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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. II


364 OLD AND NEW EDINBURGH. [Moultray?s Hill. + CHAPTER XLVII. MOULTRAY?S HILL-HER MAJESTY?S GENERAL REGISTER HOUSE. The Moultrays of :hat Ilk-Village of Moultray?s Hill-The Chapel of St. Ninian-St. James?s SquaeBuuker?s Hill-Mr. Dundas-Robert Burns?s House-State of the Scottish Records-Indifference .of the Government in r74c-The Register House built-Its Objects and Sie-Curious Documents prc;erved in this House-lhe Office of Lord Clerk Register-The Secretary?s Register-The Register of Sasines-The Lyon King .f Arms-Sir Dnrid Lindesay-Sir James Balfour-Sir Alexander ErskintNcw Register House-Great and Privy Seals of Scotland-The Wellington Statue. AT the north end of the bridge, and immediately opposite it and the New General Post Office, the ground forming the east end of the main ridge onwhich the New Town is built rises to some elevation, and bore the name of Multrie?s or Moultray?s Hill, which Lord Hailes in his ?Annals ? supposes to be the corruption of two Gaelic words ?signifying the covert or receptacle of the wild boar;? but it would appear rather to have taken its name from the fact of its being the residence of the Moultrays of Seafield, a baronial Fifeshire family of eminence in the time of James IV., whose lonely old tower stands in ruins upon a wave-washed rock near K i n g h o r n. Alexander Stemart of Grenane (ancestor of the Earls of Galloway), who fell: at Flodden, left sixteen daughters, one of whom was married to Moultray of Seafield, and another to Tours of Inverassize,? in a criminal trial, as recorded by Pitcairn. In 1715 Alexander Malloch of Moultray?s Hill quitted this ancient house at Edinburgh, to join the DK. JOHN HOPE. (AferKay.) leith, whose castle in those days would be quite visible from the height where St. James?s Square stands. The name first occurs in Scottish records, in the time of David II., when ? I Henry Multra? had the lands of Greenhill, near Edinburgh, of Henry Braid of that ilk. On the 7th of February, 1549, John Moultray of Seafield signed a charter in the chartulary of Dunfermline. In 1559, the laird being of the Catholic faction, had to furnish the insurgent lords with corn and cattle. They besieged his tower, and took him prisoner, but released him on parole not to assist the queen regent?s French troops. In 1559 Moultray of Seafield m?as chancellor of ?ane Highlanders under Brigadier Macintosh of Borlum, but was shot dead in mistake by them near the village of Jock?s Lodge; and after 1739 the older family, which became extinct, was represented by the Moultrays of Rescobie. From the abode of this old race, then, Moultray?s Hilltook itsname. Gordon of Rothiemay?s map shows a large quadrangular edifice, with gables and dormer windows crowning the apex of the hill, which may be the residence of the family referred to ; but by 1701 quite a suburban village had sprung up in that quarter, the occupants of which, weavers and other tradesmen, had the quarrel, recorded elsewhere, withthe magistrates of Edinburgh, who, to punish them, closed Halkerston?s Wynd Port, and, by the loch sluice, flooded the pathway that led to their houses. In 1765 the village seems to have consisted of at least ten distinct blocks of several houses each, surrounded by gardens and parks, on each side of the extreme east end of the Long Gate (now Princes Street), and from thence Leith Street takes precisely the curve of the old road, on its way to join the Walk. At the eastern foot of this hill, exactly where now stands the western pier of the Regent Bridge, deep down in a narrow hollow, stood the ancient chapel of St. Ninian (or St. Ringan, ?whose fame,? says Nirnmo, ?? has been embalmed in the many churches
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Moultray?s Hill.] ST. NINIAN. ?hC register house buildings births deaths marriages wellington lord wellington princes street
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