1686]   DIARY OF PATRICK GORDON.   141   Being invited to devotion and dinner, by my Lord Chancellour

1686] DIARY OF PATRICK GORDON. 141 Being invited to devotion and dinner, by my Lord Chancellour



Passages from the diary of General Patrick Gordon of Auchleuchries : A.D. 1635-A.D. 1699"




Beino invited to devotion and dinner, by my Lord Chancellour, I went May 3
thither in the morning- with the Duke. At dinner, were the Duke, the
Earles of ErroU,* Airly ,t Dumferling,:): with some ladyes and gentlemen.
After dinner, I went with the Earls of Erroll and Dumferling, and had,
with some more company, a merry collation.

I visited the Dukes of Hamilton and Queensbury, and the Marquess of June i
Athole, being brought to them by the Duke, I went, along with the Duke,
and waited upon the Lord High Commissioner, and then, with the Duke, in
his coach, went to the Parliament House,§ and satt at the foot of the throne,
below the Duke ; and afterwards dined in company with the Duke, and many
noblemen, in Krombies,|| and went downe the street with the Duke, in his
coach. I received the visits of many noblemen and gentlemen, and had
notice that my trunks from Dantzick were come to Lieth. I sent my horses

solemnity. His Grace, being alighted from
his coach, went to the Laigh Session House,
and the Lord Provost having sent to know if
his Grace was in readiness to go to the so-
lemnity, and the messenger being returned,
his Lordship, with the baillies and the rest of
the council in their robes, the city music play
ing, and city regalia being carried before
them, came to the outer gate of the Session
House, where they waited till his Grace, at-
tended by his Grace the Duke of Hamilton,
the Marquis of Athol, and most of the princi-
pal nobility, came out, and then they marched
on before his Grace the Lord High Chancellor,
with a good number of persons of quality fol-
lowing after, to the theatre erected at the
Cross, on which stood a large table with
divers piramids and boxes of sweet meats and
confections, at the upper end of which was a
little table raised about a foot above the
other, on which was laid a velvet cushion, and
a chair of state, set on a pedestal raised as
much above the floor of the theatre, for his
Grace to repose himself in. The nobility and
magistrates having taken their places about
the table, the Lord Provost proposed his
Majesty's health, and divers other healths to
his Grace, which, going round, they threw the
glasses and confections among the crowtl ; the
great guns being in the mean time discharged
round the Castle, and trumpets and hoboys
playing upon the Cross, from whence divers
pipes did run with wine. His Majesty's health
being drunk, and the confections thrown
amongst the people, the C<mmissioner his
Grace returned to the Session House, from
whence he went to the Palace, attended by
most of the Members of Parliament, whom he
splendidly entertained, together with the ma-

gistrates, at dinner ; and in the evening, gave a
fine ball to a great number of persons of
quality of both sexes. In the evening, the
magistrates, with the captains of the trained
bands, with the city music playing before
them, went to wait upon the Commissioner
his Grace, who being attended by divers per-
sons of qualitj', entertained them by drinking
his Majesty's health at a bonfire in the Palace
Close, where a battalion of the foot guards
were drawn up in good order, and, by three
salvoes of small shot, assisted at the solemnity.
The evening concluded with ringing of bells,
firing of gnns and illuminations, which were
very numerous on this occasion, no manner of
disturbance being made by throwing of stones
at windows, as has been formerly too frequent
on the like occasions.' (The Edinburgh Ga-
zette, no. 178, 7 Nov. 1700 ) \^f. Arnot's His-
tory of Edinburgh, p. 607 ' for a description of
the celebration of the birthday,' in the year

* [John, twelfth Tarl of Erroll, was the
Chancellor's brother in-law.]

t [James, second Earl of Airly, was the
husband of the Dowager Marchioness of
Huntly, mother of the Duke of Gordon, of
the Countess of Perth, and of the Countess of

t [James, fotuth Earl of Dunfermline, was
brother-in-law of the Duke of Gordon, and of
the Earl of Perth.]

§ [Gordon must have mistaken the date of
this visit to the Scotch Parliament. It met
upon the second, but not upon the first of
June. (Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland,
vol viii., p ."^yi ; Fountainhall's Historical
Notices, vol ii , pp. 727, 728.;]

Ij [.V tavern kept by Alexander Crorabic.]

Gordon was brought up and remained a lifelong Roman Catholic, at a time when the Church was being persecuted in Scotland. At age of fifteen, he entered the Jesuit college at Braunsberg, East Prussia, then part of Poland. In 1661, after many years experiences as a soldier of fortune, he joined the Russian army under Tsar Aleksei I, and in 1665 was sent on a special mission to England. After his return, he distinguished himself in several wars against the Turks and Tatars in southern Russia. In recognition of his service he was promoted to major-general in 1678, was appointed to the high command at Kiev in 1679, and in 1683 was made lieutenant-general. In 1687 and 1689 he took part in expeditions against the Tatars in the Crimea, being made a full general. Later in 1689, a revolution broke out in Moscow, and with the troops under his command, Gordon virtually decided events in favor of Peter the Great against the Regent, Tsarevna Sophia Alekseyevna. Consequently, he was for the remainder of his life in high favor with the Tsar, who confided to him the command of his capital during his absence from Russia. In 1696, Gordon's design of a "moveable rampart" played a key role in helping the Russians take Azov. One of Gordon's convinced the Tsars to establish the first Roman Catholic church and school in Muscovy, of which he remained the main benefactor and headed the Catholic community in Russia until his death. For his services his second son James, brigadier of the Russian army, was created Count of the Holy Roman Empire in 1701. At the end of his life the Tsar, who had visited Gordon frequently during his illness, was with him when he died, and with his own hands closed his eyes. General Gordon left behind him a uniquely detailed diary of his life and times, written in English. This is preserved in manuscript in the Russian State Military Archive in Moscow. Passages from the Diary of General Patrick Gordon of Auchleuchries (1635–1699) was printed, under the editorship of Joseph Robertson, for the Spalding Club, at Aberdeen, Scotland, 1859.



1635 - 1699


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