Edinburgh Bookshelf

Old and New Edinburgh Vol. I


1628, by numerous wooden booths being stuck up all around it, chiefly between the buttresses, some of which were actually cut away for this ignoble purpose, while the lower tracery of the windows was destroyed by their lean-to roofs, just as we may see still in the instance of many churches in Belgium. These wretched edifices were called the Krames, yet, as if to show that some reverence was still paid to the sanctity of the place, the Town Council decreed, ?? that no tradesman should be admitted to these shops except bookbinders, mortmakers (i.e. watchmakers)] jewellers, and goldsmiths.? ? Bookbinders,? says Robert Chambers, ?must be in this instance meant to signify booksellers, the latter term being then unknown in Scotland ;? but within the memory of many still Displaying double-beaded winged dmgons clustering round a central rose with the hook of the altar lam?. Sanction was given in the early part of 1878 by the municipal authorities for extensive restorations, to be conducted in a spirit and taste un known to thebarbarous ?improvers? of 1829. At the head of the restoration committee was placed Dr. Rilliam Chambers, the well-known publisher and author. According to the plans laid before it, the last of the temporary partitions were to be removed, the rich-shaped pillars embedded therein to be uncovered and restored ; the galleries and pews swept away, when the church will assume its old cruciform aspect. ? By these operations the Montrose aisle will be uncovered, and form an interesting historical object. Provision is made for the Knights of the Thistle, if they should desire it, erecting their stalls, as is done by the Knights of east angle of the church. Another account says they were named from the infamous Lady March, wife of the Earl of Arran, the profligate chancellor of James VI., from whom the nine o?clock bell was also named ?The Lady Bell,? as it was rung an hour later to suit herself. An old gentlewoman mentioned in the ?? Traditions of Edinburgh,? who died in 1802, was wont to own that she had, in her youth, seen both the sfdtue and the steps ; but it is extremely unlikely that the former would escape the iconoclasts of 1559, who left the church almost a ruin. But time has accomplished a change that John Knox and ?Jenny Geddes? could fittle foresee ! was ordered for the church. ?The instrument,? says the Scofsmzn, ?consists of two full manuals and a pedal organ of full compass. The great organ contains eleven stops, and one of sixteen feet in metal. There are eleven stops in the swell organ, and one of sixteen feet in wood. The pedal organ contains five stops, including two of sixteen feet in wood, and one of sixteen feet in metal. In the great organ there is to be a silver clarionet of eight feet; a patent pneumatic action is fitted to the keys, and the organ will be blown by a double cylinder hydraulic engine.? In its most palmy days old St. Gilas?s couldnevei boast of such ?a kist 0? whistles ? as this !
Volume 1 Page 147
  Shrink Shrink   Print Print   Pictures Pictures