Page:A biographical dictionary of eminent Scotsmen, vol 6.djvu/120

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490 REV. JOHN LOGAN.


whether the Pretender was or was not the son of James II. The former of these points has now been pretty satisfactorily established by the labours of Innes, Hay, Stewart, and Ruddiman, and the latter is no longer a matter of doubt But Logan is accused of having gone to other and more frail sources ; a fabulous list of kings had been added to the number of the tenants of the Scottish throne, by Boece and the other early chroniclers. Buchanan, if he did not know the list to be fabricated, knew the circumstances of the lives of these persons to rest on so unstable a foundation, that he found himself enabled to twist their characters to his theories. On the events connected with the reigns of these persons, Logan likewise comments ; but after having done so, turning to the writings of Innes and Stillingfleet, he remarked " But I shall be so good as to yield it to Lloyd, Stillingtteet, and Innes : but then let our Scottish Jaco- bites and the young chevalier give over their boasting of hereditary succession by a longer race of kings in Scotland than in any kingdom in the known world." 2 Ruddiman employed his usual labour in clearing the questions about Robert III. and the birth of the Pretender ; but in another point the wish to prove that Robert the Bruce was a nearer heir to the Scottish crown by feudal usages than John Baliol he failed. Chalmers, who can see neither talent nor honesty in Logan, and no defect in Ruddiman, observes, that " it required not, indeed, the vigour of Ruddiman to overthrow the weakness of Logan, who laid the foundations of the government which he affected, either on the wild fables of Boece, or on the more despicable fallacies of Buchanan ;" but the fables, which were satirically noticed by Logan, were subjects of serious consideration to the grave critic. Ruddiman brings against his opponent the charge, fre- quently made on such occasions, of " despising dominions, speaking evil of dignities, and throwing out railing accusations against kings, though the arch- angel Michael durst not bring one against the devil himself, whom our author, I hope, will allow to be worse than the worst of our kings." 3 This was, at least, in some degree, complimentary to Logan, and the critic, proceeding, tries to preserve, for the ancestors of Charles II., both their length of line and their virtues, and is anxious to show that, at least, such as cannot be easily saved from the censures of Buchanan and Logan, were not lineal ancestors of the great Charles II. In point of philosophy, Ruddiman's work cannot well be compared with the several pamphlets of Logan, although even the arguments of the latter against divine right, would now be considered too serious and uncalled for, by any power of defence. The different pamphlets will be found accurate- ly enumerated in " Chalmers's Life of Ruddiman." Logan was the more restless and determined of the two, and continued his attacks until 1749, when both had reached a period of life fitted for more peaceful pursuits. Logan died at Edinburgh on the 13th of October, 1755, in the seventy-seventh year of his age.

LOGAN, JOHN, a poet and sermon-writer of no mean eminence, was born in the year 1748, at Soutra, in the parish of Fala, in the county of Mid-Lothian, being the son of George Logan, a small farmer at that place, of the dissenting persuasion. He received the elements of learning at the school of Gosford, in East-Lothian, to which parish his father removed during his childhood. Being the younger of two sons, he was early destined to the clerical profession, accord- ing to a custom not yet abrogated in families of the humbler rank in Scotland. At the university of Edinburgh, he formed an acquaintance with the unfortunate Michael Bruce, and also with Dr Robertson, afterwards minister of Dalmeny, and known as author of a Life of Mary queen of Scots. In the society of the former individual, he cultivated poetical reading and composition, being fondest, ^irst Treatise, 50. 3 Ruddiman 's Answer, 27.