Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Battle of Killiecrankie

‘Claverhouse's sword (a strait cut-and-thrust blade) is in the possession
of Lord Woodhouselee. In Pennycuik-house is preserved the buff-coat,
which he wore at the battle of Killicrankie. The fatal shot-hole is
under the arm-pit, so that the ball must have been received while his
arm was raised to direct the pursuit However he came by his charm of
proof, he certainly had not worn the garment usually supposed to
confer that privilege, and which is called _the waistcoat of proof, or
of necessity. It was thus made: "On Christmas daie, at night, a thread
must be sponne of flax, by a little virgine girle, in the name of the
divell: and it must be by her woven, and also wrought with the needle.
In the breast, or forepart thereof, must be made with needle work, two
heads; on the head, at the right side, must be a hat and a long beard;
the left head must have on a crown, and it must be so horrible that it
maie resemble Belzebub; and on each side of the wastcote must be made a
crosse."--SCOTT'S _Discoverie of Witchcraft,_ p. 231.’

The notes to Sir Walter Scott’s “Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border" contain the note above, which references one of the outcomes of the Battle of Killiecrankie, which ended on July 27, 1689 – namely that John Graham of Claverhouse was fatally wounded.  Despite the victory, Claverhouse’s death was a blow to the Jacobite cause.

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