The History of Leith

November 25, 2012

Arms of the Wrights & Arms of the Masons (Maitland, 1753)

The terms of the Seal of Cause granted to the wrights and masons of Edinburgh on 15 October 1475 leave it rather unclear as to whether or not these craftsmen had already formed themselves into a recognised body. The main burden of their bill of supplication was concerned with establishing an altar of their own in St. Giles’ Church. It was to be dedicated to their patron saint, St. John the Evangelist, and also to St. John the Baptist, a most unusual combination. An interesting point is that the Seal of Cause was granted by the Provost, bailies, council “and the dekynnis of the hale craftismen of the burgh of Edinburgh”; this implies that a considerable number, if not actually all, of the incorporated trades already had some form of corporate identity with a deacon at their head, even though several incorporations had not by then been granted a Seal of Cause. for more click here

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