The History of Leith

July 25, 2012

Stone coffins, or cists

At the north-western end of the Dean bridge is the-
Trinity Episcopal Church, built in 1838, from a1
design by John Henderson, in the later English
style, with nave, aisles, and a square tower. To the
north-eastward an elegant suburb extends away
down the slope until it joins Stockbridge, comprising
crescents, terraces, and streets, built between.
1850 and 1877.
Here some stone coffins, or cists, were found by
the vvorkmen, when preparing the ground for the
erection of Oxford Terrace, which faces the north,
and has a most commanding site; and in October,
1866, at the foundations of Lennox Street, which runs
southward from the terrace at an angle, four solitary
ancient graves were discovered a little below the
surface. ” They lay north and south,” says a local
annalist, ” and were lined with slabs of undressed
stone. The length of these graves was about
four feet, and the breadth little beyond two feet,
so that the bodies must have been buried in a
.sitting posture, or compressed in some way. This
must have been the case in the short cists or coffins
made of slabs of stone, while in the great cists,
which were about six feet long, the body lay at full
length.”

source-Old and New Edinburgh

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