History of Leith, Edinburgh

Archive for 2011

Death of David I

Friday, December 16th, 2011

In the priory of Hexham, which was then in Scottish territory, David I was found dead, in a posture of devotion, on the 24th of May, 1153, and was succeeded by his grandson Malcolm IV. who,. though he frequently resided in Edinburgh Castle, considered Scone his capital rather than Edinburgh.
In 1153 he appointed Galfrid de Melville, of Melville in Lothian, to be sheriff of the fortress, and became a great benefactor to the monks, within it.

source-Old and New Edinburgh

sair sanct for the crown

Friday, December 16th, 2011

David—” sair sanct for the crown” though King James I. is said to have styled him—was one of the best of the early kings of Scotland. ” I have seen him,” remarks Aldred, ” quit his horse and dismiss his hunting equipage when any, even the humblest of his subjects, desired an audience; he sometimes employed his leisure hours in the culture of his garden, and in the philosophical amusement of budding and engrafting trees.”

source-Old and New Edinburgh

Canons Regular

Friday, December 16th, 2011

Canons Regular are members of certain bodies of Canons living in community under the Augustinian Rule (“regula” in Latin), and sharing their property in common. Distinct from monks, who live a cloistered, contemplative life and sometimes engage in ministry to those from outside the monastery, the purpose of the life of a canon is to engage in public ministry of liturgy and sacraments for those who visit their churches (historically the monastic life was by its nature lay, whereas canonical life was essentially clerical). Distinct from Clerks Regular (Regular Clerics)—an example of which is the Society of Jesus—they are members of a particular community of a particular place, and are bound to the public praying of the Liturgy of the Hours in choir. for more click here

John Bellenden

Friday, December 16th, 2011

A Scotch poet, b. at Haddington or Berwick in the latter part of the fifteenth century; d. at Rome, c. 1587. for more click here

Feast of the Cross

Friday, December 16th, 2011

In the Christian liturgical calendar, there are several different Feasts of the Cross, all of which commemorate the cross used in the crucifixion of Jesus. While Good Friday is dedicated to the Passion of Christ and the Crucifixion, these days celebrate the cross itself, as the instrument of salvation. for more click here

Augustinians

Friday, December 16th, 2011

he term Augustinians, named after Saint Augustine of Hippo (354–430), applies to two separate and unrelated types of Catholic religious orders: for more click here

David Dalrymple, Lord Hailes

Friday, December 16th, 2011

Sir David Dalrymple, 3rd Baronet, Lord Hailes (October 28, 1726 – November 29, 1792) was a Scottish advocate, judge and historian, born in Edinburgh. for more click here

legend of the White Hart

Friday, December 16th, 2011

“THE well-known legend of the White Hart,” says Daniel Wilson, ” most probably had its origin in some real occurrence, magnified by the superstition of a rude and illiterate age. More recent observations at least suffice to show that it existed at a much earlier date than Lord Hailes referred it to.”
It is recorded that on Rood-day, the i4th of September, in the harvest of 1128, the weather being fine and beautiful, King David and his courtiers, after mass, left the Castle by that gate
before which he was wont to dispense justice to his people, and issued forth to the chase in the wild country that lay around—for then over miles of the land now covered by the new and much of the
old city, for ages into times unknown, the oak-trees of the primeval forest of Drumsheugh had shaken down their leaves and acorns upon the wild and now extinct animals of the chase. And here it
may be- mentioned that boars’ tusks of most enormous size were found in 1846 in the bank to the south of the half-moon battery, together with an iron axe, the skull and bones of a man.
On this Rood-day we are told that the king issued from the Castle contrary to the advice of his confessor, Alfwin, an Augustinian monk of great sanctity and learning, who reminded him that it was the feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, and should be passed in devotion, not in hunting; but of this advice the king took no heed. Amid the dense forest and in the ardour of the chase he became separated from his train, in ” the vail that lyis to the eist fra the said castell,” and found himself at the foot Of the stupendous crags, where, ” under the shade of a leafy tree,” he was almost immediately assailed by a white stag of gigantic size, which had been maddened by the pursuit, ” noys and dyn of bugillis,” and which, according to Bellenden, was now standing boldly at bay, and, with its branching antlers, put the life of the pious monarch in imminent jeopardy, as he and his horse were both borne to the ground. With a short hunting-sword, while fruitlessly endeavouring to defend himself against the infuriated animal, there appeared—continues the legend—a silver cloud, from the centre of which there came forth a hand, which placed in that of David a sparkling cross of miraculous construction, in so far that the material of which it was composed could never be discovered. Scared by this interposition, the white stag fled down the hollow way between the hills, but was afterwards slain by Sir Gregan Crawford, whose crest, a stag’s head erased with a cross-crosslet between the antlers, is still borne by his descendants, the Crawfords of Kilbirnie, in memory of that eventful day in the forest of Drumsheugh.
Thoughtful, and oppressed with great awe, the king slowly wended his way through the forest to the Castle ; but the wonder did not end there, for when, after a long vigil, the king slept, there appeared by his couch St. Andrew, the apostle of Scotland, surrounded by rays of glory, instructing him to found, upon the exact spot where he had been miraculously saved, a twelfth monastery for
the canons regular of St. Augustine ; and, in obedience to this vision, he built the noble abbey of Holyrood, ” in the little valley between two mountains”—i.e., the Craigs and the Calton.
Therein the marvellous cross was preserved till it was lost at a long subsequent period; but, in memory of St. David’s adventure on Rood-day, a stag’s head with a cross between the antlers is still
borne as the arms of the Canongate. Alfwin was appointed first abbot, and left a glorious memory for many virtues.* Though nobly endowed, this famous edifice was not built for several years, during which the monks were received into the Castle, and occupied buildings which had ^een previously the abode of a community of nuns, who, by permission of Pope Alexander III., were removed, the monks, as Father Hay tells us, being deemed ” as fitter to live among soldiers.” Abbot William appears, in 1152, as second superior of the monks in the Castrum Puellarum, where they resided till 1176.

source-Old and New Edinburgh

Red is for ruthless: Rare Jolly Roger pirate flag captured in north Africa battle 230 years ago goes on show for first time

Friday, December 16th, 2011

It was used to frighten passing ships into surrendering without a fight – the red background meaning the pirates would give no quarter if a battle commenced. Now a rare 18th Century Jolly Roger flag captured in 1780 has gone on display for the first time. for more click here

Yonder prodigy portends either the ruin of a nation or the downfall 8F some great prince;

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

The aged King Robert III. and his queen, the once beautiful Annabella Drummond, resided in the Castle and in the abbey of Holyrood alternately. We are told that on one occasion, when the Duke
of Albany, with several of the courtiers, were conversing one night on the ramparts of the former, a singular light was seen far off at the horizon, and across the starry sky there flashed a bright meteor, carrying behind it a long train of sparks. ” Mark ye, sirs ! ” said Albany, ” yonder prodigy portends either the ruin of a nation or the downfall 8F some great prince;” and an old chronicler omits not to record that the Duke of Rothesay (who, had he ascended the throne, would have been David III.), perished soon after of famine, in the hands of Ramornie, at Falkland.

source-Old and New Edinburgh

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