A NEW memorial to the “father of Scottish democracy” has been wrongly bestowed with an English title, leading to complaints from senior lawyers. 

Thomas Muir of Huntershill was persecuted and eventually banished in 1793 for his work to champion parliamentary reforms, freedom of speech and voting rights for everyone. 

This month, a mural paying tribute to him was unveiled in his native Glasgow.

The painting, located in the Trongate area, depicts Muir with much of his face hidden by bandages. 

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He was badly injured by a glancing blow from a cannonball while making his escape from transportation to Australia.

Below the mural, a plaque says: “Thomas Muir, Scottish barrister and reformer.”

The legal title, used in England and Wales, provoked anger. Dean of the Faculty of Advocates Roddy Dunlop tweeted: “Thomas Muir was NOT a barrister. He was an advocate. One maligned in his day, yet venerated now. Look him up.”

Thomas Ross QC said: “A little surprising that having gone to all that trouble they chose to describe him as a 'Scottish barrister'”. 

Muir founded the Scottish Association of the Friends of the People in 1792, in the hope he could establish a Scottish republic, and tried to persuade the French revolutionaries to invade Scotland. 

He is said to have advised French generals that 100,000 Scots would take up arms to join them. 

In 2020, Muir was restored to the roll of the Faculty of Advocates, 227 years after he was struck off after being indicted on a charge of sedition. 

It followed a campaign by Ross Macfarlane QC, who had found an old Court of Session order quashing a decree which declared Muir a fugitive. 

The decree had centred on Muir’s failure to attend a case against him, ignoring that he was in France with no means of returning home. 

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Found guilty, Muir was sent to Australia in 1793 but was able to escape and crossed the pacific to Canada, and then went to California. 

While returning to Europe, he was wounded in a gun battle between his Spanish ship and a blockading British fleet off Cadiz. 

Muir arrived in France, where he was treated as a hero. He died in Chantilly in 1799, aged 33. 

The mural was painted by the street artist Bobby McNamara, who works under the name Rogue One. It bears the quotation: “I have dedicated myself to the cause of the people. It is a good cause. It shall ultimately prevail.”