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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. I


room where she was wont to say her prayers-such private oratories being common in most of the Edinburgh houses of the time-and the window of which overlooked the High Street, Thereat he showed himself, w dhhabiZZt, to the people passing, an exhibition which so seriously affected the repuwith violence. Once-we regret to record it of so heroic a soldier-when transported beyond the bounds of reason, he gave her a blow on the face with such severity as to draw blood; and then, all unconscious of what he had done, fell asleep. Poor Lady Stair, overwhelmed by such an insult, THE LAWNMARKET, FROM THE SITE OF THE WEIGH-HOUSE, 1825. (AfIrEzu6ank.) tation of the young widow, that she saw the necessity ot accepting him as her husband. Lady Eleanor was happier as Countess of Stair than she had ever been as Viscountess Primrose ; 5ut the Earl had one failing-a common one enough among gentlemen in those days-a disposition to indulge in the bottle, and then his temper was by no means improved; thus, on coming home he more than once treated the Countess and recalling perhaps much that she had endured with Lord Primrose, made no attempt to bind up the wound, but threw herself on a sofa, and wept and bled till morning dawned. When the Earl awoke, her bloody and dishevelled aspect filled him with horror and dismay. ?What has happened ? How came you to be thus 2? he exclaimed. She told him of his conduct over-night, which filled him with shame-such shame and compunction,
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MARSHAL STAIR. 105 Lady Stair?s closol House of Lords and Court of Session. In support of what he stated, Dundonald, in a letter to that he made a vow never again to take any species of drink, unless it had first passed through her hands; and this vow he kept religiously till the day of his death, which took place on the 9th April, 1747, at Queensberry House in the Canongate, when he was in his seventy-fifth year. He was General of the Marines, Governor of Minorca, Colonel of the Greys, and Knight of the Thistle. He was buried in the family vault at Kirkliston, and his funeral is thus detailed in the Scots Magazine for 1747 :- when the procession began, as a signal to the garrison in the Castle, when the flag was half hoisted, and minute guns fired, till the funeral was clear of the city. With much that was irreproachable in her character, Lady Stair was capable of ebullitions of temper, and of using terms that modem taste would deem objectionable. The Earl of Dundonald had stated to the Duke of Douglas that Lady Stair had expressed her doubts concerning the birth of his nephewa much-vexed question, at this time before the THE LAWNMARKET, FROM ST. GILES?S, 1825. I. Six bLton men, two and two. 2. A niourning coach with four gentlemen ushers and the Earl?s crest. 3. Another mourning coach with three gentlemen ushers, and a friend carrying the coronet on a velvet cushion. 4. Six ushers on foot, with bgtons and gilt streamers. 5. The corpse, under a dressed canopy, drawn by six dressed horses, with the Earl?s achievement, within the Order of the Thistle. 6. Chief mourners in a coach and six. 7. Nine mourning coaches, each drawn by six horses. 8. The Earl?s body coach empty. 9. Carriages of nobility and gentry, in order of rank? A sky-rocket was thrown up in the Canongate 14
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