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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. III


J48 OLD AND NEW EDINBURGH. [George Street. that sum has been called. It is expressly provided by the charter of the bank, granted 5th August, 1831, ?that nothing contained in these presents shall be construed as intended to limit the responsibility and liability of the individual partners of the said Corporation for the debts and engagements lawfully contracted by the said Corporation, which responsibility and liability is to remain as valid and effectual as if these presents had not been most elegant of any in Britain.? In addition to the ball-room, ? there is to be a tea-room, fifty feet by thirty-six, which will also serve as a ballroom on ordinary occasions ; also a grand saloon, thirty-eight feet by forty-four feet, besides other and smaller rooms. The whole expense will be 6,000 guineas, and the building is to be begun immediately. Another Assembly Room, on a smaller scale, is to be built immediately by the INTERIOR OF ST. ANDREW?S CHURCH, GEORGE STREET. granted, any law or practice to the contrary notwithstanding.? The branch of the Clydesdale Bank, a little farther westward on the other side, is a handsome building ; but the next chief edifice-which, with its arcade of three rustic arches and portico, was long deemed by those obstinately wedded to use and wont both an eyesore and encroachment on the old monotonous amenity of George Street, when first erected-is the Assembly Rooms. The principal dancing-hall here is ninety-two feet long by forty-two feet wide, and forty feet high, adorned with magnificent crystal lustres. ?? The New Assembly Rooms, for which the ground is staked out in the new town,? says the Edinburgh AdvPrtise7 for April, 1783, ?will be among the inhabitants on the south side of the town; in George Square,? Eventually this room was placed in Buccleuch Place. ? Since the peace,? continues the paper, ? a great deal of ground has been feued for houses in the new town, and the buildings there are going on with astonishing rapidity.? To the assemblies of 1783, the letters of Theophrastus inform us that gentlemen were in the habit of reeling ?from the tavern, flustered with wine, to an assembly of as elegant and beautiful women as any in Europe;? also that minuets had gone out of fashion, and country dances were chiefly in vogue, and that in 1787 a master of the ceremonies was appointed. The weekly assemblies here in the Edinburgh seasvn are now among the most brilliant and best con
Volume 3 Page 148
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