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The Chittick Family History
as written by Erminda (Chittick) Rentoul
1890 The Lodge, Cliftonville, Belfast. Ireland

Chapter Ten | Funerals of Montrose

A Relation of the true funerals of the great Marquis of Montrose, his Majesty’s Lord High Commissioner and Captain-General of his forces in Scotland, with that of the renowned Knight Sir William, of Delgetty. Written at the time by Thomas Sydserf (son of Thomas Sydserf, Bishop of Galloway), editor of the Mercurius Caledonius.

The tragical fate of Sir John Colquhoun's uncle, the celebrated awes. Marquis of Montrose, is well known. He was hanged in the market-place of Edinburgh, near the cross, on 21st May, 1650, after which his head was placed on the tolbooth of that city, whilst his arms and legs were exposed to public view in the four principal towns of the kingdom; and his body being put into a chest was buried among male-factors in the Burrow Muir, Edinburgh.

In the ceremony of collecting the remains of Montrose, and taking down his head from the tolbooth of Edinburgh, on Monday, 7th June, 1661, in obedience to an order of the Parliament on the 4th of that month, to the effect that his body, head, and scattered members should be gathered together and interred with all honour imaginable, Sir John Colquhoun of Luss, took an active part. In an account of the ceremony published in the Mercurius Caledonius at the time, it is said that the Lord Marquis of Montrose, with his friends of the name of Graham, the whole nobility and gentry, with the Provost, Bailies, and Council of Edinburgh, together with four companies of the trained bands of the city, went to the place where the coffin containing the trunk of Montrose's body had been buried, and found it. It is then added: The noble Marquis and his friends took care that these remains were decently wrapt in the finest linen, so did likewise the friends of the other (Sir William Hay, of Dalgetty, whose remains were similarly honoured), and so incoffined suitable to their respective dignities. The trunk of his Excellency thus coffined was covered with a large and rich black velvet cloth, taken up from thence, carried by the noble Earls of Mar, Athole, Linlithgow, Seafortb, Hartfill, and others of these honourable families.

The Lord Marquis himself, his brother, Lord Robert, and Sir John Colquhoun, nephew of the deceased Lord Marquis, supporting the head of the coffin; arid all under a very large pall or canopy, supported by the noble Viscount Stormount, the Lords Strathnaver, Flemming, Drumlanrig, Ramsay, Maderty, and Rollo, being accompanied by a body of horse, of nobility, gentry, to the number of two hundred, rallied in decent order by the Viscount of Kenmure, they came to the place where the 'head stood, under which they set the coffin of the trunk made for that purposes till the Lord Napier, the Barons of Morphie, Inchbrakie, Orchill, and Gorthie, and several other noble gentlemen, placed on a scaffold next to the head, and then on the top of the town's tolbooth, six stories high, with sound of trumpet, discharge of many cannon from the castle, and the honest people's loud and joyful acclamation, all was joined and crowned with the crown of a marquis, conveyed with all honours befitting such an action to the Abbey Church at Holyrood House, a place of burial frequent to our kings, there to continue in state until the noble lord, his son, ready for the more magnificent solemnisation of his funerals.

The collected remains of Montrose lay in state in the Abbey Church of Holyrood House from Monday, 7th January, to Saturday 11th May, 1661, the day on which his public funeral was performed with a splendour and heraldic pomp rarely equalled, by carrying his remains from the Abbey Church of Holyrood House to that of St. Giles. The corpse was carried by fourteen earls, and, the pall above the corpse was likewise sustained by twelve noblemen. Among the gentlemen appointed for relieving those who carried the coffin under the pall, was “Colquhoun."

Next to the corpse went the Marquis of Montrose and his brother as chief mourners, in hoods and long robes, earned up by on pages, with a gentleman bare-headed on every side.

Next to them followed nine of the nearest in blood, in hoods d long robes, carried up by pages, viz., The Marquis of Douglas, the Earls of Maris6al, Wigton, Southesk, Lords of Drummond, Maderty, Napier, Rollo, and Baron of Luss, nephew of the defunct.

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