The 1st Marquis of Montrose Society
Academic Papers

In the light of some splendid studies which have been undertaken by society members and individuals closely associated with the society we have decided to create this section on our website which seeks to publicise these fine works and to encourage further debate and discussion on their important subjects.

Most of the papers summarised below, some of which have been published under the auspices of the society, are available to all scholars through the society at minimal cost and enquiries should in the first instance be forwarded to the society secretary.

Mention here should also be made of existing publications currently in existence by recognised authors and members of this society such as:- Prof. Ted Cowan – ‘Montrose, For Covenant and King’, Ronald Williams – ‘Montrose – Cavalier in Mourning’ and Robin Bell – ‘Civil Warrior’.

SUMMARY

Contemporary Images of James Graham – Phinella Henderson – 2007

The Portrait of Montrose in Warwick Castle – Ronald Williams – 2013

Montrose Vindicated – Veronique B. van Broekhoven – 2019

A Gaelic Civil War? Iain Lom and the Civil War in the Highlands and Islands – Andrew Lind – 2017

Battle in the Burgh – Andrew Lind – 2019

To Cry Out Against Wolves – Andrew Lind – 2019

You May Take My Head – Andrew Lind – 2019

John, Lord Graham, Why Did He Die? – TVN Russell – 2005

The Murder of Lord Kilpont – Ronald Williams – 2006

Contemporary Images of James Graham, Fifth Earl and First Marquis of Montrose – Phinella Henderson - 2007

This 29 page colour booklet was published (in A5 format) following a comprehensive study of all the known contemporary images of James Graham. The author gives detailed descriptions of the images along with accompanying text and important historical notes on the artists. Expertly researched and written.

The Portrait of Montrose in Warwick Castle – Ronald Williams – 2013

This is a fascinating and well researched account of the portrait of the 1st Marquis of Montrose in Warwick Castle from the author of ‘Montrose, Cavalier in Mourning’, Ronald Williams. The author’s literary skill is matched only by his powers of detection as he unravels the intricate, and amazing, history of this ‘forgotten’ portrait of Montrose. This bound booklet consists of 16 colour (A4) pages, with images. This is a masterful and detailed piece of historical detective work.

Montrose Vindicated – Veronique B. van Broekhoven – 2019

This excellent paper addresses the matter of the sacking of Aberdeen in 1644, the blame for which has long been laid at the door of Montrose and continues to this day to be a blight on his otherwise honourable reputation.

The author of this study leaves no stone unturned in this investigation and, in casting considerable doubt on the accuracy of the contemporary accounts of this incident, seeks to completely exonerate Montrose and the Irish musketeers. This paper (37 pages published in A4 format) is a fascinating and detailed work and its conclusion casts considerable doubt on whether or not this incident ever took place, suggesting that it was perhaps just a crude attempt by the covenanters to besmirch the reputation of Montrose and the royalists.

A Gaelic Civil War? – Iain Lom and the Civil War in the Highlands and Islands – Andrew Lind – 2017

Andrew Lind is a Postgraduate Research Student at the University of Glasgow. In this well researched and compiled paper the author gives a fascinating insight into the Civil War in Scotland through his analysis of the poems of the Scottish Bard Iain Lom. He considers the factors which motivated Iain Lom and the influence which his Gaelic background had Lom’s loyalties and on his poetry.

Battle in the Burgh – Andrew Lind – 2019

Support within Scotland’s burghs for the Covenanting Movement has often been highlighted as crucial to the Movement’s success and longevity. However, there is still much work needed in order to ascertain exactly why this was the case. Indeed, whilst David Stevenson, Allan Macinnes, and Allan MacDonald have all supported the argument that the burghs were, in many ways, natural allies of the Covenanters, they have all emphasised the need to further explore and explain this phenomenon. Stevenson has even warned that this perceived unity may in fact be an illusion, projected by the increased power which the burgh elite were able to accrue over the course of the seventeenth century. Following the example of Laura Stewart’s recent research on Edinburgh, this paper will re-examine the burgh of Glasgow, which has often been regarded as one of the hotbeds of the Covenanting rebellion. This paper will seek to challenge this view, and argue that over the course of the Civil Wars, there emerged two factions within the burgh, one conservative, one radical. Whilst these factions cohabitated the burgh during the early 1640s, war in Scotland in 1644-45 brought matters to a head, resulting in conflict at the very heart of the burgh community.

It is hoped that this research will help this conference reveal the grassroots experiences of early modern Scotland, whilst also reinvigorating discussion of Scotland’s burghs during the British Civil Wars. Likewise, it is hoped that this paper will challenge the assertion that the Covenanting Movement held a monopoly on support from the Third Estate by arguing that there was tangible Royalist support within Glasgow, and that far from being a distant concern, the Civil Wars in Scotland produced fracture-lines right down through the kingdom’s communities.

To Cry Out Against Wolves – Andrew Lind – 2019

In autumn 1638, John Strang, the principal of the University of Glasgow, penned a comprehensive critique of the National Covenant and its adherents. Strang argued that Charles I had addressed the concerns of the protesters, carrying himself in a manner which befit a true Christian king. Thus, in Strang’s eyes, the Covenanters risked triggering open conflict by defying the authority of their divinely ordained king and in turn, the will of God. Indeed, Strang was not alone with these concerns. The Aberdeen Doctors–a group of divines from King’s and Marischal Colleges–have traditionally been seen as the pinnacle of anti-Covenanting activity within the Scottish clergy, thus helping to entrench the belief that the north-east was a bastion of Royalism in a kingdom swept up by the Covenant. However, between 1638 and 1641, approximately 59 parish ministers from across the kingdom were removed from their charges by the Covenanters due to their refusal to accept the National Covenant’s supremacy over the kirk.

This paper argues that there was a Royalist reaction within the parish clergy which led dozens of ministers to oppose the National Covenant. Through an examination of church court records, personal correspondences and printed tracts, it is argued that there was a remarkable commonality within the rhetoric used by Royalist ministers to defend their own actions and condemn the endeavours of the Covenanters. In particular, Royalist ministers were deeply concerned that the Covenanters’ rise to power had weakened royal authority and threatened the wellbeing of the Scottish kingdom. Doctrinal polemic is largely absent from these accounts, with a far greater emphasis placed upon the dubious legality of the National Covenant and the duty of the clergy to remain loyal to the king. This analysis not only reminds us of the divisive nature of the National Covenant, but also reassesses our understanding of those who rejected the Covenant and declared themselves for Charles I.

You May Take My Head – Andrew Lind - 2019

This paper explores what it meant to be a Royalist in Scotland during the British Civil Wars (1639-1651). In recent years, there has been a focus within the historiography upon Covenanting identity. In contrast, Scottish royalism has received very little scholarly consideration. In response to this, the following chapter examines a range of Royalist sources and accounts to determine why thousands of Scots pledged their loyalty to Charles I and Charles II. It is argued that Scottish royalism encompassed a diverse range of ideologies and motivations. Despite the heterogeneous nature of this group, there were three fundamental areas of common ground which enabled this faction to attract support from across the political spectrum. These were: the deep-rooted belief that good subjects owed loyalty to the king; the conviction that the Covenanters were acting illegally; and fears that the actions of the Covenanters were destabilising society, threatening disastrous consequences.

John, Lord Graham, Why Did He Die? – TVN Russell – 2005

During Montrose’s 1644/5 campaigns he was accompanied by his eldest son and heir Lord John Graham, a mere youth of 14 years. Such was the hardship of the campaign that, tragically in March 1645, he died whilst at Bog of Gight Castle. He is buried in nearby Bellie Churchyard and this society has erected a small memorial there to mark his passing.

The author has conducted an incredibly detailed medical analysis, prepared from a professional viewpoint, which considers all the ailments prevalent at the time and his many years of personal experience as a medical practitioner have allowed him to reach a conclusion about what it was which led to the death of Lord Graham. This is a fascinating and well researched paper on a subject which, until now, has received little or no exposure.

The Murder of Lord Kilpont – Ronald Williams – 2006

This is a fascinating account of the murder of Lord Kilpont by Stewart of Ardvorlich following the Battle of Tippermuir. Ronald Williams applies his usual high level of scrutiny to this subject and the result is, as one would expect from this leading historical author, thorough and revealing.