22nd of November

Saints Philemon and Appia. St Cecilia, or Cecily, virgin and martyr, 230. St Theodorus the Studite, abbot, 9th century.

Born. – Professor Dugald Stewart, celebrated metaphysician, 1753, Edinburgh.
Died. – Pope John XXIII., 1419, Florence; François Le Vaillant, African traveller, 1824, La Neve, near Lauzun; Professor George Wilson, author of various scientific works, 1859, Edinburgh; Father Lacordaire, eminent French preacher, 1861, Loreze.

On this Day in Other Sources.

This same year the town of Perth was wholly taken away with the great inundation of the rivers Tay and Almond; from which King William, with his Grace the Prince, and his brother David, Earl of Huntingdon, very narrowly escaped by boat; for all which there was, notwithstanding, a son of King William’s and his nurse drowned, the 22nd of November, 1210. 

– Historical Works, pp.19-38.

The reign of Robert II., though equally barren of deeds regarding the church, furnished to the charter scholars of the Scotch college their most valued evidence and their greatest triumph. After setting forth the proofs of the legitimacy of Robert III. contained in the charters, founding a chaplainry in consideration of a papal dispensation for the marriage of his father with Elizabeth More, and detailing the preservation of these charters in France, Thomas Innes, with an excusable mixture of loyalty and patriotism with grateful affection for the country of his adoption, celebrates the glory of FRANCE, who – united to Scotland by their ancient league, and often affording a hospitable reception to her royal family – hath now happily preserved at once the hope and heir of the kingdom – the hundred and tenth inheritor of the crown – and the unchallengeable proofs of the legitimacy of his race!1

– Sketches, pp.29-70.

1  Ita Francis Scotis fœdere conjuncta, regiæque familiæ hospitio non semel nobilis, ut spem et hæredem centesimum et decinmum regni Scotorum, ita etiam titulum indubitatæ auctoritatis, quo eadem familia ab omni deterioris originis suspicione vindicatur, feliciter conservavit. – Mabillon, App. p. 10. Innes, of course, only dealt with the objection as he found it in Boece and Buchanan, who asserted that Robert married Elizabeth More, not till after the death of his queen, Euphemia Ros, and then obtained the legitimation of children whom he had had by Elizabeth before his marriage with Euphemia, in exclusion of the children of his lawful marriage. That fiction is certainly overthrown by these deeds, proving the dispensation, marriage, and death of Elizabeth, ten years before the death of Euphemia. It was reserved for the ingenuity of later writers to raise other objections after the whole disputes have fortunately taken their proper rank as mere subjects of antiquarian curiosity. The dispensation referred to in these charters which is dated Nov. 22, 1347, was found in the Vatican by Andrew Stewart. Under the disguise of strange mis-spelling, for persons of such quality, it informs us quod dudum ipsis Roberto et Elizabeth ignorantibus quod dicta Elizabeth et… Ysabella Boucellier in tertio et quarto, ac Elizabeth et Robertus prefati in quarto, consanguinitatis gradibus sibi invicem attinerent, idem Robertus dictam Ysabellam primo, et postmodum predictam Elizabeth carnaliter cognovit, et quod ipse Robertus et Elizabeth diu cohabitantes, prolis utriusque sexus multitudinem procrearunt, – and then it grants the desired dispensation for the marriage, and declares the children previously born legitimate. A fine point has been raised by a learned writer, a to whether the papal legitimation could render these children born “in incestuous concubinage,” capaces successionis in regnum. – Riddell on Peerage and Consist. Law, I. c. 6. Perhaps the modern inquirer will be better satisfied with the legislative act in their favour (Parliament 1373). But, for the zealous antiquary who does not despise such inquiries, I would suggest (1.) that it is by no means proved or certain that there was not a formal marriage between the parties before the birth of those children, though the papal dispensation is bound to assume that a marriage which ex concessis was uncanonical, did not exist. But (2.) this incestuous concubinage, in plain language, the connexion of parties related within the fourth degree of consanguinity (which might be said if they were the great-grandchildren of cousins-german), with the other objection more shadowy still, are not impediments lege naturæ, nor by the law of Leviticus, but imported by the canons; and what the canons could create, the authority of the papal rescript could dispense with. This the canonists and all other lawyers admitted.

As a historian, [Hector Boece] was at first admired and followed, and latterly condemned, in both cases much beyond reason. His object was to give a classical dress to his rude native chronicles. One must doubt whether he really meant his grave readers to credit his stories of “Veremund” and “Cornelius Campbell,” and the records from Iona. He found, over a large period of his history, bare lists of kings, and he took the pains of dressing them in what he thought suitable characters and actions. Quite unembarrassed by facts, he proposed to treat his subject like an artist, with the proper balancing of light and shadow, and studied to administer among the persons of his drama some sort of poetical justice. Leslie compares him to Livy, and his most fabulous portions are perhaps not more romantic than Livy’s first decade. The difference lies in the genius of the writers.1

– Sketches, pp.254-324.

1  A few circumstances less known may be collected here concerning Hector Boece…
H. Boece died probably in 1536, for on 22d November in that year the king presented John Garden to the rectory of Tyrie, vacant by the death of Mr. Hector Bois.

Duncan McGregor, called Laideus or Laudasach, was but too well known in Breadalbane and the Highlands for half a century, but the documents and records by which his history is vouched are of the end of it. 

He must have been of some standing in the proscribed but powerful clan, although his daring character may have helped as much as his cousinship, to place him in the office of tutor of the young Chief of McGregor. His chronicler informs us that in his youth he led the life of all his clan, – the life of the Arab robber, or the wolf on whose head a price is set. Hunted “through Lorne, Argyll, Menteith, and Breadalbane,” he retired to the wilds of Lochaber, where he hoped to find shelter with Lochiel; but the Earl of Argyll having pursued him hotly, he doubled back to Breadalbane, where he was taken and thrown into prison by Sir Duncan Campbell, the second Laird of Glenurchy. He escaped, and made himself strong with many followers in the confusion that followed the field of Flodden, where the Knight of Glenurchy was slain, with his cousin of Argyll and their royal master. From this period (1513) till his death, he was the terror of the Highlands. Of the injuries he suffered personally, or the wrongs he may have had to avenge, we know little. The story is told by the other party. His last exploits we must take from the formal narrative of the public prosecutor. On the 26th November 1551, the Queen’s Advocate set forth that “Duncan Laudes and Gregour his sone recently, namely upoun Sounday the 22d day of November instant, at sex houris at evin under silence of nycht, be way of hamesukin cam to the hous of Alaster Owir alias McGregour servand to Colyne Campbell of Glenurquhay of the landis of Moreis and be force tuke him furth of his said hous and be way of murthure straik him with quhingearis and crewellie slew him and spulyeit and tuke fra him his purs and in it the soume of fourty poundis; and incontinent thireftir past to the landis of Killing to the hous of ane pure man callit Johnne McBayne Pipare, and thair assegit the said hous and brak the durris thairof and be force tuke the said Johnne furth of the samin and straik his heid fra his body and crewellie slew him and gaif him divers uther straikis with quhingearis in his body,” etc. For this murder on his “awin natioun;” as his historian tells us, he and his son were charged1 and “put to the horne;” which they treated with derision. And the common process of law was not likely to be otherwise treated by such as Duncan. Here, however, it was enforced by others than the Queen’s messengers. Alaster Owir, though a Macgregor, was a “servant” of Glenurchy’s, who was, therefore, bound to avenge his murder.

– Sketches. pp.341-394.

1  The charge was executed at the Market Cross of Perth, 28th Nov. 1551.

After suffering all those grievances, and vexations, the unfortunate captive was still doomed to swallow some very bitter pills, while her health declined. The Duke of Norfolk, at the command of Elizabeth, issued a declaration of all his proceedings, either by himself, or others, with the Queen of Scots. Soon after the arrival of the Queen, at Carlisle, her warden, the vice chamberlain, Knollys, had laid it down as a sort of maxim, which appears to have been adopted, by the statesmen of Elizabeth’s court, that the Scotish Queen could not be detained, as a prisoner, unless she were disgraced by calumny. The notorious enquiry, at York, at Westminster, at Hampton-court, was plainly conducted, on that maxim. Both parties seem to have made some preparations of attack, and defence, of the unhappy Queen, though with very unequal arms. Buchanan scribbled his Detection of Mary’s doings: and Murray caused Buchanan and Wood, to forge Paris’s Declaration, in case more proof should be wanted. On the other side, the Bishop of Ross, with the hints, and informations, of Lord Herries, and Lord Boyd, wrote Mary’s Defence. The detection, and defence, seem to have both appeared, in 1571, during Mary’s troubles.  

There remains a letter from Mary, on this subject, to the French ambassador, Fenelon, 22d November 1571; complaining, that a scandalous book, in Latin, detracting from her character, lately printed, had been put into her hand, by Mr. Bateman, an officer of this castle, who, she was sure, would not have done it, had he not been directed to do so: She earnestly entreated the ambassador to lay the subject before his master; and to request him to write to Queen Elizabeth, to suppress such infamous publications against her: as the French King had suppressed, in France, at the request of Queen Elizabeth, all publications written by her subjects, in her favour: But, at all events, she begged, that this publication might be suppressed, in France, where she had many friends, who were interested, in her concerns, or that publications, in her favour, might be freely circulated there. She had requested a priest, to administer the sacrament to her, according to her religion, and conscience; instead of which consolation, Mr. Bateman brought her a book, defaming her character, written, by an atheist, Buchanan, whose impiety she well knew; and had requested the Queen of England, that he might be removed from being near her son, to whom, she understood, he had been appointed preceptor. 

– Life of Mary, pp.244-251.

The door to the floors above the coining-house in the Mint bore the letters “C. R. II., God save the King, 1674.” Here was the lodging of Archibald ninth earl of Argyle, during his attendance on the Parliament, after Charles II. had most unexpectedly restored him to his father’s title. Under date November 22nd, 1681, only a few days after the escape of the Earl from the Castle, disguised as his stepdaughter’s page, Lord Fountainhall records that “Joseph Brown and James Clark, having poinded the Earl of Argyle’s cabinet forth of the coin-house at Edinburgh, for a debt owing to them by the Earl’s bond, the said cabinet having been rescued from them by violence, they gave in a complaint to the Privy Council of the riotous deforcement.” 

In defence it was alleged that the Mint was a sanctuary, and no poinding could be enforced there. It was answered that it was unknown whether it was by law or usurpation that the Mint was an asylum, and that it could protect only those in the service of the King; “but to extend this to extraneous persons running in there to avoid captions, much less to secure goods and plenishing, &c., is absurd. They fearing the want of this, alleged that the wright who made it (the cabinet) retained it jure tacito hypothecæ till he was paid the price of it.” 

– Old and New Edinburgh, pp.266-274.

Thursday 22 November 1888, p. 4. 

“THE Dumbarton Town Council feel aggrieved at the removal of Wallace’s sword from the castle to the Wallace Tower on Abbey Craig, and have resolved to remonstrate with the War Office authorities, and ask that the historic weapon be returned to the place where it has lain for between five and six hundred years.” 

– Scots Lore, pp.280-282.

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