Covenanter James Renwick was executed - On this day in history
On 17 February 1688, Scottish minister James Renwick became the final Covenanting martyr when he was executed at Edinburgh's Grassmarket for refusing to swear fealty to King James VII. Renwick studied religion at the University of Edinburgh and during the 1680s, several of his friends were martyred for the Covenanters cause.
After five years spent preaching around Scotland, the king's forces caught up with him in February 1688 and sentenced him to death for his refusal to submit to the rule of King James VII. He was executed by hanging and his severed head and hands were hung on the city gates to serve as a warning to others.