Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1573-1589. Originally published by Scottish Burgh Records Society, Edinburgh, 1882.
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5 July 1581.
Wechtt of the woll mercatt.
Ordanis Jhone Sym, James Nicoll, baillies, to pas with the dene of gild throw the merchantis buithis and visy and trye the justices of thair wechtis of pund and stayne seruing the woll mercatt, and to putt refermatioun thairto.
Aisler staynes, calsayes.
Ordanis James Nicoll, baillie, with the persounis before namet, to tak ordour for vpbringing of the aisler staynis cum fra Sanct Colmes Inche and to see the sam placet in the over kirkyaird, and siclyke that thai intreat with the inhabitantis of Leyth for leding of staynes to repairing of the calsayes betuix this burgh and Leyth.
7 July 1581.
[The bailies and council] ordanis the sowth loch to be viseit quhilk is allegeit to be lattin furth by thair command and to the hurt of the toune in this tyme of drowth, and names to the visiting thairof the saidis Henry Nesbet, Alexander Vddert, Robert Bog, William Littill and James Ros.
Aisler staynes, cariage thairof.
Ordanis the aisler staynes pertening to the guid towne and lyand besyde the schore of Leyth to be cairtit and transportit to the over kirkyaird of this burgh, and the thesaurer to agrie with the cairteris and workmen for careing thairof, and thai to haif fyve pund allenarly for the cariage of ilk hundreth staynes.
19 July 1581.
Wod in Leyth, stoupis of his stair there.
Appoyntis James Nicol, baillie, Jhonn Robertsoun, thesaurer, and Androw Steuinsoun to pas and visy the grund and land of Thomas Wod, in the Bred Wynd of Leyth and to se that the said Thomas mak na alteratioun nor novatioun in chayngeing of the stouppis of his stairis of the said land by the awld places the sam stuid into of before, and that the wynd be nocht nairowet nor na ma stowppis sett vp nor wes of awld.
21 July 1581.
Moreis involuntate, chairge, thesaurer.
Dauid Moreis, merchant, beand callit and accusit for bying, pakking, metting, and mesvring within the vnfrie towne of Leyth of foure hundreth elmis of plaiding contrair to the liberty of this burgh, and confessand the metting thairof wes adiugeit and decernit in ane vnlaw of ten pundis to be payet to Jhone Robertsoun, thesaurer, and bestowet on reparatioun of the calsayes betuix and Leyth, for the quhilk it wes promist to the said Dauid that gif he sall fynd and delaitt ony persounis weyand irne or lint, pakking or metting in the said towne of Leyth, and the sam beis tryet to be of verity, to caus that persoun or persounis to pay to him agane the said x li.
26 July 1581.
Assignatioun, for payment of the xm merkis.
Alexander Vddert, baillie, producet ane act of secreitt counsale quhair the Kingis hes maid the guid towne assignatioun to thair awin pairt of the generall extent of xlm li. and to the sowme of [blank] of the first termes payment of the dewty of the cungyehous awand to his Grace be the takkismen thairof quhilk suld be payit the last of Nouember nixt.
28 July 1581.
Anent the nichtbouris that lent the xm markis.
In presens of [the provost, bailies, and council] the nichtbouris quha lent the xm merk being assemblit at the counsalehous dur and incallit, and the assignatioun maid to the towne be the Kingis Grace for payment of the said sowm being red and publist to thame, thai desyrit be the mowth of Alexander Scott gif the takkismen wald accept the said assignatioun, to quhome it wes ansuerit be Henry Nesbet that gif the Kingis Grace nather reuokit the said assignatioun nor tak, and gif thai remanit dettouris to his Grace at the day of payment thai wald accept the sam and pay thair nychtbouris before ony vtheris, and it wes declairit to the saidis nychtbouris be the saidis provest, baillies, and counsale that gif thai gatt nocht payment at the day, thai suld be infeft according to the act maid xv. Martii last wes, and thair annuellis payit thame thankfullie.
2 August 1581.
[Ale to be sold not dearer than 9d. the pint.]
Repairing the hospitale, chairge, nychtbouris thairof.
Vnderstanding that the sowme of [blank] is collected and gadderit of the guid will of certane of the sessioun and guid nychtbouris of this burgh for reparatioun of the new hospitale in the Trinity College, ordanis Thomas Aikinheid and Andro Sclateris, maisteris of the said hospitale, to resaue the said money and imploy the sam in repairing of the said hospitale, and to be comptabill thairfor to the guid towne.
4 August 1581.
Harlotis and vicious persounis.
[The provost, bailies, and council] consentis and ordanis that ilk baillie in his quarter sall concure with the ministeris and eldaris to pas and visy the samyn for purgeing thairof fra the greitt multitude of harlottis and vitious persounis quhairwith this toune is now replenescheit.
Proclamatioun for keping the Sabboth day, &c.
For suppressing of the greitt insolence and profanatioun of the Saboth day, ordanis proclamatioun to be maid throw this burgh dischairgeing all kynd of gemmis and playis now commonly visit the said day, sic as bowling in yairdis, dansing, playing, rynning throw the hie streittis of husseis, bairnis, and boyes, with all maner of dissolution of behaviour, with command to all maisteris of houssis to gif dilligent attendance on thair seruandis, bairnis, and famelis that thai keip the preicheing be exerceit, in all godly conuersatioun, and refrayne fra the wantones before rehersit, vnder the payne of viij dayes imprisonment of the persounis doing contrair this proclamatioun and payment of xx s. besydes the imprisonment of the said maisteris of houshald at the will of the magestratis, and for the better execution heirof willis the baillies to owersey the streittis and houssis thair owlk about, and Jhone Sym, baillie, to begyn the nixt Sonday and sua furth als weill Sounday as tyme of seruice.
Repairing the calsayes betuix and Leyth.
Becaus Jhone Robertsoun, thesaurer, is enterit to the bigging, mending, and repayring of the calsayes betuix this and Leyth, ordanis Jhone Sym, baillie, [and four others] to be visitouris of the said wark and concure with the thesaurer in devysing the best and maist substantious way of making thairof, and thair counsale and jugement to be followet thairinto.
Vnderstanding that the officiaris of this burgh thocht thai be mony yitt oft tymes ar of the streittis and can nocht be had quhen thair is ado with thame, statutes and ordanis that at ilk ane of the places following to witt, betuix the over trone and auld tolbuith at the croce, and at the Blakfreir Wynd heid, twa of thame thair owlk about awaitt contenually quhair thai may be fund at all tymes reddy to all pairteis haveand ado to serue as thai suld be chairget or requyrit in thair offices, vnder payne of tynsale of his office to him or thame that sall be fund furth of the said places in thair awin tyme except quhen thai ar making chairges or at the tolbuith, and the rest to awaitt on my lord prouest and baillies.
16 August 1581.
Wecht of the tounis syluer maser.
In presens of [the provost, bailies, and council] the townis syluer mase being producet and weyit be Adame Craig, goldsmyth, wes fund to extend to twa pund fourtene vnce and ane half trie and all, and incontinent thairafter delyuerit to Robert Stewart, towne maser.
22 August 1581.
[The provost, bailies, and council] ordanis proclamatioun to be maid throw this burgh that na maner of personis by ony talloun or vther forbidden guidis ta sell agane or transport furth of the country, vnder payn of escheitt theirof and tynsale of thair fredome.
23 August 1581.
[The provost, bailies, and council] ordanis proclamatioun to be maid throw this burgh, toune, and schore of Leyth anent the mesoures as after followes, to witt, forswamekill as in tymes past thair hes bene vsit within this burgh and fredome thairof and in the towne of Leyth ane greitt diuersity of pek and furlott and siclyke far different fra the awld mesouris of the realme, to the greitt hurt of the puir and all our Souerane Lordis lieges, thairfore commanding and chairgeing in our said Souerane Lordis name and in name and behalf of the prouest and baillies of this burgh that na maner of persounis, baxteris, meilmen, or ony vtheris topperis and ventares of victuall tak vpoun hand to sell, mett furth, resaue, or vse fra the feist of Michaelmes nixt ony vther mesour of pek and furlett and siclyke nor that quhilk sall be maid agreand to the townis mesouris laitlie maid, and that thai brek downe and destroy thair awld mesouris and mak new conforme to the said townis mesouris, sufficientlie bandit with irne lyke to the sam in all sortis, fra the said day furth vnder the payne of breking of thair vther mesures and payment of ane vnlaw of ten pund sua oft as thai failyie.
Villa, Wawchop, talloun, flescheoures, candilmakeris.
Anent ane pretendit licence obtenit be maister Adame [blank] francheman, chirurgeane, fra our Souerane Lord, with avyse of the secreitt counsale, for bying four last of talloun ryndet and vnryndet and transporting thairof furth of the realme, as the said licence subscryuet be the Kingis Grace and vnder the signet past and allowet in counsale of the daitt the first of July last perportis, quhilk licence George Wawchop, merchant, hes bocht fra the said francheman for twenty crownis as he allegeit, becaus the sam is hurtfull to the commoun weill and ane preparatiue quhilk wold nocht be lattin to tak effect, and becaus the said George declairit he beand na loser wald agrie thairto as nocht willing to vnderly the bruitt and indignatioun of the pepill; thairfoir it is appoyntit betuix the saidis prouest, baillies, and counsale in name of the guid towne on the ane pairt and the said George in the vther pairt, that he sall renunce the said licence and rycht thairof and delyuer the same to thame to be cancellat or vsit at thair plesour, lykeas he presentlie renunceit and delyuerit the said licence to that effect; for the quhilk caus thai faythfullie promittit that he sall be na loser thairby, bot to caus the talloun bocht be him als weill ryndet and vnryndet to be tane of his hand, and the pryce he gaif thairfor with all vncostes maid thairon to be payit to him, and lykewayes pay to him the said xx crownis or fourty sevin pund for the said crownis and this within xiiij dayes nixt heirafter, and for performing heirof he to gif vp the names of the fleschouris selleris to him of the talloun, the nummer and quantity bocht fra thame, with the names of the candilmakeris randeris thairof and vncostes maid thairon, and hes ordanit that the saidis flescheouris be compellit to resaue thair talloun vnryndet bak agane and refound the pryces thairof, and if that is ryndet thai compellis the candilmakeris to resaue and pay thairfor with the vncostis thairof; and the saidis fleschoures and candilmakeris to be callit for breking the statutes of the towne and actis of parliament and vnlawet but favouris, and the vnlawes to pay the said xx crownis.
Clavy, nether kirk yaird, landis in Bethis Wynd.
Ordanis Johne Clavie, candilmaker, to big up and close with ruch wark in massiue wall the duris and windowes on the eist syde of his land at the fute of Bethis Wynd toward the nether kirk yaird, and to tak furth the soillis and lintellis that na monument thairof remayne heirafter, becaus the sam is bigget be him aganis all guid nychtbourheid, quhilk gevis him na sic priuelege on that syde of his land, and is hurtfull to the towne in thair property of the said yaird, and the baillies to se this ordinance tak effect, and lykewayis to caus the haill landis thair about to be formit in lykemaner conforme to dyuers actis maid thairvpoun of before.
24 August 1581.
Nichtbouris that lent the xm merkis.
In presens of the prouest, baillies, and counsale the nichtboures that lent the xm merkis being callit in, and ane lettre sent to thame and the town fra the Kingis Grace desyring in effect that thai wald superseid and prolong the day of payment appoyntit to thame in his Hienes assignatioun to the dewty of the cungyehous being oppinly red vnto thame, thai ansuerit that thai wald haif executioun of the act maid xv Martii 1580, becaus the Kingis Grace wes na debtour to thame, bot the toune; quhairfore this day aucht dayes wes appoyntit for thame to convene of new and forther ordour to be tane heiranent, and in the mean tyme the baillies comptis of the said money and of the extent to be hard and maid.
25 August 1581.
Precept, thesaurer, javelour, coillis.
Ordanis Jhone Robertsoun, thesaurer, to pay and avance to Andro Lindsay, javelour, the sowm of ten pund for bying and making prouisioun for coillis aganis the nixt wynter seasoun to serue the guid town and sessioun.
30 August 1581.
Dowglas, chairge, gild.
Ordanis Jhone Douglas, tailyeour, to pay to the dene of gild ten schillingis for his falt in raising and drawing of ane young trey in the buriale yarde plantit be the town fornent his hous, and nocht to do the lyke heirefter vnder the paynes of gritt pvnisement.
Miller put to liberty, chairge, thesaurer.
Comperit Gilbert Primrose, James Craig, and James Lindsay, chirurgeanes, and maid fayth that thai had sene the hurt and wound of Howsteane Braikinrig, butterman, gevin him be Rychert Miller, quha hes remanit the dew tyme in waird, and declairit that the said Howsteane is in na daynger of his lyfe of the said wound, quhairfoir thai ordanit the said Rychert to be putt to liberty vpoun cautioun for his re-entry, at pairties entres haveand entres, and vpoun payment to the towne of fyve pund of bludewyte [and surety was found].
8 September 1581.
Falaw putt in dyngwall.
In consideratioun of the supplicatioun gevin in before thame be Margaret and Agnes Inglissis, dochteris to Christiane Falaw, desyring that thair said mother quha is detenit in warde for fornicatioun and wer nocht putt to an oppin schame, to the dishonour of the saidis compleneris hir bairnis, and in respect that sche hes bein licht this viij yeir, sum vther pvnisement wer inputt to hir, ordanis hir to be put in dyngwall induring the townis will the compleneris sustenand hir thair, and Archibald Someruell, butterman, become guid for hir sustentatioun in the said place.
13 September 1581.
Thesaurer, flescheouris stok maillis.
Comperit Jhone Henrysoun, dekyn, Rychert Henrysoun, William Diksoun, and Robert Purfes, brether of the flescheour craft of this burgh, and for thame selffis and in name of the rest of thair brether occupearis of the flesche stokis of the said burgh, actit thame selffis to pay to the thesaureris of this burgh for the tyme in name of the guid towne for the maillis of the said flesche stokis of the yeir to cum, the soum of threttie sevin pund, the ane half at Mairtymes nixt, the vther half at Witsounday nixt thairafter.
18 September 1581.
Anent the new custome of Scottis clayth in France, factouris in Deip.
James Nicoll, baillie, exhibit and produceit ane mass of lettres direct to the guid [town] fra the factouris of Dieppe in France, quhilk being oppinit and red contenit ane bill fra the saidis factouris concerning the laitt impost laitlie raisit vpoun all Scottis clayth cumand to France be the Kingis fermieris for the seilling and visitatioun thairof, declairing that thai had obtenit ane decreit of the King and his counsale aganis the said fermier, willing that our natioun suld be als frie in thair trafficque as thai wer wont to be, and chairgeing the saidis fermieris to tak the said custome of his awin subiectis and nocht vpoun our natioun, and thairfor the saidis factouris desyrit the townis testificatioun vnder thair seill of caus avowing thame to be thair seruandis in susteining the liberteis of the cuntrey, and forther desyring ordour to be tane with the nychtbouris cumand thair quha volundlie payis the saidis customes that thai tyne nocht the caus won, as at lenth is contenit in the said bill, and als conteining ane copy of the said decreitt in Fraynce, togidder with the copies of twa vther lettres in Fraince of the drapieris and fermieris supplicatiounis gevin in to the King of France and for ordour to be tane anent the premissis, ordanis the nichtbouris merchantis to be wairnit and convenit the morne.
19 September 1581.
Factouris in Deip, new impost on Scottis clayth.
[The bailies and council] and ane greitt pairt of the merchantis nychtboures of this [burgh,] convenit for ordour to be tane anent the billis cum from Deip concerning the custome of Scottis clayth conforme to the act maid heirvpoun yisterday, ordanis that ane bill be sent to the factouris in Deip thanking thame of travell and paynis, and desyring thame to send the compt of thair expenssis maid in the said caus, togidder with the impost and sowmes vpliftet be thame for rambursing of thair saidis expenssis, and dischairgeing thame of all forther vplifting and exacting of the samyn, and quhair thai desyrit ane testificatioun of thair seruice, continueis the sam to the nixt conventioun of burrowes, quhair thai ordane the said mater to be proponit to the commissioneris of the burrowes; als ordanit ane lettre to be sent to the magestratis of Deip desyring thair concurrance and mantenance of the Kingis sentence and to defend the priueleges of our natioun, and for remeid aganis sic as may preinge the natioun be thair voluntare payment of the said new impost of the clayth, hes accordet and agreit, and als statutes and ordanis that na merchant or traffiquer pay the said clayth custom quhilk is twa sowlz of ilk pece clayth in ony tyme cuming, inhibiting and dischairgeing thame thairof vnder the payne of twenty crownis to be tayne of thame, and euery ane of thame, swa oft as thai do the samyn; the quarter thairof to the revelare and apprehendare of thame thairwith, and the rest to the common guid of the burgh but favouris.
27 September 1581.
Precept, thesaurer, clerkis.
Ordanis Jhone Robertsoun, thesaurer, to pay to the clerkis for writting the missiues to the burrowes the sowm of thretty schillingis for thair drink syluer.
29 September 1581.
Alexander Legatt, indweller in the Cannogaitt, being accusit for pakking of certane pledding in Leyth, confest the sam and cum in will thairfor, and forther oblist himself to cum and dwell in this burgh at Witsonday nixt and nocht to remane ony langer in the Cannogaitt gif he dwelt in this cuntrey, vnder the payne of jc li. that he sall mak na merket of his merchandice owtwith ane frie burgh bot bring the sam to this town, vnder the payne of escheitt thairof.