Bernard Burke.

A visitation of the seats and arms of the noblemen and gentlemen of Great Britain (Volume 1) online

. (page 58 of 79)
Online LibraryBernard BurkeA visitation of the seats and arms of the noblemen and gentlemen of Great Britain (Volume 1) → online text (page 58 of 79)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

hairbreadth escape. In the midst of a narrow
pass they met Avith a party of Roundhead
troopers, who, not suspecting the prize wliicli
fortune had placed within their grasp, fairly
opened to the right and left, and made
way for the travellers to proceed. They
had also of necessity to pass through
Bristol, Avhere the king's face was well known
to many ; and, to make this hazard all the
greater, they contrived to lose their way in the
city at a tune when every step out of their road,
and every minute of delay, w-ere matters of the
utmost importance.

It being a holiday when they came to jMr.

Norton's house, " they saw many people
about a bowling-green that was before the
door ; and the first man the king saw Avas a
chaplain of his own, Avho Avas allied to the
gentleman of the house, and Avas sitting on
the rails to see hoAV the boAvlers played. So
that William, by Avhich name the kmg went,
walked with his horse into the stable, until
his mistress could provide for his retreat.
Mrs. Lane was very welcome to her cousin,
and Avas presently conducted to her chamber ;
where she no sooner Avas than she lamented
tlie condition of a good youth, who came
with her, and Avhom she had borrowed of his
father to ride before her, Avho was very sick,
being newly recovered of an ague ; and de-
sired her cousin that a chamber might be
provided for him, and a good fire made, for
that he Avould go early to bed and Avas not
fit to be beloAV stairs." This request was
immediately complied Avith, " and Avhen it
AA'as supper-time, there being broth brought
to the table, Mrs. Lane filled a little dish,
and desired the butler who waited at the
talile, to carry that dish of porridge to AVil-
liam, and to tell him that he should have
some meat sent to him presently. The butler
carried the porridge into the chamber with a
napkin and spoon, and bread, and spake
kindly to the young man, who was Avilling to
be eating. And the butler, looking narrowly
upon him, fell upon his knees, and with tears
told him he was glad to see his Majesty.
The king was infinitely surprised, yet recol-
lected himself enough to laugh at the man,
and ask him Avhat he meant. The man had
been falconer to Sir Thomas Jermyn, and
made it appear that he knCAv well enough to
AA'hom he spake, repeating some particulars
Avliich the king had not forgot. Whereupon
the king conjured him not to speak of Avliat
he knew so much as to his ma.ster, though
lie believed him a very honest man. The
fellow promised, and foithfully kept his
word; and the king was the better Avaitod
upon during the time of his abode there."

Nor Avas this the only adventure that
occurred to Charles while abiding at Leigh
Court. He narrowly escaped being dis-
covered by Dr. Gorges, Avho had been his
chaplain, and who upon the predominance of
the Parliament had, like many others of his
brethren, abandoned the church for physic.
From pure good nature he must needs pay a
medical visit to the supposed William, about
Avhom he saAv ]\Irs. Lane Avas so anxious.
This danger, hoAvcver, the king escaped by
AvithdraAving " to the in.side of the bed, that
he might be farthest from the candle."
Another time curiosity, or a weariness of his
chamber, and the desire of amosementinduced
him to go doAvn to the place Avhere the young
men Avere playing at a game of ball called
fives. Being teazed to join the party, and



apprehensive of being discovered by some
among them, he made a hasty retreat, and
was hicky enough to get away from them
witliout suspicion. It was, nevertheless,
obvious that the cliances of discovery were
multiplied in proportion to the length of his
sojourn m any one place, and after a few
days more he went on to Colonel Wyndham's
house at Trent. What further befel the
fugitive, although highl}^ interesting matter
in itself, Avould be out of place here, as it
bears no connection with the subject of our

The old mansion of Leigh Court, which
was in the Elizabethan style of arcliitecture,
Avas pulled down by Philip John jMiles, Esq.
In its place he erected a handsome structure
of the Ionic order, in the midst of a beautiful
scene, and one of a highly varied aspect.

This splendid seat, adorned with a very
fine collection of pictures, is now one of the
chief ornaments of the county of (Somerset.

SHALFORD HOUSE, co. Surrey, the seat of
Sir Henry Ednnmd Austen, was built in the
year 1600 or 1608, on the site of the ancient
rectorial manor house, by John and George
Austen, Esqrs. ; the former having repre-
sented Guildford in Parliament in 1563, the
latter in 1603, and to him the town is indebted
for the preservation of many of its estates
and rights, as well as for some plate used by
the Corporation on their festival days.

The original mansion was modernised
about 1760, by the uncle of tlie present pos-
sessor, presenting however no architectural
distinction, and now exhibits but one room,
the dining parlour, indicati\'e of the age m
which it was built : this room is of oak pa-
nel, having a carved oak ceiling and a chim-
ney piece of much beauty, on which are em-
blazoned the family arms, crest and motto,
with various impalements

The rectory belonged to the Hospital of
St. Mary Bishop's Gate without Bars, Lon-
don, and was granted by Queen Elizabeth to
her Latin Secretary, Sir John Wolley, who
sold it to the jNIores of Loseley, by Avhom it
was alienated to the Austen family hi 1599.

The House contains a good collection of
portraits, besides those of the family. Those
of Archbishop Abbot, Bishop Abbot (his
brother), Mr. George Abbot, Lord Haversham,
who died m 1710, Annesley, Earl of Angle-
sea. Earl of Tyrone, Hampden the patriot,
Honourable Lady Every, Pope the poet,
Queen Mary II., and of John, Duke of Marl-
borough, may be enumerated.

In the dining-room it is said that several
conferences took place, at which Cromwell,
Pym, Hampden, and other leaders of the
Puritan party, assisted ; the house at that
time l^elonging to Colonel Austen, whose
portrait reraahis ; this gentleman was wounded

at the battle of Worcester, and was one
of those who signed the petition to the Lord
Protector, that he should assume the regal

The paintings, many of which came from
the Orleans Gallery, are of great value and
beauty, embracing

"Ilubens' Daughter," hy Her Father, amas-
terpiece of that great artist.

The celebrated " Old Woman's Head," by
Denner, described by Horace Walpole and

An " Old Man's Head," by Fielding, sur-
named the English Denner.

Three " Game Pieces," by Elmer,

" Battle Piece," by Vandcrnieulen.

" Hagar and Ishmael," by Nicholas Poussin.

"View on the Scheldt," by Zachdeven.

" Landscape near Tivoli," by MoKcheron.

" Alpine Scenery," by I'eniers, hi his ta-
pestry style.

" Flemish Interior of a Farm," by Teniers.

"Tobit and the Angel on the Banks of the
Tigris," by Annihale Caracci.

"Fawns and Satyr Dancmg" by Poelem-

"View of Dort, in Holland," by Van

" View of Venice," by Marieschi.

"Landscape in the Black Forest," l)y
WgnaiUs and Jean Stein, and some others by
artists unknown, includmg views on the
Meuse and Bhine.

The grounds are extensive and much en-
hanced in beauty by the river Wey mean-
deruig through them in a most circuitous
fo]-m, and the distant view of St. Catherine's
hall, A\-ith its ruinous cliapel, supposed to
have been erected by Henry III. The village
and church contribute also to ornament the
place, and the Monks' Terrace is admired by
all who visit the scenery near Guildford.

H.R.H. the Count D'Artois, afterwards
Charles X., resided some time at this scat
during the mmority of the present proprietor.

EBBERLY HOUSE, Devonshire, in the pa-
rish of Boborougli, near Great Torrington,
the seat of Henry Hole, Esq. A house of
\ery ancient date, but not otherwise remark-
able, has stood here for centuries. This was
pulled down, and a new mansion built by
the present owner of the estate, who came
into possession of it by bequest from liis
grandfather. It is a handsome structure,
in the modern style of architecture, stand-
ing in the midst of grounds and planta-
tions that cannot fail to delight the lover
of the beautiful and picturesque. The
approach to the house is singularly strik-
ing, and affords many charming subjects
for tlie pencil of the artist, while in every
direction are walks and rides of surpassing
beauty. This is particularly the case iii



coming to the banks of tlic river Torririge,
■wliidi winds round the base of the hill
whereon Torrington stands, and flows on
through some of the richest hanging woods
in the kingdom.

HAMILTON PALACE, co. Lanark. Before
we attempt to deserilie this maguiticent place,
it may lie interesting to our readers to say a
few words on the subject of the great his-
torical family to whom it belongs.

During the reign of Edward I. of Eng
land, two l)rothers migrated thence to Scot-
land, Sir Walter and Sir John Fitz Gilbert
de Hamilton. Tliey were the sons of Sir
Gilbert de Hamilton, a knight of one of the
highest families in England, being descended
from the great Norman house of De Bella-
mont. Earl of Leicester. From the elder of
these brothers, Sir Walter, is descended the
ducal house,- and from the younger, Sir John,
is sprung the knightly family ol Preston, re-
jiresented by that distinguished phil()soi)her
Sir "William Hamilton, Baronet, of Edin-
burgh. ^

The arms of Sir "Walter were gules, three
cinquefoils, pierced ermine, derived, like his
pedigree, from the Earls of Leicester. A
romantic story is connected with his crest.
Having slain a knight liigh in favour with
the English king. Sir Walter fled to Scotland,
and on one occasion he narrowly escaped
being taken prisojier by his pursuers, from
his disguise of a woodcutter, in memory of
Avhich adventure he adopted for his crest an
oak tree, traversed by a hand -saw, with the
ir.otto "Through."

Sir W'alter was well received by King
Robeit Bruce, who gave him extensive eshites
in Lanarkshire, where, for several genera-
tions, the family existed with honour, ns
Barons of Cadzow. Most of the distinguished
branches of the house of Hamilton in Scot-
land, derive their descent from these earlier
generations. Sir Walter married the daugh-
ter of the Lord Gordon, and from his j'ounger
son is descended the family of Hamilton of
Innerwick, with its liranch the Earls of Had-
dington. Sir David, second Lord of Cadzow,
married the daughter of the Earl of Hoss, and
from his younger son is descended tlie family
of Hamilton of Grange. Sir David, third
I^ord of Cadzow, married the daughter of
Keith of Galston. From his younger sons
are descended the families of Hamilton of
]>ardowie, and Hamilton of Udston, from
whom are descended the second and the third
lines of the Lords Bellhaven. Sir John, fourth
Lord of Cadzow, married a daughter of
Douglas of Dalkeith, and from his younger
sons are descended the families of liamihon
of Dalserf, and Hamilton of L'aploch. 'Hiis
last was one of the most considerable of the
early branches of the house of Hamilton. It is

represented by Hamilton of Barns, and among
its branches were the Earls of Clanbrassil,
and the Haniiltons of Torrance, represented
by G. Hamilton Dundas, Esq. Sir James
Hamilton, fifth Lord of Cadzow, married the
daughter of Sir Alexander Livingston. From
his yomiger sons are descended the families of
Hamilton of Dalziel, Hamilton of Silverton-
liill, represented by Sir Frederick Hamilton,
Bart., and Hamilton of Newton, represented by
the Kev. John Hamilton Gray of Carntyne.

It was at this time that the family of
Hiimilton rose from the condition of powerful
barons to that of magnates of the land. Sir
James Hamilton, sixth l^ord of Cadzow,
married the Princess Wary, daughter of
James II., King of Scotland, by which alliance
his descendants became next heirs to the
crown. He Avas created Lord Hamilton, and
his son was raised to the dignity of Earl of
Arran. He had two natural sons, Hamilton-
of Kincavel, Avhose son, Patrick, Abbot of
Feme, was the protomartyr of the Scottish
Ivcformation ; and Hamilton of Bioomhill,
ancestor of Lord Bellhaven, of the first line.
James, Earl of Arran, was one of the most
powerful subjects in Scotland. By his first
marriage with the daughter of Lord Drum-
nior.d, he had a daughter married to Stewart,
Lord Evandale and Ochiltree, whose descend-
ant, James Stewart, the unworthy favourite
of James VI., usurped, for a season, the
Earldom of Arran and the fortimes* of the
house of Hamilton. His third wife was a
near relation of Cardinal Beaton, by whom he
had a son, the Begent Duke of Chatelheraidt.
From his natural son Avas descended the
family of Hamilton of Fynnart, for a short
time the most poAverful of the branches of
the Ilamiltons. James, second Earl of Arran
and Duke of Chatelhcrault, Avas Begent of
Scotland during the minority. of Queen Mary,
and Avas declared next heir to the croAvn. His
Avife Avas a daughter of Douglas, Earl of
IMorton, and from his youngest son. Lord
Claud Hamilton, is descended the great
branch of Hamijton, Marquis of Abercorn,
Avith its numerous 1 tranches, among Avliich may
be mentioned Hamilton, Viscount Boyne,
and three baronets of the name.

The Begent Duke of Chatelherault's eldest
son Avas a very unfortunate nobleman. He
aspired to the hand of ^larj'. Queen of Scots,
and died insane. In his time the fortunes of
his house Avere greatly depressed, and his
titles Avere usurped by James Stewart of
Ochiltree. The second son of the Regent
Avas .John, created Marquis of Hamilton. He
married the daughter of Lord Glamis. Ilia
natui'al son Avas ancestor to Hamilton, Lord
l'>argeny, noAV represented as heir of line by
the Duchess de Coigny. James, second
IMjirquis of llann'lton, married fhe daughter
of the I'^arl of Glcncaini, bv Avhom he had



the tAVO first dukes, James and William, who
both perished in the cause of the king ; the
first on the scaffold, and the second on the
field of Worcester. By the marriage of the
first duke with the daughter of the Earl of
Denbigh, tliere was a daughter, Anne,
Duchess of Hamilton, heiress of her illustrious
family, who gave her hand to one not less
high-born than herself, William Douglas, Earl
of Selkirk, younger son of William, first
Marquis of Dx»uglas. This union was pros-
perous and fruitful, and produced, besides the
fourth Duke, the Earls of Orkney, Kuglen,
and Selkirk, the last of which continues
in the male Hue, and Lord Archibald, from
whom was descended Sir AVilliam Hamilton,
Ambassador at the Court of Naples, and illus-
trator of Grecian antiquity. James, fourth
duke, was killed in the celebrated duel with
Lord ]\Iohun. From his younger son. Lord
Anne, are descended a branch of the family
in the male line, who are the nearest cadets
of the ducal house, and in the female line,
Sir Ralph Anstruther, Bart. He was created
Duke of Brandon, and was succeeded by his
eldest son, James fifth duke, who had two sons,
James, sixth duke, and Archibald, nintliduke
of Hamilton, wjio succeeded on the death of his
nephew. By the daughter of the Earl of Gal-
loway he was father of Alexander, the present
and tenth Duke of Hamilton, seventh Duke of
Brandon, and fourteenth Duke of Chatel-
herault. Tiie duchess was daughter of the
late William Beckford of Fonthill. His only
son, the JMarquis of Douglas, married the
Princess jMary of Baden, daughter and co-
heiress of his Royal Highness Charles Louis
Frederick, Grand Duke of Baden.

Before we conclude this brief sketch of the
House of Hamilton, it may be Avortli while
to mention that, during the lifetime of James
George, seventh Duke of Hamilton, in 1761,
ArchibaM, Duke of Douglas, died. And the
Duke of Hamilton, as heir male, succeeded
to the splendid titles of that illustrious fa-
mily, with the exception of the dukedom,
which became extinct. But from hence-
forth the Alarquisate of Douglas and the
Earldom of Angus have been the desig-
nations of the son and grandson of the
Duke of Hamilton. The great estates of
the Douglas family were inherited by Mr.
Stewart, nephew to the Duke of Douglas,
who was created Lord Douglas. The famous
Douglas cause deserves, more than almost any
other, the name of cause celehre, as well from
the illustrious rank and historical importance
of the families connected Avith it, and the vast
estates Avhich depended upon it, as from the
romantic incidents of the story. But our
limits do not permit us to enter upon this
curious subject.

Besides his great estates in Scotland, Ha ■
milton, tlie ancient lordship of the family,

tlie island of Arrau, which was the reward of
a royal alliance, and Kinncil, in West Lothian,
the Duke of Hamilton has a considerable pro -
perty in Lancashire. — Aston Hall, inherited
from the Spencers of Rendlesham, through his
paternal grandmother, and Easton in Suf-
folk, which was devised to him by his
father's half-brother, tlie last Nassau, Earl of

Hamilton Palace, the seat of this illustrious
family, has been made by the taste of the pre-
sent duke, one of the noblest residences in Eu-
rope ; and it probably contains a greater collec-
tion of precious curiosities and rare works of
art than the abode of any man under the rank
of a king. In what is really solidly valual)le, it
far surpasses Chatsworth, as it is, and Stowe,
as it was. But the collection at Hamilton
has been the great work of a long lifetime,
and is the result of the most exquisite
taste, varied learning, sound judgment, vast
wealth, and anxious search. The present
Duke of Hamilton has erected a memorial of
his refined and classical appreciation of the
beautiful and valuable, which will hand down
his name to posterity as one of the most
successful cultivators of the fine arts that
has ever lived to enrich and adorn the virta
of liis native country. The sums which
have been laid out on this magnificent gal-
lery must indeed have been immense ; for
everything within the palace (even including
the old family pictures) has been purchased
with the wealth of the present duke.

But even before tlie enlarged and renovated
Palace of Hamilton was raised in emulation
of the jMedici, this place was truly magnifi-
cent, and well worthy of being the seat of
the premier noble, and next heir to the
crown, of Scotland.

Hamilton Park is of great extent and
diversified beauty. On one side it is boimded
by the full sweep of the broad and majestic
Clyde, wliile at the distance of about two
miles from the palace, it is intersected by
the river Evan, Avhich runs between two
lofty and precipitous banks, dividing the
hill crowned by the Chateau of Chatelherault
from the grand old forest of Cadzow, wliich
contains the ancient residence of the family
during the first centuries of its existence in

The Castle of Cadzow, now a ruin, stands
on a romantic situation on the summit of a
precipitous rock of a reddish colour, the
foot of which is washed by the river Evan
or Avon. In the most ancient times this
castle was a royal residence, as is proved
by the charters of many of the Scottish
kings having been dated from hence during
the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. King-
David the First is said often to have resided
here. When King John Balliol contracted
his son Edward to a niece of the French



King, among other crown lands Avhich con-
tributed to her jointure, are enumerated the
estate and Castle of Cadzow. King Robert
Bruce granted these domains tu Sir Walter
Fitzgilbert de Hamilton, that noble knight
of the blood of the Bellamonts (and
through them immediately descended from
the Capetiau kings), who renounced the
allegiance of Edward the First, and came to
establish himself in Scotland, so recently
freed by the patriotic efforts of Wallace and

The successors of Sir Walter Fitzgilbert
de Hamilton continued to make the Castle of
Cadzow their principal seat down to the time
of the lirst Earl of Arran ; and the Regent,
second Earl of Arran, and Duke of Chatel-
herault, occasionally resided there, as is
l^i'oved by many charters and public docu-
ments dated by him from thence. And
certainly, from its commanding situation, and
surrounded by the oaks of the ancient Cale-
donian forest, in the pride of their strength,
it must have been a baronial seat of sur-
passing grandeur. The fortress occupied a
very considerable extent of ground, and was
constructed Avith all the strength and solidity
peculiar to the feudal ages. It contained
within its walls a chapel and various offices,
and was surrounded by a strong rampart and
fosse, the remains of which are yet to be
seen. It underwent several sieges. In 1515
it was invested by the Regent Duke of
Albany, at the head of a select body of
troops and a train of artillery. It was then
the residence of his aunt, the Princess Mary,
of Scotland, daughter of King James the
Second, and mother of the tirst Earl of
Arran. Opening the gates, the aged princess
went out to meet her royal nephew, and
soon effected a reconciliation between him and
the earl her son. After the battle of Lang-
side, in 15G8, it was summoned by the Re-
gent Moray, and surrendered to him. It
was besieged in 1570 by the English, who
came to assist the Regent Lennox against
the Hamiltons and their partisans. It was
lastly besieged in 1579 by the Regent
Morton, and the castle was completely dis-
mantled. Cadzow has now been a ruin
for between two centuries and a half and
three centuries ; and the abode of the Hamil-
ton family has long been removed to the
more modern palace on the banks of the
Clyde, situated quite at the other side
of the park, and between two and three
miles distant from Cadzow, Castle. It is
entitled to the distinction of being styled
palace, from having been an abode of
royalty ; Queen ]Mary having resided there
for a season. And the name has been re-
tained as natural and appropriate to the
mansion of the nobleman who is next heir
to the Scottish crown, failing the reigning

family and its branches. Before we take
our leave of Cadzow, we must recommend
our readers to peruse the ballad of Cadzow
Castle, which is one of the most beautiful of
the minor poems of Sir Walter Scott.
Nothing can be more graphic than tlie
description there given of the scenery. The
ruins in their present state of decay em-
bosomed in wood, darkened by ivy and
creeping shrubs and overhanging thetorient,
are highly romantic. Behind and around the
castle, is a forest of huge oaks of hoary
antiquity, some of vdiich measure upwards of
twenty-tive feet in circumference. There is
still preserved in this foiest the breed of the
Scottish wild cattle, of which the appearance
is beautiful, the colour being white with
black muzzle, horns, and hoofs. The bulls
have manes.

Hamilton Palace stands on the level valley
near the river Clyde. At the time when
the present duke succeeded, it was a very
laige pile, Avithout any claim to architectural
beauty. Its front was not devoid of grandeur,
being formed by two deep wings at right
angles in the centre, and all in the Louis XIV.
style. But the duke, who is no less a
classical architect than a devoted lover and
exquisite judge of works of art, has encased
the ancient building with a vast new front,
and wings of the most beautiful masonry
and magnificent design. The Louis XIV.
front is all that is now visible of the old
building. A grand front consisting of a deep
colonnade of immense monolithal Corinthian
pillars on a gigantic flight of steps, flanked
by widely extended side buildings in the
Italian style, presents a whole which is
unrivalled m Scotland, and surpassed by
none even of the greatest English houses.
On the side of this magnificent new front
there are two entrances which require to be
noticed. One, on the rez de chaussee, which
communicates with the first story by a stair-
case of solid black marble, erected at im-
mense expense, and having a very remarkable
appearance. The other entrance, Avhich is
on the first story, is from the Corinthian
portico, to which we ascend by the outer
steps. This is a hall of vast dimensions,
beautifully fitted up with marble, and filled
with a number of groups in bronze, being
castes, in full size, of the most famous statues
of antiquity, which had been orighially made
for Marie de Medicis, Queen of Henry IV. of

It is very difficult to describe an immense

Online LibraryBernard BurkeA visitation of the seats and arms of the noblemen and gentlemen of Great Britain (Volume 1) → online text (page 58 of 79)