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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. IV


The Cowgate.] THE CORPORATIONS. 265 of the first places where woollen goods were made, and had, at one time, the most important wool market in Britain. The hatmakers were formed into a corporation in 1473, when ten masters of the craft presented a petition to that effect; but the bonnet-makers did not receive their seal of cause till 1530, prior to which they had been united with the walkers and shearers, with whom they were bound to uphold the al+a of St Mark in St Giles?s Church. In the articles and conditions it contained ; but it is said that a seal was issued In 1508, Thomas Greg, (? Kirk-master of the flescheour craft,? OD behalf of the same, brought before the Council a complaint, that certain persons, not? freemen of the craft or the burgh, interfered with their privileges, and had them forbidden to sell meat, except on Sunday and Monday, the free market days, ? quhill thai obtene thair fredome.? The coopers were incorporated in 1489, binding - INTERIOR OF THE CHAPEL OF ST. MARY MAGDALENE. - 1685 an Act of Parliament confirmed all their privileges, together with those of the litsters, or dyers. About the middle of the seventeenth century, owing to the spread of the use of hats, instead of the national bonnet, among the upper classes, this society was reduced to so low a condition that its members could neither support their families or the expense of a society. The fleshers were a very old corporation, but the precise date of their charter is not very clear. In 1483 regulations concerning the fleshers dealing in fish in Lent, &c, were issued by the magistrates, whom they petitioned in 1488 for a seal of cause, which petition was taken into consideration by the Council, who ratified and confirmed the whole of 83 themselves to uphold the altar of St. John in St. Giles?s Church. The walkers obtained their seal of cause in August, 1500. They had an altar in the same church dedicated to SS. Mark, Philip, and Jacob, to which the following among other fees were paid :- Each master, on taking an apprentice paid ten shillings Scots ; and on any master taking into his service, either the apprentice or journeyman of any other master, he paid twenty shillings Scots ; if any craftsman was found working with cards in the country, he was to forfeit the sum of fifteen shillings Scots, to be equally divided between the work of Si Giles?s, their altar, and the informer. It is also
Volume 4 Page 265
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