11th of July

St Pius I., pope and martyr, 157. St James, bishop of Nisibis, confessor, 350. St Hidulphus, bishop and abbot, 707. St Drostan, abbot of Dalcongaile, about 809.

 

Born. – Robert I. of Scotland, 1274, Lochmaben; Lalande, French mathematician, 1732, Bourg en Bresse
Died. – Emperor Anthemius, murdered at Rome, 472; Charles Macklin, comedian, 1797, London; General Alexander Hamilton, Vice-president of United States, killed in a duel, 1804.

 

On this Day in Other Sources.

 

As we cannot name the first Celtic chieftain who consented to change his style of Toshach and his patriarchal sway for the title and stability of King’s Thane of Cawdor, so it is impossible to fix the precise time when their other ancient property and offices were acquired. But on 11th July 1405, we find Donald, Thane of Cawdor, succeeding, by formal process of law, to his father, Thane Andrew, who died last vest and seised in the offices of hereditary sheriff of the shire, and constable of the royal castle of Nairn. 

– Sketches, pp.395-436.

 

Throkmorton slept, on the 11th of July [1567], at Fast castle, within the Scotish border, where he was met, by Maitland, the forger, Lord Home, the insurgent, and Sir James Melvill, the insidious instrument of the perfidious council. We may easily suppose, that the confidential conversation, which ensued, would blazon Morton’s motives, and blacken the Queen’s faults. On the morrow, Thorkmorton was conveyed to Edinburgh, by Lord Home, at the head of 400 horsemen.  

Life of Mary, pp.155-184.

 

July 11 [1611]. – ‘Saturday, in the evening, as the Archbishop of St Andrews and Bishop of Orkney were going abroad, the archbishop being in his coach, and the other stepping in, a wicked fellow standing behind the coach did shoot the Bishop of Orkney beneath his right hand; which broke his left arm a little above the wrist with five balls.’ So wrote the Privy Council to the king. – P. C. R. The assassin was a preacher named James Mitchell,’ a weak scholar,’ according to Kirkton, but whom Wodrow describes as ‘a youth of much zeal and piety.’ 

– Domestic Annals, pp.302-321.

 

The forcible abduction of Sir Alexander Gibson, Lord Durie, a noted lawyer (who drew up the decisions of the Court from the 11th July, 1621, to the 16th July, 1642) – that his voice and vote might be absent from the decision of a case – is well known, but told incorrectly, in the ballad on the subject. It appears that in September, 1601, Lord Durie was carried off from the neighbourhood of St. Andrews by George Meldrum younger of Dumbreck, and taken to Northumberland, where he was kept for eight days in the Castle of Harbottle, while his friends and family, unable to account for his mysterious disappearance, believed him to be dead, or spirited away by the fairies. 

– Old and New Edinburgh, pp.166-173.

 

One of the gems of the collection is found in this melancholy letter – “There are still here 500 Commissioners of the States; they relieve one another by course as Castor and Pollux went to hell”! 

But it is time to quote some delightful passages from those of the opposite faction. “A Person in England” writes thus to “Two Confidents” in Scotland, on the 11th July, 1638 – “I hear it [sic] the unanimous consent of many leading persons, that they hope to find an America in Scotland.” Hopes are held out that if “liberty” is to be found there, “there will be hardly found receipt for those who will thrust themselves amongst you, such who are men of eminent rank, and great estates, and those tho, I daresay, will spend, a few of them, in the discharge of their ordinary affairs, more money yearly nor is now to be spared in the kingdom; I could number forty or fifty of them that will allot 100,000l. yearly for their expence.” 

This must surely mean one hundred thousand “pounds Scots.” Anyhow, a tempting prospect is held out to poor Jockey of the prosperity that will result to him by the admission of wealthy and liberal Englishmen. To clench the matter the writer says – “You, by this manner, will get their estates and persons amongst you, and they will take none of your gospel away although they communicate with you.” 

Scots Lore, pp.259-264.

 

The LORD’s Protest on the SCOTS Jurisdiction-Bill.

May 21, 1747.

   THE Order of the Day being read for resuming the further Consideration of the above Bill, it was moved to commit the same; which being objected to, and a long Debate thereupon, the Question was put, Whether this Bill shall be committed? It was resolv’d in the Affirmative: Content 79, Not Content 16. 

   Dissentient, 1st, Because changing the Civil Constitution of Scotland, which the Act of Union reserved, and taking from the great Families in that Part of the Kingdom, without their Consent, and against their Will, their ancient Rights and Inheritances, to be purchased by the Publick, in this Time of Distress, at a great but uncertain Expence, appears to us to be so extraordinary an Exertion of the Power of Parliament, as could only be justified by Necessity of State, or some general, manifest, or urgent Utility to the Publick. 

   2dly, Because we apprehend this Bill not to be justified by any Necessity of State, since it is manifestly and avowedly ineffectual, if calculated for adding further Security to his Majesty’s Government; because it is not so much as pretended that this Bill can have any Effect upon the influence upon Clans, which arises from no legal Authority; and since from these legal Jurisdictions, subject to the Controul, and necessarily under the Direction of the King’s Court in Scotland, Danger to Government is no more likely to arise, than from the Influence which Rank and Property may acquire in any other Part of his Majesty’s Dominions. 

   3dly, Because Utility to the Subjects in that Part of the Kingdom, from this Bill is not apparent to us; since it is not imagined, that a real, a great and extensive Benefit should not be desired by the People of Scotland, when tender’d to them; but on the contrary, should meet with strong Opposition, cold Acquiescence, or silent Disgust: and since no single Instance of Grievance has been alledged, but on the contrary, has been acknowledged that no bad Use has been made of this Part of the ancient Civil Constitution of Scotland, which is intended by this Bill to abolish at once and for ever. 

   4thly, Because we do not conceive the Policy of making, without Necessity, at this Time by a permanent Law, so considerable an Alteration in Government; nor do we apprehend the Wisdom of purchasing an ineffectual and problematical Plan, by a certain but unknown Expence; neither do we understand how it is consistent with Justice, to abolish the Right of the Parties concern’d, without previously adjusting their Compensation; nor can we reconcile with our Duty to the Publick, the delegating to the Court of Session in Scotland the Power of fixing the Sums to be raised upon the People: A new Method of creating a new Load of Expence, in no Degree ascertained, or even suggested to Parliament. 

   5thly, Because we apprehend, by the Maxims of the Constitution of this Country, Influence in the Hands of the Crown is more to be feared from the Abuse of ministerial Power, especially in the Election of Members of Parliament, than when in the Hands of Nobility and Gentry, whose Rank and Property are naturally the Supports of a free Government; and we cannot conceive how the Liberty of Scotland will be preserved by this Bill, (which in our Opinions) manifestly tends to constitute, at this Juncture, a new Influence over all the Counties of North Britain, by throwing a great and dangerous Power into the Hands of Ministers; especially when it is avowed, that such an Alteration of Government may necessitate the Introduction of a military Force. A fatal Symptom! when it can be mentioned in a British Parliament, that a Measure avowedly ineffectual for the Safety of the Government, and evidently unnecessary for the Publick Utility, most probably be carried into Execution by military Force; which if allowed and not exerted, must produce an Influence of the most pernicious Kind; and if exerted, establishes a Military Government of the most dangerous Nature, because masked under the Form of Civil Government; a Practice tending, in either Case, to subvert the Constitution of this Country, and to which therefore we never can consent. 

   Oxford and Mortimer,          Shaftsbury,          Stanhope, 

   Westmorland,                         Denbigh,              Ward, 

   Ferrers,                                    Litchfield,           Talbot,                   Beaufort.” 

– Newcastle Courant, 11th July, 1747.

– Treaty of Union Articles, 1700-1750.

 

“GENERAL POST OFFICE – SCOTLAND.

Edinburgh, July 9, 1872.  

   SIR, – I observe that the heather is already on fire upon this subject; but I should like just to say one or two more words. 

   It is now many years since the question as to the removal of the General Post Office of Scotland was fully discussed – the subject having been investigated by an authorised Committee, both with regard to the Edinburgh and Dublin establishments, when it was decided that it would be preferable that the head offices should remain in the capitals of Scotland and Ireland respectively. A suitable building for the Scottish office was accordingly erected at considerable expense, and the foundation laid in great state by the late Prince Albert, in conjunction with that if the National Scottish Museum – both on the same day – these constituting the last important public acts performed by Her Majesty’s esteemed consort. An establishment set on foot under such auspices, and after such an elaborate inquiry, ought not to be thrown down on the first complaint as to the working out of a few of the mere details. Besides, what guarantee is there that they would be better attended to in London, so far removed from the scene of operations? 

   There must be officials within the Edinburgh establishment quite competent to set matters right in any of these details, if invested with powers to do so. A general surveyor for Scotland, to be connected with the head office, and who could, if necessary, visit any district where his presence would be desirable, might be appointed; and at his office all complaints and suggestions as to the expediting or altering the despatch and delivery of letters, &c., could be made, and these he should be empowered to attend to, without waiting to correspond with London. There ought to be more discretion left with our local authorities. What, for instance, can be more out of all character than that we have had to wait for fully three years regarding the complaints made about the deposits of gunpowder in the Castle and Leith Fort? And yet there these deposits still lie, it is said, to the extent of about one hundred tons in each, at imminent risk to the lives and properties of the inhabitants! 

   In conclusion, I think it should be thirled into the minds of the parties in authority at London that it is, I believe, the very decided desire of the people of Scotland that the spirit of the Treaty of Union as to the upholding of the establishment therein reserved should be adhered to, and even supplemented, wherever practicable, and that an end shall be put to those constant attempts to wrest from us what we are so unwilling to part with. – I am, &c. 

SCOTUS.”  

– Scotsman, Thursday 11th July, 1872.

– Treaty of Union Articles, 1850-1875.

 

“THE JUDICATURE ACT.

   Mr. DISRAELI, in reply to Mr. McLaren, said that the Supreme Court of Judicature Act (1873) Amendment Bill involved no violation of the treaty of union between England and Scotland. The bill provided that Scotch appeals should be referred not to the courts prohibited by the treaty, but to the New Imperial Court of Appeal. He could not propose in committee that there should be two or more permanent Scotch judges in the court. The great object was to secure the best men. He was not aware that the sixteen Scotch representative peers were appointed by the Act of Union for the purpose of hearing Scotch appeals, or had been in the practice of doing so.”

– Liverpool Mail, Saturday 11th July, 1874.

N.B. It surely can’t be just myself who feels as though this court was founded in order to circumvent article 19 of the Treaty of Union. How can the treaty have prevented a move of the jurisdiction of Scottish courts to a court as yet unfounded at Westminster? It does, however, state all the courts there at the time of signing and that cases dealt with by the Scottish courts were not to be dealt with at Westminster, so you would think that would apply to any court established thereafter at the same place.

– Treaty of Union Articles, 1850-1875.

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