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of any people to fix and to limit the persons to whom they are to commit authority, and whom they intrust with the power of governing them, I hold to be indisputable. Nor is any man treated with injustice, because a majority does not choose to commit the management of their interests to him on account of supposed want of qualification, which deprives him of their confidence. But I do not mean to enter on discussion: I have written from the respect which I feel for your character; and to assure you, that though I consider it my duty to express my sentiments without reserve when I am called to give an opinion, yet that I never differ from any good man without much pain and reluctance.

“ I am yours, &c.,

" S. M.”

In 1828, Dr. Macgill was, on the motion of Principal Haldane, the previous moderator, seconded by Dr. Cook, unanimously elected moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. There can be no doubt that party spirit stood in the way of his election to that distinguished place years before. Nevertheless, there was only one opinion as to the fitness of such a man to occupy such a place, and the justness of the claim

any view. His conduct as moderator was exactly what might have been anticipated ; calm, dignified, and courteous. He paid every attention that was due to the business of the house and to the


different speakers; while he conducted the devotional exercises with impressive solemnity. During the lapse of the year preceding, the church had been deprived by death of some of her brightest ornaments, and particularly of that eminent man, Sir Henry Moncreiff Wellwood.

With that eminent father of our church, and with his distinguished son, the present Lord Moncreiff, the intimacy of Dr. Macgill had been of no ordinary kind; and a very gratifying duty devolved on him, that namely, of drawing up the sketch of Sir Henry's character, which the General Assembly unanimously agreed should be inserted in the printed acts.* In his farewell address to the Assembly, the moderator made allusion to the same event in the following terms:

“We are now, my much respected brethren, about to separate ; and I trust we shall separate with mutual affection, and a more earnest desire to employ our united endeavours for advancing that glorious cause to which we are devoted. The thought of separation, and the probability that many of us shall never again meet in this world,

*The comprehensive sketch which Dr. M. drew up on this occasion, will be found published at length in the volume of the Edinburgh Christian Instructor for 1838. It forms part of a Memoir of Sir Henry Moncreiff Wellwood, inserted in two numbers of that work. A life of this eminent man, and of his no less eminent friend, Dr. Andrew Thomson, are still desiderata in our ecclesjastical annals,

+ The address on this occasion forms the concluding lecture of Dr. Macgill's volume on Rhetoric and Criticism, published 1838,

should soften our hearts to one another, and remind us that we must work while it is called today. During the year which has elapsed since the last Venerable Assembly, some of the most distinguished members of this church have finished their course,


gone to render an account of their stewardship. They have fought the good fight, and were strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. The floods lifted up their voice; but they trusted in him who is mightier than the noise of many waters, and continued stedfast to the end in the cause of their Master. Amidst the buffetings of the tempest, they bravely stemmed the tide, and still were seen rising on the top of the billows, nobly directing the vessel to the kingdom of their Lord. They have entered the haven of rest, while we still remain to struggle with the storm. Let the remembrance of their high example sustain our courage, and animate our exertions in the same heavenward course. And while we look to those who have gone before us, and through faith and patience are now inheriting the promises, let us also learn from them that our work is great, and our time is short and uncertain,-THAT NOW IS THE ACCEPTED TIME, NOW IS THE DAY OF SALVATION.”



In the beginning of 1824, Dr. Macgill's mind was led to form the idea of a monument to John Knox” at Glasgow. The national claims of the distinguished Reformer would have warranted the citizens of Glasgow and the west in projecting such a thing; but additional circumstances occurred in 1818, to render “ Glasgow" a very proper place for the erection of such a monument. In that year, the fourth edition of Dr. M‘Crie's Life of Knox was published ; and in the appendix he narrates the circumstances which led him to the discovery that Knox was educated, not at the University of St. Andrew's, as had been hitherto supposed, but at the University of Glasgow. His name occurs in the matriculated list of the University of Glasgow, in the year 1522.

“ In coming to the conclusion," says Dr. M'Crie, “ that this was our Reformer, I do not rest simply on his name occurring in the Record. This opinion is confirmed by the two following circumstances :1. The time answers to that at which he might be supposed to have entered the University; for in 1522, he was seventeen years of age. 2. John Major was at that time Principal of the University of Glasgow; and all the ancient accounts agree that Knox studied under that celebrated Professor. This circumstance may perhaps account for the mistake into which the old writers may have fallen on this subject. They appear to have been ignorant of the fact that Major taught at this time in Glasgow; and being informed that Knox studied under him, they concluded that he did so at St. Andrew's, where that Professor was known to have resided for many years.”

The following letter from Dr. Macgill to the Convener of the Trades House of Glasgow, will furnish the best account of the considerations which induced him to engage in the work of promoting the erection of a monument to the great Reformer of Scotland.

Glasgow College, 22d Feb. 1824. “SIR,— Permit me to request that you will have the goodness to bring under the notice of the members of the Trades House of this city, the subject of the proposed monument in memory of Knox, our great reformer, and of those inestimable benefits which we have received by the Reformation. To pay honour to the illustrious dead, is not only a tribute due to their memories, but keeps in remembrance the great principles by which they were actuated, inspires an admiration of their virtues, and leads to a high and grateful sense of those blessings, which they were the means of securing to their country. Among the benefactors of their

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