Monday, 5 December, 2022
HomeOn this day in Scottish HistoryMarquis of Montrose is executed

Marquis of Montrose is executed

On 21 May 1650, James Graham, Marquis of Montrose, the chief Royalist military commander in Scotland, was executed in Edinburgh.

Montrose had initially been one of the nobles to draw up the National Covenant in 1638, however, he became concerned about the opposite extreme, a Presbyterian oligarchy led by Archibald Campbell, the 8th Earl of Argyll, who imprisoned Graham in 1640.

Montrose, therefore, sided with the King against the Covenanting Army under Argyll, which was allied to the English Parliamentarians. Montrose won six successive battles at Tippermuir, Aberdeen, Inverlochy, Auldearn, Alford and Kilsyth, before being defeated by David Leslie at Philiphaugh. He escaped to continental Europe.

Shocked at the execution of Charles I, he returned to avenge the old King and support the young King Charles II, but his small force was defeated at Carbisdale. He was betrayed by MacLeod of Assynt, captured, hung, quartered and his head impaled on a stake at the Mercat Cross on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile. He was reburied in St. Giles Kirk some eleven years after his execution.

Editorial
Editorial
Covering the History and Heritage of Scotland. Articles, Commentary and Reviews. Events and Places to Visit. mail@scottishhistory.org

Related articles

lastest

80th anniversary of the Royal Marines Commandos marked at Spean Bridge

Hundreds of commandos gathered in Lochaber to mark the 80th anniversary of the formation of the Royal Marines Commandos. The gathering took place at the Commando Memorial near Spean Bridge in the heart of Commando Country. Surrounded by hills and...

The Scottish Highland Clans: Origins, Decline and Transformation

The Highland, Gaelic-speaking clans are a vital part of Scotland’s history. They also shape how the world imagines Scotland today. This course uses the expertise of University of Glasgow academics to explain the structure, economy and culture of the clans....

most read

Massacre of Glencoe

In the Massacre of Glencoe of 13 February 1692, 120 Scots Army soldiers from the Earl of Argyll’s Regiment of Foot fell upon the Macdonalds of Glencoe. Under the command of Captain Robert Campbell of Glenlyon they carried out...

The Spanish Galleon of Tobermory Bay

Following their defeat at the hands of the English navy in the summer of 1588, the surviving ships of the Spanish Armada were forced to make their way home around the north and west coasts of Scotland. Several ships...