Page:History of England (Macaulay) Vol 4.djvu/278

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against the pusillanimity of the government which had not dared to withstand that bigotry. On this subject the High Churchman and the Low Churchman were of one mind, or rather the Low Churchman was the more angry of the two. A man like South, who had during many years been predicting that, if ever the Puritans ceased to be oppressed, they would become oppressors, was at heart not ill pleased to see his prophecy fulfilled. But in a man like Burnet, the great object of whose life had been to mitigate the animosity which the ministers of the Anglican Church felt towards the Presbyterians, the intolerant conduct of the Presbyterians could awaken no feeling but indignation, shame and grief. There was, therefore, at the English Court nobody to speak a good word for Melville. It was impossible that in such circumstances he should remain at the head of the Scottish administration. He was, however, gently let down from his high position. He continued during more than a year to be Secretary of State; but another Secretary was appointed, who was to reside near the King, and to have the chief direction of affairs. The new Prime Minister for Scotland was the able, eloquent and accomplished Sir John Dalrymple. His father, the Lord President of the Court of Session, had lately been raised to the peerage by the title of Viscount Stair; and Sir John Dalrymple was consequently, according to the ancient usage of Scotland, designated as the Master of Stair. In a few months Melville resigned his secretaryship, and accepted an office of some dignity and emolument, but of no political importance.[204]

The Lowlands of Scotland were, during the year which followed the parliamentary session of 1690, as quiet as they had ever been within the memory of man; but the state of the Highlands caused much anxiety to the government. The civil war in that wild region, after it had ceased to flame, had continued