Page images
PDF
EPUB

copious detection of those spurious poems, by fome supposed to reflect the greatest honour, by others the greatest disgrace, on that part of the nation which claims and attests the imposture as its

own.

As this work forms a Continuation of Robert. son's History of Scotland, with which it coincides, it is my design to add, in a small preliminary, or rather intermediate volume, an Historical and Critical Differtation on the accession of Mary Queen of Scots to the murder of her husband. When revived by Goodall, the question was decided by Hume and Robertson; but the declamatory apologies which have since appeared, serve only to perplex, and to render the controversy more obscure than ever. A clear and concise deduction of facts, in the order of time, and a critical examination of the letters, sonnets, and other evidence, are still requisite to establish the innocence, or the guilt of Mary, on a better foundation than the perversion of every historical fact. On this fubject I have already discovered, and may

still expect to procure some original materials, subservient to the evidence of which the public is possessed.

The reader will be disappointed who expects to be gratified, in this work, with any pointed, political allusions to the present times. The prefent ever appears the most important period, and the political productions of the day are overpaid with praise at the time, in proportion as they are afterwards neglected or contemned. But the following History was mostly written in a distant

folitude,

[ocr errors]

folitude, far removed from political discussion. It would be difficult to speak of the present times, without degenerating either into adulation or censure, and absurd indeed to render the history of the last century a comment on the philosophy or folly of the present.

EDINBURGH,
June 2, 1800.

ERRATA TO Vol. I.

$6.

85.

2.

200.

Page 35. line 6. note, for Romanam read Romano

for regalem dum read dum regalem 22. for provisional read provincial

6. note, for 1669 read 1609 79. 3. for operated read operates

for fixty read fifty 116.

1. mote, for season read reason 162. margin, for of read to the Scots 176. line 13. for by discharge read by a discharge 188. 21. for constructed read constructive 192. 22. for conciliatory read but conciliatory 198. 4. note, for their read the original,

1. for were read was represented 203 30. for on read in the present reign

22. for as read and as 213. 31. for their former read the former 219. 2. note, for a court read the court

2. for evaded read invaded 251•

7. for in read on the confines 255.

2. dele as 298.

5. note, for Airley, with, read Airley with
262.

24. for addreffed read addreffes
366. 27. for Scotland read Ireland
370. 16. for a nation read the nation
445 26. for specie read ipecies
448.

5. nore, for afterwards read allo
4636 1. 7.90, for Sir read Mr.

210.

222.

THE

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

Acceffon, and departure of James from Scotland.-

State of that kingdon-Union, and ecclesiastical conformity attempted.--Retrospective view of prefbytery.Revival of prelacy.-State, and proposed improvement of the Borders Highlands and Isles. - Discoveries of Gowrie's conspiracy, of Balmerino's treafon ; ecclesiastical affairs.--King's journey to Scotland. - Articles of Perth.-Death and character of James.

1.

1503.

He marriage of James IV. and of Margaret, BOOK TH

eldest daughter of Henry VII. was productive at first of a temporary alliance, and at the distance of a century, of a permanent union between Scot- Descent, land and England. After the first generation, the issue of Henry had terminated in females, and on

the

VOL. I.

B

1.

1503•

crown.

BOOK the death of Elizabeth his grandchild, the blood

of the Tudors existed, almost exclusively, in the
veins of the Stuarts. James VI. of the Stuarts,
and the third in descent from Margaret, and
James IV. had been placed while an infant on the

throne of Scotland, which his unhappy mother was 1567

forced to resign ; but had attained to a mature
age, when his succession opened to the English

The design of this History is, to
describe the domestic transactions of Scotland,
and the relative events with which they were
occasionally connected in England, from the
union of the two crowns under James VI. to the
union of the kingdoms in the reign of queen
Anne.

It is seldom that the accession of a foreigner is
Janes tranquil, and James was peculiarly obnoxious

from his birth-place, to the antipathy of a people,
among whom his mother had suffered an ignomi-
nious death. But his accession was promoted by
the expectations of every religious, and the in-

terests of almost every political party in England. 1603. The puritans, who had experienced his friendly

intercession with Elizabeth, anticipated a reforma-
tion in the church, if not the downfal and destruc-
tion of the hierarchy, from a prince whose pro-
fessed religion was congenial to their own'. The
established clergy had examined his character with
more anxious attention; and discovered, both in
his conduct and in his controversial discourses, a

And accef. fion of

[ocr errors]

· Fuller, 224.

strong

« PreviousContinue »