Macduff - Mellerstain

A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland. Originally published by S Lewis, London, 1846.

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Samuel Lewis, 'Macduff - Mellerstain', in A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, (London, 1846) pp. 225-244. British History Online [accessed 18 May 2024].

Samuel Lewis. "Macduff - Mellerstain", in A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, (London, 1846) 225-244. British History Online, accessed May 18, 2024,

Lewis, Samuel. "Macduff - Mellerstain", A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, (London, 1846). 225-244. British History Online. Web. 18 May 2024,

In this section



MACDUFF, a burgh of barony, and a sea-port, in the parish of Gamrie, county of Banff, 1 mile (E.) from Banff; containing 2228 inhabitants. This place, which is situated on the eastern bank of the river Doveran, at its influx into the Moray Frith, and nearly opposite to the town of Banff, was in the early part of last century an inconsiderable fishing-village called Down. It derived its present appellation from its proprietor, James, second earl of Fife, by whom it was greatly extended and improved, and who, in 1783, obtained from George III. a charter erecting it into a burgh of barony, upon which he conferred the family surname. The town, which is neatly built on the acclivity of a hill rising gently from the shore, consists of numerous streets, and in the direction of Banff, on the west bank of the Doveran, is an elegant bridge of seven arches; the streets are lighted with gas. A public library is supported by subscription. The surrounding scenery is enriched with the plantations in the grounds of Duff House, of which the town commands an interesting view. The manufacture of ropes, sails, and twine, which last is made into nets, is carried on to a considerable extent; and the curing of herrings and other fish affords employment to many of the inhabitants.

The trade of the port consists in the exportation of cattle, grain, and fish, and the importation of lime, coal, timber, and bones for manure; the number of vessels belonging to the port is fifteen, of 1036 tons aggregate burthen, and mostly engaged in trading to Leith, London, and the Baltic. The number of vessels annually entering the port is 200, averaging an aggregate burthen of 11,000 tons; and the amount of shore dues annually averages £300. The harbour, which is the private property of the Earl of Fife, by whom it was constructed at a great expense, is easy of access, and one of the best in the Moray Frith; it affords safe anchorage for vessels of any burthen, and good shelter for the numerous boats engaged in the herring-fishery, of which this place is the principal station. A market for provisions of all kinds is held on Tuesday; and the inhabitants have also facility of access to the market at Banff, which is on Friday. The burgh, under its charter, is governed by a provost, two bailies, and four councillors, triennially elected by the resident burgesses, whose qualification is the tenure of lands within the burgh. The magistrates hold bailie-courts for the trial of civil causes to a trifling amount, and of petty offences, in which they act without an assessor; but their jurisdiction is exercised in but few instances. Macduff is included within the parliamentary boundaries of Banff. The town-hall is a neat building, to which a small gaol is attached. A penny-post has been established here under that of Banff; and facility of intercourse is maintained by good roads, and, for the conveyance of produce, by the harbour. There is a church, situated on an eminence, a neat structure with a spire, and containing 858 sittings: the minister has a stipend of £120, arising from the Earl of Fife's endowment, and is likewise in possession of a manse and glebe. The members of the Free Church have also a place of worship; and one of the parochial schools is situated in the town. In the immediate neighbourhood is a mineral spring, called the Well of Tarlain, which is much resorted to, and with which are connected facilities for sea-bathing.

Machar, New

MACHAR, NEW, a parish, in the district and county of Aberdeen, 10 miles (N. W. by N.) from Aberdeen; containing 1262 inhabitants. This parish, which derives its appellation from its having been disjoined from Old Machar, comprehends certain lands named Straloch, in the county of Banff, though entirely surrounded by the county of Aberdeen. These lands are separated from the main portion of the parish by a branch of the parish of Udny, uniting itself to that of Fintray; this division of Udny has for several years been annexed quoad sacra to New Machar, and the lands of Straloch are now rated and politically attached to the county of Aberdeen. The parish measures ten miles in length from north-west to south-east, and its average breadth is two and a half miles, comprising 8390 acres, of which 5570 are arable, 958 pasture, and 810 plantations, chiefly of larch and fir, with an intermixture of hard-wood. It is bounded on the south by the river Don, and is mainly situated between hills of moderate elevation, gently sloping, and inclining from north-west to south-east; while the intermediate surface is agreeably diversified by little hills, some of which are cultivated, and the others under wood. A rivulet, crossing the parish in a southern direction, and turning several corn-mills in its course, falls into the Don near the bridge of Dyce; and in the south-east end of the parish are two lochs. Of these, one is situated in a rugged and uninviting district; but the other, anciently called Loch Goul, but now the Bishop's loch, from some of the bishops of Aberdeen having resided in a humble dwelling on a small island here, is stretched out in the midst of beautiful scenery, and is extensive and well wooded.

The soil near the Don is a rich loam, resting on gravel; and in the middle portion the land is of the same kind, but of much inferior quality. The northern tract has some parts capable of good cultivation, lately reclaimed by draining; but the soil in this quarter is mostly indifferent, interspersed occasionally with loam, and resting on clay. The produce consists chiefly of barley, bear, oats, and the usual green crops, grown generally under the five or seven shift rotation. The improvements carried on here within the last fifteen years have been very considerable, comprising principally draining and liming; and not only much waste land has been reclaimed, but that in tillage also has been greatly improved. The farms vary in size from forty-five to 200 acres, and the rent of land is averaged at £1 per acre: the rateable annual value of the parish is £5227. The cattle are the Aberdeenshire horned and dodded, or crosses between the short-horned and Hereford breeds. The rocks principally found here are granite and limestone, the former especially abundant in the southern part. The mansion of Parkhill is a spacious modern residence, surrounded by ornamental plantations, with a rich lawn beautifully diversified with wood and water, and commanding a fine view up the valley of the Don, bounded by the noble elevation of Bennochie. Straloch, also a superior structure, finely situated, was once the property and residence of the geographer Gordon; and the mansion of Elrick is a neat and comfortable residence, skirted by thriving wood.

A post-office has been lately established; and the Aberdeen and Banff turnpike-road runs through the parish from north to south, and joins the Peterhead turnpike-road not far from the old bridge of Don. The Aberdeenshire canal passes within half a mile of the southern boundary of the parish. The produce of the district is sold at Aberdeen, whence coal is brought to this place, for the more wealthy; but turf and peat are burnt by the lower classes, procured from an extensive range of moss lying between this parish and Belhelvie, and called "Red moss." A cattle fair has been recently established, at which, however, but little business is done. The parish is in the presbytery and synod of Aberdeen, and in the patronage of the Earl of Fife: the minister's stipend is £217, with a manse, and a glebe of very nearly twenty acres, valued at £17 per annum. The church was built in 1791, and contains between 600 and 700 sittings. The members of the Free Church have a place of worship. The parochial school affords instruction in the usual branches; the master has a salary of £30, with a house, and £5 fees. There are two parochial libraries, the one confined to religious works, and the other comprising nearly 500 volumes in miscellaneous literature. Remains exist of several ancient chapels; and the ground of one, called St. Colm's, is still used as a burial-place. A portion of land in the parish is designated King's-seat, from the circumstance, according to tradition, of King Malcolm Canmore having sat down to rest upon a stone still remaining on the property, near which is a well called Betteral well. Robert Gordon, the eminent geographer and antiquary, was born in the parish in 1580: at the earnest request of King Charles, he constructed an atlas of Scotland, which was published in 1648, and went through several editions. Dr. Thomas Reid, the wellknown metaphysician, was minister here from 1737 till 1752.

Machar, Old.

MACHAR, OLD.—See Aberdeen, Old.


MADDERTY, a parish, in the county of Perth, 6 miles (E.) from Crieff; containing, with the hamlet of Bellyclone, and the burgh of barony of Craig of Madderty, 634 inhabitants. A religious house was founded here in the year 1200, by Gilbert, Earl of Strathearn, and his countess, Matilda, and dedicated to the honour of God, the Virgin Mary, and St. John the Apostle and Evangelist. It was called Inch-Effray, and took its name both from its situation on an eminence surrounded, or nearly so, by the river Pow, and from the nature of the institution; its Latin appellation was insula missarum, or "the island of masses." David I. and Alexander III. conferred upon it many valuable privileges and immunities, and it was esteemed one of the richest abbeys in the kingdom. The Abbot Mauritius was present with Robert Bruce at the battle of Bannockburn, and is reported to have had with him the arm of St. Fillan, to which relic much importance was attached as to the issue of the conflict. James Drummond, son of David, Lord Drummond, having become possessed of this monastery by favour of the commendator, Alexander Gordon, Bishop of Galloway, was styled Lord Incheffray, and afterwards, in 1607, was created Lord Madderty, by King James VI., who erected the estate into a temporal lordship. The title, however, was forfeited in 1715. The extensive buildings of the establishment have at different times supplied stones for various purposes; but there are still a few remains, which, with six or seven acres of land in the vicinity, belong to the Earl of Kinnoull, who, in consequence of this property, possesses the right of patronage to twelve parishes formerly attached to the abbey.

The parish comprises 3430 acres, of which 2820 are under cultivation, 450 in plantations, and the remainder waste. The climate is wet and cold; and much of the land is still marsh and moor, requiring thorough draining, which has, however, been carried on to a considerable extent in some parts for several years. The Pow, which rises from the Red moss, about a mile eastward, runs through the parish, in a canal or cut about twenty-four feet wide, and six deep, dug, in order to straighten its course, nearly 100 years since; a part of the stream takes an eastern direction, and falls into the river Almond, while the other part travels westward, and empties itself into the Erne at Innerpeffray. The latter portion has the appearance almost of stagnant water, from the gentleness of the declivity; and on account of the adjacent lands lying so low, they occasionally suffer much from inundations. The mansion-houses are those of Dollerie and Woodend. The village of Craig has become nearly extinct; and in its place has risen up the village of St. David's, consisting of about fourteen feus, where a school has been erected within the last few years, by the proprietor, Lady Preston Baird, with commodious and ornamental premises. It is intended for the instruction of children in sewing and knitting, and in the first rudiments of education, preparatory to admission (of some of the scholars) into the parochial school; the teacher receives a salary of £10 per annum, a free house, and other perquisites. The parish also contains the hamlet of Bellyclone. A turnpike-road runs through the district; the inhabitants communicate principally with Crieff, but the dairy produce is generally sent to Perth. The rateable annual value of Madderty is £3500. It is in the presbytery of Auchterarder and synod of Perth and Stirling, and in the patronage of the Earl of Kinnoull: the minister's stipend is £225, with a manse, and a glebe of nine acres valued at £11 per annum. The church is a plain edifice erected in 1668. The parochial school affords instruction in the usual branches; the master has a salary of £34. 4., with a house and garden, and £12 fees.


MADDISTON, a village, in the parish of Muiravonside, county of Stirling, 2 miles (W. by S.) from Linlithgow-Bridge; containing 164 inhabitants. This is the principal village in the parish, and is picturesquely seated on the slope of a hill, and on each side of a stream, over which is a bridge. On the adjoining lands considerable quantities of iron have been wrought, and the Carron Company have still works in the vicinity; the iron is of fine quality, but dispersed over a great bulk of ore. The facilities of communication are very ample; the Stirling and Edinburgh road, the Union canal, and railways between Slamannan and Glasgow, and Glasgow and Edinburgh, passing conveniently to the village, and all intersecting the parish.

Madoes, St.

MADOES, ST., a parish, in the county of Perth, 6 miles (E. by S.) from Perth; containing, with the villages of Cot-Town and Hawkstone, 327 inhabitants. This parish is supposed to have derived its name from St. Modoch. The relics of antiquity calculated to throw light on its early history are scanty. One of the several Druidical temples, however, which are to be seen in this part of the country, stands here; and there is a pillar yet remaining in the churchyard, composed of grey sandstone, and constructed after the model of those pillars termed Runic, which are generally supposed to be of Danish origin, but which many are rather disposed to think were raised at the first introduction of Christianity, to commemorate that event. It is considered highly probable that St. Modoch, a Gallic missionary to Scotland in the third or fourth century, visited this parish, and that, having made converts, a church dedicated to him was built in the place where the present church stands. It may also be observed, that in the village of Hawkstone is a large stone upon which it is believed the hawk of the peasant Hay alighted, after it had circumscribed in its flight the land to be assigned to him as a reward for his services at the battle of Luncarty. This relic is always called "the hawk's stone," and stands upon the verge of property formerly belonging to the Hays, of Errol.

The parish, which is among the smallest in Scotland, contains 1152 acres. It is situated in that division of the county called the Carse of Gowrie, and is bounded on the north by Kinfauns, on the south by the river Tay, on the east by the parish of Errol, and on the west by Kinnoull. The surface principally consists of three successive level tracts, each rising a little above the other: the first, commencing at the margin of the river, has all been recovered within the last half century, and some of it very lately, and is four or five feet below high-water mark. The second level is six or seven feet higher; and the third is elevated about fourteen feet above the second, and is much more extensive than either of the others. After this the ground ascends gradually to its highest elevation, sixty-two feet above the high-water mark of the river, and then gently slopes northward till it becomes level with the large flat upon the southern side of the ridge, and with the rest of the rich and fertile tract called the Carse of Gowrie. The scenery, which from some points appears rather tame, changes its character if beheld from the elevated parts of the neighbourhood, especially the summit of Inchyra hill, when several objects rise in different directions to grace and beautify the prospect. The ample stream of the Tay, receiving into its basin on the opposite side the waters of the Earn; the spreading buildings of Newburgh on one side, and on the other the town of Abernethy, the ancient capital of the Picts, resting on the slope of a range of rugged hills; Pitfour Castle, with its lands and plantations; and the church spire, almost concealed by venerable foliage, supply altogether a group of no ordinary interest. The Tay, the chief stream connected with the parish, is in this part about one mile broad, and at high-water seventeen feet deep. In the winter of 1838 it was visited by the wild swan, a circumstance which had not occurred before for forty years.

The soil varies considerably in different parts. On the higher grounds it is a dark loam, incumbent on light sand or clay, and running sometimes to a depth of three feet. The flat land bordering on the higher is in some parts a rich alluvial loam, of a clayey nature, and producing all kinds of crops in abundance; other parts are a strong clay. The level in the immediate vicinity of the Tay consists of eighty acres, mostly reclaimed since 1826, and is a rich loam, yielding the heaviest crops without manure. Of the whole lands about 1059 acres are under tillage, sixty in pasture, and thirty-three under wood; the crops comprise wheat, oats, barley, beans, potatoes, turnips, and hay, the grain being chiefly sent to Perth, and the potatoes to London. Wedge or furrow draining, introduced into these parts within the last twenty years, has been practised to a considerable extent and with great success, especially in those soils distinguished by a tenacious clay. Among the materials used for the construction of the drains have been turf, wood, and broken stones, each tried separately; but nothing has been found to answer so well as tiles, which are now coming into general use, through the ample supply of them provided at the extensive kilns built by Sir John Stuart Richardson, Bart., of Pitfour Castle, the proprietor of the parish. About eighty-five acres of land have been at different times reclaimed from the Tay by embankments; and it is supposed that many acres more may be converted into productive fields. A considerable quantity was recovered in 1826, by an enterprising farmer, at a cost of £1530. In 1833, eighteen acres were gained at an expense of £1200, by the proprietor, whose paper on embankments, read before the Highland Society, received the prize medal. The plantations consist of every species of wood, among which are some very fine planes and elms; the trees are in a flourishing condition, and vary in age from seventeen to seventy or eighty years. The rateable annual value of the parish is £4182.

The prevailing substratum throughout the district is the old red sandstone formation. In all the more level grounds it is covered with an alluvium so thick that the rock is scarcely to be reached; but in the higher parts, where the strata have been accidentally disturbed and thrown up, its character is distinctly seen. It lies in beds varying in thickness from one to three feet, with thin layers of clay between them; and a quarry has been opened in the parish, in which numerous highly interesting organic remains have been discovered, consisting of various species and parts of fishes. These prevail most in the deeper beds, and in those of a brecciated character. The great number of scales and dissevered parts which have been found in the quarries here and in the neighbourhood, have been proved by the discovery of a very beautiful and complete fossil specimen in 1836, to belong to the genus Holoptychius. The chief mansion in the parish is Pitfour Castle, the residence of the proprietor of the parish; it is spacious and of a quadrangular form, and surrounded by rich and extensive lands, plantations, and gardens, all tastefully disposed and in excellent condition. The park, flower-gardens, and shrubberies are, indeed, surpassed by few in the Carse of Gowrie. There are two villages, named Hawkstone and Cot-Town, each having a small population; the intercourse for the disposal of produce is mainly with the market-town of Perth, with which there is a daily communication by coaches and carriers. Roads for local convenience intersect the parish in every direction; the great road from Perth to Aberdeen, by Dundee, traverses its northern boundary; and the road from Perth to Errol also runs through the parish. A pier and harbour, constructed a few years ago by the proprietor, opposite the junction of the Tay and Earn, have proved of great advantage to the parish; here coal, lime, and manure are received, and large quantities of potatoes exported. There is a valuable fishery for salmon, the rent of which, paid to the proprietor of the parish, is £1000: the hands employed in it are during the winter months engaged in the manufacture of flax and hemp, which they regularly receive from the Dundee merchants.

The ecclesiastical affairs are subject to the presbytery of Perth and synod of Perth and Stirling; patron, Sir John Richardson. The stipend of the minister is £208. 10., with a manse, built in 1804, and repaired in 1829, and a glebe of twenty-seven acres, and about two acres of garden, valued at £80 per annum. The church, a plain building erected in 1798, contains 610 sittings. There is a parochial school, in which mathematics are taught, with the usual branches of education, and Latin and Greek if required; the master has a salary of £34, with a house and garden, and about £10 fees. The children receiving instruction belong principally to the neighbouring parishes of Errol, Kinfauns, and Kinnoull. There is also a subscription library of 200 volumes, the terms of which are 4½d. per quarter; and the poor have the interest of £500, arising from a bequest, made 200 years ago, of only 200 marks, which by good management accumulated. The chief relic of antiquity is the stone monument in the churchyard, seven feet in length and about three in width; it is a great curiosity, and beautifully carved with numerous emblematical devices on both sides, in a state of high preservation. From the sign of a cross on one side, it is supposed, as already observed, to be connected with the introduction of Christianity into the parish. The Rev. Archibald Stevenson, one of the leading men of the Church of Scotland during the last century, was minister of St. Madoes.


MAIDEN-SKERRY, an isle, in the parish of Northmavine, county of Shetland. It consists of a high rock, of which the summit has never been trodden by man. In the summer season it is occupied by the largest kind of gulls, called the black-backed, which nestle upon it in vast numbers, undisturbed.

Mainland Isle

MAINLAND ISLE, county of Shetland; containing 16,141 inhabitants. This is the largest island of the district, about sixty miles in length, and in some places sixteen in breadth, projecting into the sea in many irregular promontories, and indented by numerous bays and harbours. The interior or middle part is hilly and mountainous, and full of bogs and mosses; but the greater part of the coast is arable, producing chiefly oats sown in April, and barley about the middle of May. The hills are mostly covered with heath, and afford pasturage for cattle and sheep. The island is almost bare of trees, and hardly any shrubs are to be seen, except juniper and small roan trees and willows in the more sheltered valleys. It would, however, appear to have been formerly covered with wood, as trees of considerable size are occasionally dug up in the mosses, some of which are at a great depth; and it is generally observed that their tops are uniformly found lying towards the west, as if they had been overthrown by a storm or inundation from the east. There are appearances of various kinds of metallic ores; at Sandlodge, a coppermine was wrought for some time; and iron-ore is in considerable quantity. The island is divided into the eight parishes of Delting, Dunrossness, Lerwick, Nesting, Northmavine, Sandsting and Aithsting, Tingwall, and Walls and Sandness, all of which are described under their respective heads.

Mains and Strathmartine

MAINS and STRATHMARTINE, a parish, in the county of Forfar; containing, with the villages of Baldovan and Kirkton, 2110 inhabitants, of whom 1295 are in Mains, 2 miles (N. N. W.) from Dundee. The original name of the old parish of Mains was Strathdighty, descriptive of it as a valley watered by the river Dighty; and the name of the other parish, which is a continuation of the same valley, is said to have been derived from a stone erected on the north side of it, in commemoration of some valorous exploit performed by a hero of the name of Martine in the ancient days of chivalry. These parishes were joined in the year 1799; and the united parish is six miles in length, varying from one mile to three miles in breadth, and comprises 7063 acres, of which 6180 are arable, 450 woodland and plantations, and the remainder moor and waste. The surface is one continued vale of pleasing appearance, bounded on each side by rising grounds, the highest point of which, however, is not more than 400 feet above the level of the sea. The only river is the Dighty, which has its source in two lakes in the parish of Lundie, and flows with equable stream through the whole of the vale into the sea near the mouth of the Tay, in the parish of Monifieth. On the banks of this river, the largest in the immediate vicinity of Dundee, are numerous works connected with the manufactures of that town, which extend into this parish; and thus, not only the adjacent scenery has been deprived of much of its natural beauty, but the fishing has been greatly injured, and the quality of the water rendered unfit for domestic use. Several small rivulets intersect the parish, forming tributaries to the Dighty; but they are usually dry in the summer months. Near the castle of Mains, a spring of excellent water issues from a crevice in a rock, and flows with undiminishing abundance even in the driest times, affording a valuable supply for the inhabitants of that portion of the parish.

The soil is generally a black loam, and very fertile; the crops are extremely favourable; and, with the exception only of a few patches of moor, and some rocky elevations, the whole is in a state of profitable cultivation. The crops are, oats, barley, wheat, potatoes, and turnips. The system of agriculture is greatly improved; the lands are well drained, and inclosed with stone dykes and hedges of thorn; and the farm houses and offices, though inferior to those in several other parishes, are still commodious and in decent repair. A very large extent of waste land has been reclaimed and brought into cultivation, and the general appearance of the parish greatly improved by the flourishing plantations that have been made on the higher grounds. The woods consist chiefly of oak, fir, and the usual kinds of foresttrees, of which beech seems the best adapted to the soil; and there are several trees of venerable growth, especially one near the castle of Mains, of very stately dimensions, supposed to be more than two centuries old. The plantations are larch, and spruce and Scotch firs, intermixed with forest-trees, and, with the exception of the larch, which thrives only in the better soils, are all in a flourishing condition. The principal substrata are grey-slate and trap-rock, of which the higher grounds mainly consist, and which are quarried to a considerable extent for the roads and inclosures, the stone being of good quality for such purposes. Baldovan House and Strathmartine are both handsome modern mansions. From its proximity to Dundee, and the facilities afforded for the manufactures of that place by the Dighty, a great proportion of the inhabitants of this parish are employed in works established by the Dundee proprietors on the banks of that river; on which, within the limits of Mains and Strathmartine, are four bleachfields, two of which are very extensive, and six mills for washing yarn and preparing it for the loom. There are likewise in operation three flour-mills, five for meal, a saw-mill, and several threshing-mills, all put in motion by the water of the river, with the exception of one of the flour-mills, partly worked by steam. The rateable annual value of Mains is £7770, and of Strathmartine £4686. The agricultural and other produce is sent to the market of Dundee, with which frequent intercourse is kept up; and facility of communication is afforded with other places in the vicinity by three turnpike-roads, which pass for more than eight miles through the parish, and by a railway from Dundee to Glammis, constructed at an expense of nearly £100,000. There are not less than nine bridges over the Dighty. Fairs are held on the first Tuesday after July 11, on the 26th of August, and the 15th of September, for cattle, sheep, and horses, and for hiring farm servants.

The parish is in the presbytery of Dundee and synod of Angus and Mearns, and in the patronage of the Crown; the minister's stipend is £217. 8. 4., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £35 per annum. The church, erected in 1800, is conveniently situated, and is adapted for a congregation of 900 persons. The parochial schools of both the old parishes are continued, and afford a liberal course of education; the masters have each a salary of £34, with a good house and garden, and the fees average annually at Mains £40, and Strathmartine £30. A school for females is supported by an endowment of Lady Ogilvy; and there are two others in the parish, for teaching children to sew. The poor have annually the interest of some accumulated capital realizing £20, and are eligible for admission in case of sickness into the Dundee infirmary, for the benefit of which a collection is made annually at the church of this place. The principal remains of antiquity within the limits of the parish are some vestiges of a Roman camp in the Strathmartine district, supposed to have been occupied by a portion of Agricola's army, and which, probably, was afterwards a stronghold of Sir William Wallace. This latter opinion is corroborated by a tradition, that that gallant defender of his country's honour pitched his tent on Clatto hill, from which the moor in this place takes its name. There are also two obelisks in the parish; but the history of their erection is not clearly ascertained. Claverhouse, the residence of the well-known Dundee, was situated here; and near the site of the old mansion, an edifice in the form of an ancient ruin has been erected by his descendant, Mr. Webster.

Mains of Errol

MAINS of ERROL, a hamlet, in the parish of Errol, county of Perth; an inconsiderable place, containing 62 inhabitants.


MAKERSTOUN, a parish, in the district of Kelso, county of Roxburgh; containing 355 inhabitants, of whom 79 are in the village, 5 miles (W. S. W.) from Kelso. This place is supposed to have derived its name from its original proprietor, Machar, or Machir. The parish is beautifully situated on the river Tweed, which forms its southern boundary, dividing it from Roxburgh; it is nearly four miles in length from east to west, varies from two to three miles in breadth from north to south, and comprises 2892 acres, of which 2574 are arable and pasture, and 318 woodland, plantations, and roads. The surface has a considerable rise towards the north, where it attains an elevation of 471 feet above the level of the sea; and the lands are agreeably diversified with thriving trees. The soil in the southern part is a dry loam, exceedingly fertile; but it is less productive towards the north, being chiefly a thin clay. The substratum is generally gravel and sandstone. The crops are, wheat, barley, oats, peas, turnips, and potatoes, of which two last there are on the average 400 acres; the plantations include the different kinds of timber usually grown in this part of the country, and there are some good meadows and rich pastures. Nearly all the land is the property of Sir Thomas and Lady Makdougal Brisbane; the remainder belongs to the Duke of Roxburghe. The farms are tolerably extensive, the farm-buildings commodious, and the system of agriculture greatly improved. The fuel is coal, obtained at a moderate cost, and for the drawing of which facilities are afforded by the turnpike-road from Kelso to Edinburgh, passing through the eastern part of the parish. The rateable annual value of Makerstoun is £3729. On the north bank of the Tweed is the seat of Sir Thomas M. Brisbane, an ancient mansion, with additions of modern date, and beautifully situated in a richly-wooded demesne embellished with timber of venerable growth. Sir Thomas has here an extensive observatory, furnished with astronomical instruments of the first order. The parish is in the presbytery of Kelso and synod of Merse and Teviotdale, and in the patronage of the Duke of Roxburghe; the minister's stipend is £219. 14. 7., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £25 per annum. The church, built on a new site in 1807, is nearly in the centre of the parish, and affords accommodation to 200 persons. The parochial school is well attended, and affords a liberal education; the master has a salary of £34, with £28 fees, and a house and garden. A sum of £27 has been bequeathed for poor women above seventy years of age, the interest of which is annually distributed among them; and the interest of a legacy of £20 is also appropriated to the relief of the poor.


MANOR, a parish, in the county of Peebles, 2½ miles (S. W.) from Peebles; containing 270 inhabitants. This parish, of which the name is of very uncertain derivation, is nine miles in length from north-east to south-west, and about three miles in average breadth; it is bounded for nearly two miles by the river Tweed, and comprises 17,030 acres, of which 14,800 are hilly moorland affording tolerable pastures for sheep, 1630 arable and in cultivation, 400 woodland and plantations, and the remainder waste. The surface is varied, consisting chiefly of one continued valley, inclosed on either side by a lofty range of hills, and broken by two detached hills of considerable elevation, of which one is wholly, and the other only partly, within the limits of the parish. The hills on both sides of the vale are of steep ascent, and in some places project boldly towards the margin of the stream called the Manor Water, which flows through the whole extent of the parish. The highest point in these ranges is Dollar Law, 2840 feet above the level of the sea, and commanding an extensive prospect over the Lothians, the county of Berwick, and the English borders; the other hills vary from 1500 to 2000 feet in height. The Water has its source in the mountains towards the south boundary of the parish, and, after a winding course, flows into the Tweed about two miles above Peebles; it abounds with salmon, which in the season ascend the stream to deposit their spawn, and considerable numbers are then destroyed. Formerly it abounded also with yellow and dark-coloured trout of excellent quality, and was much frequented by anglers; a few sea-trout are still taken in the autumn, and par is found in great abundance.

The soil in the plains, and lower portions of the hills, is a rich loam and clay, but of no great depth, and in other parts light and thin, intermixed with sand and clay, with some alternations of loam resting on gravel: in the higher lands is a considerable portion of moss, with which, also, most of the pastures are slightly interspersed. The crops are, oats, barley, wheat, peas, potatoes, and turnips. The system of agriculture is in an advanced state; the lands have been well drained, and considerable portions of waste reclaimed; the farmbuildings are substantial and conveniently arranged, and the lands are well inclosed. The average number of sheep annually pastured is 7400, of the black-faced breed, with a cross of the Cheviot; the cattle, of which about 300 are pastured, are chiefly of the short-horned breed, and seventy horses are bred, mostly for agricultural purposes. The plantations, which have very much improved and extended of late, are well managed and in a thriving condition. The substrata are principally greywacke, of which the hills are also composed, and clay-slate; the former has not, however, been quarried to any great extent, and but few minerals have been found imbedded in the seams. Rich specimens of galena have been met with, in boulders, in the channel of the Manor Water; and in some parts veins have been discovered: an attempt to work it was made some years since, but was abandoned. Barns is a handsome modern mansion, finely situated on the banks of the Tweed; and Hallyards is an ancient mansion, pleasantly seated in the valley. The nearest market-town is Peebles, with which, and with other towns in the neighbourhood, facility of intercourse is afforded by good roads.

The parish is in the presbytery of Peebles and synod of Lothian and Tweeddale, and in the patronage of the Earl of Wemyss: the minister's stipend is £155, with a manse, and a glebe valued at above £30 per annum. The church, an ancient edifice, and inconveniently situated, is in good repair, and is adapted for a congregation of 200 persons. The parochial school affords a liberal course of instruction, and is well attended; the master has a salary of £34 per annum, with £14 fees, and a house. The poor till lately had the interest of funded bequests amounting together to £184. Near the farm of Cademuir are the remains of an ancient circular camp, supposed to be of British or Danish origin; it appears to have been surrounded with four intrenchments, between which are regular intervals of about twelve paces. The ramparts are fifteen feet in breadth at the base, and about the same height, and are intersected by a road fifteen feet wide, leading to the interior circle; one half only of the lines is remaining, and there are no traces of the corresponding semicircles. There are also, in a commanding situation upon a hill called Chester Hill, the remains of a camp of oval form, with a double intrenchment of loose stones, of which the interior is about 660 feet in circumference; the area of the inner inclosure has a regular descent towards the centre. Some coins of Edward, and of Elizabeth, have been found near the site, and also in the vicinity of several similar intrenchments on a smaller scale. There are likewise remains of numerous strongholds belonging to various chieftains, which appear to have formed a continued chain of fortifications extending from one extremity of the barony to the other; the first of the series was at Manorhead, and the last at Barns, which communicated with Needpath Castle, on the Tweed. Dr. Adam Ferguson, author of the History of the Roman Republic, lived for many years at Hallyards. In 1845, Messrs. Chambers, of Edinburgh, erected a gravestone in the churchyard, over the remains of David Ritchie, the "Black Dwarf" of Sir Walter Scott.


MANSFIELD, a village, in the parish of New Cumnock, district of Kyle, county of Ayr, 1 mile (N. E. by E.) from New Cumnock; containing 122 inhabitants. This village is situated a short distance north of the river Nith, and of the high road from New Cumnock to Kirkconnel, and is the seat of a considerable colliery. The coal formation here is an isolated basin, in which six seams of coal have been ascertained, in the whole about forty feet in thickness; the uppermost seam is a fine cannel coal, two feet and a half thick, and is much in demand for making gas. Lime-kilns, constructed on an excellent plan, have been erected by Sir Charles G. S. Menteath, Bart. A railway, nearly three miles in length, has been laid down to the boundary of the counties of Dumfries and Ayr, to facilitate the transport of the coal and lime to suitable markets. A mill for carding wool was erected some time since by Mr. Hunter, at which most of the home-spun wool is carded. The meadowlands around the village have latterly been much improved; in its neighbourhood is Mansfield Hall, the property of Sir Charles Menteath.

March of Lunanbank

MARCH of LUNANBANK, a hamlet, in the parish of Inverkeillor, county of Forfar, 5 miles (N.) from Arbroath; containing sixty-five inhabitants. It lies on the south side of the Lunan water, a very short distance from its banks, and on the road from Redcastle to Dunnichen. There are some stone-quarries in the vicinity.


MARCHFARM, a hamlet, in the parish of Kirkinner, county of Wigton; containing sixty-one inhabitants.


MARESTONE, a hamlet, in the parishes of Aberlemno and Rescobie, county of Forfar, 2½ miles (N. E.) from Forfar; containing twenty-six inhabitants. The hamlet is an inconsiderable place, on the high road from Aberlemno to Forfar.

Margaret's Hope, St.

MARGARET'S HOPE, ST., a village, in the parish of St. Peter, island of South Ronaldshay, South Isles of Orkney; containing 260 inhabitants. This is a considerable place in the north of the island, having a safe and pleasant roadstead opening into Water sound, which separates the island from that of Burray. It is an excellent fishing-station, and the inhabitants are chiefly engaged in taking and curing cod, ling, and berrings. There are a post-office, and several inns, in the village; and in the neighbourhood of it is the parochial school, built about 1815.


MARKINCH, a parish, in the district of Kirkcaldy, county of Fife; containing, with the villages of Coaltown of Balgonie, Dubbieside, Balcurvie, Burns, HaughMill, Milton, and Windygates, and part of Star, Thornton, and Woodside, 5965 inhabitants, of whom 1315 are in the village of Markinch, 7 miles (N.) from Kirkcaldy. This place is supposed to have derived its name, signifying in the Celtic language "the island of the forest," from the site having been at a remote period surrounded by water, of which, notwithstanding the land being drained, and partly covered with buildings, there are still evident traces. The parish is about six miles in length, and varies from two to five miles in breadth, comprising an area of sixteen square miles, or 10,200 acres, of which nearly 8500 are arable, 800 woodland and plantations, and the remainder meadow, pasture, and waste. The surface is pleasingly diversified, sloping gradually towards the south and east from the Lomond hills, by which the parish is skirted on the north. It is divided into four distinct valleys, inclosed by ranges of low hills, and watered by as many streams, which unite towards the east, and fall into the Frith of Forth; the principal rivers are the Leven and the Orr.

The soil is various. On the north bank of the Leven is a gravelly and clayey loam, dry and fertile; but a wet loam, sand, and clay prevail in the district between the Leven and the Orr, and also in the south and eastern portions of the parish. The crops are, wheat, oats, barley, potatoes, and turnips, with a small portion of peas, beans, and flax. The system of agriculture is in an improved state; the lands are well drained, chiefly by furrow drains; and the farm-buildings are generally substantial and commodiously arranged. Bone-dust has been introduced for manure, and lime is used upon most of the lands. The hills afford good pasture for the cattle, usually of the Fifeshire breed. The plantations, which are chiefly around the seats of the several proprietors, and of the more ornamental character, are in a thriving state, and add greatly to the beauty of the scenery. The substrata are mainly sandstone of every variety, abounding with organic remains; ironstone is found in different parts, but, though containing eighty per cent of ore, the working of it has long been discontinued. Coal is abundant on the lands of Balbirnie and Balgonie, and is extensively wrought at both places. The coal in the former lies at a depth of twenty-five fathoms, and occurs in three seams, of which the uppermost is eighteen inches in thickness, the middle seam fifty-four, and the lowest twenty-four inches; the coal on the lands of Balgonie occurs in two seams, at a depth varying from twenty-five to thirty-five fathoms, the upper seam nine feet six inches, and the lower seven feet, in thickness. The mines at the village of Thornton were discontinued in 1743, but re-commenced in 1785, when powerful steam-engines were erected; they are still in extensive operation. The rateable annual value of the parish is £16,081. The castle of Balfour, once the family-seat of the Balfours, situated near the confluence of the Orr and Leven, has been the property of the Bethunes for nearly five centuries. To the west of it is the ancient castle of Balgonie, one of the seats of the Earl of Leven: the oldest portion is the keep, a square tower eighty feet in height, crowned with battlements, and having circular projecting turrets at the angles; and communicating with it is a house of three stories, erected by the first earl of Leven, to which a wing was added by one of his successors. The estate was purchased in 1823, for the sum of £104,000, by James Balfour, Esq., brother of General Balfour, of Balbirnie; and the family purpose to restore the castle. Balbirnie House, now the property of John Balfour, Esq., about a mile to the west of the church, is a handsome modern structure, erected by General Balfour, ornamented in the principal front with a noble Ionic portico, and situated in a park of 200 acres, richly wooded. Kirkforthar, the seat of George Johnstone Lindsay, Esq., is an ancient mansion. There were formerly numerous other resident proprietors in the parish, of whose houses scarcely any traces are now left.

The village of Markinch is built partly on the southern acclivity of the hill of that name, which has a height of about 100 feet, extending in a ridge from east to west for 300 yards: on the northern side, the precipitous ascent is cut into terraces twenty feet in breadth, rising above each other to an elevation of ten or twelve feet, and supposed to have been formed by the Romans under Agricola. The water-power afforded by the Leven and the Orr, the abundance of coal and freestone in the neighbourhood, and the facilities of communication, have greatly encouraged the establishment of manufactures in the parish, among which are the Rothes papermills, erected in 1806 by Mr. William Keith, and now the property of Messrs. Tullis and Company. The chief articles manufactured here are brown and grey wrappingpapers, in which twenty men and ten women are engaged. The Auchmuty mills, belonging to the same firm, for the making of cartridge, coloured, printing, and writingpapers, afford occupation to 100 persons, of whom onehalf are women, and produce about 500 tons of paper annually. The Balbirnie mills, established in 1816 by Messrs. J. Grieve and Company, for coarse and fine wrapping-papers, give employment to thirty persons, of whom fourteen are women; and the quantity annually produced averages 250 tons. The woollen-manufactory at Balbirnie-Bridge was erected in 1835, by Mr. Drysdale, for the weaving of plaidings, blankets, and shawls, principally for the Glasgow merchants: in this factory are ten power-looms employing twenty-seven persons, and four hand-looms employing ten persons, of whom a considerable proportion are females. The linen-manufacture (of silesias, and holland for window-blinds) was till 1810 confined to about fifty persons, who sold their webs to the merchants of Auchtermuchty and Kettle; but since that time the weaving of dowlas, sheetings, and towellings has been introduced by Mr. Robert Inglis, and the number of persons employed has increased to nearly 900. who work in their own houses, and of whom many live in the adjoining parishes. The spinning of flax and tow is extensively carried on at Milton of Balgonie, and in the village of Haugh, which see. There are also bleachfields at Rothes and Lochty; the former affording occupation to 110 persons, of whom eighty are women and children; and the latter employing about 100 persons. At Cameron-Bridge is a very extensive distillery; and at Thornton are some vitriol-works, connected with a similar establishment at Glasgow.

The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Kirkcaldy and synod of Fife. The minister's stipend is £267. 17., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £30 per annum; patron, the Crown. The church, a very ancient structure with a lofty tower and spire, situated on an eminence in the village, was partly rebuilt and enlarged in 1806, and contains 1360 sittings. Churches to which quoad sacra parishes were formally annexed have been built at Milton and Thornton; and there are places of worship for members of the Free Church and United Secession. The parochial school is numerously attended; the master has a salary of £34, with a good house and garden, and the fees average about £70 per annum. There are nine other schools, of which two, on the Balgonie estate, have endowments, the one of £10 per annum, with a house and garden, and the other of £5 only; one at Balbirnie has simply a house for the master, and a female school in the village is supported chiefly by a subscription of some ladies of the Balgonie, Balbirnie, and Barnslee families. About two miles from the mouth of the Leven are the remains of some ancient fortresses, of which the origin is not distinctly known; and in the westward portion of the parish have been found, at various times, Roman relics consisting of military weapons and other antiquities. On the highest point of the ridge near the village, at an elevation of eighty feet, are the remains of Maiden Castle, a quadrilateral intrenchment, supposed to have been one of the strongholds of Macduff, Thane of Fife; and to the east of the village is Dalginch, another of his castles, from which there is said to have been a subterraneous communication with the former. The latter, now called Barnslee, is the residence of Mrs. Paston.


MARNOCH, a parish, in the county of Banff, 8½ miles (S. W. by S.) from Banff; containing, with the village of Aberchirder, 2691 inhabitants. This parish was originally called Aberchirder, a name taken, as is supposed, from the estate of Sir David Aberkerder, Thane of Aberkerder, who lived about the year 1400, and was proprietor of a large part of the parish; he paid revenue to the see of Moray, and eventually his daughter was married to Sir Robert Innes, brother to Sir John Innes, the latter of whom was bishop of Moray for seven years previously to 1414. The village is still called by the ancient name of Aberchirder, which is said to signify "the head or opening of the moss," and to have been used on account of the situation of the estate at the edge of an extensive moss. The term now applied to the parish is derived from Saint Marnoch. The parish is situated on the northern bank of the river Doveran, along which it extends for about six miles, some of the extreme points, however, being eight miles distant; and it stretches, in breadth, from the stream five or six miles, with a fine southern exposure; the whole comprising thirty-four square miles. The borders of the river, where there are fine haughs, are distinguished for richly-diversified and beautifully-picturesque scenery, and include a variety of objects calculated to invest the landscape with the highest interest. The estate of Ardmellie, ornamented with a number of large trees, and the mansion-house, situated in the midst of well-cultivated grounds, and commanding an extensive view of the valley of the Doveran, commence the series of varied spots receiving from, and communicating to, the winding course of the stream a pleasing and impressive effect. In this part rises abruptly the well-wooded hill of Ardmellie, the highest ground in the parish, at whose foot, on the bank of the river, which here receives the burn of Crombie, stands the manse. The church is on an eminence at a little distance; it was once surmounted by a Druidical circle, now only marked by two remaining stones; and the churchyard, at the margin of the stream, is rendered especially interesting by the ruin of the old church, and several superior monuments. Among these, one, conspicuous for its richlycarved ornaments, is to the memory of "Reverendus et Pius Geo. Meldrum, de Crombie, et quondam de Glass, Præco," who was minister of Glass, and laird of Crombie in this parish, and who died in 1692, aged seventy-six. Attached to the monument there is a finely-executed half-length figure of him, in stone, represented wearing a cap, and in his full canonicals, with a book in his hand.

At a short distance from this, the river displays several windings; and a little further is a bridge of two arches, built in 1806, below which the scenery derives interest from the ancient mansion of Kinairdy. This is a structure of very singular appearance, somewhat similar to a tower, situated on a promontory at the confluence of the burn of Kinairdy with the Doveran, and once the property, with a large portion of land in the vicinity, of the Crichtons, of Frendraught. The river afterwards pursues its beautiful course towards the church, manse, and village of Inverkeithny, on the opposite bank, about two miles distant. Here is Chapelton, on the Marnoch side, where it is thought a place of worship once stood; at a little distance appears the modern and handsome mansion of Netherdale, with gardens and grounds finely laid out, and flourishing beech hedges; and these complete the striking line of the course of the Doveran in this locality. The surface in the centre of the parish, from west to east, consists of several hills and undulations, mostly crowned with thriving plantations, and having intervening straths well cultivated, and watered by small rivulets.

The soil is generally damp and mossy; but in some parts it is dry, and in the southern portion it generally produces early crops. On the hill of Crombie are extensive mosses, supplying plenty of peat. Agriculture has made considerable advances for the last quarter of a century; and in this period, by draining, the cultivation of waste land, and other improvements, the rental of the parish has been increased to the extent of one-third, its rateable annual value being now £7898. Improvements have also taken place in the breeds of cattle, through crosses with superior stock. Granite is to be met with in the district; it is extensively quarried, and blue limestone is found on the estate of Ardmellie. In addition to the mansions already noticed, there is the house of Crombie, the property of the Earl of Seafield, situated in the western quarter; it is a tolerably ancient structure, consisting at present of only three stories, but it was formerly much higher, and appears to have been a place of some strength. The mansion of Auchintoul, on the largest property in the parish, and situated near the middle, was once the residence of General Alexander Gordon, who entered the Russian service as a cadet, under Peter the Great, and by his valour in the wars carried on against Charles XII., King of Sweden, was raised to the rank of major-general by the emperor: after his return to his native country, he wrote the history of his patron. Having, however, involved himself in the troubles of 1715, by taking part with the Highland clans at Sheriffmuir, and by other acts, he was attainted for treason, and compelled to escape to France; but, having remained there for several years, he returned, and died here at the age of eighty-two. The house consists of three sides of a square, one of which was built by the general; and is a large plain building, much improved by the present proprietor. It has a handsome quadrilateral range of offices, with hothouses and a conservatory, as well as fine gardens, and grounds ornamented with belts of plantations; and is much indebted for its pleasantness to its commanding situation. The mansion-house of Cluny, on the east, is an elegant edifice built of granite, to the grounds of which is attached some thriving wood.

The only village is Aberchirder, which see. There are regular markets for hiring servants at Whitsuntide and Martinmas; a weekly grain-market on Mondays during the winter; and an annual market for cattle and horses, called Marnoch fair, on the second Tuesday in March. The parish is in the presbytery of Strathbogie and synod of Moray, and in the patronage of the Earl of Fife: the minister's stipend is £220, with a manse, and a glebe of seven and a half acres, valued at £21 per annum. The church is a very plain building, erected in the earlier part of the present century. There are places of worship for members of the Free Church, Episcopalians, Baptists, the United Secession, and Roman Catholics. The parochial school affords instruction in the usual branches: the master has a salary of £34, with a house, and from £15 to £25 fees; also about £53 from Dick's bequest, Bruce's legacy, and his office of session clerk. There is an extensive library for parochial use.


MARTIN, an island, in the parish of Lochbroom, forming part of the late quoad sacra parish of Ullapool, county of Ross and Cromarty; containing 45 inhabitants. This is a small island, situated in Loch Broom, on the western coast of the county, and close to the main land of the parish, from which it is separated by a narrow channel. It is about five miles north-northwest from the village of Ullapool.

Martin's, St.

MARTIN'S, ST., a parish, in the county of Perth, 5 miles (N. N. E.) from Perth; containing, with the villages of Caroline-Place and Guildtown, and the hamlet of Cairnbeddie, 1071 inhabitants, of whom 750 are in the rural districts. This place comprises the ancient parishes of St. Martin and Cambus-Michael, which were united soon after the time of the Reformation; and is celebrated as having been the residence of the usurper Macbeth, of whose castle of Cairnbeddie there are still some vestiges remaining. The site of this stronghold was a circular mound nearly in the centre of the parish, about eighty yards in diameter, and surrounded by a moat thirty feet wide; and on levelling the surface during the process of agricultural improvements, within the last thirty years, great numbers of horse-shoes of small size, and fragments of swords and other arms, were discovered. Not thinking himself, however, sufficiently secure in the castle of Cairnbeddie against the insurrections of that troublesome period, Macbeth afterwards removed his residence to the castle of Dunsinnan Hill, in the adjoining parish of Collace, in which he fortified himself against the assaults of Malcolm III., but was at length killed, after the battle of Dunsinnan, in 1057. About a mile from the castle of Cairnbeddie is a spot still called the "Witches' stone," where the usurper, as recorded by the Dramatist, is said to have held an interview with the witches, who assured him of safety "till Birnam forest come to Dunsinane."

The parish is bounded on the west by the river Tay, and is of irregular form, varying greatly in breadth, and comprising about 7000 acres, of which, with the exception of 1100 woodland and plantations, the greater portion is arable, and the remainder meadow and pasture. The surface is boldly undulated, without rising into hills of any striking elevation; and most of the acclivities are ornamented with plantations of fir, which, together with the coppices of wood along the banks of the Tay, add much to the pleasing appearance of the scenery. The only river of importance is the Tay, which is navigable to Perth for vessels of considerable burthen; it abounds with salmon and trout, of which the fisheries are very valuable. There are several rivulets; the largest is the burn of St. Martin's, which intersects the parish from west to east, giving motion in its course to some corn and lint mills, and receives the waters of a tributary stream near the church. Trout are found in most of the smaller streams. The soil is generally a black mould lying on a tilly bottom, but along the banks of the Tay of richer quality, resting on a substratum of gravel; the crops are, grain of every kind, with potatoes and turnips, and the usual grasses. The system of husbandry has been greatly advanced under the auspices of an agricultural society that has been established here for some years, and there is now scarcely an acre of waste land in the whole parish; several small hamlets, indeed, which existed in different parts, have been altogether razed by the plough, and their sites brought into cultivation. The lands have been well-drained, and inclosed with fences kept in good repair; the farm-buildings have been rendered substantial and commodious, and all the more recent improvements in the construction of agricultural implements are adopted. The plantations are generally under careful management, and in a thriving state; and there are some considerable remains of natural wood. Limestone is found in the north of the parish, near the Tay, but is not extensively worked; whinstone and freestone are every where abundant, and the latter is of excellent quality, and largely wrought for building. The rateable annual value of the parish is £5805. St. Martin's House, a handsome modern structure, is finely situated in a richly-planted demesne.

Many of the inhabitants are employed in the manufacture of coarse linen cloths, chiefly for exportation; and several are engaged in the various handicraft trades requisite for the supply of the surrounding district. A savings' bank has been recently established, under that of Perth; and a library, also founded within the last few years, is supported by subscription. Facility of communication is maintained by the great turnpike-road from Edinburgh to Aberdeen, which passes through the eastern portion of the parish, and by other good roads that intersect it in various directions. The principal villages, which are described under their respective heads, are Guildtown, in the west, built in 1819 upon property belonging to the Guildry of Perth; and CarolinePlace, in the northern district, founded in 1825 in honour of Caroline, Queen of George IV., and consisting of wellbuilt houses to each of which is attached a portion of garden-ground. The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Perth and synod of Perth and Stirling. The minister's stipend is £192. 7. 8., with a manse, and also a glebe, including the old glebe of Cambus-Michael, and valued at £28 per annum; patron, the Crown. The old church, built in 1773, and which was both inconvenient and unsafe, was taken down, and a handsome and substantial structure erected in 1842, which is well adapted to the accommodation of the parishioners; it contains an elegant monument of marble to the memory of William Macdonald, Esq., secretary to the Highland Society of Scotland. The parochial school, for which a handsome building has been erected, at a cost of £300, is well attended; the master has a salary of £34, with a house and garden, and the fees average about £25 per annum. There is also a private school at Guildtown, of which the master is provided with a house and garden rent free by the Guildry of Perth. Very distinct vestiges exist of the Roman road leading from Bertha, through the northern part of the parish, towards the neighbouring parish of Cargill, in which it appears in its primitive state.

Mary, St.

MARY, ST., Orkney.—See Ronaldshay, South.

Mary's St.

MARY'S ST., a hamlet, in the parish of Holm and Paplay, county of Orkney; containing 34 inhabitants.


MARYBURGH, Inverness-shire.—See FortWilliam.


MARYBURGH, a hamlet, in the parish of Cleish, county of Kinross, 3 miles (N. N. W.) from Kinross; containing 39 inhabitants. It is situated in the south-eastern part of the parish, and on the high road from North Queensferry to Kinross. The Kelty water flows at a short distance south of the hamlet; and in the neigbourhood is a bridge which crosses that stream, called Kelty bridge. A school is supported by Sir Charles Adam, who supplies the master with a house and garden rent free, and pays him a salary of £15, in addition to the fees, which average about £30. A school for teaching female children to sew is also kept, by the wife of the schoolmaster, to whom Miss Adam pays £5 per annum.


MARYBURGH, a village, in the parish of Fodderty, county of Ross and Cromarty; containing 403 inhabitants. This is a modern village, of very recent formation, and improving in population and extent. To its erection, and to that of the village of Keithtown, may be ascribed the late increase in the inhabitants of the parish. There is a place of worship here for members of the Free Church.


MARYCULTER, a parish, in the county of Kincardine, 7½ miles (S. W. by W.) from Aberdeen; containing 991 inhabitants. The name of this place has generally been derived from the Latin words Mariæ Cultura, on account of the dedication of the church to the Virgin Mary; but some Gaelic scholars are of opinion that the latter part of the name may be traced more correctly to the compound word cul-tira, in the Gaelic signifying "the back of the land." The parish was formerly the residence of the Knights Templars; but very little of its ancient history is now known. It is of an oblong form, six miles in length and two in breadth, extending from the river Dee to the Grampian mountains, and contains between 8000 and 9000 acres. It is bounded on the south by the parish of Fetteresso; on the east by that of Banchory-Devenick; and on the west by the parish of Durris. The surface is in general rocky and stony, with much hilly and mossy ground; and the rushy moors and heath, with only here and there a green hill, give to the whole district an appearance of wildness and sterility, with the exception of the land in the vicinity of the river, where some small haughs and dales are to be seen. There are many good springs; but the only river is the Dee, which washes the north side of the parish, and over which is an ancient ford opposite the manse. There is no mill, however, upon it throughout its entire course, in consequence of its being subject to great and sudden floods, of which a remarkable instance happened on the 17th of September, 1768, and another on the 4th of August, 1829.

The soil near the river is sometimes thin and sandy; in the midland grounds it is deeper and blacker, resting in parts on a subsoil of clay; while in the southern quarter it is swampy, turfy, and mossy. About 3300 acres are under cultivation, 4200 waste, and 850 in plantations; but very much of the waste land is considered capable of profitable tillage. No wheat is raised; but other white crops are grown; and of the green crops, turnips form a prominent part, and are produced of excellent quality by the application of bone-dust and of guano. Improvements in agriculture have been carried on to a considerable extent, and, notwithstanding the untoward nature of the soil, are still in progress: the manure in general use is dung, obtained from Aberdeen. The cattle are small, but of good quality, and are almost all black, without horns: many are a cross with the Teeswater. The horses are poor, though improving in breed; few sheep are reared, but a pretty large number of swine, of the Chinese and Berkshire cross breeds, are exported alive to London, and some also cured. The rocks in the parish consist chiefly of granite, and masses of gneiss are seen in different parts; the granite is quarried, but to a very small extent. The rateable annual value of Maryculter is £4513. The mansion-houses are those of Maryculter, Kingcausie, Heathcote, and Auchlunies, all pleasantly situated, and ornamented with wood and gardens; the two first are in the immediate vicinity of the Dee, and their scenery is much improved by their contiguity to this pleasing stream. The mansion of Heathcote is built in the villa style, and is of recent date; Auchlunies is an ancient edifice, much adorned by its elegant grounds. The parish has good turnpike-roads, several miles of which run parallel with, and sometimes nearly touch, the river. There are five salmon-fisheries; but they have been for some time in a very declining state.

The ecclesiastical affairs are subject to the presbytery and synod of Aberdeen; patron, the Crown. The stipend of the minister is £172, with a manse and suitable offices, and a glebe of about ten acres, worth £2. 8. per acre. The church was built in 1787, and is in good repair; it accommodates about 460 persons with sittings, and is conveniently situated. There is a Roman Catholic chapel, forming a distinct portion of a building used as a seminary for the education of youth for the priesthood; the average number of scholars is thirty. This institution is on the property of Blairs, given many years ago to the Church of Rome by Mr. Menzies, of Pitfoddels. A parochial school is supported, in which the usual branches of education are taught; the master has a salary of £30, with a house, and about £10 fees. There are also two or three private schools, on a small scale, entirely supported by the fees; and a savings' bank, instituted in 1823. Numerous cairns remain in the parish, in which human teeth and bones have been found; but they are not entitled to distinct notice.


MARYHILL, lately a quoad sacra parish, in the parish of Barony, suburbs of the city of Glasgow, county of Lanark; containing 3233 inhabitants, of whom 2552 are in the village. This district was for all ecclesiastical purposes separated in 1834, by the General Assembly, from the Barony parish, within which, however, it is now again included; it is about three miles in length and two in breadth, and consists of a large village and a rural district. The village is chiefly in habited by persons employed in power-loom weaving and calico-printing, for which latter large printfields have been established, and by ship-carpenters, iron-founders, and colliers. The parish was in the presbytery of Glasgow and synod of Glasgow and Ayr; and the minister's stipend was £150, paid from the seat-rents and collections by the managers and subscribers, who were patrons. There was neither manse nor glebe. The church was erected in 1826, at an expense of £1455, partly by subscription, towards which Lady Grace Douglas contributed £500; it is a neat structure, the body containing 542 sittings, to which, by the erection of a gallery, 400 were added in 1837. A parochial school is maintained; the master has a salary of £12. 16. 8., with a large schoolroom and comfortable dwelling-house, and the fees, amounting to £70. There are various other schools, in which together more than 300 children receive instruction.


MARYKIRK, a parish, in the county of Kincardine; including the village of Luthermuir, and containing 2387 inhabitants, of whom 147 are in the village of Marykirk, 6 miles (N. N. W.) from Montrose. This parish, of which the ancient name, Aberluthnott, or, as in some documents, Aberluthnet, was in use till the beginning of the last century, is about seven miles in extreme length from east to west, and varies greatly in breadth. It is bounded on the south by the river North Esk, which separates it from the county of Forfar; and comprises 9320 acres, whereof nearly 7000 are arable, 570 meadow and pasture, 1530 woodland and plantations, and the remainder water and waste. The surface, which slopes gently from the borders of the river, is tolerably level; and the only hills are the almost parallel ridges of Kirkton hill and Balmaleedie, which extend for nearly two miles in a north-eastern direction, but attain no very considerable degree of elevation. The river Luther, rising in the Grampian hills, intersects the lands for nearly five miles; and there are numerous excellent springs affording an ample supply of water.

The soil in some parts is light and sandy; along the banks of the Luther, a deep rich mould; and in other places, a wet and retentive clay which has been greatly improved by good management, and rendered fertile. The crops are, oats, barley, turnips, and potatoes, with a few acres of wheat. The rotation system of husbandry is prevalent; the lands have been drained, and inclosed partly with hedges of thorn and partly with stone fences; the farm-buildings, erected of stone and roofed with slate, are substantial and commodious; and on most of the farms are threshing-mills. The pastures are rich, and considerable attention is paid to the improvement of live stock, consisting mainly of black-cattle of the polled or Angus breed, of which 500 head are annually reared. Horses for agricultural purposes, and also for the carriage and saddle, are reared with great care, and are much prized; of the former, about 210, and of the latter, about seventy, are annually bred. From 300 to 400 pigs, likewise, are generally kept, and fattened for the market. The woods comprise the usual kinds of timber, but there are few trees of ancient growth except on the lands of Inglismaldie, where are some more than a century old; the plantations are very extensive, consisting principally of firs, and are in a thriving condition. The streams contain salmon, grilse, sea-trout, common trout, and eels, but not in any great quantity; the salmon and grilse are found chiefly in the North Esk. The substratum is mostly sandstone of the old red formation; a bed of limestone of coarse quality traverses the parish from east to west, and on the higher grounds are trap and conglomerate rocks. The quarries are not extensive, the expense of working them, and of draining off the water, rendering their operation scarcely of any advantage to the owners. The rateable annual value of the parish is £7988. Kirkton Hill is a handsome house, recently rebuilt on the site of the former ancient structure; it is finely situated, commanding some interesting views, and the grounds are embellished with flourishing plantations. Balmakewan, which has also been rebuilt, is a good mansion on rising ground near the North Esk, of which it has a pleasing prospect; and is surrounded with a well-planted demesne. Inglismaldie is an ancient mansion at present unoccupied, but in good repair; the lands attached to it are richly wooded, and embellished with some timber of venerable growth. Thornton Castle is a castellated building, part of which was erected in 1530; it had fallen into a state of dilapidation, but has been restored with a strict regard to the original design, and is occupied by the proprietor. Hatton, the property of the Honourable General Arbuthnott, is now a farm-house.

The prevailing scenery and general aspect of the parish are of pleasing character. There are two handsome bridges over the North Esk; the one of great antiquity, on the road from Aberdeen to Edinburgh, and which has been recently repaired and beautified; and the other near the village, of four circular arches of equal span, erected in 1813. The village of Marykirk is neatly built and pleasantly situated: a post-office has been established, which has a daily delivery. At Caldham, on the river Luther, is a mill for the spinning of flax, in which about 100 persons are employed; and the weaving of linen is carried on upon a large scale in the village of Luthermuir, about four miles distant, which is described under its own head. There are also several corn-mills, and mills for sawing timber for agricultural uses. The salmon-fishery is pursued to a small extent, employing five or six men, and the aggregate rent is £40 per annum. An annual fair for cattle, horses, sheep, and wool is held on Balmakelly moor, on the last Friday in July. Facility of communication is afforded by roads kept in good repair. The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Fordoun and synod of Angus and Mearns: the minister's stipend is £231. 13., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £8 per annum; patron, Alexander Crombie, Esq. The church, situated in the village, is a neat structure erected in 1806, and containing 638 sittings. There are places of worship for members of the Congregational Union and the United Associate Synod. The parochial school is generally attended by about fifty children; the master has a salary of £30, with a house and garden, and nearly four acres of land, and the fees average £20 per annum. There is also a school at Luthermuir. The parochial library, consisting of about 200 volumes, chiefly on religious subjects, was presented by Patrick Taylor, Esq.


MARYTOWN, a village, in the parish of Forgan, district of St. Andrew's, county of Fife; containing 232 inhabitants. This is a small place, which has latterly increased in population owing to its becoming the resort of strangers from its contiguity to Dundee.


MARYTOWN, a parish, in the county of Forfar, 2¼ miles (W. S. W.) from Montrose; containing 452 inhabitants. This place is supposed to have derived its name from the dedication of its church to the Virgin Mary, or from the existence here, at some ancient period, of a religious establishment in honour of that saint: on the confines of the parish is a spring which still retains the appellation of Marywell. The parish consists of the estates of Old Montrose and Dysart, distant from each other about half a mile, and divided by an intervening portion of the parish of Craig; and is three miles in length from north to south, and one mile and a half in average breadth. It is bounded on the north by the river South Esk and the basin of Montrose commonly designated the Back Sands, and on the south-east by the sea; and comprises 2180 acres, of which 2080 are arable, about seventy woodland and plantations, and thirty in natural pasture. The surface is broken by a small ridge of hills, of which the highest point, Marytown Law, has an elevation of nearly 400 feet above the sea; the summit is of artificial structure, and is supposed to have been raised as a beacon, or to have been the spot where the great family of Montrose in feudal times dispensed justice to their vassals. The eminence commands one of the most extensive and beautiful views in this part of the kingdom, embracing to the north the richly-fertile vale extending from Montrose to Brechin, enlivened by the picturesque windings of the South Esk, and thickly studded with elegant seats and pleasing villas. The basin and harbour of Montrose, with the town, are seen at one extremity of the vale, and to the west the town of Brechin; while in the back ground appear the Grampian hills, with part of the county of Kincardine, and to the east the view terminates with a prospect of the sea. The South Esk abounds with salmon and sea-trout; and in the month of May great numbers of smaller trout, called smouts, are found in its stream. Vast numbers of aquatic fowl frequent the Back Sands of Montrose during the winter; among these are wild geese, ducks, sea-gulls, curlews, and herons; and in the parish generally are partridges and hares in abundance, and pheasants in moderate numbers.

The soil on the lands of Old Montrose is a strong loamy clay, of great depth, and admirably adapted for the growth of wheat; on the lands of Dysart the soil is of much thinner and lighter quality, but rendered fertile by the improvements that have been made within the last few years. The system of agriculture is in the most advanced state, and the six-shift course of husbandry generally prevalent; the crops are, oats, barley, wheat, peas, beans, potatoes, and turnips. The lands are well drained, and inclosed in the higher grounds with stone dykes, and in the lower with hedges of thorn; the farm-buildings are substantial and commodious; a considerable portion of land has been recovered from the Back Sands, and brought into profitable cultivation; and all the more recent improvements in implements are in use. A great number of cattle are fed during the winter, and sold to the butcher; and a tolerable number of horses are reared, chiefly for agricultural purposes, on the several farms, the breed of which, and also of the cattle that are reared, has been much improved through the encouragement afforded by the Agricultural Association in the county. The principal substratum is trap-rock of a coarse quality; and several quarries are worked, mostly for dykes for inclosures, or to furnish materials for the roads. A fishery is carried on in the South Esk, where are salmon and other fish, the produce of which is estimated at about £100 a year. The rateable annual value of Marytown is £4438. The nearest market-town is Montrose, in which a ready sale is found for the agricultural and other produce of the parish, and from which place every requisite supply of articles necessary either for the farm or for domestic use can be procured. Facility of communication with the neighbouring towns is maintained by the turnpike-road from Montrose to Forfar; and by the river lime and coal may be easily obtained. The parish is in the presbytery of Brechin and synod of Angus and Mearns, and patronage of the Crown. The minister's stipend is £198. 6. 9., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £18 per annum. The church, erected in 1791, and repaired within the last twenty years, is a neat plain structure adapted for a congregation of 300 persons. The members of the Free Church have a place of worship. The parochial school affords a good course of instruction, but is thinly attended; the master has a salary of £30 per annum, with £10 fees, and a house and garden. There are also two Sabbath schools, and a parochial library in which are more than 200 volumes of standard works, chiefly on religious subjects, and about 100 pamphlets. Bonnytown, now forming part of the estate of Old Montrose, was formerly the property of the family of Wood; and the foundations of the ancient castle where they resided, and of the moat by which it was surrounded, are still to be distinctly traced.


MARYTOWN, a village, in that part of the parish of Kirriemuir which formed the late quoad sacra parish of Logie, county of Forfar; containing 202 inhabitants. The village is chiefly inhabited by persons employed in the linen manufacture, and in agriculture.


MARYWELL, a village, in the parish of St. Vigean's, county of Forfar; containing 138 inhabitants. The village is of small extent, and mostly inhabited by persons employed in manufactures connected with the coarse-linen trade.


MASTERTOWN, a village, in the parish and district of Dunfermline, county of Fife, 1½ mile (N.) from Inverkeithing; containing 145 inhabitants. This village, which is but of small extent, is situated on an eminence in the south part of the parish, commanding a view of the Frith of Forth and the adjacent country; and is neatly built, on the lands of Pitreavie. An hospital was founded here in 1675, by Sir Henry Wardlaw, proprietor of the estate, who endowed it for four poor widows, who have each an allowance of six bolls of oatmeal, and 40s. in money, annually.


MAUCHLINE, a manufacturing town and parish, in the county of Ayr, 8½ miles (S. E. by S.) from Kilmarnock, and 11 (E. N. E.) from Ayr; containing, with the villages of Haugh and Auchmillan, 2156 inhabitants, of whom 1336 are in the town, 90 in the village of Haugh, 35 in that of Auchmillan, and the rest in the rural districts of the parish. This place derives its name from the Gaelic magh, a meadow, and linn, a lake, which together are descriptive of its most prominent features. The town is situated on the south side of a hill that intersects the parish, and at no great distance from the river Ayr; it was formerly a burgh of barony, and still retains something of its original character, being governed by a baron-bailie in conjunction with the county magistrates. It is neatly built and well inhabited. A public library is supported by subscription, and a certain portion of the funds is annually appropriated to the augmentation of the collection. The inhabitants are principally engaged in weaving, and in the manufacture of shoes, and snuff-boxes of wood. The manufacture of snuff-boxes affords employment to about 140 persons, and the articles produced are of admirable workmanship and of a great variety of elegant patterns; the weavers work at their own dwellings for the manufacturers of Glasgow and Paisley, and many of the inhabitants are occupied in the various trades requisite for the supply of the neighbourhood. The woollen manufacture is carried on in the village of Haugh, where is a mill for that purpose, which gives employment to thirty persons, chiefly in spinning yarn for the carpet manufactory of Kilmarnock. There are also a corn-mill, a lint-mill, a saw-mill, and one for grinding reaping-hooks, all set in motion by the Ayr. A post-office is established; and facility of communication is afforded by excellent roads, of which the turnpike-road from Ayr to Edinburgh, and that from Glasgow to London, intersect each other in the town; and by an elegant bridge over the river, which has one arch one hundred feet in span, and ninety feet high. Fairs are held on the first Thursday after the 4th of February, for cows and horses and for hiring servants; the second Thursday in April, for cows and general business; the first Wednesday after the 18th of May, and the third Wednesday in June, for cows and horses; the first Wednesday in August, for cows and horses and hiring of shearers; the first Thursday after the 26th of September, or on that day if it be Thursday, for cows, horses, ewes, and lambs; the first Thursday after the 4th of November, and the 4th Wednesday in December, for cows and horses. A horse-race takes place on the last Thursday in April. There is a small prison for the temporary confinement of petty offenders against the peace.

The parish has been reduced in extent by the separation from it of the parishes of Sorn and Muirkirk, and part of Tarbolton; it is situated nearly in the centre of the county, and is about eight miles in length and from two to four miles broad, and comprises 7206 acres, of which 500 are woodland and plantations, and the remainder arable in good cultivation, with a moderate portion of meadow and pasture. The surface is level, with the exception of a lofty ridge which intersects it in part from east to west, and terminates in a hill in the parish of Tarbolton. The river Ayr flows, in part of its course, between precipitous banks of red freestone about fifty feet in height: along it are numerous caverns cut out of the rock, and in other parts its sides are richly wooded, presenting some pleasingly-picturesque features. Near Barskimming it receives the waters of the Lugar; and after a course of ten miles further, it falls into the Frith of Clyde at Ayr. The only lake is Loch Brown, a fine sheet of water covering about sixty acres of ground, and frequented by aquatic fowl; it was long in contemplation to drain this lake, but it has been preserved for the supply of the mills to which it gives motion. There are numerous springs affording an abundant supply of water of excellent quality; some are supposed to possess mineral qualities, but they have not been yet analysed. The soil is various, but chiefly of a clayey nature interspersed with light sand, and in some parts a rich loam; it is well adapted to the culture of trees, of which several have attained a luxuriant growth. The crops are, grain of all kinds, potatoes, turnips, and carrots. The system of agriculture is improved, and the rotation plan of husbandry generally adopted; furrow-draining has been practised to a considerable extent, and the lands are inclosed with hedges of thorn kept in excellent order; the farm-houses are roofed with slate, and the offices well arranged and commodious. The woods are of oak, elm, beech, ash, and plane, and the plantations of larch, firs, ash, birch, and hazel; they are carefully managed, and in a very thriving state. On the lands of Barskimming are some larch-trees of remarkably fine growth; and in the churchyard is a stately and venerable ash, fifteen feet in girth, and apparently of great age. The substrata are chiefly limestone, ironstone, coal, and white and red freestone; the three first appear in beds of inconsiderable thickness, and are not wrought. The strata of red freestone are more than forty feet in depth, and extensively quarried for building purposes; the white freestone is exceedingly compact and durable, and is employed chiefly for paving and similar uses. The rateable annual value of the parish is £7572. Ballochmyle is a handsome mansion in the Grecian style, and chiefly of the Ionic order; Netherplace is a spacious castellated mansion in the Elizabethan style, pleasantly situated in a well-wooded demesne; and Kingincleugh Cottage is also a good residence.

Mauchline is in the presbytery of Ayr and synod of Glasgow and Ayr, and patronage of the Marquess of Hastings; the minister's stipend is £230. 19. 11., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £20 per annum. The church is a handsome and spacious edifice in the later English style, with a square embattled tower crowned by angular turrets rising to the height of ninety feet, and was erected in 1829, to replace the old church, which, being much dilapidated, was taken down; the interior is elegantly arranged and well lighted, and is adapted for a congregation of 1100 persons. There is a place of worship for the United Associate synod. The parochial school affords a liberal education; the master receives a salary of £34, with £40 fees, and a house and garden. There is also a school at Crosshands; the master has a house and garden given by the Duke of Portland. Eight friendly societies are maintained in the town, two of which have been established for many years, and possess considerable funds; and all have contributed greatly to diminish the number of applications for parochial relief. A savings' bank was founded in 1815. A battle is said to have taken place at Mauchline Muir, between the King's forces and the Covenanters, in 1647, when the former were defeated; and their military chest, which had been buried in the ground for concealment, was many years afterwards discovered. The only remains of an ancient monastery that existed here, subordinate to the abbey of Melrose, consist of a tower in the village, to which has been attached a building converting it into a residence called Mauchline Castle, for some time the abode of Gavin Hamilton, Esq., the friend of the poet Burns, who for nearly nine years occupied the farm of Mossgiel, in this parish, and while here published the first edition of his works, by the advice and under the patronage of Mr. Hamilton. Mauchline confers the title of Baron on the Marquess of Hastings.

Maul Elan An

MAUL ELAN AN, isles, in the parish of Assynt, county of Sutherland. These are two very small islands situated on the western coast of the county, and attached to the farm of Culkin-Drumbaig; the shores are bold and rocky, and dangerous of approach except in fine weather.


MAXTON, a parish, in the district of Melrose, county of Roxburgh; containing, with the village of Rutherford, 459 inhabitants, of whom 110 are in the village, 7 miles (N. N. W.) from Jedburgh, and at an equal distance from Kelso and Melrose. This place appears to have derived its name from its proprietor, Maccus, who in the early part of the 12th century possessed the manor, which in ancient records is called Maccuston and Mackiston. A carucate of land in the parish was granted to Melrose abbey, about the beginning of the 13th century, by Robert de Berkely, whose daughter, Alice, was married to Hugh de Normanville; but the barony, being subsequently forfeited by William de Soulis, was granted by Robert I. to Walter, Lord Steward of Scotland, who gave the patronage of the church, with some contiguous lands, to the abbey of Dryburgh, to which, till the Reformation, the church seems to have been an appendage. The ancient village of Maxton is said by some to have been very populous prior to the Union, and to have been able to furnish many armed men; but with greater probability it is supposed to have been only the occasional rendezvous of the numerous troops which subsisted on the borders by continual depredations on their southern neighbours. That it was, however, of much greater extent and importance than it is at present, is evident from the foundations of buildings which are frequently discovered in the progress of cultivation; and the shaft of the ancient cross still marks the site of what was perhaps the principal street, though now containing only a few miserable cabins.

The parish is pleasantly situated on the bank of the river Tweed, which forms its northern boundary for more than three miles; it is four miles in length, and nearly three in breadth in the broadest part, diminishing in other parts to about one half, and comprises 4514 acres, of which 3836 are arable, 668 woodland and plantations, and ten an irreclaimable bog. The surface is undulating, and rises in a gentle acclivity from the river; it is diversified with numerous flourishing trees, and the country around commands much interesting scenery. The soil in the southern and higher parts is thin and wet, but in the north of better quality, consisting of a light and dry earth resting on freestone and gravel, and a rich loam on a substratum of clay, and bearing heavy crops of wheat, barley, and oats, with peas, beans, turnips, and clover. The bed of the Tweed is a reddish sandstone, which is quarried also in the steepest of its banks, and is of good quality for building; masses of whinstone are likewise found on the banks of the river, and in other parts of the parish, of great hardness, and well adapted to the formation and repair of roads. The four, five, and six shift courses of husbandry prevail, according to the several qualities of the soil; and agriculture in general is in a very improved state. The plantations consist principally of ash, elm, larch, and oak, which thrive exceedingly well, and Scotch fir, which thrives for a short time, but seldom forms profitable timber. Great improvements have taken place in draining, inclosing, and fencing the lands; lime and bone-dust are much used for manure, and considerable facilities for obtaining the former have been afforded by the improvement of the roads. The farm houses and offices, also, are substantially built and commodious. The chief fuel is coal, brought from Northumberland at a great expense, the thinnings of the plantations affording only a very scanty supply. Considerable advantage is derived to Maxton from its proximity to the several markets of Jedburgh, Kelso, and Melrose, and from the facility of intercourse with those towns by the turnpikeroads which lead through the parish. The cattle are chiefly the short-horned breed, and the sheep the Leicestershire, with a few of the Cheviot, and a cross between both; much attention is paid to their management, and to the improvement of the stock. The rateable annual value of the parish is £4256.

Maxton is in the presbytery of Selkirk and synod of Merse and Teviotdale, and patronage of Sir W. H. Don, Bart.: the minister's stipend is £211. 15. 10., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £10 per annum. The church, romantically overhanging the Tweed, is part of a very ancient structure dedicated to St. Cuthbert; the time of its original foundation is unknown, but it was modernised and repaired in 1812, and gives accommodation to a congregation of 150 persons. The parochial school affords a useful education, but the children of the peasantry, from the early age at which they are employed in agriculture, derive but partial benefit from it; the master has a salary of £30 a year, with a house and garden. The poor receive the interest of a sum bequeathed for charitable uses, amounting to about 30s. per annum. In the north-east of the parish are the remains of an ancient fortification of semicircular form, 160 feet in diameter, and situated on the summit of a cliff impending over the Tweed, by which it is defended on that side, being secured on the others by deep trenches and ramparts; it is called Ringly Hall, but the origin of the name is unknown, neither has it been ascertained by whom it was made. On the east side was an entrance; and at no great distance, but in the parish of Roxburgh, is a tumulus with which it appears to have been connected. The English, in one of the border skirmishes, are said to have occupied this station, while the Scots took up their position in a deep ravine on the other side of the Tweed; and the former, having forded the river to attack the latter, sustained a signal defeat, and many of them were slain. The spot where they were buried was the cemetery of the church of Rutherford, a small parish which, after the dissolution of its church, was annexed to Maxton. There was also an hospital connected with the church of Rutherford, for the reception of strangers and the maintenance of infirm poor; it was dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene, and was granted by Robert I. to the canons of Jedburgh, which grant was confirmed to that body by Robert II. No remains exist of any of the buildings; the site has been ploughed up, and the grave stones in the cemetery have been broken, and used as materials in the construction of drains. Vestiges of a Roman camp, on the west side of which are the remains of a Roman road, are still to be traced on the declivity of a hill near Lilliards Edge: the road, in some parts tolerably perfect, passes by the western boundary of the parish, and crosses the river Teviot near the mouth of the Jed, and the river Tweed near Melrose. Not far from Maxton was fought the battle of Ancrum-Muir, in which the Scots under the Earls of Arran and Angus defeated the forces of Henry VIII. under the command of Sir Ralph Evers and Sir Bryan Layton. About a mile westward of the site of the ancient village of Rutherford are the ruins of Littledean Tower, once a place of great strength, and the residence of the Kerrs, of Littledean, by whom it was finally deserted during the last century; they occupy an elevated site on the bank of the Tweed, but are rapidly disappearing.


MAXWELLHEUGH, a village, in the parish and district of Kelso, county of Roxburgh; containing 90 inhabitants. This place, which is of very great antiquity, and now a suburb of the town of Kelso, formed part of the parish of Maxwell, long since united to that of Kelso. There stood anciently here, south of the Teviot, and nearly opposite the Roxburgh Castle, a Maison Dieu for the reception of pilgrims and of the diseased and indigent; and its site is chiefly the ground on which the present village is built. David I. granted to the establishment a carucate of land in Ravendene; and it appears that, in 1296, Nichol de Chapelyn, the guardian of the house, did homage to Edward I. It belonged to the monks of Kelso, together with the chapel of Harlow, which stood at a farm called Chapel, about a mile from Maxwell. In 1389, Richard II. of England granted to Allan Horsle and his heirs the vills of Maxwell and Softlaw; and Robert II. bestowed on John de Maxwell the lands of Softlaw, in the barony of Maxwell. The church of Maxwell was a rectory, and, when the monks were in possession, was valued at £11. 16. 8. per annum. The village is charmingly situated on the south bank of the Tweed, opposite to the eastern extremity of the town of Kelso, and on a gentlyrising eminence; hence the affix of "heugh" to the name. It is surrounded with wood; and the prospect from the village, and from the ascent to it, is very beautiful, embracing almost every description of scenery. In the neighbourhood are excellent bridges across the Tweed and Teviot. The Earl of Morton had a residence in this suburb in the time of Elizabeth.


MAXWELLTON, a village, in the parish of East Kilbride, Middle ward of the county of Lanark, 2½ miles (W. S. W.) from Blantyre; containing 334 inhabitants. It is situated in the north-eastern part of the parish, about a quarter of a mile from the church at Kirkton village, and not much more than half a mile eastward of the village of Kilbride. A school here is supported by Sir William Maxwell, Bart.


MAXWELLTOWN, a burgh of barony, and lately a quoad sacra parish, in the parish of Troqueer, stewartry of Kirkcudbright; adjoining the town of Dumfries, and containing 3230 inhabitants. This place, originally the small village of Bridge-End, was erected into a burgh of barony in 1810, in favour of its superior, Marmaduke Constable Maxwell, Esq., of Nithsdale, in honour of whom, upon that occasion, it assumed its present name. The town, which since that time has greatly increased in extent and population, is pleasantly situated on an eminence on the western bank of the Nith, opposite to the royal burgh of Dumfries, to which it forms an interesting suburb, and with which it is connected by two bridges over the river. The more ancient portion of the town is irregularly built, consisting of indifferently-formed and narrow streets, of which the houses possess neither uniformity of character nor pretension to neatness; but the more modern portion is handsome, its streets regular and spacious, and the houses of very superior appearance. The inhabitants, in the year 1833, adopted the general police act, for paving, lighting, and cleansing the streets; and the aspect of the town has thus been greatly improved, and the comfort of the population enhanced. In the environs, which are very pleasant, are four nurseries, two of them having hot-houses for raising grapes and other fruits, which are produced in great perfection.

A manufactory for damask which is celebrated for the beauty of its texture, and the elegance of its patterns, gives employment to several of the inhabitants; and a waulk-mill, a dye-house, a considerable brewery, and two rope-walks, have long been established. Two iron-foundries, also, have been lately erected, but though both are in full operation, they scarcely afford a supply of articles adequate to the demand. The market for butchers' meat is amply furnished with every variety, and for some time it took precedence of that of Dumfries. A branch post-office under that of Dumfries has been established; and facility of communication is maintained by the public road from London to Portpatrick, and that to Glasgow and Edinburgh by Thornhill and Elvanfoot, both of which pass through the town. The government is vested in a provost, two bailies, and four councillors, all of them elected annually; and the magistrates hold courts for the determination of civil actions to a limited extent, and for criminal cases as occasion may require, in both of which they are assisted by the town-clerk, who acts as assessor. The civil jurisdiction of the magistrates is, however, much lessened by the small-debt courts held here by the sheriff; and their criminal jurisdiction is confined chiefly to offences punishable by fine or imprisonment. The court-house is a plain building, but has sufficient accommodation for transacting the public business of the burgh, and for holding the several courts; and below it is a gaol for the confinement of delinquents till their committal to the gaol of Kirkcudbright. A chapel of ease, to which an ecclesiastical district having a population of 1932 was till lately annexed, was erected here within the last few years; it is a neat building containing 1000 sittings, of which thirty-six are free; and the minister has a stipend of £150, arising solely from seatrents, but neither manse nor glebe. The members of the Free Church have a place of worship. A school has also been erected of which the master has a salary of £9. 12. from an endowment by the heritors, and £4, the interest of a bequest, in addition to the fees; and there are two other schools, supported wholly by the fees. In all of these, about 250 children are taught.


MAY, an island, forming part of the parish of Anstruther Easter, in the county of Fife; containing 22 inhabitants. It is a small isle, lying at the mouth of the Frith of Forth, about six miles south-east-bysouth from Crail, the nearest part of the coast; and is a mile in length and three-quarters of a mile in breadth. The island was formerly the property of General Scott, of Balcomie, and afterwards of his daughter, the Duchess of Portland, from whom it was purchased, with the right to the duties, by the Commissioners of Northern Lights, for the sum of £60,000. It has had a lighthouse at least since 1635; but a more commodious edifice was erected in 1816, and the present light, which is fixed, is seen at the distance of twenty-one nautical miles. There was at one time a village, at which divine service was performed once a month; but at present the only inhabitants are the lighthousekeepers and their families. The pasturage for sheep here is of the finest kind, and a well supplies excellent water; the island, however, is much exposed to cold bleak winds: it is visited by immense numbers of various kinds of sea-fowl. There are ruins of a religious house that belonged to the priory of Pittenweem; and in the chapel of it, which was dedicated to St. Adrian, who is said to have been killed upon the island by the Danes in 870, or 872, that saint is supposed to be buried. In January 1791, a melancholy accident occurred at this place. For two evenings no light was exhibited, and the weather was so tempestuous no boat could be put off from the shore to ascertain the cause. On the third day the storm abated, and a boat was manned from Crail, the crew of which upon landing were assailed by a strong sulphureous smell; and on proceeding directly to the lighthouse, they found the door closed, and no one answered to their call. Forcing an entrance, they discovered the keeper, his wife, and five children all suffocated to death, and a sixth child, an infant, sucking the dead mother. In another room were two men almost expiring, who were providentially recovered by the timely assistance rendered to them; two cows in a byre under the building were dead. It was supposed that this lamentable disaster was caused by burning coal having been blown among some refuse which lay at the bottom of the lighthouse.

Burgh Seal


MAYBOLE, a markettown and parish, in the district of Carrick, county of Ayr, 9 miles (S.) from Ayr, and 12 (N. E.) from Girvan; containing 7027 inhabitants. This place, of which the name is of very doubtful origin, appears to have been the chief seat of judicature for the district of Carrick, and to have been the residence of the earls of Cassilis, in those times denominated Kings of Carrick, and of the principal families of that district; and the town still retains many vestiges of its former importance. It was erected into a burgh of barony by charter of James V., in 1516, which conferred on the inhabitants the privilege of a weekly market, the right of election of bailies and other officers for the due administration of affairs, and all other liberties and immunities appertaining to a free burgh. There are several streets of good houses, and the town is paved, lighted, and supplied with water by the corporation; the approaches have been greatly improved by the formation of good roads in all directions, and many of the streets have been widened: the adjacent scenery is beautiful. A public library is supported by subscription, and there is also a circulating library. An agricultural association called the Carrick Farmers' Society has been long established, and holds meetings in the town for awarding premiums for improvements, and for the exhibition of stock, when, among other prizes, are voted two pieces of plate annually given by the Marquess of Ailsa and Sir Charles Fergusson, of Kilkerran.

The inhabitants are principally employed in weaving for the manufacturers of Glasgow and Paisley, which is not confined to the town, but is practised in every small hamlet throughout the parish; and it is calculated that, on an average, from £500 to £700 are weekly paid to the weavers by the agents of the manufacturers who supply them with work. There are some handsome shops for the sale of different kinds of merchandize; and the various trades connected with an extensive agricultural and manufacturing district are carried on here with success. At Dunure is a small fishing-harbour, where cargoes of lime and bone-dust are landed in vessels from Ireland; but the fisheries have their chief market at Ayr. The post-office has a tolerably good delivery twice a day. The market is on Thursday, chiefly for butter, eggs, and fowls, the grain raised in the parish being generally sent to Ayr; and four fairs are annually held, called the Candlemas, Beltane, Lammas, and Hallow E'en fairs, which were formerly amply furnished with stores of all kinds, but are now mostly limited to the hiring of servants. Under the charter of James V. the burgh is governed by two bailies and a council of burgesses, seventeen in number, who supply vacancies, as they occur by death or resignation, from their own body; the bailies and subordinate officers of the corporation are elected annually. The magistrates exercise jurisdiction within the burgh, and hold weekly courts for the determination of civil suits to any amount and the trial of petty misdemeanors, in which the townclerk acts as assessor; they also exercise a summary jurisdiction in a court for the recovery of debts not exceeding six shillings and eight pence. The town-house is old, and but ill adapted to its purpose; and attached to it is a small prison for the temporary confinement of prisoners previously to their commitment to the gaol of Ayr, equally unsuitable.

The parish is nine miles in length and about five in extreme breadth; and is bounded on the north, and partly on the east, by the river Doon, which separates it from the parishes of Ayr and Dalrymple; on the east by the parish of Kirkmichael; on the south by the river Girvan; and on the west by the parish of Kirkoswald and the Frith of Clyde. The surface, generally wavy, is towards the north-east intersected by a lofty ridge called Brown-Carrick Hill, which commands an extensive and richly-varied prospect over the river Doon, the sea, and the spacious tracts of fertile country around, including the districts of Kyle and Carrick, the town of Ayr, and other interesting objects. The rivers are the Doon and Girvan; the former appears to have changed its ancient course, and to have made for itself a shorter and more direct channel previously to its influx into the sea. There are numerous springs of pure water, affording generally a good supply, one of which called the Well Trees Spout, discharges about 1000 imperial gallons per hour; there are also some chalybeate springs, formerly in repute, but not at present much regarded. The soil is various; that of the arable lands is of a light dry quality, and abundantly fertile; in other places is a strong clay, and in some parts moss and moorland. The whole number of acres is estimated at 20,681, of which 16,684 are arable, 955 woods and plantations, about 600 meadow, and 2400 hilly pasture and moor. The crops are, wheat, oats, beans, barley, potatoes, and turnips; the system of agriculture is advanced, and a considerable portion of the moorland was lately reclaimed and brought into cultivation. Very satisfactory progress has also been made by the proprietors in draining their lands. The farm houses and offices on the larger farms are substantial and commodious, but on the smaller many of the buildings are inferior; the lands are inclosed chiefly with hedges of thorn, and the various improvements in agricultural implements have been rapidly growing into general adoption. Considerable numbers of young cattle are fed on the hills; they are now almost exclusively the Ayrshire, which have been found to answer better than the Galloway, formerly fed in the parish. There are but few sheep; they are chiefly of the Cheviot and black-faced kinds, but on some farms the Leicestershire have been lately introduced. The woods and plantations are well managed and in a thriving state. The substrata are, mainly sandstone, limestone, ironstone, and shale; the sandstone is of a reddish colour, and in some instances passes into conglomerate. The limestone is of good quality, but not worked to any great extent; neither are there any quarries entitled to particular notice. The rateable annual value of the parish, according to a recent return of the amount of real property assessed to the Income tax, is £20,742.

The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Ayr and synod of Glasgow and Ayr; and the patronage is in the Crown. The stipend of the incumbent is £314, with a manse built in 1806, a small but comfortable residence; and the glebe comprises several acres, valued at £30 per annum. The church, erected in 1808, is a substantial and handsome edifice adapted for a congregation of 1298 persons; and its distance from many parts of the parish rendering additional accommodation highly necessary, two other churches of the Establishment have been recently erected, one at Fisherton, on the coast, and the second at the west end of Maybole, by Sir Charles Fergusson, affording together sittings for 1100 persons. There are places of worship for members of the Free Church and the United Secession; also a small place of worship for Wesleyan Methodists. The parochial school affords a liberal course of instruction, and is well attended: the master, who has an assistant, receives a salary of £34 with a sum for a house and garden, and an allowance of £5 to be distributed in prizes among the scholars; the fees average about £100. There are various other schools in the parish, of which one is supported by subscription, and two have each a free schoolroom. A savings' bank has been likewise established. There are still some remains of the ancient collegiate church of this place, which was endowed for a rector and three prebendaries, and of which the revenue at the Dissolution was granted to the Earl of Cassilis, by whose family, and by others who contributed to the preservation of its remains, it is used as a place of sepulture. A portion of some conventual buildings is likewise remaining, and the orchards attached to them are yet to be traced. These relics have been recently surrounded with walls, and the inclosure tastefully planted by subscription of the inhabitants. Remains also exist of numerous ancient castles scattered throughout the parish. Of the castle of Maybole, the ancient baronial residence of the earls of Cassilis, the principal part is still in good preservation; and there are considerable portions left of those of Newark, Greenan, Dunduff, Dunure, and Kilhenzie. Of the others, there remain only slight fragments of the dilapidated walls. On the farm of Trees are the vestiges of an encampment; and there are several more in different parts, one of which, near the castle of Dunduff, is in very tolerable preservation. In the Provost's house, now the Red Lion inn, a meeting for discussing the Roman Catholic and Reformed doctrines took place between Quintin Kennedy, Abbot of Crossraguel, who had in his chapel of Kirkoswald proclaimed himself ready to defend the mass against all objectors, and the celebrated Reformer, John Knox: it was continued for three days. Dr. Macknight, author of the Harmony, and the Truth of the Gospel Histories, was incumbent of this parish; and the late Lord Alloway, one of the judges of the court of session, resided here during the vacations.


MEADOWMILL, a village, in that portion of the parish of Tranent which formed part of the quoad sacra parish of Cockenzie, county of Haddington; containing 120 inhabitants. This village, of recent origin, occupies a site memorable as the scene of the battle of Prestonpans, and as the spot where Col. Gardiner was killed, while endeavouring to rally a body of infantry that had been engaged in the conflict. It is inhabited chiefly by persons employed in agricultural pursuits; and the children of the village receive instruction in the free school attached to Stiell's hospital, which is situated a little to the south. The hospital, a handsome and capacious building, was erected in 1821, at an expense of £3000, and contains arrangements for the maintenance and education of a limited number of male and female children.

Mearns, The.

MEARNS, THE.—See Kincardineshire.


MEARNS, a parish, in the Upper ward of the county of Renfrew, 7 miles (S. W. by S.) from Glasgow, containing, with the village of Newton and part of Busby, 3077 inhabitants. This place, in ancient records Meirnes, Morness, and Mearnis, appears to have derived its name from the appellation common to all districts inhabited chiefly by herdsmen; and from a very remote period the lands have been principally pasture, and distinguished for the abundance and excellence of the produce of the dairy. The barony is said to have been the property of the Maxwells prior to the year 1245; but no authentic notice of that family occurs previously to the time of James II., when, on the downfall of the Douglases in 1455, they acquired considerable possessions in this part of the country. In the reign of James VI., one of the Maxwells, being ordered by that monarch to confine himself within the limits of Clydesdale, was for disobedience to that injunction attainted in parliament, and the barony transferred to the Maxwells of Pollock. There are still some remains of the ancient castle of Mearns, the seat of the Maxwell family, but now the property of Sir Michael Robert Shaw Stewart, consisting chiefly of a square tower, recently covered with a roof, the summit of which is within the battlements.

The parish is nearly seven miles in length and about three miles and a quarter in breadth, and is bounded on the north by Eastwood; on the south-east by the parishes of Eaglesham and Carmunnock, the latter in the county of Lanark; on the south-west by Fenwick, and Stewarton, in Ayrshire; and on the north-west by Neilston. The surface is elevated, and broken by numerous bold undulations; but there are no hills of any considerable height. The soil is light, dry, and warm, incumbent on a stratum of decomposed rock, except in some few tracts where the substratum is clay, chiefly in the lower lands: by far the greater portion is in pasture. Of the land in cultivation, the fertility has been much increased by the facility of obtaining an abundant supply of manure; the crops are, oats, bear, barley, wheat, beans, and peas, with potatoes and turnips, the former of which are luxuriant. The pastures are rich, and the dairy-farms are managed with skill and success; the cows are of the best species of the Ayrshire breed, and the butter produced here obtains a decided preference in the markets of Paisley and Glasgow. The scenery is generally of pleasing character, and in some parts highly picturesque and romantic, and enriched with thriving plantations, chiefly of Scotch fir, spruce, and larch, for which the soil seems well adapted. In the south are several lakes; the principal are, Brother loch, Little loch, Black loch, and Long loch, the last on the confines of the parish of Neilston.

There are numerous houses belonging to resident proprietors, of which some are on the highest eminences, and others in the deep valleys that intersect the hills. Upper Pollock, the seat of Sir Robert C. Pollock, is an ancient mansion, situated on rising ground, commanding a richly-diversified prospect; and attached to it was formerly a chapel, which since the Reformation has fallen into ruins. Southfield is a handsome residence, beautifully seated in a demesne enriched with woods and plantations; Caplerig was once a preceptory of Knights Templars. The chief villages are Newton and Busby, both of which are described under their own heads; the former is within half a mile of the church, and the latter on the eastern confines of the parish. The printing of calico, for which there are spacious establishments at Wellmeadow and at Hazelden, affords employment to about 300 persons; and there is an extensive cotton-factory at Busby. A fair is held at Newton, but it is very inconsiderable, chiefly a pleasurefair. A penny-post has been established under the office at Glasgow; and the road from Glasgow to Kilmarnock, passing through the parish, affords every facility of intercourse with the neighbouring towns. The rateable annual value of Mearns is £16,559. Its ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Paisley and synod of Glasgow and Ayr: the minister's stipend is £262. 18. 4., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £20 per annum; patron, Sir Michael Robert Shaw Stewart. The church, a very ancient structure, was repaired and enlarged in 1813, and contains 705 sittings. There are two places of worship for members of the United Secession, one in the village of Newton and one at Busby. The parochial school is attended by about 100 scholars; the master has a salary of £34. 4., with a house and garden, and the fees average £63 per annum. There is also a school at the village of Busby.


MECKPHIN, a hamlet, in the parish of Methven, county of Perth, 1 mile (S.) from Methven; containing fifty-six inhabitants. This is a very small place lying in the south part of the parish.


MEGGET, county of Peebles.—See Lyne.


MEIGLE, a parish, and the seat of a presbytery, in the county of Perth; containing 728 inhabitants, of whom 271 are in the village or town, 5 miles (N. E. by E.) from Cupar-Angus. The etymology of the name is doubtful; but it has been conjectured that, the church and manse being built on a plain between two marshes or "gills," the whole district took the appellation of Mid-gills, gradually changed into Meigle. The only historical memorial of interest connected with the place is the monument of Vanora, the reputed wife of the renowned King Arthur, who lived in the 6th century. She was captured in a battle which he fought with the Picts and Scots, and sent as prisoner to a strong place at Barry-hill, about two and a half miles from the parish: having there formed an illicit connexion with Mordred, a Pictish king, she was ordered by Arthur, when he received her again, to be torn in pieces by wild beasts. The parish is four and a half miles long and from one to two broad, and contains above 3000 acres. It is in the centre of the great level of Strathmore Proper, which reaches from near Perth to Brechin, a distance of forty miles; and the surface is equable throughout, with the exception of a gentle eminence on which Belmont Castle is situated. On the north and north-west are the Grampians, and on the south and south-east the Sidlaw hills. The rivers Isla and Dean water the parish, and unite about half a mile north-west from the town: in the former, common white trout, pike, and a few salmon are taken; in the Dean are perch and pike, and its red trout are much esteemed for their excellent flavour.

The soil in general is a fine black mould; but in some parts the ground partakes of the nature of sand and clay. There are 2726 arable acres; 100 acres in pasture, a small part of it in its natural state; and 178 acres under wood, consisting of most of the trees usually grown, and which are regularly thinned and pruned. The best system of husbandry is followed; and being all well cultivated, the land bears excellent green and white crops of every description. Indeed, since the period of the commencement of agricultural improvements in Scotland, the appearance of the parish has undergone an entire change, the barren and rough ground having been all reclaimed, and fenced with good hedge-rows. The chief disadvantages now are the deficiency of roads, and the distance from a plentiful supply of fuel. The rocks in the parish are mostly red sandstone, of which two quarries are wrought for building: marl has been obtained in considerable quantities. The rateable annual value of Meigle is £5442. Belmont House, a seat of Lord Wharncliffe, built upwards of seventy years ago, on the site of the old mansion called Kirkhill, is a quadrangular edifice, retaining part of the ancient tower; the interior is handsomely fitted up, and contains a superior library. There is a fine park, with excellent lawns and gardens, and an observatory. The other mansions are, Meigle House, Drumkilbo, Potento, and Caerdean.

Meigle is an ancient, but inconsiderable and meanlybuilt, town, pleasantly situated on a rivulet of the same name, in the centre of the parish, at the intersection of two turnpike-roads. The regular weekly market has for some time been discontinued; but there is a tryst every fortnight for the sale of cattle; and two fairs are held, one on the last Wednesday of June, the other on the last Wednesday in October, for cattle, horses, and for general traffic, both which are well attended. A few persons in the parish are employed in weaving coarse linen, and there is a mill for dyeing and dressing cotton-cloth for umbrellas. The fuel chiefly used is coal from Dundee, obtained at a high price. There is a post-office here; and about six miles of turnpike-road run through the parish, upon which a coach once passed between Edinburgh and Aberdeen, by Perth and Queensferry, and another from Blairgowrie. A bridge has lately been erected by subscription over the Isla, connecting Meigle with Alyth; and there is a very ancient bridge over the Dean, connecting it with Ayrlie, in the county of Forfar: the bridges and roads are generally in good repair.

The ecclesiastical affairs are directed by the presbytery of Meigle and synod of Angus and Mearns; patron, the Crown. The stipend of the minister is £238, including about £3. 8., vicarage-tithe on yarn; and there is a manse, built in 1809–10, with a glebe of about five and a half acres, worth £17 yearly. The church, a plain structure, erected about the year 1780, has two of the aisles of the former edifice; it is in tolerable repair, and seats 700 persons. This benefice was formerly annexed to the see of Dunkeld; several of the bishops resided here, and two of them were buried in the church: indeed, the greater part of the stipend of Dunkeld is still paid out of the parish. There is an episcopal chapel; and the members of the Free Church have a place of worship. The parochial schoolmaster receives a salary of £36. 7.1., including £2. 2. 9½. in lieu of a garden, with a house; his fees amount to about £16 a-year. The ruin of the famous sepulchral monument of Vanora is distinguished by a variety of sculptured figures, consisting of a centaur, a huge serpent fastened to a bull's mouth, and wild beasts tearing human bodies to pieces. There is a tumulus in Belmont park styled Belliduff, which tradition asserts to be the spot where Macduff slew Macbeth; and about a mile distant stands a block of whinstone, twenty tons in weight, called Macbeth's stone. The correct opinion, however, is that Macbeth was slain at Lumphanan, in Aberdeenshire.


MEIKLEOUR, a village, in the parish of Caputh, county of Perth, 2½ miles (W. by S.) from Cupar-Angus; containing 110 inhabitants. It lies in the eastern extremity of the parish, a short distance north of the river Isla, and about five miles eastward of the church; and is a small place, the property of Lady Keith. On an adjoining moor are vestiges of a Roman station.


MEIKLEWARTHILL, a hamlet, in the parish of Rayne, district of Garioch, county of Aberdeen, 3 miles (N. E. by E.) from Old Rain; containing 156 inhabitants. This village is situated in the eastern part of the parish, and though small, is the largest in Rayne, consisting of about forty dwellings. There is an unendowed school.


MELDRUM, a burgh of barony and a parish, in the district of Garioch, county of Aberdeen; containing 1873 inhabitants, of whom 1102 are in the burgh, 17 miles (S. S. E.) from Turriff, and 17¾ (N. N. W.) from Aberdeen. This place, anciently called Bethelnie, is supposed to have derived that appellation, signifying in the Hebrew language "the House of God," from the erection of a church at a very early period, and which at that time was the only religious edifice within a very extensive district. Its modern name, which is of Celtic origin, implying "the ridge of a hill," appears obviously to have been derived from the general acclivity of the surface, which towards its northern extremity attains a very considerable degree of elevation. The town, situated on the turnpike-road from Aberdeen to Banff, consists of several irregularly-formed streets; the houses are mostly well built, and many of them of handsome appearance. The cotton manufacture is pursued to some extent, there being two establishments belonging to the manufacturers of Aberdeen, in which a considerable number of persons of both sexes are employed in hand-loom weaving, under the superintendence of agents residing in the town. The knitting of worsted stockings also affords occupation to many of the females, and there are a distillery and a brewery; the different handicraft trades requisite for the supply of the neighbourhood are carried on here, and there are shops for the sale of various wares. The town was erected into a burgh of barony by charter of Charles II., in 1672, in favour of James Urquhart, Esq., and continued for some time to be governed by two baronbailies nominated by the superior; but there is at present neither any public magistrate nor any regular police. The town-hall is a handsome building surmounted with a spire. The market, which is abundantly supplied with provisions of every kind, is on Saturday: a market for cattle and grain is held every alternate week during the winter and spring; and there are fairs for hiring farm-servants in May and November. The post-office has four deliveries daily; and facility of communication is afforded by the turnpikeroad from Aberdeen and Banff, which passes through the town, and for five miles through the parish.

The parish is about seven miles and a half in extreme length, varying in breadth from two to five miles, and comprises an area of 7474 acres, of which 5774 are arable, 500 woodland and plantations, and the remainder moor and waste. The surface is diversified with hills of no great elevation, of which a range extends across the parish from the north to the north-west: several small rivulets, which have their source within it, flow in various directions, and give motion to some corn-mills. The soil in the southern portion of the lands is a strong rich loam, superincumbent on a bed of clay, and in the northern parts of a thinner and lighter quality. The crops are, oats, bear, and a small proportion of wheat, with potatoes and turnips. The system of husbandry is improved; the lands have been drained, and inclosed partly with stone dykes and partly with fences of thorn. The farm-buildings are substantial and commodious, and well adapted to the extent of the farms; and such has been the progress of improvement that the prize of the Aberdeenshire Agricultural Society, for the best cultivated farm in the county, was awarded to the tenant of Bethelnie, in this parish. The cattle reared in the pastures are of the Old Aberdeenshire breed, with a few of the Teeswater; the sheep are of the South-Down, Leicestershire, and the native breeds. The plantations are chiefly ash, elm, oak, plane, beech, and the various kinds of fir, all of which are in a thriving state. The substrata are mostly whinstone, limestone, and hornblende-rock, of which last detached masses are occasionally found, the limestone was formerly wrought, but the workings have been discontinued. The rateable annual value of the parish is £4999. Meldrum House, the seat of B. C. Urquhart, Esq., superior of the burgh, is a spacious and elegant mansion completed in 1840, and beautifully situated in a demesne enriched with ancient timber and with thriving plantations of modern growth.

The ecclesiastical affairs of Meldrum are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Garioch and synod of Aberdeen. The minister's stipend is £223. 19. 10., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £28 per annum; patron, Mr. Urquhart. The church, an ancient structure erected in 1684, and repaired and reseated in 1810, is centrically situated, and contains 700 sittings. There are places of worship for members of the Free Church and United Secession, and an episcopal chapel. The parochial school is well attended: the master has a salary of £28, with an allowance of £6 in lieu of a dwelling-house, and the fees average about £14 per annum; he has also the interest of a bequest of £200 for the gratuitous instruction of poor children. On the lands of Bethelnie were some vestiges of a Roman camp, which have recently been levelled by the plough; and on the site of the original church is a burial-ground, in which is the sepulchral vault of the Meldrum family. There are some remains of an ancient chapel on the farm thence called Chapelhouse, with a well inclosed by masonry, which was dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Near it was found within the last few years a rudely-formed stone coffin containing an urn, with a human skull and some bones; and on the same farm were also discovered two similar urns, placed under a kind of pavement.


MELLERSTAIN, a village, in the parish of Earlstoun, county of Berwick, 4½ miles (E.) from Earlstoun; containing 173 inhabitants. It is situated in the eastern part of the parish, on the west side of the river Eden; and in the vicinity is Mellerstain House, a large modern mansion beautifully situated, the seat of the Baillie family. A school is chiefly supported by George Baillie, Esq., who allows the master a schoolhouse and dwelling-house, and pays him the interest of a bequest.