18th of March

St Alexander, Bishop of Jerusalem, martyr, 251. St Cyril, Archbishop of Jerusalem, 336. St Fridian, Bishop of Lucca, 578. St Anselm, Bishop of Lucca, 1086.

Born. – Philip de Lahire, French geometrician, 1640, Paris; John Caldwell Calhoun, American statesman, 1782, South Carolina
Died. – Pope Honorius III., 1227; Bishop Patrick Forbes, 1635, Aberdeen; the Rev. Lawrence Sterne, author of Tristram Shandy, 1768, Bond-street; Sir Henry Pottinger, G.C.B., military commander in India, 1856.

On this Day in Other Sources.

In the evening [Queen Mary] arrived at St. Andrews. Here she remained, amusing herself, with the pastimes of the country, till the 18th of March [1563.] “The Queen,” said Randolph to Cecil, “is now healthy, and merry, most commonly riding in the fields, as time will serve her: Her care is, continually, great, for her uncles, and her desire wonderful, for the quiet of France.”… She departed from St. Andrews, on the 18th of March, for Coupar, where she remained a day; and thence proceeded to Falkland. She here tried to dissipate her melancholy, by the pastimes of Falkland, on the 20th, 21st, and 22d. 

– Life of Mary, pp.78-98.

The friends of William of Orange having formed a plan for the assassination of Dundee and Sir George Mackenzie of Rosehaugh, compelled them and all loyalists to quit the city. “At the head of his forlorn band, consisting of sixty cavalier troopers – Guardsmen and Greys mingled – Dundee, the idol of his party, quitted Edinburgh by the Leith Wynd Port; and, through a telescope, the Duke of Gordon watched them as they wound past the venerable church of the Holy Trinity, among the cottages and gardens of Moutries Hill, and as they rode westward by the Lang Gate, a solitary roadway bordered by fields and farmhouses.” 

According to Balcarres this was on the 18th of March, 1689, and as Gordon wished to confer with the viscount, the latter, on seeing a red flag waved at the western postern, rode down the Kirk Brae, and, quitting his horse, all heavily accoutred as he was, climbed the steep rock to hold that conference of which so little was ever known. He is said to have advised the duke to leave the Castle in charge of Winram, on whom they could depend, and seek their fortunes together among the loyal clans in the north. But the duke declined, adding, “Whither go you?” 

“Wherever the shade of Montrose may direct me,” was the pensive and poetical reply, and then they parted to meet no more. But the moment Dundee was gone the drums of the Cameronians beat to arms, and they came swarming out of their places of concealment, mustering for immediate action, while, in the name of the Estates, the Earls of Tweeddale and Lothian appeared at the gate of the fortress, requesting the duke to surrender it within four-and-twenty hours, and daringly offering a year’s pay to every soldier who would desert him. 

– Old and New Edinburgh, pp.47-66.

Taken seriatim, the records of the Tolbooth contain volumes of entries made in the following brief fashion:- 

And so on in grim monotony, till we come to the last five entries in the old record, which is quite incomplete. 

“1751, March 18. – Helen Torrance and Jean Waldie were executed this day, for stealing a child, eight or nine years of age, and selling its body to the surgeons for dissection. Alice on Tuesday when carried off, and dead on Friday, with an incision in the belly, but sewn up again. 

– Old and New Edinburgh, pp.123-138.


   The appropriation accounts of the Comptroller-General of the Exchequer, and the Auditor-General, show that the total sum voted for Civil Services for the year 1880-1 was £30,402,812, and the total expenditure was £30,143,322, being £259,490 less than the sum granted; while the extra receipts payable to the Exchequer were £216,148 in excess of the estimate. All the Scotch Departments show a surplus to be surrendered to the Exchequer, with the exception of the Fishery Board, which expended £226 15s 3d in excess of the grant, and the National Gallery, which receives an annuity of £2100 under the treaty of union. With regard to the former Department, however, the estimated extra receipts for the year were £6010, and those actually realised £11,499, which were paid over to the Exchequer; the increase arising from the herring fishery of the year having proved more abundant than was anticipated, and having consequently yielded more brand fees.”  

– Aberdeen Press and Journal, Saturday 18th March, 1882.

– Treaty of Union Articles, 1875-1900.

   “So far as Mr [Frederic] Harrison’s patriotism is concerned, his love for his own country, and his pride in the name of Englishman, no Scot will find fault with him, or have any other feeling than that of hearty sympathy. Mr. Harrison loves England just as we Scottish people love Scotland; and is proud of being English just as we (with quite as good reason) are proud of being Scots. We all love the name of England when applied to England. We always use it when speaking of England. Nor have we the slightest objection (as Mr Harrison seems to think we have) to Mr Morley, or Sir Wm. Harcourt, or Mr Asquith, when they come to Scotland, speaking of themselves as English, seeing that they are English, any more than we would object to Mr Lloyd George calling himself Welsh, or Mr Dillon and Mr Redmond calling themselves Irish. We want each nation and land to have its own distinctive name; but when these have combined under a common united name, we want the new State thus formed to get that name, not only that the United Kingdom may be distinguished from any of its component parts, but that the honour of each of the constituent nations may be conserved, in the interests of a larger fraternity. We want England to be called England; but we do not want its name forced upon Scotland or on the whole United Kingdom to the dishonour of the nations that are not English, and this in flagrant violation of the very basis of Union. When Great Britain and Ireland are referred to, we object to their being called ‘England and Ireland’ as if Scotland were a mere English county.”  

– Scotsman, Friday 18th March, 1898.

– Treaty of Union Articles, 1875-1900.

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