Additional Info

Click here to get a Printer Friendly Page

Share

Check all the Clans that have DNA Projects. If your Clan is not in the list there's a way for it to be listed. Electric Scotland's Classified Directory An amazing collection of unique holiday cottages, castles and apartments, all over Scotland in truly amazing locations.

The Scottish Nation
Cameron


CAMERON, or CHAMERON, the name of a numerous family or clan in Lochaber, the distinguishing badge of which is the oak. Mr. Skene, in his history of the Highlanders, appears to take it as an undoubted and established fact that the Camerons are an aboriginal or Celtic clan, but it is not consistent with this theory that the Camerons themselves have a tradition that they were descended from a younger son of the royal family of Denmark, who assisted at the restoration of Fergus the Second in 778, and that their progenitor was called Cameron, from his crooked nose, (“cam shron,” the s in shron being silent), a surname which was adopted by his descendants, and that the name appears to have been borne (as will appear in the course of the work) at an early period of history by individuals in the south and west.

      Notwithstanding, therefore, of this traditionary origin of the name, which is universally accepted by the clan, it does not seem improbable that it was originally French, and not dissimilar to the modern French name of Cambronne. In the Ragman Roll occurs the name of ‘Robertus de Camburn, dominus de Balegrenach, miles,’ who swore fealty to Edward the First of England, ‘apud Sanctum Johannem de Perth,’ 22d July 1296. There are also, in the same roll, the names of Johannes Cambrun, who, in other deeds, is designed ‘dominus de Balygrenoch,’ and Robertus Camburn de Balnely; all supposed to be the same as Cameron.

      This tribe, from its earliest history, had its seat in Lochaber, to which, contrary to all tradition, they appear to have come from the south, having obtained from Angus Og, of the family of Islay, a grant of Lochaber in the reign of Robert the Bruce. Their more modern possessions of Lochiel and Locharkaig, situated upon the western side of the Lochy, still further in the Celtic or Highland region, were originally granted by the Lord of the Isles to the founder of the Clan Ranald, from whose descendants they passed to the Camerons. This clan originally consisted of three septs, – the MacMartins of Letterfinlay, the MacGillonies of Strone, and the MacSorlies of Glennevis, and the tradition is, that it was by inter-marriage with the MacMartins of Letterfinlay the eldest branch, that the Camerons of Lochiel who belonged to the second branch, or the MacGillonies of Strone, first acquired the property in Lochaber. Being the oldest cadets they assumed the title of Captain of Clan Cameron. Drummond of Hawthornden describes the Camerons as “fiercer than fierceness itself.”

      The Camerons obtained a charter of the barony of Lochiel, and the lands of Garbh-dhoch, in the 13th century, the first of them being styled “de Knoydart.” They also possessed extensive property around the castle of Eilean-Donnan, Ross-shire, of which they were deprived through the hostility of the Gordon family. The lands of Glenloy and Locharkaig were purchased by Sir Ewen Cameron in the reign of Charles II. These, with the barony of Lochiel and a portion of the lands of Mamore, are still in possession of the family.

      The Camerons of Lochiel are a family not only distinguished as the head of the clan, but by the personal characteristics of many of their chiefs, of whom Sir Ewen Cameron of Lochiel, above mentioned, and his grandson, Donald, “the gentle Lochiel of the ‘45,” are separately noticed. The family of Cameron of Lochiel are further distinguished by having raised, and during many years sustained, the 79th regiment of the line, known as the Cameronian Highlanders. This occurred through the patriotic energy of Sir Alan Cameron of Erroch, a cadet of that family, who distinguished himself in the first American war. When on detached service he was taken prisoner, and immured for nearly two years in the common gaol of Philadelphia, under the plea that he had been engaged in exciting the native tribes to take up arms in favour of Great Britain. In attempting to escape from this confinement, he had both his ankles broken, and he never perfectly recovered from the painful effects of these injuries. He was subsequently placed upon half-pay; but, aroused by the dangers and alarms of 1793, principally by his personal influence over his countrymen, he, in little more than three months, at his own expense, patriotically raised the 79th, or Cameron Highlanders, of which he was appointed first major-commandant and afterwards (January 1794) lieutenant-colonel.

      His regiment was afterwards draughted into the 42d and other regiments. Sir Alan Cameron, on his return to Scotland, was commissioned by the duke of York to raise the Cameron Highlanders anew, which was done in 1798 in little more than six months. Its gallant commander was twice severely wounded in the battle of Bergen-op-Zoom in 1799. In 1800 at Ferrol, Cadiz, &c., in 1801 in Egypt, in the descent upon Zealand, in Sweden in 1808, and afterwards in the Peninsula, in the same year, the Cameron Highlanders and their commander greatly distinguished themselves.

      At the battle of Talavera Sir Alan had two horses shot under him. He commanded a brigade in the action at Busaco. Extreme ill health then compelled him to retire from active service. On 25th July 1810 Sir Alan was appointed a major-general; after the peace a K.C.B., and on 12th August 1819 a lieutenant-general. He died March 9, 1828.

      John Cameron, bishop of Glasgow and chancellor of the kingdom in the latter part of the reign of James I., was of the family of Lochiel. In 1422 he was official of Lothian, afterwards confessor and secretary to the earl of Douglas. In 1424 he was provost of Lincluden, and the same year “Secretario Regis.” In February 1425 we find him keeper of the great seal, and soon after keeper of the privy seal. In 1426 he was elected bishop of Glasgow, and in 1428 he was appointed lord chancellor, an office which he held until the end of that reign. He built the great tower at the episcopal palace on which his coat armorial and ecclesiastical was placed. He established two commissary courts, Hamilton and Campsie, the jurisdiction of which extended over parts of the counties of Dumbarton, Renfrew, Stirling, Lanark, and Ayr. He is said to have died on Christmas eve, 1436, but his name appears in a safe conduct (inserted in Rymer) dated 30th November 1438, and his successor in the see of Glasgow was appointed in 1446.

      Charles Cameron, son of the Lochiel of the ‘45, was allowed to return to Britain, and lent his influence to the raising of the Lochiel men for the service of government. His son, Donald, was restored to his estates under the general act of amnesty of 1784. The eldest son of the latter, also named Donald, born 25th September 1796, obtained a commission in the Guards in 1814, and fought at Waterloo. He retired from the army in 1832, and died 14th December 1858, leaving two sons and four daughters. His eldest son, Donald, succeeded as chief of the clan Cameron.

_____

      The family of Cameron of Fassifern, in Argyleshire, possesses a baronetcy of the United Kingdom, conferred in 1817 on Ewen Cameron of Fassifern, the father of Colonel John Cameron, of the 92d Highlanders, slain at the battle of Quatre Bras, 16th June 1815, while bravely leading on his men, for that officer’s distinguished military services, with two Highlanders as supporters to his armorial bearings, and several heraldic distinctions indicating the particular services of Colonel Cameron. On the death of Sir Ewen in 1828, his second son, Sir Duncan, succeeded to the baronetcy.

      General Sir Alexander Cameron, K.C.B., who died in 1850 at his seat of Inverralort house, Inverness-shire, was also an eminent officer, having first entered the army in 1799, when he served under the duke of York in Holland. He was the eighth son of Donald Cameron, Esq. of Murlugan, by the daughter of Alexander M’Donald, Esq. of Achtrichtan, and was born in 1778. In 1800 he was with his regiment at Ferrol; in 1801, in Egypt, where he was severely wounded in the arm and side; in 1807 at Copenhagen; in 1808 at Vimiera; in that and the following year in Spain; in 1813 at Vittoria, till wounded; and in 1814 in Holland. At Waterloo he was severely wounded in the throat. In 1828 he was appointed deputy-governor of St. Mawes, and in 1838 major-general in the army, in which latter year he was created a knight commander of the bath. In 1846 he became colonel of the 74th foot. He received a medal and two clasps for his services in command of the rifle brigade at Cuidad Rodrigo, Badajoz and Salamanca, and had a pension of five hundred pounds a-year in consideration of his long services and wounds. He married in 1818 the only daughter of C. M’Donnell, Esq. of Barisdale.

CAMERON, SIR EWEN, or EVAN, or Lochiel, a chief of the clan Cameron, distinguished for his chivalrous character, was born in February 1629. He was called by his followers Mac’onnuill Dhu, or the son of Black Donald, according to the custom of their race, after his father Donald, the chief who preceded him; also Ewen Dhu, or Black Evan, from his own dark complexion. He was brought up at Inverary castle, under the guardianship of his kinsman the marquis of Argyle, under whose charge he was placed in his tenth year, being regarded as a hostage for the peaceable behaviour of his clan. Argyle endeavoured to instil into his mind the political principles of the covenanters, but it is said that he was converted to the side of the king by the exhortations of Sir Robert Spottiswood, formerly president of the Court of Session, who had been taken at the battle pf Philiphaugh in September 1645, and was afterwards executed. At the age of eighteen he quitted Inverary castle, with the declared intention of joining the marquis of Montrose, who, however, had previously disbanded his forces, and retired to the Continent. although the royal cause seemed lost, Lochiel kept his clan in arms, and was able to protect his estate from the incursions of Cromwell’s troops.

      In 1652 he was one of the first to join the insurrection under the earl of Glencairn when that nobleman raised the royal standard in the Highlands, and for nearly two years greatly distinguished himself at the head of his clan, in a series of encounters with General Lilburne, Colonel Morgan, and others of Cromwell’s officers. In a sharp skirmish which took place between Lord Glencairn and Colonel Lilburne at Braemar, Lochiel gallantly maintained a pass with the defence of which he had been intrusted, and thereby saved Glencairn’s army. His services were rewarded by a letter of thanks from Charles the Second, dated at Chantilly, the 3d of November, 1653.

      In 1654 Lochiel continued to aid Glencairn in a fresh insurrection headed by him. Being himself opposed to Morgan, a brave and enterprising officer, Lochiel was often hard pressed, and sometimes nearly overpowered, but by his courage and presence of mind, he was always able to extricate himself from positions of the utmost difficulty and danger.

      Monk was now commander-in-chief of the parliamentary forces in Scotland, and he resolved to establish a garrison at Inverlochy, now Fort. William, with the view of reducing the royalist clans in the neighbourhood. Lochiel lay in wait on a hill to the north of the fort, with thirty-eight of his clan, and observing a body of men about to land at a place called Achdalew, to cut down his woods, and to carry off his cattle, he proceeded along in a line with the vessels, under cover of the woods, until he saw the English soldiers disembark, one hundred and forth of them having axes, hatchets, and other working implements, while the rest remained under arms, to protect their operations. Notwithstanding the disparity of their forces, Lochiel at once gave orders to advance He ordered his brother Allan to be bound to a tree, to prevent his taking any part in the conflict, and so not deprive his clan of a chief, should he himself be cut off. But Allan prevailed on a little boy, who was left to attend him, to unloose his cords, and soon plunged into the thickest of the fight. The Camerons rushed on the enemy, discharged against them a destructive shower of shot and arrows, and before they could recover from their surprise attacked them with their broadswords. The combat was long and obstinate. At last the English, retreating slowly, yet contesting every step of ground, and with their faces towards their assailants, were giving way when Lochiel sent two men and a piper round the flank, to sound the pibroch, raise the war-cry of the clan, and fire their muskets, as if a fresh party of Camerons had arrived, hoping thereby to create a panic among the English soldiers. But this only rendered the latter more desperate, and instead of throwing down their arms they fought more resolutely than before, as they expected no quarter. They were, at length, completely borne down, and fled, pursued to the sea, when those who had been left in the boats received the fugitives, and firing at the Camerons drove them back, the chief himself advancing till he was chin-deep in the water. In the course of the struggle an English officer of great size and strength singled out Lochiel, and as they were pretty equally matched, they fought for some time apart from the general battle. Lochiel succeeded in knocking the sword out of his adversary’s hand, but the Englishman closing on him, bore him to the ground, and fell upon him, the officer being uppermost. The latter was in the act of reaching for his sword, which lay near, but when extending his neck in the same direction, Lochiel, collecting his energies, grasped his enemy by the dollar, and springing at his throat, seized it with his teeth, and gave so sure and effectual a bite that the officer died almost instantly. Of the English the number killed in this encounter exceeded that of Lochiel’s men engaged in it, in the proportion of three to one, whilst only seven of the Camerons fell.

      By this and similar attacks, now on the garrison at Inverlochy, now in conjunction with General Middleton, he harassed the forces of the Protector with general success. After the defeat of Middleton in July 1654, and his retreat to the continent, Lochiel was the only chief who remained opposed to Cromwell. The English, desirous to have peace with this formidable chief, made various overtures to him to that effect, but without success, until he was informed that no express renunciation of the king’s authority or oath to the existing government would be required of him, but only his word of honour to live in peace. An agreement on this basis took place about the end of that year. Reparation was made to Lochiel for the wood cut down by the garrison of Inverlochy, and to his tenants for all the losses they had sustained from the troops; while a full indemnity was granted for all acts of depredation and for all crimes committed by his men. All tithes, cess, and public burdens which had not been paid, were remitted to his clan.

      In 1680 the last wolf known to have existed wild in Great Britain was slain by the hand of this brave and hardy chief in the district of Lochaber. In 1681, when the duke of York, afterwards James the Second, was residing at Holyrood, as commissioner to the parliament of Scotland, Lochiel took a journey to Edinburgh to solicit the pardon of one of his clan, who, while in command of a party of Camerons, had fired by mistake on a party of Athole men, and killed several. The duke received him with great distinction, and granted his request. On this occasion he was knighted by the duke. After knighting him, the duke presented his sword to Sir Ewen, to keep as a remembrance.

      In 1689 Sir Ewen joined the viscount of Dundee when he raised the standard of King James. General Mackay had, by the orders of King William, offered him a title and a considerable sum of money, apparently on the condition of his remaining neutral, but this offer he rejected with disdain. Though then far advanced in years, he distinguished himself with his usual heroism, and had a conspicuous share in the victory at Killiecrankie. Before the battle commenced he spoke to each of his men individually, and took their promise that they would conquer or die. On first seeing Dundee’s force, General Mackay’s army had raised a kind of shout, on which Lochiel exclaimed, “Gentlemen, the day is our own; I am the oldest commander in the army, and I have always observed something ominous or fatal in such a dull, heavy, feeble noise as that which the enemy has just made in their shout.” Encouraged by this prognostication of victory, the Highlanders, with their usual impetuosity, rushed on the troops of Mackay, and in half an hour gained the victory.

      In this battle Lochiel was attended by the son of his foster brother, who followed him everywhere like his shadow. Shortly after the commencement of the action the chief missed this faithful adherent from his side, and turning round to look for him, he saw him lying on his back in a dying state, with his breast pierced by an arrow. With his last breath he informed Sir Ewen that observing an enemy, a Highlander, in General Mackay’s army, aiming at him with a bow and arrow from the rear, he sprung behind him to cover him, and thus, like his father, received in his own body the death-wound intended for his chief.

      After the battle of Killiecrankie, Sir Ewen Cameron retired to Lochaber, leaving the command of his men to his eldest son. He survived till th year 1719, when he died at the age of ninety. Notwithstanding all the battles and personal encounters in which he had been engaged, he never lost a drop of blood, or received a wound. He was thrice married, and had four sons and eleven daughters. – Stewart’s Sketches of the Highlanders and Highland Regiments. – Browne’s History of the Highlands and Highland Clans.

CAMERON, DONALD, of Lochiel, grandson of the preceding, is celebrated in history for the important part he took in the rebellion of 1745. Though called young Lochiel by the Highlanders, from his father being still alive, he was at that period rather advanced in life. His father, John Cameron of Lochiel, eldest son of Sir Ewen, had joined the earl of Mar, when that nobleman raised the standard of the Chevalier in 1715, for which he was attained. He died in Flanders in 1748.

      Donald, his eldest son, succeeded, in consequence of the attainder of his father to the estate, on the death of his grandfather, in 1719. He was styled captain of the clan Cameron, a title given to the leader or next in succession who commands a clan in absence, or during the minority, of the hereditary chief. Previous to the landing of Prince Charles in the Highlands, the Chevalier de St. George, sensible of the great influence which young Lochiel possessed among the clans, had opened a correspondence with him, and invested him with full powers to negotiate with his friends in Scotland, on the subject of his restoration. He was one of the seven chiefs and noblemen who, in 1740, signed a bond of association to restore the Chevalier. Upon the failure of the expedition of 1740 he had urged the prince to get another fitted out, but was against any attempt being made without foreign assistance. On the prince’s landing, Lochiel was summoned with other chiefs to meet Charles at Borodale. As the prince had brought neither troops nor arms with him, Lochiel went to the interview determined to dissuade him from making any rash attempt. On his way he called at the house of his brother, John Cameron of Fassifern, who, on being told the object of his journey, advised him not to proceed to Borodale, but to impart his mind to the prince by letter. “No,” said Lochiel, “ ought at least to wait upon him, and give my reasons for declining to join him, which admit of no reply.” “Brother,” said Fassifern, “I know you better than you know yourself. If this prince once sets eyes upon you he will make you do whatever he pleases.” Finding all his arguments ineffectual to prevail on Lochiel to take up arms in his cause, Charles declared his firm determination to take the field, how small soever might be the number of his adherents. “Lochiel,” said he, “whom my father has often told me, was our firmest friend, may stay at home, and from the newspapers learn the fate of his prince.” This appeal was irresistible. “No!” exclaimed Lochiel, “I’ll share the fate of my prince, and so shall every man over whom nature or fortune has given me any power.” Had Lochiel remained steadfast in his determination not to join the Pretender without foreign aid, the other chiefs would have also refused, but his yielding led to their collecting with their followers round the prince’s standard, and thus he may be said to have been the chief cause of the insurrection that followed.

      Although possessed of an estate which at that time yielded scarcely seven hundred pounds a-year, Lochiel brought fourteen hundred of his clan into the rebellion, and during his brief campaign he displayed much of the heroism and bravery of his grandfather, Sir Ewen Cameron. He acquired the respect of both parties, and obtained the name of the “gentle Lochiel.” On all occasions he was honourably distinguished by his endeavours to mitigate the severities of war, and deter the insurgents from acts of vindictive violence, or insubordination. As an example to the rest he even ordered one of his own men, caught in the act of theft, to be shot. He led on his clan with great gallantry at the battle of Preston, as he subsequently did at the battle of Falkirk. He accompanied Prince Charles in his march into England and during the retreat from Derby, and was severely wounded in both ankles at the battle of Culloden, when he was borne from the field by his two henchmen. After that disastrous defeat, he skulked in his own country for about two months, and then sought an asylum among the Braes of Rannoch, where he was attended by Sir Stewart Thriepland, an Edinburgh physician, for the cure of his wounds. He afterwards lurked for some time in Badenoch with Cluny MacPherson, and some other fugitives. Here in the course of his wanderings he was joined by the prince, though not without great risk and danger on both sides. They took up, for a time, their residence in a hut called the Cage, curiously constructed in a deep thicket on the side of a mountain called Benalder, under which name is included a great forest or chase, the property of Cluny. In this Cage they lived in tolerable security and enjoyed a rude plenty, which the prince had not hitherto known during his five months’ wanderings. On the 20th September 1746 two French frigates having appeared off the coast, Lochiel embarked along with the prince, as did nearly a hundred others of the relics of his party, and safely arrived in France, where the king gave him the command of the regiment of Albany, formed of his expatriated countrymen, with the power of naming his own officers. He was thus enabled, though his estate was forfeited, to live according to his rank. He died in 1748, and a tribute to his memory appeared in the Scots Magazine for December of that year. He married Anne, daughter of Sir James Campbell, fifth baronet of Auchinbreck, by whom he had three sons and four daughters. His eldest son Charles, who returned to Scotland in 1759, obtained the restoration of the family estate, which is now in the possession of his descendant.

CAMERON, JOHN, one of the most famous theologians of the seventeenth century was born, of respectable parents, at Glasgow, about 1579. He received his education in his native city, and after completing the ordinary course of study, he read lectures on the Greek language, that is, he taught Greek, in Glasgow university, for a year. In 1600 he went to Bordeaux in France, and having made the acquaintance of two protestant clergymen of that city, one of whom was his countryman, Gilbert Primrose, he was, through their recommendation, appointed a regent or professor in the then newly founded college of Bergerac, as teacher of the learned languages. He was so deeply skilled in the Greek especially, that one of his pupils, the learned Cappel, affirms that he spoke it with as much fluency and elegance as any other person could speak Latin. Soon after his settlement at Bergerac, he was, by the duke de Bouillon appointed a professor of philosophy in the university of Sedan, where he remained for two years. He then resigned his professorship, and visited Paris; after which he returned to Bordeaux, with the intention of studying for the ministry.

      In the beginning of 1604, Mr. Cameron was nominated one of the students of divinity who were maintained at the expense of the protestant church at Bordeaux, and who for the period of four years were at liberty to prosecute their studies in any protestant seminary. During this time he acted as tutor to the two sons of Calignon, chancellor of Navarre. After spending one year with them at Paris, they went to Geneva, where they remained the next two years, and thence removed to Heidelberg, in which city they resided for nearly twelve months. A series of theses, ‘De triplici Dei cum Homine Foedere,’ which he publicly maintained in this university, on 4th April 1608, have been printed among his works. In the same year a vacancy having occurred in the protestant church at Bordeaux, by the death of one of the ministers, he was recalled to that town, and appointed colleague to his friend and countryman Primrose.

      In 1617 two sea captains were at Bordeaux condemned to death for piracy; as they professed the reformed faith, Cameron attended them in their last moments, and afterwards published a letter entitled ‘Constance, Foy, et Rèsolution à la mort des Capitaines Blanquet et Gaillard,’ which by the parliament of Bordeaux, in its popish animosity to protestantism, was ordered to be burnt by the hands of the common executioner. In the following year he was appointed professor of divinity in the university of Saumur, the principal seminary of the French protestants, where he had for a colleague Dr. Duncan, another of his learned countrymen, who were then very numerous in France. The high reputation which he had acquired by such of his works as had already been published, was now increased by his academical lectures. In 1620 he engaged in a formal disputation which lasted for four days, on the doctrines of grace and free will, with Daniel Tilenus, a native of Silesia, who had adopted the theological opinions of Arminius. An account of this Amica Collatio was printed at Leyden in the subsequent year. The theological faculty of that university were not satisfied with some of Cameron’s explanations; and when Rivet, as dean of the faculty, communicated to him their dissent, he defended his opinions in a brief answer. The civil wars in France in 1620 had the effect of dispersing nearly all the students of the university of Saumur, on which Cameron, with his family, removed to England. For a short time he read private lectures on divinity in London, and in 1622 he was appointed by King James principal of the university of Glasgow, in the room of Robert Boyd of Trochrig, removed in consequence of his firm adherence to presbyterianism. Cameron, on the other hand, was more inclined to favour episcopacy, and it seems that among other doctrines taught by him was the dangerous one of passive obedience, which was not calculated to render him popular with the presbyterian students of those days. After teaching divinity for about a year, he resigned his situation. According to Calderwood, he “was so misliked by the people, that he was forced, not long after, to remove out of Glasco.” [Hist. vol. vii. p. 567.] He returned to Saumur, where he was only permitted to read private lectures.

      The province of Anjou, in 1623, made an application to the national Synod of Charenton, that he might be reinstated in his professorship, but the king, in a letter to the commissioner to this synod, declared against his appointment to any ministerial or academical office in France, and the request was, in consequence, not granted; but on a representation by Cameron to the same synod, that he was then without employment, and destitute of any adequate means for the support of his family, the synod voted him a donation of a thousand livres. In the following year (1624) he was permitted to accept of the professorship of divinity in the university of Montauban, whither he removed before the close of the year. The disputes between the protestants and romanists were at this period carried very high, and having opposed the duke de Rohan, who endeavoured to induce the people of Montauban to take up arms, Cameron was attacked in the streets by an unknown miscreant, supposed to have been a Catholic zealot, and severely assaulted; after languishing for some time he died at Montauban in 1625.

      He was twice married. By his first wife, Susan Bernard of Tonneins on the Garonne, whom he had married in 1611, he had a son, born at London 10th May 1622, and four daughters; but the son and the eldest daughter died before their father. Their mother having died of consumption, he married, secondly, at Montauban, Susan Thomas, with whom he only lived a few months, and who had no child. The maintenance of his surviving family was undertaken by the protestant churches of France.

      “With respect to his person,” says Dr. Irving, in his Life of Cameron, “he was of the middle size, somewhat inclining to a spare habit, sound but not robust in his constitution. His hair was yellow, his eyes were brilliant, and the expression of his countenance was lively and pleasant. He appeared to be always immersed in deep meditation, and was somewhat negligent in his apparel, and careless in his gait; but in his manners he was very agreeable, and although he was not without a considerable share of irritability his anger was easily appeased, and he was very ready to acknowledge his own faults.” [Irving’s Lives of Scottish Writers, vol. i, page 341.] “From this distinguished person,” he adds, “a very considerable party among the French protestants derived the name of Cameronites. They endeavoured to explain the doctrine of grace and free will so as to establish the conclusion, that no one is absolutely excluded from a participation in the benefits of Christ’s sufferings, though all are not enabled to embrace the offered salvation. Their opinions on this subject they attempted to reconcile with those of Calvin. Those who held such opinions were likewise denominated Universalists. They were sometimes described as Amyraldists, from the name of Amyraut, who had been Cameron’s pupil at Saumur, and was afterwards a professor of divinity in that university.” In fact Amyraut received from Cameron those peculiar theories which he developed in his ‘System of Universal Grace.’ Sir Thomas Urquhart says that because of his universal reading, Cameron was called “The Walking Library.”

      He wrote many Latin poems, which have not been preserved. His most considerable works were published by others, from copies taken by his pupils.

      His works may be thus given: –

      Santangelus, sive Stelitenticus in Eliam Santangelum Causidicum. Rupel, 1616, 12mo.

      Traité anquel sont examinez les prejugez de ceux de l’eglise Romaine contre la Religion Reformée. Rochelle, 1617, 12mo.

      Theses de Gratia et Libero Arbitrio. Salmur, 1618, 12mo.

      Theses xlii. Theol. de Necessitate Satisfactionis Christi per Peccatis. Salmur, 1620, fol.

      Sept Sermons sur le cap. vi. de l’Evangile de S. Jean. Saum., 1624, 8vo.

      Defensio Sententiae suae de Gratia et Libero Arbitrio. Salmur, 1624, 8vo.

      An Examination of those plausible appearances which seem most to commend the Romish church, and to prejudice the Reformed. Englished out of French. Oxf. 1626, 4to. The same in French, Roch. 1617, 12mo.

      Praelectiones in selectiora quaedam loca Novi Testamenti una cum Tractatu de Ecclesia, et nonnullis miscellaniis opusculis. Salmur, 1626-1628, 3 vold. 4to.

      Myrothecium Evangelicum, in quo aliquot loca Nov. Testamenti explicantur, una cum Spieilegio Lud Cappelli de eodem Argumento, cumque 2 Diatribis in Matth. xv. 5. De Vita Jephtae. Genev. 1632, 4to. et in Crit. Sac. 1660. Lond. 1660. Salmur, 1677, 4to.

      Of the Sovereign Judge of Controversies in Matters of Religion. Oxf. 1628, 4to.

      Opera. Being his collected theological works, with a sketch of the author’s life and character, written by Cappel. Genev. 1642, 1658, fol.

CAMERON, RICHARD, a zealous preacher and martyr of the Church of Scotland of the seventeenth century, was the son of a small shopkeeper at Falkland in Fife; and at first was schoolmaster and precentor of his native parish under the episcopalian clergyman. He was afterwards converted by the field preachers, and persuaded by the celebrated John Welch to accept a licence to preach the gospel, which was conferred upon him in the House of Haughhead, Roxburghshire, having for some time resided in that part of the country as preceptor in the family of Sir Walter Scott of Harden. From the freedom with which he asserted the spiritual independence of the Church of Scotland, he excited the hostility of that portion of the presbyterian clergy who had taken advantage of the act of indulgence of 1672, and in 1677 he was reproved for his boldness at a meeting of them held at Edinburgh. He afterwards went to Holland, where his great zeal and energetic character made a strong impression upon the ministers who were then living in exile in that country. At his ordination, Mr. Ward retained his hand for some time on the young preacher’s head, and exclaimed, “Behold, all ye beholders, here is the head of a faithful minister and servant of Jesus Christ, who shall lose the same for his Master’s interest, and it shall be set up before the sun and the moon in the view of the world.” In 1680 he returned to Scotland, and in spite of the severe measures of the government, immediately began the practice of field preaching. The cruel and tyrannical proceedings of the executive against him and the small party with which he was connected, and who considered him their head, led him to take a bold and desperate step. On the 20th of June 1680, in company with about twenty other persons, well armed, he entered the little remote burgh of Sanquhar, and made public proclamation at the Cross, that he and those who adhered to him renounced their allegiance to the king, Charles the Second, on account of his having abused the government; at the same time declaring war against him and his brother, the duke of York, whose succession to the throne they avowed their resolution to resist. A reward of five thousand merks was immediately offered by the privy council for Cameron’s head, and three thousand merks for the heads of the rest; and parties of soldiers were immediately sent out to arrest them. The little band kept together in arms for a month in the mountainous country between Nithsdale and Ayrshire. On the 20th of July they were surprised on Airdsmoss by Bruce of Earlshall, with a party of horse and foot much superior to them in numbers. Cameron, who was believed by his followers to have a gift of prophecy, is said to have that morning washed his hands with particular care, in the expectation that they were immediately to become a public spectacle. His party at the sight of the enemy gathered closely around him, and he uttered a short prayer, in which he thrice repeated the expression, “Lord! Spare the green, and take the ripe!” He then said to his brother, “Come! Let us fight it out to the last!” After a brief skirmish, in which they were allowed even by their enemies to have fought with great bravery, Bruce’s party, from their superiority of numbers, gained the victory.

      Cameron was among the slain, and his head and hands, after being cut off, were carried to Edinburgh, along with the prisoners, among whom was the celebrated Hackstoun of Rathillet. The father of Cameron was at this time in prison for nonconformity, and the head and hands of his son were shown to him with the question, “Did he know to whom they belonged?” the old man seized the bloody relics with all the eagerness of parental affection, and, kissing them fervently, exclaimed, “I know, I know them; they are my son’s, my own dear son’s; it is the Lord; good is the will of the Lord, who cannot wrong me or mine, but has made goodness and mercy to follow us all our days.” The head and hands were then fixed upon the Netherbow Port, the fingers pointing upward, in mockery of the attitude of prayer. The body was buried with the rest of the slain on the spot where they fell at Airdsmoss, where a plain monument was in better times erected over them. The small but zealous body of presbyterians who adhered to Cameron in his life, were from him designated Cameronians; a name which was sometimes given to the members of the Reformed Presbyterian Church.

CAMERON, HUGH, a person of humble origin, yet deserving a place in this work as one of the greatest local benefactors to the Breadalbane district of Perthshire, was born in 1705, and was no more than a country millwright. After acquiring a knowledge of his business, he settled at Shiain of Lawers, where he built the first lint-mill that ever was erected in the Highlands of Scotland. Before his time only the distaff and spindle were used for spinning lint and wool in that part of the country; and he was not only the first who constructed spinning-wheels and jack-reels in Breadalbane, but he was likewise the first who taught the people there how to use them. The number of lint-mills afterwards erected by him throughout the Highlands cannot be reckoned at less than a hundred. In short, almost all the lint-mills in the Highlands of Perthshire, and many in the counties of Inverness, Caithness, and Sutherland, were of his erecting. He also constructed the first barly-mill that was built upon the north side of the Forth, for which he was highly complimented by Maca Ghlasarich,  – Campbell the bard, – in a very popular song, called ‘Moladh di Eobhan Camashran Muilleir lin,’ that is, “A song in praise of Hugh Cameron, the lint miller.’ This singular character died in 1817, at the extraordinary age of 112 years. Though he could only be called a country-wright, he was a man of uncommon genius, of great integrity, and of a very shrewd and independent mind.

CAMERON, WILLIAM, the Rev., author of the excellent congratulatory song on the restoration of the forfeited estates, 1784, inserted in Johnson’s Musical Museum, was born in 1751, and having studied for the Church of Scotland, was in the usual time licensed to preach the gospel. In 1785 he became minister of the parish of Kirknewton, His first work, a ‘Collection of Poems,’ printed at Edinburgh in 1780, 12mo, was anonymous. In 1781, along with the Rev. John Logan, of Leith, and the Rev. Dr. John Morison, minister of Canisbay, in the county of Caithness, (who died in 1798), Mr. Cameron rendered material assistance in preparing the collection of Paraphrases now in use in the Church of Scotland. He died at the manse of Kirknewton on the 127th of November 1811, in the 60th year of his age, and the 26th of his ministry. A posthumous volume of poems was published by subscription at Edinburgh in 1813, 8vo. His song, on the restoration of the forfeited estates, beginning “As o’er the Highland hills I hied,” was adapted to the fine old air, called “The Haughs o’Cromdale.” – Notes to Johnson’s Musical Museum edited by W. Stenhouse.


Return to The Scottish Nation Index Page