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25th of July

St James the Great, the Apostle. St Christopher, martyr, 3d century. St Cucufas, martyr in Spain, 304. Saints Thea and Valentina, virgins, and St Paul, martyrs, 308. St Nissen, abbot of Mountgarret, Ireland.

Born. – Mrs Elizabeth Hamilton, authoress of the Cottagers of Glenburnie, 1758, Belfast
Died. – Constantius Chlorus, Roman emperor, 306, York (Eboracum); Nicephorus I., Greek emperor, killed in Bulgaria, 811; Thomas à Kempis, reputed author of the Imitation of Christ, 1471, Mount St Agnes, near Zwoll; Philip Beroaldus (the elder), eminent classic commentator, 1505, Bologna; Ferdinand I., emperor of Germany, 1564, Vienna; Robert Fleming, author of The Fulfilling of the Scripture, 1694, Rotterdam; Baron Friederich von der Trenck, author of the Memoirs, guillotined at Paris, 1794.

On this Day in Other Sources.

In the year 1411, on St. James’s Day [25th of July], was fought that memorable battle of Harlaw, between Alexander Stewart, Earl of Mar, bastard son to [Alexander], Earl of Buchan, Alexander Ogilvy, Sheriff of Angus, being his Lieutenant; and Donald [Dómhnall], Lord of the Isles, with MacLean, the chief leader of 10,000 Islanders. 

– Historical Works, pp.144-152.

This Alexander Sutherland was son of John, the third of that name, Earl of Sutherland, and as he pretended that the Earl and his mother had entered into a contract of marriage, he laid claim, on the death of the earl, to the title and estates, as a legitimate descendant of Earl John, his father. By the entreaties of Adam Gordon, Lord of Aboyne, who had married Lady Elizabeth, the sister and sole heiress of Earl John, Alexander Sutherland judicially renounced his claim in presence of the Sheriff of Inverness, on the twenty-fifth day of July, fifteen hundred and nine. He now repented of what he had done, and being instigated by the earl of Caithness and John Mackay, mortal foes to the house of Sutherland, he renewed his pretensions. Earl Adam, perceiving that he might incur some danger in making an appeal to arms, particularly, as the clans and tribes of the country, with many of whom Alexander had become very popular, were broken into factions and much divided on the question betwixt him and Alexander Sutherland, endeavoured to win him over by offering him many favourable conditions, again to renounce his claims; but in vain. He maintained the legitimacy of his descent, and alleged that the renunciation he had granted at Inverness, had been obtained from him contrary to his inclination, and against the advice of his best friends. 

– History of the Highlands, pp.178-198.

On the 25th of [July, 1561], she set forward to the sea, attended, by her six uncles, the Duke de Nemours, and Mons. D’Amville, and other nobles of both sexes, who conveyed her to Calais, where two galleys, and four transports, lay ready, to receive her, with her suite, and moveables. The Queen ceased not to direct her looks to the shore of France, until the darkness interrupted her wishful eyes. At the dawn of day, the coast of France was still in sight, the galleys having made but little way in the night. While it remained still in view, she often repeated: Farewell, France! Farewell! I shall never see you more. 

In the meantime, Elizabeth sent out her fleet, with whatever orders, into the channel, through which Mary was expected to sail. The chiefs of Murray’s faction, Argyle, Morton, Glencairn, wrote letters to Cecil; offering their services to Elizabeth. Secretary Maitland, who was the organ of that faction, went one step further: in several letters, which he wrote to Cecil, he advised the interception of the Queen. 

– Life of Mary, pp.15-41.

On the 25th she dined, at Kincardin; and in the evening rode forward to Perth. At this agreeable town, she remained till the 31st of July [1564]. From Perth, she proceeded to Athol, “to the hunting.” And from this amusive region, she passed the Alpine heights, which separate Athol, and the Tay, from Badenoch, and the Spey: she now went through the intervening highlands to Inverness; and from thence to the canonry of Ross. The object of that distant journey, which was far more dangerous, and difficult, than Randolph’s terrible journey to Inverness; was not then known, and cannot be completely ascertained: As she knew, that Lennox was arrived, in Scotland, and Darnley expected: As, amidst the various courtships, that had distressed her, she had resolved, secretly, to marry Darnley, if she should like his person, and conversation; the Queen, probably, went to Ross-shire, to enquire, without the knowledge of the statesmen, at Edinburgh, what was the value of the earldom of Ross, which she meant to settle on Darnley, before their marriage, wishing in case of any accident to her, to leave him an Earl, with a large estate, and a great following, which was so sought for, in those times, when men were of more value than money. 

– Life of Mary, pp.78-98.

Lord Lindsay returned, from Lochleven, to Edinburgh, on the 25th of July [1567], with the Queen’s involuntary signature to the instruments of resignation; and immediately proceeded to compel, by tumult, the keeper of the Privy Seal, to affix the appropriate seal to the same instruments. The secret council, consisting of Morton, Athol, Hume, Sanquhar, and Ruthven, assembled, to whom Lindsay, presented the three instruments, which were read, and approved. On the same day, the Queen’s resignation, and appointment of a Regency, were proclaimed, at the cross of Edinburgh. The secret council, immediately, proceeded to enter into a second association; engaging to assemble, at Stirling, and crown the Prince, and to maintain him, as King. Every effort was made, both, by the secret council, and by Murray, afterwards, to obtain subscribers to this treasonous act. At the same time, the secret council, with Morton, at its head, issued an order, to Servais de Conde, the Queen’s valet de chambre, to deliver the crown, sceptre, and sword, the regalia of this realm, for the coronation of the Prince. 

– Life of Mary, pp.155-184.

I can not omit how the King did, by his own authority, call a parliament to meet at Edinburgh, the 25 day of July [1578], this same year, which was the first he held freed of a Regent. The first act was a declaration of the freedom of said parliament; the next was a ratification of the [acceptance] of the regiment in the King’s own person; as also an act of the election and nomination of the King’s counsel; and likewise an act of exoneration was granted to the heirs of [the deceased] John [Erskine], Earl of Mar, [about] the [keeping] of his majesty’s person within the castle of [Stirling]. In this parliament, there was granted by the estates 10,000 merks for the reparation of the bridge over Tay, and a commission concerning recognition of land within the burgh. 


The 25th of July [1603], being Monday, King James and Queen Anna were together solemnly crowned and anointed at Westminster, (by John [Whitgift], Archbishop of Canterbury,) King and Queen of England, France and Ireland. 

– Historical Works, pp.340-416.

July [25, 1655]. – On a Sunday, at the close of this month, the communion was administered in Edinburgh, the first time after an interval of six years, for so long had the rite been discontinued in the capital and other parts of the kingdom, by reason of the troubles and divisions which had prevailed. From one disqualification and another, ‘much people was debarred.’ – Nic

– Domestic Annals, pp.278-301.

From the London Gazette, July 16.

   Whitehall, July 16. The Convention of the Royal Burrows of Scotland met at Edinburgh the 5th Instant, and made Choice of George Drummond, Esq; Lord Provost of Edinburgh, to be their President. The next Day his Majesty’s most Gracious Letter to them (which follows) having been transmitted by the Duke of Newcastle, one of his Majesty’s Principal Secretaries of State, was read in a very full Meeting. 


   Trusty and Well beloved, We greet you well. We having observed, that the several Sums of Money, reserved and provided by the Treaty of Union, and by divers Acts of Parliament, to be employed for the Improvement of Fisheries and Manufactures in Scotland, have not hitherto been applied to the Uses for which they were intended; principally because no particular Plan or Method hath been concerted, directing the Manner in which those Sums should be applied for the said Purposes: And being desirous to remove those Hindrances as speedily as may be; We have thought good to recommend it to you, that at your first general Meeting in the Month of July next, you do take into your Consideration, the State of the said Fisheries and Manufactures, and of the Moneys provided for encouraging the same, and that by your selves or by Committees of your Number, you devise and propose the particular Methods, Rules and Regulations, which to you shall seem the most proper, for the Application of the said Sums towards the encouraging and promoting of Fisheries, and such other Manufactures and Improvements in Scotland, as shall most conduce to the general good of the United Kingdom; and that you do return to Us the Propositions, in which you shall have agreed, to the End that upon Consideration thereof, a certain Method may be settled for the Application and Management of those Sums for the future. The Welfare of our loving People of Scotland, and the Prosperity of the Royal Burrows, is so much concerned in what We now recommend to you, that we doubt not you will go on in the Execution of what is expected from you, with the utmost Diligence, Unanimity, and Impartiality; and on Our Part, We assure you of Our Countenance and Encouragement, in what you shall propose for the real Good of your Country, consistent with the general Interest of Our United Kingdom. And so we bid you heartily farewel. Given at Our Court at Kensington the 7th Day of June 1726. In the Twelfth Year of our Reign. 

   By his Majesty’s Command. 

Holles Newcastle.”  

– Caledonian Mercury, Monday 25th July, 1726.

– Treaty of Union Articles, 1700-1750.

In 1776 Lady Glenorchy invited Dr. Thomas Snell Jones, a Wesleyan Methodist, to accept the charge of her chapel, and after being ordained to the office of pastor by the Scottish Presbytery of London he became settled as incumbent on the 25th of July, 1779, and from that date continued to labour as such, until about three years before his death, which occurred on the 3rd of March, 1837, a period of nearly fifty-eight years.  

– Old and New Edinburgh, pp.359-363.




   SIR. – I have been induced to address you in consequence of reading your observations upon ‘An address to the People of Scotland from the Association for the Vindication of Scottish Rights.’ I am at a loss to discover what could have induced you to assign as one, if not the principal objects of this association, a repeal of the union between Scotland and England. So absurd an idea could not have been gathered from the address, or statement appended to it, as it is the true spirit, meaning, and intention of that treaty which we demand the fulfilment of. 

   The address is designed as an interpretation of the terms of the treaty. It shows that the union between Scotland and England was ‘union, free and independent, on equal terms, with equal duties, with equal responsibilities, and with equal rights;’ and that what ‘Scotland was to do England was to do, what England was to receive Scotland was to receive – all in just and due proportion.’ In detailing the benefits which result from union the address states, ‘union obviates war, encourages commerce, permits of free transit, abolishes national antipathy; union, provided it is union and not domination, brings equals together for common benefit, and throws down the barriers to brotherhood.’ You will permit me to say that there is good ground for supposing you had given but a cursory glance at the address when you arrived at the conclusion that it was a ‘repeal’ cry we Scots had raised. 

   The movement is, therefore, no ‘disgraceful imitation of the worst features of the Irish character.’ The address is no tirade of vituperation against the Sassenach, and there is not one word in it derogatory to the character of the English nation; no such sentiments would find an echo or support in Scotland. It is not against premeditated injustice and injury that a stand is made, but against injustice and injury arising from indifference to, and ignorance of, our constitution and country. We demand nothing for Scotland that has not already been given to England and Ireland; it is equality we demand, and it is equality we shall have – equality of taxation, equality of representation, equality of allowances. 

   Equality of taxation we already possess, and Scotland furnishes her proportional share to the united exchequer. 

   Equality of representation. – We demand that the number of representatives returned by Scotland to the British House of Commons shall be in the same relative proportion which her wealth and population bear to England. We complain that England returns 125 members more than her just proportion; that small English boroughs return two members each, while our burghs are grouped together in half dozens, and return but one member amongst them; that the Universities of England and Ireland are represented in Parliament, and that the Scots are not. 

   Equality of allowances. – The charitable institutions of England and Ireland are assisted by grants from the public exchequer. No Scottish charity ever received a farthing from this source. The police forces of London and Dublin receive annual grants to the amount of £167,000, while the police force of Edinburgh had never been so assisted. the constabulary of England and Ireland are, as regards the former partly, and as regards the latter wholly, maintained by Government. No such allowance is made to Scotland. Harbours of refuge have been built, and five are now in progress of construction in England; but there is not one on the stormy and rocky shores of Scotland. Large sums (£181,000 last session) are annually voted for the maintenance and repair of English palaces; while Holyrood, the only habitable Royal Palace in Scotland, is in such a state that when the Scottish peers meet to elect their representative in parliament, or her Majesty’s Commissioner holds a levee, the floor requires to be supported by wooden beams in case it should give way, and in many parts the pressure of a walking cane will penetrate the floor. It is surrounded by old and ruinous tenements, and the Royal garden, instead of being laid out in ornamental grounds, is let to a kitchen gardener. Remember, this is the palace of a capital. Museums of geology have been established in London and Dublin, and the Royal Engineers are now employed in a geological survey of England and Ireland, and transmit to those museums sections of the strata and specimens of the minerals of the different localities. No such museum had been established in Edinburgh; no such survey of Scotland has taken place. The Ordnance surveys of England and Ireland have been carried on with energy, and completed at an expense of £1,630,000. The survey of Scotland has been almost neglected, scarcely £100,000 having been spent upon it in 44 years. The annual cost of our naval, military, and Ordnance departments is about £18,000,000, one-sixth (or £3,000,000) of which is contributed by Scotland, yet almost no part of this sum in disbursed there; we receive no share in manufacturing anything for national purposes; we never see British ships of war, and only know the naval uniform from pictures. In violation of the Treaty of Union our Court of Exchequer, Court of Admiralty, and Mint have been abolished, and our arms degraded. The latter may appear a trifle, but any Englishman who would allow other arms than those of his native country to be supreme in England would be unworthy of that free soil he calls ‘home;’ and surely Scotsmen need not be ashamed of their own national symbols, hallowed as they are by the memory of the past. 

   You put the question, ‘To what other end does the Imperial Parliament sit every year than to redress such grievances?’ We are well aware that Parliament sits for such a purpose, but how little attention does that Parliament pay to Scots’ affairs! Is not the half-holy day of Wednesday the only day on which any Scottish question will be listened to for a moment? Is not every measure connected with Scotland postponed and delayed in order that other business may be brought forward? The Parliament sits to redress grievances, but, seemingly, not Scottish ones. We petitioned for a small grant for our universities, which have not advanced either in number, chairs, or funds for 150 years. We petitioned that the police of Edinburgh be placed upon the same footing as the police of London and Dublin. We have petitioned that Holyrood be made fit for the reception of Her Majesty. We have petitioned for the establishment of a museum of geology, similar to those established in London and Dublin. We have petitioned for the restoration of the office of Secretary of State. We have petitioned and petitioned until we are tired of petitioning. Our requests meet with no attention. Finding that addressing Parliament is useless and futile, can it be wondered at that we now address ourselves, and take counsel of one another as to what is best to be done? 

   Shall we send £6,000,000 of revenue to England yearly, and receive nothing in return save neglect – not only neglect, but, in some instances, aggression? We cannot forget that our admirable system of banking and currency has frequently been menaced with destruction; that our local boards are one after another being made subservient to English boards; that we have been denied local access to the plans and specifications of patents, even though that privilege was conferred upon us by act of Parliament; that an attempt was made a few weeks ago to remove our Gazette; that an attempt is now being made to place the whole funds and management of the Scottish lighthouses under the charge of the English Trinity-house. When such is the case, can it be wondered at that we form an association to vindicate our national rights, and that this association should gather the country around it as it is now doing? 

   I have the honour to be, Sir, your most obedient servant, 


   Edinburgh, July 9.”

– Cork Examiner, Monday 25th July, 1853.

– Treaty of Union Articles, Formation of the National Association for the Vindication of Scottish Rights.

   “The only Court which has exercised authority for many years past has been the Committee of Privileges of the House of Lords. In the now famous Mar case that Committee was practically composed of three Lords, of whom two were English lawyers and the third was Lord Redesdale, who is neither a lawyer nor a Scotchman. It could not have been supposed that such a tribunal could have adjudicated with authority on so elaborate and complicated a question as the succession to a Peerage which involved a large number of intricate and delicate questions that depend absolutely and entirely on a due appreciation of Scottish law alone. It might have been expected that even a group of English Peers would have paid some respect to Scottish feeling, and have allowed some authority to Scottish documents and legal decisions. This was, however, not the case. The most highly-prized traditions of Scotland were ruthlessly trodden under foot; her most ancient Peerage was declared to be a ‘creation’ of yesterday; the ‘Decreet of Ranking’ was declared to be a series of blunders; the decisions of the Court of Session were ignored; and the Treaty of Union was quietly set on one side. It was not to be expected that such a state of things could be endured, and we find accordingly that for eight years the tide of popular opinion has been swelling, and that a more and more determined front has been shown against the supporters of the English Committee of Privileges… 

   In the brief debate which took place on Friday the only argument of importance that was brought forward was that an anomaly would be created if the question of title were dealt with differently in Scotland and in England and Ireland. This was the objection to the measure which was urged by the Lord Chancellor, who omitted, however, to notice that although the Scottish Peerage stands in the same position as in the two sister countries, the tribunal which decides questions relating to them is wholly English…” 

– Glasgow Herald, Tuesday 25th July, 1882.

– Treaty of Union Articles, 1875-1900.

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