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Scottish Review

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The Anecdotage of Glasgow
Rev. Mr. Clark of Tron Church on the "Sorrowed Union" of 1707


THE readers of Sir Walter Scott’s Rob Roy will be familiar with the sayings and doings of that egotistic "Gleska" serving-man oddity and original, Andrew Fairservice, who habitually dated events from the time of the Sorrowfu' Union.

As is well known, the great mass of the Scottish people were bitterly opposed to the incorporative union of the two countries and parliaments of England and Scotland. So general and widespread was this antagonistic feeling, that the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland appointed a day of fasting and humiliation to implore Divine assistance from the impending calamity, and a sermon on the subject was accordingly preached in the Tron Church, Glasgow, by the Rev. Mr. Clark, whose closing appeal to the congregation was in these words:

"Wherefore up and be valiant for the city of our God," on hearing which the congregation literally rose up in a body, and, headed by the preacher, proceeded to the Cross, nearly opposite, where they burned the proposed Articles of Union. This feeling had no small effect in bringing about the Jacobite Rising of 1715; and it did not subside till many years after the Union; when the rapid and steady increase of prosperity reconciled the citizens of Glasgow and the people of the Lowlands of Scotland to the loss of our separate nationality.


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