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flowed againe, and each tyme in a more vehemencie then the former. Heir was
pitifull lamentations that would have pearced a heart of stone, some seekeinge
and cryinge ‘Alas my husband’; some,‘Alas my father’; some,‘Alas my brother’.
This flood made in our parts a pitifull desolation, and in rememberance thereof
ten yeirs together afterward wee had the holie comunion about that tyme, and
called to rememberance even that bodihe deliverie.62
The yeare 1628: a hudge mosse that lay betwixt Stirlinge and the Fallkirke
beinge one ane hill was sensiblie perceaved to move, three dayis together from
the hill towards the plaine, so that the people that dwelt one the playne gott
leasure to flee, and at the third daye’s end it setled downe one the plaine over¬
whelming some gendemen’s housses, manie other housses, and great bounds of
land, so that for good houses and land there was nothing to behold there but a
filthy mosse. This was lamented to the lords [12] of privie councell, who
recomendit there pitifull condition to the charitie of our parishes and umquhill
John Johnstone,63 writer, was there comissioner to our parts, as I doe well re¬
The yeares 1631,1632,1633: all thire yeares together in the iles off Orknay
and Shetdand there was such a famine that horse flesh was good cheir there
amongst the poore people.65 There conditions was represented to the lords of
councell by Mr George Grahame, then the pretended bishoppe of Orknay, and
they were helped by victualls and moneyes.The Palatinate and Boheme was in a
pitifull condition all this tyme and yet ware not helped; the Almightie see to
there helpe.These unhapie warrs began in the yeare 1618, and before the end of
the yeir 1624 was reckoned above 80,000 that dyed in these warrs. Our helpe to
them was very untymelie; wee should not have looked uppon the day of our
bretheren so carelessly.66
Now to close this booke, the reader may perchance wonder when he reades
heare that our prelates both in England and Scottland were readie to allow
profan[e]nes and ignorance. What could that advantage their cause? I answere
that truely, profan[e]nes and ignorance are verie serviceable to poperie, and that
is it which they would have beine at. Ignorance, you know, is the mother of
popish devotione, that is, supperstitione, a speciall qualification of a disciple of
Rome, where blindefold is the onely play, a tricke whilke the pope borrows
from the devill:‘the god of this world hath blinded there mindes’, 2 Corinthians
62 Stevenson, History of Church and State, 109-10.
63 He is mentioned in RPC, 2nd set., i, 134, and ii, 80.
64 Stevenson, History of Church and State, 113.
65 M. Flinn (ed.), Scottish Population History from the 17th Century to the 1930s (Cambridge, 1977),
66 Stevenson, History of Church and State, 106.

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