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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. I


barbarism of the Scottish court. She was magnificent in her own attire ; she increased the number of persons in attendance on the king, and caused him to be served at table in gold and silver plate. She was canonised by Innocent IV. in 1251. For several ages the apartment in which she expired was known as ?ye blessit Margaret?s chalmer? (i.e., chamber). A fountain on the west side of the fortress long bore her name; and a small guardhouse on the western ramparts is still called the Queen?s, or St. biargaret?s, Post. The complete restoration of her oratory (says an Edinburgh Courant of 1853) ?has been effected in a very satisfactory manner, under the superintendence of Mr. Grant. The modern western entrance has been built up, and an .ancient one re-opened at the north-west corner of the nave. Here a new doorway has been built in the same style with the rest of the building. The three small round-headed windows have been filled with stained glass-the light in the south side of the apse representing St. Margaret, the two in the side of the nave showing her husband, King Malcolm Canmore and their son St. David, and the light in the west gable of the nay having a cross and the sacred monogram with this inscription :-Hac ediczda oZim Beafce Margaretce Regim Scofia, puce obiit M.XCIII., ingrate $atria izqli&zfia Zapsa, Victorire Rpmz prognatre auspiciis restitufa, A. D. MUCCCLII..? St. Margaret had scarcely expired, when Bishop Turgot, her children, and the whole court, were filled with terror, on finding the fortress environed by an army composed of fierce western Highlanders, ?clad in the dun deer?s hide, striped breacan, and hauberks (or lurichs) of jingling rings,? and led by Donald Bane, or the fair-haired, the younger brother of Malcolm III., who had fled to the Hebrides, as the latter did to England, on the usurpation by Macbeth. Without opposition he had himself proclaimed king, and ,promised to give the Hebrides and other isles to Magnus Barefoot, King of Norway, for assistance if it were required. He had resolved to put the orphan children of Malcolm to death, but believing that egress from the fortress on the steep could only be had by the gates facing the little town, he guarded them alone. The children thus escaped by a western postern, and fled to England, where they found protection with their uncle, Edgar Atheling. The two princesses were afterwards married : Mary to Eustace, Count of Boulogne, the great Crusader; and Matilda to Henry of England-a union extremely popular with the Saxon people. By the same postern Turgot and others carefully and reverentlyconveyed the body of the queen, and carried it ? to Dunfermline, in the woods; and that Heaven might have some share in protecting remains so sacred, the legendaries record that a miraculous mist arose frow the earth, concealing the bishop, the royal corpse, and its awe-stricken bearers, from the half-savage Donald and his redhaired Islesmen, and did pot pass away until they had crossed in safety the Passagkm Repine, or Queen?s Ferry, nine miles distant, where Margaret had granted land for the maintenance of a passage boat ?-a grant still in force. She was buried at Dunfermline, under the great block of grey marble which still marks her grave ; and in the sides thereof may yet be seen the sockets of the silver lamps which, after her canonisation, burned there until the Reformation, when the Abbot of Dunfermline fled to the Castle of Edinburgh with her head in a jewelled coffer, and gave it to some Jesuits, who took it to Antwerp. From thence it was borne to the Escurial in Spain, where it is still preserved by the monks of St. Jerome. Her son xdgar, a prince of talent and valour, recovered the throne by his sword, and took up his residence in the Castle of Edinburgh, where he had seen his mother expire, and where he, too, passed away, on the 8th of January, 1107. The register of the Priory of St. Andrews, in recording his demise, has these words :-? Moriuus in Dun- Edin, est sepuZfus in Dunfe~ndikg.? On his death-bed he bequeathed that part of Cumberland which the kings of Scotland possessed to his younger brother David. Alexander I., surnamed the Fierce,? eldest brother of the latter, was disposed to dispute the validity of this donation ; but perceiving that David had won over the English barons to his interest, he acquiesced in this partial dismemberment of the kingdom. It is in the reign of this monarch, in the first years of the twelfth century, that the first notices of Edinburgh as a royal city and residence are most distinctly found, while? in that of his successor, David I., crowned in 1124 after being long resident at the court of his sister Matilda, where, according to Malmesbury, ?his manners were polished fiom the rust of Scottish barbarity,? and where he married Matilda daughter of Waltheof, Earl of Northumberland, we discover the origin of many of the most important local features still surviving. He founded the abbey of Holyrood, called by Fordun ?? Monastmirm Sancfre Cmcis de Crag.? This convent, the precursor of the great abbey, he is said to have placed at first within the Castle, and some of the earliest gifts of its saintly
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