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The Case of the Present Afflicted Clergy in Scotland
by John Sage

London: J. Hindmarsh, 1690.

The Second Collection of Papers, relating to the Practice of the Rabble, after the Prince's Declaration against some Ministers who were afterwards deprived by the Council.

A true Account of that Interruption that was made of the Service of God on Sunday last being the seventeenth of February 1689 at the Cathedral of Glasgow, by the Presbyterians, both from the Hills and the Meeting-houses, to the Contempt of the Princes Declaration.

AS soon as His Highness the Prince of Orange's Declaration was proclaimed at the Mercat Cross of Glasgow, for the Preservation of the Peace of the Kingdom, and the Maintenance of the Free Exercise of Religion, as it was established in October last: The Magistrates and Ministers of the City assembled themselves, in order to the laying down such fit and united Methods as would give punctual Obedience to His Highness's Declaration, and procure the publick and undisturbed Exercise of their Religion, which has now been interrupted these four or five Weeks by-past, by the illegal unchristian Outrages of the Rabble in this place. And after a prudent Deliberation about the present State of Affairs, it was the result of their Counsels, That the Service of God should be restored on the Sunday immediately subsequent to the Publication of the Prince's Declaration, being the Seventeenth of February, according to the usual and legal Methods by ringing of Bells, and the publick use of all other accustomed Solemnities. But for the greater Security of the Exercise of Religion, and the Preservation of the Peace of the Town, the Magistrates thought themselves obliged in Conscience and Honour, to go to Thomas Crawfurd Younger, Merchant, being then Captain of the Guard at that time, and one of the Chief Commanders of that Party in this place (that keep up themselves in Contempt of the Law of the Kingdom, and the Prince's Declaration, to the [illegible] of the Magistrates and all good and peaceable People in the Land to require the said Thomas Crawfurd to lay down his Arms and dismiss his Company; which accordingly was performed by Baillie James Gibson, he (being the chief Magistrate in absence of the Provost) telling him at the same time, That he would provide for the Peace and Security of the Town in Obedience to the Prince's Declaration. Upon the absolute refusal of Obedience unto this command by the said Thomas Crawfurd, Baillie Gibson took Instruments in a publick Nottars hands, how far he had his duty to the Law of the Kingdom and the Prince's Declaration, and how far the said Thomas Crawfurd, the pretended Captain of the Guard, did despise and contemn them both. After this Intercourse between the foresaid Baillie and Thomas Crawfurd, both those Parties of the Presbyterians, that go to the Hills and the Meeting-houses, began to whisper about their illegal and bloody Designs against the Ministers of the Town, and that great Body of the People that keep still very stedfast in frequenting the Assemblies of the Church, threatning publickly all kinds of Persecution unto them in the legal Exercise of their Religion. On the Sunday morning the Promiscuous Rabble gathered themselves together upon the Streets, and hindered the ringing of some of the usual Bells for calling the People to Church. Yet the Magistrates thought fit to connive at the first Insolence, being willing upon any Terms to have the Exercise of their Religion, and give Obedience to the Prince's Declaration. But the more moderation the Magistrates shewed on this occasion, the more the Rabble were inraged, publickly threatning the People as they went to Church, to pull them out by the Ears. And particularly, they seeing a certain Minister going to Church, they pursued him with Sticks and Clubs, but he taking a House escap'd their Fury. When the Magistrates were come near the Church, they found it surrounded with a promiscuous Rout: Upon this they desired the rude People to go home in peace, but they returned Scolding and Bloody Language, and flinging from them their Cloaks and Plaides, that is Mantles, they gave the Assault with Staves and Battoons in their hands unto the Magistrates; and particularly one of them giving a severe blow to John Bell, one of the late Bailies, and at this time in company with the Magistrates. Upon which unsufferable and scandalous Attack, the Magistrates gave order to the Towns Servants and Officers, to clear their way to the Church, and beat off the Rabble; which being effected, the Magistrates, together with all the People, entered peaceably into the Church, seating themselves according to their Ranks and Qualities in the usual postures of Devotion in which the Service of God is performed in our Church. After Prayers were ended, towards the middle of the Sermon, the forementioned Thomas Crawsurd, the pretended Captain of the Guard, came into the Church, and cry'd aloud to the People, That the Town was in Arms. He was answered, That five or six hundred People of the best Quality in Town were assembled in Church, to the Service of God, according to Law and the Prince's last Declaration, That they were naked Men without Arms or the least intention to make any resistance: And if the Town was in Arms, he was more concerned to look to it than they, he being the pretended Captain of the Guard. And likewise he was told, That if the People in Church had designed any opposition to such as might disturb them in the Exercise of their Religion, they would have appeared in an armed posture (which out of a due respect to the House of God and the Prince's Declaration they did forbear to do;) and then he should have found them too strong for any Party that durst have assaulted them: But they came not thither to fight, but to serve God. The Parson continued Preaching until he finished his Sermon. Towards the latter and of the Prayers after Sermon, the Meeting-houses being dismiss'd, and joyning the Hill Party that appeared by this time in Arms upon the Streets, and together with the Company that was upon the Guard, they formed themselves in a great Body, and then marched off under the Conduct of the Laird of Carsland, taking their way straight to the Cathedral Church; when they came to it, they fired both upon the People that had fled to the Pinacles and Buttresses of the Church, and through the Door, where there was a little Boy dangerously wounded on the Face; but at last they broke open the Doors of the Church, and searching diligently for the Parson they found him: They were disired by the Magistrates to dismiss the armed Men and go in peace, but they refused it, telling, They would have out those People that beat off the Women and the Men from the Church-door upon the first Uproar. They were answered, That the Disorders were begun by the Rabble against the Prince's Declaration; and that the Magistrates could not, without doing infinite injury to the Service of God, the Honour of the Prince, and the Authority of Government, forbear commanding the Officers and Towns Servants to beat off the Rabble that opposed their entry into the Church. And to this it was subjoyned, That if they would lay down their Arms, or go home in peace, and forbear the encouraging and protecting of the Rabble in those Vproars, they could return in the same peaceable way from the Church that they came into it. But this they absolutely refused to do, telling us,

They could not desert their Sisters the Women, that by this time were assembled in great numbers upon the Streets and in the Church-yard. After this they took up the Names of the People of the best Quality in Church, and then they hurried us out by Fives and Sixes at several Doors of the Cathedral, and so exposed us to the Fury of the Rabble, which we had escap'd if they had permitted us to go out in a Body. Others of us they pretended to conduct by Guards, but carried us no further than into the very middle of the Rabble. The whole Congregation being thus maliciously dissipated, very few of them did escape without Wounds or Blows; and particularly the Lord Boyd was rudely treated, and had his Sword taken from him. Sir John Bell had above a hundred Snow-balls thrown at him: The Laird of Borrowfield and his Lady, together with his two Brothers, James and William Walkinshawes, were five or six several times beaten to the Ground: James Corbeit was very dangerously wounded in the Head with the stroke of a Syth. George Graham, one of the late Bailies of the Town, was deeply cut on the Head in two places. Doctor Wright and his Lady, and together with them her Mother and Sisters, and several other Women, were very roughly handled and beaten. Mrs. Anna Paterson Daughter to the Archbishop of the Place, Mrs. Margaret Fleiming, and several other Gentlewomen were cruelly pinch'd after their Cloaths were torn off them. There was Scores of others severely beaten and bruised, which would be tedious to make mention of here, but only this we must observe, There was a certain Carpenter, who was so dangerously wounded (so that he lyeth now beyond hopes of Recovery) by four armed Men that promised to conduct him through the Rabble, and to whose protection he innocently committed himself. This is a true Account of what pass'd upon Sunday last, being the 17th of February 1689. which I, as Magistrate of Glasgow in absence of my Lord Provost, give under my Hand as Truth.

James Gibsone.

For the further Testification of the Premises, we under Subscribers attest the same

Jo. Gillhagie.
Patrick Bell.

The Sufferings of Gideon Brown.


TO obviate all Misrepresentations of my Treatment at Smelholm, I give you this true and impartial account according to your desire.

Upon the first Saturday of February 1689. George Dickson Cottar to the Lair of Smelholm a profest Cameronian, brought to me an unsubscribed Paper in the presence of my Family, in the which he, in name of the Parochine, ordains me to cease from the Exercise of my Ministry there, pretending in it, that I had no call from the People, and that I was an Intruder, and had brought Troopers among them; with this certification, that they would force and compel me to do it. This much troubled me, to be upbraided for that of which I was never guilty, and that by Persons whom often I kept from the lash of the Law, and who had constantly heard me till the late Toleration, and frequently taken the Sacrament from me, but from the consideration of our Saviours Treatment from those to whom he was ever doing good, I comforted my self, and resolved patiently to bear and undergo this present Disaster, and whatever might follow thereupon. This being represented to the Laird Smelholm, he advised me for a day to cease from Preaching, and withdraw, which accordingly I did: The next Lords day I returned (laying aside all Fears, not willing so easily and suddenly to be put from the Exercise of my Ministry) and it pleased the Lord to grant to me, and to continue with me, a safe Exercise of my Ministry without disturbance, until the fourteenth of April hereafter, which was the Lords day, on which day the Scum of that People, most of them not above the quality of a Servant, yet all dwelling under the Laird of Smelholm, except two, and newly instigated by one George Dickson Preacher in a Meeting-house near by (as I am credibly informed) did assemble with Staves and Battoons (having, on Saturday before, warned me by a second Summons, and taking away the Bell-rope) to oppose me that day; the Laird of Smelholm being acquainted by me, of the said intended Uproar, at the ordinary time of convening, came to the Church-yard, I following with my Family, and after some communing with the said Rabble, his Tenants, who had been there from six a Clock in the morning, prevailed to make patent Doors, and having entered the Pulpit and begun to Pray, immediately the said George Dickson (having received the Hire of eighteen Pence from the rest, as he himself confess'd afterwards in my Beadles hearing) approached furiously to draw me out of the Pulpit, which a Son of mine (of sixteen years of Age) observing, stop'd him before he came near me; upon which there came ten about the Boy, pulling the Hair off his Head, tearing his Hat, Cloak and Neckcloth, which extorted from his Mother these words in the midst of the Church, Murder! Murder! and forced me from the Pulpit, at length the Laird quieted them. Upon all this I took Witnesses, and withdrew with my Family, to the Neighbour Church, ever after that they put Cattle of all sorts into the Church, frequently threatned my self, watched every Lords day for my coming, to Church, not to Hear me but Harm me: O the Sin of Stoning of the Prophets, which brought sad Judgments on the Guilty of Old, is now frequently among us practised, the Lord grant Amendment. This forced me to Preach in my own House, while after Whitsunday, and then it being reported to me by some, that if I preached any more in the House, the said Rabble would eject me and my Family, I ceased there, and preached in some Neighbour Churches: At length they caused cite me before the Council, Sept. 28. where for not praying for K. W. Nominatim, in my House, and not reading the Proclamation there, I was deprived by the Council, and appointed to remove from my Manse at Mertimas, to which I gave Obedience at the time (the Laird assuring me that he could not keep his People off me, and that some had sworn to him, that they would eject me, be the event never so Hazardous) and came to the City of Edinburg with my whole Family, intending there the Education of my seven Children at Colledge and Schools: This is a true Narration of what befel me at Smelholm, among that People, who kindly received and joyned with me in all the parts of my Ministry, until the said Dickson and others of that Perswasion had conversed with them and frequently preached among them; yea, I am credibly informed that this George Dickson on a Saturday night as he came from Edinburg, lighted in a Change House, and then the People desiring him to preach to morrow, he answered, He would preach no more until they put away the Curate from among them.

Sir, I doubt not but what I have here written, will find credit with you on my single Testimony, yet to this the Laird of Smelholm, with many others, can bear witness, I rest (wishing the Lords Grace and Mercy ever to attend you)

Your humble Servant G. B.

The Persecution of Mr. William Bullo, whom the Rabble hindred from giving Obedience, and yet was deprived.

MR. William Bullo Minister at Stobo in Tweddale, was all the Winter over most barbarously used by the Rabble, they having many times, not only in the day time, but even under cloud of night, with drawn Swords and Guns in their Hands, entered his House, broke open the Doors thereof, and searched the same for himself, and thereby did so affright his Wife and Children, that they took Sickness through fear, and he himself for fear was forced to lye out in the Fields in the coldest Winter nights: And after he had endured a great many of their Onsets, about the beginning of April last, as the said Mr. Bullo was coming home from the accompanying the Corps of a Gentleman, they lay in ambush for him by the way, and riding through a little Village in his own Parochine, where there was a Meeting house erected, and where was the Dwelling-House of the Preacher of the Meeting-house, out of which House there broke out upon him a number of the Rabble (among whom was the Preachers Servant-man) and with drawn Swords in their Hands, offered to stobb him, and charged him to stand, and he putting the Spurs to his Horse rode for it, they firing their Guns after him; and at last two of them mounted themselves on Horses and pursued him, and chased him farther than his own House, until at length the said Mr. Bullo's Horse gave over riding, and so they apprehended him, and told him, they would instantly shoot him, and commanded him to his Knees; and he desiring for a little time to pray; they told him, he had lived too long; he answered, that was to quarrel with God, and he wished them to consider what they were saying and doing, For, said he, you are in passion: You Damn'd Rogue, said they, do you take on you to admonish us, we'll shoot you presently through the Head: Then said he, Since you will do it, God have Mercy on my Soul, and God forgive you, and now, said he, I have done: Then they laid many stroaks on him, with the broad side of their drawn Swords, and told him, They would forbear his Execution that night (it being then late of the night) and would take him Prisoner to his own House, and guard him there until the next day, and pronounce Sentence on him in sight of the whole Parish, and would do further as they thought fit: And accordingly all this was done, for to morrow morning they sent through the whole Parish, and convened all that would joyn with them against the said Mr. Bullo, and entered his House in a most Hostile manner with their Arms, and commanded his own Manservant to tear his Gown; and after many Altercations betwixt him and them, they discharged him to preach any more upon the peril of his Life: He told them, that he would receive no orders from them, he came in by Authority and would not go out but by it. And about a Fortnight or twenty days after this, they came upon his Family (he being from home) and most cruelly threw out at doors his whole plenishing and Furniture of his House, and locked up the Doors; and upon the Lords day, whereupon he should have read the Conventions Proclamation for making Prayers for King William and Queen Mary, and upon the day of Thanksgiving, they set Guards in the Church-yard, lest he should have given Obedience. And thus was he violently forced away from his Church, and is since deprived by Act of Council, for his not Reading and Praying.

The Names of these honest Gentlemen who offered to attest the Truth of this matter by their Oaths, when Mr. Bullo was deprived, are so well known to the Council, that it would be needless here to insert them.

The Persecution of Mr. James Little.

MR. James Little Minister of the Gospel at Tindace, was warned by six Men, whereof two were Cotters and four Young men, all Parishoners, to desist from the Exercise of his Ministry at the Church of Tindace and Trailflatt annexed to Tindace: he enquired of them by what Authority they did that; they answered, What they had done they would stand to it: He enquired at several Parishoners, If they had any Commission from them for the same; they answered, Not; so he continued for two Lords days thereafter doing his Ministerial Duties without Interruption: upon the third Lords day he goes to the Kirk of Trailflat, where he is obliged to preach once a month, and there when he was going to perform his Duty, there meets him to the number of fifty Women and upwards, with Cudgels in their hands, and enters the House where he used to go in, and came there and most violently abused his Person, without giving any reason why, and teared his Cloak from his Shoulders, and hauled him out of Doors; which being done, they compassed him about and beat him most severely with their Cudgels, so that some Persons who was come to hear a Sermon, cryed out, Will you Murder a Man? and after they had torn all his Cloaths (his Shirt not excepted) and inquired how he durst come to preach there this day, being warned before to desist, he answered, That they could not be ignorant of a Proclamation issued out in name of the Prince of Orange, which was publickly intimate from the Cross of Drumfries the Wednesday preceding, that all their Violencies and Injuries should surcease until the Meeting of the Estates: They answered, That they could not obey Mans Laws, but their King of Heavens Laws. He said likewise unto them, Why do you put your selves out of that Frame and Temper that is suitable to the Lords day? They answered, That in doing to me what they pleased, they could not offend their King of Heaven. After this he desired them to allow him some covering for to defend his Head from the cold, after they had cut his Hat in pieces, and trod the same, with the rest of his Cloaths, in the Mire; all which they denied. After all this they required the Key of the Kirk-door; he cried for the Beadle, who lived half a Mile distant from the Kirk, who was not as yet come; upon which they sent two of their own number for it, and the Man being out of the way they returned without it; so that the Minister was necessitated to send again for the Key, which then came; during which time, which was more than an hour and a half, he stood naked: Then they compassed him about four at each Arm, others of them beating his Head and Shoulders with their Fists, others of them Scratching and Nipping his bare Back, and leads him along first to the Kirk-door, and after entering into the Kirk, they required of him that he would there confess all the Wickednesses he had done, as the Preaching under a Popish Tyrannical King, and delating those who did not keep the Kirk: To which the said Mr. James answered, God Almighty forgive you and me all our Wickednesses, and if you will have the patience, I shall preach a Sermon to you, wherein I shall shew you, upon what Ground you and I may build the Forgiveness of all our Wickednesses, because every one that asks Forgiveness does not obtain it. After which they came upon him with their Cudgels over again, and lent him upon the Head and Shoulders, and said, Will you preach to us: After all this they dragg'd him out of the Church, and caused him to deliver the Key to one of them, and others of them cried, Come all here, that we may all be alike in this Business: Immediately after they fastened four to each Arm, as before, and leads him out of the Church-yard until they bring him to a Myre, where they go about the Myre, and takes up handfuls of Dirt; which made those who had him by the Arms, to part from him, and threw the same handfuls of Dirt upon him, and after they dismiss'd themselves. This I am ready to prove by many unexceptionable Witnesses.

I. L.

The Persecution of Mr. Archibald Ferguson Minister at Kirkpatrick.


SInce you are so earnest to hear from me a true account of the Barbarities committed by the pretended Godly Presbyterians here, upon the Person and Family of Mr. Archibald Ferguson Minister at Kirkpatrick, in the Stueartry of Annandale, where I live; as I am able so I am willing to satisfie you in this matter to the full, for I was an Eye-witness to some part of the Tragedy, and had the rest from some very honest Persons who were Spectators of the whole: The matter of Fact in short was this; Upon the Festival of Easter last (a day observed with much Religious Reverence by all the Christian World, except our Presbyterians, who seem to have separated from that Catholick Society) eight Men in Arms with about an equal number of Women, much in the same posture, came to the Ministers Dwelling-house early in the morning; and having forced open his Gate, the good Minister, who was then busie in preparing himself to serve God and his People in the Church, surprized with the extraordinary noise, and hearing them ask so furiously for him, came calmly to them, and modestly ask'd what business they had with him; Whereupon one of them took him by the Gorget, commanding him to surrender himself up to them as their Prisoner: He ask'd them what he had done for which he should be made Prisoner, and by what Authority they made him theirs: He was answered by a severe blow upon the Head with a Pistol, the stroke knock'd him flat to the ground, and the Wound it made, would in all probability proved mortal, if his Head had not been guarded by a thick Velvet Cap, which by kind Providence he had then upon it: The Miscreant who wounded him, ordered him immediately to be drag'd out from his Gate, which two of his Blood-thirsty Accomplices as readily performed, beating him afterwards down into a nasty Puddle; his poor Wife (then so big with Child that she expected every day to be brought to Bed) running out to save, if she could, her Husbands Life, was, at her first Appearance, knock'd down with the Butt end of a Musket; she received many merciless blows, and had her Head and Body severely bruised among the Stones where she was beat down. Then James Harcannass their noble Captain at this honourable Expedition, gave the word of Command to his Female Janizaries, which was, Strip the Curate (for they think this a most Disgraceful Appellation, and therefore they apply it to all Episcopal Ministers) the order was no sooner given, than these Amazons prepared to put it in execution, for throwing away their Plaids, (i. e. loose upper Garments) each of them drew from her Girdle a great sharp pointed Dagger, prepared, it seems, for a thorough Reformation. The good Minister lying panting and prostrate on the ground, had first his Night-gown torn and cut off him, his close Coat, Wastcoat and Britches ript open with their Knives; nay, their Modesty could not so far prevail against their Zeal, as to spare his Shirt and Drawers, but all were cut in pieces and sacrificed to a broken Covenant: The forementioned Captain gave the finishing stroke himself, with a great Reforming Club, the blow was design'd for the Ministers Head or Breast, but he naturally throwing out his Hands to save those vital parts, occasioned it to fall upon his Shin-bones, which he had drawn up to cover his Nakedness; the blow was such, as greatly bruised both his Legs, and made them swell extraordinarily after; however the Captain thinking that they were broke, and finding it uneasie for himself and his Companions to stand longer in a great Storm of Wind and Snow which happened to fall out that morning, he drew off his Company, and left the Semi-Martyr, who afterwards by the assistance of his Servants, crawled home to his Bed, and but a little after, the whole Herd of his Persecutors broke in again upon him, and told him, They had treated him so, because he prayed for the Tyrant York, (so these People ordinarily called King James, tho he was too kind to them) and because he had presumed to preach, and visit the Parishioners as if he had been their Minister, which they had formerly forbid him to do; they required him also to be gone from their Covenanted Lands, under pain of death, before that day Sevennight, and never again to meddle with the Ministry. And tho Application was afterwards made by some who might have been supposed to have had Interest with that Crew, yet nothing could prevail to obtain so much as but a delay till his poor Wife should be brought to Bed, and himself a little recovered of his Wounds: So that he was forced to fly for his Life, from his Parish, Wife and Children, without any hopes of returning, till it shall please God to bring some order out of our present Confusions, to open the Eyes of blind and fiery Zealots, and to stop the Fury of our ungoverned Rabble: I may say, that our Judgments begin at the House of the Righteous, for this Man is a Person of extraordinary Parts and Piety: I think it not strange, that some Men with you are so unready to believe the Fanatick Practices here, since few Men can suppose any People so Barbarous as our Bigots indeed are, but I admire that these ill Instruments about Court, who give Encouragement, Life and Motion to the Faction here, should so impudently deny the Matters of Fact, which themselves know to be but too true. If this particular Passage should be contradicted, I am ready and willing my self to attest it, and to prove it by several other unexceptionable Witnesses; and tho it be dangerous to have particular Mens Names published, the Faction we have to deal with being Merciless and Bloody; yet if nothing else can serve, I allow you to use my Name, but do it no further than the Cause requires, and with all that Discretion and Caution that is expected from you by


Your sincere Friend and humble Servant

G. M.

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