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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. II


High Street.] TULZIES IN THE HIGH STREET. 195 - - his own friends and servants into two armed parties, set forth on slaughter intent. He directed his brothers John and Robert Tweedie, Porteous of Hawkshaw, Crichton of Quarter, and others, to Conn?s Close, which was directly opposite to the smith?s booth; while he, accompanied by John and Adam Tweedie, sons of the Gudeman of Dura, passed to the Kirk (of Field) Wynd, a little to the westward of the booth, to cut off the victim if he hewed a way to escape ; but as he was seen standing at the booth door with his back to them, they shot him down with their pistols in cold blood, and left him lying dead on the spot. For this the Tweedies were imprisoned in the Castle; but they contrived to compromise the matter with the king, making many fair promises ; yet when he was resident at St. James?s, in 1611, he heard that the feud and the fighting in Upper Tweeddale were as bitter as ever. On the 19th of January, 1594, a sharp tulzie, or combat, ensued in the High Street between the Earl of Montrose, Sir James Sandilands, and others. 10 explain the cause of this we must refer to Calderwood, who tells us that on the 13th of February, in the preceding year, John Graham of Halyards, a Lord of Session (a kinsman of Montrose), was passing down Leith Wynd, attended by three or four score of armed men for his protection, when Sir Janies Sandilands, accompanied by his friend Ludovic Duke of Lennox, with an armed I company, met him. As they had recently been in dispute before the Court about Some temple lands, Graham thought he was about to be attacked, and prepared to make resistance. The duke told him to proceed on his journey, and that no one would molest him; but the advice was barely given when some stray shots were fired by the party of the judge, who was at once attacked, and fell wounded. He was borne bleeding into an adjacent house, whither a French boy, page to Sir Alexander Stewart, a friend of Sandilands, followed, and plunged a dagger into him, thus ending a lawsuit according to the taste of the age. Hence it was that when, in the following year, John Earl of Montrose-a noble then about fifty years old, who had been chancellor of the jury that condemned the Regent Morton, and moreover was Lord High Chancellor of the kingdom-met Sir James Sandilands in the High Street, he deemed it his duty to avenge the death of the Laird of Halyards. On the first amval of the earl in Edinburgh Sir James had been strongly recommended by his friends to quit it, as his enemies were too strong for him ; but instead of doing so he desired the aid and assistance of all his kinsmen and friends, who joined him forthwith, and the two parties meeting on the 19th of January, near the Salt Tron, a general attack with swords and hack buts begun. One account states that John, Master of Montrose (and father of the great Marquis), first began the fray; another that it was begun by Sir James Sandilands, who was cut down and severely wounded by more than one musket-shot, and would have been slain outright but for the valour of a friend named Captain Lockhart. The Lord Chancellor was in great peril, for the combat was waged furiously about him, and, according to the ? Historie of King James the Sext,? he was driven back fighting ?to the College of Justice ( i e . , the Tolbooth). The magistrates of the town with fencible weapons separatit the parties for that time ; and the greatest skaith Sir James gat on his party, for he himself was left for dead, and a cousingerman of his, callit Crawford of Kerse, was slain, and many hurt.? On the side of the earl only one was killed, but many were wounded. On the 17th of June, 1605, there was fought in the High Street a combat between the Lairds of Edzell and Pittarrow, with many followers on both sides. It lasted, says Balfour in his AnnaZes, from nine at night till two next morning, with loss and many injuries. The Privy Council committed the leaders to prison. The next tulzie of which we read arose from the following circumstance :- Captain James Stewart (at one time Earl of Arran) having been slain in 1596 by Sir James Douglas of Parkhead, a natural son of the Regent Morton, who cut off his .head at a place called Catslack, and carried it on a spear, ?leaving his body to be devoured by dogs and swine;? this act was not allowed to pass unrevenged by the house of Ochiltree, to which the captain-who had been commander of the Royal Guard-belonged. But as at that time a man of rank in Scotland could not be treated as a malefactor for slaughter committed in pursuance of a feud, the offence was expiated by an assythement. The king strove vainly to effect a reconciliation ; but for years the Imds Ochiltree and Douglas (the latter of whom was created Lord Torthorwald in 1590 by James VI.) were at open variance. It chanced that on the 14th of July, 1608, that Lord Torthonvald was walking in the High Street a little below the Cross, between six and seven in the morning, alone and unattended, when he suddenly met William Stewart, a nephew of the man he had slain. Unable to restrain the sudden rage that filled him, Stewart drew his sword, and ere
Volume 2 Page 195
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