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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. II


240 OLD AND NEW EDINBURGH. [High Street. When the Company of Merchant Tailors in London requested James to become a member of their guild, he declined, on the plea that he ?was already free of another company,? and referred to the similar corporation in his native capital, but added that his son Henry, the Prince of Wales, would avail himself of the honour, and that he himself would be present at the ceremony. From ?? Guthrie?s Memoirs? we learn that in 1643 a solemn and important meeting was held in the Tailor?s Hall between the conservators of peace with England and commission of the General Assembly. St. Magdalene?s Chapel, and the modern Mary?s Chapel in Bell?s Wynd, form the chief halls of the remaining corporations of Edinburgh that have long survived the purposes for which they were originally incorporated. In August, 1758, there occurred a dreadful fire in Carrubber?sClose, onwhich occasion four tenements containing fifteen famiiies were burned down, and many personswere severely injured. Towards the end of the eighteenth century gentility was still lingering here, for in the Edizburgi Adverfiser for 1783 we read of the house of Stuart Barclay of Collairniehaving a drawing-room in its ruins thirty-five persons, and shooting out into the broad street a mighty heap of rubbish. A few of the inmates almost miraculously escaped destruction from the peculiar way in which some of the strong oak beams and fragments of flooring fell over them; and among those who did so was a lad, whose sculptured effigy, as a memorial of the event, now decorates a window of the new edifice, with a scroll, whereon are carved the words he was heard uttering piteously to those who were digging out the killed and wounded: ?? Heave awa, lads, I?m no deid yet !? ST. PAUL?S CHAPEL, CARRIJBBER?S CLOSE. - - measuring Igft. by 14ft.-being for sale; and also . that belonging to Neil Campbell of Dantroon, at the foot of the close. At the head of Bailie Fyfe?s Close, No. 107, High Street, there stood a stately old stone tenement, having carved above one of its upper windows a shield bearing two mullets in chief, with a crescent in base-the arms of Trotter, with the initials I. T. I. M., and the date 1612. Elsewhere there was another shield, having the arms of the Par?ieys of Yorkshire impaled with those of Hay, and the legend Be. Pasienf , in. the. Lord, and to this edifice a peculiar interest is attached. After standing for close on 250 years, it sank suddenly-and without any premonitory symptoms or warning-to the ground with a terrible crash at midnight on the 10th of November, 1861, burying In Chalmer?s Close an old house was connected in a remote way with the famous Lord Francis Jeffrey, whose grandfather dwelt there when in the trade as a barber and periwig maker, and the old close is said to have been in his boyhood a favourite haunt of the future judge and critic. In large old English letters the name JOHN HOPE appears cut over the doorway of an adjacent turnpike stair, with a coat pf arms, now completely obliterated, and on the bed-corbel of the crowstepped gable is another shield, sculptured with a coat armorial and the initials I. H. Moulded mullions and transoms divided the large windows. - a rather uncommon feature in Scottish domestic architecture; and from the general remains of decayed magnificence, the name, initials, and armc, this is supposed-but cannot be absolutely declared -to be the mansion of the founder of the noble family of Hopetoun, John de Hope, who came from France in the retinue of Magdalene of Valois, the first queen of James V., and who, with his son Edward, bad two booths eastward of the old Kirk Style. But the name of Hope was known in Scotland in the days of Alexander 111. ; and James III., in 1488, gave to Thomas Hope a grant of some land near Leith. No. 71 is Sandiland?s Close, where tradition, but tradition only, avers there dwelt that learned and munificent prelate, James Kennedy, Bishop of Dunkeld, Lord High Chancellor, and the upright
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High Street.] BISHOP KENNEDY. 241 counsellor of James 11. and James 111. The building indicated as having been his residence is a large stone tenement of great antiquity on the east side, having thereon a coat of arms and a mitre, which were removed a few years ago ; and our best antiquary asserts that ?? the whole appearance of the building is perfectly consistent with the supposition? that it had been Bishop Kennedy?s abode. ? The form and decorations of the doorways all prove an early date ; while the large ?A large and convenient house, entering by a close mostly paved with flagstones, on the north side of the street near the Nether Bow, consisting of eight rooms, painted last year, or papered, some with Chinese paper ; a marble chimney-piece from the ceiling in one, concaves and slabes (sic) two other of the rooms ; the drawing-room elegantly fitted up, painted, gilded, and carved in the newest style, with light closets to all the bed-rooms and other conveniences to the dining-room and parlour ; HOUSE IN HIGH STREET WITH MEMORIAL WINDOW, I? HEAVE AWA, LADS, I?M NO DEID YET !? and elegant mouldings of the windows, and the massive appearance of the whole building, indicate such magnificence as would well consort with the dignity of the primacy at that early period.? Bishop Kennedy, author of a history of his own times, now lost, died in 1466, and was interred at St. Andrews. . Baron Grant?s and Bailie Grant?s Closes were among the last alleys on this side, adjoining the Nether Bow Port. An advertisement in the Edinburgh Cvurani for 1761, in describing the house of Mr. Grant (who was a Baron of the Exchequer Court) as offered for sale, gives us a pretty accurate idea of what a mansion in the Old Town was in those days :- 31 wine cellar and large kitchen, a coal-fauld, fire-room for servants, and larder; a hen-house and cribbs, for feeding all sorts of fowls ; a house for a sedanchair; a rack to contain 10 gross of bottles, all built and slated; a garden extending down the greatest part of Leith Wynd, planted with flowering shrubs, and servitude for a separate entry to it, passing by the gate of Lord Edgefield?s house.? The garden referred to must have been bounded by the massive portion of the eastern wall of the city, which fell down about twenty years ago ; and the Lord Edgefield, whose neighbour the Baron had been, was Mr. Robert Pringle, who was raised to the Bench in 1754, and, dying ten years after, was succeeded by the well-known Lord Pitfour.
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