In this combination the chancellorship of the exchequer was first offered to Lord Palmerston, who accepted it, but this appointment was frustrated by the king's intrigue with Herries, and Palmerston was content to remain secretary-at-war with a seat in the cabinet, which he now entered for the first time.
With Herries and Maxwell he shook the English centre, but while Stanley and the men of Cheshire drove the highlanders of Lennox and Argyll in flight (their leaders had already fallen), the admiral and Dacre fell on the flank of James's command, which Surrey, too wise to pursue the fleet highlanders, surrounded with his whole force.
According to the Memoirs of Sir James Melville, both Lord Herries and himself resolved to appeal to the queen in terms of bold and earnest remonstrance against so desperate and scandalous a design; Herries, having been met with assurances of its unreality and professions of astonishment at the suggestion, instantly fled from court; Melville, evading the danger of a merely personal protest without backers to support him, laid before Mary a letter from a loyal Scot long resident in England, which urged upon her consideration and her conscience the danger and disgrace of such a project yet more freely than Herries had ventured to do by word of mouth; but the sole result was that it needed all the queen's courage and resolution to rescue him from the violence of the man for whom, she was reported to have said, she cared not if she lost France, England and her own country, and would go with him to the world's end in a white petticoat before she would leave him.
Here Murray, with 4500 men, under leaders of high distinction, met the 6000 of the queen's army, whose ablest man, Herries, was as much distrusted by Mary as by every one else, while the Hamiltons could only be trusted to think of their own interests, and were suspected of treasonable designs on all who stood between their house and the monarchy.
Robert died without sons in October 1667, when a cousin John Maxwell, 7th Lord Herries (d.