Extracts from the Records: 1490-94

Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1403-1528. Originally published by Scottish Burgh Records Society, Edinburgh, 1869.

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'Extracts from the Records: 1490-94', in Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1403-1528, ed. J D Marwick( Edinburgh, 1869), British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/edinburgh-burgh-records/1403-1528/pp58-69 [accessed 20 July 2024].

'Extracts from the Records: 1490-94', in Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1403-1528. Edited by J D Marwick( Edinburgh, 1869), British History Online, accessed July 20, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/edinburgh-burgh-records/1403-1528/pp58-69.

"Extracts from the Records: 1490-94". Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1403-1528. Ed. J D Marwick(Edinburgh, 1869), , British History Online. Web. 20 July 2024. https://www.british-history.ac.uk/edinburgh-burgh-records/1403-1528/pp58-69.


25 June 1490.

Assedation of Burrowmuir.

(After the catalogue of twenty-seven names of sum honest persounis of the town berand office, and of twelve deikins, it is said that and in lykewyse all the haill counsale deikynis and community consentit to the assedatioun of the space of the burrowmuir. (Lowse leiffes.—Tr.)

1 February 1490–1.

Swyne. Lokman.

The prouest and counsall ordanis the lokman, quhaireuir he fyndis any swyne betuix the Castell and the Netherbow vpoun the gaitt or commoun throw gangis owt of band, that he tak of euery sow to his fie iiij d., and quha that will nocht pay this that he tak the said sow and nocht pairt thairwith quhili he haif viij d., and chairges that na man tak vponn hand to stop or mak impediment to the said lokman heirvntill vnder the payne of pvnissing of thair persounis. (Lowse leiffis.—Tr.)

Circa 1490.

Watte courtis.

It is statute and ordanit that fra thyne furth thair be na watter court be haldin within the burgh but in Leyth, vnto the tyme that the reformatioun and good rewle may be had and brocht in vpoun the inormiteis iniuries and vsurpatioun maid and vsit be thame in Leyth vpoun the fredome of the towne, and quhat tymes and quhensumeuir the counsale of the town fyndis iniuries and vsurpatioun vsit vpoun the townis fredome, that all nichtbouris and all deikynis with thair craftismen be reddy daylie, quhen thai ar chairgit be the provest and bailles, be reddy to pas with thame to Leyth for the haldin of the watter court for reforming of injuries done aganis thair fredome, vnder the payne of ane vnlaw of viij s. to be raisit and vnforgevin, and that the commoun soyt roll be red in Leyth, and he that is absent without lawfuil caus to be pvnisit be the said vnlaw of viij a. ilk court. (This act in a revin leif about the daitt of 1490.—Tr.)

Anent victuals and tymmer cummand in at Leyth.

Statutum tangens commune bonum. Item it is statute and ordanit be the prouest baillies counsall and deikynis of the craftis, for the commoun proffeitt of the towne and inhabiteris thairof, that in tyme to cum, at the entrie of all schips bringand in any vittaillis or tymmer at the port of Leyth, that the thesaurer of the towne that happinis to be for the tyme proffer a goddis penny and bye the same vpoun a competent pryce, gif he can, to the behuif vtility and proffeitt of the nichtbouris of the towne, and gif any of thame byes the sam in greitt mair than accordes for his awin sustentatioun and vse to sell, or euir he resaue or sell any of the saidis vittaillis or tymmer the byaris sail compeir in presens of the prouest baillies and counsall and thair declair be his greitt ayth of quhat pryce he bocht the saidis vitaillis or tymmer, and incontinent thairafter thai sall caus the belman with the handbell pas throw the towne wairnand all nichtbouris that sic vittaillis and tymmer ar to sell of sic a pryce, and than the byares thairof in greitt sall tap and sell the samyn to the nichtbouris of the towne, sum laid sum half laid, as accordis for thair sustentatioun or for thair biggings, the tymmer of the sam pryce that thai bocht it of, and thai byes the same in small thai sall mak fayth that it is to thair awin vse and nocht to regraitt agane, and heirvpoun the byares in greitt sall remayn thris viij dayes redy delyuerand to all nichtbouris for the payment and pryce abourewrittin, and gif thai failyie heirintill, and the first byares brekis in ony of thir thingis abourewrittin or sellis nocht the saidis vittaillis or tymmer of the samyn pryce as thai bocht the sam, it beand previt with ij persouns, thai sall pay to the kirkwerk of St Gele x li. but favoures.

Owt marrowes dischargit; Byeris of Leyth in greitt.

Item, that na nichtbour of the toune take ony owte marrow, and speciallie of thame dwelland in Leyth, in felowschip wiht him in ony merchandice bying or deling, vnder the payne of the payment of v li. to the said kirkwark but favoures to be raisit, and that na indwellar in Leyth bye ony sic vittails or tymmer in greitt bot fra the fremen of the towne, vnder the payne of escheitt of the guds that beis bocht be thame, vtherwayes to be raisit in brocht to the said kirk wark. (This act on a reiffin leif with ane daitt 1490—Tr.)

28 August 1491.

Executioun of slauchter at the King's horne.

The quhilk day the persouns vnderwritten, that ar to say, James Hayne and his brother William of Bog, Jhone of Schele buklar makare, Jhone Taitt skynner, (blank), art and pairt of the crewale slauchter of Robert Malysoun cordiner, committit within this burgh of Edinburgh vpoun Sunday as evin last wes, the quhilkis persouns hes bene sercheit and socht be the baillies of the said burgh, schreffis within the samyn, at thair dwelling places, and cowth nocht apprehend thame, bot ar fugitiue fra the lawes for the said cryme; Quhairfore the saidis schireffis denunceit the saidis persouns our Soverane Lordis rebellis at the mercat croce of the said burgh and putt thame to the horne, becaus thai ar fugitiue fra his lawes for the said cryme, and chairgeit thairfore all and sundry our Souerane Lordis lieges that nane of thame suld howse herbery resset supple or intermet with the saidis persouns vnder the payne of deid.

[Slaughter. Patersoun.]

Item, the said day in lykewayis Jhonn Homill pynour, delatit committer of the cruell slauchter of Adame Patersoun flescheour within the said burgh, and thair in the forme aboue written he wes denunceit the Kingis rebell and putt to his horne vt supra. (Lowse leiffes.—Tr.)

17 January 1491–2.

Assyse. Wheat. Malt.

Curia capitalis burgi de Edinburgh et vicecomitatis tenta post festum Natalis in Pretorio hujusmodi burgi coram balliuis eiusdem, 17 Januarij 1491, curia affirmata, assisa.

[The Head Court of the Burgh and Sheriffdom of Edinburgh, held after the feast of Christmas, in the Tolbuith of this Burgh, before the bailies of the same, 17 January 1491, the Court fenced.—Assize.]

The best quhett in the mercat was fundin be ane assyse for xij s.; item the laid of malt for xx s.


[Statute anent masons of St. Giles.]

Statutum penes regimen magistrii latimi ecclesie collegiate Beati Egidij burgi de Edinburgi.

[Statute anent the government of the master masons of the College Kirk of St Giles, of the Burgh of Edinburgh.]

The quhilk day, the prouest dene of gild baillies and counsale of the burgh of Edinburgh thinkis expedient and als ordanis that thair maister masoun and the laif of his collegis and seruandis of thair kirk wark that now ar and sall happin to be for the tyme sall diligentlie fulfill and keip thair seruice at all tymes and houiris as after followes: That is to say, The said maister and his seruandis sall begyn to thair werk ilk day in somer at the straik of v houris in the morning, and to continew besylie into thair lawbour quhill viij houris thairafter, and than to pas to thair disione and to remane thairat half ane hour, and till enter agane to thair lawbouris at half hour to ix houris before none, and swa to wirk thairat quhill that xj houris be strikken, and afternone to forgather agane to thair wark at the hour of ane, and than to remayne quhill iiij houris afternone, and than to gett a recreatioun in the commoun luge be the space of half ane hour, and fra thine furth to abyde at thair lawbour continually quhill the hour of vij be strikkin: And in winter to begyn with day licht in the morning kepand the houris abouewritten, and to half bot thair none shanks allanerly afternone, and to remayne quhill day licht be gane. And gif the said maister quhatsumeuir or his collegis and seruandis faillis in ony poyntis abouewritten, or remainis fra his said seruice ony tyme, he to be correctit and pvnist in his wages at the plesour of the dene of gild that sall happin to be for the tyme, as the said dene will ansuer to God and to the guid towne thairvpoun. (Lowse leiff dattit 1491.—Tr.)

12th April 1492.

Assysa on the paice of breid. Price of malt.

Curia capitalis burgi de Edinburgh post festum Pasche tenta coram balliuis ejusdem in Pretorio, 12 Aprilis 1492, curia affirmata.

[The Head Court of the Burgh of Edinburgh, held after the feast of Easter, before the bailies of the same in the Tolbuith, 12 April 1492, the Court fenced.]

It is fundin and delyuerit be ane assyse that the pais suld be gevin of the penny laiff to the baxteris after the raitt of the quheitt to x s. vj d. the boll, the quhilk wes sawld in the last merkat day guid and sufficient stufe. Item, thai fynd the pryce of the malt for xviij s. the laid, and swa wes sauld guid and sufficient stufe. (This amang lowse leiffes notit 1488.—Tr.)

19 Aprilis 1492.

Proclamatio. Aill.

We command and chairge in our Souerane Lordis name, prouest and baillies of this burgh of Edinburgh, that na maner of browster or dry topster within this burgh sell or tap ony aill derare than for viij d. or xij d. the galloun, under the payne of pvnitioun extreme after the forme of the statutes maid thairvpoun at Michaelmes bygane, certefeand thame that quha dois the contrair fra this day furth the statutes sall be execute vpoun thame to the extreme with the rigour of justice, and at the first law dayes after Pasche the brekeris heirof sall haif acknawlege, and quha beis than convict sall be pvnist as said is, and gif the xij d. aill be nocht of fynare and worth the pryce that it be sawld for viij d., and ilk persoun sellares of aill haif baith xij and viij d. aile; and heirto the baillies ar sercheouris, and quha thai will lymit heirto. (Lowse leiffes.—Tr.)

April 1492.

(In April 1492. Is contenit four kepers of the commoun seill.—Tr.)

24 May 1492.

Commoun guid.

(The baillies and certane vtheris quha wer awand the toune ar chairgeit to enter in waird for the sam or enter guidis in the officeris handis, and that be the provest and counsale. (Lowse leiffes.—Tr.)

6 October 1492.

Peremptour court of twenty-one dayes.

The quhilk day it is deuysit consentit and thocht expedient be the president baillies counsale greitt dosane and deikinis that for to eschew greitt trubill and daynger that has bene sustenit in tymes bygane be calanzears quhilkis accept thame to the court of processis and dilatour, and wald nocht obey to the haisty priuelege grantit be our Souerane Lord of the court peremptour of xxj dayes grantit to this burgh for the haisty expenditioun of justice betwix nychtbour and nychtbour of this burgh, and betwix ws and thame of straynge realmes and countreyis, that the said court peremptour of xxj dayes be obseruitt putt in vse and execute after the forme tenour and effect of our Souerane Lordis infeftments vnder his greitt seill given to us thairvpoun, (fn. 1) and gif any nichtbouris or persouns inhabitantis [of] this burgh proponis thame in the contrair heirof, it is avysit and consentit that that persoun quhatsumeuer be callit afore the provest baillies and counsale and accusit vpoun his ayth as a proponer contrair the fredome and priuelege and commoun proffeitt of this burgh, and quha sua beis convict thairvpoun the saidis provest baillies counsale greitt dossane and deikynis thinkis expedient that he be private of his fredome for euir, quhill he recover it agane at the townis hand, certifeand that gif any of our said nichtbouris or indwelleris of this burgh wald cause our said priuelege thus grantit be the Kings Hienes to [be] resort or prouokit before the lords, and swa putt it in disputatioun, that the haill body of the towne will with thair substance wisdom and guids defend the sam at their possibill power. Thir names consentit to this statute:—Sir Jhone Murray, president, Andro Bertram, James Richertsoun, Henry Prestoun, David Crawfurd, Jhone Lawder, Georgius Edwartsoun, Roger Murray, Adame Halkerstoun, Jhone Twedy, Robert Rynde, Jhone Bercare, William Knox, Jhone Quhyteheid, Henry Aichensoun, Robert Wardlaw, Jhone Levingtoun, Stevin Borthuic, Archibaldus Todrik, Thomas Turnour, Alexander Stanely, Robert Bruse, James Rychtsoun younger, Mr James Henrysoun, Androw Gray, Henry Rynde, Franskyne Peblis, James Tovnis, William Dunsyre, Thomas Harvy, David Quhyte, baxter, Thomas Esdale wobster, James Harlawbankes skynner, Jhone Flemying fleschour, Walter Martzeoun masoun, Johannem Cranstoun wricht, Thomas Ra smyth, Pat. Forester goldsmyth, David Quhyteheid, Jhone Williamsoun, and the haill body of the toun. (Lowse leiffes.—Tr.)

(Nota.—This sam act in this maner insert in the convict buik begynand Julij 1505.—Tr.)

12th October 1492.

Thesaurer, escheitis.

The quhilk day it is statute and ordanit be the provest bailies and counsale that in tyme to cum quhen any escheitt happynis to fall in the tounis hand be any cryme committet within this toune, that incontinent the baillies sall raise and tak the samyn and delyuer the said escheitt to the thesaurer of the towne and he to mak compt thairof to the towne siclyke as he dois of the vther commoun guidis, because the baillies of before appropriat sic escheittis to thameself and sufferit thame nocht to cum to the commoun proffeitt. (Lowse leiffes.—Tr.)

19th October 1492.


The provest baillies and counsale hes ordanit Adame Halkerstoun thair thesaurer to intromett with the rents and proffeitts of the towne sen Michaelmes bygane, exceptand the buith males of the Martymes terme to cum, with the quhilk thai ordane Johne Patersoun thair thesaurrer of the last yeir to tak vp and intromett, and ordanis him to gif in his compts als sone as he plesis, and quhat beis fundin awand to the said Jhone the provest baillies and counsale hes grantit to gif him thair commoun seill for payment thairof sicklyke as he desyret before. (Lowse leiffes.—Tr.)

Dusane, Seros.

It is ordanit be the hale dusane of the town that gif any of the dusane beand wairnit cumis nocht betymes for the halding of the counsale in the wirking of the commoun proffeitt, that he sall pay for ilk defalt vj[pennies?] vn[for] gevyn, to be drukken be the dusane, and gif the dene or baillies or any of thame cummis nocht within dew tyme thai sall dowbill als mekill vnforgevin. Item it is ordanit that ilk dusane day the commoun proffeitt be spokin of and sene to or ony playntis or vther thingis be hard. (Amang the leiffes of auld gild courts.—Tr.)

10 November 1492.

Baxteris. Floure merchants.

The quhilk day, it is avysit consentit thocht expedient statute and ordanit be the baillies counsale and community of this burgh, for the honour and commoun proffeitt thairof, that all baxteris within this burgh that byis ony floure fra ony pairts beyond sey or within the realme, to baik saile breid of, or to sell the samyn be les mesoure or mair, sall pay to the fermorer of thair commoun myln the multure thairof as effeiris, and at na merchant within this burgh tak vpoun hand to top or sell ony floure in small bot in greitt, vnder the payne of escheit of the samyn quhaireuir it may be fundin or owertane.

10 November 1492.

Crafts. Burgessis. Stallengeris.

Item, in lyke wyis, it is statute and ordanit that na craftismen or vthers indwelleris within this towne occupy the fredome of the same, be intrometting with thair practik or craft quhateuir it be, bot gif thai be frie burgessis, or leif as stallengeris for the yeir and pay thair dewteis thairfore to the clerk as effeiris, according to the lawes of the burgh; and this statute to be extendit to all maner of vnfrie folkis, bayth merchants, browsteris, baxteris, and regratouris of fysche, butter, cheise, eggis, wyld fowlis, and all vther things sawld and occupeit within burgh.

22 November 1492.

Poinding for non setting furth of fyris.

The provest, and counsall ordanis the baillies to gadder in the vnlawis of thame that set furth na fyrris, extending to iiijxx personis, the ane half thairof to the stallis, and the vther to the officeris for thair labouris.

12 December 1492.


The provest, baillies, counsal, and deykins, hes ratefeit and affermit the statute anent stallangers dated the xij day of December, etc. [jm cccc], xcij because it conformis to the commoun law; and ordanis the commoun clerks to resave the samyn to thair awin vse after the forme of the law, to be disponit with awyse of the provest.

26 April 1493.

[Abbot of Narent.]

(Anent the Abbot of Narent callit Abbat de Narentia, se in the said [convict] buik, 26 Aprile 1493. Siclyk 4 Maii 1518, Ibid, quhair he is callit Robin Huid and Little Jhone.—Tr.)


Assedationes redituum burgi de Edinburgh, facte per Johannem Murray de Tulchad militem, prepositum, balliuos consules et communitatem eiusdem burgi, anno jm[cccc] lxxxxiij.

[Tacks of the rents of the Burgh of Edinburgh, made by John Murray of Tulchad, knight, provost, the bailies councillors and community of said Burgh, in the year 1493.]

The setting of the mylnis.

The mylnis ar set to Henry Rynd thesaurare, with the aventour of deid and weir, for the sowme of iiijcand ten markis, to be payit efter the forme of the actis maid vpoun the setting of the commoun rentis.

Petie customes.

The petit customes of the toun are set to Henry Rynd thesaurare for the sowme of jcxv markis.

Petie customes of Leyth.

The petit customes of Leith are sett to the said Henry for jcand xv markis.

Wyld aventouris.

The wild aventouris set to the said Henrye for the sowme of thretten scoir of markis.

18 July 1494.


It is statut and ordanit be the provest baillies and counsale of Edinburgh, that in tyme cumming the frawchts of schips within the said burgh, and shipis passand in Flanders Holland and Seyland, take the common clerk to thame or his deputtis for to mak thair chairtour pairty, siclyke as is commandit be our Souerane Lordis acts of parliament, (fn. 2) and at thai caus to be insert thairintill specially the sek fraucht of the schip aboue fyve lastis of guids, and vnder that birth of half sek frawcht to thair chaiplane of St Ninianes altare in Bruges, and at the samyn be payit now to Mr James Wawane thair present chaiplane of the samyn for his tyme, and in likewayis for the payment of the tvne frawcht hamewart to St Gelis wark after the tenour of the said act of parliament. (This in the convict buik begynand 1505 Julij.—Tr.)

20 October 1494.

Powltre.; Powderit geis.; Fleschouris.

It is avysit statute and ordanit be the provest baillies and counsale for the commoun proffeitt, that in tyme to cum that all maner of wyld fowle brocht to this burgh to sell that the sellaris thairof putt thame oppinly to the merkett, to be commonly sawld till our Souerane Lordis lieges at the merkat croce, and nocht vnder covert, vnder pane of escheitt to the owertakare; and at thai sell na powderit geis, bot qwik or fresche powlit, vnder the payne of escheitt quhair the contrare beis funden, and ponesing of their pvrsouns to the rigour but favouris; and at thai sell the paitriks na dairer nor xij d. the cupill, and the cuppill pluvoris for vj d., and the laif of the wyld fowlis according thairto; and at na flescheour tak vpoun hand to powder ony flesche to sell vnder payne of escheitt; and at bayth fremen and vnfremen obserue and keip thir said statutes vnder the paynes aboue written. (Ibid.—Tr.)

23 October 1494.

[Tax of the browsters for the common wells.]

It is avysit and thocht expedient statute and ordanit be the provest baillies and counsale that the browsteris zeild be gadderit incontinent be the baillies, that is to say of euery browstare and dry topstare within [the burgh] be taikin and raisit xij d. in the yeir, and [that] be the baillies that sall happin to be for the tyme, and delyuerit till Edinburgh the townis messinger and seriand, for to be exponit and wairit vpoun the reparatioun of thair commoun wellis of the towne be the maisters of the wark lymmit thairto, and to be obseruit and kepit be the said messinger in a close lokkit buist, and compt to be maid and delyuerit thairof, becaus it is clerely vnderstand [to be for the] commoun proffeit for the haill nychtboures of the toune, and specially for the said browsteris and tapsteris that vsis the same, and first to begyn at the new well, and swa about till continew quhair it sall be thocht maist expedient; and this zeild to be gadderit yeirly anes in the yeir quhill the haill wellis be completly endit furnist and putt to poynt as efferis for the honour and commoun proffeitt of the haill toune. (Ibid.—Tr.)

8 November 1494.

Wawponis in buithis.

It is avysit thocht expedient statute and ordanit be the provest baillies and counsale of this burgh, with avyse and consent of the haill body of the toune, to the intent for till eschew at thair guidlie power the dyvers and mony barganis and tulyeis that hes bene committit in tymes bygane into this toune vpoun the Hie Streitt, and throw the quihilkis thair hes bene sundrie slauchteris bene committit, that thairfore all and sundry nychtboures and inhabiters [of] this toune bayth merchandmen and craftismen fra this tyme furth haif reddy into thair buithis besyde thame thair defensabill geir, sic as jak, sellat, briggantenis, gluiffis of plaitt, a handaix or a sword, or at the leist the said aix or sword with sellat and gluiffis [of] plate, to relief thair with and cum to the provest baillies or quartermaisteris quhen ony sic suddane tulyeis or bargannis happinis, throw the quhilk guid rewle may be had bayth day and nicht and the honour of the toune obseruet and kepit; and that ilk persoun haif this said furnist geir besyde him, sic as he may furnis and accordis for his substance to haif, within viij dayes nexttocum; certefeand thame that the officers will ger serche the samyn, and quha swa beis owertane nocht haveand the said geir sall pay the vnlaw of viij s. als oft as it happinis to be raisit to the kirkwark but favouris, etc.


It is avysit ordanit and thocht expedient be the provest baillies and counsale, in augmentatioun of the statute abouewritten, to the intent that it sall be the mair diligently obseruit, that the vnlaw be raisit be the baillies and appropriat the sam to their awin vse, and at thai rais the samyn but favouris als oft as it happinis; and at ilk seriand haif a guid cutmais or bastero all tyme at his belt vnder the payne of depriuatioun of his office.

8 November 1494.

Thesaurer. Compts.

It is avysit thocht expedient statute and ordainit be the provest baillies and counsale, with avyse of the honorabill persouns of the toun, for the commoun weill and proffeitt of thair commoun guidis, that in tyme to cum that the thesaurer of the yeir bygane gif his compt betwix the tyme of the chesing of the lyttis for the officeris and the day of thair electioun, throw the quhilk thai may consider how it standis with thame in thair commoun guidis agane the nixt assedatioun, vnder the payne of his persoun to remayne in wairding of his persoun within this inner chawmer quhill he gif in his said compt but fauouris; and gif he be superexpendit that he remayne with the Mairtymes maillis, and Compts. gif he be nocht superexpendit that the new thesaurer intermett with the samyn.


  • 1. By a Charter under the Great Seal, dated at Edinburgh on 16th November 1482, King James the Third, in consideration of important services rendered to him by the Provost, bailies, dean of guild, treasurer, common clerk, councillors and whole community of the Burgh, granted to them and their successors the office of Sheriffship within themselves, to be exercised by the Provost as sheriff, and by the bailies as sheriffs-depute, along with a variety of other important liberties and privileges. In particular, the King, understanding by true information that the process of the Four Courts of the Burgh, holden led and used in the administration of justice at the stated times, was tedious, slow, and long, granted to the Provost, bailies, clerk, council and community, and to the sheriff, and to their successors, and their assistants and deputes, on account of the confluence, arrival, and coming to the said Burgh, as the chief burgh of the Kingdom, of strangers from other nations using and occupying merchandise, that the Provost, &c., should, for the more ready and prompt administration of justice to their own neighbours and to strangers of other nations, concerning any sums of money or merchandise, have for ever full power to appoint and hold a peremptory Court of twenty-one days, lawful publication of the said days being first made in the burgh to the neighbours of the same, and betwixt the said neighbours and strangers; and that the said Court might be holden at all times in the year as necessity required, without frivolous exceptions, dilatory pleas or counter pleas, on holy days, and as often as need were, to proceed summarily without fail.—Original Charter in the Archives of the City.
  • 2. The Acts here referred to are 1467, c. 4, and 1487, c. 15, both passed in the reign of King James the Third. [Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland, Vol. II., pp. 87–178.]