WILLIAM, SEVENTH EARL MARI5cHAL—LIBERATED FROM PRISON—
HIS DEATH—GEORGE, EIGHTH EARL—HIS DEATH— WILLIAM, NINTH EARL—AN
OPPONENT OF THE UNION— GEORGE, TENTH EARL—HE JOINED MAR’S RISING—EARL
MARISCHAL ABROAD—SKETCH OF THE CAREER OF FIELD-MARSHAL KEITH.
WHEN the Restoration came, in 1660, Earl
Marischal was liberated from the Tower of London. Charles II., appointed
him a member of the Privy Council, and in other ways conferred on him many
marks of respect.
The Marischal married Elizabeth, a daughter of George,
Earl of Winton, by whom he had four daughters :—Lady Mary married Sir
James Hope of Hopetoun; Lady Elizabeth married Robert, Viscount Arbuthnott;
Lady Jane married George, Lord Banff; and Lady Isabel married Sir Edward
Turner, an English Baronet.
He died at Inverugie in 1661, and was succeeded
by his brother, George, eighth Earl Marischal. He married Lady Mary Hay, a
daughter of George, Earl of Kinnoull, by whom he had an only son.
Earl George was a man of much energy, and had suffered
a long period of exile on account of his adherence to the cause of Charles
II. He was one of the members of the Commission appointed by Parliament to
visit the Scottish Universities in 1690. He was one of the committee
selected to make inquisition of the University of Aberdeen; and this
committee met at King’s College on the 15th of
Professor Garden declined to recognise their jurisdiction, appealed to the
General Assembly, and refused to sign the Confession of Faith.
The Marischal died at Inverugie in
and was succeeded by his son, William, ninth Earl
Marischal. He was an exceedingly kind and open-handed nobleman.
On the 8th of August,
he endowed a Chair of Medicine in Marischal College—"
Taking into our consideration the weal, utility, and profit of our said
College, and resolving to advance and promote the good thereof, and to
encourage the profession and teaching of all sciences therein."
He was a firm opponent of the Union
between England and Scotland, and entered a protest against it in the
following terms :—" I do hereby
protest that whatever is contained in any article of the Treaty of Union
between Scotland and England shall in no way derogate from, or be
prejudicial to, me or my successors in our heritable office of Great
Marischal of Scotland, in all time coming, or in the full possession and
exercise of the whole rights, dignities, powers, and privileges thereto
belonging, which my ancestors and I have possessed and exercised as rights
of property these 700 years. And
I do further protest that the Parliament of Scotland and constitution
thereof may remain and continue as heretofore. And I desire that this my
protestation may be inserted in the minutes and records of the books of
he was elected one of the Representative Peers of Scotland.
He married Lady Mary, a daughter of
James Drummond, Earl of Perth, and High Chancellor of Scotland, by whom he
had two sons and two daughters:—Lady Mary married John, Earl of Wigton;
and Lady Anne married Alexander, Earl of Galloway.
He died on the
27th of May, 1712,
and was succeeded by his eldest son,
George, tenth Earl Marischal.
In the reign of Queen Ann; Earl
Marischal was appointed Captain of Her Majesty’s Guards. After the
accession of George I. he was removed from his post. He had doubtless
taken offence at this treatment, being a young and high-spirited nobleman;
while his mother was a daughter of the Earl of Perth, one of the great
Jacobite families, and no doubt she had influenced the action of her sons.
Accordingly the Marischal joined Mar’s rising with a troop of horse,
mostly raised in Buchan; and his only brother, James Francis Edward Keith,
also joined the rising.
On the 20th of September,
Earl Marischal, accompanied by a number of noblemen,
entered Aberdeen and proceeded to the Cross and there proclaimed the
accession of James VIII. to the throne of his ancestors. The
depute-sheriff read the proclamation, at night the city was illuminated,
and the bells of St. Nicholas Tower were rung in honour of the new king.
On the succeeding day, Earl Marischal and his party were hospitably
entertained by the members of the Incorporated Trades; and in the
afternoon they accompanied him to his mansion of Inverugie. The professors
and regents of the two colleges were nearly all Jacobites; but the
magistrates were inclined to continue loyal to the Government. The
majority of the citizens of Aberdeen of that day, however, appear to have
been Jacobites, and they took the command of the city.
Earl Marischal returned to Aberdeen
on the 28th of September, and arrangements were immediately made for the
election of a Jacobite Town Council. In the new Church of St. Nicholas a
head court of the burgh was held, and the election of a council proceeded.
Those nominated by Earl Marischal were installed in the offices, and
Patrick Bannerman assumed the functions of Lord Provost of the city in the
name of James VIII.
On the 2nd of October the kirking of
the new council came off in the West Church, in which the King’s loft was.
Special care was taken to place well-disposed ministers in the pulpits. In
the forenoon Dr George Gordon officiated, in the afternoon the Rev. Robert
Blair preached, and both of them prayed for King James.
Earl Marischal commanded two
squadrons of cavalry at the battle of Sheriffmuir. His brother James was
wounded in this engagement; and shortly after he made his escape to
France. On the failure of the rising, the Marischal also escaped to
France; but he was attainted, and his estates forfeited to the Crown.
Cardinal Alberoni was at the head of
the Government of Spain, and promised to declare war against England.
Spain recognised the Pretender as King of Great Britain; and the Cardinal
undertook to land a force in Scotland. Earl Marischal and his brother were
invited to serve in the Spanish army. A fleet consisting of ten ships of
war was equipped, and a number of transports, which had on board a force
of about 6000 men, many of whom were Irish. The fleet sailed for Scotland
on the 7th of March, 1719, and the Duke of Ormond had command of the
expedition, as captain-general for the King of Spain.
But a storm off Cape Finisterre
dissipated the Spanish fleet, and only a small force effected a landing in
the Western Highlands, and a few Seaforth Highlanders joined them. Earl
Marischal intended to surprise Inverness and capture it; but the
Government was well prepared, and the capital of the Highlands was
defended by loyal troops. The small army took up a position in the pass of
Glenshiel, and attempted to make a stand. They were soon attacked by the
Government troops, driven from height to height, and defeated. Earl
Marischal and other officers retired to the Western Isles, and after lying
concealed for some time, he escaped to Spain. He resided a number of years
in Spain, and was sometimes employed in the service of the Spanish
Government. In 1745 he left Spain and visited Vienna. Shortly after, he
went to Prussia, where he was kindly received and employed by Frederick
This seems to be the proper place to
present a brief sketch of the remarkable career of Earl Marischal’s
brother, James Francis Edward Keith—Field-Marshal, and one amongst the
greatest men of his time in Europe He was born in the Castle of Inverugie,
in the parish of St Fergus, Aberdeenshire, in 1696. As stated in a
preceding paragraph, he joined the rising of 1715, and, after the battle
of Sheriffmuir, escaped to France. For some time he studied military
tactics in Paris. He went to Spain in 1719, and joined the Spanish army,
in which he attained the rank of colonel. But on account of his religion
(being a Protestant) there was little hope of further promotion in the
Spanish army. Accordingly he resolved to seek another country where
military abilities and personal merit alone would determine the rank of an
Colonel Keith fixed his mind on
Russia, and only requested the court of Madrid to give him a
recommendation to the court of St Petersburg, which was readily granted.
He arrived in Russia in 1729, and immediately received the brevet of
major-general. He soon gained the favour of the young Emperor Peter II.,
who gave him a lieutenant-colonel’s commission in a newly raised regiment
of guards. Shortly after, he was made colonel of the regiment.
The revolution, which occurred in
Russia in 1730, did not effect Keith’s promotion. After the death of Peter
II., Anne, a daughter of Ivan IV., was made Empress, and she was very
favourable to Colonel Keith.
In 1733 the election of a King of
Poland caused a war, in which Russia took the side of Augustus, a son of
the late King, against Stanislaus. General Lacy (a Scotchman) was ordered
to enter Lithuania with a Russian army. On the 12th of September,
Stanislaus was elected King, and the Russian troops then advanced into
Poland. Keith served under his distinguished countryman General Lacy, who
had complete confidence in him. The Russian army forced Stanislaus and his
followers to abandon Warsaw on the 22nd of September. On the 5th of
October, Augustus was elected King of Poland, and on the 10th Lacy and his
army entered Warsaw. Fifteen thousand men were left in Poland; while Lacy
marched into Prussia with the main body of the army. Dantzic and other
towns were besieged. On the 7th of July, 1734, Dantzic surrendered on
terms. Keith greatly distinguished himself at this siege; and in November
he was made a lieutenant-general.