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Kay's Originals Vol. 1


BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. 99 was said she afterwards formed a “ mesal2knce” with John (commonly called Jack) Fortune, a surgeon, who went abroad (brother of Matthew Fortune, who kept the Tontine, Princes Street)-both sons of old Fortune who kept the noted tavern in the High Street, the resort of the higher ranks in Scotland fifty years ago ;’ but Mrs. Fortune was a younger sister. Sir Hew’s family originally consisted of fifteen, several of whom died when young. The eldest daughter, Miss Mary, was married in 1775 to General Fletcher of Saltoun (then Campbell of Boquhan), and afterwards to Colonel John Hamilton of Bardowie, in Stirlingshire; and the second, Lucken, was married to General Gordon Cuming of Pitlurg, Aberdeenshire, by whom she had ten children. Mr. Kay mentions that the publication of this Print created great excitement at the time (1784), and was the cause of several articles being written pro and con in the periodicals of the day. Captain Crawford (brother to the lady) was very much irritated, and threatened to cudgel the limner, at the same time “ daring him at his peril to pencil any lady ever after.” As might have been expected, this threat had a very contrary effect-being immediately followed by an alteration of the Plate, making the head-dress of Miss Crawford a little more ridiculous, and also by the caricature of ‘‘ RETALIATIO;N O R THE CUDGELLER CAUGHT.” RETALIATION ; OR THE CUDGELLER CAUGHT, REPRESENTthSe gallant and high-minded Captain Crawford, who was then young, in the hands of a brawny porter, while his sister and her companion, Miss Hay of Montblairy, who then resided with her mother in Haddington’s Entry, Canongate, are lustily calling out for help. This caricature, however, is supposed to have been merely a flight of fancy, without any foundation in fact. Captain Crawford, afterwards Sir Hew, was a very handsome man. He married a Miss Johnston, of the county of Leitrim in Ireland, by whom he had two sons and three daughters. “On the 10th of October 1775, a wager w8s determined at Fortune’a tavern, Edinburgh, on the quality of the beef of two bullocks-one fed by the Duke of Buccleuch, the other by John Lumsdaine of Blanairn, Esq. A sirloin of each waa roasted ; and it took two men to carry each to the table. The wager was determined in favour of the Duke. Besides his Grace and Mr. Lumsdaine, there were a goodly number of other iioblemen, gentlemen, clergy, etc., at dinner-twenty-one in number--aZZ dressed in the nzanufactures of Scotland.” The Duke of Bucclench is well known to have been “ a great encourager of Scotch manufactures,” which were at that time in their infancy.-The Earl of Hopetoun, as Commissioner to the General kssembly, used to hold state in Fortune’s tavern ; and on election occasions the Scottish Peers frequently terminated the proceedings of the day by dining there. The premises were at an earlier period the town residence of the Earls of Eglinton.
Volume 8 Page 145
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100 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. No. XLVIII. HENRY VISCOUNT MELVILLE AND THE HON. ROBERT DUNDAS OF ARNISTON, LORD CHIEF BARON OF THE COURT OF EXCHEQUER. THE first figure in this Print represents the Right Honourable HENRY DUNDAS, Viscount Melville and Barop Dunira. Mr. Dundas was second son of Robert Dundas of Arniston, Lord President of the Court of Session,’ by Anne, daughter of Sir William Gordon of Invergordon, his lordship’s second wife, and was borq an the 28th April 1742. After completing his education at the University of Edinburgh with the usual course of legal st,udy, he was admitted a Member of the Faculty of Advocates in the year 1763, At this period it has been said, that, after paying the expense of his education and admission to the faculty, Mr. Dundas had just sixty pounds remaining of his patrimony. Mr. Dundas began his splendid public career in the comparatively humble capacity of an assessor to the Magistrates of Edinburgh. The office of one of his Majesty’s Depute-Advocates was then conferred upon him j and subsequently he was appointed Solicitor-General for Scotland. To these situations he recommended himself by his superior talents, which were early displayed, and which obtained for him the highest consideration of the Bench and Bar. But the ambition of Mr. Dundas was directed to higher objects than were to be attained even by the most brilliant success at the Scotch bar, where the only honour that would follow the most successful exertion of talent, would be a seat on the bench. He accordingly resolved to try his fortunes in the sister kingdom, and with this view, in the year 1774, successfully contested the county of Mid-Lothian with the Ministerial candidate. He, however, afterwards joined the party then in power-became a zealous and able supporter of Lord North‘s Administration-and was, as a reward for his services, appointed Lord Advocate of Scotland in 1775. Two years afterwards, he obtained the appointment of Keeper of his Majesty’s Signet for Scotland. 1 To prevent any misconception, it may be right to mention that there were two Presidents of the Court of Session hearing the name of Robert Dundas. The first, who waa born on the 9th December 1685, and died on the 26th August 1753, was the father of Lord Viscount Melville. The second, who was born on the 18th July 1713, and died, in the seventy-fifth year of his age, on the 13th December 1787, waa the eldest son of the preceding judge by his first marriage with Elizabeth, daughter of Robert Watson, Esq. of Xuirhouse, and in this way was the “half-brother ” (to use a Scotticism) of Lord Melville.
Volume 8 Page 146
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