Seal of Rev William Livingston


Rev. William Livingston

So NY and Hudson River Valley
Prominent Families
Autobiography Extract
New England Families

Rev. William Livingston
(1576, Kilsyth Scotland)
(1641, Lanark Scotland
(son of Rev. Alexander Livingston and Barbara Livingston)
+ Agnes Livingston
(Abt. 1585)
(daughter of Alexander Livingston and Marion Bryson)

Rev. John Livingston (1603-1672)
Samuel Livingston, died young
Barbara Livingston
Lillias Livingston
Anna Livingston (-1627), m. Rev. Thomas Vessie, minister at Torpichen
Margaret Livingston (-1632)
William Livingston

+ Nicolas Somervell

Jean Livingston
Martha Livingston
Janet Livingston (-1690)

+ Marion Weir (-1632)

The Livingstons of Livingston Manor
Kilsyth: A Parish History
The Scots Peerage

Livingston Coat of Arms

Genealogical and Family History of Southern New York
and the Hudson River Valley
Cuyler Reynolds, 1914, p1303

Rev. William Livingston, son of Rev. Alexander and Barbara (Livingston) Livingston, was born 1576, probably at Monyabroch. He completed his education at the University of Glasgow, where he laureated in 1595. After leaving this institution, he was ordained, January 13, 1596, to preach privately; on January 27 was licensed; July 10 was instituted, and on July 13 ordained, at first taking temporary charge of the Monyabroch parish on account of his father's infirmity. On February 20, 1599, he was appointed to fill the vacancy permanently. Church affairs were in so unsettled a condition both in England and Scotland, that within six years of this time he was not only deposed by the king on advice of the privy council, and confined to the bounds of his parish, but at the end of that time no less a person than the king presented the living of Lanark to him. He was a leader in the great struggle between the bishops and the Presbyterian clergy, about which a book might be written, a contest leading to the outbreak shortly of civil warfare. He died prior to October, 1641. Rev. William Livingston married three times; firstly, Agnes, daughter of Alexander Livingston, of Falkirk, of the House of Dunipace, in Stirlingshire. She has been described as "a rare pattern of piety and meekness." She died in 1617, aged about thirty-two years. By this marriage he had three sons and four daughters. His second wife was Nicolas Somervell, by whom he had three daughters. The third wife was Marion Weir, and she also died before her reverend husband. It is not known that he had issue by this marriage.

Prominent Families, Arthur Meredyth Burke, 1908, p33
William Livingston (1576-1641), b. 1576; graduated at Glasgow University, 1595; instituted to the Rectory of Monyabroch, 15 July 1599; deprived for opposing the Restoration of Episcopacy, 1613, but was soon after (1 Oct. 1613) appointed minister at Lanark; m. (1) Agnes, dau. of Alexander Livingsotn, of Falkirk, and, by her (who d. 1617), had issue:-
1. John, of whom later.
2. Samuel, d. young.
1. Barbara.
2. Anna, m. Rev. Thomas Vessie, minister at Torpichen.
3. Jean.

He m. (2) Nicolas Somervell, and, by her, had issue:-

4. Jean.
5. Martha.
6. Janet, d. 3 April 1690.

He d. before Oct. 1641, having m. (3) Marion Weir, who d.s.p. 7 Jan. 1632.

Autobiography Extract in Current English
of Rev. John Livingston

A Brief Historical Relation of the life of Mr John Livingstone, minister of the gospel, containing several observations of the divine goodness manifested to him, in the several occurrences thereof.

Written by Himself
during his banishment in Holland, for the cause of Christ.

With a historical introduction and notes,
by the Rev. Thomas Houston,

A new edition, with appendix.

John Johnstone,
15 Princes Street, Edinburgh; and
26 Paternoster Row, London.

My father was Mr. William Livingstone, first minister at Monybroch (The same as Kilayth), where he entered in the year 1600, and thereafter was transported, about the year 1615, to be minister at Lanark, where he died in the year 1641, being sixty-five years old. His father was Mr Alexander Livingstone, also at Monybroch, who was a near relation to the house of Calender. His father was killed at Pinkiefield, anno 1547, being a son of the Lord Livingstone, which house thereafter was dignified to be Earl of Linlithgow. My father was all his days straight and zealous in the work of reformation against Episcopacy and ceremonies, and was once deposed; and wanted not seals of his ministry, both at Monybroch and also at Lanark. My mother was Agnes Livingstone, daughter of Alexander Livingstone, portioner of Falkirk, come of the house of Dunipace. She was a rare pattern of godliness and virtue. She died in the year 1617, being about thirty-two years of age. She left three sons and four daughters. I was born in Monybroch, in Stirlingshire, the 21st of June 1603.

The first period of my life, I reckon from my birth to the first day I preached in public, which was at Lanark, on a Sabbath afternoon, the 2d of January 1625.

Having at home learned to read and write, I was sent, in the year 1613, to Stirling, to a Latin school, where Mr William Wallace, a good man, and a learned humanist, was schoolmaster; where I stayed till summer 1617; at which time I was sent for, to be present with my mother dying. About October 1617, I was sent to the College of Glasgow, where I stayed four years. I passed master of arts July 1621. After that I stayed in my father's, in Lanark, till I began to preach.

During this time, I observed the Lord's great goodness, that I was born of such parents, who taught me somewhat of God so soon as I was capable to understand anything, and had great care of my education. I had great fears about my salvation when I was but very young. I saw somewhat of the example and carriage of sundry gracious Christians, who used to resort to my father's house, especially at communion occasions: such as Mr Robert Bruce, and several other godly ministers, the rare Countess of Wigtown, Lady Lillias Graham, who also at my baptism desired my name, because her father, her husband, and eldest son, were all of that name; the Lady Culross, the Lady Bantoon, and sundry others.

It is remarkable, that Mr William Wallace came but a short while to Stirling before I was sent thither to school, and the year after I left the school he also left that charge. Likewise worthy Mr Robert Boyd of Trochrigg, was but lately come from Suamur in France, to be Principal of the College of Glasgow when I went thither,a dn went from the college the year after I left it.

The while I was in Stirling, Mr Patrick Simpson was minister there -- a man learneed, godly, and very faithful in the cause of God; and in Glasgow, I heard Mr John Bell - a grave, serious man; and Mr Robert Scot, who also was once deposed for opposing the corruptions of the time.

The first year after I went to Stirling school, I profited not much, and was often beaten by the schoolmaster; and one day he had beaten me on the cheek with a stick, so that it swelled. That same day, my father came occasionally to town, and seeing my face swollen, did chide with the master, that he having a chief hand to bring me to that place,he should use me so. The master promised to forbear beating of me, and I profited a great deal more in my learning after that. And when, in September 1616, I with the rest of my equals, had gone through all the Latin and Greek that was taught in the school, and so were ready to go to the college, and my father was come to bring me home for that end, the schoolmaster prevailed with my father (I being so young, and the master having hopes of my proficiency) that I should stay one other year; and thus another boy and I stayed another year. We for the most part read by ourselves in a little chamber above the school, the mster furnishing us books, where we went through the most part of the choice Latin writers, both poets and others; and that year was to me the largemost profitable year I had at the schools.

New England Families, William Richard Cutter, p. 1247
Rev. William Livingston, son of Rev. Alexander and Barbara (Livingston) Livingston, was born in 1576, probably at Monybroch (Kilsyth), and was graduated from the University of Glasgow, where he was laureated, in 1595. He was ordained July 13, 1596, and had temporary charge of his father's parish after the deposition, and he was subsequently given the ministry permanently. Six years later he was also deposed, having opposed the restoration of Episcopacy and not submitting to canons and ceremonies, yet King James himself presented him with the living of Lanark soon afterward, but he was again deposed for denouncing the legality of the general assembly that passed the Five Articles of Perth, and he was thrown in prison. After his release, however, he boldly continued his antagonism. He was a leader in the struggle between the bishops and the Presbyterian clergy. Died prior to October, 1641. He married (first) Agnes Livingston, (second) Nicola Somervell, (third) Marion Weir, and had three sons and seven daughters.

The Livingstons of Livingston Manor, Edwin Brockholst Livingston, p. 15
Concerning The Reverend William Livingston, Minister Of Lanark, And His Son The Reverend John Livingston, And Their Opposition To The Introduction Of Episcopacy Into Scotland.

"Richt trustie and weilbelovit cosines and counsellouris—Understanding of the unquiet and turbulent dispositioun of Maister Williame Levingstoun, minister, professing himselff rather a fyrebrand of discorde and dissensioun, then according to his dewtie and function, a goode instrument for the unitie and peace of the Churche, . . . oure pleasoure and will is that, by oure speciall command in oure name, you do confyne the said Maister Williame Levingstoun within the boundis of his owne parroche qhair he is preacheour, inhibiting him to transcend or come furth of the boundis thairof without oure speciall licence had and obtenit, and that under the pane of rebellious "
        King James the Sixth to his Scottish Privy Council, from his Court at Royston, 18th October, 1607.

THUS wrote that sapient monarch King James the Sixth of Scotland, and First of England, from his Court at Royston in the latter kingdom, in the autumn of 1607, to his Scottish Privy Council at Edinburgh, the King's wrath having been aroused by this young minister's sturdy opposition to his pet scheme, the introduction of Episcopacy into Scotland. The son certainly, could not be considered, as the father had been, lukewarm in the upholding of the Reformed doctrines.

The Reverend William Livingston was born, most probably at Monyabroch (Kilsyth), in the year 1576 and he completed his education at the University of Glasgow, where he was laureated in 1595. On leaving college, he was ordained to preach privately, on the 13th January, iS95-[6], licensed 27th January, instituted 10th July, and ordained 13th July in same year. As mentioned in the previous chapter, he had been permitted by the Glasgow Presbytery to have temporary charge of the parish of Monyabroch on his father's deposition; and his conduct having given satisfaction to the church authorities, they recommended, 20th February, 15q8-[c)], that he should be appointed to fill the vacant ministry permanently; whereupon he was duly presented to the living, upon the following first of July by the patron, Alexander, seventh Lord Livingston, admitted by the tenth, and inaugurated and instituted upon the fifteenth of the same month.

The Privy Council lost no time in carrying out the commands of the king, so that Mr. Livingston appears to have been detained a close prisoner within the bounds of his parish until his deposition six years later, for opposing the restoration of Episcopacy and not submitting to the canons and ceremonies. Whether the king considered this bold minister had been sufficiently punished by being deprived of the right of ministering to the spiritual needs of his native parish, or whether family influence had been brought to bear upon James, who was always well disposed towards the Livingstons for their unselfish loyalty to his unhappy mother,1 it is still a rather remarkable fact that within a few weeks of his being deposed from the ministry of Monyabroch, Mr. Livingston was presented to the living of Lanark by no less a person than King James himself!2 If however that crafty monarch had ever entertained any hope that by this act of grace or policy he would not be troubled further with opposition from this quarter, he was soon doomed to be disappointed. For a very few years after receiving this appointment, one of the most outspoken of the preachers who denounced the legality of the General Assembly that passed the so-called Five Articles of Perth was this very minister of Lanark.

This conduct naturally brought Mr. Livingston to the notice of the High Commission Court, a tribunal which had been recently specially appointed for the trial of such offences. "What can you say against the Assembly?" enquired the Bishop of Glasgow, the presiding Commissioner, of the undaunted minister when the latter appeared before him. "It was neither free, nor full, nor formal, it stood not of such as had power to enact; and I thank God," he boldly replied, "I saw it and the proceedings of it, the neglecting of lawful Commissioners that got no vote, the taking in of others who had no commission." For his contumacy Mr. Livingston was deposed from his ministry and sentenced to be imprisoned, but the Court allowed him to return to Lanark before proceeding to his place of confinement. His parishioners evidently were not of the same bold type as their pastor, as upon his offering to administer the communion to them before his departure, they refused "fearing to be cut off from all benefit of his ministry."

For what length of time the people of Lanark were deprived of their pastor is not stated, but he had been restored to them prior to September, 1624, though he had not heard the last of the Court he had defied. For in the summer of 1635 he was again summoned before this tribunal to answer, this time, to the charge of having employed his son, the Rev. John Livingston, who had been also deposed for nonconformity in Ireland, to assist him in the dispensing of the communion. Mr. William Livingston in defending his conduct on this occasion, spoke out as fearlessly as on his previous appearance before the Court; so that a clerical contemporary in writing of this event has recorded:

The Lord so assisted him with wisdom, zeal, and courage, that in defending his own deed from all just offence, he laid their heinous offences to their charge; so that they repented that they had caused summoned him, and were fain to dismiss him, saying that they would bear with him because he was an aged man.

As Mr. Livingston could barely have been in his sixtieth year, this was palpably an excuse on the part of the Commissioners to get rid of him. Clanship, moreover, in those days stood for much, and the minister probably had family connexions among the Commissioners. His age certainly did not prevent him from taking a prominent part in opposing Charles the First's disastrous attempt to introduce the use of Laud's liturgy into the Scottish Church. So much was he esteemed and respected by his fellow-ministers during these troublous times, that when they assembled to meet the King's Commissioner, the Marquis of Hamilton, on his entry into Edinburgh, on the 8th of June, 1638, they chose him to be their spokesman. The entry of the royal Commissioner into the Scottish capital, and Mr. Livingston's part in the proceedings, are thus amusingly described in a contemporary letter written by one of the ministers present on this occasion, and himself a noteworthy participator in the historical events that followed:1

In his [Hamilton's] entry at Leith, I think as much honour was done to him as ever to a king in our country. Huge multitudes as ever were gathered on that field set themselves in his way. Nobles, gentry of all shires, women a world, the town of Edinburgh, all at the water-gate; but we were most conspicuous in our black cloaks, above five hundred on a brae-side in the links, our alone [sic] for his sight. We had appointed Mr. William Livingston, the strongest in voice and austerest in countenance of us all, to make him a short welcome, but a good friend of yours and mine was rashly officious to inform Dr. Balcanquall [the Dean of Durham) that in the harangue were invectives against the bishops; which was not so, for you may read the speech. Upon this information the Commissioner excused himself to our nobles, and, in passing, to Mr. William himself, said that harangues in the field were for princes, and above his place; yet what he had to say he should hear it gladly in private. Accordingly on the following day the Marquis received a

'Namely, the Rev. Robert Baillie, afterwards principal of the University of Glasgow. The letter, dated 2 2 July, 1638, was written to Baillie's cousin, the Rev William Spang, minister of the Scottish Church at Campvere in Holland. deputation of ministers headed by Mr. Livingston, in the audience chamber at Holyrood House, when the latter was permitted to deliver his speech. Four months later the worthy minister was a member of the General Assembly which met at Glasgow to enquire into the evils that distressed the country, and to provide suitable remedies; and his name was placed, with four others, on the list for moderator, though he was not the one finally chosen to fill that post. He, however, took a prominent part in the proceedings of this historical Assembly, which set the king at defiance and declared that prelacy was contrary to the principles of the National Covenant and the Church of Scotland. His son, the Rev. John Livingston, at this date minister at Stranraer, was also a member.

This appears to have been the last occasion, upon which the minister of Lanark took any leading part in this great struggle between the bishops and the Presbyterian clergy; a contest which led to the outbreak of civil war very shortly after the above famous General Assembly had been dissolved. For the Rev. William Livingston only lived long enough to witness the failure of Charles's unfortunate attemps in 1639 and the year following to coerce his Scottish subjects into submission, as he died prior to October, 1641, leaving several children to mourn his loss, having been married three times.

His first wife, the mother of the Rev. John Livingston, and the only one mentioned in that divine's Autobiography, was, to quote her son's actual words, "Agnes Livingston, the daughter of Alexander Livingston, portioner1 of Falkirk, come of the House of Dunipace.2 She was a rare pattern of piety and meekness, and died in the year 1617, being about thirty-two years of age, and left three sons and four daughters." Mr. William Livingston's second wife was Nicolas Somervell, by whom he had three daughters, while '"Portioner," namely one who possesses part of a property which has been originally divided among co-heirs. ! Dunipace in Stirlingshire; this line was a cadet of the House of Callendar. the third was Marion Weir, who also predeceased her husband; by her he apparently had no issue.

Kilsyth, Peter Anton, 1893

Preceeding Begins with Rev. Alexander Livingston


Prelate versus Presbyter - William Livingston, Voice and Appearance - The King, his Character - Melville, Welsh, and Bruce - Bishops Ordain Ministers - Perth Assembly - Jenny Geddes - W. Livingston Presented to Kilsyth - The Enmity of the King - Livingston Confined to his Parish - Deposed - Presented to Lanark - Second Deposition - Imprisoned - His Curious Dream—Before the High Commission - Addresses Marquis of Hamilton - Glasgow Assembly - Last Appearance - Death.

After the meeting of the Scottish Parliament in 1560, the country enjoyed a period of comparative quiet after the storm of the Reformation. This quiet was reflected in the life of Alexander Livingston. With the deposition of Livingston, however, and the coming in of the 17th century, there began new troubles and there arose new dangers. Then began that struggle between prelate and presbyter which was to last for the next hundred years. The stirring life and career of the Rev. William Livingston, the second minister of Monyabroch, as it begins with the year 1600, takes us to the very beginning of this controversy, and leads us right onward through the first half of it. William was very unlike his father; he had no taste for compromise, was full of energy, of a disposition essentially combative, and may be well credited with having inherited the ardour of his grandsire, who fought and died at Pinkie. He had a heart hatred of Episcopacy, and had it not been for such as he, so continued and determined were the efforts of the prelatists, there can be little doubt the rule of the bishops would have been established in Scotland. As it was, the fathers of the Scottish Church stood like rocks in the midst of the waves and repelled every assault. In that war none acquitted himself with greater bravery than William Livingston. He possessed the voice of a Stentor and a forbidding countenance; and wherever he is found he is seen laying about him to excellent purpose.

King James was largely responsible for the ecclesiastical troubles of Scotland. He was ill-fitted by nature to act the part of a king. A shattered nervous system rendered him physically a coward. He was fond of his book and his bottle. Striving to be a master in theology he was a novice in practical religion. He was a curious compound of wisdom and folly, of vacillation and obstinacy. Now he was strongly Presbyterian, praising "the God who had made him King in such a Kirk as that of Scotland—the sincerest Kirk in the world." And then, again, with his "No Bishop, no King," he was equally strongly Episcopalian. Whatever form of Church government he really loved eventually, there can be no doubt he became the foe of Presbyterianism. He had rude memories of his Scottish life. George Buchanan had warmed his ears as a boy; Andrew Melville had plucked at his sleeve and called him "God's silly vassal," and then the raid of Ruthven was an undoubtedly bitter recollection. Melville was a fitting successor to Knox. He was a man of fixed purpose and determined spirit, and prepared for any emergency, Holyrood or Blackness, the pulpit or the gallows. James thought if he could get quit of Melville his ends would be gained in Scotland. With this view he invited him to London, and clapped him in the Tower. Melville had, however, by this time done his work. He had consolidated the labours of Knox, written the Second Book of Discipline, and given the Church that practical shape which she still retains. Two of his best known fellow-labourers were Welsh and Bruce. When the wife of theformer wentto London to begtheKingto releasehim, for he also had been imprisoned, the King said he would release him if he would submit to the bishops. Lifting up her apron and holding it towards the King, the brave woman is reported to have replied—" Please, your Majesty, I'd rather kep his head there." Robert Bruce was the son of the proprietor of Airth and one of the most popular preachers of his day. In the course of his life he became owner of Kinnaird, and was an ancestor of Bruce, the Abyssinian traveller. Because he would not acknowledge the guilt of Gowrie in the affair of the conspiracy, the King persecuted him with relentless hatred. His preaching was full of the richest spiritual matter, and his prayers always short, are spoken of as being like bolts shot up to heaven. His death was characteristic. One morning at breakfast he said to his daughter, who was serving him— "Hold, my Master calls me." Asking for the Family Bible, and finding his eyesight gone, he said, "Cast me up the 8th chapter of the Epistle to the Romans, and place my finger on these words, ' I am persuaded that neither death nor life shall be able to separate me from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Now," he continued to his daughter, "is my finger upon the place?" and being told that it was, he added, "Then God be with you, my children; I have breakfasted with you and shall sup with the Lord Jesus this night," and so saying the good man expired. A cause supported by men like Melville and Livingston, Welsh and Bruce, was both in excellent keeping and nurture.

Among the chief events of the time were the ordination by English bishops of the three Scottish ministers, Spottiswoode, Lamb, and Hamilton; and the General Assembly held at Perth in 1618, which passed Acts in favour of kneeling at Communion, Confirmation, and the observation of Good Friday, Easter, and Ascension Day. The Scottish people having found it necessary that in the cause of religion they should present an united front, the National Covenant was signed in Greyfriars Churchyard, on the 1st March, 1638, and the Solemn League and Covenant was formulated five years later. One of the most notable incidents was the riot which took place in St. Giles' Church, Edinburgh, on the 23rd July, 1637. The time having come when Archbishop Laud had determined to foist his liturgy on the Scotch people, at eight in the morning on the day on which it was to be introduced, there was a Presbyterian service, and the minister, with tears in his eyes, took farewell of his flock. When the Dean of Edinburgh entered to perform the service there was an immense crowd, and the excitement was intense. There was considerable clamour amongst the people when the dean began, and the service had not proceeded far when an old woman, named Janet Geddes, who kept a vegetable stall in the High Street, unable further to restrain her wrath, seized the stool on which she was sitting, and hurled it at the head of Episcopalian authority with the words, "Out, thou false thief! dost thou say mass at my lug?" The lawless act was like putting a match to gunpowder. There was a fierce riot, the bishop was nearly torn to pieces, and the influences that radiated from Jenny's strong arm stimulated the Presbyterian cause throughout the whole country.

Amid these scenes and men, William Livingston acted his great part, and resisting alike threats and flatteries, stood true to the national interest and the cause of the Reformed Church. He was born at Monyabroch, in the year 1576. He was educated at Glasgow University, and laureated in 1595. According to the custom of the time, he was ordained at first to preach privately on the 13th January, 1596. He received public license on the 27th January, institution on the 10th July, and ordination on the 13th July—all of the year 1596. His father neither disputed his deposition nor appealed from the verdict of the presbytery. This acquiescence, on his part, was no doubt because he had good reason to believe that his son would become his successor in Monyabroch. But be this as it may, when his father was deposed, William received temporary charge of the parish. Having fulfilled his duties both to the satisfaction of the people and the presbytery, the former body recommended him to the patron as worthy to be appointed permanent minister for the reasons stated, and "his having the kirk these two years by-gone." In the circumstances Alexander, seventh Lord Livingston, and shortly afterwards created Earl of Linlithgow, issued a presentation in his favour, and he was ordained to Monyabroch, 15th July, 1599.

William Livingston was a strong man, and he had not been half a dozen years minister of Monyabroch, when his influence began to be felt as a power throughout the whole country. James had ascended the throne of England, but even in that elevated situation he thought with concern of the doings of the young minister. Livingston had a tremendous voice, and in denouncing the inroads of Episcopacy, he used it to the best purpose. It was intolerable to the author of the "Basilicon Doron" to have a young rude Scotsman rising out of the obscurity of his native mosses and confronting him after this fashion. The King bit his nails with vexation, not knowing what to do with him. Then having well pondered the matter, on the 18th October, 1607, at his Southern Court at Royston, he fulminated against him his first decree. "Understanding," the King wrote, "of the unquiet and turbulent disposition of Maister William Livingstoun, professing himself rather a fire-brand of discord then, according to his dewtie and function, a good instrument for the unity and peace of the Church . . . oure pleasure and will is that, by our speciall command, in our name, you do confyne the said Maister William Livingstoun within the bounds of his own paroche, quhair he is preacher, inhibiting him to transcend or come forth out of the boundis thairof without our special licence had and obtenit, and that under pane of rebellion." There was much more to the same effect. The Royal mandate was addressed to the Scottish Privy Council, and was most carefully composed. There is a touch of humour in it. The tenor simply runs, "Let this wild, young minister keep to his mosses and his badgers. They are his native place, and the best place for him." The Privy Council carried out to the letter the Royal behest, and Livingston was for six years kept a close prisoner within the bounds of his parish. His fame had been growing; he had made himself in a short space a power in the land; it is easy to understand, consequently, how his proud spirit would chafe under the abhorrent decree. It was certainly an artful and awkward log placed across the path of a young man conscious of a career before him. It was evident he could, in the very nature of things, get no sympathy from the honest farmers and shepherds of his flock. How could they believe or see that, to be compelled to live amongst them was a sore indignity for him?

William Livingston thus early felt the weight of the King's hand. But he was not cowed. He nursed his wrath to keep it warm. In 1612 the King wrote the Archbishop of Glasgow that he had heard good accounts of William Livingston of Monyabroch, and that he be released from his confinement. The King was under a complete mistake. The brave spirit he was six years before that, he was still, and when his tether was cut, he was tooth and nail at his old work again. The King was evidently incensed, for in the autumn of 1613, he deposed Livingston from the ministry of Monyabroch for opposing the restoration of Episcopacy, and not submitting to the canons and ceremonies. This action left the Sovereign as perplexed as before. He had deposed Livingston as far as he was able to depose him, but his mind was ill at ease. William Livingston was the hot chestnut in his hand which he could not hold and which he disliked to throw away. It may be the King remembered the loyalty of the Livingston family to his unfortunate mother. Anyhow, whether it was vacillation, or the recollection of past favours, the King gave substantial proofs of his change of mind. Not many weeks after William Livingston's deposition from the charge of Monyabroch, on the 1st October 1613, he was presented by the King to Lanark parish. But if Livingston had shown he was not to be cowed, he was also to show he could not be cozened. In Lanark he was as true a man, as faithful a pastor, as fearless a preacher, and as greatly beloved of the people as he ever was in Monyabroch.

Amongst the denunciators of the Perth Assembly and the five prelatic Articles there were none to compare with William Livingston. Authority accordingly decreed that further indulgence was vain, and that his mouth must be shut at all hazards. He was accordingly summoned to appear before the Court of High Commission, at Edinburgh, on Tuesday, the 28th March, 1620. Livingston put in two pleas. The first was that he had not been lawfully summoned, too little time having been allowed him to prepare his case. This plea the commissioners overruled. His second plea was that " the [ocr errors] Commission was neither free, nor full, nor formal," and was incompetent in the case. When sentence of deposition and imprisonment had been pronounced, Livingston spoke his mind freely. He held that the accusation against him was such as could only be tried by a commissioner sitting under the authority of the General Assembly, and not under the authority of the King. His speaking, of course, was of no avail. The court, before apprehending him, allowed him to pay a visit to his friends, thereafter he was imprisoned in Minin Abbey. There are, however, some who say that the place of banishment or confinement was his former parish of Monyabroch.

William Livingston was kept a close prisoner for nearly three years. It was a sore trial to his parishioners. By 1623 he was again, however, restored to their affections. This was the year in which he had his famous dream. It opens up a curious feature in the religious beliefs of the time. Mr. Livingston was lying in bed one winter night fast asleep in his house at Lanark. In his sleep he was awakened by hearing the words— "Arise, go and help Crossriggs, for he is in great hazard." Crossriggs was the name of a little estate four miles distant in Lesmahagow parish, and the laird went by the same name. The proprietor was a gentleman of respectability, and for some time had been in great concern about his soul's salvation. Thinking his own fancy had deceived him, Livingston fell asleep again. In a little, however, he was once more awakened by the voice, which, while it spoke the same words, spoke them far more emphatically. Again he mused over the matter, and again he fell asleep. But soon, receiving a powerful stroke on the side, he awoke the third time to hear the mysterious voice calling to him with great emphasis—" Go and help Crossriggs, for he is in great hazard, otherwise I will require his blood at thy hand." Livingston now arose with alacrity, and after dressing, mounted his horse and sallied out into the dreary winter night. He arrived at Crossriggs about four in the morning, and at once observed light in the proprietor's bedroom. Livingston entered the house and knocked at his door. It was instantly opened by Crossriggs. "What brought you here," asked the laird, "at this time of night?" "What in all the world," retorted Livingston, "keeps you up at this time of night? I know it is not anything ordinary." "I will not answer that question," said Crossriggs, "until you tell me what brings you here at so unreasonable an hour." The minister made frank with the proprietor, and told him his dream and the voices he had heard. Crossriggs then, to his great relief, told Livingston that he had been in great despair about his soul, and that he had sent to Edinburgh for cats-bane, as he had received direction, when he was engaged in prayer. The bane, a white powder, was lying on a table in the room, and after spending a night in prayer he had resolved to take it at a draught. Livingston dissuaded him, and taking the powder and getting it tested, found it was a deadly poison. How Livingston had been made an instrument in God's hands of saving the life of Crossriggs from the machination of the Evil One was accepted as true, and the extraordinary dream and attendant circumstances were all much talked of.

In 1635, William Livingston was again before the High Court of Commission. The charge against him this time was for employing his son, who had been deposed for noncomformity in Ireland, in helping him to dispense the Communion. He was now getting familiar with courts, and on this occasion he entirely turned the tables on the Commissioners. He addressed them as the culprits in the case, and he certainly frightened them, for they dismissed him, saying they could bear with him seeing he was an aged man. The excuse was rubbish; Livingston was at that time living a life of the most intense mental and physical activity.

wo years afterwards, when the Marquis of Hamilton, the Commissioner of the King, landed at Leith, William Livingston received the crowning honour of his life. He was selected to head the 500 clergymen of the Scottish Church who were to meet the Marquis of Hamilton, the Commissioner of the King, when he landed at Leith, and act as their spokesman on the occasion. It was a great function. There had never been seen at Leith such large multitudes, for the country was expecting a message of peace. "The whole of the nobles of the country, the gentry of all the shires, a world of women, the whole town of Edinburgh, all at the Watergate. And," continues Baillie, "we "—(the ministers of the Kirk)—-" were about five hundred, met on a braeside on the links. We had appointed Mr. William Livingston, the strongest in voice and the austerest in countenance of us all, to make him a short welcome." When Hamilton came up to the cloud of black coats, he was pleased with their salutation, and said, "Vos estis sal terrae." "What does he say?" asked one minister of another, who ventured the humorous but not inappropriate reply, "Dinna ye hear, man, we're the loons that mak' the kail saut!" Next day at Holyrood, Livingston, in a closely knit speech, laid the whole case of the suffering Church before His Grace; but to very little purpose, as was proved.

Livingston's last historical appearance was at the General Assembly held at Glasgow, November, 1638. Alexander Henderson of Leuchars was chosen moderator, and there never was such an exciting Assembly, Hamilton was touched by the zeal of the members, and the tears were seen coursing down his cheeks. But his injunctions were strict. He dissolved the Assembly in the name of the King, and then rose and left. But the Assembly neither dissolved nor left. Under the guidance of Livingston they set to work. They examined the character and conduct of the bishops, and deposed every one of them; they overturned the Five Articles of Perth; they nullified the work of the six Assemblies held since the accession of James; they condemned the Service Book, canons, and High Commissioner's Court. They then wound up by declaring Prelacy inconsistent with the principles of the National Covenant and the Church of Scotland. In dismissing the Assembly the moderator said, "We have cast down the walls of Jericho: let him that rebuildeth them beware of the curse of Hiel, the Bethelite."

In the following year, Livingston witnessed the failure of Charles in his attempt to perform in Scotland by force what his father had failed to perform by policy and kingcraft. In the autumn of 1641, he died at Lanark. He was in the 65th year of his age, and the 44th of his ministry. He was thrice married; first to Agnes Livingston, daughter of Alexander Livingston, portioner, Falkirk, brother of the Laird of Belstane, by whom he had seven of a family, four sons and three daughters; secondly, to Nicolas Somervell, by whom he had three daughters; and, thirdly, to Marion Weir, who also died during his lifetime, and by whom he had no family. His illustrious son, John, was the oldest child by his first wife. He left behind him only one printed work, a pamphlet bearing the title, "The Conflict and Conscience of a Dear Christian, named Bessie Clarksen, in the Parish of Lanerk, which she lay under three years and a half.'' It serves as an illustration of a happy pastoral manner. He was a considerable heritor in Monyabroch, and sold to Lord Livingston that portion of ground, then called Burnsyde, on which the Craigends now stand. It was purchased by his lordship, that he might devote it to extending the township,


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