The History of Leith

September 23, 2008

St Ninians, Leith


(c) John Arthur

Leith never had a connection with St Ninian however we have a St Ninian Church and Manse which originaly was the chapel of St Nicholas Hospice in North Leith. Could this be the origins of it as the knights who came to Leith came from Torphichen. If this is correct then it follows that the knights of St John also founded the St Nicholas Hospice-

“In the 5th century St Ninian is remembered for bringing the Christian faith to West Lothian Scotland and building there a small chapel in the village of Torphichen.

Seven centuries later the Knights of St. John established their Scottish headquarters (preceptory) at Torphichen and incorporated the St Ninian’s chapel into their newly constructed (Norman) church, 1168. As a result the Knights dedicated the building to their founder, John the Baptist, while dedicating one of its side altars to St Ninian. A hospital existed on the upper floor of the transept.”

Source-Torphichen Church & Torphichen Preceptory and the Knights of St John

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