Charters and Documents Relating To the City of Glasgow 1175-1649 Part 1. Originally published by Scottish Burgh Records Society, Glasgow, 1897.
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On 27th January, 1609, a convention of the estates was held to ratify the conclusions of the assembly of the previous July, and passed several statutes in favour of the church. (fn. 1)
On 29th April, 1609, Mr. John Bell and Mr. Robert Scott, the ordinary ministers of the city, appeared, on behalf of the kirk session, before the town council to represent the ruinous condition of the High Kirk, when, after consultation, it was resolved to seek the king's help to collect the "siluir of ald laid vpone sindrie gentill mennis landis callit the commonis of the kirk," and to raise a voluntary contribution from the inhabitants of the town, parish, and barony. Collectors of this contribution were appointed, and it was resolved to take further action after the archbishop's return. (fn. 2) On the 9th of the following November, the council, deacons and merchants, and representatives of the merchant class, being met to select a commissioner to accompany the archbishop to report to the king the ruinous condition of the kirk and to seek his majesty's help, appointed Mr. Robert Scott, one of the town's ministers, to perform this duty. (fn. 3)
On 16th May, the town council, with a view to the protection of the liberty of the town, and specially of the water, pier, and market place, prohibited all persons from bringing timber, victual, fish, vivers, skins, or hides, within the liberty of the burgh and freedom of the water, and from selling the same to unfreemen, and giving delivery thereof on the other side of the water, under the pains prescribed by the act of parliament, and a penalty of £20 to be taken from the buyer and also from the seller. (fn. 4)
On 6th June, Robert Hogsyard was appointed treasurer and John Burns master of works; (fn. 5) and on the 12th of the same month ten men were appointed to accompany the archbishop, at his request, to the parliament at Edinburgh on the 24th of the month. (fn. 6) After passing various penal statutes against papists and excommunicated persons, this parliament conferred commissariat jurisdiction on bishops, and revived their ancient jurisdiction in all ecclesiastical causes, the secular courts being required to aid in enforcing the spiritual and ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the bishops. Authority was also given by it to the king to regulate the habits to be worn by judges, magistrates, and churchmen. (fn. 7)
In a parliament held at Edinburgh in June, Glasgow was represented by James Inglis, and an act was passed on the 24th of that month restoring the archbishops and bishops of the realm to their former authority and dignity, privileges and jurisdictions, and specially to the jurisdiction of commissariats and administration of justice in all spiritual and ecclesiastical causes between persons dwelling within the bounds of their prelacies and bishoprics. This act was, however, declared to be under reservation of the heritable right of the commissariat within the bounds of Argyle belonging to Archibald, earl of Argyle. (fn. 8)
On 3rd October, the archbishop recommended James Inglis, (fn. 9) merchant, to be provost for the following year, and he was elected accordingly, and on the same day the archbishop selected, from a leet submitted to him Mathew Turnbull, James Braidwood, and George Muir to be bailies. They were accordingly elected; and four days later twenty-three persons, of whom eleven were craftsmen, were appointed councillors. (fn. 10) On the 10th of October Thomas Morrison was elected deacon-convener and James Fisher visitor. (fn. 11) On the 17th of the same month James Bell was elected dean of guild. (fn. 12)
On 19th August, the town council passed an act, in which, after referring to the great abuse done to the bridge by the laying of fulzie at both ends of it, prohibited every person from laying any kind of fulzie at either end, within or without the port, or from emptying fulzie on any part of the bridge, under a penalty of £10 and forfeiture of the deposit. The carrying or transporting of "wattles or oyse" along the bridge on cars or sledges was also prohibited under a penalty of 40s. (fn. 13) And in view of the injury done to the Clyde, and especially to the pier and port of Broomielaw, by the discharge there of ballast from barks and boats, the council, on 14th October, prohibited such discharge, under a penalty of £5, and further punishment at their sight. Such ballast was ordered to be deposited forty feet beyond flood mark, and the water sergeant was required to see to the due observance of this order under pain of deprivation of his office. (fn. 14)
On 7th October, 1609, the town council, considering the injury to the burgh occasioned by the admission of persons as burgesses either gratuitously or on payment of reduced rates, passed an act requiring all subsequent admissions to be made in presence of the dean of guild and his council, and only on payment to the city treasurer of the fines specified in the acts of council. If any persons were afterwards received by the dean gratuitously, or on payment of less than the prescribed fines, then the dean was to be personally accountable for the regular fines. To secure the better observance of this act, the council, for themselves and their successors, denuded themselves of the right to admit burgesses, save as provided for by the act, and all admissions otherwise were declared to be null. The act further specified the fees to be afterwards paid by the city treasurer as follows:—to the provost, £40; to each bailie, £20; and to each of the clerk, master of work, and treasurer, £15. (fn. 15) On 14th December the council also ordained that the exaction of five merks by the dean of guild and deacon-convener, for behoof of the two hospitals, from the sons of burgesses and from those who married the daughters of burgesses should cease. (fn. 16) The effect of the act of 7th October was to deprive the master of the grammar school of two burgess fines, previously granted him; and on his representation the council, on 24th March, appointed forty merks to be annually paid to him by way of compensation. (fn. 17)
In the early part of 1609 the king's scheme for the plantation of Ulster was announced, and among the seventy-seven Scotchmen who applied to the privy council in Edinburgh for shares of the Irish lands were three Glasgow burgesses, whose applications were lodged in July of that year. These were (1) John Ross, who applied for 1,500 acres, and offered as his surety, to the amount of £300, James Carmichael of Pollicschaw; (2) Malcolm Colquhoun, who applied for 2,000 acres, and offered as his surety, to the amount of £400, Alexander Colquhoun of Luss; and (3) Samuel M'Gill, who applied for 2,000 acres, and offered as his surety, to the amount of £400, Robert Gray, brother of Patrick, lord Gray. None of these applicants, however, received any grant in the ultimate allocation. (fn. 18)
In virtue of the power conferred on him by the act 1609, c. 15, the king on 16th January, 1610, addressed a letter to the clerk of the register, prescribing the costume to be worn by judges, magistrates, churchmen, and other public persons. By this letter the provosts, magistrates, and councillors of all burghs were required to wear black gowns, lined with a grave kind of fur, at all meetings of council and public assemblies, including specially conventions of burghs and meetings of parliament and conventions of estates. A pattern of such gown, different from those worn by ministers and deacons, was accordingly provided by his majesty, and all the burghs were required to conform to it. But the principal burghs, including Edinburgh, Perth, Dundee, St. Andrews, Glasgow, Stirling, and Aberdeen, were required to wear gowns of scarlet cloth, with suitable furrings, on Sundays and all other solemn days, such as the riding of parliament, the 5th of August, the 5th of November, and other days of solemnity. Such other burghs as preferred that their magistrates and councillors should wear scarlet gowns were, however, authorised to do so. (fn. 19)
Recognising the precedent established in England by Henry VIII., and continued by Elizabeth, the king, in February, 1610, erected a court of High Commission in each of the provinces of St. Andrews and Glasgow, with unrestrained power to try all scandalous offenders in life or religion, and to enforce its judgments by fine and imprisonment, and also by excommunication. Each of these courts was composed of the archbishop, his suffragan bishops, and several peers, barons, judges, and ministers. (fn. 20)
By the action of the king, acquiesced in so far by the general assembly, and sanctioned by parliament, the presbyterian form of church government was now practically subverted. But this appears not to have satisfied the king and his advisers, and it was resolved to seek the further confirmation of the church. Accordingly, a general assembly was summoned to meet at Glasgow on the 8th of June, 1610, and in convening this meeting the king openly directed, through the archbishop of St. Andrews, the selection of the members to be returned by the several presbyteries. (fn. 21) On the appointed day thirteen bishops, thirteen noblemen, forty barons, and upwards of a hundred ministers and commissioners of burghs, assembled. The earl of Dunbar appeared as the royal commissioner, and the assembly was opened by a service conducted by archbishop Spottiswood, who was afterwards elected moderator. The greatest care had been taken to secure the presence of a large proportion of members who might be relied on to support the policy of the crown, and the most diplomatic management of the burghs was resorted to to smooth over difficulties and secure results in accordance with the wishes of the king and the episcopal party. At this, as at other assemblies of the period, controverted questions were not openly discussed, but were settled at private conferences, and the result was reported to the assembly for confirmation and registration. In this way it was agreed—(1) that the calling of assemblies belonged to the king, but that an assembly should be held annually; (2) that synods should be held twice a year in every diocese, and should be presided over by the bishop; (3) that the approbation of the bishop should be obtained to every sentence of excommunication or absolution; (4) that presentations by patrons to benefices should be directed to the archbishop or bishop of the diocese, who, if the presentee was found qualified, should be assisted by the ministers of the district in perfecting the act of ordination; (5) that in the deposition of ministers, the bishop should associate with himself the ministers of the district, and, after trial, pronounce sentence; (6) that before any minister was admitted to a living he should take an oath acknowledging the king to be "the only lawful supreme governor of the realm, as well in things temporal as in conservation and purgation of religion," and should also do homage to his Majesty; (7) that bishops should personally visit their dioceses, except when the bounds were too great to admit of this, in which case he might appoint a substitute; (8) that exercise of doctrine should be continued weekly among ministers at the time of their accustomed meetings; and that the bishop or his deputy should be moderator; (9) that bishops should in all things be subject to the general assembly, and, being found culpable, might, with the king's consent, be deprived; (10) that no one should be elected a bishop under forty years of age, and who had not taught as a minister for ten years; (11) that no minister should, in the pulpit or in public, exercise, argue against, or disobey the acts of that assembly, under pain of deprivation; or discuss in the pulpit the parity or imparity of ministers. (fn. 22)
It is noticeable that in all the acts and discussions of this assembly the use of the word "presbytery" was avoided, and this fact coupled with the constitution of the courts of high commission indicates the success which had attended the king's design to revolutionise the ecclesiastical constitution of the country. The suspicion that a considerable distribution of money was made, by his order, among those members of the assembly who supported his policy has been converted into certainty by the discovery of a letter from him to the treasurer of Scotland, dated 8th May, 1610, in which he commanded a sum of ten thousand merks (£555 11s. 1d. sterling), to be in readiness for division among such persons as might be held fitting on the advice of the archbishops of St. Andrews and Glasgow. (fn. 23) On 19th June the king issued a proclamation ratifying the proceedings of this assembly. (fn. 24) But notwithstanding the penalties which attached to those who challenged them, many of the ministers denounced what had been done, and, in consequence, the privy council on the same day issued a proclamation forbidding every person from impugning any part or article of the assembly's conclusions. But this also proved insufficient to prevent the expression of hostile opinion, which was not confined merely to conscientious presbyterians, but was shared in by those laymen—noblemen and landed proprietors—who had participated in the spoilation of the ancient property of the church. (fn. 25)
While episcopal government had thus been restored in conformity with the desire of the king, as far as the action of parliament and the general assembly could go, there was still awanting the valid consecration of the bishops which was deemed essential in England, and which the leaders of its church desired to see extended to Scotland. Accordingly the archbishop of Glasgow and the bishops of Brechin and Galloway were summoned to London, and, on 21st October, 1610, were consecrated by the bishops of London, Ely, Rochester, and Worcester. (fn. 26) Those bishops, instead of the English metropolitan, were selected by the king to obviate the difficulty suggested by Spottiswood, that the consecration might be construed into subjection of the church of Scotland to that of England. The Scottish bishops being so consecrated gave consecration in St. Andrews to the archbishop of that see; and the other Scottish bishops were similarly consecrated by Scottish bishops who had previously been themselves consecrated.
On 5th July, 1610, the convention of burghs assembled in Crail had under consideration a supplication from Glasgow for aid in taking away the sand in the Clyde, which prevented ships and boats from coming to the town, but the application was continued till the next convention. (fn. 27) On 8th May, 1611, the provost, who was about to ride to Culross, was requested to bring Henry Crawford to the town, at its cost, to see the river, and consider how it might be helped. (fn. 28) The application to the convention was again before that body at its meeting in Stirling, on 4th July, 1611, but its consideration was again delayed. (fn. 29)
On the 2nd of October, letters from the archbishop were presented to the magistrates and council, nominating James Inglis, the provost of the preceding year, for re-election, and also consenting to the bailies for the following year being elected in his absence. Inglis was accordingly elected provost, and, from a leet of nine, Matthew Turnbull, James Steward, and James Braidwood were elected bailies. Four days later twenty-three councillors were appointed, of whom eleven were merchants and twelve were craftsmen. On the 9th of the same month Thomas Morrison was re-elected deacon-convener, and Walter Douglas visitor of maltmen; and on the 16th James Bell was reelected dean of guild. (fn. 30)
On the 15th of December, the council having regard to the manifold disturbances by notorious "tulyeouris, fechtars, and nycht walkers" who had no means to satisfy the fines imposed on them, or the parties whom they injured, and who by means of their poverty could not be adequately punished, ordered all such men on conviction, whether free or unfree, to be imprisoned for eight days in an unfreeman's ward, and, if women, to be put in the branks on Monday and Friday from 10 to 12 o'clock. After such punishment the offenders were required to ask God's mercy and the pardon of those whom they had offended. (fn. 31) "Scallis and bardis" (scolds and quarrelsome persons) who abused honest women with their blasphemous language, and who could not be punished in their goods, were ordered to be imprisoned for eight days, and afterwards to be "brankit" on a market day from ten to twelve o'clock. (fn. 32)
During the year 1610 archbishop Spottiswood is said to have ascertained that the population of the city was 7,644. In 1600 it is said to have been 7,000.
On 8th April, 1611, the king, at the earnest request of the archbishop, granted a charter, under the great seal, confirming all infeftments, gifts, rights, privileges, freedoms, and immunities given by him, or by his predecessors, to the provost, bailies, councillors, and community of the burgh and city, and of which they had been in the use and possession. He also granted to them and their successors the burgh and city itself, with the customs, rights, freedoms, and privileges of patronages and gifts of benefices, chaplainries, prebends, and altarages, maills, multures, the loading and unloading of ships and vessels, and other privileges within the bounds of the Clyde, from the Cloch Stane to the bridge of Glasgow. He further erected the burgh and city into a free royal burgh, with all the rights and privileges thereto belonging—to be held in feu farm, heritage, and free burgage for ever, for the service of burgh used and wont, and the annual payment to the archbishop and his successors of sixteen merks Scots (11s. 1⅓d. sterling). But it was declared that the granting of this charter should in no degree prejudice the freedom and privileges conferred by the crown on the archbishop, his power of electing magistrates, as then in use, and the privilege of regality, nor the emoluments, duties, maills, customs, or other commodities belonging to him and his successors. (fn. 33) It appears from the council records that the draft of this charter had been prepared in Edinburgh and had been taken to London by the archbishop. On the 23rd of the same month the council appointed the provost and one of the bailies to ride to Edinburgh and get the charter passed the seals and infeftment taken upon it. (fn. 34) They also ordered the charter chest to be opened, and the old charters and infeftments of the burgh, which had previously been sent to Edinburgh at the forming of the signature, to be again sent there with the provost and bailie. Four deeds were accordingly delivered to the bailie; and for finishing the business and defraying their expenses, the treasurer was ordered to pay them £100. They were also authorised to borrow such money in Edinburgh as might be required to pay the composition on the charter, and to have the infeftment passed the seals without delay. (fn. 35) On 8th June the merchants and craftsmen consented to a voluntary contribution of £400 for meeting, inter alia, the expense of the charter, of which sum one half was to be contributed by the craftsmen, and the other by the merchants; (fn. 36) and on the 14th of the same month another act of council bears that various writs were taken out of the town's charter chest and delivered to Mathew Turnbull, bailie, to be produced to the chancellor in Edinburgh before the new charter in favour of the town could be expede conform to the town's will. (fn. 37)
In the same month of April, offers were made to the council to feu lands which formed part of the endowment of the master of the grammar school, and the council had under consideration how this could be done. John Blackburn, the master, attended, and represented that such feuing could only be done through him with consent of the council, but he left it to them to determine what proportion of the feu-duties obtainable from these lands should be paid over to him. It was accordingly arranged that one-half should belong to the council, and the other half be paid to him. (fn. 38)
Rutherglen complained to the convention of burghs at Selkirk on 7th July, 1608, that Glasgow exacted customs from the inhabitants of Rutherglen at Glasgow bridge, and also a ladleful of bear or malt on the market day. (fn. 39) This complaint was continued in the conventions at Cupar in July, 1609, (fn. 40) at Crail in July, 1610, (fn. 41) and at Stirling on 3rd July, 1611, on which last date Glasgow was assoilzied from the complaint, as regarded the exaction of ladle custom, "in respect of ane decreit of the lords given thairanent producit be Glasgow." As regarded the bridge custom, Rutherglen was ordained to pay £3 a year to Glasgow in lieu thereof. (fn. 42)
The condition of the streets in many of the Scottish burghs was such as to induce the convention of burghs at Crail, on 5th July, 1610, to ordain all the burghs to repair "their calsays sufficiently" previous to the next convention, and then to report their diligence in the matter, under a penalty of £100. (fn. 43) On 3rd July, 1611, the convention at Stirling renewed the order against several of the Fife burghs, (fn. 44) and it was again renewed by the convention at Arbroath, on 7th July, 1612, when it was extended specially to Glasgow and Elgin. (fn. 45) It will have been observed, however, that, on 5th November, 1605, the town council took action spontaneously with the same object. (fn. 46)
On 1st October, 1611, James Inglis (fn. 47) was reappointed provost in accordance with a letter of presentation by the archbishop in his favour; and from a leet of nine the archbishop nominated James Steward, Mathew Turnbull, and James Braidwood to be bailies, and they were elected accordingly. Four days later twenty-four councillors were elected, one-half being merchants and the other half craftsmen. (fn. 48) Ninian Anderson was also elected deacon-convener, and Walter Douglas visitor of maltmen and mealmen. (fn. 49) On 14th October William Wemyss was appointed dean of guild; (fn. 50) and on 23rd May Thomas Brown was admitted as treasurer. (fn. 51)
On 5th October the archbishop, who was present in the council, proposed that, in obedience to the king's ordinance, constables should be appointed for the preservation of the peace. In accordance with this proposal sixteen persons were elected to that office, and districts were assigned to them. (fn. 52) On 18th April, 1612, again, a similar election of constables was made, and they were appointed to remain in office till the following Michaelmas. (fn. 53) On 4th July the council, for the better execution by the constables of their office, ordained them to meet weekly on Wednesday in the Tolbooth, and report their diligence in repairing wrongs within their respective bounds, with a view to these reports being given up to the council. Failure to attend, after due warning, subjected the absentee to a fine of 40s. (fn. 54)
On 21st March, 1612, the town council, considering the injury done to the burgh by countrymen, who, leaving their farms and taking up their residence in the town, "flais and castis thair common, haldis thair gudis vpone the samin, and vsurpis sindrie vther liberteis and priuiledges of this brucht, being vnfrie men," prohibited all unfreemen from casting "fail, fewall, or difet" upon the common, or holding their horse, or cattle, or other bestial upon it, under pain of £5, toties quoties. The public herd was also prohibited from taking charge of the animals of such persons. Freemen were ordered not to cast more "darkis of elding" (fn. 55) on the common than was allowed by the old statutes, viz., two "darkis" for their houses; and all persons were prohibited from casting turfs on the common to be made into middings for fulzie, under a penalty of £5. (fn. 56)
In obedience to an order by the king on the town council to appoint and establish postmasters within the burgh to serve the lieges and strangers, John Hall and George Hereot, stablers, were on 4th April, nominated postmasters; and they were ordered to have signs before their doors. They were also authorised to provide horses at rates to be set down by the justices of the peace, viz., thirty pence per mile without provisions, and all persons in the town who had horses for hire were required to place them at the service of the postmasters to be hired to the lieges, under pain, if they refused to do so, of being punished at the discretion of the magistrates. (fn. 57)
On 8th June, the council being met to consider what was required for the improvement of the river, and for taking away the large stones in its bed at Dumbuck ford, appointed several of its members "to prepair chenyeis of irne, towis, capillis, hogheidis, and vther necessaris" for removing the stones with diligence. For the better execution of this order, and for casting the water above and beneath the bridge, the town was ordained to be divided into eight parts, the constables of which, with the master of work, were appointed to oversee the work. (fn. 58) The town-clerk was at the same time directed to issue a warrant to the treasurer to pay the expenses so incurred, as certified by an account given in by the dean of guild. (fn. 59) This was supplemented on 4th July by another act for furthering the work, which had already been begun. It ordered that twenty workmen for the merchants and twenty for the crafts should be provided by the dean of guild and deacon-convener respectively, to pass down to the ford on the 8th of the month, and three persons were appointed to go with them and oversee the work. (fn. 60) Several of the persons so warned, however, failed to appear, either personally or by deputy, and the council, on 11th July, ordained each of the absentees to pay £6 for the repair of the common calsays or other common work. The remanent merchants were also ordained to contribute to the payment of the workmen. (fn. 61) To meet the expenditure thus incurred, apparently, the council petitioned the convention of burghs held at Arbroath in July, 1612, for liberty to apply for an impost of ten shillings on every boat and barque coming to the town, but the convention continued the application till the next convention, (fn. 62) which was held at Dunbar on 9th July, 1613, when it was again continued. (fn. 63)
The convention of burghs held at Stirling on 3rd July, 1611, had under consideration the competing claims of several burghs to precedency, which, in one form or another, had been before it with very unsatisfactory results since 1578, (fn. 64) and, in that as in preceding years, it shelved the question for a time by duty on Glasgow and four other burghs. (fn. 65) That convention, held at Arbroath on 7th July, 1612, again continued the subject, but ordained Glasgow and the four other burghs previously mentioned not to take their places in the convention till "called and placed," under a penalty of £10, toties quoties. (fn. 66) Nothing further appears on the subject till the meeting of the convention on 13th December, 1660.
On 6th October, 1612, the archbishop reappointed James Inglis to be provost, and from a leet of nine nominated James Stuart, Mathew Turnbull, and James Braidwood to be bailies. Four days later twelve merchants and twelve craftsmen were appointed councillors, and on the 13th of the month Thomas Morrison was elected deacon-convener, and John Crawford visitor of maltmen and mealmen. On the 20th James Bell was elected dean of guild. (fn. 67)
On the following day archbishop Spottiswood assigned to Mr. Robert Scott, one of the ministers of the city, in part satisfaction of his stipend, one chalder of teind meal for crops 1607 to 1612, and yearly thereafter during the lifetime of Mr. David Wemyss, minister of the parish. This assignation proceeded on the narrative that Walter, lord Blantyre, was owing to the archbishop one chalder of teind meal as in full of fifteen chalders assigned by Blantyre, as principal tacksman of the parsonage of Glasgow, for sustentation of the ministers of the city, and which teind was in arrear for the crops above specified. (fn. 68)
While bishops had been recognised by the general assembly, and had been consecrated and received full episcopal recognition, they still possessed no legal standing as such in Scotland. The act of 1592, which Cunningham designates the "Magna Charta of presbytery," still existed. It had to be repealed, and this object was attained through the parliament which was convened at Edinburgh on 23rd October, 1612, and in which Glasgow was represented by the provost, James Inglis, and by James Bell. It referred to the remit made to the king in 1597 to consult with the general assembly of the kirk as to the authority which archbishops and bishops should have in the policy and discipline of the kirk; to the various conferences which had taken place under that remit; and to the conclusion which had been arrived at in the general assembly held at Glasgow in June, 1610, as to all doubtful and controverted points concerning the jurisdiction, policy, and discipline of bishops, "with full and uniform consent of a very frequent number of godlie ministers, assisted by the counsel and concurrence of a great many of best affected nobility, barons, and commissioners of burghs of this kingdom;" and it thereupon ratified all the acts of that assembly, with various important modifications, which served to elevate the position of the bishops. (fn. 69) "The assembly and the parliament, in fact," says Cunningham, "were like the two parts of a well balanced machine, and worked beautifully the one into the other." The contest was now over, he adds, and "episcopacy was victorious. The vehement debates in the assembly, the bold defiances to the king, the free utterance of thought in the pulpit, were hushed, and there was a dead lull after the storm, broken only by the grumbling of some discontented synod or presbytery. But the fear of popery had not yet died away. The adherents of Rome were still numerous and active; propagandists traversed the country in disguise; and many of the nominal protestants were still unable entirely to divorce themselves from Roman feelings, opinions, and practices." The presbytery of Glasgow subjected to church censure such persons as "usit May plays," and debarred them from sacraments and marriage until they had paid their fines. (fn. 70) For some unspecified offence Mr. Peter Low, doctor of chirurgerie, had been ordered to pay a fine to the treasurer of the kirk, and to stand upon the pillar, but he had neither paid the fine nor conducted himself befittingly on the pillar, nor indicated his repentance by occupying that position on two subsequent Sundays. He was, therefore, ordered to re-appear before the presbytery. (fn. 71) The citizens "were still under the impression that a crucifix painted on their houses gave luck. Limners were found to ply the unlawful trade, and the presbytery busied itself in hunting them out. (fn. 72) The truth is, the popular mind was by no means purged of popery. The people in many districts still clung to old religious customs, which had become entertwined with their social and domestic habits. On Midsummer eve they persisted in kindling bonfires, and the fines of the magistrates did not deter them. (fn. 73) At Yule and on New Year's day, frolicsome women clothed themselves in male attire, and as guisers visited the houses of their neighbours and friends. (fn. 74) Persons professing Protestantism still undertook pilgrimages, and thought they derived benefit from washing themselves in sacred wells. The Sunday was still in many places desecrated by markets, by fishing, by the operations of husbandry. (fn. 75) But stricter notions were gradually growing up. Fines were levied upon persons who absented themselves from church. Eavesdroppers were employed to go about the streets and pick up all whom they chanced to overhear swearing; and such defaulters, being brought before the magistrates, were punished by palmies." (fn. 76)
In consequence of the prevalence of theft within the town, as well as of the stealing of stuff out of barns and the drawing of corn out of stacks beyond, the council, on 26th December, 1612, appointed a nightly watch to be kept by twenty-four persons—six in each quarter. Three of the six were required to watch from 10 o'clock till relieved by a constable or master of the watch, when the other three took their place. The persons so relieved were required thereupon to proceed to the Tolbooth, and remain there till 4 o'clock, when the whole watch was dismissed. Failure to obey this order was punished by a fine of forty shillings, which was appointed to be applied to such use as the watch deemed most expedient. Disturbers of the watch were appointed to be imprisoned in the Tolbooth till censured by the magistrates and council. Each officer had to warn the watch in rotation weekly. (fn. 77)
On 28th May, 1613, the archbishop, in consideration of a payment of 3,000 merks (£166 13s. 4d. sterling), granted a tack to the burgh for nineteen years of the bishop's customs of the tron, weights of the firlots, pecks, and others, his customs of all boats repairing by water to the burgh, and of all weights and customs whatever of the burgh on all customable goods. (fn. 78) The town council on the following day approved of this arrangement; (fn. 79) but the subjects thus let were conveyed by him absolutely to the town by a charter executed in duplicate on 7th December, 1614. By that deed he disponed to the magistrates and council the whole customs and duties of the tron belonging to him, as part of the patrimony of the archbishopric—to be held of him and his successors for payment yearly of £50 as the annual feu-duty, with £16 13s. 4d. in augmentation of the rental, extending in all to 100 merks (£5 11s. 1⅓d. sterling). (fn. 80) The College of Glasgow, however, claimed to have right to the subjects thus conveyed by the archbishop, by virtue of a charter granted to them by archbishop Boyd, and, on 3rd March, 1615, the town obtained from the College a charter conveying these subjects to the magistrates, councillors, and community, for payment of the feu-duty specified in the charter from the archbishop. (fn. 81) For their relief from the double claims of the archbishop and the College, the archbishop, on 27th March, granted a bond in which he undertook to obtain from the College a renunciation of its claim and a ratification of his charter, or otherwise to get the claim of the College set aside. Failing his implementing this obligation, and in the event of the College distressing the town, he engaged to refund the town the four thousand five hundred merks (£250 sterling) which had been paid to him for his charter. (fn. 82) On 4th June, 1617, the king, by a charter under the great seal, confirmed the charter by the College in favour of the town, dated 3rd March, 1615. (fn. 83)
On 21st August the magistrates and council granted a seal of cause to the craft of skinners, by which they ratified the following articles:— (1) The craft to have power to elect a deacon annually, who should choose one half of the quarter-masters and one of the two box-masters—the other half of the quarter-masters and the other box-master to be chosen by the craft; (2) no person to work any kind of skinner work within the city until made a burgess, and examined by three or four masters of the craft as to his ability, under a penalty of £10; (3) no one within the city to pull skins, under a penalty of £10; (4) no person to be received freeman with the craft unless he had been an apprentice within the burgh, and had served the years mentioned in the letter of guildry, viz., nine years—seven as an apprentice, and two for meat and fee; (5) a stranger marrying the daughter of a burgess, and having served the above term as an apprentice, to be admitted a freeman on payment of twenty merks of upset; (6) a stranger marrying the daughter of a burgess to be admitted on payment of forty merks of upset; (7) any craftsman taking an apprentice for fewer years than those above specified to lose the freedom of the burgh; (8) a stranger who had not been an apprentice, and was not married to the daughter of a burgess, but was free with the town, to be admitted for payment of £60 of upset; (9) persons admitted freemen not to have an apprentice for the space of two years, nor thereafter until it was certified by the magistrates and council that they could sustain an apprentice; (10) no one to receive another's servant or apprentice, who was not freed by the deacon; (11) the deacon, with some of the masters of the craft, to search all skinner work made or sold in the burgh on market days or outside booths, and any found insufficient to be escheated and distributed among the poor; (12) no person to pull or dry shorling skins for transport furth of the realm; (13) the deacon, masters of craft, and their brethren to have power to make acts and statutes among themselves; (14) the deacon, with another person annually elected by the magistrates and councillors, to have power to search all skins ill-wrought, holed, or cut in the neck or jugger, and when such skins were found, a penalty of two shillings each was to be paid; (15) any member of the craft disobeying the deacon or his officer in any of the points aforesaid, or in the execution of their office, to pay a new upset, and forty shillings to the bailies for each conviction; (16) one-half of these penalties to belong to the bailies, and the other half to the craft; and the officer of the craft, with concurrence of one of the town's officers, to have power to poind therefor, and on default of payment to close the disobeyer's booth windows till payment was made; and (17) the deacons and masters of the craft, if they were negligent and omitted to try the faults above specified at convenient times, to pay a fine of £10 to the provost and bailies of the burgh. (fn. 84)
The council records for the period between 28th August, 1613, and 30th September, 1623, are awanting.
In 1613 a misunderstanding existed between the burghs and the king in regard to the case of one Stercovius, a Pole, who, in a book which he published, so traduced the nation, and especially those members of it who trafficked in the East Countries, as to excite the ire of his majesty. He accordingly commanded a prosecution against the offender to be instituted by one Patrick Gordon, a foreign agent and man of letters, (fn. 85) assisted by David Gray, which resulted in the suppression of the book and the execution of the author. The cost of these proceedings amounted to £600 sterling; and, holding that the Scottish merchants and traffickers in the Low Countries were chiefly benefited by the prosecution and execution of the offender, the king called upon the burghs to refund the charges and expenses of Gordon and Gray. To this demand, however, the burghs demurred, holding that, as the libel affected the whole nation, the burghs should only contribute their proportion of the cost. The privy council thereupon, on 27th January, 1613, ordered a charge to be given to the magistrates of eight of the burghs, including Glasgow, to appear before them, and see decree given against them for the amount. (fn. 86) Nothing seems to have followed upon this charge till 28th April, 1613, when the privy council ordered charges to be given to the burghs to appear before it, and see decree pronounced against them. (fn. 87) But in July Gordon appears to have attended a meeting of the convention of burghs in Dunbar in reference to the matter; and on the 9th the commissioners resolved to go to Edinburgh, and, after consultation, to appear before the privy council in regard to it. (fn. 88) The matter was probably under the consideration of the privy council at the same time, for Dr. Masson calls attention to the fact that, at its meeting on 13th July, the word "Stercovius" is jotted on the record, and repeated under the sederunt of the next entry on the following day. (fn. 89) Doubtless the representatives of the convention had appeared before the privy council, and represented their views on one or other or both of these days, with the result (which, however, does not appear to have been minuted) that the privy council agreed to write to the king on the subject, and the convention instructed Patrick Hamilton, its agent at court, to use his best efforts to secure that the burghs should only be required to contribute with the rest of the realm—at all events to urge that the king should allow the question to be decided as an ordinary action before the civil court. (fn. 90) The king, however, adhered to his resolution of requiring the burghs to bear the whole cost incurred by Gordon and Gray, and intimated that, if they refused to do so, he would not only "discharge his agent to solicit their affairs in the eastern ports," but would convene the estates, and submit the matter to them, so that the burghs might "be forced to embrace that which they refuse against reason to yield to." He, therefore, commanded that the burghs should be again convened and their resolution reported to him. On consideration of the whole matter, however, at a meeting held on 15th September, the burghs adhered to their former resolution, and declared that "neither by law, paction, or contract" were they obliged to pay the sum charged; and in explanation of the refusal, they further referred to the burdens imposed upon them, "the taxations yet to be levied of them" in that year and for some years to come, and the "great decay of trade and commerce within the kingdom" occasioned "by his majestie's absence." They, however, repeated their former offer to bear a proportional part of the charge along with the other branches of the State. A letter to this effect was accordingly ordered to be prepared and sent to the king, with an entreaty that he would accept their "humble offer, and have great commiseration of their meanness and inability," and grant a continuation of his "royal favour and protection." (fn. 91) A fresh charge seems then to have been given on 2nd November (fn. 92) to all or most of the burghs to appear before the privy council on 9th December to answer to the complaint against them, and on that day the representatives of most of the burghs appeared, declined the jurisdiction of the council in the matter, and claimed to have it decided by the judge ordinary. This contention the privy council sustained, and remitted the decision of the matter to the judge competent. (fn. 93) While thus so far successful in their contention, they, on the following day, resolved, "in testimonie of thair dewtiful and loyal affections and thankful mynds to his majestie, to mak offer to his majestie of the soum of 6,000 marks, in name of the haill burrowes," to be paid to the treasurer of Scotland with the taxation for the year. (fn. 94) The offer thus made seems to have been allowed to remain in abeyance till 14th July, 1614, when the privy council, referring to the offer, and to the king's direction that the amount should be paid to Gordon, directed the treasurer depute to pay that amount to him "in haill or in pairtes, according as he sall ressave the saim from the burghs." Thus ended what threatened at one time to be a rupture between the king and the convention. Throughout the dispute the representatives of Glasgow to the several conventions appear to have made common cause with the other burghs. These representatives were—James Stewart, bailie, who attended the conventions on 6th and 12th July; James Bell, on 14th September; and James Inglis, on 9th December.
In March, 1613, the king issued a commission for the visitation of the University of Aberdeen; and on 9th December he granted a charter under the great seal, by which he appointed the archbishop of Glasgow, the bishops of Orkney and Galloway, and ten other persons, including William Hay, "commissair" of Glasgow, and John Bell and Robert Scott, ministers there, of whom the archbishop should always be one, to visit the University of Glasgow, investigate its foundation, and reform its abuses. (fn. 95)
M'Ure and Cleland state that on 5th October in this year, James Stewart, merchant, was appointed provost, (fn. 96) and Mathew Turnbull, James Hamilton, and John Anderson were elected bailies. (fn. 97)
On 21st December, the king granted a charter under the great seal to the magistrates, council, and community, by which, in consideration of the frequent expenditure by them in repairing the metropolitan church of the city, and in upholding the bridge over the Clyde, which were two great ornaments of the kingdom, and of the services rendered to him and his predecessors, he conveyed to them and their successors in feu the whole tenements, as well built as waste, yards, barns, and barn yards, lying without the Rattounraw port of the burgh; eight acres of land or thereabout lying in Deanside; three acres in Crubbis; thirty acres or thereby in Provanside; and three acres lying at the back of the barns, on the north side of the street (Rattounraw). These lands and others formerly belonged to the subdeans of Glasgow, but were then at the disposal of his Majesty by virtue of the act of annexation of church lands to the Crown, and were appointed to be held and applied for the benefit and advantage of the burgh; for payment to the Crown of thirty-six shillings and eightpence, with three shillings and fourpence of augmentation, and of the duties to the college and the crafts' hospital used and wont. The lands and others were, moreover, incorporated into one tenandry, to be called the "Tenandry of Rattounraw," and were united to the burgh. (fn. 98)
The application by the town council to the convention of burghs in July, 1612, for liberty to apply to the king for authority to levy an impost on boats and ships belonging to unfreemen, to be applied in repairing Glasgow bridge, and then continued till the next convention, was under consideration at the convention in Dunbar on 9th July, 1613, and again delayed. (fn. 99) But at their meeting in Kirkcaldy on 7th July, 1614, the convention granted the authority desired,—the impost to be levied for five years, and its application to be reported to the burghs. (fn. 100)
For some years after 1612 the civil and ecclesiastical authorities exhibited exceptional zeal against Roman catholicism, and that zeal was intensified by a letter from the king, in which he urged severe measures to be adopted against all persons "infected with that leprosie." In accordance with that command, archbishop Spottiswood, about the beginning of October, caused "a Jesuit and messe priest," called John Ogilvie, to be apprehended and examined. He was a Scotchman by birth, but had resided abroad for about twenty-two years before coming to Glasgow, where he was well received by a number of citizens. On Ogilvie's apprehension being reported to the king and the privy council, they, on 11th November, appointed the archbishop and three others to be justices for his trial. It commenced in Edinburgh on the 8th of December, but was transferred to Glasgow, where it proceeded, on 28th February, 1615, before a special commission appointed seven days previously. The commissioners consisted of the provost and bailies of the city, with the archbishop and six assessors, of whom Sir Walter Stewart, bailie-depute of the regality, was one; and the crime charged was high treason, in declining the king's authority, alleging the supremacy of the Pope, and hearing and saying mass. On this charge Ogilvie was found guilty by a jury, of whom Sir George Elphingstoun was chancellor, and on the afternoon of the same day he was hanged. It is said that this was the only instance, after the Reformation, of a Roman catholic priest being put to death on account of his religion. But it is noticeable that while the prime mover in the tragedy was the episcopalian archbishop Spottiswood, his action seems to have been sympathised with by the presbyterian Calderwood. (fn. 103) On 6th December, 1614, thirteen or fourteen of the inhabitants of Glasgow who had received Ogilvie were convicted, for hearing mass and resetting a mass priest, in a court held by the bishop and three members of the privy council, who had been commissioned, under the king's direction, to try them. "The bruit went," says Calderwood, "that they were to be beheaded, drawn, and quartered; but they were in no danger." (fn. 104)
On 2nd May, 1615, archbishop Gledstanes died in the castle of St. Andrews, and archbishop Spottiswood was appointed his successor in the primacy. The charter of transfer to him, under the great seal, was dated 30th May, (fn. 105) and he was inaugurated at St. Andrews on Sunday, 6th August, in presence of most of the suffragan bishops. (fn. 106) He was succeeded in the archbishopric of Glasgow by Mr. James Law, bishop of Orkney, who was appointed by the king on 20th July, (fn. 107) and installed in September. (fn. 108) Before his installation, however, viz., on 23rd August, he was, by the king's orders, admitted an ordinary member of the privy council, and took the requisite oaths. (fn. 109)
On 1st July thereafter archbishop Spottiswood conveyed to Mr. Robert Scott, one of the ministers of the city, a right to four acres of glebe land, which he had acquired from Mr. David Wemyss, also minister of the city. This conveyance bears to have been made to Scott "for his better attendance upon the chairge of the ministrie heir, til it sal pleis God we haif better occasioun and means to help his present provisioun." (fn. 110)
On 3rd October in the same year, according to M'Ure and Cleland, James Hamilton was re-appointed provost, (fn. 111) and James Bell, Colin Campbell, and James Braidwood were re-elected bailies. (fn. 112)
On 21st December, 1615, a royal ordinance was issued consolidating the two Courts of High Commission, which had been in existence since February, 1610, and appointing a body of commissioners—twenty-two churchmen and nineteen laymen—of whom five, one of the archbishops being always one, were constituted a quorum. By this consolidation the efficiency of the original institution was largely increased, inasmuch as either of the archbishops with any four of the other commissioners could exercise the full powers of the court over the whole of Scotland. (fn. 113)