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10 Things

10 Things about Lady Grizel Baillie

I admit before this morning I had no idea who Lady Grizel Baillie was so here are 10 things I’ve learned about her. 

  1. She was a Scottish poet and song writer. In fact many of her ancestors were also poets – most notably Patrick Hume of Polwarth and Alexander Hume.  
  2. Her father, Sir Patrick Hume, was representing the then imprisoned Robert Baillie of Jerviswood and Lady Grizel would smuggle letters to Baillie while he was imprisoned. 
  3. Lady Grizel was 12 when she met her future husband George Baillie. It is suspected that it was during the time she was bringing letters from her father. 
  4. She fled with her family to the United Provinces (Precursor to the Netherlands) due to her fathers association with Robert Baillie and suspected treason. 
  5. When she returned to Scotland after the Glorious Revolution she turned down an offer to be one the Queen Mary’s maids of honor. 
  6.  In 1692 she married George Baillie and settled into the Mellerstain House. 
  7. She would have three children and her two daughters, Grizel and Rachel, would survive into adulthood. 
  8. Only a few of her poems have survived over the centuries. One of which “And werena my heart light I wad dee” is copied at the bottom of this post and was originally published in Orpheus Caledonius, or a Collection of the Best Scotch Songs (1725) by William Thomson
  9. She kept records of her home life which can be found here. These records provide an depth look into the affairs of a running a Scottish house. 
  10. She passed away on December 6, 1746 and is buried in the Mellerstain House.

Werena My Heart Licht I Wad Dee

There was ance a may, and she lo’ed na men; 

She biggit her bonnie bow’r doun i’ yon glen; 

But now she cries, Dool and a well-a-day! 

Come doun the green gait and come here away! 


When bonnie young Johnnie cam’ owre the sea 

He said he saw naething sae lovely as me; 

He hecht me baith rings and monie braw things; 

And werena my heart licht, I wad dee. 


He had a wee tittie that lo’ed na me, 

Because I was twice as bonnie as she; 

She raised sic a pother ‘twixt him and his mother, 

That werena my heart licht, I wad dee. 


The day it was set, and the bridal to be 

The wife took a dwam and lay doun to dee; 

She maned, and she graned, out o’ dolour and pain, 

Till he vowed that he ne’er wad see me again. 


His kin was for ane o’ a higher degree, 

Said, what had he do wi’ the likes o’ me? 

Albeit I was bonnie, I wasna for Johnnie: 

And werena my heart licht, I wad dee. 


They said I had neither cow nor calf, 

Nor dribbles o’ drink rins through the draff, 

Nor pickles o’meal rins through the mill-e’e; 

An werena my heart licht, I wad dee. 


His tittie she was baith wily and slee, 

She spied me as I cam’ owre the lea, 

And then she ran in and made a loud din; 

Believe your ain een an ye trow na me. 


His bannet stood aye fu’ round on his brow 

His auld ane looked aye as weel as some’s new; 

But now he lets ’t wear ony gate it will hing, 

And casts himsel’ dowie upon the corn-bing. 


And now he gaes daund’ring about the dykes 

A a’ he dow do is to hund the tykes; 

The love-lang nicht he ne’er steeks his e’e; 

And werena my heart licht I wad dee. 


Were I but young for thee, as I ha’e been 

We should ha’e been gallopin’ doun in yon green, 

And linkin’ it on the lily-white lea; 

And wow, gin I were but young for thee. 

Lady Grizel Baillie (1665–1746)
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10 Things

10 things about the Mirabal Sisters

Today is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. The date was chosen because it was the day that the 3 Mirabal were assassinated for protesting the dictatorship under Rafael Trujillo. I wanted to do a post about them because this was a family that gave up so much for their country so that their children could have a better future.

We cannot allow our children to grow up in this corrupt and tyrannical regime. We have to fight against it, and I am willing to give up everything, even my life if necessary.

– Patria Mercedes Mirabal Reyes
  1. The 4 sisters were known as the Unforgettable Butterflies in the Dominican Republic. This name was used in Julia Alvarez’s 1994 novel In the Time of the Butterflies.
  2. Doña Dede was the only sister not assassinated and after the death of her 3 sisters she took in their 6 children and raised them alongside her own. She also devoted her life to preserving the legacy of her sisters as feminists and political activists. 
  3. When asked how she could survive she responded with, “So I could tell their story!”
  4. The legacy that the Mirabal sisters left influenced their children and they have been active in politics as well as Vice President and a Deputy Foreign Minister. 
  5. Minerva went to university to receive a degree in Law and Maria Teresa followed in her footsteps to go to university and received a degree in mathematics. 
  6. The three sisters (Patria Mercedes, María Argentina Minerva and Antonia María Teresa) as well as their husbands were involved in political activities against the Trujillo dictatorship. In fact they had been arrested multiple times. 
  7. It was as they were visiting their incarcerated husbands on November 25, 1960 that the 3 sisters were stopped, separated, strangled, and beaten to death. 
  8. Their assassination helped ignite the anti-Trujillo movement and within a year Rafael Trujillo was assassinated as well. 
  9. In 1997, after Joaquín Balaguer stepped down the Mirabal sisters were finally recognized as martyrs in the school curriculum. 
  10. The province where they grew up, Salcedo, was renamed to the Hermanas Mirabal Province in November 2007 to honor their legacy. 

Do you have someone who you think should be featured? Let me know below 👇

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10 Things

10 things about Sojourner Truth

I did not run away; I walked away by day-light

Sojourner Truth is an inspiring person. There is no other way to put it. After she escaped slavery with her infant daughter she fought the system to regain custody of her son and won. Not only that but she continued to campaign as an abolitionist and human right’s activist. This won’t even begin to cover how amazing she is but here are 10 facts about her and her legacy: 

  1. NASA’s first rover on Mars is named Sojourner
  2. June 1, 1843 is when she changed her name from Isabella Baumfree to Sojourner Truth and became a Methodist. 
  3. Growing up she spoke only Dutch and didn’t learn English until she was 9 when she was sold to new Masters who only spoke English. They would frequently beat her for miscommunicating.  
  4. In 1851 at the Women’s Convention in Akron, Ohio she delivered her famous Ain’t I a Woman speech.
  5. In 1864 she met Abraham Lincoln 
  6.  During the Civil War she worked for the National Freedman’s Relief Association as a counselor to the “freed people.” 
  7. During her lifetime she brought and won three lawsuits – for her son, a slander suit and a personal injury case. 
  8. She was active in helping with relocating former slaves and petitioned the federal government to grant free land to help them settle in the ‘New West’. 
  9. She will appear on the back of the new $10 bill alongside Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Alice Paul and Lucretia Mott. 
  10. She moved to Battle Creek, Michigan in 1857 and joined the growing abolitionist movement – the Progressive Friends. 

You can read The Narrative of Sojourner Truth written by Olive Gilbert online.

Is there a mother you find inspiring? Let me know in the comments 👇