The Woman Who Never Was

By Dr. Mark Jardine - Posted at Jardine's Book of Martyrs:


Amid the flotsam of the Killing Times of 1685 are a few brief lines on a threatened drowning of a woman at Kirkcudbright. She never was drowned, but her remarkable story deserves to be told…

The case of Grizel Fullarton has striking parallels with the drowning of the two Wigtown martyrs, Margaret McLachlan and Margaret Wilson.

Grizel Fullarton was captured by Colonel James Douglas, who commissioned the court that initially sentenced the two Wigtown women to be drowned for refusing the abjuration oath in April, 1685, under powers awarded to him on 27 March.

The events of Fullarton’s case took place earlier in the same year in the same jurisdiction, Galloway, but under a slightly different set of judicial commissions. She was scheduled to face some of the same judges that went on to condemn the Wigtown women, but under their commission to press the abjuration oath in January, 1685.

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