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February 22nd 1655

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John Nicoll's diary

“Mr Patrik Maxwell ane arrant decevar wes brocht to the Mercat Croce of Edinburgh, quhair a pillorie wes erectit and thair, eftir ane full hours standing on that pillorie his right lug wes cuttit of; and thaireftir careyit over to the town of St Johnnestoun quhair ane uther left lug wes cuttit of him. The cause heirof wes this; that he had given out fals calumneis and leyis aganes Collonell Daniell, governour of Peirth. But the treuth is, he wes a notorious decevar and ane intelligencer sumetyme for the Englisches uther tymes for the Scottis and decevand both of thame,” 
John Nicoll

John Nicoll was a keen observer but a trimmer who changed his views according to the party in power. Whether or not Mr Maxwell was indeed “ane intelligencer”  (spy), the crime of speaking ill of the English governor of Perth was sufficient to merit the somewhat barbarous punishment he received.

In another part of his diary he mentions the treatment meted out by Cromwell’s men to a Scots prisoner. “A simple sodger quois eyes they holkit out of his heid, becaus upon his bak thair wes drawn with quhyte calk thir wordis ‘I am for King Charles’, stryped him naked of his cloathes and sent him bak.” 

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