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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. IV


264 OLD AND NEW EDINBURGH. frhe Cowgate. The skinners would seem to have been created into a corporation in 1474, but references to the trade occur in the Burgh Records at an earlier date. Thus, in 1450, there is recorded an obligation by the skinners, undertaken by William Skynner, in the name of the whole, to support the altar of St. Crispin in St. Giles?s Church, ?in the fourth year of the pontificate of Nicholas the Fifth ;? and a seal of cause was issued to the skinners and furriers conjointly in 1533, wherein they were bound to uphold the shrine of St Christopher in . St. Giles?s, and several Acts of Parliament were passed for their protection. One, in 1592, prohibits ?<all transporting and carrying forth the realm, of calvesskinnes, huddrones, and kidskins, packing and peilling thereof, in time coming, tion of ? the goodwill and thankful service done to us by our servitor, Alexander Crawford, present deacon of the said cordiners and his brethren.? We first hear of a kind of ?? strike,? in the trade in 1768, when the cordiners entered into a cornbination not to work without an increase of wages, and reduction of hours. The masters prosecuted their men, many of whom were fined and imprisoned, for ? entering into an unlawful combination,? as the sheriff termed their trade union. Charles I. In 1703, by decree of the Court of Session, the bow-makers, plumbers, and glaziers, were added to the masons; and to the wrights were added the painters, slaters, sieve-wrights, and coopers. These incorporated trades held their meetings in St. Mary?s Chapel, Niddry?s Wynd, and were known as ?The United Incorporation of St. Mary?s Chapel? In 1476 the websters were incorporated, and bound to uphold the altar of St. Simon in St Giles?s, and it was specially stipulated that ?(the priest shall get his meat.? Cloth was made in those days by the weavers much in the same fashion that is followed in the remote Highland districts, where the woo1 is carded and spun by the females of the household j but Edinburgh was one under the paine of confiscation of the same for His Majesty?s use.? Edinburgh has always been the chief seat of the leather trade in Scotland, and the troops raised after the American War were entirely supplied with shoes from there. In 1475 the wrights and masons were granted the aisleand chapel of St. John in the same church, when their seal of cause was issued. Their charter was confirmed in 15 17 by the Archbishop of St. Andrews. in 1527 by James V., and in 1635 by THE CHAPEL hND HOSPITAL OF ST. MARY MAGDALENE. (Aflcran EtckiqHlisrlim 1816.)
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