The second Earl of Stair gives precedence to the Blessed Sacrament

September 15, 2011

John Dalrymple, 2nd Earl of Stair (1673-1747) General & Diplomat

While British Ambassador to the court of France, John Dalrymple, second Earl of Stair, forbade his coachman to give right of way to any other vehicle whatsoever. One day he came across a carriage carrying the Blessed Sacrament and his coachman asked:

— “Your Lordship, would you be so kind as to allow passage for the Blessed Sacrament?”

— “Certainly! But to no one else!”

The ambassador opened the carriage door, stepped down and knelt in the street while the priest carrying the Body of Christ passed by.

"The Viaticum", by Leonardo Alenza, Prado Museum, Madrid, Spain.


Edmond Guérard, Dictionnaire encyclopédique d’anécdotes (Paris: Firmin Didot, 1872), Vol. 1, p. 32.

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 109



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