Pencaitland - Perth

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Institute of Historical Research

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Author

Samuel Lewis

Year published

1846

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351-367

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'Pencaitland - Perth', A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 351-367. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=43470 Date accessed: 31 August 2014.


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Pencaitland

PENCAITLAND, a parish, in the county of Haddington, including the hamlet of Nisbet, and containing 1127 inhabitants, of whom 48 are in the village of Easter Pencaitland, and 171 in Wester Pencaitland, 4 miles (S. E.) from Tranent. This place, which derives its name, properly Pencaithlan, from its situation at the head of a narrow valley watered by the river Tyne, is of very ancient date, and appears to have been granted by William the Lion to Everard de Pencaithlan, who gave the church, with the tithes and other property belonging to it, to the monks of Kelso, in whose possession it remained till a short time prior to the accession of Robert Bruce. The manor subsequently became the property of a younger branch of the Maxwell family, who granted the advowson and tithes to the monks of Dryburgh, who held them until the Reformation. The parish is about four miles in length from east to west, and about three miles in breadth; it is in the most westerly part of the county, and is bounded on the north by the parish of Gladsmuir, on the east by that of Salton, and on the south and west by the parish of Ormiston. The surface rises on both sides from the banks of the Tyne, by which it is divided into two nearly equal portions, in a gentle acclivity till it attains a moderate degree of elevation, and is pleasingly diversified with fields in rich cultivation, and with meadows of luxuriant verdure. The river, here a very inconsiderable stream, flows silently through a narrow but highly picturesque valley in its progress towards the sea; and there are numerous springs, affording an ample supply of excellent water. The soil is generally fertile, though not well adapted to green crops, and by good management has been much improved: the whole number of acres in the parish is estimated at 4800, of which 4300 are under tillage, 200 in pasture, and 300 in woods and plantations. The crops are, wheat, barley, oats, peas, beans, potatoes, and turnips; the system of agriculture is in an advanced state, and the six-shift course of husbandry prevalent. The lands are well inclosed, and have been much benefited by furrow-draining, which is extensively practised; the farm houses and offices are substantial and commodious; and on most of the farms are threshing-mills, several of them driven by steam, which is growing rapidly into use. The fences, chiefly thorn hedges, are kept in good order, and contribute much to the pleasing aspect of the parish. About 1400 or 1600 sheep are annually fed for the Edinburgh market. The woods and plantations are mostly on the lands of Winton and Fountainhall, and contain some trees of venerable growth. The substrata are limestone and coal, with some veins of freestone of excellent quality, which are quarried to a considerable extent for building and other purposes: the coalfield is part of the East Lothian range, which appears to terminate in this parish. The coal is found chiefly at a depth of about sixty feet, in seams varying from three feet to nearly five feet in thickness, below which, at a depth of nearly seventy feet, lies a vein of splint coal, from a foot and a half to three feet thick: there are three mines wrought, affording employment to more than 200 persons. There is also a vein of carboniferous limestone, wrought with profit. The nearest markettowns are Haddington and Dalkeith, to which the agricultural produce of the parish is chiefly sent; and facility of communication with these and other places is maintained by good roads: that from Edinburgh to Dunse passes a little to the east of Easter Pencaitland. The rateable annual value of Pencaitland is £7396.

Among the chief mansions are, Winton House, the seat of the earls of Winton until the estates were forfeited in 1715, and now the property of Lady Ruthven: and Fountainhall, belonging to Sir Thomas Dick Lauder, Bart.; both very ancient structures. The villages of Easter and Wester Pentcaitland are separated from each other by the Tyne. The latter is of corresponding antiquity with the parish, and appears to have been formerly of more importance than it is at present; it contains an ancient cross, from which it is supposed that a market was formerly held in it. An old proclamation, inserted in the Edinburgh Gazette, in August, 1699, authorized the holding of two fairs in this village, for the sale of horses, cattle, and sheep, and of linen and woollen cloths, on the 8th of June and 4th of October yearly, "free of customs for three years." The population of both places are chiefly employed in agricultural pursuits, and in small handicraft trades; but the inhabitants of the village of Newtown, also in the parish, almost exclusively in the collieries. The ecclesiastical affairs are under the presbytery of Haddington and synod of Lothian and Tweeddale, and the patronage belongs to Lady Ruthven: the stipend of the minister is £291, with a manse, a comfortable residence, and a glebe of six acres of good land, valued at £14 per annum. The church is a venerable structure, of which by far the greater portion was erected in 1631; the other portion, called the Pencaitland aisle, is of much greater antiquity, and most probably part of the original church. It is situated nearly in the centre of the parish; and adjoining to it is an ancient building, known by the name of the "College," probably from having been a seminary previous to the Reformation. The members of the Free Church have a place of worship. The parochial school affords education to about seventy scholars; the master has a salary of £34. 4., with a house and garden, and the fees amount to £30 per annum. The schoolroom, which is ample and commodious, is situated in the village of Wester Pencaitland. A school for girls at Easter Pencaitland was established by the late Mrs. Hamilton, for instructing children in elementary learning and in needle-work; and there is also a school in the village of Newtown, for the children of persons employed in the collieries, the master of which receives from Lady Ruthven and the lessee of the mines certain donations, in addition to the fees. Sir John Lauder, Lord Fountainhall, an eminent lawyer and statesman, who took his title from this parish, was the author of Fountainhall's Decisions, published in two volumes, and of three quarto and ten folio volumes of MSS. James Hamilton, one of the judges of the court of session, and a lord justiciary by the title of Lord Pencaitland; and George Seton, the fifth and last earl of Winton, who was taken prisoner at Preston, and sentenced to death for his attachment to the Pretender, were also among the eminent men connected with this place. Among several distinguished ministers of the parish have been, Calderwood, the ecclesiastical historian, who entered on his spiritual duties here some time after his return from Holland, whither he had been banished during one of the most eventful periods in the history of the Scottish Church; and the Rev. Robert Douglas, who, in the capacity of chaplain, accompanied a brigade of auxiliaries sent over to Germany from this country, to aid the Protestant cause under the celebrated Gustavus Adolphus, by whom he was held in high estimation.

Penicuick

PENICUICK, a parish, in the county of Edinburgh; containing, with the hamlets of Howgate, Nine-Mile-Burn, and Kirkhill, 2572 inhabitants, of whom 907 are in the village of Penicuick, 9 miles (S. by W.) from Edinburgh. The present name of this place is supposed to be derived from a British or Gaelic word signifying "Cuckoo's hill;" and as several places in the neighbourhood also received their epithets from this bird, it is probable that it was a frequent visiter in these quarters. The parish was formerly called St. Mungo, this being the popular name of St. Kentigern, to whom the first church was dedicated, and of whom some memorials still remain, especially a spring near the church, called St. Mungo's well. Penicuick was considerably augmented in 1635 by the annexation of the parishes of Mount-Lothian to the east, and St. Catherine's to the north-west: the former of these was an ancient chapelry belonging to the monks of Holyrood, who pastured their flocks on its rich and extensive grounds, from which it was often called by the name of Monk'sLothian. There are few events of historical importance to record; but mention may be made of New-Hall House, an ancient and interesting edifice, situated about three miles above Penicuick House, and which appears to have been a religious establishment. It was held in 1529, and during the rest of the 16th century, by a family of the name of Crichtoune; and not far from it is the ruin of Brunstane Castle, which was occupied by a family of the same name in 1568. New Hall lies on the border of a desolate moor, on the principal route from Edinburgh to the south-west, from which there was a pass here over the Pentland hills to the north; and it is supposed that the house afforded a refuge and lodging for travellers, at night, in the midst of their dreary journey, the lands in the neighbourhood and a farm-house being still denominated Spital. There was formerly a cross on the summit of the pass 1500 feet above the sea, intended, as is thought, for a signal or directory, and of which the stone forming the pedestal still remains. The lands of New-Hall passed from the families of Crichtoune, Penicuick, and Oliphant, into that of Forbes in 1703, in which they long remained. It is also worthy of notice that, near Logan House, surrounded on all sides by the Pentland hills, was the favourite hunting tract of the Scottish kings, where the celebrated match took place between the hounds of Robert Bruce and Sir William St. Clair, of Roslin. This match led to the erection by the latter, out of gratitude for his victory, of the chapel of St. Catherine's, the beautiful ruins of which were submerged some years ago in the construction of the great reservoir of the Edinburgh Water Company.

The parish is nearly twelve miles long, averaging four in breadth, and contains 20,000 acres. It is bounded on the north by Glencross, Colinton, and Currie parishes; on the south by the county of Peebles; on the east by the parishes of Temple and Lasswade; and on the west by Kirknewton. The surface is greatly diversified, exhibiting in the south-eastern parts a tolerably level country, but rising in numerous undulations and abrupt breaks towards the north-west, and comprehending a considerable portion of the Pentland hills, which rise 1700 feet above the level of the sea, and are overspread with numerous flocks of sheep. The proportion of wet moorland is very large; and this circumstance, together with the lofty elevation of many of the hills, renders the aspect of the parish in several parts wild and barren, and the climate bleak, damp, and unhealthy. Much interesting scenery, however, is formed by the Pentland hills, running from north-east to south-west; and the lands are enlivened by the river Esk, which, rising among the mountains, and flowing for about seven miles, leaves the parish a little below the village of Penicuick. The romantic valley of the Logan water, also, which divides the Pentland range, constitutes scenery worthy of admiration. There is only one loch, and this of small extent; but the numerous springs throughout the parish, and the several beautiful and copious streams, tributaries to the Esk, and issuing from the Pentlands, afford an abundant supply of the finest water for the ornamental scenery of pleasure-grounds, the uses of rural economy, and the extensive operations of the paper-mills established in the district.

The soil about the village consists of sand and gravelly earth resting upon sandstone and schistus; but in other parts clay is predominant, with large tracts of moss beneath which, at the depth of ten or twelve feet, is found a soil of great richness and fertility. About 1000 acres lie under wood; some thousands are mere barren heath, moor, and moss, capable, however, to a great extent, of profitable cultivation; while the remaining land consists of arable ground producing most kinds of crops of good quality, the total annual value of which is upwards of £20,000. Sheep are bred in considerable numbers, and, as well as the cattle, have been of late much improved by crossing the breeds. The Galloway cattle formerly prevailed; but the Ayrshire are now preferred, especially in dairy-farming, which is much attended to, being chiefly relied on by the tenants for the payment of their rent. The horses are mostly of the Clydesdale breed. Among the changes recently introduced, the superior character of the farmhouses and steadings deserves particular notice: all of these, in the Penicuick barony, have been rebuilt with good slated roofs, or improved in various ways. Large tracts of waste land have been progressively brought into tillage, particularly on the Springfield estate; and south-west of the village is a vast tract of barren moor, the reclaiming which, for some time commenced, has recently received an impulse by the formation of two turnpike-roads through the whole property. Inclosures and drains have to a considerable extent been constructed in the parish, the former consisting generally of stone dykes, though on the superior estates hedges and ditches are usually to be seen: furrow-draining also is gradually working its way; and tile-draining, so advantageously employed in the west of Scotland, has just been introduced. Lime is used as manure in very large quantities; and for obtaining it, in order to the reclaiming of waste, great facilities are afforded by the landlords. The land is portioned among numerous heritors, of whom Sir George Clerk, Bart., occupies more than one-half; and the rateable annual value of the parish amounts to £6070. The rocks most common are, sandstone, limestone, and schistus, which are abundant in every direction. In the eastern quarter the limestone is quarried to a considerable extent, and on the plains the sandstone and schistus run into the various alluvial formations of clay and gravel; fossils of shell-fish and plants have frequently been found, and of the latter class a very fine fossil-tree was taken out some years ago. The Pentland hills consist chiefly of porphyry, and on other high grounds chlorite, granite, and sienite are often seen: sometimes garnets are found, and iron-ore is met with in beds and veins of schistus. Coal, also, is abundant, and is now rather extensively wrought.

The chief mansion is Penicuick House, the seat of Sir George Clerk, an elegant structure built in 1761, in the Grecian style, with a portico of great beauty, and commanding a fine prospect of the valley along which the Esk flows, terminated by the western extremity of the Pentlands, and embracing the interesting ruins of Brunstane Castle. The library is well selected and extensive, and there is a superior collection of Roman antiquities; but the chief attraction to the visiter is Ossian's Hall, a spacious room the ceiling of which is ornamented with numerous designs from the poems of Ossian, painted by the celebrated Runciman, whose death is supposed to have been occasioned by the painful position and the flexures of his body rendered necessary in painting this roof. The house of New-Hall, the residence of the Brown family, is handsomely built in the manor-house style. The village of Penicuick, the only village in the barony, has good shops of every description; and two fairs are held in it during the year, one on the 3rd Friday in March, and the other on the 1st Friday in October, the chief business being the hiring of servants. A bailie holds a monthly court, and has at command a police force consisting of several special constables, whose services, however, are seldom required.

The three hamlets, Kirkhill, Howgate, and Nine-Mile-Burn, contain together about 600 persons. There are a few weavers; but the leading manufacture is that of paper, which has been long established, and is carried on to a great extent. The mills, impelled by the stream of the Esk, consume 1000 tons of rags annually, manufacturing paper to the amount of £80,000; and about 400 hands, including men, women, and children, are employed in the works. The premises were in 1810 turned by the government into a depôt for prisoners of war, and the adjacent cottages adapted to military purposes; the paper-mills were fitted up to receive 6000 prisoners, and the Esk mills, used at that time as a cotton-manufactory, quartered 1500 British troops. At the close of the war in 1814, however, the premises reverted to their former occupation; an event which was hailed throughout the parish with joy, manifested by a public illumination. An iron-foundry employs about thirty hands. Three great turnpike-roads run through the parish from north to south, all passing by different routes to Dumfries; viz., the old road by Howgate, the new road by Penicuick, and one recently formed by NineMile-Burn. Another road has been opened, connecting Penicuick with Linton; and all are in good order.

The ecclesiastical affairs are directed by the presbytery of Dalkeith and synod of Lothian and Tweeddale, and the patronage is vested in Sir George Clerk: the stipend of the minister is £158, of which about a third is received from the exchequer; with a manse, a commodious residence, and a glebe of six or seven acres, worth, with the farm-offices, about £26 per annum. The church is a neat structure in the Grecian style, with a chaste portico of four Tuscan columns supporting a pediment with architrave and entablature; it was built in 1771, and is in good repair. It formerly accommodated only 500 persons; but in 1837, 300 sittings were added at an expense of £600, and in 1845 two additional galleries were erected. There are a place of worship for members of the Free Church, and two for the United Associate Synod; one of the latter, at Howgate, was built in 1750, and accommodates about 400 persons. A parochial school is supported, the master of which has the maximum salary, with a house and garden, and £40 fees; but only the common branches of education, as reading, writing, and arithmetic, are taught. There are also several private schools in the parish, supported by fees; two infants' and four Sunday schools; and a good subscription library, containing about 1200 volumes, with one or two others of a minor character. Of three friendly societies one has a capital of £1200; and there is a savings' bank, to which the manufacturing classes chiefly contribute. It may be observed in reference to this parish, that the romantic scenery about the Esk, at New Hall, is generally supposed to have furnished the celebrated poet, Allan Ramsay, with some of the pictures of his admired pastoral, The Gentle Shepherd; and on the opposite side of the river is an obelisk raised to his memory. Near Valleyfield is a neat monument in memory of 300 prisoners of war who were buried in a beautiful spot here, while the mills constituted a government depôt. It has upon it the following inscription, Grata quies patriæ, sed, et omnis terra sepulchrum; and underneath is added, "Certain inhabitants of this parish, desiring to remember that all men are brethren, caused this monument to be erected." Chalybeate and petrifying springs are to be met with in the parish.

Pennan

PENNAN, a village, in the parish of Aberdour, district of Buchan, county of Aberdeen, 2 miles (N. N. W.) from the village of Aberdour; containing 168 inhabitants. This is a thriving fishing-village, situated on the Moray Frith, in the north-west quarter of the parish, and on the coast road from Banff to Fraserburgh. The Frith here abounds with fish in great variety, principally cod, ling, haddock, turbot, halibut, sole, mackerel, and herrings; and lobsters, crabs, and other shell-fish are taken. Six boats, with a complement of four men each, are usually employed upon the station. In the rocks of Pennan is a millstone-quarry: at one period the stones were sent to the south and west of Scotland, the demand being very great; but at present a few men only are engaged, and it is comparatively little wrought. A school has been established in the village, for the children of the fishermen.

Penninghame

PENNINGHAME, a parish, in the county of Wigton, 8 miles (N. W.) from Wigton; containing, with the market-town of Newton-Stewart, 3672 inhabitants, of whom 1500 are in the rural districts. This place, of which the name is of obscure and doubtful derivation, is not distinguished by many events of historical importance. There are some memorials of a battle having occurred at a very early period near Killiemore, in the parish, supposed to have been between the Romans under Agricola and the ancient Caledonians under Galdus; but no particulars have been recorded. The residence of the bishops of Galloway appears to have been at this place; and the celebrated bishop Alexander Gordon, who died here in 1576, was also proprietor of the lands of Clary, in the parish, which he settled upon his only daughter and heiress, who married Anthony Stewart, rector of Penninghame, a member of the Galloway family, and which are now the property of the present earl. The parish is bounded on the north and east by the river Cree, and on the west by the Bladenoch; and is about sixteen miles in extreme length, and from five to six miles and a quarter in extreme breadth; of very irregular form; and comprising nearly 38,000 acres, of which 12,000 are arable, 600 woodland and plantations, 1600 meadow, and the remainder hill pasture, moorland, moss, and waste. The surface rises to a considerable height in the centre of the parish, the eminences ranging from north to south, and sloping gradually towards the rivers on the east and west; it is also diversified with numerous hills of moderate elevation, and with tracts of level land, of which latter the moss of Cree, in the south-east, is almost 2000 acres in extent. The rivers are, the Cree, which rises on the confines of Ayrshire, and, after flowing for some distance along the border of the parish, expands into a considerable lake, and, pursuing its course southwards, falls into the bay of Wigton; and the Bladenoch, which, issuing from Loch Mabery, at the north-west angle of the parish, forms its boundary, and runs eastward through the parish of Wigton into the Cree. There are various small streams, tributaries to the rivers; and several lakes in the northern part of the parish, but none of them of any considerable extent, or distinguished by features deserving particular notice. There are also numerous springs of excellent water, and a chalybeate, strongly impregnated, but which has long ceased to be medicinally used. Salmon and grilse are taken in the Cree in great abundance, during the advanced period of the season, which commences in January, and continues till the end of September; seatrout are caught during the summer, and fresh-water and yellow trout at all times. In March the Cree abounds with smelts, of which great numbers are sent to England; and in the lakes, and the streams which flow from the hills into the Cree and Bladenoch, trout and pike of large size are found.

The soil on the higher lands is usually dry and fertile, and on the lower lands in the south, a rich loam of considerable depth; but in general, the land in the intervals between the hills is wet and marshy. In the northern district the soil is extremely various, but mostly of inferior quality. The crops are, barley, for which the ground seems peculiarly favourable, oats, potatoes, wheat, and turnips, with the usual grasses. Great improvement has been made under the encouragement of an agricultural society established within the last few years; and many tracts of moss and waste land have been reclaimed, and brought under profitable cultivation. The lands have been drained, and embankments have been constructed by the Earl of Galloway, and are still in progress; the due rotation of crops is regularly observed; and the inclosures, which are well adapted to the size of the farms, are chiefly stone dykes, but occasionally hedges of thorn. The farm-houses have been also improved, and are generally substantial; and all the more recent improvements in the construction of implements have been adopted. Much attention is paid to live-stock, for which the pastures afford ample scope. The sheep, of which great numbers are reared, are mostly of the original native breed on the sheep farms, with some of the Leicester and Cheviot breeds in the southern district of the parish; the cattle are mainly of the Galloway breed, with some few of the Irish; and Kyle cows have been lately introduced, especially on the dairyfarms in the neighbourhood of Newton-Stewart. Much of the agricultural produce, and numbers of sheep and cattle, are sent by water to Glasgow and Greenock, and to the Liverpool market, for which the river Cree, always navigable for vessels of forty tons to Carty-Port, about a mile to the south of the town of Newton-Stewart, where there is a convenient harbour, affords every opportunity. There are scarcely any remains of ancient woods. The plantations, principally of modern growth, consist of larch, Scotch and spruce firs, oak, ash, elm, and beech, which are all in a thriving state, though some of them are on lands not available to any other use; and evergreens of all kinds grow luxuriantly on damp soils, when the stagnant waters have been drained off. The chief substrata are of the greywacke formation, and are extensively quarried for building purposes, though sometimes with difficulty; the stone forms walls of great strength and beauty, and, when managed with care, is perfectly dry. Galloway granite is also found in several parts, occurring in masses occasionally mixed with green sienite, and of many tons' weight; it is much used in buildings in lieu of freestone. The rateable annual value of the parish is £11,324.

The chief mansion-houses are, Penninghame House, beautifully situated on the Cree, about half a mile distant from the picturesque ruins of Castle-Stewart, an ancient seat of the Galloway family; Merton Hall, two miles to the west of Newton-Stewart; Corsbie, belonging to the Earl of Galloway; and Corrisel. There are no villages: the town of Newton-Stewart is described under its own head. The post-office there has a tolerable delivery; and facility of communication is maintained by good roads, of which the military road from Dumfries to Portpatrick intersects the parish; and by two good bridges respectively over the Cree and the Bladenoch, of which the former is a handsome structure of five arches. The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Wigton and synod of Galloway. The minister's stipend is £231. 15. 11., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £22. 17. 2. per annum; patron, the Earl of Galloway. The church, erected in 1777, and enlarged in 1827 by the addition of galleries, contained 700 sittings; but being in a decayed state, and inconveniently situated, a new church was erected at NewtonStewart in 1841. The present church is in the later English style, with a tower surmounted by a lofty spire; it is seated on an eminence, and has 1200 sittings. There are places of worship for members of the Relief and Reformed Presbyterians, both in the town, where is also a Roman Catholic chapel. The parochial school is well attended; the master has a salary of £34. 4. 4., with a house and garden, and the fees average about £15 annually. There are also several endowed schools, of which one has a salary from the Earl of Galloway, with a school-house and dwelling-house, built by subscription, to which his lordship liberally contributed: another was founded by Archibald Mc Creddie, Esq., who endowed it with £500, the interest of which is paid to the master for the gratuitous instruction of poor children. A third school was founded by Samuel Douglas, of Jamaica, a native of the parish, who bequeathed, in trust to the ministers of Penninghame and Kirkmabreck, property since vested in land producing £300 per annum, from which, after deducting the cost of the erection of an appropriate building in Newton-Stewart, on a site given by the Earl of Galloway, the trustees pay £80 as a salary to a master, and £20 each for the boarding, clothing, and education of as many children as the remainder of the funds will maintain. There are numerous graves near Killiemore, of which the origin is unknown; and near them have been found coins of great antiquity, but on which the inscriptions were altogether illegible. The head of a Roman spear, nine inches in length, and a Roman battle-axe, were discovered near Merton Hall early in the present century; and celts of granite, and other relics of antiquity, have at various times been dug up. To the north of Newton-Stewart are the ruins of Castle-Stewart; and there are yet some remains of the old house of Clary, the property of Gordon, bishop of Galloway, in the ancient gardens of which are trees still bearing fruit. There are ruinous vestiges of the chapel of St. Ninian, and also of the old church and burying-ground of Penninghame: near the latter are a few small cottages, called the Clachan, through which hamlet James IV. in 1507 passed, on a pilgrimage to Whithorn.

Pennycuick

PENNYCUICK, county of Edinburgh.—See Penicuick.

Penpont

PENPONT, a parish and village, and the seat of a presbytery, in the county of Dumfries, 2 miles (W. S. W.) from Thornhill; containing 1266 inhabitants, of whom 492 are in the village. This parish is supposed to have derived its name from a very ancient bridge erected over the Scarr, of which the abutments rested on the summits of two precipitous rocks on opposite banks of the river, and which, from the singularity of its appearance, obtained the appellation of the "Hanging bridge." It is a place of great antiquity, and appears to have been a Roman station; the vestiges of a causeway may still be traced along the bank of the Scarr, and through the parish of Tynron, and there were also several forts, of which no vestiges now exist. Near the confluence of the Scarr and the Nith, to the south-east of the parish, are some slight remains of a fortress said to have been erected during the occupation of this part of the country by the Romans, by one of the Roman generals, and which was called Tiber's Castle in honour of the Emperor Tiberius. This castle was subsequently held by a detachment of the English army under Edward I., who placed in it a garrison to keep the Scots in subjection, and which committed frequent depredations throughout the neighbouring districts, and laid waste the country. To deliver his countrymen from this tyranny, Sir William Wallace, assuming the disguise of an itinerant mendicant, ascertained from the keeper of a kiln in the immediate vicinity of the castle, which prepared the corn for the use of the garrison, their probable number, and so far ingratiated himself in the good opinion of the keeper as to be entrusted with the care of the kiln during his temporary absence. Taking advantage of the opportunity, Wallace set fire to the building, and retired. The garrison, on seeing the flames issuing from the roof, at once repaired to the spot to save their grain from destruction; and Wallace, advancing with his party from their concealment in a thickly-wooded dell, made himself master of the castle, which he burned to the ground.

The parish is bounded on the west for almost five miles by the river Scarr, and on the north-east for about three miles by the Nith; it is nearly eighteen miles in length and five miles in breadth, comprising by computation 20,640 acres, of which by far the greater portion is grazing land. The surface is hilly, and partly mountainous. The hills mostly vary from 500 to 1000 feet in height; the bases of many of them are clothed with copse wood, and the acclivities and summits of these afford excellent pasturage for numerous flocks of sheep; while others are rugged and precipitous, resembling those of the Highlands. Of the latter the most conspicuous are, the Craig of Glenquhargan, which has an elevation of 1000 feet, terminating a range of heights that intersects the parish from north-west to southeast; and Chanlock, at the extremity of a similar range, of nearly equal height, formerly planted with trees to its very summit, and still presenting in the verdure of its aspect a fine contrast with the barren Craig of Glenquhargan. Almost in the centre of the parish is a ridge, extending towards the north, and terminating in Cairnkinnow; it rises by a gradual ascent to 2080 feet above the level of the sea, and commands a richly-diversified prospect over a country abounding with the most interesting features. By these several ridges the parish is divided into three deeply secluded, but picturesque and fertile valleys, each watered by its own peculiar streamlet, and in the highest state of cultivation, enlivened with verdant pastures and with plantations. The Scarr has its source in the hills to the north-west of the parish, and, after a course of ten miles through the interior, forms its western boundary, as already stated, separating it from the parish of Tynron; it subsequently flows eastward for nearly three miles along the southern boundary, and falls into the Nith. In its course through the parish the Scarr receives numerous tributary streams, of which the principal are, the Glenmanow burn, the Chanlock burn, the Homer burn, and the Druid Hill burn, all of which have their respective glens; and in the north-west is the Mar burn, which runs through the grounds of Drumlanrig Castle into the Nith river. The only lake is that of Dowloch, a small sheet of water, originally 120 yards in length and seventy yards in breadth, though now much diminished by draining, situated near the summit of the hilly ridge to the south of Drumlanrig, and in early times supposed to possess miraculous efficacy in curing all kinds of disease.

Of the lands, little more than one-tenth is arable and in cultivation; and of the remainder, which consists chiefly of sheep-walks and plantations, but a very inconsiderable portion is thought to be capable of improvement. The soil of the arable land is generally fertile, and the system of husbandry has been gradually advancing. The chief crop is oats; some barley is likewise raised, and sent to the Ayrshire breweries; and the growth of turnips, to be eaten off by the sheep, has been recently introduced with great advantage: the dairyfarms are under good management, and the produce forwarded to the Glasgow and Liverpool markets. The farm houses and buildings, especially on the lands belonging to the Duke of Buccleuch, are substantial and commodious; and under the favourable leases granted, considerable progress has been made in draining and inclosing. The plantations, which are rapidly increasing in extent, consist, in the Highland districts, of natural copsewood, chiefly hazel; in the glens, oak, for which the soil seems well adapted, and various kinds of foresttrees, all in a thriving state. The rocks are generally of the basaltic formation; and the substrata principally sandstone, of good quality for building purposes, and of which there are two quarries in operation, one on the lands of the Duke of Buccleuch, and one on the estate of L. Maitland, Esq. The rateable annual value of the parish is £9397. The only mansion is Eccles House, the seat of Mr. Maitland, beautifully situated in a richlyplanted demesne commanding a fine view of the vales of the Nith and the Scarr for several miles; the grounds are tastefully laid out, and near the house are two stately beech-trees of luxuriant growth. Part of the pleasure-grounds, and the whole of the extensive new gardens, of Drumlanrig Castle, a seat of the Duke of Buccleuch, situated in the adjoining parish of Durisdeer, are within the limits of this parish. These gardens were commenced, and have been completed, within the last ten years, at an expense of £11,000; and an elegant cottage for the residence of the gardener has been erected, under the superintendence of Mr. Burn, the architect. The vegetable garden occupies an area of four acres within the walls, and abounds with every variety of produce, of the choicest quality, and in the highest perfection. Nearly 1000 square feet of glass are contained (in the fruit garden) in the forcing-frames for melons, cucumbers, and similar plants, and in the vineries, pine-stoves, and peach-houses, in all of which the requisite degree of heat, for each, is produced by water raised to different degrees of temperature. In the conservatories is every species of exotics, in the richest profusion. All the various departments are studiously contrived with a due regard to the most scientific arrangement, and preserved in the most beautiful order; and by the liberality of the noble proprietor, the gardens are accessible to the visits of strangers, who are also permitted to inspect the flower-gardens in the immediate vicinity of the castle.

The village of Penpont is situated on the turnpike-road leading from New Galloway to Edinburgh, and consists of several clusters of houses which once formed the hamlets of Townhead, Brierbush, and Burnhead; the last is within half a mile of the Nith, and may be regarded as a suburb. The inhabitants are chiefly employed in agricultural and pastoral pursuits; but the smelting of old iron, and the making of spades and other implements, have been lately introduced, and afford employment to about four or five persons. There are, also, some good inns, and several small shops stored with various kinds of merchandise for the supply of the neighbourhood; and some of the inhabitants are employed in the usual handicraft trades. Fairs were formerly held on the third Tuesdays in March, June, and October, chiefly for hiring servants. Letters are forwarded from the post-office at Thornhill; and facility of communication is maintained by good turnpike-roads, and by bridges over the different streams, of which the ancient bridge across the Scarr, from which the parish is supposed to have taken its name, has been rebuilt. The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Penpont, who have their seat in the village, and the synod of Dumfries. The minister's stipend is £236. 6. 9., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £30 per annum; patron, the Duke of Buccleuch. The church, which is situated at the lower extremity of the parish, about 150 yards from the village, was built in 1782, and since substantially repaired at an expense of £340, including the session-house; it is a neat plain structure, partly cruciform, and contains 408 sittings. There are places of worship for Reformed Presbyterians and members of the Relief. Two parochial schools are supported, of which the masters have salaries of £27. 6. 6. and £24 respectively, with a house each, and one a small garden, in addition to the fees, which average £16 and £9: in one of these schools, the Greek and French languages are added to the usual routine. The foundations of Tiber's Castle may still be distinctly traced; and till the year 1812 a portion of the doorway, and a winding staircase, were remaining, near which a labourer, who had been employed to remove part of the ruins for the sake of the materials, discovered a number of arrow-heads, fragments of pottery, and the head of a spear.

Penston

PENSTON, a village, in the parish of Gladsmuir, county of Haddington, 3 miles (E. by S.) from Haddington; containing 233 inhabitants. This village, which is chiefly inhabited by persons employed in collieries, is irregularly built, and the houses of a very inferior description: it appears to have been indebted for its extension, if not for its origin, to the valuable seams of coal found in the immediate vicinity. The inhabitants are supplied with water from three open wells. A friendly society has been established, which has been productive of benefit by diminishing the number of poor applying to the funds of the parish for relief. The coal is of excellent quality; the seams are generally from thirty to thirty-five inches in thickness, and have been worked almost from time immemorial. The rental of the mines in the 17th century averaged about £400. Several of the older mines have been exhausted, and new ones opened to the north of the village: their operation was formerly much retarded by a copious influx of water, but they have been perfectly drained by the erection of steam-engines, of which there are two now at work. More than a hundred persons are regularly employed, of whom nearly one-half were till lately women and boys; and the quantity of coal produced annually averages 15,000 tons. A saw-mill has been erected, which is applied to the preparation of wood for the use of the mines, and for various other purposes. A school is maintained for the instruction of the children of the colliers; the master is supported by the fees; and a branch of the Haddington Itinerating Library is established in the village. The site of a church erected at Thrieplaw is now occupied by a few huts, raised at the time of the opening of some of the coal-pits in this part of the parish, and in the building of which the walls of that edifice, which had been suffered to fall into decay, were incorporated. The spot where these cottages stand is called the Old Kirk; and the old manse, in which Principal Robertson wrote part of his History of Scotland, is still remaining.

Pentecox

PENTECOX, a hamlet, in the parish of Newton, county of Edinburgh, 1½ mile (W. N. W.) from the village of Newton; containing 41 inhabitants. This is a small place in the western extremity of the parish, situated on the great road from Edinburgh to Dalkeith.

Pentland

PENTLAND, a small village, in the parish of Lasswade, county of Edinburgh, 2 miles (W.) from the village of Lasswade. This place, which is in the Pentland district of the parish, on the borders of Liberton, is chiefly the property of Mrs. Gibsone, of Pentland House, an elegant mansion finely situated; and a handsome school-house has been erected here by that lady, with a dwelling for the master, to whom she allows a salary of £20 per annum. The adjacent mountainous ridge of the Pentland hills, commences about four miles south-west of Edinburgh, and extends for a considerable distance towards the western borders of the county, some of the highest elevations being upwards of 1700 feet above the level of the sea.

Pentland Skerries

PENTLAND SKERRIES, an island, forming part of the district of St. Mary's, in the parish of South Ronaldshay, county of Orkney; containing 11 inhabitants. This is the largest of several small islets situated at the east end of the Pentland Frith, and bearing the common name of the Pentland Skerries. It is a mile long, and half a mile broad, and has a lighthouse on which two fixed lights are exhibited, a hundred feet apart, and seen at the distance of from sixteen to eighteen nautical miles: the light was erected in 1794, previously to which time the Skerries were most formidable to mariners. No anchorage can be found in any part of the Frith; and when a west or south-west wind causes an increase in the current, scarcely any vessel can withstand the tremendous surge, which dashes with such violence against the coast, that the spray is often carried a great distance inland, and falls like a shower of rain. This strait has been the terror of the boldest sailors, and the grave of thousands; it connects the Atlantic with the German Ocean, and from the Hebrides and Cape Wrath the flow of the former comes rolling in one unbroken and irresistible stream.

Persey

PERSEY, a district, on the river Shee, in the parish of Bendochy, county of Perth, 13 miles from the church of Bendochy. This place, which includes North and South Persey, belonged formerly to the monks of CuparAngus, from whom it was purchased about the time of the Reformation; it is now the property of Capt. John Stewart and Charles Farquharson, Esq. The lands form a part of the Highland district of the parish, and comprise 1871 acres, of which 287 are arable, 412 woodland, and 1172 pasture. A chapel was erected here about the year 1785, at an expense of £150, raised by contributions, for the accommodation of the inhabitants of this distant portion of the parish, and adjoining portions of the neighbouring parishes; it is a neat structure containing 400 sittings, and the minister derives a stipend from the seat rents, averaging £70, and has a manse, erected in 1835 by subscription. The proprietor of North Persey granted the site for the chapel and the manse, with half an acre of ground for a garden; and the chapel is under the superintendence of trustees for maintaining it in connexion with the Established Church.

Perth

PERTH, a city, a royal burgh, and anciently the metropolis of the kingdom of Scotland, in the county of Perth, of which it is the capital; comprising the parishes of East Church, Middle Church, St. Paul, and West Church, and the late quoad sacra district of St. Leonard; and containing 19,293 inhabitants, of whom 12,616 are in the burgh, 44 miles (N. by W.) from Edinburgh, and 61 (N. E.) from Glasgow. This place, which is of very remote antiquity, is supposed to have derived its name, originally Bertha, from the Celtic terms Bhar, "high," and Tatha, "the Tay," signifying "the Height of the Tay," from a lofty eminence on the opposite bank of that river, on the west side of which Perth is situated. The origin of the town is involved in much obscurity; but it is generally ascribed to the Roman general Agricola, who, about A.D. 85, established a winter station here, and founded a colonial town, which he fortified with walls, and with a strong castle surrounded by a broad and deep fosse supplied with water from the Almond, a stream tributary to the Tay, over which river he erected a bridge of wood. Little, however, is known of the history of the town from this period till 1210, when William the Lion, confirming a series of charters from the year 1106, and which are still extant, erected it into a royal burgh. From these several charters, it appears to have been at an early date a place of considerable importance, the seat of government, and the residence of the Scottish kings, who were crowned in the abbey of Scone, in its immediate vicinity. The remains of the ancient house of parliament were still in existence in 1818, when they were removed to afford a site for the erection of the Freemasons' Hall, on the north side of the High-street, in an area yet called the Parliament-close. The Flemings frequented the port at a very remote period, and several of them fixed their abode in the town; but from the impolitic restraints imposed upon them by David I. and his grandson, William the Lion, they ultimately emigrated to England, where, meeting with a more favourable reception, they established the woollen trade, and thus laid the foundation of that country's manufacturing prosperity. In 1210, the town was almost destroyed by an inundation of the rivers Tay and Almond, which swept away the bridge, an ancient chapel, and other buildings; the king, with his family and household, and many of the inhabitants, made their escape in boats, and such as remained found safety only on the flat roofs of their houses.


Burgh Seal.

In the reign of Alexander III., the inhabitants carried on a very extensive trade with the Netherlands in vessels of their own, for the encouragement of which that monarch used every means in his power, making provision for the protection of their shipping from the attacks of pirates, and for guarding it against detention in foreign ports. During the disputed succession to the throne, Perth largely participated in the hostilities of that disturbed period. After the battle of Falkland in 1298, Edward I. of England, having obtained possession of all the Scottish fortresses, rebuilt the walls of the ancient castle, and fortified the town, which he placed under the government of his deputies, and in which his son, Edward II., resided for some years; but on the establishment of Robert Bruce in 1312, that monarch took active measures for the recovery of the fortresses and the expulsion of the English garrisons. Of all the strongholds, the castle of Perth was the most formidable, not only from its situation, being surrounded with a deep fosse, which prior to the use of artillery rendered it impregnable, but also from the numbers of the garrison; and though repeatedly assailed by the Scottish forces, it long resisted all their efforts to recover it. On his return from an incursion into England, Bruce laid siege to it in person, but, after a protracted attempt, fearing for the health of his forces, abandoned the enterprise. Still, however, persevering in his resolution to effect his purpose, he soon renewed the assault, and furnishing his forces with ladders, took the opportunity of a dark night, and while the garrison, fancying themselves in perfect security, were off their guard, partly swam across, and partly waded, the fosse at the head of his forces; carried the castle by escalade; and overpowering the garrison, made himself master of the fortress, and set fire to the town. Thus reducing the whole of Perth and Strathearn into his power, he completed the expulsion of the English from his dominions. In 1332, Edward Baliol, after the battle of Dupplin, seized Perth, and was crowned at Scone; but, returning southward to open a communication with the English marches, the loyal adherents of Bruce again besieged the castle, expelled the garrison which had been placed in it by the usurper, and recovered possession of the whole town.

In 1336, Edward III. of England, standing before the great altar in the church of St. John, in conversation with his brother, the Earl of Cornwall, who had recently arrived from England, reproached him for some highly aggravated cruelties inflicted on the inhabitants of the western counties on his route to Perth. The earl repelling the accusation, a violent altercation ensued, in the heat of which the king drew his dagger, and stabbed him to the heart. In 1339, the regent, Robert Stuart, afterwards king, who had succeeded to the regency on the death of the Earl of Murray, besieged the castle of Perth, at that time defended by an English garrison; but it had been so strongly and so skilfully fortified by Edward, that, after three months' siege, he resolved to give up the enterprise. At this moment, however, Douglas, Lord Liddesdale, who had been sent to France on an embassy to David Bruce, returning with several ships and a plentiful supply of men and provisions, Robert renewed the contest with vigour. Douglas, in attempting an escalade, was severely wounded, and the castle still held out for a considerable time; but at length, the Earl of Ross, having contrived to drain off the water from the fosse, opened a passage for the assailants by land, and the governor, Sir Thomas Ochtred, finding the place no longer tenable, surrendered it on honourable terms, after having sustained a second siege of one month. Not long after this time, a deadly feud arose between the powerful clans of the Mc Intoshes and the Mc Kays; and Robert III. sent the Earls of Dunbar and Crawfurd with a strong force, to reduce them to order, for which purpose they proposed to the chiefs to select thirty men from each clan to decide the contest at Perth, in presence of the king. On this occasion, one of the Mc Intoshes was not forthcoming, and his place was taken by a saddler of the town named Wynd, upon condition of receiving half a French dollar of gold. After a sanguinary battle, in which twentynine of the Mc Kays were killed, the surviving individual, seeing no hope of victory over Wynd and the ten remaining Mc Intoshes, bursting from the lists, swam across the Tay, and made his escape. In 1437, James I. was barbarously assassinated in the monastery of the Black Friars, by Walter, Earl of Atholl, Robert Stuart his grandson, and Sir Robert Graham, who were subsequently taken, and executed, after being put to the torture: the mangled remains of the king were interred in the Carthusian monastery, which he had founded in 1429. In 1512, the plague committed dreadful havoc in the city; and for the purpose of arresting its spread, a proclamation was issued by James V. to the magistrates, a copy of which is still preserved among the records.

The doctrines of the Reformation were eagerly embraced by the citizens of Perth, on their earliest introduction; and to check their progress, Cardinal Beaton, with the bishops and clergy, obtained under the sanction of the Regent Hamilton, Earl of Arran, a commission for the punishment of such of the inhabitants as maintained the new opinions. For this object, the cardinal and Hamilton came to Perth to hold a court for the trial of heretics, when Robert Lamb, with his wife, and eight others of the citizens, were convicted, and confined in the Spey Tower. Intercession was made for them by a number of the people, who, relying upon the promise of Hamilton that they should be pardoned, peaceably dispersed; but the cardinal, who had the regent under his own influence, insisted on their execution, and the men were consequently hanged, and the woman drowned. In 1559, John Knox, the reformer, having returned from Geneva, visited Perth, and preached in the church of St. John a sermon in which he vehemently condemned the idolatry of the Romish Church. After the conclusion of the service, the congregation were quietly dispersing, when, a priest coming forward and preparing to celebrate the mass, those of the congregation that still remained were exasperated into open violence: they defaced the altar, broke the images, and destroyed the other ornaments of the church; and afterwards proceeded to the monasteries, which they plundered, and almost levelled with the ground. The queen, incensed at the destruction of the monasteries, and more especially at that of the Carthusians, in which were enshrined the ashes of her ancestors, advanced to Perth with an army consisting chiefly of French troops, to punish the authors of that violence. But the adherents of the Reformation, animated with zeal for the maintenance of their religious principles, assembled in a body to defend the town, and were sufficiently numerous to face the army of the queen, commanded by D'Oysel, the French general. A mutual accommodation, therefore, took place, by which it was stipulated that both armies should be disbanded, and the gates of the city opened to the queen, who entered on the 29th of May; but after the Protestant army had dispersed, the queen introduced the French forces, dismissed the magistracy, and re-established the old religion. The citizens, upon this, again assembled a considerable force, and, imploring the aid of the lords of the congregation without delay, Argyll, Ruthven, and others marched to their assistance, summoned the garrison to surrender, and, on their refusal, laid siege to the place. Ruthven attacked the town on the west, and Provost Halyburton, with his men from Dundee, played on it with artillery from the bridge; the garrison capitulated on the 26th of June, and the reformers, assembling in great numbers, went forward to Scone, destroyed the palace and the abbey, and set fire to the village.

In 1600, James VI., then residing at Falkland, was while on a hunting party allured by John Ruthven, Earl of Gowrie, and his brother Alexander, to the castle of that nobleman in Perth, and detained there for some hours as a prisoner till rescued by his attendants, who, in the scuffle that ensued, killed the earl and his brother. Three of Gowrie's attendants, being convicted of assisting him in an attempt on the king's life, were afterwards executed at Perth. The exact nature of this transaction has never been satisfactorily explained, though it is generally supposed that the object of the earl was, to extort from the king some concessions in favour of the Presbyterians. In 1651, the citizens raised a body of 100 men, whom they marched to Burntisland to watch the movements of Cromwell, who with a fleet and army had some time before arrived in Scotland; and being soon afterwards joined by a detachment of the royal army at Dunfermline, they were attacked by a superior number of Cromwell's forces, which had landed at the Frith of Forth under the command of General Lambert. An obstinate battle ensued, in which the Scots were defeated: such of the citizens as escaped returned to Perth, which they fortified against the usurper; while the king with his army retreated to Stirling, on his route to England. Cromwell and General Lambert, advancing towards Perth, halted for one night at Fordel, and on the following morning appeared before the gates of the city, which they summoned to surrender; but the inhabitants assumed an air of contemptuous defiance, and Cromwell, thinking them more powerful than they were, offered honourable conditions, and the gates were opened to admit him. In order to keep the citizens in awe, he built a citadel on the South Inch, for the erection of which he demolished the walls of the convent of Grey Friars, removed 300 tombstones from the cemetery, destroyed the school-house and 400 dwellings, pulled down the ancient cross, and took away even the buttresses of the bridge, to furnish the materials. The building was a quadrangle, inclosing an area 266 feet in length and of equal breadth, with a circular bastion at each of the angles; and was surrounded by a moat. In 1715, the Pretender, under the title of the Chevalier de St. George, made Perth his head-quarters, but was soon dislodged by the Duke of Argyll; and in 1745 Prince Charles Edward, the Young Pretender, was proclaimed king in the town. He made a new election of magistrates, and endeavoured to fortify the place; but he was shortly defeated by the forces under the Duke of Cumberland, to whom the provost and council presented the ancient castle of Gowrie, in honour of his victory over the rebels. In 1842, the city was visited by Her present Majesty, accompanied by Prince Albert, arriving here in the afternoon of the 6th of September. At the South Port they were received by the magistrates and council, and the lord provost presented the keys of the city, which were returned; the gates were then thrown open, and the royal cortége passed under a magnificent triumphal arch, and proceeded through the city, the streets of which were occupied by multitudes of people, interspersed with the various public bodies of the place, in their appropriate dresses. In the evening, Her Majesty honoured Lord Mansfield with her presence at dinner, at Scone.

The town is beautifully situated on the western bank of the Tay, over which is a handsome bridge of ten arches, built in 1771 to replace the ancient structure, destroyed by an inundation of the river in 1621. The present bridge is more than 900 feet in length, and about twenty-two feet in width between the parapets, and was completed under the superintendence of the architect Smeaton, at an expense of £27,000, chiefly through the exertions of the Earl of Kinnoull; affording a communication with the populous village of Bridgend, and with the road to Dundee. The streets are spacious and regularly formed; and the houses, especially those of more modern erection, are substantial and handsomely built. The principal streets, High-street and South-street, intersect the city from east to west in a parallel direction: crossing these at right angles are, Speygate, Watergate, and George-street, in a line with each other, the last leading to the bridge; also Princes-street, Kirkgate, and Skinnergate. Still further westward are the pile of New-row, and some pleasing villas at the extremity of the city; while on the north side are several handsome streets, crescents, and terraces of recent date. Perth is lighted with gas from works erected in 1824, at an expense of £19,000; and the inhabitants are supplied with water from works established in 1830, at a cost of £13,609: the water, filtered from the river, is conveyed into a spacious reservoir at the eastern end of Marshall-place, and forced by steam into a lofty circular tower, which forms a great ornament. The ancient cross, situated in the centre of High-street, and demolished by Cromwell, as already observed, in 1652, was rebuilt after the restoration of Charles II.; but being found an obstruction to the public thoroughfare, it was removed in 1765, and the materials sold by order of the magistrates. Of the walls of Perth, scarcely a vestige is remaining; and of the several towers by which the gates were defended, the last, the Spey Tower, was taken down at the commencement of the present century. Adjoining the town, on each side, are spacious greens called respectively the North and South Inch. The former, which is on the margin of the river, was considerably enlarged in 1785, and forms a beautiful appendage to the city. On the west side of this green is the ancient mansion of Balhousie, embosomed in lofty and venerable trees, above which is an old mill driven by water from the canal originally formed from the Almond for supplying the fosse by which the town walls were surrounded; and on the east of the green is a fine level race-course, more than a mile and a quarter in length. The South Inch is surrounded with avenues of trees, and interspersed with pleasing villas, and has on the north side Marshall-place and King's-place, and on the west the villas of St. Leonard's Bank: the high road to Edinburgh passes through the centre of this green, between stately trees. The approaches to Perth on every side are beautifully picturesque; and from many points the city, in combination with its noble river and the sylvan scenery upon its banks, has an air of impressive magnificence.

There are six circulating libraries, of which the principal is the Perth Library, instituted in 1786, and supported by annual subscriptions of fifteen shillings; it contains about 6000 volumes, which are kept in an apartment appropriated to its use in the building called Marshall's Monument, and is under the care of a librarian who attends for two hours daily. The Exchange Coffee-house in George-street is well supported. There are three weekly newspapers published: of these, the Courier was established in 1809, the Advertiser in 1820, and the Constitutional in 1835. The Literary and Antiquarian Society was founded in 1784 by the Rev. James Scott, and is under the direction of a president and committee. It has an extensive and valuable collection of scarce and interesting books, manuscripts, coins, and medals, with various other antiquities and relics illustrative of the history of Scotland; and it has received many additions from natives of the county, and from its president, Lord Breadalbane. Its annual meetings are held in the hall assigned to its use in Marshall's Monument, when papers on literary, scientific, and antiquarian subjects are read before the society, prior to being deposited in the library. The building styled Marshall's Monument was erected by public subscription of the citizens, in honour of their provost, the late Thomas Hay Marshall, Esq., of Glenalmond; and is an elegant structure in the Grecian style of architecture, of circular form, surmounted by a spacious dome, and embellished with a portico of the Ionic order: it is finely situated at the north end of George-street. The Theatre was built in 1820, at an expense of £2625, but is not much frequented. The Freemasons' Hall, erected in 1818, on the site of the ancient house of parliament, is a handsome building, and contains a large hall occasionally used for public auctions. The races, which are held annually, are well attended. The barracks, originally intended for cavalry, but now fitted up for infantry, were erected in 1793, at the western extremity of Atholl-street; they form a neat range of buildings, and are well adapted to their purpose. The extensive depôt erected by government in 1812, at an expense of £130,000, and capable of receiving 7000 prisoners of war, has been recently converted into a penitentiary.

Among the principal manufactures carried on in the town and its vicinity are those of gingham, muslin, shawls, cotton goods and linens, handkerchiefs, scarfs, and trimmings, in which more than 1600 persons are employed. Of the ginghams, those for the making of umbrellas are most produced, and great quantities are forwarded to London and Manchester, and to other towns in England; the rest of the manufactures are chiefly exported to North and South America, and the East and West Indies, and many of the shawl pieces are sent to Turkey. A mill for spinning flax and tow has been lately established, in which were at first but 850 spindles, and the number of persons employed was only one hundred, the greater portion of whom were females; but the number of spindles has been augmented to 1250, and the number of persons proportionally increased. In the neighbourhood are extensive bleachfields and printing establishments. There are several breweries and distilleries, and numerous corn-mills; the Perth and St. John's iron-foundries, and some brass-foundries, are in operation on a large scale; and there are rope-walks, tanneries, and dye-works, in which considerable numbers of persons are engaged. The manufacture of bricks and tiles is extensive; and there are several coach-building establishments, and some saw-mills worked by steam for the preparation of timber, with which the neighbourhood abounds, for various uses.

The trade of the port consists chiefly in exporting agricultural produce to the London market, principally potatoes, which are said to have been first grown here on their introduction into Scotland, and of which the quantity annually shipped is about 30,000 tons: of grain of various kinds, 40,000 quarters are exported; and a considerable quantity of timber and slates is sent off. From the proximity of Dundee, the manufacturing produce is generally forwarded to that place in lighters for exportation. The imports consist chiefly of flax, clover seeds, and linseed, cheese, foreign spirits, bark, hides, madder, tar, Norway, Baltic, and American timber, bones for manure, salt, lime, and coal from England and different parts of Scotland. The number of ships registered as belonging to the port, in 1843, was ninetyfour, and their aggregate burthen 9624 tons; and the number of vessels that entered in a recent year was 758, of which twenty-two were from foreign ports, and 736 coasting-vessels. The duties paid at the custom-house in 1843 amounted to £13,481. The harbour, at first near the bridge, was in 1752 removed lower down the river; but, though at that period accessible to ships of tolerable size, it was in the course of a few years, from its want of depth, frequented only by small craft. In 1830, therefore, considerable improvements were projected by Mr. Jardine, and a commodious pier was constructed; but the works were discontinued, and the original improvements not carried into effect, till 1834. At that time others, also, on a more extended scale, including the deepening of the river from Newburgh to Perth, the removal of several fords by dredging machines, and the construction of a tide harbour, a ship canal, and wet-docks, rendering the harbour accessible in springtides to vessels of 380, and at neap-tides of 130, tons, were adopted by the town-council at the suggestion of the Messrs. Stevenson, and are now in progress, with every prospect of being fully accomplished. The tide harbour has been completed; vessels of 300 tons now reach Perth with ease, and the amount of the shipping belonging to the port is on the increase. Ship-building is carried on here to a very considerable extent, the surrounding country affording abundance of timber; and several vessels of 500 tons have been built in the dockyards. A ship-building company was established in 1838, chiefly through the great impulse communicated by the firm of the Messrs. Graham, who in their commercial transactions employ vessels of their own, of which the aggregate burthen exceeds 2400 tons. The first iron steam-boat on the eastern coast of Scotland was made here, in the foundry of Messrs. A. Mc Farlane and Sons: this vessel, which plies on the river, between Perth and Dundee, is 112 feet in length, and, with 500 passengers on board, draws three feet water, being propelled by an engine of seventy-horse power. Since that time, several iron and other steam-vessels have been launched from the port.

The salmon-fishery of the Tay is carried on with very encouraging success. The whole of the fisheries on the river afford employment to nearly 500 men; and the average number of fish taken annually at this place only is 25,000 salmon, and 50,000 grilse, all of which are exported direct to the London markets. With a view to promote the commerce and manufactures of the town, there are two provincial banks established, namely, the Perth and the Central Banks, with branches of the Bank of Scotland, the British Linen Company, the Commercial, and the National Banks. A savings' bank was founded in 1815; the amount of deposits is above £4000. The post is frequent; and the revenue of the office formerly amounted on an average to about £4000. Facility of communication with the towns of Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Dundee, and Dunkeld, is afforded by excellent roads diverging from the city; and these means of intercourse will be vastly increased by the construction of the Scottish-Central, Dundee and Perth, Edinburgh and Northern, and Scottish-Midland-Junction railways, the statutes authorising which were all passed in the session of the year 1845, so remarkable for its railway projects. The works connected with these important undertakings are in active progress, and all the four lines pass through, or terminate in, the city as a common centre. The general market, which is on Friday, is plentifully supplied with corn and provisions of every kind; and there is a market on Wednesday, also well attended. Fairs are held on the first Fridays in March, April, and July, and the second Friday in December, for horses and cattle; on the first Friday in September, for the hiring of servants and general business; and on the third Friday in October, for cattle, horses, and cheese.

The government of the burgh, by a succession of charters from its erection into a royal burgh by William the Lion to the time of James VI., who confirmed all previous grants, was till lately vested in a provost, dean of guild, three merchant-bailies, and one trades'-bailie, a treasurer, and nine merchant and three trades' councillors, assisted by a town-clerk and other officers. The present magistrates are, a provost, a dean of guild, four bailies, and a treasurer; and the number of councillors is now nineteen. The ancient seal, which bore upon the obverse the decollation of St. John the Baptist, and on the reverse the enshrinement of that saint, was disused after the Reformation, and the present seal, alluding to the foundation of the town by the Romans, adopted in its stead. The provost, the bailies, and other officers, are elected by the council from among their own body; and the council, under the Municipal Reform act, are chosen by the £10 householders: the dean of guild is elected by the guildry, or merchants' incorporation. There are seven incorporated trades, the hammermen, bakers, glovers, wrights, tailors, fleshers, and shoemakers, in which the fees for admission vary from £1 to £4 for the sons of freemen, and from £20 to £100 for strangers. The jurisdiction of the magistrates extends over the whole of the royalty, of which, however, the limits are not clearly defined. The provost, who is also sheriff and coroner, with the bailies, holds burgh courts regularly every week, upon Tuesday, for the determination of civil causes; there is also a court holden for the recovery of small debts; and a court of guildry is held monthly, and occasionally at other times. The criminal jurisdiction of the magistrates is rarely, if at all, exercised; though it extends to capital offences, and there are instances on record of persons having suffered the extreme penalty of the law. The burgh, previously to the passing of the Reform act, sent a member to the imperial parliament in conjunction with those of Dundee, Cupar, Forfar, and St. Andrew's; but since that period it has returned its own representative.

The County Buildings, which are conveniently situated at the end of South-street, near the margin of the river, were erected in 1819, at a cost of £32,000, after a design by Mr. Smirke; they form an elegant structure of freestone in the Grecian style, of which the principal front has a stately portico of twelve fluted columns, supporting an entablature and cornice surmounted by a triangular pediment. The centre comprises the court of justice, of semicircular form, sixty-six feet in length, and containing a gallery for the accommodation of 1000 persons: behind the bench are the judges' rooms and rooms for witnesses; and leading from the bar is a flight of steps communicating with a subterraneous passage from the prison. The county-hall, which occupies the south wing, is a handsome apartment sixty-eight feet long and forty feet wide, elegantly fitted up, and embellished with portraits of the late Duke of Atholl and the late Lord Lynedoch by Sir Thomas Lawrence, and one of Sir George Murray by Wilkie; the committeeroom is thirty feet square, and on the floor above is a tea and card room forty-four feet long and thirty feet wide, with other apartments. The sheriff's-court and clerk's offices form the north wing; and above them are, an office for the collector of cess, and a fire-proof room in which the city and county records are deposited. Behind the County Buildings is the new City and County Prison, inclosed within a lofty wall, and containing two divisions, one for debtors, and the other for criminals; the latter has ten cells and one large dayroom, with an airing-yard, for males, and three cells, a day-room, and airing-yard, for females. The governor's house is in the centre; but the prison is not well adapted for classification. The old prison has been fitted up partly for a police office, and partly as a house of correction; it contains eight cells, of which one is appropriated to refractory prisoners. The inmates are employed at their ordinary trades, and on leaving the prison receive a portion of their earnings.

The rural district, which is bounded on the east, like the town, by the river Tay, and on the north by the Almond, comprises 3410 acres, whereof more than 2500 are arable, about 750 woodland and plantations, chiefly of pine and larch, and the remainder meadow and pasture. The surface is diversified with ridges of moderate elevation, and with several hills, of which that of Moncrieff rises to the height of 756 feet above the level of the sea; the scenery is varied, combining features of beautifully picturesque and strikingly romantic character, and the view of the surrounding country from the summit of Moncrieff hill is one of the most interesting in Scotland. The soil in the uplands is a rich loam, and along the Tay a fertile clay resting upon gravel, and is well adapted for grain of every kind. The system of agriculture is highly improved; draining has been extensively practised, and the lands lying on the side of the river have been protected from inundation by effective embankments. The farm-buildings, also, are generally substantial and commodious; but little inclosure has taken place, and what fences there are, are chiefly of stone. The substratum is mostly of the red sandstone formation, which extends throughout the vales of Strathearn and Strathmore. Nodules of granite, primitive limestone, and porphyritic trap, are frequently imbedded in the sandstone, but no organic remains: trap-rocks and an extensive bed of conglomerate are found in the southern parts of the district. There are some quarries of freestone, and one appears to have been largely wrought; but the stone is of soft texture, and the buildings which have been erected of it have soon become ruinous. There are also quarries of trap-stone of durable texture, affording excellent materials for the roads. The rateable annual value of the town and rural district, according to the returns made under the income-tax, is £56,539.

The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the synod of Perth and Stirling and presbytery of Perth; the former holding their meetings alternately at Stirling and here. The parish of St. John the Baptist was formerly the only one, and the ancient church was supplied by but one minister till the year 1595, when a second was appointed; in 1716 a third minister was appointed by the town-council, to meet the wants of a rapidly increasing population, and the church was converted into three separate churches, called respectively East, Middle, and West. Since that period the parish has been divided into several parishes, and the churches of St. Paul, St. Leonard, and St. Stephen erected. The parish of East Church comprises nearly the whole of the rural district, the town having been parted from the original parish of Perth, by authority of the Court of Teinds, in 1807; it is about five miles in length and two miles in breadth, and contains a population of 7031. The minister's stipend is, £130 in money paid by the corporation, and eighty bolls of meal and seventy bolls of barley paid by the heritors, together equivalent to £255: there is neither manse nor glebe. The ancient church of St. John the Baptist, of which the choir is appropriated as the church for this parish, is a very ancient structure in the early English style of architecture, with a massive square tower surmounted by a spire 155 feet in height. After it was given to the abbey of Dunfermline in 1226, it was suffered to fall into dilapidation, but was repaired and partly restored by King Robert Bruce; the eastern portion was afterwards rebuilt, and in 1400 the whole of the edifice was in good repair. The numerous altars at various times erected within it were, with the exception of the high altar, at the east end of the choir, subsequently removed. In the tower is a set of musical chimes. The portion of this venerable structure which forms the East church contains 1286 sittings. There are places of worship for members of the Free Church, the United Secession, Original Burghers, and Glassites, and a Roman Catholic chapel, in the parish; also some Sabbath schools in connexion with the Established Church and dissenting congregations. The parish of Middle Church, which is wholly a town parish, is about 250 yards in length and 160 yards in breadth, and was formed in 1807 by authority of the Court of Teinds: the population is 4498. The minister's stipend is, eighty bolls of meal and seventy of barley paid by the heritors, and £130 paid by the corporation, who are patrons of this and the East, West, and St. Paul's churches; the whole income being equivalent to £255. The church consists chiefly of the area between the four massive and lofty columns that support the tower of St. John's, and which was fitted up for the purpose in 1771; it contains 1208 sittings, and has some interesting details. There are places of worship for members of the Free Church, the South United Secession, Original Seceders, the First Relief, and Baptists.

The parish of West Church, almost entirely in the town, is about half a mile long and nearly equal in width; it was formed by the Court of Teinds in the year 1807, and contains 5024 inhabitants. The minister's stipend is £200, payable by the corporation: the church consists of the nave of the collegiate church of St. John, and retains many vestiges of its ancient character, among which is a fine west window; it contains 967 sittings. There are a Free church and an episcopal chapel. The parish of St. Paul, wholly a town parish, was formed also by the Court of Teinds, is about a mile in length and a quarter of a mile in breadth, and has a population of 2740: the minister's stipend is £200, paid by the corporation. The church, which is situated on the confines of the parish, is a handsome structure in a modern style of architecture, with a tower surmounted by an elegant spire; it was erected by the corporation in 1806, at an expense of £7000, and contains 884 sittings. There are places of worship for members of the Free Church, for the North United Secession, and for Independents. The late parish of St. Leonard was separated for ecclesiastical purposes only from the parishes of East and West Church, by act of the General Assembly, in 1835; it was about half a mile in length and one-eighth of a mile in breadth, and chiefly a town parish, with a population of 3039. The minister's stipend was £100, with an allowance of £20 for communion elements, all paid by the congregation from the seat-rents: there was neither manse nor glebe. The church, situated in King-street, is a handsome structure erected in 1835, at an expense of £2450, raised by subscription and donations; and contains 960 sittings. There are places of worship for members of the "Holy Catholic Apostolic" congregation, the Second Relief, and General Baptists. The incumbency of St. Stephen's was created by act of the General Assembly, in 1836; it has no definite area, but comprehends all the Highland population scattered within a distance of four miles from the church, which was built for their accommodation. The minister's stipend was originally fixed at £80, secured by bond, but without either manse or glebe. The church was erected by voluntary subscription and donations; it contains 762 sittings, and the service is of course invariably performed in the Gaelic language.

The Grammar School is of ancient foundation, and is under the superintendence of a rector and his assistant, of whom the former has a salary of £50, and the latter of £25, paid by the corporation, who are patrons of all the public schools of the town; the course of instruction comprises the Latin and Greek languages, ancient geography, history, and other subjects. The Academy, originally instituted in 1760, and for which a very handsome building has been erected in the centre of Rose-terrace, is under the care of a rector and an assistant, with salaries respectively of £100 and £25; the course includes arithmetic, algebra, geometry, surveying, mathematics, navigation, natural philosophy, astronomy, and chemistry. There are, under the same patronage, a school for the French, Italian, and Spanish languages, of which the master has a salary of £25; a school for writing and arithmetic, and one for drawing and painting, of which the masters have each a salary of £25; a school for English, of which the master receives likewise £25 a year; and a school for singing and church music, of which the master has £15. In these several schools the fees vary from £1.8. to £4. 6. for the whole term of ten months and a half. There are also endowed schools for the Trades, the master of which receives a salary of £76; and for the poor, with a salary of £50. The Manufacturers' school, of which the master is paid £20; the Guildry school, with a salary of £26; two infant schools, of which the mistresses have each £50; and a female school, of which the mistress receives a salary of £20, are all supported by subscription. A sum of £400 was raised a few years since for building additional schools for the poor, to which a grant of £400 was added by the treasury; the masters have a salary of £10, paid by the corporation, and the fees, which vary from sixpence to eightpence per month for each scholar. Altogether there are thirty-five schools in the town and parish, in which the various branches of education are taught; and numerous Sabbath schools in connexion with the Established Church and seceding congregrations. The Hospital founded and amply endowed by James VI., in 1569, with all the lands and revenues of the dissolved monasteries, chapels, and altars in the city, was destroyed by Cromwell in 1652; and the building near the site of the Carthusian monastery, erected in its stead, has, with the exception of the master's apartments and the room containing the records, been appropriated to other purposes, and the inmates made out-pensioners. The annual proceeds of the endowment, which has been greatly diminished, are £597. 8. 6., divided among more than sixty pensioners.

The City and County Infirmary, at the extremity of South-street, on the new Glasgow road, is a spacious and handsome structure, erected in 1836 from a design by Mr. Mackenzie, architect; and contains wards and accommodation for fifty-six patients. The institution possesses funds of considerable value, derived from donations and bequests, of which £500 were left by Dr. Browne; £600 were appropriated to its use from a bequest of £3000, by the first marquess of Breadalbane, to the public charities of Perth; and £400 subsequently added by the second marquess. It is also supported by subscription. The Royal Lunatic Asylum, not far from Perth, which has been incorporated by royal charter, was commenced in 1827, and greatly enlarged in 1834; it is a handsome structure of the Grecian Doric order, from a design by Mr. Burn, of Edinburgh. The building, which is 256 feet in length, and three stories high, is beautifully situated on an eminence on Kinnoull hill, commanding a view of the Grampian hills, the river Tay, and the adjacent country; and is surrounded with a fine park of twelve acres. The funds for its erection and partial endowment were bequeathed by James Murray, Esq., of Perth; and the institution is further supported by donations. In 1660 James Butter, sheriffclerk of Perthshire, left two-fifths of the lands of Scone-Lethendy, for the maintenance of four poor persons of Perth; in 1686 Mr. Jackson devised one-tenth of the same lands, for the support of one poor relative, or, in failure of such, of a person of the name of Jackson; and in 1743 Mr. Cairnie bequeathed two-fifths of the lands to the poor of Perth, reserving two-thirds to two of his descendants nearest to the age of fourteen years. This property comprises 610 acres, of which 145 are under plantation, and produces a rental of £513. 8. 6. Two persons of the name of Cairnie receive together £130, and the hospital £50; twelve annuitants receive £170, and the remainder is reserved for the liquidation of a debt of £1500, incurred by the erection of buildings and the improvement of the lands. Considerable sums are distributed to the poor by the incorporated trades, amounting in the aggregate to more than £2000 annually; and there were formerly numerous friendly societies, of which the greater number have been discontinued. The Destitute Sick Society, the Aged and Indigent Female Society, the Society for Clothing Indigent Females, and the Society for Clothing Aged Men, also distribute large sums in relieving the poor throughout the city.

Among the numerous religious houses destroyed at the Reformation, was the monastery of the Black Friars, founded by Alexander II. in 1231, and, after the demolition of the castle of Perth, the residence of the Scottish kings till the removal of the seat of government to Edinburgh in the reign of James II.: in its church the parliament occasionally assembled. The monastery of the White Friars was instituted in the reign of Alexander III.: the revenues were eventually annexed to the hospital of James VI. The Carthusian monastery was founded by James I. in 1429, and contained the tombs of the founder, his queen, and Queen Margaret, mother of James V.; the Franciscan monastery was founded in 1460 by Lord Oliphant, and in 1580 its site was appropriated as the common cemetery of the parish. There were the nunneries of St. Mary Magdalene and St. Leonard, with their chapels, and the hospital of the latter; also numerous chapels, of which that of Our Lady forms part of the old prison: the chapel of St. Lawerence belonged to the ancient castle; and those of St. Anne, St. James, St. Paul, the Holy Cross, and St. Katherine, had attached hospitals for the entertainment of the poor.

In 1807 some workmen, when digging for the foundation of St. Paul's church, discovered, at about ten feet below the surface, a portion of well-built masonry extending from north to south, and in the front of which were several massive rings and staples of iron, seeming evidently to have been erected as a pier. The surface of the street in this place has an elevation of twentythree feet above the level of the river. At some distance, in a northern direction, in Stormont-street, two willow-trees were found standing erect at a depth of twenty feet: another tree of the same kind, also erect, was discovered at a depth of eight feet. In digging the foundations for houses at a more recent date, some rich black earth was found, in which were imbedded small cuttings of leather, a spur of antique form, a pair of scissors, a small copper shield with a bend dexter, and various other articles. Pavements have also been met with, at a depth of even ten feet below the present pavements; and in erecting the buildings on the south side of the church, occupied by Mr. Ballingall, a boat about ten feet long was found imbedded in a layer of black earth, resting on its keel, with a caulking-iron and the soles of shoes near it. All these appearances indicate the elevation of the site of the town subsequently to the inundations of 1210 and 1621, by which it was nearly overwhelmed. Among the eminent characters connected with the city have been, the Earls of Gowrie, Atholl, and Erroll, Lord John Murray, Lord Crichton of Sanquhar, and Lord Chancellor Hay, all of whom had houses in Perth; Halyburton, bishop of Dunkeld; Patrick Adamson, bishop of St. Andrew's, who was born in 1536, and educated at the grammar school, and who was author of the tragedy of Herod Agrippa, and a poetic paraphrase on the Lamentations of Jeremiah; Mylne, a celebrated architect, and father of Robert Mylne, the architect of Blackfriars bridge, London; and James Crichton, commonly called the Admirable, who is supposed to have received his early education in the grammar school. The last-named is thought to have been born at Eliock House, in the county of Dumfries; but soon after his birth, which occurred in 1560, his father removed to an estate in the parish of Clunie, only seventeen miles from Perth.

Perthshire

PERTHSHIRE, an inland and most extensive county, nearly in the centre of Scotland, bounded on the north and north-west by Inverness-shire; on the east by the county of Forfar; on the south-east by the counties of Fife and Kinross; on the south by the Frith of Forth, and the counties of Stirling and Clackmannan; on the west by Argyllshire; and on the south-west by the county of Dumbarton. It lies between 56° 4' and 56° 57' (N. Lat.) and 3° 4' and 4° 50' (W. Long.), and is about 77 miles in length and 68 miles in extreme breadth; comprising an area of 5000 square miles, or 3,200,000 acres; 30,796 houses, of which 28,993 are inhabited; and containing a population of 137,390, of whom 64,978 are males, and 72,412 females. This county, of which the name is of doubtful and disputed origin, was anciently inhabited by the Caledonians, and, from its situation on the north side of the wall of Antonine, was among the last of those portions of the kingdom which the Romans attempted to add to their dominions in Britain. The latest struggle for the independence of their country made by the Britons against their Roman invaders, was the battle near the Grampians between Agricola and the Caledonians under their leader Galgacus, who, after having routed the ninth legion of Agricola's army, was at length finally subdued. For centuries the county of Perth was the metropolitan county; its chief town was the residence of the Scottish kings till the reign of James III.; and the abbey of Scone, from a very early period to a comparatively recent date, continued to be the place of their coronation. But the history of the county is so identified with the general history of the kingdom, that any further detail would be superfluous.

It was anciently divided into the districts of Monteith, Gowrie, Perth, Strathearn, the Stormont, Breadalbane, Rannoch, Balquhidder, and Atholl, all of which were stewartries under the jurisdiction of the great landholders to whom they gave titles, but which, since the abolition of heritable jurisdictions, have ceased. Prior to the Reformation the county formed two large sees, of which the bishops had their seats respectively at Dunkeld and Dunblane; but from that period, it has been almost wholly included in the synod of Perth and Stirling. It comprises several presbyteries, and sixty-nine parishes, besides parts of other parishes. Two sheriffs-substitute are appointed by the sheriff, and reside respectively at Perth and Dunblane; and for civil purposes the county is divided into the districts of Perth, Blairgowrie, Weem, Culross, Auchterarder, Crieff, Dunblane, Carse of Gowrie, and Cupar-Angus, in each of which petty-sessions are held by the magistrates, and quarterly small-debt courts by the sheriff's-substitute. Perth is the county-town. The royal burghs are Perth and Culross, and in addition to the towns that form the heads of the districts enumerated above, the county contains the towns or villages of Blackford, Auchtergaven, Stanley, Callander, Comrie, Doune, Bridge of Earn, Dunning, Errol, Fortingal, Kenmore, Killin, Kincardine, Meigle, Methven, Muthill, Rattray, Tibbermuir, Scone, Thornhill, Alyth, and Longforgan, several of which are burghs of barony. There are also numerous smaller villages.

The surface is remarkably varied, and comprehends an extensive highland and lowland district; the former, to the north and north-west, constituting a considerable portion of the Grampian range; and the latter, which is the more extensive, lying to the south and south-east. It abounds with the richest scenery of every variety; is beautifully diversified with mountains and valleys, wide and fertile plains in the highest state of cultivation, rising grounds, and gentle undulations; and is enlivened with numerous streams and picturesque lakes. The principal mountain is Ben-Lawers, on the north side of Loch Tay, rising by a gradual ascent from the margin of the lake to an elevation of 4015 feet above the level of the sea; it is cultivated around its base to a considerable height, and clothed nearly to its summit with rich verdure, affording pasturage for many flocks of sheep. Benmore, at the head of Glen-Dochart, has an elevation of 3903 feet, and commands a richly-varied prospect of unbounded extent, embracing both the German and Atlantic Oceans. Shiehallion, at the foot of Loch Rannoch, rises in a conical form to the height of 3564 feet, presenting a vast mass of sterile rock, relieved only by occasional tufts of heath; it was selected by Dr. Maskelyne, the astronomer royal, for his observations on the influence of attraction upon the vibrations of the pendulum. Ben-Ledi, near Callander, has an elevation of 3009 feet, comprehending on the east, a fine view of the whole tract of country through which the Forth takes its course to the German Ocean, and on the south, a prospect of the beautiful vale of the Clyde. It appears to have been used in ancient times as a place of devotion, and on the summit are some Druidical remains. Ben-y-gloe, in the forest of Atholl; Benchonzie, at the head of Glenturret; Ben-Voirlich, on the south side of Strathearn; and numerous others in different parts of the county, have elevations varying from 3000 to 4000 feet. The Sidlaw Hills, a fine range nearly parallel with the Grampians, and almost of equal extent, inclosing that portion of the vale of Strathmore which lies between Montrose and Perth, also attain a considerable elevation. Among the eminences of this range are, Dunsinnan Hill, the stronghold of the usurper Macbeth, whose castle stood upon its summit, rising to the height of 1040 feet, and commanding richly-diversified prospects; and Birnam Hill, near Dunkeld, 1580 feet in height, and still retaining some portions of the forest from which the army of Malcolm marched to dethrone the usurper. Turleum, in the rear of Drummond Castle, rises to the height of 1400 feet; and among the hills of Drumuachder is a defile of singularly romantic character, leading to the castle of Blair-Atholl. The pass of Killiecrankie, in which the forces of William III. were defeated by Lord Dundee in 1689, is about half a mile in length, between rugged and precipitously steep mountains, and so darkened by the woods growing among the impending rocks that the Garry and the Tilt rivers, which flow in one united stream through this dangerous pass, are in many parts of it invisible.

The principal rivers are, the Tay, the Forth, the Earn, the Almond, the Isla, the Ericht, the Bran, the Garry, the Tilt, the Tummell, the Lyon, and the Teith. The Tay has its source in Breadalbane, in the western extremity of the county, and flowing in an eastern direction, under the name of Fillan, through the vale of Strathfillan, increases in breadth, forming the Loch Dochart, by which appellation it continues its course through Glen-Dochart for nearly eight miles. Then, again expanding its waters, it forms Loch Tay, from which, issuing at the village of Kenmore, it flows under the name of the Tay for the rest of its progress, and after receiving numerous tributary streams, makes a wide frith, and loses itself in the German Sea. The Forth has its source in some small streams on the north of Ben-Lomond, in this county, and passing through the south-west portion of it for a few miles, enters Stirlingshire, to which it more properly belongs, and between which and Perth, in many points, it constitutes a boundary. The Earn has its source in the loch of that name; flows through Strathearn in an eastern course for nearly thirty miles; and receiving a great number of tributary streams, falls into the Tay a few miles below Perth. The Almond rises in a deep glen among the Grampians, in the parish of Kenmore; and after a winding course of eighteen miles, in which it has some picturesque cascades, it joins the river Tay about two miles above Perth. The Isla has its source also among the Grampians, but in the county of Forfar, and after entering this county, and receiving the Ardle and the Shee, together forming the river Ericht, runs into the Tay at Kinclaven. The Bran has its commencement in Loch Freuchie: taking a north-eastern course, and flowing through the grounds of the Duke of Atholl, where it makes a beautifully romantic cascade, it falls into the Tay at Inver, near Little Dunkeld. The Garry issues from the loch of that name, in the northwestern part of the county; it pursues a south-eastern direction, and, uniting with the Tilt near the castle of Blair-Atholl, runs through the pass of Killiecrankie into the Tummell. The Tummell has its source in Loch Rannoch, in the northern part of Perthshire, and taking an eastern course, forms the Loch Tummell; it then pursues a southern direction, and falls into the Tay at Logierait. The Lyon issues from Loch Lyon, on the western border of the county, and, watering the narrow vale of Glenlyon, joins the Tay about two miles below Kenmore. Thus, exclusive of the Forth, the only river of any importance in the county that is not tributary to the Tay, is the Teith, which has its source in two distinct branches, uniting in the parish of Callander; the northern branch rises in the western extremity of the parish of Balquhidder, and the southern issues from Loch Katrine. This river, after receiving the waters of the Ardoch, flows through the pleasure-grounds of Blair-Drummond and the lands of Ochtertyre, and falls into the Forth at the bridge of Drip.

The principal of the lakes is Loch Tay, a beautiful expanse of water about sixteen miles in length, and varying from one to two miles in breadth; it is situated in the Western Highlands, and is from fifteen to 100 fathoms in depth, abounding with salmon, trout, pike, and other fish. The surrounding scenery, though less romantic than that of Loch Lomond, is generally of striking character, and abounds with beautiful features. Loch Ericht, in the north-west of the county, is nearly of equal length with Loch Tay, but of inferior width, being scarcely a mile in the broadest part; it is in the very heart of the Grampians, and inclosed with precipitous and rugged banks. Loch Rannoch, also in the northwest, near Breadalbane, is about ten miles in length and one mile in width; the shores are richly wooded, and the scenery around picturesque. In the same district is Loch Lydoch, situated in the moors; it is as much as seven miles in length and a mile in breadth, but of uninteresting and dreary aspect. Loch Earn, a fine sheet of water in the district of Strathearn, is about eight miles long, varying from half a mile to a mile and a half in breadth, and encircled with scenery of strikingly romantic character. The banks are rocky and precipitous; and the lofty hills by which it is inclosed are intersected with numerous deep glens and ravines, alternated with protruding masses of cliffs, and relieved by tufts of wood growing wildly on the acclivities. Loch Katrine, in the western part of the district of Monteith, between the parishes of Callander and Aberfoyle, is also very beautiful, of serpentine form, and extending for about nine miles, though scarcely one mile in width. Its banks are chiefly the lower acclivities of the surrounding mountains, and are thickly wooded; the scenery combines great beauty and variety, and is celebrated by Sir Walter Scott in his poem of The Lady of the Lake. Near its eastern extremity is a picturesque island; and an outlet connects it with the lochs of Achray and Vennachar, and forms the river Teith. Achray is a small lake, but of a very lovely character. Loch Vennachar, to the south-east of the two former, is a fine sheet about five miles long and a mile and a half wide; it is inclosed with banks sloping gently to its margin, and enriched with woods and plantations. On its surface is a small islet of romantic appearance. Loch Lubnaig, situated at the north-eastern base of Ben-Ledi, is about six miles in length, and from a half to three-quarters of a mile in breadth; it has its name from its sinuous form, and, owing to the lofty and precipitous height of the mountain, which casts a deep shadow over its surface, possesses a dignified solemnity of character, which powerfully predominates over its more picturesque features. Loch Dochart lies in a barren tract in the western part of the county, and is three miles long: the adjacent scenery possesses little interest. There are two islands, one of which, formed by the intertexture of the roots and stems of aquatic plants, floats before the wind; it is about fifty-two feet in length and thirty feet in breadth, and affords pasture to a few sheep. Upon the other, which is stationary, are the remains of an ancient castle embosomed in woods, once the seat of the Campbells of Lochawe. There are also in the county the lochs Tummell and Garry, the former measuring four miles in length; and many smaller lakes in various parts, most of which are formed by the expansion of rivers in their course to the Tay.

The soil is extremely various. In the Highlands the hills are intersected with numerous glens, watered by streams, and containing some tracts of fertile land, producing grain, or affording good pasture. In the wide straths between the Grampian and the Sidlaw hills, the soil is chiefly argillaceous earth, and clay of different colours, of which the blue is the most fertile. Along the shore of the Forth is a level tract extending for eighteen miles, chiefly a stiff clay; in Strathearn and the Carse of Gowrie is a deep clay, alternated with loam, and of extraordinary productiveness; and near the town of Perth, and towards Cupar-Angus, occurs a deep rich mould. On the declivities of most of the hills, a strong tenacious clay is the prevailing character. There are many extensive tracts of moss in the Highlands; and towards Monteith, a tract containing more than 10,000 acres, called Flanders moss. The system of agriculture throughout the straths, and in the Carse of Gowrie, is in the highest state of improvement: the farms here vary from thirty to 500 acres only in extent; but those of the Highlands are chiefly large sheep pastures. In the low lands, grain of every description is raised in luxuriant crops, with potatoes, turnips, beans, peas, and other crops; flax is cultivated to a considerable extent, and fruit of all kinds is abundant and of good quality. The lands are well inclosed, partly with stone walls, but principally with hedges and ditches: for the hedges, hawthorn is mostly used; but on some farms they are formed of larch-trees, planted on the face of ditches. The farm houses and offices are generally substantial and well arranged; and all the more recent improvements in the construction of agricultural implements have been adopted. The cattle are of the Galloway and Ayrshire breeds, with a few of the Angus and Fifeshire, and some of the Devonshire, the last chiefly on the lands of the Carse of Gowrie, and of recent introduction. The numerous flocks of goats formerly to be seen in this part of the country have been almost entirely superseded by sheep, once of the white-faced breed, but now chiefly the black-faced from the south, which are found throughout the Highland districts. About 20,000 are fed in the glens among the Grampian hills, 50,000 on the Sidlaw range, and on the Ochil and Campsie hills more than 170,000; making in the aggregate upwards of 240,000 in the county. The horses are mainly of the Highland breed, of small stature, but hardy and useful; and in the districts of Atholl, Strathardle, Glenisla, and Glenshee, great numbers of hogs are reared, and sent to the markets of Kinross and Cupar.

There are extensive forests in the district of Breadalbane and Monteith, and in many other parts woods of ancient growth. Plantations, also, over a very wide tract, have been made by the Duke of Atholl and other proprietors, and have added greatly to the appearance of the country, and to the improvement of its climate; they consist chiefly of larch, which description covers above 8000 acres. Of oak there are more than 1000 acres; and a large portion of the surface is planted with ash, elm, beech, birch, and plane, intermixed with Scotch, spruce, and silver firs, laburnum, and various other ornamental trees. The minerals are chiefly coal, limestone, and ironstone. Coal has been wrought for ages at Culross, but, from the situation of the mines, is comparatively unavailable for the supply of other districts. The Carse of Gowrie, and the country around Perth, obtain coal from Fife and the collieries of England, and the district of Monteith from the mines of Clackmannanshire; while in many parts peat is the general fuel, especially in the Highlands. The limestone is abundant in several places; but, from the scarcity of fuel, very little is burnt for manure, for which in some places moss is used to a considerable extent. In Monteith is a quarry of blue limestone variegated with streaks of white, of a density equal to marble, and susceptible of a fine polish; and marble of excellent quality is quarried on the lands of the Duke of Atholl, near Glen-Tilt. The ironstone is found in the district of Culross, on the Devon, and in various other places; but this also, from the scarcity of fuel, is not wrought. In the same neighbourhood are fire-clay and slate: blue slate is found on Birnam hill, and along the sides of the Ochils; and grey slate, of a harder texture, is diffused throughout the county. Near Drummond Castle, and at Callander, are rocks of breccia, parallel with which are beds of sandstone; and on the banks of the Tay is an extensive quarry of fine grey freestone, of very durable texture, called Kingoodie-stone. The Grampian hills consist chiefly of granite. The only mineral waters in the county are at Pitcaithly, near Bridge of Earn; they are in considerable repute for their efficacy in the cure of scrofula and stomachic complaints. The seats are, Blair-Atholl Castle, Taymouth, Dunkeld, Methven Castle, Dupplin Castle, Drummond Castle, Auchtertyre House, Dunira, Blair-Drummond, Castle-Huntly, Atholl House, Castle-Lenrick, Belmont Castle, Arthurstone, the palace of Scone, St. Martin's, Castle-Menzies, Megginch Castle, Lynedoch House, Rednock House, Cambusmore, Kippenross, Invermay, Murthly, Delvine, Craighall, and others.

The principal manufactures are those of linen and cotton, both carried on to a considerable extent. The former, for which there are extensive bleaching-grounds, and large establishments in several parts, is also carried on in smaller towns and villages of the Carse of Gowrie; and there are cotton-works and printfields at Luncarty, Stormontfield, Stanley, Cromwell-Park, and various other places. There are paper-mills at Crieff, Auchterarder, and Bridge of Almond; also flax-mills, tanneries, breweries, distilleries, and other works. Facility of communication through the interior is afforded by numerous excellent roads, and, for the export and import of goods, by the rivers Tay and Forth, on which latter are the chief ports, next to Perth, within the county. The port of Culross, which formerly carried on a considerable trade in the export of salt and coal, has fallen into decay; but that of Kincardine, in the parish of Tulliallan, is in a flourishing condition, and does a large amount of business in the export of coal, for which it employs about seventy vessels, averaging from eighty to ninety tons, and also in ship-building, chiefly for the coasting-trade. The rateable annual value of Perthshire, according to a recent return of real property assessed to the income tax, is £613,168, of which amount £551,078 are stated to be for lands, £54,611 for houses, £6520 for fisheries, £677 for quarries, £272 for mines, and the remainder for other species of property not comprised in the foregoing items. The principal antiquities are the remains of several Roman camps, of which the most important is that of Ardoch; and the Roman road towards Perth may still be traced in the vale of Strathearn. There are likewise numerous remains of ancient castles, religious establishments, and Druidical altars, and various other relics of antiquity.