The History of Leith

February 8, 2011

Cock fighting on Leith Links

A teacher of fencing and Cock fighting In Edinburgh, published an “‘ Essay on the Innocent and Royal Recreation and Art of Cocking,” from which it may be learned that he it was who introduced it into the metropolis of Scotland, and entered into it con amore

“I am not ashamed to declare to the world,” he wrote, ” that I have a special veneration and esteem for those Gentlemen, without and about this city, who have entered in society for propagating and establishing the royal recreation of cocking, ln order to which they have already erected a cockpit in the Links of Leith; and I earnestly wish that their generous and laudable example may be imitated in that degree that, in cock-war, village may be engaged against village, city against city,
kingdom against kingdom—nay, father against son —until all the wars in Europe, where so much Christian blood is spilt, may be turned into the innocent pastime of cocking,”
This barbarous amusement was long a fancy of the Scottish people, and the slain birds and fugies {or cravens) became a perquisite of the village schoolmaster.

Some Text