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The earls of Cromartie; their kindred, country, and correspondence (Volume 2) online

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most affectionate cousine,


VOL. n. 2



Beaufort, 8 July 1743.

My deae Earl, — I hope this will find your lordship and the worthy Countess
of Cromerty and my dear Lord JNPLeod and Lady Bell, and all the noble
family in perfect health ; and I beg leave to assure your lordship and them
of my most affectionate humble duty, best respects, and good wishes, in which
Clunie and his wife join me.

I thank God my daughter was safely brought to bed, and is pretty well
recovered after giving a pretty young daughter to Clunie.

I am very much asham'd for not making a return to your lordship's kind
letter of the 4th of March last, in which you are so good as to profess your
willingness to oblidge me by presenting ]\Ir. Donald Fraser, provided he had
the majority of the parish of Killearnan. The only excuse I can make for the
delay of acknowledging a favour I was very sensible of, is, that as your lord-
ship referr'd the choice of a minister to the parish, I cou'd not learn what
their sentiments were before now. This is but a bad appologie, since this letter
must thank you for one favour, and sollicite you for another ; for now that
Eed Castle, elder and younger, and Kilcoy have fix'd on my friend, and that I
understand the kirk session and almost all tlie commons of the parish are for
him, I hope your lordship will put the head sheaf on the affair, and give him
your presentation, and not suffer your right to fall to the presbetery, who, you
know, do not always make the best use of power when it comes into their

I have sent my son to pay his most humble duty to your lordship, to the
countess, and to all the family, and to entreat of his cousin and friend, my
Lord M^Leod, to join him in solliciting your lordship to grant him and me
the favour I humbly ask in favours of my son's tutor ; and which I hope your


lordship will in your goodness grant us, since I can freely assure your lordship
that you have not a friend or relation in Scotland that has a greater honour
and value for you than I have. And your lordship may be fully perswaded
that, wherein I can be of use to you, or to any of yours in any shape, your
lordship may most freely command me, and you will always find me ready,
willing, and faithfuU to serve you ; for I sincerely am, with a very uncommon
esteem, zeall, and respect, my dear earl,

Your lordship's most obedient, most obliged, and most faithfull humble
servant, and most affectionate cousin,



Beaufort, 14 September 1743.

]My deak Earl, — I hope this will find your lordship and the worthy
Countess of Croraerty, and my dear Lord INI'Leod and lovely Lady Bell, and
all the pretty family in perfect health ; and I begg leave to assure your lord-
ship and them, with all my soul, of my most affectionate humble duty, best
respects and good wishes, in which my son joins me.

I have been so very anxious these severall days past to hear from your
lordship, that I cou'd not longer delay sending this express to know how you
do, and how your journey to the Highlands went on.

My secretary will tell you how handsomely I have been used by the Earl of
Murray. He promised to him at Braan to come and see me as he went by ;
but, like a man of great honour, he slighted me. However, my comfort is
that it was a fool that has no manners that did so ; but I did not think that
he woud faiU in his word, since I have the honour to be his relation, and
very nearly related to his countess. But he came by ten o'clock, Saturday
morning, to my corf house, and not daring to cross the foord in his coach, he


took a small fishing coble and cross'd in it, with the countess and the ladys
that were with her, and sent his coach by the foord, which had almost been
drown'd, and his horses, for there was above a foot of water in the coach, and
the windows open. I wish with all my soul the earl had been in the coach,
and only the ladys in the coble. When he was coming off from Braan, he
desird his principall servant to come and tell me that he was to dine with
me ; but when he cross'd the river, he sent the same servant to tell me that
he cou'd not come to dine with me, because he behoov'd to be that night
at M'Intoshe's house. I own if it had been a man of sense and manners
that had sent me this message, I wou'd have been much more surprized and
astonish'd at it than I was : however, I told my mind very freely to his
gentleman or principall servant, and desir'd him to tell his master that I was
very easy about the earl's visite, but that I was very sory that I had not tlie
honour and pleasure to see his countess, who is my near relation, and a very
pretty woman. I told him that when his master was James Stuart, son to
Mr. Francis Stewart, that he did not think it amiss to stay three or four
nights with me, but it seemd his great honours had chang'd his manners :
however, that he might tell him that neither his father, nor his uncle, nor
grandfather wou'd have gone by my house, after staying a fortnight in the
neighbourhood : that I think myself as good a man as he is, and that I
represent as good a family as his, which has done more and better services to
our kings and country than ever his did ; that I bless God I had an estate
that afforded me as good meat and drink as his lordship had ; and I thankd
God I had no dependance upon him, nor upon any belonging to him ; and as
he had no regard for me, I wou'd have none for him ; and that if I liv'd to go
to Murray, I wou'd go of purpose to the gate of Darnaway and come out of
my chariot and go in again, without sending as much as a how do ye do to
the great Earl of Murray, or to his great house of Darnaway.

SIMOy LORD LOVAT, 1743. 293

I desird the servant not to conceall a word from his master of what I
said to him ; and I afterwards orderd my secretary to entertain the Earl's
servant with the best things that were in tlie house, which he did. So there
is an end of my commerce with the great Earl of Murray : and if he chal-
lenges me for the severe things that I desired his principall servant to tell
him, I am ready to answer him in any shape.

I had a letter yesterday from the laird of ]\FLeod, and I expect him here
in 8 days. He wn^ote to me from Mogstot, Sir Alexander M'^Donald's house,
where he was very happy with Lady Margaret, and much wearied, as he
said, killing muirfowl for the greening lady.

I had a letter from the laird of Locheil by last post, who is at Edinburgh
all this winter, and he tells me that they expect great news there very soon :
God grant it may be for the good of our country and our friends.

I shall be mighty fond to have the honour and vast pleasure to have your
lordship and the worthy countess, and my dear Lord ]\I'"Leod and Lady Bell
in this little house for some days, where I solemnly declare that your lord-
ship and they w^ill be as wellcome as at Tarbot-house or Castle Leod, and I
shall do all in my power to divert you ; for I sincerely protest that except
your own cliildren there is not a Mackenzie alive that has a greater honour
and value for your lordship than I have ; and that you will find me, while
there is l)reath in me, with the highest esteem, inviolable attaclunent, and
unconnnon respect, my very dear earl,

Your lordship's most obedient, most obliged and most faithful humble
servant, and most affectionate cousin,




Beaufort, 4 October 1743.

My very dear Earl, — 1 hope this will find your lordship and the worthy
Countes of Cromerty and all your lovely childreen in perfect health, particular
my dear Lord M^Leod and Lady Bell. This is what I wish from my heart,
as much as any relation you have in Scotland, and I beg live to assure your
lordship and them of my affectionate humble duty, best respects and good
wishes, in which my son and daughter, Cluny's wife, joine me. She is in
very good health, but my son has been ill of a fever these twelve days past.
Doctor Fraser waited one him, laid blood of him, and gave him twice phisick.

Tho the unmannerly f . . 1, the Earl of Murray, neglected, which I supose
he wishes he had not done, for his principall servant told him every word that
I wrote to your lordship, which my Lord President told me,- — my other friends
did not follow his lordship's impertinant example ; for the Earl of Morton came
to see me in a most civil, discreet manner. He viewd the situation of this
place, and then examind Adam's plan of my house and the modell that is
made upon it, and gave me his opinion of every [thing], as he is a good archi-
tect. After him, my Lord President did me the honour to come and see me ;
and some days thereafter, my Lord Gerless, my Lord Seaforth, Lady Fanny,
and ane other lady came here from Braan, and severall other gentlemen, so
that we were a great company, and very merry. I will make your lordship
laugh very hearty when I see you and tell you my Lord Gerless' opinion of
his son in law.

M'^Leod came here last week, and stay'd but one night. He went to
Inverness, Culloden, and M'Intosh about the head Barron Court wdiich is to
hold at Inverness this day. He wrote to me from Inverness yesterday that
he is to come here to morrow with the Laird of Mcintosh and his Lady and


sister, and severall other gentlemen; and they are to stay with me the
whole week.

I hope and earnestly wish that your lordship may remember your promise
in being so good as to do me the honour as to come and see me here with the
g-ood Countes, dear Lord M'^Leod, and Lady Bell, which I shall always acknow-
ledge a most singular honour and favour done me. Any time that is most
convenient to your lordship, after Sunday next, will be most agreeable to me,
and no man alive will be more welcomer to this little hut then your lordship
and your family.

My Lord Stair's resignation makes a terrible noise every where ; and the
maltreatment that he has mett with has not only incensed the British troops,
but most people in Scotland. So, as the President said to me, God knows
what will come of us, for we are in a dangerous situation. I pray God pre-
serve our poor countrey and relive it from distress.

I beg your lordship may belive that, in all situations of life, you'll
always find me, with the sincerest attachment and respect, my dearest earl,

Your lordship's most obedient and most faithfull humble servant and
most affectionate cousine,



Beaufort, 7 October 1743.
My dear Earl, — I received the honour of your lordship's letter by the
bearer. I'm sorry to know that your lordship is any ways indisposd, and
wish with all my soul that your recovery may be very speedy and good, and
that you may live more years than your grandfather did, in perfect health and
prosperity, for the good of your noble and charming family, and for the satis-
faction and comfort of your friends and neighbours. I can not express the


concern I am in by your lordship's telling me that I cannot expect the honour
and vast pleasure of having your lordship and the worthy Countess of Cromerty,
and my dear Lord M'^Leod, and my dear Lady Bell, in this little hutt before
you go to Tarbot-house : for the season is coming on now so very cold, that I
despair of seeing the worthy countess here this year, tho I can sincerely
assure your lordship that no family in Scotland cou'd give me so much joy
and pleasure as the honour of entertaining your lordship and your charming
family in this little house wou'd do. But tho the Countess cannot come, I
hope your lordship and my dear Lord M'^Leod will do me the honour to come
and see me, since there is no lord in Scotland that honours and loves you
more than I do.

It was very unlucky that the laird of M'^Leod trysted witli the laird of
M'^Intosh and the Lady, and all their cavalcade, here on Wedensday ; and since
that time my house has been so full, that, tho I thank God I have plenty of
good meat and drink, yet I have not beds enough for all my company, altho
there are fourteen beds in the house. I wish with all my soul that they had
made their tryst at some other time, since it has deprived me of the vast
honour and pleasure of having the lovely family of Cromerty here.

I must now tell you, my dear earl, that your son, my Lord IVrLeod, was
not better pleas'd than I was when I got account of your victory at Dingwall.
May you always triumph in that country : I am sure you deserve to do so
better than any Mackenzie alive : and I am sure you'll always have my heart
wishes, and if my hands and my clann cou'd be of use to you, you may always
most freely command them : for I am, with the outmost esteem, attachment,
and respect, my dear earl,

Your lordship's most obedient and most obliged humble servant, and
most affectionate cousin,



P.S. — My son has had a fever that begun this day fortnight ; but I thank
God he is pretty well recovered, and he and my daughter join with me in
assuring you and the worthy Countess of Cromerty, and my dear Lord
M'^Leod, and my dear Lady Bell, of our most affectionate humble duty and
best respects.

The laird of M°Leod and the laird of Mcintosh, and all the company in
this house, drink your lordship's health and your lovely families at every
meale ; and that health shall never be forgot by me as long as I live.

I am glad that my dear friend, the young laird of Fowlis, waited upon
your lordship as he ought.

M^Leod and M'^Intosh offer their most humble compliments to your lord-
ship and the worthy countess and all the lovely family.


Beaufort, 22d November 1743.

I\Iy veky dear Eael, — Your going away from me in such a bad day
makes me so uneasy that I have presum'd to send this express to enquire
after your lordship's health, and your safe arrival at Tarbot house. I wish
from my soul that this letter may find your lordship and the worthy Countess,
and my dear Lady Bell, and all the rest of the ladys, and my dear pretty Mr.
George in perfect health ; and I beg leave to assure your lordship, and the
good Countess, and all the rest of the noble, lovely family of my most affec-
tionate humble duty, best respects, and good wishes, in which my son joins
me. And I can frankly tell your lordship, without any compliment or flatter}^,
that there is not a man on earth admires more your singular great merits
than I do, nor no man more attachd to your lordship's person and family
than I am.

VOL. II. ' 2 P


Invercauld and Duiiie and the doctor stay'd with me all night, and the
doctor was never so defeat in his life. He was terribly sick all night, but
some glasses of burnt brandy and Stoughton cur'd him this morning.

Your lordship's health was the health of the night and of the day. The
laird of Invercauld, who is really a pretty youth, is gone to Aberdeenshyre
fully freighted and charm'd with your lordship's most agreable conversation.

I give your lordship much joy of the Earl of Murray's defeat, and of the
victory that the Eosses have obtaind over him. When your lordship sees
our friends the Eosses, I humbly beg that you wou'd let them know that
Lovat, your lordship's ally and theirs, partakes very much with them in the
joy of their victory over one of their greatest enemies.

I beg, my dear lord, you will pardon this freedom, and beleive that I ever

am, infinitely more than I can express, with the highest esteem, attachment,

and respect, my very dear earl,

Your lordship's most obedient and most obliged faithfull humble servant

and most affectionate cousin,


P.S. — I have two long letters from M'^Leod and from Locheil, by this post.

They both write to me that the nation is in a very great ferment, and that

there are great changes expected in England and in Scotland. God preserve

our friends, and releive our country from oppression and slavery.

Adieu, mon tres cher Comte.

511. Simon Lord Lovat to [Isabella Countess of George third Earl of


Beaufort, 26 November 1743.
Good worthy Countess, — I never was in such a consternation in my life
as when the servant that I sent to Tarbot-house to enquire after my dearest


earl's health and your ladyship's and the children's returned, and that the
account he brought me was that my dear earl was at the point of death at
Dingwall on Wedensday, and that your ladyship, being acquainted by express,
was oblig'd to come at one or two o'clock on Thursday morning to Dingwall.
This I do assure you, dear madam, has aflicted me beyond what I can express,
or can be imagind : for there is not a man on earth that I have a greater
regard for' than for the worthy Earl of Cromerty ; and his falling ill imme-
diately after he went from my house is a double afliction to me. I pray God
Almighty restore him to perfect health, for your ladyship's comfort and chil-
dren's, and for the satisfaction and support of his friends.

I was mightily pleas'd when my runner told me that your ladyship's
brother, Dr. Gordon, had come to wait upon the earl ; and I sent a message
to Doctor Eraser that he might go and wait upon the earl, if he was in con-
dition, for I heard that he was indisposd himself.

As my anxiety will be intolorable till I hear how the earl is, I have beg'd
of his brother, Captain Hugh, wlio has been here these three or four days, to
go and see my lord, and to let me know the state of his health : and I earnestly
entreat of your ladyship to engage your brother, the Doctor, to whom I give
my most humble service, to let me know how my lord is, since he can give
the truest account of him.

I beg your ladyship a thousand pardons for this freedome, and I offer your
ladyship and my dearest earl and all the family my most affectionate humble
duty, best respects and good wishes : and I am, with the highest esteem and
respect, good worthy Countess,

Your Ladyship's most obedient and most obliged humble servant
and most affectionate cousin,



P.S. — My son, who is going south next week, went to Ardmianach
yesterday to take leave of his aunt and of the Laird and Lady Ardoch. I
am sure he will be mightily concernd when he hears of the earl's indis-

512. Mne Letters from Simon Lord Lovat to [George third Earl of


Beaufort, 28 November 1743.

My dearest Earl, — Since I had the use of reason, I never received two
letters that gave me so much joy, so much pleasure, and so much comfort, as
the two letters that I had the honour to receive from your lordship this day,
much about the same time, by your servant and my own. As my fears and
concern were beyond expression when I was acquainted of your lordship's
ilness, so, I thank God, my satisfaction and joy are now complete in finding
your lordship recover'd out of that dangerous lowness of spirits that attack'd
you : and I wish from my heart and soul that your lordship may be restor'd
to perfect health, and live at least for as many years as your grandfather did.
I do assure you, my dear Earl, that I wish this as much as I do my own
health and life ; and I wish I may have no life the day that I am not faith-
fully attach'd to your lordship's person and interest.

I am not at all surpriz'd that the worthy Countess shou'd be not only
fatigu'd but out of order, considering her riding in the midle of the night,
with so much sorrow and anxiety, from Tarbot House to Dingwal. I pray
God preserve her Ladyship and you for many years together in perfect health :
for as I beleive you the handsomest couple in the world, so I beleive you the
happiest by the mutuall love you have for one another, which must make
the marriage bed comfortable. My own misfortune makes me admire this the

SnWX LOBD LO VAT, 174:3. 301

My son is not yet come home from Ardmianach. I design to send him
of this week for St. Andrews. I am sure he will be much overjoyd to know-
that the brave Earl of Cromorty, whom he loves and honours so much, is
recover'd ; for I am pretty sure he will obey my positive orders (next to a
curse) that I gave him to be faithfull to the Earl of Cromerty all his life,

I beg leave to assure your lordship and the good worthy Countess and
dear Lady Bell and her sisters, and pretty Mr. George, of my most affectionate
humble duty, best respects and good wishes : and I am, while there is breath
in me, with more zeal, attachment, and respect than I can express, my dearest

Your lordship's most obedient, most obliged, and most faithfull humble
servant and most affectionate cousin,


P.S. — Dr. Eraser of Auchnagavin has been here these two days. I sent
for him of purpose that I might send him immediately off to see your lord-
ship, if my servant had brought me account that you continud ill. He is
overjoyd at your lordship's recovery, and begs of me, as do my trustees,
Thomas Eraser of Gortuleg, and Evan Baillie of Aberiachen, to offer your
lordship their most humble duty, and to assure you of their great joy for
your lordship's recovery.

I have settld with Applecross the debt that he was owing me ; and, of
10,000 merks, I have given him down 2000, which is more than Seaforth
wou'd do to all his kindred, — nay, to all the creation. This shou'd attach
Applecross's family to me, as they are my very near relations. But there is
little gratitude to be expected from some people.

If I get anytliing extraordinary by the post, I shall run an express to
acquaint you of it.


Doctor Fraser told nie, and so did Applecross, that your lordship com-
plain'd of the bad wine that you drank at Dingwall before you came here ;
and the doctor thinks, that if your lordship drunk of that wine when you
went back to Dingwal, that it was the plain cause of your sickness ; for he
says the wine that your lordship drunk here was as wholesome as any wine
in Scotland. The doctor is as hail and well as ever he was, and ready for
another engagement.

I have a cough and a great heavy load of cold upon me since the day
that you went from this. I beleive what gave it me was standing in the
open air for some time when your lordship took your horse ; for it was a very
ugly windy surly day, which I am perswaded did likeways hurt your lord-
ship. I am now entirely confind to my own room till I get free of this cold.
I have taken a vomite for it, and the doctor says I must take three more
before I am rid of it. However, I am extreamly easy at this, since I have
the news of your lordship's recovery.

I have now keept your lordships servant till the post is come on in hopes
to get some good news to send you ; but as to great foreign news I must refer
your lordship to the prints. A particular friend of mine wrote to me by this
post, that in a post or two he hopd to send me good news. As soon as I
receive them I shall acquaint your lordship.


Beaufort, 14 June 1744.
My very dear Earl, — There was nothing in the world could have keept
me so long from enquiring after your lordship's health and the worthy Coun-
tess of Cromerty's, and my dear Lord M'Leod's and Lady Bell's, and all the
most lovely familie's, but a most terrible violent and dangerous sickness that


I have had for about six moneths, and that I am not yet rid of, I despair'd
of my own life for above three moneths, as did every body that saw me : but
when the violence of the cough and fever went off, I began to have some
hopes. Yet I continu'd still so weak, that it is within these eight or ten days
that I could walk up and down my own room. Doctor Fraser attended me
closs for the first four moneths, when I was so dangerously ill ; and from the
first week that I fell ill till now, I had Doctor Clerk's opinion every post from
Edinburgh, for I was resolved to have, at any expense, what was thought
proper for my recovery.

I bless God I think now that I am in some measure out of danger, tho' my
health is still very often in disorder.

I frequently enquird after your lordship's health at people that I judg'd
might know it. They told me that your lordship had been very ill a good
time ago, but that you was recover'd : but what gave me exceeding great joy
and satisfaction was a letter I had from my cousin M°Leod, when he waited
on your lordship last. He assur'd me that your lordship was in very good
health, and all the family, and that you was so good as to desire him make
me your compliments.

Online LibraryWilliam FraserThe earls of Cromartie; their kindred, country, and correspondence (Volume 2) → online text (page 26 of 56)