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holdership. In 1672 the storm which had been gathering
burst upon the States from France, with which Great Britain
was now in alliance. Instinctively the people of the Nether-
lands turned to the representative of William the Silent for
leadership in the hour of difficulty and danger. He was declared
Captain and Admiral-General, and although the disciplined
armies of France rapidly overran the country, and city after
city fell into their hands, his steadfastness and capacity carried
the Republic safely through the most terrible crisis it had
encountered since the days of the Duke of Alva.


Although Maestricht fell into the hands of the French in 1673,
after a brave defence by De Fariaux, before the end of that year
they had evacuated most of their conquests in Holland, and the
conclusion of peace with England in February 1674 completely
altered the face of affairs. Scotland was once more opened as
a recruiting ground, while the officers and men of English
regiments reduced at the peace were enlisted for the Dutch
service, and many gentlemen of talent and family flocked to
the standard of the Prince of Orange as volunteers. Among
the British officers serving in Dumbarton's regiment (the
ancient Royal Scots) under French colours in 1672 was Captain
Hugh Mackay of Scourie. Quartered at Bommel, and billeted
in the house of a rich and noble family, he fell in love with the
third daughter, Clara de Bie, and as the mother would not
sanction a marriage with an enemy, upon the conclusion of the
peace, he left the French service, came over to that of the
Netherlands, and by his marriage as well as by his personal
qualities, established himself in the favour of the Prince of
Orange. 1 The Prince had found his difficulties increased

1 Bernardi in his Memoirs says that Mackay ' coming to the siege of the
Grave in 1674, made such interest to the Prince of Orange by the assistance of
Adjutant-General Collier, the present Earl of Portmore's father, who was a great
favourite with his Highness, whereby he obtained a Breviate to command the
said ten companies [of English subjects recently arrived from Bois-le-Duc] when
upon duty in the trenches.' Among the British gentlemen 'who had entered
themselves volunteers in the Prince's own company of guards,' before the battle
of Seneff, Captain Carleton in his Memoirs mentions ' Clavers, who since was
better known by the title of Lord Dundee; Mr. Collier, now Lord Portmore.'
Claverhouse is said to have saved the Prince of Orange's life at Seneff, and to
have been promised the first Scots regiment that should be vacant, which, how-
ever, was given to Mackay, whereupon he left the Dutch colours, saying he would
no longer serve a Prince who had broken his word. According to the historian
of the House and Clan of Mackay (founding on information communicated about
1798 to one of the Reay family, by Colonel ^Eneas Mackay of the Dutch regi-
ment which the general had formerly commanded, — the general's great-grand-
nephew) this occurred in connection with a lieutenant-colonelcy which became
vacant at the siege of Grave. Bernardi states that Sir Walter Vane, who com-
manded the English troops, was killed at Seneff, ' and Sir William Ballantine,
who was to have succeeded him in command, was also killed at a siege the same
year, being no otherwise concerned thereat than as an spectator.' On 19th
March 1675 Hugh Mackay received a commission dating from 12th October
1674, as lieut. -colonel of Colyear's regiment in place of Lieut. -colonel Balentyn,
and on 27th August 1677, one dating from 28th April 1677, as colonel of the old
regiment in succession to Henry Graham. There seems no doubt that on one


by the low state of discipline to which the Dutch army had
been reduced. ' The States gave,'' says one historian, ' the
chief employments in their armies and garrisons to the sons of
burgomasters and deputies of cities, raw soldiers fitter to be
taught than to command,' and the result was the imminent
ruin of their country. The author of Strictures on Military
Discipline records an incident which indicates the extent of
the demoralisation and the method of the reorganisation.

' These regiments, particularly the Scots, having nobody to pro-
tect them, became in a few years very different from what they
had been formerly ; numbers of Dutchmen, French refugees, and
other strangers having been by the means of the Burgomaster's
interest made officers amongst them, which entirely ruined these
regiments ; and such was their situation till King William became
Stadtholder; for in some skirmishes that happened in the army
even in the years 1675 and 1676 the Scots did not behave with their
usual spirit and conduct, and the Prince was much piqued and dis-
pleased, insomuch that he one day asked the brave General Mackay,
lately come to his service from France, if he was not surprised and
ashamed at the behaviour of his countrymen, the Scotch brigade ;
and he could not conceive, he said, the cause of their being so
much changed and degenerated from what they had formerly
been ; and made an appearance different from what the Scotch
brigade had done in the army of Gustavus Adolphus when com-
manded by his friend Lord Rae.

' Mackay, as much piqued as the Prince, and who stood much on
the honour and bravery of his countrymen, and whose merit the
Prince well knew and esteemed, told the Prince that he was
indeed sorry to observe daily the bad behaviour of these troops
called the Scotch brigade, but he begged leave to tell his
Highness that altho' they had that name they did not deserve it,
for that near one half of the officers and more of the men were
not Scots, but were Dutch, French, Germans, and of all nations,
even some officers in high rank as well as captains and subalterns ;
people of no family, of no education, and having no relations,
connections, nor interest in Scotland ; people ignorant of the

of these occasions the preference so sharply avenged at Killiecrankie took place,
and if it was on the latter the fiery spirit of Dundee must have been still more
deeply touched by the fact that the command had been formerly held by a


language, of the genius, customs, and spirit of that people, were
very improper to command them : nay, when they went to Scot-
land to get recruits, they were despised and laughed at, and not
getting recruits there, were obliged to enlist any they could find,
deserters and the outcasts of all nations ; and of these are composed
the regiments called the Scotch brigade ; so no wonder that their
behaviour is not such as it formerly had been, when it was esteemed
the best military school in Europe for young Scotch gentlemen to
learn the art of war. But for a good many years past it has not
been so, young gentlemen seeing the bad state of these regiments,
the disrepute they are fallen into, the discouragement of Scotch-
men, and the preference given to Dutch, Germans, and other
foreigners, made many of the young Scotch gentlemen, officers and
cadets, leave the service, and prevented others coming into it as
volunteers, so that now there is not Scotch gentlemen to make
officers, and commissions are given to sergeants or to strangers ;
and the Scotch soldiers being badly used, and unwilling to serve
under foreign officers, desei't daily. But, says Mackay, if I may
speak my mind freely to your Highness, and give my opinion,
allow me to say that the only way to recover these regiments and
bring them to their former state is by dispersing all these Dutch
and foreign officers, under-officers, and soldiers into the national
and newly levied or other regiments ; replace the officers with
Scotch gentlemen of family and merit, raise Scotch recruits, and
henceforth let officers, under-officers, and men be only Scots, and
I shall answer for their being very soon as good troops as ever, and
will behave as bravely, and as much to the satisfaction of your
Highness as ever they did to that of your predecessors, or as ever
my countrymen did in the army of Gustavus Adolphus, which
your Highness has been pleased to take nottce of so much to their
honour. Such was the situation of the Scotch troops in the Dutch
service till some years after King William was made Stadtholder,
when General Mackay got the brigade put on a tolerable footing
after having been long neglected ; and it was Mackay, by that
Prince's orders, who formed these plans for their clothing, pay,
recruiting, etc., that we see in what is called King William's
regiment, and which is the footing they remain on to this day.' 1

Mackay's advice was taken : the Brigade was reorganised :
and the foreign officers gradually disappeared. In 1677 Mackay

1 1774-


himself succeeded Graham in command of the old regiment,
while in 1684 a second Bartholomew Balfour took the place of
the veteran Kirkpatrick as colonel of the regiment that had
•commenced its service at Ostend ; and in 1676 a new regiment
was enlisted and embodied at Bois-le-Duc, 1 to take the place
of that of De Fariaux, which seems to have become hopelessly
Hollandised, and the command conferred upon the Prince's
Scottish Adjutant-General Sir Alexander Colyear. The two
old regiments, originally Scottish, now ' resumed both their
ancient name and march. 1 2 It is recorded that such was the
prowess of the Scots in the Thirty Years' 1 War ' that the Dutch
[i.e. Germans] in Gustavus's service were many times glad to
beat " the Old Scots March " when they designed to frighten
or alarm the enemy. 1 Once again the air that had sounded on
many a distant Continental battle-field was to announce the
unfaltering advance of the Scots Foot, and the red uniforms of
the British Brigade, to face unflinchingly the fiery charges of
the chivalry of France. 3

The campaign of 1672 had been signalised by the French

1 Records of $th Foot.

2 A Short History of the Life of Major John Bernardi, 1729. Bernardi states
that in the winter of 1674-75 four regiments of the English subjects were formed,
two English, one Scots, and one Irish. The two colonels of the English
regiments being Disney and Lillingston ; Graham colonel of the Scots ; and
the Earl of Clare of the Irish. And that to these were joined, to make up
a brigade, two old regiments, originally Scottish, which had been so many
years in the service 'that they were become, as it were, natives of Holland, and
beat the Dutch march.' There is, however, an error here. Graham had suc-
ceeded Walter Scott in command of the old regiment in 1673, and Colyear's
appointment was as ' Colonel of a Scottish regiment of foot, — new enlistment
from 1st January 1675.' Colyear was succeeded on his decease by James Douglas,
whose appointment dated from February 8th, 1680, and he again on April 9th,
1685 by John Wauchope (of the Niddrie family), upon whose return to Britain
at the summons of King James in 1688, the command passed to George Ramsay,
brother of the Earl of Dalhousie.

The Earl of Clare was succeeded by Sir John Fenwick, and his regiment,
losing its Irish character, became the third English one. Fenwick's regiment,
subsequently commanded by Talmash, became the 5th of the British line after
the Revolution, and Lillingston's regiment, afterwards Sir Henry Bellasize's, the
6th. See Regimental Records of $th Foot and Regi?nental Records of 6th Foot.

3 The air ' The Lowlands o' Holland ' is said to have been the march of the
Scots Brigade. As to the 'old English march,' revived by Lord Wimbledon,
see Dalton's Cecil, p. 231. As to the uniforms of the Brigade, see General


descent, under Conde and Turenne, upon Guelderland, and their
penetrating even into Holland itself, which was only saved by
the resolution to lay the country under water, by the Prince
of Orange's ineffectual attempt to recover Haarlem, and by his
bold demonstration before Charleroi. That of 1673 witnessed
the French siege and capture of Maestricht, and the gradual
recovery of their cities by the Dutch. In August 1674
occurred the bloody battle of Seneff, where Conde attacked the
rear of the combined Dutch Imperial and Spanish army, which
he overwhelmed. His fiery spirit impelled him to advance
against the rest of the allied army, who received the French
assault with steadiness, and maintained the battle, till at
eleven o'clock darkness put a stop to the fighting, the result
being so indecisive that ' Te Deum was sung as well in France
as at Brussels and the Hague. - ' After a spirited defence Grave
surrendered to the Prince at the end of October. The cam-
paign of 1675 in Brabant and Flanders was indecisive, and in
1676 the Prince laid siege to Maestricht. The three English
regiments and Sir Alex. Colyear's Scottish regiment were
employed in the siege, and were most active in the trenches
and in the assaults. Two of the English and one Scottish
colonel (probably Colonel Graham) were killed. The garrison
being very strong, made frequent sallies, but after being beat
off twice by the British brigade, ' they never attempted to
sally afterwards when that brigade was on duty.'' A detach-
ment of the Prince's Blue Guards having been ordered to storm
a detached bastion, and having been beaten off, detachments
from each regiment of the British Brigade made the second
attack, took the work, and held it, although the besieged
exploded mines and made furious sallies, until the siege was
raised. 1 They had more than their share of the hardest fighting,
and after a very sharp night's service, the Prince gave each
regiment an ox and six sheep in addition to their usual rations.
The Dutch grumbled, and the British soldiers promptly told
them ' that the same was given them to save Dutchmen's
lives, and therefore they ought to be thankful to his Highness
for it, without grudging.' 2 The advance of a French reliev-

1 Captain Carleton's Memoirs of an English Officer.

2 Bernardi's Memoirs.


ing force under Marshal Schomberg, and the difficulties con-
nected with a composite army, compelled the Prince to raise
the siege. Among the killed was Captain Robert Douglas of
Colyear's regiment.

In 1677 the Prince, attempting to raise the siege of St.
Omer, was attacked at a disadvantage by the French near
Cassel, when passing a morass, and forced to retreat, the Dutch
marines, posted between the Prince's Blue Guards and the
British Brigade, failing to do their duty, and after the conclu-
sion of the campaign he went over to England, and was married
to his cousin, Princess Mary, daughter of the Duke of York.
On his return the king sent with him the Earl of Ossory to
command the British Brigade of three Scots and three English
regiments, while in 1678 a new treaty of alliance was entered into
between Great Britain and the Netherlands, and the position of
the British troops fixed by a capitulation, signed by the Prince
of Orange and the Earl of Ossory, 1 one of the articles being that
the States ' should send these regiments to be embarked for
Great Britain whenever the king should think proper to recall
them."' Negotiations for peace were in progress, but on 17th
August the Prince of Orange attacked Luxembourg in his
lines at St. Denis. ' The three English and three Scots regi-
ments, under the command of the ever-renowned Earl of Ossory,
together with the Prince of Orange's guards, made their attack
at a place called the Chateau, where the French took their
refuge among a parcel of hop-poles, but their resource was as
weak as their defence ; and they were soon beaten out with a
very great slaughter."' 2 ' The English and Scotch regiments did
things to the admiration of all who beheld them."' 3 Sir Alex-
ander Colyear advanced towards ' the Abbey, and seconded by
General Delwick, filed through the narrow passages, and slid-
ing down the precipices with an invincible courage, drove the
enemy from their lines.' 4 The Earl of Ossory received the

1 ' Historical Account.' See p. 559, for text.

2 Carleton's Memoirs. 3 Records of ^th Foot.
4 The loss of the Brigade in officers at St. Denis was :

Sir A. Colyear's regiment, killed 2 wounded 4

Major-General Kirkpatrick's, ,, 3 ,, 6

Colonel Hugh Mackay's, ,, 4 ,, 3
—Records o/6tk Foot.


thanks not only of the States-General, but of the King of
Spain, in a letter under his own hand, while the Duke of York
wrote to the Prince : ' I am very glad you are so well satisfied
with Lord Ossory and His Majesty's subjects, and that they
behaved themselves so well.' The peace made by the treaty
of Nimeguen was proclaimed next day in the evacuated en-
trenchments of the French, now occupied by the allied army.

On the death of the Earl of Ossory in 1680, King Charles
proposed to confer the command of the British Brigade in
Holland on the gallant George Douglas, Earl of Dumbarton,
whose famous regiment, the Royal Scots, had been recalled
from France. The Prince objected on the ground that he was
a Roman Catholic, and it was given to Henry Sidney, after-
wards Earl of Romney.

In 1685 the Brigade was despatched to Great Britain to
assist in quelling Monmouth's rebellion. The Scots sailed
first, being originally intended for service against the Earl of
Argyll in Scotland, but his design had ended in disaster before
they arrived, and they were directed to London. They arrived
at Gravesend on 30th June, 1 on 3rd July they were ' drawn up
in Blackheath before His Majesty, and the next day early they
marched towards the west.'' 2 But already the steadfastness of
the Royal Scots, and Churchill's cavalry charges, had broken
the army of Monmouth on Sedgemoor, and on this visit to
Great Britain the Brigade saw no fighting. Their soldierly
appearance made a great impression, 3 and in writing to the
Prince of Orange about the English regiments which were to
follow them, the King said : ' If they be but as good as the
Scotch regiments which I saw this morning, I shall be doubly
pleased : for as to those I have seen, there cannot be, I am sure,
better men than they are : and they do truly look like old
regiments, and one cannot be better pleased with them than

1 Letter of King James.

2 LuttrelPs Diary.

3 On 4th July 1685, W. Blathwayt, Secretary at War, wrote to the Duke of
Albemarle, that the three Scots regiments, about fifteen hundred men, had
marched through the city to Hounslow Heath, adding, ' They are the best men,
and best prepared for service, that ever were seen, having their tents and all
other necessaries of their own with them.' See papers, pp. 536-541.


I am.' Colonel Mackay was promoted by King James to the
rank of major-general, and the Brigade returned to Holland.

They were soon to land again in Great Britain, but under
another banner, and with different auspices. As the discon-
tent with King James's policy in Britain grew deeper, and the
relations between him and his son-in-law more strained, the
disposal of this disciplined body of troops became a matter of
grave moment, if not indeed the determining factor of the
whole situation. There had been friction between the King:
and the Prince as to the command of the Brigade, and early in
1688 the king made up his mind to recall the whole of his
troops serving in Holland. The States declined to comply
with the royal demand to send the regiments to be embarked, 1
but allowed any of the officers who wished to do so to leave
their service. But they sent deputies to all the garrisons
where the regiments lay, to harangue the officers, pointing out
the advantages of their employment, extolling the services of
the Brigade, and urging the probability of the English Parlia-
ment praying the king to reduce his army ; and it is said that
General Mackay, upon whose fidelity King James had strong
claims, made a speech to his officers, stating that he was going
to leave in obedience to the king's command, and inciting them
to follow his example, but that upon going to the Hague to

1 See papers printed, pp. 542-565. ' There are,' says the ' Historical Account,'
' in King William's cabinet four letters from King James concerning the recall of
his troops from the Dutch service, the first of which is as follows: ' 17th Jan.
1688.— I have charged my envoy, Mons. d'Albeville, who will give you this
letter, to give you an account that I think it for my service to call for home the
six regiments of my subjects which are under your command in the States'
service, and have written to the States to the same purpose, and hope you will
do your part to further their being embarked as soon as may be,' etc. In the
second letter, 16th Feb. 16S8, King James signifies his displeasure that any
difficulty should be made in sending home his troops : in the third he appeals to
the treaty made in 1678 betwixt Lord Ossory, on the part of King Charles II.,
and the Prince of Orange, on the part of the States-General, saying, ' You will
have seen before this gets to you the copy of the capitulation you made with the
late Lord Ossory, which is very home to this point.' In the fourth, dated 15th
March 1688, he says, ' I did not expect to have had such an answer from the
States to the Memorial lately given in by my Envoy, especially when your
influence is so great ; and sure it is the first instance, and I believe will be the
last, where ever subjects were refused the liberty to return back when demanded
to serve their Prince.'


take leave he was so influenced, that he returned and told his
officers the king had called for them merely out of ill-will to
the States, and that if they returned home they would soon
want bread. 1 The result was that of two hundred and forty
officers in the six regiments, only sixty resigned their com-
missions, and obeyed the royal summons. The king sent a
royal yacht to transport them to England, gave them three
months 1 pay, and raised three regiments to reinstate them in
their respective ranks, the command of one of which, raised in
Scotland, and apparently embodied at Musselburgh, was con-
ferred upon Colonel John Wauchope. 2

In October 1688 the Prince of Orange sailed on his
momentous expedition to England. ' His army, 1 says Sir John
Dalrymple, ' was composed of near four thousand cavalry, and
about eleven thousand infantry, of the best troops of the
Republic, with three hundred French officers, Protestant
refugees. Of these troops the most formidable were the six
British regiments in the service of the Dutch. The fleet was
divided into three squadrons, on board of which were troops of
different nations. The English and Scots, commanded by
General Mackay, a Scotsman of a noble family, sailed under
the red flag. 1 3

Who were the officers that sailed on that memorable voyage,
under the colours of the old Scots Brigade, following the
banner that bore, beneath the motto of the House of Orange,

1 Captain Bernardi's Memoirs ; ' Historical Account.'

- The following Scottish officers can be identified as having left at this time :

Of Mackay's regiment, Captains John Gordon, y^neas Mackay, and Henry
Graham, all appointed to Wauchope's Scots Foot.

Of Balfour's, Captains Gavin Hamilton, Henry Balfour, and Ferdinand Cun-
ningham, the two former being appointed to Wauchope's, and the last to Gage's

Of Wauchope's, Colonel John Wauchope, and Captains John Ramsay, George
Hamilton, John Dalyell, and Maurice Plunket. Hamilton and Dalyell both
were appointed to Wauchope's, and Plunket to an Irish regiment. The eight
senior officers of the new Scots regiment were thus all from the Scots Brigade.
After the Revolution the command of it was given to David Colyear, Earl of
Portmore, and it frequently served along with the old regiments of the Scots

The three regiments raised were paid by France.

3 For the names of the transports, see p. 518.


Je maintiendrai, the words, ' the Protestant Religion and the
Liberties of England" ? General Mackay, so soon to command
a Lowland army against a Highland one, led by a Lowland er,
was himself a Highlander of an ancient house, and of near kin
to his chief, Lord Reay. His own adhesion to the Prince of
Orange, and the presence of the disciplined body of British
soldiery he commanded on board the fleet, were an emphatic
proof of how different were the conditions of 1688 from those
of the Civil War, for the great Lord Reay, who served under
the ' Lion of the North, and the champion of the Protestant
Religion, 1 had been one of the most steadfast of the Scottish

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