Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1573-1589. Originally published by Scottish Burgh Records Society, Edinburgh, 1882.
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1 October 1578.
Precept, thesaurer, Ros.
The baillies and counsale ordanis James Ros, thesaurer, to deburse and pay for the charges of Henry Chairteris, Robert Kar. his awin charges and the charges of James Wod, dekyn of the baxteris and William Huchesoun, dekyn of the cordineris, send to Striueling with the townys writing and ansuer for electioun of oure maiestratis, the sowmes of thretty sex pundis vij s. viij d.; and the samyn sal be allowit in his compttis, produceand the principale compt for his warrand.
The baillies and counsale ordanis James Ros, thesaurer, to pay to Alexander Vddert the soume of alevin pundis xvj s. vj d., debursyt be him in the townys effaris, vizt:—for ane lyveray to Cudde at his passing to Striueling with the young men, dichting of the new wall, clenging of the thevis hoill, and the vther the commoun effaris, as the particuler compttis deliuerit to the said James berys.
3 October 1578.
The prouest, bailleis, and counsell ordanis James Ros, thesaurar, with the auis of Gilbert Dick, Alexander Vddart, maister Johne Prestoun, Williame Litle, to caus big ane dyik of stane wall foirnent the entrie of the Hie Schole in the Blackfreir Kirk yaird for assisting of the wedder.
4 October 1578.
[The four penny loaf to "keip the pais and weycht" of 12 ounces.]
[Ale to be sold at sixpence the pint, "and that in respect the nyne firlottis of groundoun malt is to be sauld for nyne pund, ten schillingis, and the boll of beir for fyiftie schillingis."]
8 October 1578.
[The provost, bailies, and council are ordained to convene every Wednesday and Friday for reasoning upon the common affairs of the town "vnder the payne of auchtein penneis to be put in the box for the puir vnforgiffin."]
11 October 1578.
[Two of the lord provost's servants were made burgesses, and the duties given them, one by right of the provost's office, and the other at his request.]
12 October 1578.
Prouest, precept, Ros, Cay.
The prouest, bailleis, and counsell vnderstanding my lord prouest to be summonit to compeir befoir our Souerane Lord and lordis of secreit counsell, to ansuer vpoun the complaynt giffin in aganis him and the guid town for allegeit taiking of certane wictualis fra the said Kay, they being send thair, ordanit James Ros, thesaurer, deliuer to him fourtie pundis.
17 October 1578.
Precept, gild, kirk wall.
The prouest, bailleis, and counsell ordanis Williame Little, maister Johne Prestoun, James Ros, Alexander Vddart, Patrick Kinloche and James Inglis to apponit and aggre with the masonis for bigging of the new wall at the eist end of the kirk, and eftir as thai agre ordanis Lucas Wilsoun, dene of gild, to furneis thame all necessaris and pay thair chairgeis.
5 November 1578.
In presens of the provest, bailleis, and counsell and deakonis, it being proponit be [blank], constable of the castell of this burgh, for the pairt of Alexander Erskin, capitane thairof, that as he wes informit auld capitanis befoir him had the priuilege at all tymes quhen malt and wtheris deir wictuallis come to the commoun mylnis of this burgh, the samyn wes ressauit but impediment, but preferment of places; and ansuer wes promisit to gif thairanent the nixt counsell day, willing the said constable to compeir the said day and ressaue his ansuer, quhilk he acceptit.
Villa, passages, New Heauin.
The provest, bailleis, and counsell vnderstanding that thair commoun passages to and fra thair new heawin are stopit and narrowit be [blank] Logane of Bonnyntoun, quhairfoir thay ordane the said provest with soume of the bailleis and wtheris of the counsale and deakynis to sic nummer as thay please, to pas and visie the saidis passages, reforme the samyn, and mak thame patent conforme to thair ancient and prestand ordour as thai will ansuer to thair vthermest chairge.
The prouest, bailleis and counsell dischairgeis the ten souldiouris, keparis of the stepill, fra this day furth, and onelie four men to the keiping thairof for fyiftein or twentie dayis at the farrest allannerlie at thair plessour.
7 November 1578.
[Candles to be sold for 1s. 4d. the pound for the "raig weik;" and 1s. 2d. the pound for the "hardin weik."]
10 November 1578.
[Rochell wine, and "small wynis laitlie cum hame," to be sold not dearer than 1s. 8d. the pint.]
11 November 1578.
Villa, Dalmehoy, burs, Leith.
The provest, baillies, counsall, and dekynis vnderstanding Johnne Dalmehoy in Leith to hai obtenit ane gift of that pairt of the landis lyand in thair bulwark, sumtyme callit the commoun closetis and of new callit the burs; and that he hes the Kingis confirmatioun thairvpoun vnder his Hienes greit seill with precept of sesing as accordis; Quhairfoir they ordane Andrew Stevinsoun, thesaurer, to delyuer to the said Johnne sovme of ane hundreth merkis for his rycht and titill thairof and the pertinentis, the said Johnne resignand the samyn in the handis of ane of the baillies of Leith for heretabill infeftment to be gevin to the tovne and thair successouris thairof, the saidis Johnnis titillis and evidentis being delyuerit to Alexander Guthre and Alexander Vdert conforme to the appoyntment maid be thame with the said Johnne at the command of the provest, baillies, and counsall foirsaid.
Villa, chancellar, Foresteris luging.
The provest, baillies and counsall, vnderstanding the Erll of Atholl, chancellar, to mak his remaning within this burgh for doing of justice in his office, and that it lykis his lordship best to haif his duelling in the luging quhilk he presentlie occupeit sumtyme callit Dauid Foresteris hous, they ordane the baillies and counsall foirsaid to aggrie with Dauid Nicoll and his wyfe, heretouris and possessouris of the samyn for sufficient payment of the mall of samony of the saidis houssis as sal be found meit and convenient for the said lord, his lady, and company, and that they sall mak the samyn patent to thame agane his nixt cuming to the tovne, and incais the said Dauid, his wyfe, or ony vther possessour of ony of the said houssis be wilfull, and will nocht glaidlie grant heirto, they ordane because the said hous hes euir bene ane hous of lowage rady to serue euery honest man for payment in respect of the said lord chancellaris auctorite having honorabill office in action of justice, they ordane the saidis wilfull possessouris to be removit as said is and reasonabill price set thairvpoun, and the chancellaris obleissis him to releve thame thairof.
Appointment, burrowis, Campfeir.
In presens of the provest, baillies, and counsall comperit Henry Nesbett, burges of this burgh, commissionar for the merchant estait of this realme, laitlie efter his arryvall from the pairtis of Flanderis and producit and delyuerit the appoyntment and conclusion taikin with the tovne of Campfeir for placing of our staipill thair, writtin in parchement in the Frenche tong, vnder the common seill of the said tovne; quhilk weill accepted, and his diligence allowit, they ordane the samyn to be delyuerit to the common clark to remane in their register, and the samyn to be transumed and delyuerit to all the burrowis of this realme desyrous thairof, vpoun thair resonabill expensis.
14 November 1578.
Efter ressonyng to quhome the sereffis gluffis and dewetie of the fairis of this burgh, fyndis and delyveris that the samyn dois appertene and hes ewer appertenit to the provest outwith the poirt, as seref-principale of the said burgh and to the bailleis within the poirt his depuittis, nochtwithstanding that Edward Masser hes bene collectour thairof for the said provest and seriandis for the saidis bailleis, quhilkis deweteis the saidis provest and bailleis hes euir disponit lyik as thay may dispone thairvpone at thair plessouris.
24 November 1578.
Wilsoun, Jaksoun, extent.
The provest, bailleis, and counsell eftir ressonyng findis and delyweris that Johne Wilsoun and Johne Jaksoun, sones in law to Lucas Wilsoun, dene of gild, nochtwithstanding the argument takin be him in thair defence, sall pay thair extent in all tymes cuming, and that in respect of thair traffique, and becaus thai haif thair remanyng within this burgh and may traffique quhen it lyikis thame.
The prouest, bailleis, and counsell ordanis James Ros to pay to the men of the stepill conforme to thair compt giffin in be thame the sowme of thre scoir sewintein pund, in compleit payment to the xxv day of October.
3 December 1578.
The Kingis Maiesteis writting directit vpone the bak to the burgh of Edinburgh, off the quhilk the tennour followis:—Burgh of Edinburgh, we greit yow welle. Our nobilitie and counsale laitlie heir convenit nocht thinking thame selfis a sufficient nomber to deliberat and tak finall ordour in syndrie wechty materis concerning our estate and the commoun quietnes of our realme, it is thairfoir thocht convenient be ws [with] thair aduise that a gede nummer of our haill estaites salbe heir convenit wpoun the xv day of Januar nixtocum, to the quhilk day we desyr yow that ye will nocht faill to send your commissioneris that the materis resting vnresoluit may be then deliberat vpoun be commoun consent and guide awyse of our haill estaites that salbe present. This we commit yow to God. At our Castell of Striueling the xxiij day of November 1578. JAMES R. Quhilk writting red and considderit, ordanis certane discreit men, maist qualefeit of thair counsell, to keip the appointit day aboue written, and commissioun to be giffin to thame according to the ordour, and in the mene tyme ordanis sum of the said counsell to be sent to Striueling to his Hienes and lordis of secreit counsell lamenting the hurt done to the estait of burrowis and in speciall the setting of the lait taxt set furth for repressing of the inobedient subiectis wpone the bordouris send with the Lord Ruthuen, his Hienes louiftennent.
Protes tatio, Preposito et Dyk.
Archiebauld Stewart, provest, disasentis to the lettres sent be deliuerance and actis of the lordis of secreit counsell wnder his Hienes signet, insafer as the samin ar preiudiciall to the estait of merchantis, contrair the tennour of the actis of parliament, and protestit for remeid quhen tyme and place sall serve; yit nochttheless fand guid the extent for the pairt of this burgh to be gatherit and inbrocht and had in redines, yit nocht to be deliuerit befoir the commissaris of burrowis wer forder hard; and Gilbert Dik, baillie, protestit inlykmaner, and thai ordane the saidis lettres to be registrat, of the quhilk the tennour followis: JAMES be the grace of God King of Scottis, to the Provost and Baillies of our burgh of Edinburgh, and to our lovittis Williame Porteous, messingeris, oure schereffis in that pairt, coniunctlie and seuerallie specialie constitute, greting: Forsamekle as our peicable and guid subiectis of our realme, inhabiting the cuntreis ewest our bordouris, ar heivylie oppressit be the stouthisreiffis and vtheris enormiteis of the thevis and brokin men duelland wpoun the saidis bordouris, as alsua be thair frequent ryding and incursionis in Ingland without redres, the peax betuix the realmes sa endangerit that without spedie remeid it may be the occasioun of mony and gryit inconveniencis, and sen experience hes declairit that nocht onlie ane present repressing of the thevis is requisit bot sum ordinar force to be employit for ane certane space to repres sic fugitiue and owtlawis as may lay out efter the ordour takin thairfoir. For suppoirting of the chairges to be maid thairanent the Estaitis convenit hes willinglie grantit ane taxatioun of tuelf thousand pundis money of our realme to be payit betuix and the first day of Januar nixtocum, that is to say, four thousand thre hundreth threscoir sex pundis xiij s. iiij d. be the Spirituall estait; four thousand thre hundreth threscoir sex pundis xiij. s. iiij d. be the Barronis and fre halderis; twa thousand ane hundreth threscoir seiventein pundis xv s. vj d. twa pairts of a penny be our Borrowis; and ane thousand four scoir aucht pundis xvij s. ix d. twa pairts of a penny, in compleit payment of the said taxatioun, be the fewaris, tenentis, and occupiaris of our propertie; and for inbringing of our burrowis pairt of the said taxatioun our vtheris lettres ar direct quhairwith the provest and baillies of ilk burgh ar chargit to mak payment of the taxt and extent thairof to our traist cowsing and counsallour William Lord Ruthven, our thesaurer and collectour generall of the said taxatioun, betuix and the first day of Januar nixtocum; for quhais relief, Our will is and we chairge yow straitlie and commandis that incontinent thir our lettres sein ye pas and in our name and authorite command and chairge all and syndrie the inhabitantis of the saidis burrowis to convene and elect certane persones to stent thair nychtbouris, and thairefter that ye command and chairge the personis electit to accept the chairge vpone thame in setting of the said stent wpoun the inhabitantis of ilk burgh and to convene and sett the samin and mak ane stent roll thairvpoun as efferis within xxiiij houris nixt efter they be chairgeit be yow thairto, wnder the pane of rebellioun and putting of thame to our horne and eschet and inbring all thair movable guidis to our vse for thair contemptioun, and the said extent being set that ye in our name and authorite command and chairge the burgessis, nychtbouris and inhabitantis of the samin, to mak payment of thair pairtis of the said extent to our saidis prouest and bailleis conforme to the said taxt roll to be maid and gevin out thairvpone, within the space of thre dayis nixt efter thai be chairgeit be yow thairto, vnder the said pane of rebellion and putting of theme to our horne. And gif they failye thairin, the saidis thre dayis being bypast, that ye incontinent thairefter denunce thame our rebellis and put thame to our horne and escheit and inbring all thair movabel guidis to our vse for thair contemptioun, and gif neid be that ye poind and distrenye thairfoir as ye will answer to ws thairvpone; the quhilk to do we commit to yow coniunctlie and seweralie our full power be thir our lettres, deliuering thame be yow deulie execut and indorsat agane to the berar. Gevin under our signet at our Castell of Striueling the fyiftene day of November and of our regine the twelft yeir, 1578. Per actum Secreti Consilii.
8 December 1578.
The prouest, bailleis and consell ordanis missive billis to be direct with all diligence to Perth, Dundie, Abirdene, Couper in Fyfe, Lynlithgow, Striueling, Air, Irving, Dumfreis, to send thair commissioneris to convene with the commissioneris of Edinburgh befoir the Kingis Maiestie and lordis of Secreit Counsell for ressonyng wpone the lettres befoir writtin, grantit to my Lord Ruthven, thesaurer, and for resing of the taxt of twelf thousand pund grantit by the auise of the Estaitis contrair the act of parliament, and to meit thair the xx of this instant.
11 December 1578.
Sanct Paulis Wark, Makdougall.
The provest, bailleis, and counsell ordanis Williame alias Sir Williame Makdowgell, collectour of the hospitale of Sanct Paule in Leyth Wynd, to mak compt, reknyng, and payment with the bedmen of Sanct Paulis Wairk of all termes preceiding the feist of Martimes last bypast, and that he compeir befoir thame vpoun Wednisday last of this instant December, bringing with him his perfite compt and reknyng, with certificatioun and he failye he sall be dischairgeit of the said office, and vtheris plaicit thairintill, becaus he wes chairgeit heirto of befoir and disobeyit.
15 December 1578.
In presence of the bailleis and counsell Nicolas Vddert, maister Johne Prestoun, Mungo Russell, Williame Wallace, and diuers wtheris merchantis and marinaris desyring thair wynis newlie cum furth of Burdeaulis to be enterit in the townys buikis, thair offeris and prices to be had and ressauit conforme to the ancient ordour and licence grantit to thame to dispone vpone the samyn; to quhome it wes ansuerit that befoir ony forder ordour be taikin with thame, maist neidfull it wes that thair merchand billis sould be first produceit, thair aithis taikin, and giffin thairvpone, and vtheris solemniteis contenit in the actis of parliament to be obseruit in sik caissis. Quhilkis merchant billis they produceit subscryuit be thair merchantis and factouris within Burdeaulis, and gaif thair aythis that thair saidis wynis cost to thame at the first fiftie aucht frankis ourheid the fraucht and suiring of everie towne thairof twelf pundis fywe schillingis for lakage of everie towne sex li., and sua making thame sewintene schillingis for the frank, they find the Burdeaulis towne of wyne can be na better cheip sauld nor for ane hundreth merkis the tun, and the poynt thairof commonlie for threttie twa penneis; quhilk ordour they ordane to be keipit and obseruit to all our Souerane Lordis lieges quhill forder ordour be taikin. And in the menetyme ordanis proclamatioun to he maid heirof be sound of taborne throchout this towne of Edinburgh and Leith that na persones transgres this present ordinance wnder the panis of fywe pund for the first, ten pund for the secund, and escheit of the wynis for the thrid and last fault, without preiudice of the Kingis actione.
17 December 1578.
Taxt, Leith, chairge, Stevinsone.
The prouest, bailleis, and counsell vnderstanding thame selffis to be set and extentit to gryit sowmes of money for furnessing of my Lord Ruthveing, luiftennet and his companeis to the bordouris, thay ordane Walter Cant and Johne Thomesone, baillies of Leyth, to set the inhabitantis thairof to the sowme of threttie pundis according to thair knaulege and conscience and with diligence, collect, delyuer, and imbring the samyn to Andro Stevinsone, thesaurer, as thay will ansuer vpoun thair vthermest chairge.
18 December 1578.
Precept, souldarttis, stepill.
The provest, bailleis, and counsell ordanis to pay to the souldarttis keparis of the stepill the soume of fourtie fywe pund nyne schillingis, conforme to the ordour taikin and compt maid be Gilbert Dik, baillie, in compleit payment of thair veages to this day and dischairgeis thame fra thyne furth; and ordanis Andro Stewinsone, thesaurar, to mak payment heirof.
[The provost, bailies, and council], the deakonis of the baxteris, barboris, cordineris, tailzeoris, skynneris, masonis, goldsmythis, walkaris, wobsteris, bonnetmakkeris, and fleschouris, efter avisement that this xx of this instant December wes appoyntit for sending of certane commissioneris of burrowis to the Kingis Maiestie and his Hienes Secreit Counsell in Striueling, for ressonning vpoun certane wrangis allegeit downe to the estait of burrowis contrair the actis of parliament, amongis quhome thai nominat, makis, constitutis, and ordanis thair weilbelouffittis Robert Ker younger, Henrye Nisbet, Henrye Charterous, and James Inglis, skinner, thair procuratouris, actoris, factoris, speciall errand beraris, and commissaris for this burgh gevand thame coniunctlie and seuerale full commissioun in communi forma, etc., and ordanis the samin to be seilit vnder the seill of caus and subscryuit be thair commoun clerk as vse is quhairat thai obleist to abyde, etc.
Protestatio, Kar, Nysbit, Charterous, commissaris.
Forsamekle as at the commandment, eirnist requeist and desyr of the provest, bailleis, counsell, and deaconis forsaid, the saidis Robert Ker, Henrye Nisbet, Henrye Charterous, and James Inglis had acceptit the commissioun and procuratioun befoir mentionat toward the Kingis Maiestie and lordis of secreit counsell in Striueling, conforme to the instructionis giffin to thame vnder this protestatioun incais it happinnit thame or onie ane of thame to be trublit, wairdit or huirt in thair body or guidis for the caussis giffin thame in commissioun vnto the tyme ane particular cause be tryit aganis thame deulie as efferis, than and in that cais the saidis provest, bailleis, counsall, and deaconis obleisis thame and thair successouris to content, pay and refound to thame all costis, skaithis and damnages quhilk it salhappin thame to sustene other in body or guidis quhill tryell be tane as said is; and this present act to endure quhill forder ordour be taikin.
Lord Seytoun, Dik, Ellot.
The provest, bailleis, and counsell in the counsallhous of this burgh, Gilbert Dik, baillie, desyrit my Lord Seytoun, being present thair, to ressaue [blank] Ellot, wardour within the tolbuith of this burgh, furth of the samyn, and to keip him suirlie, conforme to the Kingis Maiesteis writting quhilk thay had intimeit to him diuers tymes of befoir as he wald ansuer to the King, and the said Loird Seytoun refusit it, allegeand he nor his predicessoris had nocht bein in vse of ressauyng of sic lyke pepill, being safer within the countrey, and thairfoir as of befoir disassentis and refuissis, and Dik askit instrumentis.
19 December 1578.
The provest, baillies, and counsell ordanis Andro Stewinsone, thesaurar, to deliuer to maister James Lawsoun, minister, to the suppoirt of his expenssis in this his journay to Striueling to the Kingis Maiestie in the caus of the kirk, the sowme of ten pundis, and gif he spendis ony forder, to refound the samyn vnto the said maister James.
24 December 1578.
The prouest, baillies, and counsell ordanis Gilbert Dik, baillie, Robert Ker, baillie, Alexander Vddert, Michaell Gilbert, and Dauid Kinloche, baxter, to pas to Alexander Erskyn, capitane of the castell of this burgh, and entir in ressonyng with him tuiching the dewetie acclamit be [blank] Stewart, baxter, allegeit to appertene to the capitannis of the castell of auld, concernyng thair priuieligis in grinding at the tounis mylnis and to repoirt thair ansuer the nixt counsall day to the said provest, bailleis, and counsall.
26 December 1578.
Ordour for the Lord Ruthven, extent.
In presence of the provest, bailleis, counsell, and deaconis, comperet Robert Ker younger, Henrye Charterous, Henrye Nisbet, and James Inglis, skynner, commissaris for this burgh, laitlie send to Struieling with diuerss wytheris commissaris of this realme for ressonyng with the Kingis Maiestie and lordis of his secreit counsell tuiching the extent laitlie grantit be thame without auise of the merchand estait etc., for the furnesing of certane hoirsmen, with the Lord Ruthven luiftennent, for ordering of the bordouris, thay produceit ane act and ordinance of the saidis lordis for thair ansuer, of the quhilk the tennour followis, and desyrit the samyn to be registrat for thair wairand: Apud Castrum de Striueling xxiij° Decembris anno domini jm vc lxxviij°: Forsamekle as it being considderit be the Kingis Maiestie and estaitis convenit vpone the ellevint day of October last bypast how the peciable and guid subiectis of this realme inhabiting the cuntreis ewest the bordouris wer hawelie vppressit be the stouthisreiffis and vtheris enormiteis of the thevis and brokin men duelland vpoun the saidis bordouris, as alsua how be thair frequent ryding and incursionis in Ingland without redres, the peace betuix the twa realmes wes sa indengerit that gif spedie remeid had nocht bene prouidit mony and greit inconvennientis wes able to haif follovit; thairfoir proclamationis wer direct commanding our Souerane Lordis liegeis duelland within diuers sherefdomes of this realme, to convene at certane places and dayis bypast for pursuit of the saidis thevis and brokin men and reduceing of thame to his Maiesties obedience, as at mair lenth is contenit in the proclamationis direct theirvpone, nochtwithstanding it being considderit thairefter how irksum and panefull it wes to his Hienes liegeis to travell in this seasoun of the yeir and thair gryit chairges and expenssis that thairvpoun wald follow, thairfoir for thair ease and releif it wes thocht guid and agreit vpoun be the Estaitis convenit for the tyme, that ane generall taxatioun sould be collectit and tane vp for intertenyng of ane ordinar force to be employit for a certane space on the saidis bordouris, quhilk taxt albeit it be grantit for guide and necessarie caussis tending to the commoun quietnes of this realme quhilk mycht ressaue na delay, yit it is complenit vpoune alsweill in name of the spirituall estait as be the barronis and commissionaris of sum burrowis, that the forme in making and granting of the said taxt wes nocht vsit and obseruit conforme to the actis of parliament, howbeit at the tyme of the making thairof it wes na wyis menit that the samyn sould onyvyis preiuge ony estait of this realme in thair liberteis and priueliegeis nor yit induce ony propertie heireftir bot onelie for relief of the present necessitie, ease of his Hienes guid subiectis, and eschewing of a gritter danger that vtherwyis mycht follow be delay, and thairfor for the bettir satisfactioun of all estaitis of personis the Kingis Maiestie, with auise of the lordis of secreit counsale, decernis and declaris that the forme in granting and making of the said generall taxatioun is nor sal navyis be interpreit as preparatiue, innovatioun or diragatioun of the forme and ordour appointit be the saidis actis of parliament, nor yit that the samin sall on navyis be hurtfull or preiudiciall of the liberteis and priuilegis of ony of the estaitis of this realme, bot the samin actis to stand in full strenth force and effect and to haif executioun in all tymes cuming as efferis. Extractum de libro actouris S. D. N. R. secreti consilii per me, Johannem Andro, clericum deputatem eiusdem, sub meis signo et subscriptione manualibus. JOHANNES ANDRO.