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The earls of Cromartie; their kindred, country, and correspondence (Volume 1) online

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Quarterly, first, or, a rock in flames proper, for Macleod of Lewis ; second, azure, a buck's
head, cabossed, or, for Mackenzie ; third, argent, three pallets sable, the centre one charged
with an imperial crown proper, with a border of fleur-de-lis for Erskine of Innerteil ; fourth,
gules, three legs of a man armed proper, conjoined in the centre at the upper part of the
thighs, flexed in triangle, garnished and spurred. Crest, the sun in his splendour ; supporters,
two savages wreathed about the middle with laurel, holding batons over their shoulders
proper. Motto, Luceo non Uro. An engraving of that seal is printed at the '^nd of this Note.

After the creation of Viscount Tarbat as Earl of Cromartie he appears to have
used the same armorial bearings as Earl, and they were continued by the Second
and Third Earls of Cromartie until the forfeiture of the latter.



The arms were restored to his granddaughter and successor, the Honourable
Mrs. Maria Murray Hay-Mackenzie of Cromartie, by a patent from the Lyon
Kiug-of-Arms, dated 30th August 1849, in which the arms are thus blazoned : —

Quarterly, first, or, a mountain azure in flames proper, for Maoleod of Lewis ; second, azure,
a buck's head oabossed, or, for Mackenzie ; third, gules, three legs of a man armed proper,
conjoined in the centre at the upper part of the thighs, flexed in triangle, garnished and
spurred, or, for the Isle of Man, formerly belonging to the Macleods ; fourth, argent, on a j)ale
sable an imperial crown proper, within a double tressure flowered and counterflowered mth
fleurs-de-lis gules, for Erskine of Iimerteil. These arms were to be borne by the patentee in
a lozenae, and in the event of the heirs-male succeeding, there is to be placed above the shield
a helmet befitting their degree, with a mantling gules doubled argent, and upon a wreath of
their liveries is to be set for crest, the sun in his splendour, and in an escroll over the same,
this motto, — Luceo non Uro.

AYlien Her Grace the Duchess of Sutherland was created Countess of Cromartie
in 1861, a patent of arms was granted by Sir Charles George Young, Knight,
Garter, principal King-of-Arms, on 25th March 1862, in which her armorial
bearings are thus blazoned : —

Supporters on the dexter side, a wild man wreathed about the loins with oak, holding a club
resting on the exterior shoulder proper, aud on the sinister side a greyhound argent collared
gules, and the arms are: Quarterly, first, or, a mountain in flames ; second, azure, a buck's head
cabossed ; third, gules, three legs of a man armed proper, conjoined in the centre at the upper part
of the thighs, flexed aud triangle, garnished and spurred, or, for the Isle of Man, formerly belong-
incr to the Macleods ; fourth, argent, on a pale sable, having an imperial crown in the centre within
a double tressure, flowered and counterflowered with fleur-de-lis, gules, for Erskine of lunerteil.

Seal of Viscount Tarbat.



1. Instructions by John first Eael of Middleton, Commissioner of King
Charles the Second in Scotland, to Lord Tarbat, on his special mission
to the King [5th June 1602].^

Instructiones for my Lord Tarbatt.

1. Yee shall give his Majesty ane accountt of the proceedings of this
parliament, particularly of the Act of restitution of bishops ; how frequent
and cheerfull the parliament was at the doeing of it, and who were the few
unclear and dissenting persones.

2. Yee shall acquaint his Majesty how vnanimous the j)^i'lif^i^ent
were in ther thanks for the restauration of the House of Huntly ; and how
earnestly (and upon what good grounds) in the recomendation of these
people wlio were oppressed be the late Marquiss of Argyle, and of others
his creditors : and yee shall use all diligence and instance with his Majesty
to hearken to the just desyre of his great Councell therin.

3. Yee shall acquaint his Majesty how much disaffected persones are
incouraged, and ther party increased thorow the country, by the favours

1 The great object of Middleton in these exchision of Middleton himself, and also of

instructions was to obtain the consent of the Lord Tarbat, for several years, from aU public

King to the celebrated clause of exclusion in employment. The Instructions are apparently

the Act of Indemnity. But he was unsuccess- in the handwriting of Lord Tarbat. They are

ful, and the proposal ultimately led to the said to have been dictated by Primrose.


which his Majesty bestowes on people of tliese principles ; and how pre-
judiciall it is, by discouraging the honest and loyall subjects : especially
how much all honest men are unsatisfied, and rogues insolently lifted up,
be the remission past to the Brodies. Yee shall represent the ill deeds
of these persones, ther undeservings of favour, and inconsiderablnes as to
good or ill service; and wdiat a prejudice the noise of so ample a remis-
sion to such persones, and dureing the sitting of the parliament, hath
occasioned to the King's effaires. Yee shall therfore earnestly desyre, that
by a letter, or instruction to his Commissioner, it may be recalled, and so to
satisfy the ParKament by leaveing them to their censure, as others are.

4. Yee shall represent to his Majesty, that ther be some persones who
were most active in the rebelliones against his father and himself, doe still
continue in ther bad principles ; and are hopefull, the Act of Indemnity
being once past, to screw themselfs into publick trust, ajid to overturne
what was done these two last yeares in this kingdome, and to ruine those
who caried on the samne. It is therfore much desyred by the parliament (and
it is the sense of honest men that nothing can be of more use nor security
to his Majesties interest then), that such should be excepted from publick
trust. Yee shall therefore urge that this exception in the Act of Indemnity
be allowed by his Majesty ; and that he warrand his commissioner and par-
liament, either by a letter, or by ane instruction under his royall hand, to
except from publick trust such as they know to have been most active and
nialitious in the late rebelliones, and are yett discerned by them to continue
on these bad principles, not exceeding the number of fourteen persones,

5, Yee shall shew how much his Majestie's service suffers by the absence
of some of our prime country men at Court, it being generally beleeved that
they absent themselfs on purpose, so [as] not to have accession to what is passing
in this parliament, and therby raise new hopes in fanatickes ; and were it


not for this, and that it is conceaved some about the King are dissatisfied
with publick proceedings, and who procure favours to disaffected persones,
and doe discountenance honest men, no discontent would appeare heer.

6. Yee shall represent the present state and condition of the kingdome
to his ]\Iajesty; and what hazard may arise to prince and people by the
misrepresentation of persones and effaires at such a distance, if all con-
veyance and councell be in the hand of on servant ; and therfor shew his
Majesty how necessar it is that Scots effairs may be putt in such a channell
at Court as may be for the good of his service, and the security of those who
cary it on. Press therfor, that his Majesty may call some of his Scots
councell to a constant attendance with his Majesty, by whose advise he ma}^
ordor and dispose of their effaires in evry thing.

7. Yee shall communicat these Instructiones to his Highnes Eoyall the
Duik of York, and to the Chancellor of England, and Lord Leivtenant of
Irland ; and yee shall crave their advice and assistance in all your pro-
secutiones of these effaires.

2. John first Eael of Middleton to James first Earl of Newburgh, aiid
Sir George Mackenzie, Lord Tarbat, or either of them.

Edinburgh, June 22, 1662.^
My Lord, — I did receave on from yow befor yovr goeing to Hampton
Court, the recept of which by my last I did acknowledge. Since that time

1 The original date of this letter, still dis- the letter was written, so as to make the date
tinctly visible, was 1662 ; the last figure has read as 1G63. The former is obviously tlie
been altered, however, probably not long after correct one; but it is difficult to imderstand


I have had nothing, thogh I was Ml of expectations to have had, att least,
some accompt of yovr receptione att Court by the last post ; bvt I presvme
yovr stay att Hampton Court heas been longer then yow expected, which
heas occasioned yovr missing of the post. I did by my last informe yow
how little Lome deserved his Majestie's favovr. I did leckwayes desire yow
to vse yovr best endevors with the King, that nothing might be done for
him, till I might have time to acqvant his Majestie of his merit. I doe
agean renewe my desire, for I cannot send yow a fvll informatione till the
parliament meet, which wiU be Twesday next, the 24 instant. The thing
meanly concernetli the parliament, so the parliament will give his Majestie
ther livmble sense of it. I shall only say, that ther is so mvch of weight in
the mater as will deserve his Majestie's consideratione befor he determine
anie thing in Lorns bvsiness. Nowe that yow may sie with what indvstrie
Lome persueth his bvsiness, and how hopefvU he is to accomplish his desires,
I have sent yow the two inclossed, written with his owne hand thogh not
signed. I dovbt bvt his hand is weiU known to yow, bvt wee can prove
the writ to be his by other papers written and signed with his hand. Yow
will perceave by the inclossed his descretione, and how vnworthie he is
of anie honest man's favovr. I will leave the macking vse of the in-
clossed letters to my Lord Newbrogh's discretione and yovrs. Shvre I
am some worthie person is mvch abvsed by him, as will verie cleerly
appear to yow by his letters. Wedensday morning nixt I shall send yow
by another express the informatione concerning him. My Lord, all I can
say is, that all indvstrie is vsed for keeping and macking wp a wicked
damned peartie, which will prove significant or insignificant, as his Majestie

why an alteration so clearly wrong should be of Middleton, immediately following, written
made upon the date of a letter referring to after Lome's conviction, will explain the half
events so well and widely known. The letter obscure references contained in this.


is pleassed to bestowe or withhold his favovrs. My lord, my opinion is
that no vse be made of the inclossed papers bvt by my Lord Chancellors
advyse. Yow may returne the bearer immediatly, being yow will have
another, Saterday nixt the 28 instant. This is all but that I am,
My Lord,

Your most affectionat servant,


This most serve Newbrogh and yow.
For the Earle of Newbrogh and my Lord Tarbitt, or ether of them.

3. John fikst Eakl of Middleton to Sir George Mackenzie, Lord Tarbat,
» a Lord of Session.

Edinburgh, June 25, 1662, clock 2 afternoone.
My Lord, — I have nowe sent yow my Lord Lorn's letter derect to my
Lord Duffvs.^ The parliament haveing nowe seen it, and vpon serious con-
sideratione of the things therin contained, have (with my allowance and per-
mission), offered ther humble thoghts of it to his Majestie. The principall
letter is in my Lord Advocat's keeping, and this dvble is atested by him.
Ther is no doubt but the originall is Lorn's, and all written with his ovvne
hand. It is no wonder that strange reports are made concerning this king-

1 The letter was to the eifect that Lord Parliament on the 24th June 1662, as a libel
Lome had convinced Lord Clarendon of the on their proceedings. Lord Lome was after-
injustice done to Lord Lome's father by his wards tried for leasiug-making, and sentenced
execution in 1661, for complicity in the mur- to be beheaded, but was pardoned when
der of King Charles the First, and subse- Middleton lost his power in 1663. Lord
quently to Lord Lome himself. The letter Clarendon declared the sentence to be so un-
was intercepted and communicated to the just that he would get out of the Kiug's
Earl of Middleton, who brought it before the dominions as fast as the gout would let him.


dome, as if it ware rent with devisions and discontents, when a person in the
couditione he is in dare writt so to a privie cunseller. Least yow be not
provided with acts of parliament, I have sent yow some, that Lorns gvilt
may the better appear. I doubt not but it will be cleer anevgh to his
Majestie, that he heas trangressed against those. I could have sent yow more
acts of this natvre, for ther is not anie crime that heas so manie standing
lawes against it as this ; and that vpon most excellent and solid grovnds : for
if ther be not a good vnderstanding betwixt his Majestie and his people, it
wold be a sad misfortune ; so that all fomenters of jealosies, misinformers,
and lyers, are strongly provyded against by ovr lawes. That letter of the
parliaments concerning the favovrs done by his Majestie to the familie of
Huntly, and ther hvmble desire relating to the creditors of the late Marqvis
of Argyll, is that which Lorn mainly aims att, when he says the King is not
Weill satisfied. That which he says of me (thogh I be not named), is, that I
vse the King's name on trvst to mack men beleeve it wold be acceptable to
the King to be his ennemie ; and then his inference is, that the parliament
most derect the King. He is vncivill, giveing the lye to that which was a
cleer trvth, as yow know ; for no man spock on w^ord against that ; only my
Lord Lothian desired that Lorn might be recommended to the King leckwayes,
which was all. But the blowing over of this storm, as he calls it, can import
no less then a dissolveing of this parliament, and that vpon the worst of
accompts, for tricks : which yow know is the most significant way in ovr
langvage to express the height of rogrie and willanie, Eeallie I most say
Lome is a stout man, and bold things may be expected from him, if he come
to that conditione which he seems to be verie confident of. His letter is
verie plain, and needs no cummentarie. It was weill vnderstood by the
parliament, and indeed was loocked vpon wdth astonishment, for svch a
paper in a time of pace heas not been seen in this kingdome : and his


Majesties jvstice to his parliament is humbly expected, as it is hvinbly
exprest in ther letter to his most sacred Majestic. The parliament in ther
letter leaveth much to yovr inforraatione, becavse yow can say more then a
letter of this natvre to the King. Be pleassed to receave a dvble of the
parKaments letter to the King, that yow may the better vnderstand ther
sense. Be pleassed to delyver my Lord Chancellors letter ovt of yovr ovvne
hand, that yow may give him a full accompt of bvsines ; for I have remitted
all to yow. Yow most wait vpon the Dvck of Yorck, and present him with
tliis letter, and give him a full accompt ; for his letter is generall. This is
all, bvt that I am, my Lord, your most affectionat hvmble servant,


For Sir Geo. M'Kenzie.

4. Sir John Fletcher of New Cranstoun, Knight, Lord Advocate, to
Sir George Mackenzie, Lord Taebat.

Holyrudhous, 25 Jvme 16G2.
My Lord, — That you the more clearlie may perceave what laws and acts
of parliament the wreatter of that letter (whereof you haif ane trew copie in
so farr as relates to the King's Majestic and parliament) lies contraveined,
I haif sent you the dowbles of three mainlie relaiting to the busines ; butt
thair be verie manie more : for in none of our King's tymes will you find that
the parliaments haif bein wanting to guaird aganst the making or fomenting
anie misvnderstanding betuixt the King and his subjects, or such as should
misconstruct his Majestie's proceedings or deprave his lawes. And besyd
that act sent in King James' tym, thair be three more, as pari. 8, cap. 134,
pari. 14, cap. 205, pari. 8, cap. 2, which you may, if you can find acts thair (as


I beleive you may with Mr. Jhon Lokliart), pervse at your leisour, from
which zow will fiud ground eneuch to heighten the guilt to its proper pitch ;
which is looked vpon here as verie transcendant from such ane person at such
ane tyni, when he cannot expect subsistauce butt from his Majestie's favour,
and when he cannot butt acknowledge that never parliament in this kingdom
hatli ever givin such testimonies of loyaltie and zeale for anie king as this
lies for his Majestie's service in all things relaiting to his autoritie, prerogative,
and other interests, all which I dowt does not please persones of his prin-
ciples. It was, you know, the engyn of the first troublers of our peace to
reproche the King's evell counsellors and officers of State, butt to deprave and
defame a quhole (and such a) parliament is boldnesse above expression, and
vnheard of in this kingdome. . . .

My Lord, I haif no more to say, butt wishes you all happinesse in your
imployments, and ane speedie succesfuU return, with fulness of health, to your
freinds, with all which none shal be more satisfied then, my Lord,

Your Lordship's most reall freind and servant, without chang,

For my Lord Tarbet — theas.


Edinburgh, September 25, 1662.
]\Iy Loed, — How I shall be ever able to retvrne yovr great kyndness I
know not, but I will say no man shall be jvster in a fvll acknowledgment.


My Lord Chancellor and ovr other freends are as yow left them, verie franck
and honest, and will be most readie to doe evrie thing that becommeth good
and dewtiefvU svbjects, not only in serveing the King in ther owne stations,
bvt in telling ther jvdgments frielie concerning the misdemeanors of others.
I did expect little better receptione at first then yow writt of, bvt I am
hopfvU things will be better vnderstood yet. It is thoght absolvtlie necessar
that yow stay yet till more of the bvsiness be knowen, for I perceave when
none of ws are ther wee are still att a losse. A short time will doe it,
therfor pardon me in keeping yow from a contentment (I know) yow long
mvch for. I have been keept in this towne abovt the settleing of the
magistrats for the ensveing year, and to morrow morning I goe west. I long
to hear from yow, and am, my Lord, yovr most affectionat hvmble servant,


For my Lord Tarbitt.

6. William Earl of Glencaene, Lord Chancellor, to Lord Taebat.

Edinburgh, 23 November [1662].
My Lord, — I could not let this noble bearer goe without giuing you some
trouble fearing the cuntrie life's sueitnes may aither haue prevaild to make
you too much in love with it, or the hard renconters yee haue mett with in
your first appea[ra]nces in the world may persuade you in too greate a
despondencie. At my returne hither I was surfeitted with the solemne and
extraordinarie kindness our great ones receved at their first arryvall, which
greue to that height that the Chancellar of England was comanded to medle
no more in Scottish affairs, and all meittings of the Scotts Councell thair
prohibited. This was eneugh to presage all future events ; bot I was a litle



comforted by a letter from Dumfreis sheuing alse greatt confidence as ever,
and that the Chancellar is nou over all mistaks and fixt in his Majeste's
favour. This securd my dispondencie, while yesterday my Ladie Wemis
was with me, and she confirms all that Dumfreis wreatt, and assurs me that
her brother is to returne the nixt month ; and, upon his returne, I ame to be
sent for, and then, upon my coming up, a full examination of all busines is
to be taken by the Kinge ; and other business relating to English deport-
ment will then likAvyse be sett a foote ; and hou desyrous I must need be,
yea, and hou necessarie it is, that yee be heir befor I goe (which Dumfries
assurs me will be about Christmas), yee may easilie conjecture. Whairfor
my earnest desyre is, that yee will precislie be over against the first of
Januarie ; for, if my hops and my oune hart doe not deceive me, wee will
yet hau a happie issue of all our difficulties. Thair hath beine much talking
heir of neu freindships betuixt my [lord] the Archbishop, the Lord Treasurer,
and my Lord Midlton, bot thir things are yet so groundles that I rather
looke upon them as that some men are at a stand and beginning to look
about them whair to fixe againe. Our Archbishop is allarumd with informa-
tion giuen against his negatiue voice, bot this week he takes journey. Tued-
dall is to be ane extraordinare Lord of the Session, and indeed is the only
man hath gott thanks in the Duke of Monmouth's behalfe. I sail say no
mor, bot wishing with all my harte to sie you heir, and I hope against then
to giue you better neus, and in the meane tyme non sail mor endevour to
deserve your guid esteme then, my Lord,

Your lordship's most humble servant,


For his verie honorable guid Lord, my Lord Tarbett,
on of the Senators of the ColledQ- of Justice.


7. [James first Earl of Newburgh] to Sir George Mackenzie,

Lord Tare at.

February the last [1663].

My Lord, — I have very little to .say to yow l3y this post, all thinges
being att a stand, which I impute much to the great business wee haue here,
which, thankes be to God, is gone so well as that neither papist nor presbiter
will haue much reason to brag. In a word, the Act of Vniformity wil be
preserued, and I doubt not but you will see the parliament here and our
parliament of Scotland to go vpon one and the same grounds. Lauderdaill,
I now see, had more then himselfe for condemneing the Act against the
Covenant, for the same thing was heighly pressed in the parliament here ;
but thankes be to God, without success, as I doubt not his in conclusion will
proue so ; and I must tell you, that I am not att all displeased with our
delay, being confident that in the end we shall be no loosers.

I do expect a black box from the Chancellor to morrow, and I doubt not
but he has done as becomes himselfe and a man of honour.

My humble service to him and the rest.

I am faythfully yours.
For my Lord Tarbett.

Indorsed by Lord Tarbat : " E. Xewburgh, Feb. 1663."

8. James Sharp, Archbishop of St. Andrews, [to Sir George Mackenzie,

Lord Tarbat.]

St. Andrews, September 2, 1665.
My Lord, — By a letter from the Bishop of Ross, last night, I was so sur-
prysed, that I resolved to give yow the trouble of this account of it. He


wreats that after he had thought that all differences about the dues of his
see had been by your and the Bishop of Murreyes interposing amicably
setled, the Earle of Seaforth, accompanyed with your self and the laird of
Cromartye and above a score of gentlemen of note more, came to his howse ;
and yow were pleasit, in great heat, publickly to discharge all freindship,
correspondence or respect to him, alleadging that he had wreat a letter to
me challenging my Lord Seaforth, your self, and Cromartie, of disaffection to
the Church Government. If that be the cause of this strange usage, I must
bear testimony to the Bishops innocency, he not having wreat a letter to me
bearing any complaint of the Earl of Seaforth or any other in Eoss, in the
poynt of ther disaffection to the Government, but a relation of the con-
dition of that countrey and of his sense of it, to the same purpose with
the letters wreat by the Earl of Seaforth and your self to my Lord Com-
missioner which his Grace w^as pleasit to shew to me. I have been told,
indeed, that it has been observed that, since my Lord Seaforth his last
coming from the Sowth, the Bishop hath not been used with that kyndnes
and respect which formerly he had, which is very grevous and discouraging
to him, and caused admiration in me, my Lord Seaforth having, when he did
me the honour to see me, givin me those assurances of his freindship to the
setled order, and assistance to the Bishop of Eoss, that I did WTeat to London
and caused represent to the King how necessary it would be for the good
uf his service that the Earl of Seaforth be incouraged and inabled by a
speciall fruit of his royall bountie ; for which purpose I did soUicit my Lord
Commissionar his favour, to which he was most inclyned ; and that as the
Earl of Seaforth and his freinds interest in that countrey was great, so I made
no doubt of his resolution and affection to improve it for the publick peace

Online LibraryWilliam FraserThe earls of Cromartie; their kindred, country, and correspondence (Volume 1) → online text (page 27 of 53)