Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border, Volume 2 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 315 pages of information about Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border, Volume 2.

  And bold Aboyne is to the sea,
    Young Huntly is his noble name.
—­P. 41. v. 3.

James, earl of Aboyne, who fled to France, and there died heart-broken.  It is said, his death was accelerated by the news of King Charles’ execution.  He became representative of the Gordon family, or Young Huntly, as the ballad expresses it, in consequence of the death of his elder brother, George, who fell in the battle of Alford.—­History of Gordon Family.

  Two thousand of our Danish men.—­P. 41. v. 5.

Montrose’s foreign auxiliaries, who, by the way, did not exceed 600 in all.

  Gilbert Menzies, of high degree,
    By whom the king’s banner was borne.
—­P. 42. v. 1.

Gilbert Menzies, younger of Pitfoddells, carried the royal banner in Montrose’s last battle.  It bore the headless corpse of Charles I., with this motto, "Judge and revenge my cause, O Lord!" Menzies proved himself worthy of this noble trust, and, obstinately refusing quarter, died in defence of his charge. Montrose’s Memoirs.

  Then woe to Strachan, and Hacket baith.—­P. 42. v. 2.

Sir Charles Hacket, an officer in the service of the estates.

  And Huntly’s gone, the self-same way.—­P. 42. v. 4.

George Gordon, second marquis of Huntley, one of the very few nobles in Scotland, who had uniformly adhered to the king from the very beginning of the troubles, was beheaded by the sentence of the parliament of Scotland (so calling themselves), upon the 22d March, 1649, one month and twenty-two days after the martyrdom of his master.  He has been much blamed for not cordially co-operating with Montrose; and Bishop Wishart, in the zeal of partiality for his hero, accuses Huntley of direct treachery.  But he is a true believer, who seals, with his blood, his creed, religious or political; and there are many reasons, short of this foul charge, which may have dictated the backward conduct of Huntley towards Montrose.  He could not forget, that, when he first stood out for the king, Montrose, then the soldier of the covenant, had actually made him prisoner:  and we cannot suppose Huntley to have been so sensible of Montrose’s superior military talents, as not to think himself, as equal in rank, superior in power, and more uniform in loyalty entitled to equally high marks of royal trust and favour.  This much is certain, that the gallant clan of Gordon contributed greatly to Montrose’s success; for the gentlemen of that name, with the brave and loyal Ogilvies, composed the principal part of his cavalry.


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