The History of Leith

October 20, 2012

The Little Lass in Newhaven.”

Perhaps the most pleasing Newhaven memories
associated with those of James IV. are connected with
the nameless little Newhaven girl to whose identity we
have no clue whatever, for the king never speaks of
her except as ” the little lass.” Children, unless they
are of royal blood, do not figure largely in State documents,
and are not often met with in local history.
King James, however, always seemed to be specially
interested in them ; it might be because he had lost
so many of his own, ” which grevit him sae sair that
he wald not be comforted.” He possessed in a very
high degree all that charm of manner so characteristic
of the Stuarts, which drew to him both young and old.
At Newhaven we see James’s love for children shown
in his interest in this little nameless lass, whose charm
and grace of manner seem to have been no less attractive
than his own, and whose little heart he was wont to
make glad on his visits to his dockyards with the small
money gift of a groat, perhaps to buy strawberries from
one of those sunny gardens where they used to ripen so
early, or, if autumn were the season, to purchase honey
pears from the fruitseller at the pier end. What an
interesting story of child life in the days when James
IV. was king might be written round the title, ” The
Little Lass in Newhaven.”

source-The Story pf Leith

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