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* burgh. He took his stand in a wooden gallery, “ which had a window towards the street; spread a * feather-bed on the floor, to hinder the noise of his “ feet from being heard; hung up a black cloth behind “ him, that his shadow might not be observed from “ without; and, after all this preparation, calmly er“pected the regent's approach, who had lodged, du“ ring the night, in a house not far distant. Some in“ distinct information of the danger which threatened “ him had been conveyed to the regent, and he paid so “ much regard to it, that he resolved to return by the “ same gate through which he had entered, and to fetch “a compass round the town. But, as the crowd about “ the gate was great, and he himself unacquainted with “ fear, he proceeded directly along the street; and the " throng of people obliging him to move very slowly, “ gave the assassin time to take so true an aim, that he
• This projecting gallery is still shewn. The house, to which it was attached, was the property of the Archbishop of St Andrews, a natural brother of the Duke of Chatelherault, and uncle to Bothwellhaugh. This, among many other circumstances, seems to evince the aid which Bothwellhaugh received from his clan in effecting his purpose.
“ shot him, with a single bullet, through the lower part “ of his belly, and killed the horse of a gentleman, who “ rode on his other side. His followers instantly en« deavoured to break into the house, whence the blow “ had come; but they found the door strongly barri“ caded, and, before it could be forced open, Hamilton “ had mounted a fleet horse,* which stood ready for him “ at a back-passage, and was got far beyond their reach. “ The regent died the same night of his wound.”— History of Scotland, book v.
Bothwellhaugh rode straight to Hamilton, where he was received in triumph; for the ashes of the houses in Clydesdale, which had been burned by Murray's army, were yet smoking; and party prejudice, the habits of the age, and the enormity of the provocation, seemed to his kinsmen to justify his deed. After a short abode at Hamilton, this fierce and determined man left Scotland, and served in France, under the patronage of the family of Guise, to whom he was doubtless recommended by having avenged the cause of their niece, Queen Mary, upon her ungrateful brother. De Thou has recorded, that an attempt was made to engage him to assassinate
* The gift of Lord John Hamilton, commendator of Arbroath.
Gaspar de Coligni, the famous admiral of France, and the buckler of the Huguenot cause. But the character of Bothwellhaugh was mistaken. He was no mercenary trader in blood, and rejected the offer with contempt and indignation. He had no authority, he said, from Scotland to commit murders in France; he had avenged his own just quarrel, but he would neither, for price nor prayer, avenge that of another man.—Thuanus, cap. 46.
The regent's death happened 230 January, 1569. It is applauded or stigmatized, by contemporary historians, according to their religious or party prejudices. The triumph of Blackwood is unbounded. He not only extols the pious feat of Bothwellhaugh, “ who," he observes, " satisfied, with a single ounce of lead, “ him, whose sacrilegious avarice had stript the me“ tropolitan church of St Andrews of its covering ;" but he ascribes it to immediate divine inspiration, and the escape of Hamilton to little less than the miraculous interference of the Deity.-- Jebb, vol. II. p. 263. With equal injustice, it was, by others, made the ground of a general national reflection; for, when Mather urged Berney to assassinate Burleigh, and quoted the examples of Poltrot and Bothwellhaugh,
the other conspirator answered, “ that neyther Poltrot “ nor Hambleton did attempt their enterpryse, without “ some reason or consideration to lead them to it: as “ the one, by hire, and promise of preferment or re“ warde; the other, upon desperate mind of revenge, “ for a lytle wrong done unto him, as the report goethe, “ accordinge to the vyle trayterous dysposysyon of the “ hoole natyon of the Scottes.”—MURDIN's State Papers, vol. I. p. 197.
THE RIGHT HONOURABLE
LADY ANNE HAMILTON.
When princely Hamilton's abode
Ennobled Cadyow's Gothic towers, The song went round, the goblet flow'd,
And revel sped the laughing hours.
Then, thrilling to the harp's gay sound,
So sweetly rung each vaulted wall, And echo'd light the dancer's bound,
As mirth and music cheer'd the hall.