Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1573-1589. Originally published by Scottish Burgh Records Society, Edinburgh, 1882.
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2 April 1580.
Villa, Rex, writting, Levings tounis, Hammiltoun, day of law.
The foresaidis baillies and counsale with the deikynis of barbouris, fleschouris, skynneris, baxteris, cordineris, and bonetmakeris, ordanis ane writting to be direct to the Kingis Maiestie declairing the townis pairt in the laitt tumult maid in the Hie Streitt of this burgh be the Levingstonis and Guildletis in the day of law betuix thame and the Hammiltounis, that his Hienes takna evill opinioun of the town, and directis Robert Ker, baillie, to pas to Stirling to his Grace with the said writting, granting him thair full power and commissioun to expone and declair the said mater and to mene the townis cawse quha ar daylie trublit and putt in hazard of thair lyffes in the dayes of law betuix pairteis, and thairfore to desyre and guid ordour to be taikin thairanent in tyme cuming, promisand to hald firme and stabill, etc.
6 April 1580.
Rex, villa, statute, dayes of law.
Robert Ker, baillie, reportit from our Soverane Lord his Hienes, letters of thanks to the guid toun for thair guid seruice in staying of truble the last day of law betuix the Hammiltounis and Guidlettis, desyring the guid towne in any lyke occasioun to interpone thame selffis with the lyke discretioun as the said lettre subscryuit be his Hienes at Stirling the fourt of Apryle instant purports; for obedience quhairof and staying of cummer in all tymes cuming, the saidis prouest, baillies, and counsale with ane greitt pairt of the dekynis being present, statutis and ordanis that vpoun lik day of law betuix greitt pairteis ane quarter of the toun be wairnit be the baillie of the quarter to be in thair airmour with thair said baillie reddy at all aventoures to stay all cummer, and the rest of the toun to be in reddynes to support and assist thair nychtbouris gif neid sall requyre, as thai sall happin to be wairnit be the commoun bell, and the absentis to be amerciat and vnlawit in the soume of xviij s. but fauouris; and this ordour to begyn on the nixt day of law at the Southeist quarter and swa furth to the Southuest, Northuest, and Northeist quarteris respectiue and successiue ilk ane after vther to proceid at all tyme cuming.
Cairnis, redare, bybill, Arbuthnet.
Jhone Cairnis, redare of this burgh, presentit ane new prentit bybill bund in blak lether, deliuerit to him be Alexander Arbuthnet for fulfilling of the ordour appoyntit to the said Alexander at the granting of licence to him to prent the said bybillis. And becaus the said Jhone declairit that he had payit for the binding thairof the sowm of twa merk, the said Alexander being alwayes bound to deliuer the sam frie of the bynding, thai ordane the said Alexander to be chairget to ansuer before thame on Fryday nixt and to cause refound the said sown, and the said Jhone Cairnis to be chairget with the said bybill heirafter.
Villa, Maweris mylne et precept the saurer.
It wes reportit be Henry Nesbitt, baillie, in name of the personis direct with him to visie the rowm at Maweris mylne conforme to the act maid thairvpoun, that the same is verray necessar and commodious for byging of ane hons and roume for keeping of the nychtbouris stufe cumand to grind at the said mylne; and thairfore the said baillies and counsale with the deikinis of the barbouris, baxteris, flescheouris, skynneris, hammermen, goldsmythis, tailyouris, wobsteris, and bonetmarkeris being personalie present, ordanis the theasurer to caus big ane sufficient hous at the west syde of the said mylne of fiftie fute of lenth and threttie fute of bried and of twa hous heicht, and the expenssis to be allowit in his comptis. And Thomas Andersoun, deikin of the baxteris, wes content and consentit for himself and in name of his said craft to red the rowme and boundis of the said house reddy to the bigging vpoun thair awn expenssis, the toun lenand to thame thair walklomes to that effect.
Vantroller, thesasurer, custome, buikis.
Ordanis acts to be direct chairgening Thomas Vantroller, buikseller, to mak payment to [the] theasaurer of the custome of all buikis brocht be him within this realm, vnder the payne of wairding.
15 April 1580.
Dry topsteris of outlandis aill dischairget.
Forsamekill as it is vnderstand and knawin vnto thame that the baill aill, run, ventit, toppit, and sawld within this burgh is browin furth of this burgh, quhairby the derth of aill is vphalden and the profeitt and commoditie thairof redounding to the vowtlandis browsteris is abstractit frome the friemenis and burgessis of the said burgh, as als the rent and proffeitt of thair commoun mylnes is be the samyn greitlie diminischet, and the haill body of this burgh havelie hurt and damnefeit, thairfore it is thocht expedient, statute, and ordanit be the saidis prouest, baillies, counsale, and deikynis, for the vniuersall weill of this burgh and inhabitantes thairof and for augmentatioun of the yeirlie revenew and commoditie of thair commoun mylnis, that na maner of persoun, friemen burgessis, or indwellaris of this burgh, tak vpoun hand fra this day furth to rin, vent, top or sell within thair landis, tavernis, and houssis any maner of ail quhilk is nocht browin within this burgh and friedome thairof be friemen, friemenis wyffes, and the wedowes of frie burgessis, dischairgeing all outlandis aill to be toppit or sauld within the same at any tyme heirefter, vender the payne of xviij s. to be taikin but fauouris of the contraueneris of this present ordinance for the first falt; and vnder the payne of xxxvj s. for the secund falt, and for the third falt to the spaynit frome all topping and selling of aill in tyme cuming during the will of the prouest and baillies of this burgh, quhilkis paynis sall be execut and vplifitit with all rigour, etc.
20 April 1580.
Javellour put in irnes.
Ordanis Robert Ker and Henry Nesbett to pas to the javellour hous of this burgh and thair caus putt Andro Lyndesay, thair javellour, in the irnes thair to remain quhill the morn at xj hours, and that for putting William Henrysoun, seruand to Michaell Gilbert, furth of the irne and to liberty by the townis command vsurpand thairby thair authority vpoun him.
New maid furlettis and pekkis.
Ordanis [three of the bailies, the dean of guild, and treasurer] to pas and caus mett and jadge the twa new maid furlettis and twa new pekkis; and to report thair answer vpoun mesor and quailitie thairof.
22 April 1580.
Knelandis, vnlawes, charge, gild.
Comperit Alexander and William Knelands, maltmen, quha beand accusit for making and selling of malt within the fredome of this burgh and vsing of the tred of merchandice within the same, thai being nather burgessis nor fremen, confessit thair falt and referrit thame selffis in the townis will; and the saidis prouest, baillies, and counsale, being avyset heirwith, adindgeit and decernit the saidis personis and euery ane of thame for thair trespas in ane vnlaw of fyve pund, and dischairgeit thame of all farther vsing of the said tred or ony wayes vsurping of the priuelege of ane frieman within the liberty and fredome of this burgh, ay and quhill thai mak thame selffis frie with the guidis toun, and ordanis Lucas Wilsoun, dene of gild, to be chargeit with the said vnlawis in his comptis; and Andro Kneland, seruitour to the laird of Lethingtoun, become souerty for payment of the said vnlawes.
29 April 1580.
Ker, sowldiour, putt to liberty.
Henry Blyth, chirurgeane, burges of this burgh, and Robert Young, barbour in Leyth, makis fayth that Robert Patie, sowldiour, laitlie hurt in singulare combatt be Andro Ker, sowldiour, in his left syde, is in na daynger of his lyfe of the said hurt, quhairfore tbai ordane the said Andro to be putt to liberty furth of waird vpoun cawtioun.
Baillies to reforme the insolence on Sounday.
For staying of the awld superstitioun and insolencie commounly vsit in the tyme of May, and in the somer seasoun, ordanis the baillies, euery ane thair day about, fra this day furth to Lambes nixt, to gif diligent attendance at euery Sounday at evin throw the streittis of this burgh that na sic superstitioun or insolence be done within the sam, and quhair any inormity sall happin to putt haisty remeid thairto, this ordour begynnand at the baillie of the sowth eist quarter and swa furth.
Cok, pryce of tymmer.
Thomas Cok, merchant, and awner of the ane half of the tymmer latlie cum hame fra Norway in the schip callit the [blank] of [blank] mayd fayth that the jc dailles may nocht be sawld better cheip nor xxx li; and the jc sparris nor ix li; quhairfore thai ordane the sam to be sawld na deirier.
The foresaidis baillies, and counsale, and deikynnis nominatis and creatis Jhone Someruell, messinger, thair officiar and seruand of court to execute be poynding or wairding and to vplift and resaue the dewtie of the puir, viz.:—xij d. of euery pund of all sowmes recouerit and decreittit before thame aganis quhatsumeuir personis, conform to the laitt act of parlyment maid anent wilfull pleyares within burgh.
4 May 1580.
Littill, baillie, calsay at the burialls.
Ordanis William Littill, baillie, to caus repair and mend the calsay betuix the stray merkett and the buriall place, with the reddiest money of the vnlawes of the maltmen of the south west quarter.
Burrow loch, precept, thesaurer.
Ordanis Andro Steuinsoun, thesaurer, to caus dam and hald in thair burrow loch, because it is fund that the lattin furth thairof is the principall caus of the scarcenes of watter and dryness of thair commoun wellis in the drowth and somer seasoun.
Seruing brewsteris from commoun wellis dischairgeit.
Forsamekill as it is perfytelie knawin and vnderstand to the prouest, baillies, and counsale of this burgh that be occasioun of the burnmen of the samyn and wemen watter bereris thairof drawin the watter furth of the commoun wellis thairof and seruing the brewsteris thairwith, the said wellis in the drouth and somer seasoun becumes swa dry and scant of watter that the towne can nocht be seruit, as als that the said wemen watter bereris ar the cheif instrumentis of all thift and harlettry committit within the samyn, and commoun banneris, sweireris, and blasphemeris of Godis name; thairfore it is thocht expedient and be thir presentis statute and ordanit that nane of the saidis burnemen and wemen bereris of watter presume or tak vpoun hand to draw and cary frome thair commoun wellis the watter furth thairof for seruing of the browsteris with the same, and that na maner of browsteris brew thair aill with the said watter of the commoun wellis in any tyme heirefter, and als that nane of the saidis wemen commoun bereris and draweris of watter at the said wellis presume to draw, cary, or beir any watter to the nychtobouris housis of this burgh within tyme cuming or exerce and hant any sic kynd of tred, bot that the nychtbouris serue thame selffis with the watter of the saidis commoun wellis be thame selffis be thair feyit and houshald seruandis as thai sall haif ado, dischairgeing the said wemen commoun bereris and draweris of watter of the said tred in all tymes heirafter.
6 May 1580.
Reid, day throw the toun.
[The bailies and council] grantis ane day throw the toun to Jhone Reid, cobler, and Janet Harvy, his spous, to impretrat the almous of the guid nychtbouris thairof on Mononday the [blank] day of May instant.
Ordanis the baillies with all possibill diligence to caus mak finis and sett furth the rolles for sustening of the pure of this burgh conforme to the act of parliament.
11 May 1580.
Smal put to liberty.
[Henry Lumsdaill, chirurgeon, having certified that a] seruand to the Erle of Argyle is in na perell nor daynger of his lyfe of the hurt and wound gevin him be Jhone Small, [he was put to liberty.]
13 May 1580.
Nesbett, Eley, Lord Oliphant.
[The provost, bailies, and council] appoyntis and nominatis Henry Nesbett, baillie, to pas and convene the xx day of May instant in the toun of Sanct Andrews in name of the guid toun, with the remanent commissoneris of burrowes appoyntit in the last conventioun of burrowes, to visie and sicht the heavin and harbary begun to be bigget in the Iland of the Eley be the laird of Ardro, and thair, efter sicht thairof, to intreat and concur in thair taxatioun, as wes ordanit and agreit in the said conventioun, gevand the said Henry thair full power and commissioun as the remanent nychtbouris and burrowes appoyntit to convene as said is sall haif, and ordanit alswa the said Henry to pas to my Lord Oliphant be the way and in place of Jhone Mayne to intreat with him as wes imponit to the said Jhone anent the benefice of Dumbarny and minister thairof.
18 May 1580.
Precept, thesaurer, Morame, officer.
[The provost, bailies, and council] being convenit in the counsale hous of this burgh, ordanis the said Andro Stevinsoun, thesaurer, to content and pay to Thomas Moram, porter of the Nether bow, the soume of ten merkis for his releif and sustentatioun, because he is hurt and woundet for the effairis of his office be certan wikket personis quhais names are nocht knawin, and hes nocht quhairwith to sustene himself.
25 May 1580.
Precept, thesaurer, Symth, gild officiar.
Ordanis Andro Stevinsoun, thesaurer, to deliuer to Jhone Smyth, gild officiar, the soum of thre pund in contentatioun of the garment quhilk the guid toun suld haif gevin him with the rest of the officiaris of this burgh at the Kingis Graces entrie.
27 May 1580.
Baillies of Leyth to tak Forester, Thomesoun, flescheour, for thair contempt.
Ordanis actis to be direct chairgeing the baillies of Leyth to serche, seik, tak, and apprehend William Forester, younger, Jhonn Thomesoun, tymmenrman, and Lawrence, flescheour in Leyth, and to bring thame to this burgh to be putt in waird for thair disobedience to the minister, eldares, and deykynis of thair awin kirk, thair to remane ay and quhill thai mak satesfactioun for the sam.
Villa, passages in Leyth and to the New heavin to be reformit.
Forsamekill as thai vnderstand that the hie passages leiding betuix the new heavin and this burgh ar grittumely nairowet be the nychtbouris circumiacent, and in many places incloseit, dyket vp, and haillie labourit and ceillit vp, and als that the hie passages and kairt gaittis within the toun of Leyth ar pairtlie nairowet and stoppet be casting of gottes and fowsis and setting vp of staynes that na kairtis may pas thairby, and be bigging and setting furth of choppis and stowppis of stairis and speciallie in the hie passage leiding by the landis of vmquhill Robert Patersoun in Leyth, now occupeit be his relict Jonet Cant and George Ker, skipper, hir spouse, as als in the Braid Wynd quhair thair is ane chop of new sett furth with stowppis of stairs be [blank] Wod, indwellare in Leyth, to the greitt hurt and damnage of our Souerane Lordis lieges resorting thairby and to the hurt of the priueleges and liberteis of this burgh; thairfore thai haif found, concludit, and decernit that the saidis prouest and baillies, with ane pairt of the counsale and honest nychtboures of this burgh, alsweill merchantis as craftismen, sall vpoun Tysday nixt in the morning pas and vsie the saidis hie streittis and passages, and quhair thai fynd the sam dyket vp and ceillit, to cast down the saidis dykes and make ane plane way thairof quhair the samyn hes bene of awld, and to pull vp the saidis goittis, remoue and tak away the saidis staynes, as als to demolische and cast doun the said chop and stowpes now bigget and sett vp be the said [blank] Wod in the said Braid Wynd and to remoue all vther impedimentis maid or laid in the Kingis hie streittis, conforme to the liberteis and priueleges of this burgh, and siclyke that the saidis prouest and baillies, at thair downe passing to Leyth, caus oppin proclamatioun be maid chairgeing all maner of personis that hes any victualles to sell in the said toun of Leyth incontinent thairafter mak patent and oppin the duries of thair selleris, buithis, loftes, and girnelles quhair the said victuall lyes to all our Souerane Lordis lieges quha lykes to by, and fra thinfurth to hald the samyn oppin and patent in tyme cuming daylie, fra sex houris of the morning to sex houris at evin, vnder na les payne nor confiscatioun of thair stufe quhensoeuir the saidis houssis beis fund closit; and the said proclamatioun being maid, gif any of the said selleris buithis, loftes, or girnelles beis found steiket or lokket, that thai caus the samyn be strukkin vp immediatly thairafter and maid patent to all our Souerane Lordis lieges quha lykes to by vpoun resonabill pryces, and this because it is heavelie lamentit and complenit in name of the puir, as also oppinly bruittet that the saidis victualles ar huirdet vp and kepit to ane derth be dyuers wikket and avaricious personis auneris thairof, and thairfore ordanis the premissis to be done and putt to extreme executioun the said day but forther delay.
1 June 1580.
Craftis ansuer for sustening of thair awin puir.
In presens of [the provost, bailies, and council] comperit the dekynes of craftes efter following:—[here follow the names] quhilkis haill persounis for thame selffes and in name of the craftis and haill dekynes and craftis of this burgh, after diuers termes assignit to thame and the last deikynes of craftes, thair predicessoures, to gif thair fynal ansuer and resolutioun anent the ordour to be tane for sustening of the puir of this burgh and keping of thame frome begging, conforme to the last act of parliament, for fynal ansuer declairit and offerit to sustene and hald fra begging, vpoun the chairges of the craftes, thair awin puir and all decayet and faylit persounes, als weill frie as vnfrie, that hes bene of any craft, with thair wyffes, bairnis, and seruandes, and disassentit to all contributiounis to be vniuersallie vpliftet of all the nychtbouris of this burgh owerheid for sustening of the haill puir thairof in generall, and to any vther ordour to be tane for thair pairt except as is before rehersit and offerit be thame.
Dalmahoy to remote his stoppis.
After consideratioun of the supplicatioun gevin in be Jhonn Dalmahoy in Leyth, desyring licence to retene and hald the twa stane stoppis quhilk is the entres to his littill hous in the Kingis wark in Leyth lyand in the Braid Wynd, fyndes the said stoppis with the saitt besyde to narow the hie passages in the said wynd; and thairfore ordanis the said Jhone to remoue and tak away the saidis stoppes and saittes with all diligence, vnder the payne of wairding of his persoun.
Morame, officiar, curing of his wounde.
Vpoun consideratioun of the supplicatioun gevin in for the pairt of Thomas Morame, officiar, quha wes laitlie hurt be sum wikket persounis as yitt vnknawin, for executioun of his office, be being ane commoun seruand to the towne and suld be in thair protectioun, mening that the chirurgeanes dowtting of payment ar become slak in thair cure, and that becaus of his inwart belyding, being strukkin throw the body, necessary it is to him to be purget be within be medecines and oyntments, ordanis Henry Nesbet and William Littill, baillies, and Andro Steuinsoun, thesaurer, to tak sic ordour with the said chirurgeanes and medicines as that thai be nocht negligent, bot that the said Thomas be diligently handlit and curit as thai will ansuer vpoun thair office and perell.
8 June 1580.
Precept, thesaurer, maister of maister of sang schole.
[The bailies and council] ordanis Andro Steuinsoun, thesaurer, to content and pay to Andro Buchane, maister of the sang schole, the sowm of ten merk for the Witsounday termes fie awand to him be the guid toun for his said office, togidder with the sowm of vther ten merk for the said termes maill of the said sang schole.
Precept, thesaurer, Cairnis, reidare.
Ordanis Andro Steuinsoun, thesaurer, to pay to Jhone Cairnis, reidar, the sowm of twa markis quhilk the said Jhone payet and avanceit for binding of the new prentit bybke pertening to the guid toun and being in his handis.
10 June 1580.
Watter yett oppinit.
Ordanes the kepares of the keyis of the watter yett to mak the same patent to the nychtbouris of this burgh and of the Cannonegaitt, fra fyve houris in the morning to awcht houris at evin, for the space of xv dayes, for transporting of thair fuilzie; and this sall be ane sufficient wairand to the said keparis.
College dykes, precept, theasurer.
Ordanis Andro Steuinsoun, thesaurer, to visie the dykes about the Quenis collge or new hospitall, and to repair the decayet places thairof, and speciallie to big vp and repair the same at the west end of the town wall, and sowth end of the new aisler wark, that na persounis mak thair passages thairat.
15 June 1580.
Littill, orchard litt.
Ordanis William Littill, baillie, to pas to Leyth and caus serche and seik quhair any of the orchard litt or sic fals litt laitly cum hame, contrair the townes proclamatioun, may be fund, and to inuentour the sam and putt it vnder arrest, that ordour may be tane thairwith be the counsale the nixt day.
Precept, theasurer, Morame, officiar.
[The bailies and council] ordanis Andro Steuinsoun, thesaurer, to content and pay to Robert Henrysoun and James Lindsay, chirurgeanes, the sowm of twenty pund for thair curing and handling of Thomas Morame, officiar, of the hurt and woundis gevin to him be certane personis as yitt vnknawen [blank] syne or thairby; and siclyke to pay to Adame Diksoun, apothecare, the sowm of fyftie schillingis for his drogis ministrat to the said Thomas the said tyme.
Licence to Broun, Inglisman, to dispone his beynis.
Grantis licence to James Broun, Inglishman, to sell and dispone in smalles to friemen the beynis brocht in be him at Leyth, vpon sic resonabill pryces as he may gett thairfore.
24 June 1580.
Precept, theasurer, Leyth Wynd, West Port, and playfeild.
Ordanis Andro Steuinsoun, thesaurer, with all possibill diligence to caus mend and repair the gaitt fornent the playfeild, the town wall aboue the West Port, and the calsayt of Leyth Wynd.