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But such has been the melancolly cir to outrun those whom they cannot cumstances of affairs in Scotland for resist. some years past, that allmost all the The bad consequences of those robconsiderable gentlemen who took up beries are not the only oppression which arms for his Majesty in the time of the people suffer in the loss of their the late unnatural rebellion, have felt cattle and other goods,-but by the the displeasure of those in power in habitual practices of violences and illeScotland. But as this memorialist is gal exactions. The Highlanders dishumbly of opinion, that it is the duty use all their country business, they of all good subjects to heal rather grow averse to all notions of peace and than widen breaches among the well tranquillity,--they constantly practise affected, to contend only in zeal for his the use of arms, -they increase their Majestie's service; and in consequence numbers, by drawing many into their thereof, to look forward only in obser- gang, who would otherwise be good vations of this nature, he will open subjects, and they remain ready
and this scene no farther, than with all proper materials for disturbing the gohumble gratitude to acknowledge the vernment upon the first occasion. great goodness of his Majestie towards These interruptions of the public him, in so often protecting and pre- peace in the Highlands were frequente serving him from impending ruin, ly under the consideration of the Pare which the resentment of his enemies liament of Scotland, who, out of just had threatened.
resentment of such intolerable abuses, It would, without doubt, be very did, during the course of several reigns, happy for the government, for the in- pass many laws, but without success. habitants of the low country, and, They were very severe, drawn with above all, for the Highlanders them- more zeal than skill, and almost imselves, that all Scotland was equally practicable in the execution. In some civilized, and that the Highlanders few examples these extraordinary secould be governed with the same ease verities took place; but that tended and quiet as the rest of Scotland. But more to prevent than establish the as that must be the work of great time, quiet of the country, being sufficient every remedy that can be suggested, to provok and exasperat, and too little though but particular and incomplet, to subdue the disturbers of the public yet may be worthy of the consideration peace. of those in the administration ; for These evils thus remaining without whatever tends in any degree to the a remedy, and the protection of the civilizing those people, and enforcing law being too weak to defend the peothe authority of the law in those parts, ple against such powerful criminals, does in so far really strengthen the those who saw they must inevitably present government. The use of arms suffer by such robberies, found it nein the Highlands will hardly ever be cessar to purchase their security by laid aside, till, by degree, they begin paying ane annual tribute to the chiefto find they have nothing to do with tains of those who plundered. This them. And it is no wonder, that the illegal exaction was called Black Meall, laws establishing the succession of the and was levied upon the several parcrown, should be too little regarded ishes much in the same manner as the by those who have not hitherto been land-tax now is. used to a due compliance with any law The insolence of those lawless peowhatsoever.
ple became more intolerable than ever, One of the evils which furnishes the about the time of the late happy remost matter of complaint at present, volution, when many of the chiefs of is the continual robberies and depre- the same families were then in arms dations in the Highlands, and the against our deliverer, King William, country adjacent. The great difficulty who were lately in rebellion against in this matter arises from the moun his Majestie. Ane army of regular tainous situation of those parts, the re- troops marched into the Highlands, moteness from towns, and part there- but with little success, even meeting of consisting of islands, dispersed up with a defeat by my Lord Dundee, and down in the western seas, the cri- who commanded the rebells. Other minals cannot, by any methods now methods were taken, which putt an practised, be pursued, much less seiz- end to the civil war. The well-affected and brought to justice, being able ed Highlanders were made use of to
assist the regular troops. Some of the cies attending this measure. The rebell chief's were privately gained men were cloathed in the best manover to the Government, so that part- ner, after the fashion of the Highlandly by force, and partly by severallers, both for the unaccountable marchother artfull manadgements, the quietes these people perform, and for their of the country was restored, excepting covering at night in the open air. that many of the rebells, who had They spoke the same language, and ceased to oppose the government, be got intelligence of 'every thing that gan to plunder their neighbours, and was doing in the country. They carsometimes one another.
ried the same sort of arms, convenient The continual feuds and animosi- for the Highlanders in their ways of ties that has always raged among the acting. Being picked out for this serchiefs of many Highland families, are vice, they were the most known, and skilfully and wisely made use of, both capable of following criminalls over to prevent their uniting in the dis- the wild mountains a thing impracturbance of the public peace, or their ticable but for natives to perform. taking any joint measures against the The captains procured their men, government. There is almost allways in all their proceedings, the assistance good service to be done this way; and of the inhabitants they had under their in time of the last rebellion, it retarde influence, and of all their friends in ed very much the proceeding of the the country; and the inferior officers, rebells, and made their army much and even the private men, wherever less than otherways it would have they came, found always some of their been.
tribe or family who were ready to asThe parliament of Scotland impow- sist them in doeing their duty, when ered King William to establish parti any part of these companies were upcular commissions to proceed against on command, either upon pursuit of criminalls in those parts, which were criminalls, the getting intelligence, or ishued with very extraordinary powers, otherways acting in the service. It and were executed in ane unlimit- gave no allarm, nor discovered what ed arbitrary manner, without
they were doeing; for when it was fect for the purposes they were estab- necessary that they should not be lished, so as to creat in all people ane known, it was impossible to distinaversion against such courts and judi- guish them from other natives. cature, which, even in matters of life So that, by this scheme, the very and death, were confined by no rules barbarity, the uncivilised customs of of law whatsoever--they made mal, the Highlanders, and all the severall contents against the government, and causes of the want of peace, came in at last were prudently laid aside. aid to preserve it till time and more
After many fruitless experiments expedients should further civilise the for bringing the Highlands to a state country: of more quiet, it was at last accom As the private men of the compaplished by the establishing indepen- nies were chosen from among such of dent companies, composed of High- the Highlanders who were best aclanders, and commanded by gentlemen quainted with all parts of that counof good affection and of credit in that try,—who knew those clans who were country. This took its rise from ane
most guilty of plunder, with their address of the Parliament to the King. manner of thieving, and with their
The advantages that arose from this haunts,-it was almost impossible for measure were many. These compa- the robbers to drive away the cattle, nies having officers at their head, who or hide them any where, without bewere gentlemen of interest in the ing discovered ; nor could they conHighlands, and well affected, were a ceal themselves so, but that they were great countenance and support, on all sooner or latter found out and seized ; occasions, to the friends, and a terror and in a short time there was such ane to the enemies, of the government. end putt to these illegal violences, that
The men being Highlanders, and all the gangs were taken--the most well chosen for the purpose intended, notorious offenders were convicted and the whole difficulties which arose in executed—and great numbers of othall former projects for preserving the ers, whose guilt was less, were sent peace of the Highlands, became even beyond sea into the service, as recruits so many advantages and convenien- during the war.
Thus it was that this remedy was resentment, for their distinguishing so successful; in so much, that about themselves in his majestie's service; sixteen years agoe those disturbances, and others are ruined who dare refuse even before and at this time so fre- to comply with such illegal insolent quent and grievous to the people, did demands. intyrely cease.
The method by which the country After the late unnatural rebellion, is brought under this tax is this: the Highlanders, who had been in That when the people are almost ruinarms against the government, fell into ed by continual robberies and plunders, their old unsettled way of liveing, lay- the leader of the band of thieves, or ing aside any little industry they had some friend of his, proposes, that for formerly followed, and returned to a sum of money to be annually paid, their usual violences and robberies. he will keep a number of men in arms
About this time it was thought ex to protect such a tract of ground, or as pedient to pass an act of parliament many parishes as submitt to pay the for disarming the Highlanders, which contribution. When the terms are was, without doubt, in theory, a mea- agreed upon, he ceases to steal, and sure very useful and desireable ; but thereby the contributors are saffe. If experience has shewed that it has pro- any refuse to pay he is immediately duced this bad consequence, that those plundered. To colour all this villany, who had appeared in arms, and fought those concerned in the robberies pay for the government, finding it their the tax with the rest, and all the duty to obey the law, did accordingly neighbourhood must comply, or be deliver
up their arms; but those law- undone. This is the case (among less Highlanders, who had been well others) of the whole low country of provided with arms for the service of the shyre of Ross. the Pretender, knowing but too well Arter the disarming act was passed, the insuperable difficulty for the go- and those companies were broke, there vernment to putt that act into execu were some other measures laid down tion, instead of really complying with for preserving the peace of the Highthe law, they retained all their arms lands. Barracks were built at a very that were useful, and delivered up great expence, and detachments were only such as were spoiled and unfitt made from the regiments in the neighfor service; so that, while his Majes- bourhood to garrison them, and to take tie's enemies remained as well provide post in those places which were thought ed and prepared for all sorts of mis- most proper for the repressing these chief as they were before the rebellion, disorders; but all this had no effect. his faithful subjects, who were well The regular troops were never used affected, and ventured their lives in to such marches, with their usual arms his service, by doing their duty and and accutrements, were not able to submitting to the law, rendered them- pursue the Highlanders; their very selves naked and defenceless, and at dress was a signal to the robbers to the mercy of their own and the gov- avoid them; and the troops, who were ernment's avowed enemies.
strangers to the language, and often Upon this the plunders and robber- relieved by others, could never get any ies increased; but, upon the breaking useful intelligence, nor even be suffiof the independent companies in the ciently acquainted with the situation year 1717, these robberies went on of the several parts of the country, so without any manner of fear or res as to take the necessary measures for traint, and have ever since continued pursuing the robbers when any vioto infest the country in a publick and lence was committed. open manner. The regular troops not The effect of all which has been, being able to discover or follow them, that the government has been put to a and all the innocent people are with- great expence, and the troops have out arms to defend themselves. Thus, been fatigued to no purpose. then, violences are now more notori The officers of the law, for the ous and universal than ever, in so peace, are the Sheriffs and Justices of inuch, that a great part of the country the Peace; and, in time of any commohas, by necessity, been brought under tions, thé Lieutennants and their dethe scandalous contributions before puties ; which office, long disused, was zuentioned ; and the rogues have very revived and re-established at the time near undone many people, out of mere of the late rebellion.
It would seem to be highly necessared with authority over them, and now to the government that the Sheriffs and acting in his Majestie's name, whom Lord Lieutennants should be persons they endeavoured to destroy, and to having credit and interest in the shyre whom alone they owe their lives. they are to govern,—they cannot other The constituting one person Sheriff ways have the knowledge necessary,
or Lord Lieutennant over many shyres, of the gentlemen and inhabitants, for has several bad consequences to his performing the duty of their office, and Majestie's service. There is one inmaking it useful for the advancing of stance where eight lieutennancies are his Majestie's interest. On the con all joined in one person. The memotrary, such ignorance creats many mis- rialist mentions this only as ane obtakes in the execution of their charge, servation in general, without in the tending to the interruption of justice, least detracting from the merit of any and rendering the people under them person whatsoever. discontented and unwilling to act in From some of those causes it like. the service of the government. In ways happens, that when several perthese cases, it has happened that, sons are recommended by the Sheriffs throw misrepresentations of the char or Lieutennants, to be made Justices acters of the persons employed under of the Peace, not all qualified for that them, deputy-sheriffs have been made office, without knowledge, mean, and every way unfit for their office,-igno- of no estate nor character in the counrant, of bad reputation, and notorious- try, or ill-affected to government, and ly ill-affected to his Majesty.
when most or all the well-affected genThere are two deputies of the shyre tlemen are left out of the commission, of Inverness, both of which were ac it naturally produces such confusion tually in the late rebellion, Robert and discontents as to frustrat the inGordon of Haughs, and John Bailie, a stitution and design of the office, to late servant to the Duke of Gordon the disturbance of the peace of the during the rebellion ; and both these country to the lessening his Majesdeputies were prisoners in the hands tie's authority,--and particularly, in of Lord Lovat upon that account, who all matters of excise, and a surcease of has now the mortification to see and justice, and a vast detriment to the refeel them triumphant over him, loading venue. him with marks of their displeasure. The revival of the Justices of the
In the shyre of Ross, the deputy- Peace of Scotland, immediately after sheriff is Colin Mackenzie of Kincraig, the union, was then esteemed a matter who was likewise in arms with the late of the greatest importance to the goEarl of Seaforth against the govern- vernment and interest of the protestant ment. The memorialist would not succession. It is therefore the more to mention the encouragement the gen- be lamented, that throwout the whole tlemen of the name of M‘Kenzie met north of Scotland, there is hardly any with in prosecuting his Majestie's regular acting Commission of the Jusfaithful subjects, least it should have tices of the Peace ; whereas, if the conthe appearance of any personall resent- siderable gentlemen were appointed ment, were it not the publick debate who have estates in their own county, and judgment of the House of Lords and were all affected to his Majesty, this last session, have published to the there is no doubt but that office would world, by relieving Mr George Munro be execute so as to be very useful to from the oppression he lay under. the government, and possibly pave the
It cannot but be a very melancholy way for great improvements in the scene for all the well affected gentle- political state of the country. The men and inhabitants in those parts, to memorialist, with all humility, subfind the very criminalls whom, a few mits these observations to his Majesyears ago, they saw in arms and open tie's consideration. rebellion in the Pretender's cause, vest
REVIEW OF NEW PUBLICATIONS.
The Speech of Pascoe Grenfell, Esq.in complexion or consequences of their the House of Commons,
From occupation of on Tuesday,
mind, from a commendable contempt the 13th of February 1816, on cer
of small difficulties, and from that tain transactions subsisting betwixt the Public and the Bank of England. human nature, it is clear that, in
inevitable trust of self which pervades With an Appendix. London, Mur
giving their minds to the rapid suceesray, 8vo. 1816.
sion of affairs in a great nation like Of late years the Parliament of Bri- this, ministers must be far advanced tain has signalized itself by collecting in some measure resulting from a preand disseminating information on se- ceding one, before even the first outveral important points of national ward results of that of which it is a economy. We imagine it would be consequence can be made apparent. hard for the most determined reformer This is almost always true with reto shew how, by mere extension of spect to great projects of state. It is the elective franchise, or any enlarged just one of those fatalities in human constitution of the legislative body, affairs, which, by demanding an union an House of Commons could be found of requisites the most opposite, opemore worthy in this respect, of the rate as a constant check to any propublic confidence. At a time when gress which tends beyond a certain party violence has graduated through point. It requires at once the longest various heights, until at last it seems reach of generalization, and the most to have reached its acme, it is well to untired capacity for particulars. There resort to any thing which can excite, is nothing for all this but a phalanx in on fair grounds, a favourable view of our legislative assembly, composed eithe intelligence and integrity of the ther of men who have known, or may assembly which makes laws for us. wish to share, the duties of office themOn its reputation for wisdom or folly, selves, and are not only disposed, but the intellectual character, as well as the able, to criticise acutely the proceedpolitical spirit of the nation, must in ings of its holders for the time being, some degree depend. So long as it -or of those who, without any turn contains men with the literature and for office, or experience of its duties, habits of gentlemen, what is agreed on have yet sagacity and penetration to within its walls must have a strong see when the public interests are atsympathy with what is best in the pub- tended to, and when they may be nelic: and until the whole of that public, glected, and with this, firmness to or at least that part of it whose leisure pursue their investigations, and good and education fits it for making a ready sense and management enough to make and decisive opinion on public acts and them understood and appreciated. It relations, shall become all at once, and is creditable to any country to possess permanently, wiser or better, it is evi- such men ; and we are of opinion, that dent that what could be done by a it is from their influence that our reformed House of Commons must de- House of Commons has derived to its pend more on the spirit, intelligence, proceedings a character of directness and personal independence, of the un- and sincerity which appears so greatly ministerial part of its members, than wanting in newly-formed legislatures on any new mechanism of the whole elsewhere. While that House has body. The character, not less almost men who devote their days and nights, than the existence, of the country, is their ease and their credit, their forin the hands of its responsible mini- tune and pleasures, to the public intesters. The country is not, nor cannot rest, it can never become contemptible be aware, until from the nature of the from the indiscretion of injudicious thing it is perhaps too late, of how assailants or weak defenders. Among much both are on occasions commit- those men, the speaker now before us ted; and it would be unreasonable to merits, in our humble opinion, a conexpect that the ministers themselves spicuous place. should be always aware of the true A few circumstances in the history