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• It now appeared as if Scotland were regained for King Charles. The prisons were emptied of the Cavaliers confined in them, and everywhere the Royalists ruled the day. Montrose and his assistants have been praised for their moderation in not exhausting the proper harvest of victory and subjugation. But they were on a perilous elevation. All the strong places were still in the hands of their enemies. The Covenanters had lent to England, and might recall, an army worth six times as much as any one which Montrose had defeated. He had only shown, what might have been presumed, that Highlanders trained to fighting, though in a bad school, made better fighters than Lowlanders not trained to war at all. He had the merit, certainly, of bringing into effect this peculiar force, hidden until his day ; but he had not yet measured swords with a professional soldier at the head of effective troops.
To give full effect to Montrose's military strength, he received that title of viceroy which had been given to Prince Rupert, and stood nominally in the position of absolute ruler of Scotland. The danger that all might be overturned lay in the south, and unconsciously he went to meet it. He was very desirous to recruit his army from the Borders, and to obtain from that country some serviceable horses. To this end, and that he might be near the friends of the cause in England, whom he was to aid when Scotland was all settled, he moved southwards. This was not acceptable to the Highlanders, who had ever a reluctance to trust themselves far from the protection of their own mountains. It was natural to them to return with their booty after a victory, especially if there was no immediate prospect of more fighting. They therefore went off in considerable bands.
The Scots army was before Hereford when a pressing demand for their assistance at home reached them from the Committee of Estates. The detachment sent was
by mismanagement, he attributed it to “our removing from that ground whereon we stood first embattled, being so near an enemy who had sundry advantages of us.”-Ibid., 420-423.
entirely cavalry, for the sake of expedition. They were commanded by David Leslie. They entered Scotland at Berwick, where the Committee of Estates and other eminent political persons were living as refugees from Edinburgh, where the plague then was rife. Thus Leslie got the best information as to the condition of the country and the steps he was expected to take. He moved northward until he reached Gladsmuir, near Prestonpans. He expected here to find and fight his enemy; and this is not the only occasion in history in which we may find a battle expected as likely to occur on a spot where a battle does occur in a later chapter of history. There seem to be certain physical conditions which practical men recognise as the spots where opposing armies are likely by the force of events to meet in battle. Here he learnt that Montrose was still on the Border, and he resolved to wheel round and fall on him by surprise.
On the night of the 12th of September 1645, Montrose set his headquarters in the town of Selkirk, while his attenuated army was encamped on Philiphaugh, about two miles to the westward. As the name “haugh " imports, the spot was a diluvial flat plain on the side of a river; the river was the Ettrick, and the place a little above its junction with the Tweed. There was a wood close by called the Harwood, which was said to protect the army from any surprise from the west. But in truth no precautions were taken against a surprise. That was a contingency deemed beyond the range of possibilities, otherwise Montrose could never have placed Highland troops on a flat plain, knowing, as he must have known, how eminently their method of fighting demands the command of the ground. There was abundant mountain ground hard by, and the selection must have been made for ease and convenience, not for defence.1 So imperfect was Montrose's organisation of scouts, or so perfect Leslie's
1 A small obelisk marks the centre of the field. It contains the following inscription, curious as a piece of peculiar literature : “To the memory of the Covenanters who fought and fell on the field of Philiphaugh, and won the battle there, A.D. September 13, 1645."
organisation for intercepting them, that he was that night posted within six miles of the doomed army. Montrose was writing despatches to the king through the night and into the morning, when he heard firing. He galloped to his army in time to order a despairing resistance. Mist favoured the assailants; and while a large body of horse charged from the Selkirk side, another band wound round by the spurs of the hills to attack the enemy from the west. All that Montrose's generalship could achieve was to retreat with a small portion of his force. It has been indignantly charged against the victors, that they put all their prisoners to death. The charge is likely to be true; for they were either Highland or Irish, and it was the custom so to treat the descendants of the old Scots race, on whichever side of the Channel they resided.
Montrose made arduous efforts to reconstruct his army, but in vain. It had consisted of a class who eminently require success to keep them in a fitting state of ardour for the field. He had to abandon all his efforts and leave the country, when the king put himself into the hands of the Covenanters. Such was the career of Montrose, covering a year and twelve days. Of him it cannot be said that he suffered from oblivion, like the heroes before Agamemnon. Perhaps no military career has ever had a literary commemoration so disproportioned to its length and fruitfulness. The successive tributes to his memory were begun by his chaplain Wishart, who told his career in Latin for the benefit of the learned world, while it was translated into the vernacular for home use. It was his fortune or his fate that his memory, as a chivalrous hero, was the object of devotion to a party; and the commander, who was defeated on the only occasion when he met face to face with another commander of repute, had to be maintained as high up in the temple of fame as the greatest warriors in the world's history. For the literature devoted to such causes there are many allowances to be made; and the spirit that pervades it will meet a kindly appreciation by all who peruse the latest, tributes heaped on the memory of Montrose by one allied to him in blood, and himself a chivalrous member of a chivalrous house. The secret of the interest we all take in such literature, whether it is on our own side or not, is something akin to that which we take in the warm unselfish attachments where, right or wrong, the man stands by his friend.
WESTMINSTER ASSEMBLY OF DIVINES-CONSTITUTION-RESPONSIBILITY TO PARLIAMENT-ELEMENTS OF OPPOSITION AND DISPUTEPOLICY OF INSTITUTING THE ASSEMBLY-OCCUPATION FOR THE CLERGY-RAILLIE'S PICTURE OF THE OPENING-FUNCTION OF THE SCOTS COMMISSIONERS—THEIR INFLUENCE—THE PASSING OF THE COVENANT-THE BROWNISTS AND INDEPENDENTS-PARLIAMENT AND THE DIVINE RIGHT OF PRESBYTERY-RIGHT OF DISCIPLINE-THE DIRECTORY OF WORSHIP-THE VERSION OF THE PSALMS-ADOPTION IN SCOTLAND-THE CONFESSION OF FAITH_THE CATECHISMS-CONTEMPORARY AFFAIRS IN SCOTLAND-EXECUTION OF HADDO AND SPOTTISWOOD-THE SCOTS ARMY IN ENGLAND-THE KING JOINS IT -CONTROVERSY WITH HENDERSON-THE KING GIVEN UP TO THE PARLIAMENTARY PARTY-THE TREATY OF NEWPORT-THE ENGAGEMENT-HAMILTON'S MARCH TO PRESTON-HIS DEFEAT-THE MAUCHLINE TESTIMONY-THE WHIGAMORES-CROMWELL'S ARRANGEMENT WITH ARGYLE AND THE ESTATES—THE ACT OF CLASSES-EXECU. TION OF THE KING, AND PROCLAMATION OF CHARLES II.
CONTEMPORANEOUSLY with these stirring events, much interest was felt in Scotland in the deliberations of a community of grave and reverend persons assembled in England. The sayings and doings of the Assembly of Divines at Westminster deserve a fuller and closer history than they have yet obtained. There is no intention of supplying the deficiency here, since that institution belongs to the whole empire, or if it is to be told in connection with a part of it, it belongs to England. Some reference to its
1 We have two books, each containing, at considerable length, a narrative of some of the debates and transactions of the Assembly during a portion of their long session. The one is, ‘Notes of the