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hand to the Erle Bothwell.” This casket, intercepted as contained letters written from Glasgow, Stirling, Linlithgow, an a series of twelve sonnets, and two contracts of marriage. documents were presumed to have been preserved by Bothw of her affection and as proofs of her assent to the murder of of her own abduction at Cramond Bridge. The casket, it is was lodged with other papers by Bothwell in Edinburgh Castle the Queen from Dunbar. These letters, first produced when M were never submitted to the Queen herself or to her Commi uniformly disclaimed as authentic by all concerned in her defenc lawyers, naturally jealous of the rights of individuals as again the Crown, have generally condemned this feature in the pro Queen Mary. Some of them, indeed, have gone the length of only desired to be as assuredly convinced of her innocence as unfair trial. The first and longest letter, from Glasgow, bore Elizabeth, as well as Mary's arch-foe, Cecil, indicating that by the Queen, for whom, perhaps, it was translated or transcril damaging evidence against their authenticity is the coarseness suggestion pervading them. “Cursed be this pocky fellow (she is writing from Darnley's bedside), who troubleth me thus much, for I h matter to discourse unto you but for him. He is not much the wo arrayed. I thought I should have been killed with his breath, for it your uncle's, and yet I was set no nearer to him than in a chair by his he lieth by the further side of the bed.” Again—"I have taken the his nose. You have heard the rest. We are tied to two false races year untie us from them. God forgive me, and God knit us together the most faithful couple. I am ill at ease, and glad to write you when be asleep, seeing that I cannot do as they do, according to my des between your arms, my dear life, who I beseech God to preserve from send you good rest, as I go to seek mine, till tomorrow in the morning

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F Glasgow), and other friends. Tytler writes le at full speed south to the Ferry, which she accompanied part of the way by Lord Claud ry Castle was reached, where the royal fugitive

Here a hurried despatch was sent to France, ed to proceed in the first instance to Dunbar very of the castle, and then to pass seaward ell might be made aware of her deliverance. as taken by way of Mid-Calder and Shotts, Ice somewhat over thirty miles. Here Mary Hly halted till plans were being devised for

The Earls of Argyll, Cassillis, Eglinton, Yester, Livingstone, Herries, Fleming, Ross, wded into the camp at Hamilton with their

oked, the Laird of Nether-Pollok (Sir John Lo on the 5th :-“We dowt not bot ye know

libertie, quhome we thank maist heartlie. ligence fail not to be heir at us in Hamylton

bodin in feir of weir, as ye will do us se yor constance. We need not at this ou fairweill.—(Signed) Mary, R. Dated lition, generally of a very loose kind, nice of Mary during her few busy days Castlemilk (Stuart) and Craignethan, Third of the name, whose reason had pt him for a husband. Unlike most early life actively inclined to favour lo see why Mary should for any it:ction afforded by her kinsmen

hand to the Erle Bothwell.” This casket, intercepted as mentioned above, contained letters written from Glasgow, Stirling, Linlithgow, and the Kirk-of-Field, a series of twelve sonnets, and two contracts of marriage. These important documents were presumed to have been preserved by Bothwell both as pledges of her affection and as proofs of her assent to the murder of Darnley, and also of her own abduction at Cramond Bridge. The casket, it is further presumed, was lodged with other papers by Bothwell in Edinburgh Castle when he brought the Queen from Dunbar. These letters, first produced when Mary was a prisoner, were never submitted to the Queen herself or to her Commissioners, and were uniformly disclaimed as authentic by all concerned in her defence. Constitutional lawyers, naturally jealous of the rights of individuals as against the power of the Crown, have generally condemned this feature in the proceedings against Queen Mary. Some of them, indeed, have gone the length of saying that they only desired to be as assuredly convinced of her innocence as that she had an unfair trial. The first and longest letter, from Glasgow, bore the initials of Elizabeth, as well as Mary's arch-foe, Cecil, indicating that it was inspected by the Queen, for whom, perhaps, it was translated or transcribed. The most damaging evidence against their authenticity is the coarseness of thought and suggestion pervading them. “Cursed be this pocky fellow (she is represented as writing from Darnley's bedside), who troubleth me thus much, for I had a pleasanter matter to discourse unto you but for him. He is not much the worse, but he is ill arrayed. I thought I should have been killed with his breath, for it is worse than your uncle's, and yet I was set no nearer to him than in a chair by his bolster, and he lieth by the further side of the bed.” Again—"I have taken the worms out of his nose. You have heard the rest. We are tied to two false races. The good year untie us from them. God forgive me, and God knit us together for ever for the most faithful couple. I am ill at ease, and glad to write you when other folks be asleep, seeing that I cannot do as they do, according to my desire, that is between your arms, my dear life, who I beseech God to preserve from all ill and send you good rest, as I go to seek mine, till to-morrow in the morning." Such “ Night Thoughts” in Glasgow came to an end on the 27th January, when Darnley was conveyed by way of Callendar and Linlithgow to the “ prepared ” lodging in the ruined premises at Kirk-of-Field, Edinburgh. On Sunday, 9th February, according to what is known as the Regent's Diary, the Queen and Bothwell supped with the Bishop of the Isles, and passed afterwards with Argyll and Huntly to the King's chamber, where Bothwell and his accomplices “putt all things to order.” About two hours after midnight (Hepburn confessed), when the Queen had retired from Bastian's wedding festivities in Holyrood, “a loud noise like the bursting of a thunder-cloud awoke the sleeping city. The King's House was torn in pieces and cast into the air, and the King himself slain.” Whether suffocated beforehand or killed by the explosion, it is impossible now to determine from the conflicting testimony of the ruffians concerned in the outrage. With indecent haste Bothwell was acknowledged by Mary as her friend, and before she had been three months a widow was accepted by her as a fitting successor to that husband whom he was believed to have murdered. But so unfortunate was the issue of Mary's affairs from the date of her union with Bothwell that, in little more than four weeks afterwards she was compelled to surrender to the nobles confederated in arms against her at Carberry Hill; and on the day following that surrender she was, in violation, as some think, of a solemn promise to the contrary, conveyed a captive to the castle of Lochleven. Bothwell himself contrived to escape at Carberry, scouring the northern seas afterwards as a pirate, and dying a maniac in the lonely Danish prison of Draxholm. The remains of certain minor conspirators executed were conveyed to Glasgow and hung up, in token of at least a small measure of justice meted out to the murderers of one so intimately associated by descent and title with the West of Scotland as Henry, Lord Darnley. The lands of the lordship of Darnley, which includes the mill of the barony, make up the south-west corner of Eastwood Parish, Renfrewshire, and passed from the Darnley Stewarts first to the Montrose family, by purchase, from the Duke of Lennox and Richmond, and then about fifty years later, or in 1757, to Sir John Maxwell of Nether Pollok, whose descendants are still in possession.

COREHOUSE AND THE CRANSTOUNS.

SPRUNG from the old house of Crailing, near Jedburgh, George Cranstoun may be thought to belong more to the East than the West, but the fine residence close on Corra Fall, Lanark, is so closely identified with the life and leisure of one of the foremost men of his day at the bar, that little apology is required for recalling the memory of a scholar profound as well as witty, an advocate full of enthusiasm for his client, and a judge whose judgment could always be relied on. Without the slightest pretension to the literary culture or many-sided readiness of Jeffrey, or even to the crisp conversational power of the great critic, it is not too much to say that, with the exception of Jeffrey alone, George Cranstoun stood in the very front of that group of young Whig lawyers which made the early years of the present century so memorable in the history of the Parliament House. He may not have had the homely familiarity of Cockburn with a jury, but Cranstoun had persuasive powers of another kind in grace and culture which rivalled in effect the delicious humour of “ Henry,” and kept him abreast in the race with the gay, light-hearted Fullerton, as well as of the silver-tongued Maitland. In matters of feudal law he was acknowledged to have no rival, either on the bench or at the bar-no rival at least which he needed to fear; and there were in his day either on the bench or at the bar names so historical as Robert Blair of Avonton, Robert Macqueen of Braxfield, and Ilay Campbell of Succoth. Cranstoun's career is at once an illustration and explanation of what has often appeared a puzzle to readers trying to make themselves familiar with the inner life of these harsh exclusive Tory days. How, it is asked, if public life was then made so very irksome-how did the young Whigs find their way to such high distinction and such great practice? No doubt, they got on; but they had to force their advance, and in hands less competent success would have been impossible, even although aided by the spell which seemed to have fallen on the Tories since they excluded Erskine from the office of Dean of Faculty, and elected Robert Dundas of Arniston. Step by step the resolute youths beat their foe, but it

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