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Kay's Originals Vol. 1


110 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. Lord Abercromby of Aboukir and Tullibody, and married, 27th January 1799, Montague, third daughter of Henry first Viscount Melville, by whom he has issue one son and two daughters. His second son, John, G.C.B., died unmarried in the year 181 7. The third son, James (a Privy Councillor), practised as an English barrister, and was for many years auditor to the Duke of Devonshire. He relinquished that employment upon being appointed Judge-Advocate-General, under Canning’s Administration. He was afterwards appointed (in February 1830) Lord Chief Baron of the Court of Exchequer in Scotland, which office he held until its abolition. It is hardly necessary to mention that James is presently (1837), M.P. for the city of Edinburgh and Speaker of the House of Commons. He married, in 1802, Mary Ann, daughter of Egerton Leigh, Esq., by whom he has issue one son, Ralph (born 6th April 1803), now (1837) envoy to Tuscany. The fourth son, Alexander, C.B., who still survives, is (1837) a Lieutenant-Colonel in the Army. ’ No. LIII. LAUCHLAN M‘BAIN. THIS Print, done in 1791, represents a well-known vendor of roasting-jacks. Although’ confessing at this period to the venerable age of seventy-five, he was still “ hale and hearty,” and in the zenith of his professional celebrity. Lauchlan had been a soldier, and at one time served in the 21st, or Royal Scots Fusiliers. It is not said whether he had been at the inglorious affair of Prestonpans, but he hesitated not to state that he was one of the victors at Culloden. At what period he obtained his discharge is unknown ; but unfortunately for him his retirement from the army was not accompanied by any pension. Upon the cessation of his military duties he came to Edinburgh, where he settled down in civil life by becoming a manufacturer of fly-jacks and toasting-forks. In this vocation Lauchlan soon acquired notoriety, and became one of the characters of ‘‘ Auld Reekie.” Those who recollect him, and there are many, siill remember the fine modulations of his sonorous yet musical voice, as he sang the “ roasting toasting” ditty; and like Blind Aleck of Glasgow, he was “ the author of all he made, said, or sung.” Lauchlan was unquestionably a favourite with the populace ; but as the most universally esteemed are unable to elbow through the world without sometimes giving offence, so it happened with the honest vendor of roasting-jacks. His professional chant, as he frequently winded his way up the back stairs leading from the Cowgate to the Parliament Square, became exceedingly annoying to the gentlemen of the long robe, who, though anxious to abate the nuisance, were unable legally to entangle their tormentor in the meshes of the law. Lauchlan, sensible that these visits might be turned to account, was most
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