Front Matter Albion and Brutus The Coming of the Romans The Romans Come Again Caligula Conquers Britain The Story of Boadicea The Last of the Romans The Story of St. Alban Vortigern and King Constans Hengist and Horsa Hengist's Treachery The Giant's Dance The Coming of Arthur Founding of the Round Table Gregory and the Children King Alfred Learns to Read Alfred and the Cowherd More About Alfred the Great Ethelred the Unready Edmund Ironside Canute and the Waves Edward the Confessor Harold Godwin The Battle of Stamford Bridge The Battle of Hastings Hereward the Wake Death of the King The Story of William the Red The Story of the "White Ship" The Story of King Stephen Henry II—Gilbert and Rohesia Thomas a Becket The Conquest of Ireland Richard Coeur de Lion How Blondel Found the King The Story of Prince Arthur The Great Charter Henry III and Hubert de Burgh Simon de Montfort The Poisoned Dagger The War of Chalons The Lawgiver The Hammer of the Scots King Robert the Bruce The Battle of Bannockburn The Battle of Sluys The Battle of Crecy The Siege of Calais The Battle of Poitiers Wat Tyler's Rebellion How Richard Lost His Throne The Battle of Shrewsbury Prince Hal Sent to Prison The Battle of Agincourt The Maid of Orleans Red Rose and White Margaret and the Robbers The Story of the Kingmaker A King Who Wasn't Crowned Two Princes in the Tower The Make-Believe Prince Another Make-Believe Prince The Field of the Cloth of Gold Defender of the Faith The Six Wives of Henry VIII The Story of a Boy King The Story of Lady Jane Grey Elizabeth a Prisoner A Candle Lit in England Elizabeth Becomes Queen A Most Unhappy Queen Saved from the Spaniards Sir Walter Raleigh The Queen's Favourite The Story of Guy Fawkes The Story of the Mayflower A Blow for Freedom King and Parliament Quarrel The King Brought to Death The Adventures of a Prince The Lord Protector How Death Plagued London How London was Burned The Fiery Cross The Story of King Monmouth The Story of the Seven Bishops William the Deliverer William III and Mary II A Sad Day in a Highland Glen How the Union Jack was Made Earl of Mar's Hunting Party Bonnie Prince Charlie Flora MacDonald The Black Hole of Calcutta How Canada Was Won How America Was Lost A Story of a Spinning Wheel Every Man Will Do His Duty The Battle of Waterloo The First Gentleman in Europe Two Peaceful Victories The Girl Queen When Bread was Dear Victorian Age: Peace Victorian Age: War The Land of Snow The Siege of Delhi The Pipes at Lucknow Under the Southern Cross From Cannibal to Christian Boer and Briton List of Kings

Our Island Story - H. E. Marshall


Queen Anne was the last of the Stuarts, and her husband and all her children died before she did. She had no near relatives except her brother, who was called the Pretender. He was a Roman Catholic and, therefore, could not succeed to the throne; for, in the time of William and Mary, a law had been made that no Roman Catholic should ever again wear the crown. The people had foreseen that after Queen Anne died, there might be quarrels as to who should reign next, so that, too, had been settled by law in the time of William and Mary.

James I. of England had a daughter called Elizabeth, who married the King of Bohemia, and her grandson, George, Elector, or King of Hanover, was the nearest Protestant heir to the throne. He was the great-grandson of James VI.

So, as soon as Queen Anne died, George was proclaimed King in England, Scotland, and Ireland, without any fighting or quarrelling. But although his grandmother had been Bristish, George himself was as German as could be, and he could not even speak a word of English. He was fifty-five years old when he came to the throne, and was too old ever to learn the English language or English ways and manners.

The Jacobites had never lost hope of having once more a Stuart King. Now they felt was the time to try. The new King was a German, and the people, they thought, would surely rather have a man of their own country than an old German to reign over them.

The Earl of Mar, making believe that he was going to have a great hunting-party, ask a number of the Highland lords to his house. They came, but soon it was seen that it was not deer they meant to hunt, and a large army gathered round Lord Mar and the standard of James VIII., which was the title the Pretender took. In their caps they wore his badge of white cockade or rosette.

The Pretender's standard was of blue silk, having on one side the arms of Scotland worked in gold, and on the other the Scottish thistle, with the motto, Nemo me impune lacessit, which means, 'those who touch me will suffer for it.' It had also two streamers of white ribbon, on one of which were the words, 'For our wronged King and oppressed country,' and on the other, 'For our lives and liberties.' There was great rejoicing when the standard was unfurled, but scarely had it been done when the golden ball fell from the top of the staff. That made the Highlanders very sad, for they were superstitious and thought it meant bad luck.

'But when our standard was set up,

so fierce the wind did blow, Willie,

The golden knop down from the top

Unto the ground did fa', Willie.

Then second-sighted Sandy said,

We'll dae nae gude at a', Willie;

While pipers played frae right to left

Fy, furich Whigs awa', Willie.'

In the north of England, Lord Derwentwater and another gentleman gathered an army of Jacobites and proclaimed James King. But neither Lord Mar nor Lord Derwentwater were good generals. Having got their soliders together, they did not seem to know what to do with them. So when King George's army met Lord Derwentwater's army, the Jacobites yeilded almost without a struggle.

In Scotland, the Jacobites under Lord Mar, and the King's soldiers, under the Duke of Argyle, met at a place called Sheriffmuir, near Dunblane. Lord Mar called a council of war and asked his captains, 'Shall we fight or shall we go back?'

And all the captains called out, 'Fight! fight!'

Lord Mar agreed, and they all went to their places. No sooner did the Highlanders know they were to fight than a great cheer went through the army, every man tossing his cap in the air. Every Scotchman there was glad at the opportunity of fighting his old enemies the English.

With broadswords drawn, colours flying, and bagpipes playing, they rushed to battle. But brave and fierce though the Highlanders were, they lacked a clever leader. So it happened that one half of Mar's soliders beat one half of Argyle's, but the other half of Argyle's beat the other half of Mar's, so each side claimed the victory.

'There's some say that we wan,

Some say that they wan,

Some say that nane wan at a', man;

But one thing I'm sure,

That at Sheriffmuir

A battle there was, which I saw, man;

And we ran, and they ran, and they ran, and we ran,

And we ran and they ran awa', man.'

'If we have not gained a victory,' said one Jacobite general, 'we ought to fight Argyle once a week until we make it one.' But Mar did nothing, and James, who had promised to come from France, did not arrive. So, disappointed and discontented, many of the chieftains and their followers went home again.

But at last James landed. He was greeted with great joy, and rode into Dundee with three hundred gentlemen behind him. 'Now,' thought the Jacobites, 'we have a King. Now we will be led to battle and victory.'

But they were again disappointed. James was no soldier. He was pale, grave, and quiet; he never smiled and he hardly ever spoke. The men soon began to despise him, and to ask if he could fight or even speak.

Day after day passed and nothing happened.

'What did you call us to arms for?' asked the angry Highlanders, 'was it to run away?'

'What did the King come for? Was it to see his people butchered by hangman, and not strike one blow for their lives?'

'Let us die like men, and not like dogs.'

'If our King is willing to die like a King, there are ten thousand gentlemen who are not afraid to die with him.'

But it was of no use. Nothing was done. The Pretender, taking the Earl of Mar with him, slunk back to France, a beaten man for want of courage to strike a blow. And, sad and angry, the Jacobite army melted away. Some of the leaders escaped to foreign lands, others were taken prisoner to the Tower and afterwards beheaded. Among those was Lord Derwentwater.

This rebellion is known as 'The Fifteen' because it took place in 1715 A.D.

'O far frae my hame full soon will I be,

It's far, far frae hame, in a strange countrie,

Where I'll tarry a while, return, and with you be,

And bring many jolly boys to our ain countrie.

'I wish you all success till I again you see,

May the lusty Highland lads fight on and never flee.

When the King sets foot aground, and returns from the sea,

Then you'll welcome him hame to his ain countrie.

'God bless our royal King, from danger keep him free,

When he conquers all the foes that oppose his Majesty,

God bless the Duke of Mar and all his calvalry,

Who first began the war for our King and our countrie.

'Let the traitor King make haste and out of England flee,

With all his spurious race come far beyond the sea;

Then we will crown our royal King with mirth and jollity,

And end our days is peace in our ain countrie.'