« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »
displeasure of Almighty God." In the oath you took, you called on him to help you to speak the truth. If, instead of doing this, you have, as the jury have said, falsely, wickedly, wilfully, maliciously, and corruptly, committed perjury, you are about to be called to a dreadful account. At this awful moment, when you are probably about to be for ever separated from your wife, your children, and every other endearing object in this world, it becomes you to pause and reflect; it becomes you to remember into whose presence you are about to appear. In the eternal records of that tribunal, your guilt or your innocence is already registered.
If you have by your own act, percipitated yourself before its bar, without a wicked and wilful intention to commit perjury, I do most deeply feel for you; but, if you have coolly and deliberately, and in the presence of that Diety whose aid you invoked, in the evidence you gave on the trial of Soye, sworn falsely, with the in
tention to acquit him, unlawfully, of the crime of which he was charged; and more especially, if you have done this from other motives, which the court will not now name, your case becomes almost too horrible for reflection. It is far from my wish to insult you, or even unnecessarily to wound your feelings, in the sentence which the law calls on me to pass on you. Let me, therefore, again warn you to prepare for death-and may you before the bar of the great judge, he, who shall judge both you and myself, receive pardon and mercy.
The sentence of the court is, that you be remanded to the jail from whence you came, there to remain until Thursday the twentyeighth day of this present month; on which said day you are to be taken in the custody of the sheriff, from said jail to the place of execution, and there by said sheriff, between the hours of twelve and two o'clock of that day, be hanged by the neck until you are dead.
CIRCUIT COURT OF JUSTICIARY.
PERTH, Sept. 22.
This trial having excited the greatest possible interest, the Court was crowded at a very early hour, and they considered themselves fortunate who could gain an admission upon any terms.
The court having met--Hon. Lord Gillies on the Bench, the case of His Majesty's Advocate against David Landale, merchant, in Kirkcaldy, was called. Mr. Landale, who was at large since the unfortunate rencontre, appear
ed and took his place at the bar, ported by Provost Hadden, of Aberdeen, Mr. Moneypenny, of the Customs, and Messrs. Spears, sen. and jun. of Kirkcaldy. The criminal letters were then read, charging the said D. Landale with the crime of murder, in so far as he did, on the 22d of August last, wickedly and maliciously challenge George Morgan, jun. then agent for the Bank of Scotland, in Kirkcaldy; and on the 23d of same, on the farm of Car
Mr. H. Cockburn, for the prisoner, said, that although he admit ted the relevancy of the indictment, he considered it to be his duty to state that it was not calculated to put the jury in possession of the whole facts of the case, which it was necessary they should be more particularly acquainted with, to enable them to give a Mr. Landale, proper verdict. the panel, was a merchant in Kirkcaldy, where his reputation as a mercantile man was of the first description; and this was of a most material importance to the decision of the case. Of this the most satisfactory evidence would be found, were it necessary to prove it, in the very letters of the deceased. He (Mr. Morgan) on whose ashes he would tread as lightly as possible, was agent for the bank of Scotland in Kirkcaldy, and, as such, he need not say it was his duty to preserve inviolable secrecy with regard to all matters entrusted to him. Such was the situation held by the man now no more, when he committed that error which led to the melancholy catastrophe of which they were now to judge. How did Mr. Morgan conduct himself towards the prisoner? Did he did not disclose the panel's most private transactions, and that in a manner that it shook his credit with all?even his oldest friends were affected by it, and in some instances
withdrew their countenance. Under these circumstances, Mr. Landale wrote to the Bank, complaining of that conduct. The Bank, whether rightly or not he would not pretend to say, communicated that letter to Mr. Morgan, who, as agent for the Bank only had been complained of, wrote a letter, accusing the prisoner of "falsehood and calumny." This letter was couched in language seemingly framed for the very purpose of provoking a duel, and to prevent misconception he signed it, not as agent for the "George Morgan, Bank, but Lieutenant, half-pay 77th Foot." Several other notes passed between the parties, and the result of all was an attempt, which succeeded but too well, on the part of the deceased, to compel the prisoner to send a challenge. This was done deliberately, for he took advice, he having been informed that the challenger on trial, was certain of banishment, therefore he (Mr. Morgan) must manage to get the prisoner to give the challenge. This advice he followed, and caused it to be circulated that he intended to insult Mr. Landale in the street.
Being aware of
what would follow, he put his pis-
placed in that situation where a man's conduct is most liable to misconstruction, he had still courage, and it required courage, to say that he would accept of an apology. But that offer was declined by the deceased; not by his second for him, but by the man who struck the prisoner for the purpose of provoking a duel. No alternative remained; the parties met, they fired, and Mr. Morgan ceased to live. Such were the facts of the case, such had been the conduct of the prisoner, and upon that conduct they were now called upon to judge.
Special defences were given in for Mr. Landale to the following effect:
The defender admits generally that he had a quarrel with Mr. George Morgan, the result of which he sincerely laments. But Mr. Morgan brought that quarrel, and all its consequences, upon himself. He was the agent of the Bank with which the defender had for a long course of years transacted his most confidential business, and was bound, especially in a period of mercantile alarm, to preserve the most scrupulous secresy with respect to the circumstances and credit of an employer who trusted to his honour. But instead of this, being of a rash and quarrelsome habit, he not only spoke of the defender's affairs to strangers, but attempted to ruin his credit by statements and insinuations, which he was not called upon to make, and which he knew or ought to have known were utterly groundless. On discovering this, the defender wrote to his constituents in terms which he conceived, and still
humbly conceives, were fully warranted by the facts. Upon this, Mr. Morgan formed the deliberate determination, contrary to the advice of his friends, to assault the defender; and, after a pause which was more than sufficient to show him the atrocity of that proceeding, and to set its necessary consequence fully before him, he carried this resolution into effect, by striking his adversary on the public street. This left the defender no course but one to follow; but to the very last he was always willing to accept of an apology; which was going further towards a reconciliation than most men in the defender's situation would have thought proper or safe.Even this very moderate satisfaction, however, was refused; after which, if Mr. Morgan fell by the hands of the defender, this was a catastrophe for which he had himself alone to blame.
The following witnesses were then called :
Mr. Wm. Milne, manufacturer in Path-head. I know the prisoner; I knew Mr. Morgan; I received a letter from the prisoner on the 22d of August, containing a challenge; it was in these words:" Mr. Morgan has just now struck me with his umbrella, in passing Mr. Cumming's shop. I merely called him a cowardly rascal, and left him. There is no alternative left me but to challenge him, which I have long made up my mind to do, and enclose one that you may deliver immediately with all secrecy for my honour." I went to Kirkcaldy and delivered the challenge to Mr. Morgan he said, certainly, by all means." Mr. Morgan said, there need be
no delay, as his pistols were provided and ready. He (Mr. Morgan) took them from under a table and placed them before me.The same evening Lieutenant Milne called on me; he came on the part of Mr. Morgan, requesting a meeting in the evening, to which I agreed, and met him accordingly. Some discussion took place as to the place of meeting, in consequence of which I left Milne under the conviction that the parties would meet at the time and place stated. 1 then went to Mr. Landale and arranged for the meeting. I called on Mr. Landale next morning at half past five. A carriage was in the neighbourhood, into which Mr. Landale, Mr. Smith, a surgeon, and I entered; we then proceeded to the place of meeting, where were Mr. Morgan and Lieutenant Milne, Having got into the field, I asked Lieutenant Milne, if he had any communication to make by way of apology; Mr. Morgan hearing this, called out, "No apology;" so far as I heard, Mr. Landale did not use similar expressions. The parties then took their ground. Just as they had taken it, Dr. Johnson came running from the wood, and begged them to stop. I explained the matter, and he retired. The pistols were then given to the principals, and I explained that the word was to be," Gentlemen are you ready? Fire!"-At the word "Fire," the parties were to raise their pistols. The word was then given. Mr. Morgan raised his pistol at the word "ready;" I called out "Mr. Morgan that is not fair--drop your pistol till the word 'fire' is given." Mr. Mor
gan lowered his pistol; the word being again given, both raised their pistols together, and fired so exactly together, that I was not conscious of hearing two shots. Mr. Morgan on receiving Mr. Landale's shot, did not fall immediately. He stood some seconds, then fell, and died instantly. The panel and I immediately quitted the ground.
Cross-examined by Mr. Jeffrey.-I am aware that Mr. Landale received intimation four or five days before, that he would be struck by Mr. Morgan. Mr. Landale told me that if so, he could not avoid challenging Mr. Morgan. When on my way to meet Milne in the evening, I called on Mr. Landale, and informed him of what had passed with Mr. Milne in the forenoon; Mr. Landale authorized me to receive a written apology; but Milne said that Mr. Morgan would make no apology; but on his way to the ground I observed that I meant to ask Lieutenant Milne whether he had authority to make an apology. Mr. Landale acceded to this, and said that a verbal apology on the field would do, if Mr. Morgan would commit it to writing afterwards, as that all he wished was satisfaction for the injury received.
Lieut. Milne, R. N.-I was acquainted with the late Mr. Morgan. At four o'clock, on the 22d of August, he came to me in a post-chaise. Mr. Morgan said he had a quarrel with the prisoner, and would be glad if I would arrange the business. I agreed to go; when on the road Mr. Morgan explained the circumstances, but did not mention till we reached Kirkcaldy that he had struck the
prisoner; on this I had great objections to Mr. Morgan's second, and expressed my disapprobation of his conduct; Mr. Morgan entreated me as a brother officer, and I agreed, in hope of getting matters amicably arranged. I proposed to Mr. Morgan, to make an apology conditionally, but that he refused. Mr. Morgan desired me to go to Mr. Milne; I went ; Mr. Milne seemed anxious to have the matter made up. As I had got into the business so hurriedly, I had no time to consider of it, and therefore requested Mr. Milne to call in the evening; he did so. I then proposed that, "on the supposition the parties were equally wrong, the parties should meet half way, and shake hands." This was declined. Next morning the parties met on the ground. [The other part of his evidence was merely a corroboration of what was stated by the preceding witness to have taken place.]
Examined by Mr. Jeffrey.-Mr. Landale took aim; every thing was quite fair.
Mr. James Cumming, bookseller, Kirkcaldy.-I am acquainted with the parties. The day before the duel, Mr. Morgan came into my shop, and after a little conversation, Mr. Landale passed the door; Mr. Morgan immediately went out and struck Mr. Landale a blow over the shoulders with his umbrella, saying, "Take that, Sir." No quarrelling took place immediately previous. Mr. Landale came into the shop and said, "I trust you observed what passed." Mr. Morgan then poped his head in at the door and said, "By G-d, Sir, you shall have more of it." Mr. Landale then
went out, and in less than two minutes, Mr. Morgan returned and said, " By G-d, James I have never told you of the shocking usage Mr. Landale has given me and my brother; but just hear this letter." I replied, "It is nothing to me what your usage has been; but what you have done just now is wrong."
Wm. Todd, blacksmith in Kirkcaldy, was sent for by Mr. Morgan about a fortnight before the duel, to take a ramrod out of his pistol; received also orders to make a number of bullets to fit the pistols. I made 33 bullets for him.
Dr. Johnson saw Mr. Morgan the night before the duel, and was asked by him to be at Torban next morning by six. I went, and found the parties there, and their seconds. I recommended, if possible, to try to effect an arrangement; this not being done, I retired. I heard one shot, and my name being called, I went up, and found Morgan on the ground, but alive. A shot had passed through his body, entering on the right side, and coming out on the left side.
Dr. Smith, of Kirkcaldy.-I accompanied Mr. Landale to the field. I heard a shot, and saw Morgan fall. He died within a few seconds. The wound was the cause of death.
Cross-examined. I heard Mr. Landale say he would receive a verbal apology, if afterwards reduced to writing. Mr. Landale appeared to me to have no object but to repair the injury his character had sustained.
This closed the evidence for the prosecution.