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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. IV


374 OLD AND NEW EDINBURGH. [Greyfriars Church. and, forming a part of her volunteer forces, six battalions of infantry, two of artillery, and a corps of cavalry. On the night of the False AZam, on the evening of the 31st January, 1804, Scotland was studded with beacons-something on the system ordered by the twelfthparliament of JamesII. By mistake, that on Hume Castle was lighted ; other beacons blazed up in all directions ; the cry was everywhere that the I;rench had landed! All Scotland rushed to arms, and before dawn the volunteers were all on the march, pouring forward to their several rendezvous ; in some instances the Scottish Border men rode fifty miles to be there, without drawing bridle, says Scott ; and those of Liddesdale, fearing to be late at their post, seized every horse they could find, for a forced march, and then turned thein loose to make their way home. When, in 1806, new regulations were issued, limiting the allowance to volunteers, the First Edinburgh Regiment remained unaffected by them. ?I wish to remind you,? said the spirited Lieutenant- Colonel Hope, one day while on parade, ?that we did not take up arms to please any minister, or set of ministers, but to defend our native land from foreign and domestic enemies.? In 1820, when disturbances occurred in .the West Country, the volunteers garrisoned the Castle, and offered, if necessary, to co-operate with the forces in the field, and for that purpose?remained a whole night under arms. SOOA after the corps was disbanded, without thanks or ceremony. Northward of the hospital, but entering from the Grassmarket, we find the Heriot brewery, which we must mention before quitting this quarter, a being one of those establishments which have long been famous in Edinburgh, and have made the ancient trade of a ?brewster? one of the mosl important branches of its local manufacturing in. dustry. The old Heriot brewery has been in operation for considerably over one hundred years, and foi upwards of forty has been worked by one firm, the Messrs. J. Jeffrey and Co., whose establishmeni gives the visitor an adequate idea of the mode in which a great business of that kind is conducted, though it is not laid out according to the more recent idea of brewing, the buildings and work: having been added to and increased fmm time tc time, like all institutions that have old and small beginnings; but notwithstanding all the nurnerou: mechanical appliances which exist in the diiTeren1 departments of the Heriot brewery, the manu? services of more than 250 men are required then daily. In Gordon?s map of 1647, the old, or last, Greynars Church is shown with great distinctness, the ,ody of the edifice not as we see it now on the outh side, but with a square tower of four storeys .t its western end. The burying ground is of ts present form and extent, surrounded by pleasant ows of trees j and north-westward of the church is species of large circular and ornamental garden #eat. Three gates are shown-one to the Candlenaker Row, where it still is ; another on the south o the large open field in the south-east angle of the :ity wall ; and a third-that at the foot of the ROW, ofty, arched, and ornate, with a flight of steps zscendiq to it, precisely where, by the vast accumuation of human clay, a flight of steps goes downward Over one of these two last entrances, but which le does not tell us, Monteith, writing in the year 1704, says there used to be the following inscripion :- low. ?? Remember, man, as thou goes by : As thou art now, 50 once was I. As I am now, so shalt thou be ; Remember, man, that thou must die (a?ee).? The trees referred to were very probably relics Df the days when the burial-place had been the Sardens of the Greyfriary in the Grassmarket, at the foot of the slope, especially as two double rows of them would seem distinctly to indicate that they had shaded walks which ran soutli and north. Writing of the Greyfriq, Wilson says, we think correctly :-? That a church would form a prominent feature of this royal foundation can hardly be doubted, and we are inclined to infer that the existence both of if, and of a churchyard attached to it, long before Queen Mary?s grant of the gardens of the monastery for the latter purpose, is implied in such allusions as the following, in the ? Diurnal of Occurrents,? July 7th, 157 I. ? The haill merchandis, craftismen, and personis renowned within Edinburgh, made thair moustaris in the Grey Frear Kirk Yaird;? and again, when Birrel, in his diary, April ~ 6 t h ~ 1598, refers to the ?work at the Greyfriar Kirke,? although the date of the erection of the more modem church is only 1613.? In further proof of this idea Scottish history tells that when, in 1474, the prince royal of Scotland, (afterwards James IV.) was betrothed, in the second year of his age, to Cecilia of England, and when on this basis a treaty of peace between the nations was concluded, the ratification thereof, and the betrothal, took place in the church of the Greyfriars, at Edinburgh, when the Earl of Lindesay
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Greyfrian Church.] THE COVENANT. 375 and Lord Scrope represented their respective monarchs. The number of the inhabitants having greatly increased, and the churches of the city being insufficient for their accommodation, the magistrates, in 1612, says Ariiot, ordered a new one to be built on the ground formerly belonging to the Greyfriars, and bestowed on them by Queen Mary for a public cemetery; but he makes no mention of any preceding church, on which the present edifice might have been engrafted. The eastern entrance from the Candlemaker Row was formed at some time subsequent to the erection or opening of this church. On the 28th of February 1638, the National Covenant was first subscribed at the Greyfriars Church, when the aggressive measures of Charles I. roused in arms the whole of Scotland, which then, happily for herself, was not, by the desertion of her nobles and the abolition of her officers of state, unable to resist lawless encroachment ; and her sons seemed to come forth as one man in defence of the Church, which had then no more vigorous u p holder than the future Marquis of Montrose. ?? In the old church of the Greyfriars,? to quote his memoirs (London, 1858), ?? which stands upon an eminence south of the ancient capital, and within the wall of 1513, amid quaint and smoke-encrusted tombs, and many headstones sunk deep in the long, rank grass-where now the furious Covenanter, Henderson, and Rosehaugh, ? that persecutor of the saints of God,? as the Whigs named him, are lying side by side in peace among the dead of ages, the Covenant, written on a sheet of parchment one ell square, and so named because it resembled those which God is said to have made with the children of Israel, was laid before the representatives of the nation, and there it was signed by a mighty concourse, who, with uplifted hands, with weeping eyes, and drawn swords, animated by the same glorious enthusiasm which fired the crusaders at the voice of Peter the Hermit, vowed, with the assistance of the supreme God, to dedicate life and fortune to the cause of Scotland?s Church and the maintenance of their solemn engagement, which professed the reformed faith and bitterly abjured the doctrines and dogmas of the Church of Rome -for with such they classed the canons and the liturgy of Laud.? It was first subscribed by the congregation of the Greyfriars ; but the first name really appended to it was that of the venerable and irreproachable Earl of Sutherland. Montrose and other peers followed his example, and it afterwards was sent round the churches of the city; thus it speedily became sa xowded with names on both sides, says Maithd, :hat not the smallest space was left for more, It appears that when there was so little,room ;eft to sign on, the subscriptions were shortened by inserting only the initials of the Covenanters? names, 3f which the margins and other parts were so full that it was a difficult task to number them. By a cursoryview Maitland estimated themat about 5,000. By order of the General Committee every fourth man in Scotland was numbered as a soldier. In 1650 the church was desecrated, and all its wood-work wasted and destroyed by the soldiers of Cromwell. Nine years afterwards, when Monk was in Edinburgh with his own regiment (now the Coldstream Guards) and Colonel Morgan?s, ? on the 19th of October, he mustered them in the High Street, in all the bravery of their steeplecrowned hats, falling bands, calfskin boots, with niatchlocks and bandoleers, some time prior to his march southward to achieve the Restoration, From that street he marched them (doubtless by theRest Bow) to the Greyfriars Church, where he told his officers that he ? was resolved to make the military power subordinate to the civil, and that since they had protection and entertainment from the Parliament, it was their duty to serve it and obey it against all opposition.? The officers and soldiers unanimously declared that they would live and die with him. In the year 1679 the Greyfriars Church and its burying-ground witnessed a pitiful sight, when that city of the dead was crowded, almost to excess, by those unhappy Covenanters whom the prisons could not contain, after the rising at Bothwell had been quenched in blood. These unhappy people had been collected, principally in the vicinity of Bathgate, by the cavalry, then employed in ? dragooning,? or riding down the country, and after being driven like herds of cattle, to the number of 1,200, tied two and two, to the capital, they were penned up in the Greyfriars Churchyard, among the graves and gloomy old tombs of all kinds, and there they were watched and guarded day and night, openly in sight of the citizens. Since Heselrig destroyed the Scottish prisoners after Dunbar (for which he was arraigned by the House of Commons) no such piteous sight had been witnessed on British ground. They were of both sexes and of all ages, and there they lay five long months, 1,200 souls, exposed to the suq by day and the dew by night-the rain, the wind, and the storm-with no other roof than the changing sky, and no other bed than the rank grass that grew in its hideous luxuriance from the graves beneath them. All were brutally treatedby their
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