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A TALE OF THE COVENANTERS.

Founded on fact.

BY THE

REV. A. MORTON BROWN, LL.D.,

CHELTENHAM,

AUTHOR OF " EVENINGS WITH THE PROPHETS," "SALVATION, AND

THE WAY TO SECURE IT," ETC. ETC.

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PREFACE.

THERE are few readers who are not interested in the Covenanters of Scotland. The cause of their sufferings was one which has ever been dear to the world. The struggle which they had to endure was against such frightful odds, and the bold and manly spirit in which they withstood their persecutors, and sealed their testimony with their blood, have not failed to enlist upon their side the sympathies even of those who have not been able entirely to agree with their opinions.

The Covenanters were, comparatively speaking, a mere handful of men, and, with few exceptions, were uninfluential, in a worldly point of view, but resolute for God and truth. They withstood, to the death, successive kings and their governments. They braved and battled, yea! drove back the whole High Church party both of England and Scotland, and that, too, in the very heyday of its dominancy in both countries. In doing this, the trials to which they were exposed — personal, domestic, and public—in our days of peace and freedom, can scarcely be believed. And yet, for the privileges we enjoy, to the Puritans in the South and the Covenanters in the North, this country owes a debt of gratitude not easily overestimated.

The object of the Author, in the following pages, has been, in a familiar and illustrative way, to depict some of the scenes through which the Covenanters had to pass, and the manner in which they behaved themselves. The volume may be entitled a Memoir, a Tale, and a History

-a Memoir of Alexander Peden, a Tale of the era of the Covenant, and a History of some of the principal events of the period. His intention in selecting this form in which to enunciate his information has been twofold: first, to render it

interesting to a large class who might not otherwise be induced to read their history; and, next, as it afforded what appeared to him to be the most fitting vehicle through which to exhibit the domestic and social, as well as religious aspects of society at the time.

The Author has endeavoured to present his views with candour, on subjects in regard to which great differences of opinion prevail. He feels strongly in reference to the present state of parties in the Church of England, and has not hesitated honestly to express his convictions—as well as concerning Presbyterianism and Independency—and yet he hopes he has done so in the spirit of Christian charity and fairness. In no case, in the main features, has he tampered with the facts of history. His aim has been to convey instruction ; making use of well-known names and events for this purpose, in what he trusts will be considered a legitimate form. In passing through the press, amid the pressure of many official duties, he fears errors may have crept into the work, for which he has to crave

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