The two Margarets (Wilson & McLachlan – martyrs)

Two heroes of the faith
down in the “thieves hole”,
Choosing to lose their life
choosing to save their soul,
Margaret Wilson from Wigtown
only eighteen years old,
Margaret McLachlan a widow
refused to fit the mould.

Then they refused to renounce
At the command of the King,
Their faith in Christ Jesus and
The song their hearts did sing
The covenant of faith made
Between God & Scotland’s kin,
Choosing eternal life
Over death without it’s sting.

Late on the eleventh of May
In sixteen eighty five,
After hiding in the hills
From Charley’s Selfish pride,
We’re led to Wigtown bay
When it was low tide,
They were tied to a stake
And watched the water level rise.

All of the kings cronies
Gave chance to reverse,
Their allegiance to the King
To the kingdom of the Earth,
But they refused to dishonour
The King of their new birth,
Correctly assessing
Who gives us true worth.

As Salt water filled their lungs
They quoted and sang some songs,
Some Psalms and some hymns
About to Whom they both belonged,
In trying to dim the light
Charley only made it strong,
The two Margarets showing
It’s about whom is beyond.

To make example to the crowd
As they breathed their last breath,
They thrust their head in the water
To show all a morbid death,
Margret Wilson first, to put
Margaret McLachlan under stress,
One at a time
The died a horrific martyr’s death

Our real heroes should not be
Those in the Olympic games,
Or achievers in the world
Who win success and worship fame,
But any ordinary person
Who worship Jesus and His name,
The One who gave His life
Giving freedom from all stain.

The Wigtown Martyrs

A despicable event was the drowning of two women who were tied to stakes in Wigtown Bay and engulfed in the rising Solway tide. This punishment was meted out to Margaret Lachlane aged 63 years and Margaret Wilson 18 years old, who refused to give up the Covenant and so they became known as the “Wigtownshire Martyrs”.

Their names had been given to the authorities by two local ‘king’s curates’ as being non-attendees at the church, thus branding them as ‘disorderly’ parishioners. Both had gone into hiding, hiding in the hills with many other “covenanters”, but a party of dragoons led by the feared Robert Grierson of Lag soon found their hideaways. They were tried before the court in Wigtown on 13th April 1685 and were sentenced by the judges to execution by drowning.

They were marched down from the Tollbooth by the soldiers and two stakes were hammered into the sands. The tide was out, the sands being so flat that the sea recedes almost two miles thereabouts. The soldiers first went to McLachlan, and give her the chance to pray for the King, but she refused. Some men were incensed at the impudence of the old woman, and one cursed and told the soldiers to, “Let her gang to hell”. As the tidal race worked it’s way higher up the body of old Margaret, one of the town soldiers took his halberd and held it over her throat, bringing her to a quicker end.

Earlier, Margaret Wilson began to sing the 25th Psalm as the waters rose up her body, “Consider mine enemies, how many they are. And they bear a tyrannous hate against me”. Finally one soldier came forward and upon pushing her body under the water said “Tak anither drink, hinny; clep wi’ the partans”. The reference to the partans or crabs, was made as the women are said to have grasped the stakes tightly. At a later time, when the tide had once again receded, the corpses of the two women were taken from the waters and under the cover of nightfall transferred to the Parish Kirkyard. A grave was hastily dug and they were laid in consecrated soil.


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