The History of Leith

January 6, 2012

The Lawnmarket in the past-Edinburgh

THE Lawnmarket is the general designation of that part of the town which is a continuation of the High Street, but lies between the head of the old West Bow and St. Giles’s Church, and is about 510 feet in length. Some venerable citizens still living can recall the time when this spacious and stately thoroughfare used to be so covered by the stalls and canvas booths of the “lawn-merchants,” with their webs and rolls of cloth of every description, that it gave the central locality an appearance of something between a busy country fair and an Indian camp. Like many other customs of the
olden time this has passed away, and the name alone remains to indicate the former usages of the place, although the importance of the street was such that its occupants had a community of their own called the Lawnmarket Club, which was famous in its day for the earliest possession of English and foreign intelligence.

source-Old and New Edinburgh c1885

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