Available July 2024

Scottish Covenanter Stories

Dane Love

978 1 911043 22 5


Paperback, 268 pages


Between 1638 and 1688 Scotland was in an almost constant state of civil unrest because many people refused to accept the royal decree that the king was head of the church. When those who refused signed a Covenant which stated that only Jesus Christ could command such a position, they were effectively signing their own death warrants. And so began one of the bloodiest periods of Scottish history ... the Killing Times.
Soldiers were billeted with those who would not attend the king’s churches, eating them out of hosue and home and robbing them of their possessions. Dragoons were garrisoned in castles commandeered from Covenanting lairds and given the names of those who did not attend official church services. They set off in grim pursuit, houding innocent men and women out of their homes which were set ablaze. Fines were levied, many escaped death with imprisonment but others were banished to the American plantations as slaves. Many of those cut down on their country’s soil attained martyrdom.
On a few occasions the Covenanters rose in arms. They marched to Edinburgh, only to be defeated at Rullion Green. At Drumclog the Covenanters were victorious, but with a few weeks were routed at the Battle of Bothwell Bridge by Tam Dalyell. The atrocities carried out during this period were often beyond belief. John Graham of Claverhouse murdered John Brown of Priesthill in front of his wife and young family. Two women, one aged 63 and the other 18, were tied to stakes and left to drown in the waters of the Wigtown Sands. James White’s head was severed from his body and ised by the dragoons as a football on the village green.
In this unique and fascinating account, Dane Love recounts fifty tales from Covenanting folklore including the stories of all the main martyrs as well as many lesser known incidents. As an insight into a grim period of religious persecution in Scotland, this book is an indispesable primer.