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gives of the torturing of Spence, con- thumbikens, whether imported from firms the then recent use of the thumbi- abroad, or invented at home, was a kens.“ Spence,” says he, “ was struck mode of torture which had been only in the boots, and continued firm. Then recently introduced, at the frightful a new species of torture was invented; period to which we have just been rehe was kept from sleep eight or nine ferring ;-a period well fitted, either nights. They grew weary of manage for the reception or the production of ing this; so a third species was in- any new device, calculated to extend vented ; little screws of steel were the outrages of power over its unhappy made use of, that screwed the thumbs victims. This being the case, we see with so exquisite a torment, that he' no good reason for not going a step sunk under it.” This point, we think, farther, and taking the account of its is put beyond all doubt by the fol- introduction which is given by Lord lowing act of the Privy Council in Fountainhall. It was upon the perse1684, quoted in Wodrow's invalu- cuted Presbyterians that this species of able History. Whereas there is now torture was first inflicted ; and who a new invention and engine called the among all their persecutors was there thumbikens, which will be very effec- more likely to enhance their sufferings tual to the purpose and intent fore- by any new device, than the ruthless said, (i. e. to expiscate matters relat- commanders, whom this Judge, their ing to the government ;) the Lords of contemporary, points out as its auhis Majesty's Council do therefore or- thors ? dain, that when any person shall by It was during this atrocious pertheir order be put to the torture, that secution, when every right and feelthe boots and thumbikens both be ap- ing of humanity were trampled unplied to them, as it shall be found fit der foot, with a degree of wantonand convenient.”

ness and barbarity unparalleled in the Thus, then, it seems clear, that the annals of any other country, that the

use of the torture reached its height. History of the Sufferings of the Church To so great an extent,” says Mr of Scotland, Vol. II. p. 347,

Hume in his Commentaries on the

Criminal Law, was this iniquity tained a promise of Sir Hugh's estate carried in those days, that confessions for his brother, provided Sir Hugh obtained in this way were made use should be condemned. He was accusof as an evidence in modum adminiculi, toined, as Burnet tells us * the Duke towards the conviction even of third of York when in Scotland bad been, parties ;--the confession of William to behold the sufferings of those torCarstares, for instance, against Baillie tured before hiin“ with an unmoved of Jerviswood."* Every one at all ac- indifference, and with an attention, as quainted with our history must know if he had been to look on some curious that Mr Carstares, afterwards Princi- experiment.” | Carstares, as we have pal of the University of Edinburgh, said, did not utter any confession was deeply concerned in those unfor- when under the hands of this arch intunate transactions, which brought çuisitor, though the passage quoteel Argyll to the scaffold in Scotland, and above from Mr lluine's CommentaRussel and Sydney in England. He ries might lead the reader to that conwas seized in England, and being sent clusion ; as would also the first notice to Scotland, was, on the 5th of Sep- of his case by Lord Fountainhall. I tember 1684, † tortured with the It appears that he was afterwards prethumbikens before the secret commit- vailed upon to give some information tee of the Privy Council, in order to affecting Baillie of Jerviswood and force him to reveal the names and de- others, under an express stipulation signs of his associates. An hour and that he should not be brought fora half of this cruel operation, during ward as a witness, and that no use which the sweat streamed from his should be made of his communications face, and some cries of agony were at their trial ; s but no faith was kept extorted, did not, however, render him with him in this respect; and his desubservient to the wishes of his inhu- claration so obtained was, as Mr Hume man tormentors; among whom the states, adınitted as an adminicle of Earl of Perth, true to the general evidence in the shameful trial and infamy and atrocity of his character, condemnation of Mr Baillie. stood conspicuous; urging the execu It would appear, from Fountaintioner to press the screws, while the hall, that the new torture of the Duke of Hamilton and the Earl of thumbikens was looked upon as exQueensberry left the room, unable any tremely cruel; and he adds, that the longer to witness the revolting spec- Privy Council would have “contracted tacle. I It was this same miscreant, some tash” by the frequent use of Perth, who, some time before, at the it at this time, had they not succeed trial et Sir Hugh Campbell, accused ed in thereby extorting some contesoi' rebellion, endeavoured, in his then sions. He mentions, too, that, in capacity of Justice-General, to urge some of these successful cases, it had on and to lead a suborned wit- proved its efficiency over the boots, ness, who was unable to say any thing because tried upon persons having against the prisoner, till he, the small legs. || Justice-General, was stopped by the After the Revolution, the Privy jury ; and this because he had ob- Council of Scotland presented Mr Car

stares with the identical thumbikens See Hume's Commentaries, Vol. II. with which he had been tortured in ch. 12.--Nothing can more clearly shew 1681. ? This curious relic is still the darkness of men's minds in those dire preserved by Mr Dunlop, who has times, as to the plainest principles of justice kindly enabled us to give the figure and evidence, than the following passage of of it, which accompanies this article, Lord Fountainhall.

** Some doubted how and which the engraver has far testimonies extorted per torturam could trived to exhibit in such a way as be probative against third parties, secing witnesses should be so far voluntary and spontancous, as to be under no terrors of * Burnet, Vol. II. p. 249. life or limb; but others dged them best + Ibid. p. 232. to be credited then.” Decisions, Vol. I.

Vol. I.

p.

302.

$ Fount. ibid. p. 326 ; M*Cormick's + Fountainhall's Decisions, Vol. I. p. Life of Carstares, p. 20, 21; and Burnet, 302.

Vol. Il. p. 256. # M*Cormick’s Life of Carstares, pre

| Vol. I. p. 303. Exed to his Stute Papois.

( M*Cornrick's Life of Carstarcs.

CON

P. 303.

LETTER

FROM

DAVID

ACCOUNT OF A RARE AND CURIOUS
TRACT CHARACTERIZED IN THAT
LETTER.

to represent a picture of the thumbi- makes us acquainted with the heroic kens in action. There is an anecdote sufferings of our forefathers, and the handed down among the descendants evil doings of their rulers,—which is of Mr Carstares, in regard to this in- calculated to sharpen our moral feelstrument, which we shall copy here, as ings against the abuses of power, we find it narrated in the fifth volume or to shew, what is more grateful, of the Statistical Account of Scotland. the solid advances made by our coun“I have heard, Principal,” said King try in the arts of legislation and goWilliarn to him, when he waited on his vernment. Majesty after the Revolution, “ that you were tortured with something they call thumbikens ; pray what sort of in- ORIGINAL strument of torture is it?” “I will

HUME TO JOHN HOME, WITH SOME shew it you,” replied Carstares, “ the next time I have the honour to wait on your Majesty." The Principal was as good as his word.-" I must try them,” said the King ;-" I must put Hume to the author of Douglas, with

The annexed letter from David in my thumbs here—now, Principal, which the public is now, for the first turn the screw.–0 not so gently-, time, presented, is both curious and another turn-another-Stop ! etop! interesting ; curious, from its alluno more another turn, I'm afraid, sion to a clever jeu d'esprit

, which would make me confess any thing.". What share of truth there may be which is now of the greatest rarity;

appeared in Edinburgh in 1774, but in this story, we know not; but and interesting, from the specimen it whatever King William's personal o affords of that gay and easy humour pinion of the use of torture may been, thus much is certain, that there which distinguished the familiar coris one case recorded in the proceedings The small satirical tract to which the

respondence of this eminent writer. of the Privy Council of Scotland, letter refers, is entitled, A specimen which shews that the thumbikens were of the Scots Review. It consists of employed under the sanction of his sign thirty pages, neatly printed in octavo, manual, in the year 1690. This was

but without the name of any printer in the case of Neville Penn or Payne, the person to whom George Duke of or publisher. It professes to give a Buckingham addressed his Essay up- tended new review; but the whole

prospectus and a specimen of an inon Reason and Religion. He was accused of having gone to Scotland to object seems to have been, to laugh

at some individuals obnoxious to the promote a Jacobite plot; and was, in writer, and particularly to ridicule the consequence of the king's warrant al- virulence, and to lower the pretensions ready mentioned," put to the torture of those who had signalized themof the thumbikens,” but without mak- selves by their attacks upon the phiing any disclosure. believe, the last occasion on which losophical writings of Mr Hume." A this instrument was employed; but promise is held out, that this “ archit was not till the year of the Union the first place; and next,“ those

infidel” is himself to be reviewed, in that torture was expressly forbidden authors who have waged an holy war by law in Scotland; the Claim of Right against himn;" of whom a list is given, in 1689 having only declared, “ that with their characters, the delineation the using torture without evidence, or

of which, in no very favourable coin ordinary crimes, was illegal.” We close these hasty memoranda to have exhausted the main object of

lours, appears, as already mentioned, of the history of the thumbikens, an instrument of vulgar sound, but well hits are aimed at the historian nim

the piece, though one or two gentle calenlated, as we have seen, for ter

self. rible purposes, with this reflection, That it is never useless to explore any

St Andrew's Square, piece of history which illustrates the

4th of June 1774. state of manners and law,—which “ DEAR JOHN,—The enclosed came

to hand to-day, and, as I take it to be Rose's Observations on Mr Fox's His. directed to you, I have sent it you. If terical Work, p. 179, 180.

on opening it you find otherwise, yon

TOL. 1.

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VIEW OF THE CHANGE OF MANNERS

may return it me, that I may find the brought to no perfection either in lintrue owner.

en or woollen ; every woman made her “ You have seen, no doubt, the spe- web, and bleached it herself; it never cimen of a Scotch Review. My first rose higher than two shillings a yard, conjecture was, that Carlyle * was the and with this cloth was every one author; but Dr Blair had convinced clothed. The young men, who were me that it is much more probably the at this time growing more nice, got production of your spiritual guide, theirs from Holland for shirts, but Tom Hepburn. † But, whoever be the the old ones were satisfied with necks father, the child has a great deal of and sleeves of the fine, which were salt, and spirit, and humour. I wish put on loose above the country cloth. he would continue, though at the ha- I remember in the 30 or 31 of a zard of my getting a rap over the ball, where it was agreed that the knuckles from time to time. For I company should be dressed in nothing see in this hero the spirit of a draw. but home manufactures. My sisters cansir, who spares neither friend nor were as well dressed as any, and their foe. I think I can reckon about twen- gowns were stript linen at 2s. 6d. a ty, people, not including the king, yard; their heads and ruffles were of whoin he has attacked in this short Paisley muslins, at 4s. 6d. with 4d performance. I hope all his spleen is edging from Hamilton, all of them not exhausted. I should desire my the finest that could be got. A few compliments to him, were I not afraid years after this weavers were brought that he would interpret the civility as

from Ilolland, and manufactories for paying black maill I to him. I am, linen established in the west. The Dear John, yours sincerely,

dress of the ladies was more expensive David Hume.” than at present, though not so often

renewed. At the time, I remember, hoops were wore constantly four yards

and a half wide, which required much IN SCOTLAND DURING THE COURSE silk to cover them; and gold and sil

ver was much used for trimmings,

never less than three rows round the [The following remarks, which will be found extremely curious and valuable, were

petticoat. Their heads were all dreswritten by a lady of an ancient family in sed with lace from Flanders, no Renfrewshire, who was as much distin- blonds nor coarse edging used : the guished for goodness of heart as solidity of price of these were high, but two suit judgment;—they are now first printed from would serve for life. They were not the original manuscript.)

renewed but at marriage, or I am sensible, that, in order to make great event; who could not afford these remarks properly, it is necessary tables were

them wore fringes of thread. Their

as full as one should have lived more in the

at present, world than I did during the times I though the meat was ill cooked, and write of, as the manners in the chief as badly served up. They ate out of towns would be something different pewter, often not clean, but were from those in the country; but, as

nicer in table linen than now, which our customs are brought from the

was renewed every day in gentlemen's metropolis

, the people of fashion in families, and always napkins. The the country cannot be far behind. the week of three days broth and salt

servants ate ill, having a set form by The year 1727 is as far back as I can meat, and three days meagre, with remember ; at that time there was little bread in Scotland, manufactories plenty of oat bread, and small beer.

Their

wages were small till the vails

were abolished ; the men from L. 3 • Reverend Dr Carlyle, minister of In- 30s. to L. 2. Át those times I men

to L. 9 in the year, the women from veresk.

+ Reverend Thomas Hepburn, minister tion, few of the women servants would of 'Athelstonford, Of this ingenious gen- all smoothed in the mangle, except

either sew, or iron linen, which was tleman we hope to give a biographical notice in an early Number.

the ladies' head dresses, which were # This was a sort of tax paid to free done by their own maids. They in booters, to obtain exemption from their general employed as many servants as inroads.

they do at present in the country, not.

OF THE LAST CENTURY.

some

in towns where one man-servant was his hours of devotion were marked, thought sufficient for most families, that nothing might interrupt him; or two at most, unless they kept a he kept his own seat by the fire, or at carriage, which was a thing very un- table, with his hat on his head, and common in those days, and only used often particular dishes served up for by the nobles of great fortune. The himself, that no one else shared of. price of provisions were about a third Their children approached them with of what they are now. Beef from awe, and never spoke with any de1 d. to 2d. a pound; butter 3d. ; gree of freedom before th The cheese 2d. ; eggs 1d. a dozen ; a fowl consequence of this was, that, except 4d. ; turkies and geese 1s. Neither at meals, they were never together, was the price of provisions much in- though the reverence they had for creased till after the rebellion in 45, their parents taught them obedience, when riches flowed much into the modesty, temperance. No one helpcountry.

ed themselves at table, nor was it the

fashion to eat up what was put on Had we a particular account of the their plate, so that the mistress of the manners of our own country, and of family might give you a full meal or the changes that have taken place from not, as she pleased, from whence came time to time since the reign of Wil- in the fashion of pressing to eat, so far liam the Conqueror, no history could as to be disagreeable. be more entertaining. But those Before the Union, and for many changes have been so little market, years after it, money was very scarce that what knowledge we have of them in Scotland. A country without trade, we owe more to the essay writers in or culture, or money to carry on either, Queen Anne's time, than to any of must improve by slow degrees. A our historians. Addison, Pope, and great part of the rents of estates were Swift, give us some idea of the man- paid in kind; this allowed gentleners of the times they wrote in ; since men to live comfortably at home, that period the information we have though they could not elsewhere, had from our parents and our own it introduced that hospitality so much observation only can instruct us. It boasted of in Britain. This way of is to be wished that some good writer life led to manners very different from would make his observations on this the present,—nothing could affect subject during his own life, which, if them more than the restraint young carried down by others, would contain people were under in presence of their both. useful and entertaining know- parents ; there was little intercourse ledge. Nobody that has lived any between the old and the young, time in the world but must have made the parents had their own guests, remarks of this kind, though it is one which consisted for the most part of ly the men of genius that can make their own relations, and near neighthe proper use of them, by represent- bours. As few people could afford to ing the good or ill consequences they go to town in the winter, their acmay have on society.

quaintance was much confined. The T'hose changes I have lived myself children of this small society were unto see, I wish to remember and mark der a necessity of being companions for my own use; my observations to each other'; this produced many cannot go much farther back than the strong friendships, and strong attachyear 1730, which period verged on the ments, and frequently very improper age of my grandfather, who was one marriages. By their society being of those born betwixt the 60 and confined, their affections were less dif70 of the century before, many of fused, and centered all in their own whom remained beyond the period family circle. There was no enlargeabove mentioned. Their manners ment of mind here ;-their manners were peculiar to themselves; as some were the same, and their sentiments part of the old feudal system still re- the same. They were indulgent to mained, every master was revered by the faults of each other, but most sehis family, honoured by his tenants, vere on those they were not accustomand aweful to his domestics ; his hours ed to, so that censure and detraction of eating, sleeping, and amusement, seemed to be the vice of the age. were carefully attended to by all his From this education proceeded pride family, and by all his guests. Even of understanding, bigotry in religion,

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