, was born June 27, 1682 and set off in the style and with the spirit
, was born June 27,
1682 and set off in the style and with the spirit of Alexander the Great. His preceptor asking him, what he
thought of that hero? “
I think,” says Charles, “
should choose to be like him.” Ay, but, says the tutor,
he only lived 32 years: “
Oh, answered the prince, that
is long enough, when a man has conquered kingdoms.”
Impatient to reign, he caused himself to be declared of
age at 15 and at his coronation, he snatched the crown
from the archbishop of Upsal, and put it upon his head
himself, with an air of grandeur which struck the people.
Frederic IV. king of Denmark, Augustus king of Poland,
and Peter tzar of Muscovy, taking advantage of his minority, entered into a confederacy against this youth.
Charles, aware of it, though scarce 18, attacked them one
after another. He hastened first to Denmark, besieged
Copenhagen, forced the Danes into their entrenchments, and
caused a declaration to be made to king Frederic, that,
if he did not justice to the duke of Holstein, his brotherin-law, against whom he had committed hostilities, he must
prepare to see Copenhagen destroyed, and his kingdom
laid waste by fire and sword.” These menaces brought on
the treaty of Frawendal; in which, without any advantages to himself, but quite content with humbling his enemy, he demanded and obtained all he wished for his ally.
, an eminently patriotic and public-spirited magistrate of Edinburgh, was born June 27, 1687, and educated in that city, principally with
, an eminently patriotic and public-spirited magistrate of Edinburgh, was born June 27, 1687, and educated in that city, principally with a view to active life, in which he very soon maue a distinguished figure. On the accession of queen Anne, when he was of course very young, he assisted the committee appointed by the parliament of Scotland to settle the public accounts of the kingdom. Tn 1707 he was appointed accountant-general of the excise, and assisted, with indefatigable diligence, in putting the accounts of that important branch of the revenue into the same form and method with those in England. In 1710, the then total change of the ministry alarmed the friends of the house of Hanover, and these alarms increasing, in 1713, at a meeting of gentlemen who had formed a society for guarding the country against the designs of the pretender, Mr. Drummond proposed a plan, which was unanimously approved and carried into execution, by which a correspondence was established with every county in the kingdom, and arms imported from Holland, and put into the hands of the friends of liberty every where. In 1715, he gave the first notice to the ministry of the arrival of the earl of Mar, was honoured with the command of a company of volunteers that was raised by the friends of government on that occasion, and was attendant on the duke of Argyle, during his residence in Scotland till the rebellion was extinguished. He assisted at the battle of Sheriffmuir, and dispatched to the magistrates of Edinburgh the earliest notice of Argyle’s victory, in a letter which he dated from the field on horseback. In 1717 he was elected a member of the corporation of Edinburgh, and discharged all the intermediate offices of magistracy until 1725, when he was elected lord provost, an office which he filled with the highest reputation and true dignity. To his indefatigable industry and perseverance it was chiefly owing, that the several professorships in the university were filled with men of the first abilities, and several new ones were founded, as that of chemistry, the theory and practice of physic, midwifery, the belles lettres, and rhetoric, by which means Edinburgh arrived at the rank of one of the first schools in the kingdom, particularly for medicine.