Extracts From the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1573-1589. Originally published by Scottish Burgh Records Society, Edinburgh, 1882.
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3 April 1588.
Fische merket in the Cannogaitt.
The baillies, dene of gild, thesaurer and counsall, for the maist pairt beand convenit, vnderstanding that sum hes begun to hald ane fische merket in the Cannogaitt, to the preiudice of the liberteis of this burgh, thairfore ordanis ane baillie to pas and stay the samyn.
Fals hard heids.
Certane fals hardheids beand fund vnder the earth in ane laich sellare of Hary Gibsouns hous in Leyth, quhilk is in the forland of Jhonn Burne, now pertenand to Michaell Gilbert, baillie, wer brocht vp be Capitane Maistertoun, ane of the baillies of Leyth, and beand weyit in William Gechanes buith, in presens of the baillies and sum of the counsall, extendet to fyve pund allevin vnce wecht, dirt and all, and wes delyuerit in keeping to Edward Mawchane, thesaurer, quhill forder ordour wer tayne thairwith.
5 April 1588.
Proclamatio, setting of lands, wemen seruands, nvreissis, fornicatoures.
Forswamekill as thair is sindry personis fund to dwell, remayne, and hald howse within this burgh quha nocht only ar vnfrie bot als ar papists, or leids ane wikket and licentious lyfe, in harletry and thift, or ressaitt of committares and doares thairof, blasphemeris of Gods name, swering execrabill aythis, iniurious to thair nichtbouris, beggares and vtheris, daylie flokkand in and resortand to this burgh, swa that all kynd of vyce is apperand to abound within the samyn, and that cheifly be occasioun of thame that settis thair howssis and lands at thair awin liberty and plesure to all sort of persouns for thair awin gredie lucre and proffeitt, without respect of the religioun or conversatioun of thair tennents, for remeid quhairof ordanis proclamatioun to be maid commanding all heretouris, lyferentares, coniunct feares, takkismen, factouris, or setteris of lands or howsis within this burgh, now in dew tyme to mak wairning to all thair tennents that ar nocht burgessis and fremen, or thair relicts and wedowes, and to all vtheris quhatsoeuir that ar bruitet or suspect of papistry, blasphemeris of God and his word, or leding ane euill lyfe in tyme past, or yitt hes resset the persouns gilty or suspect of the crymes abone reherset, or that ar knawin beggars, to remove thame furth of thair lands and howssis, at the feist and terme of Witsounday now approcheand, and that thai set nane of thair lands and howssis to ony maner of persouns quha ar nocht burgessis and fremen, or thair relicts and wedowes, or yitt to ony that ar notet, brwitet, or suspect of the crymes foresaids, or hes nocht sum knawin honest and lawfull industrie to leif be, certefeing the setter of the saidis lands and howssis that sall do in the contrar heirof, or quhen thair tennents sall be notet or fund gilty of the saidis vyces, the saidis persouns, setteris of the saids lands, sall be wairdet, or ellis thair landis or guidis poyndet for ane vnlaw of ten pund swa oft as thai failyie, to be payet to the townis collectouris, quha ar appoyntet to trye, call and pursew the contemnares of the said proclamatioun to the rigour, the persouns dwelland furth of the toun beand only wairnet at the grund of thair land wrangusly set as said is. Siclyke, that nane resaue in thair seruice, or interteny in thair howssis ony nvreissis or seruands that hes committet the vice of fornicatioun and hes nocht satefeit the kirk and reportet sufficient testimoniall thairvpoun; and gif ony sic persouns be in thair seruice that thai remove and put thame away at the said feist of Witsonday; and quhen the said cryme sall be committet in thair howssis that thai intimy the samyn to the baillie of the quarter swa sone as the sam may cum to thair knawlege, vnder the paynes foresaid.
17 April 1588.
Rollok, hie schole stipend augmentit.
Anent the supplicatioun gevin in before thame be maister Hercules Rollok, maister of the Grammer Schole of this burgh, makand mentioun that quhair, about the space of four yeiris bypast, vpoun informatioun of maister James Lowsoun and vtheris favoreris of leirning heir, he wes imployet to vndertak the chairge of thair Hie Schole in this burgh vpoun sic conditiouns as the trublous estaitt of this commoun weill than micht suffer, and vpoun promeis be word that after tryell of his qualificatioun and diligence, at the deceiss of maister William Robertsoun (quhais pensioun wes his hinderance), or vther sic meitt occasioun, he suld be better provydet, lyke as this toun hithertill hes euir bene meinful and kynd to sic as faythfully ministeris in thair publict offices, neuirtheles it is of trewth that as, be Gods grace, he hes gevin sufficient prwif of his hability and travellis, swa he fynds the fruicts thairof towards him verray small and sclender, speciallie his ordinare stipend, beand swa scairs as thair wisdomes knawis, and his casualiteis of the scholeris verray inconstant, and be daylie occasiouns (as brute of pest and weir) easely dissoluit, bot after lang tyme hardlie sett vp and repairet, and quhen the samyn is at grittest perfectioun the common ditcis thairof to be far inferiour to mennis expectatioun. This than is the effect of this present swit and requeist, that it wald pleis thair wisdomes to tak sic ordour anent him, be augmenting his stipend, as he may haif sum constant releif, albeit his casualities any tyme decay, and swa he be nocht constraynet throw carefull indigence to mixt any vther industrie with his vocatioun, quhilk in deid cravis the haill man, consideratioun alswa being had of the derth incressing daylie, quhairin he protestis faythfullie that he is nocht vtherwayes covetous of thair geir, and howppis neuir to purches any store throw moyane of the schule, bot onely is desyrous to leve soberly vpoun his lawbouris and to saif his patrimony, quhilk now he spends in their seruice, for vphald of his awld aige and prouisioun to his posterity, and he on the vther pairt in cais of thair cowrtes dealing with him dar promeis baldlie, be Gods assistance, the maist florissant schole bayth in policie and leirning that ony manis memorie can record within this realm, als weill be his present paynis as be his monuments quhilk he hes in hand to serue vtheris heirafter, to the advancement of Gods glorie and comfort of this commoun weill; as the said supplicatioun proporter. With the quhilk the said prouest, baillies, counsall, and deykins of crafts being rypelie avyset, and vnderstanding that his stipend of before extendit onely to the soum of fyftie pund yeirlie, according to the contract maid betuix the guid toun and him, thay, in consideratioun of the said supplicatioun and for the caussis contenit thairintill, and vpoun howpe of the said maister Hercules cair and vigilance in the faythfull dischairging of his dewty, [augmented his stipend by £50, making it £100 yearly, to be paid out of the common good.]
24 April 1588.
Ordanis Edward Mawchan, thesaurer, to prepair, dres and sett vp skelffis in the over study of the ministers lugeing for putting the townis library thair quhen it sall be fund expedient.
8 May 1588.
Be ressoun of the difference in materis of relligion betuix the kirk and the twa Flemyng wobsters dwelland within this burgh callit [blank,] ordanis thame, of thair awin consent, to depesche and end owt all the nychtbouris wark quhilk thai haif in thair hand betuix this and the first day of September nixtocum, and in the meynetyme that thai convene and confer with the ministers anes at the leist ilk owlk in the ile of the kirk; and gif thai agrie nocht with the kirk betuix and the said day that thai depairt and remoue furth of the realme.
11 May 1588.
Anent the watche.
Inrespect of the apperance of trubill to aryse within the realme, fynds it expedient that the town be mair substantiously and strangly watchet, and thairfore that ilk nychtbour watche in his awin persoun or send ane habill and weill airmett man for him at the discretioun of the bailyie of the quarter, the nicht watche to begyn at ix houris at evin, and continew quhill four houris in the morning, and the bailyie of the quarter ilk nycht to sett his quarteris watche and appoynt ane merchant and a craftisman to be commander thairof and to se that thai be all weill airmitt, the absents wairnet be the officer to pay ane vnlaw of auchtein schillings, the bailyie to mak ane roll of the absents and delyuer the samyn to the collectour, and he to caus poynd thair fore without delay. Als that the thrid of the quarter watche ilk nycht; for the day watche that thair be twa persouns feyet to remayne in the stepill quha sall haif xl [d.] in the day ilk persoun.
Proclamatio, staibleris, hoistleris.
Ordanis proclamatioun to be maid chargeing all hostilares and staiblers to gif vp in tikket to the bailye of the quarter the persouns that ludges or stabillis with thame, vnder the payne of xviij s.
22 May 1588.
Proclamatio, Leyth, convocatioun in airmour.
Ordanet proclamatioun to be maid throw the toun of Leyth dischairgeing the inhabitants thairof to gif or mak any mwsteris or wawpounschawin vpoun the Sondayes or yitt convocatioun or gaddering in airmour that day or ony vther day without speciall command of the Kings Grace or of the toun thair superiour, vnder the payne of ane vnlaw of v li. and pvnesing of thair persoun at the will of the magestrats.
24 May 1588.
Raid of Dumfreis men of weir.
Vnderstanding be declaratioun of my lord prouest that his lordship hes obtenit the guid toun and the rest of the burrowis vnder this present raid of Dumfries ane exemptioun thairfra for the furneising of twa hunder men of weir, thairfore thay agreit that the said men of weir be tayne vp and money gottin vpoun proffeitt for making thair charges, the remanent burrowes vnder the raid relevand the toun of thair pairt of the samyn, and ordanis the dene of gild and Edward Gallbrayth to awaitt vpoun the inrolling of the said men of weir.
29 May 1588.
Swescheour put in irons.
Ordanet [blank] Diksoun, toun swescheour, to be wairdet and put in the irnis for passing on the Sondayes at his awin hand to the May playis in Kirklistoun.
31 May 1588.
Seditious craftis childer.
Forswamekill as the jurnaymen and taskmen of crafts, with dyuers vthers that ar nocht fremen nor yitt bund to ane maister, ar be sindry acts and statutes of the said burgh fund and declaret to be nathing ellis bot idill vagabunds, trubleris of the quyet estaitt of this commoun weill, polluting the samyn with the vyces of nicht walking, drinking, harletry, and dissolut leving, and na les hurtfull to the honest burgessis and friemen of crafts, and be the said acts ar banist this burgh and fredome thairof vnder dyuers paynis contenit in the saids acts quhilk hitherto hes bene neglectet and contemnit be the said persouns abusing the lenity and patience of the magestrats, as amaugs mony vtheris the laitt insurrectioun maid within this burgh vnder sylence of nycht vpoun the first of May instant euidently declaret; at the quhilk tyme thair was ane convocatioun of ane greitt number of craftis childer quha come to the yett of Jhonn Robertsoun, baillie, with ane jest and fore hammer to haif strukkin vp the samyn, doand that in thame lay as apperit to haif strukin it vp, spuilyeit his hous and bereft him of his lyfe, blaspheming the minister of God in his hous, disobeying and contemning my lord provest; in the quhilk interpryse the said jurnaymen, taskmen, and vnfrie persouns, wer the principall doares, devyseris and ring ledares; for the quhilk caus and eschewing the lyke inconvenients in tyme cuming, the said prouest, baillies, counsall and deykins of crafts, ratefeis, apprevis and confermis the former acts and statutes maid anent the saidis persouns in all poynts, claussis and articles thairof, decerning and declaring thame to be vagabunds, makeris of insurrectiouns and trubill, and ledares of ane vitious lyfe, and thairfore banesand thame be thir presents the fredome and liberty of this burgh, commanding and chairgeing thame in our Souerane Lords name and thairis, that thai depairt of this burgh incontinent and presum nocht to cum within the samyn agane without thai be bund to ane maister for meitt and fie, yeir or half yeir, quha sall ansuer for thair behaviour in tyme cuming; with certificatioun that gif ony of thame sall be fund within the fredome of this burgh heirafter, thai sall be tayne and put in waird and pvnist as vagabounds and malefactouris giltie of the crymes foresaids, according to the lawes of this realme, acts and statutes of this burgh. Siclyke, it is thocht expedient, statute and ordanit that na maner of persouns, merchants or craftismen, or vtheris indwelleris of this burgh, presume or tak vpoun hand to interteny, howse, harbery, ressett or put to wark any of the saids jurnaymen, taskmen, and workeris at any craft, quha or nother friemen nor bund to ane certane maister for meitt and fie, yeir or half yeir, to ansuer for thame, ilk persoun vnder the payne of fourty schillings swa oft as thai failyie. And gif any maister, merchant or craftisman, hes tayne or heirafter sall tak or resaue in thair seruice any of the said sort of pepill, or yitt ony vther prenteis or seruand, that thai caus thame fynd sufficient souerty, nocht only for thair lawty and remaning bot alswa for thair guid behaviour in lyfe and conversatioun toward the kirk and magestrats, and to ansuer for thame quhensoeuir thai sall be fund transgressing guid ordour and brekking the acts and statutes of this burgh; with certificatioun to the saidis maisteris gif thai failyie that thai sall be haldin to ansuer thameselffis for the saidis prenteissis and seruands. And as to thame that ar or sall be banist the fredome of this burgh for thair evill deidis, it is fund necessar and be thir presents statute and ordanet that nane tak vp or resaue thame in thair seruice induring the tyme of thair banisement, or interteny or resset thame in thair howssis be day or be nicht, vnder the payne of tynsall of thair fredome, and to be repute and haldin as gilty of thair wikket doings and vtherwayes pvnist at the will of the magestrats. And for better executioun of this present ordinance, ordanis ilk deykin of craft to serche, seik, and trye furth the jurnaymen, taskmen, and all vnfrie persouns nocht bund to ane certane maister in maner foresaid, and gif vp thair names in writt to the counsall; and siclyke that thair be depute in ilk close and vinell ane or ma sufficient persouns to inquyre, trye, and gif vp the names of the saidis rankis of persouns dwelland or resortand within the samyn, that ordour may be tayne with thame as effeiris. And this present ordinance to be publist at the merket croce of this burgh that nane pretend ignorance.
Anent the mater proponet be my lord provest to the baillies, counsall and deykins, for thair avyse quhat pvnisement sall be layet vpoun the crafts childer quha maid the laitt insurrectioun, trubill, and invasioun of Jhonn Robertsoun, baillie, in his dwellinghous, betuix ten and allevin houres at evin vpoun the first of May last bypast, and blaspheming of the ministers of Gods word within the samyn, it is thocht expedient, statute and ordanet, anent the actuall doares allanerlie and perswaderis of vtheris and devysares of the said fact, that thai be publictly banist the fredome of this burgh for euir and sufficient security fand as may be had of sic as sall cum in hands that thai sall nocht hant nor resort at ony tyme heirafter within the samyn; and anent the rest quha come to the said tumult vnavysetly, nocht knawand thairof before hand, and wes na doares thame selffis nor perswaderis of vtheris, that thai mak ane sufficient satisfactioun to the kirk, counsall, and pairty offendit, in sic maner as sall be specially inioynet to thame, according to the circumstances of tyme, place and persouns, at the discretioun of the kirk and magestrats, and to be putt vnder straitt cautioun for thair behavious in tyme cuming; remembring alwayes that thai that had airmour vpoun thame be mair scherply handlit, bot specially gif thai drew thair swords or gaif iniurious words to my lord provest or maister James Jhonestoun, baillie, or to sic as assistet the magestrats.
5 June 1588.
Pulder to Lochmaben.
Ordanis Edward Mawchan, thesaurer, to pay for the [blank] of pulder, and carrage thairof, sent and bocht to the Kings Grace be my lord provest, at his Graces desyre, to the seage of Lochmaben, the sowm of ane hunder fourtein pund fyftein schilling sex penneis, and my lord prouest to hald his Grace in remembrance to gett the sam agane to the town.
7 June 1588.
Bellis Wynd cobill, Bischop of Dunkelds land.
Vnderstanding that the transe of Bellis Wynd heid owerflowis with filth, in defalt of the tenement of land pertening to the hospitall of [blank], foundet be vmquhill the Bischop of Dunkell, quhilk wantes ane sufficient cobill to serue the droppis thairof, thairfore ordanis the patrone of the said hospitall and fewares of the said tenenment to be charget ather to condem thair drops or ellis to mak ane sufficient cobill for the samyn betuix and Lambes nixttocum, and in the meyne tyme to hald the close clene, vnder the payne of fourty schillings to be tayne of thame for ilk drop.
11 June 1588.
Pulder and bullet to Lochmabene.
Ordanis the pulder and bullett to be gottin furth of the castell and sent to the Kings Grace to the seage of Lochmabene to be transportet and careitt thairto vpoun the towns charges and expenssis … and appoyntis Robert Ker and maister James Jhonestoun to conduce the hors with expeditioun.
12 June 1588.
Lettre of Bischop of Glasgw.
Henry Nesbet, merchaut, presentet ane lettre come fra the Bischop of Glasgw, quhilk beand red thay ordanet the samyn to be presentet to the conventioun of burrowes.
Proclamatio, laitt insurrectioun.
Ordanet proclamatioun to be maid chairgeing all persouns that ar giltie of the vprore and insurrectioun maid aganis Jhonn Robertsoun, baillie, to compeir and gif in thair supplicatiouns before the kirk and counsall betuix and Fryday cum aucht dayes, that thai may tak ordour with thame for thair trespas, with certificatioun and thai failye thai sall be callet and pvnest as the actuall doares and interprysers thairof.
28 June 1588.
Rex, intertenement of the Duik of Lenox twa sisteris.
Vnderstanding that it is airnistly desyret be the Kings Grace that the toun suld hald hous to the Duik of Lenox twa sisteris, laitly cum owt of France, and interteny thame vpoun the touns charges the spaice of fyftein dayes or twenty dayes, and it beand airnistly travellet with his Maiestie and with the comptroller for eschewing thairof, declaring the touns greitt burdings in his Graces effaires, and nathing can availl bot the toun is habill to incur his Graces displeasure gif thai sall vtterly reiect this his requeist; for the quhilk caus, and beand reply avyset heirwith, thay haif grantet, consentet and agreitt that, gif the said intertenement may be putt within fyve hunder merk, to grant swa mekill money thairto, and nawayes to exceid the said sowme of vc merk; and ordanet the comptroller to be spokin to that effect.