barons of Scotland, that they durst 
never rebel against the king, so long as he rang in peace with 
his brother." To his grace was awarded the castle of Dunbar, 
with the living pertaining thereto ; he was also appointed cap- 
tain of Berwick, and lieutenant of the eastern borders. 

Albany, as a natural consequence; soon incurred the displea* 

* Lindsay of Pitscottie. f Holinshed. 

1471.] EABL OP MAR. 79 

fiuro of Lord Home, who had enjoyed the chamberlainship of 
Dunbar and March during the reign of James 11. The duke, 
heedless of the pretensions of his lordship, drew the profits and 
duties of these lands himself, which exasperated Home so much 
that he joined in league with the Hepburns; but as Albany 
resided in the castle of Dunbar, and had the men of the eastern 
marches at his oommand, the border chieftains were unsuccessful 
in their opposition. Finding their combined forces could not 
thwart the duke, they devised means to ruin him in the opinion 
of the king. One Cochran, an architect, had at this time gained 
a wonderful ascendency over the mind of James. To this fa- 
Tourite the injured party addressed themselves ; and as the duke, 
was no Less odious to this upstart than to the barons of the 
Merse, he soon found means to poison the mind of his majesty 
against his brother. The powers of darkness were conjured up 
to aid in this work of iniquity, and a witch being ushered into 
the royal presence, predicted that " the king should be suddenly 
^slain by one of the nearest of his kin ! " * James's suspicions 
were now excited. The Earl of Mar was arrested, and com^ 
mitted to Craig Millar Castle, where after being accused of prac^ 
tising sorcery against the king's life, he was brought to Edin- 
burgh, and bled to death ; while Albany, who was imprisoned 
in Edinburgh Castle, by a dangerous stratagem, and with great 
diSLculty, effected his escape to the castle of Dunbar ;t from 

* More than once a reconeiliation was patched up between them ; and on 
one of these occasions, James HI. having mounted a hackney to ride from 
the castle to Holyrood Abbey, refused to move on till his brother had 
mounted behind him, when they rode on the same horse down the High 
Street of the metropolis, an edifying spectacle of fraternal concord, which, 
however, did not long remain unbroken. — ^Provincial Ant. ii. 

*(* A ooil of ropes was conveyed to the duke in a cask of wine, and a 
ietter, wamixig him to effect his escape, inclosed within a cake of wax; 
Having plied the captain, whom he had engaged in a game at dice, and his 
Attendants with wine, he suddenly slew him, and the rest shared the same 
fate. The keys, which were at the officer's belt, supplied the duke with 
the means of escaping to the battlements, while the sheets on his bed sup- 
plied the means of lengthening the rope, with which he descended without 
injury, and reached the sea-coast, where a skiff was ready to receive him. 

^ I 


whence he proceeded to France, where he married the Dachess 
of Bouillon, and remained there till 1482. 

Meanwhile, the king being informed of the duke's escape, sent 
Lord Evandale, then chancellor, to besiege Dunbar. In a short 
but warm contest, three knights were slain. The lords of Luss 
and Oaigiewallace, and Sir William Shaw of Sauchie, fell by 
the shot of the same gun, while John Kamsay was killed by a 
stone thrown from the battlements. The garrison finding it 
impracticable to resist the royal authority, made their escape by 
sea, bearing the principal articles with them.* Amongst these 
were Home of Polwarth, Andrew Jackson, David Chimside, and 
others, who by their names seem to have belonged to the 
Merse or East Lothian, and who were declared forfeited by par- 
liament in 1480. This is supposed to be the first time artiUery 
was used against the castle of Dunbar. 

In 1482, Albany left Fmnce for England, and entering into a 
a league with the English monarch, he proceeded to Scotland, 
and took possession of Berwick. A peace was now concluded 
between the sister kingdoms, when he was once more restored to 
his Scottish possessions. This was however of short duration. 
Under pretence that an attempt had been made to take away his 
life by poison, he again fled to the castle of Dunbar. On this 
occasion, the Earls of Angus, Buchan, and others, followed the 
fortunes of the duke, when the king alarmed, shut himself up in 
the castle of Edinburgh, and raised an army to lay siege to 
Dunbar. Albany, terrified into submission, delivered up the 
castle to the English, and sheltered himself under the protec- 
tion of Edward, till again departing to France, he was slain in a 
tilting match by the Duke of Orleans. 

In 1484, the castle was in the hands of the EngUsL Some 
partial successes of James induced Kichard, who was harassed by 
his rebellious subjects at home, to negotiate a peace; but as 
Berwick was in possession of the enemy, Dunbar, which was of 
material benefit to the Scots, as the key of the eastern marchesj 

* Holinshed's Chron, 

1466.] snooB ov dttkbab. 81 

fiumished an insurmountable obstade to any peaceable arrange- 
ment. It was therefore found necessary, on the plenipotenti- 
aries meeting in Nottingham in September, that the castle of 
Dunbar should form a separate article in the treaty, viz.: — 

** Ute castle of Dunbar, with the bounds belonging to it, was 
to enjoy an trndisturbed exemption from war for the certain term 
of six months, affcer the commencement of the general truce ; — 
^d this tmcQ with the castle was to continue during the remain- 
der of tiw three years* truce, if the king of Scotland did not 
notify to the king of England, six weeks affcer its commence- 
menty that it was not his wish that it should be comprehended 
longer thiin six months. Certifying, that should hostilities com- 
mence after that period, they should be wholly confined to the 
attack and defence of that fortress, and should in no other re^ 
spect infringe the peace concluded between the kingdoms." * 

It is with no surprise, therefore, that we behold the Scottish 
parliament, in February 1485, advisb the king to besiege the 
castle of Dunbar. By the first of May, all the men on the south 
dde of the Forth, capable of bearing arms, were summoned to 
repair to Dunbar, properly accoutred, and furnished with provi- 
cdons for twenty days ; while by the 18th of the same month, 
those OBi the north of the same river were to relieve their coun- 
larymen, and to share in the labour and glory of the enterprise.t 
Notwithstanding this parade, nothing hostile was attempted 
during the life of Eichard III., who continued to amuse James 
with fiur promises, in reply to repeated solicitations for the re- 
storation of this important fortress. But when "the weight of 
Bichard's guilt had crushed him on the bloody field of Bosworth," 
James, taking advantage of the commotion which placed Henry, 
Earl of Richmond, on the throne, laid siege to Dunbar in winter, 
and compelled the garrison to surrender. This, however, did 
tiot break the truce, as at this period both monarchs had strong 
reasona to cultivate a good understanding with each other. 

TbB XQiltaal hatred betwixt James and his nobles increasing, 

* Kidpath'8 Bord. Hist. f IWd. * 

^ I 


at length broke out into open rebellion. He then resolved ta 
annex unalienably to the crown the lands forfeited by the Duke 
of Albany ; and this was accomplished by act of parliament, <m 
the 1st October 1487. These lands were the lordship and earl^ 
dom of March, the baronies of Dunbar and Colbrandspath, with 
the castle of Dunbar, and tower and fortalice of Colbrandspath, 
and the lordship of Annandale, with the castle of Lochmaben.* 
These dependencies, particularly the castles of Dunbar and Loch- 
maben, and the tower and fortress of Cockbumspath, were vested 
in the king ; but any gift of them made by* him or his fiuoces- 
sors, without the consent of parliament, was to be considered 
revocable. The representatives of the burghs alone appear to 
have sanctioned this arrangement. Indeed, a project which 
threatened the introduction of severer measures than those to 
which the border chie& had been accustomed, could not fail to 
excite alarm and furious resentment ; and immediately the 
southern counties, instigated by the llomes and the Hepbums,. 
were once more in array against the king. 

The rebels, to give a colour to their proceedings, placed the 
Duke of Bothsay, the eldest son of James, at their head ; and 
their first object was to retake the castle of Dunbar. This was 
speedily effected. They pursued the king to Stirling ; a party 
under the Lords Angus and Home decided the event; the 
royalists were routed, and their monarch slain. 

Dunbar Castle was now in possession of the rebellious lords. 
In 1490, the English, taking advantage of these civil commo- 
tions, entered the Frith of Forth with five vessels, and did con- 
siderable damage to the m^cantile shipping. James, irritated 
by this indignity, could not prevail upon any masters of vessels 
to proceed against the enemy, till they applied to Sir Andrew 
Wood of Largo, whom they incited to the enterprise by lai^ge 
supplies of men and artillery, and with promises of royal favour 
and reward. Wood proceeded with liis two ship, the Flower 
and the Yellow Carvel, against the English, who also were well 

* Douglas' Peer. ii. 

1490.] SEA FIGHT. 8 


fiinuBhed with artillery, and overtaking them opposite Dunbai* 
Castle, a sanguinary conflict ensued. The Scottish admiral*s 
courage and naval skill secured the victory. The five English 
ships were taken and brought to Leith ; and Wood was amply 
rewarded by his sovereign and the applause of his country. Thi3 
incident shews us the insignificance, rather than the want of 
bravery, of the Scottish navy at this period, when Wood had to 
be bribed into the service. 

Henry VII., displeased at the disgrace inflicted on his flag by 
a nation unknown in the annals of the sea, offered an yearly 
jBUm to any commander who should capture Wood. 'Stephen 
Bull, an English officer, engaged to take the Scottish hero dead 
or alive, and with three ships, strongly garnished for war, pro- 
ceeded to the Forth. He anchored behind the Isle of May, and 
waited the return of Wood, who had been escorting some ves- 
sels to Flanders. On the morning of the 10th August, he d(h 
€cried two vessels under sail near St Abb's Head, which proved 
to be those of the Scottish admiral. Bull distributed wine 
amongst his men to inspire their courage, while Wood, regard- 
less of superior numbers, prepared for the attack. "These, my 
lads," he exclaimed, " are the foes who expect to convey us in 
bonds to the English king ; but, by your courage, and the help 
of God, they shall faU. Charge, gunners: let the cross-bows be 
teady ; have the lime-pots and fire-balls to the tops ; two-handed 
swords to the forerooms. Be stout, be diligent, for your own 
flakes, and for the honour of the realm." Wine was then dealt 
out, and the ships resounded with acclamations. The sun 
rising above the horison, shone full upon the English vessels, 
and displayed their magnitude to the Scots. Wood, by a skilful 
manoeuvre, attained the windward of the enemy, and engaging in 
cloee combat, the battle raged undecided till the shades of night 
•p&,Tted the combatants. Next day at dawn, the trumpets 
Bounded to arms, when the conflict was renewed with such 
obstinacy, that the neglected vessels were allowed to drive 
before an- ebb-tide and south wind, till they were opposite the 


Tay. At length the valour of the Scots prevailed, and the thxeo 
English ships were captured. 

When the intestine commotions which raged on the aocessicMi 
of James lY. began to subside, intervals of peace Reamed upoa 
the borders, and truces were made and violated, like " eaxmy 
brightnesses breaking through '' the pauses of the storzo. 

On the marriage of the Princess Margaret of England with the 
King of Scotland in 1503, the earldom of Dunbar and lordship 
of Cockbumspath, with their dependencies, lying in the con* 
stabulaiy of Haddington, were assigned as the jointure of th^ 
young queei^; and Bobert Sherbum, dean of St Paul's, h&r 
majesty's attorney, obtained seisin for the same from the sheriff 
of EdinburgL '^ 26th May 1503, James Logan, the sheriff of 
Edinburgh, went * ad crucem fori,' to the market-cross of Dunr 
bar ; and there personally gave* seisin and possession <sorporal, of 
the earldom of Dunbar, and lordship of Cowbumspecht, to th^ 
queen's attorney, in the presence of the bailies of Dunbar, and 
other respectable witnesses ; " * but in this artide the castle of 
Dunbar, and its custody, is expressly mentioned aa being re- 
served by the king to himself. 

Nothing further occurs in the history of Dunbar till after th0 
fatal field of Hodden, where James perished with the flower of 
his nobility. The crown now devolved to his son, a boy abopt 
two years old. On this event, the family of Albany was again 
an intimate of the castle. John, Duke of Albany (son of the ex* 
patriated duke), who had been bom and bred in France, wa9 
invited to accept of the regency ; and as he soon found it nece&* 
sary to employ foreign auxiliaries against the turbulent chiefe of 
the borders, in 1515, Dunbar saw its fortress garrisoned wit^ 
[French soldiers, t 

By some means the chamberlain's mother was detained a pri- 
soner in the castle, upon which Lord Home^ who was at enmity 
with the governor, penetrated into Lothian, plundered Dunbary 
and seizing on the Lyon Herald at Coldstream, took him into 

* Chalmers' Cal. U. f Bidpath's Bord. Bisk 


mmr^M^ m i^ t ^0>Mm^tt0t^^^^0k^^^i mi ^^^^^iv^v^V*f^*M'^t u <*0**t^^^>0*0k^^^^O>^^*^^>^^^^^^0> — <^>*^^^^^^0^llt^0>mf*f^0m»r^l 

M ^'i' ■■ 

custody till the lady should be released. This triumph was of 
short duration ; for shortly after, Home and his brother William 
were arrested by the artifices of Albany, and led to the block. 

After the execution of Lord Home, in 1517, Albany created 
Sir Anthony D'Arc^ (styled le sieur de la Beaute), a Frenchman^ 
warden of the east marches and captain of Dunbar. While the 
duke was absent on a visit to the King of Erance, this gentlemau 
held the delep,ted reins of government ; and as might have been 
antiicipated, the substitution of a foreigner in the place of Home, 
by the person who had brought his lordship to the scaffold^ drew 
down the vengeance of his kindred on his devoted head. 

William Cockbum, uncle to the laird of Langton, purposely 
ejected from the castle of Langton the tutors of his nephew, who 
was then in his minority, and held the place by force, in cou'- 
tempt of the regent's authority. D' Arcy, depending on the aid 
of Sir David Home of Wedderbum, who had commenced a mock 
seige of the place, repaired with a few neighbouring gentlemeii 
and domestics to the spot. Home immediately reviled D'Arqf 
imd his master for the death of his kinsTnan, when a rencounter 
took place, and the Frenchman seeking for safety by flight, 
directed his course to Dunbar. His horse unfortunately sunk ia 
a morass, a little east from Dunse ; and the pursuers coming up, 
one of them struck off D'Arcy's head, which, fixing on a spear, 
they exhibited in that town; and then carried it in triumph to 
grin with ghastly horror on the battlements of Home Castle* 
Inspired with the ferocious spirit of the age, David Home cut 
off D'Arcy's long flowing locks, which were gracefully plaited 
like womens' hair^ and knitting them as a trophy, hung them on 
his saddle-bow.* 

* Hector's fate was somewhat dmilar, when he was dragged at the 
chariot of AchiUeB : — 

** The nervous ancles bored, his feet he boi^id 
With thong inserted through the double wound ; 
These fixed up high behind the rolling wain, 
* . His graceful head was trailed along the plain. 
Proud on his car the insulting victor st(K)d, 
)lLBd bore al^ bis anns^ distUling blood. 

86 mSTORY OF DUNBAR. [1523. 

Afker the murder of D'Arcy, Morrice, another Frenchman, wad 
sent in 1518, with a reinforcement of soldiers from France, to 
take charge of the oastle. 

Kobert Stnart D'Aubigny and the Se^eur des Planes landed 
at Dunbar on the 27th November, 1520, with overtures of peace 
to the King of England, as the truce with Scotland was nearly 
expired ; and, in 1521, the Duke of Albany returned from 
France to Dunbar, after an absence of four years and fiva 
months, with a powerful escort of French guards and artOlery.* 

Henry VIII., jealous of the influence whidi" the governor pos- 
sessed over the young prince, his nephew> and the queen-mother^, 
was much displeased at his return ; and even sent a herald to 
the states of Scotland, requesting that they should depose Albany 
from the charge of the king and government, and banish him. 
from the kingdom. Incensed at this presumption, the duke in- 
vaded England ; but speedily disbanding his forces, he returned 
once more to France in quest of aid In the middle of Septem- 
ber 1523, he arrived on the coast of Arran, with a fleet of fifty 
ships, containing 3000 foot and 100 gens-d'armes. After an 
unsuccessful siege of the castle of Wark, he returned to Dunbar, 
where he probably remained till December, when he bade a final 
adieu to Scotland, after an inclB&cient regency of eight years. 

On his last visit to Dunbar, the governor built a great store- 
house and inch to the castle, called the outward blockhouse, and 
fortified it with artillery.t 

The French continued to hold the castle of Dunbar for the 
regent, even after his return from their country was despaired oft 
In December 1527, when James V. laid siege to Tantallon, theu 

m ^ - ^ I 

He smites the steeds ; the rapid chariot f^m ;■ 
The sudden clouds of circling dust arise. 
Now lost is all that formidable air. 
That face divine, and long descending hair, 
Purple the ground, and streak the sable sandj 
Given to the rage of an insulting throng." 

Pope's Homer's Iliad, book xxii. 

* Bidpath's Bord. Hist. f Idndsay's Chxon. 


the strougliold of Douglas, he " gart send to the castle of Dun- 
bar," says Lindsay of Pitscottie, " to Captain Morrice, to borrow 
Bome artillery, and laid great pledges for the same ; because the 
castle was then in the Duke of Albany's hand, and the artillery 
thereof his own ; but it was ever at the king's pleasure when he 
had ought ado, and that by the command of the said Duke of 
Albany. But yet, for restoring and delivering of the same, and 
observing of a good order, caused three lords to pass in pledge 
for the said artillery, till it was delivered again, and received the 
Bame, in manner as after follows : that is to say, two great 
canons, throw-mouthed Mow and her Marrow, with two great 
botcards and two moyans, two double falcons, and four quar- 
ter falcons, with their powder and bullets, and gunners for to use 
them, conform to the king's pleasure." * After the siege of 
Tantallon, Argyle came to Dunbar in pursuit of Douglas, and 
advanced to the Pease. ' 

In 1528, James sent to Flanders for more artillery and ammu- 
nition to supply Dunbar, Stirling, <fec. 

The castle continued to be occupied by the French during the 
r^gn of James V.j and when this unhappy inonarch, wounded 
by the perfidy of his nobles, had abandoned himself to melan- 
choly, it is said that his distresses were increa^d by the intelli- 
gence that one Leech, a Lincolnshire refugee, had murdered 
Somerset, an English herald, at Dunbar. t 

♦ Lindsay's Chron. f Ridpath's Bord. Hl«t. 

^ I 

88 HISTOSY OP DUKBAfi. [1542; 



Bom all ioo lugh — ^by wedlodc rused 

Still higher — ^to be cast thus low ! 
Would that mine eyea had never gazed 

On aught of more ambition^s show 
Than the sweet flowerets of the fields ! 
It is my royal state that yields 

This iMitemess ot woe. 
Unblest distinction ! shower'd on me^ 

To bind a lingering life in chains ; 
All that could quit my grasp, or flee. 

Is gone ;; but not the subtie stains 
Fixed in the spirit. 





The same picturBj, it has been observed, witli deeper sliadows, ia 
about to be exhibited, that disgraced the former minorities. 
James V. was succeeded by his daughter Mary; an infant scarcely 
a month old* 

Haddington was anciently a royal residence, and in its palace 
Alexander U. was bom. From this distinguished bur^ a nurse 
was selected for Maiy Queen of Scots, in the person of Mrs 
Janet Kemp. This important, office was bestowed by the queen* 
mother on Janet Sinclair, the wife of John Kemp of Haddington, 
Janet having previously proved herself a good nurse, by attend- 
ing on the deceased Prince James, Maiy^s eldest brother, in the 
same vocation. Both Janet and her husband were recipients of 
crown grants, and other testimonials of the queen-mother's 
grateful sense of her services to the nurseling of royalty. Maiy, 
though reported to be sickly, and unlikely to survlveji^was a fair 
and goodly babe, and did ample credit to Mktress Janet's 

1544,] DXINBAR BUENT. 80 

fostering (Jare. She was nursed, however, under the eye of the 
queen-mother, and in her own chamber — the most salubrious 
and the safest on the suite of apartments facing the beautiful 
lake of Linlithgow.* 

The ambition of the great, which the Kings of France and 
England endeavoured to keep at variance, employed every 
ineans to strengthen their party, while the difference of religious 
opinions that now prevailed, afforded a favourable opportunity 
for theii^ accomplishment. James had left the office of regent 
open to every pretender, and Cardinal Beaton was the first that 
claimed that high dignity ; but the church party were discom- 
fitted, and on the 22nd December, the Earl of Arran, on being 
proclaimed sole tutor to the queen, and governor of the kingdom, 
assumed the rights of the castle of Dunbar. 

The English, in the inroad under the Earl of Hertford in 1544, 
after their return from the ei^ge of Leith, and after burning 
Haddington, encamped the second night near Dunbar (26 th 
May), and on the morning set fire to the town, when *^ men, 
women, and children were suffocated «nd burnt." t 

During another inroad, they took and fortified the abbey of 
Coldingham, and ravaged the neighhourhood. The governor 

* Privy Seal Begister, quoted by Mibb Strickland* 

f The Bame day we burnt a fine town of the Earl Bothwell's, called 
Haddington, with a great nunnery and house of friars. The next night 
after, we encamped besides Dunbar ; and there the Scots gave a small 
alarm to our camp. But our watches were in such readiness, that they 
had no vantage there, but were fain to recoil without doing of any harm. 
That night they looked for us to have burnt the town of Dunbar, which we 
deferred till the morning at the dislodging of our camp, which we executed 
by V.C. of our hakbutters, being backed by V.C. horsemen. And by rea- 
son we took them in the morning, who having watched all night for om- 
coming, and perceiving our army to dislodge and depart, thought them- 
selves safe of us, were newly gone to their beds ; and in their first sleep 
dosed in with fire, men, women, and children, were suffocated and burnt. 
That morning being very misty and foggy, we had perfect knowledge by 
our> espials thkt the Scots had assembled a great power at a strait caJled 
the Pease, — Expedicion imder the Erie of Hertforde. 

The other piles and villages desolated by these cold-blooded savages, 
were Preston and the castle of Seton, Tranent, Shenstone (probably Stevens- 
ton), Markle, Traprene, Kirklandhill, Hetherwick, Belton, East Bams, &c. 



who went in pursuit of the inyaders met with such a gallant 36&- 
sistence, Uiat, alarmed at the ap{M^ach of the main army, he 
secretly departed to Dunbar. The bravery of Angus, however, • 
saved the artillery. With a band of his dependents he marched 
in rear of the ordnance, and in despite of the English horsemjen, 
brought it safe to the castle. 

In 1547, wh^i Lord Borthwick was appointed keeper of 
Haiks Castle (during the outlawry of Bothwell), he was com* 
manded, in the event of being attacked by the English, to a:ppiy 
to the captain of Dunbar for assistance in the Lord Governor's 

The same year, the Duka of Somerset invaded Scotland with 
an army o£ 14,000 men. Beacons were placed on the hills 
near the coast. Eobert Hamilton, captain of Dunbar, was 
charged with that on the Domilaw above Spot ; the prioress of 
North Berwick with that on North Berwick Law; and the Earl 
of Bothwell with Dumpender Law. And it was ordained that 
all fencible men, between sixteen and sixty, should appear at. 
the market-crosses of Dunbar, North Berwick, Haddington, &c^ 
" weil boddin in feir of weir." * The duke's ari|iy having 
crossed the pass of Pease (with ** puflfying and payne," as Palitea 
says), demolished the castles of Dunglass, Innerwick, and Thom- 
ton.+ On passing Dunbar, the castle fired several shots, but the 
army had not time to spare from their main enterprise for the 
reduction of such a strong fortress. 

♦ Keitii's Hist. 52, - 

f 13m 4onef about noon, we marched on, passing soon after within tiiA 
gunshot of Dunbar, a town standing longwise upon &e sefr«ide, whereat aa 
a castle (which the Scots count veiy strong), that sent us divers shots as we 
passed, but aU in vain : their horsemen shewed themselves in theii fields 
beside us, towards whom ^artevile with his Viii. men, all hakbutters oa 
horseback (whom he had right well appointed), with divers others, did 
make ; but no hurt on either side, saving that a man of Bartevile's slew ono 
of them with his piece ; the skirmish was soon ended. We w«[it a iiii. 
mile farther, and having travelled that day a x. mile, we camped nigh 
TantaUon, and had at night a blind alarm. Here had we first adv«*tise- 
ment certain that the Scots were assembled in camp at the place wliere we 
found them. . Marching this morning a ii. mile, we came to a loir river 


On his way to EDglaad, after the defeat at Pinkey ^ in 1548, 
the German mercenaries under the Earl of Shrewsbury (of whom" 
he had 3000 in his army), burnt the town of Dunbar. 

Haddington, fortdfied and garrisoned by the English, at this 
lime presented the no^el features of a conquered city, and served 
as a diveraion in fevour of England, on their invading inroads on 
the borders and of Dunbar. The Scots, burning with the 
mingled emotions of regret and revenge, saw the abodes of 
piety, and learning, and regal power, in the hands of the in- 
vaders. They were glad, therefore, to accept of succour from 
IVance, even at ihe expense of their youthful queen ; and as 
IHich an important political alliance as was now held out to 
Heazy could not be resisted, the requisition of the queen-mother 
and the r^ent was instantly granted, Andrew Montlamberi, 
and Monsieur d'Esse, an experienced French officer, was selected 
for this important expedition, and appointed Heutenant-general 
of the army of Scotland, and with 6000 veteran auxiliaries, 
landed at Lelth, June 16th, 1548. M. de Andelot commanded 
the foot, De Etauges the horse, Count Bim^ave (Rhinegrave"^ the 
Gkrmans, the famous Leo Strozzi the Italians, and Dunoon the 
artillery. Their arrival cheered the drooping spirits of the 

called Lyn (Tyne), running all straight eastward toward the sea ; over this 
ziv«r there is a stone bridge, that they name Linton Bridge, of a town 
thereby on owe right hand^ jmd eastward as we went, that stands upon the 
same river. Our liorsemen and carriages passed through the water (for it 
was not very deep), our footmen over the bridge. The passage was very 
strait for an army, and therefore the longer in setting over. Beyond this 
bridge about a mile westward (for so methought as then we turned), upon 
the same river on the south side, stands a proper house, and of some 
strength, belike ;. they call it Hayles Castle, and pertaineth to the Earl of 
Bothwell, but kept as then by the governor's appointment, who held the 
earl in prison. — Patten'a Journal. 

The aarmy kept along the coast, to be near their ships, which were in 
the 'FoTih ; trom. Hailes they proceeded by Beanston and Garleton to Long- 
niddxy, keeping clear of Haddington ; their encampment on the 9th Septem- 
ber being at Salt Preston. 

* The Lord of Yester and Hobby Hambleton, captain of Dunbar, were 
amongst the prisoners taken at the battle of Pinkey. 


8cats, who joined them with 8000 men, and their iirst cam^ 
paign opened with the siege of Haddington. 

Haddington was evidently a fortified town of considerable 
extent, which was strengthened and augmented .by the English, 
aided by the skill of their Italian allies. But although the 
ancient walls extended considerably beyond the site occupied by 
its present buildings, it does not appear to have been protected 
by a castle. In Ayloffe's Calendar of the Ancient Charters 
(preserved in the Tower of London) a "castrum de Hadington*' id 
mentioned ; but Chalmers justly observes, that wherever <^astle8 
existed they were distinctly marked in the grants made by Baliol to 
^idwa^d III. in 1334. Situated on a plain, unlike Dunbar and 
Tantallon, nature had stampt it with no rocky eminences, frown- 
ing o*er the steep, for an impregnable fortress; but from the 
fei-tHe district with which the burgh was surrounded, particu- 
larly towards the coast, distant only a few miles, it must have 
iiiforded abundant supplies for a numerous garrison ; hence we 
iind that) besidei^ the inhabitants, the town and suburbs accomo- 
dated 2500 men. In describing the watlike operations of the 
siege, we shall follow the account given by Monsieur Beague 
(an attache to the army), who visited this country with the 
French auxiliaries in 1548, and who must have been sufl&ciently 
versed in military affairs to have given a correct description of 
what he saw. His work was written in French, from whicli 
our limits will only allow us to give an abridged detail.* 

As a place of strength, the donjon^ the strongest part of s^ 
feudal castle, a high square tower, with waUs of tremendous 
thickness, could not be battered save on one side, and that divi- 
sion was guarded by the river Tyne, while a cavalier^ raised on 
the most exposed place of its rampart, sheltered both the house 
and its soldiers. " In fine," observes M. Beague, " the fort was 
so very convenient and spacious, that the garrison, in case of 
necessity, might retreat into it, draw up in order of battle, and 

* For a further descriptioii, see the author's " History of Haddington," 
p. 73. 

1548.] SlEOE PF HADDmOTON. 93 

{like the Bebastapol of recent tunes] . raise new fortifications for 
a further defence." Such were the fortifications of Haddington, 
as described by this lively writer, which are now entirely de- 
molished, having gradually given way to modem improvements. 

The French, with their usual ardour, were anxious to try 
their prowess in the field against the English j and in a council 
of war it was determined that the recovery of Haddington should 
be the paramount object, as a place likely to cross their designs, 
and from which the 500 horse left there by Lord Grey con- 
stantly scoured and harassed the coimtry. 

General Desse having ordered his troops to be in readiness, 
he acquainted the queen-dowager and the Eegent Arran of his 
intention, when the latter joined him with 800 horse from 
Edinburgh. As they left the city, Desse foimd the infantry 
ranked in order of battle by M, de Andelot, in an open field. 
He harangued them in the most flattering terms, and exhorted 
them to show their bravery before the Scots. " For my own 
part," says he, '' I resolve in this armour, both on foot and on 
horseback, to shew you the path that leads to glory ; anil I hope 
that this very arm, so oft and honourably dipt in English blood, 
shall yet be felt by them not at all weakened, or short of what 
it has been." The army was divided into two bodies, the one 
consisting of Germans, under Count Bimgrave, and the other 
under the daring M. de Andelot. Within a mile and a half of 
Musselburgh, they were met by M. de Anche, who brought in- 
formation that the English had retreated to Haddington, upon 
which Desse smiled, and turning to the Kegent Arran, and to M. 
Strozzi and De Andelot, said, " Here De Anche brings us good 
news ; for if the English are frightened before they have seen 
us, how much more will our nearer approach alarm them." 

The Scots in the meantime advanced to Haddington, where 
they waited in hopes that the English would break out upon 
them ; but they only fired some cannon from the ramparts. 
Captain Loup, who had been lying in wait with a party of 
fifty lancers, seeing this, returned from his ambush, and informed 

94 HISTORY OF DUNBAIt. [1548. 

Desse of the circumstance. After a seyere contest on the linka 
of Musselburgh, where the English bowmen showed their dex- 
terity, and the French their bravery, furnished with head-pieces 
and coats-of-mail, the former were foiled, leaving the battle* 
field strewn with the killed and wounded. 

After this skirmish, General Desse, at the head of fifby 
horse, encountered Sir John Wilford, commander of the foroes in 
Haddington, who, to rescue his own soldiers, came out of the 
town with 200 lancers and twenty-five arquebusiers ^ but these, 
according to the French journalist, were mostly cut off by the 
valour of their general, and the retreating companies chased 
back to the gate of the burgh. In the meantime, a. constant 
firing was kept up firom the ramparts ; but by reason of floods of 
rain, and the dark majesty of night, the balls fell without effeot 

Desse, after his attack at Musselburgh, encamped in tho 
neighbourhood of Haddington. Lord Home, who had preceded 
him, was engaged in a skirmish with the English when the 
French vanguard came up. Being nearly, worsted, Captain 
Gourdes came to his assistance — ^which he did with sodi success, 
that the English were compelled to fall back undev the shelter 
of the walls of Haddington : — 

Next tmto Berwick, Haddington faced all 
The greatest dangers, and was Scotland's wall ; 
By valiant anns oft guarded it from woea^ 
And often carried home the spoils of foes.* 

But the French, perceiving a reinforcement advancing* retreated 
apace, when Captain Villeneuve coming up with a reinforce- 
ment, broke the ranks of the English, and pursued them with 
great slaughter to the brink of the fosse which surrounded the 
ramparts, and pushed a great many into the ditch with his own 
hands ; but in this act he was mortally wounded by a musket 
ball, and died on the spot. Upon which M. du Belley writes^ 
quoth the journalist — 

* Johnstoun's '' Epigrams on the Eoyall Burghs." Aberdeen^ 1665. 
Published at Middleburgh, 1642. 

1548»] SiXOfi 0* HADDINGTON. 95 

»>^'^^>^'^i^<i^^^^*>itn^^i^t^0>^i^m''-^»9 w m'*0wv<fw^^m «w ^y^^^'*FW^w^"^^«^'^"v^^>v*^^"«^^«"»^ 

Fate^ on awift wings, doth unexpected come, 
Nor can our feani or caution change our doom. 

While these skirmishes were going on before the walls of 
Haddingtoti, Desse was not idle. He attacked and repulsed a 
party of English near the Abbey of North Berwick. Hadding- 
ton was now invested on all sides, and a sharp contest kept up. 
A considerable body of Scots, from the islands of Orkney and 
the south, who were assembled in Edinburgh by the queen- 
mother, joined the French camp, and were considered "very 
good company " for the space of twenty days. These warlike 
kernes skirmished late and early with the English, and had 
scarcely taken up their residence in the camp, when about 600 
stole away from the main body, and inarched right to the gates 
of Haddington.* They instantly beat off the advanced guards 
of the English with a volley of arrows, and then, sword in 
hand, rushed upon 500 or 600, posted between the port and the 
barriers ; but the noise of the artillery, which was new to them, 
soon quelled their courage as effectually as ever it fell on an 
Indian heart. The Highlanders shut their ears, and threw 
themselves on their bellies at each shot of the cannon. The 
English, seeing thi^ disorder, sought to avail themselves of the 
advantage; but Captain Linleres met thean halfway, and put an 
end to the pursuit. Twenty-five of his arquebusiers fired upon 
their flank, while M. de Andelot, at the head of G^ gentlemen, 
who had waited upon him from his tent as he was visiting the 
trenches, attacked them, and drove them back to their barriers. 

General Desse took the opportunity of making a narrow and 
leisurely inspection of the English works and defences; and^ 

* They wore coats of mail (says the journalist) ; each had a large bow 
in his hand, and their quiveore, swords, and shields, hung as it 'were in a 
aling. Th^ were followed by several Highlanders ; and these last go almost 
naked, lliey have painted waistcoats, and a sort of woollen covering, 
variously coloured (evidently tartan), and armed as the rest with large 
bow^, broadswoxda, and targets. Th«re was not one of them font gave con- 
vincing proofs that they stood in no awe of the English. — Beague's Hist. 
Campagnes. Tiiese mercenary soldiers, like the Zouaves fn Uie late 
BufiBian war« no doubt stole from our ranks in quest of plunder. 

96 HISTORY OF DtnCBAlft. [1548- 

vhen retiring, witnessed a notable and daring exploit of one of 
the Highlanders that belonged to the Eari of Argyle. This gal- 
lant fellow had observed the fearlessness of the French in beard- 
ing the very mouth of the enemy's cannon, which he being willing 
to imitate, went straight upon a party of the English, who had 
engaged some Frenchmen under Captain Voquedemar, and, with 
incredible celerity, seizing one of them, in spite of his struggles, 
trussed him upon his back, and in this plight brought him to the 
camp — during which the enraged captive bit the soldier's shoul- 
der in such a manner, that he almost died of the wound. The 
general rewarded this action with a coat-of-mail and twenty 
crowns, a compliment which the Highlander gratefully appre- 
ciated. In the meantime, an Italian deserter from the town 
brought intelligence to the general that the English had neither 
victuals nor ammunition remaining for a siege of twelve days- 
From this and other infofmation, Desse caused expedite the work 
of the trenches with such diligence, that in two days' time they 
had advanced to the foot of the bulwark, which he attempted by 

About eleven at night the French advanced their gabionades, 
and made loop-holes for six guns ; and " thence, by break of 
day," says M. Beague, "we awakened those in Haddington 
with a vengeance, and battered at once the wall betwixt the 
Port of Edinburgh (West Port) and Tybere's Bulwark, and the 
breastworks of the curtain." This day 340 balls were sent from 
six pieces of cannon upon the front of the wall and the breast^ 
works of the curtain, which, from its wonderful thickness, de- 
fied their efforts. This induced Desse to remove the gabionades^ 
and to place them at a lower distance. Again the guns were 
discharged 200 times, made a great noise, without effecting any^ 
purpose. Upon which a council of war was held, and the siege 

While these desultory affairs were going on, the queen- 
dowager had carried the . young queen to Dumbarton, as a place 
of security till she could be shipped foe France. Maiy was not 

.1548.] SIflOE OF HADDINGTOK, 97 

ftbove £dx year's oldj '^but even then," says the enraptured 
Beague^ " one of the most perfect creatures the Author of Natuse 
had ever &amed. Her match was nowhere to he seen, nor had 
the world another child of her fortune and hopes*" 

General Desse, to prevent the town from receiving supplies 
during the night, appointed bis genrde«arms and the cavalry to 
be continually on the watch ^t one of the avenues th^t led to the 
camp. The English, who had long been seeking to bribe a pasr 
isage to the plape, a^t length resolved to attempt its relief, and to 
throw in 200 me^, powder ^d ball^, and sucl^ provisions as the 
besieged stood in need ot Desse, informed pf this (drcumstance, 
came out of thq trenches, ajid inf<)rmed the French guard, that as 
they had humbled suph as their ordnance aiid ramparts could 
not protect, it now behoved them to reduce those that might not 
dare to meet them in the fi^ld, Aft^r u^ing this French faron- 
fule, the general was on the eve of seeking th^ road whence the 
supplies were expected, when a Scotsman, who went by the 
equivocal niclpiame of " The IAbji with the Two Heads ! " per- 
suaded him by means of a thousand oatlis, and as many not 
improbable assertions, that it was mpre expedient to march by 
pother way, which he pointed out to the Ea^l of Arran, that 
both JX^ghtf meet together, and |aU upon the approaching 
troops. This information wa^ absolutely false, and, through the 
obscurity of the night, the supplies reached the town by the 
same path that he ^a3 advised to abandon. Shortly after '' The 
Man with the T^o Heads " (who was one of Ijhpse who cor? 
responded with the Earl of Lennox) had played this trick to the 
French, the Sqpts, with the exception of 600 lancers that be- 
longed to the Earls of Arjr^in .1^4 H\^itly, withdrew to theic 

* Some apology seems neeeBsary for the sudden withdrawal of the 
Scots. '' The Scots," says M. Beague, aUuding to ijaeir present desertion, 
" never take the field but when forced to arms by necessity. The reason is 
this, they serve at their own charges, and therefore cannot spin out time, 
as all the nations in Europe do but themselves. They carry along with 
them all necessaries for the time they resolve either to encamp or to scour 
^e campaign. This time is but short, but they love it not ; for they make 


98 HI^rOBT OP DUITBAB. [1548. 

The qaeen-dowager, informed of the posture of a«ffiurs, and 
that a number of the French were idling at Edinburgh, and that 
most of the Scots had returned to their homes, immediately 
commanded all the gentlemen of her palace, and such of her othef 
servants as could cany arms, to repair to the French camp at 
Haddington. Thither she sent large quantities of bread, wine>, 
ale, and meat, and sent an assurance with her domestics to the 
soldiers, ''That she meant to repay the services she expected 
from their brarery with a greater compliment, and to employ thd 
means Gfod Almighty had left in her hands to reward their merit 
in a more particular manner." These presents were highly ac- 
ceptable to the camp, and inspired the soldiers with a high sense 
of her majesty's bounty. This accomplished, the queen-dowager 
mounted on horseback, and accompanied only by her ladies and 
maids of honour, visited the houses of the citizens of Edinburgh, 
and stimulated them to use their exertions in sending supplied 
of men to Haddington. 

Lord Grey had despatched from Berwick Sir Robert Bowes; 
warden of the west marches, and Sir Thomas Pahner, with 1000 
foot and 500 horse, to throw fresh reinforcements into Hadding- 
ton, who were now rapidly approaching. A few hours before 
day, some English began to draw near the French camp, in the 
expectation that they would find the sentinels asleep, and thus 
overpower the advanced guards ere the army had leisure to 
form ; but the vigilance of Lord Home defeated this manoeuvre. 
Qeneral Desse made the horsemen retire, and, without creating 

it their business to seek out the enemy, and fight with invincible obstinacy, 
especially when they have to do with the English ; for the reciprocal hatred 
of these two nations is intenningled with their vital spirits, and essential to 
their being. Neither is it, in my opinion, to be eradicated out of their 
breasts, so long as ambition shall prompt men to domineer, or jealousy re- 
pine at encroaching grandeur. This done, and their victuals being con- 
sumed, they break up their camp, or retire in different bodies one after 
another." — Some of the sentiments here expressed can only now be read 
with a smile ; yet fifty years have only elapsed smce we have also heard, in 
the political changes of time, grave and pious men hold up the French 
themselves as our " natural enemies ! ^* and in the words of Bums, 
<' nail'd with Scripture." 

auy public alarm, passed the orders from tent to tent, com- 
manding each corps to be in readiness to fight in snch posts as 
had been marked out for them. Andelot drew up the French 
infantiy, and Qoant Bimgrave the Grermaos, almost instantly. 
Desse went from raiik to rank, and encouraged the men, in the 
usual style of French faronode* Wliile thus inspiring the 
^rmy " to deeds of glory in the battle-field," the English ap- 
peared on the neighbouring hill, divided into two squadrons, 
consisting of about 500 horse, well armed for the most part after 
tjie French fashion. These men, with the exception of 200 
Albanians, who had been trained up in the wars of France, 
were all English — ^meu such as had attended the court, who had 
signalized their courage in several remarkable exploits, and had 
been selected for this expedition from the elite of the forces. 
. " The English came no sooner in view," says M. Beague, 
" thsuQ our soldiers gave all the apparent signs of joy that could 
be wished for, and demanded with loud acclamations to be led 
on to the enemy. But the officers made the army halt, and a 
great many of them went into Haddington ; but whether with a 
design to see or to confer with their friends, it is certain that in 
this they committed a great error, for by this means they at once 
gave time to the ardour of their men to cool, and created in us a 
contempt of their courage, believing that this trifling and wast- 
ing of time proceeded from want of resolution and experience." 

While, the English commanders were thus dalying with their 
Inrethren, and congratulating them on the vigorous defence they 
had sustained for nearly three months, they flattered them that 
henceforth they should have little to accomplish — ^that one day's 
work was likely to put an end to the war — to disperae and over- 
throw all the Frenchmen in Scotland. Desse, satisfied of the 
courage of his soldiers, sent off twenty, under M. de Etauges, to 
pickeer j and' the Earl of Caasilis, with fifty light horse of the 
Scots, was sent to support him. M. de Andelot at the same 
time advanced at the head of his battalion. Count Kimgrave 
had posted the German troops a little higher, on the left of the 

1» T \ 

iOD taSTOfeY OF DtTNBAfi. fi^48i 

French infantry, with a design to fall on the flank of the English^ 
as soon as they came up with Andelot's battalion. He had also 
mx field-pieces planted at the side of his regiment, to fire on thd 
assailants; In this maimer the two battalions marched to battle^ 
with the cavalxy and gen^^le^arms on their wingS; 

M. de Andelot, leaving the ranks, took along with him 200 
^qu^bndiers, and marching about (as if he meant to sound the 
ford of the river Tyne,* which divided them firom t^e enemy), he 
was just about to attack fbrty or fifty horse, that had gained 
their flank, when perceiving a number of the enemy preparing to 
surprise him, he commanded his arquebusiers to turn their backs> 
and make a feint of flying ; tifen seeing that they had entered 
the ford in Order to follow, he faced about suddenly and gave a 
vigorous charge> when many were slain. This efffeeted, he with-^ 
drew to more Convenient ground, where he maintained his posi* 
tion nearly a quarter of an hour* In another part of the field. Mi 
de Etauges and the Laird of Dtm, at the head of some Scots, 
distinguished themselves, and killed several of the 'Albaniaosr^ 
Meanwhile, Desse*s lieutenant came to the assistance oi M. de 
Andelot. He had maintained his position against the English 
horse with much brav^ ; and the former now finding them-* 
selves assaulted on all sides, by means of this new Teinforcan^ht^ 
began to retreat to their squadrons, leaving the ground covered 
with the wounded and slain. Each army now advancing slowly 
towards the other, " halt ere they close, and form the (keadfiil 
line," when General Desse, at the head oi his gen-de-arms, with 
Lord Home, the Laird of Dun, and M-* de Etuages, charged the 
enemy's flank, while De Andelot continued the vigoroos re^ 
sistance he had formerly made, striking a numbw of his foemeii 
down with his halberds and pikes. He had intermixed the 
arquebusiers with the rest oi the foot, and those he kept in such 
order, as to enable them to fight the English, thoi^h on horse* 

* There are at present two fords of the river Tyne at Haddington, one 
at the North-east Port, and another between the Nungate Bridge and th6 
parish church. 

Ii548,] BATtLK XT HMlDlH€WO!r. lOl 

'A- fi r ^wi nj i . ii .r i>rcTri'<*inf'i'<'i'n lrr- i -rM i III I i - - i - ii -i*- " ii 'r i "r i i i > ■ i r ■ u-n t n^rr* — ""-rri — "-fV^^ — T^'i i m ■ \ 

hdick, man to maiu Count Rhngrave endeayoured to oppose the 
Hsecond squadron of the English, who now made a movement for 
lihe support of the first, but without "effect ; and the battle now 
deepening, the fight was pursued with matchless fury on both 
'«ides. The troops under Desse, Lord Home, and the Laird of 
£hm, performed wonders, each nation, out of sheer vanity, en- 
deavouring to rival the prowess ^f the other. The fortune of 
iiie day was at last decided by an attack made by the Glermans, 
'who fell upon the English crossways. This manoeuvre com- 
pletely disordered their ranks, which made them fiy in earnest, 
-with neither courage nor leisure to rally. The slaughter was 
terrible. The allied officers, ^aad most part of the soldiers and 
■arquebusiers, had got their swords in their hands, and mixing 
themselves pell-mell with the enemy, houghed the horses, which 
'so terrified them, that those few who got clear of the soldiers 
-caold not escape the hands of the boors, who cut them to pieces 
most unmercifoliy, filling all the roads and comers in the neigh- 
bourhood with the slain. 

" In this battle," says M. Beague, " the English had about 
«800 men killed, and more than 2000 were made prisoners, 
whereas there fell not above fifteen, on our side ! '* An assertion 
palpably false, as a few days afterwards the queen-dowager was 
B,t Haddington, lamenting over the French who had fallen in the 
late skirmishes. The loss of the English, however, was great, as 
acknowledged by their own writers.* 

General Desse, thus master of the field, met Bimgrave and 
Andelot, who urged him to pursue the victory to the centre of 
the fort ; but on holding a council of war, it was thought more 
-expedient to withhold operations in the meantime. The queen- 

* This engagement, so difiastrous to the English, seems to have given 
1186 to the name of the '* Tuesday's Chase/' a field fought 17th July, 1548. 

The siege of Haddingtoune wes layed too by the Frenchmen, quhilk 
Sndurit one haill zeir. In the quhilk tyme wes the Twesday's chaisse, quher 
mony of England wer takin and slaine. — ^MS. Advocate's Library. — 
Biirel's Diary. 

John Knox, who was a decided enemy to Mary of Guise (the queen- 
mother) and her French auxiliaries, says, " that the English approaching 


lt)2 HWrORY OF DUNBAIL [1548. 

^»V»^»^^^^s^»#^l»rf^^N^^^MN*^WM»*1'>^<MiW>^*^^^^ *^ * | 

dowager seems to have been a model of Boadicia, md on receiv-; 
ing intelligence, she arrived in the camp just as they were about 
to beat the reveille at the guard. Her nwyesty shewed time 
greatest urbanity to the soldiers ; took them by the hand — re- 
commended them to their officers, and extolled their courage 
above all praise ; and although she did not distribute medals to* 
them, like the gracious Queen Victoria of ouf times, yet she- 
ordered presents to the soldiers, as an earnest of her fiirther 

The queen continued for several months in the neighbomv 
hood of the camp, to direct the oj^erations of the army. " A. 
single leaf will waft an army on," and an incident now ocrairred- 
which changed the features of the si^e. Andelot brought before^. 
Qeneral Desse an Albanian soldier, whom he had rescued fix>m. 
the points of a hundred swords in the battle. This deserter 
undertook, on obtaining his life, to make a most impcfftant dis- • 
covery, upon which he was ushered into the queen's presence^ 
when, with a confident and brisk air, he spoke to the followiog 
purpose : — " That it was evident that the fortress of Haddington, 
environed aa it was with fortifications of aH sorts, waa proof, 
against all the cannon of Scotland — that it was not to be re- 
covered but by the expedient of a long siege — ^and that, considering 
the strength of the garrison, it was scarcely practicable to make 
a breach ; but, on the other hand, that Captain Tybere and his 
Italian troops were much dissatisfied with the usage they had 
received ; and if her majesty thought it expedient that General 
Desse should remain before the town but for one month longer, 
provided he continued his usual vigilance to prevent the entry oi 

unto Hadduigtoun, for the comfort of the besieged, with powder, viotaaLs, 
and men, lost an army of 6000 men. Sir Bobert Bowes was taken, and th» 
most part of the Borderers were taken or slain, and so might the town, 
justly have despaired of any further succour to have been looked for ; yet it 
held good for the stout courage and prudent govermnent of Sir James 
Wilford, general/' — Elnox's Hist. In fact it is ahnost impossible to calcu- 
late the losses of an army ; each magnifies the succeteses of his party, and 
the losses of the enemy. 

1 548.] 8I»oiB W HABDIKOTOlf ■ ' 1 05 

proviaibius and ammunition^ it was certain tkat the town would 
be i6rced to capitulate/' The queen immediately called a council, 
in which it was determined to endeavour to effect by famine 
what gallantry could not eflfbct, and for the accommodation of 
the army during the blockade, that they should be lodged at 
Haddington (distant about 1500 paces), where the Scottish 
troops had encamped before. 

Afber the French had left the trenches, several skirmishes 
took place with sorties from the garrison, one of which we shall 
notice, as charaoteiistLc of the chivalrous spirit of the times. 
About eleven at night, a party of 200 horse, consisting of Eng- 
lish and Italians, wishing to sorprise the Scottish horse-guard, 
went about and made a compass round the hill of Aberlady* 
(evidently Byiiehill), while Sir James Wilford, the governor, at 
the head of 400 English and Italian foot, accompanied by sixty 
peasants as guides, issued forth, with a view of seizing some 
barley which had been left at the arquebusier's port, near the 
fosse. M. de Andelot, informed of the circumstance, caused 
cover the matches of the arquebusiers,t and afber descrying » 
large circuit, got betwixt the enemy and their fort, so that by the 
obscurity of the night, and the noise of the fight commenced by 
Captain Gk)urdes, he remained undiscovered, and fallingj^ fdri-^ 
ously on their rear, he cried out to his soldiers, " Fall on, com- 
rades, and fear not a few rogues in their shirts!" for the 
governor and his men had come out in a sort of night-dress. 
Sir James Wilford, finding himself surprised, made straight to 
M. de Andelot, who was in the front ; while he, fond of the op- 
portnnity of facing the Governor of Haddington in person, he* 
eause of the reputation he had acquired, received liirn as a 
Douglas would have welcomed a Percy. " But not to enlarge 
on the single combat they fought (which might appear like a 
fitoiy apiece to those of old romance), I shall only teU that M. de 
Andelot had the good luck to wound the governor in the hand^ 

* See Blaeu's Atlas. • 

t Flints were not then in uie, and percussion springs unknown. 

104 mSTORT OF- DFNBAR [1548*^ 

and that with his sword he so shattered his head-piece, that 
several times since he has publicly owned that he was neVer so, 
heartily swinged in his life/^ The goyemor barely escaped by 
a timeous retreat. 

The English cavalry, which had been led oat by Tybere fared 
no better. They were repulsed by Lord Home aiwl the Laird of 
Dun, who were that night upon guard* 

Whilie these bloody games were acted before Haddington, a, 
parliament was convened at the Abbey, on the 7th July, 154^, 
where the French camp was now established. Through the 
influence of the queen-dowager, General Desse, and the ambassa^ 
dor, M. de Oyssel, the consent of parliament was obtained for 
the young queen's marriage with the Dauphin, and of her educa- 
tion at the court of France. Those who favoured the reforma- 
tion of religion were most averse to the measure, and would 
rather have submitted to any terms from the EnglisL But 
French bribes and promises prevaLLed, and secured the majority. 
Of the latter was the regent, James Hamilton, Earl of Arran,, 
who was created Duke of Chatelherault, with a pension of 12,000 
livres a-year, having been previously invested with the order of 
St Michael by the King of France ; and with the promise of the 
command of the Scots guards, commonly called Gen-de-Armes 
Escosse, for his son. After these preliminaries, the young 
queen was consigned to the care of Monsieur Breze, who had 
been sent by the king, with the royal barge, for her conveyance 
to France. "And so, the Cardinal of Lorrain," says Enox, 
*^ got her in his keeping ; a morsel, I assure you, meet for his 
own mouth . . . but from the time the Frenchmen had gott^i 
the bone, for which the dog barked, the pursuit of the town was 

The Duke of Somerset beheld these proceefdmgs in Scotland 
with a jealous and watchfiil eye. He assembled an army of 
22,000 men for the invasion of Scotland, the command of which 
he bestowed on Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, while a fleet was 

1MB.] THB JUBL pjr sHBfiWSBirRy. ^1Q5 

fitted out und^ Ida brother, Admiral Lord Sejmo\a,to/ta,Yt^ 
the coast. . ^ 

Desse, informed of these mighly prepaxations, «ent an ezpreBd 
to the Eegent Arran, to remind him of the promise he had made 
to assist him with 6000 foot and aa many horse, as often aa ha 
should stand in need of them ; and to assure his exeellen<^, that 
if he was reinforced, that he would ;endeayour to give h^v^ a goQd 
^account of the land forces of the English. This applidation, how- 
ever, came too late, and the French had scarcely time to com- 
jnenoe their retreat, before the enemy, whom they imagined they 
liad baffled so long, was upon them. They however allowed 
them to retire unmolested. 

The Earl of Shrewsbury now reinforced the garrison of Ead- 
dington with frefidi troops, and supjdied them with necessaries of 
^. kinds, after being reduced to the last extremity* 

At this critical period, Desse was reioforeed by about 15,000 
Highlanders, under the Duke of Argyle. They had not ^i- 
iuunped when three English battaliojis and two regiments of 
horse appeared ooi the heights, where they had bemi stationed 
(te previous day. After tanying for the space of an hour, they 
departed without offering to molest the camp. M. de Andelot 
and Cbunt Bimgrave drew up their battaUond in order of battle, 
while the Scots Highlanders animated themselves with the Boxo^d 
cf the bagpipes. Desse reconnoitred the enemy, and, on the 
' report he received, resolved to stand hia ground, and to %ht tjie 
lenemy should they attack him, and every effort was trie4 to 
wean the French from their position, but in vain* Had the 
Scottish generaJs acted with: the same precision on the Duke c^ 
Somerset's late invasion, their historian would have had a dif- 
ferent tale to relate. 

For securing the communication between Berwick and Had- 
( dington, it was judged necessaiy to build a new fort at Dunglas; 
' and to defend those employed in canying on the work, the 
. C^rmans, together with some, bands of English horse and foot, 
W^maked. Meanwhile Lord Gr^, on whom the command of 

106 Bunon Of svvbas, [1$48. 

the Englkh matehes had again devolvedy aided by these German 
ttoopB, overran Teviotdale and liddiadale, rayagimg and destroy- 
ing the country withoiit n&erii^. 

General Desse^ being informed tiiat Lord Gi^ had didodged 
from Haddington, and that idbont 500 hone, which he had left 
in the same place^ were daily sallying forth and hanssing the 
soldiers and the coimtry in repeated aUnnishes, resolTed on 
endeaivonnng to take Haddington by a oonp^ie-main* For this 
purpose, M. de Andelot and Comit Bimgraye picked out 100 ef 
their beet foot and 300 horse, and took np to ambush behind a 
hill not for from the town, while Desse detached Captain hsmp 
with ten horse, to provoke the enemy to skinnicdi, and appointed 
M. de Etanges to advance dowly, and sopport him with the rest 
€t his cavahy. Loup had acaieely come in view of the En^iah, 
when all their horse^ and some foreigners on foot, isaoed out of 
the tolim, and feU upon the cavalxy of IkL de Etai^es ; upon 
whidi Desse sent an express to M. de la Chapelle de Bicon JEuid 
to Captain Boutooze, who had been left at the head of the 
foot, to march straight on the enemy, as soon aa he should 
give the flognal of a trumpet The si^ial being sounded, and 
the Ei^gliflh peFceiving thaA the general, with his men^^alMmna 
and two companies of foot, had broke forth upon them, en- 
deavoured^ but in vain, to make an orderly retreat. The French 
rotfted their opponents at' the first onset, and followed them pell- 
mell witinn the gates of the suburbs of Haddington; Here a 
Wave Englishman, enraged at the cowardly conduct of his coun- 
trymen, and believing that he could do something for the honour 
of his land, singly foeed about, and fiercely attacked M. de 
Andelot, who was in the front ; but he broke his lance in the 
attempt, and the officer warily sustaining the shock, despafecfaed 
him on the spot with a thrust of his sword. The 
laid about them most foriously with their hangers and chibs, 
drove the enemy to the gates of the fort ; and, according to the 
journalist, '^ without losing nbove three of their own number, 
-sent off 300 to their last tribunal, to give an account of that 


religion thai taught them <^ti& to saepfice thdr hoft^tm -flBd. 
lives m » war pUiMf. wnput.* Besides the glory of vanqtush- 
ing the enemy at the foot of their ramparts, we had the good; 
bide ta cany off dghty prisoners, and that in sight of the intimir; 
dated, garxiswi." 

After aU this vaunting, the "Etmoh raised the^ camp, md 
marched to Edinbnigh ; tcom wh^ice M«a*shal Stoni, the I#(»d 
de Andelc^, and seve^ otdier perscms of qmdity, sailed^for 
Fxaoee. M^^de la CSuqaelle dft Biron, a man of uaqiie&t^Qnable 
bidveiy and ezperifioce, was appointed oQ]0n^l-;geQyeraJi in Soot* 
land, and Captain . Baehe, an Italian, had Mm^ command of. fbwr 
ptotdily-amied gailie» that remained in the service. Theipde* 
fistigaBle Desse, with an activity of spirit that n^ver tired, set 
about &Ttifyin[g Leitb, which indaoed a nnmber of peiople:&om 
Haddington, Dmidee, Glasgow, and Stirling, to come ajad. settle 
there, which made the port of Edinburgh more rich and populous. 

J^essse's next exploit was an expedition to Jedburgh, wh0pe he 
was ordered, by the qUeen to destroy some Spaidaid» who had 
fcakdn.refoge in the town, and who by their foBce or artifi<;e had 
brought over a greiat part of that district, to l&e ilSpglish ipt^^. 
}ie was accompanied in .this expedition by 800 SeotQ on horse* 
faikfCk, who were much surporised at the. nice («c3rang^Hnentft.of the 
French in-providing for-thie comfort of thdr camp« 

The French troops wexe SQ- different in their .hal^ts and man^ 
ners from the Scots, that they dould not long agree, when en- 
oamped together^ The gaiety and light frivolity of the one ill 
accorded with the shrewd gravity of: the other* Further, there 
was. a strong and rigid patty who opposed them in. d^fen<^ of 

* John Knox was of the same opinion ; but unfortunately for our 
journalist, it was in favour of the other side. Speaking of the queen- 
mother i^r the battle ' of Pinjcej, he says — " When 4(he cqrtainty of thf 
clucomfiture cajney she w^s in Edinburgh, abiding upon the tiding ; but 
with expedition she posted that same night to Stirling, witb "Monsieur de 
Oyssel^ who was a« fearful as ^ a^fox when his hole is smoked.* And thus did 
God tf^e tiie second revenge upon the p^ure^ governor, with suoh as as- 
sisted him to defend an v/ifjust quarrel, albeit that max^y umocent ' fell, 
teiODgiit the wftked.'^—Knox^s Hist. R^ormaition.: 

fOB mmsmr or im^iibajl [ld4S* 

tlieiT religioi^ principles^ and the ebief beheld with a jealous eye 
the favours bestowed upon foreigners by Mary of Lorraine. A 
serious quarrel at tins time oocarred between the French and 
Sbots in Edinbui^h/which led to disagreeable results, as the 
provost and his son, James Hamilton, captain of the castle, wero 
filain in the skirmish. The whole dty was roused at the slaugh- 
ter of their provoist, and some tmfortunate persons were hung in 
Ihe Grassmark^, to appease the populace. This occurrence was 
bailed with. Joy by t^e £nglish, as likely to 6£Eeet a breach be^ 
tween the allied nations. To do away with thk impression^ 
Desse found it prudent to muster his forces with the gredtest 
flocrecy, and if possible to divert the public mind by striking 
another and final blow at Haddington, whiioh had foiled himi so 
often. He accordingly marched to Musselbiu^ and fromthenoa 

** All things being prudently and cautloudy laid for the dQ!» 
signed effort," says M. Beague, ^' about elev^ o'clock at night 
eveiy man was armed; ttnd although the heavens were ovei^ 
spread with darkness, yet Desse was faithfidly conducted by d 
secret and convenient avenue to the gates of Haddington, where 
he remained without being discovered, till some of t^e soldiers^ 
after taking a ha]f<*moon battery before the port, and killing the 
i»ntinels, made the walls resound with the name of ' Franee I* 
At the same time we attacked the enemy's guard, and found they 
did their duty but negligently.** 

The basH^ourt before the east gate of the town was gained ere 
the garrison was alarmed; meanwhile socle granaries, whidi 
the English possessed at the back of an adjacent churdi, were 
attacked, while the French were breaking open the port This 
was so suddenly efifected, that the garrison had little time to put 
themselves into a posture of defence. The Italian guard were 
put to the sword, and the few English who were upon duty 
fared no better. Indeed, fortune at first promised victory^ but 
treachery frustrated their hopes^ 

Desse and his men were exposed to the mouth of a ^^ doublcf 

IM&] AVUCK VfOK BAJDomcnoK. 100 

Gumcsi/' plaated between two gabions, upon the narrowest place 
of the entry or ayenne which led to the town« This place had 
not been mastered as yet, when a French soldier, a native of 
Paris (who not long before had been corrapted by the enen^» 
and. served him as a spy), was stationed at that very spot of 
ground. This renegade, dreading the punishment he deserved, 
iiad gcowB desperate, and, naked and unaimed as he was, tan 
to the double-mouthed cannon, and fired it. The ball made ita 
way through the close ranks <^ the Fr^och^ and; could not fedl tQ 
inake » gioot alaxi^ter amongst them* In consequence jof this 
ttoiart recejitlofi and the darkness of the night, which hindecec) 
ihein &om «£Kertaining their leid loss, whidh as yet was not 
sufficient to dishearten them, the French were sdjsed with a 
sadden panic ' A terrible cky ran through the battalion, whipb 
alarmed those in the rear, who began to retire.; and those be* 
lund following their exlumple, the French ranks were broken and 
thrown into the utmost conJ^ision. The garrison being now 
onder arms, a party sallying from a privy postern made such a 
!farious onset with spears and swords, that very few of the 
JPrench who had entered the lower or ba»KX)urt escaped alive, 
^nie brave Desse still kept his ground, and thrice renewed his 
mit^ack in the morning ; but at last, on the remonstrance of the 
other cifficeiB, and after suffering considerable loss, he was 
obliged to issue orders to sound a retreat Dissembling his 
Aoughts on this disastrous occasion, he smiled, and said to the 
liOrd De Oyssel— *" Let us then suppose, my friend, that we are 
at sea, and l^ sioim constradned to lower our sails — ^what theni 
The wind is changeable, and a fairer gale will yet enable us to 
make out the voy^^e." 

The journalist of the French army, who had been particularly 
jninute in stating the exact numbers lost by the English in each 
i^icounter, is here silent in regard to his own. According to 
iHayward, sixteen carts were filled with the wounded, and SOO 
left dead beCore the walls of Haddington. Thus terminated this 
great aiege> wMcb ha4 lueted. ne^rl^ four months without inteiv» 

110 . HISTOBT OF buif BAB. [l&4&^ 

missioti, and without aay material advantage to dther. partf. 
The brilliant affair of Desse, in cutting of the snpidies under Sir 
Robert Bow^s and Sir Thomas Palmer waa in a great d^ree 
balanced by the disastexft at Haddington, firom whence he imme- 
diately retired. This assault happened in the beginning of 
October 1548. 

We have made this digressioa £rom our hiatoiy in regard to 
the siege of Haddington for this simple reason, that the Fren<^ 
had a great ascend^oy iii this country. 

' Ever since the regency of Albany, the castle of Dunbar bad 
been garrisoned by the French^* It lay on the road to Berwidc 
and Bo3[burgh, and as it was at no great distance from Hadding* 
ton, Dunglas, Eyemouth, and Fast Castle, it was firequenldy, and 
even daily, visited by foraging parties from Haddingtoti, during 
the siege, who plundered and harassed the country* The 
French captains had made frequent sallies to meet the maraa" 

* Monsieui* Beague's description of Duifbar is bo lively that w6 caxmot 
avoid quoting it :— " The Oaptadns Achanlt, Gonronnan^ and 'Deemo, wem 
in garrison at Dunbar, a town that stands upon the brink of the sea, about 
ten leagues from Edinburgh, upon the skirts of Lotbian, in a very good 
country,- and aceommodated with ail these advantages,' that conduce bo& ti> 
the pleasure and support of Ufe. If the place was fortified and a good 
harbour contrived, which might be done with very inconsiderable charges, 
it would unquestionably claim a precedency among the goodliest towns 
which are anywhere- to be seen in these islands. It has already a vegf 
strong and beautiful castle, built upon a high rock on the edge of the sea. 
The avenues that lead to it are not to be forced but with vast danger and 
difficulty ; and art here has seconded nature so adnurably well, that ther^ 
are few ^aces in the imiverse that can vie with those conveniences th* 
castle of Dunbar affords for defence against batteries, or any warlike engine 
or invention whatever.*' — ^Hist. Gampagnes. — ^It hat been.sunnised thai$ 
a drawing of the castle exists in- the Scots College at Paris ; but in a recent 
visit to that capital, Mr David Laing, the celebrated antiquarian, could 
discover no traces of our venerable fortress. That the French, who wer* 
excellent ^igineers, took drawings both of the castle of. Dunbar and th^ 
fortifications of Haddington, ^ere can exist no doubt. These may have 
perished with the private families to whom they belonged ; but as the castte 
vras latterly a demesne- of the crown — the readence of AIb«aiy, and ultor- 
wards of Queen Maiy — some sketch may be preserved in the continental 
palaces or feudal castles. 

After the lapse of 800 yean, the idea of this higeidoiui FgmfthTBaii> thfti^tl 
^' a good harbour" might be contrived at Dunbar, ha^ beoi realized by the 
improvement of " Cromwell's " and the " Victoria." ' ' ' 

1548.] QovEBJioB or h:u>dikgton taken. Ill 

•ders ; but ad the fonner were on foot and t^e latter on horse- 
Isack, tihey were tmable to foUow up their slight rencounters. 
At. length these saUies designedly became more falnt^ and by 
* this means inveigled the enemy nearer the place ; for the Eng- 
lish, JmagifnTig that the French \^ere a&aid to fight, would dis- 
perse themselves through the whole burgh of Dunbar, and 
-alighting from their hotses, would even enter the houses. Early 
'One morning, the Frendi posted most of their men in two houses, 
Just opposite one another, and in the chureh at the entry to the 
-town on*^ €he e^my's road« They had also distributed soldiers 
:irith aniuebnses, aad the like offe^e weapons, in other hon«ee 
tiux»]^ the streets, and had given necessary directions for their 
l)ehaviour, whatever might happen. The English, as usual, 
.made tiheir appearance, and scattered themselves through the 
burgh, accompanied by Sir Jaines Wilford, the governor of 
iBbiddington, with fifty or sixty arquebusiers on horseback, who 
ivere little more distant than the shot of an arquebuse froin the 
castle. Captains Gonbman, Desme, and Achault, broke forth 
from thdr lurkizig-*places, and ^surrounded the enemy fi:om all 
quarters. The governor of Haddington attempted to escape by ^' 
^the 86ar£ade j but eighty soldiers who guarded that pass fired 
upon his cavalry, and prevented their advance; at the same 
Bioment, OaptairB Achault and Desme fell upon their rear, and 
'^eharging them £*om right to left with the greatest fiiry, bore 
many to the ground ; while the ai^uebusiers, who were sta- 
tioned in the houses of the town, liaving made apertures in the 
walls, fired as securely and directly as if they had been firing at 
4l buttor a target. 

The English thus cooped up, and attacked on all sides, 
exerted themselves with the greatest courage, and resolved to 
«ell their Hves dearly; for, in the language of our moralising 
journalist, '^ Those weapons which necessity affords, prove 
-always .the sharpest" At this critical moment, a Biscayan 
.a(ddlier,^osme<l PeUicque, a Imsk resolute fellow (who w^ after- 
wards floteotied td ^Heutep«iiicy in Gaptain Oagea^'s company). 

assatilted the goTemor, bore ia upon him most forioiisly "with hia 
pike, killed his horse, wonnded himself, and forced hmri to snr* 
render, while the rest of the soldiers who were not killed or 
taken, escaped by the fleetness of their horses. 

At length what the gallant Desse could not obtain, the pestl* 
lence effected. The English regency was engaged in a war with 
France, and harassed by rebellions at home; while to add to 
their disastets, the plague had broken, ont amongst the garnson 
at Haddington, and swept away numbers daily. 

*^ Haddington being kept," says John Knoz, ^* and much her- 

ship done about in the countzy (for what the Englidmien de* 

etrqyed not, that was consumed by the French^ Qod begins to 

fight iot Scotland; for in this town he sent a plague so oontagi^ 

otts, that with great difficulty could they have their dead buried. 

They were often refreshed with new men, bat all was -in vain ; 

>hungOT and plague within, and the pursuit of the enemy with a 

flying camp, lay about them, and intercepted all -victuals (except 

when th^ were brought by a convoy from Berwick), so ooxh 

strained them, that the cotmciL of England was compeUed in the 

spring-time to call their forces from that place ; and so, spoiling 

and burning some part of the town, they left it to be occupied 

by such as first should take possession-^these were the French^ 

men, with a small number of the ancient inhabitants. And so 

did Ood perform the words and tlffeatenings of Mr Qeoigo 

Wishart, who said — ' That for their i^ntempt of God's messen-* 

ger they should be visited with sword and fire — ^with pestilence, 

strangers, and famine.' All which they found in such per&ctioiiy 

that to this day yet that town has neither recovered the former 

beauty, nor yet men vi such wisdom and ability as then did in-^ 

habit it" 

O leaTO ifae batrcn spot tome-* 

Spare, woodmani, spare the beechen treel 

which hasnourished thee and thy fore&thers ! Enoz was a n»» 
tive of an adjoining parish to Haddington ; but here, as usnal^ 
h9 li earned aK^by his paaeioinilte ml in* hvoar of tbtM who> 


Vere martyrs to his cliurcli — ^for unliappily tlie pestilence and 
famine were not confined to Haddington. 

The Earl of Rutland, determined that neither soldiers nor 
military stores should fall into the hand« of the French, entered 
Scotland with 6000 men, amongst whom were a band of Ger- 
man mercenaries. Entering Haddington in the night, they 
totally demolished the fortifications of the place ; and, without 
molestation from either the Scots or their allies, conveyed the 
garrison with all their artillery and stores to Berwick, on the 
1st October 1549, On the 22nd March 1550, • letters were 
written to Lord Bowes, not to proceed in conveying the ordnance 
of Haddington from Dunglas, nor to send too large a supply of 
victuals to Lauder or that place, there being a prospect of peace, 
which happily was soon realised. On this occasion it was agreed 
that the forts of Dunglas and Lauder, which the King of Eng- 
land had built, "should be delivered to the Scots, together with 
all the ordnance within them, except what had been brought 
from Haddington, and that this restitution should be made as 
soon as commodiously might be before the second payment o^ 
400,000 crowns, which the French had agreed to pay England 
for the restoration of Boulogne. The forts of Dunglas, Lauder, 
Roxburgh, and Eyemouth, were axjcordingly destroyed j and the 
castles of Dunbar and Blackness, and the forts of Broughty and 
Inchkeith, for commanding the entrance into the principal rivers, 
were garrisoned by the French during the peace. In 1551, the 
fort of Aberlady at Luflhess was included in this destructive, 
mandate, to be delivered up to Patrick Hepburn of Waughton 
for demolition, reserving the house and mansion to himself in 
heritage, on condition that he sent the ammunition and artillery 
to the castle of Dunbar at his own expense. 


. I 



F«r luch a queen, the Stout's heir, 

A queen so coiirtecms, young, and fair. 

Who would not every foe diSf ? 

Who wonM not stand, who would not die ? 

When the gale heaved her bosom's screen. 

What beaati^es in her form were seen f 

A sight so fair, on Scotland's plain, 

A Scot shall never see again.— QuEiv^s Wakk. 


Ik June 1555, the queen-regent, on her return from the 
southern shires, visited Dunbar ; and in 1557 she sent De 
Oyssel, the lieutenant of the French king in Scotland, with a 
detachment of French from the castle, to rebuild the fortress of 
Eyemouth, which, by the convention of 1551, had been de* 

After the destruction of Perth and the abbey of iScone by the 
partisans of John Enoz in 1559, the queen-regent, alarmed tot 
her safety, fled with three hundred guards to the castle of 

The Lord Seton, who was provost of Edinburgh, abandoned 
his charge, and left the destruction of its monastic establish- 
ments to the mob. In short, the popular fervour had now 
arrived at such a height, that it was as easy for Canute to have 
driven back the ocean waves that mocked his rebuke as to have 
arrested its progress. The queen-regent now saw the necessity 
of a compromise ; and issuing a proclamation, proposed calling a 
parliament in the following January to arrange diflferenoes, While 

♦ Maitiand. ,_ t SpottiswoOd. 

1559.] CXVlLWAIt. 115' 

during the interval all were allowed to indulge tbeir own cdti- 
sciences in religious opinions, which was a great concession 
gained in persecuting times. In this proclamation, however, th|i 
'' congregation " were blamed as particularly obnoxious : ^' they 
were in the practice of bringing English spies into their houses, 
and had violently entered the palace of Holyrood, and seized the 
printing-irons of the mint-house." According to Knox, ''the 
que^, by oorruptibg or issuing base money, made to herself im- 
moderate gains, whereby she might maintain the soldiexy, 
wherefore it was found necessaiy that the printing irons, and all 
things pertaining thereto, should be staid, lest she Aould pri- 
vily transport them to Dunbar." * 

On Sunday the 26th July, the queen's forces marched on their 
return from Dunbar, and '' the congregational army ^' not being 
properly luited, retired before them. It was now found neces- 
sary by the reformers, or Protestants, to solicit the aid of Eng- 
land and of Elizabeth ; and it was certainly more honourable to 
demand that of a sister state, although formerly an enemy by the 
perverse conduct of its rulers, than that of a foreign ally. Bat 
before doing this the congregational leaders were urged to the 
greatest extremity for want of specie to pay their troops. 

'' To pacify the men of war," says Knox, " a collection was de- 
vised ; but because some were poor, and some were niggards aod 
avaricious, there could no sufici^it sum be obtained. It was 
thought expedient that a coin-house should be made : thnt every 
nobleman should coin his silver work and plate, to supply the 
present necessity ; and there, throogh David Fon^s, John Hart, 
and others, who before had charge of the coining-house, did pro- 
mise their faithful labours. But when the matter came to this 
very point, the said John Hart, and others of his faction, stole 
Away, and took with them the inatrum^xts fit for that purpose. 

In 1560, when the EngHsh forces tmder Lord Grey passed. 

* Knox's Hist. Calderwood observes-^" The clipped and rounged 
MOtiUieea^ {i,e, the gnavfed tovs, a species of small money), '' which had not 
ysHiwd these t^iree ^ears bygone in France^ were commanded by her to 
bave ikee ooorte within this reabne.** — Oalderwood's Biist. 



Dunbar on their way to Leith, some skirmishers sallied from the 
garrison j but as they kept near the walls of the castle, only a 
few lives were lost.* 

While the English were now aiding the cause of the Eeformers 
at the siege of Leith, the latter were employed in the destruction 
of palaces and abbeys in another quarter. Nor were there op- 
ponents less active ; for Bothwell and the French commandant 
of Dunbar cut to pieces many straggling parties of Scotch and 
English, and more than once seized the military chest when on 
on its way from Berwickt 

In a hasty and ill-conducted attack to scale and stom^ the 
town of Leith, the English sustained a repulse, the failure of 
which was attached to Sir James Crofts, who did not make the 
assault at the part of the wall assigned to him. Norfolk 
(in a letter to Cecil) calls Crofts the Bell-wether of all his 
mischief, and got him superseded in the command of Berwick, 
which was conferred on Lord Grey.J The last succours sent 
from Berwick to Leith were two bodies of 300 men each, who 
setting out on the 8 th, arrived in the camp on the 10th June. 
The same day, the Queen-regent of Scotland, worn out with 
grief and vexation at the wavering interests of her party, died in 

* Bidpftth. t Maitland. 

+ .« The queen-regent at a distance beheld the overthrow," gays the his- 
torian of the Congregation, ''and as the ensigns of the French were dis- 
played on tie walls, she gave a gawf of laughter, and said, * now will I go . 
to the mass, and 'praise God for that which mine eyes hath seen.' The 
French, proud of their victory, stripped naked the slain, and laid their car- 
cases along the wall in the hot sua, unto which, when the queen-r^ent 
looked, for mirth she leapt, arid said, * Yonder is the fairest tapestry that 
1 ever saw ; I would that the whole fields that are betwixt this place and 
you were strewed with the same stuff.' " — ^These expressions drew forth the 
lanatheinies of John Knox, who boldly affirmed in the pulpit, " That God 
shqiald revenge that contumely done to hu image ! not only on the furious 
Mid godless soldiery, but even in such as rejoiced thereat ; and the very 
experience proved that he was not deceived, for within a few days after 
(yea, some say that same day), began her belly and legs to swell, and so 
continued till that God in his wisdom took her away from this world." 

The garrison at Leith was in such a miserable condition, that horseflesh 
■old at a considerable price. , 

1560.] • LOfiD DAENLEY. 117 

the castle of Edinburgh, little regretted but by those in her 
immediate interest* 

• The tenglish and French ambassadors having met at Berwick 
for the purpose of negotiating a trace, it appeared to be one 
great object of the Scottish nobility and people to get the French 
garrisons sent out of the country, But while thus anxious for 
their removal, they at the same time were equally anxious that 
their departure should not ,take place till restitution had been 
made to those they had wronged. Here two difficulties oc- 
curred. The commissioners of France wished that a certain 
number of men should remain for the service of the king and 
queen, while those that were disbanded should be allowed to 
depart with their baggage unmolested. At length, to propitiate 
both parties, through the intercession of the Queen of England, 
concessions were made to the nobility and people ; and part of 
the fortifications lately built at Dunbar were to be razed, and 
no new buildings erected without the consent of Parliament. 
These resolutions are noticed in a parliamentary article, entitled, 
" Concessions granted by the King and Queen to the nobility and 
people of Scotland." * 

From these articles it appears that certain new works lately 
•erected at Dimbar were to be demolished. On the 1 6th July 
1560, the French army embarked in English vessels, and the 
•Engliah army, when on their way' to Berwick, made it their 
business to see that the demolition of the fort lately built in front 
of the castle of Dunbar should be put m execution. 

Mary having turned her attention to a matrimonial alli- 
ance, formed the resolution of espousing her cousin, Lord 
Damley, eldest son of Matthew, Earl of Lennox. The latter 
had resided in England ever since he had abandoned his own 
<;ountry ; and as the price of his allegiance and services, had re- 
ceived in marriage the Lady Margaret Douglas (the niece of 
Henry VIIL), by whom Darnley was his son. Damley being a 
native of England> and the eldest male descendant of the 

* - • . * KMth»g Hist. p. 137. ■■ 

> 4 

118 HISTOEir or DtyjTBAR. [1500. 

daughter of Henry VII., he was presumptive heir to the crowa 
of England — a matter that induced Mary to form ber choicou 
But the ancient enemies of the house of Lennox, espedally the 
Hamiltoiis, were averse to a match which would restore that 
house to their ancient dignities and possesdcms ; and Moray and 
Maitland, who ever since the queen's return firom France had 
governed all public affairs, felt a jealousy of being superseded by 
» beloved husband. These fears were promoted by t^ insolence 
and folly that soon appeared in Damley's proceedings. The 
Queen of England encouraged these domestic discontents, de- 
clared openly against the new aUiance, and imprisoned Ladjr 
Lennox in the Tower. The chieftains of the borders, partica-* 
larly Lord Home and the Lairds of Cessford and Femiherst^ wei^ 
forward to serve her at this eventful crisis. Lord Home was in 
hopes of being created Earl of March ; and Bandolph, in a letter 
to Elizabeth, advises his mistress ** to find Home business at 
home J by hiring some of the strapand Elliots to oblige him to 
keep at home to look after hiB com and cattle." Put the men 
of liddesdale were at that time wholly in the interests of Eng^- 
land, and could not by all Bothwell's promises be induced to give 
their aid to the queen. 

Lord Gordon, eldest son of the Earl of Huntly, who had been 
convicted of joining with his father in an enterprise against the 
queen, in 1562, and was condemned for high treason, which was 
commuted into imprisonment in the castle • of Punbar, wan 

In the last week of the stormy year 1562, Queen Maiy left 
Edinburgh for a brief visit to Dunbar, to be meny with her 
brother. Lord John of Coldingham. She next proceeded to 
Castle Campbell, where she honoured the nuptials of the secu* 
larised Abbot of St Colm and the Earl of Aigyle's sister with 
her presence. It was at this time that her minister, the new 
Earl of Moray, caused the heir of the ruined house of Gordon to ^ 
be brought to trial for high treason; and although the only, 
crime bf the unfortunate young nobleman was being the r^re^ > 

1563.] ixBL OF fiUNTLY. 119 

nentative of that devoted family, he was by hia tiine-serving 
judges found guilty, and doomed to be hung and his body 
quartered. Mary could not be induced to consent to this 
iniquitous sentence, and she caused the victim of Moray's policy 
or vengeance to be removed from Edinburgh castle to Dunbar, 
on the 11th February, and put into free ward there, under the 
charge of the captain of that fortress, until farther orders. 
Moray, finding it impossible to persuade his royal sister to sign 
the death-waprant, endeavoured to compass his sanguinary de- 
sign by outwitting her. One day when he brought an unusual 
number of ordinary papers which required her signature, and 
which she was accustomed to sign without reading, fiilly con« 
fiding in the description he gave her of their purport, he shuffled 
in among the rest a mandate in her name, addressed to the 
Captain of Dunbar, ordering him immediately, on the receipt of 
the same, to strike off the head of his prisoner, George Gordon, 
Commonly called Lord Gordon and the Earl of Huntly.* 

The queen signed the fatal order, unsuspicious of its mur" 
derous intent ; and the artM statesman, who had thus imposed 
on his royal mistress, despatched the paper by a trusty mes^ 
Sanger to the captain of Dunbar. That gentleman was surprised 
and troubled, and with much concern communicated its purport 
to Gordon. " It is the malice of the bastard," exclaimed the 
young earl, with passionate vehemence, '^for the queen sent me 
assurances of her pity ; and I know, and alu sure, it is not her 
intention to take my life." He then implored the casteUan to 
suspend the execution of the warrant till he should have seen her 
majesty, and heard frt)m her own lips whether it were indeed 
her irrevocable intention that the instructions in that paper 
[^otdd be' acted upon. Touched with compassion for his noble 
prisoner, and suspecting that foul play was designed, the captain 
ci Dunbar generously risked his own ruin, by venturing to post* 
pone the execution of the warrant till he should have returned 

* l&loty ti tike Kdble Funify ol GoTdoii> quoted by BCmn Stridkbnd, 
ToL ui. ' 

120 : msTO&Y QF DUNBAR. [1560, 

from Edinburgli. He arrived there at the dead of night. Being 
well known to the warders and porter at Holyrood as a person 
in her majesty's confidence, he obtained admittance into the 
palace, and made his way to her bed-chamber door ; but there he 
was stopped by the guard, who told him the queen had retired 
for the night, and was in bed. In consequence of his urgency 
as related life or death, the lady in waiting was summoned, 
to whom he protested that he must see her majesty on business 
that would brook no delay. Mary being informed, desired that 
he should be ushered in, that he might declare his errand at her 
bedside. He entered with heavy looks, approached, and kneel- 
ing, told her he had obeyed her order. She, wondering, asked— 
" What order ?" " For striking off Huntly's head," he replied. 
Suddenly roused by intelligence, so astounding, Mary seemed at 
first as one still dreaming ; but when she comprehended the 
announcement, she burst into lamentation, mingled with pas-, 
sionate reproaches, to the captain of Dunbar, for the murderous 
deed which had been perpetrated against her instructions. He 
showed her the order signed by her own hand. Tears gushed 
from her eyes, " This is my brother's subtlety," she exclaimed, 
*' who, without my knowledge or consent, hath abused me in 
this and many other things." " It is good," says the captain of 
Dunbar, " that I was not too hasty in such a matter, and re- 
solved to know your majesty's will from your own mouth," 
Mary, in a transport of joy at finding the murder had not been 
perpetrated, tore the paper eagerly, commended the prudence 
of her castellan, and enjoined him to give no credence to any 
instrument touching his noble captive, but only to her own 
word, spoken by herself in his hearing ; and charged him in the^ 
meantime to keep him safely till she could resolve what best 
to do.* 

It having been bruited at this critical juncture that the queen, 

* This interesting fact the Baron of Pitbiurg, in his manuscript History 
of the Family of Gordon, declares he had from his father, to whom it yfts 
related by Huntly's own lips. 



who had professed herself weary of the thankless responsibilities 
of her vocation, intended to withdraw to France or Lorraine, 
excited great anxiety in the public mind. Watchful attention 
was paid to her movements at this time, which are thus de- 
scribed by Kandolph : — 

" Her grace went upon Monday last to Dunbar — a few m 
company only, to pass her time. Immediately hereupon riseth 
the bruit 'that these were two ships that arrived there that 
night, and either that there was some nobleman come out of 
IVance, or that the queen, taking a despite against this country, 
would again into France, and for that cause Martignes came to 
Calais to receive her, and the ships to convoy her.' To strengthen 
this suspicion, it was said that in the night there was conveyed 
out of the Abbey four great chests, and her grace, being on 
horseback, should say unto my Lord Morton, * God be with you, 
my Lord of Morton ; I wiU bring you other noveUes (tidings) 
when I come again.' 

" The next day cometh this news, that one of the two ships, 
that are laden with artillery to come into Scotland, was arrived 
at Dunbar, and the other was taken by the Englishmen. That 
night, being Wednesday, sudden warning was given to all my 
Lord of Moray's servants and friends in this town tb ride out, 
and to lodge themselves in towns and houses about Dunbar, for 
that my Lord of BothweU was come secretly to speak with the 
queen, with many horses, and my Lord of Moray, being without 
any company, might perchance have fallen into some danger. 
The last news of all was, that my Lord of Moray was command- 
ed to ward there. 

" With these news," continues Randolph, in reference to the 
above false reports, " there was one ready to have ridden away 
to my Lord of Argyll, of whose stay I think I was myself the 
occasion; and if I had been as hasty to believe as I was credibly 
informed, and earnestly advised and required from wise men to 
write away to your honour" (Cecil) "in time, I might by this 
time have put your honour in great doubt of cumber here, and 


1 22 HISTORY OF DTJ^BAR. [ W66. 

showed myself more hasty than wise. I took this resolution 
with myself, that if there had been appearance of the first bruit 
to have been true of the queen's departure, or the last, which 
was my Lord of Moray's imprisonment, I would myself have 
gone to Dunbar to have been near her grace, and have learned 
of herself what her meaning was. lBnt finding, by diligent in- 
quisition, not one of all these bruits to be true, I thought it best 
to seem as though I had never heard word of them." * 

The domestic quiet of the queen was of short duration, for she 
was frequently engaged in quarrels with her consort. Lord 
Damley was a man of loose principles, and soon treated hes 
with marked neglect ; while an ill-judged attachment ivhich she 
formed for Bizzio, an Italian musician, drew on her the moi^ 
unhappy ooQQisequences. This excited the indignation of Damley, 
who placed himself at the head of a plot for destroying the luck- 
less minion. It was agreed that the Eail of Morton, with 160 
men, should seize the gates of the palace, and that Damley, 
accompanied by Lord Buthven, Douglas, and his associates, 
should seize Bizzio in the queen's presence. Morton having 
secretly secured the entrances while her majesty was at supper 
with the Countess of Argyle, Bizzio, and ,a few domestioi, 
Damley suddenly entered the apartment by & private passage, 
followed by the Lords Lindsay and Ruthven, in complete armour, 
with Maitland of Lethington, aiid other accomplices. This 
unusual appearance created alarm, and the poor victim, in the 
utmost consternation, retired behind his royal mistress. Buthven, 
who for some time had been so emaciated by disease, that he 
could scarcely bear the weight of his armour, with his helmet 
on his head, seemed to be the moving picture of death, and with 
a voice dreadfully hollow, after reproaching Bizzio for the bad 
offices he had done the king (Darnley), by endeavouring to with- 
hold from him the matrimonial crown, drew his dagger, atid 
wresting him from the queen, to whom he clung, forced him 
into the antichamber, where the wretched minion fell pierced 

* Randolph to Cecil, Feb. 28, 1504. State Paper MS. 


»<a^^^..<«i^»^»^»i^^l^i*rffc^fc*^M^^i»<fcJ|il^^h^'^^^"^'* i^^*^^ — 

with Mfcy-six wounds, in a less honourable position than Julius 
Csesar, Thus fell Bizsdo, whose real crime was that of being a 
foreigner, and because he was imprudently intrusted by his mk- 
tress in affairs which she could commit to no other secretary, 
while his presumption and insolence had rendered him obnoxious 
to the ftobOity. That th^e was any criminal intercourse be- 
tween this unfortunate minion aiid the queen was as improbaJble 
as it was malicious to suppose ; for while Damley was dis- 
tinguished by the graces of his person, the figure of Eizzio was , 
described by Buchanan as so ugly and awkward, that no dress 
could m£^e him look like a gentleman. 

Mary, alarmed for her safety, left Edinburgh on the following 
Monday at midnight, in company with Damley, and proceeded 
to the palace of iSeton, whence she pursued her journey to the 
aafer retreat of the castle of Dunbar. Having thus seduced the, 
king to abandon his party, the queeij^'s next step was to ayen^^e 
the murder of her favourite. A proclamation was accordingly/ 
issued from Dunbar on the 16th March,* calling on the inh.jdbir 
tants of the sheriffdom of Edinburgh, in the constabulary of" 
Haddington, linlithgow, Stirling, Lanark, Boibuxgh, Se'iiirk^, 
Peebles, Berwick, Lauder, <fec., to meet her at Haddixigt oo^. o^iu 
Sunday the 17th current, with e^ht days provisions, *^^ a^ ofi^ 
danis thairfoir letteris to be direct to ofiiciaris of armes , to pasa 
to the mercat-croces of the said burgh of Haddingtc ,\sx, and 
utheris places neidfull, and thair be openin proclamation jii. charge 
all as aforesaid, under the pane of tyns^ of lyff, 3 jattdg,; J^nd^ 
gudifl." t 

After issuing this proclamation, Mary sent order .-a to Lord" 
Erskine to fire upon the associated lords fr<Hn fch a ca^le of 
Edinburgh ; and the Earl of Morton, Lord Ruthven,^ tha barons, 
of Ormiston, Warriston, <kc., were immediately simunQned to 
appear, under pain of rebellion; but the two first :fledto New- 

* Present — George Earl of Huntly, James Earl of 'BotlLwell, John. 
Earl of Athol, William Earl Mareschal, David Earl of Crawford, Gilbert. 
Earl of Cassilis, and George Earl of Caithness. 

t KeitVs App. 130, who quotes Acts of Privy Ooimcil. 

124 HISTORY OF DUKBAB. 1566.] 

rifX^kXtXtf^ "tf^ * l ~ l *r*|— ■ ■^ ■ ■^*- ■* - - ■*■* » ^»* »,^^ m. m m - » »■ ■ a ■ II MM *^^ 

c^le, while the others sought refuge in the Highlands or on the 
border. The queen thereafter returned to Edinburgh in triumph, 
with 8000 warriors in her train. Sir James Melville (one of the 
gentlemen of her chamber at Haddington), says, that she com- 
plained bitterly of Damley's conduct in the late assassination ; 
and from that day forward never met him with a smile.* 

The birth of James VI., which soon took place, made no 
alteration with regard to the prejudices she had imbibed against 
the king. But if Bi2zio fell by the instigation of Damley, the 
latter was himself soon destined to fall by the devices of one still 
more favoured. This imprudent woman, regardless of the sus- 
picion attached to her conduct, threw herself into a dangerous 
illness, by riding post to Hermitage Castle for the purpose of 
seeing BothweU, who had been wounded in an aflfray with the 
marauderis of Liddesdale. "There is a tide in the affairs of 
men ; " and to mark how fast that of Damley was ebbing, in 
January 1566, Maiy went to Glasgow to visit her husband, who 
was slowly recovering from the supposed effects of poison. On 
consenting to be removed to Edinburgh, he had apartments 
assign^ him in a remote part of the city, in a solitary place 
called " Kirk-of-Field " (now the site of the Koyal Infirmary), 
while Bothwell was royally lodged in Holyroodhouse. The 
sc^tude of the place encouraged Bothwell to execute what he 
had so long premeditated. He believed Morton, like himself, to 
be a man of no principle; and the earl had no sooner returned 
from England, on being pardoned by the queen for being con- 
cerned in the assassination of Eizzio, than he met him at Whit- 
tingham, and directly proposed that he should join him in as- 
sassinating the king, and requested him to subscribe a bond to 
that effect. Morton, instead of being startled at so execrable a 
proposal, asked Bothwell whether he had the queen's warrant 
for the murder. He was answered in the negative ; but he be- 
lieved that her majesty was very earnest the deed should be ac- 
complished, because she blamed her husband more for Bizzio'a 

* Spottiawood, 200. 

1567.] bothwelIa 125 

murder than she did Morton. Bothwell afterwards employed 
Douglas, the favourite of Morton (brother to the Laird of Whit- 
tingham), and the same who had been so active in Eizzio's 
death, to persuade the earl to the murder, but he still insisted on 
the warrant. 

The fatal charm was now nearly wound up. On the 9th her 
majesty appeared uncommonly kind to the invalid, but took 
leave of him at midnight for the great purpose of attending the 
marriage of Sebastian, a facetious musician. Meanwhile Both- 
weU, to make sure work of his victim, came upon the king in his 
sleep, and after strangling him, removed the body into an 
orchard, when, to avoid suspicion, the house was immediately 
blown up by gunpowder, which had been brought from the 
castle of Dunbar. Bothwell was instantly accused of this atro- 
cious murder, to which his intimacy with the queen seemed to 
lend its sanction. Lennox, the father of Damley, stood forward 
as the accuser; and on the 28th March 1567, the Privy Council 
directed that the " enormous subject " and his associates should 
appear before the tribunal of their country. The same faction, 
however, which had goaded the ambition of Bothwell, now in- 
terposed, and by means of intrigue and influence obtained his 
acquittal ; * yet that he was the contriver of the plot was after- 
wards confirmed by his own confession when a prisoner in Den- 

A very few days after his acquittal, Bothwell was permitted 
by the infatuated Mary to carry the sword before her in the pro- 
cession to parliament ; and, as a prelude to higher favours, be- 
sides the ratification of his other lands and offices, he was awarded 
the following in the neighbourhood of Dunbar : — • 

"On the 19th of April, in parliament, the queen taking re- 
gard and coDLsideration of the great and manifold good service 
done and performed, not only to her highness's honour, weiQ, 
and estimation, but also to the commonweill of her realm and 
lieges thereof, by James, Earl Bothwell ; and that, through his 

* Chahners' Cal. ii. + Keith's Hist. 

126 HISTORY OP DUNBAR. [1567. 

great service foresaid^ he not only frequently put bis person in 
peril and danger of his life, but also super-exp^ded him^lf, 
S«nated andmortgaged his l/viBg, lands, aS heritage, in ewrbi- 
taut sttmS; whereof he ia not hajstUy abb to recover the same, 
and that he, his friends, and kinsmen, for the most part dweU 
ne^ Q/d^a^nt to her highnoss's castle of Dunbar, and that he is 
most habile to have the captaincy and keeping thereof, aiid that 
it is necessarily required that the same should be well enteiv 
tainedi maintained, and furnished, which cannot be dc^ie without 
fiome yearly rent and profit given to him for that effect, and 
also for reward of his 3aid service : Then^ore, her nugesty in- 
fefted him aud his heirs male in the o$ce of the captaincy keep- 
ing of the castle of Dunbar^ and aLso in the crown lands of 
j^ter and Wester Bams, the lands of Newtonleyes, WaJldauQ, 
Hdg and Muris, Myreside, with the links and coning-yairs (war- 
rens), iSpc., the pull called Brand's-smyth, West Barnes mill, 
with (heir lan(}s> and L.10 of annual rent from the lands of 
I#oclu^nd| with aU the lands, privileges, and fees belonging to the 
govemm^ent of the castle, lying in the constabulaiy of Hadding- 
ton, and sheriffdom of Edinburgh, holding of her highness and 
her successors, in as full a manner as if contained at length in 
the charter and infefbment, of the date of one thousand five 

hundred threescore and -_ years. And now her majesty 

being of the same mind, the better to strengthen his lordship's 
title, with the advice of the three estates, she had thought proper 
to ratify t^ese grants in parliament, never to be revoked, v&rho 
regiSf by her or her successors." * 

Next day a more extraordinaiy scene occurred j for BothweU, 
having invited the principal nobility to supper, surrounded the 
house with an armed force, and compelled them to sign a bond, 
signifying their approval of his marrying the queen. 

On the 21st April Mary went to Stirling, to visit her soi]l ; 
and on her return on the 24th, Bothwell, with an armed party of 
dOO men, met her at Cramond Brig, and taking her horse by the 

* Douglas' Peer.— Maitlftnd's Hist. 


bridle, he conveyed her "full gently" to the c&stle of Dunban* 
The Earl of Hufitly, Secretary Maitland, and Sir James MeJU 
Tiile, were taken captives with the queen, while the te&t of her 
servants were allowed to (iepart. Sir James Melville infofms ns 
that neit day, when in Dunbar, he obtained permisslcm to go 
horned. *' Hiere," oontinties he, " the Earl of Bothwell boasted 
he would marrgr the queen who wonld or who would not ) yed, 
whether she woilld herself ot not." Captain Bladkatet, who had 
taken him, allciged that it was with the queen's own consentt 
Crawford justly obs^rVegl— " The Mendly love was so highly 
contrasted betWlxt this great jprincess and her enormous subject, 
that there was no end thereof, so that she suffitred patiently to 
be led where th^ lover list, and neither made obstade^ impedi- 
meht, clamour, or- resistance, bA in snch aedd^t used to be, 
which she might hav6 done by het princely anthority." J " They 
had scarcely remained ten days in the castle of Dunbaa-/' says 
Buchanan, ^' with no great distance between the queen's chamber 
and BothweU's, when they thought it eit^pedient to return to ^e 
castle of Edinburgh," and the dependants of Bothwell tht^W 

* " Upon th€f 24< of Apfyll, het majeitie, upon ooiuemg back from 
Striveling to Edinlburghe, at the bridge of Oraumont, the Earll of Bothuell, 
being wSl accompanied, raveshett ye qneine, and so took her yat same 
night to ye casteil of Dmnbar (not against her alren will). 

** The 15. of Mail, the queine wes maried to the Dudk of Orkney, in the 
chapell-royall of Holyrudhous, by Adam Bothnel, abbote of Holyrudhous ; 
and hes text wee ye 2nd of Genesis. 

*' l%te 11. day Junii, the queine being in Borihwidk oastdl, upon the 
Budden, certain of the nobility beset the casteil round about in arms, very well 
provydit. The principal of these w^, the Earles of Athol, Glencaim, M<)r- 
ton, Maatf ivith the Lords of Hdme^ Lindsay, Semple, Buthven, Sanquhar. 
The chief of the small barons and gentlemen yat accompanied them, wer 
TuUibairdin, Drumlanricke, Ces^ord, IhrmnqUhaill, Coldlnknowes, Loch- 
levin, Ker of Saldomyde, Grange, and the tutor df Fittour, triih divers 
oihers. Th^ de^ed the Earll Bothuell mififht be delivered to them ; but 
the iiord Borthuic^ answered that he wes fled to Dunbar. Thereafter they 
desy¥«d the queine to come and assist th^ In perseute of ber husband's 
muttii6rer> and she althogether refusit. 

" The 12. day of Junii the queine and duek rode to Dumbar. — BirreFa 

t MelvilleVMem, t Crawford's MS., quoted by Keith, 383w 

128 HISTOBY OF DUNBAB. [156?. 

away their weapons, that they might not be challenged for de- 
taining the queen prisoner. 

Finding Mttry in accordance with his wishes, Bothwell, on the 
plea of his having an adulterous, connection with his maid, sought 
to procure a divorce from the el^ant and accomplished Lady 
Jane Gbrdon, whom he had married only siz months before. In 
the court which sat on the occasion appeared John Manderson, 
canon of. the collegiate church of Dunbar. The clergy granted a 
divorce on a blind excuse, which had been previously overlooked, 
viz. consanguinity to his lady, while the laymen granted it on 
the plea of the before-m^itioned adultery. Some demur now 
took place in publishing the bans of this political marriage, which 
the conscientious principles of the Eev* John Craig could not 
overcome. On this occasion Thomas Hepburn, minister of Old- 
hamstocks, was delegated to enforce the ceremony, but without 
effect, for it formed the subject of public reprobation, and was 
demitted. But he who has benefits to confer can easily obviate 
flcruples ; and accordingly Bothwell, after being created Duke of 
Orkney and Shetland, was, on the 15th May 1567, married to 
Mary, Queen of Scots, in Holyroodhouse, by the bishop of 
Orkney, amidst very few spectators, while the French ambassa- 
dor refused to attend.* 

The nuptials excited the indignation both of the nation and of 
foreign courts. A confederacy of nobles met at Stirling, levied 
troops, and prepared to maich against the murderer of their 
king. The regicide being alarmed, fled with Mary to Borthwick 
Castle. Lord Home, who with other lx)rder chieftains had joined 
the confederacy, environed the castle ; but Bothwell effected his 
escape, and the queen, disguised as a page, with some difficulty 
followed him to Dunbar.t 

The associated lords, thus disappointed in their enterprise, pro- 
ceeded to Edinburgh, and issued the following proclamation : — 

" 12th June 1667. 

" That the Earl of Bothwell, having put violent hands on the 

* Spottiswood'B Hist. f ll>i<i* 



1867.] BATTJiK OF CABBB»RY-HH.L. 129 

queen's person, and shut her up in the cag^le of Dunbar ; having 
prooeeded to a dishonest marriage with her majesty after obtain-, 
ing a divorce from' his former \nfe ; having abr^y murdered 
the late king, and now attempting by his gathering together of 
forces^ to murder the young prinoe also : Therefore, they com^ 
mand all the lieges to be ready on three' hours wanung to pass 
forward with them, to deliver the queen's person, and take re- 
venge on the Earl of Bothwell, for ravishing and detaining her 
xnigesty ; and charge all those who will net assist them, to de-* 
part from the town of Edinburgh within four hourSj with certifi- 
cation," &c* 

, But while the inhabitants of Edinburgh heartily joined in the 
confederacy, the magistrates and town-council found it convenient 
to stand aloof, and aaUiomed deputies to wait on the qneen.t 

Meantime both parties prepared for war, and in a few daya 
after the queen's arrival at Dunbar, 4000 men had flocked to her 
standard. Confiding in her numbers, Mary left Dunbar with 
Botbwell on the 14th June, with 200 hakbntters, the flower of 
her forces, and some field-pieces from the castle ; and lodged tho 
first night at Seton* 

This news having reached the associated lords, they left Edin-r 
burgh early next morning (Sunday), and met the queen's forced 
at Carbeny-HiU, near Musselburgh, Here Bothwell a second 
time threw the gauntlet down to hi4 accusers : but after the 
challenge had been for the second time accepted, he refused to, 
fight. The confederates " conquered ere a sword was drawn," 
and the poor buffeted queen surrendered herself to the hard of 
Grange, whilst the guil^ BothwcU retraced his steps in a soli- 
tary flight to Dunbar.J 

Mary has been censured by her friends for leaving Dunbar so 
speedily. " This fort," says Keith, ^^the lords could not have 
taken without ammunition and warlike engines, with which 
they were not provided, and for want of which each was (m ther 
point of dismissing and shifting for himself." 

* Keith'B Hist. + Ibid. t Spottiswood, 207. 


130 HISTOET OF DUNBAR. [1567. 

The queen was led to Edinburgh the same dayy and obliged to 
submit to the indecent aspersions of a heated populace. Still 
glued to her fate, she repented at having so hastily surr«idered ; 
and found means to bribe one of the guards to get a letter con- 
veyed to BothwelL This, however, the soldier delivered to the 
lords, who, finding that her majesty still doted on her outlawed 
husband, judged it necessary for the peace of the nation, that she 
should be sent to repent of her folly in the picturesque solitudes 
of Lochleven Qastle, while iactive measures were taken for the 
apprehension of her lord.* 

Accordingly, on the 26th June, the lords of council ordained 
" letters to be directed in the queen's name, to heralds, &c., to 
pass and charge the keeper of the castle of Dunbar to surrender 
the same to the executor of the said letters in six hours ; because 
the Earl of Bothwell was reset and received within the said 

Bothwell, afraid that he might be environed in Dunbar, fled 
by sea to Orkney, where he intended to defend himself in the 
castle of Kirkwall ; but the keeper refused to admit him. After 
having eluded the vigilance of some vessels sent in pursuit of 
Mm, he was taken by a crew of Norwegians, while endeavour- 
ing to make prize of a Turkish vessel, and carried to Denmark. 
Here he paid the price of his crimes by languishing out the re- 
mainder of his days in a loathsome dungeon, confessing his guilt 
in his last moments, and exculpating Mary from being privy to 
her husband's murder.J 

After an unsuccessftd negotiation with Throckmorton, the 
English ambassador, in August 1567, the confederated lords had 
reason to apprehend that Elizabeth would show her resentment 
lyy the force of war. 

Dunbar Castle, besides protecting one WUson, a convicted 
regicide, still held out for the Duke of Orkney. The keepers at 
this period were Patrick Whitlaw, of Whitlaw, John Newton, 

* Keith's Hist. t MelviUe's Mem. t Ibid. 

1567.] SIEGE O^ THE CASTLE. 13il 

junior, of Newton, and Mr Thomas Hepburn, minister of Old- 

The regent knew that it was of the first importance to get 
this fortress into his possession ; and accordingly, on the 26th 
August, the same year, an order was issued for " letteris to be 
directed to command and charge James Erie of Bothwell, Patrick^ 
Quhjrtlaw of that ilk, Johne Newtoun, zounger of. that ilk, Mr 
Thomas Hepbume, parson of Aldhamstocks, and all utheris 
keiparis of the casteU of Dunbar, to render and deliver the sam<e, 
with all artaillierie, pulder, and munitionis, being thairin, to the 
to the ofSlciaris executoris heirof, within sex houris after thp 
charge, with certification of forfaulter, <&c., as traitt«ures in case 
of refusal." * 

The same persons were likewise charged to deliver, before the 
justice and his deputies, with the Tolbooth of Edinburgh, in the 
space of twenty-four hours after the charge, " the person of 
Patrick Wilson, who had been declarit tndttour, and art and part 
in the kingis murthour, under the pain to be repute, haldin, callit, 
persewit, and denunceit as plane partakaris with the said Pat- 
rick in his rebellioun and treassonabill deids, and to be puneist 
thairfoir with rigour, in exempill of utheris." + 

Notwithstanding this charge for the surrender of Dunbar 
Castle, the keepers were determined to hazard a siege ; and on 
the 21st September 1567, four companies of soldiers, under 
Captains Cunyngham, Murray, Melvil, and Haliburton, were 
sent to take Dunbar ; J and by an order of the privy council, 
issued on the 23d, "the brewsters, baxters, and fleschers of the 
town of Haddington " are charged " to pass and gang forwart 
with bakin bread, brewin aill, and flesche, to fumische the camp ' 
lyand at the siege of Dunbar Castell, at competent pryces, under 
the payne to be repuit assistaris of the rebellis : And charging 
the provost and bailzies of Haddington to see the said breid, aiU, 
and flesche, furnished to the said camp, as thai will answer upoun 
thair obedience, and under the payne foirsaid." § 

* Keith's HiBt. t Ibid. t BirreU's Diary. § Keith's Hist. 

IX^ ftfStORY OF WNBAil. [15€7. 

As the estates of Bothwell lay in the bosom of East Lothian^ 
he had many fnends and adherents in that district Accoiding- 
ly, while the siege proceeded, the noblemen and gentlemen who 
Were in the interest of the queen^ or friends to the duke, were 
commanded) on pain (^ confiscation, to submit to the new 
regencyi Some readily obeyed, while otheifs were denounced 
rebels, and their property confiscated^ 

Aft^r these precautionary arrangements, the castle of Dunbar 
was summoned to surrender; but the Usilal answer of that 
^ti^hty fortress was given, that the place would be defended 
to- the last exti^emityt Anothi^r proclamation was therefore 
issued by the Regent Murray, on the 1st September, command^ 
ing all men betwixt sixteen and si^ty, '' weill bodin in feir of 
wieiir," to meet him at Edinburgh ; and on the 26th September 
four of the best double cannon, and six smallet pieces, with 
'powder and bullets, aad other provisions) were sent from Edin-^ 
burgh, to assist in redudhg Dunbar ; and the next day the lord 
regent with his company followed* 

Despairing of support, the captain of Dunbar, when he saw 
these resolute measures adopted, surrendered to the regent on the 
1st of October* On the submission of this important fortress^ 
the Earl of Morton, th^ Lords Hume and Lindsay, and several 
others, applied for its keeping. But it had been so often a wea^ 
p6n in the hands of the border lords that the regent, by remove 
ing the artillery and ammunition to Edinburgh, wisely gave 
offence to no party, and committed this stronghold to the eostody 
of the town of Dunbar till the meeting of parliament* 

Matters were now arranged in a peaceable manner, and Sie 
William Cecil, in a letter to Sir Henry Norris, the English am- 
bassador in France, writes — " All things be quiet in Scotland 
mstca^ tbd last of September, at which time the castle of Dunbar 
Was s^utendered to the Earl of Murray ; and one named tha 
iord Wau^ton, follower of the Earl of Bothwell^ which kept 

^ t)iEi}de¥wood*8 MS. and Crawford's MS. agree Uiat all the cannon and 
^tiBS tbeliein compet^it were carried to the caetle of Edinbnigh. 

r^67.] THIS 0A8TLE DEMOUSHSD. 133 

^i<N^^^^iW^»^^f^i^^^^r ^wri»^w<i^^>wiw<'^^ ^ 

the castle as long as he could, was adjudged to pay for the 
charges of them which besieged it, and the charge of the car- 
riage of the ordnance back to Edinburgh — a new kind of pun-> 
ishment sufficient enough for such a beggar/' * So writes Sir 
William Cecil ; but the Laird of WaughtoQ (Hepburn) was no 
Iseggar in dne sense, if he paid the charge of those engaged in the 

On the 3rd January following, the regent ordered the execu- 
tion of four persons who were convicted of assisting in the mur- 
det of Damley. These were Hay of Tallo, Hepburn of Bolton, 
4nd William Powry and George Dalgliesh. John Hepburn, at 
•his examination on the 8th December, confessed that the greater 
part of the powder was brought &om Dunbar.f 

On the meeting of parliament, December 1567, the castle of 
Dunbar, which had been so often the asylum of the unfortunate 
luad the guilty, was ordered to be destroyed. In act 3d, parL 1, 
James VL, we find the following item :— " Forsamekle as jthair 
hes bene of befoir divers large and sumpteoHs ezpensis maid ba 
^or soverahe Lordis predecessouris and himself, in keiping, foHi- 
fjdng, and reparatioun of the castell of Dunbar and forth of Inche- 
keith, quhilMs ar baith unprofitabill to the realme, and not abiU 
to defend the enemies thairof, in cais the samin war assaultit : 
and now seeing tiiat the said caste^ and forth ar baith beoumiii 
«a ruinous, that the samin sail all iitterlie decay, except thair be 
«ie expensis maid thairupon as is imhabill to be performit with** 
out greit inconveniences ; and alswa havand consideratioun of ane 
^t of parliament maid in umquhile our soverane Ix^ds grand-* 
flchiiis tyme. King James the Feiid, of maist worthie memorie, 
onlinand the said castell of Dunbar to be demolischit and cassin 
downe, as in the act maid thairupon at mair lenth is oontenit, 
qulnlkAct as zit is not abrogat. Thairfoir our soverane Lord, 
with avise and coimeftki of my Loni. Begent, and the estatis of 
thi$ present parliament^ hes ordainit, and ordainis, that the castell 
of Dunbar and the forth of Inchekeith be demolischit and cassin 

♦ Keith's Hiet. t Anderson's Coll. ii. 173. 


downe utterlie to the ground, aud distroyit in sic.wyse that na 
foundment thairof be occasioun to big thairu|>on in tyme cum- 
nnng. * 

Some months elapsed before this act was carried into execu- 
tion ; for after the escape of Mary from Lochleven, an attempt 
was made by the relation of Bothwell, John Hepbumy.the parson 
of Oldhamstocks. once more to regain Dunbar for the queen. 
Sir William Drury thus acquaints Cecil with the transaction : — 

" 6th March 1568. — Upon Monday, Dunbar had like to have 
been surprised ; for at one instant there arrived into the towa 
the parson of Auld-Hamstock with a xz., and as many sent from 
the Lord Hume ; but the town more affected to the Lord Hume,^ 
increased his strength so much, that the parson desisted from his^ 
enterprise, and so relumed." 

Thus fell that venerable fortress, which had so often " laughed 
a siege, to scorn," after it 1^ sustained the brunt of war and the 
ravages of the storm for seven hundred and sixty-seven years of 
authenticated history. 

"In 1581, among several grants excepted by James VI. from 
the general revocation of his deeds of gift made through impor- 
tunity, mention is made of the * forthe of Dunbar granted to 
William Boncle, burgess of Dunbar.' This probably referred to 
the site of the fostreas, and perhaps some ground adjacent^" t 

The earldom of March was conferred on Robert Stuart, grand- 
uncle of James VL, on his resigning the earldom of Lennox to 
his nephew, Esme Stuart of Aubigny ; and he had a charter of 
the earldom of March and lordship of Dunbar, 25th of October 
1582y erecting the same of new into an earldom. Dying with- 
out issue, the title again reverted to the crown. Lord William 
Douglas, second son of William, first Duke of Queensberry, was 
created Earl of March in 1697; his grandson William, third 
Earl of March, succeeded as fourth Duke of Queensberry in 
1778; but dying iwithout issue in 1810, the Earl of Wemyss 

* KeitVs Appendix, 155. + Provincial Ant. ii. 




succeeded to the title of Earl of March, along with an extensive 
range of property in Peeblesshire, 

With the fall of the castle, the ancient military history of 
Dunbar is at a close. After the union of the kingdoms there 
was a repose from the miseries of war, and the glorious work of 
reformation from popery next engaged the attention of the 
people. This was followed by the virulence of sects or parties, 
and '^ pulpit drum ecclesiastic^ was beat with fist instead of a 

Dunbar could take little part in these quarrels ; but in the 
winter of 1588, when the popish lords had leagued with the 
Spaniards, the inhabitants felt the natural alarm, then spread 
throughout the country, lest the Spanish Armada might land on 
iheir shores. The elements, however, happily prevented this. 

136 HisTOBY 6f dunbab. [}649« 


Cromwell, our chief of men, who throag^h a doud 

Not of war only, but detractions rode ; 

Guided by faith and matchlesB fortitude, 

To peace and truth thy glorious way hast ploughed^ 
And on the neck of crowned fortune proud 

Hast rear'd God*B trophies, and his woik pursued^ 

While Dimbar's fidd reaounds thy praises loud. 
And Worcester's wreathe. Yet much remains 

To conquer stilL Peace hath her Tictories 

Ko less renewed than war : new foes i^rise, 
aireatontog to bind o«r »«). ^iK>calar el«m..»-Btoro». 

Cdonel Cromwell, already famous for -various daring eocpIoitB, as SldQ-- 
fully planned and as ably executed, exercised over die minds of many 
men of bold spirit, enthusiastic piety, and of a condition at once wealthy 
and obscure, an' influence which had giyen proofs of great genius and great 
power. — GuizoT*8 Hist, of English Bxfobmatxon. 



The man whom Milton eulogised^ and of whom Waller smig,* 
must have been a talented p^sonage ; and of him we have now 
to speaL On the commonwesJth of England, which now held 
the reins of goTemment, receiying intelligenoe that the sons of 
Charles I. had taken refioge among the Scots, preparatiaiis were 
made for an inevitable war; and Oliver Cromwell, a geaitleman 
of a good private family, who by his talents and intrigues had 
gained the sway of the parliament, was sent into Scotland with 
an army of 16,000 men. 

* Waller, the celebrated English poet, composed in eoccellent Latin 
verse a panageric upon Cromwell during his protectorate. Charles 11. be- 
ing restored in 1660, Waller presented some verses to the king he had com- 
pcwed in his praise. Charles, after reading them, told him he (the poet) had 
conq)08ed better verses in praise of Cromwell. "Sire," replied Waller, 
*' we poets always succeed better in fiction than in truth ! *' 

1650.] osomwsll's invasioh. 157 

On Friday^ the 26tL July 1650, he marched from Cockbums* 
path to Dunbar, which he found the principal inhabitants had 
abandoned, and none between the ages of seven or seventy re- 
mained : eveiything in the shape of leaf or ear, root or brancl^ 
was removed. The murderous pxxseedings of the English in Ire- 
land had inspired the people with terror ; and it was believed 
that it was their intention to cut off the right hands of all Soots- 
men capable of bearing arms, and bum with hot irons l^e breasts 
of all women capable of bearing children.* 

On the arrival of the English, an alarm being ^ven that th^ 
jScots were approaching, they drew up in a field near the town. 
This alarm, however, proved £a.lse, and next day the Amity and 
other ships arriving 6x>m Newcastle with a supply of provisions, 
the Protector departed to Haddington. 

The command of the Scottish army in the meantime had de- 
volved upon Leslie, an experienced officer, who had entrenched 
himself in a fortified camp between Edinburgh and Leith ; 
and as it was his policy to remove from the Merse and Lothiao 
everything whidb might serve for subsistence to the invaders, 
Cromwell fdund himself straitened for want of provisions, and on 
the 6th August he had again to return to Dimbar, where on the 
17th his army received a supply of tents and provisions from the 
ships. He now found the people in such a deplorable state from 
8tarva|ion, that the iron front of war was smoothed, and the 
comnKioners were ordered to distribute pease and wheat to the 
value of L.240 among the inhabitants.t Two days were then 

* Whitelock's Memoriskls of English Affairs, p. 452. 

+ *' The inhabitants of Dunbar," says Whitelock, " were in such want 
of provisions, that they picked the beans from the horses off the ground, 
and ate the sheeps' guts which were thrown away by the soldiers ; and 
many of the women of the countiymen are so sluttish, that they do not 
wash their linen above once a-month, nor their hands and faces above 
once a-year." 

We scarcely think that the Englishman had time to prove the last asser- 
tion. The Scots had no doubt received the same hint that Leslie gave to 
the household troops at Musselburgh — " That the gude women of the town 
should aw come awa with their gear, and not stay to brew or bake few the 
English army, on pain of death. 

4 S 

138 Bunomr &r jmsBKBk.' [16S0C 

spent in prayeis and exhortations to tiiie army, after vbich they 
advanced to Edinboigh. 

Cromwell endeavoured in vain to draw Leslie from a strong 
position he occupied near Arthur's Seat, and having shipped hia 
sick at Musselburgh, he retreated to Haddington, while the Scots 
hung on his right flank. " Here we staid," says Captain John 
Hodgson, '^ till about ten o'clock, whoi after prayer had be^i 
made in several regiments, we marched, a poor, shattered, hungry, 
discouraged army," to Dunbar. This place they entered on 
Sunday the 1st September. 

Cromwell drew up in a field near Dunbar, ** fall of swamps 
and bogs," while the Scots flanked him on the hills on the right. 
Their army was computed at 27,000 men, and that of the TSskg* 
lish at 12,000. 

Threatened with famine, he was on the eve of sending his foot 
and artilleiy by sea to England, and of breaking through thd 
Scots party on the borders at all hazards with his cavalry, when 
he was spared this disgrace by the wild entht^iasm d the dergy, 
who, like those of Switzerland at the battle of Sempaeh, had 
joined the patriotic standard. The Scots army, instead of being 
imder the control of its general, was regulated by a committee of 
these enthusiasts ; and afterwards, amongst Cromwell's prisoners^ 
we flnd Gallespy and Wargle, ministers.* These worUiies hav- 
ing cleared the army of about four thousand profane pet^ps and 
Sabbath-breakers, believed that there remained a remnairf of iit- 
vindble saints. Night and day had they been wrestling with 
the Lord in prayer ; and revelations, they imagined, had been 
made to them, foretelling that the sectarian and heretical army, 
together with Cromwell, the modem Agag, shoidd be deHviered 
into their hand& 

Leslie had encamped in an admirable position on the top of 
Doonhill, an eminence four or Ave hundred feet high, about two 

* A Scots captain taken prisoner, told the English officers that thor 
ministers advised them, if they were taken, that they should throw away 
their Bibles ; for if the English took any with J^bles, they should have no 
cuarter. — Whitelock's Mem. 



miles south firom Dunbar ; * and while from its summit he had 
an excellent opportunity of observing the motions of the enemy, ' 
the gentle decUvities of the Lammermoors immediately behind it, 
were admirably fitted to conceal and shelter the army. He had 
also taken care to possess himself of the pass of Pease, the only 
road which led from Dunbar to Berwick. But the indiscreet^ 
zeal of his pious partisans, notwithstanding the remonstrances of 
:the general, oompelled him to descend, and gave battle to the 

On Monday evening, Leslie increased his right wing of horse 
with two<thirds of his left, and edged down towards the sea, 
while his infantry and artillery inclined to the right. When 
Cromwell observed this movement, he ordered three regiments 
and a half of foot to march to the van, whilst the brigade under 
Colonel Monk, and that imder Colonels Pride and Overton, with 
the two remaining regiments of horse, brought up the cannon 
and rear. They however stood in battalia all the day. A great 
.ditch or ravine, formed by Spott water, from Brands-mill west- 
ward^ lay between both armiies, offering much disadvantage to' 
those who should first attempt to pass it. During the night the 
English drew as close to the ravine as possible, with their field- 
pieces planted in each regiment. Before dawn on Tuesday the 
3rd September, Cromwell despatched three regiments of horse 

* On the Bouth-eaet summit of DoonliiU, is the supposed remains of a 
Boman camp, now ploughed up, the tumuli and trenches of which are still 
Tidble. A little ^bove Spott^oor is another camp, from which perhaps 
i^e neighbouring hiU of Cheaters .(Ceasters) gets its name, as that term in 
the Anglo-Saxon signifies a fort or castle. 

i* It is said that Leslie's officers were averse to fight, and proposed rather 
to make a bridge of gold for them to pass home ; but the clergy over-ruled 
it.— Whitelock*s Mem. 

John Roy, who visited Scotland in 1661, says in his Itinerary — "They 
.had at out-going tiiere two ministers in Dunbar ; they sang their gloria 
patri at the end of the psalm, alter the sermon, as had been ordered by the 
parBamenty in these words : — 

Glore to the Father and the Sonne, 
And to the Holy Gheast : 
As it was in the b^inning, 
Is now, and aye doth last." 

140 HISTORY OF DUKfiAB. 1^0^] 

and two of foot^ to force the pass of Pease^ whereby they might 
the more readily get round upon the Seots. This dispute wa» 
effected in about an hour. At sun-rise the Protector, standing 
on a gentle eminence east from Broxmouth House, still called 
Cromwell Mount, reconnoitred with his telescope the Scots camp 
in motion. " They aire coming down," he exclaimed, " the Lord 
hath deliyered them into our hands ! " 

Both armies had now assumed the canting style of the times. 
The watchword of the Scots was, '^ The Covenant ; " that of the 
English, " The L<»d of Hosts." 

About six o'clock titie battle became general. The Scottish 
lancers coming gallantly down the hill, were as bravely repulsed. 
Two regiments of the English foot deployed below Broxmouth 
House towards the sea, and fell upon the Scottish flank, at the 
eastern extremity of their line, with pike and musket This 
attack was well sustained, till a troop of the enemy's horse 
coming up, cut the Scots down in all quarters, and left them to 
the mercy of the infantiy. The Scots now began to fall back, 
and the sun shining full on their fjEUses as it rose &om the sea, 
Cromwell seized the lucky moment, and exclaimed, ^' Now let 
. God arise, and his enemies shall be scattered." His iron brigade 
making a successful charge up the hiU, the Scottish foot threw 
down their arms, and fled in every direction, some towards 
Cockbumspath and others to Haddington, whether they were 
pursued. Never was victory more complete : the fugitives nov 
became, as Cromwell observed, "as stubble to their swords.** 
About 3000 were slain, and 9000 taken prisoners.* Their whole 
train was taken, consisting of thirty-two pieces of ordnance, with 
small, great, and leather guns ; two hundred colours, horse and 
foot, with arms, tents, baggage, &c. The loss of the English 
was so trifling as to be almost incredible — it was stated at forty 
men in the whole engagement, and not one officer, except M. 

* Many of the killed are said to have been buried in and about Spott« 
dean. Muskets, bullets, swords, human bones, pieces of scarlet doth, ke,, 
were sometimes found in the neighbourhood. 


Bokesby, who died of his wounds ; but from the resolute attdck 
of the Scots at the onset, the small loss of the English is justly 

Many men of distinction fell in this fatal conflict, amongst 
whom were the Homes of Wedderbum, father and son, and Sir 
.William Douglas of Eorkness, who appears to have fallen at 
JBrozmouth, as a plain stone, bearing his name in legible charac- 
ters, lies in the shrubbery south-east from the house. .Amongst 
the prisoners were twelve lieutenant-colonels, six majors, thirty- 
seven captains, &c. Cromwell's fbrst act after the battle was to 
letum thanks to the Almighty for the victory he had gained ; 
jmd, as if anxious to refute the odium of cruelty imputed to him, 
sent back the principal prisoners in his own coach, and the 
wounded in waggons. It is farther asserted by Walker, that 
after the battle of Dunbar he sent " a thousand of the wounded 
men in a gallantry to the Countess of Winton.*' 

The following proclamation was issued by the conqueror, re- 
specting the wounded left in the field :— 

'^ Forasmuch as I understand that there are several soldiers of 
the enemy's army yet abiding in the field, who, by reason of 
their wounds, could not march from thence : these are therefore 
to give notice to the inhabitants of tlus nation, that they may 
Lave free liberty to repair to the field aforesaid, and with their 
carts, or any other peaceable way, to carry the said soldiers to 
such places as they shall think fit, provided they meddle not, or 

* According to Whitelock, " at the battle of Dunbar 15,000 were killed 
and taken. Of these the general sent home upon their parole 5000 of the 
prisoners, being wounded old men and boys ; the men house-keepers, forced 
out of their houses to take arms, and 2100 of them died by the way. The 
other 5000 were sent prisoners to Berwick, and so to Newcastle." 

• " The Grovemor of Berwick gave to each Scotch prisoner for one day 
three biskits, ^and a pottle of pease, which they said was more than their 
own officers gave them three days together. 

" November 11. The Scots prisoners taken at the battle of Dunbar, at 
their first coming to Newcastle, got into the gardens, and fed so greedily 
xipon the raw cabbages, that they poisoned their bodies. Sixteen hundred 
of them died, 500 more were sick, and 900, in health, were sent to work 
tliere.''--Whitelock'« Mem. 

143 sisTo&t (w Dmnux. [1650. 

take away any of the arms there ; and all officers and soldia» 
aie to take notice that the same is pennsfcted* C&rea mtA&rxay 
hand at Dunbar. 

" 0» Obomwbll. 

" September 4, 1660." 

The parliament ordered that the colonrs taken at the battles 
of Preston and Dunbar should be hung up in Wertioinster Hall, 
and that medals of gold and silver i&ould be giTen to the 8pl> 
dieiy, in remembrance of God's mercy, and (^ their yalour and 

Cromwell spent the next day at Dunbar in writing lettecs to* 
the House of Commons, detailing the yictoiy, wMeh will be found 
in Note I., at the end of this chapter. It has been remarked 
that his principal victories at Dunbar and Worcester happened 
on the. 3d of September, and, finally, his death on that day. 

After Cromwell was promoted to the Protectorship, Monk, 
who distinguished himself as (me who led the van at the late 
battle, was appointed eommander-in-chief in Scotland, and one 
of the commissioner for uniting that country with the common- 
wealth. He took up his residence at Dalkeith, and remained 
there chiefly during the years that intervened between that period 
and the restoration, during which time a number of lett^^ passed 
between him and the magistrates of Dunbar, regarding the assess- 
ments levied on the burgL This correspondence is preserved in 
the archives of that place, and will be found in Note IL ap- 
pended to this chapter. 





A. LeUerfrom the Losi> General Ckomwell, ^rom Dunbar, con- 
taming a true Eekxtkn of tlte proceedings of the Parliament 
Army under his commaTid in Scoikmd, <wd the success God 
was j^eased to gvoe them against the Scots armyy in a Battle at 
Dwnhary Sept. 3, 16Sa 



" Sir, — ^I hope it ia not ill taken, that I make no more fre- 
qaent addre^es to the parliament ; things that are of trouble, in 
pdnt of provision for your army, and of ordinary direction, I 
have, as I could, olten presented to the councel of state, together 
with such occurrences as have happened ; who, I am sure, as 
they have not been wanting in their exti^rdinary care and pro^ 
Tision for us, so neither what they judge fit and necessary, to 
represent the same to you ; and this I thought to be a sufficient 
discharge of my duty on that behalf. 

"It hath now pleased God to bestow a mercy upon you, 
worthy your knowledge, and of the utmost praise and thanks of 
dll that fear and love Iiis name ; yea, the mercy is far above aU 
praise, which, that you may the better perceive, I shall take the 
boldness to tedder unto you some circumstances accompanying 
this great business, which will manifest the greatness and season- 
ableness of this mercy. We havii^ tiyed what we could to 
engage the enemy three or four miles west of Edinburgh ; that 
proving ineffectual, and our victual failing, we marched towards 
our ships for a recruit of our wants. The enemy did not at all 
trouble us in our rear, but marched the direct way towards 
Edinburgh, and partly in the night and morning, slips through 
hia whole ajrmy, and quarters himself in a posture easie to inter- 
pose between us and our victual ; but the Lord made him lose 

144 HISTOBY OF mnXBAJL [1650. 

the opportimity, and the inoming proving exceeding wet and 
dark, we recovered, by that time it was light, into a grouud 
where they could not hinder us from our victual ; which was a 
high act of the Lord's providence to us. We being come into 
the said ground, tlie enemy marched into the ground we were 
last upon ; having no mind either to strive to interpose between 
us and our victual, or to fight ; being indeed upon this lock, 
hoping that the sickness of your army would render their work 
more easie by the gaining of time ; whereupon we miarched to 
Muscleburgh to victual and to ship away our sick men, where we 
sent aboard near five hundred sick and wounded soldiers : and 
upon serious consideration, finding om: weakness -so to increase, 
and the enemy lying upon his advantages, at a general councel 
it was thought fit to march to Dunbar, and there to fortifie the 
town, which, we thought, if any thing, would provoke them to 
engage ; as also, the having a garrison there, would fiinush us 
with accommodation for our sick men ; would be a place for a 
good magazin (which we exceedingly wanted), being put to de- 
pend upon the uncertainty of weather for landing provisions, 
which many times cannot be done, though tlie being of the 
whole army lay upon it ; all the coasts from Leith to Berwick 
not having one good harbor ; as also to lie more conveniently 
to receive our recruits of horse and foot from Berwick. Having 
these considerations, upon Saturday, the thirtieth day of August, 
we marched from Muscleburgh to Heddington, where, by that 
time, we had got the van brigade of our horse, and our foot and 
train, into their quarters ; the enemy was marched with that ex- 
ceeding expedition, that they fell upon the rcar-forlom of our 
horse, and put it in some disorder; and indeed had like to 
have engaged our rear-brigade of horse with their whole array, 
had not the Lord, by his providence, put a cloud over the moon, 
thereby giving us opportunity to draw off those horse to the rest 
of the array, which accordingly was done without any loss, save 
of three or four of our fore-mentioned forlorn, wherein the enemy 
(as we believe) received more loss. The army being put into a 
reasonable secure posture, towards midnight the enemy attempted 
our quarters on the west end of Heddington, but (through the 
goodness of God) we repulsed them. The next morning we 
drew into an open field, on the south side of Heddington ; we 
not judging it safe for us to draw to the enemy upon his own 
ground, he being prepossessed thereof, but rather drew back to 

1650.] ' 00B&B8FOND£iirc2, 145 

give him way to come to us, if he had so thought fit ; and having 
waited about the space of four or five hours, to see if he would 
- come to us, and not finding any inclination of the enemy so to 
dOy we resolved to go, according to our first intendment, to Dun- 
bar. By that time we had marched three or four miles, we saw 
aonne bodies of the enemies horse draw out of their quarters ; and 
by that time our carriages were gotten neer Dunbar, their whole 
army was upon their march after us ; and, ii^deed, our drawing 
back in this manner, with the addition of three new regiments 
added to them, did much heighten their confidence, if not pre^ 
sumption and arrogancy. The enemy that night, we perceived^ 
gathered towards the hills, laboring to make a perfect interposi* 
tion between us and Berwick ; and having, in this posture, a 
great advantage, through his greater knowledg of the country, 
which he effected, by sending a considerable party to the strait 
pass at Gopperspeth, where ten men to hinder, are better than 
forty, to make their way : and truly this was an exigent to us > 
wherewith the enemy reproached us with that condition the 
parliament's army was in, when it made its hard conditions with 
the king in ComwaL By some reports that have come to us^ 
they had disposed of us, and of their business, in sufficient re- 
venge and wrath towards our persons, and had swallowed up 
the poor interest of England, believing that thdr army and their 
king would have marched to London without any interruption ; 
it being told us, we know not how truly, by a prisoner we took 
the night before the fight, that their hing wa& very sudderdy to 
come amon^ them vriih those Unglish they allowed to be aJxyut him; 
but in what they were thus lifted up, the Lord was above them. 
"The enemy lying in the posture before mentioned, having 
those advantages, we lay veiy neer him, being sensible of our 
disadvantage, having some weakness of flesh, but yet consola- 
tion and support from the Lord himself, to our weak faith, 
wherein, I beleeve, not a few amongst us shared, that, because 
of their numbers, because of their advantages, because of their 
confidence, because of our weakness, because of our strait, we- 
were in the mount, and in the mount the Lord would be seen, 
and that he would finde out a way of deliverance and salvation 
for us; and indeed we had our consolations and our hopes. 
Upon Monday evening, the enemy, whose numbers were very 
great, as we heard, about six thousand horse, and sixteen thou^' 
aand foot, at least j ours drawn down, as to sound men, to about 


146 HIBTOSV OF DUNBikft. [1650« 

seven thousand five hundred foot, and three thousand five hun- 
dred horse ; the enemy drew down to their right wing about 
two-thiids of their left wing of horse, to the right ^, shogging 
also their foot and train much to the right, causing their right 
wing of horse to edge down towards the sea. W^ could not 
well imagine, but. that the enemy intended to attempt upon us, 
or to place themselves into a more exact position of interposition. 
Major-general and myself coming to the Earl of Bosburgh's 
house, and observing this posture, I told him, I thought it did 
give us an opportunity and advantage to attempt upon the 
enemy ; to which he immediately replyed, that he had thought 
to have said the same thin^ to me : so that it pleased the Lord 
to set this apprehension upon both of our hearts at the same in- 
stant. We called for Colonel Monk, and shewed him the thing ; 
and coming to our quarter at night, and demonstrating our ap- 
prehensions to some of the colonels, they also cheerily con- 
curred ; we resolved, therefore, to put our business into this 
posture, that six regiments of horse, and three regiments and a 
half of foot should march in the van; and that the major-general, 
the lieutenant-general of the horse, and the commissary-general, 
and Col. Monk, to command the brigade of foot, should lead on 
the business; and that Colonel Pride's brigade, Colonel Over- 
ton's. brigade, and the remaining two regiments of horse, should 
bring up the cannon and rere ; the time of falling on to be by 
break of day ; but, through some delays, it proved not to be so 
till six o'clock in the morning. The enemies word was * The 
Covenant,' which it had been for divers days ; ours, * The 
Lord of Hosts.' The major-general, Lieutenant-Qeneral Meet- 
wood, and Commissary-Gener^ Whaley, and Colonel Twisletons, 
gave the onset ; the enemy being in very good posture to receive 
them, having the advantage of tiiieir cannon and foot against our 
horse. Before our foot could come up, the enemy made a gaUant 
resistance, and there was a very hot dispute at swords point be* 
tween our horse and theirs : Our first foot, after they had dis- 
charged their duty, being overpowered with the enemy, received 
some repulse, which they soon recovered ; but my own regiment, 
under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Goff, and my Major 
White, did come seasonably in ; and at the push of pike, did re- 
pel the stoutest regiment the enemy had there, meerly with the 
Gour^ the Lord was pleased to give ; which proved a great 
amazement to the residue of their foot. This being the first 

1650.] coBBifiBcmDEsrcs. 1'47 

j_ i _ i« u iij ^j<j « "^'W'vv> f> rwvvvVvv'Tiv%<^<v-<nr»- « ''tr^^ f - > r « - » - i >-M-w-»'»- » ~ » r » 'vv^ >i ^v* > Tr » ' » fK)<* i A i * t fW^V>fW>r > *ir»V i <*»* i ' > ' > » ■ > 

actdou betveen the foot, the horse, in the meaii time, did, vdth a- 
great deal of eourage and spidt, beat back all opposition, chatg* 
ing through the bodies of tiie enemies horse and their foot, who 
were, after the first repulse given, made, by the Lord of Hosts, 
as stubble to their swoords. Indeed, I believe, I may speak it 
without partiality, both your chief commanders, and others, in 
their several phuMss, and soldiers also, were acted with as much 
courage as ever hath been seen in any action since this war. I 
know they look on to be named ; and therefore I forbear particu- 
lars. The best of the enemies horse and foot being broken 
through and through in less than an hour's dispute, l^eir whole 
army being put into confusion, it because a total rout ; our men 
having the chase and execution of them near eight miles. We 
believe, that upon the place and near about it, were about three 
thousand slain. Prisoners taken of their officers, you have this 
enclosed Hstj of private soldiers, near ten thousand. The 
whole baggage and train taken ; wherein was good store of 
match, powder, and bullet ; all their artillery, great and small, 
thirty guns. We are confident they have \e£t behind them not 
less than fifteen thousand arms, I have already brought into 
me near two hundred colours, which I herewith send you. 
What officers of quality of theirs are killed, we yet cannot learn ; 
but yet surely divers are, and many men of quality are mortally 
wounded, as Colonel Lumsdel, the Lord Liberton, and others; 
and ihsit, which is no smaU addition, I do not believe we have 
lost twenty men ; not one commissioned officer slain that I hear 
of, save one comet, and Major Booksby, since dead of his 
wounds; and not many mortally wounded. Colonel Whaley 
only cut in the hand-wrist, and his horse twice shot and killed 
under him, but he well, recovered another horse, and went on 
in the chase. Thus you have the prospect of one of the most 
signal mercies Gk)d hath done for England and his people this 
war. And now may it please you to give me the leave of a few 
words : It is easie to say, the Lord hath done this ; it woidd do 
you good to see and hear our poor foot go up and down making 
their boast of Gk)d. But, sir, it is in your hands, and by these 
coninent mercies God puts it more into your hands to give glory 
to him, to improve your power and His blessings to His praise. 
We that serve you, beg of you not to own us, but God alone; 
we pray you own His people mwe and more, for they are the 
diariots and horsemen of Israel : disown yourselves, but own 

148 HIBTOBY OF DUNBAS. [1650. 


your authority, and improve it, to curb the proud and ihe inso« 
lent, such as would disturb the tranquility of England, though 
under what specious pretences soever. Believe the oppressed ; 
hear the groans of poor prisoners in England ; be pleased ta 
reform the abuses of all professions ; and if there be any one 
that makes many poor to make a few rich, that suits not a com- 
monwealth. If He, that strengthens your servants to fight, 
pleases to give you hearts to set upon these things, in order to 
His glory, and the gloiy of your commonwealth, besides the 
benefit of England shall feel thereby, you shall shine forth to 
other nations, who shall emulate the gloiy of such a patem, and 
through the power of Gk>d, turn into the like. These are our 
desires ; and, that you may have liberty and opportunity to do 
these things, and not be lundred^ we have been, and shall be 
(by Ckd's assistance) willing to venture our lives, and not desire 
you should be precipitated by importunities from your care of 
safety and preservation ; but that the doing of these good 
things may have their place amongst those which concern well 
being, and so be wrought in their time and order. Since we 
came into Scotland, it hath been our desire and longing to have 
avoided blood in this business, by reason that God hath a 
people here feanng His name, though deceived ; and to that end 
have we offered much love unto such in the bowels of Christ ; 
and concerning the truth of our hearts therein, have we appealed 
unto the Lord. The ministers of Scotland have hindred the 
passage of these things to the hearts of those to whom we in- 
tended them; and now we hear, that, not onely the deceived 
people, but some of the ministers, are also fallen in this batteL 
This is the great hand of the Lord, and worthy of the considera- 
tion of all those who, taking into their hands the instruments of 
a foolish shepherd ; to wit, meddling with worldly policies, and 
mixtures of earthly power, to set up that which they called the 
kingdom of Christ ; Thich is neithJit. nor, if it were it, would 
such means be found effectual to that end, and neglect, or trust 
not to the Word of Gk)d, the sword of the Spirit, which is alone 
powerful and able for the setting up of that kingdom; and 
when trusted to, will be found effectually able to that end, and 
will also do it. This is humbly offered for their sakes ; who, 
having lately too much turned aside, that they might return 
again to preach Jesus Christ, according to the simplicity of the 
gospel ; and then, no doubt, they will discern and finde y6ar • 

1650.] OOBBlfiSPOKDEKCS. 149 

protection and encouragement. Beseeching you to pardon this 

leiigthy I humbly take leave, and rest, Sir, your most humble 


"O. Cbomwell. 
" PuKBAB, Septanber 4, 1650.'* 

The following letter, written by Cromwell to his lady, is copied 
bom the MS. collections in the British Museum : — 

"DUNBAB, 4th September, 1650. 
"My Deabest, — ^I have not leism-e to write much, but I 
could chide thee, that in many of thy letters thou writest to me, 
that I should not be unmindful of thee and my little ones. 
Truly, if I love you not too well, I think I err not on the other 
hand much, ^ou art dearer to me than any creature ; let that 
suffice. The Lord hath showed us an exceeding mercy. "Who 
can tell how great it is ? My weak faith hath been upheld. I 
have been in my inward man miraculously supported, I assure 
tiiee I grow an old man, and feel infirmities of age marvellously 
stealing upon me. Would my corruptions did as fast decrease. 
Pray on my behalf in the latter respect. The particulars of our 
late success, Henry Vane or Gil. Pickering will impart to thee. 
My love to all our dear Mends. Thine, 

"0. Cbomwell" 

NOTE n. 

Zetters, addressed by General Monk and others, to the Magistrates 
of Dunbar, during the time of the Commonwealth, 



'^ These, for the honble the Cfheife Magistrates of the Totone of 

Dvmba/t in 8coUa/nd, 

"Honble Sib, — ^I am very sensible of the disappointment 
^hich it may be to yqu, that this has not reached you sooner ; 
'but truely the great aJffaire, which hath beene long upon the 
wheell, and before his highnesse, hath caused all matters of in- 
feriour and private ccmcemement to be att a stand for these late 
moneths : According to my promise to Doctor Purveys (^mc 

wo HI8T0BT OP DITNSAft. [165S.' 

hoixrd friend, and one very zealous for your good), I have now 
sent the letter from his Highnesse and ye Coundll to the Doctor 
to be conveyed safely to you, which he was pleased to «nder- • 
take. Gknts., I beg of you a candid construction of my indea- 
vours to serve you, though attended with this blemish of a 
delay, yet have they beene very reall from, Sir, your very re* 
spective friend to serve you, 

"Jo. Vincent. 

" DoNCASTBB, June 2, 1657." 

" I purpose 4» goe towards London to-morrow." 


" To the Comissioners of Assesse m the hwrgk of ^Dunbar, 
(" For the service of the state.) 


" Gentlemen, — His highness and the Oouncill being sensible 
of the urgent necessity of bringing in of money for the present 
affisdres of ye comonwealth, have sent their letters to ye comis-: 
sioners for the assessement in the severall counties of England to 
meete in order to the raising of ye six monthes assessement^ 
beginning from the 24th June next, and appoint their general! 
meetinge at such convenient times, and that they soe proceed as 
that the assessement for the first three monthes of that six 
monthes, which, by the act, is payable on or before the first of 
September next, be paid in to the respective receiuers on or 
before the sixth day of July, and ye latter three monthes assesse 
payable by the said act, on or before the first of December next, 
be paid in to the respective receiuers on or before the sixth of 
October next, to the end there may be a seasonable supply for 
the pressing occasions of the Comonwealth and of the Armies^ 
which will otherwise unavoidably come to free quarter : And 
therefore his Highnes and the Oouncill have thought fitt to re- 
quire his Highnes' CoundU heere to write the like letters unto 
the comiasioners in their respective ahyres, counties, and places 
in Scotland to the same effect. In pursuance whereof, his High- 
nes Oouncill heere have thought fitt to signify the premises unto^ 
yow, the comissioners for assessement in the burgh of Dunbarr ; 
And to desire yow, that yow also meete in order to the raising 
of the six monthes assessement, beginning from 24. Jon^ next, 
and appoint your meetings at such convenient times, and that 


yow soe proceed, as that* the assessement for the first three 
monthes of those six monthes in the said burgh, which, by the 
act, is payable on the first of September next, be paid into the 
recduer on or before the sixth day of July next, and the latter 
three monthes, payable by the said act on or before the first of 
December next, be paid in to the receiuer, on or before the sixth 
of October next ; to the end there may be a seasonable supply 
for the pressing occasions of the Combnwealth, and of the 
Armies, which will otherwise unavoidabk come to free quarter ; 
And although this be but the same tax xnat is laid by the act, 
yet the timely payment thereof will prevent many inconveniences, 
and be of great advantage to the publick service, which they 
desire yow to doe your utmost to promote heerein, by the cause- 
ing those six monthes assessement of ye burgh to be paid m att 
ye times aforesaid ; And the said Councill heere doe further 
desire yow, to give them an accompt of your receipt heereof, and 
of your resolutions thereupon, as speedily as you can. 

" (Signed in ye name, and by order of the CoundU), 

" Geobgb Monck. 
"Edinh. 11. May, 1658." 


"Motoh honnored freinds, — ^Acording to the command 
laid upon me by his hienes Counsell, and the wreattes issued 
out for that effect, be pleasit to resaue heirwith inclosit this pre- 
cept whiche I desyre yee may cause be proclaimit at your mer-. 
catt-croce the first mercat day effcer the resaitle heirof, and that 
your burgesses may attend the melting therby appoynted, the 
day and plaice therein mentionate for the endes therein exprest. 
And that yee will retume to me this precept dewlie execute and 
indorsate. The cairfull performance qrof is expectit by, your 
affectionat freihd and servand, 

" A. Don. 

" INTewtownb, 25. Dec. 1658. 
•* For my Tumnored freinda ike Bailzies of Ihmhar." 



. "Mutch honnored and worthie frindis, — Our tonne 
heath reaseaued ane letter from my Lord Ge;ierall, recommends 
ing to use our ParUament man* He maids mcintioune of one^ 

152 BISTOBY OV DtJNBAB. [16d8i 

doctor Thomas Clairgis, only brother to his Lady, a man that 
heath doune great seruise to the toune of Edmbrouche. Hie is 
agent for the Counsel! of England and Scotland ; with all, my 
Lord wrytis to use, that hie, a gentleman that will not be 
chargable to us. It is my Lords dissyre to use to gife zou notis 
of tMs gentellman which his Lo: heath rdcommendit. Our com- 
missinar wiU attend upone zouris Monday in the morning or at 
nicht, that upone Tuesday thay may goe away airly. This letter 
of my Lord Generalis is to be carried aUong to the rest of th& 
burrose. This is the substanse of the letter that is writtine to 
550U by him. 

" Who is zour werry affectionat &ind & seruant^ 

" W. Seatouke* 

" HABDiNaTOtKlB, the 31. of December, 1658. 
** For my lumored frindis the ByllU of Jhmbar.*' 


"For my very loving Fremds, the MccgUtrates of the bv/rgh of Ihmbarre, 

" Gentlemen, — Haveing a call from God and his people ta 
march into England, to assert and maintaine the liberty and 
being of Parliaments, our antient constitution, and therein the 
freedome and rights of the people of these three nations, from 
arbitrary and tyrannicall usurpations upon thair consciences, 
persons and estates, and for a godly ministry, I doe theirfor 
exspect from yow, the Magistrates of ye burgh of Dunbarre, that 
yow do preserve the peace of the comonwealth in your burgL 
And I heerby authorize yow to suppresse all tumults, stirrings, 
and unlawful assemblies ; and that you hold noe correspondency 
with any of Charles Stuarts party or his. adherents, but appre- 
hend any such as shall make any disturbanse, and send them 
into the next guarrison ; And doe farther desire yow to counten* 
ance and incourage the godly ministry, and all that truely feare 
God in the land ; and that you continue faithfcdl to owne and 
assert the interest of Parliamentary government in your severall 
places and stations. I hope my absence will bee very short } 
but I doe assure you, that I will procure from the Parliament, 
whatever may bee for the good government . and releife of this 
nation, and doubt not but to obtaine abaitements on your 
assesse and othet publique bu^hens according to the proportion' 


of England ; and further service I may bee able. I shall not 
bee wanting in what may promote the happiness and peace of 
this afflicted people. I shall not trouble yow further, but begg 
your prayers, and desire yow to assure yourselves, that I am> 
your faithfbll freind and humble servant. 

"Edinbubgh, November, 1659. 

** I desire yow to send me word to Barwick under your handi» 
how fair yow will comply with my desires, by the 12th of 
December next. 

** I desire yow, that what is behind, of the last foure monthea 
of ye twelve monthes assesse may bee in a readiness against 
it is called for. I likewise desire that their may bee par- 
ticular notice given, that such as are not free to concurr 
with yow in this businesse, yow will send me their names." - 

The above letter has no signature. It is written verbatim 
with one sent to North Berwick, of the same date, to which 
General Monk's name is appended. 



"My Lords and Gentlemen, — I have receaved your opi- 
tiione by some of your number, and doe take notice of your 
great respect to me, that you are pleased to have such a sense 
of my endeavours in preserving the peace of this countrey ; 
for which I desyre to signefie to your Lordships, gentilmen, and 
burgesses, my verrie affectioned and heartie thanks. 

" I doe farder tiak notice off your good affectiones to the Par- 
liament of England, and your resolutiones to preserve the peace 
and saiftie of this countrey, in caise God sail be pleased to call 
lis to the assistance of our freinds in England. And I doe 
farder assure yow, for this your great service to the commone- 
wealth of England, at such ane tyme of hazard and danger, that 
I will make good to the uttermost off my power my former pro- 
mises, and vse all meines for the ease and releife of this afflicted 
natione, for giveing yow anie farder power than I have done in 
my letter, to prevent or supprese any tumults or stirnipcs, I 


154 HISTORY OF DUKBAB. [1659. 

have not had tyme to .considder ane better way at present ; 
bot at your nixt retume from your severall sliyres and burghes, 
by the twelt day of December, I sail then think upon the best 
way to enable yow to secure the peace of the countrey. 

" As to the appoynting of waitches upon the countrayes nixt 
to the hylands, or upon the borders, if you please to give me 
ane not what shyres will joyne togither for the manteaning of 
ane watch, and the number of men to be imployed, and of ane 
fit persone or persones to comand them ; I shaU then give him 
or them power to have soe manie men vnder his or their comands 
for the protecting of these shyres and pairts from robbers ; and 
that these shyres, who have watches for there securetie doe give 
ingadgement vnder ther hands for such men that doe comand or 
ar comandit, that they sail act nothing against the Parliament or 
commonewealth of England. 

(No Signature.) 

"Edin. 17th Nov. 1659. 

"For the Magistrates of Jhmham. 

Gentlemen, — ^I have received your petition, and am heartily 
sorry that I can give you noe relief concerning your desire ; butt 
when the commissioners come downe, I shall be glad to farther 
your businesse there as much as lies in mee, which is all I can 
L in your businesse, but remayne, your very loving &eind 
and servant, 

*' George Monck. 

Dalkeith, 18. Dec. 1659." 




" My Lords and Gentlemen, — I have received your letter 
and the letter of severall other brughs, and does find my selfe 
obleidged to retume you reall and heartie thanks for your 
afiectioun to the commonwealth and the army heir, and to that 
good interest for which we are now contending, and in particular 
to myself ; and to assure you, that we shall alwayis retaine a 
graitfull sense of it, and sail be reddie upon aU occasiouns 

U59.] (k>bbesfokdekce; 155 

to protect and encour^e your dttie and aU vyr bragbis. I 
desyre you to communicatt tbis to sucb your brugbis as bave 
subscryved tbe letters ; and renudne, your Lordsbips very 
bumble servant, 

" {Sic mbs,) George Monck. 
" Tbis is tbe true coppie, W. Thomsone. 
" Berwick, 14. Dec. 1659. 

^'Mr Tbomsone knowis tbe names of tbese brugbes, tbat bave 
sent to us, and I desyre to send a copy of tbis letter vnder 
your clerlds band to tbem. 

** For the Right Hon^ Sir James Stewart, Lord Proveit, a/nd to the ImUies 
qf Edmr" 

156 ttlSTOEY OF DtTNBAE. [1660/ 


Cope sent a letter frae Dunbar, 
Saying, " Charlie, meet me an ye daur, 
And 111 diow you the art of war, 

Right early in the morning."— -Old Song. 




The restoration of the Stuarts was in a great measare {effected 
by the tergiversation of General Monk. Richard Cromwell, when 
he felt that '' uneasy lies the head that wears a crown/' signed 
his demission in 1660, upon which Monk, like a skilfiil general, 
when he beheld the jarring interests of the state, immediately 
marched upon London, and seizing the first opportunity of declar- 
ing for Charles II., was afterwards rewarded with the dukedom 
of Albemarle for his services in the royal cause. 

Charles, who is characterised by Rochester as one " who never 
said a foolish thing, nor ever did a wise action," was well cal- 
culated to be the puppet of the despotic administration which 
followed, of which the Duke of Lauderdale was the head. Their 
first object was to strike a blow at Presbyterianism in Scotland, 
and by this means to restore Episcopacy as the national religion, 
being nearer in its forms to the Romish church, which they 
durst not openly avow. The Scottish clergy, rather than submit 
to this, unwarrantable stretch of authority, relinquished their 
altars and their homes for conscience' sake ; and, under the 
denomination of Covenanters, worshipped Qod in the open 

To support these arbitrary measures, it was ;found necessaryi 

1679:] rtHB KBBELiaoN. 157 

on the 2nd October, 1669, to call out a militia of 16,000 foot 
and 2000 cavalry, to which Dunbar furniehed its quota.* 

James, Duke of York, who succeeded Lauderdale in the 
management of Scottish afiairs, visited Scotland in November 
1679, when he was met by the magistrates of the burghs in his 
progress. That reprobate measure, the test act, was next en- 
forced on all persons holding civil and military ofl5c!^*and as 
several members in the respective merchant-councils of the 
bui^hs, evaded or refused to take this oath, the Earl of Perth, 
lord high chancellor, issued a circular, in 16^6, authorising and 
enjoining the present magistracy to remain during his majesty*s 
pleasure, and discharging the election of new counsellors. These 
jmeasures were too s^vefe to continue; and at length in 1688, 

* As a proof of the vigilance of the magistracy and the jealousy of the 
goyemment about this period, we subjoin the following extract from a letter 
written by Mr Adam Blackader, giving an accoimt of his reception in 
Scotland on his return from Sweden : — 

" It being Sunday, the skipper sayes to me (for he was a very strick 
pious man), ' What is to be done ? ' Sayes I, ' That's an impertinent ques- 
tion ; you see it is a matter of life and death.' Then he orders his men to 
weigh anchor ; and after being a month at sea, we 'landed at Dunbar in 

" So soon as the people of Bunbar observed us cast anchor, we sees a 
boat coming to us, where was the baily and town-clerk, who came aboard, 
and asked tiie skipper if he had got any passengers^ He answered he had 
none but a young gentleman and his wife. * We must see them,' say th^y. 

* We were called up to the deck. * From where come you, sir ? ' * From 
Stockhohn in Swedland.' ' What*s your occupation V 'A merchant.' 

* What's your name, sir ? ' * You are very positive in your questions,' said 
I ; * my name is Blackader.' Then they were more inquisitive, thinking 
they had got a prize. ' What ! are you any relation of Mr Blackader in 
the Bass there ? ' ' Yes, sir ; I am not ashamied to own my relation to 
him — ^I'm a son of his.* This was, it seems, crime enough. ' Aha ! ' sayes 
the baily, * then, by my faith, you'r right enough. You must ccune both 
aahoar to prison, till you give account of yourselves to the government.' 
^ Ou ! ' sayes I, ' gentlemen, let me oome a^oar first and do a fault, before 
you pimish me upon Scotch ground.* * It's all one,' sayes he, ' this is the 
council's orders, to secure and examine all stranger passengers.' 

" Well, ashoar we comes, in order to go to prison. But good providence, 
that never failed me, ordered it so, that one of them, Baily Faa, who was 
intimately acquaint with my father, gave bail for my appearing before the 
town-council when called — ^which they took : and he kept me in his house 
for a fortnight. The town was full of sodgers, going about the country 
like madmen."— Mem. Rev. J. Blackader. 

158 HL'iTORY OF DUNBAR. l((96j 


when the wiahed-for landing of the Prince of Orange was daily 
expected, the govemment taking alarm, addressed the following 
letter to the magistrates of Dunbar, while beacons were placed 
on the Bass, St Abb's Head, North-Berwick Law, and Garletoi^* 
hill, as signals : — 

" To be directed straight from Haddington to Dumbar. 

" HoLTBOODHOUS, SOth October, 1688. 

" Sib, — I am informed there is a ship arrived at your port^ 
which came off from Rotterdam on Monday was a se'ennight. I 
desire the favour of you^ that you would order the master of 
that vessell to come to this place immediately, or if his occasions 
be such as he cannot come himself, that you should receive front 
him all the information he can give concerning the Dutch fleets 
their number of ships, land-men, theii* design of landing, where 
and how he left them, and all other circumstances belonging 
to them, in which you will oblige, your assured friend, 

" Pebth." 

The arrival of William and Mary, which soon took place, was 
hailed with joy by the kingdom ; but as the expatriated family 
hid many partisans remaining, the seeds of civil discord still 
Ungered in the land ; and at this time a large fle^t of Dutch 
fishing vessels appearing at the mouth of the Frith of Forth, 
on being taken for a French armament, was sufficient to excite 

On the 6th day of March 1696, a proclamation was issued 
from Edinburgh, calling out the half of the foot militia in the 
shire of Haddington. The Lord Belhaven was appointed colonel, 
the laird of Prestongrange lieutenant-colonel, and Ensign Bobert 
Sinclair, major. This militia, by act of parliament, cap. 26, 
1663, was only to be employed for the suppression of foreign 
invasions and intestine troubles^ All heritors, and others liable, 
were commanded to '^ outreik,^' and furnish their number and 


proportions, on the 12tli March, with ten days' pay, at ^di per 
diem, with their best arms and accoutrements, at Beanston- 
moor ; and for the better encouragement of those who might 
attend this muster, it was provided that they should not other- 
wise be troubled nor employed but in resisting the present 
threatened inva^on. 

In 1745, the smothered hopes of those who had formed the 
daring design of re-establishing the Stuarts in 1715, were again 
revived. The lapse of thirty years, that had consigned many a 
chief to his narrow bed, had whetted the ardour of their sons ; 
and if we consider that, instead of a prince advanced in years, 
they were now led on by his son, a youth of great martial 
talents, enterprising, and compared to " the Bruce " in his per- 
sonal appearance, we need not be surprised that the leader and 
his plaided followers went on for a time conquering and to 

It was about the 8th August when the news reached Edin* 
biirgh of the descent of Prince Charles. On the first notice, 
Lieutenant-Generai Sir John Cope, commander of the f6rces in 
Scotland, gave the necessary orders to the troops. Several 
parties employed in improving the roads were ordered" to join 
their respective regiments ; arms and ammumtioa were sent to 
the troops and garrisons from the castle of Edinburgh ; all mill-r 
taiy persons whatever in Scotland were required to repair to 
their respective posts, and the out pensioners of Chelsea Hospital 
to present themselves before lieutenant-General Guest at Edin- 

On the 4th September, Archibald Stewart, lord pr^^ost of 
Edinburgh, sent a despatch to Provost Lundie of Haddington^ 
to intimate to the most proper persons in the neighbourhood^ 
to send as early intelligence as possible, by expresses on horse^ 
back (which the city should pay), of any body of armed men he 
might find marching to Edinburgh. Which being taken into 
consideration by the town-council, it was resolved that the 
magistrates of Haddington settle a correspondence for that pur« 

160 HISTOBT OF DUNBAB. [1745. 

pose between tlie magistrates of Dunbar and 'North Berwick ; 
and in furtherance of the same object, they sent letters to the 
ministers of Tynningham, Dirleton, and Aberlady, to give intelli- 
gence of the landing or marching of any armed men in those 
districts of the coonty. 

Prince Charles entered Edinburgh on the 17th, and took pos- 
session of Holyroodhouse^ encamping his army in the King's 

The Mends of the reigning government still flattered them- 
selves that a stop would speedily be put to the progress of the 
Highland army. Brigadier Fowkes, who had arrived at Edin- 
burgh from London on the 15th, marched next day with the 
dragoons eastward. The same day, lieutenant-General Cope, 
with his transports, arrived off Dunbar. The troops were 
landed at Dunbar on the 17th, and the artillery, &c, next day, 
being the nearest port they found it practicable to land on the 
south side of the Forth. On 1;he 19th, Cope left Dunbar, and 
marched towards Edinburgh, wending his way by Beanston, and 
encamped that night in a field to the westward of Haddington. 

Early next morning Cope departed, and followed the ordinary 
line of road, which then led by Huntington to Edinburgh, when 
striking off to the right, he took the low faract nearer the sea, 
and passing by St Gkrmains and Seton, arrived at Preston. The 
same day, Friday, 20th September, Charles joined his followers 
at Duddingston ; and, like Pizarro when he landed, and drew a 
line on the sand with his sword, and swore he would not return 
till he accomplished his enterprise, said, '^ My friends, I have 
flung away the scabbard ! " an action in the style of Charles XII., 
who threw away his weapon that it might not be taken from 
him. The army marched, and drew up at Carberry-hill ; but 
finding that General Cope had kept down towards Prestonpans, 
the Highlanders directed their march along the brow of Fawside- 
hill, till they came in sight of the king's troops, upon which 
they gave a great shout by way of defiance, which was answered 
by a simi^r huzza from his majesty's soldiers. 

I74t5.] BATTLS''OF PREBTQN. 161 

Qeneral Cope had taken up an admiral)le position^ haying a 
bjoad and deep ditch in front, the town of Preston on the right, 
8ome houses and a morass on the left, and the Frith of Forth in 
the rear, which rendered an attack on his front ahnoat impracti- 
cable ; which the rebel^ obserring, caused a large detachment to 
file towards Preston, with a view of taking them in flank, whict 
being perceived, a motion was made by the army, which pre- 
vented the rebels from making an immediate attack, and made 
them resume their former position. An advanced party of the 
insurgents having taken possession of the churchyard of Tranent, 
a train of horsemen sent a few shots amongst them ; but during 
the night there were no other offensive measures, 

About three in the morning of Saturday, 21st September, 
1745, the patroles observed some movement in the camp of the 
rebels. The Highlanders, marching eastward, formed a line, 
with a view to prevent General Cope from making his deploy 
in' that quarter, while another party was stationed on the west, 
to prevent his getting to Edinburgh* Robert Anderson (a son 
of Anderson's of Whitburgh, in the parish of Humbie) led the 
way, followed by Macdonald of Glenaladale, danronald, Glen-^ 
gany, and others of the Highland dans. 

Sir John Cope, who had spent the night at Cockenzie, where 
his baggage was disposed under a guard of the 42nd Eegiment, 
hastened to join his troops. His impression seems to have been, 
that, after finding it impossible to attack him either across the 
morass or through the defiles of Preston, they were now about 
^ take up a position on the open fields to the east, that a 
pitched battle might^be fought when day began to appear. 
. Andrew Henderson (a Whig historian) mentions, in his ac^ 
iX>Tmt of the engagement, that the sentries, on first perceiving 
the Highland line through the mist, thought it a hedge, which, 
like " Bemam wood coming to Dunsinan,*' was gradually ap- 
parent as the day increased. The event, however, proved that 
the royal army was completely taken by surprise. To the dark- 
ness which hovered o'er the landscape, Charles was in some 


162 HISTOBT OF BUlfBAJL [1745. 

measure indebted for 'his sadden victory. The groups of dans 
seen through the dim sunny mist seemed of interminable num- 
ber, augmented by the savage and rustic-armed followers who 
swelled their train. The English artillery, with their whole 
line, opened a heavy fire, which did little execution. Covering 
their faces with their targets, the Highlanders advanced to the 
very muzzles of the guns of their opponents, when, ptdling off 
their bonnets, and ejaculating a short prayer, they discharged 
and threw down their muskets as incumbrances, and drawing 
their broadswords, gave a hideous shout, and cutting right and 
left, rushed furiously on the king's troops, whUe a fatal panic 
soon seized the whole Hue. 

Then ^d and high the Cameron's gathering rose. 
The war-note of Lochiel, which Albyn's hills 
Have heard, and heard, too, have h«r Saxon foes :^- 
How in the noon of night that pibroch thrills, 
Savage and shrill. — ^Btbon. 

The Camerons led the way to victory. That spirited clan hav-. 
ing swept over the cannon, found themselves opposed to a squa- 
dron of dragoons under lieutenant-Colonel Whitney. They 
only fired a few shots, when these dastards, scarcely recovered 
from their former fright, wheeled about, and fled over the 
artillery ground. The rear squadron of dragoons, under the 
gallant Colonel Gardiner, was then ordered to advance to the 
attack. Their old commander led them forward, encouraging 
them as well as he could by the way ; but they had not pro- 
ceeded many paces, when, receiving a few shots from the High- 
landers, they reeled, turned, and followed their companions, " to 
witch the world with noble horsemanship." Hamilton's dragoons, 
at the other eictremity of the line, behaved in a similar cowardly 
manner. No sooner had. they seen] their comrades flying before 
the Camerons, than they also turned about and fled, without 
having fired a carbine. Cope's soldiers, thrown into complete 
confusion, fell, fled, or surrendered. Sauve qui pent (" save him- 
self who can ") was now breathed as sincerely as ever it was 
afterwards uttered by Napoleon's battalions on their defeat at 


At Waterloo, when the fatal war-cry of the same descendants of 
Lochiel arose. One small party alone, out of the whole army, 
had the resolution to make any resistance. They fought for a 
brief space, under Colonel Gardiner, who, deserted by his own 
troops, and observing their gallant behayiour, unfortunately put 
himself at their head. This brave band suffered severely, and 
only gave way when their excellent leader fell, pierced with 
jDiany wounds. 

The fate of " the gallant and good Gardiner " was sincerely 
lamented by both parties. He had taken leave of his family at 
Stirling only a few days previous, with a fatal presentiment <^ 
his approaching fall. " Honest, pious, bold Gardiner," (says 
General Wighfman, in a letter to Lord President Forbes), ** died 
in the field, and was striped near the threshold of his own 
house." Deserted by his own squadron, and suffering from 
two shot and sabre wounds — one in the shoulder, the other in 
the forehead — ^he still attempted to rally a party of infantry, but 
in vain, and was cut down from behind by the stroke of a 
scythe, a weapon witii which of the Macgregors were armed. 

The battle of Prestonpans was decided in the course of a few 
hours, and what followed was a dreadful scene of carnage. 
There never was a victory more complete ; but, like the comet's 
blaze, it was destined to be evanescent. Of the infantry, com- 
posed of about 2500 men, scarcely 200 escaped, the rest being 
either slain or made prisoners. Many of them exhibited a 
frightful appearance, being hideously cut vdth the broadsword. 

The military chest of the army had been placed in the house 
of Cockenzie (Mr Cadell's), and the baggage in a large field ad- 
joining, which during the action was upon the left. It was. 
guarded by a few of the Earl of Loudon's Highlanders, the 
greater part of whom had joined the rebels on the breaking out 
of the rebellion. This guard, on seeing the event of the battle, 
surrendered themselves prisoners, while specie to a large amount 
fell into the hands of the victors ; some accounts say to the 
amount of L.3000 — Sir John Cope having secured the rest 

1^4 MlSTOttY Of DUKBAlL [1745. 

(says Alex. Henderson) partly in the Fox man-of-vary and 
partly at Haddington and elsewlierey which was amongst the 
mdst prudent actions of that general daring his inglorious 

Qeneral Cope, after maTring a vain attempt to rally Gardinor^s 
dragoons^ for the poi^pose of supporting the broken infrntry, with 
the assistance of the Earls of Home and London^ gathered 
together about 4d0 horsemen, at the west eod of the Tillage of 
Preston, and passing from thence up a narrow path leading to 
Birslie Brae> which was afterwards called ** Johnie Cope's road," 
Tetreated with them over Soutra-hill to Lauder, and reached 
Coldstream that same night, a place full fbrtjr_miles from the 
moming^s battle-field. 

The misfbrtunes of this day as regarded blt^ Sir John (not 

Falstaff), were not to terminate here ; for although, as far as 

personal courage went. Cope was completely acquitted on his 

trial, he was doomed to be 

Sacred to ridicule Ids whole life long, 
And the sad burden of a meny song. 

On the 21st of September, the ma^trates and coubdl of 
Dunbar, having acquainted the ix>rd Advocate of Scotland, who 
was then in that place, that they had a number of arms belong- 
ing to the burgh ; and being feaifhl lest they should Ml into tln» 
hands of the rebels, he granted a warrant that they might be 
sent on board of a king^s ship. They were accordingly shipped 
on board the Margaret of Aberdeen the same afternoon, and by 
her delivered next day to the Fox man-^f-war, Captain Beaver^ 
conunanden These arms consisted of 95 bayonets, lOi mus* 
kets, 35 pistols, with nine shoulder-belts, fite cartridge-boxes^ 
and one sword-belt A fdw weeks afterwards, the Fox, with 
these arms on board, was unhappily lost at Tyne Scmds. 

Some days after the success of Charles at Preston, the follow-^ 
ing letter was received from Secretary Murray : — 

" HoLTBOODHonsB, 26th Septembor, 1745. 
" Sir, — ^You are hereby ordered upon receipt of this, to repair 

1 9 4&.] iDOBBSSFOiYBSNCE. l6o 

to the SecretaiT's ofBkie in the palibce of Holyroodhonse^ there to 
have the contribution to be pftid by your town of Dunbar, for his 
highness's use^ ascertained ; which shall be done according and in 
proportion to the duties of excise aiiseing out of the said town of 
Dnnbar. For the repayment of which contribution, the said duty 
«hall be assigned. This you are ordered, upon pain of rebellion, 
forthwith to obey.— By his highness command, 

" To the Provost of the Town ofDunbcurJ* 

The town's contribution-money or assessment to the rebels, 
■waa L.486, 12s. 

On the 30th of October following, the king's birth-day was 
«ele))rated in a private manner, at 6 o'clock in the evening, and* 
the glaring appendages of bon-fires and iQuminations were dis- 
pensed with, as the rebels had still possession of the country. 

On the 15th April, 1746, the Duke of Cumberland's birth-day 
was publicly solemnized ; and on the 26th, an address was vot- 
•ed to his majesty, to be presented by the Duke of Argyle, on the 
defeat of the rebels. 

For some months, however, the government continued in an 
•agitated state ; and the following letter was transmitted to the 
magistrates : — 

{'* On his Majesty's service.) 
" To (he honowahle the Provott emd Miigietratei of Dunbar. 

" Edinburgh, 27th July, 1746. 
" SiES, — ^I send you this by express fo acquaint you, that by 
the intelligence that I have from the north, the Pretender's son 
has lefb the West Highlands, and fled towards the east coast, in 
hopes, no doubt, of making his escape that way. Whether he 
will attempt to get away upon the north-east coast, or if he will 
endeavour to get into England, or what other course he will take 
time alone will discover. But it is our duty, and Tthat of every 
faithful subject, to guard all the avenues as far as is in our power, 
Which makes me give you this early notice ; and to desire, that 

166 BI8T0ST OF DUNBAR. [1760;. 

yon would please take the proper measures in your neighbourhood. 
I am^ Sirs, your most obedient humble servant, 

" And. Fletcher." * 

On an application to General Husk, on the 31st March, 1747, 
he directed' David Lyon, store-keeper in the castle of Edinbuigh, 
to deliver 100 muskets and bayonets to the town of Dunbar, for 
those that they had lost in the late rebellion.t 

In 1760 the abolition of giving vaih to servants, and a Scots 
militia, were the subjects of general conversation and delibera- 
t tion. It was then the custom of gentlemen, when visiting their 
friends, to give perquisites to servants in the name of " vails or 
^ drink-money," which became a serious tax to visitors. The 
former usage was easily disposed of, but the latter met with 
considerable opposition, particularly from the agriculturists, who 
imagined that the measure would deprive them of the most 
able-bodied of their labourers. On the 12th March, a biU was 
introduced to the House of Commons for establishing a militia, 
which, however, was lost. The measure vras aUowed to rest 
till 176-2, when it was again revived. A meeting of noblemen, 
freeholders, and others, was held at Edinburgh on the 26th 
January, 1762, when a committee was appointed, and the Earl 
of Haddington chosen preses. The burgh of Haddington op* 
posed the measure, while the county and the burghs of Dunbar 
and North Berwick supported it. 

The lieges of Dunbar now enjoyed a tolerable repose from 
alarm tOl the beginning of the American war, when the success 
of the enemy's privateeis on the west coast of Scotland roused 
their attention ; and the council having recommended to the 
armourer to make up a state of what arms were lodged in the 

* Lord Provost of Edinburgh. 

+ 1745, Sept. 17. — Waiiam Valey, burgess in Dunbar, was allowed » 
claim of L.5 178. 4d., for loss and damage sustained through the dragoona 
of CoL Gardiner and Hamilton's regiments, by foraging their horses upon 
two acres and a half of pease, at the rate of Ss. 4d. per boll. The straw 
was valued at If. per threavo,«^Haddington Council B^. 

1779.] PAUL JONBS. 167 

'Council-house, Dr Hamilton, one of a Committee,* reported on 
the 8th May, 1778, that 100 stand of arms, as formerly men-, 
tioned, had been delivered to the treasurer from Edinburgh ; 
but that the same year the Greenland Company had borrowed 
sixty stand for the use of their ships, thirty stand of which still 
remained in their possession. Matters thus remained till May 
1779, at which time the country dreading an invasion from the 
combined fleets of France and Spain, the council of Dunbar, 
for the purpose of strengthening the hands of government, offered 
a bounty of three guineas for each able-bodied seaman, and two 
guineas for every ordinary seaman. 

In the month of September the same year, a noted marine 
adventurer made his appearance off the coast, in the person of 
John Paul Jones, a native of Selkirk, but now a commander in 
the French service. His purpose was to bum the shipping in 
the Jiarbour of Leith. He appeared off Dunbar on the 20th, with 
five Bhips, and lay in the offing for some days, as if waiting for 
the rest of his squadron coming up. An English vessel (after- 
wards one of the Dunbar Greenland-men, under the name of the 
Bodney), comuig down the Forth in ballast, ran into the port 
for safety, or rather went ashore at the Lammer-haven, at the 
mouth of the harbour, being ebb-tide. One of the enemy's gun- 
brigs, which seemed to have been watching her motions, had 
given chase to a sloop going southward ;' but, by a signal from 
the fleet, she was recalled, although not in time to intercept the 
English vessel, which consequently escaped. Jones did not fire 
a single shot into the town ; but the brig that gave chase to 
the above vessel came so near, that, by means of pe;rspective 
glasses, the seamen were distinctly observed at the main-chains 
heaving the lead 

While Jones lay off Dunbar, which might be for ^ye or six 
days, the magistrates appUed to the commander-in-chief for 

* The committee consisted of Dr James Hamilton, Messis Grive Wil- 
son, Bc^ert Melville, Alexander Brown,' Charles Lorimer, and Bobeit 
Maddiftb. — Council Kec. 

168 msTOBY OF mncBAs. [177^» 

troops to defend the place, ia case of a landing being attempted 
•by the enemy. A raiment of dragoons was sent from Edin-^ 
biiigh, while most of the inhabitants assembled by tack of dnuny, 
and enrolled themselres as Yolnnteers nnder Dr HandltoD, iba ; 
and sach as were inclined were to retain their anns, and form 
themselves into a corps. Four or five gons, bdonging to the 
Greenland ships, were planted on the Kirkhill, where embra- 
sures were dug and a batteiy formed in the coarse <^ an after* 
noon ; a twelve-poimder was placed on the roandel of the' piear, 
and other two pieces of ordnance stood like thonder-tongned 
sentinels at the entrance from the sands to the harbour, while 
watchmen were stationed on the church steeple and at Enocking- 
Hair, and the dragoons occasionally paraded themselves in a line 
on the heights, in all the ^^ pomp and circumstance of war ; ^ 
but happily the services of neither were required. On this occa- 
sion the Greenland Company shewed their liberality hy con- 
tributing part of the expenses incurred in fortiQriPQg the place. 

The squadron having stood up the Frith of Forth, were seen 
nearly opposite Leith, when a violent south-west wind aiisiog 
(aided, as was said, by the prayers of a godly minister of 
Kirkaldy), happily drove them back again, and separated their 
ships.* Jones seemed anxious to take shelter under the lee* 
ward of the Bass ; but the gale increasing, he left the coast, and 
proceeding southward, he encountered his majesty's ships the 

* Although we consider the dskjB of piopheoy paat, nnoe the memoniblfr « 
days of Thomas the Bhymer of Ersledun, and Alexander Peden, yet tho 
Bev. Kobert Shirra, minister, Linkton, Kirkcaldy, has brought it down to 
the days of grandfathers. On the threatened destmction of the shipping' 
in the port of Leith, by the Scoto-American pirate, Paul Jones, in 1779, it 
is said that when the inhabitants of Kirkaldy were in a state of great ex- 
citement and consternation at the sight of the freebooter's squa&>n, Mr 
Sbirra took an old arm-chair, and sat down on it on the sandsy dedaring 
that if God did not listen to his prayer (what presumption), and send a 
strong westerly wind to drive the pirate vessels out of the Frith, he would 
sit there and be drowned ! Had this bigotted man not ready that ** the sea 
rolled not back when Canute gave command ! *' 

Mr Shirra.was a well-meaning, straightforward man, jealom ct those 
who assumed superior powers to himseli. At a sabflequent period^ after Ifet 

1781.] CAPTAIN FALL. 169 

Serapis and Countess of Scarborough^ near FLamborough-head, 
which he captured after a desperate engagement. The king's 
ships had the Baltic fleet in convoy, which luckily escaped 
during the conflict. The enemy carried their prizes to France, 
having no less than 300 prisoners, which had been taken during 
their cruise in the north seas. For these exploits the King of 
France rewarded Jones with, the military order of merit, and a 
gold-hilted sword.* 

On the 22nd of May, 1781, about eleven o'clock a.m., Captain 
Fall, another but less noted maritime adventurer, gave chase to 
a Gravesend flshing-smack near St Abb's Head, which made for 
the port of Dunbar. It being ebb-tide, she was under the neces- 
sity of casting anchor at the Lammer Island, immediately at the 
mouth of the harbour. At the same time, a small privateer 
belonging to the burgh, which lay in Dunbar bay, having 
that morning arrived from a cruise, felt alarmed, and notwith- 
standing the bravado conveyed by the usual motto attached to 
her name, ^^The Thistle," sought refdge in her mother's lap, 
astern of the smack; This brave little vessel had been fitted 
out by the voluntary subscripticm of the town and neighbour- 
hood, for the purpose of picking up any small craft belonging to 
the enemy. Under the command of Captain Hare, she per- 
formed a voyage to the Leeward Islands, and made the unhappy 
mistake of capturing a small Prussian vessel, which, as that 
power was at peace with the country, she had the mortification, 
which must have been huxtfdl to the feelings of her veterans, to 

« I ' II ■ ■ ll.l I II — »— I II III! ■ ■ ■■ !■ I I II ■! ■ I ■ I ^ 

liad Btadi6d under Ebenezer Erskme, professor of theology, to the Associate 
Synod, 1747 to 1749, he was employed in teaching his fedlow-students, and 
on one occasion he met with the justly-celebrated John Brown of Hadding- 
ton, who was appointed to the professorial chair in 1768 — *' Mind man " 
(quoth Shirra), " though you are professor now, / taught you logic ! " 

* The lather of Paul Jones was gardener to Lord Selkirk at St Mary's 
Isle. The son began his public career as mast^ of a trading vessel belong- 
ing to Kirkcudbright ; and, on his return to that port, he was imprisoned 
on the chaige of murdering his carpenter, but was acquitted, after being 
used with uncommon severity. From thence he went to the United States^ 
and latterly into the French service. 


170 HIBTO&T OF DUHBAS. "[^78^1; . 

restore! She peiformed no other feat, bat Bought protectiim 
where she had a right to expect it, after the appearance of Gap* 
tain Fall had thrown a damp over her naval ardoor. 

To retoni fi»ni our digression — Captain Fall had his boat in 
the tackles, apparently for the poipose <£ laonching to cat oat 
these yessels, when the bustle on shore seemed to make him 
change Ins opinion. The inhabitants, among wliom there were 
some choice spirits, had not been idle. Three tweive-poimd«r 
caronnades, belon^ng to the Greenland Company, had been 
bronght fix)m their storehouse to the Tiammfflr Island, the same 
spot on which the battery was afterwards bnilt. Provoet Bobert 
Fall collected eveiy sack of floor deposited in his grananea, foe 
the porpose of forming embrasures for the protection of the 
gunners. To convey these eveiy yehide was put in requisition ; 
some were carried in carts and barrows, while others were 
. dragged by the people; and even women and children flocked 
in multitudes to the island, anzious, like the pen-and-ink war- 
riors at Prestonpans, to behold the result. These three guns, 
being the most important, were chiefly manned by sailors, under 
the direction of George Spiers, a carpenter, who had served in 
the Boyal Navy. 

Another party, chiefly landsmen, dragged two nine-pounders, 
that were found in Tyne sands, and had belonged to the iU- 
Cated Fox man-of-war, but which had been " left alone in their 
glory" without carriages, to an eminence on the castle^ These 
guns were under the direction of Bailies Simpson and Pringle. 
A shrewd bystander observing that they went to fight in a more 
barbarous manner than pirates, having no colours, one of the 
bailies sent for an ensign belonging to the Princess of Wales 
Greenland-man, which was immediately hoisted on that eminence 
where Scotland's standard flamed of yore. 

Provost Fall having ordered away all tudesB hands firom the 
island above mentioned, prepared for action. The veteran Spiers 
was not long in sending a weU-directed shot under the enemy's 
bow ; the second shot told still better, going betwixt the mast 

1V81.] CAMAtN FALL. 171 

and the foresheet ; and tlie third was observed to drop into the 
ooean, right astern; The party on the castle did not succeed so 
Vrell. Having no shot large enough for the calibre of their 
pieces, they put in four or five six-pound shot into one gun ; the 
consequence was, that the powder hanging loosely about the 
balls, had little effect, and they were scattered like ponderous 
lead-drops at the back of the island, to the no small consternation 
of the brave party stationed there. The first shot of Captain 
Fall fell into Provost Fall's garden, which was situated at the 
back of his house, now the front of the barracks. Striking the 
ground, it covered a person workii^ there with gravel, l^e 
second shot struck a log of Memel timber lying at the road, 
leading to the castle ; and the third and last shot fell at the 

The well-directed shots sent from the shore had their due 
effect, and the enemy, after remaining an hour and a half 
off the town, and within half a mile of the shore, sheered 
off. He proceeded to the Isle of May, about fifteen miles 
distant, and carried off all its she^. A party of volun* 
teers had in the meantime provided themselves with musketo, 
and proceeding to the end of the pier, fired a volley by way of 
biding hijn good-bye.* 

* The following is a Bpecimen of the epistolary style of the pirate cap- 
tain, which, bnt for the favouring breeze, and the report of a distant gun, 
might have been handed into Dunbar : — 

« At Sea, May The twenti-third. 

GentlemeK, — ^I send these two Words to inform you— That I will haye 
you to Bring to, to The french color in Less than a quarter of an hour, or 
I set The town in fire Directly* ; such is the order of My Master the King 
of franoe, I am sent by. Send directly the Mayor and The Chiefs of the town 
to Make Some agreements With me ; or Til Make my Duty. It is the 
WiU of yours, &o., , 

" G. Fall. 
** To Mens* mayor of the town ealVd a/rbroughi ; or in his absence 
to the Chief man after him in ScoUand,^ 

Fall had the audacity to demand L.30,000 of Arbroath ; but although 
\k& kept up a cannonade at intervals for three days, the coolness and de» 
termination of the magistracy wearied lum out, and he wdghed anchor. - 

17lt filSTOEY Oil' DUNBAIL 1781.] 


To hofte I to hone t the standard flieg| 

The biiq;lM sooikI the cajl ; 
The Gallic navy stems the seas, 
The voice of battle's on the hreea». 

Arouse jey one and all ! — Sib W. SgoT¥. 


It was n^w found necessary to do something to put the bni^ 
into a state of defence against the visit of privafceers. On the 
22nd Jnne^ 1781, the magistrates and conncil met for this par« 
pose ; and the plan of a fortress, drawn hy Mr Fraser, engineer, 
was adopted, and the present battery was erected on the Lammer 
Island. The battery monnted sixteen gons, of different calibre, 
the largest two being long eighteen-ponnders. The last public 
occasion on which they were fired was on the lamented death of 
the Princess Charlotte. The government gnnswere afterwards 
removed to Edinburgh on the general peace. 

After the alarm created by Captain FaU*s vessel, in the fol* 
lowing year, 16th July, 1782, the South Fendbles, commanded 
by the Duke of Bucdeuch, left Edinburgh Castle, and entered 
into encampment for a short time on the East Links of West 
Bams. This regiment was 1000 strong; and besides it, there 
was a park of artillery, under Captain Dickson, formed in the 
field west of that occupied by the infantry. ^On Wednesday, 
September 18th, the soldiers were reviewed by General Mackay, 
along with his own regiment, the 21st, which was in quarters at 
Dunbar. At this time the arrival <ii the Baltic fleet, which cork- 

1793.] ME TOLUNTSSfiS. 173 

'' »in< ' «ri< ' »i n i»'» i « ">r> i ' t ' > r»n r ' » '«' > n iiiii > i K r ii " iii MT i <T' > r» i ' »i '>r iii n »^ - i r i< - n - »i -n- nr n-iri r iiC''n ~ » — m' » n' l ' i ' i ' i ' i - - * - i T i ' — I ' l -nT in — r~i~i 1- - ■ 

laisted of about forty sail, was anxiously looked for, and on their 
Appearance off Dunbar on the 20th, an express was immediately 
«ent to Edinburgh with the happy intelligence. They came 
under convoy to Shieldfi. On the 11th of October the camp^was 
raised, and the South Fencibles went into winter quarters at 
Linlithgow, the artillery being removed to the castle of Edin- 

In 1783 there was another encampment at West Bams, con- 
sisting of the Essex light Dragoons and a regiment of Black 

LoDg after the rebellion was subdued, there was a secret 
grudge between the Saxon and the Gael ; the former felt the 
superiority of united numbers, and the latter the pangs of 
wounded pride in the faUen fortunes of his prince : hence a 
£[ighland and English regiment seldom came in contact without 
a scuffle. On one occasion, in consequence of a. part of a High- 
land regim^it and a body'of dragoons coming into billet^uarters 
at Dunbar, a serious afi&ay took place, in which several of the 
men were wounded ; and the consequences might have been still 
more serious, had the Highlanders not been withdrawn &om the 
town by their officers. 

The era of the Erendi revolution, however, in time buried the 
animosities of both nations in their efforts against the common 
enemy* The success of the republican arms in Germany, and 
the uncompromising attitude which Great Britain assimied, made 
it neoessaiy that individuals should associate together and arm 
in their own defence. Accordingly, a corps of volunteers wa"» 
raised in 1793, by Major George Hay. They were called the 
^' Xkmbar Defensive Company " — ^were famished with arms and 
accoutrements by government — drilled twice a-week, and re- 
ceived 2s. weekly of pay. The corps consisted of one company 
of 73 men, which was afterwards augmented to 100. On the 
appointment of Major Hay to a^ nulitia regiment, the command 
devolved on Christopher Middlemass, Esq., as the next senior 
officer. At the same time, a geptleman-company was enrolled. 

174 HlStOHY OF DUKBAR. [180S. 

who furnished themselves with clothing, and served without pay. 
As a mark of distinction^ they were placed on the right of the 

^e East Lothian Yeomaniy Cavalry were enrolled in 1797, 
under the command of Sir James Gardiner Baird, Bart. It con- 
sisted of three troops, averaging 50 men each. The fourth, or 
Dunbar troop, was raised by Mr Hay of Spott, in 1803, and 
was 75 men strongs 

Every precaution was now used to guard against invasion, or 
of being surprised by the enemy. Telegraphs and signal-stations 
were erected on the heights of St Abb's and Etackcastle, which 
communicated with Dunbar battery, North-Berwick Law, and 
Garleton-hill, and thus commanded the whole extent of the 
coast and inland country all the way to Edmburgh. The first 
encampment during the revolutionary war was formed at West 
Bams in 1796. It was composed of the Scots brigade in two 
battalions (afterwards the 94th foot), under the command of 
General Francis Dundas, and the 4th Eegiment of Dragoons. 
These were relieved on the same ground, when the Scots brigade 
embarked at Dunbar, by Fendble cavalry — viz., the Dumbarton, 
Lanark, and the Dumfries. 

During the interval between this period and the peace of 
Amiens, the Dutch and French fleets were destroyed by Duncan 
and Nelson, and the noise of invadon gradually died away ; but 
after the rupture of 1803, nothing but Napoleon and his bridge 
of boats, were dreamt or spoken of; and the greatest military 
force ever assembled on these shores in these latter days was 
now encamped at West Bams Links, under the vigilant com- 
mand of Creneral Sir George Don. The regiments consisted of 
the Lanarkshire, Perthshire, and Fife militias ; the Galloway aa 
gunners, and a few dragoons to do the general's duty. 

* This regiment was disembodied in April, 1802. The gentleman- 
company wore blue coats with red collars, white vests, white breeches, and 
stockings, with short black gaiters. The other companies had blue coate 
with red iadnsB, and blue striped trousers, which were afterwards changed 
to tight pantafoons, and round hats with cockades. 

1803.] THg VOLUNTEBBS. 175 

. The Yolunteers were reimbodied in the month of June, in a> 
more effective manner^ by Major Middiemass^ under the name of 
the "Dunbar Loyal Volunteers." The battalion consisted of 
four companies of 80 men each, rank and file, which, for the. 
oonyenieney. of field movements, were subdivided into eight com-, 
panies of forty men each, including a gr^adier and light com- 
pany. They had muskets, havresacks, and canteens, and were 
;allowed the common rate by government ioit dothing, which 
being of a finer fabric than that used by the regular army, the 
difference was defrayed at their own expense. Their clothing 
was scarlet, .faced with green, and white laee:; with white 
breeches and long gaiters. The corps drilled twice a-week, on 
Wednesdays. and Saturdays; and as they had a good band of 
music, th^ drew forth on all occasions plenty of the yoiing and 
gay as spectators. In short, the smart appearance of this little 
battalion, with its music and its spirited nianoeuvres, gave it 
considerably the lead of all the neighbouring volunteer corps. 

. The determined principle which the country had adopted in 
prosecuting the war against the "modem Cromwell,'* rendered 
it' necessary that more substantial cantonments e^ould be - found 
for the soldiery than the tented field ; accordingly, barracks^ 
were erected at Dunbar and Haddington, in the autumn of 
1803, with wonderfdl celerity. At Dunbar they were begun ere 
the crop was off their site, and were occupied by the 1st of 
November. The infantry and artillery banaeks were situated 
on the Heu^ Heads, a high ground overlooking the sea, west 
from the eastle park. The huts were capable of containing 
12,000 infantry and 300 artillery. The cavalry barracks were 
situated in the park betwixt the Gallowgreen and Belhaven^ and 
were capable of containing 300 men.* The fijrst regiments that 

* The Infantry barracks consisted of 104 huts—idz. 2 mess-rooms, with 
kitchen, cellars, &c. ; 8 field-officer's rooms, 42 for officers, 45 for soldiers, 
25 for servants ; and 2 for staff-sergeants ; besides stables for 40 horses, 
tOL hospital, store-houses, guard-houses, &c. 

The Artillery Barracks consisted of 34 huts — -viz, 1 mess-^room, 2 field* 
offieen' rooms, 12 for officers, 12. for eoldiers, 7 for servants ; besides stables 

176 HISTOBY OF DUNBAB. [1803. 

occupied the barracks were the Ajrahiie and Lanarkshire militias^ 
and a light brigade of artillery. 

In regard to the barracks, one thing is worthy of remark, that 
a more healthy situation, independently of other ciicumstanoes^ 
could not have been chosen. A regiment has been known to 
march into the barracks with 170 in the sick-report, which in a 
short time was reduced to six ; and in one instance a regiment 
of 1360 men had not one man in the hospital. It was a general 
complaint all over Britain that the hospitals could not contain 
the sick ; but sA Dunbar the hospital, though only constructed 
for one4ialf of the regulated number, would have answered the 
purpose had it been one-fourth the size. 

The erection of the barracks was the golden age of East 
Lothian. It not only brought a vast population to the buighSy 
and set a great deal of capital in dxculation, but the cattle and 
victual consumed by the troops, the forage by the dragoon 
horses, and the value of their manure, was of material service to 
the agriculturists. The farmer, in place of his keg of aqua or 
cask of country-brewed ale^ could now. treat himself to a pipe of 
wine, and the merchant could introduce the piano into his 
drawing-room as a substitute for his grandmother's, spinning- 
wheel ! Many active persons^ also, who had formerly moved in 
a very obscure sphere of life, came suddenly into notice, and by 
dint of honest industry, and other means^ acquired moderate 
competencies ; and he who but yesterday held the plough might 
nbw be a candidate for the highest civic honours of the burgh. 
Not content with individual gains, our municipal rulers also 
wished to turn the occurrence to public advantage ; accordingly, 
the town of Haddington, which holds a right to part of tl^ 
anchcorage of Aberlady, turned her eyes to the harvest that 

for 140 horses, gun-shed, Bmiths", farriers', wheelers', and saddlers' shopSy. 
guard-house, stores, &c. 

The Cavaby Barracks consisted of 44 huts — ^viz. 1 mess-room, 4 field- 
officers' rooms, 16 for officers, 4 for quarter-masters, 4 for sergeants, 12 for 
jk)ldiers ; besides stables for 820 horses, hay-sheds, granaries, goard-hoiue^ 
fftore-rooms, kc. 

1804.] ME FALSE ALARM. 177 

might be reaped from her sea-port, and on the 6th Ootober, 1804, 
the town-council presented a memorial to government, recom- 
mending the port of Aberlady as a fit place for a naval station ; 
and requested the Lords of the Treasury to cause a survey of 
the coast to be made for that purpose — a scheme which we are 
not aware met with any consideration, as its proximity to Leith 
could have rendered it of little utility. The plan of Dunbar new 
harbour was at that time j^lso suggested, which not only pos- 
sessed greater natural advantages as a basin, but appeared 
pregnant with utility as a fishing station. 

Dunbar was now pretty well prepared to meet the threatened 
invasion, and a more vigilant officer than General Don could 
not have been appointed. He had already been severely wounded 
ill actual service, and he both knew the care and circumspection 
necessary for the important post which he filled. On the 19th 
November, 1803, he issued instructions for the regulation of the 
yeomanry and volunteer infantry of the county of Haddington, 
in the event of being called into service, which will be found in 
the Note at the end of this chapter. 

General Don seems to have taken a great interest in the 
volunteers ; and accordingly, on the 29th of the same month, he 
entered into a correspondence with Major Middlemass respecting 
their equipment, in order that they might feel as comfortable as 
pos&ible when on duty. The articles recommended were, great- 
coats, knapsacks, havresacks, canteens, and camp-kettles. To 
carry this into effect, the town of Dunbar contributed fifty 
guineas. General Don thirty guineas, and each man 40s. It 
was considered that a sum not less than L.600 would be re- 
cjuired for this purpose. It was also the wish of Lord Moira 
that each man should carry sixty rounds of ball-cartridges. The 
boxes, however, were only enlarged to carry forty. 

On the evening of the 2nd February, 1804, a circumstance 
occurred which at least placed the zeal of the yeomaniy and 
volunteer corps beyond a doubt. The person who kept watch at 
Hounamlaw, in Roxburghshire, mistook some accidental light^ 


178 HISTORY OF DUNBAR. [1804. 

which arose at a Iwuse-heatingy situated in a conspicuous spot 
in the neighbourhood of Dunse, for the beacon of Dunselaw, 
and she in her turn lighted up, when she beheld the former in a 
blaze ; or, according to another version, in a note to the 
<* Antiquary," it was the person stationed at Home Castle, who 
was deceived by some accidental fire in Northumberland ; conse- 
quently the signal was immediately repeated through all the 
valleys on the English border. Luckily, the watch stationed at 
St Abb*s Head considered, that had there been a descent on the 
eastern sea-coast the alarm must have come from that quarter, 
and did not fire his beacon, otherwise the alarm would have 
blazed from Blackcastle to Qarleton, and alarmed the whole of 
the north of Scotland. 

In Berwickshire, Roxburghshii-e, and Selkirkshire, the volun- 
teers got under arms with wonderful rapidity ; and next morn- 
ing the inhabitants of Dunbar were surprised by the arrival of 
the Berwickshire yeomanry at an early hour, some of whom 
were no doubt chagrined at the hoax, while others were agree- 
ably disappointed. The same day the Dunse volunteers came to 
Haddington, being their appointed place of rendezvous in the 
event of an invasion ; and the Selkirkshire yeomanry, notwith- 
standing their remote distance from the alarm-post, reached 
Dalkeith by one o'clock. 

On the 7th May, 1804, the Haddington volunteers, com- 
manded by Lieutenant-Colonel Hay Mackenzie, went on per- 
manent duty into the North Barracks of Dunbar for fourteen 
days ; and on the 19th, the whole of the military stationed in 
the neighbourhood of Dunbar, including the garrison of Hadding- 
ton, were reviewed on Westbams Links by the Earl of Moira, 
then commander-in-chief of the forces in Scotland. The regi- 
ments reviewed were the first and second battalions of the 18th 
or Royal Irish ; the Perthshire and Galloway militia, the latter 
as gunners ; and a brigade of the Royal Artillery ; also a brigade 
of volunteer infantry — viz. the Dunbar, Haddington, Nort^" 
Berwick, Dunse, Eyemouth, and Coldingham regiments, and the 

IB 13.] WELLINGTON. 179 

Berwickshire and East Lothian yeomanry — the whole amounting 
at least to 5000 men. 

This military parade continued but a few years. Napoleon 
got so much embroiled with the continental powers, that our 
brave countrymen, in junction with their allies, met the enemy 
in other lands, and on other shores, and the alarm of an invasion 

In 180S the Haddingtonshire Local Militia was embodied — Lord 
Sinclair of Herdmonston, colonel-commandant, and Lord Binning 
(now Earl of Haddington), lieutenant-colonel — upon which the 
volunteer regiments of the county transferred their services to 
that corps. The regiment was 686 strong. Their clothing was 
scarlet, with yellow facings, and grey trousers; and in other 
points similar to the regular militia. 

The year 1809 was memorable for a jubilee in honour of 
Gfeorge IIL, who had entered into the fiftieth year of his reign. 
This event was celebrated in the burgh with its usual loyalty, 
social assemblies, fireworks, &c. 

On the 6th February, 1810, the Prince Regent, owing to the 
melancholy state of his majesty's health, assumed the reins of 
the executive government, which he carried on with the same 
ministry that had been appointed by his father, George III. 

On the 7th October, 1813, Lord Wellington entered France 
with his victorious army. The people in the south of France 
received the British as friends and deliverers from a yoke thrown 
over them by a man of consummate military genius, although a 
soldier of fortune, which they were ready to cast off on the first 
opportunity. The Earl of Dalhousie was despatched with 5000 
men to Bourdeaux, when the citizens immediately declared for 
the Bourbons, upon which deputies were sent to Louis XVIIL, • 
and the British invited to enter the town. The close of the 
campaign was marked by one unfortunate event. In a sortie 
which the French made from Bayonne, the picquets of the' 
British were driven in, and General Sir John Hope (afterwards 
Earl of Hopetoun) was made prisoner^ The Earl of Dalhousie 

l^d HtSTORY OF DUNBAR. * - [1815. 

remained at Bourdeaux till the general peace was concluded, and 
superintended the return of the British army, which he brought 
home in 1814. Congratulatory addresses were voted by the 
burghs of Dunbar and Haddington on this happy event to the 
Prince Regent ; and the freedom of the latter burgh was con- 
ferred on the Earl of Dalhousie, as a mark of respect for his ini' 
portant services. 

The voluntary abdication of Napoleon followed these successes; 
and, as a mockery of his former greatness, the sovereignty of tha 
petty island of Elba was awarded to him, with a garrison of 400 
men, and an annual revenue of two million of francs. He was 
conveyed thither by British ships, under the surveillance of 
Colonel^Sir^Neil Campbell 

The revolution in the affairs of Napoleon had a wonderful 
effect over^the nation. The destinies of mankind seemed to 
hang *onj his successes or his defeat. Europe awoke as from a 
dream, and, in the energetic language of Byron, "wondered 
that she had been the footstool of a thing so mean "-^that 

" Since he, miscall'd the morning star, . 
Nor man nor fiend, has fallen so fiur." 

It was therefore ordained that the barracks, whidh had arisen 
with as much celerity as if the magic wand of Alladin had been 
employed in their erection, should be as speedily removed ; ac- 
cordingly, in the beginning of October, 1814, the barrack ma* 
terials were brought to sale by public auction, and, after the 
brief space of eleven years, the barracks both at Hiuidington and 
Dunbar were as totally removed by the month of November as 
if they had never existed. 

A few months had only elapsed^ when the star of Napoleon 
again arose, to the astonishment of Europe. He suddenly left 
Elba, and landed at Frejus, when he was joined by Marshal 
Ney and most of his old officers and generals. His return 
looked rather like a triumph than an invasion. He soon found, 
however, that his power had been irremediably shaken, and the 
field of Waterloo closed the military drama of this great soldier. 


Meanwhile a factiou had arisen in the country, who, under 
the specious name of radical reform, sought to sweep away at 
one fell swoop every vested right, and to root up every ancient 
establishment. There may be " something rotten in ike state 
of Denmark," but it requires cautious hands to remove the leaky 
planks of the national vessel, and a skilful carpenter to supply 
timber of a better quality. The plausible doctrine of universal 
suffrage was also widely circulated — a, doctrine than which 
nothing can be more absurd ; for as long as talent and industry 
continue to tread on the heels of imbecility and sloth, so long 
will distinctions in society necessarily exist. Treasonous prac- 
tices were pursued in England. In Scotland the flame of sedi- 
tion spread in the manufacturing districts, regular drillings were 
held, and seditious proclamations issued. Government, in conse- 
quence of these proceedings, issued orders that the yeomanry 
of the neighbouring counties should assemble at Glasgow, and in 
a few days 5000 troops were collected in that city. Overawed 
by this imposing force, the insurgents, who had assembled at 
Bonnymuir, near Kilsyth, were routed by a troop of huzzars, 
nineteen taken prisoners, three executed, and others transported. 
During these commotions, the East Lothian Yeomanry, under 
Sir James Gardiner Baird, having been ordered to Edinburgh, 
while the Berwickshire came to Haddington, the thanks of the 
city were conveyed to the former by the Lord Provost of Edin- 
burgh (John Manderston) to the Earl of Haddington ; as also 
that of the county of Edinburgh, through the most noble the 
Marquis of Lothian to the same nobleman. 

On King George IV. 's visit to Scotland in August, 1822, the 
squadron attending his majesty appeared off St Abb's Head 
about nine o'clock on the morning of Wednesday the 14th. On 
passing Dunbar, a salute was flred from the battery, and &om 
flume pieces of cannon placed on Doonhill by Mr Hay, and where 
a bonfire was lighted in the evening. Several persons went off 
in boats, and had an opportunity of seeing the king, who bowed 
"with his usual affability to the spectators. 


*^^^^^^^y^^^^»^»^^iwrfv*n^^^*»^^r^^^^^i^ %^^^*^^*^^^^>^^^^'^^^^^^%#^^^^^^^^'%^^>>^ 

At a meeting of the magistrates and coimcil, held on the 
Friday preceding, a dutiful and loyal address was voted ; and it 
was agreed that the town should be illiuninated, which took 
place on the Thursday after the king's arrival. 

On Monday the IQth, the Berwidcshire yeomanry went into 
quarters at Musselburgh, and next day the East Lothian yeo- 
manry assembled at Haddington. Both raiments, with the rest 
of the military, were reviewed by his majesty at Portobello Sands 
on Friday the 23rd. 

The king's departure from Scotland was announced about 
seven o'clock on the evening of the 29th, by some guns placed 
on the Bass. A bonfire was immediately lighted at Dunbar 
pier-head, and a salute fired from the battery, which was echoed 
by the guns placed on Doonhill ; but the wetness and Ha.r1niP«ft 
of the night precluded any view of the squadron, save the 
glimpse of a solitary light at one of their mast heads. 

In the year 1827, three troops of the East Lothian Yeomanry 
Cavalry were disembodied, viz. the Salton, Seton, and Gifford, 
but the officers were allowed to retain their conmussions. The \ 
Dunbar troop, under James Hunter, Esq. of Thurston, continued 
to serve without pay. 

The demise of George lY. took place at Windsor on the 26th 
June, 1S30. 

On the 2nd July the town council took the oath of allegiasice 
to William lY., on his accession to the throne, and voted an 
address of congratulation on the event. 

On the 20th June, 1837, the town council voted an address 
to her Majesty Queen Yictoria, on her accession to the throne y 
and on the 28th June, 1838, the coronation of her m^esty was 
celebrated throughout the countiy with great rejoicings. 

In the beginning of 1840, an event occurred whidi excited 
considerable interest throughout the united kingdouL On the 
10th February, her Majesty Queen Alexandrina Yictoria -was 
married to Francis Albert Augustus Charles Emanuel, Duke of. 
Saze, Prince Coburg and Gotha, which was celebrated with great 

-1842.] QUEEN victoria's visit to SCOTLAND 183 

rejoicings in Dunbar and throughout the country. This happy 
event was ^irther augmented on the 21st November, 1840, by 
the birth of the Princess Boyal of England, which was also cele« 
brated in our xoyal burgh with the greatest demonstrations of 
loyalty; and, on the 11th November, 1841, by the birth of 
Albert Edward, Prince of Wales. 

Early in the summer of 1842, the intelligence of the queen*s 
intention to visit her Scottish dominions was received with the 
greatest satisfaction. As the popularity of her majesty gave a 
double zest to the anticipated measure, every effort was made 
that loyalty could devise or science execute, to welcome her 
with the pomp and splendour considered due to her exalted 

On the 31st August, 1842, at the early hour of five o'clock in. 
the morning, the burgh of Dunbar announced the commencement 
of their demonstrations to welcome her majesty by the ringing of 
bells. On the old castle a flag-^tafif was erected, and the union- 
flag of England fluttered in the breeze. From this eminence, and 
from the pier during the day, many an anxious eye was turned 
towards St Abb's Head ; but it was seven in the evening before 
the queen's yacht was descried from this lofty promontory. The 
squadron passed Dunbar about eight o'clock, when a royal salute 
of twenty-one guns was fired from the castle, which was an- 
swered by a beauti^ flight of rockets from her majesty's fleet. 
Fires were immediately lighted on Doonhill, the Vault-point, the 
Kirkhill, and castle of Dunbar, the estate of Ninewar, &c,, and 
eveiy elevated point in East Lothian was soon shrouded in 
smoke and flame ; and, indeed, among the many modes which 
Scotland adopted to testify her loyalty to her majesty, none 
were of a more imposing nature than the large bonfires lighted 
on the summits of her lofty mountains. From the Garleton 
hills, which are nearly in the centre of the county, and which 
were also lighted up, as many as thirty of these colossal fires 
wero observed, amongst which the high conical peak of NortJi 
Berwick Law shone conspicuous, the promontory of »Seiicliff 

182 HISTORY OF DVXBAR. [1842, 

^^^^^B^>^^>^^<^>^ V^»^»^^^ 

i^^^rf«^k^.^-»h^^^bJfc^h ^^^^ ^^^t^^^ a^ , « , ^«^^|- , ^^ ^ l^^«y^^-^^- ^ - , ^_^^ ^ ^^ 

Hottse, Doonliill and Blackcastle, Traprene-law, Lammer-law, 
&<i,, and the whole range of these pastoral hills which stretch 
from Dunglas to their termination at Soutra. 

In the expectation that the royal fleet would have appeared 
in the Frith by noon, most of the prominent heights of the 
county were also covered with spectators, anxious to catch the 
first gMmpse of the squadron; and during the day many a 
telescope and eager eye were turned towards North Berwick 
Law, in the hope of obtaining a view of the signal which was to 
intimate to the metropolis the approach of her majesty. The 
shades of an autumnal evening closing in, obscured the prospect, 
and the " majesty of darkness " veiled the splendid sight. 

On the morning of the 1st September, 1842, her majesty and 
Prince Albert landed at Granton Pier from the royal steamer at 
nine o'clock, and proceeded to the palace of Dalkeith. 

On the 5th her majesty held a levee at Dalkeith Palace, 
where addresses poured in from the royal burghs, and Dunbar, 
with a similar loyalty, forwarded two addresses, one to her 
majesty, and the other to Prince Albert. The first waa presented 
through the Earl of Aberdeen, the foreign secretary, and the 
other by Mr Anson, the treasurer of his royal highness's house-f 
hold, to whom they were conveyed by the Earl of L^'Uderdale,. 
treasurer of the burgh of Dunbar, when on a visit to Taymoutk 
Gastle, while her majesty was spending a few days with the 
Marquis of Breadalbane. The following are copies :— ^ 


** Most Gracious Sovereign, 

*' We, your Majesty's faithful and Ipyal subjects, the magistrates and 
council of your ancient burgh of Dunbar, in council assembled, with hearts 
full of the warmest affection, beg perpii^sion, amidst the vniversftl ftcclama-t 
tion of a free and united people, to present our humble duty at the foot of 
your throne, and joyfully hail your Majesty's welcome to Scotland. May 
your Majesty be graciously pleased to accept of this humble tender of our 
unvariable attachment to your sacred person and gpyernment ; and it shall 
ever be our earnest prayer that the great Kuler of the universe may direct 
and prosper all your coimsels. That your Majesty's visit to Caledonia may 
be pleasant and happy, blessing and plest, in the devot^ attachn^ent of a^ 
free, loyal, and grateful people — and that your Majesty may return ii^ 


health and safety to the metropolis of your kingdom, and long fill that hiSg^h 
throne amongst the nations^ in which your Majesty's exalted virtues are so 
eminently conspicuous. 

" Chbistopheb Mibdlbmass, Provost.** 


"We, the provost, magistrates, and council of the ancient and royal 
buigh of Dunbar, in common council assembled, beg to express, on the 
happy and auspicious occasion of the royal visit to Scotland, our heartfelt 
prayer that a kind Providence may watch over and protect yoiv royal 
highness while sojourning in the land of the mountain and the flood — amid 
the most enthusiastic rejoicings of a loyal and delighted people. — ^That 
living as yom: royal highness does in the afifections of your royal consort, 
our illustrious Queen, your royal highness may be long spared with her 
gracious Majesty to form the pride and glory of the British nation, encircled 
with every blessing which Providence can bestow. 

" Chbistophkb Middlbmass, Provost." 

These addresses were most graciously received, and answers of 
acknowledgment were transmitted to the town-council of Dunbar, 
couched in the most flattering terms. 

After the lapse of forty years of European peace, England 
beheld with a watchful eye the aggressive power of Russia, which 
but for her interference, along with France, the Turks would 
have been sacrificed to the modem Attila. The militia system, 
long in abeyance, was again brought into notice. It waa agreed 
that the new force should be organised on the basis of the 
general, rather than that of the local militia — that is, instead of 
being a force existing only two or three years, during a period of 
excitement, it should have a character of permanency. A pro- 
clamation was issued accordingly by the Marquis of Tweeddale, 
K.T., lord-Ueutenant of the county, calling on spirited young 
men to come forward to join the ranks, which was speedily 
acceeded to. In place of ballotting as formerly, a great improve- 
ment on the old system was adopted, by offering a bounty of 
L.6 for a service of five years, in consequence of which a number 
of fine volunteers came rapidly forward. The Haddington, 
Berwickshire, Linlithgow, and Peebles Militia Artillery, were 
embodied at Dunbar in March 1855, under William Hay, Esq,, 

A 2 

184 HiSTOBT OF DUNBAK. [1865. 

of Donse Castle, lieutenant-oolonel commandant^ in consequenoe 
6f a placard issued by her majesty's Lord lieutenant-Qeneral, 
the Marquis of Tweeddale, E.T., under the following condi- 
tions : — 

1. Volunteers to be enrolled for five years, and not to be sent 


2. A bounty of L. 6, to be paid at stated periods during the five 


3. Ten shillings to be paid on being enrolled. 

4. Five shillings to the person who brought a fit volunteer to 

the regiment. 

5. Thp regiment to be clothed in a similar imiform to the Boyal 

Regiment of Artillery. 
Volunteers to be taken &om 18 to 35 years of age, and not 
under 5 feet 6 inches in height. 

The militia were at first billetted on the inhabitants ; but this 
measure being considered a great grievance, especially by the 
small householders, a representation was made to government, 
which was favourably received. Accordingly the Earl of 
Lauderdale's house, at the foot of the High Street, which had 
long been untenanted, with the Castle Park in front, was pur* 
chased for the accommodation of the garrison ; while that laige 
tenement in the same street, which goes under the name of 
the New Inn, along with its spacious stables^ was also secured 
for the use of the officers. 

From the vast resources of Russia, no one could prophecy, on 
the commencement of the war, when or how it might terminate. 
But the fall of Sebastopol humbled the pride of the Czar, and he 
was glad to sue for peace. But for this concession, the flags of 
England and France might have been floating on the towers of 
St Petersburg. 

The militia regiments were now disembodied, and on the 18th 
July, 1856, the artilleiy were conveyed to Dunse by the rail- 
way train, and the men, after receiving the thanks of their gallant 

1856.] THB MILITIA. 185 

ji_nj-ij-u- » - i i~rv~ ' I * * ■ I 'T *-*-"^-' ■""■■"■""""""""'""""■"""■■■I «i^«^^^*^^i^^w ■«i«»iimh«« ■» ■■« ^^^.^..^ »» | ti «»«. 


colonel^— who pointed out the necessity, if they would rise in the 
world, of continuing to cultivate ^he habits of punctuality which 
they had been taught in the militia — returned to their homes. 

A dispute now occurred in regard to the quarters of the dis- 
embodied sta£ At a meeting of the Commissioners of Supply 
at Haddington (Tuesday, October 28th, 1856), on the subject of 
a storehouse for the arms and accoutrements of the disembodied 
regiment of artillery militia, made in quotas by the counties of 
Haddington, Berwick, Linlithgow, and Peebles, it was stated 
that the Marquis of Tweeddale, the lord-lieutenant, had selected 
Dunbar for the head-quarters ; but Colonel Hay, having his 
residence at Dunse, refused to concur in the transfer of the arms 
and stores to Dunbar. His lordship, under these circumstances, 
took the opinion of the Solidtor-Gleneral, who considered the 
marquis had only exercised his statutory duty in providing a 
storehouse for the regiment, and that he 'presumed the colonel 
must obey the Sectretary at War — and that he had no doubt of 
the liability of the other counties for the expenses incurred by 
Haddington. The marquis said he had selected one of the most 
suitable buildings for the purpose, which would cost L.800 if 
porcfaased, or taken <m a leeae of sixty years. On the motion of 
Lord Elcho, the proceedings of the lord-lieutenant ,were approved 
oC The head-quarters of the staff were accordingly fixed at 





" On the signals being made for an enemy's fleet being off the 
coast, or that a descent has been effected in the north of England 
or in Scotland, or that positive intelligence is received to that 
effect, the corps of yeomanry and infantry ^^nll instahtly assemble 
at their respective alarm-posts, where each horseman is to be 
provided with a cloak, great-coat, or blanket, and with two days' 
provisions for himself, and two days' com for his horse ) and 
where as many ball cartridges and flints are to be issued to the 
infantiy as each man can carry (60 rounds if possible), and where 
each soldier of infantiy is to be provided with two days' provi- 
sions (to be carried in a havresack or knapsack), and with a 
great-coat dr blanket, to be rolled up and slung ovet bis shcrolder. 
Such of the infantry as have not yet been armed with firelocks or 
pikes, must be provided with pitchforks, or any other weapon 
which can be procured for them. 

" East Lothian Corps of Yeomanry Cavalry. — The first, 
second, and third troops of this corps will, on an alarm, assemble 
at Haddington, and join and act with the brigade stationed at 
that town ; and should the brigade haVe inarched from it, these 
troops wUl follow the column, and endeavour to join it as soon 
as possible. The fourth troop of this corps will assemble at 
Zhinbar, and join and act with the brigade stationed at that 
town ; and should the column haVe marehed &om thence, the 
troop will follow and join it as soon as possible* 

" Dunbar Eboiment of Volunteer iNFANtRY.— *This regi- 
ment will, on an alarm, assemble at Dttnbar, and immediately 
join and act with the brigade at that town. 

* The author is indebted to Hugh Fraeer, Ed^.^ 6addmgton, for this 
doouxnent, as well as for other information. 

KO*A 187 

tills corps will iEmnediately assemble at North Berwick, and join 
and act with any troops that may be stationed at that town. 

'^ ShotQd the enemy land to the eastward of Dunbar, this 
corps will march from North Berwick, and proceed by White - 
kirk and Tyningl^usi Bridge to Dunbar, where the commanding 
officer will inform himself of the march of the brigade from that 
town, and follow l^e dirlsotion of the column, and endeavour to 
join it as speedily as possible. 

^' Should the enemy land at Tyningham Sands, this corps will 
march from North Berwick, and proceed to and occupy the 
strong position of Lawhead. 

"Should the enemy attempt to land at Peffer Sands, this 
corps will march from North Berwick, and proceed to and occupy 
the strong poeition on Whitekirk hJights ; and, if in time, Jl 
oppose the landing of the enemy at the said sands, taking care 
to secure a retreat to the above-mentioned heights. 

" Should the enemy attempt to land at Dirleton Bay, this 
tOTps will march from North Berwick, and proceed to and occupy 
th6 high groUnd and woods to the westward of Archei^eld ; and, 
if in time^ will oppose the landing of the enemy in the above 
bay, taking care to secure a retreat to the heights at Fenton- 

" Should the enemy attempt to land at Gulane or Aberlady 
bays, this corps will march from North Berwick, and proceed to 
end occupy the strong position at Gulane heights ; and, if in 
time, will oppose the landing of the enemy in these bays, taking 
care to secure a retreat to Killduff-hill, and afterwards to the 
fiti^ong position at Garleton-hills. 

" Should the enemy land between Aberlady Bay and Preston- 
paois, this corps will march from North Berwick, and proceed 
along the coast and act upon the left flank of the enemy, taking 
care to secure a retreat to Garleton-hills. 

" Should the enemy land at Musselburgh, or to the westward 
of that town, this corps will march from North Berwick, and 
will proceed along the coast and endeavour to join ihe brigade 
at Musselburgh, under the command of Major-General Sir James 
St Clair Erskine. 

^' On the taking up of any of the foregoing positions, the com- 
manding officer of this corps will seud forward a guide on hon^ 


back {who must be previously secured at North Berwick), to 
M^or-Oeneral Sir James St Clair Erakine or myself, according 
to the line of march the corpH ^lay have moved, and to report 
its situation, and receive further orders. 

'^ In the above movements and operations, this corps will act 
as a light corps ; and when opposing the enemy, will take ex- 
tended order behind hedges and walls, and in ditches or in 
woods, and endeavour as much as possible to conceal its force. 

^' On the march of this corps from North Berwick to any of 
the above-mentioned positions, the corps will kill all the live 
stock which may not be driven from the coast or ^nployed on 
the public service, particularly horses. 

" Habdinotoi) Begiment of Volxtntbkb Infantky. — ^This 
regiment will assemble at Haddington, and join and act with the 
brigade stationed thera Should the brigade have marched from 
thence, the regiment will follow the colunm, and endeavour to 
join it as speedily as possible. 

** Given at West Bams, this 19th day of November, 1803. 

"Geo. Don, M%j-Gen. 

**I%e Hon, LieiU.'Colond Hay Madcemie, commandwg 
the Haddington Regimeni of Volunteer InfanKsry^ 











The 8lk»red tapers' lights are gone, 
Grej moBS has dad the altar stone. 
The holy image is o'erthrown. 

The bell has ceased to toU. 
The long-ribbed aisles are burst and shrunk, 
The holy shrines to ruin sunk, 
Departeid is the pious monk — 

God^s blessing on his soul I-^Bediviva. 



AccoBDiNa to Bede, there was a Saxon monastery of St Baldred 
at Tyningham so early as the sixth centnry. In 635, the 
bishoprick of Lindisfam comprehended the whole of Lothian. 
The Breviary of Aberdeen contains some particulars which have 
not been met with elsewheYe, in which it is stated that " Baldred, 
the suf&agan of St Eentigem, flourished in Lothian in virtue 
and in illustrious miracles. Being eminently devout, he re- 
nounced all worldly pomp ; and following the example of John 
the Divine, resided in solitary places, and betook himself to the 
the islands of the sea. Among these he had recourse to one 
called Bobs, where he led a life, without all question, contempla^ 
tive and strict, in which for many y^rs he held up to remem- 


^' ^%#iM^" W i^^^i*'N^^»^^^i^^K^»w^^#^^^^^^^» >»^i^r^^»^'^^%'^^^^*#^^i»<i^^»'^^^^r^<^'^^^^r^ w^^^^^>^^^^^>^^^^^^W^»<^^^^Wi<»<a <> 

brance the most blessed Eentigem, his instructor, in the constant 
contemplation of the sanctity of his conduct.* 

While residing in this sublime solitude, Baldred died on the 
6th March, 607-8. Held in veneration by the natives, on his 
demise the three neighbouring parishes of Aldham, Tyningham, 
and Preston, laid claim to his remains. It being impossible to 
satisfy the multitude without supernatural agency, the enraged 
embassy were on the point of deciding right by might, when a 
Pictish sage judiciously advised them to spend the night in 
prayer, that the bishop of the diocese might have an opportunity 
of settling their dispute in the morning. " When day dawned," 
says Holinshed, '^ there were found three biers, with three bodies 
decently covered with clothes, so like in all resemblance that no 
man might perceive any difference. Then, by commandment of 
the bishop, and with great joy of the people, the said three bodies 
were carried severally unto the said three several churches, and 
in the same buried in most solemnwise, where they remain until 
this day, in much honour with the common people of the oouii- 
ties near adjoining." Such was the credulity of untutored 
savages, that this event was advanced as an irrefragable proof of 
the doctrine of transubstantiation. Camerarius gravely observes, 
that the dispute was settled by the prayers of the saint himself ; 
while John Major asserts the doctrine to be supported by the 
fact. For a farther account of St Baldred, see the author's 
poem on that subject. 

In the age of miracles we also had three female saints, who 
competed for the distinction of which should build a church 
nearest to the sea, which, however curious, may probably have 
arisen &om the circumstance of three churches on the eastern 
coast having been built in such situations. An old rhyme re< 
garding the erection of these holy fabrics will be music to the 
ear of the poetic antiquary : — 

St Abb, St Helen, and St Bey, 

They a' built kirks which to be nearest to the sea — 

* Dr Jamieson's Hist. Culdees. 


St Abb's upon tbe nabs, 

St Helen's * on the lee ; 

St Ann'Syt upon Dunbar sands. 

Stands nearest to the sea ! X 

In 941 Anlaf, the Dane, spoiled the chnich, and burnt the 
village of Tyningham, which the emdite Chalmers observes^ is a> 
very early notice of the kirktown of this place. 

The first notice we have of the church of Dunbar is in the. 
Tazatio of Lothian, in 1176, where Ecclesia de Dunbar, cum 
capella de Whytingeham, is assessed at 180 merks ; and it was 
the highest in the deaneiy, Haddington being rated at only 120 
merks. The following places, now in Dunbar Presbytery, are 
thus rated in the same tazatio : — 


Ecclesia de Dunbar cum capella de Whitingeham, 180 

de Lintoun (Prestonkirk), - - • 100 

de Haldhamstock, .... 60 

de Tyningham (now merged into Whitekirk), 40 

d^ ATlcibairn (which also now belongs to Whitekirk), 6 
de Innerwyk, ----- 30 

de Hanus, or Petcocks (now merged into Stenton), 10 

The church of Cockbumspath (anciently ColbrandVpath) does 
not appear in the ancient tazatio. As it seems never to have 
been connected with any religious house, it was probably, like 
that of Dunglas, only a diapeL Spott was also a '^ rectoria '* 

* How impressive the ruins of a kirk and a kirkyard in such a solitary 
spot, far from any peopled habitation. Nothing to be seen but a few sheep 
nibbling the grass, and nothing heard but the distant sound of the ocean, 
the hum of me honey-laden bee, or the scream of the sea-fowl. Here 
and there a flat tombstone tells of the long-forgotten inhabitant who 
moulders below. — ^Eecollections on visiting St Helen's Church. 

*h There was also chapel of St Ann at Haddington. 

X St Abb's Head is a forilaxid jutting out into the €kiman oceai^ w«Q 
known to mariners. On the western hiU there is an observatory, useful in 
the preventive service ; and on the eastern, the remains of a monastery - 
and church, which were dedicated to Ebba, a pious abbess, and sister of 
one of the kings of Northumberland, from whom the name of the locality 
is derived. St Helen's lies between Cockbumspath and St Abb's Head, 
and still shows the remains of some building. St Ann's, however, upon 
*' Dimbar sands," must have occupied a different site fro^i the ancient and 
present buildings which stands on a height considerftUy above the beach. 


belongmg to Dnnbar. There was also a chapel at the preben- 
dary of Pmkerton, and at Hetherwick (Ninewar). 

According to the Chronicle of Melrose, Adam, the parson of 
Dunbar, died in 1179.* 

In 12^45, there was a composition between the prior and chap- 
ter of "St Andrews on the one part, and the monks of Hadding- 
ton on the other, in wliich the chapter " Orientali Laudonise ** 
of East Lothian is distinctly stated. The authority of the 
Bishop of St Andrews continued till the bishoprick of Edinburgh 
was estabfished by Charles I., when the power was transferred 
to the latter. By ^iis newierrangement the ministers of Tranent, 
Haddington, and Dmfbai*, were constituted three of the nine 
prebendaries of Edinburgh ; and such continued to be the ecde- 
dlastical state of Haddington till the Beformation placed it under 
the jurisdiction of presbyterian synods. 


In 1318, Patrick, sbtth Earl of Dunbar, founded a monastery 
of Bed or Trinity friars in Dunbar. These friars were also called 
3iatharine8, from a house wliich they had in Paris, dedicated to 
£t Matharine ; also, " De Bedemptione Captivomm," as . their 
t)ffice was partly to redeem Christian slaves from Turkish bond- 
iige. They were first established by St John of Malta and Felix 
de Yalois, the latter of whom was an anchorite at Cerfroid, about 
three miles [from Grandalu. 1^ :a bull of Pope Innocent IH. 
in 1209, it appears they had six monasteries in Scotland. Their 
houses were called hospitals or manistries ; and a third of their 
substance or rents was appropriated for the redemption of slaves^ 
as above mentioned. Their habit was white, with a red and 
blue cross upon their scapular or short cloaLt 

It appears from the researches of Greneral Hutton, who has 
thrown much light on the monastic histoiy of Scotland, that this 
house was suppressed previous to the Beformation. In the in- 

* On the 26th April, 1209, Bandulph, sacerdos de Dunbar, accepted 
the cure of Eccles. — ^Chahnen' Cal. ii. 

t Knoz'i Catalogue, 242. 


ventory of the late* Duke of Queensbeny's papeis is the folloyr- 
mg extract: — ^*'Gift by K. James V., under the Great Seal, to 
the Holy Cross Church at Peebles, of a house in Dunbar, buili ^ 
by Christian Bruce, Countess of Dunbar, and given by her to the 
brethren of the order of the Holy Trinity, formerly at Dunbar, 
then translated to Peebles, dated oth July, 1529." * 

The lands belongmg to the Trinity Mars were acquired by 
Geoige Hume of Eriarsland, ancestor to Hume of Fnrde. f 

This monastery is supposed to have stood in the field called 
the Friar's Croft. Part of the belfry still remains, which is con- 
verted into a pigeon-house, and the ground where it stands haa 
obtained the rural, but lesjs classical, appellation of the Do'cot 
Park. It is mentioned in the town charter as being situated 
near the buigk 

At the back of the buildings of Delisle Street, fronting this 
park, was a pond called the Parson's Pool ; and a little farther 
west, at the foot of the gentle eminence of Enocking-haer, is a 
stripe of ground called the Priest^fauld Baulk. 

A wynd or passage leading to the friary lay betwixt the site 
of the New Inn and the old manse. An old house situated 
at the head of this wynd fronted the High Street, and contained 
a xiiche in the wall, once the sentinel station of the blessed 
virgin. The marks of a gateway may also be distinguished at 
the foot of the minister's garden, on the left of which la the re* 
mains of an alms-house, about the size of a watch-box. This 
was probably either the place styled in ancient charters, ^' the 
Blessed Lady's Wynd," or led to it. Indeed, all the lands 
lying westward firom the church, bounded by the Common, and 
extending as far as the West Port road, were holy ground, and 
are designated '' the Blessed Yirgin's land," '' St John the 
Baptist's land," &c. 

* Letter from General Hutton, to W. H. Bitcbie, Esq., DunUr. Be- 
sides this letter, the author is indebted to the latter gentleman for many 
oth^r valuable papers. 

f Keith's Catalogue. 

194 BIBIOllT Of DUKBA&. 


In 1263 Patrick, seventh Earl of Danbar (the same year in 
which he was severely wounded, while leading on his division 
against the Danes and Norw^ians at Laigs), founded a monas- 
tery for Carmelites, or White Friars at Dunbar. 

These personages were the third order of b^ging £iars, and 
derived their name from Mount Carmel in Syria. They came to 
Scotland during the reign of Alexander IIL, and had nine con- 
vents. They were called White Friars &om the colour of their 
outer garments. 

No vestiges remain to mark where the Caimelites' Maiy stood* 
In 1766, when digging a found for the reservoir, some Soman 
medals were discovered, with the inscription " Judea Captiva." 
It was conjectured at the time that this was the foundation of a 
religious house — ^probably the remains of the Carmelite fiiaiy. 


About 1728, the remains of a religious house, vulgarly called 
** the Maiden Dew," were cleared away to make room for the 
old Bowling Green, which was situated at the head of the High 
Street. Keith does not notice this hospital in his catalogue ; 
but the antiquarian zeal of Ceneral Button has placed ita 
existence beyond doubt. This gentleman, after ransacking the 
British Museimi for information respecting our monastat establish* 
ments, discovered a paper among the Harleian MSS., entitled, 
" An Act anent the College Kirk of Dunbar/' wherein a Maison 
Dieu, or hospital, is distinctly noticed. 

The ground immediately adjoining was purchased from Lord 
Belhaven, and is designated the lands of Maison Dieu in the 
title-deeds. These hospitals were erected either for receiving 
strangers or for maintaining poor peoplt^ 

In 1818, some copper coins were found in the old Bowling 
Green, marked " C. IL, R," and on the reverse a thistle, with 
a Scottish motto, which appear to belong to the time of 
Charles U. 



Collegiate ehurclies were unknown in Scotland till the reign 
of David II. The first establishment of this kind (according to 
Chalmers)^ was founded in Dunbar in 1342, by Patrick, tenth 
Earl of Dunbar and March, who converted the parochial church 
into a collegiate form. It was confirmed by William, bishop of 
St Andrews, and was the first establishment of that kind known 
in Scotland.* 

The constitution .of the collegiate church was vested in a dean, 
an archpriest, and eighteen canons. For their support were 
^signed, together ^th its own revenues, the incomes of the 
•chapels of Whittingham, Spot, Stenton, Penshiel (in Lammer- 
jpioor), and Hetherwick. In addition to these, were annexed 
the chapels of Linton in East Lothian, and Dunse and Ghim- 
aide in Berwickshire, while the founder reserved to himself and 
Ms heirs the patronage of the whole. By a new regulation in 
1492, the chapels of Dtmbar, Pinkerton, t Spot, Belton, PetcoMs, 
Linton, Dunse, and Chimside, were appointed as prebends to the 
eoUegiate church, and, with the exception of Pinkerton, were all 
settled churches. In Bagimont's Boll, these component parts 
were thus assessed : — 


Decanatiis de Dunbar, - 


Beotoria de Dimbar, 

Prebeudarius de Piiikerton, 

Bectoria de Spot, ... 

Bectoria de Beltoun, 

Bectoria de Petcokis, - - • 

Bectoria de Linton, 


Bectoria de Buns, - - - 

Bectoria de Obirxiside, 

* Spotswood says that the college of Bunbar was founded by George Earl 
of March. He succeeded his father in 1369. These colleges.were erected for 
secular priests, and amply endowed with revenues. The chief person was 
called the provost, and the college the provostry. 

f Master John Fleming was prebendary of Pinkerton on the 20th 
March, 1478-9. Pari. Bee. Chabners* Cal.—The chapel stood at the 
fano>towii of Little Pixkk«rtOD. 

L.13 e 




5 6 


5 6 



2 13 







Soon after this arrangement, the chapels of Spot, Stenton, 
and Hetherwick, were converted into parish churches, yet still 
remained dependent as prebends of the college. 

On the forfeiture of the earldom of March, in 1434-£», the 
patronage of the church fell to the crown. During the reign of 
James III. it was enjoyed, with the earldom of Dunbar, by the 
Duke of Albany. It again reverted to the king, on the for- 
feiture of his traitorous brother in 1483, and now belongs to the 
Duke of Bozburgh, as principal heritor of the parish. 

The church of Dunbar ceased to be collegiate at the Eeformar 
tion, in 1560 ; and while its monasteries were levelled with the 
ground, it escaped the ravages of religious zeal and popular fary. 

This church, as before noticed, was anciently the richest in 
the deaneiy of Lothian. With its subordinate chapels, it was 
valued at 180 merks, a greater valuation than any other church 
in Scotland could bear at the same period. At the Eeformationy 
l^e archpiiestry of Dunbar was stated at L.80 ; and the follow- 
ing is a table showing how the stipend was proportioned in 



Dunbar Parsonage, 























1 . 





33 4 5 
16 8 11 




Community Tiends 
bv Soot, 









The surplus number of merks above the 311 would probably 
go for the communion elements. In 1755, the minister's sti- 
pend was L.98, Is lOd; in 1798, it rose to L.223, 4s 9d/and 
has since been considerably augmented. 

A church, partly Gothic and partly Saxon, it may easily be 
conceiyed, was ill adapted for accommodation : and accordingly, 
in 1779, the old church underwent a thorough repair. It was 
ceiled in the roof, new floored, part of the long body cut off by 
a partition, and regularly seated 

This venerable fabric had all the appearance of being the 
workmanship of different ages. It was built in the form of a 
cross, measuring 123 feet in length, while it was only from 20 to 
25 feet broad. The transept or cross aisle measured 83 feet. 

The west end of the church, beyond the transept, was pro- 
bably the ancient chapel of Dunbar. The entry lay through a 
Saxon arch — 

On ponderous Gohimns, short and low. 

Built ere the art was known, 
By pointed aisle and shafted stalk. 
The arcades of an alley^d walk. 

To emulate in stone ; 

while the east end of the church, including the south aisle of the 
transept, was a species of the Norman or Grothic style. 

The case of the old tower, which was 50 feet high, was built 
in the form of a square, with four turrets like watch-towers on 
the top. A slender steeple rose about thirty feet above this 
tower, which was built by John Cochran, town-mason, in 1739, 
and consequently formed no part of the Saxon tower. 

As the interior of churches, as well as of domestic buildings, 
had been much improved within the present centuiy, this edifice 
had long been found inconvenient for a modem audience. Early 
in 1818, plans and estimates were taken in for a new church, 
which was appointed to be built on the site of the old one, and 
the fate of this venerable fabric was thereby sealed. The last 
sermon preached within its walls was on Sunday the 7th March, 


1819^ by the Kev. John Jafi&ay^ present minister of Dunbar, 
then assistant to Dr Carfrae^ to a crowded audience. The te^ 
was in Psahn Ixxxiv. verse 1. 

In taking down the east part of the churchy which is supposed 
to have been the main body of that founded in 1342^ several 
sculptured stones were found, that had been used in building the 
foundation and otherwise, which strengthens the supposition that 
this was only an addition to the old Saxon chtirch of the 
eleventh century. 

Several sepulchres were discovered near the altar, and in the 
body of the church; but they contained nothing but a few 
scattered fragments of their mouldered tenants. 



The foundation stone of the new church was laid on the after- 
noon of Saturday, the 17th April, 1819, by Provost Hume, in 
presence of the magistrates, some of the heritors, and a vast 
assemblage of people. This stone is situated in the north-east 
comer of the building, in the cavity of which a small bottle, 
hermetically sealed, is deposited, containing the coins of the 
realm, and a list of the heritors and magistrates. 

Mr James Gillespie, Edinburgh, was the architect. The work 
was contracted for by Messrs M*Watt & Dickson, of Hadding- 
ton, at L.4990 ; but it cost about L.1000 more before the 
burial-vaults and other additions were completed. One fifth of 
the expense was paid by the town of Dunbar, and the rest by 
the heritors. The church is a handsome building, in the Gothic 
style, built with a red stone, brought from a quarry near Bower- 
houses, and is capable of containing 1800 hearers. From the 
steeple, which is about ninety feet high, five counties may be 

The church was opened on the 20th April, 1821, before ii> 
was quite finished, for the ordination of Mr Jaffray, by the Rev. 
David Logan of Innerwick, who preached and presided upon 
the occasion. The very Rev. Principal Baird introduced the 


minister to his congregation on the Sunday ensuing, and 
preached two hours and a-half to a highly^ielighted and ex- 
cessively crowded audience^ from these words — " Go ye into all 
the world, and preach the gospel ; " after which, the Eev. John 
J'affi*ay addressed his parishioners in a discourse frx>m the text — 
" We preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord." * 


The first object which arrests the stranger's attention on 
entering Dunbar church is a superb monument, immediately 
behind the pulpit, erected to the memory of George Home, 
Earl of Dunbar, third son of Alexander Home of Manderston. 
This nobleman was in great favour with James YI., and suc- 
eessively held the offices of high-treasurer of Scotland, and chan- 
cellor of the exchequer in England; and, while in the latter 
capacity, he was created a peer of his native land. It was on 
bim that " the British Solomon " chiefly depended for the re- 
storation of prelacy in Scotland ; and, at the parliament held at 
Perth, in 1606, he had the skill to carry through the act for the 
restoration of the estate of bishops. He was on several occa- 
sions high-commissioner to the General Assembly, wherein acts 
were passed unacceptable to the presbyterians ; t and, as a 
matter of course, drew down the rancour of that party. His 
death took place suddenly at Whitehall, on the 29th January, 
1611, when he was about to solemnize his daughter's marriage 

* The ndw church was opened on this occasion by the Key. Principal 
Baird, and the good nature of the parishioners forms a striking contrast 
to the tumult raised on the ordination of Mr Pyott in 1733. ^fter Princi- 
pal Baird had ended his introductory discourse, an old lady declared, " that 
she put on her kail-pat when she left home ; that her bit meat would be 
boiled to tavers; but," added she, ** it made nae odds, if he kept her lang, 
sbe did'nt weary ; and if the meat would not eat, it would sup I 

The church was completed, and opened for pubEc worship on the 16th 
of September following. Mr Dods of Belford pleached in the forenoon, 
and Mr JaSc&y in the afternoon from these words — *' This is the house of 
God ; this is tibe gate of heaven." 

+ Bribery, as well as artifice, was practised on the members of this 
assembly, which obtained the name of the angelical assembly, in allusion 
to the names of the coins distributed on the occasion. Sir James Baifour 

c 2 


with Lord Walden in a magmficent maimer. A writer in the 
" Biographia Scoticana, or Scots Worthies," imputes this circum- 
stance to ihe judgment of heaven, while Sir John Scott, in hia 
political epitome of slander, ascribes it to some poisoned sugar- 
tablets, which were given him by Secretary Cecil, for expelling 
the cold.* . . , • 

" His body," isays Crawfurd, " being embalmed, and put into 
a coffin of lead, was sent down to Scotland, and with great 
solemnity interred in the collegiate church of Dunbar, where his 
executors erected a very noble and magnificent monument of 
various coloured marble, with a. statue as large as life." 

The monument is twelve feet broad at the base, and twenty- 
six feet in height. Above the pedestal, Lord Dunbar is re- 
presented, kneeling on a cushion, in the attitude of prayer, with. 
a Bible open before hinu He is clad in armour, which is seen 
under his knight's robes, and on his 1^ arm is the badge of the 
order of the garter — ^head uncovered. Two knights in armour 
stand on each side as supporters. The figure on the right bears 
a shield, emblazoned with three parrots, and at his feet are a 
sword, halbert, helmet, and mace ; while the figure on the left 
has a shield with a white lion rampant, on a green field, and at 
his right foot a lion's head and battle-axe, and on the left a 

Bays, the Earl of Dunbar distributed among tiie ministers *' 40,000 merka 
to facilitate the matter and obtain their suffi*ages." Nothing, it was said, 
was to be seen about Glasgow, for some time after the assembly, but 
angels. A travelling pauper, named James Reid, who had been there in 
the course of his profession, having heard what a country minister got for 
his vote, railed on him as a fool for selling his Master for two angels, 
when he (the pauper) had got three for nothing. — ^M*Crie'8 Life of An(&ew 

* Be this as it may, the Earl of Dunbar, like the generality of courtiers, 
was well versed in Machiavellism. Andrew Melville, the celebrated 
scholar, seems to have been duped by him. When a prisoner in the Tower 
for non-conformity, he says, in a letter to his nephew — " Through the kind 
offices of Sempill, I now enjoy more healthful air, though still confined in 
the Tower. I am put in hopes that I shall have greater liberty within a 
month or two, on the return of sine quo nihil ; (Earl of D.) You know 
whom I mean. Your friend, forsooth, who did not even deign to salute 
you lately. Sure you admire the prudence and caution of the hero.'' 


gaunilet. Immediately beneath the arch of the niche, the fol- 
lowing inscription is cut on a tablet of black marble: — 



Above the knights in armour are two female figures^ The 
one represents Justice, and the other represents Wisdom in the 
person of Minerva with her owl. Betwixt these figures, andT 
immediately above the cupola. Fame, in the form of a cherub, 
sounds her trumpet ; while on the opposite side, Peace, with her 
olive wand, sheds a laurel wreath on his lordship. 

Above the last figures, in the centre of the pediment, the 
arms of Home are quartered, viz. a lion rampant on a green 
field in the first and fourth quarters (Home) ; in the second 
quarter three parrots (as representative of the family of Pepdie 
of Dunglas) ; and in the third quarter three green escutcheons, 
in a silver field (as representative of Hay of Broxmouth). The 
shield is adorned with a helmet, and is supported by two lions 
sefant, with a tree at their backs, and for crest a horse*s head 
and neck. 

In a vault immediately beneath the monument, the body is 
deposited in a leaden coffin, which had been sadly mutilated by 
barbarous visitors.* 

" The sculpture of this monument," Mr R. Chambers ob- 
serves, " is unequalled in Scotland ; and we compliment the in- 
habitants of the place on the possession of so beautiful and rare 
a work of art. 

There are only other four monuments of the kind in Scotland, 
that of Lord Scoon in the aisle at the palace of Scoon; Sir 

* The monument was repaired in 1820,' by Mr St George, for which 
the Duke of Koxburghe contributed L.IOO. 

George Brace's at Culross ; Archbishop Shaipe's at St An- 
drewB I and the Duke of Queensbeny s at Dnrisdeer. The first 
and second are of the same age with Lord Dunbar's, but neither 
of them is so el^ant, while the second is decidedly inferior ; the 
third is in poorer taste, having been reared in a time when the 
art was not so highly cultivated; and as for the Duke of 
Queensberr]r> with his Bamillies wig and rolled stockings, it is 
not to be mentioned in comparison with the monument in the 


In the beginning of the seventeenth century there was as great 
a struggle between ' episcopacy and presbyterianism in Scotland 
as their had been formerly betwixt the latter and popery, and 
Which led to fields of blood " in either Charles's reign." With a 
view of gradually introducing prelacy, it was proposed that 
'* constant moderators" should be admitted to the General 
Assembly; tn other words, that bishops should be moderators 
of provincial assemblies, and that the moderators of presbyteries 
should be constant members of the General Assembly. This led 
to a deal of cavaling in the church; and while some obeyed 
willingly, others yielded through dread. In the month of March, 
1607, several presbyteries Were charged, under the pain of 
homing, to admit coTtstani moderators. The commissioners from 
the secret council to the Synod of Lothian were — Walter Lord 
Blantjrre, Sir Thomas Hamilton of Monkland, and John Preston 
of Pennycuik. The Presbyteries of Peebles, Haddington, and 
Dalkeith, delayed accepting ; but Edinburgh, Dunbar, and Lin- 
lithgow, were persuaded to satkfy the kiiig's commiasioiiers. 

Every art was used to assimilate the Scotican church as nearly 
as possible to that of En^and. Mr John Home of Dunbar, Mi 
C^ige Grier of St Martin's, Haddington, and four other minis-^ 
ters, were summoned to appear before the high commission at 
Edinburgh, on the 26th January, for not preaching On holidays, 
and of not administering the communion (kneeling) agreeable to 
the form prescribed by the Perth Assembly. Few others at* 


^^j^^f^V> /|ft(^S*|i^>ftr*><*> r^*^nrvT i " M *>r ii ~ iii ~i~ nr~ini~ ii ~ i rM~i'^ < — i nn~ i r i~i — ^ ^"i i ~w~i < ^r* i r i r i r ii '^ '^ nr"^"^nr* ii ^t* i r ii * i[ *Y^* i '* i i' ' ' i ' ^r* ! " * i ^"'~r- i ''' i ~r^ 

tended except the Bishops of St Andrews, Glasgow, and the 
Isles. The various ways in which the conscientious presby- 
teiians were now persecuted by the lordly prelates, at the in- 
etance of the Biitiah Solomon, who was a pope in eveiything but 
the name, were truly lidieulous. The introduction of the Mve 
Articles was carried by a small majority, several of whom voted 
byproxy^ which wa« considered a new mode of procedure in 
Scotland. Sir Bobert Hepburn and the Laird of Preston were 
commissioners for the county of Haddington ; Mr James Cock- 
bum, for the burgh of Haddington ; Qeoige Purves, for Dunbar ; 
«nd Geoi^ Bailie, for North Berwick. 

The grounds of the Five Articles, to which so much impor- 
tance was attached, were — ^that communicants should celebrate 
the Lord's Supper on their knees ; that, in the event of sickness, 
the pastor might administer the sacrament in the invalid's house; 
that children should be baptised the first Lord's day after their 
birth — and, if possible, openly in the church ; that children of 
eight years of age should be catechised by the priest, and pre- 
sented to the bishop for his blessing ; that the festival days com- 
memorative of the nativity and sufferings of Christ should be 
observed. This was followed by a proclamation against holding 
conventicles, or meeting privately for the purposes of preaching 
and exhortation ; a measure which afterwards paved the way for 
the downfall of the house of Stuart. 

George Home, Earl of Dunbar, who had been the chief instru- 
ment employed in enforcing the new discipline of the presby- 
teriaii church, died at Whitehall, on the last day of January, 
1611. The death of the Earl of Dunbar did not heal the 
wounds Q^ the diurch; but James, from the plausible du- 
plicity of his conduct, succeeded in quieting the peopla 
Charles, urged by his own bigotted and inflexible character, went 
a degree of despotism beyond his father, while the mercenary 
«nd unprincipled ministers of Charles II. hurried the drop-scene 
of the drama of persecution, from the ashes of which religious 
toleration arose with healing in its wings. 

204 'history of dttnbar. 

It is unnecessary to recapitulate the measures pursued bytftee 
two Charles's, which have been already amply detailed. 

The following are the names of the ministers in East Lothian 
who were nonconformists to prelacy in 1633, and who were 
either banished, confined, or turned out of their parishes : — 

Presbytery of Haddington — Mr Robert Ker of Haddington, 
John Macghie of Dirleton, and Thomas Kirkaldy of Tranent. 
Presbytery of Dunbar — ^Mr John Baird of Innerwick. Presby- 
tery of Dalkeith — ^Mr John Sinclair of Ormiston. 

Mr David Calderwood, the eminent historian of the church, 
and who was aftierwards minister of Pencaitland, was, along with 
others, imprisoned and banished for opposing the religious and 
dogmatical opinions of James VI. 

In reforming abuses, it seems to be the fate of mankind to 
rush from one extreme to another — ^from a state of callous in- 
difference to one of punctilious severity. The penances and 
absolutions of the Romish church were scarcely more absurd 
and antichristian than the rigour and cruelty with which a devia^ 
tion firom the path of virtue was now visited on those unfortu- 
nate wretches who incurred the displeasure of our native church. 
Idolatry and licentious conduct incurred the penalty of banish- 
ment, the pillory, or burning on the cheek.* We shall merely 
notice one or two cases. In 1691, Alexander Marshall did 
penance on the pillar of repentance in Prestonpans church, for 
fornication ; and Marion Scott was imprisoned in the steeple- 
head till she made confession of the same crime. Persons con- 
victed were compelled to fall on their knees before God, and con- 
fess their sins to the kirk session ! A man of the name of Seton 
did penance one year and one day, arrayed in sackcloth, at the 
church door of Prestonkirk, on the going in and out of the 
people attending the service. When the present church was 
erected in 1770, some waggish mason built the robes of sack- 
cloth, with which the foolish delinquents were wont to be iri- 
^vested, into the steeple. It was probably the same irrevenuit 

♦ Bulk of the Kirk of Canagait-1564. 


.vandal whom Mr Baron Hepburn accuses of haying broken a 
supposed statue of St Baldred, which lay in the churchyard, in 
pieces, which he intended to have placed in the chiurch wall for 
preservation. We make these remarks in akin to what we have 
to say in regard to the penetiancy system of Dunbar. The ses- 
sion register of I)unbar contains the following entries : — 

- July 27, 1712. — Tkaa day ihe minister (Eev. T. Wood), had been ordain- 
ing elders, when they were " exhorted to walk exampelary in their good 
beha-viour before the people, and to be carefull to delete scandalous persons 
ox suck a0 break the Sabbath-day. Morover he read to them a minute left 
be his predecessors, mentioning how dreadful a disaster had fallen upon the 
people of this place for breaking the Lord's day, ordains the same to be 
i^egarat. Qch is as foUoweth : — 

** Mr -SimpBoa, minister of Dalkeith, son to Mr Andrew Simpson, minis^ 
ter at Dunbar, in his exposition of the XXXII. Psalm, hath these words — 
A fearfuU judgement of God fell furth at Dunbar, about the year of God 
1577, qrof 1 waa an eyewitness. My fother, Mr Andrew Simpson, of good 
memory, beine^ minister thereof, qho, going to the church, saw a thousand 
boats setting Sieir nets on the Sabbath-day. He wept and feared that God 
would not suffer such contempt. It being a most calm day as ever was 
qeen at that season ; — at midnight, when they went forth to draw their 
nets, the wind arose so fearfully, that it drowned eight score and ten boats, 
0o that there was reckoned in the coast-side fourteen score of widows." 

"Sunday, 3rd April, 1659. — Margaret Home, rebuked for her fall in 
fornication, anno 1651, with John Bahill, trooper in General CromweU's 
r-egiment, and paid penalties L.3 Scots." 

" August 7, 1709. — It is enacted this day, for the better observing the 
Xjord^a day, that two elders, with ane officer, go through the town after 
sermon in the afternoon, and reprove such as they find going or paracdng 
either in the streets, shore, or castle, or any who sitt at their doors inter- 
taining idle discourses, and reprove such ; and to bring in a list of those 
who will not refraine." 

"August 29, 1710. — ^The elders, whose dutie it is to search the town, 
found severall persons in Janet Hunter's, drinking a glass of twopeney beer 
and smoaking, the tyme of divine service. The persons were cited before 
the session, and confessed they were humbly sorrie for such a heinaiss 
breach sf the Lord's day ; but they declared they wauld drink no more two- 
penny beer, or smoak tobacco again on Sundays, so they were absolved.'* 

" 29th March, 1710. — ^A proclamation for a fast to be keept on Wed- 
nesday, that the Lord might prosper our armys against the blody French- 
men, was read." 

" Nov. 1710. — ^Two hundred and sixty pounds Scots was collected at 
the church-door of Dunbar, for erecting schools in the Highlands and 
Islands of Scotland." 

• 1765, Feb. 12. To erecting a new stool of repentence, L.l 4 

Aug. 3. Altering ditto, - - - - 3 lOj ^ 


179S, Mardi 24.— The Bomm pnrchMed 100 boHa of otAmetH, at 15s 
per bon, for the relief of the poor. It was dealt oat at 9d per peck. 

The churcli did not rest satisfied with refoiming the domestic 
morals of the people, bnt tmned its attention to their popnlar 
amusements, some of which, howerer absurd, were at least 

Among the first religions spectades exhibited were rejniesenta- 
tions of dumb show, with short speeches interming|ledy repre- 
senting the most interesting scenes in the life of our SaTioor. 
These representations, from the nature of the subject, acquired 
the name of MygterieSy in which all^orical personages, such as 
Sin and Death, were introduced By degrees dramatic pieces 
were formed from such personifications, and these were entitled 
Moral Plays or Moralities, In the course of time humorous 
subjects were introduced ; and hence the distinctions of tragedy 
and comedy arose. In the beginning of the sixteenth century, 
these performances became so popular and common that the 
church complained of them as a nuisance. In the houses of the 
nobility the chaplain was conmionly the author of these holy 
plays, from which they got the appellation of GlerJ^s *Plays, and 
the meniaLs of the family or retainers, were the performers. The 
taste for clerk's plays prevailed to a considerable extent in the 
burghs, particularly at Haddington. In the last sermon which 
Qeorge Wishart preached in that church, in 1544, he inveighs 
violently against the people for their love of these amusements, 
which it appears from his observation were attended by thousands 
of persons, while the reformer could not obtain a hundred auditors. 

The Albot of Unreason J who was also styled the Lord of Mi^ 
rtiUy presided over Christmas gambols with dictatorial authorily, 
and with an address or epilogue closed those scenes of festivity. 
He sometimes assumed a farcical character in the interlude, and 
in the garb of a dignified clergyman, entertained the rabble with 
his ceremonies. Our present guimrds or masks, during the daft 
days (who still have their Judas); are the only remains of these 


■^1^l*ri*T*Tt^T-l— l-rT*l~— ^■'— » I 'f I ' . >nr-.i-iri>-ir rii r ii r .ri.T-ii - i, - ii, I, iji.i,j u - u- i .nj_ .- i.r -i J W - uv rvT->i-y>»l . i _H i -m jijlii ..w^a ,, . 

The Duke^of York (James' VIL), as if he had sought by the 
gaiety of novel sports to make the people forget the real grievances 
of hia administration, was the first that introduced a regular 
company of comedians into Scotland. It was about the same 
time that he introduced the iniquitous Test Act, which might be 
a good reason for the presbyterians long looking with no com- 
placent eye upon the stage. But after the clergy had railed 
against the stage upwards of a century and a half, it was a mat- 
ter of no small mortification to them to behold a play written by 
one of their own order, acted in presence of several of their num- 
ber, and received with universal applause. This was the tragedy 
of Douglas, written by Mr John Home, minister of Athelstane- 

We must pass from these subjects, having merely stated the 
conflicting opinions in regard to religion and morality at this' 

It is not the province of this work to enter into any minute 
details of the various schisms which have &om time to time 
agitated our national church ; for 

" Who shall decide when doctors disagree ? " 

But we" shall, as briefly as possible, notice the denominations 
which have sprung from them. About the year 1732, Ebenezer 
Erskine and a few ministers, having openly decried patronage 
and other acts of the Qeneral Assembly, came imder the censure 
of that body, and were expelled from the Scottish kirk. The 
expulsion of these individuals laid the foimdation of the Seces- 
sion Church, which now extends over the greater part of Scot- 
land, and of which, latterly, the celebrated Eev. Alexander 
Hetcher, in London, took the lead. 

At Dimbar, the Burghers^ or Secession Church (connected 
with the Associate Synod), was established in 1766. Their first 
minister was the Eev. John Henderson, who died in 1816, and 
was succeeded by the Eev. Alexander Jack. The minister's 
stipend was originally LJO, including L.10 for communion ele- 

20B filSTOET OF m7NBAfi< 

ij < - i . i»M» ■■ M » ■ ■ • ■ ' M ' » ' i I I » i " i * i " ■ 'r ' ' ' ' ' I • II I 1 ^" I' Y'T *tT^^r*-*T~rr^ n" r ■ • - - i - ■ -■ ■■*-— ~^y "-1">- 

ments, with a free house and garden. The present meeting- 
hoose^ which accommodates 700 hearers, was built in 1814. 

The Anti-Burghers erected a meeting-hoase at East Bams ia 
1763. The Bev. Eobert Cunningham of Balgonie, in Fife, was 
the first minister of this infant establishment. Upon his demise, 
the Bev. Andrew Bayne was chosen to the Tacant charge, and 
in 1820 the place of worship was transferred to Dunbar, a new 
meeting-house having been built for the acccHnmodation of the 
congregation. Mr Bayne continued to discharge his clerical 
duties until prevented by indisposition, when, in 1828, the BeTl 
John Scott was ordained his assistant and successor. 

Dr James Hamilton, a physician, whom we formerly had oc- 
casion to mention, and Mr Andrew Affleck, tenant in Chester- 
field, formed a connection here with the Wesleyan Methodists in 
1752, and a chapel was built in 1764. The Bev. William T^H« 
was their first stationary preax^her. This is the oldest congr^a- 
tionofthekindinSc<Ind; and here John Wesley, on hif^t 
to Scotland, pour*d forth, like another Spurgeon, his pulpit 
thunders. In consequence of the popidarity of some of th6 
preachers, it was found necessary to enlarge the edifice, which 
now contains 300 sittings, at the cost (including the additional 
ground) of L.283. 

The exerticms of the British and Foreign !^ble Society, whidi 
had early in the present century contributed towards printing 
editions of the Hble, or psurt of it, into no less than twenty-siz 
different dialects or languages, seventeen of which w&te spoken 
on the continent of Europe, led to the f(»mation of a similar 
society in Edinburgh. Stimulated with the same fervour, the 
Dunbar Misdonary and Tract Sodely was instituted in Dec^n- 
ber, 1812, and a Sabbath-School Society was formed in 1819 ; 
but it was about fcoty years earlier that Sunday schools were 
established in the place. 

The next object that engaged the attention of the religions 
world was the church-extension scheme in Scotland. In fur- 
therance of these views, the East Lothian Society for Churdi 


Extension was established in 183^7, which, led to the erection of 
St John's Church at Haddington, and the quoad sclera church at 
Belhaven, for Dunbar, in 1839. This church was opened for 
public worship in 1840. The Rct. William Sorley (now of the 
Fre^ Churchy Selkirk) was its first nunister. He was succeeded 
in 1844 bj the Eev, James Dodds (now of the Free Church, 
Dunbar). The building cost L.1&90, and has sittings for 6^0 
hearers. , 

We now come to a new epoch of the church, unparalleled 
since the days of Ealph Erskine. In 1785, the law of church 
patronage was apparently agitated for the first time in the 
hurghs. This spirit, although it passed away for a time, was 
not allowed to sliunber, and for a long period the General 
Assembly was divided by two parties, of which the right of 
patronage formed the grand touchstone. This feeling com- 
municating itself to the laity, a body sprung up, under the title 
of Ncm-Intrusionists, with a view to msuntain what they con- 
sidered the rights of the church, independent of the control of 
the civil power. These sentiments becoming extremely popular, 
ultimately led to a violent disruption of the church, when about 
250 parishes were vacated by their, ministers, under the foUow- 
ijQg circumstances. On the 18th May, 1843, the General As- 
sembly of the Church oi Scotland haviag met as usual in St 
Andrew's Church, Edinburgh, before making up its roll, David 
Welsh, D.D., the old moderator, read a protest, signed by 120 
ministers and 72 elders, against the constitution of the Assembly, 
ixi consequence of the rejection by the Legislature of the claim of 
right adopted by the previous General Assembly. A copy of 
the protest beiug then delivered to the clerk, the protesters left 
the church, and with their adherents proceeded to Tanfield, 
Canonmills, where they formed themselves into " the General 
Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland," and choose Thomas 
Chalmers, D.D., as their moderator. 

The church at Belhaven was occupied by the Free Church 
congregation of Dunbar till 1850, when the present church was 


opened on the 1st of December, by the Kev. Dr Duff of CaJ-* 
cutta. The edifice (from a design by Thomas Hamilton^ 
architect, Edinburgh) cost about L.1660, including about L.20O 
for the site (the old Bowling Green), purchased from the Earl 
of Lauderdale. It contains sittings for upwards of 600 — the 
seats yr«e to members of the congregation. The Eev. James 
Dodds (formerly of Humbie, under the old regime) is now the 


Owing to the influx of Irish into the county, a chapel con-* 
nected with the diocese of Edinburgh has been opened at 
Haddington. Their present pastor is the Rev. Mr Prentergast, 
who occasionally preaches at Dunbar. 


The Baptists opened a meeting-house in Dunbar, under the 
name of the " Ebenezer Chapel," in 1842, of which Mr McLean 
was pastor, and Mr Porter, Innerwick, his coadjutor. 


This church was originally built as a ^pioad mcra church, and 
occupied by the Free Church till 1850, when it was shut up, in 
consequence of the decision of the House of Lords, that it be- 
came the property of the EstabKshed Church. Under the 
auspices of the Mission Committee of the Church of Scotland, it 
was re-opened on Sunday, August 22nd, 1858, by the Rev, 
William H. Gray, of Lady Tester's Church, Edinburgh* 


' ?.tV 

• rv. 


'^. ."'* :-i'I'i*^ 

• . ! . 


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:s ;,' ' o(/Mj..i:oT-. 

V Mi. . 


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i' ' < '• " w' I ■ ' 

, , . , -, 1 . . 1 

t^: *^ijn*'.''»xw#i*- JiaMiiax. ttV^Viut^ic^iF 



I see nothing now 
That midds me of old times, except the stones 
In the chmvhyard. 



Saving spcJsen of the church, we must now notice that " boiirtie 
from which no traveller returns." A public footpath lay through 
Dunbar churchyard, which led to the road to Spott, thus con- 
verting the resting-place of the dead into a common thorough- 
fare, the denizens little dreaming that here the disciples of Burke 
«ind Hare pursued a lucrative trade. 

It was not till about 1819 that the people became aware that 
such a practice existed as violating the mansions of the dead, 
which, in the neighbourhood of the great medical school of 
Edinburgh, had been carried on to a considerable extent. The 
merit of this discovery was left to the police-officer of East 
Linton, and some of the inhabitants of the village (in conse- 
-quence of some private information they obtained from some 
rival body-stealers), when some resurrection men were detected 
at Prestonkirk in lifting the body of a young woman who had 
been recently interred. After this discovery, watch-houses were 
built, and mort-safe societies and associations for the protection 
of the dead formed throughout the county of East Lothian, and 
such unhallowed thoroughfares stopped. 

We have often thought of taking a ramble through the church- 
yards of Haddingtonshire, for the purpose of making a selection 
of remarkable epitaphs, similar to the plan of Monteith's 
" Theatre of Mortality," which was published at Edinburgh in 


1712. ^uch a selection woiild excite a smile, as well as draw a 
tear. We have already noticed the splendid monument erected 
to the memory of the Earl of Dunbar in the church. We shall 
now notice that of Professor Stevenson, of which the following 
is a translation from the Latin inscription, by Monteith :-^ 


'' To the sacred dust, here reposed, of his most famous and most dear 
father, Mr Andbew Stbvenson ; first, for thirty years, a most famous pro- 
fessor of philology and philosophy in the college of Edinburgh ; thereafter, 
for the space of twenty-five years, most faithful minister at the church of 
^Sunbar (to whom the short dawning of a natural life began to appear, or 
he was bom, October 29th, 1588, and the noonday of eternal life began to 
shine, or who died, December 13th, 1664). Mr Archibald Stevenson, 
doctor of medicine, of the defunct's eight children (whereof Mr Thomas, 
James, and Jonet, rest here at their father's feet), only surviving with hi» 
sister Agnes, drenched in tears, have dedicate and consecrate tins homely 

" Here Mr Stevenson Ues, of high renown, ^ 

To learning a great ornament and crown ; 

Full five-and-fifty years he was in charge. 

And wisely did all offices discharge ; 

In youth, the school difficulties he broke. 

And, in his fresh old age, himself betook 

To divine eloquence ; which did extol 

His reputation, and enrich his soul. 

Who seeks a crown of life, let this man be, 
f'or his good life, a pattern unto thee." 

The tablet was placed in the wall, on the right of the door 
leading into a roofed aisle, on the south-east side of the old 
collegiate church, which, in taking down the wall, was splintered 
by some ignorant vandal. 


" The bright example of his generous mind. 
Whose godlike impulse was to serve mankind." 


" In memory of Thomas Edward Kitchie, historian and banrackmaster, 
Belhaven. Obit 1810." 

Ritchie was a man of considerable literary talents, but of ex- 
cessive vanity. He 'acted as amanuensis for a few years to 
James, eighth Earl of Lauderdale, who was distinguished for his 
theoretical writings, but was dismissed in consequence of his 

TttB chxjbchyard; 213 

petulance. His principal production was the " Life of David 
Hume," the historian, which was published in 1807. As a 
proof of his vanity, while engaged on this work the windows of 
his apartments appeared as iUnminated ; and in regard to his 
dress, he wore the Windsor uniform, a blue coat, with red 

Eitchie translated a deistical volume from the [French, entitled 
** Ecce Homo," for which he was munificently rewarded — ^pub- 
lished in London by a licentious bookseller. Like David Hume, 
he did not die what some considered a philosopher's death, but 
by a most deplorable accident. During tiiie reign of Greorge IIL, 
•on the 4th of June, it was customary in Dunbar to drink some 
glasses of wine on the High Street, to the king's health, and all 
the rest of the royal family, and in the evening a party of the 
loyal burgesses met in Lorimer's Inn (now the St George) for 
the same purpose. Bitchie was one of the company, and, ac- 
. cording to my father's account, who was present (merely to 
show his countenance to the house, as he was no wine-bibber), 
he was shocked at Bitchie's immoral expressions. I am not 
aware that Eitchie was an intemperate man in regard to drink- 
ing, but he retamed to his lodgings very tipsy. He then 
x)ccupied the apaitments of a house at the foot of the Hi^ 
Btreet, three stories high, the ground flat of which is now thie 
Inspector's office. Finding himself skk, he pulled up the win- 
dow for the purpose of vomiting, and lo^g his balance, fell to 
the street. His groans attracted the notice of the inhabitants. 
He lingered for a few days, and then closed his deistical caj'eer. 


** Sacred to the memory of Lieut. Sydenham Wtlbb, R.N". ; WiluaM 
LxKJAS, chief boatman of the Co^ist Guard Servioe ; Peveb Dabo, David 
. DABa^ William Milleb, and William Clements, seamen, who lost their 
lives on the 20th August, 1845, in bravely and devotedly, but. alas ! unsuc- 
* «esftfully, endeavouring to rescue a wrecked fisherman from a rock at the 
•entrance of the harbour. This tablet was erected by the commimity of 
Dunbar and vicinity.** 


^t^i^^^^ ^ m^^0^^^t^^^i^t^t^t^^^^^t^^f^^^^^^t^^»^^^>^^t^^^^^^^^^^^^i^^^0»A i>C^0M 



CoLUifBA Dunbar, a descendant of the Earls of Moray, wa£P 
dean of the church of Dunbar in 1411. He is designated, 
Decanns ecclesise oollegiatae de Dunbar, penultimo Februarii 
1411, when he was promoted to the see of Moray. 

He was bishop of that place in 1429 ; and in 1433 a safe- 
conduct was granted him by the King of England, to pass- 
through his dominions on his way to Eome, with thirty servants 
in his retinue ; and again, on the 10th May, 1434, he was per- 
mitted to return, when on his way to attend the council of BasiL 
Columbia died, in his castle of Spynie, in 1435, and was buried 
in the isle of St Thomas the Martyr (Becket). 

John Mandbrston was canon of the college church of Dais- 
bar in 1S67, and was one of those appointed by the Archbishop 
of St Andrew's to attend the court on a divorce sued for by 
Lady Jean Gordon against the Earl of Bothwell, whilst Queen 
Mary was detained at Dunbar. 

In 1566, the queen presented George Home, son to George 
Home, the laird of Broxmouth, to be parson of Finkerton. Ih 
1569, he was translated to be rector of Dunbar, which he after- 
wards resigned in favour of Jasper Home of Lawfield. 

Andrew Simpson appears to have been the first minister of 
Dunbar after the Keformation. He was originally master of 
the school of Perth, where be taught Latin with mucb' 
success. He had sometimeslunder his charge 300 boys, many 
pf them sons of the principal nobility. He left Perth at the 
Beformation in 1560, and became minister of Punning and 


Cargill, from which he was translated^ in 1564, to Dunbar, 
wliere he sostained the double office of master of the grammar- 
school and minister of the parish, which was not an uncommon 
circumstance at that period. He was the author of Latin 
Kadiments, which were taught in the schools till the time of 
Buddiman, and were much esteemed by that excellent scholar* 
It does not appear that this venerable person understood the 
Greek language ; but he was careful that his son Patrick should 
not labour imder the same defect. He was sent to the Uni« 
versity of Cambridge, where he made great proficiency, and after 
his return to Scotland, taught Greek at Spott, near Dunbar.*^ 
The conversion of Mr Simspon to the reformed faith is ascribed 
to the influ^ce of Sir David Lindsay's poems, in alienating the 
pupils and their master from popery.t 

In 1570, Mr Simpson wIbub called to attend the Bev. John 
Kello, minister of Spott, in hk sickness, "who was shortly after 
convicted and executed for the uimatural murder of his wife. 
This unhappy person having related a remarkable dream he had 
had to Mr Simpson, the latter had no hesitation in applying to 
him the language of Nathan unto David — Thou art the man! 
This struck so deep into the culprit's heart, that he made in- 
stant confession ; and when on the scaffold, he ascribed the dis- 
closure of this horrible deed to the soul-pierdng discernment of 
this pious priest, in these memorable words — ^**Ther was not 
small support in the mouth of some faythfull brethren, to bring 
mo to this confessione of my awin offence. Bot, above all, Mr 
Andro Symsone, minister of Dumbar, did so lyvlie lype foorth 

* Andrew Simpson had five sons, who, like their father, distinguished 
themselves in asserting the rights of the presbyterian church against the 
lordly encroachments of prelacy. In 1564, when ther^ was an express 
charge given by the king to the dergy, either to acknowledge Adamson as 
Archbii^op of St Andrews, or loss their benefices, Patrick Simpson opposed 
the order with all his power, although the archbishop was his unde by the 
mother^s side, fie was one of the forty-two ministers who signed a protest 
,9^fuiist ^e proceedings of the parliament at Perth, and with his own hands 
delivered ft to the Earl of Dunbar. — See "Biographia Scoticana," 

t M'Crie'a Life of Knox. . . ' . " 

E 2 


the inward cogitationes of my hert, and discover my mynd ao 
planelie^ that I persuaded myself God spaik in him ; and besydis 
Ttheris notable coniecturies which he trulie dedvced befoir my 
eyes, he remembrit me of ane dreame^ which in my grit seikness 
did appearandlie present the self .... at this tyme did God 
move my hart to acknowledge the horror of my awin offence, and 
how far Sathan had obteinit victorie ower me." * 

Mr Simpson's prophetic intelligence was no less remarkable 
than his skill in oneirology. In 1577, when tiie filling boats 
were wrecked off Dunbar, he prognostieated that dreadful 

Alexander Home of Houndwood succeeded Mr Simpscm, on 
the 13th September, 1582, and held the situation till 21st May, 
1601. He died in December, 1623, and appears to have been a 
half brother of Sir G^eoIge Home of Broxmouth. 

On his demission, Mi James Home was appointed to the 

* Bannatyne*s Trans. Scot. — "Mt John Kello was libelled in the indict- 
ment as " committeer of the murfchour of ymqle Mazgrot Thomeeonne, hitt 
gpous ; committit be him within his awin lugeing in the toun of Spot for the 
tyme, be strangling of hir with ane towale, vpoun the rxiiij day of Septem- 
ber last bypast, befoir noyne. 

" Sbntence. — For the quhilk he was adjugeit be dome pronimceit, to be 
hangit to the deid, and thairef tir his body to be cassin in ane fyre and brint 
in assis ; and his gudis and geir quhatsumeuir (pertening to our soueraH 
lord) to be confiscate &c." — Pitcaim's Crim. Trials. 

The above circumstance is alluded to by Nicol Bume, the Popish pro- 
fessor of St Andrews, in his " Admonition to the Antichristian Ministers in 
the Deformit Kirk of Scotland " ^hich was published at Paxis in 1581), 
in his '^ Disputation with Certain Ministers of the Keformed Kirk of Scot- 

" Symson of Dumbar, quhat sail I say of thee ? 
I know thow waittis Lieutenentis place to have ; 
I grant thy wisdom soleid for to be, 
As Kellochis dreame bearis witnes ouer the lave. 
8a may thow baldlie ane hear place cum crave, 
War not thou seis full ill the band to leid : 
The less experience hes thow thy flock to save : 
Kilt up thy Connie, to Geneve haist with speid.** 

Kello*s Dying Speech and confession is printed in Bannatyne*8 Journal* 
' Bartilmo, his son, and Barbara and Bessie KeUo, his daughterSi got a gilt 
of his escheat. — Beg-: S^. ^. 

t See extracts from the Session Records. . 

I • 


vacant chaige, and vrsia styled minister of Dunbar, while the, 
former retained the designation of parson of Dunbar.'' He 
does not appear to have enjoyed this situation long, for Mr 
Manbbbson was admitted in 1604, and was suoceeded by Mr 
WiLUAM Maxwell in 1635. 

Mr Andsew Stevknsoit appears to have succeeded the latter 
incumbent. On the authority of his epitaph, which is printed. 
in Monteith's Theatre of Mortality, he was for thirty years ^' a 
most famous professor of philology and philosophy in the college 
of Edinburgh, and thereafter, for the space of twentty-fiye years, 
most faithful minister at the church of Dunbar." 

The Rev. Andrew Wood, son to the Rev. David Wood, by 
Miss Guthrie, uster to John Guthrie of Guthrie, was minister, 
first of Spott, and then of Dunbar in 1665 ; and was created 
Bishop of the Isles in 1678» He received a dispensation from, 
the king to hold the benefice of Dunbar together with the said 
bishoprick. He was translated to the see of Caithness in 1680, 
where he continued till the revolution in 1688. He died at 
Dunbar in 1695, aged 76 years. 

Mr Thomas Wood succeeded the Bishop of the Isles in 1681. 

Mr James OsAia was admitted in 1718. He was succeeded 
by Mr Geobge Logan in 1722, who was afterwards translated 
to Edinburgh. 

Mr Alexander Pyott was admitted in 1733. The ordina- 
tion of this gentleman was very unpopular, and the opposition 
of the congregation was carried with so much virulence, that, on 
the minister and elders proceeding to the church, they found the 
people assembled, the doors locked, and themselves excluded. 
I^ the purpose of gaining admittan<;, the session-house window 
had to be broken open, and as the minister passed along, one of 
the congregation arose and exclaimed — ""Verily, verily, I say 
unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, 
but cHmbeth up some other way, the same is as a thief and 
« robber." Gait introduces a similar anecdote into his Annals 

* M'Ciie's Life of Andrew Melville. 

218 msTOBT or dukbas. 

of the Panfih. It was on tliis reverend gentleman that the. 
satirical Memoirs of Mago^Hca were written, by Dr Halybnrton, 
cfai4>lain to the Boyal Begiment of Foot, in consequence of some 
dispute about a soldier's marriage. 

Mr Geobqe Bbuge was admitted in 1766, and died in 1794. 
He drew up the aooount of Dunbar pansh for Sir John Sinclair's 
Statistical Aooount of Scotland. 

In the ensuing year, the Bev. Fatbiok Cabfbai, D.D., vas 
admitted as his successor, being translated from Motham, Pj^ea- 
byteij of Haddington. The doctor possessed in an eminent 
degree all the qualifications requisite to form an accomplialied. 
orator. He died, at his retirement of Bowerhouses,.on the 5th 
March, 1822, having previously, on the 4th October, 1820, re- 
signed his benefice ia favour of his assistant, the Eev. Johk 
Jaffbay, the present minister, who was ordained 20th April, 

The Presbytery of Dunbar, in the Synod of Lothian and 
Tweeddale, comprehends tiie follo'wing parishes, all situated in 
East Lothian, except Ckx;kbumspath and part of Oldhamstooios,. 
which are in Berwickshire : — 


Dunbar^ . 

Spott, . 
Stenton, . 
Whitekirk 4Uid 

lungham, . 



The Xhike of Boxbtizghe.. 
Lady M. C. N. Hanulton. 
James W. Hunter of Thurston. 
C. D. Ferguson of Hailes. 
James Sprott of Spott. 
Lady M. C. N. Hamilton.' 

Crown and ^he Earl of Haddinftpn. 
Arthur James Balfour of VVhittingham. 
The Crown. 


** We were a while tdid that they had an old translation of the Scrip* 
tures ; and told it till it would appear obstinacy to inquire again. Yet by 
continued accumolation of questions, we found that the tramslation wa« 
nothing else than the Izish Bible." — Dr S. JoHKsoir's TouB« 

A library, belonging to the Presbytery of Dunbar, was kept 
in the old grammer-school, consisting of some hundreds of 


iFolnmes^ ddefly in Latin, and on theological subjects. To this 
Mibraiy, in 1708, the Rev. James Eirkwood, minister of Astwick, 
in Bedfordshire, bequeathed a number of letters and papers, 
detailing his efforts, in conjunction mth the Hon. Bob^ Boyle 
(the celebrated chemist and philosopher), in disseminating the 
Sciiptares in the Irish character throughout the Highlands of 
Scotland. Five hundred copies of the Irish Bibk, by William 
BeddeU, Bishop of Kilmore, were printed in 4to at London, in 
16185, at the expense of Mr Boyle. This excellent person pre- 
sented Mr Eirkwood with 200 copies, one copy of which was 
sent as a churdh-bible to each parish in the Highlands, that it 
might be read to the people in their own language on the Sun- 
days. Mr Kirkwood afterwards printed 8000 copies of the same 
Bible by private 8ub»^ption^ in the Boman character, and 1000 
copies of the New Testament separately, for gratuitous distribu- 
tion. This edition was printed in small 12mo, by R Evering- 
ham, London, in 1690. Mr Boyle, for the same purpose, printed 
6000 catechisms and Prayer Books at his own expense. A 
library was also established for the clergy in the Highlands by 
Mr Eirkwood, in 1699, a catalogue of which is preserved in his 
MS. papers. 

Great events frequently spring from simple causes, and the 
efforts of a few philanthropic individuals have laid the founda- 
tion of those societies, which are now established for the propaga- 
tionof knowledge in every shape, and in ample abundance. A- 
few years after Mr Eirkwood had passed his probationary trials; 
at Haddington, he was called to preach in the Earl of Breadal- 
bane's family'in the Highlands, most of the servants of which 
did Jiot understand Gaelic. It was when h^*e that he beheld 
the ignorance of the natives. He found the parishes without 
schools, the people without Bibles, and the clergy with indifferent 
libraries, and immediately set about the remedy. Fortunately^ 
he was invited to a small living in England by Bishop Burnet, 
in 1684, and was thence promoted to the rectory of Astwick, 
where he formed an acquaintance with the honourable gentleman, 


before mentioned, who was well fitted to ^id bim in his benero-- 
lent projects.* Bat notwithstanding this happy Mendship, he 
met with the osoal discouragements that ^^ flesh is heir to/' from: 
the carelessness of Mends and the malice of enemies. Amongst, 
other objections to the plan, it was mooted that it wonld obstruct 
the extirpation of the Highland language, which the partisans of 
govemm^it devoutly expected to take place in the coarse of 
thirty years ; but the Gradtie language sdli exists, and will exiat, 
without any danger to the state. This opposition, howeyer, is a 
reason assigned by Mr Kirkwood for bequeathing his papers to* 
the care of a pubHc body, that the detail of his ^Eorts. mi^bt be; 
preserved, and the whispers of calumny, if necessary, refiited. 
He had been indebted to the schools of Dunbar for his educa*< 
tion, and both there and in that neighbourhood he had many 
friends and relations. This circumstance mduced him, at an. 
earlier period, to bestow several books and MSS., with " some 
other tlungs," on the library. In short, Mr Kirkwood was one 
of the virtuous obscure— one of those talented individuals who 
set the secret springs in motion, which afterwards move the 
weightier machinery of higher men, that they may reap the 
honour and the reward. 


Mr Andrew Simpson, as formerly noticed, held the office of 
minister-schoolmaster in 1564; There seems to have been a 
substantial reason for pluralities at this time ; for Mr James 
Carmichael, n^ho held the same office at Haddington in 1572, 
was only allowed L.40 Scots yearly as stipend, atid ten merks 
to pay his " chahner maill," with xiid. quarterly from " ilk toun. 
bairn *' as school-fee ; so that Goldsmith's countiy curate, wi^- 
his L.40 sterling, held a lucrative office when contrasted with 
the presbyterian clergy of this period. 

* Dr G3bert Burnet, Bishop of SaUsbuiy, was origmally minister of 
Salton, in East Lothian. On publishing his History of the Befonnation, 
he also was indebted to tiie moiuficence of Mr Boyle in bringing that work 


After an interval of thirty years, we find a notice of Anbbew 
DiSHiNOTOK, schoolmaster of Dunbar, in the Records of the 
Presbytery of Haddington. " The act of the last synodall 
assembly, giving the presbyterie commission to try Andro 
Dischingtoun, schoolmaster of Dunbar, not only in his hability 
to travell in the ministry, but also to teache ane grammar- 
43choole ; being presentit to the presbyterie, the brethren ordainit 
him to cum heir yis day aucht dayes, and for banning of his 
tryall to teache ane piece of the first book of the Gkorgyckes of 
Virgill, at the beginning yrof, to try quhither he be able to 
teache ane grammer-schoole or not." — Sept. 4, 1594. " It was 
ordainit be the presbyterie, that the haill schoolmn wtin yair 
bounds sould be chargit to compeir befoir thame, that thay 
myt not only knaw how yai wer abil to instruct the yowt, bot 
also charge thame to keip the exerdse, that yai myt be the better 
j&equented with the heids of religioun.'* — June 2, 1596. 

Alisxanbeb Home, the grammarian, appears to have been 
master of the grammar-school of Dunbar in 1615. He was 
principal master of the High School of Edinburgh from 1596 to 
1606, when he removed to Prestonpans. He left the latter 
place in 1615, and appears as schoolmaster of Dunbar, in witness 
to a deed, June 24, 1623, and to another in November 1627. 
He published a Latin Eudiments and Grammar, which it ap- 
pears were in much repute, for, in 1614, it was ordained by the 
Town Coimcil of Edinburgh that the Dunbar Eudiments "be 
onlie teached, as maist approved and ressavit in the cuntrie." 
This grammar was likewise appointed to be used in all schools, 
both by the Privy Council and Parliament. Home also revised 
** Belkma Grammaticale," a humorous tragi-comedy, in which 
the different parts of speech are arrayed in opposite sides, in a 
' contest concerning the respective claims of the noun and verb 
to priority. He left behind him, in manuscript, a compendium 
of Buchanan's History (in Kbl. Jurid. Edin.), and a gram< 
matical tract.* 

* Life of Andrew Melville. 


The following extracta from '^School Begolatious," adopted 
by the burgh in 1679^ give a view of the discipline and usages 
then in force : — 

^' Whatever public damage ye scliollars doe, dther to glass -windows 
(especially about the church or schoole), or by brakeing ye dasks, locks, or 
any thing in the schoole, they are to make up the same ; and if the particu- 
Iflur persone cannot be found out, then are they aJl to contribute for ye 
damage done, and if hee be afterwards knowen, then to reoeive double 

" Whomsomever shall, through contempt, tume fagitives, it shall be 
lawfull for the masters to cause hoile them to schoole, and punish them as 
he shall judge convenient. 

"All those that refuse to submitt to discipline, but maliciously rebell 
against their masters, ye masters, with the greatest severitie, are to make 
them ane example to the rest ; and if the stubbome parties be too strong, 
then to call for help from ye magistrate. 

** If children may be wone by words or threatenings, it is expected that 
ye masters will make usd of prudence in their actions, and to 6pare ye rod 
as long as it may consist with ye good of ye children ; but if neitiier fair 
words nor threats will gaine them, then shall ye masters show, both by 
their words and countenance, ane aversatione to passione, and a dislyke to 
ye actione, with suitable expressions to that purpose, in which humor they 
may correct ; soe yt they may be as angrie as they will when they intend 
not to correct, but not to be passionat when they correct, meer necessity 
(being for the weelf air of the children) compelling them to it ; but not for 
every trifle to stupifle them with streaks. 

** That the masters assume nothing to themselves that may render them 
obnoxious to ye clamour of ye vulgar, as they are to instruct and correct, 
according to our order and command ; soe by ye same authority they are 
to give ye accustomed liberty to their scholars, that ye children be not 
used as edaves, but as freebome. And that their labour may be sweetned 
unto them, upon every Tuesday and Thursday, the dayes being fair, they 
shall be suffered to play at the place appoynted for that end, frc^m halfe- 
three till four aftemoone ; after which tyme they aie to retume to schoole, 
where they are to remaine tiU sex ; these dayes, being unfitt for recreation^, 
itt may be delayed untiU the fir^ fair seasone, with every Saturday's after- 
noone ; together with the accustomed festival dayes, observeing the ancient 
rites of their oblations (to testifie their thankfulnes) to their masters j att 
and after which tymes, the shoUars may, with a kyndly homelines,. mediat 
for the play by the moubh of their victor j as ii£9oe at the entry o! a new 


sohollar ^ eatnets&y intreated), they may have it for all night. The lyke 
may be granted to any of the mastera, supexiorBi or for a complement to 
BtrangerSy or when any necessare occacdone requyre itt, that thereby the 
masters show their clemency to their schollars, and gain them by such de- 
monstrations of their affectione towards them ; but the masters sluJl nowise 
give them whole dayes play, without they be permitted or commanded by 
tbeir saperiors. 

" It hath been one ordinaiy customey that three or lonre dayee in the 
summer qua^^, the children had libertde to goe and cutt downe bent, or 
rushes, for the schoole ; but accompanied with this inconvenience, that often 
tymes they fall a wrestleing with hooks in their hands, that sometymes they 
-wrong themselves, other tymes their neighbours ; soe that, to prevent this 
evill, and the schoUars to have their former liberty, every schollar shall 
bring at least twelve pennies Soots, and give to ye master, and that upon 
the first Monday of May, the lyke to be done upon ye first Mondays of 
June and July, which is commonly called ye Bent-silver-play ; with which 
money ye masters are to buy bent, or other things needful! for the 

Mr Jam£s E1BKWOOP9 who is mentioned by Eoddiman as 
author of several elementaiy books in the Latin language, ap- 
pears to have been a native of this parish. He was author of a 
grammar entitled^ " Grammatica Despauteriana, cum nova novi 
generis glossa," and '^ Bhetoricse Compendium ; cui subjicitus 
de Analysi Tractatiuncula/' wherein he styles himself '^ Jacobo 
Kirkwodo DumbarensL" He was schoohnaster of Linlithgow in 
1689, where, after having filled the office fifteen years, he 
quarrelled with the magistrates, whom he styles " bigoty presby- 
terians," and refusing to attend their meeting-house, which, in 
opposition to the public place of worship, was kept in the pro- 
vost's hall or kitchen, after a long and expensive plea with the 
town, he found it expedient to remove with his family to Edin- 
burgh, where he taught a private school with great success, and 
was much patronised by the nobility and gentry. A vacancy 
having occurred in the grammar*school of Kelso, he was invited 
by the Countess of Boxburghe to that situation, which he ac- 
cepted, " chiefly," as he observes, " because he was bom under 

£hat family, and his relations were feuars or tenants to her lady- 

F 2 


^p in the neighbourhood of Dunbar." At the time that he 
accepted this charge, he refiised a Greek and Latin professorship 
in a college about to be erected at Virginia. Mr Eirkwood was 
scarcely settled in Eelso when he had a dispute with the minister 
regarding the offices of session-clerk and precentor, which had 
been withheld from him, and led to a great deal of angiy vitu- 
peration on both sides. On this occasion he published his 
defence in a large pamphlet, dedicated to his patroness, entitled, 
^' Mr Eirkwood's Plea with the Kirk Session and Presbytery of 
Kelso " — printed at London in 1698.* 

There were two public seminaries in Dunbar-— a gnunmar and 
English school conjoined, and a mathematical one — ^the masters 
of which were appointed by the magistrates. The old Engliah 
and grammar schools were situated immediately behind the 
town-house ; but in 1824 new schools were erected in a more 
healthy and airy situation, close by the sea-side. The seminaries 
are now merged into one establishment. Mr William Diok is 
the present rector of the Burgh Schools. 


Dunbar had no parochial school till 1790, when it was estab« 
lished at West Bams, for the purpose of aocommodatuig that 
populous district of the parish, which is ably conducted by the 
Bev. Qeorge Johnston. The new school-house, which is erected 
on an airy situation, was built in 1848, at the expense of the 
heritors of the parisL 

There is a school at East Bams, with a small salary, being 
the interest of L.100 sterling, mortified for that purpose by Mr 
William Hume, late farmer in that village. This school was 
made parochial in 1835^ The new school-house was built in 
1849, which bears the following significant motto— '' Disoe vel 
Discede." Mr Alexander U. Sutter is the present teacher. 

* Mr Kirkwood had also passed his probationaiy trials at Haddiqgfon 
as a preacher, and appears to have been a rdation of the Bev. James £brk* 
wood, i^dth whom he was contemporary. 




Delightful taek to rear the tender mind. 
And teach the young idea how to shoot. 


This useful seminaiy was instituted in April, 1823, under the 
control of a committee of management of thirteen persons. The 
ground on which the building was erected cost L.60, and the 
edifice about L.350. The system of education pursued in the 
seminary is reading, writing, arithmetic, and Hble geography. 
The small fee of one penny per week is required from each, thus 
placing the means of education within the reach of the ragged 
urchin, as well as the pampered boy who figures in the High^ 
land garb. The utterly destitute are educated gratis. The 
average attendance of scholars is 110. 

The establishment is vested under the surveillance of the 
following trustees: — ^W. C. Drysdale, Esq., London; C. L. 
Sawers, Esq., Dunbar; John Kelly, Esq., banker; John Kirk- 
wood, Esq., Dunbar; and W. Kobertson, Esq., Glasgow. 

At a meeting held on 6th October, 1858, the directors t^ 
knowledged the ^receipt of contributions to the amount of 
L.216 4s, besides L.100 received from the trustees of the Fer- 
guson Bequest,* which has enabled them to enlarge the salary 
of their teacher (Mr Mo&t), as well as to place the school cm an 
efficient footing. 

We are glad to notice the following distinguished persons at 
the head of the subscription list: — His Grace the Duke of 
Boxburghe; the Earls of Haddington and Lauderdale ; Lord 
and Lady Elcho; Lady Blanche Balfour of Whittingham; Lady 
Maiy 0. N. Hamilton of Beil and Dirieton ; Sir John War- 
render, Bart. ; Sir T. B. Hepburn, Bart. ; Major-General Sir H. 
R Ferguson Davie, Bart., M.P.; Mrs Hay of Beltori; W. M. 
Innes Esq. of Aytoun Castle, &c. 

The success of the institution has been much indebted to the 
trustees, and to the zeal of George Bayne, Esq., the treasurer. 

♦ This bequest was granted for the furtherance of such benevolent 
institutions, by Mr Ferguson of Caimbrock, near Irvine. 


In oonnection witih Uie CSiariftyfSdiool, a aeadaarj fat ^ds, 
for instmction in sewing and knitting, under Uie managcnient of 
Miss Beaton, has also been adopted, idiich nomben about 3D 
pnpik. A committee oC ladies^ oonsisting of seven, manage 
d^artmeot. The latter sdiool was established in 1832. 


This aeminaiy is attached to the Free Choreii, and ivai 
lished in 1845. The site of the school and building coat 
Ii.200, which was defrayed by the Deaocm's Ooort of the Free 
Chnich, aided by a grant from Qorenmieni. The number of 
scholars average from 80 to 110. The schod has twojpoinl- 
teachers, and the head-teacher, Mr Jackson, hidds a cotificate 
from Qovemment, frt>m wlumi each of them reome a salaiy for 
their services. The fees are from 2s. 6d. to 5s for the common 
branches ; indnding dassics or mathematics, 7& 6d per quarter. 


Hector Ford of Branxton, in 1678, mortified, in the hands of 
the town of Edinburgh, 1200 merks Scote, for the education and 
maintenance of six bnrsais at the University of Edinbor^ His 
own relations, and the somame of Ford, to be preferred, and 
affcerwaids any yonng men bom in the parishes or educated at 
the schools of Dnnbar or Innerwick, whom the ministers of these 
places may appoint 

Thomas Bryson^ merchant and bailie in Dnnbar, in 1702, 
mortified, in the hands of the Fresbyteiy of Dnnbar, 4500 marks 
Scots, for two bursars, to be applied solely to young men bom 
in Dunbar paruah or educated at the town schools, after those of 
his own name and kindred. 

William Hume, tenant in East Bams, in 1784, mortified L.400 
sterling, in the hands of the Presbytery of Dunbar, for the main- 
tenance of two bursars, as aforesaid, at Edinburgh, or any other 
college in the kingdom. 









Commerce brought into the public walk 
The busy merciuuit ; the big warehouse built ; 
Bais'd the strong crane ; choak'd up the loaded street 
With foreign plenty. 



The town of Drmbar is sitnated at the month of the Frith of 
P'orth^ in the county of East Lothian^ and sheriffdom of Had- 
dington, twenty-eight miles east from Edinburgh; in latitude 
nearly 56^ north, and longitude 2^ 30^ west from Greenwich. 
The parish, which takes its name from the town, is rather more 
than eight miles long, and in some places three miles broad. It 
is separated from Innerwick parish by Drybum-water on the 
south. It is bounded by the Frith of Forth and Tynningham 
parish on the north ; by the German Ocean on the east ; and by 
the parishes of Spott, Stenton, and Prestonkirk, on the west. 
The town at one time owned a considerable portion of land, 
called Dunbar Outer Common, about five miles from the town, 
surrounded by the parishes of Innerwick, Whittingham, and 

^BO msTQBT or duhbab. 

Btenton. It is Bzfcnated on tlie akurts of Lammennoor^ «nd i& 
four miles long, and in some places three, and in general two 
and a-half miles broad. The matches were perambulated yearly 
by the magistrates and council, which occasioned a scene of 
much merriment to the li^es. it was sold in 1857, to the 
estate of Beil, for L.900. 

Fanned by the undulating breezes of the Forth^ the situatioa 
of Dunbar in summer is healthy and pleasant ; in winter, when 
the north-eastern blast, wrought up into the ilickering mazes of 
the storm, desolates its rocky shores, it is chill and gloomy. 
The face of the country rises gradually from the sea, interspersed 
with green hill and gentle dale, till it is lost in the Lammer* 
moors. Its shores are rugged and picturesque ; the most strike 
ing objects seen at a little distance being the Bass and the Isle 
of May, while many a little Isolated rock, situated immediately 
upon the beach, such as the Pin-cod, Delves, &c., appear once to 
have formed a junction with the mainland. Eastward, at the 
extremity of this rocky and lofty coast, the eye reposes on the 
blue promontory of St Abb's Head, where the Princess Ebba 
once had her solitary house of prayer ; southward we behold 
the pastoral Lammermoors and the high grounds of Whitting- 
ham ; and, in the west, Traprene Law, the Garleton Hills, and 
North Berwick Law, close a beautiful amphitheatre ; while ber 
yond it are seen the shadowy outlines of the Pentland hillsj^the 
shores of Fife, and the mountains of Angus. 

A little eastward from Dunbar, immediately on the beach, we 
ineet with a considerable extent of low rocky ledges, generally of 
the red sandstone formation, dipping so gently in some places in 
their angle of inclination, as to appear almost horizontal Farther 
on, however, they assume a more vertical shape, till at length 
the strata shoot up into almost perpendicular peaks, afber which 
they are lost, and succeeded by what Professor Jameson calls " a 
bed of prophyritic basaltic greenstone," which runs a consider- 
able way into the sea. Beyond this, the red sandstone ceases to 
be visible, but beds of limestone now begin to make their ap- 


piBarance in the greyish-white fiandstone to which the fonner has 
given place.* 

The isle or rock upon which Dnnbaar Battery is built^ is situated 
between the harbour and castle^ and consists of Basaltic columns, 
or a stratum of stone, resembling the Giant's Causeway in Ire- 
land. Mr Pennant describes it as consisting of " red grit stone, 
either triangular or hexangular ; their diameter from one to two 
feet ; their length at low water thirty, dipping or declining a 
little to the south. They are jointed, but not so regularly or so 
plainly as those which form the Giant's Causeway. The surface 
ef several that had been torn off appears as a pavement of num- 
bers of convex ends,~probably answering to the concave bottoms 
of other joints incumbent on them. The space between thQ 
columns are filled with the septa of red and white sparry matter, 
the veins "of the same pervading the columns transversely." This 
range of cohimns faces the north, with a point to the east, and 
extends in front above two hundred yards. The other parts of 
the rock degenerate into shapeless masses, regularly divided by 
thick septa. 

Limestone being the prevailing rock in the eastern district of 
t!he parish, it is quarried at the Clamber Hill, Skateraw shore. 
East Bams, and Oxwellmains. Near the Clamber Hill there are 
some small seams of coal ; and adjoining to the harbour of that 
place therb are some veiy curious specimens of limestone. There 
are di^w-kHns for burning lime-shells at East Bams, the Cat- 
craig, and Oxwellmains. When in operation it is supposed they 
produce 400 bolls daily.t 

The. soil is rich and fertile, and the harvests, in general, early. 
It produces plentiful crops of wheat, and lets so high as &om 

* For an account of the geological stnicture, and other highly interest^ 
Ing peculiarities and natural appearonces of this part of the coast and neigh- 
hood, the reader is referred to " Popular Philosophy ; or, the Book of 
Nature Laid Open upon Christian Principles," a work written and pub« 
Ijshed by the late Mr George Miller, Dunbar. 

; t LiBieetone abounds everywhere in the county. In 1663, Charles II. 
granted a charter to John Cant> confirming to him several lands in Inner- 
wick, with to privilege of burouig limestone. - 


L.3, lOs. to L.5 per Scots acre. The borgh-acres^ in the imme- 
diate vicinity of the town, bring from L.6 to L.7. The fields 
are mostly enclosed with stone walls or thorn hedges. The 
lands are diy, of a rich loam^^ and partly of a light monld. Sea- 
ware is much nsed as a manure on the eastern coast, land by 
some it is reckoned equivalent to an equal quantity of dung. 
Guano has been introduced into* the county to a large extent, 
which wiU be more particularly noticed afterwards. 

The only eminences worthy of notice in the parish are the 
Brunt Hill, above Spott, and part of Doonhill, from the latter 
of which there is a beautifdl panoramic view of Dunbar and its 

The Tyne is the only stream of any consequence in the neigh- 
bourhood. It rises in the parish of Crichton, in Mid-Lothian, 
and after winding its sluggish way through many a verdant 
mead, makes a leap, or rapid fall, at the village of Linton, over 
some broken rocks, and empties itself into the Frith of Forth, a 
little below l^ynningham. This river produces trout through its 
whole extent ; and below Linton, and at its mouth, salmon are 
taken. The tide ebbs and flows about two miles ; and the sea 
has encroached upon several acres of land adjacent to West 
Bams, which, it is supposed, a little Dutch skill or industiy 
might have preserved. An attempt was made a good many 
years ago, by the late Mrs Fall, to repel these encroachments, 
which did not succeed. Some years later, Mr David France 
made a similar attempt below Bosebank, which, from the art 
and perseverance displayed, seemed to promise success ; but on 
the occasion of some veiy high tides, the waves made several 
tremendous breaches in the dike or wall, and completely gorged 
up the forthcoming soil. This gentleman, however, at a great 
expense, at last succeeded, and beat Canute, by making the ap- 
proaching waves recede. 

The small rivulet of Beil, after winding by Whitingham and 
Belton^ falls into the sea at Belhaven, while Spott-water runs 
into the sea at Broxmouth, and Drybum-water washes the 



fJI^<JI,A H St S /<*» 

southern, bouudary of the parish. On the stormy evening of 
the 3rd (^ Aogust^ 1829, the g^itle streamlet of Bell came 
roaring and boiling down, and laid thQ one half of West Bams 
nnder water. 

The following ia a list of the ploughgates of land in Dttnbar 
parish, with the names of the proprietors in 1830 ;--^ 





Mrs H. Nisbet of BeQ, 






, Miss Hunter, 


North Belton, 

ttobert Hay, Esq. of Belton, 



Mrs Nisbet, 



lieat.-Gren. George Hardyman^ 



John Allan, Esq., 



Captam Hay, E.K* 

1 3-lOths. 

South Bolton, 


8 l-6th. 

\Vest Barns, 

J. Hume and C. Middlemass, Esqs 

1. 3 2-5th8. 

West ^ms Mainsv 

John Thomson, Esq., 



Sir George VVarrender, Bart. 

4 ll-24thg. 



2 13-24UUI. 











Jhjke of Bozbuighe, 





Broxmouth, . 



Little Pinkerton> 






Meikle Puikerton> 



East Barns, 

Bobert Hay, Esq. of LawfieM, 



William Sandilands, Esq., 



Captain Bichard Anderson, B.N., 



Earl of Lauderdalef 



Heirs of Mr T. MitcheU, 



Town of Dunbar, 



Christopher Middlemass, Esq., 




The valued rent of the parish at this time was only L. 16,826, 

G 2 



17s dd Scots ; but the Iftnd rental was supposed to be at least 
L.21,000 sterling. 

It has been customary in East Lothian, since 1627, annually 
to fix, by public authority, the fiars or average prices of each 
species <^ com sold and purchased in the county. The fiars are 
struck by the shen^T in the month of March, and by these the 
ministers' stipends are regulated, and other rates payable in 
grain apportioned. 

PiABS— CEOPS 1855-56. 

By the Imperial Quarter. | 








L.4 4 11 

L.2 13 

Wheat, , . < 


8 18 8i 
3 11 lOi 

2 2 10^ 



1 18 



2 5 li 

2 6 4i 

Bablet, . . i 


2 2 3 

2 1 4* 



1 18 lOi 

1 17 3| 



1 15 2 

1 12 10 

Oats, . . < 


1 12 74 

1 7 IJ 



1 10 

1 4 2J 

There was a weekly market at Dunbar, held on Thursday, at 
which the grain was sold by sample. This market was andentlj 
held on Friday, It is now held on Tuesday. A commodious 
Com Exchange was built, at an expense of about L.510, and 
opened on the 15th October, 1855. The revenue for the year 
ending 15th October, 1856, was L.70, 10s Id; 1857, L76, 
13s 2d; 1858, L.77, 6s Id. 


There are two fairs annually at Dunbar, at the terms of Whit- 
sunday and Martinmas (old style), which were conducted some- 
what in the manner of the ancient fairs, where the people were 
wont to be suppUed with luxuries and useful commodities, and 
the children with toys ; but these are fast going to decay. There 



JB also a market for )ann% txtm 8ervanta><>D these occasioiis, and 

a traffic ia carried on in the buying and sellii^ of milcli cows. 
In the olden time there was a fair on the 8th September, called 
latter Lady-day, in harvest, and one on the 11th November, with 
the privilege of contiuTimg each fair during the apace of &e two 
market days immediately following. 


In 1755, the population of the pariah amounted to 3381. By 
an accurate survey in 1792, the inhabitants were 3700, beii^ an 
incarease of 419 ; in 1811, they amounted to 3982 j in 1817, 
they were 4499; and by a census taken in 1821, agreeably to 
an act, 1 Qeo. IV., entitled, " An Act for taking an acconnt of 
the population of Great ^tmn, and of the increase or diminu- 
tion thereof," the number of inhabitants was 5272. This re- 
markable increase may partly be accounted for from the esta- 
blishment t£ a cotton manufactory at Beihaven, which coutiuned 
a population of 550 people in 1818 ; and partly from the return 
of soldiers and sailors at the end of the war. The following is 
an abstract of the return given in to the county, for the parishes 
in Dunbar Presbytery, in 1821 : — 


Dunbar, . 

Spot*. - . 
PreBtoakirk, . 
Whitckirk, . 

Stentoo, . 





Subjcnned k an enumeration of the vaiioiis ages contained in 
the preceding abstract : — 

• • • 

1-^ 09 

10 0» A W 1^ Ol »«k lOk 



O 0> 09M <0 CPO* 

l-rf 09 

00 1^ A ^ 00 A *> 09 


•^-»l 03 JO •— j-LOL*^ 

oo I:? ifr ^ ^ i^ ^ ^ 
to 00 % .g o> o» mS to 


•-• 00 oorfk6a o»4- 

O M "<l 00 00 H' ow 

10 09 to to CO M« »«k 0» 

M i-rf o o ^ o to Oft 





SP ^ ^ S o gr JP O 



» o. 


o» Kik. ^ ^ o« a» 00 o» 

en •a 00 OS to O »^ Hri 



00 Or Oi h9 1^ Ov 00 00 

H' <*■ M 

Oi o © 



to o H' ifw ^ o» a» 00 


l-i CO 

^ o\ ^ to tp" a tt^ Qi 



tuc o> fa fo tt^ '<! >^ 


09 09 09 oe to »i^ to to 

Oi <o« O SoOOOd 4- 


tO •- 00 jl^ H-i bO — » 

Oi s^ 0» 

o © o 


OD»two> 4^a» Qoooa» 


*<ra» 03 CO o) 1-^ en C9« 



CO «*- 00 

o © o 

o o O O i-i © ^ M 



09 00 4^ 00 09 4k to i»^ 


As an extraordinary instance of longevity^ Magnus Eeid of 
Dunbar, when about eighty years of age, commenced travelling- 
chapman,. and followed this profession till within eight weeks of 


his deaths which happened in 1786| at the advanced age of 
114 years. 

Eleanor^ Countess of Lauderdale, died at Thirlstane Castle, 
on the 16th September, 1856, aged 94. 

Alison Bartram, belongmg to Chrichness, parish of Innerwick, 
died at the age of 100. 

The following calculations taken from existing data, in the 
records of mortality, by Mr James Watson, in a survey prepara* 
tory to publishing a plan of the churchyard of Dunbar, will serve 
to show the average length of human life in that parish. In 
order to ascertain the medium number of years that the persons 
lived whose ages are on the grave-stones, Mr Watson collected 
207 of these together, and divided them into six classes, as 
under: — . 

Class. Yean. Ye'^irs. MonthB. 

1. from 15 to 30 years 27 lived 613, average 22 8 

2. — 31 to 46 — 40 — 1607 — 37 8 

3. - — 45 to 60 — 49 — 2668 — 62 4 

4. — 60 to 76 — 60 — 4009 — 66 9 
6. — 76 to 90 — 31 — 2396 -. 77 3 

207 11,193 
6. ^ 90 to 105 ^ 6 — 686 

213 11,778 

By this table it appears that the medium number of years the 
above 207 persons enjoyed life, from the ages of 15 to 90, was 
naarly 53 years 10 months each. 




~~' i ~ ' I 'nr 1 * 1 * ■ *" *'* * ™ " ~ ~T *~"-~^""~'*'"l"T~r~T-if>« T II — ■ - ii~rrvtir-V»rw'W~ri)r»«w^TrinM»r»r'>rir>»rTirii->i'>r>r»'r»~»rTrMi »WTiir ii " iT*»r^riii> 




Number of 









Athelstaneford, .. 











North Berwick,.. 


Pencaitland, ....^ 







WMttingham, . . . 

















































Note It appears from the census, that within the royalty of the 

burgh of Haddington, and the royalty of the parUamentaiy boundary, 
there was an increase of 134 in the population. 



.^<i»*»%« ^ % >i w %» v <i>0>»M^< y » >i ^ ^ i^ imit'mmtuKmarm^ ^tfv ^«>«^n/v*^w»<»ww*» j»i »wi'*'* >^»<w^«>«>wo »ii^^i^»^WMS»^'«»^</<«^^««Vi»-«r<,/«»^'^ 

HADDINGTON, and BURGHS thebein, 
Maboh, 1851. 































• • • 

















* « • 









• • • 








• • • 










• • • 









• • a 









• • • 








• • • 

























• • • 









— « 








• • • 









• • • 



























• •. • 


, 10 






• • • 









• • • 









— — 
















• • • 









• A • 




















In the royalty of Dunbar, and parliamentftry boimdaryy an increase of 60. 
In the royaUy of North Berwick, and parliamentary bouiidary, a de- 
crease of 174. . 


-■^^ 1 ■!■ ■ « ■ i j»i II..-.-- I , .^i..^— . , I I , ■>- .i '^'^-ww%>v\rxrv»n,n. | -ut. i| ^ hvt |->- m ii>i 1 ( | Of»»fc l 



The town of Danbar was evidently at first a fisMng-village whicb 
gradually sprang up under the shelter of the castle^ and rose 
into notice under the influence of the powerful family to which 
it belonged. So early as the reign of Alexander IL, it appears 
to have acquired some importance; for, in 1216, according to 
the Chronicle of Melrose, King John, penetrating into Lothian, 
burnt Dunbar and Haddington. Li 1369, the principal trade of 
the borders was monopolised by the English, then in posses^ 
sion of Berwick and Roxburgh, who carried oilt of f^e kingdom 
wool, skins, and other goods, the chief produce of the pastoral 
districts of the Lammermoors, which otherwise would have paid 
a duty to the king. To counteract this traffid, Dunbar was 
created a free burgh by David IL, ^^ with limits as extensive as 
the earldom of March, with a market-cross, with power to buy 
and sell, with a eocquet and troTie^ and with a free pcnrt at Bel^ 
haven," * and was also entitled to a reciprocal commerce with 
Haddington. During the succeeding reign of Bobert IIL, 
William Danielstoun was granted a pension of 20 merks sterling 
out of the great customs of Dunbar, till the king should provide 
him with ten marks of land When Dunbar was made a free 
burgh, it was admitted, wilh other corporations, to send a re- 
presentative to the Scottish parliament ; and, since the Union, it 
joins with Haddington, Jedburgh, Lauder, and North Berwicl^ 
in bringing up a member for this purpose. 

The Earls of Dunbar were anciently the sherifiGs or justiciaries 
of Lothian. They held their baronial courts at Whittingham 
(the dwelling on the white mead), probably because it lay in the 

* ChalmeFB' Cal. ii. 

OllAETKKg. "241 

bosom of their territories, which comprehended Dunbar, Spott, 
Knkerton, Beil, Hailes, Merkhlll, Fortoun, fand other places in 
the county. After the revolution, the sheriffdom of Haddington 
tvas filled by the Marquis of Tweeddale and the Earl of Had- 
dington BUccessiv^y ; and, although* these trusts were not heredi- 
tary, yet this bondage was entailed on the lordshifs of fearonial 
courts; for, on the abolition of hereditary jurisdictions in 1748^, 
we find L.800 sterling was paid John Hay as an equivalent for 
the baillieiy of Dunbar, and L.500 to John Hamilton for the 
regality of Drem. The sheriff-court is now held at Haddington ; 
but a circuit qmaU-debt court is now held by the Sheriff at 
Dunbar every two months. 

The affairs of the burgh are managed by the magistrates and 
town-council. These consist of a' provost, three bailies, and seven 
members of council, assisted by a treasiirer, town-clerk, chamber- 
lain, and procurator-fiscal. The provost is, ex-o-fido, a member 
of the justice-of-peace court, which is held at Haddington. The 
magistrates hold a weekly court in the burgh every Saturday. 

The following is a list of charters, under the Great Seal> 
granted to Dunbar, from 1368 to the 23rd October, 1618 : — 

1. Litera quod Georgius Comes Marchie, apud Dunbar Liberum Bur- 

gum habeat, cum certis privilegies burgensibua ibidem. David II* 
. 8th Feb. 1368. Book 1. No. 244. 

• • • 

2. Carta Con. vni capellano in ecclesia coUegiate Sancte Bae de Dunbar^ 

de annas redditu, de terres in lie Colgate. James IV., 9th June, 
1601. Bodk 13. No. 512. 

3. Carta Con. Burgo de Dunbar — de eorum terns et privilegius', 

James IV. 1st March. 1-603. Book 43. No. 299. 

4. Carta — Burgo de Dunbar — de eorum • terris • et privilegiis. JdmefB 

VI. 23rd October, 1618, Book 49. l^o. 127. 

The annual revenue of the burgh in 1830 was. about L.1300, 
which arose chiefly from customs, impost, shdi*e-dues, cess, feu- 
duties, water pipes, property, &c., and was generally sufficient to 
meet the expenditure, unless when new and expensive works 
were undertaken. The town's property, in 1858, of which we 
give an albstract, is valued at L.6450. 

H 2 


BUioBT or OtniBAS. 




Cash ai doBe of lart aimiial atatoy I1.32O 17 6 
Axranat ditto, 15 16 9 

L.S36 14 3 

Bent of Cnstomsy . » . 290 
Stareet Dnng, Harbour Mnd, 130 10 
Letbypablicronp, ■■■ ■ ■■ ■■ 
Anchorage^ oollecfced by Harbour Maate« 
Ballast, Impost on Ale^ Ac, » • 
Bteel-Tard, collected by Buigh OfScer, • 

Sea Ware, , 

ABsessment on Landa and Heritages, 73 11 CI 

Trade, . . 56 8 
for Water 25 11 7 

I* AssessniBiity 
Bent of Mills, 

„ Houses, &c«. 


Water Pipes, 

Church Seats, . . « 

Boats' Licences, 

Pier Lights, 

Net Ground, . . , 

Stances for Caring HerringB, • 

Com Exchange, 

Bmgess Tickets, . . • 

Stones and Oravel, 

Seaport Property, sold, 

Casnal, • • • • 

Bark Boiling Houses and Yard, 

Property and Licome Tax repaid, 

Bai^ Interest, 

420 10 

« 46 12 


48 8 


16 2 


2 18 

155 11 


23 17 


62 17 

24 19 


20 17 


1 5 

126 4 

19 10 

2 12 


77 6 


33 14 



1 6 


290 5 


6 15 


12 14 


15 14 10 

3 15 


L.2003 2 




^^^»ji^^fk^^/Sf*ft^^t^^^^tk^ ^ ^»M^t^^^r**tti0y*^0ttvt0»ftm0»ti i ^t» M 0m » inf'm^tk^^/^^^^ f *^M^^^^^tS^^/*^^^^^^^^^^^^»^^^ 






Interest on Money borrowed, 

Betired Schoolmasters' Salaries, 

Boigh Schoolmaster^s Salary, 

Town Clerk and Market Clerks Salariesy 

Town Gerk's Qenend Businesa Account, 

Chamberlain's Commission, • , 

Burgh OfSicers' Weekly Wages and Clothing, 

Property and Income Tax, 

Expenses on Com Exchange, 

Houses, Streets, Harbour, Victoria 
Harbour, Wells, and Schools, 
Casual Expenditure, . . . * 

Hiscellaoeous Annual Charges, 
Lighting Street Lamps, .... 

Insurance, • . . . 

Town Clerk's Commission and Outlay, collecting 

Boats' Licences, 

Prisons' Assessment, ..... 

Pier Lights, 

Poors' Bates, Begistration of Births, &c.f and 

Voters' Act, 

Sanitary Measures, - - - • . 
Inspector of Nuisances, - - - • 

Seaport Property purchased, • - - 

Carting Ballast, 

Kew Barking Houses and Yard, - • . 
Arrears strudk: off, . ^ .» • . 










12 8 

8 4 

2 4 














Cash due by the Chamberlain, L670 12 
Arrears, - - - - 27 3 






13 04 


13 34 


11 8 

17 1 

12 9 

18 54 
18 2 

2 3 

6 84 

17 1 

12 44 

L.1305 6 8 

697 16 

L.2003 2 B 


Dunbar consists chiefly of a spadoas stzeet, extending nearly 
the whole length of the town, firom which the others branch ciS 
towards the shore or the harbonr. The houses are mostly 
modem, none remaining of that Memidi descriptioii whieb 
stood with their dove-tailed gables to the street, of indiicli the 
la^t was the Black BoU Inn, which has now given place to the 
splendid bnilding' of the City of Glasgow Bank. The town is 
sitoated on an eminence, gradually rising firom the sea ; and, as 
a proof of the salubrity of the climate, several instances of 
longevity oocor. The most aneient part of the burgh e;^dently 
lay towards the harbour, under cover of the castle, from which 
it appears to hav6 gradually extended southward. Among the 
old houses was a tenement called Bambuigh Castle, which lat- 
terly stood near the head of the High Street, but at one thne 
was probably detached. Tradition affirms that it had a sub- 
terraneous communication with the castle, the entrance to which 
is still shown ; and that, in later times, a foolish piper, in 
attempting to thread his way through this intricate labyrinth, 
was supposed to have been suffocated by pestilential vapour ; for 
his bagpipes were only heard to vibrate as fsur as the bottom of 
SUver Street, when their dying notes ceased. This tenement, 
and the lands adjoining, belonged to the Knights Templars. 

In the itinerary of f^nes Moiyson, gent., who perambulated 
Scotland in 1598, in search of the picturesque in man-millineiy 
and cookery, we find that Donbar still laboured under the 
desolating effects of the invasion of 1548, when it was burnt 
by the EngHsL " Being to return from Barwicke," says he, 
" I had an earnest desire first to see the King of Scots court ; so 
fix)m hence I rode in -one day forty miles to Edinburgh, the 
chief dty of that kingdom ; and in this said day's journey, after 
four miles riding, I came to Aton, a village where the lords of 
Humes dwell, whose family was powerful in those parts. After 
sixteen miles more, I came to Dunbar, which they said to have 
been of old a town of some importance, but then it lay mined, 
and seemed of little moment, as well from the poverty as the 
small number of inhabitants." 

THE TOWJf, 245 

The battle of Dunbar, and the more fatal " Tysday's chace/' 
by which epithet it was long remembered, had no doubt a 
ruinous effect on the burgh, and would be sensibly felt for some 

Prom the journal of a medical officer, who was attached to 
the army of the Duke of Cumberland in 1745, Dunbar appears 
to have been surrounded by a stone wall : — "This Dunbar is a 
pretty large town, upon the sea-coast, and hath been fenced in 
with a stone wall of great strength, though by the fioequent 
batteries it hath of late years received, it is much impaired and 
gone to decay. The houses here (as generally most of their 
capital towns) are bmlt with stone, and covered with the slate, 
and are well supplied with provisions, by reason of a weekly 
market which is held here. The inhabitants talk much of great 
losses and calamities sustained in the late civil wars ; the very 
thoughts of it do, to this very day, still strike a terror into them, 
whenever they recal that bloody day to remembrance, and think 
\diat great havoc and spoil was made amongst them. The ma- 
gistrates here made a grand entertainment to every regiment 
that passed through. The private soldiers had all a certoin 
quantity of bread, meat, and drink allowed them. The officers 
were treated in their town-house, where we had many kinds of 
their most curious dishes, but some of them were oddly cooked 
up, that it was but few many of us could eat of. We had also 
claret and punch in great plenty ; but with all these, they had a 
table-cloth so dirty, that, at other times, I should with great re- 
luctance have wiped my hands on it." 

Had this fastidious tourist accompanied Smelfungus to Turin, 
he would, doubtless, have agreed with that gentleman, that the 
amphitheatre was a cockpit ; but he was here taught an im- 
portant truth, that fatigue and hunger "need nae kitchen." 
After leaving the champaigne fields of England, and the fair 
ladies of Berwick, everything appeared to our Englishmen cold 
and hungry, gloomy and desolate. He entered upon the heaths 
and moors of the Press, " so strangely rotten and barren, that* 

94$ HlfiZOkY OF DVKfiAJEL 

they bore only a sort of moss, and some gcnrse, Ung, or furze, 
and some parts of these, even on hills, would swallow up a 
horse!** Such are the exaggerated accounts we are perpetually 
meeting with in the military journalists of this period ; and yet 
exaggeration is sometimes mixed up with a Httle matter of fact 
The frontiers of Scotland represented a large battle-field, coTered 
with a number of detached parties of skirmishers ; here no 
village could thrive — no corn-field fertilize. The beantifdl vil- 
lage of Dunglass, and the now thriving one of Cockbumspath, 
are represented as miserable places, with houses without 

Dunbar is never mentioned as a fortified town of any im- 
portance. The " strong stone wall " alluded to, was probably 
less for martial purposes than to keep out predatory wanderers. 
The castle was its stronghold, where, gazing like a vulture, 
perched on a rock, she was ready to pounce upon her prey. 
Every town, however, had its ports or gates for the receipt of 
customs, &c. Three arches of the town gates were standing in 
1768, which were partly removed when pipes were laid down 
to bring water into the town. The first stood at the east entry 
to the High Street ; the second at the west end of the West 
Port; and the third, on the north side of the foot of the High 
Street, leading to the harbour. The boys were wont to drc»s 
them with festoons of flowers at the Whitsunday fsiirs. 

In tegard to the buildings of Dunbar, there is nothing ie« 
markable, with the exception of the church, which we have 
already had occasion to notice. The mansion of the Earl of 
Lauderdale is a large building, extending across the foot of the 
High Street, with a handsome portico in the fronts looking 
towards the the sea, and the figure of a lama on the elevation 
next the town.* The town-house is an old inconvenient edifice, 
the jail being situated immediately beneath the council-chamber. 
At each end of the room are the arms of the Union, 'richly 

* This house was originally built by the Messrs Fall, with its front 
•ntrance from the street, with a flight of steps, and the liuna' for its crest. ' 

painted — the figures gilt.* The date of one is 1686. In 1822^ 
handsome Assembly Booms were built by subscription, at the 
jfoot of Craw's Wynd. The two principal inns were the St 
George and the New Inn, commodious and spacious houses, 
^e former was renovated in 1828 ; the latter is now used to 
accommodate the militia officers and yeomamy. 

The entiy to Dunbar from the Edinburgh road was ex- 
tremely awkward and narrow ; but a plan for widening thci 
West Port was put into execution in 1831, which made a ma« 
terial improvement, and added to the value of that street, as 
well as to the improvement of the town. 

Adjoining the burgh were about fifty acres of land, called 
I>unt)ar Inner Common, including the Kirkhill and Gallow-^ 
.green, where the burgesses had the privilege of pasturing their 
•cows and horses. In 1758, a piece of ground was laid out in a 
corner of the field as a washing- green or bleachfield, and a dry- 
ing-house was built. It was customary to perambulate the 
Inner Common on the king's birth-day. It was mortgaged for 
debt due by the town, and sold by the mortgagee, in 1852, for 
L.5000. The Kirkhill was also included in the mortgage, and 
void two years before, for L.650, to Dr James Eellie, and 
thereafter purchased by his Grace the Duke of Eozburghe, who 
lias turned the barren rock into a field of agricultural produce. 

Watek— -Dunbar vras imperfectly supplied with water till 
August, 1766, when an agreement was entered into by the 
town with Mr Hay of Spott, to bring water into the town, by 
aneans of leaden pipes, from St John's Well and the Smithy Well, 
two excellent springs near Spott, about two miles south from 
Dunbar. This improvement cost about L.1700, and was carried 
into effect in the course of a twelvemonth from the date of its 
commencement. By the 9th September, 1767, the water was 

* Dunbar, in former tunes, had its Jack Keioh. The hangman's 
house and kailyard stood across the head of Silver Street. En poMont we 
may notice, that Silver Street got its name from some coins being found 
there when the workmen were laying out the street. Th4 Gallowgreen 
was the place of execution. 

248 bistout of dukbas. 

flowing in a pure current tlirough the streets, and tEe pipes 
were laid in about two weeks thereafter. On laying the founda- 
tion-stone of the reservoir or main cistern, there was a masonic 
procession. This useful measure was carried into effect by 
Robert Fall, Esq., and the other magistrates, aided by contribu- 
tions from the inhabitants. 

Gas. — Fire, like water, now runs along our streets, in the shape 
of gas. Dunbar, like Haddington, first glowed with this brilliant 
light in 1836, when a company was formed, with a capi- 
tal of 391 shares at L.5 each, which has afforded a fair remunera- 
tion to the shareholders. No shareholder is allowed to hold 
more than twenty shares. John Bichardson, Esq., RN., secre- 
tary; Mr John Cuthbert, manager. 

Dunbar causeway was laid in 1737 ; and again, in 1769-70, 
the streets were new causeyed and side-pavements laid, yet tiey 
were not lighted with lamps tiU the 7th October, 1785. While 
the burgh was thus progressively improving itself, it was not un- 
mindful of its neighbours; and, 10th July, 1778, the town 
subscribed fifteen guineas towards building a bridge at the boat- 
house of Tyniimgham, and something considerable towards build- 
ing the lofty bridge over the romantic Pease.* 

* This bridge extends over a ravine or wooden chasm, upwards of 160 
feet deep, little more than a mile from Cockbumspath, on l^e old post road» 
leading by the Press inn to Berwick. During the border wars, the Fais of 
Peaths formed an important obstacle to an invading army. This bridge 
was built in 1785-86, /uid consists of four arches, 123 feet in height, of whidi 
there is a view in " Grose's Scottish Antiquities." The beautiful scenery ol 
Bunglas, in the neighbourhood, invites pic-nic parties here in summer. 

Upon thy lofty banks, no more are seen 
The AnglisuQ warriors, in their red array, 
Treading, with Somerset, the intricate way. 

Sprinkling with burnished arms thy coverts green ; 

All now looks tranquil, " save when the lark springs 
Scared by the angler in the depths beneath.' 




When dvil dudgeon fint grew hi^h, 
And men fell oat, they knew not ^hy ; 
When hard work, iealouates, and feara. 
Set f olkfl together by the ean, 
And made tiiem fight^ like mad or drank, 
For Bwrgh PoUtict, as pnnk ; , 
Whose honesty they all duist swear for, 
Hio* not a man of them knew wherefore. 




DuHBAB, like oUier good old btugbs ^ sixty years sbce/' wa» 
an ezdusiye burgh, and its magistnuy was, in some degree^ 
opposed, as rnlers in power always are, to the people ; and, as a 
contemporary observes, ^'Olympns itself was not more nnap* 
proadiable to mortals than the corole chair of Dunbar, or even 
the inferior offices, to all except a chosen few.** The burgh (as 
we observed) joins with Jedburgh, Lauder, Haddington, and 
Korth Berwick, in sending a member to Parliament, and on 
these occasions considerable turbulence was excited in the fram- 
ing of new parliaments. A most remarkable case of this kind 
oocurred in 1734, which led to divisions and contested elections 
in the burghs, of which the good town of Dunbar had its due 
share. At this time our politidans were divided into two 
parties; those supposed to favour the ministry were styled the 
'^ Court Party/* while the more popular, who had the sufirage of 

the community, were designated the "Country Party;'* or, in 

I 2 

1$Q HI610BT Ol* DinffBAB. 

plidner tenns^ ^'Jacobites" — ^for the smotheied hopes of the 
rebellion were not yet extingaished. 

The rival candidates were Sir James Dabymple of Hailes, and 
Captain Fall, Dunbar ; and as each had their partisans almost 
equally divided in the town cqpncU, it led to the most virulent 

Bailie George Erskine was delegated. May 144:h, to go to 
Jedburgh on the ISth, to vote for a member of Parliament.* 
This was the watchword of discord in thq burgh; for on the 
22nd of the foUowing August, Bailie O. Ersidne presided, in 
consequence of the provost, Andrew Dickson, refiising to attend* 
It was then agreed that Mr Dicksoi^ ahoiidd be. prosecuted for 
exhibiting a bond from Sir James Dalrymple, and other noble- 
men and gentlemen in the shire, for considerable sums granted 
to the town. 

Controverted elections of deacons and crafts counsellors fol- 
lowed on the 5th October, when it became a ground for argu- 
ment, whether the old or new deacons should vote in these con- 
tests? And amongst the votes objected to in the merchant 
QOimcil OBL the 8A indtant, was that of James Eiwlrintt, late pro* 
vost, who, from holding the offices of inKsio-master and precentor, 
was consiidered a servant <^ the town. The following weie 
elected magistrates :— Qeorge Herriot, provost ; Alexander Hep- 
bum, Richard Robertson, and James Forre£(tj bailies; Alexander 
lYalker^ dean of guild; Gkorge Youngs treasurer; and John 
Hay, bailie of Nungate. These were opposed by a wiall sup- 
ported party, headed by Jdbn Herriot, a flesher, who was joined 
by Convener Sawers and the minority of the " nyne."i* Thinga- 
were carried with such keeness on both sidesj ths^ Provost 

* On the 16th, Mr James Ersldney hxB brother, reeeired a burgess 
ticket from the nuigistrcktes And coimoU o{ Xhmbar, for "-the gopd B^ar^fim. 
done, and to be done," for that buigh. G^t^in FaU was tHo sucoQeafol 
candidate. The Congress were of his party. 

f With pipes and drum, the colours flying. 
To the towB-hali the " Nyne^ are lueing. 

The *' nyne " alluded to the nine deacons of the incorporated tvadei* 


Perriot^ backed by the mob, assembled before theooaYenerV 
door to demand his vote: but he found him, iOoe ^Willid 
Wasile/' invulnerable in his castle. Meanwhile tiie ^ opfMisitioa/' 
yfho were nidc-titoied ^^ The Congress," not. only managed, irith 
Wonderful . dexterity, to bxidg up a mode -magistracy, but had 
ibe dkiHulness or plausibility to obtain a urarrant from Lord 
^ton to imprison the whole of tho real magLatratee and coianGtl 

The sequel to these i^oteedings we shall copy from the Lon* 
don prints : — 

.^ Lond(m,: February 1.^-*- Yesterday the House of Commend 
heard, and refiarred to the Committee of Frivil^es and Eleddons, 
9> petition oS Sir James Dalrymple, Bart; another from the 
nu^^sticates of Jedburgh, and of Bobert Whitrope, Qeorge 
Soougal, asnd John Forteous, oounciUors of said burgh ; another 
Sripm the xoagistrates of Haddington ; another from the magi-^ 
9trate$ cf Lauder ; another from the magiikrates of N(»th 
Berwick; aim a petition of John Haswell, common clerk of Jed« 
^uxgh, concerning tihe Section of the district of burghs of Had*, 
dingtop, Je^bur^ Bunbas, North Berwick, and Lauder. 

*[ ]jcm$U»B^, Match 13. — ^The 12th instant, a petition of Qeorge 
Heripti i^rovost of the royal burgh of Haddington ; Bobert 
Forp^sty bjcewer there; John Hay;, saddler there; Qewge Hun* 
%ei, wheelwright there ; and Geoige Walker, skinner there, was 
j^e^ented. to thQ bouse, and read— -alleging that upon applica^ 
iion made <^e 24th day of October last, l^ James [Ekskine, John 
Cluddel, Andrew Wilson, and others, assuming to themselves 
Renames of magistrates in the said bur^, and complaining 
that the petitioners had disturbed them in the pretended execu- 
tion of their officee, the Hon. Andrew Fletcher of Milton, one of 
tiie judgoi of the Court of Justiciary, and also of the Court of 
Session in Scotland, though there was evidently no foundation 
for such a complaint, without any jurisdiction to judge of the 
merits of election of magistrates for the said burgh, without any 
evidence laid before him, without any notice given to the peti- 


iumen, or any of the persona cmcemed, and so, witboat Iraariiig. 
them or calUng them before him, gave forth a enmmaxy warranty 
directed to all officers whom it concerned, civil or military, to 
search for, seiae, and apprehend, the persons of the petitionerBy 
and many others, tothe number of forty burgesses or inhabit 
tants, whereof seventeen were acting as magistrates or oooncillois 
of the said hai^ wherever they shall be found in Scotland ; 
and to imprison them within the nearest sure prison : that thia 
warrant waa lodged in the hands of Humphry Colquhoun, one 
of the macers or messengers of the Court of Justiciary, without 
the privity of any other of the judges of that court : and, as the 
petitioners have reason to believe, the said Andrew Fletcher 
ordered the isaid macer to take directions from Patrick Lmdsay, 
provost of Edinburgh, as to the manner of executing the war- 
rant; and such directions were accordingly given, as the peti- 
tioners have reason to believe, in writing: that this warrant was 
accompanied by an order from Brigadier Moyle, then acting as 
CommaDder-in-Chief of the Forces in Scotiand, to the command- 
ing officer of the dragoons quartered in Haddington, to assist 
with his dragoons in the execution of the warrant: that upon 
the 25th of said month, the petitioners were seized, and thou^ 
the next sure prison was that of Haddington itself, or that of 
North Berwick; and though the petitioners desired to be com- 
mitted there, or to be carried to Edinburgh, the seat of the • 
courts of justice, where they might apply for redress, yet the 
said Humphry Golquhoun told titiem, his orders were to carry 
them to the prison of Dunbar, and no other place — a place 
twenty miles [now twenty-eight] distant from Edinburgh, and 
eight miles [now eleven] from Haddington: afind though the 
pretended crime was bailable, and Alexander Hepburn, the 
sheriff substitute, to whom the petitioners applied, was by law 
empowered and willing to admit them to bail, the said Humphry 
Golquhoun told, that l^e could not dismiss them upon bail, his 
express orders being to take no bail, but commit his prisoners 
to the prison of Dunbftr; where they were accordingly im« 

THE G0N0RX8S. 253 

prisoned^ firom the 2dth to tlie 27th of October^ till by a war- 
rant from the Hon. David Erskine of Dun, another of the 
judges of the said Court of Justieiaiy and Session, the peti- 
tioners were set at liberty, and execution of the warrant was 
staid against the rest upon bail given by the petitioners and 
them; and that, since that time, no criminal prosecution has 
been moved for any of these pretended crimes : that these pro- 
ceedings, as the petitioners apprehend, and are advised, were 
utterly ill^al and oppressive, tending to destroy personal liberties 
and freedom of royal burghs, and the consequence of the free- 
doni of elections of members of Parliament ; and as the peti- 
tioners can hope for no redress but from the justice of Parlia- 
ment, therefore praying to take the premises into consideration, 
and to grant relief." 

A motion being made that the said petition be referred to the 
Committee of the whole House, it passed in the negate/ 

^ The following song, which was copied from the recitation i>f 
an old member of the merchant-council, would doubtless be oon* 
sidered a satirical flash in its day: — 


Katty Mackie*8 lyinf? sick. 

And wat ye what will mend her ? 
Fifty flhiUingB in a puree. 

That Captain Fa has eent her. 
Hifl love to her love, 

Looked in a poffer — 
My service to the bonny lass, 

Katty Mackie^s dochter. 

The wabsters went unto Dunbar, 

To sell thdr cbith at venture ; * 

3ut 'twas nae for to sell their claith, 

But see their parliamenter. 
The captain made them welcome guests, 

Invited them to dine, 
And, after dinner, did not spare 

To treat them with the wine. 

d54 msroKt or difmbab. 


O fie upon ye. Congress, . , . ■ 

O fie viMm ye^ fie ; 
Had Tyne been made o' claret wine. 

Ye wad hae drank it dsry ! 

Here's your health, my Charlie, lad, 

Take aff the other bottle ! 
Blink aff your ^ass right heartily. 

Twill gar you drive the shuttle^ 
Twill gar you drive the shuttle, ' 

And soe will it the spulei, 
If we had wanted your vote, 

O we wad lost the dule ! 

How Charlie raise to drink his health. 

But louted down sae low, 
He brak his nose upcm the floor, • • 

And brak the glass also ! 

Thaw's wategtargaadihflfcr<ftai1«nftk<ifiy . ... 

And taflors wi' tree legs ; 
There^s dirt drivers and cabbage eaters, ' 

And Sandy Bower that begs. 

Simon Sawers got carts and horse, '' 

And Lawie he got looms ; 
And Bairdy he^got leather gude, 

A' for to mend ihBir shoons. 

The next matter that dgitated the burgh was the appointment 
of delegates to elect a member of parliament. This happened on 
the 30th March, 1768, nnder r&ry particular circumstances. 
Jedburgh was the returning burgh, but the Court of Session 
having reduced the magistracy of that town for some ill^al prac- 
tices, considerable contention arose in regard to where the meet- 
ing should be held. The Sheriff of Haddington issued a precept 
appointing the burgh of Dunbar to the presidency, while the 
Sheriff of Berwickshire appointed Lauder, as next in rotation, to 
name the place where the member should be chosen. The town 
of Haddington, jealous of the right of .the Sheriff of Berwick to 
nominate a place at all, and considering that by law, in the 
absence of a delegate &om the presiding burgh, she was entitled 
to a casting vote in the case of equality ; and as a matter of 


eicpedienqy^ and to asaert her righto, three commissioners were 
fl|>poiiite(l, vk.^ John McLaren, of Dreghom, advocate, to go to 
Jedjb)irgh ; James Ihidgeon, dean of guild, to attend at Had- 
^t^ton ; and Dayid Bae, Esq., advocate, to appear at Dunbar ; 
mth provision, that wherever the election might be sustained^ 
tSie;V0te'of their commissioner might be held valid. The result 
Was, that Zieiiitenant-Colonckl Watrender was elected representa* 
ttve in Parliament for the classic biughs. 


' This measure, which has engrossed so much attention in our 
times, was first agitated on the Sth March, 1787, when a letter 
was issued by the Lord Provost of Edinburgh, as Preses of the^ 
Convention of Boyal Burghs, respecting — 1, A proposed reform 
in tiia constitution of the burghs bf Scotland ; 2, The encour- 
a^moit of the linen manufacture f and 3, The extension of the 
fisheries, and improving the sea-coast of the kingdouL Men are 
80 rooted to old prejudices that the jprincipal points in this do* 
arable object were opposed. The stream, however, once loosed 
from its embankments, was destined to run on, and as a presihge 
of what good was to follow, the corporation and testa acts Were 
wpealed during the administraldon of the Duke of Wellington, 
on the 9th February, 1828. This paved the way for the r^ 
B&Wied agitation of buigh reform. Accordingly, a bill was in* 
troduced by Lord John Bussell, in Mardi, 1831, which led to. 
petitions from the clasdc bur^bs in favour of the measure. The 
bill passed the House of Commons, but was rejected by the Peers, 
i Meanwhile, while these measures were in progress^ consider- 
aUe exertions were made by the two great parties that ruled the 
CDHunons, to bring up their own candidates cm a new general 
flection* In 1831, Bobert Steuart, Esq. of Alderoton (Whig), 
entered the. field against Sir Adolphus John Dalrymple, Bart. 
(Tory). The burghs of Haddington, Jedburgh, and Lauder, 
^ted for Mr S. at Jedbuigh, on the 23rd May; but, owing to 
the abduction of one of the voters at Lauder (Bailie Simpson),, 


who was forcibly placed into a Haddington post-dudse^ and car- 
ried off by the mob,* on the choosing of a delegate on the 4th 
May, his election was nnlMed by the Honse of CommcMiSy and 
Sir Adolphos J. Dalrymple was retained as member for the 

The reform bill was again bronght forward in December, and 
ultimately passed the House of Lords, through the ezertiona of 
Earl Grey, on the 4th Jnne, 1832 ; and the Scottish bnigh 
reform bill received the royal assent on the 28th Angost, 1833. 

The first election of a member to represent the bnighs in the 
reformed British Parliament led to a severe contest between the 
Whig and Conservative ^parties, in which Mr Steuart was sue* 
cessfol, Lord Mainland, who was the other candidate, having 
retired. In 1841, the Conservative party again gained the 
ascendancy. Sir Thomas R Hepbom, Bart, of Smeaton, was 
elected for the county, and James Maitland Balfour, Esq., for 
the burghs. Jn 1847, Sir Henry Robert Ferguson Davie, 
Bart of Creedy (Devonshire), was elected for the burghs, with* 
out opposition. And again, in July, 1852, although he was 
opposed by A. Campbell Swinton, Esq., he was successful. 
And, on the 23rd March, 1857, on the. formation of a new 
Parliament, Sir Henry met the electors at Dunbar, and, on his 
progress through the burghs, was unopposed and successfuL 

A very ancient practice was abrogated by a nujorily of dis- 
senters in the town council of Edinburgh, 16th November, 
1843, anent members of the town council attending the magi- 
strates to the kirk, when it was resolved " to discontinue their 
official attendance at church, and discharging the officers from 
carrying the mace or other insignia to any place of worship in 
time to come, or of the town council appearing in their robes,** 
&c We are not aware that this example has been followed, 
but rather the reverse ; some burghs which had laid aside their 

* The examination of witnesses afterwards led to eoenes of riot in 
Haddington, which led to the imprisonment of parties unconnected with 
the abduction. 


lt^^^k»»rft»Mi»<^WXWX»^*WMO»«WWW< «i«» <^^r% < ' ir>iii-»>»<<^»^>«^"»''»i»^'i»'^^»i^»»»«»»^«< 

chureh paraphernalia, during the Bweepbg paesbg of the reform 
billy having resamed it. 

This act of the Edinburgh eotmGil was follow^ by a peti*- 
tion to her Majesty, from FrovoBt Middlemaas and the other 
taiagiatrates of Dunbar, very wisely reprobating the meaaure. 
The town cbuncil of Haddington did the same. 

The following is a list of the members of Parliament for the 
Coimty and Haddington district of Burghs, since the union with 

J^irtt imperial ParliamerU,: — Jan, 22, 180L 
The Hon. Charles Hope dt Waughton, ... County 

(Mr HiE>p^ WM seventh son of John, secoiid Earl ef Hopetoun.) 
BoBEttT Baibd, .£sq. of Kewbytl^ » . . Burgh$ 

.The Hon. Thomas Maitland succeeded Mr Baibd, 10th 
c March, 1602, on the latter accepting the Chiltem 
Hundreds. . 

Dimlvedy 29^ Jum, 1802. 

Second iTnpericd Parliament.^-^TS oy, 16, 1802. 

^e Hon. Chables Hope of Waughton, ... C<mnty 

The Honourable Thomas Maitland, ».. BurghM 

John Dalbymplb, Esq., succeeded the Honourable T. 

Maitland, February 14, 1805. 
Honourable HenbiT Ebskike, of Amondell, succeeded Mr 

Dalbymple, on his accepting the Chiltem Hundreds. 

(Mr Erskme of AmondeU was fourth son of Henry David, tenth Earl of 
Buchan.) ' • . 

• • Dissolved, 24^ Octobefy 1806. 

Third Imperiai Parliament, — ^December 15, 1806. 

Major-General the Bon. Chables Hot»E, ... County 

The Honourable Wiluai^ Lamb, ... ... Burghs 

Dissolved, 29th April, 1807. 

K 2 

Major-General the Htm. Chablbs Hopb, ... C^ptm^ 

lEBr €teoBOB WABBsmOBK, of LCfckend, Barcrndt, £« 9^A< 

ly 29A Septemb^, 1812. 

Ay^A Imperixd Parliament. — ^November 24, 1812. 
Migor-General the Hon. Chables Hofe, ... C(nifUy 

Sir James Grant Suttie, of Balgone and IVestongrange, 

Baronet, suooeeded, 1817. 
Hon« Sir Thomas Maitla]9D, ... ... Btetglu 

Captain the Hon. (now Admiral Sir) AjfTrttOKt HkmAm^ ELCK 
and E.C.M.Q., sncceeded the Hon. Sir T. Maitland,~ohtiie la^ 
ter being appointed to the government of Malta, Oct. 30, 1812» 

Diudwd, l(Mh June, 1818. 

« • 

Sixth Imperial ParliamenLr^rnKd 14, 1819% 

Sir J]ucES Grant Suttdc, Baronet, .^« ..% Camiijf 

Captain the Hon* Abthokt MaiiXiANO, *.. Buirgh 

Sir Hew Daiaymplb Hamilton, of North Be):irick, Batoneti 

fiooceeded Captain Maitland, March 31, 1820» 

Diuoked Sl^ Uaa^, 1820. 

SwiUh Imperial J'oriiamwnt-^pril 21, 1820. 
fiir James Grant Suttib, Baronet, ... ... Cbim^ 

Dudley North, Esq., ... ... ... Burgh 

Sir Hew Dalbymfsb Haiolton, Baronet, soeoeeded Mr North 
m 1821. 

DimlwA, ifndJvm^ 182& 

EighO^ Imperial ParZiowMH^-— Novembeir U, 1826. 
The Bight Hon. Lord John Hat, ... ... Oom^ 

Colonel James Dalrtmplr, ... ... Bwrgh 

Dissolved, 24th Jvly^ 1830. 

NirUh imperial Parliam^ent. — October 26, 1830. 
ThelRight Hon. Lord John Hat, ... ... ChMif 

Creorge Grant Suttie, Esq., yr^ of FTeatongrange (now Sir George), 
was also a candidate. 

Sir Ax>oi$wtJ$ John IUiayi&i^ Baroiut, Hi^ Mark, J^uirffha 

IHmMly 29rd April, 16ih 

Tenth Imjierial ParliamtKt.'^viXie H, 1^3I« 
Jambs Balfoub, Esq. of WMttmgham, ... C<ymt/^ 

. Election, 9th May. — ^Yoted for Mr Balfour, ••• .^ 40 
Voted for Sir David Baird, Baronet, of Newbythy ••• 11 

Majori^ for Mr Balfour, ••• ••• 29 

BoBEBT SrEirijiTy Esq. of Alderston, ... Svrglu 

, Tin* bmbs <)l Qaddiiigton, J^clbiug}!, v^^ I#iu;dert vpt#4 for Mr Staua^ 
^ Jedburgh, 22nd May, 1851, but owing to the abduction of one of the 
voters in a Yit>t at Lauder, on the chusing tif a delegate, 4ttL May, the 
eleotidn of . Mr Steuart was nullified by the House of Ocmiinonfly iR^en 
thd other candidate, 

Bir AiK>LPHUS J. Dalbyhple, Bfurt., was retained for the Burghi 

Dim>lved^ 3rd December ^ 13^2. 

^Uveath Imperial ParUavient, — January 29, 1833. 


Jambs Balfoub, Esq. of WMttinghami ,.. Couimt^ 

Voted for Mr Balfour, ••• ••• ••• ••« ••• 271 

SlrDavidBaird,Batonet» ••• ••« ,*• 2^2 

Ifajoriiy for Ifr Balfour, ••• ••• S9 

Bobsbt Steuabt, Esq. of Alderston, ... Burghs 

Jxad Maitiand was the other candidate, but withdrew. 

Dimlv&i^f 30th December^ 1834, 

J'wdfth Imperial Parliament. — ^February 19, 1835. 
BoBEBT Febousok, £fiq., of Ilailb> ... ..r CoufUj^ 

Voted for Mr Ferguson, «•• ••« #•• ••• ••• 268 

J; T. fiope, Esq., ••• ••• ••• ••• 231 

Majority for Mr Fer^pison, 4m 87 
Bobebt Steitabt, Esq., .», ... ... Burghs 

In 1836, Mr Steuart being appointed one of the Lords of the Treasury, a 
new election was requisite, when the same gentleman was returned 
without opposition. 

Dimlvedy IJth July, 1837. 


Thirteenth Imperial Fairiiammt, — ^N<yvemb» 15, 1837. 
The Bi^t Hem. Lard Ramsay (noir MaiqaiB of Dall^ 

E]ectioI^ 9U( Jidj.-— Voted for Lord Bainsayy ••• ^ 301 
Voted fcnr Mr Ferguson of Baitliy ••• ••• 208 

Majority^ for Lord Bamsay, ••• 93 

Mr FeigiuKm haTing retired at the doee of the first day's poI!, onfyaparfc 
of the ooDstifeneiicy voted. 

On, the death of the Earl of DaJhousie in 1838, Lord Bamsay being 
called to the House of Peers, a new election for the ooonty took place, 

Bir Thomas R Hepbusk, Bart., was eLected without oj^iOBitioii. 
BopEBT Steuabt, Esq. ... ... ... Burglu 

Electbii, 24th July.— Voted for Mr Stewart, ••• •«• 2d8 
Voted for Sir Thomas Buchan Hepburn, Baronet, ••• 237 

Majority for Mr Stenart, ••• 31 

Dmolvedf 2^rdJune, 1841. 


Fourteenth Imperial Parliament, — ^Angast 19, 1841. 

, Sir Thomas Buchan Hepbubn, Baronet, ... Cavity 

James Maitland Balfoub, Esq. of Whittingham, Bwrgh» 

Voted for Nfr Balfour, • ••• ••• ••• 273 

Bobert Steuartf Esq., ••• • 264 


Majority for Mr Balfour, 
Dissolved, 2^rd July, 1847. 

Fifteenth Imperial Parliament, — ^Nov. 18, 1847. 
The Honourable Fbakgis Chabtbbis, ... Cbtc9ity 

Voted for Mr Charteris, ••• •• • ••• 271 

Sir David Btdrd, Baronet, of Newbyth, ••• 138 

Majority for Mr Charteris, •«• 135 
Sir David Batrd retired at the close of the first day's polL 

Major-Oeneral Sir Henby R F. Davie, Bart, of Creedy, Burghi 

Dissolved, Ist JtUy, 1652. 

/Sixteenth Imperial Parliament, 
The Hon. Fbancis Chabtebis (not opposed), . . . County 



««M»<iMaMMMMW^MXM»^/MMV»'^^^A^^^^»'«<<<W%<<>^/VWW«V^W^^W^^»^'**»»»»Wg|l'll ■OWM X ' H r^^^^M^^^^VWWW^^VMMMMX^'MMX^ » 

Sir Henbt Robebt Febouson Dayie, Baronet, 

Election, 14th July.— Voted for Sir H. B. F. Da^ie, 
Voted for Profesaor A. Campbell Swinton, 



Majority for Sir Hexiry Ferguson Davie, 127 

The Hon. Fbancis Chabtebis (now Lord Elcho), re-elected for 
the county (11th Januaiy, 1853), on being appointed Scotch 
Lord of the Treasmy. 

Dissolved, 2l8t March, 1857. 

SevenUenth Imperial Parliament. 
The Bight Hon. Lord Elcho, re-elected for the county (Monday, 

30th March, 1857). Hi3 lordship was absent in Italy at the 

time of the election. 
Sir Henby Bobebt Febguson Davie, Bart., re-elected for the 

burghs (30th March, 1857). 



Soft blew the gales of avtnnm on thy diffi^ 
Dunbar ! and fann*d the beauteouB glowing Foxii^ 
While yessek bounded o'er the iqpangled waves. 
And shoaJs of herrings skimm'd below the keels. 
Like silver fishes 'neaih the ciTStal floor 
Of eastern paUuses, when prosperous years 
Had brought a vast assembla^ to thy shores 
From Holland and the Isles. 

Thx IiOST Bbats. 



The port of Dunbar was originally situated at BeUiayen, pro- 
bably because it was of easier access from the west than the 
rugged entrance of Lammer-haven, and probably because in 
these warlike times the garrison of the castle would view with 
jealousy the arrival of foreign vessels^ even although of the most 
insignificant description. So early as the middle of the twelfUi 
century^ betwixt the years 1147 and 1166, Cospatrick, Earl of 
Dunbar, granted for the commercial accommodation of the monks 
of May, " a fiill toft near his port of Bele," free from all cus- 
toms.* This toft appears to have been situated in Dunbar, 
where these monastics built a house. The burgh continued with 
little variation in its shipping till the epoch of the Bevdtution, 
when it had only two barques and sixteen herring boats. 

The town, however, seems early to have been a place of im« 
portance as a fishing station ; and in 1577, it was the rendez- 
vous of the Dutch as well as of the Scots fishery, when 1000 

* About 1168, William the Lion confirmed to the monks of May^ 
f Unam mansuram, cum tofto, in I>unbar.*' — Chalmers' Cal. ii. 

bcMito wen wredk«d 0B the coast la ldd8» ike assdze of her- 
ring from the eac^ oottt «macmted to L.1120 for diy killing ; 
mdy m 1614, it paid L;2tK)0 Seots, md L.1^1:0 of fine ; and, in 
1 U$^9y L.i ao stet&i^, 

T^eher, in his €omn»imcatioii to tiie commTwdonfirs appointed 
\jf OomweM, gives l&e foUomig aoooont of the tcade of Dim* 
bar in 1656 : — ^^' The town of Dimbar is a fisher-town, famoiis 
forAie hening fid^g, whidi are oan^ thereabout and brought 
thil^Mr, and afterwards tmred and banelled np, either for mer- 
cliai»Sse or sale to tibie country people, who come thither, hx 
and near, at the aeason, whidi is from about the middk^f 
Ad^uiETt to i&e latter end of September." And, in 1661, Joha 
Bay e^Nsenres^in his Itineiaiy — ** Hiere is a great confluence €i 
people %t Dunbar to ike herring fishery ; and they told ua^ 
sometimes to the number ^of 20,t)00 personB ; but we did not 
see how so smaE a town 450uld oontain,^ indeed, give shelter, ta 
eaak a multLtude." This mult^de, however, would not bo 
stationary at one point, but come and go aocordtng to caicma* 

Campbell, in his '' Political Survey of Great Britain in 1771,*' 
ai^s (speiddng of the port of Dunbar) — ^ The herring fiaheiy ia 
sometimeB veiy profitable — ^these herrings, in point of quality^ 
as well as size, being generally esteemed superior to those 
caught by the Dutch." 

The herring fishery in the Forth commences annually al)ont 
the end of July, and continues nearly two months. About .ihe 
beginning of the present century, the henings were taken in 
such plenty, that they were sold at |d. per dozen; and.asHiere 
was a greater quantity caught than could be immediately cured, 
the refbse was absolutely driven to manure the fields. In 181% 
there were employed at Dunbar alone about 280 boats, and in 
them nearfy 2000 men. The following year (1820) the .^fishery, 
though not so well attended, empl(^ed upwards of 200 boata^ 
which brought daily from thirty to sixty crana each, price from 
4s. to 5s. per cran. It is compnted that nearly 35,000 baixals 


were cored there in a season. In 1858^ tiie traffic lias greatly 
increased, as will be noticed in the course of this chapter. 

Th^ manner in which this fisheiy was cartied on is similar 
to the pUiL of the old Dutch fishery, wludbi renders it extremely 
benefidid to the countiy. The boats bdong partly to fidiermen, 
who employ th^ rest of the year in catching white &^, and partly id 
landsmen, who build and equip them in theway of ady^tbrers. An 
adventilre of this kind is called a drave, and id thus managed:-— 
Two or three fishermen associate with five or six landsmen — for 
there are oOnnnonly eight or nine men to a boai. Each fisher* 
inan has at least two nets of his own ; one is appointed as 
skipper, Who lays in provisions and other necessaries, and 
teceives the money for what is sold. Wheti the season ter- 
nunatesi the accounts are made up, and after dischaiging the 
expenses, what remains is divided iuto eight or nine shares, or 
as they call them, deals. The proprietor of the boat draws one 
deal, every fisherman half a deal, every two nets half a deal^ 
every landsman who is capable of working two nets half a deal—* 
thus all parties are interested in profit and loss. 

In andent times a (Certain quantity of heninigs Wetd taken for 
the king's kitchen. Which was aftelrwards commuted into a tax 
of ten shillings upon every sizeable boat. There was also a 
duty paid to the High Admiral's deputy, who presided over the 
fishery. This has fallen into desuetude; but the town exacts 
the l-15th fish as vicarage teind. The fishers still appoint one 
of their number, whom they style Admiral, to arrange the order 
of sailings Ac, and two chancellors, to whom all disputes are 

The herring, however, is a flirti^ little animal, and for some 
years, about 1830, either completely deserted the coast, or 
came in such small shoals, that the Dunbar fishers preferred 
going to Holy Island or to the Caithness fishery^ Various rea- 
sons were assigned for this dereliction of the silvery try. Some 
oDeging that the fishers, for purposes best kuown to themselves^ 
tiiink " foreign fowls have the fairest feathers ;" and others sur- 


misiiig that thosQ ' terrible leviathans, the steamerfi, frighten 
them away with, their noisy wheels. Such' is not the case now. 

In 1830, there were 133 open boats belonging to the custom- 
house district of Dunbar {%. e, betwixt QuUane Point and Ber« 
wick bounds), licensed to be employed in fishing within certain 
Mmits. AU boats required to be licensed, ezeept such as wer^ 
employed in inland navigation, or those used by julots. 

The fishing on the coast is chiefly for white-fish, lobsters^ and 
orabs, a&^f the herrings have disappeared. 

The number of boats that congregate at Dunbar during the 
herring season is from ^00 to 600. The number of herrings 
sent from Dunbar in 1855, by railway alone, and for immediata 
consumption in the inland towns, was 4303 tons, mostly reds, 
and which would yield to the fishermen about L.51,636. 

In 1857, the season being stormy, and the fishing uncertain^ 
herrings sold as high as 23s. to 30s. per barrel 

In 1858, it turned out more productive, and sales averaged 
from 158. to 23s. per barrel. Some boats cleared from L.30 
to L.40 in a morning ; and many during the season earned above 
L.200— some the length of L.300 to L.400. 

The herring drave is the marine harvest of Dunbar. White- 
fish, curing is also carried on to a considerable extent. 

A small neglected shell-fish, the periwinkle or sea-snail (com-^ 
inonly called the whelk) now forms an article of commerce, in 
which a number of women are employed in gathering, from the 
rocks below Scoughall farm, along 'the shore as far as Thomton- 
ioch. This crustaceous denizen of the rock \» purchased by the 
English fishmongers, at the rate of firom Is. 3d. to Is. 6d per bushel. 


The harbour of Dunbar, although of difficult access, is ercel- 

lently adapted both by nature and art as a place of security. 

It has in depth nine feet of water in neap, and fourteen feet in 

spring tides ; and admits vessels of 300 tons burthen. Before 

the Kclvolution> it appears only to have been capable of accom- 



modating vessels of a vety small description^ or such as were 
employed in the herring fishery. In December, 1655, it suffered 
so severely by a tempestuous storm, that the inhabitants were 
compelled to petition Pariiament for aid in its reparation j* and 
in 1658, when the "outer head" and "cross dike" were de- 
Jtiolished, they applied, for the same purpose, to the magistrates 
and town council of Edinburgh. It was probably these dis- 
astrous circumstances that induced Cromwell to grant L.30O 
towards defraying the expense of the east pier, which was begun 
during the lime of the protectorate. 

For some years before 1735, the harbour had become almost 
ruinous, so that all the means at the command of the corpora- 
tion, were insufficient to put it in repair. So national was the 
repair of the harbour then considered, that the Lord High 
Chancellor in that year issued a brieve authorising collections 
to be made throughout Scotland and England, but excepting 
Wales, for the purpose of assisting in the repairs. The Qeneral 
Assembly keenly took up the subject, and recommended colleo- 
tions at all the church doors ; and the Convention of Burghs did 

* The following is the copy of a letter, which was addressed by Mr 
liOrrain, preses of uie Council, on the state of the harbour : — 

My Lords, — ^The inhabitants off Dumbar, in Scotland, heir by yr sap* 
{^one to his Heines, represend the great damidg and prejudice qch they 
and the whole cuntry. from Berw^ to Leith, and a great pt of that 
natione have sustened through demolishing off the harbor off Diunbar by a 
great & tempestuous stonn in the moneth off Deer. 1655, yr being left, as is 
aledged, no saiff shelter ffor the hering fisching, qchi being yeirlj at that 
plaice is the onlj lyvlyehood of many persones in that natione. And, albeit 
yor lordshipes did, vpon that consideratione, grant the petitioners sum eaae 
off yr cess-monj, qch was ane incouradgement to them to endevor the repair- 
ing thereoff ; yet the same hath proved ineffectuall throw the greatnes off 
the work and the indigencie <^ the people, and tifor they ar humble 
Butors for additionall help, aither out off the excyse off yt bro^ht, the cysse 
off herringes, or in such vyr way as shall be thot fitt. His Henes and the 
Ooimsall heve trfor thot it fit to recomend it to yor Lo. to consider off 
the caisse, and off the public detriment yt heath rissen by distroying off the 
said herbor, and to afford sum additionall assistance, in such way & pro> 
portone as you shall judg fitt, for enabling the petitioner to repar the same. 

8igned in name, and by order off his Henes and Counsall, 

Hje. Lausai^i Fret. 
Whytehall, 7th May, 1657. 


the same through all the burghs, A large sum was anticipated^ 
and the collector was sent to London for the purpose of in- 
fluencing the metropolis ; but he unfortunately died there, and 
the proceeds came far short of expectation. So anxious were all 
parties on the subject, that the then clergyman of Dunbar, with a 
deputation of the corporation, went through the parish soliciting 

On January 14th, 1774, a tremendous breach was made in 
that part of the pier called the Bound Head, by a raging sea, 
accompanied with a strong Qorth-easterly wind, when, as a tem- 
porary baiTrier against the waves, 400 bags of sand were col- 
lated to fill up the opening. In the ensuing year, they com- 
menced boring at the. Island, for the purpose of widening the 
harbour, when one man was killed and another wounded. It 
was probably about this time, too, that the harbour was enlarged 
and deepened, by digging, upon an average, eight feet deep into 
the solid rock, when very commodious quays were built. In 
1785, the harbour was farther improved and deepened; and a 
new pier was built on the rock that forms the west entry, to 
whkh the convention of royal buighs, with a laudable muni- 
ficence, voted L.600; and a few years afterwards a convenient 
dry-dock was also built> but which is now unfortunately removed. 


Victoria Harbour was built in 1842, under the sup^intendence 
of the Fishery Board, the town contributing L.4500> and giving 
the use of a quarry at the KirkhiU. The lowest estimate 
was preferred, at the the sum of L. 12,990. So various was the 
opinion of the nature of the work, that the estimates varied 
from that sum up to L. 24,245.. 

The foundation stone of '^ Victoria Harbour'* was laid on 
Tuesday, 27th September, 1842, by the Bight Hon. the Earl (now 
Marquis) of Dalhousie, provincial grand-master for East Lothian. 
The different masonic bodies, consisting of deputations from 
Edinburgh, . Musselburgh, Morison's-haven, Haddington, North 


3<(8 RIflVOSt or DtJHBAlL 

Berwick, Danse, Eyemouth, &c., having joined the Dunbar CaMe 
Lodge, marahalled at one o'clock, and walked in ptocGBtaon to the 
Bite of the new harbour, an arch of erergreens decorating tihe spot 
assigned for the foundation stone* After an impressiTe -prajet 
by the chaplain (the Bev, Robert Moore, AJhL, minister of Old- 
hamstocks), a bottle, hermetically sealed, containing newspapers, 
almanacs, and coins, with lists of the magistrate^,- office-bearers 
of the lodgte and«other public bodies, was deposited by the grand- 
secretary, Charles H. Davidson, !Esq.^ Haddington. The stone 
was then lowered, and the grand-master, the Earl of Dalhonsie, 
gave instructions to Sheriff Biddell, and other competent 
office-bearers in his train^ to finish the business of the day with 
all the honouis due to the *^ mystic lie." The noble Earl, in an 
eloquent speech, addressed the meeting, to which Provost 
Middlemass made an admirable reply. He stated " that hie had 
received her Mi^esty's gracious permisnon to designate the hap 
bour, which was to be of such vast importance, not to Dunbar 
only, but to the a^acent countiy, and the stone of which had 
been so auspiciously laid — ^Vigtobia Habboub." This announce* 
hient was received with loud cheering from the multitude. The 
union-jack, which had triumphantly waved on the walls of thd 
old castle during the morning, was lowered, and one with 
'^Victoria Harbour" emblazoned on its front, hoisted in its 
place, while the guns of the batteiy fired a salute. The scene 
was highly imposing-— like eveiything connected with free- 
masonry, a pleasant enthusiasm animated the assemblage, many 
of whom had come from a considerable distance to witness an 
object of such extensive utility, oti which the welfare of thou'^ 
sands depended — ^while the clivemed rocks, which in less peace- 
ful times rung with the exploits of the gallant Ramsays, echoed 
the voice of congratulation of their noble descendant. The pro* 
cession, t>receded by music, returned by the High Street ; and 
at four o'clock a company of about 300 sat down to dinner. 
Provost Middlemass in the chair, supported by the Earl of Dal* 
housie> Sir Qeorge Wairender of Lochend^ Bart. ; Captain 

VKJTOlllA ftABBOtnu 289 

Hiinter of Thurston; James Hamilton, Esq. of Ninewar ; James 
Maitland Balfoar, Esq., M.P. ; Simon Sawers, Esq. of New* 
house, &c. The ceremonies of the day were concluded with a 
ball in.the Assembly Booms. 

The works had not proceeded for, when it was considered that 
they were too light for the exposure, tind after various remon* 
stranoes, both by the town and contractors, Mr James Walker, CE.^ 
was «ent by the Admiralty to inspect and report. In consequence 
of his in8[)ection, a further expenditure of mor^ than L.2000 was 
made. But even with this additional strength, fears were enter" 
tained for the stability of the work; and so early did this mani- 
fest itself, that the corporation declined to undertake the pre-* 
Bervation of the harbour. From time to time repeated injury 
was sustained ; and, although repaired by Government, no sub- 
«tantial improvement of the Works took place. 

In the end of 1656, a breach waa made through the sea-wall, 
which required immediate attention, to prevent the whole fabric 
from becoming' a ruin. 

In Januaiy, 1857, there seemed a disposition on the part of 
th6 Treasury to give some assistance for the protection of the 
works, and the corporation appointed Mr Ritchie, town-clerk^ 
and Bailie Barolay, as a deputation to go to London, to give 
explanations and agitate the question. The inhs^bitants also 
held a meeting, and appointed Mr EUis Dudgeon and Mr Peter 
Hv Hume as a deputation from the community. By their un- 
tiring firmness and perseverance, they succeeded in interesting a 
large and influential number of the Scotch members in their 
favour, and at a private meeting it was resolved to ask an inter- 
View with the Chancellor of the Exchequer. At this interview, 
which was more numerously attended than the private one, the 
deputation were much indebted to Major-General Sir Henry R 
Ferguscm Davie, Bart., M.P. for the five classive burghs, and many 
other Scotch members, who, with the Right Hon. R. C. Nisbet 
Hamilton of Beil and Dirleton, M.P., Sir Hew Dalrymple of North 
• B&pwkk, Sir Jolm Hall of Dunglass, and Sir John Warrender of 


Lochend, as a deputation from the county, warmly supported 
their views. This laid the foundati(Mi for subseqpient inter- 
views between James Wilson, Esq., M.P., Secretary for the 
Treasury, and the Clerk and Bailie. These ended in a grant of 
L. 10,000, and a loan of L. 20,000, for strengthening the sea- 
wall, making a wharf on the land side, and deep^iing the 
area four feet below ebb, on the security of the Victona har- 
bour dues, and three-fourth parts of the teind dues of both har- 
bours. But the securing of the grant was a work of time,, 
and required four additional joumies to London of the cor- 
poration deputation; and to their honour be it recorded, that 
the whole of these gentlemen imdertook the trouble and re- 
sponsibility without any fee or reward. The last deputation re- 
ceived the gratitude of their a public de- 
monstration; for, on their arrival, a boat,, decorated with flags^i 
preceded by a band of music, was in attendance at the railway 
station, and in this vehicle they were conducted through the 
town to the strains of appropriate music. 

It may be mentioned, that before the deputation first left for 
London, the clerk had prepared and received the sanction of the 
corporation to a statement, a copy of which, on arriving in Lon- 
don, was placed in the hands of every Scotch member, and fol- 
lowed up by an explanatory interview, which called forth univer- 
sal sympathy. 

On Wednesday, the 24th November, 1858, the inhabitants 
were agreeably surprised by the " auld clock hammer ringing 
the bell,** announcing the tidings from the authorities that the 
negotiations had been completed, and the money paid into the- 
town*s account with the Commercial Bank. In commemoratioiv 
of the event, the fishermen, and those employed in the repair^ 
paraded the streets with a boat, drawn on a hurdle, covered witL 
ship flags, and were regaled with ale from Belhaven Brewery 
In the evening there was a display of fireworks, and about fifty, 
gentiemen supped in the Freemasons* Hall. 

The building of the outer wall and deepening are in progr^* 


When finished, it is considered there will be accommodation for 
from 700 to 800 boats at Dunbar, with water sufficient to 
go in and out at all times of the tide* The importance of this 
undeitaking may be readily estimated, when it is known that dur- 
ing the herring fishing in 1858, there were nightly at the fishing- 
ground, from 600 to 1200 boats, congregated from' various 
parts of Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland, as well as from 
the French coast. Had a violent storm arisen, not more than 
400 could have found shelter. 


The custom-house was established in 1710, and comprehended 
in its juriBdiction the whole coast from Berwick bounds to 
Scoughal shore. On the abolition of the custom-house at Pres- 
tonpans, North Berwick was Silso added to the district, which 
now extends as far as Qullane Point, and is ranked as a member- 
port of LeitL 

To the custom-house succeeded the Coast Guard, about 1821. 
Their jurisdiction extends from Whitekirk to Thomtonloch. 
Lieutenant G. A. Taylor, B.K., commandant ; William B. Ken* 
dall, chief boatman, with four men. 
- Here the traveller was never harassed for a passport — 

He went ashore withont delay, 

Having no custom-house nor quarantine!, 
To ask hun awkward questions 09 the way, 

About the time and place where he had heen. — Btboit. 

' A boat was attached to the custom-house service, for the 
prevention of smuggling, &c., which at one time waa carried on* 
to a considerable extent, and to render assistance to ships 
stranded on the coast. During the French revolutionary war, a 
signal-station was erected at the Battery, which communicated 
tdth Blackcastle> North Berwick Law, Garleton-hill, «fec. The 
Battery was fortified with foi^iteen gans, commanded by a lieu* 
tenant and five men. 
Jn 1752, the East Lothian and Merse Whale Fishing Com- 


' " ■™^*"'"' ■ ■---- ---»■--.-------■■- - II - - II - | _- I - - Ill | . || j,_ | J|_ | -u- | _ | _ | ^ J , 

pany was established at 'Dunbar, and cansbted of the principal 
landed gentlemen iq the neighbourhood, in all 199 ahaies. At 
one time they had five ships engaged in this trade, of 1532 tons 
burthen, which employed 238 seamen. While the company was 
in a flourishing conditicm, the rigging out and furnishing of 
these vessels created a considerable bustle about the place ; but 
this firm, like other joint-stock concerns, when people enter into 
a traffic that they do not understand, failed in its object. No 
dividend was paid after 1785; and the company dissolved itself 
by mutual consent in 1804, with a debt of L.3383 on its head — 
minus L.17 sterling per share. 

The export trade of Dunbar was principally confined to the 
produce of an agricultural district, while its imports were chiefly 
wood and iron for the supply of the adjacent country. In 1792, 
there were only sixteen vessels belonging to the port, amountii^ 
in all to 1505 tons burthen and 100 men, employed in the 
foreign and coasting trade; and two Greenland ships of 675 
tons and 97 men; but it will be seen by the subjoined state- 
ment that the trade of Dunbar is now materially increased. 

In 1830, six vessels belonging to Dunbar were generally 
employed in the foreign trade, which were navigated by forty- 
one men, whose principal traffic was the importation, of wood 
and grain from the^Baltic; and there were other two vessels^ 
with a crew of nine men, occasionally employed in the same 
manner, and' at other times in carrying whisky to London, while 
there were twenty-seven vessels, with a crew of eighty-eight 
men, employed solely in the coasting trade, in carrying coab, 
com, whisky, herrings, ^, from one port to another in Qreat 

There were also five vessels belonging to the creek of Eye- 
mouth, navigated by fifteen men, and four vessels belonging to 
North Berwick, with a crew of thirteen men. These vessela^ 
were confined to the coasting trade, and were employed in a 
manner similar to those of Dunbar. 

*iiADi5. 278 

The quantity of coals imported at Dunbar in the year 1828, 
including her creeks, was-^ 

13,974 toA0 of Seoteb eoate ,' Imd 
3500 imperial duddhmd of EngBah dittos 

The 4r timber hnpotted £h)m fotdgu parted in 1830, 

715 loads, 24 feet (50 feet to a load). 

129 long himdredfl of deals and battend (kmg hmdted ol 120). 

The quantity of dom imported wmn^ 

Wheat, 6.. ^i 1669* quartew. 

Barley^ ... ••• 19^205} ditto. 

Oats, ... ».. 842 ditto. 

Wheat Fk>u]*, ... ... 220 sacks. 

BuckWhast, *•• •.. 561 qaaiierg. 

The com exp<»*ted hi thd datne fe0it 

Wheat, ••• ... ^08) qdaftero. 

Barley, ..< ••• . 1958) ditto. 

Oats, ... ... dl05i ditto, 

Beans and Pease, ... 8962} ditto. 

Malt, *.« •.« 2173 ditto. 

Wheat Flour, ... ... 2173 sacks. 

The whisky exported was 200,276 gallons. 

The trade of the port in 1830 was improved on the market 
being thrown open for the exportation of whisky to England. 
There were five dJatiUeties in the county, which readily con< 
Bumed the barley imported; now there is but one, at Had-' 

In 1827j the ballast of the harbour yielded '9k revenue of 
L.31, 15s. ; in 1858, L.40, 18s. 6^d. The increase is owii^ to 
the ample use of manure for the fields. The boom-pier and pier- 
rope yielded L.48, 19s. 4d. 

There is a manufactory for cordage and sail-cloth, lines, twine, 
&c., in the establishment of Messrs Barclay & Anderson. 

Ship-building was carried on to a considerable extent at one 

time, by Mr Walter Simpson and David Laing (the hero of 

these shores), chiefly confined to vessels for the accommodation 

of the port, which no longer exists. Boats, however, are occa* 

sionally repaired at the Wood Bush. . 

M 2 


._^ »M-»-»TnrTnrrTn"irTT T i ir < ~«'^' i ' i ~ ' I ' •t~i 


Mr William Brodie, Seafield Brickwork, conceived the idea of 
having a barometer erected at the harbour of Dunbar, for the 
benefit of fishermen. This gentleman having oocasioutb visit the 
fiishing town of Eyemouth, to deliver one of his biological lec- 
tures, in behalf of the " Young Men's Mutual Improvement 
Association," his attention was directed to a group of fishermen 
gaang upon a barometer. These hardy seamen were discussing 
the propriety of going to sea, as the instrument was indicating a 
change in the atmosphere. ' Upon which (says Mr Brodie) I 
asked an old seaman "What. he thought of the barometer? to 
which he replied — ^^ Many a coarse blast, and many a life it 
has saved. We counted ourselves guid judges o' the weather 
before we got it, but this is the best ane. If ye was comin' here 
at twa o'clock i' the momin' ye wad see them bumin' Indfer 
matches, keekin' at it, in case oay change had ta'en place durin' 
the nicht." 

It occurred to Mr Brodie, that if the fishing town of Eyemouth 
<20uld fiiniish such a valuable instrument, why not the royal 
burgh of Dunbar, where, during the herring season, from fifteen 
to twenty-five hundred men are employed, besides those belong- 
ing to the port, during the year. Accordingly, at the instance 
of ^ this patriotic gentleman, a subscription was elicited, in which 
he was ably supported by Messrs P. H. Hume, Lawfield; K 
Hood, Jinhead ; and Bailie Barclay, Dunbar. 

Through the exertions of the conmiittee, the sum of L.112, 
7s. 9d. was realised to cover the expenses. Of this sum Mr 
' Brodie contributed L. 2 6, besides L.15 realised firom his biologi- 
cal lectures. The barometer was furnished by Alexander Adie 
& Son, Edinburgh, with a case and an appropriate sculpture, 
representing a fisherman leaving his family on the quay, sur- 
mounted by a festoon of shell-work, from the chisel of that 
eminent artist, Alex. Handyside Ritchie, Esq., Edinburgh 
Finished 24th May, 1856. 


To this undertaking the Duke of Roxburghe and the Earl o^ 
Haddington contributed L.IO each. We cannot help quoting a 
card from the late Earl of Haddington to Mr Brodie, shewing 
how heartily that benevolent and excellent nobleman entered 
into the praiseworthy spirit of the proceeding : — 

Ttknikohame, May 14th, 1856. 

Sib, — ^I have j ost remved your letter and its endosure. At this moment I 
can only say that I most cordially approye, and will most certainly contri- 
bute. I think great credit is due to you for your energy and humanity. 
As by your account the building is finally arranged, if n6t nearly finished, 
I wiU not enter into the question as to how far it was expedient to arriye 
at an erection *' swperior to anything in Britain,^ This extra expense 
will in no degree add to the yery great yalue and importance of your kind 
and charitable undertaking, which ought not to put you to the expense of 
one shilling. I wi^h to know, before I enter my name on the list you en- 
closed, to what amount of subscriptions you haye already receiyed. — ^I 
remain, dear Sir, your most obedt. seryt., 

(Signed) Haddingtok. 

The Cove fishing village was indebted to the munificence of 
Sir John Hall, Bart., for a barometer in 1857. One has also^ 
been erected at North Berwick. 

276 HISTOBT <fr DUNfiAfi. 

CHAPTj;!!; V 

Think yoa now .behold 
Upon the hempen tackle ship-boyEi eUmbing, 
Hear the shrill whistle, which doth order give 
To sounds confused. Behold the threading sails^ 
Borne with the invisible and creeping wind, 
Draw the huge bottom through the furrow'd sea. 
Breasting the lofty surge. — Shakbpere, 


The rock-girt coast of Dunbar has been the theatre of many 
shipwrecks, and the sands of l^e the grave of many a gallant 
vessel. Our limits, however, will only allow us to notice a few 
of the most remarkable. In a strong gale from the north-east, 
during the night of the 14th November, 1746, the Fox man-of- 
war. Captain Beaver, commander, was cast away near Dunbar, 
and all on board perished. At the same time, the Trial sloop- 
of-war was lost at Holy Island, and one of the custom-house 

The last time the Fox was discovered was to the eastward of 
the island of May. It is supposed that she struck upon some of 
the half-ebb rocks near the castle, and lost her bottom, and that 
the wreck afterwards drifted to Tyne Sands, where she was swal- 
lowed up in the Homer's-hole, about one mile east £rom Tyne- 
water mouthy part of her rigging having at times been seen 
there. Most of the corpses were found at the back of the 
castle^ and others at West Bams Links, where they were buried. 
The Fox fireship, under Captain Killingworth, had been engaged 
in the battle of La Hogue. She was at the period of this 
disaster one of the guard-ships stationed in Leith Roads, during 


the tiihe of the rebelli<Hi; and had on board great part of the 
plate and other property belonging to the nobility and gentry 
engaged in the king's cause, as also the fire-arms and other 
accoutrements belonging to the burgh of Dunbar. 

Before proceeding farther with our short narrative, we must, 
in the first place, take some notice of the life-boat, as she was 
actively engaged in the disasters we have to record. The want 
of a boat of this description had long been severely felt on the 
coast of East Lothian, and it was in consequence of the inhabi-' 
tants of Dunbar and its vicinity having ivitnessed the ^' pelting 
of the pitiless stonn" on a stranded vessel at Thomtonloch, 
whenTone of the exhausted crew was brought on shore, only to 
exchange a watery for an earthy grave, that there sympathies 
were awakened to the necessity of some remedy. Accordingly, 
an "address to the public" was drawn up by Mr G. Miller, 
Dunbar,*^and by him printed and circulated gratuitously ; and at 
the same time a committee was formed for transacting the busi- 
ness attendant on this benevolent scheme,* and in a short time, 
L.371, 19s. Id. was collected by public subscription, thus show- 
ing that the public were feelingly alive to the necessity of the 
undertaking. It is a singular fact, that the boat was declared 
to be in readiness on the 14th October, 1808 (just one year 
from the first meeting of the committee), and the following 
morning she was put into actual service, under Mr David Laing, 
long the hero of these shores, for the purpose of rendering assis-, 
tance to. his majesty's sloop-of-war Cygnet, then in a state of 
great jeopardy on the coast. The boat, in tlus her first journey^ 
had to be conveyed to Lumsden-shore, more than twelve mUes 
east from Dunbar^ the nearest point from which she could be 
launched, and horses were readily famished by the tenantiy on 
this meritorious occasion. Happily the wind shi^Eting from the 
Axx^f the vessel was enabled to weather the storm ; but the ap« 

* The Committee conBisted of Mr G. Miller, bookseller ; Mr William 
Brown, accountant of the British Linen Company^s Bank, Dunbar; and 
l^r D^Y^d XjaxBg* flhipbuikter. 


pearance of the boat over the rocks on the evening of the I5tb^ 
as Captain Dix states, iB his certificate to' Mr Jjaing, '' gave 
great hopes to all on board, who had been so long in expectation 
of being dashed to pieces;" while the seamen welcomed her i^ 
proach by repeated discharges of cannon. 

On the night of the 18th December, 1810, abont half-past 
ten o'clock, some people on the shore of Donbar were alarmed 
by the appearance of bine lights or rockets to the eastward. 
This proceeded from the Pallas frigate, which, in company with 
the Nymph frigate, was returning from a cmise in the North 
seas, when, mistaking the lights of some limekilns in the neigh- 
bourhood for the Isle of May, and the May for l^e BeU Rock, 
they both ran ashore to the eastward of the town. The Nymph 
ran so close up to the drawkiln below Skateraw, that the sailors 
landed by means of the masts when they went overboard. The 
tenanlay, alarmed by the signal guns, had previously come to 
their assistance. The PaUas, however, was less fortunate. She 
had struck on a reef of rugged rocks a little 'to the east of 
Broxmouth Park and the Vault shore ; her keel was literally torn 
asunder, and from the rate at which the vessels were going, wluch 
was calculated at ten knots an hour, the i^ock must have been 
dreadful. From the pitchy darkness of the night, it was im^ 
possible to render the crew any assist^ice, or even to ascertain 
their situation, till the dawn of day, when they were beheld 
clinging to the wreck, exposed to the breakers of a tremen- 
dous sea, while the strand was strewed with planks, beams, 
spars, casks, and all the machinery of a shipwreck. 

A 4>arty of the Royals, then in quarters in the barracksy 
mounted guard over the wreck, and, along with the inhabitants 
who had come to the spot, gave every other necessaiy assistance. 
As soon as it was practicable, the life-boat was launched, under 
the direction of Mr Laing, and succeeded in landing two cargoes, 
to the number of from forty to fifty men, and in a way that 
called forth the greatest encomiums from the spectators. On 
taking in her third cargo, considerable confii£&Qa ensued; partly 

from the number of people crowding into her, by which she was 
overloaded, and from the difficulty of getting on board the 
captain, who had fallen dowQ in a state of complete exhaustion. 
On observing this accident, Mr Laing, unfortunately quitting 
the important post of steersman, rushed to his assistance, when 
the boat, broaching- to, upset ; and being by this accident thrown 
into water too shallow for her recovering, in consequence of her 
projecting stems getting entangled among the rocks, from which 
the tide had considerably ebbed, it was utterly impossible she 
•could regain her rijght position.* Mr Laing himself made a 
narrow escape ; he caught hold of a rope from the frigate, but a 
drowning man seizing it at the same instant, got his legs over 
^T Laing's shoulders, and completely immersed him in the 
waves, from which with difficulty he extricated himself, and got 
on board the frigate. 

Next to the exertions of Mr Laing, the conduct of the Duchess 
of Roxburghe was above all praise. The rooms of ,Broxmouth 
House were prepared with mattresses and hot blankets for the 
reception of the half-drowned crew, as they were carried from 
the shore in a helpless state; and through the unremitting atten- 
tion of Drs Johnson and Tumbull, the whole (with the excep- 
tion of the first lieutenant of the Pallas and two sailors) were so 
far recovered as to be able to leave Broxmouth in the evening. 
When the first lieutenant was brought on shore, be was ap- 
parently dead, and an hour and a half elapsed before he was 
able to move from the beach. Ten of the seamen, and a man 
belon^ng to the port, perished; amongst whom were some of 
the best swimmers, who, in attempting to reach the shore, were, 
dashed against the rocks. The Nymph mounted thirty-six 
guns, and the Pallas thirty-two. The latter was taken from the 
French by Lord Cochrane in Basque Roads, who mounted two 
of his favourite brass guns on her bow. It is ^mewhat singular 

* For a most satisfactory account of the cause of this accident, and of 
the impossibility of the result being otherwise, see Cheap Magazine^ vol. ii., 
a work published soon alter, and ^ted by Mr G. Miller. 

280 ' aiarofit of DimBAB. 

that a ship of t\m name (probably the same vessel) bekmged to 
Paul Jones' squadron when he was off Dnnbar. The Pallas was 
sach a complete wreck, that she was sold in lots on the spot ; 
bnt the Nymph, being in a better oonditiony was poichased by a 
shipbnilder from Snndm'landy who built a ship and loaded a 
brig from her remains, and besides got more from goviramment 
for the old co{^r, at a fiiir price, than he had pud for the 
whole lot \ A small vessel, called the Lov^ Ann of Aberdeen, 
came ashore shortly after, and lay stranded between Uiese 
Teasels, upon which it was rognishly observed, that tiie Goddess 
of Wisdom (Pallas) had led the two ladies astn^^ 

Major Middlemass, who was always first in the field ''to do 
the state some service," for his exertions on this tiying occasion, 
was presented with a idlver salver, valued at L.100, which beaia 
the following inscription : — 

" Presented by the Lords GommisBiafiierB of the Adndralty to Cbzls' 
topher Middlemass, ISsq., ProYosk of Danbar, in at^nowiedgmeni ci b» 
humane and zealous exertions to save the crew of his Majesty's late ship 
Pallas, when wrecked near Dunbar, on the night of the 18th December, 

In 1816, another shipwreck occoired in Tyne Sands, tmder 
very melancholy circumstances. On the night of Saturday, the 
9th November, the John and Agnes sloop of Newcastle, David 
Bell, master, was stranded, in a severe storm. The master of 
the vessel swam ashore in quest of assistance, leaving a brother 
and sister on board, who had been on a visit to him at New- 
castle. The life-boat, as usual, was brought to the beach, under 
the command of Mr Lsdng ; bnt, alas ! the brother and sister of 
Mr Bell had, during his absence, been washed from the deck, 
and the mate, in attempting to reiM^h the shore, also found a 
watery grave ; while a poor fellow, who had laShed himself to 
the shrouds, remained frozen in the speechlessness of death. 
The solitary remnant of this little crew was saved by the life- 
boat, the last office of the kind she was doomed to perform ; for 
by the time the Lady Anne Murray of Gate-house-of-fleet came 
on shore, in the xptonth of October^ 1821, she had got inio sncfa 

THY LIBB'-^OAT. 981 

a 9M^ of dmpmr, tbut l$»r Bfirvic^s were no longw araUable ; 
«nd it i^ e^ee^duigly paiiifiil ^ tiuok that,, on that particular 
ooea9ioii, tbey might vnder other eircuBOfltaaoeB! have been aYaii-^ 
«Ue> and' th^ miean^ cC adding anpt^er tife to the: wmb^ q( 
thoae^ she h^d abea^ 9aved.* 

1818, CH. ll^«— The Signet,, » gon-fr^te, w«b brought up^ 
hf » Qtvoi^ bree^ of wmI fiom the^ south-eaat, off Do^o-Law 
PoinU When the new9 wa9 brought to Sir Jamea ' Hall of 
Ihin^a^e^ he went iniiaedia|;ely to the Coye (a fishing village)!^ 
and told Thomaa Anderson, ik native o{ the place, that should ha 
biing the captain of the frigate ashore^ he would give one pound 
to eoeh man in tb€^ bo^ti beaidea his boat's orew a iHX>tection from 
the press-gang, Anderson, eyevy ^ iiysh a sailor," ga(7e imme^ 
diatfe order to hia boatmen to go aboard at all haiaxdsp^ They 
were fiye in number (ineliicling his brothers, John and William, 
Alexand^ Swanaon, and I(obert Ckkrdon), and away they sailed 
with their gallant little biurk, like a thiog of life, breasiting the 

* How the Ihmbar life-boat, 09, mote properly^ << the life-boat Mo&g^ 
Ipg to the county of East Lothiau,*' ^th her carriage^ &c., was allowed to 
fie by in such a state of disrepair, after having been so judiciously con- 
signed by the original oominittee, upon the completion of their yoluntary 
task, to tiie care and future disposal of those distinguished in^viduals who 
were, in the words of the printed address, issued to the subscribers on that 
occasion, '* possessed of so much ability and influence, to make them pro- 
duetive, on every emergenoy, of the greatest possible good " — and how mat- 
ters were suffered to get worse with her since, until the " ill-fated " boat, 
and her appurtenances, with the exception of ** the apparatus for restoring 
wapended animation," originally purchased from the same funds, were 
biou^t to t^e hammer, and disposed of for what they could bring, on the 
15th October, 1829 — ^it is not our present business to inquire ; but con* 
flistent witb our general plan, we simply record the short-lived history of 
tde boat^ ^d now that it has passed away, we would only express a hope 
that the ** apparatus for saving the lives of shipwrecked seamen,** presented 
by government to Dunbar, in ocnnmon with a number of other situations 
along the eoast, may prove effectual in the hour of danger, and be better 
fostered than its hapless precursor, as it is an apparatus that seems pecu- 
liarly adapted for the rooky part of these shores ; and which, it may be 
here remariied, they would have been put in possession of, or of sometiiing 
very similar, so long back as 1793, had the suggestions of Mr George MiUer, 
who took an active part in procuring the life-boat, been at that time crowned 
with success. 

M 2 

389 HHrroBTOF du^bab. 

ocean's spray, '^ dependant/' says our worthy oorreqKmdent,* 
'^tipon tbe great Creator, who alone is able to preserre in the hour 
of danger," when the seas contend with skies. When the ad« 
yentnrons seamen reached the Pease Bay, our correspmident 
graphically says, '^that the little boat stood as upright as the 
wood that grew upon land ; but fearing not, knowing in whom 
they trusted, they at last came to the frigate, and got the cap- 
tain on board, and landed him in safely on Lumsden beadL** 
At |this time there existed signal stations upon the coast, one 
near where the frigate lay, which tel^raphed to the officials at 
Leith, stating the distress of the frigate, who sent their life- 
boat, well manned, with the presf^ng, and six high-spirited 
horses to drag them to their destination ; but as the Donbar 
life-boat was on the way, they proceeded no ferther. The 
Dunbar life-boat, with four horses, arrived at Cockbnmspatii 
about three o'clock afternoon ; but accidentally she was staved 
in hoisting her over Lumsden shore's precipitous rocks. ^'It 
was curious," says a spectator, '^ to behold the fishermen from 
all quarters, ready to assist the crew, while at the same time 
they were in a tremor regarding the press-gang, who lay like 
tigers in ambuscade to snatch their prey." Such was the state 
of free-bom Britons at this time, afraid of a system which beat 
the conscript law and leUres de cachet. The vessel lay in a 
ruinous state, without masts or guns, her anchorage out, to pre- 
vent her from drifting ashore, when some vessels coming up, 
dragged the Signet to Leith, and happily there was not a man 
lost. In regard to our heroes who saved the wreck, John 
Anderson, who had served in the royal navjr, was with Admiral 
Parker at the Dogger Bank, where he lay for two hours and a hatf 
with a splinter in his thigh. His brother WHliam had served 
his countiy in the French war, and returned home also wounded, 
and afterwards sailed in the ship which brought Queen Caroline 
to England. 
. 1819, May 15. — We have a melancholy incident to relate. 

* Mr Pavid Blackball, teacher, Bilsdean. 

BfilFWBBCKS. 9^ 

lieutenant Stewart came on a visit to his nncle, Alexander 
Angus^ innkeeper, Cockbumspath, and a few days previous to 
joining his shipi he invited the two Misses Brooke, from 
Musselburgh, to. pay him a visit before he went aboard. The 
ladies (who were aunt and niece) came. With the Misses 
Biooke, he came to the Cove, the ladies leaning on his arm, 
wh^e he hired a boat. It was a beautiful day, not the least 
bree^ of wind blowing ; the waves waving in such an undulate 
ing motion, as to invite a pleasure sail on the calm waters ; but, 
ah ! it was a treacherous calm, and their joy was turned to sad*- 
ness. Lieutenant Stewart imprudently put to sea with only a: 
young fisherman, James Paterson, and the two ladies. When 
off the Pease Bum, the lieutenant called to the man to take the 
boat where the breakers were ; but he had cause to rue this 
'^ practical joke" request. The lieutenant stood upright in the! 
boat, put one foot on the starboard side and the other on the 
larboard. *^The two ladies, alarmed, rose from their seats, and 
took hold of the lieutenant, when the boat turned keel up, 
and the four were immersed in the yawning waves. Paterson 
regained a position oa the keel, and cried to the lieutenant — 
"Can you not save yourself T* He answered, "Not to-day, 
James ; do you think you will make the shore 1 " The ladies 
still held by the lieutenant, who, at last exhausted, sunk, and 
the three were drowned. The aunt's body was got next day. 
Sabbath morning, and was conveyed in a hearse to Musselburgh^ 
where she was interred, and a tombstone erected to her memory. 
The o^er bodies were not found. Thus perished, by the fooHsh 
recklessness of a seaman, a party who were much esteemed for 
their private virtues. Paterson was rescued by a boat from the 
Cove^ The fate of these unfortunate ladies will recall to the 
reader that of Mr Wilson, his son, and two daughters, who 
were drowned below Kirkhill Cottage, Dunbar, which we will 
notice afterwards. 

1830, August 30. — ^The Carolina of Hull was wrecked about 
sixty yards from the Doecove. Laden with grain, she yielded 

284 Hmt01£t tfP DtniBAS. 

to the viol^ice of the waves. By the acitivit|jr of the mate mA 
p^noDB on the be^h, the erew were saved. Happoly, P. H. 
flioney Esq., Lawfiekl, and Mr Ne^, one of the ]»«ventive bost-^ 
men, from Bedheagh, were on the fipbt at Hieldmle the ec^KHmer 
stranded. These gentlem^ eiterted themselves in a praise* 
worthy manner. They contrived to get the tope thrown oft 
board, by which, with their nnited exertions, the crew were 
saved. What made the scene more cKstressing, the captain was 
in a state of mental dtvangement. " Let no person despair of 
Ood*s providence," sayfi onr correspondent; ^'Cw when ^e 
schooner <»me in sight, nothing but despair hovered over them* 
The eea was in a fermented state, like a steam-boil^ reiuly to 
explode ; the waves rose to a fearM height The poor man- 
ners stood aghast — they reeled to and fro ; when the rainbow 
of mer^ gleamed npon them, kad the guardian angel seit a 
tear to heaven, which saved them from a watery ^ravei** BtA 
to crown the scene of this day's eventfrd escape, whi<& 1^ 
Blackball describes as the '^most beantiM he ever eaw," in 
consequence of the vessel being laden with barley, %he ha&gers-on 
gathered the grain aflter the insnrance companies were satisfied. ^(Q 
" I think there were from three to four hundred p^tK)ns on 
Bilsdean sands, men, women, and children, with baskets, when 
about seven a.m.. the roughness of the sea having subsided ixlto 
•a calm," the marauders retired -with thear booly. Sir John 
•HaU, with the benevoknt spirit which characterises 1^ fami^ 
of Dunglass, stood on the beach, and gave orders to give^veapy 
species of refreshment for the comfart of the survivors. The 
captain was taken to George Brown, the steward's house, wh^ 
assisted in conveying Captain Bussell to Mr M'Ewen's resi- 
dence, from whence immediate intelligence of the disaster and 
^insanity of the captain was posted to his family. His ^uglfter 
arrived, glad to find 'her father in existence. The captain had 
a considerable sum of money in his possession when he left 
Hull> of which he was robbed by tiie crew. The mate de- 

dared that thacapfcam Aar^w his pnrse^ filkd with soivereigns, 
into the sea ; but the cabin-boy said otherwise. 

1831, February 4w«^W«liav6 now to reoount one of the most 
melancholy disasters which eyer happened on these shores^ as 
regarded the loss of those whose business lay not on the great 
deep. The smack Czar of Leitb, Greorge Smith, master, during 
a severe storm of snow, was wrecked on Scoughall shore, about 
four miles east from North Berwick, when five of the crew, with 
the master and ten passengers, perished, among the latter of 
whom were Dr Scott of the Bifle corps and his lady, and several 
-domestics of Major-General Sir Jolm DaLrymple, Bart, of North 
Berwick, who had gone to Lovidon to witness the departure of 
the baronet to India, 

With storm-Bails set, before the |^a, tiie Czar 
Weather'd the echoing cavenis of Dimbar ; 
Bravely paf»'d o'er the shifting sands ot^S^ym, 
Where hulls and masts, tall as Norwegian pine. 
Lie many fathoms down. There, treasures hid 
Where green-eyed mermaids make their sea-weed bed ; 
And in the bosom of that vasty deep, 
What piles of wealth — ^what cotintless myriads sleep ! 

* * * Ah I too late they see 
The rotky sdarr that lengthens 6n their lee ; 
The creaking deck the rctshing' breakers sweep, 
With the whole bosom of the mighty deep : 
Then thickening snow, and icy sleets descend. 
Blinded, beneaSi their weight the sailors bend. 
From powerless grasp the helmsman feels her -reel, 
The tortured vessel tears its massy keel. 
Writhes — ^roars — and thunders in its agony, 
Like some struck eagle tumbled from the sky, 
Quivers beneath the ocean's earthquake sho<^ 
And, wedging, lies on Scoaghall*s (fieoual rocks t 

The oaken timbers omefe, while^SB^th, -alert, 
Desottkls -to die^r the dixtoping traveller's heajrt. 
Crowded within that solita^ berth, 
Where late was gamesome joy and noisy mirth, 
Knee-deep in brine, and drenched by the mad .sea. 
The sufiEereiB wait the fate they cannot flee ; 
For- now, upton^ the cabin-floorings rend, 
Beneath the weight of waves the bulk-heads bend ; 
Casks, balM pf ponderous 81^, come rolling in, 
And smother pueous' cries witii lu^xfOtipr din. 

S8d ' HiBTOBT or mnSBAM. 

Wedgmg the drowning Tictims whore they Stood, 
Who feU, in hmpB oonfused, amidst the flood ; 
While, crushed, expiring, the loud rushing noise 
Of m^ty torrents hnslrad each dying Ttnoe. 

When this fair ship for Sootia gladly bore. 

Her n>iw(Pingffis and crew were twenty-four ; 

But of these buoyant hearts, so sprightly hale^ 

Nine hardy seamen but sunived the gale. 

These lonay sailors, through the dreary nii^i;^ 

Clung to the wreck, to worship morning's hght. 

Which brought reflux of tide, when dawing day 

Shew'd the lone sufferers where th^ drowning lay ; 

For still betwixt them and the sands, a pool 

Bun, dark and deep, which might the bray est cool ; 

Then first to venture there, a gallant boy, 

Snatched up an oar, and swimming, mad with joy. 

Soon stood upon the rocks, and waved his hana. 

Crying, " Cheer up, my conurades, I have gain'd the strand I *^ 

Then came some stalwart boatmen to the beach,* 

Who« wading deep, the fated vessel reach ; 

From whence they, breast^eep, on their shoulders bore 

The half -drown'd seamen to the welcome shore. . 

There was a gallant sailor, known to war, 

Engaged in England's naval fights afar — ^t 

Hm seen great shipwrecks by Aboukir*s swell. 

Where victory rose when Abercrombie fell ; 

And where the Egyptian seaman, pale with fright, 

Smites his dark beard, which turns to deadly white I 

But here the loss of life was shed so free. 

Of those whose home lay not on the wide sea, 

It quell'd his vet'ran heart to see them lie, 

The hapless victims of the stormy sky. 

Here wedlock's tie was burst — unconsciously 
The husband and the wife dissevered lay : 

* Two brothers, James and John Kelly, fishermen, belonging to Canty' 
bay, rendered material and praiseworthy assistance in bringing on shore 
the crew that were saved from the Czar ; particularly the firsts who swam 
several times to the vessel at the risk of his life. 

t Mr Leamon, formerly commander <^ the ooast-gnard. North Ber- 
wick. In 1842, this gallant seaman, when on board his Majesty's Ship 
Blake, at Port Mahon, island of Minorca, jumped overboard, with the in- 
tention of saving the life of Lord Henry Adam Lennox, midshipTOan, who 
fell from a height of forty feet in the rigging, while the ship was entering 
the harbour. The young nobleman, however, having received a blow on 
the face, was found dead -when he and Mr L. were pid^ed out of the water ; 
and what rendered the case more distressing was, that his' lordship was 
partially under Mr Leamon's care. 


A1m» poor woman f with a mother's eye 

8he piotured home^ where Fortii's green windings lie ; 

She saw her blue-eyed Lilias, smiling, there, 

And knew each knot that bound her silken hafar ; 

Such painful anguish did her soul devour. 

She felt the pangs of death before the hour I 

There lay the maid betrothed, that spirit flown. 
Which in domestic circles might have shone ; 
Lovcy from the once dear form, turns sad away. 
Whose iodka of love have faded into day. 

There lay the old man, weltering in the flood. 

Who had growii grey in honoured servitude ; 

He just had earned a goodly competence, 

To comfort age with labours* recompense. 

He would not tempt the expanse of Indian seas, 

But, reckless, rushed where death was on the breeze.* 

There lay the gallant soldier, gashed and scanred, 
M'ho wrestled in the field where l^ons warred : 
He never tum'd aside to shun the ball, 
Though slavffhter held the lordship over all ; 
But dash'd £e banner in death's wormy face— 
Now crushed beneath the tempest's iron mace. 

SmFWBKCK OF '* The Gzab,** bt thb Attthob. 

1834, January 23. — ^The sloop Yeoman of Dunbar made a 
narrow escape. She came from Alloa to the Cove, laden 
witli coals. After delivering the cargo, James Robertson, skip* 
per, a native of Bedheugh, the crew having absented them- 
selves, got three boys, natives of the Cove, to accompany him 
in steering the vessel to its port, and they went to sea in high 
spirits, in hopes that they would reach their destination in 
safety. In place of getting to Dunbar, they bore out to sea 
with a strong breeze of wind blowing from the shore. The 
vessel got water-logged, and after being at sea eight days, the 
crew were picked up by a ship belonging to South Shields. 

1835, Jan. 19.— The schooner William Davidson of Thurso, 

* Amongst the sufibrets was James Davidson, an old servant of Major- 
General Sir John Bahymple, who had accompanied the. female part of the 
family to London, on tneir way to India. He was uigently invited to con- 
tinue with them, while tkey remained in the metropolis ; but they could not 
prevail on him la stay— *ld8 hour was come ! 

988 mBTO&T '(» DtlNBAB. 

from Newcastle, laden with coals, encountered a gale' off St 
Abb's Head. Drawing near nigbt, the wind became a hurri- 
cane. The hail Mling fast, the tide rolling in, the vessel be* 
came unmanageable about six o'clock afternoon. The sea car- 
ried her over the large rocks that lie within water mark, and 
stranded her on BOsdean beach, about 100 yards from the 
Doecove, a total wreck. The crew, five in number, were 
happily saved. Sir John Hall, in the same year, had finished 
a fine foot-path upon the west of Bilsdean Bridge, at the sea- 
shore. The night being ^as dark as chaos," the mariners 
could not perceive their position; but one of the crew ven- 
tured up the mast, and, to his surprise, landed on terra firmoj 
by placing his foot on the splendid foot-path, when he cried 
to his shipmates, "All% well!'* upon which they found the 
road, which carried them to Bilsdean, where they were r^aled 
by order of Sir John Hall. The cargo of the schooner was sold 
to Mr Thomas Hood, Cove, by the insurance company, which he 
sold out in bolls or tons, to accommodate the public. John 
Anderson, Cockbumspath, and John Liddle bought the hull, 
who, taking it down, sold it in lots, and cleared a handsome sunu 

There was another ship, near the Head, which had Swamped 
in the deep water. Two bodies were found near Bedheugh, and 
some pieces of wreck near the same place. From the violence 
of the waves, Thomas Blair's house was laid down at Skateraw 
Kiln, belonging to Thomtonloch. 

1841, Sept. 4.^— At Marshall Meadows, a boat belonging to 
Eyemouth, called the Phoebus^ was upset. The father, two 
sons, and landsman, all drowned. 

1843, Jan. 3. — ^At Skateraw, the schooner Cleveland of New- 
castle, from Antwerp to Arbroath, laden with bark, stranded, 
but got ofE^ by means of barrels, to Dunbar. Same tide, the 
sloop Isabella Hack, total wreck — ^part of the caigo saved. 

1843, Oct. 12. — ^The schooner Maria Emelia of Aberdeen, 
bound to Newcastle, laden with coal, encountered a strong gale 
of wind from N.E., about two o'clock snorauig, cS St Abb*ft 


satPwtiBCKg. 289 

Bead. The slec^ and wind blowing very bard, amidst the 
blackness of darkness, the crew knew not where they were»r 
Captain Whyte, who had seen milch foreign service, declared 
that he had never suffered so much as he experienced that 
morning. He had no sea-room, and the coals shifted with the 
roUiiig of the vessel. He commanded his men to trim the 
coals ; but in half ajl hour they were back to tjieir former posi- 
tion, the schooner lying on her larboard side. Their situi^tion 
was so perilous, that the captain addressed his crew in the 
style of Columbus—that " should it be the will of Qod that one 
of them might be saved, to tell the hews of their unavoidable 
disaster, he should rest contented/' 

Generous and brave ! when Qod himself U here, 

Why shake at shadows in your mid career t 

He can suspend the laws hunself designed ; 

He walks the waters, and the winged wind, 

!^imse]{ yotir guide ! — ^Bogbbs' VoTAais of ^OLUiiBUS. 

The captain's prayer was heard. The schooner stranded on a 
sandy beach below linkhead. He ^ent to the jiboom, when to 
his surprise, his feet touched in safety the pebbly shore. The 
wreck was taken down, and sold In lots to the public. 

1852, Jan. Q.'-^The schooner Susan, laden with grain, from 
Fraserburgh to Newcastle, encountered a gale of wind, about 
four o'clock morning, east of the Bass Eock, which laid her on 
her beam-ends. To lighten her, they cut away the mainmast 
and dropped anchor, which was found of no use, as she drifted 
along the coast, dragging her anchor and chains. The red flag 
flying half-mast high attracted the notice of the coast-guard 
boatmen, who came with the life-gun apparatus, accompiuiied 
by Dr TumbuU, from Dtmbar ; but the schooner was at too 
great a distance from the shore for her receiving any assistance. 
Like the Ancient Mariner — 

The storm-blast came, and he 

Was tyrannous and strong ; 
He struck with his o'ertaking wings, 

And chased us south along, 



With doping maats, and dipping prow, 

Ab one pniBued by yell and blow 
Still treads the shadow of his foe, 

And forward bends his head ; 

The ship strove fast, loud roar'd the blasts 
And tKuAwwrd aye we fled, 


At lengiih, moved by the violence of the waves, she Appeared 
off Bilsdean about two afternoon, where she lay, apparently as 
ffling as if she had been at anchor. Sir John Hall of Donglass 
sent his groom to Dunbar, and telegraphed to Berwick to send a 
gteam-boat to rescue the crew; but the answer returned was, 
that no steam-boat could venture out of the harbour, from the 
boisterous state of the weather ; when, wonderful to relate, the 
schooner bore away, and by the will of Providence, despite of 
the waves, she came alongside of a rock, in deep water, to 
the north of St Helen's, as directly as if she had been dragged 
by a steam tug. The crew got ashore from the rock ; one of 
them, in his anxiety, fell into the sea, but was rescued. 
The seamen were hospitably entertained by "William Hardy, 
£sq.. Old Cambus, and Dr Tumbull attended those who re- 
quired surgical assistance. The crew had made a most miracul- 
ous escape, for the moment they left the vessel, she went down 
in the deep water, and turning keel up, went to pieces. 

1854, Feb. 13. — ^The Brilliant, laden with grain, ashore at 
Thomtonloch, a total wreck. 

1855, April 1.— The Early, from Newcastle to Leith, laden 
with pease and beans, became a total wreck off ThomtonlocL 
Men, four in number, drowned. The bodies were found, and 
interred in Innerwick churchyard. 

1867, Jan. 3. — In a hurricane or wind, more severe than 
ipany remembered, the sea-coast, from the Thames to Aberdeen, 
was strewed with the wrecks of forty vessels. Amongst these 
was one at Catcraig, keel up, all hands drowned ; another at 
Scoughall rocks — ^all the crew drowned— a solitary dog found 
moaning on the beach. 



On a* Sunday morning in September, 1856> about seveu 
o'clock, a large brig struck upon the rocks, close to tihe mouth 
of Broxburn water, below Broxmouth Park, the seat of his 
Grace the Duke of Eoxburghe, and almost instantly became a 
total wreck. The sea raged so fearfully, that it was impossible 
for a boat to venture out. Fortunately, the men of the Coastr 
Guard were alert on their duty, and having watched the dis- 
astrous state of the vessel, brought Captain Manby's apparatus 
to the spot, and within from 200 to 300 yards from the land, it 
was instantly put into requisition. The first of the rope from 
the mortar, being a wrong coil, broke. The next shot was mor0 
successful, the ball alighting upon deck. The rope being 
secured to the mast, the crew, numbering ten men and a boy, 
were safely brought to land in the basket. Nor was the last 
man landed too soon, as a few minutes only elapsed from the 
time he reached the shore, when the ship keeled over, and comr- 
menced breaking up ; and so rapid was the work of destruction^ 
that in the afternoon the only part of the vessel to be seen wasb 
part of her bows, while along the shore were strewn beams, 
spars, &c., broken into splinters. The vessel was. bound from 
Newcastle to Copenhagen, laden with coals, 250 tons register, 
ten years old, the property of her commander^ T. H. MoUer, and 

In rendering assistance to the crew, the conduct of the Duke 
of Roxburghe, who was happily at Broxmouth Park, was above 
all praise — ^so much so as to caU forth a letter of gratitude from 
Captain Moller, which appeared in the "Scotsman," dated, 
Leith, October 1st : — " While acknowledging the deep obliga- 
tion we are under to all who lent assistance, I have, on the part 
of myself and crew, to express our special gratitude to his Grace, 
both from the assistance rendered by him in rescuing us from 
the wreck, and from the great kindness we afterwards ex- 
perienced at his hands. From the moment the vessel struck, 


his Grace was actively engaged in rendering assistance. He 
took part in the working of Captain Manby's apparatus ; and, 
regardless of the danger, exposed J^imself in the water assist- 
ing us to reach the shore^ After all were safely landed, 
we were taken to his Grace's mansion, where we were sup- 
plied with dry clothes and food, and treated with the greatest 
kindness and consideration. To his Grace's son (Lord Charles 
John) and domestics we owe a like debt of gratitude. 
Will you therefore permit me, through the medium of your 
columns, to make this public but imperfect acknowledgment of 
myself and crew for the services rendered, and the kindness 
shewn to us upon the above occasion. — I am, &c, T. H. Molleb, 
master and owner." 

I could not help writing some verses on the occasion, from 
which the following is an extract : — 

Maidens of Bostock, ye shall wake to weep. 
And blanch your cheeks, and rend your auburn luur. 
Thy ** Valentine " lies stranded on the beach. 
Laden witib coals from dark Northumbrians mines. 
In Dunbar^s rocky arms, ^neath the deer-park, 
Where noble Boxburghe spreads his rich domains. 
Yes I there she lies ; and like a lion chained. 
Tosses in agony, biting her strong fetters, 
Struggling in vafn to set her spirit free. 

It was a dreadful night, and when pale mom 
At length arose, 'twas like a pitiless wretch 
That l^hts the fated culprit to his doom. 
But mercy is the sovereign boon of heaven. 
And Hope, the charmer, cheers the darkest hour ; 
Humanity came, like an angel mild, 
From Brozmouth's shades. Led by the noble Duke, 
Whose bright example nerved the seamen^s arm 
To deeds of daring, the brave Coast Guard 
Brought Manby's apparatus to the beach. 
And saved the drowning crew, amidst loud cheers. 

Maidens of Bostock ! ye may cease to weep. 
Nor tinge the rose-hue of your smiling cheeks ; 
But busk with garlands gay your silken hair. 
And deck with laurels Blucher's honoured tomb ; 
And dress yourself in holiday attire. 
Hailing your fathers' — loters* — glad return ! 


And when in vespers ye appeal to heaven. 
Kneeling before St Mary's sacred shrine, 
Kemember Koxburghe and his noble fdjjulj, 
Who rescued from the ocean's yawning wave 
Your friends and kinsmen from a wateiy grave i 


1847, December 6. — ^The weather, which had been uncom- 
monly mild for the season, changed on Sunday, when the neigh* 
bourhood of Dunbar was visited by a storm of snow and hail 
from the southward, and towards the evening of Monday the 
wind became high, amounting to a perfect hurricane from the 
south-east, accompanied with rain and sleet. The sea set in 
with tremendous fury, and, melancholy to relate^ with great loss 
of life and property on the coast — 

It was a fearful night, 

And on my soul hung the dull weight 

Of some intolerable fate, — Cowlet. 

and on the morning of Tuesday the shore betwixt Berwick and 
Dunbar was literally strewed with wrecks. 

The following are among the casualties which occurred on the 
coast: — 

Between Redheugh and the Siccar Point, the Korthumberland, 
barque, of Alloa, for Berwick, laden wi,th timber from America, 
grounded on the rocks. The men took to the shrou^ls, and re- 
mained there during the night. It being impossible to approach 
the crew with boats, Mr Hood, farmer, Pathhead, about three 
miles off, getting information of the imminent danger of the 
crew, rode to Dunbar, and gave the alarm to the officer of the 
Preventive Service stationed there (Lieutenant Johnston, RN.), 
who immediately mustered his men, and, having got Captain 
Manby's saving apparatus conveyed by a special train to Cock- 
bumspath, hurried to the scene of the shipwreck. Out of the 
crew, which consisted of sixteen, twelve were saved by the 
gallant and indefatigable exertions of the lieutenant and his men 
at the Bedheugh Station, supported by the country people and 


the railway labourers, who left their emplo3rinent for the laud- 
able purpose of rendering assistance to the sufferers. One sea- 
man was so exhausted, that he fell out of the basket and was 
drowned ; a boy was killed by the falling of the mast, and the 
chief mate and carpenter were among the sufferers. The body 
of the latter was afterwards found floating near the Siccar 
Point. The conduct of Sir John Hall, Bart., and of his son, 
James Hall, Esq., jun., of Dunglas^, was above all praise. 
From the first knowledge of the unfortunate disaster, they re- 
paired to the spot, and by their presence stimulated all to exer- 
tion. Mr Hall often exposed himself to the greatest danger in 
the water, and received the plaudits of aU present for his spirited 

The sloop Agenoria of Berwick, Eichardson, master, from 
Newcastle to Port-Dundas with coals, went to pieces on the 
rocks in the Cove Bay, below Cockbumspath. The crew, con- 
sisting of three persons (including the master), perished, two of 
whom were natives of Dunbar. The body of Mr Bichardson 
was afterwards found on the shore, and buried in Dunbar 

About the same place, the sloop Johns of Limekilns, which 
left Eyemouth on Monday, was totally wrecked, and the whole 
of the crew perished. 

At the Catcraig, between Dunbar and Skateraw, the Belgian 
sloop Le Rodeur of Bruges, with a cargo of apples for Glasgow, 
was cast on shore, high on the beach, and the crew saved. Two 
of them were washed of the deck, but regained it by the next 
wave, and got on shore much exhausted. This vessel sustained 
very little damage. Her cargo was sold by auction on the spot, 
the apples bringing only from lOd. to Is. per bushel at first, 
being little above the duty of 7^d. per bushel, and latterly Is. 6d. 

The sloop Blackets of Berwick, Air, master, which sailed 
from Grangemouth on Monday, laden with barley, was wrecked 

* There was Bomething afflicting in the fate of BichardBon, who was 
betrothed in mamage, on his return to Dunbar. 

FLObp. 295 

«a little farther east. The master and mate perished, and the 
third, a boy, had a wonderfdl deliverance. He had been ad- 
vised to go to bed during the night, and when the vessel was 
found next morning, bottom up, the poor boy was literally dug 
out of his prison, much exhausted. 

At Cockenzie, the storm about midnight raged with terrific 
ibrce. Between twelve and one in the morning, the schooner 
Napier of Sunderfend, coal-laden, from Wemyss to Perth, and 
the brig Hali£ax of Newhaven, Sussex, in ballast, were driven 
•on shore about a quarter of a mile from Port-Seaton. It being 
^bout high water, the vessels floated over a dangerous reef of 
rocks, and the crews were thus providentially saved. 

The Victoria Pier and Harbour at Dunbar completely resisted 
the violence of the storm, and rendered every safety to the boats, 
<fec., of our hardy fishermen, which was far from being tibe case 
in other places on the coast. 

The industrious fishermen of Port-Seaton, Cockenzie, and 
Prestonpans (like their brethren of Newhaven), suffered much 
from the tempest. Their '*big boats," too, had been hauled 
up to places hitherto considered safe ; but the high tide and 
raging waves reached them, and dashed many of them to pieces, 
while a large number of their smaller boats, from being near 
high water mark, were destroyed. In short, such a storm, ac- 
companied with so high a tide and heavy swell, had not been 
witnessed for many years. 

Along the line of the North British Eailway, a nurnber of the 
posts of the electric telegraph were blown down, which caused a 
temporary interruption to the Telegraphic Company in transmit- 
ting the usual intelligence from London. 


1846, Sept. 26. — ^The present generation had not beheld such 
an overwhelming flood as that which swept by Haddington on 
Michaelmas day, 1846. There was a close and heavy rain on 
Monday,, which increased during the night, and on Tuesday by 


mid-day the river had swollen to an immense eld;ent. At 
Clerkington, the seat of Major-General Sir Robert Houston, the 
stream nished in its desolating progress, and the stone-wail, 
which separates the pleamire-ground from the adjoining farm, 
was laid down in masses, or scattered in fragments over the 
fields ; trees were ploughed up by the trunks, and rack of eveiy 
description came floating down the river in its majestic course, 
while the east lodge was immersed some feet ill the overpower- 
ing wave. The West and EAst Mills, alid the Distilleiy Park, 
were inundated. A great portion of a massive wall on the 
south-east side of the distillery buildings was thrown down, and 
the inmates of the cottages were glad to find shelter and relief 
in Mr George Dunlop's hospitable mansion. The walks on the 
banks of the Tyne, which rise several feet above the bed of the 
river, were furrowed up and gutted, and the haugh, "where 
maidens bleach their linetis clean," and where the horse and 
cattle shows are now held, seemed immersed in the waters of a 
troubled sea. The old Franciscan church of Haddington, whidt 
stands on an elevated situation, was nearly surrounded by th« 
flood ; but the holy fabric was more fortunate than on the festi- 
val of St Ninian, in 1421, when, according to Spottiswood, 
" the people went to the church. in a great boat, and the sacristy, 
with the church's fine library and ornaments for divine service, 
were destroyed." In consequence of the improved nature of 
heightening and draining of the streets, which are raised some 
feet above their former level, the flood made little encroachments 
on the town, except by the bursting of the coverings of some of 
the minor rivulets. Accordingly, some feet of water was lodged 
in " John Gray's house," at the old custom stone, a tenement 
celebrated for bearing a memorial, on an engraved plate, shewing 
to what height the water rose on the 4th day of October, 1775, 
when, at two o'clock in the afternoon, the river was no less than 
seventeen feet perpendicular above the bed of the Tjne, This 
circumstance, however, which in some degree saved the town, 
threw the waters in more abundance on the suburb of the Nun- 


gate^ which stands on the north bank of the river, above which 
it is elevated some feet by an earthen terrace, and ia also pro* 
tected by a wall a few feet in height. The flood here rose to 
such a height as to inundate the dwellings to the extent of 
three and four feet The inhabitants were forced to abandon 
their dwellings ; beds, chattels^ and wearing apparel, floated in 
every direction ; the goods of some grocers' shops were entirely 
destroyed — ^herring barrels swept off the counter^ — ^and the gude- 
wife saw her kail-pat, with its sheep- head treasures, landed on 
the floor, while the swinefeeder,- immersed to the waist, with 
great difficulty dragged his tusked favourites from the mire. 
At Gimmersmills (the property of George More, Esq.), which are 
situated a short distance below the Nungate, the waters spread 
over the under flat to the height of a foot, exciting much con- 
Btemation for the safety of the inmates. A field behind the 
mill, at an elevation of six or eight f At above the bed of the 
stream, was completely submerged, the walls overthrown, and 
from the quantity of gravel deposited, and the deep ruta occa- 
sioned by the current, sustained an injury which would not be 
easily repaired. The high lands on the left bank of the Tyne 
at this spot made the flood particularly destructive to the low 
lands on the right. Trees of considerable growth were strewed 
on the ground, and but for the prudent foresight of making 
apertures in the walls which enclose the Amisfleld policy, and 
thus allowing the accumulating waters to escape, much addi- 
tional damage might have been done to the adjoining produce 
and property. 

Amisfleld Park (the seat of Lord Elcho), where lately the 
covey flew on whirring wings, lay like a shining lake, where 
trouts might disport; and the Abbey Mill, where in olden 
times the abbess, with the cruciflx in her hand, bade the waters 
recede, was immersed three or four feet in the flood. 

As the day advanced, still the river rose, and the railway 

company were doomed to come in for a 'share of the destructive 

power of the stream. At the village of East Linton, the Tjme 

p 2 

296 mfftonr of DUHBiA. 

ift between sixty and eighty feet broad, and its oonise being 
over a rocky bed, it descends at this point with considerable 
ragidily. A spadons bridge, or viadnct, for the railway, 200 
feet in length, and eighty feet in height, composed of four 
arches, two of which are placed on the opposite banks, and the 
other two in the centre of the river, supported by a strong pier, 
which was recently erected, was compelled to fidl before the 
stormy flood. In the afternoon, a few minutes after the train 
bad passed, the two centre arches fell with a tremendous crash ; 
but from the noisy roar of tiiie currents, the fiill was scarcely 
perceptible to the inhabitants. The null, a little beneath, had its 
sluices carried away, and the dam chocked up with grayel and sand. 
Beneath this spot the boiling surge, fftUing about twenty feet 
into a rocl^ linn, had a stunning effect, and farmed a magnifi- 
cent waterfedL And it is worthy of remark, that neith^ the 
old bridge, which is situated a few yards below the viaduct, or 
those at the Kungate and Abbey, near Haddington, were in the 
least degree injured, as if those aged veterans stood to laugh at 
the futile masonry of modem days. We may do the builder of 
the bridge the Justice to state, that it had been haatUy reared, 
and such a deluge of waters could not possibly have been fore- 

Two bridges at Beltonford, on the railway line, were also de- 
stroyed by the flooding of Beil water, in consequence of which 
the traffic on the railway was completely interrupted^ and the 
now exploded chaises, omnibuses, and vehicles of every descrip- 
tion were put in requisition. These disasters, however, were 
not confined to East Lothian. The entrance of the tunnel at 
Cockbumspath was partially submerged by the overflow of a 
stream in the neighbourhood ; and at Penmanshiel, in Berwick- 
shire, where the railway is carried over a deep glen, by an 
embankment upwards of 100 feet in height, the arch was so 
choked by accumulated waters, rising to the height of ninety 
feet, that an enormous gap was made in the embankment, while 
other bridges on the same line towards Berwick shared an equal 

fate. These unexpected accidents were remedied by temporary 
wooden erections ; and the bridge of East Linton, with its strong^ 
timber repairs^ is considered more efficient than it was formerly. 
In addition to the damage on the railway line, a bridge over 
the Hopes water, above Giford, was destroyed; and in the 
policies of the Yester and Whittinghame estates some elegant 
fanciful bridges were swept away, and much property damaged in 
other parts of the counly. 


On Saturday, 12th September, 1857, the town oi Dunbar was 
thrown into a state of great excitement, by the loss of four lives 
by drowning — ^father, son, and two daughters. The facts are as 
follow : — 

Wniiam Wilson, Esq., &om London, had taken a marine 
residence at Kirkhill Cottage, near the sea shore. Having 
spent the summer there with his family, he had made arrange- 
ments to leave for London on the following Monday* Not- 
withstanding that the weather on the morning of the above date 
was very uninviting, and the sea receding, the two daughters of 
Mr Wilson, Margaret Ellen and Alice, aged respectively eighteen 
and fifteen, resolved upon having their last bathe for the season. 
Accordingly, about half-past ten, -they went down to the sea, 
which is only about forty yards from the house, accompanied by 
their maid servant and a young brother, about nine years of 
age. The two sisters, being excellent swimmers, went out into 
deep water. They had been in but a short time, when they 
were observed by the maid to be in danger, and clinging to each 
other, being carried back very rapidly by the receding tide, and 
calling loudly to her for the help of their father. She imme^ 
diately ran to the house and alarmed her master, who, with his 
son James, aged nineteen, was dressing himself at the time. 
They immediately repaired to the scene of danger, and saw the 
young ladies still clinging together. Making a sign with his 
hand to them to bear up, Mr Wilson plunged into the sea, 

300 B18T0BY 09 DDHBAB^ 


without undressliig. James abnost immediately followed him^ 
only taking time to partly strip, and in a few minntes all the 
four were seen by Mrs Wilson and the maid to be dinging 
together in confdsion. No other person was present at the time, 
but their cries were heard by onr informant, Sergeant John 
Bain, of the County Police, who lost no time in hastening to the 
spot, Mrs Wils6n was there alone, screaming in despair. Only 
one body was now to "be seen, and partly stripping himself, 
Bain succeeded in getting hold of it, and bringing it ashore, 
when it proved to be that of Margaret Ellen. A number of 
persons had by this time collected on the beach, and a labourer, 
named Francis Taylor, recovered the body of James in a few 
minutes after. When Margaret was first taken hold of by Bain, 
her bathing-gown was over her head, which gave her little chance 
of swimming, yet at that time there were famt agos of life, as 
she was heard to give a heavy sigh. Dr John Tumbull was 
ready to receive her on being taken to the land, and used every 
means to restore animation, but without success. Dr James 
Dunlop was in attendance on James, and using every exertion, 
it was thought for some time that he might revive ; but their 
hopes were doomed to be disappointed. 

Every search was made for the two remaining bodies, dur- 
ing which the state of Mrs Wilson may be easier imagined 
than expressed, as she witnessed the whole scene. The men of 
the Coast-Quard having procured a boat, made every endea» 
vour to find them, but in vain. The same evening, the body 
of Alice was found washed ashore at the back of the Soap 
Works, near the old harbour. The body of Mr Wilson was not 
found until a week after. It was thrown out near the Cat* 
craig, which is about three miles apd a half from where he 
was lost. They were taken to Edinburgh, and interred in the 
Grange Cemetery, the family biurial-ground. 

Mr Wilson was an extensive hat manufacturer in London, bnt 
had retired from business. He was a brother of John Wilson's, 
Esq., M.P., of the Treasury. 


A more melancholy event had not happened on these shores 
since the fate of Lieutenant Sydenham Wylde, B.N.9 of the 
Coast-Guard, fimnbar, and his crew, on the 20th August, 1845. 
During the heipng drave, a violent storm came suddenly on, 
with a heavy sea, when the Eed Bover £shing-boat, of Buck- 
haven, with a crew of five men, William Thomson, master, in 
making the old harbour about ndd-day, was driven among the 
rocks, and totally wrecked. Three of the crew were instantly 
drowned. The master got on to a rock, and was saved. His 
brother reached a small rock near the iron pole, which is sur- 
rounded by deep water, and covered at full tide, against which 
the sea was fearfully breaking. A number of people were con* 
gregated on the rocks, within twenty yards of him, who made 
many fruitless attempts for his rescue. As a last attempt, Lieur 
tenant Wylde, Mr Lucas, chief boatman, with four seafaring men 
belonging to the town — David and Peter Darg, William Miller, 
and WilHam -Clements — ^volunteered their services ; and, in a 
fishing-boat, boldly ventured out. haying a rope communicating 
with the shore. They had nearly reached the rock, when the 
poor man was washed off; but he struggled to keep up for a 
short time, and neared the boat. At this time the shore-rope 
was loosened from the boat, to give her more way. The crew 
had almost succeeded in catching his hand, when a sea struck 
ihe boat, and deprived them of their oars, driftmg the Uttla 
craft among the rocks behind the pier, when, melancholy to re- 
late, it was dashed to pieces, and the whole crew were drowned. 
It is distressing to think of the extent of the affliction which 
this tearful event occasioned. Lieutenant Wylde, Mr Lucas, 
P. Darg, and W. Clements, left families. The state of excite- 
ment shed a gloom over Dunbar, so many witnessing a scene 
where they could render no assistance. It was not known what 
caused the Bed Bover to attempt Dunbar, with such a fearful 
sweU in-shore, not having been employed in the fishing there 
for some days. It is thought that she was well fished, and 
from the circums^^ce of few Dunbar boats ' being out, ex- 


pected a more ready and better market £or her cargo than on 
the Fife coast. 

The fimeral procession, which proceeded firciEi Ite house of 
Lucas (the coffin coverecl vritk a flag)^ was a mebmcholy sight, 
borne by the men of the Coast-Qnard, from the stations of 
North Berwick, Dunbar, and Bedheugb, attended by Captain 
Arrow, RN., commander, and the officers and men of the Ghrey- 
hound revenue cutter ; Captain Motte and officers of the French 
cutter, then on the station, looking after their boats while making 
purchases ; Captain Hay of Belton, RN. (latterly Bear-Admiral) ; 
the magistrates, clergy, and respectable inhabitants; while the 
town-bell tolled a requiem, and the shops were shut. 

Of the sufferers, David Darg was a young man of great 
courage and humanity. In the previous year, he was mainly 
instrumental in saving the lives of a boat's crew, near Dunbar. 
When Darg heard of the disaster, he hastened to the beach, and 
volunteered his services. A young woman, to whom he was 
betrothed, caught hold of him, and implored him not to go> as it 
would be throwing away his life. " I am not afraid of my life," 
he replied ; '^ I must go ! I cannot see my fellow-creatures 
perish, if I can help them !" With these words he sprang into 
the boat, and fell a sacrifice to his praiseworthy humanity, leav- 
ing a widowed mother, who was solely dependant on him, to 
deplore his untimely end. 

Lieutenant Wylde's body was not found till Friday week 
afterwards, in a horrid state of decomposition. Captain Hay of 
Belton acted as chief mourner at his funeral. The union-jac^ 
covered the coffin, crowned with the cap, sword, and belt of the 
deceased. A tablet, as we have already noticed, was erected 
in Dunbar churchyard, to the memoiy of Lieutenant Wylde and 
his brave companions : — 

They had heard the din of battle, 

lliey had felt the shock of war. 
Little dreaming they should perish 

In thy rocky arms, Dunbar. 

BMt^odLma. 303 

A public meeting was held at Dunbar, for the relief of the 
\dves and families of the suflferers, of which Bailie P, H. Hume 
was chairman, and Mr James Bitchie, of the Commercial Bank, 
appointed treasurer. The sum of no less than L.400 was sub- 
scribed. At th0 head of the list was Provost Middlemass and 
the Eight Hon. Sir /George Warrender, Bart. Besides this 
handsome donation, a pension of L.15 yearly to the widows and 
£Eunilies was granted by goyermnent. 


The dell cakn fiddling through the to\^ 

And danced awa wi* the exciseman, 
And ilka wife cries, '' Auld Mahoun, 

I wish you luck o' the prise, man ! '* — 'BuBNS. 

About seventy years ago, smuggling was carried on to a 
considerable extent on the sea-coast of the county, and many a 
keg of " Hollands gin "^ and French brandy were deposited in 
the rocky recesses of the Cove shore and caverns of the Bass 
Rock. In fact, no crime was more lightly esteemed than cheat- 
ing the gaiiger, which, as a matter of course, led to deeds of a 
darker die. 

In August, 1744, the magistracy of the county having ob- 
served with great satisfaction the spirit that prevailed through 
out the kingdom to suppress the pernicious practice of smuggling, 
as fatal to the true interests of the country, and to encourage 
the consumpt of their own home-made malt liquors and spirits in 
place of French brandy, came to a resolution to discourage all 
manner of smuggling whatsoever. Acting up to this spirit, the 
heritors of the shire of Haddington had met on the 1st May, and 
subscribed resolutions to the following effect, in which not only 
liquors, but the spinster's favourite beverage, " that cheers but 
not inebriates," was interdicted : — 

" That an expensive and luxurious w^-y of living had shame- 
fully crept in," observed they, " upon all ranks of people, who, 
neglecting the good and wholesome produce of their own 


country, liad got into the habit of an Immoderate use of PVench 
wines and spirits in pnblic-honses and private £uniliesy which 
liquors were in a great degree clandestinely imported, and 
smuggled through the coimtiy, in defiraudence of the revenue ; 
as also that the drinking of tea, and especially among the people 
of lower rank, had arrived to such an extravagant excess, that 
during the war with France they should not drink Rench wine 
in any public-house, &c., or use any way in their private houses, 
brandy or French spirits; and that they should moderate or 
discourage the drinking of tea in their families." * 

When beef and ale on the board were spread. 
Our men were stont, and the women bred ; 
And glorions old Bess woold have laughed with me^ 
At the sight of an Englishman tipping tea. 


In my notes to the " Shipwreck of the Czar," I had occasion 
to notice that a barbarous practice, which once prevailed on our 
shores, had passed away like the spirit of a dream. This system 
is alluded to by Falconer, in his beautiful poem of " The Ship- 
wreck," as existing on the Cambrian coast : — 

I know, among yon, some full oft have viewed, 
With murdering weapons armed, a lawless brood. 
On England's ^e inhuman shore who stand, 
The foul reproach and scandal of our land ! 
To rob the wanderer wrecked upon the strand. 

Tet did the same exist in East Lothian at the end of the last 

century : — 

Then came Dalrymple, generous and good, 
To tame the darmg outlaw's lawless mood. 

This couplet alludes to Sir Hew Dalrjmaple, the father of the 
late Major-General Sir John Dalrymple, of North Berwick, Bart. 

" It was in the early part of the year 1790, that Mr Dal- 
r3rraple was roused at midnight by a tremendous storm, and 
cries from the crew of a vessel wrecked near his house. In- 

* Tea was then retailed at lOs, per lb. It is nowlesB than U. 

Btantly rushing forth from safety, warmth, and comfort, he found 
the unfortunate seamen struggling with the fuiy of the tempest, 
and the danger of theS: situation much increased hy lawless 
banditti assembled on the beaoh for plunder, and, as is too often 
the case, for murder in case of resistance. 

<< Baving vainly entreated them to assist in his humane pur- 
pose, he procured fire-arms, and declared, notwithstanding their 
siiperior numbers, that he would shoot the first man who offered 

^' Arrested by fear, for bad men are generally cowards — at 
length convinced by precept^ which would not so often fail were 
it inculcated by example-— and toudied by a conduct so glori- 
ously opposite to their own, they relinquished their abominable 
purpose, vigorously co-operated with their humane and spirited 
director, and, after considerable difficulty, danger, and fatigue, 
saved the sailors, ship, and cargo. 

^^ The converted marauders were rewarded for this animated 
exertion, and Mr Daliymple received the public thanks of his 
oountty. His behaviour on this and other occasions has also 
produced an influence highly salutaiy on the inhabitants of that 
and the adjoining coasts, who had long been notorious for their 
unwarrantable treatment of shipwrecked seamen; the worst 
species of robbers are become hospitable and enterprising re- 
lievers of marine distress.*' — See ^' The Curious Book." 


The following is a list of the shipping belonging to Dunbar 
In 1859 :— 

Black Agnes, William S^mith, maBtee, 58 tons r6gSster» ooaet and foreign. 

Sisters, Wm. Bichardaon^ „ 47 „ coasting. 

Margt. Lang, John M'Intosh, „ 48 „ coasting. 

Hotspur, Thomas Phillip, „ 48 „ coasting. 

Stephens, Robert Eraser, „ 86 „ coasting. 

The export trade consists chiefly of potatoes, grain, and her- 
rings. The imports are timber, rape^cake, coals ; guano, bones, 
and other agricultural manure. 


3M RBnroBT ot oiniBAX. 



It is obvioiiB that the chief oommetce of a maritime town lies in 
its shipping or fishery, and that any other traffic must arise 
solely &om its local advantages. The annexed list shows that 
the shipping of the port has diminished since the opening up of 
the Horth British Bailway, which has made a complete revolu- 
tion in business affaks. The same cause, however, that has 
diminished the shipping has benefitted the fishermen, from the 
number of respectable agents of the English fishmongers it has 
brought to the burgL These gentlem^ readily buy up the 
piscatory treasures of the deep at a liberal price, and send them 
off in train-loads to London, Manchester, and the principal cities 
of the sister kingdom. 

Banks. — ^A branch of the British linen Company Bank was 
established in 1788. C. Middlemass of IJnderedge, agent. He 
was succeeded by Thomas Nimmo, and afterwards by John 
Kelly, whose son, John Kelly, ex-provost, is now manager. 
A branch of the Commerdal Bank of Scotland was establi^ed 
in February, 1833. W. H. Eitchie, town-clerk, agent. A branch 
of the City of Qlai^;w Bank was opened December, 1853, with a 
savings' bank. John Jaffiray, agent A branch of the Western 
Bank of Scotland, o^tabliahed 29th February, 1856, with a 
savings* bank in connection. Geo. R Bobertson, agent. Trans- 
ferred to J., J., and T. Kirkwood. Owing to the iniqoitons 
failuro of the Western Bank in 1857, the branch was shut. The 
East Lothian Bank was instituted in 1810, and waa dissohed 


in 18239 in oonsequenoe of Williftm Borthwick, the manage, 
absconding with lulls and specie tp a considerable amount. 
This feiloie was a severe blow to Eaat Lothian, as many of the 
eapitalists and agriculturists in the neighbourhood were con- 
nected with the bank as shareholders ; but from this unexpected 
occurrence it has long since recovered. 

Skmp and Tax Office. — John Ferme, collector of land and 
assessed taxes, and property and income tax, for the county and 
burghs, and distributor of stamps. Alexander Cunningham, sub- 
distributor, Dunbar. Mr Cunningham is also sub-collector of 
land and assessed taxes, and property and income tax. Clerk 
to the Burgh Commissioxlers for assessed taxes, W. H. Bitchie, 
burgh of Dunbar ; Bobert Craufurd, Haddington, surveyor. 

Inland Revenue — JSxcise Department. — James Luckie, Had- 
dington, collector ; John Ooodwillie, supervisor ; Alex. Stedman, 
Dunbar, officer. 

Fost^ffice. — ^There is a branch of the Edinburgh Oeneral 
Fost-Office, Miss Christina Barclay^ post-mistress. 

On the ICth January, 1840, a complete revolution took place in the 
transmitting of letters, which created a considerable sensation, and wa/tf 
rather a novel scene in the burgh, in consequence of the mania which pre- 
vailed in the lieges wishing to indulge thems^ves in this new and cheap 
mode of epistolaiy correspondence. 

Twen^ years have elapsed since the penny postage, elaborated by Mr 
Bowland HiU, has given the benefit of epistolary correspondence to evcoy 
class of the community^ The dynasty of Bir Fraucis Freeling has made its 
exit. Members of Parliament are no longer himted by their constituents for 
franJet, The feature of the old postal system has faded away. The lettev 
to London, which cost Is. l^d., to Edinburgh TJd., and to Haddington, 5^. 
can now be transmitted to London in ten hours for one penny / 


Libraries. — ^There is a library, as we formerly had occasion 
to notice, belonging to the Presbytery of Dunbar ; but it has no 
printed catali^e. Previous to 1780, there was no jugular book- 
seller in Dunbar, the mental wants of the community being tl^en 
supplied from the shops of tke general merchant, in the same man- 
ner as they are at present in the countiy yiUages. About this 
time, Alexander Smart came from Edinburgh, and commenced 


business ; but he left it again in 1788, and was followed in tlie 
book trade by George Miller, who published his first circulating 
library catalogue in October, 1791 ; and so much had his col- 
lection increased by the month of September, 1811, that his 
catalogue of that date contained upwards of 2500 volumes, in- 
cluding an account of his news and reading-room, forming per- 
haps one of the most complete establishments to be met with in 
this part of the united kingdom. The situation, however, being 
too local and circumscribed to afford lasting encouragement for 
such an extensive concern, after the d^>arture of the military, 
the greater part of the books were removed to Haddington. . 
To this succeeded a *^ Subscription Library " in Dunbar, but 
upon a much smaller scale, which was instituted in December, 
1815, but which is now given up. A convenient news and read- 
ing-room has been since established. 

FrinUng.^-'To Gt. Miller, publisher and general merchant, Dun- 
bar, the county of East Lothian is indebted for its first printing 
press, which was established in 1795. He commenced with a 
series of " Cheap Tracts,'* which superseded the conmion trash of 
the hawkers* basket ; and, in the shape of volumes, Defoe*s '^ Ro- 
binson Crusoe,*' and " Religious Courtship," were the first that 
issued from the Dunbar press. From being a more centrical 
situation for the county business, which at first was its principal 
support, the press was removed to Haddington in 1804, under 
the management of John Miller (afterwards of Dunfermline), 
and which latterly devolved on the author of the present volume. 
In 1813-14, a series of cheap publications issued from this 
establishment, which the Messrs Chambers (in their Gazetteer of 
Scotland) consider "as undertakings in advance of the age.** 
Of the ** Cheap Magazine," the first of these works, which was 
circulated through eveiy parish in Scotland, at a vast expense, 
from the high price of carriage and postage, 15,000 to 20,000 
copies were printed ; and Haddington beheld the novel scene of 
three presses in motion, which turned off twenty reams of paper 
in a week. This publication was followed by the " Mcmthly 


Monitor/' in sixpenny nomben^, printed on finer paper, And 
more of a literaiy nature tban its precursor. Both of thes^ 
works were written chiefly by the publisher himself, and .Mrs 
Grant of Duthil (the sister of Sir Neil Campbell, who accom- 
panied Napoleon to Elba), a lady who, from pure benevolence, 
lent her gratuitous servicer As a proof how much these publi- 
cations were eonsidered to answer the object they had in view, 
they gained the approbation of men of such opposite tenents as 
the celebrated Wilberforce and Eobert Owen, both philanthro- 
pists of a different school, and William Allen, F.R.B., the 
eminent quaker. The latter gentlemen wrote an elaborate re- 
view of the " Cheap Magazine " in the " London Philanthropist,'* 
of a most laudatory nature, and commissioned four dozen copies 
to be sent mxmthly to thfi Lanark Cotton Mills, of which he wa^ 
one of the proprietors, along with Mr Owen, who had married 
the daughter of David Dale, the originates and founder of these 
splendid works. In this progressive age Dunbar can boast of 
two printing presses. David Knox, of Dunsey established one ii^ 
1849, and James Downie, the publiaher of the present volume, 
in September, 1855. 

In 1820, the " East Lothian Register, or County List/* was published 
and projected by J. Miller, the " Bemarkable Events " c^ which laid the 
foundation of the present ''History of Dunbar" and '' Lamp of Lothian." 
. This List is continued by A. Nedll. 

In Februaiy, 1886, James Allan, Haddington, commenced the '* East 
Lothian and Berwickshire Advertiser," a four-page quarto, devoted to ad- 
vertisements, published on the first Friday of the month, of which 2000 
4M>pie8 are circulated gratuitously. In January, 1838, George Neill k Son 
commenced a similar publication, which is issued on the last Friday of 
the month. These Advertisers have proved of great utility, and are widely 
circulated in Dunbar and throughout the county. 

Bvfnhar MecharM Inetni/uiUni, — ^The Mechanics' Institute Teas 
formed in 1825. This branch of national improvement had an 
occasional lecturer, and an apprentices' school, which are for the 
present discontinued. Their funds have been well applied in 
augmenting their library, which at first consisted of 600 
volumes, and now numbers about 3000 choice works in the 
different departments of sdence and general literature, and 

310 HISTORY OF ptrmsAB. 

150 members. W. H. Bitcbie, president. J. Downie^ Hbcarian. 
This Institate was honoured with the patronage of Cajytam 
Basil Hall, R.N., who bestowed on it several valuable dona- 
tions — amongst others, the Waverley Novels, in 47 vols. Hia 
** Address to the Students/' in 1828, was characterised by the 
'^ Quarterly Review " as by far the best and most appropriate 
that had been delivered to similar institutions ; that of the Bev^ 
James Dodds, in 1844, which was published, at the request of 
the president and directors, we consider in no degree inferior* 
The lectures in the first session were delivered by James Morton^ 
teacher of the mathematical school ; the third, by Robert Lori-. 
mer, M.D., Haddington. There is a valuable apparatus attached 
to the institution. 

Dunbar Building and Tnyperty Investment Society. — ^This 
society was instituted 21st April, 1857, enrolled under the 
Act of Parliament, 6th and 7th, William lY., cap. 32, passed 
for the encouragement and protection of building societies. 
The object of this institution is to raise a fimd for advancing to 
the members sufficient money to erect or purchase dwelling- 
houses or other real property. The shares of the society are 
L.25 each, paid up at the small rate of 6d. per week, which 
enabled any economical industrious artizan to become a laird/ 
In the event of the accumulation of the funds, it was decreed 
that houses might be built for sale. The object of the sodely has 
prospered. The sum of nearly L.400 has been collected^ and 
L.275 have been expended on buildings in Victoria Street. 

The Society of Sailors of the Fort of Dunbftr.-^The " Sailors' 
Box '* (now called " The Society of Sailors of the Port of 
Dunbar/*) existed m the seventeenth c^itury. In 1705, 
when the magistracy found it necessary to interfere, in con- 
sequence of its funds being dilapidated, it was said to havo 
existed beyond the memory of man. The magistrates^ who had 
then the power of sheriffship within themselves, granted the 
society a new charter on the 15th September^ 1730. The fiindft 

of the institution were ori^aUy derived from a duty of eight 
pennies on the pound Scots, out of all wages paid to the masters^ 
mates, and saUors, frequenting the port ; but in January, 1807, 
.» new supplement of bye-laws was adopted, more agreeable to 
the times; For the purpose of encouraging the science of navi-^^ 
gation, the sodety formerly psdd a salary of L.3 sterling to the 
loafthematical teacher. 

Dunbar Mvtual Assisianee and Savmgi Society, — ^This society 
was established ^t Dunbar January 28th, 1828, and from 
liaving existed for tUrty years, shews how ably the affairs 
of the company have been conducted. It is managed by a 
president, twelve directors, a box-keeper, and a clerk, upon 
the most judicious principles, which has been promoted by the 
^assiduous attention of their secretary, who obtained a prize from 
H. G. P. Nesson, P.L.S., actuary to the Medical, Invalid, and 
General Life Office, for his contribution to vital statistics, in 
1845. The society commenced with forty members, and now 
numbers 542. Mr M. Suddon, derk. 

Duvhar Total Abstinenee Society. — ^Instituted in June, 1839* 
The members of this society are required to take a pledge against 
the use of intoxicating liquors, such as ale, porter, cider, wines, 
and ardent spirits, with the exception of wine when used a0 a 
reli^oas ordinance. A similar society was organized in 1854^ 
=ander the title of " The Belhaven and Westbams Total Absti- 
nence iaaid Maine Law Association." Their zealous secretary^ 
Willmm Hutton, Seafield Brick-work, has done much to further 
the cause. 

JVw Masonry. — ^Dunbar Castle Lodge was instituted in 1758. 
It is situated in a commodious hall immediately above the water- 
' dstem of the town. A hundred years having elapsed since the 
charter of constitution was granted in favour of the Dwibar Castle 
Lodge by the Grand Lodge of Scotland, the centenary was cele- 
brated on Thursday, 9th December, 1858, when the brethren 

"312 HlSTOllT OF DlflffiAJL 

formed in piocession, and proceeded by the High Street and 
Silver Street to the Assembly Booms, where they dined. Alex- 
ander Wood, R.W. Master; James Eno^:, secretary. The 
lodge is decorated with a portrait of Thomas Aitd»flo&, Esq., 
surgeon, who, both as an active magistrate and over the mystic 
brethren, held the sway for many years. 

jPvMic CharUies, — ^The poor, previous to the late Poor-law 
Act, were chiefly paid by assessments on the heritors, agreeably 
to the valued rent of the parish, and by contributions at the 
church doors. Of this sum the town paid one-sixth part, and 
the rest was made up by assessment on landlord and tenant. 
The only mortified money for the poor of the parish of Dunbar 
at present is L.7d, left by a person of the name of Binning, 
and which sum is in the hands of the town,, who regularly pay 
the interest to the kirk-session ; and the interest of 100 merks, 
mortified by Lauder of Beilmouth for the like benevolent pur- 
pose. There is a sum of 2000 dollars bequeathed to the old and 
indigent of this pari^ by James Murray of New York, America. 
The assessment for the poor increased to an enormous degree 
from 1790 till 1821. Since then, it decreased ; yet the poor 
were equally well attended to as formerly, and in some respects 
their circumstances better. 

The Parochial Board was established under the new Poor-law 
Act, 8th and 9th Victoria, cap. 83. The average number at pre- 
sent on the roll, during the year, is 170, their aliment averaging 
' from Is. to 6s. per week, according to their circumstantial wants. 
The Board consists of the heritors of the parish whose property 
is of the annual value of L.20 and upwards, in addition to six 
members elected by the rate-payers, four members by the kirk- 
session, and the provost and magistrates for the time being. The 
amount collected and expended for the support of the poor for 
the curreigi years, 1858-59, was L.1000, which will be about 
the average since the passing of the Act. John Kelly, banker^ 
chairman ; Henry Reid, inspector. 


I I J i - itfi "I'Tr rttj ' ~ — i r ~"' — •* ~ — ^ . i ir""" ^ T — ---------- -- -,- - - — ^-- ^ ^ - ■ 

Roadsj Stage-Goaches, dec, — ^The Great T^ost Boftd runs from 
east to west the whole length of the parish, and is kept In ex- 
cellent repair* There were three toll-bars---K>ne at Kirkhill^ 
another at Belhaven, and the third, a arosshbar, at Cliok->'ini-in. 
The latter two only exist now* The first vehicle of the desoription 
of a stage-coach, which journeyed between Dunbar and Edin<^ 
burgh, was a caravan or covered cart, started by Duncan M'Cul- 
Joch, vintner in the burgh, during the time of the camp at West 
Bams Links, in 1 7 8 1 . This machine carried six inside passengers, 
and performed its journey in one day, returning the next. But the 
first stage-coach, properly so called, exclusively confined to run be- 
tween Dunbar and Edinburgh, was started by Mr Henry Laidlaw, 
in October, 1804. It was originally a four-seated light coach, 
which left Dunbar at eight morning, and joined the East 
Lothian long'coach at Haddington at ten, and reached Edin- 
burgh at half-past twelve o'clock. It returned from Edinburgh 
the same day at three o'clock afkemoon, and reached Dunbar 
about eight This was succeeded by a six-inside coach, which 
performed the journey quicker. Another coach, called the 
Enterprise, was afterwards started, and ran upon alternate days, 
and at the same hours with the former. The fares of both 
coaches were then considered moderate, and they performed the 
Journey with as much expedition as the Londcm coaches. The 
Eoyal Mail, the Union, and the Berwick coaches, also passed 
through Dunbar on their way to the metropolis. There were 
likewise Berwick waggons and Edinbuigh carriers twice a-week, 
and a Dunse carrier weekly. 


Soon shall thy arm, onocmquered steam, alar 

Drag the slow barge, or drive the rapid ear ; 

Or on wide-waving wings expanded bear 

The flying chariot through the fields of air. — ^Dabwiit. 

These lines of Darwin have proved prophetic A most ex- 
traordinary revolution took place in regard to travelling on the 

opening of the railway at Dunbar in 1846. By means of this 

fi 2 


lightning-footed steed, the whole host of stage-coaches, from 
the royal mail to the smallest Diligence, were banished from the 
highway. In place of dragging yoar lazy length along at the 
rate of six miles an honr, thirty-five to forty can be accom- 
plished. The natnre of the traffic is chiefly agricultural and 
fishery. The quantity of herrings exported by the train in 
1858 was 4000 tons ; of coals, 4000 tons. The annual revenue 
derived from passengers booked at Dunbar, in the same year, 
was L.3414, 14s. id.; goods traffic, L.10,415, 14s. 9d. ; Total, 
L.1 3,830, 8s. lOd. 


The principal villages in the parish are Belhaven, West 
and East Bams, and Broxburn. The ancient villages of Bel- 
ton, Hetherwick, and Pinkerton, fell to decay with their 
chapels, and have been partly removed to make room for agri^ 
cultural improvements. An aged tree or a solitary dovecot, is 
all that now remains in some places to mark where the inmates 
of the onstead " laugh'd loud in the village ring." 

Belhaven, which was originally the port of Dunbar, is a 
thriving villlage.* Its healthy situation render!^ it a good retreat 
for the valetudinarian ; and besides Winterfield, the seat of 
Major Anderson, several villas have been erected in its neigh- 
bourhood. The range of houses immediately opposite Winter- 

* Part of the lands in this neighbourhood belonged to the family of 
Lauder of Bass. In 1745, the son of Lauder, then of Beilmouth, took parfe in 
the rebellion, while his father, like the head of many other familiee^ acted an 
equivocal part, and remained at home. Particular favour, it is said, was 
shewn by the rebels on this account to the tenantry of West Bams and 
Belhaven. Young Beilmouth was taken at Carlisle, and executed. Search 
was made for the laird, who, by means of a concealment in his house 
(which was situated in Belhaven), evaded discovery till the heat of pursuit 
was over. He was a firm believer in the dark science of astrology, and 
when on a visit to Lreland, endeavoured to read his destiny by means of the 
horoscope. He was buried at the foot of the pulpit-stair in Dunbar old 
church. It may be farther noticed, that, in consequence of some dispvte 
between the owners and the crown, a cargo of wine, which lay in the Laird 
of Spott's cellars, on the quay of Dunbar, was carried off by the rebels 
want ceremome. 


field Park arose with the barracks. A brewery has been long 
established here, and is now owned by Mr E. Dudgeon. Brew- 
ing is carried on to a considerable extent, and the ale is famed. 
A spinning-mUl was erected in 1806, which, however, was soon 
given up. After the removal of the military, the artillery bar- 
racks, situated at Belhaven, were purchased from government, 
and converted into a factory for cotton goods. This factory was 
established in 1815, and gave' employment to 250 looms, and 
maintamed a population of 550 people, chiefly Irish ; but this 
establishment fell to decay on the disastrous termination of the 
East Lothian Bank. Belhaven is situated witlun the royalty of 
Dunbar, and gives title to a Scottish baron. 

West Barns is a respectable village, and has been on the 
increase for some years. A cotton and flax-mill was erected in 
1792, Hnder expectations which were not realised. On its 
establishment, the cotton trade was in a flourishing state, and 
from the number of young people it employed, it was hailed aft 
a patriotic attempt at the time. There is a complete set of 
mills at West Barns, belonging to the corporation, to which the 
town of Dunbar and some estates in the neighbourhood are thirled. 
A distillery was erected here in 1806, and a brewery several years 
before, but the former was pulled down twenty years ago. 

East Babns ia chiefly a faim-village, where, as formerly men- 
tioned, there is a respectable school This place is remarkable 
in the annals of witchcraft as being the residence of Isobel 
Young, wife of George Smith, portioner in that village, who 
was convicted and burnt for witchcraft in 1629.* It will 
scarcely be credited, that the dark art was the general belief of 
the same age that produced Milton, and that the most learned 
part of the community joined with the most illiterate in persecut- 
ing the deluded wretches who were accused of the crime. 

Seafield Brick and Tilbworks is situated midway between 
the villages of Belhaven and West Barns. This work, first 

* For a concise account of the witches and magicians of Eaat Lothian, 
see " St Baldred," p. 266. 


established in a small way by the late David France, Esq., of 
Seafield, has, since the entry, in 18d0, of the present tenant, Mr 
William Brodie, been gradually deyeloping itself, until it is now- 
considered, on account of the superior class of machinery used, 
and the immense quantity of drainage-pipes made, one of the 
most extensive and best manufactories of the kind in Scotland. 
Besides drainage-pipes, a considerable quantity of bricks, for 
building and paving purposes, roofing-tiles, dbc., are manufac- 
tured, which, on account of their superior quality, find a ready 
market in the surrounding districts, and are sent off by railway 
in great quantities to Berwickshire. During the summer season, 
when the work is in full operation, between thirty and forty 
persons are regularly employed; and as the greater part of their 
earnings find their way amongst the merchants of Dunbar, the 
work is of very considerable value to the town. The work is 
now being removed a little to the north of its present site, where 
it is contemplated to re-erect it on still more approved plans, 
with additional machinery, buildings, &c A large workshop 
for engineering purposes has also already been erected on the 
new site, and considering the ingenuity and indomitabfe per- 
severance displayed by the present tenant in finding additional 
employment to workmen jit is to be hoped that the newly erected 
work may continue to develope itself as much as the old one has 


The East and West Lothian Scots Fendble Cavalry were 
raised about 1795, under the command of Colonel J. Hamilton 
of Pencaitland, and Lieutenant-Colonel Robert Baird of New- 
byth. In 1800, they were stationed at Deal. 

The East Lothian Yeomanry Cavahry were enrolled in 1797, 
under the command of Sir James Gardiner Baird of Saughton- 
faall, Bart, a distinguished veteran officer in the American war. 
It consisted originally of three troops, averaging fifty men each, 
commanded respectively by Captain Charles Maitland of Mait- 


landfield/DaYid Anderson of St Gtermains, and FrandB Walker^ 
Tanderlane. The 4th, or Dunbar troop, was not raised till 
1803, and was ^yenty-five strong. Robert Uay, Esq. of Spott, 
then lieutenant, afterwards captain, in 1804, presented the 
troop with a splendid ram's-hom snufT-boz, with all the usual 
appendages, in silver, and embeding a beautiful caimgorutn 
stcHie. This liberal present is preserved with much care. 
Amongst the last surviving officers of this corps was the late 
Thomas, Earl of Haddington, K.T., who served as captain of 
the 4th troop in 1803, when Lord Binning, Sir Thomas Buchan 
Hepburn, Bart of Smeaton, and David Anderson, Esq. of St 
Clermains. The corps was disembodied in 1827. A roll 
of the officers and privates is in possession of Mr P. H. 
Himie. So emulous at this time were the gentlemen of Scot- 
land to serve their country, that when commissions could not 
be given to every one,' the Marquis of Tweeddale, General 
Hardyman, Sir George Warrender, Bart, of Lochend, <fec., served 
as privates. The latter was afterwards Lieutenant-Colonel of 
the Berwickshire Militia. The Berwickshire Yeomanry formed 
a separate regiment. 

In 1821, during the radical riots in the west, the East Lothian 
were called into service, and were quartered in Dalkeith and Mus- 
selburgh for eight days. The Berwickshire lay in Dunbar. 

On occasion of the visit of George IV. to Scotland, in 1822, 
on the 19th August, the East Lothian Yeomanry assembled at 
Haddington, and the Berwickshire Cavalry went into quarters at 
Musselburgh. Both regiments, with about 3000 cavalry, chiefly 
yeomanry, were reviewed by his Majesty on Portobello sands, 
on Friday, the 23rd August. 

From the padflc disposition of Europe in 1827, three troops 
of the East Lothian Yeomaniy Cavalry were disembodied, viz., 
the Salton, Seton, and Gifford ; but the officers were allowed to 
retain their commissions. The Dunbar troop, then under James 
Hunter, Esq. of Thurston, volunteered to serve without pay, 
and their services were accepted by government. 


Two troops of the East Lotliiaa Yeomaniy, under the anspioefr 
of James Maitlaiid Balfour, Esq. of Whittmghame, were reim> 
bodied in 1846, and two years after were joined by a Berwick- 
shire troop, which gave him the step of major-<M>nmuuidant, 
On the death of Mr Balfonr, Captain Hunter of Thurston, wha 
commanded the 1st troop, was appointed major-commandant. 

The following is a list of the present officers of the corps : — 

Dwnba/r Troop, — James W. Hunter, major-commandant ; Thomas Mit^ 
ehell Innes of P han t as s i e , captain ; Lord Binning, lieutenant ; B. C. Sin- 
clair, yr. of Stevenson, comet ; W. H. Bitchie, Dunbar, quartermaster. 

Haddington Troop. — H. M. Davidson, Haddington, captain ; Archibald 
^roun of Johnstonbum, lieutenant ; John Fletcb^, yr. of Salton, comet ;. 
James Skirving, Lufihess-mains, quartermaster. 

Berwickshire Troop. — ^Alex. M. Innes, of Ayton Castle, captain ; Charles 
Balfour of Newtondon, lieutenant ; A. C. C. Benton of Mordington, comet ;. 
Charles D. Colville, Ayton, quart^master. John Tumbull, M.D., surgeon.. 
James Brand, formerly of the Queen's Bays, sergeant-major. 

Cloth, red ; Facings, blue ; Lace, gold. 

Each troop consists of fifty-two rank and file. The permanent 
duty is at present eight days annually. 

The total expense of outfit for a private, including clothes 
and saddlery, is about L.24; the officers, from L.50 to L.100. 
The government furnishes sword, carbine, cartouche, and black 
belts, all which are returned on resignation. A fund con- 
nected with the corps was appointed for supplying clothing and 
other contingent expenses. The amount at present is fully L.300, 

In 1850, the Duke of Wellington being expected to Scotland, 
an invitation was sent to his Grace, requesting him to honour 
the Yeomanry with his company at their grand 'mess, along 
with the Marquis of Tweeddale, whose daughter was mar- 
ried to the Marquis of Douro. To tMs request the following 

characteristic answer was returned :— 

London, July 16| 1850. 

F. M. the Buke of Wellington presents his compliments to the members 
of the East Lothian Yeomanry Cavahy. The Duke regrets much that he 
has so many avocations and duties in this part of the country, that it is 
totally out of his power to visit North Briton, or to avuil himself of the 
invitation of the members of the East Lothian Yeomanry Cavalry. 

To the Members of the East Lothian Yeomanry Cavalry, 
Head-Quarters, Dimbar, N. B. 


In 1854, on the field the corps formed square, and Quarter- 
master Eitchie called in, and after a neat and appropriate ad- 
-dress by Lieutenant Broun, advocate, was presented with a 
tribute of respect, in the shape of a splendid silver claret-jug, 
which bears the following inscription : — 

Presented to Quartermaster Eitchie, from the OflBcers, Non-Commia- 
sioned Officers, and Privates, of the East Lothian and Berwickshire 
Yeomanry, as a mark of their esteem. 1854. 

1856, July 31. — ^The Yeomanry went into quarters at Dunbar; 
under the command of Captain Hunter of Thurston. This 
year's training was rendered memorable from its being the first 
after the death of their highly respected commandant. Major 
Balfour. At the general mess, one of the toasts was to the 
memory of Major Balfour, in proposing which, Lieutenant 
Broun passed a high eulogium on the many excellent qualities 
which had rendered that officer so esteemed and beloved; in 
testimony of which, he referred to the circumstance that a monu- 
ment was about to be erected in honour of Mr Balfour at the 
expense of the corps. 

The favourite English sport of the races is yearly contested 
with Nimrodian skill. About L.150 is generally collected for 
the purpose. 


About the year 1795, a sanguinary example of military disci- 
pline was exhibited at Gullane Links. Four unfortunate men, 
who belonged to " Grant's Fencibles," were condemned to be 
«hot for mutinous conduct, which we believe amounted to little 
more than insolent language made use of to their commanding 
officer. Colonel Gumming, in consequence of the hard drills to 
which the men were subjected. The place of execution was a 
spot called " Yellow Mires," on the west side of Gullane Links, 
where the spectators were stationed. The regiments to which 
th^ criminals belonged formed three sides of a square, with one 
open towards the sea. In the centre of the square the men 


were placed. As a precautionary .measure, the soldiers of the 
"Grant's Fenoibles " were deprived of their gun-flints, except 
sixteen men, who were ordered to fire on the prisoner^. There 
were thirty-two men of the Scots Brigade from Dunbar, with 
loaded arms, behind them, ready to fire if the infantry had 
shrank from their painful duty. The caralry were drawn up 
behind the infantry, while the artillery, with two field-piec^, 
and lighted matches, were placed in the rear. One of the men 
had been reprieved, and another of the three was to be pardoned. 
Lota were drawn for this man ; and it is imppesible to describe 
the exultation of the individual on whom this unexpected de- 
liverance fell. He capered and jumped about in an excess oi 
joy. One of the soldiers met Ms death with great fortitude. 
He kneeled, and deliberately dropped the signal handkerchief, 
and in a few moments ceased to exist ; but the other, -proying 
refractory, required to be tied, and refusing to kneel, fell flat on 
the ground, which caused a number of shots to be put into him, 
and his body to be dreadfully mangled, before he expired. The 
criminals came to the ground in two mourning coaches, accom" 
panied by clergymen, a cart following them with the coffins^ 
The corpses were interred in Aberlady churchyard. The soldiers 
of the neighbouring garrisons of Edinburgh, Leith, and Mussel- 
burgh, attended, with a vast concourse of people, drawn together 
to witness such a novel And appalling spectacle.