The History of Leith

February 20, 2013

The Stranger

18 Aprill 1647.—It was desyred yat ye
magistrats should cause make intimaone throw
ye towne be tucke of drum yat no heritors or
landlairds sett (i.e., let) houses within yis
congregaon to any stranger and new incomer
who haith not a lawful testimonial under ye
pain
(Note.—A stranger entering the town intending
to stay for any time required to have with him a
testimonial from the Kirk Session of the parish whence
he came. Without this passport he was in the eye of
the church a scandalous person, or as we should say
now, an undesirable alien; and he was promptly
compelled to leave the town. One author writing
at this date says that no scandalous person could
live unknown, no scandal could be concealed in all
Scotland, so strict was the correspondence between
the various ministers and congregations.)

source-The South Leith Records

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