The History of Leith

June 16, 2011

South Leith Taken Over

2nd May 1655.—The which day Major Pearson Town Major of this Garrison came to James Stevinson .our present Thesaurer (by order of Timothie Wilks Governor Deput) and requyred the keyes of our Church door from us saying the Deputie would not suffer any Scots Minister to preach yr till farder order.
(Note.—The loyalty of the Scottish clergy to the King has been noted above, and as a result of this loyalty they rebelled against the regime of the Commonwealth. On Sunday 1st May the Rev. John Hog
prayed for King Charles, and indulged in some plain speaking regarding the Government. In this way he offended General Monk with the result that the Governor Depute next day took summary possession
of the church. One writer asserts that the church was at this time sacriligiously converted into a stable, adding that “a company of his Ironsides with their right hands (i.e. horses) abased the temple.” Dr
Robertson in his book remarks that no authority exists for this save vague tradition to which one may attach whatever importance he may deem fit. He adds that the vaults of the Trinity House were employed for “stores for the army,” and duly paid for. It should be remembered that a similar tradition about Cromwell exists in regard to York Minster and several churches in Scotland and England. Thus it has been stated that St. Cuthbert’s Church was converted into a barracks.)

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