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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. III


Holyrood.1 THE HOUSEHOLD TROOPS. . 75 ? blew gowns, each having got thirty-five shillings in a purse, came up from the abbey to the great church, praying all along for His Majesty. Sermon being ended, His Grace entertained all the nobles and gentlemen with a magnificent feast and open table. After dinner the Lord Provost and Council went to the Cross, where was a green arbour loaded with oranges and lemons, wine running liberally for divers hours at eight conduits, to the great solace of the indigent commons there. Having drunk all the royal healths, which were seconded by great guns from the castle, sound of trumpets and drums, volleys from the Trained Bands, and joyful acclamations from the people, they plenti- ? fully entertained the multitude. After which, my Lord Commissioner, Provost, and Bailies went to the castle, where they were entertained with all sorts of wine and sweatmeats ; and returning, the Provost countenancing all neighbours that had put up bonfires by appearing at their fires, which jovialness continhed, with ringing of bells and shooting of great guns, till 12 o?clock at night.? . In October, 1679, the Duke of Albany and York, with his family, including the future queens, Mary and Anne, took up his residence at Hdyrood, where the gaiety and brilliance of his court gave great satisfaction. The princesses were easy and affable, and the duke left little undone to win the love of the people, but the time was an unpropitious one, for they were at issue with him on matters of fxith ; yet it is clearly admitted by Fountainhall that his birthday was observed more cordially than that of the king. The duke golfed frequently at Leith. ? I remember in my youth,? wrote Mr. William Tytler, ? to have conversed with an old man named Andrew Dickson, a golf-club maker, who said that when a boy he used to carry the duke?s golf-clubs, and run before him to announce where the balls fell.? The sixteen companies of the Trained Bands attended the duke?s amval in the city, and sixty selected men from each company were ordered ? to attend their royal highnesses, apparelled in the best manner,?? and the latter were banqueted in the Parliament House, at the cost of A5231 13s. sterling. The brilliance of the little court wa: long remembered after the royal race were in hopeless exile. One of the most celebrated beauties of its circle was the wife of Preston oi Denbrae, who survived till the middle of the lasl century. In the Cupar burial register this entr) occurs concerning her :-? Buried a I st December, 1757, Lady Denbrae, aged 107 years.? The duke and duchess are said to have beer early warned of the haughty punctilio of thf Scottish noblesse by a speech of General Dalzell of Binns, whom the former had invited to line at the palace, when Nary d?Este, as a laughter of the ducal-prince of Modena, declined to take her place at table with a subject. r?Madam,?? said the grim veteran, ?I have lined at a table, where your father must have stood at my back !? In this instance it is supposed :hat he alluded to the table of the Emperor of Zermany, whom the Duke of Modena, if summoned, must have attended as an officer of the lousehold. The same commander having ordered a guardsman who had been found asleep on his post at the ?alace to be shot, he was forgiven by order of ;he duke. In August, 1681, one of the grandest funerals :ver seen in Scotland left Holyrood-that of the High ChanceIlor, the Duke of Rothes, who died :here on the 26th July. The account of the pro- :ession fills six quarto pages of Amot?s ?? History,? md enumerates among the troops present the Scots Foot Guards, a train of Artillery, the Scots Fusiliers, and Horse Guards of the Scottish army. 1$ April, 1705, John, the great Duke of Argyle, took up his residence at the palace as Commissioner to the Parliament, on which occasion he was received by a double salvo from the castle batteries, by the great guns in the Artillery Park, ? and from 111 the men-of-war, both Dutch and Scottish, then lying in the road of Leith.? the Life and Horse Guards, Horse Grenadier Guards, and the two battalions of the Foot Guards, ceased to do duty at Holyrood, being all removed permanently to London, though a detachment of the last named corps garrisoned the Bass Rock till the middle of the last century. A strange gladiatorial exhibition is recorded as taking place on a stage at the back of the palace on the 23rd of June, 1726, when one of those public combats then so popular at the Bear Garden in London, ensued between a powerful young Inshman named Andrew Bryan (who had sent a drum through the city defying all men) and a veteran of Killiecrankie, named Donald Bane, then in his sixty-second year. They fought with various weapons, in presence of many noblemen, gentlemen, and military officers, for several hours, and Bryan was totally vanquished, after receiving some severe wounds from his unscathed antagonist. The annual ball of the Honourable Company of Hunters at Holyrood, begins to be regularly chronicled in the Edinburgh papers about this In 1711 the Scottish Household troops, viz., -
Volume 3 Page 75
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