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29 October 2014
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Porteous Riot

On the 7th of September 1736, Captain Porteous was dragged from prison and lynched by an angry mob in Edinburgh.

The "Porteous Riots" had erupted in April 1736, when Andrew Wilson, a smuggler, was hanged in the Grassmarket for robbing a customs officer. The public rioting that followed Wilson's death was quashed by the locally born John Porteous, when he ordered his troops to open fire on the angry crowd, killing and wounding up to 30 people. Porteous was sentenced to death but later reprieved, leading to the lynch mob descending in fury on the prison, enraged that Porteous's appeal had been successful, and that he'd escaped the fate that had been meted out to a common man. The angry growd stormed the Tolbooth, escorted Porteous to the Grassmarket, and hanged him from a dyer's pole. Incidents of the Porteous Riots are used by Walter Scott in "The Heart of Midlothian".

Henry Campbell Bannerman

This day in 1836 saw the birth of Henry Campbell Bannerman, the British Prime Minister. Born in Glasgow and educated at Glasgow and Cambridge, Bannerman became the Liberal MP for Stirling in 1868, a position he held until his death. He climbed the parliamentary ranks, serving as Secretary for Ireland during Gladstone's administration in 1884 and entering the cabinet as Secretary for War in 1886, before becoming leader of the Liberal Party in 1899. Bannerman became Prime Minister in 1905 following Balfour's resignation, and led his party to a landslide victory in the 1906 general election. His brilliant cabinet included Asquith, Lloyd George, and Winston Churchill. Ill health forced Bannerman to hand over the leadership to Asquith, and he died two weeks later in 1908.

Today's recipe: Scots chef Sue Lawrence adds in-season raspberries to her brownies for a fruity finish.

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