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principal friends, however, did not think it advisable for him to put himself into their hands. Montrose had also its advocates, particularly, as a place capable of being fortified, being strong by its natural situation, standing in the midst of the chevalier's best friends, and having all the shires behind it staunch to his interest. At the same time, they left it entirely to his own judgment and conveniency, which of the three he might adopt.*
It was further given in charge to Hooke, to request the chevalier to say nothing on the subject of religion, further than to promise, to be directed by his first parliament. It was hoped also, that he would grant a general amnesty, without any exceptions, and that he would promise to set at liberty, all the vassals of such as should oppose him, that such vassals might be induced to take arms in his behalf. The colonel was also directed, to represent to his most Christian Majesty, “that the French people were as much loved in Scotland, as they were hated in England—that the Scotish people still retain a pleasing remembrance of their ancient alliances, and preserve several French idioms, and terms of expression in their language, which are not used in England; that France is therefore always dear to them; and that they promise themselves the deliverance of their country, and the restoration of their king, under his Majesty's protection.”+
Having thus visited the principal families in Scotland, particularly in the north, and north-east parts of the country, and taken their bond to appear for James and France, with all the means of men and money they could command, Hooke returned to France, by a ship that waited for him upon the north coast, sometime in the end of May, carrying with him letters from the principal of them to the chevalier de St. George, who, he assured them, would be in Scotland, to receive their grateful homage, by the month of August.I
Hooke appears all along, to have considered his mission as one of high honour, and of great importance, and on his return to France, he triumphed not a little over the earl of Middle
* Hooke's Secret Negotiations, pp. 73–75. + Ibid. pp. 79, 80.
$ Lockhart Papers, vol. i. p. 233.
ton, whose friends in Scotland, he scrupled not to accuse with a want of zeal for the honour and interests of him, whom they were pleased to dignify with the appellation of their king. His reception among the Scotish nobility, at that time pro verbial for pride, was certainly such as might have encouraged confidence in a mind less subject to the inspirations of vanity than that of colonel Hooke; but advantage had been taken of his sanguine disposition, to flatter, rather than to inform him; and, in not a few instances, he certainly was grossly imposed upon. This was particularly the case with regard to the representations of the dutchess of Gordon, and Ker of Kersland, respecting the Presbyterians, whom they reported to be perfectly in the interest of the pretender, and ready to aid him at all hazards, with thirteen thousand men. The dutchess was very hearty in the cause herself, and no doubt wished the Presbyterians to be so too, and may therefore be supposed to have believed what she stated to be matter of fact; but Ker of Kersland was a spy, in the pay
of government, and purposely misrepresented the Presbyterians, in order to come, by that means, at the secrets of Hooke, which he certainly did, and as certainly communicated them to the British government.t
* Lockhart Papers, vol. i. p. 232. It was the common saying of Lockhart's children, “truly our king lives in France." Memoirs of North Britain,
+ Ker's name was originally Crawford, but, on marrying the heiress of Kersland, he assumed the name of Ker, and along with it, pretended to as. sume the principles by which the Kers had been long and honourably distinguished. In consequence of these pretensions, he was admitted to some meetings of the Old Dissenters, though it does not appear that he ever succeeded in gaining much of their confidence. He certainly, however, had more of it than he deserved, as his purpose was only to betray them to the government, whose spy, at the solicitations of the duke of Queensberry, he had become. He also pretended to be a zealous partisan for the pretender, and seems to have perfectly succeeded in deceiving the Jacobites, who communicated with him generally without reserve. He obtained from queen Anne, after having communicated to her government, the whole of Hooke's negotiations, a patent for his roguery in the following words.
“ Whereas, we are fully sensible of the fidelity and loyalty of John Ker of Kersland, Esq., and of the services he hath performed to us and our government: We therefore grant him this, our Royal Leave and Licence, to keep
All parties, however, appear to have been pretty well satisfied, Hooke with himself, the chevalier de St. George with the vain hopes of a crown, his most Christian Majesty with the prospect of a diversion in his favours, on the part of Scotland, and the poor deluded Scotish Jacobites, with the visionary idea of regaining national independence, and along with it the sovereignty of England !! How miserably all were disappointed, we shall see in the sequel.
In the meantime, those who had been intrusted with the management of Scotish affairs, having succeeded in carrying into effect the measures suggested by the English ministry, with a facility, and to an extent far beyond their most sanguine expectations, hastened exultingly to court, where they were received with every demonstration of respect. Montrose and Roxburgh were both created dukes, and Queensberry, whose life had been threatened, and who was execrated by the populace in his own country, was in England, every where welcomed with expressions of gratitude and joy. At Berwick, Newcastle, Durham, and the other great towns through which he passed, he was waited upon, and complimented by the magis
company, and associate himself with such as are disaffected to us and our government, in such way or manner as he shall judge most for our service. Given under our Royal Hand, at our castle of Windsor, the 7th of July, 1707, and of our reign the 6th year.”
Thus fortified against any legal consequences that might accrue to him for his conduct, and furnished with money to serve present exigences, he became a leading man in all the deliberations of the Jacobites, and was by them thought to bave full power over the Presbyterian Societies in the south and west, who, as they were known enemies to the union, were supposed necessarily to be in the interest of the pretender. Nothing, however, could be a fonller calumny, and it does not appear that he had any authority whatever from the Societies, which were composed of men far too strict in their morals, to have any thing particular to do with a man so profligate as Ker certainly was. He performed bis dirty work, however, with considerable ability, and, as is usual in such cases, was rewarded with neglect. After a bustling life of rascally intrigue, which he has himself carefully chronicled, he died in great misery, a prisoner for debt, in the King's bench prison, London, July 8th, 1726, aged 52. His Memoirs were published the preceding year, in three parts, and dedicated to a very proper patron, Sir Robert Walpole. Vide Memoirs of Johu Ker of Kersland, in three parts, London, 1726; and Lockhart Papers, vol. i. p. 307.
trates, while assembled multitudes every where surrounding him, testified the deep interest they felt in what he had so happily accomplished. At Barnet, Highgate, and other places near London, the queen's ministers, and the members of both houses of parliament, waited upon him in their coaches, and the metropolis had never seen so great and so joyful a concourse of people, since the entry of James VI. at the union of the two crowns. A pension of £3,000 per annum, out of the post office, was settled upon his grace, the whole patronage of Scotland was vested in his hands, and he was created a British peer, by the title of duke of Dover, marquis of Beverly, and earl of Rippon, and took his seat as such in the house of lords, in the month of November following. *
The first British parliament was convoked by proclamation, on the 23d of October, 1707, and, after taking into consideration the affairs of the United Kingdom generally, turned its attention to the political situation, and internal government of Scotland, for improving which, and rendering the late treaty of union more completely effective, they passed a number of most important regulations. In the true spirit of kindness and conciliation, they addressed the queen, to discharge the informations that were still hanging over a number of merchants, for goods imported into Scotland before the 1st of May. They repealed the famous Act of Security, and the Act anent peace and war, both of which were indeed abrogated by the union, but, as they had been the means of inflaming the Scotish, and alarming the English nation, in no ordinary degree, to allay every uneasy apprehension, their formal and literal reversion was judged necessary. The militia of Scotland they voted to be placed upon the same footing with that of England. They restored the office of justices of the peace, which had been laid aside since the revolution, with the same powers as those of England; and, for the better and more speedy administration of justice, they appointed the lords of justiciary to travel their circuits twice in the year. Writs for electing members of parliament, they ordered to be issued, and the returns made in the same manner as in England, and they determined, that
• Douglas' Peerage of Scotland, vol ii. p. 381.
after the 1st of May, 1708, the Scotish privy council should be finally dissolved, thus annihilating the last vestige of the national government. These enactments did not pass either house without violent opposition, especially the last, which was carried in the house of lords, by a majority of only five voices; and, though the council in question was a most odious tribunal, and one which, had it been continued, would effectually have prevented any benefit arising from the union, its extinction tended to exasperate that irritable and gloomy feeeling, which at this time unhappily characterized the Scotish people.
While the friends of their country were thus employing themselves to promote its best interests, the Jacobites were doing their utmost to counteract them, by restoring the exiled family, and breaking up the union, which they considered as giving, if it ever came to be fairly established, the death blow to their projects. The month of August was ardently looked for, as the happy period that was to bring them the accomplishment of all their wishes; but when it did arrive, it brought only a notice, that his most Christian majesty, at that time, could do nothing; and this notice was repeated from time to time, till the hopes of the most sanguine were nearly extinguished. From the freedom of speech and of action too, in which many of them had indulged, fears were entertained, that they might be proceeded against by the existing government, and, without reaping any of its advantages, suffer all the pains of treason. Under this impression, they became all at once apparently deeply interested in the management of public affairs, and, as it was certain the parliament behoved to be dissolved at the end of the session, they began to canvass for seats in the new parliament, for the double purpose of laying asleep the
* “In the records of the Privy Council of Scotland, after the junction of the crowns, we meet with more frequent examples of the gross abuse of delegated power, than occur perhaps in the history of any nation possessing a regular and established government. The functions and proceedings of the ordinary judicatories were often suspended, and their decisions overawed and controlled, by the indefinite prerogatives of a tribunal, which was a standing engine of regal and aristocratic oppression.” Somerville's History of Great Britain, &c.