Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1573-1589. Originally published by Scottish Burgh Records Society, Edinburgh, 1882.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
2 July 1583.
Appoyntment with Haliburtoun, prebendare.; Precept collectouris; Precept, gild.
Comperit Sir Walter Haliburtoun, ane of the prebendares of the College Kirk of Sanct Geill of the said burgh, and of his awin frie will, renunceit, gaif ower, and simpliciter dimittit his prebendarie callit Prebenda Sancti Nicolaj, foundet in Sanct Nicolas ile within the said kirk, to the quhilk he wes provydet of awld be the prouest, baillies, and counsale for the tyme, with all richt, title, clame, propertie, and possessioun quhilk he had, hes, or may haif in and to the said prebendarie, fruits, rents, emoluments, and proffeits quhatsumeuir pertenand to the sam in all tymes cuming, and this in favouris of the saidis prouest, baillies, counsale, and community of the said burgh and thair successouris and collectouris in thair names, conform to their richts and titles quhilk thai haif or may haif thairto, as gif the said Walter wer naturally deid; and siclyke, constitutes and ordanis the said prouest, baillies, counsall, and community and thair successoures and collectouris in thair names his lawfull, vndowtit, and irreuocabill cessioneris, assignayes, and procuratouris in rem suam in and to the sowm of tuenty punds money of this realme restand awand to him of his pairt of the fruits of the kirk of Dunbernie for the space of twa yeiris last bypast be Lawrence Lord Oliphant and his cawtioneris, conform to ane obligatioun registrat in the buiks of counsale, and als in and to the haill anniuersareis, sawle messis, diergeis, Lady messis, syluer, and vthers commoun quhatsumeuir in vberiore forma with power to thame to intromett thairwith and call thairfoir as thai sall think best, in swa far as may pertene to him as ane of the prebendares foresaidis, and siclyke renunceit his richt and title to his said pairt of the fruits of Dunbernie, Poltie, and Moncreif in all tyme cuming, and that in favouris of the said prouest, baillies, counsale, communitie, thair successoures and collectouris in thair names; and forther, the said Walter oblist himself to delyuer to the guid town and thair collectouris all euidents, richts, and titles quhilk he had concerning the said prebendary and the said commouns; for the whilk caus the said prouest, baillies and counsale, for thame selffis and thair successouers, oblist thame and thair foresaidis to caus thair thesaureris or collectouris present and to cum to pay and delyuer to the said Walter yeirlie induring all the dayes of his lyfetyme the sowm of twenty-twa pund allevin schilling sex penneis vsuall money of this realme,. . . . And in contentatioun of his byrunis of Dumbarnie ordanis maister Jhonn Prestoun, dene of gild, to pay to him twenty pund.
4 July 1583.
Mekillis stipend of the impost at Leyth.
The prouest, baillies, dene of gild [council and deacons,] in consideratioun of the greitt paynes tayne and to be tayne be Andro Mekill in collecting and inbringing of the laitt custome at the port of Leyth, conform to the act of burrowes and lettres past thairvpon, thairfore gevis and assignis to him ane yeirlie stipend of twenty four pund to be tayne of the reddiest of the said collectioun induring his office of collectory.
Precept, gild, Smyth, gild officiar.
Ordanis maister Johnn Prestoun, dene of gild, to pay to Johnn Smyth, gild officiar, the sowme of twa merk for his travellis tane and to be tane quhill the feist of Michaelmes nixttocum in wairning of the deykins of crafts, als weill of the counsell as that ar nocht of the counsall, to all dayes of counsall ordinare and extraordinare, and this by his ordiner fie be ressoun he is burthenit heirwith by the seruice quhilk he had of before.
10 July 1583.
In presens of the prouest, baillies, and ane pairt of the counsall, Jhonn Peblis in Peblis actit himself of his a win consent nocht to be fund byand any maner of skynis within this burgh or fredome thairof bot fra friemen of the sam, vnder the payne of escheitt of the said skynis.
15 July 1583.
Lettre to Thomsoun, wyne to the Kingis Grace.
The prouest, baillies and ane pairt of the counsell ordanis ane lettre missiue to be direct in all thair names to Jhonn Thomesoun in Sanct Androis, requyring him to ansuer and delyuer to Jerome Bowie, sumlier to the Kings Maiestie, twa twnis of wyne, and thai sall caus him be satisfeit and payet of the reddiest of the Kings Maiesteis customes quhilkis the burrowes hes in taks.
17 July 1583.
Precept thesaurer, Nesbet, Nicoll, Wilkyn.
Ordanis Mungo Russell, thesaurer, to pay to Henry Nesbet, James Nicoll, Jhonn Wilkyn, the sowm of fyftein pund sevin schilling sex penneis for thair expenssis in passing to the Kings grace to Sanct Androis with lettres of the townis and in vthers the towns effairs as thai wer directit be the counsell, speciallie anent the cawtionary desyret be the Kings grace of the burrowes.
19 July 1583.
Tabill of the customes.
Ordanis ane tabill to be maid and sett furth of the hail customes of this burgh at thair port of Leyth according to thair awld infeftment, and the same to be putt in perchement in ane brod and affixt in ane publict place that nane pretend ignorance.
Precept the saurer, Jhonestoun.
Ordanis Mungo Russell, thesaurer, to pay to Jhonn Jhonestoun, the sowm of twenty shilling deburset be him in the townis effairis, and gevin to the masers at the submissioun of the caus of Dumberny to the lordis.
Statute anent burges dochteris na virgins.
The same day, at afternone, the prouest, Andro Sclater, baillie, Mr. Jhonn Prestoun, dene of gild, Mungo Russell, thesaurer, [and council], for the better explanatioun of the act contenit in the gild buik, maid anent burges dochters quha ar commoun or notorious huiris, fyndes, declairis, statutes and ordanis that na burges dochter quha ather is ane commoun or notorious harlatt or quha sall anes defyle hir body with fornicatioun, and is nocht at the tyme of the solemnizatioun of hir mariage ane clene virgine swa repute and haldin, sall in ony tyme cuming bruik the priuelege of ane burges dochter to mak hir husband burges or gild brother be hir richt for the dewty vsit to be tayne of ane that mareis ane burges dochter, bot ipso facto to haif forfaltit and tint the said liberty for euir.
23 July 1583.
Commissioneris to Perth
The prouest, [bailies and council] makis and constitutes Jhonn Robertsoun, merchant, and Michael Gilbert, goldsmyth, thair commissioners in the generall conventioun of the realme at Perth, to begyn the [blank] day of this instant, and ordanis ane lettre to be maid heiron vnder thair seill of caus.
26 July 1583.
Precept, the saurer, schoir of Leyth.
[The provost, bailies, and council] ordanet that Andro Sclater, baillie, and Mungo Russell, thesaurer, suld pas and visy the schore of Leyth, and to consider quhair ony of the aisler staynes thairof ar lowsit, and the said thesaurer to caus repair the sam with all vther defalts in the said schore with diligence.
Precept, house at the West Port.
The foresaid prouest, baillies, and ane pairt of the counsell ordanis Mungo Russell, thesaurer, to caus repair, beitt and mend the howse in the town wall at the north cheik of the West Port occupeit be Jhonn Mwre, porter, and to mak the sam sufficient in all necessaris.
27 July 1583.
Anent the extentouris of the last extent.
The prouest, baillies, dene of gild, thesaurer, and [council,] vnderstanding that the setteris of this last extent of iijm merk hes set the rollis to ijmjcv li. iij s., by the extents of Leyth, Kingorn, and Innerkething and swa jc v li. iij s. mair nor the principall sowm, by the said townis, and suspecting that thair sall be greitt defalcatiouns in the said rollis, thairfore approvis the doings of the said extentouris swa far as thai haif exceidit the principall sowm in the said superplus, and dischairges thame of all things that may be layet to thair chairge for the sam; and ordanis the said superplus to be imployet vpoun the wark of the College with the rest of the said extent appoyntet to that end, consideratioun beand alwayes had of the chairges of the rollis, setting and ingaddering of the said extent.
31 July 1583
Staying of skynnis to Flanderis.
The prouest, [bailies and council,] after consideratioun of the missiue bill sent to the guid town be the conseruatour, desyring that the sending of skynnis to Flanderis be stayet for a seasoun, for the ressouns thairin contenit, ordanis missiues to be direct to the burrowes of Perth, Dundie, Muntrose, Sanct Androis, Abirdene, with a copy of the said bill, desyring thame to caus stay all skynnis at thair ports quhill forther aduertesment, and that thai send bak thair ansuer to the guid towne agane the xij of August nixt, gif thai will obey the sam or nocht, and quhill the said day ordanis that na skynnis be sufferit to pas at Leyth.
Laird of Sorne, his men to liberty.
At the requeist of the laird of Barnebarrow, ordanis the twa seruandis of the laird of Sorne to be putt to liberty, quha wes wairdet to hurting and wounding of vthers in the hie streitt, becaus the saidis hurtis ar nather deidlie nor mutulatioun, thay payand the vnlaw of bludwyte and fyndand cawtioun to keip the town harmles and skaythles of all that may be layet to thair chairge.
2 August 1583.
Extentis of Leyth, Kingorn, and Innerkethein.
[The provost, bailies, and council] ordanis precept to be direct to the baillies of Leyth, chairgeing thame to extent the inhabitants of Leyth thair pairt of the townes extent of the generall taxatioun to the sowme of fiftie pund allanerlie, in consideratioun of thair present decay in thair substance; and that lettres be sent to Kingorn and Innerkethein for thair pairt of the said extent, quhilk is Kingorn xxxiij li., and Innerkethein xxij li.
9 August 1583.
Ordanis lettres missiues to be direct to the burrowes of Hadingtoun, Dunbar, Northbervik, Lawder, Jedburgh, Selkirk, Peblis, Lynlythqw, Lanerk, togidder with a copy to ilk ane of thame of the overtures anent the brekking down of the cvngyie of the plakis, balbeis, nonsunts, half merkis, requyrand thame to send to this burgh agane Thurisday nixt thair commissaris sufficientlie instructet with thair mynd, thairanent, or ellis ane autentik writt contening thair said mynd, to be schawin be the guid town in the nixt generall conventioun.
[The provost, bailies, and council "electit and chuse Robert Pook to be swescheour to the guid town induring their willis allanerly."
Granted to "William Wilson, wobster, the place of ane beidmanschip in St. Pawles Wark, vacand be deceis of James Tannahill, with all proffeitts and dewteis and causaliteis belanging thairto, induring thair willis allanerly, and ordanis institutioun to be gevin to him heirvpoun gif neid beis."]
Comperit James Lyndsay, Henry Lumisdaill, Henry Blyth, James Craig, chirurgeanes, and beand sworne maid fayth and declairit that thai had sichtit the woundis and hurt of James Marioribankis, younger, in his [blank] hand and airme, allegit gevin him be William Blythman, Flescheour, and his complices, and that he was na daynger of his lyfe of the said wound at that present, bot gif he was mutilat culd nocht swa suddanelie declair the sam.
10 August 1583.
Grantis and gevis licence to Jhonn Gilcryst, smyth, to sett vp ane traveis of tymmer for shoing of horsis besyde hisa smiddy at the new wall, swa that he pas nocht ower the gutter nor bewest the eising drop of his said smiddy.
14 August 1583.
Thomsoun, stepill heid.
[Ordained the dean of guild to pay to "Jhonn Thomesoun masoun the sowm of fyve pund in contentatioun of his bounteth for repairing and mending the stepill heid, and siclyke remitts to him the sowm of £3, 6s. 8d. for his vpsett to his craft."]
16 August 1583.
Commissioners to general convention, ministers.
Electit and constitut my lord prouest, Jhonn Robertsoun, and Michaell Gilbert, goldsmyth, and Gilbert Prumrose, chirurgeane, commissioners for the guid town in conventioun of the estaitts to be begun and haldin at Sanctandrois the [blank] day of this instant, and ordanis ane lettre to be maid heirvpoun vnder thair seill of caus; and siclyk hes accordet that the ministers of this burgh quha ar writtin for to the said conventioun sall pas on the townes chairges.
[Ordained that the 6d. loaf weigh 16 oz.]
30 August 1583.
Ordanis Mungo Russell, thesaurer, to caus prepair and gif to Sir Frances Welsinghame, imbassatour to the Quene of Ingland, the crotcherts and the wyne at his cuming to this burgh, and vther intertenment in his lugeing.
Vnderstanding that the said baillies ar dischairget be lettres of the secreitt counsall fra all asking, craving, and resaving be thame selffis, thair deputs or officeris, fra William Moncreif, of ony custom of sum horssis laitlie brocht be him fra Swadyn, bot to suffer him to pas but trubill or impediment, vnder payne of rebellioun, as at lenth is contenit in the said letteres of the daitt the xx day of August instant, thairfore thai haif dischairget and be thir presents dischairgis thair fermorers of thair customes at the port and heavin of Leyth, thair seruands or substitutes, from taking of any maner of custome fra the said William or his souerteis for the said horsis, conform to the said lettres.
4 September 1583.
Ramsay, inbringing of the Sowth Loch.
Anent the offer maid be George Ramsay, brother to the laird of Cokpen, to inbring the Sowth Loch to the Kowgaitt, vpoun certane conditiouns proponeit be him to certane of the counsall appoyntet to confer with him, conform to his supplicatioun gevin in thairanent, appoynts and nominats the said Jhonn Jhonestoun [and seven others] to convene with the said George, consult, confer, and devyse with him anent the performing of the premissis and conditionis thairof, and to report agane to the counsall at sic tymes as thai think expedient.
6 September 1583.
Setting of the eill ark.
The provest, baillies, dene of gild, thesaurer, and maist pairt of the counsall and deykins of crafts, settis to Edward Galbrayth, skynner, the eill ark at the eist end of the North Loch, for the space of thre yeir nixt followand the daitt heirof, he payand thairfore the sowm of ten markis to the maisters of the hospitale.
13 September 1583.
The baillies, dene of gild, thesaurer and ane pairt of the counsall ordanis proclamatioun to be maid, discharging all bikkerers vnder the payne of skurgeing of the vagabunds, and commanding euery persoun to keip the guid ordour vpoun the Sabboth day, thair bairnis and prenteisses, and to ansuer for thame vnder the pane of xl s. ilk persoun swa oft as thai failyie.
17 September 1583.
The prouest, baillies, dene of gild, and thesaurer, and Jhonn Jhonestoun [and eight others] of the counsall ordanit acts to be direct for wairning the haill deykins of crafts to compeir before the counsall the morn be ix houris to resaue thair lyttes of the deykins of crafts to be chosin for the yeir to cum, and to gif thair avyse and opinioun of the best and worthiest of thair crafts conform to the decreitt arbitrall, ilk persoun vnder the payne of xviij s., and with certificatioun and thai compeir nocht, the provest, baillies and counsall will proceid according to the said decreitt.
Precept, gild, Rollok.
Ordanis maister Jhonn Prestoun, dene of gild, to pay the sowm of twenty pund to maister Robert Rollok, quha is to be maister and regent of the College, and that for making his expenssis to transport himselff, his buikis and guidis, and vpsetting of his chalmer.
18 September 1583.
Lyttes of deykins.
[The provost, bailies, and council having elected others in place of those of the council who were absent, and the deacons of crafts "comperand and thair opiniouns and jugements hard of the best and maist honest persouns of thair saidis crafts quha wer habill to be deykins thairof, and thai seuerally removet, the provest, baillies, and counsall" elected certain persons to be on the leets for the deacons of crafts, all in terms of the decreet arbitral.]
20 September 1583.
Presenting of the new deikins.
["In presens of the provest, baillies and counsall, comperit the awld deykins and brether of the crafts vnderwrittin, and presentit the persouns following, as electet be the saidis crafts owt of the lyttes gevin and schawin to thame to be deykins of crafts for the yeir to cum, to witt," chirurgians, Robert Henrysoun; tailors, Alexander Owsteane; hammermen, John Watt; furriers, Thomas Diksoun; cordiners, Thomas Bruce; goldsmiths, Thomas Annand; skinners, Jhonn Bannatyne; websters, Thomas Wrycht; fleshers, James Vr; wrights, Richert Burn; masons, Mungo Tailyiefer; walkers, William Cowts; baxters, James Wod; bonnet makers, William Somer.]
["The foresaidis provest, baillies and counsall, owt of the saidis new dekyns, electit and chuse the persouns following to be of the new counsall of this burgh for the yeir to cum, to witt, Robert Henrysoun, chirurgeane, Thomas Annand, goldsmyth, Alexander Owsteane, tailyeour, Jhonn Watt, smyth, Johnn Bannatyne, skynner, Thomas Bruce, cordiner."]
25 September 1583.
Election of council; Kings lettre to the councell.
In presens of the baillies, dene of gild, thesaurer, and Jhonn Jhonstoun [and nine others] of the awld counsall, comperit the sex deykins of crafts electit on the new counsall, to witt, … quha acceptit of the said office of new counsaiouris for the yeir to cum and gaif thair aythis for dew administratioun thairof. Quhilkis provest, baillies, and counsall, awld and new, procedand to the electioun of the rest of the new counsale, first, for completing of thair number quha hes vote thairinto, electit and nominat the persouns following to vote in absence of thir persouns vnderwrittin, viz., in absence of my lord provest James Ros; in absence of Robert Ker, younger, William Cokburn, younger; and in absence of Jhonn Harwod, Andro Stevinsoun; quha comperand acceptit the said office vpoun thame. Thairafter comperit Mr. George Young, seruitour to the Kings Majestie, and producet ane lettere direct be his Majestie to the baillies, counsale, and deykins of crafts, off the quhilk the tenour followes:—Richt trest freinds, we greitt yow hairtly weill. Vnderstanding the tyme of the electioun of your magistrats to be now at hand, and desyrous to haif sic men plaiceit in your publict officers for the yeir to cum as ar knawin honest, of guid experience, and loving and affectionat in our seruice, we haue send yow heirwith the speciall names quhome we can best lyke to be chosin of the new counsall, and in baillies, thesaurer, and dean of gild for the yeir to cum; quhilks haill persouns we vnderstand hes borne publict office of before, and swa ar the mekill mair habill to do thair dewteis this yeir, quhome we ar rather desyrous to haif plaiceit to serue be ressoun of thair knawin guid will and affectioun, and that the difficultie of the present tyme, subiect to practizes and dealing displeasant to ws, requyris those of tryet persouns, the rather becaus our intentioun is, God willing, to be for the maist pairt resident amangs yow; desyring yow thairfore effectuouslie, as ye tender our plesure and the contentment of owre mynd, that Dauid Williamsoun, William Nesbet and Hew Lawder may be chosin on the new counsale for the merchants; William Harvy, tailyeour, and Thomas Myller, cuitler, for the crafts; that Henry Nesbet, William Littill, James Nicoll, merchants, and Thomas Aikinheid, skynner, may be baillies, James Adamsoun, merchant, deane of gild, and James Ros, merchant, thesaurer. Heirin we lippin to be satisfeit, our requeist being swa resonabill; desyring yow alswa to credite the berer in that quhilk he sall speik to yow on our behalff. Sa we committ yow to God. At Falkland the xxij of September 1583. Subscribitur: James, R. And being avyset with the said lettre and credite of the berer. quhilk wes conform thairto in all poynts, fyndes it necessar to direct William Fairlie, baillie, and Alexander Owsteane, tailyeour, with thair ansuer be ane letere in writt to his Majestie, desyring his Grace to consider thair priveleges and acts of parliament, and quhow perilous it is in the begynning to brek any poynt of the decreitt gevin in be his Majestie, and seing thair intentioun wes to chuse na vthers bot sic as thai thocht his Majestie suld lyke weill of as persouns of jugement and diligence in thair office, and for quhome the towne sall be bund to ansuer, that thairfore thair priveleges with the lawes of the realme and the said decreitt may tak place, and ordanis ane letere to be writtin to my lord provest desyring his lordship to pas to court with the saidis persouns, and to assyst thame in thair suitt, and to cum with thame to this burgh agane Fryday nixt, to the quhilk day thay continew all forther electioun of the new counsall that thai may heir forther of his Majesteis will and mynd, but preiudice alwayes of thair ancient liberties.
27 September 1583.
Electioun. Lettre from the King; New counsall.
[The bailies and council] beand of purpose to proceid in the commoun effairis, comperit Jhonn Androw, seruand to the Kings Majestie, and produceit his Graces lettre direct to thame, quhair of the tenour followes: Traist freyndis, we greitt yow hairtlie weill. In our last lettre to yow, quhairin we gaif yow significatioun of our mynd toward our lyking of sum speciall persouns to be electit in magistrats and officiares of that our burgh for the yeir to cum, we omittet to mak mentioun of your provest as nocht beand than resolute, bot now having thocht of diuers, thair is nane quhome we can be better contented with then Alexander Clerk, your awin nichtboure, quha hes occupeit that charge thir sindrie yeiris last bipast; desyring yow thairfore effectuuslie that, respecting this present time quhairin we wald airnistlie wis that our cheife town to haif sic magistrats as wer knawin weill affectionat to our seruice, ye will elect and nominat the said Alexander your prouest, and the vtheris speciall persouns mentionat in our former lettere in your magistrats and vtheris officiares, quhilk we trest assuretlie sall honestlie dischairge thair dewteis to our plesure and your satisfactioun, seying thai haue all bene imployet in lyke chairge of before, as ye will declair your guid affectioun to content our mynd and do ws acceptabill plesure, and swa, requyring yow to credite the berer, our seruitour, committs yow to God. At Falkland the xxiiij day of September 1583. Subscribitur: James, R. And siclyk, it wes reportet be William Fairlie, baillie, and Alexander Owsteane, tailyeour, quha wes direct to his Majestie with the townis ansuer to his graces former lettere, after declaratioun of thair procedings in the end, that it wes his Majesteis will that the persouns mentionat in the saidis twa letteres suld be chosin to the said offices and na vtheris, and beand avysit heirwith, for obedience of his Majesteis will and desyre heirinto, be thair senerall votes, for the maist pairt nominat, admittet and creat Dauid Williamsoun, William Nesbet, Hew Lawder, for the merchants, and Thomas Myller, cuitler, and William Harvy, tailyeour, for the crafts, to be of the new counsall for the yeir to cum. And the said Mungo Russell, thesaurer, protestit, in name of the town, that this present obedience of the Kings Majesteis lettere suld nocht prejuge the town heirafter in thair frie electioun conform to the liberties grantet to thame.