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Kay's Originals Vol. 2


Volume 9 Page 560
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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. 419 himself in the hands of Lord Lauderdale, who was then considered the leader of the Whig party in Scotland, and in whose judgment he had the most implicit confidence. The noble Earl at once concurred with his friend in the propriety of accepting an offer so very handsomely made by their political opponents. How well the abilities of Lord Gillies entitled him to the distinction is amply acknowledged by the high consideration uniformly attached to the opinions he delivers from the bench. Lord Gillies had a singular facility in catching the leading features of a cause. It was in vain for the most ingenious lawyer to attempt to perplex or confuse him. Nothing diverted his attention from what he considered to be the real point at issue. His comments, though brief, were lucid and to the purpose ; and every syllable he uttered bore directly upon the case. In enforcing his views he never used a word more than was necessary. His memory was excellent. He rarely took notes, and yet never forgot, in the course of his speech, any fact adduced, or argument brought forward, that might illustrate or support his opinions. Frequently caustic and severe, he would demolish in a few minutes an oration that had taken some unfortunate pleader hours to deliver. In a word, as a close and convincing reasoner, his lordship had scarcely any rival, either at the bar or on the bench. His lordship married, in 1801, Elizabeth, second daughter of Thomas Carnegy, Esq., of Craigo. Mr. Malcolm Laing, the able Scottish historian, and friend and contemporary of Lord Gillies at the bar, married Margaret, another daughter of Mr. Carnegy.1 The figures in the rear are those of two well-known macers to the Court- GRAHAMan d MrrNRo-the former of whom is in the centre. No. CCCXIII. JEROME WILLIAM KNAPP, LL.D., DEPUTY-CLERK OF ARRAIGNS. ME KNAPP was an English barrister of the Middle Temple, and succeeded his father as Deputy-Clerk of Arraigns on the home circuit, which o5ce he filled with much ability for a period of nearly thirty years He came to Edinburgh in 17 9 4, as Clerk of Arraigns to the Commission of Oyer and Terminer for the trial of Watt and Downie, accused of high treason-the former of whom suffered capital punishment. Another daughter married Sir George M. Grant of Ballindalloch, Bart.
Volume 9 Page 561
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