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CHAP.
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your necks and shoulders that ye shall never be « able shake it off 38.

Such declamatory invectives addressed to no one in particular, and conveying no distinct information, are the sole authorities of those who adopt, as a rule of judgment, every assertion which Mary's early apologists have chosen to advance, and to reject every fact which her opponents have endeavoured to prove. But the rhetorical intimation of what was full well known, implies that it was not known ; what they could tell signifies in plain language what could not be told; and on this subject Lesly's veracity may be ascertained at once. None were present at Craigmillar, but Huntley, Argyle, and Lethington, who signed the bond devised by Balfour,

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** Anderson, i. 76. Tytler has a long argument to prove that Lesly's assertion concerning Paris's Confession, passed uncontradicted by Murray, who must bave seen it, as the first edition of his Defence was printed at the end of the year 1569, and Murray's death happened on the 23d of January, 1569-70. Tytler, i. 297. By this double supputation the fact is disguised, that the end of the year 1569 was March 25th, 1570, according to our present computation of time. Murray was shot, as Goodall expresses his assassination, on the 22d January, 1569-70, and Lesly's Defence was not printed till the Easter thereafter, which happened that year before the 25th of March. Whitaker, iii. 484. But Lesly's assertion was expressly contradicted in Buchanan's Detection, by publishing the genuine Confessions of the criminals at the place of execution.

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and Murray, whom Beton's letter acquits, and CHAP. whom Lesly has not ventured to accuse or even m to name. Morton and his associates were then residing as exiles in England; and the intimation that they were actually present at the conference at Craigmillar, was a fiction of which Lesly himself was conscious, and which he wished to insinuate, but was afraid to assert directly as a fact. When branded with such notorious marks of misrepresentation and fiction, his assertion, that the criminals confessed at their execution in the presence of many thousands, that the queen was innocent, and that her aco' cusers were the chief authors of the murder, must be supported by better authority than his own word. The confession of what Bothwell told his servants, would amount to nothing if genuine, as it was his policy as well as the queen’s, to transfer the imputation of the crime to Murray. But the fact inserted in Lesly's instructions, and suppressed at the conference, was introduced into an anonymous pamphlet with the less hesitation; and it admits of this obvious confutation, that the Confessions ascribed to the criminals in the presence of thousands, at the place of execution, were unknown in Scotland, and are not once mentioned by a single historian of the age. Not to insist on Buchanan's silence, Melyil and the author of the Historie and Life of King James the Sext, who mentions the seizure

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CH AP.
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or the execution of the criminals taken in one of w Bothwell's ships, Hollinshed and Thin his con

tinuator, and the contemporary authors whom
Calderwood consulted, or whose annals are still
extant in manuscript, were all ignorant of those
supposititious confessions of the queen's innocence,
and of the guilt of her accusers. In the next cen-
tury Camden’s interpolator, improving upon
Lesly, transcribed his assertion with this notable
mistake, that Paris, whom Lesly had mentioned
in the same sentence, suffered at the same time,
(1567) with Dalgleish and Powrie; and with
this remarkable addition, that they understood
from Bothwell, that Murray and Morton were
the authors of the regicide, from all suspicion of
which they absolved the queen. Paris is men-
tioned in the History of James VI. as one of the
devisers of the king's death, but that he denied
the fact at his execation, is one of Crawford's

39 Camden's Annals, 121. Sir James Balfour in his MS. Annals, transcribes this passage from Camden, with the same mistake, which points out, as their sole authority, Lesly, who mentions the execution of Hay, Powrie, Dalgleish, and Paris in the same breath. Sir James wrote about the year 1632; and in another part of his Annals he informs us, “ that the murderer of this innocent prince was known to be Bothwell, &c. by those who best understood how matters went at court. But the popish affected that applauded the queen's wicked courses, spread a rumour and laid the crime on Morton and Murray, which the queen mainly laboured to do by her answers to foreign princes."

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fession or

ration.

numerous interpolations or forgeries, which CHAP. Goodall had not the honesty to correct 40.

7. Had the queen's share or concurrence in Paris’sConthe murder been concealed from those who had first declano access to her person, her connivance could not have escaped the observation of Paris, the confidential servant whom she received from Bothwell. The question why he was not produced at Westminster during the conference, has been repeatedly asked by those who ought to have known that he was not then apprehended. His name and Ormiston's are inserted in Bothwell's attainder, (December 20th, 1567,) and the rest were executed (January the 3d, 1567-8) before any idea was entertained of the Conference at Westminster4l. From an original letter of Murray's to Elizabeth, it appears that Paris, who had

40 Crawford's Memoirs, 113. In the original MS. “ The regent passed to St. Andrew's qubair a notabill sorceress called Nicnevin was condemnit to the death and burnt, and a Frenchman callit Paris, quha was ane of the devyseris of the king's death, was hangit in St. Andrew's, and with him Williame Steward Lyonn, king of armes, for divers points of witchcraft and necromancie.” History of James VI. p. 66.

41 Keith's assertion, (366) that Paris had been two years and a half in prison when the confession was made, has been transcribed implicitly by Tytler, Guthrie, and Stuart, who, had they read the conferences at Westminster, would have found in Anderson, iv. 152, that he was then an outlaw. Whitaker first perceived and corrected Keith's mistake. Whitaker, i. 469.

CHAP. arrived at Leith about the middle of June 1569,
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was conveyed to St. Andrew's, as the regent was
then engaged in a progress through the north,
and that' he was executed by order of law
(August 16th) after a diligent and circumspect
examination, on the regent's return". His Con-
fession on the 9th of August, which occasioned
his examination on the 10th, has been preposter-
ously questioned by those who never saw the
original. An abridged translation from Calder-
wood's History, was published by Goodall, as the
proof of a forgery which he never examined, in-
stead of the French original in the Cotton library,
to which he seems to have had no personal ac-
cess. The latter is written in an indifferent French
hand; it is signed at the end of each leaf and at
the conclusion, with a contraction of the initials
of Nicholas Hubert, nick-named Paris, and appears
to be a free and voluntary confession, made pro-
fessedly without interrogation or constraint. T'he
internal marks of its authenticity are indisputa-
ble; as it is delivered with an arch simplicity that
is almost inimitable, and in a narrative quite dra-
matic, which could occur only to a person strongly
impressed with the precise words that were utter-
ed, in the scenes which he describes. It abounds,
as Robertson observes, with a number of minute

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