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Ql0rtt?U lltttoFraitg ICibrarg 

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CLASS OF 1893 


3 1924 091 785 471 



Cornell University 

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the Cornell University Library. 

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Chap. T. Introductory Notices, ...... 1 

Chap. II. Buteshire, . .... . 24 

Chap. III. Stirlingshire, ........ 40 

Chap. IY. ClacTimannanshire, ........ 87 

Chap. V. Kinross-shire, . ..... 99 

Chap. VI. Fifeshire, 112 

Chap. VII. Argyleshire, ■ . . . : . . . . 144 

Chap. VIII. Perthshire, ... . . 163 

Chap. IX. Aberdeenshire, .... . . 212 

Chap. X. Banffshire, . 237 

Chap. XL Elginshire, .... . . 257 


This volume contains all the completed MS. of Caledonia left by George 
Chalmers, and deposited in the Advocates' Library, Edinburgh. 

Considerable collections were left by him there and in other quarters 
towards describing the remaining Counties, but after much careful examina- 
tion and consideration it has been decided that no useful purpose would be 
served by printing these owing to their disjointed and fragmentary condition ; 
and to attempt to put one's self back nearly a century and complete the 
descriptions from these fragments, is an impossibility. 

It was intended to have included in this volume the full Index to the 
entire work, but the labour and time involved in its preparation is so great 
that it has reluctantly been resolved to issue the present volume separately. 
The Index volume is in an advanced stage of preparation, and will follow as 
speedily as its careful and accurate compilation will permit. 

November, 1894. 





Introductory Notices of its General State. 

§ I. Or THE Pkogress of this Work. — I now presume to offer to the 
curious reader the fourth volume of Caledonia, which I beg to submit for 
illuminating the obscurities and clearing the difficulties that embarrass the 
Caledonian Annals. 

§ II. Of the Various Topics of Volume I. — The first volume professed 
to treat of the North British history in four Books, which comprehend so many- 
periods : 

1. The Roman Period, consisting of the transactions of the Roman 

power in that country from the rule of Agricola in 89 a.d. till 
the Roman departure in 446. 

2. The Pictish Period, which commenced with that event, and ended 

with the amalgamation of the Picts and Scots in 843 A.D. 

3. The Scottish Period, which began with the memorable union of 

those celebrated people, and which closed when their distracted 
affairs were tranquillized, by the Supercession of the Caledonian 
Constitution in 1097. 

2 AnAOOOUNT [Cb. I.— Introductory. 

4. With those memorable events began the Scoto-Saxon Period, 
which, after many incidents both adverse and prosperous, ended 
with the restoration of the monarchy by the accession of Robert 
Bruce and the demise of Edward I. Such, then, were the 
interesting- Contents of the first volume of Caledonia. 

§ in. Of the Topics of the Second and Third Tomes of this Work. — 
These topics consisted of the topographical history of seven Shires in eight 
Sections in the Second Tome, and of eight Shires in the third ; all lying on the 
southern banks of the Forth and Clyde. The present volume will comprehend 
eleven counties, beginning with Stirlingshire and ending with Nairnshire. The 
topographical history of all those Counties chiefly consists : 

1. Of the Name. 

2. Of the Situation and Extent of each. 

3. Of the Natural Objects. 

4. Of the Antiquities. 

5. Of the Establishment of the Shire in each. 

6. Of its Civil History. 

7. Of the Agriculture, Manufactures, and Trade. 

8. Of the Ecclesiastical History of each. 

Such, then, are the topics whereby it is proposed to clear the doubtful, to 
illustrate the obscure, and to disintangle the intricate of those various subjects. 

§ IV. Op the Dissimilar Lineages op the Caledonian People. — What 
has been already written need not be repeated, and what has been demonstrated 
need scarcely to be re-examined. Some men, however, there will always be 
who will not hesitate dislike when they meet with reasonings which seem new 
to them ; who abound, in their own sense of things ; and who find it a very 
easy task to reprehend those whom they cannot confute. 

In opposition to such objectors it has been affirmed, and not opposed, that 
the Caledonians who met Agricola in conflict were undoubtedly the unmixed 
descendants of the Celtic aborigines of the British Island. In the progress of 
ages the first people may seem to weak intellects to have acquired new dis- 
criminations, and in the advancement of their fortunes to have appeared to 
contemporary observers under a new name ; but the Pictish people who became 
predominant upon the Roman recession, are acknowledged by intelligent 
inquirers to be merely the genuine descendants of the original Colonists under 
a novel appellation. 

The fundamental positions touching this important subject which are 
established in Caledonia are : 

Sect. IV.— Of the Caledonian People.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 3 

1. That the original inhabitants of South and North Britain were all 

Celtic ; that the same Celtic tribes who peopled South and North 
Britain also colonised Ireland. 

The proofs of those positions besides the authorities of Roman authors, in 
addition to probability; are the names, and in many instances the sameness of 
the names in South and North Britain, and also in Ireland, as they appear in 
Ptolemy and Bichard ; and the sameness of the names of places in South and 
in North Britain, from more recent authority, compared and explained from the 
Celtic speech at great length, namely. 

Of promontories, harbours, and hills. 

Of rivers, rivulets, and waters. 

Of miscellaneous districts. 

2. That the Caledonians of the first century and the Colonists, who 

were called Picts at the end of the third century, were the same 
Celtic people who were called Picts by different names at conse- 
cutive times ; and, of course, that the Picts were a Celtic people ; 
that is a Cambro-British people. Thus the main point of the 
Pictish question is satisfactorily established by the several proofs 
above mentioned. 

3. That the first Gothic people who settled in North Britain were the 

Saxons in Lothian durhig the fifth century, who soon spread 
themselves over the Southern parts of North Britain. 

4. The settlement of the Scoto-Irish in Kintyre during the year 503, 

who pushed their settlements over the Western districts of the 
neighbouring countries, and at length overpowered the Picts in 
843 A.D. After this great event they carried their settlements 
over the whole country, which from those events became known 
at length by the distinguished name of Scotland. 

5. The settlement of the Scoto-Irish Cx'uithne in Galloway at the end 

of the eighth century, goes to effectuate the same proofs. 

6. The establishment of the Gothic Scandinavians in Orkney and Shet- 

land, and subsequently on the coasts of Caithness and of Sutherland, 
as well as partially on the shores of the Hebride Isles, supply 
additional proofs by showing a manifest difference in local names from 
those of other parts of Scotland. 

7. That no Gothic people colonized proper Scotland in the Northern side 

of Bodotrea, that is, the country from the Frith of Forth to the Frith 
of Moray ; the country this of the Picts at any anterior time to the 

4. AnAOOOUNT [Oh. I.— Introductory . 

twelfth century ; and that the Teutonic people who settled m this 
region in the twelfth and subsequent centuries were the Saxons from 
the South of the Forth and from the North of England, and the 
Flemings from the South, some of whom were soldiers of fortune who 
settled in the same country of the Picts, and particularly m the 
towns which were mostly colonized by English, as we may learn from 
Newbrig. This position under article seventh, which is so important 
and at the same time so adverse to the fiction of the Picts being a 
Gothic people, is supported by a variety of proofs, and particularly by 
the topographic language of the country from the Frith of Forth to 
the Frith of Moray, a great part of which is Celtic, and the names 
which are not Celtic are either all Scoto-Saxon or English ; and the 
Scoto- Saxon names are of a more modern cast than those on the 
South of the Forth, and still more than those of the Orkney and the 
Hebrides. Such, then, is the truth with regard to the origin and 
names of the Picts and Scots, which I formerly settled from an 
investigation of the names of places in the maps, wherein, finding in 
proper Scotland scarcely any but Celtic appellations, I formed my 
judgment that the Picts and Scots were of a Celtic and not a Gothic 
origin ; in which opinion, however, T am not singular. Bishop Lloyd 
in his Church Government reasons the matter in this manner : " The 
Picts, who had the rest of this Island of Britain, inhabited the North 
part of Scotland, which, from Graham's Dike before-mentioned, 
extended as far as the North ocean. They were anciently called 
Caledons (a) or Caledonians, that is, perhaps Cilyddion, Borderers, 
etc. in the British tongue, and were not of a different language from 
the Britons {b) ; nor were they called by any other name that we 
read of till about 300 years after Christ. Then we find them (c) first 
called Picts, because they still continued the old British use of paint- 
ing their bodies {d) : and yet they that lived next the Roman frontier 
were still called Caledones, that is, borderers (e), and were by that 
name distinguished from the other Picts. Who those other Picts 
were we learn from Ammian, that writ about fourscore years after. 

(a) Taciti Vita Agricola, c. 25. (ft) Oamden Brit., p. 83. 

(c) Eumenii Paneg. ad Oonstantium, p. 258 ; V. Ussher Prim., p. 586. 

{d) Olaudian de III. Cons. Honoris, ver. 54, calls them nee false nomine Pictos, and V. Olaudian de 
bello Getioo, v. 418. 

(e) Paneg. ad Oonstantium, p. 235 ; Oaledonum aliorumque Pictorum Sylvas and Preludes ; 2 
Ammian 27, p. 346 ; i., 30. 

Sect. IV.— 0/ the Caledonian People. JOpNOBTH-BEITAIN. 5 

For he tells us (/" ) there were two nations of the Picts which were 
called Di-Caledones and Vecturiones, perhaps Deucllyddion and 
Chwithwrion [g), that is, in British, the Southern Caledones or 
Borderers, and the Northern men. No doubt the same that were 
afterwards called the South and North Picts, which, as Bede saith {h), 
were separated from each other by a ledge of high and steep 
mountains that lay between them. These mountains, I suppose (?'), 
wei-e the same that were called Mons Grampians by the ancients, and 
are now called Grampian Hills, among which hills [j) the country is 
called Braid Alhan, that is high Albion, and the highest of them is 
called Drum Albin, that is the back or ridge of Alban or Britain, 
Avhich I mention as being perhaps the only remains of that most 
ancient name of this island. 

Ireland the meanwhile was inhabited by the Scots, and from them was called 
Scotland by the writers that lived in those times. The first writer that men- 
tions the name of Scots is Porphyry (/;) in a book which seems to have been, 
written about the year of Christ 300 ; for there, as it is quoted in St. Jerome (l), 
he calleth Britain a province fruitful of tyrants ; referring chiefly, no doubt, to 
those, Caranzius, Alectus, Asclepidotus, that set up then against Dioclesian, 
and there he speaks of the Scottish nations apart, as not living in Britain at 
that time, but that their dwelling then was in Ireland is afiirmed by Orosius {m), 
in his history, which was written in the year 417 ; his words are, Ireland is 
inhabited by the nations of the Scots, with which agrees that of Claudian (n), 
who wrote twenty years before that the Scots rose all over Ireland, and made 
the sea foam with their oars ; and again (o), that Ireland wept over the heaps 
of Scots that were slain. So Prosper, within twenty years after Orosius, calls 
that in which the Scots lived the barbarous island, in contradistinction to 
Britain, which he calleth the Roman Island. Therefore Ireland is called Scotia 
by the writers of those times ; particularly by him that calleth himself Hege- 
sippus (p), who was either St. Ambrose or a writer of that age {q). So Isidore (?■), 

(/) Ammian, i., 27, p. 346 ; i., 30. 

(^g) Deu and Ohwith, right and left, were anciently used for Soulli and North. V. Usher Prim., p. 
80 and 1021. (h) Bed. Hist., iii. iv., p. 168. (i) Atlas Scot., p. 76. 

{j) lb., p. 113. (Jc) Ussher de Primon, pp. 586, 728. 

(J) Hieron. Epist. ad Ctesiph. Tom., ii., p. 259. (m) Oros. Hist., i. 2, in Europa. 

(ra) Claudian de Pro. Oons. Stilicho, i. 2, v. 251, totum cum Scotus Ternen movit et infesto Spum- 
avit, remige Tethys. (o) Claudian de IV., Cons. Hon., v. 33. Scotorum oumulos flevit glacialis Terne. 

[p) Hegesippus de Bell. Judaic, v., 15. (§■) Gronov. Monobibl. 

(r) Isidor originum xiv. 6, p. 193 ; B. Scotia eadem et Hibernia. 

6 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. I.— Introductory. 

about the year 620 A.D., saith Scotia is the same with Hibernia.^ Gildas (s), who 
writ in the year 564 a.d., calls the same people sometimes Scoti and sometimes 
Hiherni. Cogitosus saith of Kildare in Ireland {t) that it was the safest place 
in all the land of the Scots. So Adamnanus {u), about the year 680, calleth it 
the Isle of Scotland, and saith of Columba that he sailed out of Scotland into 
Britain {v). So Bede, in his history, which was writ about forty years after, 
calls it the Isle of Scotland, and hath the words Scotland and Ireland used 
promiscuously for the same in general places {ic). And King Alfred in his 
Saxon translation {x) of Orosius, at the passage which I have mentioned, hath 
these words, Ibernia, that we call Scotland ; and in his translation of Bede (y) 
he calls it Hibernia, Scotland, and sometimes Hiberina the Scots island (z). 
But not to burden the reader with more quotations I shall refer him to the 
most learned Bishop Ussher (a), who at large proves the use of the word, and 
thus concludes : (6) " I do not believe that there is any writer that lived within 
a thousand years after Christ that once mentioned the name of Scotland and 
doth not mean Ireland by it." 

But at what time did the Scots come to settle in Scotland ? Boece and 
Buchanan have said that they came here 330 years before the birth of Christ. 
These fictions no man can pretend any ground for in any ancient history ; but 
that the Scots dwelt in this island, at least in the time of Julius Caesar, 
Buchanan maintains against Humphry Lluyd, an excellent poet against an 
excellent antiquaiy, as Camden well judgeth between them (c). 

I leave the reader to him for an account of the authorities. Only one, that 
is the chief, I ought to take notice of, because it proves that the Scots did not 
dwell here in Caesar's time {d) ; and yet from the same place Buchanan proves 
they did by construing it falsely, for which Camden ought to have given him 
correction. The words themselves I have submitted to the reader, wherein 
Buchanan says that sali Britanni is not the nominative case but the genitive, 
and so he construes it thus, that before Caesar's coming hither the Britons 

(s) Gild, de excedis Brit., 1. 1, p. 1006-7. {t) Cogitosi vita Brigidse, ch. 14. 

(u) Adamn. vita Ool., i. 12 ; Insula Scotica. 

(r) lb. i., de Scotia ad Britaniam enavagivit so essit Badg. an 565. 

{w) lb., ii. 4, and iv. 226, p. 345. {x) Ussher Prim., p. 731. 

(y) Bede Hist, lib., v., p. 120. {z) lb., iii., 7, p, 177, and iv., 26, p. 345. 

(a) Ussher Prim., p. 725, etc. 

(J) lb., p. 734, speaking of the eleventh century he saith, neminem qui toto ante oendentium anno- 
vem spatio sovisterit, produci posse arbitramur, qui Scotia Appellatione Alboniam Unquam designa- 
varit. (c) Camb. Brit. 89 in Scoti. 

(d) Panegyr. Maximinians, p. 258. "Ad hoc natio etiam tunc rudis, et sali Britanni Pictic modo 
et Hibernis assucta hostibus ad hue Seminudis, facile Eomanis armis signisque cesserunt. 

Sect. IV.— 0/ the Caledonian People.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 7 

fought against the Scots and Picts of the Pictish soil, as he explains it. If this 
were so, the words would be clearly of his side ; but being construed truly, they 
are as truly against him. For this is it that the orator drives at, comparing 
the victory of Constantius over Caranzius in Britain, with that which Caesar 
formerly gained over the Britons, he would show that this of Constantius was 
the greater action of the two. For, saith he, Caesar had several advantages 
which Constantius had not. Moreover, the nation that he overcame being yet 
rude, unskilful of war, and only Britons, a nation used to no other enemies 
than Picts and Irish, who were yet half-naked, easily yielded to the Roman 
arms and ensigns ; but he whom Constantius overcame having stopped some 
squadrons of auxiliaries, having mustered the Gauls that were here on account 
of merchandise, having drawn into his assistance no small forces of the barbar- 
ous nations, and having all these exercised and trained, it was no such easy 
thing to get the victory over him. I think it plain by this comparison that 
sali Britanni are not genitive but nominative, and if so, then the Irish here 
spoken of are not said to dwell in British soil as Buchanan would have it. 
Indeed to help the matter he would have them called Scots, because it sounds 
pretty well that the Scots lived in Britain. Now as to the Irish, where should 
they dwell but in Ireland ? It is scarcely sense to say the Irish of the British 
soil. Buchanan was wise, and the word Scots was more agreeable to his 
purpose. Yet, as Camden observes, the Panegyrist is as far from saying that 
the Scots were then in Britain, that he does not say that they were yet come 
into Ireland ; he only says that there were Irish then in the world, and that 
they and the Picts were enemies to the Britons ; and yet even that he did not 
speak like an historian with Camden (e), but as orators used to speak of old 
things at the rate of their own times. But besides admit they were Scots that 
he spoke of, he does not say they lived in Britain though the Picts did. He 
only saith that both these nations were enemies to the Britons, the Picts, 
indeed, living in the same continent, made incursions upon them by land, which 
was an act of hostility ; the Irish, who lived in another island, came in their 
Curroughs and robbed them by sea, which was no less an act of hostility. If 
the author had said Scoti and Picti, this had proved nothing, only it would not 
have made against Buchanan's opinion, as most evidently it doth, when the 
author saith Hiherni and Picti. He would have called them Scots rather than 
Irish, if he had thought of any other than Ireland for their country. 

But when did the Scots first come into Britain ? continues Bishop Lloyd (/), 
This question he elaborately answers, but . it is not necessary to follow him at 

(e) Oamd. Brit, in Scot., p. 89. (/) In bis Hist. Acct. of Cliui-ch Govt., p. 14. 

8 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. I.— Introductory. 

present, for Innes in his Critical Essay hath clearly shown that the Scots first 
came from Ireland and made a lasting settlement in Kintyre during the year 
503 A.D. (g). Innes' Essay throughout demonstrates the truth of the foregoing 

This much has been said from Bishop Lloyd's admirable work and from Innes' 
Critical Essay, in confirmation of what I had already written with regard to 
the lineages of the Caledonian people (h). It is well remarked by the Eev. 
Wm. Clarke in his Connection that the Highland and Lowland Scots were of 
different originals. By such elaboration I have shown, I trust, that I was not 
singular in saying that the Picts were a Celtic people, the genuine descendants 
of the aboriginal Britons who planted North Britain, and not a Gothic race of 
more recent arrival from the Scandinavian hive. 

The first person of any note who wrote absurdly on this important topic was 
the Eeverend Lachlan Shaw, who appears to have been a native Highlander, 
and who says (i), that the Pictish, English, Saxon, Danish, Swedish, Icelandic 
and Norwegian are but the various dialects of the Gothic and Teutonic lan- 
guages, as the British, Welsh, Cornish, Scottish and Irish, are dialects of the 
Gaelic and Celtic. Mr. Pinkerton in his treatise of the Goths adopted a similar 
train of nonsense ; and more recently Doctor MacCulloch, with unlucky pre- 
sumption, has adopted Mr. Pinkerton's Gothicism with an inculcation of silence 
on all who think differently from him on this interesting topic. 

The author of Caledonia has shown by incontrovertable proofs (1) That 
England, Scotland, and Ireland were originally planted by the same Celtic 
tribes ; (2) That those Celtic settlers were originally called Caledones or 
Caledonians (j), nor were they called by any other name during 300 yeai's after 
the birth of Christ ; (3) That the Caledonians were at length called Picts by 
the Roman authors, by Eumenius the Panegyrist and Claudian the Poet for 
the first time, because, like the other Caledonians, they painted their bodies ; 
(4) That in after times the same Picts were called by Ammian Dicaledones and 
Vecturiones ; (5) On the other hand, those writers who suppose the Picts to 
have been Goths have no proofs to oppose to those Latin authors, and what are 
still more irrefragable the local names in the country of the Picts, which can 
only be explained from the Celtic language ; (6) That the Scots in the mean- 
time lived in Ireland (k), and were not an indigenous people who sent a colony 
to Argyll, wherein they settled during the recent epoch of 506 ; (7) That the 

(g) Cilt. Essay, 637 ; Oron. Eeg. Sector., No, 11, p. 789. {h) Caledonia, iii., p. 2, s. iv. 

(i) Hist, of Moray, 167. He died in 1777, aged 85. (j) See Tacitus' Life of Agricola. 

(k) Orosius, wiio wrote in 417, expressly says this. 

Sect, v.— 0/ its Population.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 9 

first Teutonic or Gothic people who came from England and settled on the 
Tweed were the Saxons ; (8) That the first Scandinavian people or proper 
Goths who planted the Orkney and Shetland, and the Western Isles, as well as 
the coasts of Caithness and Sutherland, formed those settlements in much more 
recent times ; (9) That those seven positions, being all so many truisms, leave 
nothing for those objectors in support of their absurdities but loose assertion 
and ridiculous presumption. 

§ V. Op its Population. — To ascertain the progress of a people whether they 
increase or decrease is always of great importance in such disquisitions, as we 
may thereby perceive whether they have been properly or improperly governed. 
Long experience has clearly shown that the propensities of mankind, owing to 
the great primaeval command " to increase and multiply," continue to produce 
their usual efiects by the constant multiplication of their numbers. From 
enumeration, indeed, we know that the population of Scotland in the five 
following periods has greatly increased. Thus : — 

In 1755 the population of Scotland amounted to 1,255,663 souls. 
In 1791 „ „ „ 1,514,999 „ 

In 1801 „ „ „ 1,618,303 „ 

In 1811 „ „ „ 1,805,688 „ 

In 1821 „ „ „ 2,093,456 „ 

We may thus perceive that the people of the Caledonian regions in sixty-six 
years have increased to the amount of 837,793 souls, whatever may have been 
the numbers of their emigrations. The population of the towns being nearly 
one-third of the whole, and the population of the largest town was lately as 
under, according to the recent enumerations : — 

There were in Edinburgh and Leith during 1811, - - 102,693 

„ 1821, - - 138,835 

Increase, - 36,142 

There were in Glasgow and its suburbs during 1811, - - 100,749 

1821,- - 147,043 

Increase, - 46,294 

There were in Paisley during 1811, ... - 37,721 

1821, ... - 38,048 

There were in Greenock during 1811, .... 19,042 

1821, .... 22,088 

There were in Perth during 1811, - ... 16,948 

1821, ... - 19,068 
7 2 

10 AnAOOOUNT [Oil. I — Introductory. 

There were in Dundee during 1811, - - 29,016 

1821, - - 30,575 

There were in Aberdeen, Old and New, during 1811, - 36,293 

1821, - 45,928 

There were in Inverness during 1811, - - 10,757 

1821, - - 12,284 

§ VI. Or ITS Agrioulturb. — With the augmentation of her people North 
Britain has greatly improved in her agriculture, her manufactures, and her 
commerce. After some attempts to instruct the husbandmen of this country, 
they continued at the beginning of the late reign in 1760 still unskilful and 
dispirited ; but during that beneficent period the agriculturists became 
intelligent and active. In consequence the land rent became high, and the 
products of the soil rose in goodness and price, in proportion to the greater skill 
of the farmers as well as to their more active labours. 

When the spirit of industry began about the year 1748 to animate the 
country, a very intelligent writer estimated the rent of the land and houses of 
Scotland at £822,857 sterling (I) ; and the same epoch saw the husbandmen 
placed in a state of greater freedom by . the salutary abolition of the heritable 
jurisdictions. At the same time that the sum of £152,037, which the 
proprietors of those jurisdictions received for their compensations, gave a 
stronger course to the circulation of a country which during many years had 
the benefit of banks without knowing how to employ such useful machinery. 

On the 29th of August 1749, an order was made to the Exchequer for trans- 
mitting to Scotland the money certified by the Session as due to the nobility 
and gentry and others, on account of the heritable jurisdictions in that king- 
dom abolished by Act of Parliament (m). 

If it be certain that in 1 748, as we have seen, the rents of the lands and 
houses of Scotland were truly estimated by an intelligent investigator at 
£822,857 sterling, and that in 1813 the gross rental of the same lands and 
houses amounted to £6,285,309 ; it follows as a very interesting consequence 
that the agriculture of this active country had been improved meantime with 
extraordinary success. Such, it should seem, was the actual result of the for- 
mation of new boards ; of the establishment of various societies " for the 
encouragement of arts, manufactures, and agriculture"; which contributed 
their several efforts to keep alive the genius of industry among a people who 
had wasted their gallant spirits in civil war. 

(l) Scots Mag., 1748, p. 228. (m) British Chronologist, iii., p. 42. 

Sech.YLl.— Of its Roads.] Or N OE T H-B E I T AIN. 11 

§ VII. Of its Roads. — But all those plans of improvement had been adopted 
in vain if the Parliament had not wisely concurred by making communications 
in almost every shire by building bridges over every stream, and by erecting a 
mole for protecting every harbour. The roads and bridges and moles, which 
the Parliamentary Commissioners established with equal policy and skill, for 
connecting the Highlands with the Lowlands, and the countries producing 
cattle with the capital towns consuming them, thereby exceeded the usefulness 
and emulated the grandeur of the Greek knowledge and the Roman opera- 
tions (n). Upon those most important measures of domestic economy there was 
expended of public money, in the busy period from 1733 to 1821, no less than 
£600,000. But those Commissioners did more. They introduced a' legal mode 
for preserving those ways and bridges and moles from becoming deteriorated 
by time or injured by inattention. 

§ VIII. Of its Canals. — Analogous to roads are Canals. The first object of 
this nature was formed in the neighbourhood of Edinburgh as far back as 1739. 
A tunnel of considerable extent was cut through the great bank whereon the 
village of Inveresk stands, under the direction of William Adam, one of the 
celebrated architects of that name ; the object of this work being to drain the 
coalfield at Pinkie (o). The second canal which was formed in Scotland was 
that near Saltcoats in Ayrshire, and which was opened in 1772, for carrying 
coals from Seabank and Ardeer to the harbour of Saltcoats. In the same 
county of Ayr, at Muirkirk, a canal more than a mile long has been made for 
transporting metal to the iron works there, and for supplying the machinery 
with water. In Galloway, Mr. Gordon of Culvornan, near forty years ago, 
made a canal a mile and a half long from Carlinwark to the river Dee ; and he 
thus obtained a navigation for boats loaded with marie, to navigate upon the 
Dee and the Ken to New Galloway, which is 15 miles distant. In 1802 an 
Act of Parliament passed for making a canal from the boatpool of Dairy, in the 
Glenkens, to Kirkcudbright, which is distant more than 25 miles, (p). 

In Kintyre, within Argyle, a canal three miles long, on one level was made 
about 80 years ago (1794) by the lessee of the coal works, for carrying that 
mineral to Campbeltown (q). 

A communication by a canal between the Forth and Clyde had been long in 
contemplation, even at the commencement of the late reign. In 1763 the 
Board of Trustees for fisheries and manufactures had the tract for it surveyed 

(n) See Caledonia, iii. p. 8 in the note h. 

(o) The report on a canal upon one level, by Eobert Stevenson, Edinburgh, 1817, p. 21. 

(p) 42 G. 3, ch. 114. (q) Agricult. View of Argyle, 297. 

12 An ACCOUNT [Oh. I.— Introductory. 

and planned by the very able engineer John Smeaton. After various obstruc- 
tions and delays, an Act of Parliament being at length obtained, this great and 
useful work was begun on the 10th of July, 1768, and was carried forward to 
Stocking-field before the 16th of July, 1770. In November, 1777, this vast 
enterprise was brought forward to Hamilton-hill above Glasgow, but it was not 
carried to the Clyde at Bowling Bay till the 28th of July 1790, at the end of 
two and twenty years (r). 

In addition to this great work, there are two other canals which are con- 
nected with Glasgow. The Monkland Canal, for bringing coals to that 
populous neighbourhood ; and the Ardrossan and Glasgow Canal, which 
commences on the Clyde at Tradeston, a suburb of Glasgow, traverses 
Henfrewshire to Johnstone, and was originally intended to enter the Frith of 
Clyde at Ardrossan in Ayrshire. 

In that vicinity is the Crinan Canal, affording a passage between Loch 
Crinan on the west coast of the mainland of Argyleshire, and Loch Fyne (as 
connected with the Clyde) to the eastward, and thereby saving a tedious 
voyage of thirty of forty leagues round the Mull of Kintyre. The length of 
this canal is nearly nine miles, and between ten and eleven feet in depth, with 
locks of ninety-six by twenty -four feet. This canal is of the more importance 
than it would seem from a slight view, that by the means and aid of the 
Caledonian Canal it opens an interior and easy communication with the fruitful 
countries on the Moray Frith and the commercial towns on the Clyde. 

The active city of Aberdeen enjoys the advantages of a canal, which has 
been carried up a dozen miles into the country towards the Garioch and the 
neighbourhood of Inverurie, and which transports reciprocally heavy articles 
between the city and the interior. The late Mr. J. Ferguson of Pitfour caused 
a small canal to be opened between the sea and his estate in Buchan, near the 
river Ugie, which can be deemed important only in proportion to its dimensions 
and accommodations (s). 

(r) See Mr. Hopkirk's excellent account of those great operations, Glasgow, 1816. The population 
of Glasgow in 1791 was 66,578, and in 1821 it amounted to 147,043. Glasgow had happily all the 
means which concur to effect the success and populousness of any town. It has among other means a 
navigable river and three canals, which contribute to its industry, its enterprise, and its opulence. The 
number of passengers on this canal was — 

1° -^820, - - . . 89,074 persons. 

In 1821, - - . . 78,085. 

Inl822, .... 87,955. 

Inl823, - . . 83,142. 

(The increase arose from the King's visit to Edinburgh and the fine weather.) 
(«) Eennie's Eeport. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Canals.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 13 

The City of Edinburgh has been the means of opening a canal from that 
capital to Glasgow, which has been called " The Union Canal." It was 
constructed by taking advantage of the Forth and Clyde Canal, and by 
beginning at the lock No. 16, within two miles of Falkirk, and is carried thence 
through a rich, populous, and enterprising neighbourhood and country. This 
measure adds greatly to the use and importance of the Forth and Clyde Canal 
by adding to the transport of goods and the conveyance of passengers. It was 
not originally foreseen that so many travellers as eighty-five thousand yearly 
would take the benefit of such a conveyance. But the fact seems to be that 
the commodious transport has promoted greatly the commodious accommodation 
and frequent intercourse. It was formerly a very serious afPair to bring suitors, 
and witnesses, and students, and adventurers, as well as travellers of any sort, 
from the Hebrides to Edinburgh ; but all those parties can now perform that 
journey without risk or trouble, or delay or expense, by means of the steam- 
boats belonging to the Clyde, and transhipping their persons and their baggage 
in the passage boats for Edinburgh, and even for London. 

Come we iiovy to the Caledonian Canal, which though last is not least in its 
value and importance. The object of this great measure was to form " an 
inland navigation from the Eastern to the Western Sea by Inverness and Fort 
William " under Parliamentary Commissioners. The original survey for that 
canal was made by the celebrated James Watt. The necessary track and 
other preparations for executing this stupendous work vs^ere made in autumn,, 
1803, and the canal was opened in October, 1822. The length of this naviga- 
tion is 60^ miles, whereof the lochs or waters were 37 miles 32 chains. The 
depth proposed was 20 feet, and the locks 38 feet long, and the chambers were 
152 feet. The whole expenditure thereon amounted to £937,154 16s. 5jd., 
sterling money. 

This has already commenced its accommodation to the various shipping 
which has occasion to pass from sea to sea. No fewer than 844 vessels have 
been there accommodated, though some of them went no further than Fort 
Augustus, which may be deemed the half-way house of this passage ; and the 
winds of this great valley being variable and not stationary, as had been 
formerly supposed, those vessels made use of their sails only, and of course did 
not require to be drawn by horses, and thus has been opened a new scene of 
domestic trade between the fruitful shores of the Moray Frith with the 
commercial towns on the capacious Clyde, 

Among a thousand advantages to be derived from those canals, one, and not 
the least, is to teach the people what they did not know before. The High- 
landers were instructed how to measure the excavations which they 

14 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. 1.— Introductory. 

engaged to perform, the millers were taught how to form their milldams by 
seeing what angle made the strongest mound, and the whole inhabitants were 
shown what mighty works could be effected by ingenuity and labour while 
constantly energised by liberal expenditure. 

Analogous to canals is the deepening of rivers. By persevering in excavating 
the Clyde, the magistrates of Glasgow, under the skilful guidance of Rennie, 
have enabled oversea vessels to deliver their cargoes at the well-known landing 
place of that city called the Broomielaw. Such is the power of the new 
machine applied to deepening of the Clyde that in the course of a few days it 
dug out above 7000 tons of earth, and cleared away the bank extending 
opposite Finnieston to the length of 140 yards and 40 feet wide, thereby 
deepening the river nearly two feet in all that space. The consequence is a 
safe navigation where vessels were formerly apt to take the ground. 

To all those local improvements ought to be added the enlargement and 
deepening of harbours. Leith and Greenock were both thus improved, accord- 
ing to the elaborate suggestions of the same engineer. Peterhead and others 
were equally benefitted by the same means. 

§ VIII. Or Banks and Circula.tion. — But those vast enterprises could not 
have been executed without lai-ge sums of money, and so much money could 
not have been raised without the aid of banks. The epoch of such establish- 
ments is 1695, during the commercial infancy of England, Scotland and Ireland. 
It was at that epoch the Bank of Scotland was formed. A quarter of a century 
expired before this bank could employ to any useful purpose thirty thousand 
pounds sterling {t). A fact this, which evinces the want of agriculture and 
manufacture, of trade and shipping. But the greatest of all those wants was 
the want of commercial capital which, as far as credit is capital, those banks 
had a necessary tendency to supply. Notwithstanding the Act of Parliament, 
which was intended to promote moderation and prevent extravagance, there 
were formed banks in every district, even as far as Shetland, amounting in all, 

(t) On the 9tli of April, 1696, brancliea of that bank were settled in Dundee and Montrose, at 
Aberdeen and Glasgow. On the 29 th of December, the branches at Montrose and Aberdeen were 
recalled ; on the 2nd of July, 1697, the branch at Glasgow was recalled ; on October 6th, 1698, the 
branch at Dundee was recalled. In 1727 the Eoyal Bank was established. A competition arose 
between the two banks at Edinburgh, that money could scarcely be found to go to market with, as we 
know from the epistles of Duncan Forbes. See Caledonia, III., p. 9. On the 14th of July, 1731, 
branches were ordered to be established at Glasgow and Berwick, at Dundee and Aberdeen ; but on 
the 10th of July, 1733, all those branches were recalled. Those singular notices were copied from 
the books of the old bank for the information of the author of this work. Meantime the Eoyal Bank 
was established in 1727, and in 1746 a charter was granted to The British Linen Company. 

SectlX.— Of its Manufactures.] Of NOETH - BE IT AIN . 15 

including banks and brandies of banks, to more tban one liundred and twelve 
such establishments. The rise and progress of all those banks may be most 
clearly traced by adverting to the interest of money in Scotland during succes- 
sive periods of her afiairs, which may be seen most clearly in the note below, 
as the same appears in the Scottish Acts of Parliament, and which, preceding 
the term of Lammas, 1633, was 10 per cent., whereof 2 per cent, went to the 
King (»). 

§ IX. Of its Manufactures. — The manufactures of North Britain, as they 
had a late beginning, have had a quick progress. There is scarcely any branch 
of business in which this country does not enjoy its full share. The cotton 
manufacture has spread far in its various articles, whether we consider it under 
the head of spinning or weaving. "\^^e might infer as much from the quantity 
of cotton wool which is now imported yearly. It even appears in the Bengal 
Provinces as the rival of a native product from the skill and hands of an 
unassuming and ingenious people. Of Iron, the ore is brought from the various 
fields and mines where it universally abounds, to the great foundries, which 
rival the largest establishments of other countries. 

The wool which is produced in the countiy is wrought up into hose, rather 
than exported, by the women, or weaved into cloth by the men, so as to 
convert the material into manufactures of gTeat value. 

But it is the Linen which has been chiefly fostered, and by continual care 
and skill has been can'ied up to extent and value for sale, in addition to what 
is made for domestic use. In the year 1822 there were made for sale 
86,268,530 yards, which were valued at £1,396,296 sterling (v). 

It was to have been apprehended that the competition of richer fabrics would 
have borne down a manufacture of a feebler character ; yet we may this 
perceive, from the fact that it continues to flourish amidst other labours while 
the noise of outcry was heard. 

(m) Scots Magazine, 1742. The rates of interest of money -svas — 

From Lammas 1633 to Lammas 1636, at 10 % From Whitsun. 1695 to WMtsun. 1696, at 5 ''^ 

From „ 1696 to Martin. 1696, at 6 ,, 

From Martin. 1696 to Whitsun. 1698, at 5 „ 

From Whitsun. 1698 to Martin. 1698, at 6 „ 

From Martin. 1698 to Whitsun. 1705, at 51 „ 

From Whitsun. 1705 to Martin. 1765, at 6 „ 

From Martin. 1705 to Michael. 1714, at 5i ,, 

From Michael. 1714 to this time, at 5 „ 

(v) An office statement. 

From „ 

1636 to 

1646, at 

8 „ 

From ,, 

1646 to „ 

1649, at 



1649 to Martin. 

1672, at 

6 „ 

From Martin. 

1672 to 

1672, at 

5 „ 

From „ 

1672 to Whitsun, 

.1690, at 

6 „ 

From Whitsun. 

, 1690 to 

1691, at 

5 „ 


1691 to 

1695, at 

6 „ 

16 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. l.~Introductory. 

§ X. Of the Foreign Trade oe Scotland. — From considerations of Bank- 
ing, whose very objects are to supply credit and capital, from the details of her 
principal manufactures, it does not require strong proofs to demonstrate that 
the foreign commerce of that energetic country must also be prosperous. It is 
idle for speculative writers to. talk of how much foreign traffic Northern Britain 
enjoyed in former ages of weakness and of indolence. Without commercial 
caj)ital, without oversea enterprise, without any knowledge of the genius or 
operations of commerce, what trade could the Scottish people enjoy or under- 
take ? It is indeed true that during the good old times of David I. and his 
two grandsons, successively, charters affirm that shipping came into their 
ports ; and dui-ing those primeval times the monks of several religious houses 
had their shipping and their merchandize. But when monks were the 
merchants, what traders could there be? What foreign commerce could exist? 
Before the commencement of the late reign, Scotland, by prudent perseverance, 
had acquired some import and greater export trade ; before the close of that 
long reign Scotland had become a commercial countiy : — 

According to a 5 years' average, ending with 1760, there were entered at the 

The value of 
Custom House, - - . . . 

The same in 1800, - - . . 

The same in 1820, .... 

In 1821, ..... 

In 1822, ..... 

In 1823, ..... 

§ XI. Of the Ports oe Scotland. — The next object of consideration are 
the Custom House Stations, through which those great imports and greater ex- 
ports were made. That there were some such stations, even during the early 
reign of David I., is certain, but they have been since modified at various times 
and in various ways, is equally certain. 

Since the publication of the prior volume there has been no change in the 
ports, whatever there may have been in the shipping of Scotland. 

A slight investigation of the past state of the shipping of this country may 
throw some light on the commerce and navigation of the several ports of 
Northern Britain, as we learn from Tucker, who was sent to Scotland in 1656, 
to investigate the Scottish traffic (w). According to him salt was the great 

{w) Tucker was obviously an Englishman, as we may learn from the single word lough for loch, a 
lake. Such is the settled spelling of lough for loch by the English surveyors and mapmakers. This' is 
the established orthography of the word loch for lake in Ireland, which was originally surveyed and 
delineated by Englishmen. But more I know not of him, as he appears not to have been of either of 
the universities. 















Sect. XI.— Of the Ports of Scotland] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 17 

product of that nation. To Dunbar many small vessels come to fetch salt and 
bring goods, which would be stolen ashore if there were not customhouse 
waiters. There belong to Leith and its creeks some twelve or fourteen vessels 
of two or three hundred tons each. Its trade was chiefly with England, and 
the remainder with Norway, Eastland, the low countries, and France direct. 
The next port to Leith is Borrowstoness, belonging to the town of Linlithgow, 
but from the silence of Tucker it appears that it had no ships ; the two great 
commodities being coals and salt, which are chiefly carried away by the Dutch. 
The next town on this shore is Elphinston, a small port whence there is a great 
quantity of coal shipped ; and though there be not a vessel belonging to this 
place, the Dutch and others trade there on account of the goodness of the coal 
and its measure. The next place is Stirling, which is famous for its castle and 
bridge. There live here some merchants, and all goods are entered first, and 
cleared at Borrowstoness. Such are the ports on the southern side of the 
Forth. On the north thereof there is the port of Alloway, having a fine 
harbour and excellent coal, which for the most part is carried out by the Dutch, 
there being no vessel belonging to the port. The next are Kincardine and Cul- 
ross, and from these two salt only goes out, and they have only two vessels. 
The next port is Burntisland, lying opposite to Leith, whose district leaches 
from Inverkeithing along the shore of Fife to the Tay. The trade of this 
district inwards is from Norway, the East country, and sometimes from France 
with wines, and outward with coals and salt at all times, though of very little 
value. To this port very many vessels belong. 

There were owned in Burntisland seven, viz., 1 of 40 tons, 2 of 30, 1 of 24, 
3 of 20. To Kinghorn there belonged 1 of 50 tons. To Kirkcaldy there 
belonged 12, viz., 2 of 100 tons, lof 70, 3 of 40, 3 of 36, 1 of 24, 2 of 30. To 
Desert there belonged 4, viz., 1 of 50 tons, 2 of 20, 1 of 14. Weemyss had 6, 
viz., 3 of 20 tons, 1 of 18, 1 of 14, 1 of 12. Leven had 2 ships, viz., 1 of 20 
tons, 1 of 18. Ely had 2 ships, viz., 1 of 50 tons, 1 of 40. St. Minens had 1 
vessel of 36 tons. Pittenweem had 2 vessels, viz., 1 of 100 tons, 1 of 80. 
Ainster had 10, viz., 1 of 50 tons, 1 of 40, 1 of 30, 1 of 25, 1 of 20, 2 of 15, 1 
of 14, 2 of 13. Crail had 1 of 90 tons. St. Andrews had 1 of 20 tons. South- 
ferry had 1 of 1 8 tons. Such, then, were the shipping of Fife. 

Dundee came now in view near the mouth of the river Tay. It was formerly 
a town of trade and riches, but the many recontres it sustained duting the 
Civil War, and her obstinacy and pride in late years, made her a prey to the 
soldiers (x). The trade of Dundee is from Norway, the East country, Holland, 

(x) Dundee was taken by stovm by tlie English army. 
7 3 

18 AnACCOUNT [Oh. I. — Introductory. 

and France ; and outwards the commodities are salmon and plaiding (a coarse 
woollen cloth). 

St. Johnston or Perth was a handsome walled town, with a citadel added 
thereto in late times, lying upwards on this Tay, and trading in wool, skins, 
and hides, whereof great plenty are brought from the Highlands. 

Arbroath, a small town without any trade, but a little for their own use. 

Montrose, seated between the North and South Esks, a pretty town this, 
with a safe harbour, has risen by the fall and ruin of another town of the same 
name, at no great distance. 

Dundee had 10 vessels, viz. : 2 of 120 tons, 1 of 90, 1 of 60, 1 of 55, 1 of 50, 
1 of 40, 1 of 30, 2 of 25. 

Montrose had 12 vessels, viz. : 1 of 20 lasts, 2 of 18, 2 of 16, 2 of 12, 1 of 7, 
3 of 6, 1 of 5. 

Aberdeen lies next northward, being a handsome burgh, seated at the mouth 
of the Dee. There is an older town of the same name at the mouth of the Don. 
The trade of Aberdeen, as generally all over Scotland, is inwards from Norway 
and Eastland. 

The vessels of this district are ; — Aberdeen has 9, viz. : 1 of 80 tons, 1 of 70, 
1 of 60, 3 of 50, 2 of 30, 1 of 20. Fraserburgh has 4 of 20 tons. Peterhead 
has 1 of 20 tons. 

The best port lying northerly is Inverness, at the head of the Moray Frith, a 
small town which would be worse if it were not for the citadel, which was built 
here of late years. This port has for its districts all the harbours and creeks of 
the shires of Moray, Ross, Sutherland, and Caithness, with the isles of Orkney. 
The trade of this port is only a coast commerce, there being only one merchant 
in all the town who brings home sometimes a little timber, salt, and wine. 
The vessels or barques belonging to this district are : — In Inverness, 1 of 10 
tons. In Garmouth, 1 of 12 tons. In Cromarty, 1 of 16 tons. In Thurso, 1 
of 30 tons. In Orkney 3, 1 of 15 chaldons, 1 of 13, 1 of 12. 

Such, then, was the shipping on the eastern coast of North Britain. Mr. 
Thomas Tucker now adverted to the shipping of the west. Glasgow was said 
to be a town lying upon the banks of the Clyde, and was one of the most 
considerable burghs of Scotland. The inhabitants, all but the students of the 
college, are merely traders and dealers. The situation of this town in a 
plentiful land, and the mercantile genius of the people, are strong signs of an 
increase, were she not checked and kept under by the shallowness of the river, 
which is every day growing more and more shallow, so that no vessel of any 
burden can come nearer up than fourteen miles. 

The member ports of this district are 1st, Newark (Port-Glasgow) where, in 

Sect. XI.— 0/ the Ports of Scotland.'] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 19 

addition to the Laird's house, are four or five houses ; but before them is a 
pretty good roadstead, where all vessels do ride, unlade, and do send their goods 
up the river to Glasgow in small boats. 

2. Greenock is such another, only the inhabitants are more numerous ; but 
all seamen or fishermen trading in open boats for Ireland or the isles, at which 
place there is a mole or pier, where vessels, in stress of weather, may ride and 
shelter themselves before they pass up to Newark. 

3. Fairlie, Calburgh, Saltcoats, the inhabitants whereof are fishermen, who 
carry fish and cattle for Ireland ; bringing home corn and butter for their own 

4. Bute, a small island lying in the mouth of the frith, under which some 
vessels, in stormy weather, shelter themselves, but afterwards pass up the river 
(Clyde). The inhabitants are all countrymen, and cowherds, who feed cattle, 
and spin and make woollen cloth, which is carried to be dyed and dressed at 
Glasgow, where they buy whatever they have occasion for their provision. 

Lastly, Irvyn, a small burgh town, lying at the mouth of a river of the same 
name, which hath been for some time a pretty small port, but at present almost 
chocked up with sand which the western sea beats into it ; so as it wrestles for 
life to maintain a small trade to France, Norway, and Ireland, with herring 
and other goods, which are brought on horseback from Glasgow, for the 
purchasing of timber, wine, and other commodities to supply their occasions. 

The vessels belonging to this district are as follows : — -Glasgow has 1 2 ves- 
sels, viz., 3 of 150 tons each ; 1 of 140 ; 2 of 100 ; 1 of 50 ; 3 of 30 ; 1 of 15 ; 
and 1 of 12. Renfrew has 3 or 4 boats of 5 or 6 tons each. Irvine has 3 or 4 
vessels, the largest not exceeding 10 tons each. 

The next and last head port is Ayr, a small town in Kyle, lying over against 
the Isle of Arran, where formerly the inhabitants, before the troubles of 
Ireland, report themselves to have had a pretty trade thither. How flourish- 
ing their former condition was, it is now certainly to be deplored, the place 
growing every day worse and worse, by reason of their harbour being filled up 
with sand, which the Western sea and the winds from the neighbouring islands 
beat up into it, insomuch that it is very difficult for any vessel to come in or 
go out. That which will most conduce to the preserving of the town either in 
trade, name, or memory, will be the strong citadel which hath been built there 
of late by the English. 

The limits or district of this port are of a very large extent and circuit, being 
all the shore that bound and terminates the Shires of Kyle, Carrick, and Gallo- 
way, places these which are fuller of moors and mosses than good towns or 


An account [Ch. l.~Introductory. 

people ; the same being in many places not planted, and all of it void of trade 
except the town of Ayr, Kirkcudbright, and Dumfries, nor in any likelihood of 
obtaining any, when there is not a ship or barque belonging to any port in 
those parts, except to Ayr, where there is one ship of one hundred, another of 
forty, and a third of some thirty tons ; and two barques, one of three, and the 
other of some four tons only, which are employed most commonly in a coasting 
trade to Glasgow, and sometimes with coals for Ireland. 

The creeks along the coast from Ayr to Portpatrick are Dundufumul, Dunure, 
Maidenkirk, Turnberry, Druningurloch, Girven, Armillan, Balantrae, Gairon, 
and Glenfoofc, at which places there are five or six fisherboats, and not many 
more houses, except Ballantrae, which is a market town, which is as poor as it 
is little. From Glenfoot there is no creek up the loch until one comes as far as 
Stranraer, otherwise called the Chapel, being a small market town on the side 
of the loch, which would prove a pretty harbour for shelter of vessels in time 
of storms, which is seldom, in respect there is not now, nor ever was, any trade 
to be heard of here. 

Next to Stranraer is Girvellan, a creek whether boats come and go to and 
from Ireland ; and next to those two is Portpatrick, a place which is much 
frequented by those who have any trade or affairs towards Ireland, because of 
its ueainess to that country, and conveniency of transporting horse, cattle, and 
other materials for planting thither, which is the sole trade of these parts ; as 
there is no harbour, so no vessel of any burden can possibly come in. The next 
to those places are Whithern and Wigton, to the latter of which there comes 
sometimes a small boat from England with salt and coals. 

Between those and Kirkcudbright there is no creek nor port, but one creek 
at the foot of the water of Fleet, not worth the mention. As to Kirkcudbright 
it :s a pretty place, and one of the best ports on this side of Scotland, where 
tiiere are a few, and those very poor, merchants or pedlars, rather trading for 
Ireland. Beyond this there are three small creeks of Balcarie, the Water of 
(^re, and Salterins, whether some small boats come from England with salt and 
coals. And last of all is Dumfries, a pretty market town, but of little trade, 
that they have being most part by land, either for Leith or Newcastle ; the 
badness of coming into the river upon which it stands hindering their commerce 
by sea, so as whatever they have to come that way is commonly landed at 
Kirkcudbright. This town of Dumfries was formerly the head port of those 
] arts, the town of Ayr being then within the district of Glasgow; but there 
being nothing to do, the Commissioners thought fit to remove the Collector to 
Ayr (which is much the better town of the two), where there is a check and 

Sect. XII.— 0/ the Progress of its Shipping.} OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 21 

officers : one of which officei's attends constantly at that town ; the other of 
them resides at Portpatrick, and looks to that and to the adjacent creeks of 
Stranraer, Garvellen, Whithorn, Wigton; and the last of them at Kirkcud- 
bright, for looking after that place, with Dumfries and the Water of Fleet, 
Balcarie, Water of Ore, and Salterins. The rest of the ports and places of this 
district having been never esteemed worth either the care or charge of a 
waiter ; and, indeed, the whole will not do much more than defray the charge 
which is necessarily expended on them. 

Such, then, is the representation of Thomas Tucker to Oliver Cromwell. 

§ XII. Of the Progress of its Shipping. — The subsequent statement from 
the Customhouse Register will be found much more satisfactory. But what a 
progress has there been from 1656 to 1823, as the principles and the practices 
of the people grew more diligent, and as the incitements of Parliament became 
more operant. After the disastrous events of the Seventeenth Century Scot- 
land could only supply some brigantines with a few mere boats. Scotland 
derived some shipping from her union with England, and many more from the 
subsequent indiistry of her people. 

Soon after the commencement of the present century the existence of shipping 
upon a new principle began, though the true epoch of the steam system began 
in 1737, from the ingenuity of Mr. J. Hulls. The first real steam vessel which 
was actually brought into practice was the Comet, which began in 1811 to ply 
on the Clyde between Glasgow and Greenock, under the contrivance of Mr. H. 
Bell. There has been since built of such steam vessels about 95, at the cost of 

In 1823 no fewer than fifty -five steam vessels were plying in Scotland, thirty- 
two whereof belonged to the Clyde. Suppose those fifty-five steam vessels 
employed 500 men a week, including the captain and stewards wages, the whole 
would amount to £32,175. Suppose the average consumption of coals for 39 
weeks, at 12s. 6d. per ton, the whole cost £32,175. The harbour dues for 
these steamboats yearly, £6,500. Tear and wear on 55 steamboats, at £4,000 
each, £22,000. The profit of 10 per cent, on the capital invested, £22,000 ; so 
that the annual receipts ought to be £114,850. And if we, moreover, suppose 
that each passenger paid 4s., the number will be yearly 574,250. This evinces 
the amount and value of the steam navigation in Scotland. These operations 
led to the establishment of a steamboat which navigated from Glasgow to the 
western end of the Caledonian Canal, through the Crinan Canal. This last 
communication is of great importance to Scotland ; and the Stirling Castle 


An account [Cli. 1.— Introductory. 

steamboat has been established on the communication between Inverness and 
Fort Augustus, being a navigation of seven miles on the Caledonian Canal, and 
twenty-three miles on Loch Ness. 

§ XIII. Or ITS Fisheries.— Analogous to inquiries respecting shipping are 
Fisheries, which in the older periods of our policy scarcely existed, owing per- 
haps to the disinclination of a Celtic people. Perseverance, however, in a 
salutary cause will generally prove successful. Without going into considera- 
tions with regard to the shore fisheries, Scotland had employed in the sea- 
fishery, during the year 1760, 113 vessels carrying 3842 tons ; and before the 
year 1818 the vessels thus employed had increased to 337, bearing 18,010 tons. 
The whole fisheries of Scotland have been estimated at the incredible value of 
a million and a quarter. The Scottish fishers partook of the whale fishery, but 
they scarcely engaged in the Newfoundland fishery, and much less in the south 
whale fishery, which was begun in England during the year 1775, and before 
the year 1801 employed 78 sail. In that year five-and- twenty vessels only 
brought to England of sperm oil, whale oil, whale-bone, and seal skins, which 
sold in the London market for £209,317 4s. 6d. 

The late Mr. Samuel Enderby of Kuels Wharf, London, was the first who, in 
1788, sent a vessel of 278 tons, commanded by James Shiels, round Cape Horn 
to fish for spermaceti whales in the Pacific Ocean. All the south whale fishers 
now navigate the Australasian regions in the same pursuits, as every seaman 
navigates the American Seas after the discovery of Columbus. But it was Mr. 
Enderby who first showed the adventurous example of sending a vessel round 
Cape Horn in quest of spermaceti whales, throughout the vast expanse of the 
southern hemisphere. 

§ XIV. Of the Moral Effect of such Industry. — Scotland is no longer 
the same country, whether we regard the numbers of the people, their qualities, 
or pursuits from her union with England, or to the union of Ireland with both, 
or from that epoch to the present times. What farmers, fishers, manufacturers 
or traders, could that people be, who could not usefully employ thirty thousand 
pounds sterling as a capital within the commercial year ? Throughout Scot- 
land, including Lerwick in Shetland, there are now upwards of a hundred 
banks whose very business at present is to supply capital to all who are entitled 
to it from their dihgence and their stability. The existence of so many banks 
evinces that they all find adequate employment. Agriculture, whatever it may 
have been formerly, is now cultivated with skill and assiduity. Manufacture is 

Sect. XIV.— Of the Effect of Industry.] OrNOETH-BEITAIN. 23 

at present carried on to a great extent. The traffic of such a people advances 
with great strides and skilful discernment. We may see in their labours that 
the Scots are now a people knowing in the sciences, and dexterous in the arts ; 
and we may perceive, as hath been before remarked, that they are a people, 
during their present fortunes, who advance in everything which can enrich a 
spirited, and elevate an active nation. 

24 An ACCOUNT [Gh. II.— Buteshire. 



§ I. Of its Name. — It is not easy to give a satisfactory account of the name 
of Bute, which seems to be much perverted. In the tradition of the country, 
saith Pennant, the name of Bute was of old Bothe. The spelhng of ancient 
charters was Both, as I learn from some ancient charters which Lord Bannatyne 
had the goodness to communicate to me. And Beoth in the earliest language 
of Britain signifies Tugurium, a rustic house (a). Hence Booth, Bod neon 
mansio habitatio (h) , and Baide is Irish for the same object. Rothesay Castle 
is said historically to be of very early origin though it has been built at different 
times, especially since the ownership of it has been the patrimony of the 
Stewarts. At the epoch of the arrival of the Stewarts in Caledonia, there were 
but few castles of stone and lime in that country. When the Stewarts took 
possession of this isle they would have a mansion to build, and from this 
habitatio we may easily suppose that Bute derived its name, though after some 
deflection. In AyloflPe's Calendars (p. 343) there is a " Oharta Regis Norwegis, 
super insula de Bot, et quibusdem aliis concessis Regi Manio "; and Bute is said 
by Pennant (iii. p. 164) to dei'ive its singular name from Bothe. 

Arran in the British tongue signifies a mountain. Arran, says Pennant, 
means the isle of mountains. Ai-en is the name of many places in Wales. 
There are the Arran Isles in Galloway Bay, Ireland (c). 

Cumbrae, or Cambrics, signifies the obstructions of navigation. Cunrig 
means molestation or hindrance (a). 

(a) J. Davis' Dictionary. 

(b) Id. Both capellania de in Euddiman's Diplomate liii. Angus, near Pennon. Index locorum, 
there is Both Mernook, Tuguricum Memo, Both Eldine, a vill and parish on the right bank of the 
Tweed, in Teviot. The place is now called Boulden. lb. Diplom., xxiv. 

(c) See Beaufort's Map of Ireland. 

(d) Such was the exposition to me of the late Major McDonald, a Gaelic scholar at Ayr, in his letter 
of the 17th of May, 1795. But Shaw has not in his Gaelic Dictionary the word Gunrig for hindrance. 

Sect. I.— Of its Situation and Extent] Of NOETH-BRITAIN. 


§ I. Of the Situation and Extent op this Shiee. — Bute, the Cumbraes 
and Arran, all lie within the Frith of Clyde, and have Argyleshire on the west 
and north, Ayrshire on the east, and the mouth of the Frith of Clyde on the 
south. The whole shire, including Bute, Cumbraes, and Arran, lies between 
55°53 N. latitude; and between 1°52 and 2°26 longitude west of Edinburgh; 
and those isles extend from south to north nearly 28 miles, and from east to 
west nearly 15 miles. On Arrowsmith's map those several isles lie from south 
to north 29 miles, and from east to west 17 miles. 





Bute comprehends, ...... 




Inchmarnock, W. of Bute, 





Arran comprehends, 




Lamlash [Holy Isle], E. of Arran, ... 




Pladda, S. of Arran, - ... 

12 3| 



Oumbrae more comprehends, ..... 




Oumbrae beg, ....... 





The Total, 


In the year 1811 the whole population of Buteshire was 




In 1821, the same, viz. : — 

Eothesay, .... 


Kingarth, ... 


Oumbrae, - .... 


Kilbride, ... 


Kilmorie, - .... 


1 .q 7C)7 + 

§ III. Of its Natukal Objects. — This shire may be considered as consisting 
of several islands, great and small, and as all lying separately in the Frith of 
Clyde. They may be said to be all high, yet being surrounded by water and 
lying open to the sea ; the climate is less rigorous than could have been 
expected, however much it is subject to rain. 

This county cannot be said to abound in minerals, though it may be allowed, 
perhaps, that they have never been much sought for. In Bute the minerals 

* Ordnance Survey 225 square miles or 143,997 acres. 
7 4 

t 1881—17,666. 

26 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. II.— Buteshire. 

are chiefly schistus, red sandstone, pudding stone and basalt, and other whin- 


The mineralogy of Arran has long attracted the notice of students and 
teachers of geology. Granite abounds to a great extent in the isle of Arran. 
The mountainous part of that island is wholly composed of granite. The 
granite mountains of Arran are said to occupy an area of eight to ten miles from 
east to south-west, and from five to six miles in an opposite direction, or more 
than an area of forty square miles. Besides those solid masses of granite there 
is found along the sea-shore throughout the whole of Arran, and even on the 
Holy Island, innumerable blocks of granite from that of a hen's egg to that of 
a sheepcot. 

Micaceous schistus also abounds in the Isle of Bute. In Arran, mountains 
of schistus surround those of the granite, and form a sort of elevated terrace, 
projecting from their sides. On the west and north of Arran, the schistus ex- 
tends to a much greater distance than on the east and south coast. These 
schistus rocks are intersected by many veins of whinstone ; but whether they 
have been formed by crystallization or decomposition, or by both, is left to geo- 
logists to decide. 

Slate for roofing houses, which is a species of schistus, is found within Bute 
in great abundance. Slate of excellent quality has long been, and still con- 
tinues to be wrought to some extent near Kames Castle. Slate has likewise 
been wrought at Inchmarnock, and at Ardmalash on the estate of the Marquess 
of Bute. Slate fit for covering houses is also found in various parts of Arran. 
Some of a grayish blue colour was formerly wrought to a considerable extent 
by Mr. Conrie on a hill called Benleven (flat-topped mountain) south-east from 
Kanza. Here the slate is found in strata at an angle of 45° ; a road was made 
to convey the slate to Banza harbour, but the working of the slates has been 
abandoned. Mr. Headrick also mentions a broad vein of irregular blue slate, 
which intersects the primary pudding-stone above mentioned, where the road 
from Glen Ranza crosses North Sannox, which he considered to be a striking 
singularity (e). That intelligent geologist also discovered a dark blue slate on 
the farm of Whitefarlane, the property of Captain Fullerton. 

Breccia, or Pudding-stone, is found to a considerable extent in Arran. Mr. 
Headrick has distinguished it into two varieties, which he calls primary and 
secondary. The first, he says, forms a chain of detached hills running parallel 
to the schistus rocks, from the head of Glencloy to the mouth of the lorsa, and 
from which a branch diverges through the centre of the South Hills. In some 

(e) Headriok's View of Arran, 228. 

Sect. lY.—Of its Antiquities.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 27 

places detached masses of it are met with. In one instance near Corrie, Mr. 
Headrick found an irregular block of it occupying a chasm in the granite, which 
he considered as a remarkable occurrence. The secondary or stratified pudding- 
stone is more various in its structure, and in the thickness of its beds. The 
ground of this species is generally ferruginous clay, which is often very hard, 
and in some places it is indurated chalk. Its concretions are jaspers, silicious 
spar, granite, micaceous schistus, flints, agates, chalcedonies, syenite, nodules 
of pitch stone, slate, sandstone, etc., which are generally much rounded. At 
Scriden rocks which are of enormous thickness and lean on the side of the 
mountain at the angle of 45°, Mr. Headrick found large rounded blocks of 
pudding-stone, composed of smaller rounded pieces, these containing smaller 
blocks, and this a third, all composed of rounded stones, which, he thinks, 
proves that the secondary strata have undergone at least three revolutions 
before they were arranged in their present form. 

Such immense masses fell from those rocks at one time on the sea beach, up- 
wards of a century ago, and encumbered it so much as to render it diflBcult and 
even unsafe to pass along that part of the shore. The concussion shook the 
earth, and the sound was heard in Bute and in Argyle. Mr. Headrick on 
examining the hill above found that the whole mass had shifted its position, 
and its transverse sections had in some places separated from each other, so as 
to leave spacious gaps between. On looking at some places, the most lively 
apprehensions were excited that a much greater portion of the mountain was 
yet about to fall. 

Pitchstone is found both in veins running through the granite mountain and 
in strata, and also in veins in the strata of red sandstone. Mr. Headrick men- 
tions a singular species of this stone, which he found below the farm of Easter 
Clachland. The ground of it is pitchstone of a dark bottle green colour, 
through which are interspersed rounded pieces of quartz of a brilliant white 

Basalt is also found in great abundance in many places in Arran, as well as 
in Bute and Cumbrae. The whole island of Pladda consists of a stratum of 
basaltic columns. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — In every country the earliest antiquity is the 
people. It has already been remarked that every part of these islands were 
settled by the same Celtic colonists. There are proofs in the results of what 
is discovered in the local circumstances of those islands which evince that there 
were settlements made here many ages before the birth of Christ. In Kin- 

2g AnAOOOTJNT [Oh. II.— Buteshire. 

garth parish on a little hill there are evident vestiges of a vitrified fort, which 
was raised by the inhabitants for the purpose of defending the isle against the 
ravages of the Danes. There are the remains of a Druid temple, three large 
stones of which are still standing at no great distance from Mid-kirk on a 
plain. There are large oak trees in a morass, which are not two hundred yards 
from the said temple (/). [The ruins of St. Blane's chapel are also in this 
parish, about 2^ miles from the south of the island. It is said to date from 
the 12th or 13 th century, from the existence of Norman characteristics in the 
architecture. See Eeid's History of Bute.] 

In the Cumbraes there are the remains of an ancient cathedral which had 
been dedicated to St. Columba (g). 

In Arran there are caves in the limestone rock, the houses, no doubt, of the 
ancient colonists. [Also the site of St. Bride's Convent at Loch Ranza, the 
ruins of Loch Ranza Castle, and other remains of forts and chapels. See 
MacArthur's Antiquities of Arran, and Landsborough's Arran.] 

§ V. Of its Establishment as a Shire. — As a part of the great estates of 
the Stewart family, Bute and the other isles of this district remained under 
their protection, without the benefit or the burden of a sheriff". Those isles 
certainly did not form a sheriffdom at the epoch of the accession of Robert 
Bruce (h). The origin of the sheriffwick of Bute was during the reign of 
Robert II., who demised in 1390. Robert III. immediately followed his father 
in the government of the realm. This Prince, in November 1400, granted and 
confirmed to his natural brother John Stewart of Bute, the office of Sheriff of 
the Shire of Bute (i). 

When such offices were to be abolished, Lord Bute claimed, in 1747, for the 
sheriffwick of Bute, and constableship of Rothesay, £8000. He was allowed 
by the Lords of Session, for the heritable office of the sheriffship of Bute, the 
sum of two thousand pounds sterling, and for the heritable office of lordship 
and jurisdiction of the regality of Bute one hundred and six pounds, nine shil- 
lings, and three pence sterling, amounting in all to £2106 9s. 3d. sterling {j). 
Upon that compensation in March 1748, Mr. Archibald Campbell, advocate, 
was appointed by the King, Sheriff of Argyle and Bute, at a salary of £250 
sterling a year. 

(/) Stat. Acct., i. p. 312. 

(g) lb., V. XL, p. 122. Little Cumbrae is in the shire of Bute, but it forms a part of the parish of 
West Kilbride, and the presbytery of Irvine in Ayrshire. (h) Eyley's Placita, p. 505. 

(z) Eobertson's Index, p. 146, No. 35. James III. granted to Eobert Stewart of Bute the hereditary 
ofBce of Constable of Eothesay. Crawford Peerage, 55. (j) Scots Mag., 1748, p. 139. 

Sect. VI — Of its Civil History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 29 

§ VI. Of its Civil History. — Bute and its dependant isles cannot be clearly 
traced, amidst the people who found it not an easy matter to retain the pos- 
session of those isles, whUst the Danish rovers made all retention very insecure. 
The first invasion of the Norwegians occurred in 1229 ; and the second in 1263, 
when the invader Haco gave them as free holdings of himself to Rudri, a Scot- 
tish exile, claiming an hereditary right to them, (Torfseus). According to 
Sympson, the antiquary (Jc), a female descendant of Eudri conveyed by marriage 
these isles to Alexander the Stewart, and the great-grandfather of King Robert 
II. ; but Barbour (232) seems to consider Bute and its isles as belonging, in 
1314, to the same person. 

The Stewart having passed from Bute, where he had lain concealed since the 
fatal field of Halidon, to Dumbarton, declared against Edward Baliol, and being 
assisted by Campbell of Lochawe, took the Castle of Dunoon in 1334 a.d. The 
Isle of Bute, after the death of its governor, Alan de Lisle, declared for David. 
In 1335 Edward Baliol granted to John Lord of the Isles, Mull, Skye, Islay, 
and Gigha, with the lands of Kintyre and Knapdale [l). 

David, the eldest son of Robert III., was created the Duke of Rothesay 
in 1398, being the first Duke who had then been created in Scotland. In 1404 
Robert III. died at his Castle of Rothesay on hearing of his only son, James, 
being taken by the English on his voyage to France. In 1466 the Isle, with 
the Earldom of Arran, was given to the son of the Lord Boyd on his marriage 
with Margaret, the sister of James III. In 1544 the Earl of Lennox, on being 
refused admittance at his Castle of Stirling, ravaged the coast as well as the 
Isles of Bute and Arran. In 1639 the Earl of Argyle, the chief of the Cove- 
nanters, seized the Isle of Arran. In 1685 the Castle of Rothesay was burnt 
by the Earl of Argyle. 

After successive descents Sir James Stewart was, by Queen Anne, on the 
14th of April, 1703, created Earl of Bute, Viscount Kingarth, and Lord Mount- 
stuart, Cumbrae, and Inchmarnock. In 1796 to all those titles were 
superadded the Marquess of Bute, Earl of Windsor, and Viscount Mountjoy. 

ijc) History of the Stewarts, 59. 

(?) The descent of the' noble family of Bute was from Sir John Stewart, the son of Robert II., who 
had by his father's grant a valuable possession in the Isle of Bute, the ancient patrimony of the royal 
family of the Stewarts long before they attained to the crown, with the hereditary Sheriffship of Bute, 
Arran, and the Oumbraes, which King Eobert III. confirmed by his charters on the 11th of November, 
1400. Moreover, the same Sir John Stewart obtained a charter from Eobert Duke of Albany, when 
Governor of Scotland, of the lands of Fynock, at the town of Irvine, on the 1st of January, 1418. The 
third of this family obtained from James III., in consideration of his good services before that time 
performed, the ofiSce of hereditary constable of the Castle of Eothesay, which had been an ancient seat 
of the King, and where Eobert III. demised. 

30 An ACCOUNT [Gh. ll.—Buteshiye. 

§ VII. Op its Agriculture, Manufactures, and Trade. — Of the climate of 
Bute there can be no doubt that, as a greater quantity of rain falls on the 
Western than on the inland, or even on the Eastern part of Britain, it may 
well be expected that the county of Bute, from its locality, must be subject to 
much rain. The wind in that shire, as in all other parts of Scotland, blows 
more from the west and the south-west than from any other quarter. 

The winds all along the west coast of Britain are nearly south-west, and 
prevail, with very little variation, for seven or eight months in the year. The 
current of the tide is uniformly from south-west to north-east, and instances 
have been known of spars and loose pieces of wrecked shipping being drifted 
from the West Indies to the west coast of Scotland in a very short time. 

Until more correct knowledge of the mysterious processes of nature shall be 
obtained, it will not be easy to determine whether the more copious rains of the 
western shires proceed from the vast extent of the Atlantic Ocean or other 

The high and rugged surface of the western districts, and particularly those 
of Arran and Argyleshire, has a tendency to promote ventilation, attract the 
electric fluid, shake and break the clouds, and so occasion rain ; and the vast 
quantities of uncultivated moss earth, springs, and unreclaimed marshes, which 
abound in the western shires have also a powerful tendency to attract the rain, 
as well as to lower the temperature. It is well known that every wet spongy 
substance attracts and assimilates moisture from the atmosphere much more 
powerfully than any earth or substance that is dry. The cold in the moss earth 
condenses, and the moisture which it contains attracts aerial fluids. Hence, 
rain-dew falls more copiously on or near to moss ground Avhen it is wet, and 
more sparingly in time of drought, than they do upon dry soils. Moss does not 
prevail to any great extent in the county of Bute, but it is found in great 
abundance in the neighbouring shires of Ayi', Renfrew, and Argyle. 

From the statements that have been given of the rain that has fallen in 
difi'erent parts of Scotland, from 1803 to 1812 inclusive, it is evident that a 
greater quantity generally falls on the west than on the eastern shores, but 
that far more falls towards the east and west shores than in the inland districts. 
This may probably be in part owing to the greater altitude of the latter. 
Mists and drizzling rains may sometimes rest on the tops of the hills, when 
none falls on the intervening vales, but where rains become general a great 
quantity falls, and the drops are much larger in low than in high situations. 

The temperature of the shire of Bute varies from almost the highest to nearly 
the lowest in Scotland. In general, however, the Island of Bute, from its low 

QectYh— Of its Civil History.] Of NOETH - BEIT AIN. 31 

altitude above the level of the sea, the dry permeable nature of its soil and 
subsoil, the small quantity of moss found in this isle, and from its being much 
sheltered on all sides by the surrounding Highlands, is not so cold in winter as 
any of the neighbouring districts. Snow seldom lies more than a few hours, 
and the thermometer scarcely ever falls more than two degrees below the 
freezing point ; and from the smallness of the island, and from being surrounded 
by the sea, it is never so hot in summer as on the mainland of Scotland. 

" With regard to the temperature of Arran," said the Rev. James Headrick, 
" and other places on the west coast which are intersected by the sea, they 
are not understood to be so warm in summer nor so cold in winter as other 
places on the same parallel and of the same elevation on the east. Nor does 
the medium temperature vary so much as it does on the broadest part of the 
island towards the south, near England. Still less does the temperature vary 
so much as it does on the same parallel in the opposite continent of Europe and 

But though a greater quantity of rain falls in the county of Bute than in 
some other parts of Scotland, all the islands are remarkably healthy, and as 
great a proportion of the inhabitants live to an advanced age as in any other 
part of Scotland. If the climate were any way inimical to health, longevity 
would not be nearly so common as it is in these islands. From there being no 
sultry heat, and the air purified by the sea breezes, the whole county is healthy. 
Some eminent physicians of Scotland used formerly to send their patients to 
Bute and Arran for recovering or improving their health. 

Of its soil and subsoil, which is composed of the various matter whereof this 
earth is formed, which either have not been cemented into a more solid mass or 
that afterwards have been separated and melted down by the weather or other 
natural causes. Water has evidently been the agent in collecting that matter 
and depositing it on the earth's surface, from its stratification and the rounded 
water-worn shape of the gravel and small stones which are found in it, or from 
the laminated beds of the clay. Hence Werner and his followers very properly 
termed the soil an alluvial formation. 

When the soil is composed chiefly of particles so extremely small as to feel 
smooth and soft to the touch, and when it dissolves in and mixes so minutely 
with water as to render it difficult to separate, then it is denominated a clay 
soil. When it is composed chiefly of roundish gritty particles, which do not 
adhere to each other and which feel hard to the touch, it is termed a sandy soil. 
If the greatest part of the soil is composed of still larger masses it gets the 
name of gravelly or stony soil. These difterent species of soil are seldom found 

32 AnAOCOUNT [Ch. 11.— Buteshire. 

anywhere entire. The most tenacious clay contains some sand, and the sandy 
or gravelly soils have a mixture of clay or earthy particles. The appellation of 
clay, sand, or gravel, does not therefore imply cleanness in any case, but only 
that these are the most prevalent. 

Soils of pure earth, clay, sand, etc., hovrever well they may be proportioned, 
are barren and unproductive till they are mellowed by the weather and 
enriched by other admixtures. The oxides or calces of some metals not only 
alter the colour of the earth, but sometimes injure vegetation. A large portion 
of acid is, till it is naturalized, injurious to the growth of most valuable plants. 
Some of the gases which have been detected in the soil have considerable 
effects on vegetation. But of the admixtures which are generally found in the 
soil, animal and vegetable matter are the most enriching, and when they are 
under decomposition they have the most powerful effects on the growth of 
plants. Some parts of the soil contain a considerable admixture of calcareous 
matter which, if it is in due proportion, is favourable to vegetation. 

The soil is generally valuable and productive according to the proportion it 
contains of the primitive earths and admixtures that have been named. 
Philosophers, however, and speculative writers on agriculture, frequently 
disagree as to the proportions of these, and very often of their names. Some 
wish for a proportion of alumine and some for magnesia, and others for 
inflammable matter. Some consider 80" of sand, 13- clay, and 7' calcareous earth, 
as the standard of fertility, while other prefer 50" of sand, 40" clay, and lo- 
cal carious earth ; and if all other circumstances are favourable, either of those, 
or any thing near to any of them, will form a valuable soil. But the misfor- 
tune is that soils must be taken as they are, and cannot often be brought to 
these or any fixed standard. 

The proportion of vegetable, animal, or calcareous matter, however, fall more 
within the power of the cultivator, and as they may be supplied by human 
industry it is to them more than to the original confirmation of the soil, over 
which they have little control, that the attention of the farmer ought to be 
chiefly directed. 

Clay is a prevailing soil in the Isle of Bute. By far the greatest part of the 
parish of Kothesay, some of the higher parts of that of Kingarth, and of 
Nether-Cowal, in the Isle of Bute, are of the nature of clay soil, frequently 
resting on a tilly, retentive subsoil, but mixed with such a proportion of sand 
or small stones as renders it friable. The middle part of the island is of a 
clayey nature, and in some parts a deep clay over a retentive bottom. 
, In the Isle of Arran, a ridge of about a mile, broad between the head of 

Sect. VII Of its Trade, etc.] OpNOETH-BRITAIN. 33 

Brodick Bay, which forms the south boundary of Glencloy, is a reddish clay 
soil, much of which is capable of cultivation. Towards the south of Arran a 
reddish friable clay prevails in the I'ising ground, with alluvial soil in the 
valleys. From the river lorsa to Loch Ranza much of the small portion that 
is cultivated is of the nature of micaceous clay of a bluish colour, and formed 
from the decomposed schistic rocks vifhereon it rests. There is very little clay 
soil in the Island of Cumbrae. 

Loam, or rich mould formed of a proper mixture of earth and sand, is found 
in many places in the shire of Bute. The whole straths from Karnes Castle to 
the western shores of Bute is a sandy loam, much of it washed from the higher 
grounds, and being formed by water, is what some writers term alluvial soil or 
delta ground. Some farms in the parish of Kingarth, as Arderahee, Kerry- 
lamont, Buchag, etc., are mostly of the nature of sandy loam. Much of the 
land about Ardroscadale, and from that eastward, is an excellent loamy soil, 
which is capable of high cultivation. 

Some lands near to Brodick— in Glendon, at Lamlash, KUdonan in the Yale 
of Shisken, and small patches in many different parts of Arran, are of the nature 
of sandy loam and reddish friable earth, and some part of the best land in 
Cumbrae is of that description. 

Sandy and gravelly soils abound in all the isles that compose the county of 
Bute ; but as these and the other descriptions of soil are so much mixed, and 
so often changed into each other, it would be as difficult as it would be 
uninteresting to point out the particular spots. By far the greatest proportion 
of the arable land in the whole county is either clay or of a light, dry, sandy 
or gravelly nature. In some parts of the northwest and north of Arran the 
soil of the arable lands is gravelly or rather stony, especially near the shore. 
Chalky soil is unknown in the shire of Bute. The peat soil or moss earth is 
met with in all its stages of hill or bent and of flow moss in the shire of Bute. 
Hill moss or moor ground abounds in all the islands, and covers by far the 
greatest part of the surface in the shire of Bute. 

Bent moss abounds in Arran, towards the north of Bute and some parts of 
Cumbrae. It is generally of greater depth than hill moss, and is always 
covered with a more valuable herbage, and from which it is formed. 

Flow moss is found in the county of Bute, but not to such an extent as to 
merit attention. In the Isle of Bute it is only met with towards the northern 
extremity, and that in Arran is mostly in such elevation as to be regarded only 
as a species of fuel. 

34 A N A C U N T [Oh. 11.— Buteshire. 

Of its waters it may be remarked that this shire is watered with seas, 
streams, lakes, and springs. 

The Frith of Clyde, which washes the coasts of Eenfrew and Ayr, and 
bounds on the east those of Dumbarton and Argyle, surrounds all the islands 
which form the shire of Bute. Being well sheltered from the violence of the 
western winds, and the waves of the Atlantic being broken by the peninsula of 
Kin tyre and the Isles of Arran, Bute, and the Cumbraes, and yet having 
abundance of sea room around all these, with lochs, inlets, and harbours on all 
sides, the Frith of Clyde is one of the safest and finest channels on the coast 
of Britain. On entering the Frith from the Atlantic, the lochs of Larne, 
Belfast, and others of the coast of Ireland ; Loch Ryan on the east, Campbel- 
town on the west, Lamlash, Loch Hanza, Loch Fyne, Loch Gilp, Loch Long, 
Gareloch, and others in the county of Argyle, are places of shelter to which any 
number of vessels that can navigate the channel may run to, and be safe in the 
greatest storm. The Lady Isle, Fairlie, and other places in the Frith also 
afford shelter in the severest gales. The Bay of Rothesay is safe and capacious. 
The Bay of Karnes, Kyles of Bute, Bay of St. Ninians, are all places of shelter. 

Harbours, many of them large and commodious, have been erected, and con- 
tinue to be built, some of them at a great expense, in all parts of the Frith of 
Clyde. Besides the lochs and creeks on its shores, the confluence of every 
river forms a harbour for small craft, and some of these, as Ayr, Irvine, have 
been so improved as to receive vessels of considerable burden. The harbours 
of Greenock, Port-Glasgow, Ardrossan and Troon, are not inferior to any in 

The port of Rothesay is the only harbour of importance in the shire of Bute. 
It is situated at the head of a capacious bay, which being well sheltered by the 
surrounding high hills, affords plenty of sea room to enter or depart from this 
harbour of Rothesay, while it is neither so large nor so deep as the greatly 
increased trade of Rothesay would now require. But the magistrates have it 
in contemplation to enlarge Rothesay harbour considerably. 

The Marquess of Bute has built at Kerrycroy, where the packet for Largs 
arrives and departs daily, a harbour capable of receiving, at common tides, 
vessels that draw eight feet of water ; and Lord Bannatyne built some years 
ago a small harbour at Port-Bannatyne, near Karnes Castle, whence the slates 
are exported ; and vessels frequently anchor with safety at Whitefarren and 
Blackfarren, which are both on the north end of Bute, and at several of the 
bays in that isle, when the wind blows from the land. A vessel may approach 
to within two cables length of the Isle of Bute anywhere. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Trade, etc.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 35 

The harbour of Lamlash was built by the worthy Anne, the Duchess of 
Hamilton, about the end of the seventeenth or the beginning of the eighteenth 
century. Mr. Headrick observes that this harbour was built of quadrangular 
blocks of sandstone. We may form some idea of the magnitude and solidity of 
this work when we are informed that it cost £2913 sterling, at a time when 
masons' wages are said to have been eighteen pence, and labourers' wages were 
fourpence, per day. 

This harbour, like some others of the spirited improvements begun by the 
patriotic noblewoman, has not only been suffered to fall into decay, but has 
actually been demolished for the use of the stones, and its ruins render the 
communication with the shore more difficult than if the harbour had never been 
built. A harbour and dock, where temporary repairs could be executed, at 
Lamlash, near to which so many ships come to anchor, would be of great utility, 
and could not fail to promote some traffic for which the place is so well 

There is a sort of natural harbour, called Haddockport, on the north-west of 
Arran ; one at the foot of Blackwater, in the Vale of Shisken, the usual ferry- 
ing place to Campbeltown ; and another, still less commodious, below the 
village of Imachar, whence the ferry-boat sets out to Saddel in Kintyre. 
There is a harbour of easy access, great depth of water, and very safe when the 
wind blows from the land, at Ranza ; and the noble proprietor has lately built 
a commodious harbour for small craft at the head of Brodick Bay. 

The running streams in the shire of Bute are numerous, but from the small- 
ness of the islands, and all of them being raised high in the centre, they can 
only be considered as burns instead of rivers. The stream of lorsa in Arran, 
which rises in a small lake near Camnacaldy, receives supplies from Loch 
Tunady, Loch Finna, and passes through Loch lorsa, is the largest stream in 
the shire of Bute. The Machrie Water, which passes through Glen Machrie, 
the Blackwater and Sliddry Water, at the south end of Arran, are next to it 
in size. 

Of those streams, what is most remarkable is the grand cascades which many 
of them form when precipitated from the heights. When torrents of rain fall 
those cascades are seen at a great distance in Ayrshire, and when they are 
approached they appear awfully grand. 

There are both in Bute and Arran various lakes. Of these. Loch Fad (the 
long loch) near the centre of Bute is much the largest, and supplied the cotton 
mills of Rothesay with thirty tons of water every minute for twelve hours every 

36 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. U.— Buteshire 

day even in the greatest drought (n). Eels abound in all those lakes. Springs 
are found in all the islands which form the county of Bute. As those springs 
are perennial, there must be large hollows in the body of the mountain where 
the water is collected, and small apertures whereby it is discharged. 

Of the state of property, with the estates and their management. The soil 
of the shire of Bute is at present vested in four noble families and six 
commoners. The family of Bute, which is lineally descended from the royal 
house of Stewart, have for many ages held the largest estate in point of value 
in that shire and which, as now increased, comprehends twenty-one out of 
twenty-four parts of the whole island of Bute, and nearly the half of the 
greatest Cumbrae. The family of Hamilton have been lords of the manor, and 
held the chief part of the Island of Arran, since it was first conferred on their 
ancestors by James III. in 1474, on the marriage of that nobleman with the 
King's sister, after the banishment and death of Lord Boyd, her first husband. 
This island had long been a royal domain where the Scottish kings resorted to 
enjoy the amusements of the chase. The first creation of private property upon 
it seems to have been in favour of a small nunnery, which had been established 
on the Isle of Lamlash, which had that island and some lands around the bay 
annexed for its support. The monastery of Kilwinning afterwards obtained 
a grant of the lands between Corrie and Loch Ranza, and the convent of Saddel 
in Kintyre enjoyed those of Shisken and others on the west side of the island. 
At the dissolution of monasteries those lands came into the family of Hamilton 
as chiefs of the island. 

The estate of Eanza, on the north end of Arran, seems to have been long a 
part of the royal domain. The castle on it is understood to have been built by 
one of the Scottish kings as a hunting residence. Fordun mentions it as a 
royal castle in 1380. It was long the property of the Montgomeries of 
Skelmorlie, the ancestors of the present Earl of Eglinton, before it became that 
of the Duke of Hamilton. 

The Earl of Glasgow is proprietor of the east side of the Meikle Cumbrae, 
and the Earl of Eglinton of the Little Cumbrae. The estate of Karnes, which 
was lately the property of Lord Bannatyne, and had long been held by his 
ancestors, and is now the property of James Hamilton of Karnes, was, when 
entire, the lai'gest estate in Buteshire pertaining to a commoner; but 
part of it has been by Archibald MacArthur Stewart of Ascog added to the 
estate he and his ancestors formerly held there. Ascog is now the second 

(n) See a detailed account of the several lakes in Alton's General View of the Agriculture of Bute, 
p. 60. 


































Sect. VII.— 0/ its Trade, etc.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 37 

estate in the Isle of Bute, and the largest in that county pertaining to a 
commoner. Alexander MacConachy of Ambrosebeg, Archibald Glass of Mid- 
Ascog, Daniel M'Kay of South Garrochly, who are all termed barons, and the 
Burgh of Eothesay, are the only other proprietors of land in the shire of Bute. 
Some idea may be formed of the magnitude of these several estates from the 
following list : — 

Proprietors aud Estates. 

The Marquess of Bute, the estate of Bute, 

The Duke of Hamilton, Arran, - - . - 

The Earl of Glasgow's estate in Meikle Cumbrae, 

The Earl of Eglinton for Little Cumbrae, ... 

James Hamilton, Karnes, . . - . . 

Archibald MacArthur, Asoog, - ... 

John Fullei'ton, Kilmichael, ... 

Alexander M'Oonoohy, Ambrosebeg, 

Archibald Glass, Mid Ascog, - . . . . 

Daniel M'Kay, South Garrochly, .... 

The total valuation of the shire exclusive of the burgh, - 

The Burgh of Bothesay is the only public body in this county, and the whole 
territory, including a number of small proprietors, has been recently valued in 
sterling money at £1,941 2s.\6d. of yearly rent. 

The management of estates Vs a subject of very great importance not only to 
the proprietor and the occupier but to the public and even to the Government. 
In a country like Scotland, where the soil does not yield much spontaneously, 
but where the greatest exertions are necessary to render the earth productive, 
neglecting to naanage any part of it to the best advantage is an injury done to 
the proprietor who might, by due attention to the subject, double his income 
every twenty or thirty years. It is no less so to the tenants or occupiers who, 
instead of being kept half idle, half fed, and half starved, destitute of wealth, 
strangers to industry, and enjoying but a small degree of comfort, might by 
their industry on the soil employ a much greater number of people, pay them 
better, and add to their wealth as well as greatly enrich the soil. The public 
are equally interested, as more human food must be raised and brought to 
market when due attention is paid to the cultivation of the soil than when it is 
neglected. And the Government is also most materially interested in the 
right management of the soil, as it secures food to a greatly increased popula- 
tion, the principal strength of any state, and prevents the riches of the nation 
from being drained off to a foreign country to procure the necessaries of life. 

38 An ACCOUNT [Oh. 11.— Buteshire. 

About the middle of the last century the tenants of Bute had no leases, 
being tenants at will, and Lord Bute had a steelban or right to one half of the 
crops. There were then no carts in the island. Too many cattle were kept, 
and they were neither productive of milk nor had food to fatten them. Six 
horses were generally yoked into a clumsy plough of the Scottish kind. The 
crops were seldom more than three, often little more than two, seeds, the 
ground being overrun with weeds ; the ridges were crooked, with large banks 
between them ; fallows, green crops, and artificial grasses were unknown in tlje 
country. The farms were small, but the stocks of the occupiers were propor- 
tionally smaller. The farms were generally occupied by more than one, and 
often by three or four or five tenants, who were all joined in the possession and 
the barbarous arrangement of croft and outfield, the farmer getting all the 
manure ; and the latter, kept in a state of reprobation, prevailed over the 
whole island. There were no inclosures. The houses of the tenants were very 
mean, with the fire on the floor, and the condition of the inmates, of course, 
was far from being comfortable. 

John, the third Earl of Bute, being desirous of meliorating his estate and 
tenants, which though they were not worse than the estates and tenants of the 
neighbouring barons in the western parts of Scotland, the eyes of that noble- 
man were opened to his true interest and that of the country at a time when 
those of others in situations more propitious still remained shut. In 1758 his 
lordship ofiered his tenants leases of their possessions, abolished the steelban 
usage, relinquished boon work, converted the victual rent into money of moder- 
rates, reversed the terms of entry by fixing them at Martinmas for the arable 
parts of the farms, and at the 1st of May for the pasturage parts thereof, and 
endeavoured to teach his tenants to consider themselves independent, and on a 
more respectable footing than formerly. 

His lordship had previously invited to Bute a few tenants from other parts, 
who were supposed to be conversant in arable husbandry, and shepherds who 
were skilled in storefarming, to whom he gave leases, with every reasonable 
encouragement. But such was then the prejudice of the native inhabitants 
that the generality of them hesitated to accept leases for nineteen years, which 
they supposed as a scheme to bind them to their native soil. His lordship, 
after performing much for his own benefit as well as the interest of his tenants, 
he is amply entitled to receive the praise which is due to him who has made a 
blade of grass where none grew before. He was not only the earliest improver 
in the west of Scotland, but the wisest improver of his time (o). He died at 

(o) His various proceedings are detailed in Alton's Agriciiltural Survey of Buteshire, 73-6. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 89 

London on the 10th of March, 1792, aged 79. His example was followed in 
Bute by the late Lord Bannatyne, though at some distance behind a personage 
of more skill and greater means. 

Of manufactures this shire can scarcely boast. Like other districts in their 
progress from rudeness to refinement, Buteshire may have had some domestic 
fabrics from the hands of the women while the men were employed in the 
ruder labours of the fields or the fisheries. But the building in 1778 of a large 
cotton mill at Rothesay gave the inhabitants a knowledge in that kind of 
manufacture, and induced others to prosecute the same species of business. The 
position of this town with a good port on the Frith of Clyde, connected it by 
an easy navigation with Greenock, Paisley, and Glasgow, which suggested 
employment and supplied capital. At the epoch of the Peace of 1762, Rothe- 
say, and indeed Bute in general, were indeed but very wretched. But the 
introduction of such machinery and employees wrought a great change, 
particularly as they found the third Earl of Bute always ready to concur in 
promoting any reasonable project or proposal. From having one detached 
vessel of inconsiderable burden, in less than thirty years' they accumulated 
shipping to the amount of 42 to 46 tons. In 1790 sixty busses, carrying 3104 
tons, were in that year fitted out from the port of Rothesay for the herring- 
fishery. Rothesay in 1791 contained of industrious people 4,160, but in 1821 
it was inhabited by 5,709, a demonstration this of the salutary government of 
a diligent people. Rothesay is a royal burgh, and concurs with others in send- 
ing a representative to Parliament, and it gives the title of Duke to the heir- 
apparent of the crown. 

§ VIII. Of its Ecclesiastical History. — As the shire has but few parishes, 
it can only have but few facts of a religious nature. The shire lies in the 
synod of Argyle, and within three Presbyteries, namely, of Dunoon, of Kintyre, 
and of Irvine, the whole comprehending merely five parishes. Rothesay may 
be deemed the first parish, of which we have already spoken. Kingarth is the 
only other parish of the Isle of Bute which, as it has partaken of the same 
encouragement, seems to have equally prospered. In 1791 it had 727 
parishioners, but in 1821 this parish contained 890. Kilbride, one of the 
parishes of Arran, with less attention has increased in people from 2,545 to 
2,714, Kilmory, the other parish in Arran, has also thriven in the same 
period, having 3,259 parishoners in 1791 and 3,827 in 1821. The only other 
parish in this shire is Cumbrae, which had of parishioners 509 in 1791, and 657 
in 1821. 

40 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. III.— Stirlingshire. 



§ I. Of its Name. — The name of this district is plainly derived from the 
designation of the town, and the town itself was undoubtedly named from the 
British Ystref-lin, signifying the village or town at the pool, or stagnating part 
of a river. Thus is the original name plainly a description of the location of the 
thing signified (a). 

In a writ of Edward II. in 1309 the Castle of Stirling is called " Castrum de 
Estrivelin" (h). In old documents it is always called Strivelin or Estrivelin, 
and not Stirling (c). In the curious document entitled " De situ Albania," 
about 1160, in Innes's Essay, from the Colbertine Library, the name is "Strive- 
lin." Many of the charters of King William the Lion are dated at Strivelin. 

In the charter of Alexander I. to Scone he granted to it " quinque mansionis, 
domum isnam apud Edenesburg, unam apud Strivelin " (cZ). In various 
charters of David I. he studiously calls this town Strivelin, which was the 
original name of it throughout his reign (e). The same may be said of King 
William, and of the grants of his son and grandson, Alexander 11. and Alex- 
ander III. The legend of the very ancient seal of this town may be seen in 
Asher's Seals of Scotland (Plate II., No. 3, being " Strivehnse "). 

Mr. Cardonnel supposes that William coined money at Stirling, according to 
the Mint-Master, but upon examining the coins referred to in No. 9 and 10 of 
Plate I., I can only discover as the place of mintage " Derlig." This is sup- 

(a) Hearne's Antiq. Discourses, ii., 2-7, for what William Patten, a learned antiquary, says of 
Stirling : The true name being Estriveling, and at this day (towards the end of Elizabeth's reign) is 
called by the name of Striveling. (J) Eotuli Scotia, i. 80. 

(c) Ohartularies of Scone, Oambuskenneth, Kelso, Glasgow, and Dunfermline ; Maitland's Edin- 
burgh, p. 145 ; Dalrymple's Ool., App. p. 372, 384-5. (d) Chart. Scone, No. 1. 

(e) See David I. charters in Chart. Oambuskenneth, No. 55 and No. 61 ; Sir Jas. Dalrymple's app 
384-5 ; MS. Monast. Scotia, p. 105, 107. 

Sect. II.— Of its Situation and Extent.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 41 

posed, I presume, to signify Stirling, and this supposition is made contrary to 
the charter of William and the language of the time. There was no other 
coinage at Stirling, continues Mr. Cardonnel, till the reign of James I., James 
II., and James III. (f). Upon examining his plate of coins, the coin No. 8 of 
James I. appears clearly to have in the legend " Villa Strevevli," the (n) being 
left out for want of room, and the (v) being interpolated by the blunder of the 
moneyer {g). The coin No. 5 of James II. has plainly " Villa Sterling " {h). 
None of the coins of James III. engraved by Cardonnel appear to have been 
coined at Strivelin or Stirling (i), and this coin of James IV. is the first 
instance wherein the original name, which had sense in it, was blundered into 
Sterling, which has no sense except the sense of Sibbald (Jc), who derives the 
modern name from its metropolis, Stirling, which is so called, says he, from its 
situation upon the descent of a steep hill, at the foot of which runneth the 
river of Forth ; for, as David Buchanan observeth, Ster, in the old Saxon 
language, signifieth a mountain or rock, and lin a deep water. But Ster, or 
rather Staer, in Somner signifies a history, a story ; in Lye, Sterr signifies a 
star, and lin a deep water. 

Such, then, is the sense of Sir Robert Sibbald and of David Buchanan ! Such, 
then, were the ancient and modern names of Stirling. The modern name, 
which has no significance nor sense, having superseded the significant Estrive- 
lin of the British speech. 

§ II. Of its Situation and Extent. — It has Perthshire upon the north, 
Dumbartonshire on the west, parts of Dumbarton and Lanarkshire on the 
south, and Linlithgowshire, the Frith of Forth, and Clackmannan shire, on the 
east. It is situated from 55° 53' 50" to 56-16' 50" north latitude, and from 
3° 37' 10" to 4° 40' 20" longitude west of Greenwich. 

Its greatest length from east-south-east to north-west, is about 48 miles, and 
the largest breadth is 21 miles, including the detached parish of Alva {I). But, 
exclusive of that portion, the breadth is from 17 to 12 miles, and the north- 
west extremity of the shire is only five miles broad. The whole county of 
Stirling contains a superficies of 502 [466] square miles, or 821,280 [298,758] 
English acres. 

In 1821 Stirlingshire, containing 502 square miles, and being inhabited by 

(/) Card. Pref., 6. {g) Par. lb., pi. IV., Ju. I. No. 8 ; and his letterpress, p. 68. 

{h) lb., pi. v.. No. 5. {i) See lb., pi. V., and p. 79-81. {k) Hist. Stirling, p. 35. 

(I) The parish of Alva, which is comprehended in Stirlingshire, lies on the north of the river 
Devon, embosomed in Clackmannanshire, which bounds it on the south, east, and west sides, and 
Perthshire bounds it on the north. This detached parish is 4i miles long and 2\ miles broad. 
7 6 


An account [Oh. HI — Stirlingshire. 

65,750 people (this includes about 374 seamen who were omitted in the popu- 
lation returns of 1821), these circumstances make nearly 131 to a square mile. 
The 65,750 people composed 13,733 families, who inhabited 8,984 houses, being 
4.80 in each family, and 7.32 persons in each house. Such, then, are the 
situation, the extent, and the populousness of Stirlingshire, which has increased 
in the numbers of its people, and continues to increase. 

Stirling town is situated in 56° 7' 35" north latitude, and in 3° 56' of west 
longitude, from Greenwich. Like Edinburgh, this shire town is built upon a 
hill, overlooking the Forth, and rising from the east, terminates in a steep and 
perpendicular rock upon which the castle stands. 

§ III. Of its Natural Objects. — Of its climate, at least in the west and 
south-west districts of this shire, it may be said to be rainy, being frequently 
exposed to the west winds and heavy showers from the Atlantic Ocean. The 
clouds, in their course towards the east, are constantly intercepted by the 
Campsie Hills, Ben Lomond, and the other mountains which generally receive 
their watery contents. This shire does not so much suffer by the cold as by 
the frequent rains and changeable weather, which retard the operations of 
husbandry and prove injurious to the hay and corn harvest. The town of 
Stirling, and plains on the north and east of the Campsie Hills, enjoy a climate 
more dry, warm, and favourable. Snow seldom falls to a great depth or lies 
long on the ground. The great inconvenience in this district is the long 
continued east winds which prevail in the spring time, and even in the 
beginning of summer. By a register which has been kept in Stirling town 
during five years, ending in 1 780, the average number of rainy days was 206, 
and the quantity of rain which fell in each year was 30. 3- inches. In the 
eastern division of Stirlingshire it may be said to enjoy a dry climate, in the 
west it must be allowed to be wet. On the whole, it is concluded that this is 
rather a showery than a rainy climate. 

But in judging of climate^ the elevation of the ground must always be con- 
sidered. Thus — 

Feet above the Sea. 
The Oarses on tlie Forth are from - 12 to 20. 

The hill of Airth, - - 70. 

The highest elevation of the great canal, 162. 

The land in tillage near Slamannan Moss, - - 620. 

The Kilsyth Hills, - - . 1,360. 

The Campsie Fells, - - 1,500. 

Benoleuoh, in Alva, - - - 2,363. 

Ben Lomond, - - - - . 3,192. 

Loch Lomond,* - - 22. 

* The Eev. Dr. Graham's General_,View, p. 8. 

Sect. III.— Of its Natural Objects.] f N E T H - B E I T A I N . 43 

Much, of the surface of Stirlingshire must be allowed to be mountainous and 
moorish. The Campsie Hills or Fells, as they are commonly called, cover a 
considerable extent of country. This ridge of hills commences at the eastern 
extremity of Denny parish, and runs westward through Kilsyth, Campsie, 
Strathblane, and Killearn, a space this of about twenty miles. The waters of 
Carron and Endrick separate this ridge from the hills of Dundaff and Fintry. 
The chief remarkable mountain in this shire is Ben Lomond, which rises in a 
cone 3,192 feet from the side of Loch Lomond, which is 22 feet above the sea. 
It is chiefly used for sheep walks. Most of the hills in this line consist of 
whinstone or granite, though in many places freestone of various colours also 
appears. Many points of the hills in Strathblane and Killearn are regularly 
stratified with alternate beds of till and argillaceous stone, containing a con- 
siderable proportion of lime and iron. A few very thin seams of gypsum are 
likewise interspersed among them. The quantity of till, however, is five or six 
times more than all the rest. 

The soils of Stirlingshire are very various, from the mountains and moorish 
to meadow and carse, with other alluvials. The word carse or kerse is merely 
a variation of the British cors, signifying a bog or fen. 

The isolated portions of Stirlingshire which lie on the northern side of the 
Forth, consisting of the whole parish of Alva, and parts of the parishes of 
Lecropt and Logie, is in the low grounds, partly clay or carse, and partly loam. 
The mountains of Alva are entirely green, and are covered with rich herbage, 
with the exception of a thousand acres of moss, which appear to be irreclaim- 
able, on account of its great depth, and the want of a level. Clay or carse, 
the distinguished soil of the richest portion of Stirlingshire, and perhaps of 
Scotland, is here usually denominated carse or kerse land. This remarkable 
soil extends along the banks of the Forth in this county, from the neighbour- 
hood of Bucklyvie on the West, to its junction with Linlithgow on the East, 
through an extent of about 28 miles. Its breadth varies from ^ a mile to 4^ 
miles, the average breadth may be about two miles ; and making 56 square 
miles, or 28,500 Scots acres. If, indeed, all the carse lands which skirt the 
Forth on both sides, that is, in the Counties of Perth, Clackmannan, Linlithgow 
and Stirling, this fruitful soil may be computed at the average length of 34 
miles, by 6 in breadth ; amounting to 204 square miles, or 10,380 Scots acres, 
nearly, and unquestionably constituting the richest and most important district 
of Scotland, in an agricultural point of view (m). 

(m) The Eev. Dr. Graham's view, 33-4. The Ohartularies of Scotland, from the epoch of Charters, 
are full of notices about those carses, or corses, as objects of desire. The soil is evidently alluvial, 
and the substances which are found in it, as well as the aspect of the higher grounds by which it is 
bounded, indicate that it was covered by the sea at some remote period. 


An account [Ch. III.— Stirlingshire. 

Peat-earth or moss, is the only other species of soil to be noticed in Stirling- 
shire. Though a great part of these shallow mosses are in some measure 
inappHcable to the purposes of husbandry, and though these moorish tracts 
through their whole extent are of inferior value, yet, must they not, without 
many limitations, be indiscriminately classed under the denomination of wastes. 
The greater part of these moorish grounds furnishes good pasture for sheep. 
Perhaps the only grounds in Stirlingshire that may be accounted wastes, are 
the mosses of Muiravonside, and Slamannan in a great part ; the thousand acres 
of moss in the mountains of Alva, of which mention has been made, and the 
small patches of deep, or flow moss, as it is called, which are found in the lower 
district of this shire, or the banks of the Forth, which must now be noticed. 
Of this last kind of mosses there are three in the lower part of the parish of 
Kippen ; one of 200 acres, one of 180 acres, and one of about 70. There were 
formerly some other mosses in this neighbourhood, but these, with a great part 
of those mosses which remain, have been removed, and they will all be soon 
removed, according to the established practice. In the fertile parish of Airth, 
there is a moss of between 400 and 500 acres, of which the late Lord Dunmore 
cleared away 100 acres lapon the Kerse estate, and his son, the present Earl, is 
prosecuting the same undertaking with increased ardour. All those mosses are 
incumbent on a clay or carse soil. 

That all of those mosses, with the still more extensive moss of Blair- 
Drummond in Perthshire and on the northern bank of the Forth, had their 
origin in the destruction of vast forests which of old occupied this extensive 
plain, is the generally received and probable opinion. Those mosses consist of 
two strata, the upper one is formed of a light spongy peat earth of a whitish 
colour, and extends to the depth of 5 or 6 feet. This spongy matter is neither 
useful as a fuel nor convenient as a manure. Below the upper strata is found a 
stratum of 4 or 5 feet of black, compact peat earth, which is used for fuel, and 
which, when mixed with clay or dung, makes a good manure for a clayey soil. 
Below this vast body of moss, a rich clay soil appears, precisely of the same 
quality and upon the same level with the adjacent carse. The following estimate, 
though not absolutely accurate, will give an idea sufficient for our purpose, of 
forming a very good opinion of the amount of each sort of soil, in the varied 
surface of Stirlingshire : 


The Carse soil has been estimated at - - - - 28 500 

The Loamy soil at --.... go QOO 
The Mountain and Moorish pasturage including woods, small lochs, 

rivers, roads, towns, and villages - . 202,500 

Deep Mosses, and those impracticable of much improvement - 7,000 

Total, .... 328,000 

Sect. III.— 0/ its Natural Objects.] OpNOKTH-BRITAIN. 45 

From the climate, the mountains and moors, and arable soil, we are naturally 
carried forward to the waters of Stirlingshire. 

The Forth when it approaches Stirling town, becomes from the junction of 
kindred streams a large river ; and is thence, notwithstanding its curvatures, a 
navigable river to the German Sea ; and, as it runs through and along the 
extremes of this shire, must necessarily be of considerable advantage from its 
water carriage. Loch Lomond throughout the extent of 18 miles washes this 
shire on the west side, and with its islands adds much to the picturesque 
beauty of the county, though it contributes but little to the water carriage of 
the shire. As this charming sheet of water had been in Dumbartonshire 
originally, when this sort of jurisdiction first began, and was afterwards trans- 
ferred virtually, rather than directly to Stirlingshire, there has been much 
dispute among writers who do not look into original documents, with regard to 
what shire it now lies in. The Lochlomond isles, with the 40 pound lands of 
Buchanan, formerly belonged to the parish of Luss, and county of Dumbarton, 
but in 1617 the 40 pound lands of Buchanan, with those isles were separated 
from the parish of Luss, and annexed to the parish of Inchcailloch, which was 
afterwards called Buchanan, this parish is now altogether in the shire of Stirling. 
The Forth and Clyde Canal which begins at Carron Mouth, as far as it proceeds 
through Stirlingshire, is of more value and importance for the convenience of 
carriage than Loch Lomond. There are in this shire some other lochs of little 
size and importance. Stirlingshire is copiously watered by several streams. 
There is the Carron which is known to history, and falls into the Forth ; the 
Endrick and the Blane fall into Loch Lomond. The Kelvin river which rises 
near Kilsyth, with its tributary streams, after traversing this shire falls into 
the Clyde. All those inferior rivers not only add to the picturesque effect of 
the country, but are very useful for agricultural purposes, and contribute trout, 
salmon, and other fish to its domestic economy. 

Stirlingshire abounds in minerals. Coal exists in various districts of this 
county in abundance, which has encouraged the establishment of many important 
manufactures. Limestone which is so useful and important abounds in the 
southern and eastern districts of this shire. It is burnt as a manufacture at 
Campsie and Kilsyth, at Sauchie and Murray's-hall. Much lime is also imported 
from Fife. Freestone also abounds in this shire, as it generally accompanies 
coal and limestone. In the western parts of this county there is a reddish 
freestone which is easily wrought, but its appearance in buildings of any 
elegance is not pleasing. The freestone of Kilsyth is of excellent quality and 
admits of a fine polish. Its vicinity to the great canal renders its conveyance 

46 AnACOOUNT [Ob. III.— Stirlingshire. 

to Glasgow easy and cheap, and of course great quantities are carried thither 
oil this canal. 

Ironstone, which is found in various places in Scotland as well as in England, 
occurs in this shire. It was this circumstance, with the abundance of coal and 
the convenience of water-carriage, internally and externally, which were the 
moving causes that induced the establishment of the vast ironworks on the 
Carron. In Kilsyth are found what is called ball-iron-stone, and which is the 
most valuable of any. Basalts occur very frequently. The rocks which are 
found in the mountainous tract from Dumbarton to Stirling more or less, 
appear in the basaltic character. In Fintry parish on the hill called the Dun, 
there is a grand range of basaltic pillars, 70 in number, of the height of 50 
feet ; some of them are square, while others of them are pentagonal and hexa- 
gonal. Granite is found here. A seam has been worked in Kilsyth, of which 
vast quantities are sent to Glasgow for paving the streets. Whether this 
granite of Kilsyth be equal to the granite of Syene in Egypt has not been de- 
cided. In the Hailstaln-bung of Kilsyth, Raspe, the German mineralogist, 
found large masses of gray and variegated dull coloured flint, yellow and red 
jasper with nodules of agate and porphyry. This jasper, which is of a fine 
grain, has long ago found its course to the lapidaries and engravers of Edin- 
burgh and London. 

Of copper, there are appearances in Kilsyth, which had been wrought about 
the year 1731 by the York Building Company. This was visited by Raspe in 
1791, who found in the old drift "a vein of reddish heavy spar, or vitriolated 
barytes. Upon entering the mine, he found promising appearances of copper." 
Copper has also been found in the Ochil-hills within the county. In Logic 
parish a copper mine was wrought some years ago with a great prospect of 
success, but notwithstanding this probability of profit, the search was given 
up to impatience. 

Silver ore has been found in the parishes of Logie and Alva. In the three 
years from 1761 to 1764, an English company opened a silver mine on the 
estate of Airthry ; but some loss induced them to relinquish what they had 
found. Another mine of silver was attempted in Alva parish, in the glen or 
ravine which separates Middlehill from Woodhill, but after some success was 
abandoned. Another trial was made here in 1750 with more skill and better 
perseverance ; but the miners found nothing to justify the continuation of the 
search. During this last trial, a large mass of cobalt was found, a great part 
whereof was erajoloyed in a manufacture of porcelain, which had been estab- 
lished about that time at Prestonpans. It is supposed that the cobalt of Alva 

Sect. IV.— Of its A iniquities. ] OfNOETH-BRITAIN. 47 

was hot in the least inferior to that which is procured from the mines of 
Saxony. When those trials were made in Alva, an agent, who was quite equal 
to the task, made a Survey, from which it appears that there are in the parish 
of Alva 14 or 15 mines, containing copper, iron, cobalt, and silver. 

Near the Spout of Balagan, in Strathblane Parish, there, in a perpendicular 
rock of 70 feet, which forms a magnificent cascade, no fewer than 192 feet of 
earth and limestone present themselves ; and there are also found some thin 
strata of alabaster of the whitest colour. There were, moreover, found near 
the same place, amongst the rubbish which had been thrown up by an inunda- 
tion, some rich specimens of antimony. 

In a country where there are so many minerals, there are, as may be ex- 
pected, not a few mineral waters. In Polmont parish, indeed, there are mineral 
springs which are impregnated with iron, owing to the great quantities of iron 
ore in the higher grounds. In the parish of Airth there is a well near Abbey- 
town bridge called the Lady well, which is thought to be medicinal. In Kilsyth 
parish, near the Mansion House, there is a mineral spring, which seems to be a 
strong chalybeate. But as those and various other mineral waters have not 
been analysed, their various properties are quite unknown. 

In districts so picturesque as the parishes forming this shire, there are a 
variety of the curiosities of nature. There are cataracts which emulate the 
Falls of Niagara, there are rocks of singular distortions, there are hills of various 
appearances, and they are all described with great minuteness in the several 
statistical accounts. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — The most curious antiquities in every district 
are the people and their appurtenances. The Damnii appear from classic 
authorities to have inhabited the whole country from the ridge of hills between 
Galloway and Ayrshire on the south, to the river Earn on the north, compre- 
hending all Ayrshire, Strathclyde, Renfrew, and Stirling, with a small part of 
Dumbarton and Perth (n). This was one of the most powerful of the British 
tribes who inhabited North Britain ; and they left much of their language in 
the topography of the country, as an evidence of the fact. The very name of 
the shire town, however much it may have been barbarised in being converted 
from Strivelin to Stirling. The word carse, which is so often mentioned in de- 
scribing the several districts on the Forth, is merely a variation of the British 
cors, as we have already seen. In every district the British language might 
be shown, however much it has been corrupted by tradition, and mistaken by 

(») Caledonia, i. 61. 

48 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. III. — Stirlingshire. 

mapmakers. So Bala, at the issue of the lake, and Aber, at the meeting of so 
many waters, demonstrate. 

A Cromlech, called the "old woman's lift," still remains in the parish of 
Campsie, being upon the height of a hill out of harm's way (o), being a place of 
worship where the British people had so often offered their adorations. The 
hill forts of the Britons, which they placed in opposition to the Roman wall, 
may still be traced to this origin. The maiden castle, which may be found so 
often in other shires, is merely the maydun of the British speech. Few, if any, 
of the British weapons have been found in this district. The tombs of the 
warriors have been discovered in various places (p). The antiquity of Stirling 
Castle has been matter of boast. On this rocky height a British fortlet may 
have been erected, but certainly a fortress of the Romans, who did not appro- 
priate such locations for their fortifications, did not here exist. 

This shire is fruitful, however, in Roman antiquities. Their vast wall, which 
was devised to fence the isthmus between the Forth and Clyde, was altogether 
worthy of the Roman skill and perseverance ; their roads also evince how 
laborious the Roman legionaries were. Some of their armour, and many of 
their memorial stones have been found on the course of the wall. On the 
moor of Killearn have been found a sufficient number of tumuli and cairns, as 
to prove that a battle had been fought here in former times, though the oppos- 
ing combatants have not yet been ascertained. At Blair-Essen, or rather 
Blair-easem, the field of battle, at the small cascade, the tumuli which have 
been opened were found to have at bottom a stone coffin of such large dimen- 
sions as could not be moved without breaking them in pieces {q). 

The much more modern castles which are now in ruins can scarcely be con- 
sidered as antiquities, since neither their origin, their progress, nor their de- 
struction are clearly ascertained, so that little instruction can be gained from 
them. The same observations may be made concerning the many Roman 
Catholic Chapels which have long been in ruins, since they seem to ascertain 
that in those ancient times, while there may have been less religion, there were 
certainly more places for worship of God than in present days of doubtful 
morals and disingenuous religiousness. 

§ V. Op its Establishment as a Shire. — There is reason to believe that 
there was a Sheriffdom here as early as the beneficent reign of David I. David 
granted to the monks of Cambuskenneth the tithes of all his pleas and gains, 

(o) It is well described by the Rev. Dr. Lapslie, the minister of Campsie. Stat. Acct., xv., 314. 
(p) See the several Stat. Accounts of this shire. (g) Stat. Account, xvi., 100. 

Sect. V — Of its Establishment as a Shire.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 49 

" de Striveling et de Strivelingschyre " (r). Duffie was certainly Sheriff of 
Stirling between the years 1147 and 1153 (s). William, the son of Konald, 
supposed to have been Sheriff here in the reign of William the Lion (t). Alex- 
ander was Sheriff" of Stirling in the period between 1189 and 1199 (u). 
Maurice, the Earl of Monteith, succeeded him as Sheriff of Stirling as early as 
1225 (v). This oflBce did not remain so long in the family of Fraser as hath 
been supposed by some (iv). John, the Sheriff of Stirling, witnessed charters 
between the years 1240 and 1249 (x). Sir Patrick Graham was Sheriff of 
Stirling during the reign of Alexander III. (y) He was certainly Sheriff here 
in 1282 A.D. (z) In 1293, Andrew Fraser is said to have been Sheriff of Stir- 
hng in 1293 a.d. (a) 

In the memorable year 1305, William Byset was Sheriff of Stirling and 
Constable of the Castle under Edward I. (h) The Erasers of Touch, who were 
then eminent men, are supposed to have continued Sheriffs of Stirling during 
the long and disastrous wars of the succession (c). On the 16th of April, 1370, 
David II. conferred the office of Sheriff of Stirling on his friend Sir Robert 
Erskine, whose posterity is said to have long enjoyed this office (d). 

On the 2nd of May, 1407, Sir William Keith, the Marshal of Scotland, and 
Margaret Fraser, his wife, the heiress of the Erasers, granted with other pro- 
perty this office to John Stewart, lord of Buchan, and his heirs male (e). On 
the 28th of January, 1423-4, Archibald Cunningham of Auchinbuie acted as 
the Sheriff of Stirlingshire (/). In 1471, Sir Malcolm Fleming acted as Sheriff 
of Stirlingshire (g). On the 14th of February, 1487-8, at a very critical 
moment in the life of James IV., the king granted this office to Sir Alexander 
Cunningham of Polmais and his son Robert, for their several lives (h). But 
they seem not to have enjoyed this office long. In 1503 the Earl of Mar acted 

(r) Chart. Cambusken., No. 61. (s) lb., 175. (t) lb., No. 137-179. 

(m) Chart. Scone, No. 40 ; Chart. Glasg., p. 35-7; Diplom. Scotia, pi. 287; Eobertson's Index, 146 ; 
Chart. Arbroath, No. 159. Alexander continued in this office as low down as 1224. 

(v) Chart. Cambus., No. 186. Bernard Fraser was certainly Sheriff here in 1234. Chart. New- 
bottle, No. 186 (iv) Crawf., Off. of State, 229. (x) Chart. Newbottle, No. 191-231. 

(ij) Malcolm's MS. Notes, p. 449. (z) Chart. Cambus., No. 53. (a) Nisbet's Heraldry, i. 388. 

(6) Eyley's Placita, 505. (c) Nimmo's Hist., 501-23 ; Crawf. Off. of State. 

(d) Mag. Sig., Lib. i., 222. At the demise of David II., Februar}-, 1370-1, Sir Eobert Erskine had 
the custody of the thi-ee castles of Stirling, Dumbarton, and Edinburgh. Wyntoun, ii., 204. The 
firmness with which Sir Eobert opposed the Earl of Douglas's pretensions to the crown, in opposition 
to the Stewart and the law of the land, perhaps prevented a Civil War. Sir Eobert Erskine died 
in 1385. (e) Eeg. Mag. Sig., Eot. ii., John Lord Buchan. (/) Macfarlan's MS., Notes, 385. 

(g) Crawford's MS. Notes, from the Excheq. Books. (h) Eeg. Mag. Sig., v., 129. 

7 7 

50 AkAOCOUNT [Oh. 111.— Stirlingshire. 

as SherifFof Stirling {i). On the 26th of February, 1506-7, James IV. granted 
this office to Eobert Erskine, the son and heir of Alexander Lord Erskine, and 
his heirs, for the office of Sheriff of Selkirk, which he had resigned (j). In 
consequence of this heritable grant, the office of Sheriff descended in the 
Erskine family till 1641, when the Earl of Mar resigned it to the king, who 
engaged to pay his lordship £5000 sterling for the Sheriffship, and £3000 more 
which was to be restored to him as the arrears of his pension of £300 a year, 
making in all £8000 sterling (k). On the 22nd of July, 1646, the first Earl of 
Callander obtained a grant of this office, which was ratified in Parliament on 
the 27th March, 1647 (l). Sir WiUiam Bruce of Stonhouse, owing to his prin- 
ciples, was appointed by Cromwell to this office (m). At the Eestoration, how- 
ever, the Earl of Callander was restored to his office ; but soon after, refusing 
to take the test, the office was given, in January, 1681-2, to the Earl of Mar (n). 
The Earl of Callander was, in 1688, restored to his heritable office. Alexander, 
Earl of Callander, was, on the 16th of May, 1688, served heir to his uncle in 
the office of Baillie of the lordship of Stirling, and Baillie upon the Forth (o). 
On the 4th of August, 1693, James, Earl of Callander, was served heir to his 
father in the same offices. James, Earl of Callander, succeeded to the Earldom 
of Linlithgow in 1695, on the death of his uncle without issue. In 1710, the 
Earl of Linlithgow was the heritable Sheriff of Stirlingshire, to whom Sir 
Robert Sibbald dedicated his history of the same shire. Little did the patron 
or the dedicator know how soon the heritable office was to go into other hands 
by forfeiture, in consequence of his rebellion in 17 15. The Duke of Montrose 
was appointed Sheriff in his stead during pleasure, and the Duke's posterity 
enjoyed this office till the epoch of the abolition of all such offices in 1747. 
William, the Duke of Montrose, appears neither to have received nor claimed 
any compensation for the office of Sheriff, as it was held during pleasure (p). 
In March, 1748, Mr. David Walker, advocate, was appointed Sheriff-depute of 
Stirling and Clackmannan shires, at a salary of £150 sterling a year (q). Such, 
then, was the origin, the progress, and the abolition of an office which marks 
the various changes of an ancient policy for a new system of laws. 

It cannot easily be ascertained of what districts this sheriffdom was formed 

(t) Sir J. Balfour's Pract., 16. (jj Eegist. Mag. Sig., i., xiv., 322. 

(k) Purvis's Extracts from the Exchequer Accounts ; Douglas' Peer., 465 ; Guthrie's Memr., 202. 
(l) Acts Pari., vi., 287. (m) Baillie's Letters, ii., 383-395. 

(w) Warrant Book, Paper OflSce, 580. At the Eevolution the Earl of Mar continued to act as Sheriff. 
Printed Proceedings, Scots Convention, 1689, p. 10. (o) Inquisit. Spec, i., 310. 

(pj MS. Eeport in the Privy Council Eegister. (g) Scots Mag., 1748, p. 155. 

Sect. V — Of its Establishment as a Shire. OfNOETH-BRITAIN. 51 

during those early times. The shire, saith Sibbald, is at present of much larger 
extent than it was formerly, when it comprehended only the county which lay 
about the town of Striveling. In ancient times, much of it, both as to the civil 
and the ecclesiastical jurisdiction, was contained under that of West- Lothian. 
In March 1503-4 because there had been a want of justice in several sheriffdoms 
through the greatness thereof, it was enacted by the Parliament of James IV., 
that Culross and TuUiallan, Clackmannan and the lands lying between it and 
Stirling should, thereafter, form parts of Stirlingshire in the stead of Fife and 
and Perth (r). There were, moreover, annexed to Stirlingshire, the Lenzie, 
Lathbert (now Larbert), the Byrnago, Strathmuir, Kippen and Garden and 
Sebogo, which were detached from the shires of Dumbarton, Perth and Edin- 
burgh. At the same time, the lands of Buchanan and the parishes of Fin try, 
Campsie, Strablane, Buthrane (Balfron), Drymen and Inchcailloch, and from 
thence westward were directed to belong to the shire of Dumbarton. Those 
six parishes were afterwards taken from Dumbartonshire and annexed to Stir- 
lingshire, but at what time does not appear. They certainly belonged to Stir- 
lingshire in 1593, when those six parishes and the parish of Killearn, which 
were called the seven parishes of Stirlingshire that are within Lennox (s). There 
was a supplication from Dumbartonshire for disuniting those seven parishes 
from Stirlingshire and annexing them to Dumbartonshire. On the 3rd of 
October 1639, this supplication was appointed by the Committee of Articles to 
the Earls of Mar and of Airth, and they to be heard thereupon (t). On the 
13th of November 1641, the Act for disuniting the seven parishes oi Inch-ecd- 
beach, which is now called Buchanan, Drymen, Balfron, Fintry, Killearn, Stra- 
blane and Campsie, from Stirlingshire, and annexing them to Dumbartonshire, 
was read in audience of the King and Parliament and continued till the next 
Parliament (u). 

The present situation and extent of Stirlingshire will be best seen and com- 
prehended from the section of the history of Stirlingshire in this volume on 
those particular topics. 

On the 12th of October 1501, James IV. granted to the burgh of Stirling a 
right of sheriffship within its jurisdiction (v). 

§ VI. Of its Civil History. The two great topics of the more ancient history 
of this shire are, its original people, and their language. The Koman transac- 

()•) Acts Pari. II., 243. By anotter Act, during May 1509, the territory of this shire was declared 
to be restored to the same state wherein it stood before the Act of 1502-3. Acts Pari. II., 268. 
{s) Acta Pari. IV., 40. (0 lb. V., 271-282. 

{u) lb., 461. (y) Regist. Mag. Sig., B. XIII., 475. 

52 AnAOCOUNT [Gh. TLl.— Stirlingshire. 

tions within it have been already treated of, either under the antiquities of this 
shire, or under a district section having those interesting topics for their special 
objects {w). So much is said in the account of this shire of the Grimes of old and 
of Grymes dike, it may, perhaps, be proper to explode a second time this popular 
fiction of Gryme's dike. Tn the first place, there are several other such dikes 
in England which are also called Gryme's dike, and this popular name and 
fiction have arisen out of the ancient language, the meaning whereof was for- 
gotten. Grym in the British signifies strength, and by an easy deflection was 
applied to any strong wall, and hence was it called Gryra-dike, or Gryme's 
dike [x). 

The first great part in the history of this shire, after the abdication of the 
Roman government and the recession from our island of the Roman power, was 
the colonization of Argyle by the Scots from Ireland in 605 A.D. When the 
Irish colonists became ambitious of more power, as well as of more territory, 
they ti'aversed the Clyde into Ayr and passed the mountains into Stirling. 
Here they settled amongst the defendants of the Damnii, with whom they easily 
amalgamated, as they understood the speech of each other and practised many 
of the same manners. 

The union of the Picts and Scots in 834 a.d., is perhaps a still more interest- 
ing fact in the history of this central shire. This great event took place under 
the wise and vigorous reign of Kenneth, the son of Alpin. 

There was a third fact, the introduction of the municipal law, and as an inci- 
dent thereof the introduction of sheriffdoms and sheriffs, which are circumstances 
still more important, as they are mentioned in history, and have produced last- 
ing effects. Neither the introduction of the municipal law nor the settlement 
of sheriffdoms could have taken place but for the incorporation of many Anglo- 
Saxon and Anglo-Norman barons with their followers among the Celtic people. 

Some of the first circumstances which strike the eyes of antiquaries vdien 
they open the volume of local history, are the castles and towns, the rivers, the 
fisheries, the trade ; and they immediately perceived that the king enjoyed the 
castles and towns as his demesne, and the rivers for their salt and fisheries, 
with the can or customary dues on ships coming within his ports. 

Stirling Castle, however it may have been possessed in still more ancient 
times, was certainly enjoyed by the king. The town was his for the use which 
he made of it ; the king also enjoyed the river Forth and its kindred waters. 
The king may be seen granting salinas or saltworks on the banks of the Forth, 

{w) See Bk. I. The Eoman period Oaled. I. 
(a;) See Caledonia I., p. 19. Note. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 53 

on either side of this great river, with fisheries in the smaller rivers and streams, 
and can from the vessels coming within the ports of the Forth. Such were the 
facts as they are vouched by the chartularies (y). It is the business of law 
rather than the duty of history, to instruct every individual when he claims 
any of those rights, that he must establish his title by showing a grant from 
the king, either mediately or immediately. 

Alexander I. died in the Castle of Stirling, on the 25th of April 1224 a.d., 
and was buried at Dunfermline (z). 

His immediate successor, David I., often resided in his castle of Stirling, 
which stood at the entrance of the Highlands, and was surrounded during that 
period by Gaelic people. David I. no doubt carried with him a body of people 
from Stirlingshire to the disastrous battle of the Standard, who with him 
partook of the danger and disquiet. 

The fighting men of this country equally followed Malcolm IV. in his wars 
both foreign and domestic, and enjoyed with that youthful prince either the 
mortification of his repulses or the glory of his success. 

William the Lion, his successor, frequently resided in the Castle of Stirling, 
held his Parliament therein, and died of old age, at his favourite residence, on 
the 4th of December 1214; and was carried thence for burial to the Abbey 
Church of Aberbrothick, which he had founded and endowed. During his 
reign Stirling Castle was a place of coinage, according to Cardonnel's information, 
Stirling, like other towns in Scotland which were all probably covered with 
thatch, was consumed by accidental fires (a). 

Stirlingshire flourished, from the prosperity, the plenty, and hilarity of the 
reign of Alexander III. Dying prematurely, and leaving only a grand-daughter 
for his heir, his sad demise brought with it a million of intrigues, which ended 
in long and distressful wars, both foreign and domestic. On the 12th of July 
1291, Edward I. visited the Castle of Stirling, with a view, no doubt, of con- 
sidering it as being one day his own. In the meantime Baliol held his second 
Parliament, on the 3rd of August 1193, at Stirling (6). 

On the 13th of May 1296, the Castle of StirHng was yielded to Edward I., 
whose ambition arrogated the sovereignty of Scotland. 

Wallace, who can never be mentioned but with praise, performed some of his 
earliest exploits at Stirling Bridge (c). 

Wallace was not a leader who would allow his army to sleep upon their 

(y) See tlie foundation charter of David I. to the Abbey of Oambuskennetb. 

(z) Fordun ; Wyntoun. (a) Lord Hailes' An., i. 302. 

(b) Lord Hailes' An., i. 228. (c) Nimtao's Hist. Stirlingshire ; Border History, 206. 

54 AnAOOOUNT [Oil. III.— Stirlingshire. 

victories. Having crossed the Forth to the south, and gained the army of the 
Stewarts of Scotland and the Earl of Lennox, he attacked the enemy under the 
Earl of Surrey at Penwood, with such confident animation, and such persevering 
vigour, that he completely overthrew them after a gallant conflict (d). Edward 
I. was not a prince who would hear of such repulses, by a people under a leader 
whom perhaps he despised, without resolving on retaliation and revenge. In 
summer 1298, he conducted into Scotland a large and well appointed army, 
which was commanded by the ablest captains of England. On such an occasion 
Bruce would have wasted the country as the enemy approached, and have 
retired behind the Forth. Wallace resolved to fight such a foe. The two 
armies met near Falkirk on the 22d of July 1298, when the Scots were defeated 
after a desperate resistance. In their retreat beyond the Forth, the Scots 
burnt the town and Castle of Stirling (e). But iu July of the subsequent year, 
the guardians of Scotland besieged and retook that strength (_/). After 
Edward's expedition into the North of Scotland in the summer and autumn of 
1303, the only fortress which remained to the Scottish people was Stirling 
Castle, which Sir William Oliphant commanded. In this vicinity on the 
southern bank of the Forth, Comyn, one of the guardians, had collected a 
numerous force to protect this last hope of their national independence. He 
idly supposed that such a warrior as Edward I. would, like Cressingham, 
attempt to force the bridge in the face of the foe. But the sagacity of Edward 
having discovered a ford at some distance above, he crossed the Forth at the 
head of his whole cavalry. The Scottish army did not wait his approach, but 
looked for safety in dispersion rather than in firmness. 

Stirling Castle and the gallant Oliphant were now left to their fate. In the 
beginning of 1304, Edwai-d prepared to besiege them. Every known machine 
in those days were now employed against this well-defended fortlet. Edward, 
though well stricken in years, exerted himself like the youngest officer in his 
army. We may from that circumstance infer what so great a prince thought 
of its strength. At the end of three months the defences of this stronghold 
being reduced to rubbish, the gallant Oliphant after an obstinate and bloody 
defence, was obliged with his spirited garrison to surrender at discretion. But 
their fidelity to a great trust, and their gallantry of spirit did not save them 
from the axe of Edward I., who sacrificed his glory to his resentment. 

The accession of Bruce to the throne, and the demise of Edward I. in 1306-7 

(d) Nimmo's Hist., 153. (e) Lord Hailes' An., i. 238-263 ; Edinb. Mag., 11, 617. 

(/) Lord Hailes' An., i. 262. 

Sect. VI — Of its Civil History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 55 

A.D., are epochs in the history of Northern Britain. A bloody war was instantly 
renewed, which involved Stirlingshire in devastation and misery for many a 

In 1313, Edward Bruce, after taking Eutherglen and Dundee, besieged 
Stirling Castle. Philip de Mowbray, the Constable of the Castle, offered to 
surrender if he were not relieved on the 25th of June 1814. Bruce, though he 
did not approve of this rash treaty, which might beget many evils, at length 
ratified it. For relieving the Castle of Stirling immense preparations were 
made in England. As Bruce foresaw that Edward II. would endeavour by 
every effort in his power to relieve this fort, which had cost his father so much 
blood and treasure, he resolved to meet his adversary with an adequate army 
in the field. The Scottish King commanded his forces to lendezvous at the 
Torwood. On Sunday the 23rd of June, both the Kings prepared for a decisive 
day. At Bannockburn ensued a battle which was fought on both sides with 
great skill, uncommon valour, and yet greater perseverance. The superiority of 
Bruce as a commander decided the success of the battle. Edward II. was 
obliged to flee for shelter to Dunbar and thence to Berwick. This conflict was 
so decisive as to establish the independence of the Scottish monarchy. On the 
following day, Mowbray the Governor surrendered Stirling Castle, in pursuance 
of his treaty {/). The war was now no longer internal in Scotland, but con- 
sisted in wasting England, which could not easily be defended from the desultory 
inroads of so active and well directed an enemy. The treaty of Northampton 
ensued in 1328, which established Bruce on the throne of Scotland as an inde- 
pendent kingdom, and seemed equally to acknowledge David II., the infant of 
Robert I., as the Scottish Sovereign. 

In the meantime Bruce called several Parliaments at Cambuskenneth, while 
he himself resided in Stirling Castle. His second Parliament assembled in the 
Abbey of Cambuskenneth on the 16th of November, and it was chiefly 
occupied in attainting those who were not there at the faith of the King. On 
the 25th of July 1323 a parliament, being the fourteenth of Robert I., 
assembled at the Abbey of Cambuskenneth. The clergy, the nobles, and 
barons swore fealty to David, as the successor of his father, and failing him they 
equally swore to submit to the Stewart of Scotland as their King. A tax was 
here granted to Robert I., who was exhausted by a wasteful war, and in return 
he granted a Charter in form of an indenture, for admitting into Parliament 
the representatives of the several corporations of the Scottish burghs (g). 

(/) Lord Hailes' An., ii. 51 ; Border Hist., 246-7. 

(y) Lord Hailes' An., ii., p. 116 ; Wight on Elect., app. No. 1 ; Bk. iv., ch. i. 

56 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. UI.— Stirlingshire. 

After so many circumstances of comfort to Bruce, he at length enjoyed a 
male heir to his crown, the independence of his kingdom, and the goodwill of 
his people. In the midst of all those enjoyments this great king as we have 
seen departed this life at Cardross, Dumbartonshire, on the 7th of July 1339, 
full of years and satiated with glory. 

Owing to the infancy of Bruce's heirs, to the ambition of Edward III., to the 
pretentions of Edward Baliol, which his father had resigned, the war was to be 
rekindled which inflamed and wasted Scotland during many years. 

The death of Kandolph-the Eegent in 1332, the entrance of the disinherited 
barons into Scotland, the hostile appearance of Edward Baliol in that kingdom, 
and the loss of the battle of Dupplin in August 1332, these circumstances 
•obliged the young king to seek refuge in France, and to relinquish Scotland for 
a time, and with it Stirling castle. This fortlet, from its position on the Forth, 
became an important object to both parties. Sir Andrew Murray laid siege to 
that fortlet in October 1336. Edward III. hastened to relieve it, and the Scots, 
owing to the death of Sir William Keith, abandoned an enterprise which was 
beyond their strength. Edward III. came to Stirling castle in the beginning 
of November 1336, where finding it safe he did not remain long. 

In the progress of action by the Stewart as Regent, his next enterprise in 
August 1340 was against Stirling castle, which was relieved by the efforts that 
Edward made for its safety. The Scots, however, appear to have obtained pos- 
session of so desirable an object in June 1341 (h). During that siege of Stirling 
castle, the Scots are said by Froissart to have employed cannon. While Edward 
III. was engaged in his illegitimate and idle project of conquering France, the 
Scots re-conquered Scotland. Among the seventeen burghs which appeared in 
the Parliament for confirming the ransom of David II. (1357), Stirling was 
ranked as the tenth. 

Supposing the return of David II. to his people, after a captivity in England 
of eleven years, put an end to the Succession War, we may, from a record of 
undoubted veracity, perceive how much Stirlingshire lost by such a length of 
warfare. By the old extent, the whole lands of Stirlingshire were valued at 
£1,739 19s. 4d. By the true value of the new extent (1366) £687 3s. lOd. 
Every European country was exhausted by the waste of war. Froissart describes 
Scotland in 1385 as involved in poverty and bai'barism. The slightest accom- 
modations of peace or allowance of war could hardly be procured ; every article 
of iron and leather was imported from Flanders (i). 

(h) Eot. Sootia, 15, Ed. III. (i) Pinkerton's Hist., i. 30. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.] OrNORTH-BEITAIN. 57 

On the 12th of June 1368, four knights were ordered in Parliament to inspect 
the King's castles of Lochleven, Edinburgh, Stirling and Dumbarton {j). 

Upon the demise of David II., on the 22nd of February 1370-71, and Robert 
the Second's succession under several acts of Parliament, Earl Douglas, in op- 
position to law, made pretensions to the crown ; but Sir Robert Erskine, who 
was keeper of the three chief castles in Scotland, Stirling, Dumbarton and 
Edinburgh, coming forward as the Stewart's friend and supporter of law, Earl 
Douglas withdrew his claim as insupportable. 

Of the wars with England there seem to have been no end. In 1385, Richard 
II., after burning Edinburgh, marched to Stirling, which was also destroyed by 
fire, and with it an abbey adjacent. On the 4th of March 1405-6 the burgh of 
Stirling was accidentally burnt (k). 

On the 19th of September 1419, Robert Earl of Fife and Duke of Albany, 
died in Stirling castle, aged eighty-one. His son Murdoch succeeded to the 
Regency, with as little objection as is made to the heir apparent to the crown, 
though he lost his life for his assumption. At the beginning of April 1424, the 
king, who had been a prisoner for so long in England, arrived within his own 
kingdom. He had many wrongs to resent, though it may be doubted whether 
his resentments were directed by policy. Murdoch, who had ruled his kingdom 
for years without valid authority, was convicted in Stirling castle by his Peers, 
and was executed as a traitor on the Esplanade. Murdoch's eldest son was 
tried and beheaded. Duncan the Earl of Lennox, Murdoch's father-in-law, was 
also found guilty, and executed at the age of eighty (l). 

The king had now avenged his wrongs ; but his severe conduct generated 
revenge against himself, and he was assassinated by conspirators who could not 
distinguish between public justice and private vengeance, on the 20th February 
1436-7, at Perth. Graham and some others of the conspirators were tortured 
and executed at Stirling, avowing sentiments with their last breath, which 
evinced that they knew nothing of the principles connecting the sovereign with 
his subjects. 

Stirling Castle seems to have been settled by the late King on his Queen, 
the lady Joan, the daughter of the Duchess of Clarence, as a part of her dower. 
Residing therein, on the 3rd of August 1439, the Queen was seized by Lord 
Callander, the brother of Alexander Livingston, who were keepers of the same 
castle, and who confined her in a chamber therein, till she was enlarged by the 
three estates, at a Council holden at Stirling (m). But the Queen and the lords 

(j) Printed Pari. Eec, 112. ■ (k) Bower. L. XV., v. 19. 

(/) lb. 114. (m) Chronicle of James, ii., p. 1. 

7 8 

58 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. Ill.—Stirlmgshire. 

having the custody of the mfant King's person, made an agreement, by the 
advice of Parliament, on the 4th September, within the fortlet which she lent 
to them as a proper residence for her son while under age (n). The assassma- 
tion of the King by one set of villains, and the imprisonment of his widow by 
another, shows that in Scotland there were then little moderation and no 

Upon such maxims, against such principle of society, acted William Earl of 
Douglas, who, coming into the King's presence within the same castle, and re- 
fusing bluntly to relinquish his illegal fraternities, the King struck the Earl 
with his dagger, on the 22nd of February 1452, and Sir Patrick Gray dis- 
patched that insolent character. The Parliament justified the King's act, as 
not being contrary to a safe conduct, and as being for the public safety. 
During this reign, however, there were at Stirling Castle some happier scenes. 
In 1449, there was held a tournament, in which some Burgundian knights 
fought the Douglases, who were rather worsted in the conflict (o). 

James III. while yet an infant succeeded his father in 1460. His reign was 
distinguished by a tissue of faction and treason throughout. One of the causes 
of complaint against this elegant but unfortunate monarch was his taste for 
architecture and music. His erection of the great hall within the Castle of 
Stirling, and establishing the chapel royal with a dean and a body of chaunters 
and other musicians within the castle, could not easily be forgiven by insur- 
gents. The factions had by artifice, as early as the 2nd of February, 1487-8, 
obtained, from the treachery of Shaw of Sauchie, the faithless governor of 
Stirling Castle, the person of the King's son and heir, who was placed at the 
head of the guilty nobles (p). The King met the rebels at Sauchieburn, which 
is commonly called the Field of Stirling, on the 11th of June 1488. When 
his army began to give way, the King left the field with great speed. He un- 
luckily fell from his horse, and being carried into a neighbouring mill, was 
assassinated (q). 

It does lasting honour to Aberdeen, that the people of that city sent an 
address to Parliament, praying for enquiries concerning those guilty transac- 
tions, and particularly against those who had murdered the King (r). 

The presiding Chancellor had been one of the chief leaders of that unfounded 

(ra) See that curious document in Pinterton's Hist., i., app,, No. xxiv. 
(o) Pink. Hist., i., 207. fpj Pari. Eec, 340-367 ; Acta Pavl. 

(g) Nimmo's Hist., 226-233 ; Danlop's Eng. Hist. Battles, ii. ; and Edin. Mag., iii., 57. 
(7') Records of that city. 

Seel. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 59 

James IV. addicted himself much to Stirling Castle, not only for its natural 
beauties, but for the agreeable inhabitants within its royal walls. James IV. 
made Stirling castle the chief residence of his mistresses. He very soon dis- 
charged Shaw, the guilty governor, who had delivered himself when young to 
the insurgents, and who, feeling their motives to be inadequate, wished for 
such a chief. That James IV. had appeared in the field against so indulgent a 
father, cost him many a groan. The Chapel Royal of Stirling Castle, which, as 
it had been built and endowed by the late King, had been one of the principal 
causes of that traitorous resistance to legitiniate authority. It was a favourite 
place of the devotion of a repentant son, who enlarged and re-endowed it. The 
Gray Friars of Stirling were the King's favourites, upon whom he spent much 
money for their buildings, their books, and their ornaments (?■). Throughout 
his reign he expended much money in repairing, furnishing, and ornamentmg 
this favourite retreat, to say nothing of the gardens which he formed and cul- 
tivated on the flat below this commanding eminence. In his gardens here he 
planted vast numbers of fruit trees of various kinds, and vines which were cul- 
tivated by his French gardener. Herbs of various kinds were brought from 
several places, and seeds of different kinds of vegetables were occasionally 
bought for them. Here also the King formed fish ponds, and had live fish, 
namely, perches, trouts, pikes, etc., brought from Loch Leven and other waters 
and put into his ponds. He built a house at Stirling, in the years 1496-7-8. 
On the 9 th of January, 1496, the Treasurer gave to Walter Merhoun and John 
Merhoun, masons, in part payment for building the King's house of Stirling, 
£49 (s). In 1496-7-8, there are many payments to masons, wrights, smiths, 
and other tradesmen, and also for a variety of materials for the King's house 
of Stirling {t). On the 14th of November 1497. there was paid to Schir John 
Millar — an ecclesiastic— for 1100 young trees to the garden at Stirling {u). 
There were afterwards many payments for trees, seeds, gardeners, etc., for the 
garden at Stirling {v). 

On the 9th of February 1500-1 there were paid for thorns to the hedges of 
the new garden at Stirling 20s. On February 19th there were paid for 400 
thorns, to set at Stirling, 21s. March 6th, paid for seeds to sow in the garden 
at Stirhng, 66s. On the 17th of February the gardener of Scone brought to 
the King, who was then at Perth, herbs which were sent to Perth for the 
garden there, and the treasurer paid the gardener 2s. for their carriage. On 
the 21st February there were paid to the gardener at Scone for Osare (Osier) 

(r) Treasurer's Accounts. (s) Treasurer's books of that date. {t) Id. {u) Id. {v) Id. 

60 An ACCOUNT [Ch. III.— Siirhngshire. 

trees to send to Stirling, 6s. On the 27th of February there were paid for the 
carriage of nine horse-loads of trees, which were sent from Perth to Stirling to 
be planted there, 27s. On the 26th of April 1501, at Stirling, there were given 
to the French gardener going to Irvine for wine trees to be brought to 
Stirling, 28s. April 27; paid to Campbell the gardener at Stirling, by the 
King's command, 14s. On the same day there was paid to the Frenchman that 
set the wine trees at Stirling, 14s. The French gardener at Stirling received 
18s. a week for wages from the King's treasurer. On the 11th of February 
1502-3, there were paid to Dene Matho Tacket, monk of Culross, for 1500 
plowme (plum) trees for the garden at Stirling, 25s. Besides payments for 
trees and seeds for this garden, there were various payments to the gardener 
for the workmen in it. On the 23rd of April 1503 there were paid to a man 
who brought quick (live) perches from Loch Leven to Stirling, 14s. There 
were several payments to persons bringing quick (live) trouts, pikes, perches, 
etc., to the ponds at Stirling (x). In 1505-6 there are various payments to 
Schir John Sharp, chaplain, who makes the gardens at Stirling. On the 23rd 
February 1506-7, paid the gardener at Stirling for half a pound of onion seed, 
for half a pound of bow cail seed. 

In 1501 there were many large payments to Andro Ayton for the King's 
works at Stirling, whereof he had the direction, and also for the materials 
thereof. The whole amount for the works at Stirling, from February 1500-1 
to September 1502, being 19 months, was £3,509 6s. lid. The auld kirk in 
the Castle of Stirling appears from the same record of money paid to have been 
repaired. In 1511-12 the amount of the King's expenses on the Castle of 
Stirling was £405 13s. 5d. (y). 

We may easily perceive from the context that this house was not built for 
the King's own residence. 

At the same time, James IV. engaged in other works near Stirling, on the 
Forth, which some may suppose of much more importance than his houses and 
gardens, and which may be allowed to be more elegant, though less useful than 
dockyards. In 1511-12 the King established a harbour at Pol-erth, on the 
southern side of the Forth where the frith ceases and the river begins. There 
is a rivulet here which is called the Pol or Pow, which empties its waters into 
the Forth, and here forms a harbour. In 1511-12 there were various payments 
to Robert Callander for expenses of the King's works at Polerth, to the amount 
of £216 7s. 5d., viz., casting three docks and another dock for the great ship ; 

{x) The Treasurer's books of those dates. (t/) Treasurer's Account. 

Sect. VI.— Of its Civil History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 61 

building a stable for 50 horses at Polerth ; and expenses on the ships there, 
putting them into the docks, etc. On the 22d of March 1511-12, there was 
paid to Johnson of the ferry, to seek the deeps and passage to Polerth, 28s (z). 

We thus see, then, that James IV. was an improver, and established works 
that required more considerable sums in those times. Happy, if he had confined 
his activity to the labours of peace rather than to engage in the struggles of 
war. As an athletic and vigorous prince he fought personally till he was cut 
in pieces on Flodden field, where he left the flower of his people. 

During the infancy of James V. and his brother, Margaret, the widowed 
queen, retired from Edinburgh to Stirhng Castle with her children. One of 
the first acts of Albany's administration upon his arrival, was when he com- 
mitted the venerable Lord Drummond, the constable of Stirling Castle, a close 
prisoner to the fortress of Blackness, on the 16th of July 1515. The Regent 
Albany issued a declaration of treason against all who should retain the Castle 
of Stirling against the Parliament. This proclamation frightened the attendants 
of the Queen and her children from Stirling Castle, and when the Regent 
Albany came there at the head of 7000 men, there was no one to defend it. 
The Queen put the keys of the fortress into the infant hands of the King, who 
gave them to the Regent. The Queen was now obliged to return to Edinburgh 
Castle, while Albany left a garrison in Stirling Castle of 700 men, and gave 
the King and his brother with the Castle to the Earl Marshal, and the 
Lords Fleming and Borthwick (a). 

Stirling Castle appears to have been a part of the dower of Margaret the 
widow of James TV. The youthful King prevailed on his mother to resign to 
him her Castle of Stirling in exchange for the lauds of Methven, which were to 
be created a peerage for her husband. He now appointed trusty officers of 
tliat Castle, with a view to a secret purpose of freeing himself from the domina- 
tion of Angus and the Douglases. In July 1528 the King, then living in 
Falkland Castle under superintendence, commanded a hunting on the subse- 
quent morning, and pretending to retire early to rest, James disguised as a 
groom went to the stables, and mounting a fleet horse, travelled with such 
speed that he and his two attendants reached Stirling by the dawn of day. 
He entered the Castle, when the gates were fastened, and the King having 
received some rest, went to his privy council, who agreed to issue a proclama- 
tion commanding the Douglases not to come within six miles of the Court on 
pain of treason. The Douglases heard of this denunciation while on the road 
in pursuit of the King, and perceiving that resistance on their part would be 

(z) Treasurer's books of those dates. (a) Pink. Hist., ii. 143. 


An account [Ch. lll.—Stirlingshire. 

vain, the King became in this manner free (6). James V. during his dedining 
days visited StirUng several times, but he chose Falkland Palace, where he was 
to die of a wounded spirit. 

Having lost his two sons, the king heard on his deathbed with little solicitude 
that his queen had brought him a daughter, saying that it had come with a kss 
and would go by a lass. The king died on the 14th of December 1542, and 
Mary the queen was born on the Sth of the same month in Linlithgow palace. 
During the distractions of the moment, owing to the weakness of the Eegent 
Arran and the irascibility of Henry VIII., the queen's mother did not think 
herself and her infant quite safe at Linlithgow and having easily obtained the 
protection of several nobles, she removed her daughter to Stirling castle. The 
persons who were chiefly concerned in this transaction were indemnified by Par- 
liament. A Convention met at Stirling for settling the differences which had 
arisen between the Governor Arran and the Queen-mother on the 18th of 
November 1544. The proceedings at Stirling were ratified by the Parliament 
of February 1551-2. Stirling castle was thus the scene of the infant queen's 
education, from the 24th of April 1545 till September 1547. She now was car- 
ried to a safer castle in the Loch of Monteith, free from the intrigues of Arran 
and the violences of Henry VIII. , till she was removed to Dumbarton castle, 
whence she sailed to France at the end of August 1548. 

During the transactions of the Keformation, the B,egent queen frequently 
held her court and Parliament in Stirling castle ; and in 1559 the lords Refor- 
mers, understanding that the queen intended to place a French garrison in 
Stirling to guard the passage of the Forth, took possession of that important 
post for their own designs. The zeal of the Pteformers at the same time de- 
stroyed the ancient abbey of Cambuskenneth (c). 

The queen, after the demise of her first husband Francis II., returned to her 
kingdom in 1561. In September of the same year, she set out with some of 
those nobles who had accompanied her from France, to make a tour through 
some of her towns. On the 11th of September she rode from Holyrood-house 
to Linlithgow palace, and from thence she went to Stirling castle on the 13th. 
Here she ran some risk of being burnt with her apartments. Lying in her bed 
with a candle burning beside her, she fell asleep, when the candle set fire to the 
curtains and tester of the bed. She returned to Edinburgh from a tour of dis- 
couragement on the 29th of September 1561. 

The baptism of King James VI. at Stirling on the 17th of December 1566, 

{h) lb., 291. (c) Nimmo's Hist., 323-4. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 63 

was one of the most splendid ceremonies which had ever graced any of the 
Scottish towns. Darnley, the father of James, remained in Stirling castle 
without seeing the ceremony, and afterwards departed for Glasgow without 
taking leave. 

In her frequent excursions during peace and in war, the queen visited Stir- 
ling till she was committed a State prisoner to Lochleven castle on the 16th of 
June 1567. The traitorous nobles who thus dethroned the queen, proceeded on 
the 29th of July 1567 to the formal coronation of the infant James at Stirling. 
The perjured and murderous Morton took the coronation oath for the baby 
James. The Lords Lindsay and Euthven, who had compelled the queen to re- 
sign her sovereignty to her son, publicly swore at the coronation that she had 
willingly, and without compulsion, resigned her estate to her son James. What 
perjured wretches were Lindsay and Ruthven. The government of Scotland 
in future was carried on in the name of James VI. Stirling castle was now the 
residence of the infant king during many a year. 

On the death of Murray, owing to the revenge of Hamilton of Bothwell- 
haugh, on the 22nd of January 1570-1, he was succeeded by Lennox, the grand- 
father of James, who held a Parliament at Stirling soon after. On the 1st of 
April 1671, Dumbarton castle was surprised by Crawford of Jordanhill. He 
found therein Archbishop Hamilton, who was carried as a prisoner to Stirling 
castle, wherein he was soon after hanged by the ruling powers, as guilty of 
Darnley's death, which was certainly effected by the instruments of the same 
powers. During the year 1571 the General Assembly of the Scotican Church 
sat here in August 1571, and June 1578. On the 4tli of September, the Regent 
Lennox was surprised and slain at Stirling by the adverse party. The Earl of 
Mar now succeeded Lennox, and died of vexation in the same castle on the 29th 
of October 1573. 

The expatriated nobles, Angus, Mar, Glamis and others, returning by Eliza- 
beth's suggestion, came secretly from England to Stirling, and surprised and 
took the town and castle of Stirling on the 18th of April 1584. On the 27th 
of the same month, the king marched to Stirling with a few soldiers and retook 
both the town and castle. On the 4th of May in the same year. Earl Gowrie 
was there beheaded for his detaining the king during some months at Ruthven. 
On the 1st of November 1585, the king being then at Stirling, the exiled 
nobles, Angus and others, surprised both the town and castle. So that the 
king was obliged to pardon them and to change his ministers. 

The King came to Stirling on the 26th of August 1589, where was a con- 
vention of some of the estates appointed, but there learning that his wife might 

64 AnACCOUNT [Oh. III.— Stirlingshire. 

be daily expected at Leith from Denmark, the King immediately repaired to 
Edinburgh to make preparations for her reception. Stirling Castle was about 
this time connected with a sort of common prison wherein delinquents were 
warded (cl). On the 7th of September 1593, a convention of the nobility and 
some of the estates met at Stirling, to consider of the violence of Bothwell (e), 
which he had committed against the King's person. Upon the 19th of Feb- 
ruary 1594, the Queen was dehvered of a prince, within the Castle of Stirling, 
who was named Henry (/), Soon after, the Chapel Koyal was taken down 
and rebuilt at the King's expense, against the expected baptism therein of his 
heir apparent (g). 

After the King's departure from Edinburgh for England, on the 30th of 
May 1603, the Queen and prince came from Stirling to Edinburgh (h). King 
James now bade a long farewell to Inchmerenry, one of the isles of the Lomond 
Lake, which Avas the frequent scene of the King's hunting, and is now the 
Duke of Montrose's deer park. 

Stirling Castle having thus ceased to be the residence of any part of the 
royal family, ceased to be so frequent an object of history. During the insur- 
rections at Edinburgh, which were occasioned by reading the Service-Book, the 
Privy Council and the Court of Session were removed to Stirling by the King's 
direction, where they remained for some time. The town was soon after taken 
possession of by two thousand armed men (i). Stirlingshire was now involved 
in the several miseries of the Civil War. 

This county meantime produced and brought upon the scene the Marquis of 
Montrose, who, seeing where the popular measures led to, took part in the 
King's cause. He now overran the greatest part of Scotland, and having ob- 
tained at Kilsyth the last of six victories, for a while closed his career. 

After the loss of this battle, Baillie, the Parliamentary general, marched the 
shattered remains of his array to Stirling. He was afterwards questioned for 
the loss of this conflict, but he showed that the Committee of Parliament who 
had been placed over him, had misdirected his proceedings. It was owing to 
such follies that Cromwell conquered Scotland. Soon after the departure of 
Charles II. lor England, who was closely pursued by Cromwell, Monk took 
possession of Stirling, and in a few days reduced the castle, which was not very 
strenuously defended. Under the army and commissioners of Cromwell, Scot- 
land enjoyed peace, to which she had been long a stranger, and partook of some 
justice, whereof she had never enjoyed much, 

(d) Moyse's Mem., everywhere. (e) lb., 208-9. ffj lb., 225. (g) lb., 229. 

(A) Birrel's Diary, 50. (i) Nimmo, 329-30. 

Sect. \l.—Of its Civil History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 65 

The Restoration came at length, which did not bring tranquihty to a people 
who were incapable of enjoying it. The silence of Wodrow seems to show that 
in the period from that epoch to the era of the Revolution, the Church and 
State of Stirlingshire did not suffer much. There is published, indeed, by 
Wodrow, in May 1588, a list of fugitives, as covenanters from this shire [j). 
But there do not appear in the above list any clergymen, or, indeed, any per- 
son of the slightest consequence. The minister of Stirling, James Guthrie, was 
hanged, indeed, for his misdeeds during the late troubles ; whether this example 
taught moderation to others, I do not pretend to know. 

Stirlingshire concurred in the Revolution with unaffected attachment, and 
the castle, under the Earl of Mar, was found to be a convenient place of arms. 
On the 13th of June 1689, the thanks of the Convention were given to the 
Earl of Mar for his care of the Castle of Stirling (li). It was ordered that the 
Earl of Mar should name his own officers in the charge of the castle, consulting 
with General Mackay {l). He was to provide provisions for the Earl of Perth, 
who was then a prisoner in Stirling Castle. It was ordered, on the 20th of 
April, that the Earl of Perth should be kept as a close prisoner within Stirling 
Castle (m). It was directed, on the 14th of May, that the keepers of the pub- 
lic arms at Stirling deliver to the Lord Bargeny 340 suits of Bandaleers (n). 
After the Revolution had been completed, the Parliament passed an Act for 
rescinding fines and forfeitures, which mitigated the fugitives and others who 
may have incurred the penalties of law (o), whereof Stirling partook of the 

In the war of the Revolution, Stirlingshire bore its full share of the taxes 
levied, and of the men lost in the warfare of those vigorous hostilities ; what- 
ever trade with France, or privilege, or pretension in that kingdom were left 
by the war being unnoticed by the peace of Ryswick, which no more regarded 
Scotland than if it had not been one of the kingdoms which King William had 
obtained by the Revolution. This shire partook, however, of the various bene- 
fits which resulted from the several laws that the Revolution Parliament had 
passed for the protection of liberty of persons, as well as for the safety of the 
property belonging to individuals. Greater inconvenience might well be borne 
for the lasting possession of personal security, with the legitimate acknowledg- 
ments of the rights of property. 

(j) Wodrow, ii., app., 94. (h) Printed Proceedings, No. 9. (J) Id. (m) lb., No. 11. 
(ra) lb., 19. Anotter warrant was issued by tlie Estates to the Earl of Mar, to deliver arms to Cap- 
tain Young going to Ayrshire. (o) Wodrow, ii., app., page 219. 

7 9 

66 AnAOCOUNT [Cb. HI.— Stirlingshire. 

The next gveat object to the Eevolution in consequence and m benefit was 
the Union. 

In Scotland there were only two towns wherein the Union was opposed by- 
insurrection, Dumfries and Glasgow. At Dumfries it was a mere political 
tumult ; the insurrection at Glasgow " was wholly a Jacobite rabble of that 
party, who was deluded by want of foresight " (p). I do not concur in supposing 
that the tumults at Glasgow proceeded from Jacobitism, which never existed 
at Glasgow. It was mere mobism, incited by a few busy men, in opposition to 
the Magistracy and the higher powers. 

"We may see, then, that Stii'ling entered into no such tumultuary insurrec- 
tion in opposition to the Union. The Presbyteries, however, of Glasgow and 
of Stirling, sent letters to the Commission of the Church Assembly, containing 
heads of grievances, and representing several things which they desired the 
Commission to demand of the Parliament for the Church's security {q). The 
Church's security was provided for by a special Act of the Parliament. In 
Stirling there may have been private altercations on topics in which every one 
had a strong interest ; but there was in this shire nothing like mob or insurrec- 
tion in opposition to a great measure which was fraught with infinite good to 
every class and to every individual. 

A real Jacobite insurrection not long after ensued. In 1715 the Duke of 
Argyle commanding the King's army, encamped in the park below the Castle 
of Stirling, and marched thence four miles northward to SherifFmuir, where he 
engaged the rebel army Avith less success than confidence had expected. The 
Duke, however, persevered, and finally dispersed the Jacobite insurgents. 
Thirty years afterwards another rebellion broke out, in somewhat greater force, 
upon similar principles, with somewhat greater success. On the 17th of 
January 1745-6 the rebels met the King's troops near Falkirk, on the west- 
ward, where so many conflicts of greater armies had been fought, when the 
rebellious troops not only resisted but i-epulsed the King's army, under Hawley 
and Huske. This repulse was owing chiefly to the want of discipline of the 
troops and the want of skill of the generals. Two days after the rebel clans 
returned to Stirling Castle, which they endeavoured to take from the brave 
Blakenay, who finally repulsed the besiegers. The King's army in the field 
was soon after placed under the command of a very difierent leader, who 
pursued the insurgents to CuUoden, where he dispersed them after some conflict. 
None of those insurrections had happened had there been contemporaneously 

(p) Defoe's Hist., 12. (q) Defoe's Hist., 51. 

Sect. VI. — Of its Civil History.] Or NORTH-BEITAIN. 


in England, less party-feeling and more political beneficence ; and then at the 
same time in Scotland, less domestic idleness, and more commercial capital. 

§ VII. Of its Agriculture, Manufactures, and Trade. — The facts which are 
stated in the foregoing section concerning the civil history of this shire, evince 
sufficiently by their notices that Stirlingshire could not have been an agricul- 
tural district till recent times. What agriculture could exist in a country 
which paid a regular contribution to freebooters for the protection of the cattle 
and other property of the farmers from plunder (a). When Wight came here 
in 1778 to make a survey of its agriculture, he found but few examples of 
improving husbandry. He began at Buchanan on Loch Lomond, the estate of 
the Duke of Montrose, who had lost his eyesight, and with that loss was 
deprived of much of the pleasure of improvements. The Duke had, however, 
smoothed the rugged face of the western end of the Grampian Mountains, and 
had enclosed much and planted more. 

It seems quite certain that ancient Caledonia was in the earliest times a well 
wooded country. We know this fact from the notices in Volume I. (6). The 
considerable remains of woodlands within this shire, even at this day, both 
below and above the surface, evince that fact. It was thus wooded at the 
great epoch of the Roman invasion, as we know from the Roman history. It 
became denuded of its woods partly by design, perhaps still more by accident 
and neglect. Rather more than half a century has elapsed since the natural 
woods which remained on the banks of the rivers and lochs, became objects of 
great consideration and care. It has been found from such considerations, that 
there still remains in Stirlingshire of oak copeswood almost 3000 acres (c). It 
was the same consideration which introduced pretty generally plantation, with 
its benefits and its beauties. But improvements upon a large and liberal scale 
were necessarily accompanied by inclosure, without which every melioration 
had been in vain. About the same recent times it was that in this shire the 
improvements in husbandry began, by slight movements at first, which by a 
general movement effected a vigorous progress. One of those improvements 
was in the more manual act of ploughing, which has been carried by attention 
and encouragement to a successful state of great melioration. This is plainly a 
mountainous country, with Ben Lomond, which rises 3192 feet above the water 
level, the most conspicuous of the whole as we have seen. The flats within the 
several districts consist of different soils and various fertility. The carses on 

(a) That contribution was paid in 1725, when Wade was sent to disarm the Highlanders. MP. 
report to the King. (6) Vol. i. throughout. (c) The Eevd. Dr. Graham's Genl. View. 

68 AnACOOUNT [Oh. 111.— Stirlingshire. 

the margin of the Forth, as they are all alluvial, may enter into rivality with the 
fruitfulness of any country. This shire exhibits as great a diversity as to the 
ownership of landed property as any county in North Britain. From the 
interest which proprietors have in the soil, they become the earliest, as well as 
the most persevering improvers. It was only about the period when Wight 
cast his skilful eyes on Stirlingshire (1778), that it became a rare occurrence 
for any man to rise to independence by the mere produce of the soil. The 
processes whereby the ground may be made to yield the greatest returns 
whereof it is capable, as well as those by which the operations of agriculture 
may be facilitated, were equally unknown. Graziers and speculators in cattle 
wei'e the first class of farmers in this shire who were able to accumulate some 
wealth, in consequence of the increase of trade and manufacture, whereby 
towns and villages were so enlarged that animal food came into more general 
use. The speculators in cattle, either by breeding or buying, were ready to 
meet this demand, and their profits were considerable. This occupation also, 
requiring little personal toil, was more agreeable to them than the more 
laborious cares of the agriculturist. 

At length, however, the cultivation of the soil began, though lately (before 
1812), to assume the station which belongs to its society; and enlightened land- 
holders have perceived the wisdom of encouraging persons of some property and 
liberal views, to settle as tenants upon their estates. The agricultural improve- 
ments which have been recently introduced (before 1812) with regard to the 
application of manures, the rotation of crops, and the instruments of husbandry, 
have had the happy effect of giving dignity to the profession of a farmer, and of 
rendering it not unworthy of a gentleman. The striking increase that has taken 
place in the value of land, has been generally brought about by the enterprise 
of farmers, who were possessed of intelligence to comprehend the late discoveries 
and improvements in agriculture, and who had sufficient stock to enable them 
to apply those discoveries and improvements successfully in practice {d). 

In the practice of tillage in this shire, little attention was paid to the con- 
struction of ridges ; they were generally winding in a semicircular form. They 
were moreover raised high in the middle, so that the most fertile parts of the 
soil were accumulated there, whilst the sides of the ridge were left bare and 
barren. It is singular that in some remote period, the ridges of which the 
vestiges appear in several parishes were perfectly straight and equal (e). Such 
circumstances must have occurred while kings and nobles were farmers. This 

{d) Rev. Di-. Graham's Genl. View. (e) lb. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OpNOETH-BRITAIN. 69 

injurious practice has given way to more recent improvements, after the 
ploughmen had acquired skill and dexterity from competition and rewards. 

Fallowing was one of the earliest improvements, while the improvers did not 
themselves know that though the general practice be salutary, under some cir- 
cumstances of soil and climate, fallowing is allowed to be destructive. In this 
shire the practice of fallowing has become very frequent owing to its necessity 
and its use. 

The next practice which was early recommended and adopted, was the course 
or series of ci^ops. This has been now very generally adopted , though the same 
series does not apply to every sort of soil, so that it is from experience that the 
best series of crops are adopted from the success of the practice. 

Under such practice and experience is the custom established in this shire, 
for the cultivation of wheat, barley, oats, pease and beans, the several sorts of 
grain which are almost exclusively cultivated here. The introduction of the 
turnip husbandry into Scotland is doubtless an epoch of great importance. 
Whether they supply salutary food at a convenient season, or leave the soil 
ameliorated for the subsequent crop, the merits of this branch of husbandry 
must be allowed to be unquestionable. The potatoe is perhaps of more import- 
ance. This root is said to have been first planted in the open fields during the 
year 1739, by Mr. Graham of Tomaoes. It is more cultivated by every one in 
the fields, either for private use or general sale, and comes into the series of 
crops with great distinction. It is in Stirlingshire, generally followed by wheat, 
by barley, or oats, which are all repaired with grass seeds. Almost every 
sort of grass is cultivated in this district, with great advantage. 

In this shire, indeed, there are large tracts whereon grass grows naturally 
with much benefit to the farmer. There are in this shire, moreover, many 
meadows which chiefly lie low on the rivers, and frequently high on very dif- 
ferent ground. Wherever those grasses may grow, or however they may be 
used, they are a great advantage to the cattle of the farmer. A variety of 
mountains in this shire, rising from 1,000 to 1,500 feet above the sea-level, 
supply very abundant pastures for sheep on the upper regions, and for cattle in 
the lower grounds ; and these pastures are equal, if not superior, to any similar 
pastures in Scotland. The practice of the dairy is but little attended to in this 
shire, as more profits are made from the growing of corn. 

Of gardens and orchards, there can be no doubt whether the soil and the 
climate of this shire are favourable to them. Every gentleman has a garden of 
greater or less utility according to his care and experience. 

70 AnACCOUNT [Oh. 111.— Stirlingshire. 

The lower orders of men cannot comprehend how much a garden would con- 
tribute to their domestic use. There are orchards here, but they are very sel- 
dom cultivated as they are in Clydesdale, for the mere profit of them. The 
monks of Cambuskenneth (/), though not very skilful husbandmen, yet had 
knowledge and taste enough to know the value and the use of gardens and 
orchards. Nor are there any wastes or lands held in common in this shire, at 
least to any extent. There are moors, which afford excellent pasturage for 
sheep and cattle, which admit of little other improvements than draining the 
superfluous moisture, and preventing the bad effects of violent winds. There 
are mosses, however, lying along the Forth and other rivers, which during the 
effluxion of time and the inattention of ignorance have been allowed to collect, 
to a great depth, moss earth on the finest soil. Mr. Ure of Skipgartan, in Kip- 
pen parish, is said to have been the first who suggested the notion of floating 
off the moss, by running water into the Forth. This project has been since 
fully adopted, and many acres of moss, particularly on the estate of Blair- 
Drummoud, have been cleared away, which has uncovered the substratum of 
the finest soil for various cultivation. Of forests in this shire, whatever they 
may have had of old, whether the Torwood, or Callander, or Dundaff, have long 
disappeared, in fact and policy, within Stirlingshire. 

Every farmer has long understood the value of manure, though every one 
knows not how to collect and apply the most appropriate composts. Of marl 
much has not been found in Stirlingshire, and indeed has not been very dili- 
gently sought for. Some, however, has been found, though how to use it is not 
well understood. When its uses are once known its application wiU be easily 

But lime of every other manure has been most generally used, because there 
are very few soils that are not benefitted by it, though it is not always properly 
used. Much is learned from theory, but it is experience which instructs the 
inteUigent husbandman how to apply his manure to his soil. The farmyard 
manure is so much within the contemplation of the farmer, that he is generally 
at little loss how to use it. Peat earth, by a recent discovery of the late Lord 
Meadowbank, has been found by a proper mixture to be excellent manure, yet 
is it slowly adopted. 

Stirlingshire cannot be properly considered as a breeding and grazing county 
for black cattle. As much of this shire, however, is convenient for the great 
market of Glasgow, cattle are brought from distant districts and fattened on 

(/) The abbey stood on one of the reduplications of the Forth, upon the northern side of the river, 
■within the limits of Stirlincr castle. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc. OfNOETH-BRITAIN. 71 

the rich pasturages of the western parts of this shire for the Glasgow consump- 
tion. Yet in these parts of Stirlingshire, much has been done for obtaining the 
best breeds of cattle, analgous to the climate and pasture whei-e they are to 
exist and breed. But salt, however valuable its use for the health of cattle, is 
little employed in this shire, which seems not very apt to catch at any practice 
which the fathers of the country did not formerly adopt. 

But a very large proportion of the upland pastures of this shire is employed 
as sheep walks. The sheep which partake of those pasturages are the black- 
faced or Linton breed, which are more hardy than any other, and are of course 
more congenial with the country and climate. 

The introduction of swine into Stirlingshire is but recent, and the practice is 
not generally adopted. The ancient prejudice against eating swine's flesh is 
wearing fast away, and even the poorest families keep a few for domestic use, 
which are found to be a considerable resource. It was only at the distilleries, 
before they were prevented from distilling corn, that swine were raised and 
fattened for general sale like black cattle. The Chinese breed are what is most 
used, though that breed is mingled of late with the south country kind. 

Improvements are made in vain if there be not commodious communications. 
Excellent roads were introduced into this country during Roman times by 
Roman hands. After their recession, the people who assumed the power which 
they had left cared very little about such roads, and by this circumstance 
evinced the state of their civility and the practice of their habits. As early as 
the reign of David I., the public roads were called the King's highways. Roads 
were first noticed with approbation by the Parliament of Charles II. 

Roads and road-making in this shire have only been noticed in approbation 
during recent times. Thirty-four years have now elapsed since turnpike roads 
were originally executed to a certain extent in this shire. By the Stirling 
Road Act of 18 G. 3 ch. 69, which was to continue five and twenty years, the 
turnpike roads were first introduced into this country, and now turnpike roads 
intersect Stirlingshire in every direction, while the more local or parochial 
roads are better kept, and of course are rendered more useful. Various railways 
have been introduced into this shire for the convenience of carrying coals from 
the works to the shipping port. Thus far the farmers of this shire are amply 
provided with ways of various sorts for carrying their manure, and sending out 
their products. They have, moreover, the great advantages of water carriage. 
The Forth accommodates the northern side of this shire with water carriage. 
.The Forth and Clyde Canal, beginning at Grangemouth, runs westward eleven 
miles through this Shire, and afterwards pushes forward to Glasgow on the one 


An account 

[Ch. III. — Stirlingshire. 

hand, and to Dalmuir upon the Clyde upon the other. The advantages of such 
a communication even to farmers are incalculable [g). 

They are now in the act of making a smaller canal, from the great one near 
Falkirk to Edinburgh, which will furnish a more easy water conveyance from 
Glasgow to Edinburgh. 

We are thus led forward to the state of manufactures in this shire, and of 
course to the towns wherein the markets are held. Stirling is certainly one of 
the oldest towns in Scotland. A hamlet was naturally formed under the Castle 
on the rock, while the language of the Britons was still spoken here. The 
origin of the fortlet is lost in the darkness of antiquity. At the epoch of 
Charters under Alexander I., it is allowed to have enjoyed some of the rights 
of a corporation. But under the subsequent reign of David I. it seems still to 
have been a town in demesne of the Crown (g). David granted to the Abbey 
of Crmbuskenneth 40s. out of the rental of Stirling, and can of one ship, and a 
saltwork, and tithes of his firms of Stirling, and twenty cudrums of cheese, a 
part of the rental of Stirling (h). He also granted to the same monastery by 
another charter titles of all his pleas and gains, " de Striveling and de Strivel- 
ingschyre, and unum toftum, in hurgo meo de Striveling " {i). We thus per- 
ceive that under David I. Stirling was his burgh. He granted to the monas- 
tery of Dunfermline one mansion in the town of Stirling, and one half of the 
skins, fat, and blood of the beasts which might be killed during his festivals at 
Stirling {h). He moreover granted to the monks of Dunfermline that they 
should have yearly five marks of money for clothing them, of the first ships 
which came to Stirling or to Perth {I). By another charter, David gave to the 
same monks " decimam denariorum de causu meo de Strivelin " (m). William 
the Lion gave to Jocelin, the Bishop of Glasgow, and his successors, "unum 
plenarium toftum, in burgo meo de Strivelin " (n). Alexander II. granted to 

In August 1821 there were 
In August 1822 there were 

f passengers, in 1815, 


in 1816, 


in 1817, 


in 1818, 


in 1819, 


in 1820, 


in 1821, 







Increase owing to the King's visit - - . - 

(ff) Chart. Soone, No. 1. (k) Chart. Cambus., No. 55. (?) Id., No. 61. 

(k) MS. Charters, p. 105. (l) Id. (m) MS. Monast. Scotia., p. 107. (n) Chart. Qlasg., p. 35. 

Sect. VII. — Of its Agriculture, etc.] OrNOETH-BEITAIN. 73 

the monks of Cambuskenneth, " in excambium molendini nostri de Clackmanan 
viginti marcas singulis amis precipiendas de firma burgi nostri de Striveling," 
dated the last of April 1229 a.d. When the Eeform Bill was before the par- 
liament, the town produced a charter of Charles I., 1641, confirming all their 
former charters. The town also gave in a charter of Charles II., in favour of 
the Provost, the Bailies, the Council, and community (o). 

The gross revenue of Stirling in 1788, as returned to Parliament, was 
£1,480 15s. 2d., Sterling. By a new Sett, which was given on the 23rd 
May 1781, the Council was to consist of 21, including a provost and four 
bailies. Of the 21, fourteen are merchant or guild councillors, and seven 
trades councillors. The number of people in Stirling was 5320 in 1811, and 
7113 in 1821. The magistrates of Stirling are still considered as the keepers 
of the ancient jug, or Scots pint, as the standard of this measure. 

Falkirk, which had a population of 4196 souls, has now 11,536 souls, and is 
naturally the centre of trade to the richest and most populous part of the 
shire of Stirling. It is a burgh of barony under the proprietor of Callander, 
whose bailie governs the town. Its market day is Thursday, whereon great 
quantities of corn are sold. But it is the great numbers of Highland cattle 
which are sold at the tryst on the contiguous moor which is the boast of Fal- 
kirk. Kilsyth is also a market town, but being situated half-way between 
Glasgow and Falkirk, and only twelve miles from either, its markets are not 
much frequented. There are also in this shire several populous villages, as 
Balfron, Buchlyvie, New Fintry, Kippen, Gargunnock, Bannockburn, St. 
Ninians, Bainsford, Lauriston, which exchange various commodities between 
each and the country, and between the country and them. The people in- 
habiting the towns of Stirlingshire amount to 22,804 ; and inhabiting the 
country, 28,007=50,811 souls. The number of people in the whole shire now 
amount to 65,376. 

A domestic manufacture for domestic use has always existed in this shire. 
The most ancient which appear on record are the Salinas, or Saltworks, on the 
Forth. The manufacture of the wool which was grown on the sheep of the dis- 
trict might have been a very early manufacture, for the vestures of the people 
in a climate cold and uncertain. In Stirling and its neighbourhood more than 
the wool of this country was manufactured. A considerable alteration in the 
manufacture came with the changes of policy and of dress among the people. 
Carpets have been substituted for vestures, and carpets now form an important 

(o) Eeport of the Committee of the House of Commons, June 1793, app., 60. 
7 10 

74 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. III. — Stirlingshire. 

article of manufacture in Stirling, which is sold from two to four and sixpence 
per yard. Serge, a coarse kind of woollen cloth, is manufactured everywhere 
about Stirling. It is rather remarkable that the woollen manufacture has 
never succeeded to any large extent in Scotland, being overshadowed, perhaps, 
by the great and prosperous manufactories of Yorkshire. 

There seems to have always been a linen manufacture in this shire. But a 
great many other manufactories pressing upon it, the linen fabrics seem never 
to have risen to any great extent. 

In 1786-7, there were registered for sale 35,641 yards, of the value of £2177. 
In 1798-9, there were made for sale 29,682 yards, of the value of £2786. 

The fact seems to be that the Glasgow traders, by their considerable com- 
merce and capital, oppress every other manufacture, except what are subser- 
vient to their advantage. In all the large villages in this shire a number of 
looms are employed by the Glasgow manufacturers, and in Kilsyth alone there 
are between four and five hundred looms so employed, to the great advantage 
of such a town and of the State. 

Various circumstances have led to the introduction of Printfields and Bleach- 
fields by the same traders. Those circumstances are a plenty of fuel, abund- 
ance of streams with commodious falls of water, and the vicinity to Glasgow, 
with carriage to it by water. Those pi-intfields are generally upon a large 
scale, as one in the. parish of Campsie cost £14,000. They employ many hands, 
and to execute them properly requires great genius and very considerable in- 
genuity in order to follow the various fashions of a refined and opulent people. 

The cotton manufacture, when in the full career of its prosperity, was con- 
nected with so many other establishments, such as the printfields, that they 
were too powerful for weaker manufacturers. In the parishes of Fintry, of 
Balfron, and other districts, cotton mills of great extent, and enterprise of great 
activity, have been established, whose importance to the country as well as to 
the nation cannot easily be doubted. 

The varied genius and surplus capital of Glasgow have introduced into this 
shire chemical works, which require great ingenuity as well as attention. In 
the neighbourhood of Campsie there are established such works to a great ex- 
tent. Herein are made alum, copperas, soda, Prussian blue, etc., by the em- 
ployment of skill and of a great capital. It is by means of such ingenuity and 
capital that neither land nor water produce anything but it is turned to some 
use, and converted to considerable profit. 

It was upon this principle that the Carron Iron Works were established early 
in the last reign, whose magnitude seems to defy competition, and whose in- 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.'] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 75 

genious manufacture of iron for the various uses of life cannot be excelled. This 
company had also the merit and the profit of inventing the carronades, which 
have forced themselves into the operations of war by the convenience of their 
construction. That such extensive works, which are highly beneficial to the 
nation, are at the same time of little use to the district where they are estab- 
lished, is one of those propositions which as they involve absurdity, requires 
infinite ingenuity to enforce conviction. 

Distilleries, since they have been allowed by law to use corn as the material, 
have been again revived with redoubled effect ; and as they ofier markets for 
corn, and fatten cattle for the butchers, are deemed of great use to agriculture. 
In the same manner extensive tan-yards, as they create a demand for the bark 
of certain woods, and give an adequate price for hides of slaughtered cattle, are 
also deemed encouragers of husbandry. 

The numerous falls of the Carron in Denny parish have supplied some con- 
venient situations for mills. Here, there are nine mills for manufacturing corn, 
there are two for spinning wool, one for preparing dye-stuffs, one for chipping 
wood. There are also three paper mills, a manufacture which is carried on to 
some extent, particularly coarse paper for making cartridges for war, and still 
more for packing, the more congenial uses of peace. 

"We are thus carried forward to some considerations with regard to the com- 
merce of this shire. That ships came to Stirling during the prosperous days of 
David I. is certain ; that they imported what Scotland did not then make, and 
could not want, and carried away wool and hides and other rude materials, is 
equally certain, unless we doubt his charters. King James IV., as we have 
seen at the end of the fifteenth century, caused docks to be formed at Polerth, 
near Higgen's nook, only a little higher on the Forth than Grangemouth, we 
know from record. In our own times the great canal, with the concurrence of 
the vast ironworks on the Carron, have created a port at Grangemouth, as it 
is a principle that trade will make a port, but a port wiU not make a trade. 

Before the year 1783, Grangemouth had not a name. It is now, owing to 
various influences, a customhouse port independent of Borrowstownness. 
Grangemouth is situated upon an angle, which is formed by the junction of the 
river Carron with the Forth and Clyde Canal. The commerce which is carried 
on from this port, consists in an extensive coast trade with London, with the 
intermediate ports on the east and north coasts of England and Scotland. There 
is a very considerable corn trade with Norfolk and the other corn districts, and 
occasionally to some of those places which require a supply of Irish oats that 















7G AnACOOUNT [Oh. Ill — Stirlingshire. 

are largely imported into the Clyde, brought thence by the Canal, and carried 
by the shipping of Grangemouth to Newcastle and to London. 

But its foreign trade is the most important. Grangemouth trades with Nor- 
way and Sweden, Russia and Denmark for their products, and the shipping of 
this port carries to those countries the manufactures of Stirlingshire. Grange- 
mouth may be properly termed the eastern port of Glasgow. This port has, 
moreover, a coal trade. In 1805 the tonnage which entered this port was 
45,000 tons. In 1810 the tonnage amounted to 60,000 tons. 

The whole shipping which belonged to Grangemouth, according to the Cus- 
tom House Register, amounted 

In 1811 to - - - 

In 1812 to 

In 1813 to - - - 

In 1816 to 

In 1817 to - - - 

In 1818 to - - - 

A herring fishery has been carried on in the Forth near Grangemouth, em- 
ploying 500 vessels, each whereof contributed some profit to the port. What 
of trade and shipping may have once belonged to Stirling, have from considera- 
tions of convenience, emigrated to this emporium. Its influence on the sur- 
rounding country has already been felt from its energy and its profit. 

§ VIII. Of its Ecclesiastical History. — Even as late as the close of the 
Pictish period of the Scottish annals in 843 A.D., research cannot discover any 
parishes to have been laid out, or any dioceses to have been located (p) ; and 
as low down as the accession of Robert I., the bishops of St. Andrews afiected 
to call themselves the bishops of the Scots. 

Parishes, however, appear to have been locally distinguished in Scotland as 
early as charters or record ; though the word parochia meant in those times a 
diocese rather than a parish. This ecclesiastical district we may see in charters 
designated under the Saxon term size or schire, and we may perceive this de- 
nomination of schire for a parish in the earliest of the Scottish charters amidst 
so much obscurity (g). In the most ancient records, tithes are mentioned as 
established rights from early ages ; as such, the payment of them was enforced 
by the assizes of David I., as well as by the injunctions of his successors, 

(p) Lloyd's Church Hist. Govt., Ch. VII. ; Caledonia, I., 329. 

(g') See the App. to Anderson's Independence ; Smith's Bade ; Sir James Dalrymple's Col. ; App. 
Nicolson's Soots Hist. Lib., No. VII. 

Sect. VIII. — Of its Ecclesiastical History.] OfNORTH-BEITAIN. 77 

Malcolm and William (r). Indeed, the Church may be traced hack as far as 
the year 910 a.d,, when Constantine the King, and Kellah the Bishop, solemnly 
vowed to observe the faith, to follow the discipline, and to enforce the rights of 
the churches (s). The foundation of religious houses may be even traced back 
to prior times {t). The origin of the bishopric of Saint Andrews may be found, 
perhaps, at the great epoch of the Scottish monarchy, by the happy union of 
the Picts and Scots in 843 (m). But it was the plastic hand of David I. which 
cast the whole Scotican Church into its appropriate mould, when its general 
establishment was settled upon a uniform plan of wise policy and special use- 

The country was probably first divided into dioceses by David I., who ap- 
pointed the limits of the jurisdiction of every bishop, and at that epoch assigned 
to the bishop of St. Andrews as his diocese Fife, Lothian, the Merse, Stirling- 
shire, Angus, and the Mearns (ty). 

We may now enquire what were the donations which were made to the 
several churches, chaplainries, and other ecclesiastical objects. In November 
1485, there was granted by Robert Bruce of Stenhouse a confirmation of a 
charter of amortization to a chaplainry on the south side of the parish kirk of 
Airth, and to the mansion a house, yard, and toft of land lying at the end of 
Blacraig, extending yearly to 20s., with other denominations of a similar 
kind {x). 

There was another charter of amortization by the King to a chaplainry 
founded in the castle of Stirling, with an acre of the King's land of Eaploch, 
with annual rent amounting to 20 marks yearly from the lands of Craigorthie, 
for the purpose of sustaining a chaplain in the said kirk of Stirling {y). 

There was, in July 1504, a charter of confirmation of a grant by John 
Stirling of Craigbarnard, amortizing to a chaplainry in the kirk of Campsie an 
annuity of 10 marks and 12 shillings out of his lands of Craigbarnard in 
Lennox, and other 6 marks out of his lands of Glorat lying in Dumbartonshire. 
There was a confirmation of this charter in June 1508 (z). 

There was a charter of confirmation in August 1496, of an amortization which 
was made by Thomas Carmichael, the vicar of the altar in the parish kirk of 
Stirling, to a chaplain at St. Michael's altar in the said kirk, of an annuity of 

(r) Caledonia, I., 432-3. 

(s) Innes's Grit. Essay, App. III. ; Wilkins' Concilia, I., 204 ; Caledonia, I., 433. 
(«) Caledonia, I., 426-7. («) lb., 429. 

{w) Eeliquiae Divi Andreee. It is probable, however, that the Western part of Stirlingshire was after- 
wards assigned to the bishopric of Glasgow, (x) Eegist., B. XI., 28. 
{y) Eegist., B. XV., 49. {z) lb., B. XV., 132. 

78 AnACCOUNT [Oh. III.— Stirlingshire. 

10 marks, to be received out of the tenement on the north side of the 
High Street (a). 

A confirmation of a charter in August 1498, of amortization, which was made 
by Robert, the abbot of Holyrood House, to a chaplain of the Mary chapel of 
Polmont, of an annuity of 6 marks, which he has by William Leirmonth of the 
hills, in excambion yearly, out of the tenement of Alexander Turing in Edin- 
burgh, on the south side of the Netherloch. 

A charter of mortization by the King, in May 1500, to two chaplains in 
Ninian's Kirk, of an annuity of 30 marks to the lord of Terregles, and were re- 
signed by Andrew Herries, the lord thereof, to the King. 

A charter of amortization, in December 1502, to St. Rothes Chapel at the 
bridge- end of Stirling, of the lands called Wiemikel haugh, with 15 marks out 
of the lands of Row in Monteith. 

A charter of amortization, in July 1505, by the King, giving to the kirk 
within the castle of Stirling, an annuity of 20 marks out of the lands of Craig- 
airth, in Stirlingshire, with an acre of the King's lands of Raploch. 

A charter of amortization, in November, to the college kirk of the chapel of 
Stirling, of the feu duties, annuities, as follows : out of the land of Castle Raw 
in Edinburgh, £80 ; out of Auchnabad in Perth, £6 13s. 4d. ; out of Straband 
and Glenesk in Perth, £98 ; according to the writings which were made to the 
tenants of those lands. 

A charter of amortization, in April 1534, which was made by Sir Robert 
Ratho the chaplain, for the support of a chaplain of St. Michael's altar in the 
parish church of Falkirk, of his lands, namely, a croft and barn in Stirling, an- 
other croft lying between Thomas Jones' land on the north and the march croft 
on the east ; another croft adjacent to the Gomass hill ; and moreover, the 
divers small annuities, amounting to 57s. 4d., all particularly bounded in the 
above charter (6). 

A charter of confirmation of a gift by James II., in November 1537, to the 
Brether preachers of Stirling, of two mills. A charter of the lands of Ernbag, 
in February 1458-9, to a chaplain in the chapel of the Virgin Mary of Garwald, 
in the moor of Dundass (c). 

Here follows what is appropriate to the place, the roll, and rental of small 
benefices in Stirlingshire : — • 

(a) Eegist., B. XIII., 249. 

{b) Eegist., B. XXV., 120. is the 1st January 1533-4. 

(c) Eegist., B. v., 44. 

Sect. VIII. — Of its Ecclesiastical History.'] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 79 

The chaplaincy of Stirling, - - - £1000 

The canonry of Alloa, within the Ohapel Eoyal, - 100 

The prebend of Strabran and Glenshee, - - 200 

The ohancellry of the Chapel Eoyal, - - 1500 

The prebend of the same, - - - 200 

The chaplenry of St. Bollock, - - 50 

The St. Laurence Altar in Stirling kirk, ... 40 

The chapel of St. Ninian's, near Stirling, - . - 40 

The chapel near Bannockburn, - - - - 100 

The chaplaincy of the Lady Altar in Oambuskenneth, - 60 

The chaplaincy of St. Ninian's kirk there, - . - 500 

The chaplaincy of St. Thomas, within the house in Stirling, 60 

St. Andrew's Altar in the kirk of Stirling, - - - 100 

The altarage of St. Michael's there, - - 100 

The Black Friar's there, - - . . 300 

The Altar of St. John the Baptist there, - - 60 

The Eude Altar there, - ... 20 

There seems never to have been many religious houses in Stirlingshire. 
Such as they were may he stated in the following manner : — 

(1.) Manuel, upon the north bank of the Avon a mile above the bridge. It 
was founded by Malcolm IV. in 1156. It was consecrated to the Virgin. 
The walls continued long to be seen as the remains of a worthy object. 

(2.) The convent of Dominicans or Blackfriars in Stirling town. This order 
of monks were introduced by Alexander II., and their house was founded by 
him in 1233 A.D. This college was demolished by the Reformed Lords of the 
Congregation in 1559 {d). 

(3.) The convent of Franciscans or Grey Friars, who were mendicants. This 
house was founded by James IV. in 1449. This convent was also demolished 
in 1559, but the church was left untouched. Both those establishments when 
they were demolished were found to have more breadth than had been foreseen, 
saith J. Knox. 

(4.) The Collegiate Church or Chapel Eoyal in the castle of Stirling. James 
III., taking up his residence in this castle, erected therein a Collegiate Church 
of secular priests which he called the Chapel Eoyal. This institution consisted 
of a Dean, or Provost, a Treasurer, or Sub-Dean, or Chanter, with other officers. 
The King, moreover, appointed a double set of those officers, so that there were 
sixteen ecclesiastics and sixteen boys. What the King did on that occasion 
was one of the causes of the rebellion in which he lost his life. 

The Knights Templars had possessions at Denny, in the Carse of Falkirk, 

(d) Keith's App. Dupin's Oh. Hist, 

go AnACOOUNT [Oh. III.— Stirlingshire. 

and in other parts of this shire. The order had a house and castle at Ogerstoun, 
which cannot easily be discovered. 

In the town of Stirling there are three hospitals, the oldest whereof is called 
Spittals, from the name of the founder, Eobert Spittal, the tailor of James V., 
which was endowed for the relief of decayed tradesmen. St. James's Hospital 
was founded at the end of Stirling bridge. 

We are thus carried forward to the epoch of the Keformation, and to the ec- 
clesiastical establishments which resulted from it. 

There is a Synod of Perth and Stirling, and in this Synod, and within the 
shire of Stirling, there are five Presbyteries and parts of Presbyteries ; namely, 
Stirling Presbytery, comprehending the parishes of Stirling, St. Ninians, Gar- 
gunock, Denny, Larbert and Dunipace, Bothkennar, Airth and Alva. The 
Presbytery of Linlithgow, comprehending the parishes of Falkirk, Polmont, 
Muiravonside and Slamannan ; the Presbytery of Glasgow, comprehending only 
the two parishes of Kilsyth and Campsie ; Dumbarton Presbytery, which com- 
prehends the nine following parishes, namely, Baldernock, Strathblane, Fintry, 
Killearn, Balfron, Drymen, Buchanan, and a part of East Kilpatrick ; in the 
Presbytery of Dunblane there are parts of Kippen, of Lecropt and Logie. 

Stirling town is divided into two parishes, east and west, or at least has two 
churches. The Presbytery of Stirling was established in 1581. The ancient 
ancient name of Strivelin has already been given ; and to all these notices have 
been added many of its local circumstances. The parochial school of Stirling 
has gained celebrity under some of its late masters. It has a reading-room, 
with a library and other literary accommodations, which have a tendency to 
enlighten the citizens of such a town. 

Saint Ninian is the name of a town and parish in Stirlingshire, from the name 
of a holy person who is very famous in the martyrology of Scotland, but was 
unknown to the erudite author of " L'art de Verifier les Dates." It is situated 
one mile south-east of Stirling. In 1746 the church, being converted by the 
insurgents into a magazine, was blown up by accident, without injuring the 
spire ; a circumstance this, which seems to evince that there was not much 
gunpowder contained in this magazine. Beaton's Mill, wherein James III. was 
assassinated, still remains a monument of the villainy or the ambition of the 
leaders of that insurrection. Exclusive of St. Ninians there are five other vil- 
lages in this parish, which contains 8,274 inhabitants. 

Gargunnock parish is situated on the southern side of the Forth. The ground 
rises gradually from the river, and forming a various soil of carse, of dryfield, 
and of moorland. Great improvements in agriculture have been effected here 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OrNOETH-BEITAIN. 81 

by the proprietors of the soil during recent times. Having no manufactories, it 
appears to have become somewhat depopulated since 1755, the numbers of 
people having declined in that period from 956 to 862. 

Denny parish has a surface very agreeably diversified, and being tolerably 
fertile is well cultivated. It stands on the Carron, which separates it from 
Dumbarton. It is traversed by the great Canal between the Forth and Clyde, 
which has benefited the inhabitants, and promoted their increase from 1,392 in 
1755, to 3,364 in 1821. 

The united parishes of Larbert and Dunipace, owing to the establishment of 
various works, have increased greatly since 1754, as it is constant employment 
which produces useful populousness. This parish has a fruitful soil. The manu- 
factures here are very considerable. In Dunipace there are a printfield and a 
cotton spinning work, and in Larbert there are the Carron Iron Works. On a 
dry moor in Larbert is held the Falkirk-tryst, wherein there are collected in 
October from 20 to 30,000 cattle. There are also coal works. Herein also is the 
Torwood, wherein Wallace sheltered himself after his defeat in the North, and 
near this famous woodland is a square field, which has been inclosed, wherein 
that discreet clergyman, Donald Cargill, excommunicated Charles II. The in- 
crease of people in this united parish has been from 1,864 in 1745 to 4,659 in 

The small parish of Bothkennar, forming a square of about a mile and a half, 
is perfectly level, and is inclosed throughout its small extent. It is as well cul- 
tivated as need be. It has a dozen very fruitful orchards. Much ground has 
been of late gained by embanking the Forth, and the Carron intersects the 
whole parish, which has obtained of inhabitants an augmentation from 529 in 
1754 to 895 in 1821. 

The whole parish of Airth is a plain, with the exception of the hills of Airth 
and of Dunmore ; and the soil is extremely fertile. As it lies upon the Forth, 
it has two harbours for small vessels. There are large plantations of oak in 
this parish. Both the hills of Airth and Dunmore contain coals and freestone. 
There are three ferries across the Forth, and the parish has a mineral spring of 
great repute. Its inhabitants have decreased, however, from 2316 in 1764, to 
900 in 1821. 

Alva, the last parish in the presbytery of Stirling, is surrounded by Clack- 
mannanshire. It abounds with useful minerals. Its soil is variable but rich, 
and its meadows are subject to the inconvenience of being overflowed by the 
Devon. The plantations which have been made during late times by the pro- 
prietors have flourished greatly. The village of Alva has had a manufacture 

82 AnACOOUNT [Oh. UI.— Stirlingshire. 

of serges and blankets for upwards of a century. Owing to their industry, the 
people have increased from 436 in 1754, to 1,150 in 1821. 

We are now to enter the Presbytery of Linhthgow. Falkirk, which has out- 
lived the many conflicts that have been fought in and near it, is famous for its 
trysts or agreements for the sale of cattle, sheep, and horses, in its neighbour- 
hood. Its soil is level, except the rise on which the town stands, and is watered 
by the Carron, near which lies the carse of Falkirk, which is celebrated for its 
uncommon fertility. The great canal intersects this parish, and numerous 
villages have been built within the limits of this district. Two such causes as 
this useful canal, which carries to market annually upwards of eighty thousand 
people, and the Carron Works, which employ many hands, are quite sufficient 
to augment the inhabitants from 3,932 in 1755, to 11,586 in 1821. 

The parish of Polmont was disjoined from that of Falkirk in 1724. Polmont 
is bounded on the north by the Forth, by the Avon on the east, and is inter- 
sected by the great canal. A considerable portion of this district is carse, 
which rises towards the south. All except a small moor and a common is under 
cultivation. There are coal and ironstone in great abundance within this 
parish. Polmont gives a title to the Duke of Hamilton. The numbers of its 
parishioners have greatly increased since 1754, having become more numerous, 
from 1,094 souls in 1754, to 2,171 in 1821. 

Muiravonside is a parish on the Avon towards the west. Near the river the 
soil is light, the rest is clay, with a mixture of moss and moor. This parish 
during late times has been mostly enclosed, and is generally well cultivated. 
The ruins of Manuel Abbey are still to be seen on the bank of the Avon, about 
half a mile above Linlithgow bridge ; and near the church of this parish is the 
old castle of Alinond, formerly a seat of the Earls of Callander. Coal and iron- 
stone abound. The Avon within the limits of this parish drives seventeen 
mills. The parishioners have increased from 1,539 in 1754, to 1,679 in 1821. 

Slamannan is a parish lying on the banks of the Avon. Near the river the 
soil is light and fertile, but at a small distance is moory and cold. Besides 
several castles, there were two conical mounts like those of Dunipace, but one 
was lately levelled, and the Church of St. Laurence erected upon its site. 
There are three small lakes within this parish, one whereof is one of the reser- 
voirs to the great canal. The population of this parish has gradually declined 
from 1,209 in 1755, to 981 in 1821. 

We are now to enquire into the circumstances of two parishes, Kilsyth and 
Campsie, in the Presbytery of Glasgow.. Of Kilsyth the general appearance is 
bleak, rugged, and elevated, commanding a prospect of sixteen counties. The 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 83 

Carron and the Kelvin are its principal rivers ; a reservoir of the Carron Iron 
Works covering 70 acres is in this district, and there are here also several 
mineral springs. The soil is tolerably fertile, and yields excellent crops. By 
an experiment here in 1762, one peck of potatoes produced 264 pecks. The 
neighbourhood of Kilsyth was the site of one of the victories of Montrose over 
the Covenanters. It now carries on considerable manufactures in happier times, 
without a covenant. Kilsyth is a burgh of barony, which is entitled to hold a 
weekly market and four annual fairs ; and prior to the wretched year 1715, 
gave the title of Viscount to the unfortunate family of Livingstone, who sacri- 
ficed its estate and honours to its attachment for the abdicated royal family. 
In the burial place of this family are the bodies of Lady Kilsyth, with her in- 
fant son, in perfect preservation. It abounds in minerals of various kinds, 
which have contributed to its wealth ; and its people have increased from 1,395 
in 1755, to 4,260 in 1821. 

Campsie also lies in Glasgow Presbytery, and from the Presbytery of Glas- 
gow has derived much of its own industry and wealth. The soil of this district 
is very various. Its carses on the Kelvin and Glozart are very fertile. But it 
is to its ingenious manufactures that it owes its industry and its opulence. 
From^the great increase of the parishioners it is apparent how much they have 
been employed, and how much benefit they have derived from their employ- 
ments. In 1755 the number of souls amounted to 1,399, but in 1821 they had 
increased to 4,929. 

We now enter Baldernock Parish in Dumbarton Presbytery. The soil of 
this parish is very variable. On the banks of the Kelvin the ground is fertile, 
but as it retires from the river the soil becomes covered with heath. There is 
much of lime, freestone, and coal. The ruins of the mansion of Baldernock 
evince its strength of old. There is also an old tower, which evinces that the 
barons bold had many a conflict in other times. There are several cairns, 
which indicate that underneath repose "the brute and boisterous force of 
violent men ; " and here also may be seen the three gray stones which, from 
their magnitude, have been vulgarly called the Auld Wives' Lift, and which 
carry back considerate minds to the unholy worship of the Druids, who acted 
as the priests, the prophets, and the physicians of the aboriginal people. The 
inhabitants of more recent times, if they have lived more quiet and practised 
more industry, have not added many to their numbers, which in 1755 were 
892, but in 1821 only 621. 

The parish of Strathblane derives its name from its forming the Strath of the 
Blane. Thejgeneral appearance of the country is agreeably picturesque. The 

84 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. III.— Stirlingshire. 

land in this valley is very fertile. Beyond the influence of the river there is 
much moorland, with its accustomed barrenness, yet afibrding pasture for many 
sheep. Here are two ancient castles, Mugdock and Duntreath, which once, 
formed the residence and the retreat of barons who sat in the Scottish Parlia- 
ment without patent or election, and when they retired from forming' legislative 
acts practised the virtues of hospitality. The Blane forms the cascade which is 
vulgarly called the Spout of Balagon. Bala in the British speech signifying a 
discharge or issue, and bala-lyn meaning the outlet of a lake, and gan in the 
same speech has various significations, and here signifies the remarkable section 
of the adjoining hill which is here presented. The population of this district 
has declined from 797 souls to 748. 

Fintry parish is situated in that range of hills which reaches from Stirling to 
Dumbarton, and behind the Campsie Fells. The general appearance is hilly, 
yet green, as the bills are covered with verdure. The soil is light and produces 
good crops. The Carron and the Endrick both rise in this district, and both 
exhibit several remarkable falls in their course ; the most singular whereof is on 
the Endrick, which falls over a precipice of 90 feet, that is called the Loup of 
Fintry. Near the town of Fintry is a hill which is called the Dun, in which is 
a very superb range of basaltic columns. In the population of Fintry there 
has been some increase, the number of souls in 1755 being 891, and in 1821 
amounting to 1102. 

Killearn parish is situated in the western extremity of Strathblane. The soil . 
is various but is in general fertile. It is watered by the Blane and Endrick. In 
this obscure district Wallace found a retreat, Napier his residence, and Buchanan 
his birth-place. The number of its parishioners in 1755 was 959, and 1,126 in 

Balfron is a parish in Stirlingshire still more obscure. Its surface lies in a 
gentle declivity from the banks of the Endrick, with a southern exposure. Its 
soil is in some places sandy, but the greatest part is wet. Bad roads, a distance 
from manure, and the poverty of the farmers, are infelicities which modern 
efforts have in a great measure removed. It contains lime and freestone, but 
coal has not been discovered. Into the Kirktown, however, the cotton manu- 
facture has been introduced. The efforts which have been made to remove all 
these infelicities, have augmented the parishioners from 755 in the year 1755, 
to 2,041 in 1821. 

Drymen is a parish of considerable extent. Its soil consists chiefly of moors; . 
the country is in some places rugged and mountainous, in other parts it is flat 
and level. It is intersected by a number of streams, by the Duchray, by the 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.'] OrNOETH-BEITAIN. 85' 

Endrick, and by the Forth, which is but a rivulet while it traverses this district. 
The Kirktown of Drymen has been enlivened and benefited by the manufac- 
turers of Glasgow, who have given the parishioners employments, and have in- 
cidentally taught them the value of industry. The inhabitants of this district 
amounted to 2,709, but had declined before the enumeration of 1821 to 1,661. 

Buchanan is a parish which extends eighteen miles in length and six in 
breadth along the eastern side of Loch Lomond. The surface of this district is 
mountainous, if we except the two fertile vallies of Glendon and Glenarelet. 
The Forth has its rise from the eastern side of Ben Lomond, and the Endrick 
runs through it, but often overflows the ground on its banks. Buchanan moor, 
which is an extensive barren, lies towards the south. Some of the isles in Loch 
Lomond belong to this district, and on Inchcailloch lately stood the parish 
church. There are, moreover, three small lakes, which abound with perch and 
trout, and there grow here some very extensive oakwoods. In Craigrostan are 
several caves, one of which is said to have afforded shelter to B,obert Bruce, and 
is known by the name of " King Eobert's Cave." These caves were also the re- 
sort of the Highland freebooters who so long infested this country (e). A lime- 
stone quarry which has been opened of late times, is likely to be of great ad- 
vantage to the agricultural interests of this district. Were we to form a judg- 
ment from the state of the population of this parish, of its prosperity or decline, 
we ought to infer that it has been long in a disadvantageous state. In 1755 it 
contained 1699 souls, in 1821 only 763. 

Kilpatrick-east is situated partly in Stirlingshire and partly in Dumbarton- 
shire, and was disjoined from Old Kilpatrick at the end of the seventeenth 
century. The Kelvin runs through this parish, and the great Canal is carried 
over that river by an aqueduct bridge of four arches, each whereof is fifty feet 
wide. The soil is generally clay, which is difficult of culture ; and the old 
practice of agriculture being generally followed, little advantage is derived from 
the recent improvements, of husbandry. The only village is Milngavie, contain- 
ing merely 200 people who can give but little aid to agriculture from a busy 
manufacture. Yet there are in this parish various incitements to industry, 
which have brought with them considerable benefits to the parishioners, such 
as six bleachfields, eight mills, one half whereof are for corn, one for snuff, and 
one for paper ; there are several coal pits and an extensive limework. The 
population of course has increased from 546 in 1755, to 958 in 1821. 

We now enter Dunblane Presbytery. A part only of Kippen parish lies in 

(e) Eob Eoy's cave is mentioned on the map which is prefixed to the Second Edition of Nimmo's 

86 AnAOCOUNT [Ch. Ill — Stirlingshire. 

Stirlingshire, but the whole district lies on the southern side of the Forth. The 
soil is naturally divided into carse and dryfield, the former lying on the bank of 
the river and is interspersed with extensive mosses, and the dryfield of course 
occupies the higher grounds. The surface of the country presents a variegated 
and extensive prospect. This parish contains two villages, namely, Kippen, 
which contains 76 families, and Bucklyvie 102 families. Both have weekly 
markets, and each has five fairs within the year. 

Freestone and limestone are found in this parish, but there is no coal nearer 
than a dozen miles. The people have increased, however, from 1,304 souls in 
1755, to 1,368 in 1821. 

Lecropt is a parish lying at the union of the Teith and Allan with the Forth, 
two-thirds whereof are situated in Perthshire and one-third is in Stirlingshire. 
Of the soil one-half is carse and the other half is dryfield. There is only one 
village in this parish, which is called the Bridge- of-Allan, a stream more re- 
markable for its romantic scenery and tumultuous current than for the quantity 
or quality of its water. There may still be seen here the remains of those 
Caledonian forts which defended the tribes from one another full as much as 
from a foreign foe. In that part of Lecropt which lies in Stirlingshire was con- 
tained, in 1755, 282 souls, and in 1821 only 252. Whence we may infer that 
the spirit of industry had not in that period shed its beneficial influences on 

The parish of Logie, lying on the Forth about two miles from the shire town, 
is pretty equally situated in the counties of Perth, Stirling, and Clackmannan. 
One half of the soil is carse, producing luxuriant crops, the other half is dry- 
field and hilly, affording excellent pasturage. In one of the curvatures of the 
Forth stands the ruinous abbey of Cambuskenneth, which was founded by 
David I. in 1147, wherein the murdered James III. with his Queen lie buried. 
In this parish there are some appearances of silver and copper mines, some of 
which have been wrought with little advantage to the adventurers. That part 
of Logie parish which is situated in Stirlingshire contained of people 600 in 
1755, and 608 in 1821. 

Sect. I — Of its Name.] Of NOETH - BEIT AIN . 




§ I. Of its Name. — This must be souglit for in the language of the earliest 
inhabitants of this part of the country. The Horestii were the people who 
roved in this district during the classic age of Agricola. Clackmaen-an would 
signify the hamlet or burying place of the little stone, the final an being a 

It is a remarkable fact that in the street of the village of Clackmannan there 
stands a stone, which, having been broken into three parts owing to time and 
chance, has been batted or clamped with four iron bolts. This circumstance 
clearly evinces that in the tradition of the country and the consideration of the 
town, this stone is deemed an object at once sacred and memorable. The name 
plainly refers to this shattered stone. 

There was, during the year 1215, the castle of Maen-clock-og in Dyfed,. 
which, in the Welsh or ancient British, is synonymous with Clackmaenan,. 
which has formerly signified the burying place of the little stone. 

Yet it is supposed by some to have derived its appellation from St. Manan 
or Monan, a Scottish martyr of the ninth century, whose memory was venerated 
in Fife and the adjacent districts. He is said to have been archdeacon of St. 
Andrews, and during an invasion of Fife by the Danes in a.d. 881, he, with St. 
Adrian and other ecclesiastics, took refuge in the Isle of May, where they were 
cruelly slain by the Pagan invaders (a). Monan was canonized as a martyr, 
and he was commemorated on the 1st of March and 22nd of December. His 
name, whether alone or compounded in local appellations, appears in the dif- 
ferent forms of Monan, Manan, and sometimes Minnan. Several cells or 
churches appear to have been dedicated to this Fife saint. The church of St. 
Monan's in Fife was originally dedicated to him, and the parish still bears his 

(a) Caledonia, I., 380 ; Dempster's Menolog. Soot., p. 5, 33 ; Keith, 232. 

88 AnACCOUNT [Oh. IV .—Clackmannanshire. 

§ II. Of its Situation and Extent. — It has the river Forth on the south, 
Perthshire on the east, and Perthshire with parts of Stirlingshire on the north 
and west. 

Clackmannan county is situated between 56° 4' 40" and 56° 13' 30" of N. 
Latitude ; and from 3° 37' 30" to 3° 55' of Longitude west from Greenwich (6). 
It extends from south to north ten miles, and from east to west upwards of 
eleven miles. It contains a superficies of 51 square miles, which are equal to 
32,640 [31,876] English statute acres. 

§ III. Of its Natural Objects. — In its general superficies is included two 
small lakes containing 130 acres, and the river Devon, which traverses its 
whole extent. In this shire there is coal, consisting of four seams of good 
quality, and ironstone on the south side of Devon river within two miles of 
Alloa. It also has freestone and granite in abundance. In the Ochil hills have 
been often discovered ores of silver, lead, of copper, of cobalt and antimony. 
Precious stones have also been discovered, such as pebbles, agates, and some 
topazes, and ironstone exists in great plenty. It is a plain and fertile country, 
producing pasture and corn. On the shore of the Forth it enjoys the benefit 
of several safe harbours. From those shores the surface rises into the Ochil 
hills, the highest whereof is Bencleugh, lying in Tillicoultry parish. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — The old tower of Clackmannan is said to have 
been built by Bruce, the illustrious restorer of the monarchy. Whatever there 
may be in this position, it certainly was long the principal residence of the 
Bruces in Scotland. 

The most curious antiquity in this inconsiderable shire is the stone which 
stands in the shire town of Clackmannan, which has been preserved to the 
present time by several clamps of iron, as hath been already mentioned, 
Clackmannan has been for many generations the seat of the chief of the Bruces 
in Scotland. David II. gave it to his kinsman Robert Bruce, the first laird of 
Clackmannan, on the 9th of December 1367. From the fashion of the ancient 
tower, it appears to have been erected during the reign of Eobert Bruce. The 
greatest height of this tower is 79 feet, and has been surrounded by a moat. 
Adjoining to this tower stands the old mansion, the residence of the Bruce 
family till the direct line became extinct. Both the tower and mansion are 
fast falling into ruins, and exhibit a mournful spectacle of human greatness. 

(b) In the Taxatio of 1175, the parish of Olaokmannan was comprehended in the district of 

Sect. V — Of its Establishment as a Shire.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 89 

Henry Bruce, the last laird of Clackmannan, died in 1772. His widow, 
Katharine Bruce, survived him till November 1791, when she died, by means 
of an accidental fall, at the advanced age of 95. She had in her possession a 
very lai-ge sword and a helmet, which are said to have been used by King 
Robert Bruce at the decisive battle of Bannockburn, both of which she be- 
queathed to the Earl of Elgin. 

§ V. Of its Establishment as a Shire. — Of this policy, which introduced a 
new system of jurisprudence, it seems to be impossible to ascertain its epoch (c). 
It is certain, however, that it had been established as a shire before the singular 
epoch of 1305, when Mons. Malcolm de Innerpeffer was then the Sheriff ((i). 

When the wars of the succession had ceased, owing bo the perseverance and 
victories of Bruce, this office became hereditary in the family of Sir John 
Strivelin, knight. At the Parliament of Scone, in October 1382, Mariott, the 
daughter and heiress of Sir John Strivelin, made a voluntary surrender of the 
barony of West Kerss in Alueth (Alloa), with the office of Sheriff and forester 
of Clackmannan, when those offices were granted to William of Monteith and 
Elizabeth his wife, and to their heirs (e). 

William Monteith, the heir of John Monteith, obtained a charter from 
Robert II. of his mother's lands and the hereditary offices of Sheriff and 
forester of Clackmannan, reserving to his mother Marjory a life estate both in 
the lands and offices, as we may learn from the Sutherland case. Those her- 
editary offices appear to have continued during several centuries in the family 
of Monteith of Carse or Kerse, who held them during the reign of James VI. (/) 

In the seventeenth century those hereditary offices passed from Monteith of 
Kerse to Bruce of Clackmannan, who held them during the i-eign of Charles 11. 
In April 1674, David Bruce of Clackmannan was served heir to his father, Sir 
Henry Bruce of Clackmannan, to the lands and barony, to the burgh, to the 
offices of Sheriff and forester of Clackmannanshire, and to the customs of St. 
Bartholomew Fair (g). In January 1682, the hereditary office of Sheriff of 
Clackmannan being in the hands of the creditors of Bruce of Clackmannan, and 
the possessor not having taken the test, the King appointed the Lord Clerk 

(c) During the reign of William, indeed, Alexander was Sheriff of Clackmannan from 1200 to 1214. 
Chart. Arbroath, No. 59-89. 

(d) Eyley's Placita, 505. In 1310, Malcolm, Earl of Levenax, or Lennox, obtained from Robert I. 
a grant of the office of Sheriff to him and his heirs. Chart, of Dumbarton, p. 18. 

(e) Eobertson's Index, p. 30-35. 

(/) The Laird of Carse Monteith was Sheriff in October 1591. Treasurer's Acct. 
(g) Inquis. Special., 41. 

7 12 

90 An ACCOUNT [Ch. IV. — ClacJcmannanshire. 

Register, Sir George Mackenzie of Tarbet, to be Sheriff of Clackmannanshire 
during pleasure, with power to name deputies (h). 

At the Eevolution the office of Sheriff of Clackmannan was restored to Bruce 
of Clackmannan (i). Before the year 1724 the Sheriffwick had become heredi- 
tary in the family of William Dalrymple ; and before the year 1747 this office 
became vested in the Earl of Dumfries, who claimed for it £5000, and was 
allowed £2000 sterling, and this hereditary Sheriffwick was at length 
abolished {j). 

§ VI. Of its Civil History. — Many a dreary year elapsed from the era when 
the Horestii hunted for their subsistence throughout the forests of Fife and 
Clackmannan (k). Before the reign of David I., those lands with their appur- 
tenances became the demesne of the Crown. David II., with his usual benefi- 
cence, granted a tenth of his can, due to him as sovereign, from Clackmannan (I). 
The various facts and circumstances which are stated from charters in the note 
below, exhibit the domestic affairs of Clackmannan throughout the effluxion of 
many a rude age. David I., we are assured, held his Parliament within the 
Abbey of Cambuskenneth for settling the succession to the throne. In 1195 
William the Lion held a Parliament at Clackmannan for regulating the descent 
of the Crown (m). In 1359, December 9, Sir Robert Bruce of Clackmannan 
obtained from King David Bruce a charter " dilecto et fideli consanguineo suo 
Roberti Bruces " of the castle and manor of Clackmannan (n), with the appur- 
tenances. It is not very probable that Bruce, the restorer of the monarchy, 
should have built the old tower of Clackmannan, though it is pretty certain 
that the family of Bruce in Scotland long resided in it A petty district con- 

(h) Privy Council Eeg. Warrant Book, vi. 592. (j) Breviate of the State of Scotland. 

(j) Scots Mag., 1748, 137 ; Reports of the Lords of Session. 

(k) The Scots are said to have defeated the Danes and Norwegians at Dollar in 678 a.d ; but credu- 
lous must be the reader who can believe such an improbable statement ; 1st. There were no Scots at 
Dollar in that age ; 2nd. There were no Danes and Norwegians on the seas in so early a period. 

(I) App. Sir Ja. Dalrymple, Col. 386. David granted to the same monks that they might enjoy in 
the forest of Clackmannan what was necessary either for burning or building to them and their men, a 
grant this which was confirmed by a charter of James II. in 1450. MS. Monast. Scotiae., 95. Gregory 
the Pope, in 1234, confirmed to the same monks the tenth of barley and oats from the products of 
Clackmannan. lb. 99. David also granted to the same monks of Cambuskenneth the Church of Clack- 
mannan, with forty acres of land and the toft belonging to the priest of Clackmannan with other ease- 
ments. Chart. Cambusken., No. 61. This was confirmed in 1164 by Pope Alexander. lb. 28-9. 
Alexander, in the 16th of his reign, confirmed to the monks of Cambuskenneth in exchange for his 
mill at Clackmannan, twenty marks yearly to be received from his firm of his burgh of Stirling. lb. 
No. 213. (m) Lord Hailes' An. i. 138. (ji) Douglas' Baronage, 238. 

Sect. VI — Of its Civil History.] OrNOETH-BEITAIN. 91 

sisting of only four parishes, and partaking of the fortunes and misfortunes of 
its neighbours can only supply to civil history but a few notices of slight im- 

The tower and lands of Alloa were exchanged in 1305, by David II. with 
Lord Erskine, for the estate of Strathgartney in Perthshire, and from that epoch 
Alloa has been the usual residence of the Erskines. And here was Lord Erskine 
visited by Mary Queen of Scots in July 1506, who went thither by water soon 
after her delivery of King James. 

The shires of Clackmannan and Kinross, under the Union, choose by turns a 
Commissioner to represent them in Parliament, Clackmannan having the first 
choice (o). 

During the plot of the nobles to intercept Mary Queen of Scots on her jour- 
ney from Perth to Edinburgh, the Earl of Argyle placed himself in Castle 
Campbell, while the Earl of Murray lodged at Kinross. But the Queen, having 
some intimation of their purpose, galloped with such speed as to elude the 
machinations of such traitors, Murray being her bastard brother, and Argyle 
being the husband of her bastard sister. 

The narrative with regard to the death and burial of Edward Lord Bruce, 
who was slain by Sir Edward Sackville in a desperate duel, in Bergen near 
Holland, may be properly inserted here : 

Sir Robert Preston of Valleyfield, Bart., in consequence of an ancient tradi- 
tion that the heart of Edward Lord Brace, who fell in the memorable duel with 
Sir Edward Sackville in the year 1612, had been sent from Holland, and was 
interred in the vault adjoining to the old Abbey Church of Culross in Perth- 
shire, directed a careful search to be made in that place in November 1808, 
when two flat stones measuring four feet in length and two in breadth were 
discovered, two feet below the surface of the pavement and partly under an old 
projection in the wall of the building. These stones, upon which there appeared 
no inscription, were strongly clasped together with iron, and when separated, 
a silver case or box shaped like a heart was found in a hollow or excavation 
between them. The box was evidently of foreign workmanship, and upon the 
lid of it was engraved what was meant as a representation of the arms of the 
Bruce family, and the words " Lord Edward Bruce." It had hinges and clasps, 
and when opened was found to contain a heart carefully embalmed in a liquid 
of a brownish colour. The box was only opened twice, and accurate drawings 
being taken, was again replaced with care in the same state and spot where it 

(o) Wight on Parliament, 107. 

92 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. IV. — Clackmannanshire. 

was discovered. There was also a small leaden box between the stones in 
another excavation, the contents of which, whatever they might have been 
originally, appear now reduced to dust. 

Some time afterwards Sir Robert Preston had the following inscription en- 
graved on a brass plate, with the delineation of the silver case according to the 
exact dimensions, and placed on the projection of the wall where the heart was 
discovered : — " Near this spot was deposited the heart of Edward, Lord Bruce 
" of Kinloss, who was slain in a bloody duel in 1613 with Sir Edward Sackville, 
" who was afterwards created Earl of Dorset, near Bergen-op-Zoom in Holland, 
" to which country the combatants had repaired, the one from England and the 
" other from Paris, for the determined purpose of deciding their quarrel with 
" the sword. The body of Lord Bruce was interred in the great church of 
" Bergen op-Zoom, where among the ruins which was caused by the Siege in 
" 1747, are still to be seen the remains of a monument erected to his memory ; 
" a tradition however existing, that his heart had been sent over to his native 
" land, and was buried near this place, a search was made by Sir Robert 
" Preston of Valley-field, Bart., in 1808, when it was found embalmed in a 
" silver case of foreign workmanship, secured between two flat and excavated 
" stones clasped with ii-on, and was carefully replaced and securely deposited in 
" the same spot. For the particulars of this challenge and fatal duel, in which 
" Lord Bruce was killed upon the spot, see Lord Clarendon's History of the 
" Rebellion, and the letters and narratives which were published in No. 129 
" and 133 of the Guardian." 

Lord Edward Bruce, the eldest son of Sir Edward, the baron of Kinloss, so 
created by King James L in 1603, to whom the King gave the dissolved abbey 
of Kinloss in Morayshire, and who had been instrumental in the succession to 
the crown of England, to which country accompanying the King, he was made 
Master of the Rolls in 1604, died in 1610, and was buried in the Rolls Chapel. 
His son Edward, Knight of the Bath in 1610, was killed in 1613, and was suc- 
ceeded by his brother, who was created Earl of Elgin in 1633, and an English 
Baron in 1641. The narrative of the challenge and combat as given by Lord 
Edward Sackville is rather obscure as to the place where the duel was actually 
fought. From this account it would seem that the parties, after meeting at 
Fergoes in Zealand, had embarked for Antwerp, whence they were to proceed 
to a village midway between the State's territory and the Archduke's. It does 
not however mention that they arrived at Antwerp, but goes on to state, with- 
out naming the place where they disembarked, that they proceeded on horseback 
about two English miles to a meadow, where they dismounted and fought. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.] Op NOBTH- BRITAIN. 


Clarendon indeed says that they fought under the walls of Antwerp, but a par- 
ticular and careful enquiry having been recently made, there appears to exist 
no doubt that the combatants disembarked at Bergen-op-Zoom, and fought 
near that town and not at Antwerp. The circumstances of the duel are well 
known at Bergen at the present day (1814), but at Antwerp there exists no 
tradition about it. There is a small piece of land a mile and a half from the 
Antwerp gate at Bergen, which still goes by the name of Bruceland, and which 
is recorded as being the spot where Lord Bruce fell. According to a vulgar 
tradition at Bergen, the ground was previously purchased by the parties for 
the purpose of fighting upon it, at all events the spot is unclaimed at the pre- 
sent day. It is marked by a little earthen boundary, which separates it from 
the surrounding cornfields, and until the French Revolution was considered 
as free ground, where any person might take refuge without being liable to 
arrest. The distance from Bruceland to Bergen is correspondent to that which 

A Cornfield. 

A Cornfield which is separated from Brace's land, by a pathway, that leads 
out to the main road to Antwerp. 

Lord Sackville states the parties to have rode on horseback previous to their 
fighting, and that spot being near the road which leads to the frontier, where 
it was the original intention of the parties to have fought, there can be no 
doubt but that that place was the scene of their sanguinary duel, nor is there 
any doubt but that Lord Bruce was buried at Bergen. For among the monu- 
ments which are still to be seen within the walls of the great or Protestant 
church, is one which is positively stated to have been erected to the memory of 
Lord Bruce, who is asserted to have been buried there. That church was much 
injured during the memorable siege of Bergen in 1747, and it continues in a 
state of ruin. Many monuments were totally destroyed, and the remains of 
others which are still to be seen have been evidently removed from other parts 
of the church. But that which is shewn as the undoubted monument of Lord 
Bruce is fixed or built in the wall of the church, and in all probability was 

94 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. IV. — Clackmannanshire. 

originally inserted in it. It is placed about eight feet above the ground, and 
an iron railing is stated to have been fornaerly placed round the flag at the 
bottom. The slab, which probably bore an inscription, and other parts of the 
monument, have been quite destroyed (o). 

§ VII. Or ITS Agriculture, Manufacture and Trade. — A small county 
saith the skilful Wight (g), but considerably improved. Cultivation goes on 
briskly. The soil of this shire may be considered under these descriptions : the 
alluvial soil of the Forth, which is usually called the carse ; the common soil of 
the middle tracts ; and the soil of the hills, some of which rise 2,450 above the 
level of the Forth. The carse soil below the bridge of Stirling is deemed richer 
than that above it. That above the bridge is supposed to have been covered 
with moss, and that this circumstance makes it more retentive of water, which 
is deemed by skilful persons rather favourable than disadvantageous. The 
middle division is plain and fertile soil which produces abundance of corn and 
pasture. From the shore of the Forth the surface rises by gradual ascent into 
the Ochil hills, the highest whereof is Bencleugh. The sides of those hills afford 
excellent pasture for sheep, but towards the summits the naked rocks appear 
but too plainly. Considerable improvements have been made in this shire, as 
indeed we might learn from the intimations of Wight, though it might be ad- 
mitted that more attention has been paid to pasturage than to tillage ; yet do 
the luxuriance of the soil and the skill of the husbandmen enable them to ex- 
port corn. The ancient practice of ploughing with four horses abreast and of 
striking the horses in the face to make them advance more briskly appears to 
be given up. This absurd practice was followed by the habit of yoking three 
horses in a line all going in the furrow. This improvement has been followed 
by having two horses only in the plough, without a driver, and this progress of 
melioration has been followed by using the best implements of husbandry. 

The important practice of the rotation of crops, both green and white, has 
also been introduced here, with conviction of its usefulness. Cabbages, potatoes 
and turnips, as well as wheat, beans, barley and oats, have, moreover, been cul- 
vated in this district as food for cattle at particular seasons. Summer fallowing 
during the whole season has been introduced, but not so easily, since the imme- 
diate benefit of this was not immediately perceived by eyes which look eagerly 
for immediate gain. The best sort of ploughs had not been introduced when 
Wight made his agricultural surveys into that part of Scotland. 

(o) This narrative waa communicated to me by Lord Stowell, after his recent return from Scotland, 
for publication. — G. 0. {q) Wight's Agricult. Tour, ii. 104-105. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, Manufactures, and Trade.'} OfNOKTH-BEITAIN. 95 

Clackmannan was said to be a populous county, and yet the wages of farmers' 
servants were high. A ploughman obtained from £5 to £6 sterling, with his 
victuals ; labourers ninepence a day. Harvest wages to women were ninepence 
a day, and to men elevenpence, without victuals. 

In this improving shire there are many mills, as we are informed by the 
Agricultural View (7-). There are many fairs (s), but all improvements are vain, 
unless in the absence of canals there be proper roads ; and such was the convic- 
tion when a Turnpike Act was obtained for this shire in 1774. Much of the 
agricultural improvements and prosperity are owing to the Farmers' Club of 

Clackmannan can scarcely be called a manufacturing county, unless the spin- 
ning of women in every family be deemed such. There are two extensive dis- 
tilleries in this shire, one at Kilborgie and the other at Kennetpans. On Lord 
Cathcart's estate, the Devon Iron Company have erected extensive iron furnaces 
and machinery near the prosperous village of Newtonshaws, for converting iron- 
stone into bar iron. This is a manufacture of some consequence. But of manu- 
factures in the proper sense of the word and of the thing, there are certainly 
none in Clackmannanshire. It may have some domestic traffic, but of exports- 
and imports to and from foreign countries, it may well be doubted whether it 
can have much. During the prosperous period, however, of 1702, the port of 
Alloa enjoyed of shipping 104 vessels bearing 6,297 tons (t). Alloa indeed has 
a very commodious harbour for the reception of shipping, and has for some years 
been remarkable for shipbuilding ; and owing to these circumstances a dry dock 
was lately formed at this commodious port. Much coal is raised in this vicinity,^ 
and vessels are expeditiously loaded with this necessary article to human com- 
fort, there being here a wagon-way of recent and singular construction. A 
manufactory of glass, an iron foundry, a tan and tilework are also carried on 
here, and it had moreover fisheries which yield adequate revenue to the several 

But the village of Clackmannan is the shire town where the Sheriff's Courts 
are held ; yet it is not a Boyal Burgh (u). The town stands on the estate of 
Clackmannan, and pays a feu duty to the proprietor of the estate. It has twa 
fairs in the year, one in June and the other in September. It is probably very 
favourable to health {y). 

{r) P. 67. (s) lb. 68. (<) The Custom house Eegister of that year. 

(m) Stat. Acot. 606-7. 

(v) When the enumeration of 1821 was made, there were one man and one woman who were upwards, 
of a hundred years of age in Clackmannan parish. 

96 AnACCOUNT [Ch. lY.— Clackmannanshire. 

§ VIII. Of its Ecclesiastical History. — The ecclesiastical like the civil 
history of this shire is barren and obscure. Cambuskenneth is recorded as the 
only religious house which under the ancient system formed an abbey of some 
note, and which was established by David I. on one of the reduplications of the 
Forth. Under the reformed system, Clackmannanshire has not the honour of 
forming a Synod or Presbytery. Three of its parishes and a portion of a fourth 
form a part of the Presbytery of Stirling, and that division of Logie parish lying 
in this shire make a district of Dunblane Presbytery, and the whole of those 
parishes are comprehended in the Synod of Perth and Stirling. 

Clackmannan, as hath been already intimated, is the shire town, whose ap- 
pellation has been already investigated. The church of this parish is an old and 
mean structure in the form of a cross, which was obviously built at different 
periods, and is now in a very ruinous state. The manse of the minister was 
erected about the year 1740. It is beautifully situated on the south side of the 
ridge whereon stands the shire town, and enjoys a various view of the whole 
banks of the Forth. Of this parish Lord Dundas is patron. The stipend con- 
sists of 24 bolls of barley, 16 bolls of oats, and £50 sterling in money, exclusive 
of £40 Scots for communion elements and £20 Scots for grass mail, with a glebe 
of about 4 acres of good land and what is called Craigleave coal, that is free 
coal, except paying the collier, which is about one third part of this stipend. 
Owing to the pressure of the times in November 1754, the stipend was aug- 
mented by an addition of four chalders of victual, one half in meal and the other 
half in barley, besides £5 sterling in addition to the communion elements. 
Though there are a variety of sectaries in this parish, only one of the Sects, 
the Relief, has a meeting house in it, the other sectaries go to meeting-houses 
in the neighbourhood. The records of the Kirk Session commenced only in 

The next parish to Clackmannan is Dollar. This name, according to some, 
was anciently spelled Dollard, and hence the appellation may have been 
derived from the Celtic Doll a plain, and ard a height ; and this is perfectly 
applicable to the location of this parish, being a beautiful plain lying along the 
foot of the Ochil hills. Other etymologists suppose the name to have been 
Doillar, signifying a hidden place, which is also applicable to the situation of 
the place, which is not seen at any distance, approach it in whatever direction. 
The greatest part of this parish was formerly the property of the Campbells of 
Argyle till the year 1605, when their property was feued by Archibald the 
Earl of Argyle and Dame Agnes Douglas, reserving only Castle Campbell and 
two farms in its neighbourhood. Hence, the Duke of Argyle is superior and 

Sect. VIII.— Of its Ecclesiastical History. ] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 97 

patron of the living as well as titular of the tithes. The minister's stipend, 
exclusive of the manse and glebe, has been considered to be about £80 upon an 
average. The church was rebuilt in the year 1775, and is considered as a very 
neat building for a country place of worship. The manse was out of repair. 
Mr. John Gray was ordained the minister of this parish in 1709, being the first 
minister settled here after the Eevolution. He was commonly called the 
Baron, as during his incumbency here he purchased two baronies at the expense 
of £4,944 sterhng. But he must have had some other resource than his stipend 
to have had such a surplus. The school of Dollar has produced some respect- 
able scholars. The poor of this parish receive their subsistence monthly, which 
amounts to about £17 a year, and the salutary effect is that a beggar has not 
been seen in this parish in the memory of man. 

The next parish is Alloa, whose church was repaired and enlarged in 1680, 
under a commission from the Archbishop of St. Andrews. The church stands 
on a gently rising ground on the west side of the gardens of Alloa, and is orna- 
mented by some old trees near it. In a niche there is a statue of St. Mungo, 
the titular saint of the place. But it is now too small and too inconvenient 
for the accommodation of the parishioners. But these inconveniences were in 
a great measure removed by the several acts of beneficence of Lady Charlotte 
Erskine, who was a daughter of the house of Hopetoun. The minister's stipend 
has been at successive times augmented, so as to amount in 1770 to £107 4s. 5d. 
Scots. The minister has also a valuable glebe and a comfortable manse. In 
Alloa there are a burgher and an antiburgher meeting-house, and there are 
some Episcopalians. There are five ministers here, who are said to live in the 
greatest harmony with one another (iv). There is a variety of schools in this 
parish, which have gradually and usefully instructed and humanized the youth. 
The numbers of the people of this district in 1821 were 5577 souls. 

Tillicoultry is the next parish in this diminutive shire to be considered. Its 
name is undoubtedly Gaelic. But the difficulty consists in applying this lan- 
guage to the location. TuUich-cue-tir, the mount at the back of the country, 
is submitted by the learned writer of the statistical account ; but he is himself 
dissatisfied with his own definition, which is probable, and will have it to be 
derived from the Latin, as if a Latin people had ever resided here, as if Celtic 
residents would have applied a language whereof they were ignorant to the 
localities daily before their uninformed eyes (x). 

The old church and manse were situated near the house of Tillicoultry. 

(w) See the Stat. Acct., VIIL, p. 92, etc. 

(a;) Tillicoultry is an inland parish, and comprehends a considerable part of the Ochill-hills, where 
these are highest ; but the principal part of the parish lies at the foot of the hills. After all, the 
7 13 

98 AkACOOUNT [Oh. IV.— Clackmannanshire. 

The church belonged to the abbey of Cambuskenneth, having been granted to 
it by King Malcohn, together -with the tithes and pertinents (y). The whole 
passed to the Erskines of Mar at the Reformation, when there were so many 
changes. As the abbot and convent had leased the tithes to the Colvils of 
Culross, John Earl of Mar, in May 1628, ratified the leases above mentioned. 
The patron of Tillicoultry at present is James Bruce, a minor, who is titular of 
the tithes, and the heritors and feuars hold their lands of him. The manse was 
built in 1766, and is the second in the same place since the year 1730. Its 
materials and architecture must have been very bad. The new church stands 
near the manse, and is almost equidistant from the three villages, and was 
built in 1773. It is a small but neat building, which is well lighted, but not 
very commodionsly seated. There are two churchyards, one of them where the 
old church was situated, and the other at the new church. The old manse has 
long since been converted into a stable, and the old glebe is an orchard. The 
glebe was exchanged in 1730, when the manse was removed to its present 
situation. It lies in four different pieces, and ought to consist of thirteen acres. 
The stipend consists of £120 Scots, including the communion elements, 34 bolls 
of oats, 24 bolls of baidey, and 6 bolls of meal. It commenced in 1648, and 
has not been since augmented. The minister has the same privilege as other 
parsons of getting his coals free, for paying the collier the price of working, 
and he has also pasturage in the hills for maintaining seven or eight sheep. 
There is a school in the parish which supplies the most useful instruction at the 
cheapest rate. The poor are maintained without any assessnaent, and there are 
no beggars (z). As proofs of a rather luxuriant refinement, it is remarked 
that all ranks dress better than they did formerly, and in 1764 there were only 
ten clocks in this parish, whereas there are now above sixty (a). 

In this shire lies a part of the parish of Logie, which is situated on the Forth 
two miles north of Stirling. It is about four miles long, and as many in 
breadth, and is almost equally situated in the counties of Perth, Stirling, and 
Clackmannan. In this parish and in one of the peninsula which is formed by 
one of the reduplications of the Forth, stand the ruins of the abbey of Cambus- 
kenneth, wherein were buried James III. and his Queen. It is supposed that 
the part of Logie district which is included in this shire contains 971 souls. 
The inhabitants of the abbey district of Stirlingshire lying in this county 
amount only to the diminutive number of 201 souls. 

Ochills are improperly spelled ; it is Uch, and Uch-tir, whicli, in the original speech of this country, 
signifies high, high-land. See Owen's Dictionary, in vo. Uc-el-high, lofty. 

(y) The above Malcolm must have been Malcolm the Maiden, and not Malcolm Oanmore, as the 
abbey of Cambuskenneth was founded by David I., the son of the last, and grandfather of the younger 
Malcolm. (z) Stat. Acct., xv., p. 206-209. (a) lb., 215. The King is patron of Alloa. 

Sect. I — OJitsNmne.] OrNORTH-BEITAIN. 99 



S I. Of its Name. — This name is not so much concealed in its Celtic oricfinal 
as that of the former shire of Clackmannan. It is certainly derived from the 
appellation of the shire town, and the names of both have derived their Celtic 
origin from the ancient tongue of the original settlers, and its locality in a 
peninsular situation on Loch Leven. For Cyn-rhos in the British speech, and 
Ceanross in the Gaelic, signify the end of the promontory. The town of Kin- 
ross stands on the neck of a promontory which runs into Loch Leven, and the 
ruins of the old church of Kinross stand on the point of this promontory. In 
the charters of Robert I. and of David II., the name of this town and shire 
appears in the form of Kinros. In the charters of Robert II. and Robert III., 
it is written Kynross, while in modern times the name is uniformly spelt Kin- 

For, as we may learn from the ingenious Lhuyd, Cean signifies the head as 
well as the end or limit, and Ross a peninsula ; and so Kinross means the head 
of the peninsula. Keanross, saith Sir R,obert Sibbald, in the old language sig- 
nifieth the head of the peninsula. But what he meant by the old language, 
he saith not (a). Kinross in the Celtic signifies the head of the peninsula, 
saith the Rev. Archibald Smith, the writer of the Statistical Account ; and it 
is said by tradition that the whole tract of country between the Tay and the 
Forth had anciently the name of Ross, or the Peninsula (6). 

§ II. Of its Situation and Extent. — Kinross-shire is of a circular form, and 
is more than 40 miles in circumference. It lieth, says Sibbald, in a goodly 
plain, between two ranks of low green hills, the arms of the Ochill mountains, 
which are excellent for pasture. The middle part is occupied by the beautiful 

(a) Hist. Kinross, 106. (&) Stat. Acct., VI., 164. 

100 AnACOOUNT [Oh. M .—Kinross-shire. 

lake called Loch Leven, and from its banks the ground rises towards the north 
and west with a gentle acclivity ; but on the south the hills of Benarty, and on 
the north-east the West Lomond Hill, rise more abruptly to a considerable 

This county is situated between 56° T 40" and 56° 17' north latitude; and 
between 3° 16' and 3° 35' 30", west longitude from Greenwich (c). It has Fife- 
shire on the south, the east, and the north-east ; Perthshire on the north- 
west ; and Perthshire, with a small part of Clackmannanshire, on the west. It 
extends from east to west a little more than twelve miles, and from north to 
south nearly eleven miles ; and the whole shire contains a superficies of seventy- 
eight square miles, or 49,920 [46,485] English acres. In 1821, this small 
county was inhabited by 7762 souls, which gives 99 "5 to each square mile. 
This population composed 1827 families, who inhabited 1419 houses, being 4-25 
persons to each family, and 5 "47 to each inhabited house. 

§ III. Of its Natural Objects. — In Forgandenny there are two chalybete 
springs, but they are not much frequented. This shire is remarkable for its 
lakes and its rivers. Loch Leven with its islets are objects of some beauty and 
great convenience for its fishery. The river Devon is very remarkable for its 
cataracts and its floods. Of minerals, this shire has only a few. It has whin- 
stone, limestone, and ironstone, with four freestone quarries in Orwell parish ; 
and in the Ochils have been found copper and lead ore, with a proportion of 
silver, and also with coal. Its hills and its watei-s are the most remarkable of 
its natural objects. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — The names of its localities are Celtic, except a 
few Teutonic or English. This circumstance evinces the nature of the aborig- 
inal people, whatever Sir Robert may dream. The hilltops have mostly all 
been fortified, but not by Danish hands, whatever parochial antiquaries may 
think or say. Upon a rising ground above the river May, there is undoubtedly 
the obvious remains of a Roman camp in Forgandenny. It is of a square 
figure, whose every side is 90 yards in extent. Such various fortifications are 
bv no means unfrequent in Northern Britain. The operations of the Roman 
armies induced the Celtic people of the country to defend and secure them- 
selves according to their own trade and their inferior skill. Urns have been 
found, and stone cofl&ns have been disinterred, all containing human bones. 

(c) The county town of Kinross stands in 56° 12' 25" north latitude, and 3° 25' 30" west longitude 
from Greenwich. 

Sect, v.— Of its Establishment as a Skire.} Of NOETH- BRITAIN. 101 

These discoveries refer us back to ages and to practices antecedent to the intro- 
duction of Christianity amidst the Celtic people of very remote periods. The 
ecclesiastical antiquities are very noticeable, particularly the religious houses 
and the baronic castles, particularly the castle of Loch Leven, which will be 
long remembered for its guilty imprisonments and hard constraints. It was in 
Lochleven Castle that the Queen of Scots was imprisoned by a faction of nobles, 
who were equally remarkable for their villany and treasons. 

§ V. Of its Establishment as a Shire. — This event is obscure, yet are 
there sufficient facts to evince that it had become a separate shire before the 
year 1252. John de Kinross, the Sheriff of Kinross, witnessed a perambulation 
of the lands of Cleish in 1 252 {d). It contained a Sheriffdom in 1296 (e), con- 
trary to what Sir Robert Sibbald asserts to have taken place in 1426 (/) ; and 
it had become an office hereditary before the important year 1305, when it was 
asserted that the Sheriffdom belonged to him " Celui qui est de fee" {g). 

In May 1372, Robert II. granted to Robert Hacket the office of Sheriff of 
Kinross-shire during his life (h). This office became hereditary in the family of 
Douglas of Loch Leven (i) ; but at what time is uncertain. They certainly 
held this office during the reign of James V. {k) ; and this family, who suc- 
ceeded to the Earldom of Morton in 1588, continued to hold this office till the 
reign of Charles II. (Z). 

During the reign of Charles II., Sir William Bruce of Balcaskie, who was 
Master of the King's Works in Scotland, purchased from the Earl of Morton 
the town, lands, and barony of Kinross, with the castle and lake of Lochleven, 

(d) Haddington's Col. Nisbet's Heraldry, I. 406. 

(e) John, the son of John de Kinross, Knight, swore fealty to Edward I. in 1296. Prynne, 
III, 651. 

(/) Hist, of Kinross, p. 205. There is nothing of what Sibbald asserts in the Eegister House at 
Edinburgh, as the late William Robertson, the Deputy Register, assured me, by his letter of the 3rd 
November, 1794. 

{g) Ryley's Placita, 505. But the oflSce became forfeited, probably during the War of the Succes- 
sion. For David II. granted to John Oreighton the keeping of the castle of Loch Leven, and the office 
of Sheriff of Kinross-shire. Robertson's Index, 31 ; Dalrym. Col., 420. 

(A) Reg. Mag. Sig., B. L, 330. 

(i) The first of the family. Sir Henry Douglas of Lugton, obtained from Henry II. a grant of the 
King's Castle of Loch Leven, with the town and lands and mills of Kinross, and various other lands in 
Kinross-shire attached to that fortress. Reg. Mag. Sig., Robt. IX., 5. 

(Ic) On the 20th of January 1540-1, Robert Douglas of Lochleven obtained a new charter to himself 
and to his son, William Douglas, of the town, lands, and barony of Kinross, with the castle and lake 
of Lochleven, and the oflfice of Sheriff of Kinross-shire. lb., B, XVII., 179. 

(l) Treasurer's Accounts, October 1591 ; Inquisit. Special., Kinross-shire, 2, 14. 

102 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. V. — Kinross-shire. 

the heritable office of Sheriff of Kinross-shire, and other property, of all which 
he obtained a new and ample charter in March, 1685 (m). As this shire has 
formerly been but small, comprehending only the parishes of Kinross and 
Orwell, Sir William Bruce obtained an A.ct of Parliament, in 1685, adding to 
it the parishes of Portmoak, Cleish, and Tulliebole, with the lands of Cuthil- 
gaurdie in Perthshire, of which lands Bruce was proprietor ; and these various 
parishes and lands were disjoined from the shires of Fife and Perth, and united 
permanently to the shire of Kinross in favour of Sir William Bruce (n), who 
was the first of the family of Bruce of Kinross who continued to hold this 
heritable office till the abolition of such jurisdictions in 1748 (o). Charles 
Bruce, on that occasion, claimed for this heritable office of Sheriff of Kinross 
£2,000, and he was allowed the full amount of his claim (p). Upon these 
aboliiions in 1748, Mr. James Leslie, advocate, and brother of the Earl of 
Rothes, was by the crown appointed Sheriff- Deputy of Fife and Kinross at a 
salary of £200 sterling a year (q). 

§ VI. Of its Civil History. — The Caledonian Horestii appear to have 
manfully defended their country when it was invaded by the Romans, a people 
of superior union and better discipline. The Caledonians were left without the 
Roman wall, which was constructed from the Forth to the Clyde, by the Roman 
policy during the second century of the Christian era. After the Roman 
recession the Caledonian tribes remained during four centuries and a half free 
and independent under the name of Picts. At the memorable epoch of 843 
the Scots became amalgamated with the Picts, and thereby becoming one 
people, formed one kingdom. 

The government of the whole being now in the power of Scottish princes, 
the Scots acquired a predominance over the Picts. This condition of the united 
people continued even to the sad demise of Malcolm Canmore. 

A great change now took place, when the ancient form of the Celtic Govern- 

(m) Acta Pari., viii. .548. 

(n) Acta Pari., viii. 488. By this addition the shire of Kinross was doubled in extent. 

(o) Anne Bruce, the only child of Sir William Bruce, married Sir Thomas Hope of Craighall, and 
their son and heir, Sir Thomas Bruce Hope of Kinross and Craighall, was heritable Sheriff of Kinross- 
shire in 1724. MS. Report. He was succeeded by his brother, Sir John Bruce of Kinross, whose 
eldest son, Chai'les Bruce, being vested in the heritable office of Sheriff of Kinross during his father's 
life, was compensated when it was abolished. 

(p) MS. Report of the Lords of Session in my library. Sir John Bruce of Kinross claimed also for 
the Regality of Kinross £2000, but he was only allowed £243 13s. 8d. Id. 

(q) Scots Mag., 1748, p. 155. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil I-Iistoru.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 103 

ment was changed for the Anglo-Saxon. This great change, though little 
noticed by history, in some measure affected every parish and every part of 
Northern Britain. 

One of the greatest events in the civil history of Kinross was its separation 
from Fife as a distinct shire. This change occurred at a much earlier period 
than its original historian supposed and said (r). Every county was succes- 
sively enlarged or lessened according to the influence of its leading characters. 
Such was the fate of Kinross. In 1685 the shire of Kinross, which compre- 
hended the parishes of Kinross and Orwell, was greatly enlarged as a shii-e by 
the addition to them of three other parishes, Portmoak, Cleish, and Tulliebole, 
with some other lands (s). 

At Kinross the guards were purged on the 12th September, 1650, by 
Warriston and Brodie. In the first Parliament of Charles I. a statute was 
passed for preserving the fish in Lochleven {t). 

In this diminutive shire was produced John Mair, who distinguished himself 
as a Latin grammarian, who published many grammatical treatises for the use 
of schools. Another native, Michael Bruce, possessed great poetic powers, and 
would have risen to great eminence as a poet had his fortune bi^en equal to his 
genius. Mary Queen of Scots was confined in Lochleven Castle from the 16th 
of June, 1567, to the 2nd of May, 1568, by a set of the most consummate 
miscreants that every existed in any country. The schoolmaster of Aberdeen 
having married a girl, for whom Lord Burleigh had a great regard, and carried 
her to his own house during Lord Burleigh's absence, his lordship hearing of 
this event rode to the schoolmaster's house, and shot him at his own door. 
Lord Burleigh, feeling that by this murder he had violated all law, took up his 
residence for a considerable time in a hoUow ash-tree, which still remains (u). 
But such a shire as Kinross does not supply such a series of facts as to furnish 
materials for a civil history of much detail. 

§ VII. Of its Agricultuke, Manufactuke, and Trade. — The surface of 
this shire is very various. The middle position, which comprehends nearly one- 
half of the whole, occupies a situation comparatively low, and rriay be con- 
sidered as a plain or flat, varied slightly with gentle swells or rising grounds. 
The Ochill Hills form the northern boundary of this shire, the Cleish Hills the 

(r) Sib. Hist, of Kinross, p. 105. 

(s) Acta Pari., viii. 488. («) Id. v. 44. 

(m) This remarkable hollow tree, which is called Burleigh Hole, is still standing near to the old 
castle of Burleigh in Orwell parish, Kinross-shire. Stat. Account, xx. 133. 

104 An ACCOUNT [Ch. Y.—ianross-shire. 

southern, and Balneart Hill, or the West Lomond or Bishop's Hill, bound it on 
the east and south-east quarters. The sides of those hills which face the 
central part of the country form most excellent pasture, the aspect of the whole 
shire is open and exposed, there being few inclosures and still fewer hedges and 

The number of acres in each parish may be thus stated : — 

Kinross contains 6,230 Scottish acres. 

Orwell „ - - 9,923 

Portmoak „ - - - 6,544 „ 

Cleish „ - - - 5,680 

Parts of Fossaway and Tulliebole, - - - 6,400 

Part of Arngask, ... - 1,533 

Part of Forgandenny, - - - 1,124 

The total, exclusive of water, - 36,433 Scottish acres. 

The climate of the higher parts of Kinross-shire is cold and wet, owing to 
the elevation of the land, and mostly to the hills, which obstruct the clouds in 
their courses. The frosts set in somewhat more early, and continue longer than 
in the adjacent country to the south. The air is generally clear, which con- 
duceth to the health of the inhabitants. The south-west wind is often very 
violent, but it is supposed to be advantageous by carrying oflP the super- 
abundant moisture, which is collected on the lower grounds in copious springs, 
which flow from the declivities of the hills. The high winds, however, are 
often very injurious, shaking the corn when too ripe. On the whole, the air is 
salubrious, and the people vigorous, while the seed-time and harvest are as 
early in this shire as in any of the neighbouring districts. 

In this, as in most other of the counties in Northern Britain, the soil is 
various. This generally is the fact when hill and dale are intermixed, and 
especially if rivers should abound, as in this shire. Some soils are doubtless 
much earlier than others. There is reason to believe, from some recent experi- 
ments, that latent heat operates considerably in promoting the ripening of corn 
and other crops, and that this heat can be easily induced on any soil in any 
tolerable degree of cultivation. 

Kinross, as the shire town is called, is distant about fifteen miles from the 
port town on the Forth, the sea, or the Tay. The villages are but few, and 
are not populous, though the numbers of the people have certainly increased 
gradually during the last sixty years. The useful importance of villages is 
increased when inhabited by an industrious and sober people, and the villagers 
of this shire merit well that praise for their sobriety and industry. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, Manufactures, and Trade.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 105 

Without roads all labour is vain. In this shire the roads both public and 
parochial are very good. Turnpike roads have been introduced here. The 
roads from Perth to the Queen's-ferry, and from Stirling to Kinross are turn- 
pikes, and they are kept in the best repair, as are the bridges which have been 
thrown across the rivulets or larger streams. 

Fences and enclosures, or the enclosing and subdividing of land are agri- 
cultural practices of not long standing in this shire. The advantages which 
may be derived from such practices are perfectly understood here, and a con- 
siderable quantity of the soil is enclosed every year. But however much those 
practices may have prevailed in Kinross-shire, these still continue to be unen- 
closed. Hedges, where they occupy a good soil and are properly managed, are 
generally considered as the best fences. A stone dike must, indeed, be allowed 
to be the most immediate fence, as it is soonest completed ; but a thriving 
hedge is both a fence and a shelter, and this shire, as it has few trees, stands 
much in need of adequate shelter. Lands which are enclosed for pasture, rent 
from year to year at higher sums than they would do for tillage on a long 

As more than half of this country is in pasture, and the most of the pasture 
is natural rather than cultivated, cropping is but little practised. Oats, barley, 
and peas, have long been the chief crops which are raised in this shire. Beans 
are sometimes sown broad-cast-ways. Beans, however, and peas are deemed 
uncertain crops. Wheat has lately been sown in some ■ places with some 
advantage, but the quantity is but very small. Clover and rye-grass are culti- 
vated, and, when made into hay, find a ready and profitable market near Kin- 
ross. Considerable attention has recently been paid to the raising of turnips, 
and the cultivation of this root is supposed, from the nature of its cultivation, 
likely to be introduced here as an yearly article of culture. Potatoes have 
been regarded in this shire, as in every other district, as a root of the greatest 
utility to every class. Their returns are very productive, while they are a crop 
which free the land from weeds. Besides, every farmer, and mechanic, and 
cottager, has a piece of ground for potatoes, the product whereof makes a con- 
siderable part of their food. 

Mr. Adam of Maryburgh is said to have been the first person in Kinross-shire 
or its neighbourhood, who planted potatoes in the green field. Formerly a few 
potatoes were only raised in gardens. But so few potatoes were yet cultivated, 
that Mr. Adam found it necessary to bring his seed potatoes from Carlisle ; and 
in years of scarcity the lower orders have nothing else to subsist upon but the 
invaluable potatoe during a couple of months. 

7 14 

106 AnACCOUNT [Ch. y .—Kinross-shire. 

Lint of flax finds encouragement on every farm, which is so important to the 
employment, the industry and morals of the women. 

The following table will show, with sufficient clearness, 

The artiolea sown yearly 

and the yearly products 

Oats, . 

. 3,550 bolls 

. 10,200 bolls 

Barley, . 

510 „ 

3,080 „ 

Peas, . 

160 „ 

Wheat, . 

15 „ 


17| „ 

888 stones 


20 acres 


255 „ 


85 bolls 


Of the mode of cropping or cultivation, the old divisions of outfield and infield, 
and the old methods of managing them, still prevail in most parts of the county. 
The infield receives all the manure which is produced throughout the year, and 
is cropped without interruption. From the outfield, after being manured by 
the feeding of cattle upon it, the farmer takes three or four successive crops of 
oats, and then, without sowing grass-seeds, trusts to the spontaneous products 
of nature for pasture during the ensuing season. Many farmers, however, are 
beginning to lay aside old prejudices, and to adopt improvements which, in 
some other places, have been the source of opulence and of plenty. Regular 
systems of cultivation are adopted by several farmers, and are likely to become 
more common, A general rotation of white and green crops is certainly com- 
mendable, but for a farmer never to deviate from every dictation, and to pay no 
attention to the seasons, or to the state of the market, would be folly ; and for 
landlords to bind their tenants to a particular system without the smallest 
deviation, as some proprietors have done elsewhere, is extremely injudicious, 
and no wise or prudent man will become bound to observe. 

As to plantations, exclusive of those at Blair, on the eastern extremity of 
Cleish hUls, there are not perhaps in the whole county a hundred acres of land 
planted with trees. This article of improvement might be practised with ad- 
vantage in several places. 

The live stock is the next object of consideration. Some are said to be of the 
aboriginal kinds {v). The famous draught breeds of Lanarkshire also exist here, 
and mingle with the former. There are, moreover, a few of the blood-horses 
which contribute to the agility and dispatch on long journeys. The country 

(v) David I., who demised in 1153, had wild mares which, with their progeny, pastured in the 
moorlands and woods. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] Or NOKTH-BEITAIN. 


does more than supply itself with horses, there being about one fourteenth part 

Many, if not the whole of the black cattle which are reared in this shire, are 
of the Highland breed. The ultimate value of the cattle depends almost alto- 
gether on the plenty or scantiness of the food. 

Although the hilly parts of this shire are well adapted for the rearing of 
sheep, yet this sort of stock has not yet been managed upon any systematic 
principles. The sheep which are commonly pastured on the Cleish Hills, are 
generally brought from Linton in the beginning of summer, and most of them 
are usually sold before winter. The profit upon them is two shillings each. 
This kind are black faced and coarse wooUed. This is the hardiest sort of sheep, 
yet a severe winter generally carries off a considerable number of them, the 
farmers not being at sufficient care to feed them in that season ; and those 
which survive are so weakened as scarcely to recover their strength during the 
subsequent summer. On the Lomond hills the sheep are mostly of the white 
faced sort, which, by experience, are found to thrive best on this pasture. They 
are very hardy, but of a small size. They are commonly sold for 9 s. or 10s. a 
piece. Their wool not being fine, there is much room for improvement in this 
respect. The pastures are in general good, and the climate healthy, but the 
pastures are overstocked and the breed is neglected. 

There are very few swine bred in this shire. 

This subject of stock may be summed up in the following details : 

In Cleish. there are 

In Portmoak ,, 

In Orwell ,, 

In the rest of the shire there are 







The total, 

Their value may be thus stated : 

1,146 horses at £10 each, 
5,766 cattle at £6 each, - 
7,000 sheep at 10s. each,- 







The total value, 


The next great subject under this head of inquiry is Manufactures. There 
has always been in this shire a domestic manufacture for domestic use ; but the 
present subject regards manufactures, or the surplus thereof, which can be sent 
out for foreign supply. 

108 AkACCOUNT [Ch. Y.— Kinross-shire. 

The principal manufacture in Kinross-shire is that of coarse linens, which 
are commonly called Silesias. Much of this kind of linen is woven for family 
use. About 400 looms are usually employed by 530 persons, and the quantity 
which is yearly stamped for sale, amounts in value to £4,441 annually. In the 
town of Kinross there are four annual fairs, which are resorted to by people 
from a considerable distance, especially dealers in black-cattle and horses. In 
the parish of Portmoak there is a parchment manufacture, which is carried on 
by two persons, and great quantities of this uncommon manufacture are sent to 
Edinburgh and to Glasgow. The distillery of spirits is carried on to a great 
extent at Hattonburn, which employs many hands, feeds numbers of cattle, 
and produces much manure. Thei-e are also some branches of the cotton manu- 
facture introduced here. This shire was formerly famed for its cutlery manu- 
facture, which about the year 1776 employed 30 to 40 hands; but it has de- 
clined in such a manner as to have almost disappeared in its former situations. 

Kinross-shire has no shipping, as we might know from the Custom House 
Registers, if the local position of the county in the interior did not preclude the 
use of navigation. 

§ VIII. — Of its Ecclesiastical History. There seems to have been of old 
in this district several religious houses. The ruins of the old priory of St. 
Servan still remains in the isle of Loch Leven. There was the hospital of 
Scotland Well, which was founded by Malvoisin, the bishop of St. Andrews, for 
the redemption of Christian captives. 

The several parishes and parts of parishes lie mostly in the Presbytery of 
Dunfermline. Portmoak is situated in the Presbytery of Kirkcaldy ; Tulliebole 
belongs to Auchterarder Presbytery ; and parts of Arngask and Forgandenny, 
which lie in this shire, are subject in ecclesiastical matters to the Presbytery of 
Perth. All those parishes and parts of parishes are subject, as to sacred affairs, 
to the Synod of Fife and the Synod of Perth and Stirling. The advowson or 
patronage of the whole, except Arngask and Forgandenny, belong to Graham 
of Kinross. 

The parish of Kinross since the year 1732 has had its own share of religious 
divisions. The number of souls which belong to this parish is about 700 ; the 
rest of the parishioners are Burghers, Anti-burghers, and those who have a 
meeting-house for dissidents of dissent. The parish of Kinross stands on the 
east of the town, on the Lochside. The stipend of the established minister of 
the church consists of £536 8s. 4d. Scots, including 50 marks for communion 
elements, with 68 bolls of oatmeal and 15 bolls of bear, and an augmentation in 

Sect. VIII — Of its Ecclesiastical History.] OpNORTH-BEITAIN. 109 

money of £18 3s. 8d. sterling. The school is in a flourishing state, having from 
100 to 140 scholars yearly. The salary of the master is £100 Scots, with small 
payments by the scholars, with a good house, a small garden, and about an 
acre and a half of land. The poor are maintained at the expense of £34 ster- 
ling. The patron of the parish pays yearly out of the estate of Kinross, £100 
Scots for the support of the 16 out pensioners of an hospital, which it seems 
was intended to be built near this town by Sir William Bruce. 

Kinross is a burgh of barony, and it was the burgh of the Regality of Kin- 
ross, which was established in 1685 and abolished in 1748. 

The church of the parish of Cleish was built in 1775, and is one of the best 
in the county. The stipend of the minister including the value of the glebe is 
about £83 16s. lOd. The manse was built in 1744, and was much out of re- 
pair. There are about 30 scholars attending the parish school. The salary of 
the schoolmaster is 100 merks. His whole emoluments, exclusive of his house 
and garden, are about £13 a year. The people are very desirous of giving their 
children education. 

The parish of Orwell is the third within this contracted shire. In 1380 the 
parish church of Orwell was but a chapel of ease. The present kirk, or, as it 
is commonly called, the Old Kirk, in contradistinction to the meeting-houses of 
the Seceders, which are usually called the New Kirks, was built in 1729. It 
stands upon a height above the village of Milnathort, about 200 yards from the 
manse, and it has outwardly a decent appearance for a country kirk. The 
manse is also situated upon a eminence above the village, and it is almost 
entirely new, being built in 1788 upon the site of the old manse, and as it is so 
insufficient that it cannot prevent the entrance of the rain and of course cannot 
last long. There are no fewer than four places of worship in the Kirktown, 
consisting of the Established Church, the Anti- burghers, the Burghers, and the 
Reformers, who are called Cameronians. The minister's stipend, including the 
value of the glebe, amounts to £147 5s. 9d. sterling. The glebe consists of 
eight Scots acres of good i^ch soil. The general character of the people, 
whether parishioners or seceders, is excellent : mirth makes them not mad, nor 
sobriety, sad. 

Portraoak, whose name is derived chiefly from St. Moak, in honour of whom 
a priory was erected on the banks of Lochleven port, is said to have been pre- 
fixed from it, being the nearest land to the isle of St. Serf, and of com'se the 
usual landing-place from the priory, which was situated in that islet. The 
church was built in 1659, till which period a part of the old priory served for a 
place of worship. It was repaired about the year 1777,- and was then made 

110 AnACCOUNT [Ch. v. — Kinross-shire. 

pretty decent. The manse was built about the year 1727. The stipend, in- 
cluding the allowance for communion elements, is £63 6s. 8d., and five chalders 
of grain, whereof 42 bolls are oatmeal, 22 of barley, and 16 of oats. The glebe 
contains about 13 acres, one-half of which is good soil and the other very bad. 
The parochial schoolmaster's salary is 100 merks Scots, which, together with 
his perquisites, may amount to about £22 sterling, a reward by no means equal 
to the abilities and the application which are necessary for discharging his trust 
with fidelity and success. A school and a house for the master were recently 
built. The scholars who attend the whole year are about 60. Wyntoun, the 
author of the Orygynale Cronykil of Scotland, was Prior of Lochleven during 
the reign of James I. Wyntoun was born about the middle of the long reign 
of David II., and when he was in the act of writing his Cronykil he complained 
of the infirmities of age. 

We are thus led forward to TuUiebole, which is supposed to signify the poet's 
hill, as in ancient times every chief had his own bard. Fossaway and TuUiebole 
were, of old, two parishes. The junction of the two districts took place about 
the year 1614. Fossaway lies in the shire of Perth, but TuUiebole is situated in 
Kinross. After the annexation as low down as 1729, the two places of worship 
in Fossaway and TuUiebole were still retained and used, and the minister 
preached usually two Sundays at Fossaway and the third at TuUiebole. In that 
year both these churches were cast down, the manse and glebe at Fossaway 
were sold, the present glebe and churchyard, which lie in TuUiebole, were pur- 
chased, and a new church and manse were built in a situation more centrical to 
both parishes, and more convenient for the parson. The right of advowson 
and presentation, after some doubts, was decided by the Court of Session to 
belong to Graham of Kinross under a grant from the crown. The church is 
neither commodious nor in good repair, although it has been frequently 
repaired. The manse and outhouses were rebuilt in 1781, and are convenient 
and sufl&cient enough. The glebe, which is now occupied by the incumbent, is 
about 10 Scots acres. It was formerly a moor, and of course is a very poor 
soil. The stipend consisted of 40 bolls of grain, two-thirds meal and one-third 
bear, and £56 13s. 4d. sterling, and there has been more recently an augmenta- 
tion of 43 bolls, 3 pecks, and 1 lippie of victual, two-thirds meal and one-third 

There are only two villages in this parish, and both are burghs of barony, 
which have the privilege of holding markets. Since the year 1782, 2000 acres 
have been enclosed, and much plantation has taken place. There are two 
schools in the united parish, one at the Crook of Devon and the other at Blair- 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.} OfNOETH-BEITAIN. Ill 

gone, whose emoluments are small and uncertain, however important from their 

Of Arngask a part only lies in this shire. The whole parish is about 4^ 
miles long and ^^ miles broad. Three counties, Perth, Kinross, and Fife, join 
in this parish, and the road from Perth to Queensferry passes through it. The 
church stands in Fifeshire. 

In the same manner a small part only of Forgandenny lies in Kinross, the 
large part lying in Perth, and thereon stands the church and school. The 
population of this parish has been decreasing, and a very small number of the 
inhabitants dwell in Kinross-shire. 

112 An ACCOUNT [Ch. Yl.—Fifeshire. 


§ I. Of its Name. — The appellation of this county is at once very difficult 
and very obscure. Of old it was called Ross, a peninsula (a). In the Cornish, 
Ross, saith Hals, is a promontory ; and the eastern division of this shire is pro- 
perly a promontory. But it was afterwards called Fife, saith Camden, from 
Pifus, a noble to whom it was given by Kenneth II. (h) 

But this county lying between the Forth and Tay was called Fife and Forth- 
riff, as early as the twelfth century, if nob earlier. It is not, however, easy to 
find in any word-book the term of Fife, or fief, iu the appropriate signification 
of a point of land or a peninsular country (c). 

In the Diplomata Scotica, we may certainly see in the Index Locorum, Fif- 
Fife, ampla Scotia provincia estuarii Fortha et Tai inter jacens. But this inti- 
mation is as little to our purpose (d). 

There is sufficient reason to presume, then, that the word Fife has been long 
changed from its original form to some more familiar appellation. Pwyth 
Meinlas is said by the Welsh historians and philologists to be the place where 
Csesar landed in England, signifying the narrow green point (e). If that great 
captain landed anywhere on the coast between Sandwich and Dover, whatever 
may have been washed away in such a tract of time, he still made good his 

(a) In the ancient language of the Plots, saith Sir Eobert Sibbald, Fife was called Ecss, which signi- 
iyeth a peninsula, that still appeareth in Kinross, the head of the peninsula ; Culross, the back of the 
peninsula ; Muokross, the snout of the peninsula ; and there is Ardross, the height of the peninsula. 
There remains a charter of William the Lion of the lands of Ardross, etc., to Merlswain. 

(b) Camden, 1695, p. 949. And the county of Boss, in the north of Scotland, certainly runs out be- 
tween the Moray Firth and the Frith of Dornock, into a long point, terminating in Tarbetness. 

(c) In the Dictionaire Franco! s-Celti que of Restrenen, we may see, indeed, Fief, signifying heritage ; 
Fief noble, Fief naturier, Frankfief, Fief dominant, Fief servant, arrierfief. But this list of French 
law terms is nothing to the present purpose. 

(d) Diplom. Scot., XXXV. (e) Ed. Lluyd ; Prichard's Welsh Dictionary. 

Sect. I Of its Name.] Or NOETH- BEIT AIN . 1j3 

footing on the narrow green point. If he landed for the first time in Britain 
during the year 55 before the birth of Christ, it is certain that tlie Caledonians 
under whatever name, inhabited the countries lying between the Forth and 
Tay, in whose speech Pwyth signified a peninsular district (/). But if the 
British word Pwyth be appropriated by us the original appellation of Fife, can 
such metathesis be justified by any topographical usage ? Yes, the county 
maps of Northern Britain are full of such vicissitudes. Mr. Pinkerton, how- 
ever, suspects that Fife may have derived its natne from the plant Fifa, on the 
heaths ; fifa being the name of a ship, saith Torfseus {g). No one can doubt 
the index knowledge of Mr. Pinkerton, whatever his judgment or candour may 
be. But what country ever derived its name from the index of a book, rather 
than from the common voice of its inhabitants. The name of Fyfe was applied 
to the country on the northern borders of the Forth before the Goths arrived 
on the shores of the Baltic. The name of Fyf, or Fyfe, was certainly so applied 
to that country as early as the epoch of recording Scotland. 

From the ancient Taxatio of the Churches in the bishopric of St. Andrews, 
the division of that part of the county which is called Fife appears to have com- 
prehended all the peninsula lying eastward of a line from the influx of the 
Leven with the Forth to the Tay, a little below the mouth of the Earn, includ- 
ing the parishes of Scoonie, Kennoway, Kettle, Collessie, Abdie, Lindores, 
which is now Newburgh, and all other parishes lying to the eastward of those 

The division of Forthrif comprehended all the remaining part of the county 
lying westward of the above line, and also the whole of Kinross-shire with the 
parish of Clackmannan and the parishes of Muckhart and Arngask in Perth- 
shire (h). 

On the 22nd of August 1350, WiUiam bishop of St. Andrews issued a pre- 
cept to his Christian Dean of Fiff and Forthriflf, desiring him to invest Adam 
Abbot of Cambuskenneth in the vicarage of Clackmannan ; and on the same 
day, Brice, the Christian Dean of Fyfi" and ForthriflF, issued his precept to Mr. 
Patrick Picard, rector of Torry, for that purpose (i). David II. granted a 
charter to Allan Erskine of the office of the Coronership of Fiff and Forthriff. 
The same king granted a charter to Walter de Spital of the ten part of the 
lands of Kininmouth, " In quarteris de Fortheryff, in vie de Fyfe." Sibbald in 

(/) Owen Diet., in v. Pwyth. 

(g) Orcades, 120. Fifao-herba lamiga palustris — est nomen navis. lb., 120. See tlie Index. 
(h) See the taxatio of the chartulary of Arbroath, and Ainslie's map of Fife and Kinross. 
(i) Chart. Cambuskenneth, No. 60-65. 

7 IS 

114 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. Yl.—Fifeshire. 

his account of Fifeshire says, that Mr. Robert Maule deduceth the name Forth - 
rick from Veachric, in the old Gothic language which was that of the Picts ; 
Veach signifying pointed, and Eic regnum ; so Forthrick imparteth the kmg- 
dom of the Picts, of which it was a choice part. Lord Hailes says Forthrif is 
called Forthrick in the Chartulary of Cambuskenneth, which is compounded of 
of Forth and rick, that is the kingdom or territory of the Forth. He adds, " I 
suppose it means that country which lies on the northern bank of the Forth 
from the neighbourhood of Stirling to the junction of the salt water with the 
Forth." This shows that he was ignorant of the real situation and extent of 
Forthriff"; and if the Chartulary of Cambuskenneth can be relied on, he is also 
wrong in saying it is therein spelled Forthrick, as appears from the foregoing 
extracts, which agree with the spelling of the name in all ancient charters, 
being always Fothriff. In a charter of David I. to the monastery of Dunferm- 
line, he granted to it " octavam partem de omnibus placitis et luoris meis de 
Fif et de Fotheriflf exceptis rectitudenibus que abbatis de Dunkeld pertinent," 
and he also granted " Decimam de omnibus meis silvestribus equabus de Fif et 
Fotheriff." Another charter of David I. to the same monastery, granted the 
eighth part of all the pleas and fines in the same words, and " Omnem decimam 
totius mei ean et brasii de Fife et Fotherif, exceptis rectitudinibus, abbatice de 
Dunkeld pertinent." It also states "Preteria pater meus et mater mea de- 
derunt ecclesia sancte limtatis parochiam totam Fotherif et sic concedo," and 
it is also granted " Decimam omnibus meis silvestribus quebus de Fif et de 
Fotherif." David granted, by another charter to the same monastery, in " ele- 
mosina omnem decimam de auro quod mihi eveniet de Fif et Fothrif." In 1239 
William Earl of Ross, justiciary on the northern part of the Scotican Sea, issued 
his precept to David de Wemyss, the Sheriff of Fife, commanding him to give 
to the abbot and convent of Dunfermline the eighth pai-t of the Fines of Fife 
and of Fothryf, " Nos in itinere nostro ultime apud Cupar in Fife habito con- 
tingencium, etc." In a charter by James II. during 1450, confirming the grants 
of former kings to the monastery of Dunfermline, he confirms David I.'s grant 
of the eighth part of all pleas and gains, of Fyfi" and Fotherick. This is the 
only instance which has occuri'ed of the rick in the second name. If this should 
be deemed the proper name, the etymology is obvious from the Anglo-Saxon 
ric, a region or kingdom. So the Forthric is the region of the Forth which is 
descriptive of this region, which lay along the northern side of the Forth, from 
the Leven on the north-east to the Devon on the south-west. In the statistic 
account of Dunfermline, it is said to lie in Forthrickmoor, and on the north side 
of Dunfermline parish, a moor still retains the name of Patrick moor. On the 

Sect. II.— Of its Situation and Extent.'] OfNOKTH-BEITAIN. 115 

map of Fife in Blaeu, the moor on the east side of Dumfermhne parish is 
called Forthridge Moor. The ridge is an erroneous anglifi cation of vie. 

§ II. — Of its Situation and Extent. Fife is situated between the Forth 
and the Tay. It has the Forth on the south and south-east, the German Ocean 
on the east, the Firth of Tay, which separates it from the shires of Forfar and 
Perth, on the north, and it has the shires of Perth, Kinross, and Clackmannan 
on the west. This county lies between 56° 0' 35" and 56° 26' 40'' north latitude, 
and between 2° 36' 50" and 3° 39' 15" W. Longitude from Greenwich. Cupar 
lies in the latitude of 50° 18' 45" north and 3° 2' West Longitude from Green- 

Fifeshire extends in length from E.N.E. to W.S.W. about 40 miles ; and in 
breadth to 17 miles. It contains a superficies of 467 square miles, or 298,880 
English acres. The population of 1821 amounted to 114,556, which gives 245.3 
souls to a square mile. The population of Fife according to the enumeration of 
1821 was: 

St. Andrews district, 
Oupar district, 
Dunfermline district, 
Kirkcaldy district, 

This enumeration did not include soldiers or sailors. 

In the ancient Taxatio of 1176, this country was divided into two districts, 
by the names of Fyfife and Fothryflfe, — ^the former comprehending all the coun- 
try to the east of a line extending from the mouth of the Leven to the river 
Tay, or a little below the confluence of the Earn. The latter comprehended 
the whole country to the west of the same line, and also the shire of Kinross, 
the parish of Clackmannan, and the parishes of Muckhart and Arngask in 

§ III. — Of its Natural Objects. The surface of Fife is certainly tmequal, 
but there is no appearance of anything which can be denominated mountainous. 
The most remarkable hills are the Lomonds, which separate this district on the 
west from Kinross-shire. Largo-Law, though it does not rise above 800 feet 
above the sea level in the eastern district of the shire, yet running up in a 
oonical form, is a very conspicuous object from the surrounding waters, as well 
as from the opposite shore (a). Whatever may be the elegance of the aspect of 

(a) Various such hills in the southern shires of Scotland have the term Law annexed to them. In 
the Saxon tongue, Hlawe signifies, agger acoernus cumulus tumulus, as we may learn from Somner. 









116 AnACCOUNT [Oh. Yl.—Fifeshire. 

Fife along its shores, yet when its interior is minutely inspected it assumes an 
appearance somewhat bleak and repulsive. 

A country so contracted in its outline cannot have any river of great magni- 
tude. The Forth indeed washes its southern shores, and the Tay its northern, 
but the waters which flow from its midland heights or unsightly mosses can 
only be called rivers. Such are the Orr, the Leven, the Lochy, the Eden, 
which all supply the benefit of a fishery, but not the advantage of navigation. 
This observation does not apply to the Forth or the Tay, much less does it 
comprehend the German Ocean which laves its eastern shores. 

Fifeshire abounds in lochs, such as Loch Lindores, Kilconquhar Loch, Loch 
Kinghorn, Lochgelly, which abound with fish, and beautify the country. It 
also abounds with mineral waters. There is a spa in Kinghorn parish, near to 
Pettycur, whose virtues have been disclosed by. Barclay and Anderson, two 
skilful physicians. At Balgrigie Hill there is also a mineral spring of approved 
virtues. At Dysart there is a vitriolic spring, which has been applied to useful 
purposes. At Kinkell and Orrock there are similar waters, which have all been 
applied to the purposes of life. 

The climate of Fife is more temperate and more friendly to vegetation than 
from its latitude or elevation could reasonably be expected. Along the shores 
of the Forth, where there is some shelter from plantation, the climate is 
temperate and warm. Snow seldom covers the surface for any length of time. 
In the middle and more northern districts, where the ground is high and some- 
what hilly, and where it is without shelter, the aspect is bleak and the cold is 
penetrating. It is the easterly winds which are most pernicious to vegetation. 
The contrary winds are the most favourable, but it is the south-west wind which 
is the most forcible and the most injurious to husbandry (b). 

Few of the shires of Scotland abound so much in coal and lime as Fifeshire, 
and are so profitably worked. The coal abounds both along the several shores of 
this peninsular country as well as in the interior, and they have also peats and 
turfs for firing. At Limekilns, about three miles further east than Torryburn, 
are the limeworks which belong to the Earl of Elgin, and are supposed to be 
the most extensive in Scotland. In Burntisland parish there are inexhaustible 
quarries of limestone, which are exported in great quantities to Carron and to 
other places, which are equally the seats of ingenuity and labour. In some 
parts of this shire the substratum is whinrock, and where this circumstance 
occurs neither coal nor lime is to be expected. Ironstone is also found in various 

(b) See Thomson's general view of the Fifeshire agriculture in the article " Climate." 

Sect. III.— 0/ Us Natural Objects.] OpNORTH-BEITAIN. 117 

parts of Fifeshire, and where ironstone is found there may coal be expected, as 
they seem to be co-relatives of each other. Near Dysart there is a field of 
excellent ironstone which has long been wrought, and whereof four-and-twenty 
miners raise yearly 2,080 tons. Ironstone is also quarried in other parishes to 
profitable advantage. Freestone of excellent quality is also to be found 
throughout this shire. As the freestone of Fifeshire possesses every good 
quality, and admits of commodious carriage, it is of the greatest advantage to 
Edinburgh, where there is so much building constantly in process. Whinstone 
also abounds particularly in the northern districts ; as it admits of a fine polish 
and assumes an admirable colour, it is also in great demand for various uses. 
There is also a hard stone near Burntisland, of a dark colour, indeed, but so 
durable as to resist fire for years of trial, though exposed to the intensest heat. 
Such are the qualities which have long been recommended as most useful in the 
soles of ovens, and for the sides of chimneys. In Orrock Hill much crystal is ob- 
tained, which is equal to the best Bristol stones, and of a purple colour. In some 
quarries in this shire mineral pitch is obtained, and there is also fine ochre. 

In the Lomond Hills both lead and copper are supposed to exist. Of the 
first successive trials have been made, and as often relinquished as unprofitable. 
Of the copper it appears not that there have been any trial made, at least that 
any has been found. Marie has been found in this shire, though it does not 
abound everywhei'e ; the truth, perhaps, is that its fertilizing qualities have not 
been sufficiently known to the farmers, whatever they may be to speculators. 
Though marie, then, has been used in this shire, it has not been generally em- 
ployed as an efficient manure. Clay has, moreover, been discovered of an 
excellent quality for making building-bricks and tiles, and also for making fire- 
biicks, which have been found to answer all the purposes of busy life. For 
notices of the fishes and shells, and also of plants, the late edition of Sibbald's 
" Fife " must be referred to. 

Such then are the natural objects of Fifeshire, which, whatever may be their 
value, are less numerous in their beneficial classes than some other counties 
have disclosed and afforded. 

§ IV. — Of its Antiquities. Its earliest antiquities are undoubtedly the 
people. At the epoch of Agricola's invasion, Fife and its circumjacent countries 
were inhabited by the Horestii, a tribe of the Celtic Caledonians. From the 
strength of their dominions, it is supposed by Gaelic etymologists, that they 
derived their name (c). 

(c) Caledonia, Bk. I., ch. i., p. 56. 

nS An ACCOUNT \Ch. m—Fifeshire. 

The great characteristics of such a people, in so distant an age, were love of* 
liberty and bi'avery of spirit in defending their independence. Their language 
also, -which may still be traced in the maps of those districts, evinces, beyond a 
doubt, that the Horestii were a Celtic and not a Gothic people. Their modes 
of life and methods of sepulture confirm that intimation. The succession of the 
several inhabitants was the ancient Britons, the Romans, the Anglo-Saxons, the 
Scoto-Irish, and Scoto-English. When the several tribes were formed into one 
people or state, they were Celtic. At the remarkable epoch of 843 a.d. they 
had become in a great measure a mixture of Scots and Irish. At the more 
recent commencement of the twelfth century the Celtic people had become 
mixed with Saxon and Flemish settlers, a circumstance this which superinduced 
gradually a considerable mixture of Gothicisms upon the Celticism of prior 
times. The gray stones still stand in Fife and the adjoining districts in various 
forms, as lasting memorials of the primeval customs of the earliest people. 

When we see David I., who demised in 1153, distributing certain portions of 
the annual produce of his wild mares in Fife, we may easily suppose that it did 
not abound with inhabitants. 

The palace of Falkland is a descriptive specimen of the skill and opulence of 
ancient times. It was here that Alexander Ruthven inveigled King James VI. 
to visit his brother Lord Gowrie, at Perth, with whatever purpose of treachery 
or of folly. The public buildings at St. Andrews are almost all of the nature 
of antiquities. "The ruins of ancient magnificence whereof the ruins cannot 
long be visible, unless some care be taken to preserve them." They have been, 
till very lately, so much neglected that every man carried away stones who 
fancied that he wanted them. 

The cathedral, of which the foundations may yet be traced, and a part of the 
wall is still standing, appears to have been a spacious and majestic building, not 
unsuitable to the primacy of the kingdom. 

Not far from the cathedral, on the margin of the sea, stands a fragment of 
the castle in which the Archbishop formerly resided. It was never very large, 
and was built with more attention to security than pleasure. Cardinal Beaton 
is said to have had workmen employed in improving its fortifications at the 
time that he was murdered by religious and political enthusiasts. 

The City of St. Andrews, when it had lost its archiepiscopal pre-eminence, 
gradually decayed ; one of its streets is now lost, and in those that remain 
there is the silence and solitude of inactive indigence and gloomy depopula- 
tion {d). 

(d) Johnson's Tour, 319. 

Sect, v.— Of its EstaUishnent as a Shire.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. \l% 

§ V. Of its Establishment as a Shire. — It is pretty certain that this dis- 
trict was not governed as a shire at the accession of David I. (e). It even 
admits of" some doubt whether Fife was a sheriffdom at the demise of David I. 
in 1153. In 1229, indeed, Ingeham de Balfour was sheriff of Fife. In 1233 
John Hay was sheriff of this county. In 1239 David de Wemyss executed this 
office. In 1292 Constantino de Lochor was then the sheriff (/). In 1305 
Constantine de Lochor was still sheriff [g). David de Wemyss was constituted 
sheriff by Kobert Bruce (A). In 1314 Michael de Balfour held this office. 
During the administration of John Baliol, John de Valonies was shei^ff. In 
1351 David de Wemyss was sheriff. In 1424 and in 1439 John Lumisden was 
sheriff. In 1449 Eobert Livingston was sheriff. In this period the Sheriff's 
Court sat on the Camhill, which is now called the Moothill of Cupar. In 1464 
and 1465 Alexander Kennedy was sheriff. In 1489 George Earl of Rothes was 
appointed sheriff. In 1504 Andrew Lundin was sheriff. The Sheriff's Court 
was now transferred from the Moothill to the Tolbooth of Cupar. In 1505 
Henry Bamsay was sheriff. In 1514 Lundin of Balgonie obtained the sheriff- 
ship for some years. In 1517 and 1524 Lundin obtained this office, and was 
sheriff in 1530. In 1531 George Earl of Eothes was appointed sheriff to him 
and his heirs, so that this office became hereditary in his family. 

In 1748 the ancient system was abolished. George Leslie, the brother of 
the Earl of Rothes, was appointed, under the new plan, Sheriff-deputy of Fife 
and Kinross at a salary of £250 a year [i). 

§ VI. — Of its Civil History. So much is said by the historian of Fife of 
conflicts with the Danes that it may be proper to state something introductory 
on this head. 

The pirate kings or Vikings were long the scourges of the shipmen who- 
navigated the European seas. The eighth century, however, confined their 
odious piracies to the Baltic. They first appeared distinctly on the eastern 
coast of England duriug 787 A.D. Their piratical invasions were first felt on 
the Caledonian shores a few years afterwards. Throughout the ninth century 
the Vikings made the Hebridians mourn their barbarities, while the intruders 
burnt the religious houses which the Columbans had built. They landed at 
length on the eastern shores of Caledonia among the Picts, who defended their 
country in a bloody conflict, wherein the Picts lost their king with several 
chiefs, while they repulsed the invaders. This loss, and its consequent feeble- 

(e) See Crawfurd's 0£Scers of State, App. 431, a perambulation between Kirkness and Lochor. 

(/) Eymer's Feed., ii. 570. (g) Ryley's Placita, 505. 

(A) Sibbald's Hist, of Fife, 100. {{) Scot's Mag., 1748, p. 155. 

120 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. YI.—Fifeshire. 

ness, led on to the union of the Picts and Scots, in 843 A.D., under Kenneth, 
the son of Alpin (j). 

One of the first Earls who appeared in Scotland was the Earl of Fife, though 
that event did not take place till the commencement of the Scoto- Saxon period. 
In that early document, the " De Situ Albanii," (k) the whole kingdom, united 
as it had been, was supposed to be divided into seven districts, whereof Fife and 
Forthreve were divided into many smaller parts, which in after times were 
called parishes. 

At Dunfermline (I), in this district, resided Malcolm Canmore with his Saxon 
spouse, who was the means of introducing some changes both in the language 
and the law. 

David, their youngest son, made a grant in 1153 to the monks of Dunferm- 
line of all the gold that should accrue to him out of Fife and Forthriff (to). In 
1159 Malcolm IV. granted to Duncan Earl of Fife, and to his heirs, Strath- 
miggloch, Falecklen, Rathulit, Strathbranen, and the whole of the King's firms 
of Cattel, in liberum maritageum, with Ada, the King's niece (n). 

On the 1 6th of March, 1284, Alexander II. was thrown from his horse, 
between Kinghorn and Burntisland, and was killed upon the spot. This sad 
event produced in the result many evils to Fife and to Scotland. The greatest 
of those evils were the frequent wars with England. On the 12th of June, 
1298, the Earl of Pembroke, as general of Edward I. of England, landed in the 
north of Fife (o) with hostile views. Edward I. himself held a Parliament at 
St. Andrews, when sentence was pronounced against Wallace and others. 
That great King sacriligeously stripped the whole lead from the roof of the 
monastery of St. Andrews for the machines which were used at the siege of 
Stirling Castle. Edward did not long survive that odious deed. In 1317 the 
English landed at Inverkeithing and routed the Earl of Fife, who opposed 
them ; but the Bishop of Dunkeld, with great skill and courage, rallied the 
fugitives and drove back the invaders to their ships (p). 

Some happier events occurred at Dunfermline. On the 5th of March, 
1323-4, was born to the gallant Bruce at that place a son, who was named 
David. Here also was born Charles I. Ermangard, the virtuous widow of 

{jj For those dates see the Ulster and the Pictish Ohron. and Caledonia, i., p. 212-3. 

(k) See Innes's Crit. Essay, App. No. 1. Andrew, the bishop of Caithness, who supplied that docu- 
ment, died in 1185 a.d., during the reign of William the Lion. Chron. Ma. Innes's App., 770. 

(I) Lord Hailes An., i. 297. (m) Lord Hailes An., i. 297. 

(«) MS. Charter in the Brit. Museum. Gilbert Earl of Strathearn granted to Malcolm, the son of 
Earl Duncan, the land of Glendovan, Carnbo, and Fossaway. Id. Douglas Peerage, 275. 

(o) Hailes' An., 255. (p) lb. ii. 73-4. 

Sect.YL— Of its Civil History.] Op N OR T H-B E I T A IN. 121 

William the Lion, died in 1233, and was buried within the monastery of Bal- 

The war of the succession continued. On the 31st of July, 1332, the 
younger Baliol appeared with hostile designs in the Forth, and routed the Earl 
of Fife, who opposed his landing near Burntisland (q). 

In April 1335, the Stewart and Earl of Moray, the two Regents, held a Par- 
liament at Dairsie near Cupar (o). In January 1335-6, Sir Andrew Moray 
assembled a Parliament at Dunfermline, and was acknowledged by it as 
Regent. In February 1336-7, Sir Andrew cast down the town of Falkland, 
won the castle of Leuchars, and after a siege of three weeks took the castle of 
St. Andrews. In the articles which were exhibited against Robert Wishart, 
the bishop of Glasgow was charged with aiding Edward's enemies in defending 
the castle of Cupar, and the bishop himself as a warrior maintained the same 
castle till it was taken from him by assault. The gallant bishop would have 
been hanged by Edward I. if this prince had not been afraid of the Pope (p). 

James V. died on the 14th of December 1542, at Falkland, and was buried 
in Holyrood Abbey. 

During the year 1546, events happened in Fifeshire which reflect little 
honour on it. Upon the first of March, George Wishart, a person of respect- 
able family, was burnt'at St. Andrews for his Protestantism, under the influence 
of Cardinal Beaton. The Cardinal himself was assassinated within his castle 
at St. Andrews, on the 29 th of May (q). The chief assassin was the notorious 
Norman Leslie, who, as he was bound to the Cardinal in a bond of manrent, 
his crime was aggravated to petty treason. The other murderers were the 
laird of Grange, the Rev. James Leslie, William Kirkaldy, younger of Grange, 
Henry Balnaves, and John Leslie of Parkhill, who were all pensioned by the 
English Government under the administration of the Protector Somerset. 
Eighty footmen and forty cavalry were also subsisted for maintaining the castle 
of St. Andrews under the English Government (r). This castle was soon after 
besieged by the Earl of Arran, the ruler of Scotland, but without success. The 
skill and valour of the French galleys soon after compelled those worthless men 
to surrender at discretion, and the prisoners were carried into France. In 

(q) Lord Hailes' An., iii. 148. (r) lb., 179. 

(p) Eynaer's Letter to Nioolson, Bp. of Carlisle, 98. 

(q) James's MS. Ojbron. Knox says the 29th of May ; but it is singular that the real date has not 
been ascertained. 

(r) Books of Privy Council, Edward VI., Vol. I., established those facts. The Queen Dowager, who 
obtained the government from Arran, pardoned those worthless men on the petty motive of obtaining 
a little popularity. 

7 i6 

122 An ACCOUNT \Ch.. \l.—Fifeshire. 

1547, the Scots defeated the English at Portencraig (s). In the subsequent 
year, the Scots also repulsed the English at St. Monans, Broughty Castle was 
also taken from those whose arms were enfeebled by their crimes. 

Mary Queen of Scots, after her return from France, delighted to sojourn in 
Fife, residing sometimes at Falkland and often at St. Andrews. The Queen 
was, on the 16th of June 1567, imprisoned in Lochleven Castle by the consum- 
mate villains who, during her reign, with the aid of Elizabeth, had acquired all 

Fife, a populous and powerful county, was much attached to the congrega- 
tional reformers. It was wasted and plundered by the French, who came in 
aid of the Dowager Queen. 

The Synod of Fife excommunicated the Archbishop of St. Andrews for con- 
tumacy, and several nobles for their papistry {t). 

In 1592, on the 7th of February, happened at Donibristle, in Fife, the assass- 
ination of the Earl of Moray and some of his followers, by the Earl of Huntly, 
who pretended that he had the King's authority for a fact which no authority 
could justify. 

On the 26th of September 1596, a convention was holden at Dunfermline, 
touching the Popish lords, but was adjourned to Edinburgh ; and on the 2nd of 
November the princes came from Dunfermline to Edinburgh. In the same 
year the younger Bothwell attempted to seize the King at Falkland, but was 
disappointed by the King's attendants. On the 5th of August 1600, the King, 
then residing at Falkland, was inveigled from Falkland to Perth by the two 
Euthvens, the sons of the late Earl Gowrie, where he would probably have lost 
his life, but for the spirited resistance of his attendants. The good people of 
Perth are not yet convinced of the truth of a fact which happened before the 
eyes of their fathers. The King's attendants slew those guilty men in the act 
committed by them {u). 

On the 20th of November in the same year, Charles I. was born at Dunferm- 
line. On the 1 8th of February, was born to the King a third son at Dunferm- 
line, who was baptized Robert. 

An assembly of ministers was holden at Burntisland, where the King made 
an oration, in which he solemnly vowed to do ample justice to his reformed 

The provincial assembly of Fife sat at Dunfermline on the 3rd of April 1649. 
During this summer all sorts of grain in this kingdom was excessively dear. 

(s) Macpherson (David), Illustrations. 

(if) Eobertson's Hist., I., 227 ; II., 143-220. (m) Birrel's Diary, 49. 

Sect. Yl.— Of its Civil History.] OpNOETH-BRITAIN. 123 

At the same time very many witches were taken and burnt in several parts of 
this kingdom, particularly in Fife, at Inverkeithing, Aberdour, Burntisland, 
Dysart, and Dunfermline. In August 1649, at Cupar, there sat a committee 
for the valuation of the products of Fife. 

In June 1650, Charles II. arrived from Holland in Scotland, having taken 
the Covenant. He was crowned at Scone, on the 1st January 1651. He re- 
sided chiefly at Falkland, and at other parts of Fife. There was an army 
raised for defence of the kingdom against the Sectaries of England. General 
Leslie, the Earl of Leven, was appointed commander of it, and David Leslie 
was named Lieutenant General of it. A fast was appointed by the Genera^ 
Assembly, to be held for the security of the kingdom against the Sectarian 
army from England. Cromwell restored the term Sectarian upon the Scottish 
clergy and Parliament men. They were probably all equally guilty of Sec- 
tarian folly except Cromwell, who acted as a hypocrite that he might be en- 
abled to act as a sovereign. But the Scottish Sectaries would have a king, 
and they sent a deputation of nobles, commoners, and clergy, to solicit Charles 
II. to choose Scotland for his residence and his rule. But when he did arrive 
in compliance with such solemn solicitation, the Sectaries considered him 
rather as a prisoner and an object of convenience, than as a king, having con- 
stitutional power and legal authority (w). The King was, however, crowned at 
Scone, on the first of January 1651. But he was not anointed, as this cere- 
mony was supposed to savour of superstition. Of such objectors it might be 
observed that they sacrificed the truth to their superstitions and traitorous 

It was observed of Fifeshire, that it was indifierent, and leaned rather to the 
side of the King than to the guilty objects, the sectarian objects (w). Fife- 
shire refused to rise or to be commanded by the covenanting chiefs {x). Such 
a people as were the Scots in that age must necessarily be conquered when in- 
vaded by such a character as Cromwell, and even such a general as David 
Leslie. A part of Cromwell's army landed at Inverkeithing, in Fife, where 
they entrenched themselves, on the 17th of July 1651. They attacked a part 
of the Scots army, which had marched eastward to meet their opponents ; but 
the English detachment easily routed the Scots, and completely dispersed four 
regiments which had been recently raised in Fife. On the 2nd of August, 
Perth yielded to the conquerors. On the 15th of August, the castle of Stirling 
surrendered to them. They stormed Dundee on the 1st of September, and they 

(v) See the State Papers in Walker's Journal of Affairs in Scotland during 1650. 
(w) lb., 182. (x) lb., 184. 

124 • AnAOOOUNT [Qh.Nl—Fifeshire. 

marched to Aberdeen, where they were well received ; and they even placed 
some troops in the Orkneys to enforce submission to the English authority in 
those distant isles. In May 1651, Dunnotar Castle surrendered to the English 
arms, being the last strength in Scotland which held out against them in this 
odious warfare. 

In the meantime, after the King was allowed in some measure the command 
of the army, David Leslie, as Lieutenant-General, marched the Scots army 
from Stirling to the Torwood, the scene of so many military operations, and 
thence, at the end of July 1651, he marched them into England, and on the 
3rd of September they met their fate at Worcester from the vigour of Crom- 
well, who followed them from the north. Scotland was now subdued, as every 
country must be where distraction is allowed to overrule every dictate of com- 

Scotland was at length quiet, under the military command of General Monk. 
The ecclesiastical assembly met in St. Andrews, in July 1651, when they per- 
formed their usual functions in tranquil significance. On the 31st of December 
1658, at Cupar, the shire town, the laird of Dury w^as chosen commissioner for 
the gentry of Fife, to represent them in Parliament at London {y), though it 
was therein debated whether representatives from Scotland and Ireland should 
be admitted into their councils. 

During all those varieties of fortune, amidst such distraction as the world 
had never seen before, Fifeshire was indifferent, and leaned to the ancient 
authorities rather than to that of the factionaries, either lay or ecclesiastical. 
The county of Perth refused to rise in warlike manner, or to be commanded by 
the fanatic chiefs (2). 

When the Scottish army, at the end of July 1651, with the King at their 
head, marched into England and Cromwell pursued them, Fifeshire and Scot- 
land under the prudent command of Monk, fell into a dreadful quiet, and worse 
far than arms, a sullen interval of war. 

When the nation, at the end of twenty years of distraction and of warfare, 
felt the evils of such a state, the King was restored to his English people. 

But Charles II., after his restoration, was not proclaimed as King in Scot- 
land. It must be recollected, however, that he was crowned at Scone on the 
1st of January 1651, when he was acknowledged King, and in consequence 
thereof took the coronation oath. It may have been, indeed, debated by the 
ruling powers in 1660, whether Scotland ought to be considered as a separate 

(2/) Lamond's Chronicle of Fife, 193. {z) Walker's Journal. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.] OrNOETH-BEITAIN. 125 

The gentry of Fife met at Kirkcaldy, and chose Ardross and Dury as repre- 
sentatives in the ensuing Parliament, which was appointed by the King to sit 
at Edinburgh on the 12th of December 1660. The sitting of this Parliament 
was, however, postponed to the 1st of January 1661. 

A declaration was issued, however, on the 18th of April, 1661, by the clergy 
of the Presbytery of Cupar, the shire town of Fife, that they were resolved to 
adhere to their old principles and to pursue their former practices (a). This 
resolution may, perhaps, have provoked a proclamation by order of Parliament, 
on the 10th of January 1662, prohibiting Synods, Presbyteries, and Kirk Ses- 
sions till further orders. On the 23rd of July 1662, the Solemn League and 
Covenant was, by order of Parliament, torn at the cross of Edinburgh (6). 

During the Dutch War in 1666, several vessels of war were fitted out of 
Scotland, whereof seven were out of the ports of Fife, as capers or privateers, 
which brought in many shipping of the Netherlands (c). 

On the 9th of July 1668, Archbishop Sharpe was driving up the street of 
Edinburgh, with Bishop Honeyman in his carriage, a person approaching the 
coach, fired a pistol into it, and wounded Bishop Honeyman. In 1679, May 
the 3rd, Archbishop Sharpe, returning to St Andrews, in his coach with his 
daughter was assasinated on Magus Moor, within two miles of St. Andrews, by 
a band of fanatics, who derived but little instruction from the vaunted 

In Fife, then, it is quite apparent that two Archbishops have been assassin- 
ated, by every mode of aggravation which can make such a deed more hideous. 
Oh ! Sight of terror, foul and ugly to behold, horrid to think, how horrible to 
feel ! In the Palace of Falkland the Duke of Bothesay, and heir apparent of 
the Crown, was assasinated by Bobert Duke of Albany, his uncle, on the 27th 
of March 1402. 

Fifeshire little concerned herself in the Bevolution and agreed with the 
Union. Measures these which were justly considered as the most interesting 
and important that appear in her annals. 

It is singular meanwhile, how few persons in Scotland understand distinctly, 
either the descent of the people or the nature of their speech. Even the 
learned writer of the Agricultural Survey of Fifeshire considered the ancient 
language of this county to be Gothic when he ought to have regarded it as 
Celtic {d). 

(a) Wodrow, I., 39. (&) Lamond, Chron. of Fife, 190. (c) lb., 249. 

(d) This county, says he, on account of its alnaost insular situation was in ancient times called 
Boss. This word in the Gothic or Pictish speech signifies a peninsula. Agricult. Survey, 16. Boss 
in Cornish, says Hailes, is a promontory. 

126 i^NACOOUNT [Oh. Yl.—Fifeshire. 

Dunfermline in the 12th, 13th and 14th centuries was written Dumfermelyn, 
and Dunfermhn. It is so in several charters of David I. to the monks of this 
town ; (e) and it is derived from the Celtic Dumfairmlim, signifying the Watch 
fort on the rivulet or water (/"). This name was first applied to a small penin- 
sulated hill in the deep and narrow valley of the stream, which passes the west 
side of the town. On the top of this steep and rugged eminence there was an 
ancient fort which existed during the reign of Malcolm Canmore, and its 
remains are still to be seen. From this fortified mount the Burgh of Dunfermline 
took its armorial bearing of a tour or fort (g). The names of places in this parish 
as well as throughout Fife are Celtic, if we except recent names, which are old 
English. Pitcarthie, the name of two hamlets in this parish, was granted by 
Malcolm III. to the monks of Dunfermline ; and this grant was confirmed by 
his son David I. (h). Thus the name of Pitcorthie is derived from the Celtic 
Pit-corthan, signifying the hollow of the circles, and Pitt in the British signifies 
a hollow ({). Hence the name of Ach-en-Corthie, the field of the circles in 
Kincardineshire, at which there is a Druid Temple, consisting of three con- 
centric circles. Pite-bach-lie, a hamlet, was also granted by Malcolm III. to 
the Monks of Dunfermline, and confirmed by David I. This name may be 
derived from the Gaelic Pit-Caighli, signifying the fawn's hollow, or it may be 
derived from Pit-bachla, the hollow of crooks or turnings. 

Thus also Pit-liver, an estate and gentleman's seat, on the east side of a 
small stream. The name is composed by prefixing Pit, a hollow, to Liver, the 
ancient name of the stream which passes the site. Liver in the British signifies 
a flux or flow (j). This appellation is still retained by two streams in Argyle- 
shire ; the rivulet Liver falls into Loch Awe at Inverliver ; and Liver, which 
falls into Loch Etive at Inverliver. 

Pit-trivie, an estate and gentleman's seat near Dunfermline, in two charters 
of David II. is called Pit-revie and Pitravie. The name is derived from the 
Gaelic Pit-riabha, signifying the gray or brindled hollow. This name is pro- 
nounced Pitriavie in the Scoto-Saxon, as the Gaelic (bh) has the power of the 
English (v). But of Pits enough I 

Gillat, east and west, are the names of two hamlets, and Gellat is an 
abbreviation of Gellald, which is the appellation of this place in ancient charters. 
In two charters of David I. to the Monks of Dunfermline, he confirmed to them 

(g) MS. Monast. Sootiae, p. 104-5-6-7 ; and so, in the Ohron. of St. Orucis, sub an. 1150. 

(r) Owen's Diet, of the Welsh ; Pryce's Archseol. ; Shaw's Gaelic Diet. (g) Lluyd's Arch. 

(A) MS. Monast. Scot., 104. (i) Shaw and Owen. (7) Owen's Diet. 

Sect. VI — Of its Civil History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 127 

Schirem de Gell-ald, which had been granted by his brother Edgar (k). Gellald 
is derived from the Gaelic Geal-ald, signifying the White-rivulet. 

Cavel, an estate and gentleman's seat, derived its name from the British 
Cavell, signifying a retired, an enclosed place, a retreat. 

Craigs, a hamlet, derives its name from Craig, signifying a rock, which is 
common to the British and Irish, and is frequently found in the topography of 

Craig-Luscar, a gentleman's seat, derives its name from Craig, a rock, and the 
Gaelic Lusca, a cave or subterraneous place. Luscair signifies a person who 
lives in a cave. In the vicinity of this, within the parish of Carnock, there is 
another place which is called Lascar, which is also a gentleman's estate. David 
I. confirmed to the Monks of Dunfermline two villages named Luschar, which 
were granted to them by Duncan (Z). The same was also confirmed by a char- 
ter of James II. (m). 

Logie, a gentleman's seat, derived its name from the Gaelic Logan, signifying 
a hollow. This is the name of many places in Scotland, and in a number of in- 
stances the Gaelic termination an has been changed to the Scoto-Saxon ie. 

Balmule, a gentleman's seat, derives its Gaelic name from Bal, a dwelling, a 
town ; as the dwelling of a single family is called in the Scoto-Saxon, and Moel 
British, Maol, Gaelic, a bare or naked eminence. It is pronounced in the Scoto- 
Saxon Mull or Mule ; hence the Mull of Kintyre, the Mull of Galloway, and so 
of others. If Balmule is not situated at or near some place of this description, 
it may be derived from Balmaol which is pronounced Balneol, signifying the 
dwelling of the religious person or devotee. 

Foad, south, middle, and north hamlets, which have derived their names from 
the British foad, signifying the place of retreat, or of running away ; or from 
the Gaelic foid, signifying glebe, land, turf 

Touch, a country hamlet, derived its name from the British tu-ach, signify- 
ing the side of the water. It lies, indeed, on the north side of a small stream 
which drives Touch-Mill. The parish of Tough, in Aberdeenshire, and one or 
two more places of the same name in that county, have derived their appella- 
tions from the same source. 

There are in Dunfermline parish Hall-beath, Kiers-beath, and Nether-beath, 
as well as other places called Beath in the neighbouring parish of Beath. All 
these names are derived from Bedw, British ; Beath, Gaelic, birchwood which 
formerly abounded in this district. 

(k) Ms. Monast. Scot., 104. Dalrymp. Col., 383 ; it is also called Gellald in a charter of James 11. 
MS. Monast. Scot., 94. (Z) MS. Monast Scot. 104. (m) lb. 94. 

128 An ACCOUNT [Oh. ^l.—Fifeshire. 

Garvoch, a hamlet which is situated on the edge of a hill, is merely an 
abbreviation of Garve and Garve-cnoc, signifying in Gaelic the rough hill. 
Garvock in Kincardineshire, which also stands on rugged high grounds, derived 
its name from the same source. 

Knocus-hill, a hamlet, is a pleonastic compound of the Gaelic Cnoc and the 
English hill. 

Drumtu thill, a hamlet, derived its name from the Gaelic Drumtuathal, signi- 
fying the northern ridge. So Inchtuthil in Perthshire signifies the northern 
isle, which derived its name from an islet in the north side of the Tay at this 

Bogs is a small hamlet that derived its name from the Gaelic Bog, a swamp, 
with the English plural (s) added to it. 

Denduff, on Ainslie's Map of Fifeshire, ought properly to be Dunduff, which is 
the name on Font's map of Fife, made in the middle of the 17th century. It 
derived its name from the Gaelic Dundubh, signifying the black hill. There are 
several other places in Scotland which are distinguished by the same Celtic 

Rescolme, a hamlet on the summit of a hill on Ainslie's Map, must be a 
mistake for Koscobie ; the name is Roscoble on Font's map of Fife. The name 
may be derived from the British Rhos-cobau, signifying the moor with mounds 
or heaps upon it : and the Eoscobie in Forfarshire has derived its Celtic name 
from the same source. But of all those intimations from the etymons of places, 
enough ! A thousand other names of places might be given to prove the 
certainty of the names of places in general being derived from the Celtic, and 
of the difficulty of drawing the appellations of places, in countries which were 
originally colonized like England, Scotland, and Ireland, from the earliest people 
of Europe. 

§ VII. Of its Agriculture, Manufacture, Trade. This county exhibits a 
great variety of soil, differing both in kind and quality ; such as clay, loam, 
gravel, sand, moss ; and each of these is diversified according to the proportions 
in which they are intermixed and combined. This statement, however, is only 
general, and though just has nothing in it very peculiar, as it may apply 
to almost any county as well as Fife, and perhaps to any parish in Fife as fitly 
as to the whole. 

When the topography of it is carefully examined with a view to ascertain 
this point, we find it dividing itself into four tracts clearly distinguished from 
each other by a general difference of soil, and by other circumstances aflPecting 
its fertility. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, Manufacture, Trade.'] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 129 

Along the Forth, from the eastern to the western limit, the land rises gently, 
but does not rise high. In this division, the soil is generally of an excellent 
quality, being of a deep rich loam, good clay, and gravel mixed v\rith loamy 
earth. The breadth of this divison, from south to north, is various. From the 
parish of Leven as it stretches eastward, it gradually expands till it reaches 
three miles, and exhibits a tract of rich flat land, which is unequalled by any 
in the county. 

It may here be proper to notice the links, or downs, which skirt the south 
and east coasts, but are of little value, though of considerable extent. 

The description which has been given of the several soils, conveys ideas, that 
are sufficiently clear, of the general surface. In this survey the eye would 
gladly avoid those tracts which are yet in a natural state. But they are too 
extensive to be disregarded, and form those agricultural scenes where industry 
and skill have for some years exerted their united powers, in promoting pro- 
gressively the improvement of the soil. 

The climate of Fife is generally much milder than might have been expected 
from its northern latitude ; a favourable circumstance this which it owes to its 
inconsiderable rise of the general surface above the sea level. Hence is the 
climate more friendly to vegetation than countries lying much more to the 
southward, but of greater altitude. In the middle and northern districts, where 
the ground is more mountainous, the soil is cold, wet, unsheltered; the aspect 
is bleak, and the air more chill. The driest and most steady weather arises 
from the west, north-west, and eastern winds. The unavoidable inconveniences 
of the variable climate may be overcome or lessened by extraordinary labour, 
persevering exertion, and judicious management. 

The whole conveniences and disadvantages considered, the yearly value of 
the income of Fife amounts to £362,584 Scottish money. The valuation of the 
whole kingdom is stated at £3,872,600 Scots, whereof the valuation of Fife is 
nearly thirty-two parts. Supposing, however, that the whole of this shire 
which are fit for tillage and pasture, amounting to 230,000 acres, were to be let 
on lease, the gross rent would amount to £212,000 ; and according to this 
computation, the annual average rent by the acre must be 18s. 6d., and the real 
rent to the valued rent, in the proportion of £6 of the former to £10.5 Scots of 
the latter. Such are the general notions that have been formed of the yeai-ly 
rent of Fifeshire. 

According to the annual practice of husbandry during the old system, which 
seems to have been the same in every part of Scotland, the practice of fallowing 
was unknown in the agriculture of this shire. Every farm seems to have been 
7 17 

ISO AnAOOOUNT [Oh. Yl.—FifesMre. 

divided in outfield and infield, and these were cultivated by turns according to 
every preposterous practice of management. Under this course five indifferent 
crops of oats were taken in absurd sequence, and tlien the land was laid out for 
pasture, without any consideration whether grasses might not be cultivated in 
the same manner as corn. By such a course, it is obvious that scanty crops 
must have been produced, and that the land must have been injured. In order 
to cure this evil practice as effectually as possible, recourse was had to summer 
fallowing, which, by judicious management, proved completely effectual ; a 
practice this which soon became general in Fifeshire. 

This practice was ere long followed by what is called, from the nature of the 
thing, a rotation of cropping. This is supposed by the most judicious husband- 
men to contribute more than any other to the melioration and permanent 
fertility of the soil. This practice of cultivation by a series of distinct species of 
grain has become pretty general among the intelligent farmers of Fifeshire. 
The series of the articles are often different among various farmers ; between 
those who cultivate the best soils, and those who labour the worst. The 
following is the most approved series. Potatoes, wheat, hay, oats, drilled beans, 
pease, or beans and pease, mixed : flax is also cultivated in Fife to a great ex- 
tent. Such rotations, however practised, evince sufficiently that agriculture has 
made a very beneficial progress among the farmers of such a shire. As Fife is 
a grazing as well as a corn county, and as the black cattle which are bred here 
are in great estimation by the English dealers, a course that should combine 
both tillage and pasturage would be the most eligible for all parties, for the 
cultivator and the consumer. 

About one fifth of this county may be considered as inaccessible to the ploiagh, 
a circumstance this which points to the practice of pasturage rather than to 

The property in Fifeshire is more equally divided, perhaps, and distributed, 
in proportion to its value and extent, among a greater number of proprietors, 
than in any other shire of Scotland. In Fifeshire a large portion of the estates 
are valued at from £400 to £3,000 a year. From £3000 to £6000 there are 
only a few, and only one amounts to £8000. From £400 down to £40 or £30 
a year, there are a great number of proprietors who pay cess and other public 
taxes, and consequently rank as heritors ; and although of inferior fortunes, are 
generally men of most respectable characters. Such divisions of estates are 
favourable to agriculture, as the proprietors are more attentive to new practices 
of husbandry, and are usually more apt to adopt what appears to be beneficial. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, Manufacture, Trade.] Op NOETH-BEITAIN. 131 

Under this head may be mentioned that there are in Fifeshire two societies 
which were estabhshed in a great measure for the cultivation of farming. 

The one is called the Fife Farming Society, and the other the Inverkeithing 
Club. The principal objects which are aimed at by thoss institutions, are a 
mutual communication of discoveries for the benefit of husbandry, common pro- 
tection from thieves, and for raising a joint stock for the benefit of their families. 

It is said that Fifeshire has long been a manufacturing county. During 
recent times it has distinguished itself for its manufactures, every county 
having from early times, had domestic fabrics for family uses. 

It is chiefly distinguished for its manufacture of wheat into flour, having 
fourteen flour mills which annually convert 40,000 bolls of wheat into flour ; 
but chiefly for domestic use. Of barley there are certainly 42,000 bolls made 
into malt, and this malt manufactured into whisky and beer of various kinds. 
In this shire there are at present four distilleries. The contents of the stills 
amount to 214 gallons, and upon the whole these four stills will use annually 
18,720 bolls of barley ; and if constantly employed will yield 205,920 gallons, 
which would pay £21,852 for duties. 

There are numerous breweries in Fifeshire, though none of them are very 
extensive. The quantity of malt which is thus consumed, exclusive of what is 
used by private families, is supposed to be 18 to 20,000 bolls, add to this 15,000 
bolls of barley, which are used for culinary purposes. 

The linen manufacture is more extensive^ more valuable, and more useful in 
employing people, than any other in Fifeshire. The different sort of linens 
which are manufactured in Fife are damasks, diapers, checks, ticks, osnaburghs, 
besides plain linens of various kinds. In the eleven years ending with 1798, 
there were manufactured 50,113,955 yards, of the value of £2,019,123 sterling, 
which were made for sale, exclusive of what was made for domestic use. The 
spinning mills were introduced into Fifeshire in 1793, and are deemed of infinite 
importance. These mills were originally driven by water, but in the progress 
of employment the steam engine has been introduced in the place of water. 

Salt is made in Fifeshire to the amount of 90,000 bushels, yielding a duty of 

Ship-building during recent times has been introduced into various ports of 
Fife, and 1,200 tons of shipping have been annually built in its several ports. 

Leather is manufactured in several towns of Fife, the annual return whereof 
yields about £30,000, and the duties paid to the Exchequer amount to more 
than £1000 Sterling. 

Soap and candles, are manufactured to some extent in Fifeshire. Of soap 

132 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. Yl.—Fifeshire. 

250,000 pounds are made, and of candles, 180,000 pounds ; and the duties 
which are paid on both yield about £3,000. 

Bricks and tiles are made in this shire to the number of 750,000 which yield 
a revenue of £300. 

Vitriol is manufactured in Burntisland to a considerable extent, by a work 
which is considered as the second in Scotland. 

Of its trade some notion may be formed from the number of its fairs, amounting 
in the year to 87. The principal market for corn is held weekly at Cupar. 
The situation of this shire for foreign trade is very favourable, being almost 
surrounded by the sea, and abounding in harbours of some depth. It has two 
customhouses, at Kirkcaldy and Anstruther: the former extends from Aberdour 
to Largo inclusive, and the latter from Largo to Saint Andrews. The trade 
on the northern shore is included in the custom houses of Dundee and Perth ; 
the trade on the southern side from Aberdour westward, belongs to the custom 
house of Borrowstounness. The port of Anstruther enjoyed in the prosperous 
year 1792, 53 vessels bearing 2,986 tons ; and the port of Kirkcaldy had during 
the same year 96 vessels, bearing 9771 tons. 

In Fifeshire there are fourteen royal burghs, the seats generally of industry, 
of manufacture, and of trade, which, if 67 be the whole number of such burghs 
in Scotland, are more than one fifth of that number. They may be thus 
enumerated : Cupar is the shire town, St. Andrews, Dunfermline, Crail, Kirk- 
caldy, Dysart, Inverkeithing, Burntisland, Kinghorn, Pittenweem, Kilrenny, 
Anstruther-Easter, Anstruther- Wester, and Falkland. 

Cupar, as Doctor Campbell assures us, may boast of high antiquity. The 
learned Doctor might be asked, what he means by high antiquity. The year 
843 is the epoch of the Union of the Picts and Scots. Was there a town here 
at some period prior to that epoch ? And it might also be asked whether the 
Celtic people did not dislike towns, and prefer a i-esidence in some glen or on 
some mountain. The thanes of Fifa during the earliest times whereof we have 
any accurate notice, held their Courts of Justice in Cupar ; but we know that 
in early times the Courts of Justice were held on the neighbouring hill. It is 
but a modern circumstance to hold their Courts of Justice within the town. 
William Earl of Fife and justiciary of the north of the Firth of Forth, held his 
courts in Cupar during the year 1239. For this fact a precept in the Chartu- 
lary of Dunfermline is quoted. This burgh is said to have been dependent upon 
the Earls of Fife, who had their residence in the Castle of Cupar. This burgh 
is said to be in possession of several charters which conferred on it many 
privileges and extensive property. Capar is at present governed by a Provost, 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, Manufacture, Trade.^ Or NOETH-BEITAIN. 133 

3 Bailies, a Dean of Guild, 13 Councillors who choose one another, and 8 Trades 
Councillors or Deacons, who are elected by 8 incorporations. In conjunction 
with Perth, Dundee, St. Andrews, and Forfar, Cupar sends a representative to 
Parliament. The gross income of this burgh which was returned to Parliament 
during 1788, was only £859 10s. lid. Is this extensive property? They 
may have wasted their estates, but this ought not to be presumed (n). 

David II. granted a charter to Wm. Ramsay, the Earl of Fife, erecting Cupar 
into a free burgh (o). Robert III. granted by a charter to Robert Earl of Fife 
and Montieth, 200 marks sterling out of the great customs of Linlithgow and 
Cupar during his life. Of inhabitants the burgh and parish of Cupar contains 
5,892 souls. 

St. Andrews is a royal burgh which was endowed with the amplest privileges 
which corporations could expect, being created, about the year 1140, by the 
means of Robert the Bishop of St. Andrews, who with the license and assistance 
of David I. placed Maynard, a Fleming, the first provost thereof, which 
erection and privilege were of old certified and approved by Malcolm IV. and 
by Roger and David, the Bishops of St. Andrews, and more lately by other 
kings and archbishops, particularly by Archbishop Gladstone 1614. Bishop 
Robert who founded the Priory, induced Malcolm IV. to create this city a 
royal burgh (p). David II. in 1362 granted a charter to the Bishops of St. 
Andrews, wherein several privileges were granted to this city and citizens. 
The gift of the great custom in wool and hides was confirmed by Robert III. to 
the Church, and Henry the Bishop of St. Andrews, and to his successors, in 
1405. David II. granted a charter (q) to Andrew de Kirkcaldy, the Chaplain, 
five marks sterling yearly, of the customs of St. Andrews, in the 34th of his 
reign (r). Robert III. granted to John Ram organ a pension out of the customs 
of St. Andrews (s). Robert the Bishop of St. Andrews, who died in 1158, 
granted to the Prior of St. Andrews one toft in Kilrennan, three tofts in St. 
Andrews, and the Mill of Kilrimont. Richard the Bishop of St. Andrews 
granted to the same Priory the Church of the Holy Trinity in Kilrimond, with 
other lands and property. The grant which was thus made, was confirmed by 
a charter of William the Lion (t). Malcolm IV. granted a charter of confirma- 
tion to the Burgesses and Bishop of St. Andrews, of all the liberties and customs 
" which any of my burgesses have within his dominions." (u) The Council 

(h) Stat. Acct., V. 17., p. 138, fo) Eobertson's Index, 45. fpj Sibbald, 105. 

(qj Eobertson's Index, 148. ( r) lb. 74. (sj lb. 137. (t) Eeliq. Divi. Andrae. 

(m) See Pennant, II. 461 : and see tbe Act of Pari., in February 1369, for settling the controversy 
between the citizens of St. Andrews and the guild brethren of Oupar. 

134 J^nAOOOUNT [Oh. Yl.—Fifeshire. 

consists of the Provost, the Dean of Guild, four Bailies and a Treasurer, Mer- 
chants or Guildry, and fourteen Guild Brethren, Merchant Councillors and the 
Convener, and seven Deacons Trades Councillors. The gross revenue of St. 
Andrews, in the year 1780, as returned to Parliament, was £308 14s. Od. 
sterling (v). The inhabitants of the burgh and parish of St. Andrews amount 
to 4,899 souls. 

Dunfermline is a royal burgh, and the residence in it of Malcolm III. and his 
queen, and the monastery which was founded by them here, were no doubt the 
means of raising the town (w). Dunfermline is the seat of the Presbytery, and 
the most considerable manufacturing town in Fife. This burgh, it appears, held 
up the monks of this town for two centuries. It became royal by a charter 
from James YI. in May 1588. It is among the royal burghs which paid 
taxes in 1556 (x). By this charter the King ratified sundry donations and 
indentures, by John and Piobert the Abbots of Dunfermline, and particularly 
an indenture which was made at Dunfermline in October 1395, between John 
the Abbot of the Monastery and the Alderman and community of the burgh ; 
whereby the Abbot renounced in favour of the burgh the whole income thereof, 
reserving part, however, from the lands of the burgh and the correction of 
the Bailies, as often as they should be guilty of injustice in the exercise of 
their office (y). The gross revenue of the burgh as reported to Parliament in 
1788, was £366 9s. Id. sterling. David I. granted to the corporation of that 
town, near the water on which the church is situated, one mansion in the 
burgh of Dunfermline free from all the tithes of the burgh and from the tithes 
of the mill and of his houses in Dunfermline {zj. Robert I. granted to the 
monks of this burgh, the new great customs of the same, which were confirmed 
by Robert III. (a). 

The inhabitants of the burgh and parish of Dunfermline amount to 13,680 

The town of Crail is said by Sibbald to be a burgh royal of ancient creation 
even before the age of William the Lion ; and Boece says it was a considerable 
town in 874 A.D., and he is as positive as if he had the record of the fact before 

(vj Eept. to the House of Commons, 1793, app. (wj Stat. Accts. 13. 446-7. 

fx) Gibson's Glasgow, 78. 

(y) Stat. Acct. 13, 429-30-1 of Dunfermline ; wherein may be seen the constitution of the burgh. 
It is among the burghs which paid taxes in 1556. Gibson's Glasgow, 78. 

(zJ Dalrymple's Col. app., 334-5-6. 

(a) MS. Monast. Sect. 90; Eoberts. Index, 20, 146. The Decree of 1724 enacted that in all succeeding 
•elections, the magistrates and ordinary council should consist of 22 in place of 16. Eeport of the 
Com. of the House of Commons, p. 94. 

Sect. VII.— Of its Agriculture, Manufacture, Trade.] Or NOETH-BEITAIN. 135 

him. He is also positive that David I. died here, but he has mistakenly 
substituted Crail for Carlisle. It is a royal burgh, and in conjunction with 
Kilrenny, Anstruther-Easter and Wester, and with Pittenweem, sends a repre- 
sentative to Parliament. Crail received a charter from Robert Bruce, (6) 
which was successively confirmed with several additions, by Robert II., by 
Queen Mary, by James YI. and by Charles I. (c). The remains of an old castle 
overlook the harbour upon the east. In it David I. is said to have frequently 
resided, which I much doubt. From him, however, Crail became a constabulary, 
extending westward to Kincraig Point {d). In a roll of Robert I. there is a 
charter to Crail (e). Robert II. granted to Andrew Clapham the lands of 
Tomakyders in the constabulary of Crail (_/). David I. granted to the monks 
of Dryburgh one Manerium, in his royal burgh of Crail, with three roods of 
land, with their pertinents {g). Jhe Countess Ada granted a charter to the 
Monks of May, addressed among others to her men of Crail and her baillies of 
the same ; she protecting the Prior of May with all the possessions which the 
Monks of May possessed in her fee of May [h). The Countess Ada, the Scottish 
King's Mother, granted to the Monks of Dryburgh one full toft in her burgh of 
Crail {i). She also granted to the Monks of Cambuskenneth one full toft in 
her burgh of Crail. This grant was confirmed by by William the Lion (/). In 
a bull of Pope Celestine, An. 1195, he confirmed to the same monks, from the 
donation of the Countess Ada, one full toft in the burgh of Crail and one mark 
of money out of her rents in Crail {h). William the Lion granted to the same 
monks one mark of money from his firms in the burgh of Crail (J). William 
also granted a confirmation to the same monks of his donation of money out of 
his firms in the burgh of Crail yearly, in furtherance of what his mother the 
Countess Ada had given them in the burgh of Crail (to). King William the 
Lion also granted to the Monks of Lindores one full toft in his burgh of Crail (n). 
Robert II. granted to Alexander Lindsay an annual rent of 100 shillings 
sterling, out of his burgh mails of Crail, which John de Malcolm had before, 
and Alexander de Cambok enjoyed before him (o). David II. granted to 
William Stewart the office of keeping the King's Moor in Crail during his life (p). 

(b) See the roll of Eob. I. wlierein is the charter to Crail. 

(c) Stat. Acct. of Crail, 9, 493-4, wherein its territory and privileges are described. 
\d) Stat. Acct., 9, 454. (e) Roberts. Index, 25. (/) lb. 94-295. 
{g) Chart. Dryburgh, and Dugdale's Monast. II., 1054. 

{h) From Charter of May in the register of Reading Abbey. 

(i) Chart. Dryburgh, No. 10. {j) lb. No. 180 ; Chart. Cambusken., No. 197. 

{h) lb. No. 29. (/) lb. 71. {m) lb. No. 179. (n) Chart. Lindores, No. 6. 

(o) Robertson's Index p. 117-70. {p) lb. 57. 

136 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. \l.—Fifeshir 

The Kings appear to have long had a pretty extensive domain around Crail, 
to which the King's Moor of Crail was a common pasturage. The Monks of 
Dunfermline had a grant of a tenth of the victual and oats belonging to the 
King in Crail, which was confirmed to them by a bull of Gregory in 1234 (q). 
Alexander II. in the 22nd of his reign, granted to the same monks his lands of 
Dollar in fee of Clackmannan, in exchange for what they were in use to receive 
out of his domains in Kinghorn and Crail, and for what they used to receive 
out of the King's kitchen, as well as that of the Queen his Spouse (r). 

Hobert III. granted to William Fleming the office of Mayor of Fee, within 
the barony of Crail, with the land of Mortoun, and the acre called Pulterland, 
which belonged to the said office (5). Alexander II. in the 20 th of his reign 
granted to the Monks of Balmerino that they should be discharged from the 
annual-rent which was used to be paid out of a certain burgage, in the king's 
burgh of Crail, which they had purchased of William the son of Peter, and the 
burgesses of Crail (f). 

As it appears that the burgh of Crail had never had a proper constitution, 
the Privy Council declared on the 9th of June 1711, that it was both just and 
reasonable that the constitution underwritten should be punctually observed : 
The Council to consist of three Bailies, a Treasurer, eleven Merchants, and six 
trades councillors, which should be elected thus : — The old Council shall 
choose two merchants and one tradesman as new councillors. The fourteen 
other councillors should remain without election ; and the four maofistrates are 
to be elected by the old and new council and seven deacons of trades (u). 
The inhabitants of the burgh, and parish of Crail amount to 1854. 

Kirkcaldy is very obscure in its origin. It first was known when it became 
one of the regality burghs of the lordship of Dunfermline. It was gi'anted in 
1334 by David II. to the abbots of Dunfermline, successively in whose possession 
it continued till 1450, when the commendator and convent conveyed to the 
bailies and community of Kirkcaldy, and to their successors for ever the burgh 
and harbour, burgh acres, the small customs, common pasture in the moor, with 
the courts, etc. It was soon after created a royal burgh, with the customary 
privileges, and these were specially ratified by a charter of confirmation, which 
was granted by Charles I. in 1644, and created de novo into a royal burgh and 
free port (v). In a charter from David I. to the monks of Dunfermline he con- 
firmed among other grants of his father and mother " Schiram de Kirh- 

(q) MS. Monasfc. Soot., p. 97. (r) lb. 209. (s) Eoberts. Index, 127. 

(t) Chart. Balmerino, No. 35. (u) Eeport of the Committee of the House of Commons, p. 96. 

(v) Stat. Acct. of Kirkcaldy v. 18 p. 15-16. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, Manufactures, Trade.] OfNORTH-BEITAIN. 137 

calduit" (w). In a bull of Gregory (an. 1234) he confirmed to the same 
monastery " totam Kirkcaldy " (a;). Robert I. granted to the monks of Dun- 
fermline the new great custom of the burgh of Kirkcaldy (y). When the 
Reform Bill was before the Parliament, the corporation of Kirkcaldy produced 
a notarial copy of the charter by Charles I., on the 5th of February 1644, which 
gave power to the bailies, councillors, and community to elect and make a 
perfect magistracy (z). The council consists of ten seafaring men, eight 
merchants, and three tradesmen. The old council chooses the new, and the 
new and the old council with the whole deacons choose the magistrates (a). 
The inhabitants of the burgh and parish of Kirkcaldy amounted to 4,452 in the 
year 1820. 

The whole barony of Dysart appears to have belonged to the Sinclairs, Earls 
of Orkney. Robert Duke of Alba.ny granted a charter confirming a wadset of 
twelve marks Scots out of the barony and collieries of Dysart, which had been 
granted by Henry de Sinclair, Earl of Orkney, to John Forester of Corstorphin, 
in consideration of 300 marks of gold, English, which had been lent to him (b). 
The inhabitants are mostly feuars of Lord Sinclair, who has his seat and 
ordinary residence within Dysart. It is one of the royal burghs which paid 
taxes in 1556 ; and it then paid more than Dunfermline (c). The gross revenue 
of the burgh of Dysart which was returned to Parliament was £117 3s. 8d. 
Sterling (d). The constitution of Dysart was formed of a Council, consisting 
of two bailies, 21 councillors, without distinction of traders or tradesmen. The 
old Council chooses the new out of lists given by each member. Each of the 
bailies makes a list of six, out of which the old and new Council choose six, and 
of these six the two bailies are elected. The bailies and new treasurer are 
chosen out of the new list of two, which were given by the old treasurer. 
There is no restriction as to the re-election either of the magistrates or coun- 
cillors (e). The entire parish of Dysart contained in 1821, 6,529 people. 

Inverkeithing is a very ancient royal burgh. William the Lion gave it the 
first charter. Other kings of Scotland conferred on this burgh charters at dis- 

(w) MS. Monast. Scot., p. 104 i Sir Ja, Dalrymple's Col., 383. 

{x) Monast. Soot., 99. 

(y) Monast. Soot., p. 96. Roberts. Index, 20, which was confirmed by Bob, III. lb. 146, MS. 
Monast. Scot. p. 91. Confirmed by James IL in 1450. 

(z) Report of the Com. of the House of Com. 1793, app. 61. The decree of Arbitration^concerning 
the constitution by the Earl of Rothes in 1662, and the constitution which was explained on the 29th 
of August 1721, on a submission to the convention. 

(a) lb. 87. (b) Roberts. Index, 163. 

(c) Gibson's Glasgow, 78. (d) See Report, App. E. 

7 i8 

138 An ACCOUNT [Gh. Yl.—Fifeshire. 

tant periods, and James VI. confirmed all those grants in 1598, and he declared 
the jurisdiction of this burgh to extend from the river Devon to the Leven, 
and as far north as Kinross (/). Its revenue is £200 sterling a year. The 
charter of Alexander I. gave to the monks of Scone five mansions, one house at 
Edinburgh, one at Inverkeithing, one at Stirling, one at Perth, and one at 
Aberdeen {g). David I. granted the monks of Dunfermline a passage and a 
ship of Inverkeithing, and other privileges. A number of other grants were 
made to and from Inverkeithing. The point of the promontory from which 
the passage boat sails, is a mile and a half from the town, and on this point 
is built a village which is called the North-ferry. The revenue of Inverkeithing 
in 1788, as reported to Parliament, was £220 12s. Id. sterling. The constitu- 
tion of this burgh consists of a Provost, two Bailies, a Dean of Guild, and a 
Treasurer, with ten burgesses, who must be inhabitants. Of people, the burgh 
and parish of Inverkeithing contained in 1821, 2512. 

Kinghorn probably owes its origin to its harbour, its fishery, and its ferry. 
David II. is supposed to have created this place a royal burgh (h). David I. 
granted to the monks of Dunfermline Kinghorn with its pertinents, together 
with the seals which might be caught at Kinghorn (i). During the reign of 
David I., and during many subsequent reigns, Kinghorn was a town in the 
demesne of the Crown, and there was of course a constabulary formed of King- 
horn. The revenue of this burgh was reported to Parliament in 1788, at 
£146 8s. 8d. sterling. The constitution of this burgh consists of seventeen 
traders, sailors, and brewers, with five deacons, and the Provost and two 
Bailies out of the Council of seventeen (j). 

Burntisland has no doubt derived its origin from the excellence of its port. 
It was of old sometime called Western Kinghorn. In 1234 this town was 
known by the two names of Western Kinghorn and Burntisland. Its revenue 
was reported to Parliament as £156 13s. Id. sterling. The constitution of 
Burntisland consisted of a Council of fourteen merchants and seven tradesmen,, 
in all twenty-one of actual inhabitants. The old Council was to choose the 
new, and the new Council chooses three Bailies out of the merchant Council, 
who cannot continue longer than two years. Of people, Burntisland in 1821, 
within the burgh and parish, consisted of 2136 souls. 

Anstruther-Easter belonged of old to Henry de Anstruther, who, with the 

(e) Eeports of the Committee of House of Commons, 86. (/) Stat. Acct., No. 10, 501-2. 

(g) Stormont Chart, of Scone, No. 1. 

(h) Stat. Acct., 12, 230. (i) Sir J. Dalrymple's Coll., 384. 

(j) Eeport to Pari., 90. 

Sect. YU.— Of its Agriculture, Manujacture, Trade.} OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 139 

consent of his wife Margaret, granted three booths to the abbot and canons of 
Dryburgh (k). The descendants of the first grantors conveyed other property 
out of this town of Anstruther. Anstruther- Wester forms only one town, the 
two being merely separated by a small stream. Sibbald says that the two 
Anstruthers formed only one town, the wester and easter vills being only 
separated by a stono bridge of two arches (l). Eobert III. granted to John 
Pattenweyme the mill of Anstruther (m) This place is not ancient as a royal 
burgh. The revenue of this burgh of Easter- Anstruther as reported to Parlia- 
ment in 1788, was only £37 8s. 6d. The constitution of the burgh consists of 
three Bailies, one Treasurer, and fifteen Councillors. Of people, Anstruther- 
Easter, the burgh and parish, contained in 1821, 1090. 

Anstruther- Wester, as we have seen, is merely separated from the eastern 
town by a small stream. It became a burgh of barony in 1554, and a royal 
burgh in 1587, The Magistrates of this western town consist of three Bailies, 
a Treasurer, and any number of Councillors from six to eleven (n). Anstruther- 
Wester in the burgh and parish contained of people in 1821, 429. 

The small town of Pittenweem derived its origin as a vill from its harbour 
for shipping, and it belonged of old to the priory of Pittenweem, in a charter 
of James II. in 1452 to the bishop of St. Andrews; and this vill was thereby 
included in the regality which was granted to the archbishop (o). In a prior 
age David I. granted Pedneweme to the monks of May (p). Yet this vill was 
formed into a royal burgh in 1541, by a charter of James V. The constitution 
of this little burgh consisted of a Council of four Bailies, a Treasurer, and nine- 
teen Councillors, who are elected thus : the old Council elect the four Bailies 
out of the list of twelve, of which the four old Bailies and the old Treasurer 
must be in the number of the list of the new choice ; the Treasurer must be 
taken out of the list of three, and the nineteen other members of the new 
Council, without any provision against electing themselves (q). The burgh 
and parish of Pittenweem contained in 1821, 1200 people. 

The burgh of Kilrenny is known fully as much by the vulgar name of Cellar- 
dykes as by any other appellation. By whatever name it may pass, it lies 
along the shore in one street, to the south-west end of which joins East 
Anstruther, and both appear but to be the continuation of one town. About 
three-quarters of a mile north of Cellardykes lies the village and parish church 

(k) Chart. Dryburgh, No. 15. (I) Hist, of Fife, 131. 

(ni) Eoberts. Index, 32. (n) Wight on Parliament, 48-415. 

(o) Eeliq. Divi. And., 97. (p) MS. Charters of May, in the Eeg. of Eeading, No. 3. 

(q) Eeport of the Com. of the House of Commons, p. 92. 

140 AnACOOUNT [Oh. YI.—Fifeshire. 

of Kilrenny, from which it derives one of its names (r). Kilrenny, it should 
seem, is a royal burgh, holding, however, of the laird of Balfour as the superior (s). 
The revenue of this small burgh as returned to Parliament amounted only to 
£4 2s. sterling (t). The constitution of this burgh consists of a Council of 
three Bailies, one Treasurer, eleven burgesses, which are elected thus : the old 
Council chooses the new, then the Bailies make out a list of nine, whereof there 
are always three, and the Treasurer makes a list of three persons, of whom he is 
always one ; and out of those lists the three Bailies and Treasurer of the en- 
suing year are elected by the votes of the old Bailies, the Council, and whole 
qualified burgesses (u). Of people, the burgh and parish of Kilrenny contained 
in 1821, 1494. 

Falkland is supposed to have been created a burgh by James II. in 1458. 
The reason which is stated for this creation is the frequent residence of the 
royal family at the manor of Falkland. This charter was renewed by James VI. 
in 1595, and among other privileges it has the accommodation of many fairs 
and markets (v). But it has no vote in the electing of a representative in 
Parliament. Falkland contained of people, in 1821, 2459. 

Besides the foregoing list of royal burghs, there are also several burghs of 
regality and of barony in Fifeshire. Aberdour was created a burgh of regality 
by the Earl of Morton, whose successor has a seat here {w). West Wemyss is 
a burgh of barony which belongs to the Earl of Wemyss. It has a harbour 
for ships and great advantages for trade (x). Wester Wemyss is a burgh of 
barony, having two Bailies, a Treasurer, and Council (y). Aberdour contained 
of people in 1821, 1489. 

Alexander III. granted a charter, confirming to the abbot of Lindores that 
he and his successors should have their village to be called Newburgh (z). In 
1457 John, abbot of Lindores, gave a charter to the burgesses of Newburgh, 
various privileges, and the right of choosing Bailies yearly, who might hold 
courts and fairs on the day of St. Katharine (a). Its former rights and privi- 
leges were confirmed by Charles I. in 1631, with the usual powers of a royal 
burgh, except, however, the right of voting for a representative in Parliament (&). 

§ VIII. Of its Ecclesiastical History. The antiquities of the Church in 

(r) Sibbald's Fife, 132. 

(s) Eeport of the House of Commons, 64. Wight on Elections, 48. 

{t) Eeport of the House of Commons, 1793, App. E. (ii) lb., 99. 

{v) Sibbald's History of Fife, 151. 

(to) Sibbald's History of Fife, 122. {x) lb., 127. 

{y) Stat. Acct. of Wemyss, 16, 514. {z) Chart. Lindores, No. 3. 

(a) Chart. Lindores, No. 1. Sibbald's Fife, 158. (6) Stat. Acct., 8, 178. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 141 

Fifeshire extend beyond the commencement of the Scoto-Saxon period. There 
was a bishop here, perhaps, before there was a parish. The true origin of such 
districts cannot easily be ascertained, though that event began many an age 
after the introduction of Christianity. But parishes were preceded not only 
by bishops, but were undoubtedly followed by religious houses. This system 
of ecclesiastical government continued long under various modifications till a 
concurrence of circumstances induced what has been called the Reformation (c). 

There are various lists of the bishops from the first to the fifteenth, though 
Ruddiman's catalogue may be safely allowed to be accurate (d). The see of 
St. Andrews was made an archbishopric in 1471. 

There was less doubt with regard to the number and name of the religious 
houses. St. Andrews, which was situated upon the seashore in Fifeshire, was 
a priory of canons regular, and was founded by Alexander I., who reigned from 
January 1106-7 to April 1124 (e). At Cupar of Fife there was a religious 
house which was founded by the Earl of Fife, and was joined to St. Monans. 
This house of St. Monans was founded on the seaside for Black friars. The east 
part and steeple remained in 1754, and then served for a parish church to the 
people of Abercromby. In St. Andrews was also a convent of observations 
which was established by Bishop Kennedy. 

At Balmerino there was founded a convent for Cistercians by Queen Ermen- 
gard, the mother of Alexander II., about the year 1229 (/). 

At Crail was settled, by desire of the prioress of Haddington, a collegiate 
church in 1517, for a Provost, a Sacrist, and Treasurer, with ten Prebendaries {g). 

At Inchcolm, an islet in the Forth, about two miles from Aberdour, was an 
abbey which was founded by Alexander I. in 1123 A.D., which was dedicated 
to St. Columba of lona. Walter Bower, one of the continuators of Fordun's 
history, was abbot of this house, and died about the year 1449. 

At Inverkeithing was an abbey of Franciscans. John Gray, a son of Lord 
Gray, was one of this religious order who lived long here, but upon the Refor- 
mation retired to Brussels, where he was murdered in the Franciscan Church 
by the Prince of Orange's soldiers. 

At Lindores, in the forest of Ernside on the Tay, was a convent of Tyronen- 
sians which was founded by David Earl of Huntingdon, the brother of William 
the Lion, upon David's return from the Holy Land {h). 

The Isle of May, at the mouth of the Forth, which belonged of old to the 
monks of Reading, was founded here as a cell by David I., and was dedicated 
to All Saints (i). 

(c) Caledonia I., p. 329, 426-7, 432, 674. (d) See Sibbald's Hist., ch. 4. 

(e) Keith, 237. (/) Diplom. Scot., xxxiv. (g) Keith, 285. 

142 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. Yl.—Fifeshire. 

Pittenweem was a religious house of canons regular, and was dedicated to 
the Virgin, and had many lands belonging to it, with the churches of 
Anstruther- Wester and others, which were all erected into the regality of 
Pittenweem, whereof the lairds of Anstruther were the hereditary Bailies (j). 

St. Salvator's College in St. Andrews was founded in 1458, for a Provost and 
several Prebendaries, by the worthy Bishop Kennedy, to which college he 
annexed the churches of Cults, Kemback, Denino, and Kilmany ; and the good 
bishop, on the 10th of May, 1466, was herein interred (k). 

The cells belonging to the priory of St. Andrews were Lochleven, Portmoak, 
the Isle of May, Pittenweem, and Monymusk (I). 

Under the old system of Church policy, Fifeshire was divided into deaneries 
and archdeaconries. Under the new or reformed system, Scotland was formed 
into Synods and Presbyteries. Fifeshii-e was established into one Synod and 
four Presbyteries. 

Kirkaldy Presbytery having 1 5 Parishes. 

Dunfermline Presbytery, 12 „ 

Cupar Presbytery, 19 „ 

St. Andrews Presbytery, - 20 ,, 

66 the whole. 

The Deanery of Fife comprehended the following parishes, which were of old 
rated as under : — 

The Archdeanery of St. Andrews, 

The Provostry of Crail, - 

The Vicarage of Kilrenny, 

The Vicarage of Carnbee, 

The Vicarage of Elie, 

The Vicarage of Largo, 

The Vicarage of Scoonie, 

Kinnochie (Kilconquhar), 

The Kectory of Methil, - 

The Kectory of Terbet, - 

The Rectory of Kemback, 

Dynnynoche (Denino), - 

The Vicarage of St. Andrews, - 

The Vicarage of Leuchars, - - - 6 13 4 

{h) Keith, 251. ({) lb., 230. (j) lb., 238. 

(k) Keith, 288. (/) Eeliq. Div. And., 170. 




























Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] Or NOETH-BEITAIN. 


The Vicarage of Forgund, 

The Vicarage of Kilmany, 

The Vicarage of Flisk, 

The Vicarage of Colessie, 

The Vicarage of Monymail, 

The Vicarage of Cowper, 

The Vicarage of Markinch, 

The Rectory of Dysart, - 

The Vicarage of Kirkaldie, 

The Vicarage of Kilgoure, 

The Vicarage of Kingowne Easter, 

The Provostry of St. Mary of Fife (pro- 
bably Pittenweem, which was dedicated 
to St. Mary), 

The Priory of Portmoak,- 

The Ministry of Scotland well, - 

The Parish of Auchtermuchtie, 


The Eectory of Quyltis (Cults), 

The Sum of the Deanery of Fife, 

Fortherick : — 

The Eectory of Ochterarder, 

The Rectory of Balingair (Ballingry), 

The Sacristy of Dunfermline, 

The Rectory of Mukart, 

The Sum of the Deanery of Fortherick, £38 
The Sum of the tenth of the Benefices of 

the Diocese of St. Andrews, - £947 o 

The establishment of such religious houses was deemed in those times acts of 
great piety. Such establishments had their day. When this fashion changed, 
such religious houses, with their lands and other property, became the objects 
of grant to courtiers and favourites. During prior ages, when they were in- 
habited by religious men and women, the religious houses were of some use to 
the public ; when they became the estates of such worthless characters, they 
ceased to be of any value to the public. 




















































144 AnACOOUNT [Ch. Yll.—Argyleshire. 


§ I. Of its Name. — It is not easy to settle the true name or the meaning 

" Ar, in the British signifies upon, and K or C changes to G in construction. 
Thus, some have it, upon the Cyl ; so Arron is upon Mon, in Wales ; and ar- 
goid is upon the Wood, from ar and Coed. But what is Cyl ? If it were 
written Cul in Welsh, which sounds like Kyi, it would mean upon the narrow ; 
or instead of Ar, upon, it should be ar, land, then it would be the narrow 
region." Thus much from Mr. Wm. Owen, the ingenious author of the Welsh 
and English Dictionary. 

In three several charters of David I., who died in 1153, the spelling of this 
district was Ar-gayl, twice in 1125, Errogail in 1128, and in the third Ergathel. 
In the De Situ Albanise (pi) the name of the above-mentioned district is Arre- 
gathel — Arregaithel ; and in the same document there is the following exposi- 
tion: "Arregathel dicitur quasi margo Scottorum seu Hibernensium : quia 
omnes Hybernenses Scotti generaliter Gaitheli dicuntur a quodam eorum 
primoevo duce Gaithelglas vocato." Ear-Gahel, the border of the Gael, from 
earr or earra, border or margin. Such was a specimen of the names in Argyle, 
by Dr. John Smith. 

Jar-ghael is said (n) by the late James Macpherson not to be the name of the 
country but of the people who were its inhabitants from the earliest times. 
" It signifies the Western Gael in opposition to the Eastern Gael or the Picts, 
who possessed the shores of the German Ocean." But the Irish word Jar, which 
is here used by Mr. Macpherson, properly signifies after or behind (o). Mr. 

(ot) Innes' Grit. Essay, No. 1. This document was written in the twelfth century, as it appears the 
information conveyed in it was given by Andrew, the Bishop of Caithness, who died in 1185. Chron. 

(n) Introduction, 148, (o) See O'Brian's Diet, in re Jar and Eirin. 

Sect. II.— 0/ its Situation and Extent.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 145 

Whitaker, who answered Mr. Macplierson, says that Argathel, Jar-gael, or 
Argyle, signifies nothing more than the Irish (p). 

§ II. Op its Situation and Extent. — As low down as the year 1366 the 
northern parts of Argyle belonged to the district of Gairloch, which was granted 
by the Earl of Ross to Macintyre (q). Consequently it follows that Loch Tor- 
ridon and its waters were the northern boundary of Argyleshire in the four- 
teenth century (r). There were in those times a North and South Argyle. 

Argyle has Inverness-shire on the north, the shires of Perth and Dumbarton 
on the east, the isles of Bute and Arran, the Frith of Clyde and the Irish Sea 
on. the south, and the Atlantic Ocean on the west. Dr. Smith says (s) Argyle 
is divided in the County Books into the districts of Kintyre, Cowal, Argyle, 
and Lorn, except the parish of Morven, Ardnamurchan, etc., which lie in the 
division of Mull. The whole county, including all the islands belonging to it, 
lie between 55° 23' and 57° 8' north latitude, and between 1° 30' and 40° 7' 
longitude west of Edinburgh. 

Argyleshire is only 2492 [3213] square miles, according to mensurations on 
Ainslie's Map {t) and according to Templeman's Survey ; but Dr. Smith shows 
that Templeman's calculations are in general too low, even as much as a 
third [u). 

From the south end of Kintyre to the north boundary of Ardgowan is about 
105 miles. At the north end the breadth from the boundary of Perthshire to 
the west side of the isle of Mull is about 72 miles. The breadth from the 
Frith of Clyde to the west side of Islay island is about 64 miles. 

The promontory of Kintyre, which is only seven miles broad, projects about 
twenty-six miles to the south of the left line of the square from the Frith of 
Clyde to Islay island. The whole length of Kintyre from the south end to the 
isthmus at Tarbert is about forty miles (v). The small isles of Muck, Rum, and 
Canna, which are detached a good way to the north, and the islands of Coll 
and Tiree, which are detached to the west, are not included in the above extent. 
Muck isle is 5 miles. Rum isle is 15 miles, and Canna about 30 miles north of 
Ardnamurchan. Coll isle is about 10 miles, and Tiree is 15 miles north-west 

(p) Genuine Hist, of the Britons, 207. 

(q) Eobertson's Index, 98 ; and the Charter in Hay's Vindication of Elizabeth More, p. 18. 

(r) See also the Charter of Moray by Eobert I., in 1321 ; Shaw's Moray ; Lord Karnes' Law Tracts. 
This Charter of Moray is among Haddington's Coll. ; Charter of David II. (1342) to Eeginald, the son 
■of Torkil, in Northern Avgyle, of 10 Davacht of Land in Kintail within Northern Argyle. 

(s) Agricultural Survey, p. 3. (t) lb., p. 1. (m) lb., p. 3. 

(v) Langland's Map of Kintyre. 

7 19 

146 A N A C U N T [Oh. Nll.—Argyleshire. 

of Mull island. All these measurements, except the length, of Kintyre were 
from Ainslie's large map of Scotland. 

The whole continent and isles in this shire contain in parishes about 3780 
square miles, or 2,419,200 acres. 

The whole population of Argyleshire in 1811 was 85,585 souls. 
Do. do. 1821 was 97,316 „ 

Do. do. 1755 was 45,043 „ 

Do. do. 1795 was 48,985 „ 

§ III. Oe its Natural Objects. — This may be said to be a mountainous 
country, yet the mountains can only be considered as molehills when compared 
with the stupendous mountains in South America. There are some rivers and 
many lakes, yet what are they compared with the vast rivers and great lakes of 
the same lands. But the narrowness of the country does not admit of such 
mountains and hills, such rivers and lakes as America contains. 

The climate is various in different parts of the country, yet upon the whole 
is leather moist and variable, and the transitions from hot to cold, and from dry 
to wet, are frequently sudden and often instantaneous. The snow does not lie 
long, and the frost is seldom severe. 

It does not even abound in Minerals, though it is acknowledged that they 
have not been explored. Lead ore has been discovered in various parts of this 
shire. A copper mine has been found in Kilmartin, though it has not been so 
much or so skilfully wrought as to ascertain its real value. Sea coal certainly 
exists, but though wrought it has not been raised to any great extent, and is 
not of the best quality. They have abundance of peats and turf for their com- 
mon fuel. Limestone not only exists, but is more valuable than marble, as it 
is more easily wrought and abounds in most parts of the county. There is 
stone of various kinds — freestone, granite, and slates, whereof about five 
millions have for some time been sold annually at 25s. the thousand ; monu- 
mental stone, marble, gray marble, etc. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — The earliest antiquities are probably the singular 
gray stones, which, in their present appearance and systematic forms, are sup- 
posed to be the works of Druid hands, and the objects of Druid worship or 
sepulture. On a hill above the upper end of Loch Craigness there is a remark- 
able collection of such stones. There is one standing stone thirteen feet high, 
with several circles of stones and a small mound and a collection of stones 
placed around the foot of it, all which appear in a systematic group. There is 
another place of worship, or of sepulchre, which is called Kilmichael, on the 
road between Rhivnahyrin and Clachan Kilcolmanell in Kintyre. This work 

Sect. IV.— Of its A ntiquities.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 147 

consists of a large circle with a transverse dike of stone and an artificial erection 
of stones within it, the whole structure consisting of large loose gray stones. 
On the roadside between Rhivnahyrin and Clachan in Kintyre there are 
various stones, one whereof is about ten feet high. There is a heap of stones 
which is called Carnmor, the large cairn, and there are five other stones standing 
at some distance from each other, which seem to have been displaced from their 
original position. Near Coshendun, in a field called Ballekkoch, there are nine 
such stones that are disposed in two different clusters Near Lochbuy, in Mull, 
there is a circle of eight gray stones. On the road between Rosschelin and 
Kilmartin, on the continent of Argyle, there is a cairn which is surrounded by 
seven gray stones. Near Kilmartin there is a large cairn with a pile of large 
stones on its summit, and with two large stones lying at the foot of it. There 
is in the same district a sculptured pillar or cross, which was erected in 1489 
to Lauchlan MacFingone and his son John, abbot of Hy. This monument 
throws some light upon other sculptured stones in various parts of Scotland, 
which, though sculptured, have no similar inscription. There is indeed a 
similar stone, in the form of a cross, in Argyle, which is called the cross of 
KilarOir. On the front there is a deer hunt, and on the reverse Christ crucified. 
There is this inscription: "Hie est Crux Alexandri Macmule." At Kilavour 
there is another sepulchral pillar with sculptures and this inscription: "Hie 
jacet John Carpentarie, et fratres Molmore, et Eristinus-Faber." 

The rude gray stones, the circles of similar stones, the cairns, as they are 
the remains, so do they demonstrate the early inhabitancy of the countries and 
isles wherein they remain, unremoved by ignorance and uninjured by cultiva- 
tion. Among other inscriptions there is the following one, which reveals 
what is hitherto unknown to history : " Llyma Dheehrenad-y-bethan yn Ih 
Colymkil " (w). 

There appear everywhere in those islands and countries within Argyle 
numerous chapels in ruins, which denote much more modern times and a very 
different religion. Near Loch Etive are the ruins of Berigonium, and there is 
Dunstaffnage Castle. Near Oban may be seen Dunolly Castle. 

It is a point of antiquity to trace when the numerous family of the Camp- 
bells began to predominate in Argyle. Among my collection there remains 
" An Indenture between John, Lord of the Isles, and John of Lorn, Lord of 
Argyle," in 1354. It appears to have been copied from the original on parch- 
ment in the public archives, by the late John Davison, Writer to the Signet. 
The above date corresponds with the twenty-sixth of the reign of David II. 

(w) The monument of Anna and her daughter, who was prioress of lona. 

148 AnACOOUNT [Oh. Yll.—ArgylesMre. 

It speaks of ounces of land : Unciatis terrae. It narrates of ships of 12 or 16 
oars. This indenture is sealed with the seals of the two contracting parties, 
without witnesses. But it does not mention any Campbell. The Campbells, 
however, appeared as respectable men as early as the reign of Kobert Bruce ; 
and Sir Nigel or Neil married Mary, the sister of that illustrious prince. As 
early as this reign the Campbells obtained from the King's favour with whom 
they had fought, grants of lands in Lorn and Argyle. Sir Duncan Campbell 
of Lochow was created a Lord of Parliament in 1445. His grandson Colin 
was made Earl of Argyle in 1457. Archibald, the Eighth Earl, was created a 
Marquis in 1641 ; and Archibald, the Tenth Earl, was created Duke of Argyle 
in 1701, the thirteenth of William (u). 

Such, then, are the most prominent antiquities of Argyle. The arrival of the 
Scots from Ireland, under the conduct of Fergus, the son of Ere, in 503 a.d., 
and settlement in Argyle, is perhaps the most important of all those antiquities. 

In that curious document, in the Appendix No. I. of Innes's Critical Essay, 
" De Situ Albaniae," Argyle is always called Arregathel, " et dicitur quasi 
Margo Scotorum, vel Hybernen." 

S V. Of its Establishment as a Shire. — There was no shire in this Celtic 
country in 1305 a.d. (v) 

The Vicecomitatus is mentioned in the foundation charter of the church of 
Kilmun in 1442 (w). There is some reason to conclude that there may have 
been in this wild region a Sheriffdom created as early as the reign of Robert 
Bruce (x). 

Admit the fact to be that the policy of a Sheriffdom was in this wild country 
established by Robert Bruce, could a Sheriff execute process in such a country 
in such an age ? In the curious contract between John of the Isles and John 
of Lorn, there is not a single trace of a SheriflFdom in Argyle. In the progress 
of abuse, rather than of policy, the Sheriffship of Argyleshire became hereditary 
in the chief of the Campbells, whose power and whose influence absorbed all 
meaner authorities and rights ; and in the meantime it was not recollected that 
privileged officers are no less an interruption of justice than privileged places. 

The fact is, that when the hereditary jurisdictions were to be abolished in 
1748, and a reasonable compensation to be granted to the proprietors, Archi- 
bald Duke of Argyle claimed £5000 for the Sherifiship of Argyle and £15,000 
for the office of Justice General over the shire of Argyle and over all the isles 

(v) Eyley's Placita, 505. (w) Sir Lewis Stewart's Coll., p. 84. 

(x) MS. Harl., Brit. Mus., No. 4609, p. 18. Vicecomitatus Ergadie is mentioned in a roll of charters 
of Eobert I. (m) Caledonia, I,, 598 ; Orawf. Peerage, 16-22 ; Dougl. Peerage, p. 41. 

Sect. VI.— Of its Civil Histonj.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 149^ 

of Scotland, except the Orkney and Zetland isles and Arran. The Court of 
Session reported on this claim as follows : The jurisdiction claimed by Archibald 
Duke of Argyle may be rated as under : " The heritable Sheriffship of the 
Shire of Argyle, at the sum of five thousand pounds sterling ; the heritable 
jurisdiction of Justice General of the Shire of Argyle and the whole islands of 
Scotland (excepting Orkney, Shetland, and Arran), at the sum of fifteen thou- 
sand pounds sterling ; and the heritable office of the lordship and jurisdiction 
of the regality of Campbell, at one thousand pounds sterling." 

It is apparent that in 1503 an Act of Parliament was made, directing that 
Justices and Sheriffs be made for the isles {y), both north and south ; and at 
the same time justice airs were to be held and administered in Argyle, Lorn, 
Bute, and those parts shall sit at Perth at the King's pleasure. 

After all those abolitions, Archibald Campbell of Stonefield was appointed 
Deputy Sheriff of Argyle and Bute shires, at the yearly salary of £250 sterling. 

§ VI. Of its Civil History. — The stone monuments which still remain 
within Argyleshire evince that the various districts of this county were settled 
by a Gaelic people during the earliest times. 

The next great fact in the civil history of Argyle is the arrival and settle - 
ment of the Scots from Ireland in Kintyre during 505 a.d. They were con- 
ducted by Lorn, Fergus, and Angus. There is some reason to believe that 
their followers were but few. Kintyre was the portion of Fergus ; Lorn 
possessed Lorn ; and Angus is supposed on good grounds to have colonized 
Islay-isle. Ere long they were joined by other settlers from Ireland. Those 
colonists were no doubt for some time occupied with the necessary but unin- 
teresting labours of settlement. They obviously formed their several settle- 
ments according to the anarchical customs of their original country. The 
history of those Scoto-Irish colonists would evince that by acting on this notion 
of anarchy during a rude age, their descendants were frequently involved in 
the domestic contests of disputed succession, and often in the sad miseries of 
civil war. 

Whether they acquired their settlements by force or favour has been often 
disputed by obstinate theorists. The poetic notion of conquest cannot possibly 
be true, and probability and fact merely justify the more reasonable position of 
allowed colonization. The intelligent Bede, who lived in the North of England, 
adds the confirmation of his judgment to the simple notion of quiet settle- 
ment (z). 

In the effluxion of time there does not occur a period of history which is so 

(y) Murray of Glendook, ch. 59. 

150 An ACCOUNT [Gh. Yll.—Argyleshire. 

perplexed and obscure as the annals of the Scoto-Irish Kings and their 
analogous tribes, from their settlements in 505 A. D. to their ascendancy in 843. 
The original cause of this opaque obscurity is the want of contemporaneous 
writing. An ample field was thus left open for the inveterate conflicts of 
national emulation, ignorance and ingenuity, sophistry and system, which all 
contributed by their various effects to make what was dark still more obscure. 

The series and genealogy of the Scoto-Irish Kings have been involved in 
peculiar perplexity by the contests of the Scottish and Irish antiquaries for 
pre-eminence as well as in fame. A Cimmerian darkness overspread the annals 
of a people who were too restless for the elaboration of study, and too rude 
for the repose of writing. 

From the attentive consideration of various chronicles, arid from an accurate 
examination of other documents, a Table has been compiled, both genealogical 
and chronological, of the Scoto-Irish Kings, during that dark period of their 
distracted annals, which I trust will be found to be more satisfactory than any 
genuine series that has yet been submitted to the inquisitive world ; and I now 
lay the substance of it before the reader, with the hope of clearing the dark 
and settling the doubtful as to the early sovereigns of a country which has 
been aptly called the cradle of the Scottish monarchy (a). 


Showing the several descendants of Erc, the common progenitor of those 
princes who held the Scoto-Irish sceptre from 503-843; and exhibiting the 
three distinct races who ruled over Argyle and its isles during that long period. 

(z) Bede, Lib. I., cap. 1 ; Caledonia, I., 273-75. (a) lb., p. 276-7. 

Sect. YI.—A Genealogical Table.] Op NOETH-BEITAIN. 

Eec, the son of Eocha, died in 474 a.d. 


LoEN, the Son of Ere, reigned 
contemporaneously with Fer- 
gus ; and his progeny furnished 
the nine following Kings to the 
Scoto-Irish race. 

9. Fbeohae, the son of Fogan, 
and the 6th in descent from 
Lorn, and reigned from 621- 
637 A.D. 

12. Dttngal began to reign with 
Conal, and died (?) 642 a.d. 

15. Feechae-fada, the grandson 

of Ferchar First, reigned 

from 681 to 702 a.d. 


17. Ainbhcealaoh, the son of 
Ferchar-fada, reigned from 
705 to 706 A.D. 

18. Selvach, the son of Ferchar- 

fada, reigned from 706 to 
729 A.D. 

21. MuBEDACH, the son of Aimbh- 

cealach, reigned from 733 to 
736 A.D. 

22. EodAN, the Son of Mure 
dach, reigned from 736 to 
739 A.D. 

25. Selvaoh II., the son of Be- 
gan, reigned from 772 to 
to 796 A.D. 

27. DtJN&AL, the son of Selvach 
II., reigned from 826 to 

Angus, the son of Ere. 

1. Fbegus, the son of Ere, reigned 

from 503 to 506 a.d. 

2. DoMANGAET, the son of Fergus, 

reigned from 506-511 a.d. 

3. CoNiGAL, the son of Doman- 
gart, reigned from 511 to 
535 A.D. 

5, Conal, the son of Conigal, 

reigned from 567 to 571 A.D. 

11. OoNAL II., the grandson of 
Conal I., reigned from 642 
to 652 A.D. 

13. DoNALD-DuiN, the son of 
Conal II., reigned from 652 
to 665 A.D. 


14. Maolduin, the son of Conal 

II., reigned from 665 to 
681 A.D. 

19. DuNCHA-BEG, the son of 

Domnal, the grandson of 
Conal, and the great-grand- 
son of Maolduin, reigned 
over Oeantir and Argail, 
while Selvach reigned over 
Lorn, and died 720 a.d. 

4. Gaueon, the son of Doman- 
gart, reigned from 535 to 
557 A.D. 

6. AiDAN, the son of Gowdan, 
reigned from 571 to 605 A.D. 

7. EoOHAB-Bui, the son of Aidan, 

reigned from 605 to 621 A.D. 

8. Kenneth-Obae, the son of 
Eocha-bui, reigned 3 months 
in 511 A.D. 

10. DONAL-BEBAC, the son of 
Eocha-bui, reigned from 637 
to 642 A.D. 

16. EooHA-EiNEVAii, the son of 
Domangart, and the grandson 
of Donalbreac, reigned from 
702 to 705 A.D. 

20. EooHA III., the son of Eocha- 

rineval, reigned from 720 to 

733 A.D. 


23. AoDH-PiN, the son of Eocha 
III., reigned from 739 to 769 


24. Feegus II., the son of Aodh- 
fln, reigned from 769 to 772 


26. Eocha-Amini, the son of 

Aodh-fln, reigned from 796 

to 826 A.D. 

28. Alpin, the son of Eoch-anni- 
nime, reigned from 833 to 
836 A.D. 


29. Kenneth, the son of Alpin, 

reigned over the Scots from 
836 to 843 A.D. 

152 An ACCOUNT [Oh. YlI.—ArgylesMre. 

Such then were the Scoto-Irish Kings who reigned for so many years over 
Argyle, and the Isles thereto belonging. The sagacity of Alpin seems to have 
perceived the weakness of his neighbours beyond the Clyde, and his ambition 
prompted a desire to reign over a richer people and more extensive domains 
than his own. In 836, he set sail from Kintyre, and landed on the coast of 
Kyle, within the bay of Ayr. According to the odious practice of a savage age, 
he wasted the country between the rivers Ayr and Doon, before the inhabitants 
and their chiefs could meet him in conflict. Following the course of those 
rivers he penetrated to the ridge which separates Kyle from Galloway, and 
here he met his appropriate fate, during a violent struggle, from the obscure 
weapon of an enraged chief, near the site of Laicht- Castle, which derived its 
singular name from the memorial stone of Alpin, which was known as the 
gravestone of the last of the Scoto-Irish Kings, during three centuries and a 

Alpin was succeeded by his son Kenneth, in 836 a.d. He was distinguished 
by the Gaelic bard as Kenneth, the hardy. His several invasions on the south 
-of the Clyde evinced that he severely avenged the fate of his father. He seems 
to have depressed to their proper level the races of Argyle and Lorn, which 
were already weakened by the infelicities of civil war. Nor was he inattentive 
to the conflicts among the Picts beyond Drumalban. While oppressed by their 
weakness, the natural efiects of their civil dissentions, the Pictish people were 
at this period harrassed by the invasion of the Danish Vikinger ; and the 
demise of Uven, the Pictish King, and the relation of Kenneth, after a dis- 
tracted reign of three years, opened the succession to the clear sighted Kenneth : 
and the enterprise and power of the Scoto-Irish King wrested the ancient 
sceptre from the weak hand of Wied, the last of the Pictish sovereigns, in 843, 
after Kenneth had reigned over the Scots during seven active years. 

Such is the genuine history of the Scoto-Irish Kings of Kintyre, Argyle, and 
Lorn. It is a sort of historical miniature of the annals of their Irish progenitors, 
whose Kingdom of Ireland was subdivided into a Pentarchy, which left four 
provincial Kings to dispute the authority of the fifth. The policy and power of 
Kenneth, however, united the Picts and Scots into one kingdom, at the 
felicitous epoch of 843 a.d. ; and Argyle, and its peninsulas, and its isles, fell 
back into a subordinate State, within the United Kingdom of Scotland. 

During the subsequent ages, the surrounding seas were invested, the lands 
were plundered, the islands were settled, and the promontories were named by 
the Danish Yikinger. Some of the principal families of those countries and 

(b) Caledonia, I., 302-3. 

Sect. YI.~Of its Civil History.] OrNOETH-BRITAIN. 153 

islands owe their origin and respectabilities to those Danish rovers. The 
inhabitants were a mixed race, and became turbulent from nature, and unruly 
from indulgence. 

Alexander II., in proceeding to enforce submission to his government, and 
submission to his laws, died in the island of Kerrara, on the 8th of July 1249. 
The place where his Pavilion was erected still bears the name of Dalree, the 
King's place, from that unfortunate event. 

Robert Bruce, flying from the English rulers of the land, was attacked in 
1306 by the Lord of Lorn, and narrowly escaping was hospitably received by 
Angus of the Isles ; and easily passed to Rathlin on the Irish shore ; whence 
returning in the subsequent spring, he found shelter in Arran. He soon 
became surrounded by those who approved his purpose, and wished to defend 
the independence of their common country. In 1308 he defeated the Lord of 
Lorn, and seized his castle of Dunstaffnage. Before the close of 1315, he com- 
pletely subdued the Western isles. The battle of Bannockburn confirmed the 
independence of his kingdom. 

But the demise of this eminent statesman and warrior, with the succession 
of his infant son, created new troubles. The Stewart of Scotland avowing him- 
self, after being concealed in Bute during the misfortunes of his country, 
and being joined by Campbell of Lochawe, took the Castle of Dunoon from the 
enemies of his country. Edward Baliol, during the moment of his success and 
his hopes, granted to John Lord of the Isles, Mull, Skye, Isla, and Gigha, as 
well as Kin tyre and Knapdale, during the year 1335. 

In consequence of that grant, probably was made in 1354 that singular con- 
vention between John of the Isles, and John of Lorn, Lord of Argyle, whereby 
like independent characters, they made a partition of several islands and 
castles. Nothing could be a clearer proof than this convention of the weakness 
of David Second's government. 

In 1455 the Earl of Boss overrun Argyle and Arran. 

James V. attended by the earls of Argyle, Huntly, and Arran, visited the 
Hebrides, and held courts of Justice therein, during the year .1536. 

The Earl of Argyle, the chief of the Covenanters, seized the isle of Arran 
during the year 1639. 

Montrose, being joined by the laird of Clanranald, suddenly invaded Argyle's 
country, who, with difiiculty, made his escape from Inveraray, in 1644. 

In 1646, Argyle and Leslie pursued Macdonald of the Isles ; and in 1648, 
took the Castle of Dunvegan. 

The Earl of Argyle landing at Tobermory, passed over with his friends to 
Kintyre in 1685, but, being surrounded by his enemies, imprudently placed his 

7 20 

154 AnACCOUNT [Oh. Yll.—Argyleshire. 

ammunition and arms in Alangreg, which almost immediately surrendered to 
those whom he wished to avoid ; and being afterwards taken, was executed as 
an example. 

In 1692, MacDonald of Glencoe, not having taken the oaths on the appointed 
day. Captain Campbell of Glenlyon was sent with a company of the Argyleshire 
regiment to exterminate the clan. After being kindly entertained they 
treacherously arose in the night to massacre the friends who received them as 
friends. King William's government was so completely disgraced by this act 
of cruelty as well as of treachery, that King William never regained his 
popularity in Scotland. 

In 1715 and 1745 parties of Argyleshire men joined the King's armies, in 
support of law and government. 

This extensive country constituted nearly the whole of the Scottish King- 
dom, from the reign of Fergus the son of Ere, till the Picts were subdued, 
rather than annihilated, by Kenneth the son of Alpine ; that is, from 503 to 
843 A.D., and is the only part of the Kingdom wherein the aboriginal Scots 
retained a footing (c). 

§ VII. Of its Agriculture, Manufacture, and trade. — Supposing Argyle- 
shire to contain 1,367,500 Scots acres, the whole is supposed to consist of 
1,213,580 acres of heath, hill and pasture. 
100,000 Do. arable ground. 
30,000 Do. wood. 
24,000 Do. fresh water lakes and rivers. 

1,367,500 Scots acres. 
Of the climate of Argyleshire it may be said, that the lower and more 
southern parts differ greatly from that of the higher and more northern parts 
of it. The lower districts are everywhere so much surrounded and indented 
by the sea, that the atmosphere is mild and climate temperate. Frost seldom 
continues long, and snow rarely lies above two or three days at a time upon 
the sea coast. In Kintyre the frost is seldom so intense as to sink the ther- 
mometer 6 degrees below Fahrenheit's freezing point. But the upper and 
northern parts being far above the level of the sea, and bordering on the 
Grampian hills, are subject to a severer atmosphere. These lofty mountains are 
generally covered with snow for a great part of winter, by which the air is 
chilled to a considerable distance. The valleys, however, among those moun- 
tains are not, even in that inclement season, so cold or uncomfortable as might 

(c). Eev. Dr. Smith's Agriculfc. Survey, p. 3. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, ^c] OrNORTH-BEITAIN. 155 

be expected from the general aspect of the country. Most of them are low and 
winding, and derive a great deal of shelter from the surrounding mountains. 
Most of them also look to the south or south-east, and as the wind blows for 
the greatest part of the year from the west and north-west, these high moun- 
tains, which generally stand in that direction, serve as a sort of screen to ward 
off its blasts. 

The climate in different parts of the country is no less different in respect of 
wet and dry. The clouds wafted from the Atlantic Ocean and breaking on the 
tops of the highest mountains occasion much more frequent rains in the upper 
than in the lower parts along the sea coast. Of these rains we are apt to 
complain, without considering that our mountains, which are now covered with 
grass and verdure, would, without them be barren and unfruitful. Mildews, 
blights and hoarfrosts, which are so hurtful to crops, in some other parts of 
Scotland, are seldom known to do much harm. 

The climate, however, is upon the whole rather moist and extremely variable, 
and the transitions from hot to cold, and from dry to wet, are frequently 
sudden and almost instantaneous. The sudden checks thus given to perspiration 
have rendered comsumptive complaints and rheumatisms rather common, since 
linens have been used instead of flannels, which are certainly better adapted to 
such a climate. 

The general complexion of the people, however, is remarkably healthy, and 
instances of extreme old age are not unfrequent. 

Of the soil and surface, it might be observed that the general appearance of 
this country is rough and mountainous, especially in the more northern parts of 
it, where, as already observed, it borders on the Grampian hills. There alps 
piled on alps hide their heads in clouds, and the face of nature wears a wild 
magnificence. Even along the sea coast where the land is generally lower and 
more level, there are some mountains of stupendous size and height. Cruachan 
washed on one side by the sea, and on the other by Lochawe, is 3399 [3689] 
feet above the level of the sea, and about twenty miles in circumference. The 
most mountainous parts of the country are interspersed with beautiful and 
fertile vales, along the margin of whose streams there is generally a considerable 
quantity of arable and improvable ground, though rarely in so great a propor- 
tion as along the sea coast. 

The soil of the arable ground is extremely various. The most common along 
the sea and rivers is a light loam mixed with sand or gravel, on a clay or 
gravelly bottom. On the sides of the hills the most common is a light gravelly 
soil on a till bottom. Sometimes the soil of the lower grounds has a mixture 
of clay and sometimes of moss ; and not seldom it is a sort of black mossy earth 

156 AnACOOUNT [Oh. Yll.—Argyleshire. 

lying on till. As our mountains consist chiefly of whinstone, the lower grounds 
must of course contain a considerable proportion of the particles of that stone, 
which, since the creation, have been continually washed down from the higher 
to the lower grounds. The greatest defect of the soil in general is the want of 
a due proportion of clay, to give it the proper degree of tenacity for supporting 
corn crops. This is commonly the case in all hanging grounds and mountainous 
countries. The clay washes away, while the gravel and sand remain behind. 

The soil of the pasture grounds is no less diversified. Some of it is dry and 
kindly, and produces a sweet and fine pile of grass ; some of it is wet and 
spongy, and covered with coarse grasses and rushes ; some of the flat grounds 
are marshy and some mossy, and a very great proportion, both of what is flat 
and hilly is covered with heath. The tops of the highest hills are generally 
bare and barren rocks, the unenvied abode of the ptarmigan, scared only by 
the scream of the eagle. 

Of water it has been already observed that this county is everywhere 
indented with arms of the sea. Some of these run from the one extremity of 
it almost to the other. This form gives it such immense advantages of com- 
merce, of fishing, manure, and kelp, as may some day be of more avail to it 
than all its extent of territory. The value of the herrings which were caught 
in Lochfyne in 1794 and 1795, has been computed at more than £40,000 each 
year ; but such great captures are very uncommon. The quantity of kelp which 
was made on the shores of the continent is not so great as that on the shores 
of the islands, from the great quantities of fresh water which mixes with the 
salt. About 600 tons are supposed to be made annually along the continent 
of this shire. Some of the best kelp has been sold this year, 1797-8, as high as 
£9 per ton. 

The streams of water are numerous, and all of them abound with trout and 
salmon ; but those fishings have declined of late. If manufactures should be 
introduced into the shire many of those streams may be very useful for turning 
machinery. Almost all of them are capable of being turned to great account 
in watering land, and cannot fail to be highly prized, when that valuable 
improvement shall be generally introduced. Pearl shell or other mussels abound 
in many of them, but this is seldom of much account. The fresh water lakes 
in this county are numerous, but few of them are of considerable extent. 
Lochawe, the largest of them, is computed to be 24 miles long, and somewhat 
less than one mile broad, a beautiful sheet of water this, which is adorned with 
isles and ancient castles, and its banks with cornfields and hanging woods. The 
only parish in this shire which has no sea shore has this lake running through 
it. It has also another lake three miles long. Lochawe alone may be nearly 

Sect. YU.-^Of its Affriculture, ^c] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 157 

equal in extent to all the other lakes in this shire. A few of the smaller lakes 
have not yet been planted with fishes, though it would be a cheap improvement 
both for the rich and poor. 

When lakes are shallow and easily drained, the sediment at their bottom is 
found to make excellent arable land. A valuable improvement of this kind 
was cheaply obtained some years ago at Loch Sanish in the neighbourhood of 
Campbeltown. Another is nearly effected at Lochandu'el in the Parish of 
Kilcalmonel, and those who have property on the banks of Lochawe talk of 
deepening the outlet from it, so as to lower its surface and enlarge its shores. 
Lochawe like Lochness, and some other lakes in Scotland, very seldom freezes. 
It may be proper to observe here that some lakes may be converted to reservoirs 
for watering the land. 

What minerals may be in this shire is a point which has not yet been 
sufficiently settled. A lead mine has long been wrought on the border of it, 
near Tyndrum, on Lord Breadalbane's estate, but has now been discontinued, 
and another at Strontian. On this 200 people are at work; and the proprietor, 
Sir James Riddel, gets one eigthth of the products. Some appearances of lead ore 
have also been discovered in Glenurchy in Appin, and in the Parish of Kilmallie. 
A lead mine has also been wrought in Islay. A copper mine has been found 
in the Parish of Kilmartin, but not so far wrought as to ascertain its value. 

It is said that the natives of this shire were in use some ages ago to make 
their own iron, and heaps of iron dross or slag are found in many places among 
the mountains, which were then covered with woods, and are said to be the 
remains of their foundries. But no iron ore is now obtained of so good a 
quality as to merit any attention, a circumstance this which is rather unfavour- 
able to the said tradition. 

Coals are found near Campbeltown, but they have not yet been wrought to 
any greater extent than what serves this town, which consumes yearly about 
4,500 tons. The coal is rather of an inferior quality, but it is said that better 
coal might be obtained by digging deeper. There is also the appearance of 
coal in Kinlochaline in Morven, and also in Mull. It is probable that in other 
parts of the shire coal may be found if it were properly searched for. There 
are coals probably in Derichulin, in Glenurchy. 

Freestone of various colours and qualities is found in Kintyre. There are 
many other kinds of stone which admit of being hewn and dressed. The most 
beautiful of them is that whereof the Duke of Argyll's Castle at Inveraray was 
built, the lapis ollaris, which is said to be the same whereof the King of Denmark's 
Palace at Copenhagen was built. A stone which is somewhat similar in colour, 

158 An ACCOUNT [Oh. Yll.—Argtjleshire. 

but harder and coarser in the grain, is found in Glenurchy, and seems to be the 
same with that of which the old crosses and monuments in Icolmkill were 
formed. On this kind of stone time and the weather seem to make little or no 
impression, so that it is the fittest of any for monuments. 

Esdale and its neighbourhood abound in slates, of which about five millions 
have for some time been sold yearly at 25s. the thousand. This work employs 
commonly about 300 men, whose wages amount to above £4000 a year. A 
slate quarry is also wrought in Ballachulish in Appin, and there are slate rocks 
on the estate of Mr. Campbell of Eoss, in N. Knapdale, but it is not yet 

A kind of granite which takes such a polish as to resemble spotted marble is 
found near Inveraray. A marble quarry has been wrought at Ardmaddy in 
Lorn, but the colour being a dull red streaked with white rendered it less 
marketable than it might otherwise have been, and occasioned it being given 
up with some loss. A kind of gray marble is also found in Lochiel's estate in 
Kilmallie. Some more may perhaps be discovered in other parts of this shire, 
though none of them probably will be found so valuable as the beautiful marble 
of the Isle of Tiree. 

Limestone, which is of more value than marble because easier worked, 
abounds in most parts of this county, insomuch that we may be said to have 
not quarries, but almost mountains of it. 

In our progress we are now arrived at the practice of tillage. Towards the 
end of the last century the wretched practice of former times began to give 
way to better usages. The late Duke of Argyle took the lead in showing 
better modes, and introducing English farmers into his estates in Kintyre. 
The farmers can now plough, who formerly knew not how to use this instru- 
ment of husbandry. They now begin to use two horses instead of four, and a 
very few farmers have begun to plough without a driver : yet, in some parts 
of the shire, the old mode of ploughing with four horses abreast, and the 
driver walking backwards before them is still continued. But this awkward 
mode is going fast out of fashion. Many of the old ridges were in the 
serpentine form, but this taste is changed, and new ones are made straight, 
though the direction of the old cannot easily be altered without doing mischief. 

In Lorn, after the ground has been ploughed, it is customary to run over the 
whole with the spade, and to break the clods so minutely that the field has 
much the appearance of having been delved. Any ground that is not sufficiently 
pulverized requires a liberal use of the spade, and for that use it will always 
make a liberal return. 

Sect.YlI.— Of its Agriculture, ^G.] Of NOETH-BEIT AIN. 159 

In this shire fallowing is scarcely known. The farmer cannot be easily 
reconciled to the thoughts of having a field a whole year without any grass or 
corn, though it would return him double the next year, and moreover save a 
year's seed. We have, indeed, comparatively speaking, but little of strong 
clay soil that requires to be pulverized, and if green crops were raised in more 
abundance, and managed by the horse-hoeing husbandry, the light lands might 
be cleaned and a profitable crop obtained at the same time. When a cleansing 
and non-exhausting crop will stand, instead of a fallow, it is no doubt to be 
preferred, but on what there are of stiff and heavy soils, especially in Kintyre 
and in Craignish, fallowing might be of service, and the more so if there be a 
beginning of wheat husbandry, which answers best after a fallow, though it 
may do well after potatoes, and especially on clover lea. 

The purposes of fallowing are to pulverize the soil, to enrich it by exposing 
a new surface repeatedly to the influence of the sun and air, and to clear the 
land of the roots and seeds of weeds. Three ploughings, of which one should 
be across, and as many bar rowings, well timed and judiciously performed, will 
make an incredible change upon a field that requires to be fallowed. To clear 
it of root-weeds, the work should be performed when the weather is so dry as 
to wither them, but seed-weeds or annuals are sooner destroyed in moist 
weather, that will make them vegetate quickly ; after which they should be 
ploughed down and the operation repeated till the field is cleared of them. 
Weeds at all events must be destroyed before any good crop can be expected, 
and when this is not done by green crops, it ought certainly to be done by 
fallowing. If the farmers could be persuaded to make some few and small 
experiments of this improvement, upon very stiff or foul grounds, they would 
see the advantage of it. But on light lands not greatly infested with root- 
weeds, any green or meliorating crop, well drilled, and hoed, will be of more 
advantage. The state of nurseries and garden grounds constantly in cultivation 
and constantly productive, seems to indicate that if land has every other justice 
done it, fallowing may generally be dispensed with, if green crops are put in 
drills, the interstices horsehoed, and the weeds that escaped the plough picked 
out by the hand. 

Of the importance of the rotation of crops there cannot possibly be a doubt. 
Lands properly managed in this respect, will in a number of years produce the 
double of what they would otherwise yield. Every plant seems to have food 
which is peculiar to itself, of which it will soon exhaust the ground if repeatedly 
sown on the same spot. The seldomer, therefore, that the same plant is sown 
on the same ground, the greater will be the increase. Hence, the great return 

160 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. WIl—ArgylesMre. 

of oats from new land when properly cultivated, and the great return of bear 
from land that is suitable to it, and in which it was not sown during a long 
period before. 

Besides changing the crop from white to green, it is also necessary to adopt 
each to its proper soil. Oats will answer almost on any land, but bear requires 
it should be dry and free. Beans answer best in strong soil, moist and deep ; 
pease in that which is light and dry. So that the farmer must beware of 
putting any crop in a soil that does not suit it. 

But neither agriculture, manufactures, or trade, can be carried to the best 
advantage without roads. The ways which were made through the upper 
parts of this shire under Wade, made every one sensible of the great benefits 
of roads and bridges. The landlords obtained an Act of Parliament for that end, 
which enabled them to make an assessment on the whole shire of £623 6s. 3-|d. 
which enabled them to execute the most public and necessary roads. With 
the aid of subscriptions, the same spirited persons erected bridges over the 
rivers Awe and Urchay. As wheel carriages were not much used in this shire 
when those roads were first laid out, there was not in making the roads much 
attention paid to the principle, which was dictated by the requisite plans for 
eifecting such highways. But experience has now taught the makers of such 
roads the important use both of the convenient track, and the properest material 
of such roads. Since that epoch the value of civil engineers, both for laying 
down the track and pointing out the materials, have been acknowledged and 
acted upon. 

Canals like good roads serve to lessen the expense of carriage, and to open 
the communication between one part of a country and the other, so as to 
enable the remoter parts to share in the advantages of those which are near 
the centre. Such works must therefore prove of great utility to any district. 
It is fortunate when they also yield a sufficient profit to those who are so 
public spirited as to undertake them. This has been the case of a small canal, 
which was made some years ago, by the lessee of the coal works near Campbel- 
town, who made a canal on a level to carry the coals to the town. A canal 
across the isthmus of Crinan is at present in the act of operation. The expense 
it is supposed will be about £80,000. This expense, however, was- rather 
more than the proprietors could easily advance. 

The improvement of this shire and indeed of the whole kingdom, would be 
greatly promoted by another canal between Fort- William and Inverness, 
passing through the Lochs Lochy, Oich, and Ness. This would facilitate the 
navigation from Ireland and the West of Scotland to Germany, Norway, and 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, ^c] OpNORTH-BEITAIN. 161 

the Baltic ; and it is hoped, said Doctor Smith, the writer of the View of the 
Agriculture of Argyle, that so great a national advantage will not be long 
neglected, especially as nature has done so much, that little remains to be done 
by the hands of men. This canal has been actually made, since the foregoing 
passage was written, upon the estimate of Mr. Knox. The expense of a canal, 
in 22 miles, to be 70 feet wide, and 10 deep, he computed at £164,000. The 
whole expense of making the Caledonian Canal has cost the nation nearly a 
million of sterling money. 

Manufactures have made but little progress in this shire. What we spare 
of our flax is indeed sold in yarn, but the wool is mostly exported in its 
unwrought state. About the year 1778, a woollen manufactory was established 
near Inveraray. This was much encouraged by the county gentlemen, yet has 
it not prospered so well as was to have been expected. Sometimes the want of 
conduct, the want of capital, attention, or exertion in successive managers or 
undertakers, have frustrated the just expectations of the patron and the public : 
yet, even now about 600 stones of wool are yearly wrought here, chiefly into 

In some parts of the county the poor have of late begun to buy parcels of 
wool, which they spin and sell in yarn to dealers or at the county fairs. This 
species of industry ought to be greatly encouraged. It is the first step, 
towards a general introduction of the woollen manufactures. 

The advantages that might be derived from raising a manufactory of flax 
and hemp have already been considered. A bleachfield at Campbeltown, and 
tanneries at Oban, have for some time been established, which have saved a 
great deal of money that used to be sent out of the shire for leather. A salt 
work is not only much wanted in that part of the shire, but is indispensably 
necessary to its amelioration. Yet this can never happen while the importation 
of rock salt is prohibited. We have lived to see an end put to almost all 
prohibitions, and the inutility of much speaking and writing on such topics. 
A revision of the salt laws was called for, such a revision was made, and the 
salt tax removed. There were caught on the shores of Argyle and elsewhere 
among the Hebrides, in some years from £40,000 to £50,000 worth of fish. 
Thus they add to the national riches, and merit the national encouragement. 
As a seminary for seamen, this business deserves still more to be cherished by 
the State. If it were, the number of sailors and the quantity of fish caught 
on this coast, and along the shores of the Highlands and isles, would probably 
be double what it is at present (d). 

(d) By the 26 Geo. III., a bounty of Is. p. barrel, which was afterwards raised to 2s. was allowed, for 
«very barrel which was caught by boats. 

7 21 

162 An ACCOUNT [Ch. YlL—ArgylesMre. 

Scarcity of timber, the want of more comfortable houses and better imple- 
ments of husbandry, are all of them circumstances which are unfavourable to 
improvements, but the tendency to better them that already begins to appear, 
gives every reason to expect speedy improvements. 

Upon the whole, the principal improvements that promise to promote the 
best interests of this shire are such as have been already specified, especially 
the enclosing and draining of land, the introduction of green crops, and of a 
proper rotation ; the melioration of waste lands, planting and watering pasture 
and meadows, building more convenient farm houses and offices ; attending 
more to the improvement of the native breed of cattle and sheep ; as also 
granting leases of a more salutary kind, and encouraging population ; by giving 
moderate possessions to farmers, and proper accommodation to cottagers, by 
encouraging fisheries, and introducing manufactories. The greater part of this 
shire being only in the infancy of improvement, a minute detail of practices 
which are relinquished in other parts of the kingdom, where improvements 
have made greater progress, would be of very little instruction. 

§ VIII. Of its Ecclesiastical History. — Whatever may have been the 
religious state of this shire in former ages, the Reformation caused a consider- 
able change in its ecclesiastical form during more recent times. 

Argyle now comprehends the 6th Synod, which is distributed into five 
Presbyteries ; being the Inveraray Presbytery, containing six parishes ; Dunoon 
Presbytery, consisting of eight parishes ; Kintyre Presbytery, comprehending 
eleven parishes ; Lorn Presbytery, consisting of seven parishes ; and the 
Presbytery of Mull, which contains six parishes; together with the parcels of 
two other parishes ; a piece of Kilmallie in the Presbytery of Abertarfi*, and 
a part of the small isles in the Presbytery of Skye. [Chalmers ends thus 
abruptly with a further brief reference to a " Tabular State," never compiled, 
for further information.] 

Seci.L— Of its Name.] OpNOBTH-BEITAIN. 163 



§ I. Of its Name. — Perth, in its literal signification in the language of the 
original Britons who settled this country, means Eubus, Duncis, a bush, a 
grove (e). In more recent authorities Perth signifies a thorn bush, a hrahe, or 
thicket of brambles or of thorns (/). Perth is found as a prefix in many words. 
Perth is so called by the Gaelic people, and in their speech Perth signifies a 
stronghold, the same as Fortingal, the strength of the stranger, All may, 
indeed, learn from Caesar, that the forts or strongholds of the Britons were 
formed in the thickest woods. This clearly shows the genuine meaning of the 
whole. Perth and Berth are said to have been originally the same in com- 
position : 

Froi o bobter y berth 

To turn on each side of the bush [g). 

Bertha was of old a town, which, being destroyed by a flood in the Tay and 
the Almond, a new town was built nearly on the same site, and called St. 
Johnston (A). 

For some of those positions, there is better authority than either Boece 
or Buchanan. William the Lion granted a toft, " in novo burgo meo de 
Perth (*')." We thus see then that Perth is not a very ancient town, though a 

(e) Davis's Welsh Dicty. (/) Owen's Dicty. {g) Owen invo. Perth. 

(h) In 1220 while William resided at Perth, near the confluence of the Tay and Almond, says 
Lord Hailes, Chron. 1. 138, a sudden land flood, which was met by spring tide, surrounded and 
overwhelmed the town. William, his son, and his brother, escaped with difficulty in a skiff. William 
rebuilt the town in a place which is less exposed to such calamities, and called it St. Johnston. There 
is he adds, a traditionary report, that his infant son John perished in the inundation. This last 
circumstance seems to have been an invention of later times. For the first circumstance he quoted 
Fordun VIII. 72 ; for the second, Boece VIII. 178, and Buchanan CVII. c. 50, says, that Perth was 
so named from one Perthus, who gave the ground to the King for building a new town upon. There 
is no solidity in this derivation, says his lordship. Perth and Berth are just the same. 

(i) Chart., Oambusken., No. 198. 

164 AnACCOUNT [Ch. Ylll— Perthshire. 

stronghold may have existed on the confluence, of the Almond and Tay, during 
the early times of the British Origines. The earliest Christians of Perth con- 
secrated their church to St. John the Baptist; whom they chose as the titular 
saint of the town ; from this circumstance it received the name of St. John's 
Town. This name, Perth long continued to enjoy, as the appropriate appella- 
tion of the place. 

§ II. Its Situation and Extent. — Perthshire may be considered as lying 
in the very centre of proper Scotland, having the counties of Inverness and 
Aberdeen, on the north, Forfar and Fife on the east, Stirling, Clackmannan, 
Kinross, a part of the Forth, in the south, and Dumbarton and Argyle, on the 
west. Thus, is its situation beween the 56° 4"-56" of north latitude; and from 
3° 5" to 4° 49" of longitude west from Greenwich, and between T 2" and 1° 
37 west of the meridian of Edinburgh (_;"). 

The shire town of this county lies in 56° 24' 15" north latitude and 0° 14" 45" 
west longitude of Edinburgh. 

This large shire extends from east to west Q)7\ miles, and from south to 
north 61-|^ miles. Taking a straight line across the face of the map, the mean 
length from east to west is about 62 [72] miles, and the mean breadth from 
south to north is about 58 [60] miles {h). The whole shire occupies a base of 
2,566 square miles; or 1,642,240 [1,617,808] English acres, of which lakes 
large and little occupy about 31,294 acres, which leaves, as the real case, 

The names of the ancient or Celtic divisions of Perthshire are : Breadalbane, 
Athol, Glenshee, Strathardle, Cowrie, Strathearn, Monteith, Bannoch, Stor- 
mont and Balquhidder, and Perth proper. Since the epoch of 1743 those 
divisions, whatever jurisdiction they may have possessed, are now but little 


The whole population in 1811 was 135,093. 
The same population in 1821 was 139,050. 

§ III. Of its Natural Objects. — We may learn from Stobie's map of this 
shire the detail of the names, the numbers, and the measurements of the 
principal lakes in this county : — 

(,y) Stobie's map of this shire. 

(Jc) A measurement on Stobie's map : Dr. Eobertson, indeed in his agricultural survey is quite 
be)-ond measure, making it extend, from east to west, 77 miles, and from south to north 68 miles. 

Sect. III.— 0/ its Natural Objects.] OfNOETH-BRITAIN. 165 

Eng. acres. 

Loch Tay is 14^ miles long and almost a mile broad ; 

and thus contains - - 7,160 

Loch Eannoch 
Loch Katrine 
Loch Earn 
Loch Vennacher 
Loch Lubnaig 
Loch of Monteith 
Loch Voil 


Loch Ericht, whereof there are only in Perthshire 3,000 

Loch Lydoch, whereof there are in Perthshire 1,400 

Loch Ard contains 530 

Loch Tummel contains - 500 

Loch Lyon contains - 340 

The two greatest rivers are the Forth and Tay, which are the common 
receivers of many streams, in their rapid course to the German Ocean. The 
Forth, after flowing from Dumbartonshire, receives in its course through 
Perthshire, the Teith, the Allan, and the Devon. The Tay, rising on the 
borders of Argyle, and directing its course to the south-east, receives the Lyon, 
the Garry, the Bran, the Isla, the Almond, and the Earn. The Endrick and 
the Plane, rising in Monteith, direct their course westwards towards the 
kindred waters of Loch Lomond ; and to all those the mineral waters of 
Perthshire, whereof the Pitkeathly wells, which lie a mile to the left of the 
bridge of Earn, are the most considerable and are most frequented. 

The hills of Perthshire rise to considerable heights : Ben Lawers rises from 
the margin of Loch Tay to the elevation of 4015 [4004] feet, above thelevel of 
the sea; Benmore is 3903 [3843] above that level; Schiehallion to 8564 
[3547]; Ben Ledi is 3009 [2875] feet above the same level ; besides which, 
Ben-y-Gloe, Benchonzie, Benvoirlich, Torleum, are of very considerable ele- 
vations. But, what are all those mountains to the Himalayas of the east, or 
to the Cordilleras of the Western Indies ! 

The valuable minerals in Perthshire are but few. Coal is found in the 
southern parts of it near Culross, which town claims the merit of inventing the 
mode of extracting pitch and naphtha, from that most useful mineral. Lime- 
stone is wrought in many parts, particularly in Rannoch, Glenlyon, Breadalbane, 
and Strathearn ; while in Monteith the limestone is in the nature of marble, 
and is capable of a fine polish. The district of Stormont also enjoys several 
limestone quarries. Slates are found in many places, and particularly in the 

166 AnACCOUNT [Oh. mil— Perthshire. 

parish of Aberfoyle. The mountains of the north and west are chiefly composed 
of granite. Freestone of the best quality is abundant, and wrought to a great 
extent in Longforgan, and in TuUiallan. In Monteith there is a ridge of 
steolites or rock soap, which is three feet thick, and which extends upwards of 
four miles in length ; and a valuable clay which is similar to that wrought at 
Stourbridge in Worcestershire has been discovered in great beds near Culross. 
There is much ironstone near TuUiallan, but it is not of sufficient value to 
encourage practical smelting. A copper mine has been wrought within the 
parish of Logie on the banks of the Forth, and a lead mine was carried on for 
some years near Tyndrum, and another in Glenlyon. Some lead ore was 
recently discovered in Ben Ledi mountain near Callander. Perthshire seems 
to form the dividing boundary of nature between the South and North of 
Scotland. The former being more fitted for the raising of corn, and the latter, 
more appropriate for pasturage. It also divides the country on the North 
where firs once abounded, from that of the South where oaks and other 
deciduous trees, but no firs grew. It is also the limit of the country where coal 
has been discovered, and those districts where that mineral has not yet been 
found ; and this shire is moreover supposed to be the dividing district, which 
separates the granite and the freestone productions. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — The inhabitants of this extensive shire were 
originally Celtic, and their posterity continue to exist in its Highland divisions, 
— even down to recent times. 

The gray stones which were the memorials of the aboriginal people both of 
their worship and their sepulture, still continue here to cause the wonder of 
ignorance and the disquisitions of learning. 

The erections of lime and stone came but late into this Celtic country. There 
is reason to believe that such buildings scarcely existed here before the great 
epoch of the union of the Picts and Scots, in 843 a.d. Such intimations are 
properly repeated to explode the futility of referring historical events to periods 
of incalculable antiquity. 

Abernethy College, or round tower, is said to have been the Pictish capital, 
and a bishopric, till it was removed to St. Andrews in 840 a.d. The round 
tower is exactly similar to the high ones, and its use is full as difficult of 
explication. Culross Abbey was founded as we are told, in 1217, by Malcolm 
the Earl of Fife ; having acquired a yearly revenue of £786, when a small sum 
produced great effects. Its remains are still curious, and it has a happy 
prospect of the Forth, and of the agreeable scenes along its distinguished banks. 

The Abbey of Scone, which was founded by Alexander I. in 1114, was famous 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.] OpNOETH-BRITAIN. 167 

for being the Coronation Seat of the Scottish kings. This rehgious house was 
burned during the practices of the Reformation, by the zealots of Dundee. 
Charles II. was crowned in the present chapel, before he set out to meet his 
fate on Worcester field. The palace of recent times was begun by the adjudged 
Earl of Gowrie, and finished by Moray of Gospatric, to whom it was granted by 
James I. of Scotland, and supplied the title of Stormont to that respectable 

Doune Castle, which was built by Murdoch Duke of Albany, is one of the 
lai'gest castles in Scotland, and was garrisoned by the rebels in 1745. Hunting- 
tower was originally Ruthven Castle, but lost its name when that name was 
proscribed. Here the two towers are shown, from whence the lady leaped, as 
Pennant has recited. Elcho Castle, the seat of the Wemyss family, has for 
some time been an extensive ruin on the Tay. Castle Campbell is a most 
romantic ruin, belonging to the Argyle family. It was burnt by Montrose, 
and has hardly recovered its misfortune. It overlooks a dreadful glen, and 
used to be called Castle Gloom. The village of Dollar stands below it, and it 
is washed by the streamlet of sorrow. 

§ V. Its Establishment as a Shire. — This large county was probably 
established as a Sherifidom as early as the reign of David I. During the long 
administration of William the Lion, Roger de Mortimer was Sheriff of Perth (l). 
John de Haya was Sheriff of Perth during the reign of Alexander II (m). In 
1305 John de Inchmartin was Sheriff of Perth (n). It is in vain to pretend to 
trace such minute facts from year to year, from that period to the final abolition 
of such jurisdiction in 1747 (o). During March 1748, in pursuance of the 
appointment of Sheriff Deputies, Mr. James Erskine, an advocate, was appointed 
Sheriff of Perth at a salary of £250 a year (p). 

§ VI. Of its Civil History. — Before the existence of record, what history 
can be given of such a portion of the annals of Scotland ? Three periods of the 
Scottish history, the Roman, the Pictish, and the Scottish period, ending in 

(/) Chart. Scone, No. 41. 

(m) Chart. Aberbroth., No. 5. The same person was Sheriff here on the 30th March 1226. lb., 

(n) Eyley's Placita, 505. It should seem, from the chartulary of Scone, No. 71, that there were ■ 
during the reign of Robert I. a Sheriff of Perth, a Sheriff of Gowrie, and a Sheriff of Scone. So it 
was in the time of David II. lb., No. 89. 

(o) It is however certain, that before the reign of Robert III. Perth enjoyed the oflBce of Sheriff, 
within the burgh : and Sir Wm. Euthven was Sheriff at St. Johnston. Roberts. Index, p. 137, art. 

(p) Scots Mag., 1748, 155. 

168 An ACCOUNT [Ch. Vlll.— Perthshire. 

1097, have been already discussed (q) ; and we have seen that the epoch of 
Eecord and the introduction of Sheriffdom are the same, as such was the com- 
ment of the municipal law. 

At this period Perth was already a town in the royal demesne. It already 
had some trade, and thence yielded some revenue to the crown, from which the 
King granted a portion thereof to the monks of Scone (r). The monks of 
Dunfermline also enjoyed the King's bounty, from his port of Perth, out of the 
first ships which might arrive there (s). Malcolm IV. granted to the monks of 
May five marks as a perpetual charity, from the can of the port of Perth, which 
had been already granted, by his grandfather David I. (t). As early as this 
Sovereign the King had mills at Perth from the products whereof his bounty 
made grants, and in his time there was a fishery in the waters of Perth, a 
portion whereof, amounting to one net, he granted to the priory of St. 
Andrews (u). David I. granted to the monks of Scone ten shillings for lighting 
their church, from the firms of his mills upon the Almond river (v). 

King William granted to the monks of Cambuskenneth one full toft " in 
novo burgo meo de Perth " (tv). We may thus perceive that there was un- 
doubtedly a new town at the burgh of Perth. The same King granted a toft 
to the monks of Lindores, out of his burgh of Perth (x). In a charter of 
Richard, the bishop of St. Andrews, from 1153 to 1173, he confirmed to those 
monks of Dunfermline the church of Perth, the school of the same town, the 
chaplaincy of the castle, and the church of St. Leonard (y). We have now 
seen Perth in those various lights. It was a town in demesne of the crown. 
It acquired a Sheriffdom within itself. It had several churches, with a school. 
It had a castle, which no doubt belonged to the King ; and it had some trade, 
a fishery and mills, which last belonged indeed to the King (z). 

In 1166, Malcolm the IV. having assembled the estates at Perth, the Scottish 
nobles, jealous at their attachment to Henry II., reproached him for his mis- 
conduct ; and under the lead of Farquhar the Earl of Strathearn, assaulted the 
tower wherein the King had sought for refuge ; but they were reconciled by 
the interposition of the clergy. 

(q) Caledonia v. I. Malcolm III. was crowned at Scone in 1167. 

(r) Sir Ja. Dalrymple's App., 372, Chart. Scone, No. 16. 

(s) MS. Monast. Scot, 104-5 : Dalrymple's Col., 386. 

(t) MS. Charters of Mag., No. 121. (m) Eeliq. Divi. And., 165. 

(v) Chart. Scone, No. 16. This grant was confirmed by Malcolm IV., and William the Lion. 

(w) Chart. Cambuak, No. 198. (x) Chart. Lindores, 6. 

(y) Sir Lewis Stewart's Col., No. 45. 

(z) Sybilla, the queen of Alexander the I. died at Loch Tay in 1122. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 169 

In 1310, William the Lion with, his son and brother residing at Perth, which 
then stood nearer the confluence of the Almond with the Tay, narrowly escaped 
with his life from a sudden flood which overwhelmed the town, which probably 
was slightly built. The King rebuilt the town, lower down upon a somewhat 
different site, where it was called Saint Johnstown, 

In 1214, Alexander II. was crowned at Scone. 

In 1283, a parliament was held at Scone, wherein the crown was settled on 
Margaret the daughter of Eric King of Norway, and grand-daughter of 
Alexander III. 

In 1292, John Baliol the grandson of Margaret, the eldest daughter of David 
Earl of Huntingdon, was crowned at Scone. 

In 1296, Edward I. in his retreat from Scotland after the submission of 
Baliol, carried with him the stone seat whereon the Scottish Kings were 
crowned. It was deposited at Scone, the place of coronation. 

In 1306, Robert Bruce, the grandson of the competitor was crowned at Scone. 

The Earl of Pembroke sallying out of Perth, attacked and defeated the 
Scottish army, when Bruce narrowly escaped into Athole. 

In 1311, Bruce having besieged Perth for six weeks, raised the siege, but 
returning in a dark night with a chosen band, scaled the walls and took the 

In 1318, the parliament which met at Scone declared Robert Stewart the 
successor to the crown, failing heirs of the sceptre. 

In 1329, Robert I. died at Cardross, and was buried at Dunfermline. 

A bridge was built at Perth during the busy reign of Robert I. {a). Robert 
III. granted to the bridge of Perth 40 shillings out of the customs of Perth, 
and he confirmed to them the several privileges which had been granted to 
them by William the Lion (6). It seems not, however, to have been judiciously 
built, as experience evinced that it was unable to sustain the floods of the Tay, 
and to resist the frosts of the winter. 

In 1331, David II. and his queen Johanna were crowned at Scone. 

Edward Baliol, in 1332, having marched from Kinghorn and encamping on 
the southern bank of the Earn, at Millarsacre in Forteviot, found a superior 
army before him under the Regent Earl of Mar, with another at Auchterarder 

(a) There remains a letter of Eobert I. to the Abbot and Convent of Scone, dated the 4th July 
1328, requesting leave to take stones from their quarry of Kyncarach and Baleormoe for building a 
church at Perth, and the bridge of Perth and Earn. It appears, also, by a proceeding in 1365, that a 
toll was collected upon the bridge of Perth. Eobertson's Index, 77. 

(b) lb., 146. This King also granted to the magistrates of Perth, the forfeitures and estates as they 
occurred within it. lb., 149. 

7 22 

170 AnAOOOUNT [Oil. Nlll.— Perthshire. 

under the Earl of March, which was ready to fall on his left flank ; and knowing 
how impossible it was for him to retreat, he suddenly passed the river, and 
falling by surprise on the Eegent, totally routed him on Dupplin Moor, The 
Eegent and the Earls of Moray, Menteith, and Carrick, with others fell in the 
disastrous surprise. Baliol took possession of Perth, and was crowned at 

Edward being, however, obliged to march into the South, James Eraser and 
Robert Keith surprised and took Perth. 

In 1335, Edward III. having invaded Scotland on the West, while Edward 
Baliol forced his way by another route, united their forces near Glasgow and 
marched to Perth. 

Edward III. in 1336, joining his army at Perth, raised the siege of the Castle 
of Lochendorb, and marched quite to Inverness. He added much to the 
fortifications of Perth. 

The Stewart, in 1339, took, after a gallant defence, the Castle of Perth, 
which was commanded by Ughtred. 

In 1346, assembling his army at Perth, among other Barons, were William 
the Earl of Ross, and Ronald of the Isles. A dispute arising among them, the 
former was assassinated by the latter in the monastery of Elcho. 

In 1371 Robert II. was crowned at Scone. 

In 1390 Robert III. was crowned at Scone. 

A dispute having long subsisted between two Highland clans, — the clan 
Chattan and the clan Kay, — thirty from each met on the North Inch of Perth 
in 1396, to decide by the sword, in the presence of their Sovereign, their 
respective pretensions. On the day fixed only 29 of the clan Chattan appeared 
(one having absconded), and the opposite party refusing to withdraw one of 
theirs, one Henry Wynd, a saddler, offered, though no way connected with the 
quarrel, for a French crown of gold to take his place. In this bloody rencounter, 
in which a victory was gained by the prowess of Wynd, only ten of his party 
were left, though they were all desperately wounded. On the opposite side 
only one, and he saved his life by throwing himself into the Tay and escaping 
to the other side. 

At a convention at Scone in 1405, (James being prisoner in England), Robert 
Duke of Albany was chosen Regent. 

James I. was crowned at Scone in 1424. 

In 1425 James I. arrested Murdoch Duke of Albany; and seized his two 
castles of Falkland and of Devon. 

James I. brought over some Carthusian monks ; and endowed for them in 
1426 a convent at Perth. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History.'] OrNOKTH-BRITAIN. 171 

In 1437, on the 20th of February, having disembodied his army before 
Eoxburgh, on hearing of the conspiracy of his nobles, retired to Perth, but he 
was soon after assassinated there by a band of ruffians who were headed by his 
uncle, Walter Earl of Athole, and was buried at Perth. 

Donald Earl of Ross, instigated by the English government, and the ex- 
patriated Earl of Dunlop, in 1461 invaded Athole, so suddenly, that the Earl 
and Countess, the fair maid of Galloway, and the principal inhabitants fled to 
the sanctuary of St. Bride. The savage Earl forced the church, murdered the 
ecclesiastics, and carried off the Earl and Countess with an immense booty to 
the Isle of Islay. 

In 1531, James V. made a progress through Athole and Strathearn, and so 
to Dundee and to St, Andrews. 

The feeble Earl of Arran, after concluding a treaty with Henry VIII., and 
imprisoning Cardinal Beaton as an opposer of it in 1543, suddenly changed his 
policy, and in a conference with the Cardinal Beaton at Callander, soon after 
resumed his religion. 

In 1559, the reformed religion was preached publicly for the first time at 
Perth (c). Owing to a supposed breach of the Regent Queen's promise, and 
zeal of the populace, an insurrection broke out at Perth, where many strangers 
had collected from various parts. The insurgents fell upon the established 
churches in that town. The monasteries they levelled to the ground. The 
Regent Queen marched her army, which was composed chiefly of French 
against Perth. Both parties were, however, afraid to hazard a battle, and this 
indecision ended in a treaty, which did not last long, owing to the imprudence, 
if not perfidy, of one party, and the zeal of the other. The Regent Queen left 
a garrison of native troops in Perth. The neighbouring shires, as well as the 
town of Perth continued in a state of great perturbation. The Regent Queen 
relinquished the possession of Perth, which the insurgents were ready to 
acquire by force, but in the meantime the populace destroyed the monastery of 

Mary, after the baptism of her son at Stirling, passed the winter of 1566 at 
Drummond and Fruchibardin. 

James VI. in returning from the sport of hunting in Athole was detained at 
Ruthven in 1582 by some of his nobles, who carried him a prisoner to Perth, 
by a violence which has been called in the colloquial annals of rude times, the 
Raid of Ruthven. 

In 1600, James VI. was inveigled by Alexander Ruthven to accompany him 

(c) Eobertson's Hist., I. 179. 

172 AnACOOUNT [Oh. Vlll.— Perthshire. 

to Gowrie House in Pertli, where lie was treated by Earl Gowrie and his 
brother as a prince, whom they meant to detain, for whatever purpose, rather 
than as a tyrant, whom they intended to assassinate on a motive of revenge. 
The two brothers were slain by the manly attendants of the King, and the 
name of Huthven was suppressed. If the nobles who detained the King at the 
raid of Kuthven, had been adequately punished, the two Ruthvens would not 
have engaged in so dangerous a conspiracy, and we may see, also, from those 
examples, that the law is the safest shield when it is impartially executed. 

In 1640, the Earl of Argyle at the head of the Covenanting army, overran 
Athole, seized and destroyed the estates of Royalists, and carried the Earl of 
Athole a prisoner to Stirling. 

Montrose having escaped with great difficulty from England, in 1644, went 
into Perthshire, and hearing that some Irish had landed in the North, joined 
them in Athole with a body of Highlanders. Two armies of Covenanters under 
the Earl of Argyle and Lord Elcho, marched against him. With only 1500 
men, who were merely half armed, Montrose fell upon Lord Elcho at Tippermuir, 
when he totally defeated him and took Perth. 

Montrose crossing the almost impassable mountains from Badenoch, fell on 
Argyle's army at Dunkeld, and obliged it to retreat to Perth. 

In 1651, Charles II. was crowned at Scone. 

Cromwell in the subsequent year, built a fort at Perth, to command that 
commodious position. 

In 1689, Lord Dundee having marched from Inverness to relieve Blair, 
waited till the next morning for the approach of King William's army under 
Mackay, till he had approached beyond the pass of Killicrankie, and though 
Dundee defeated his opponent ; yet being mortally wounded, Dundee died 
soon after at Blair of Athol. When King William heard of this defeat, he 
said shrewdly, something must have happened to Dundee, or we should have 
heard of him at Edinburgh. 

In 1715 the Earl of Mar proclaimed the Pretender at Kirkmichael, Moulin, 
and Logierait ; and being joined at Dunkeld by 2000 men, he established his 
headquarters at Perth, where he was joined by Lord TulUbardine, Huntly, Sea- 
forth, and Marshal; and being reinforced by the northern clans under Lord 
Seaforth and General Gordon, left Colonel Balfour at Perth, and marched to 
Auchterarder. The Duke of Argyle having left Stirling marched to meet him, 
and encamped with his right at Sheriffmuir and his left at Dunblane. General 
Witham, who commanded Argyle's left wing, fled to Stirling at the beginning 
of the action, while the Duke beat the rebels with his right wing. Argyle 
retired to Dunblane, and Mar to Ardoch. On the 7th of January, 1716, the 

Bed. YIl— Of its Agriculture, ^c] Of NOETH-BEIT AIN. ' 173 

Pretender arrived at Scone, made his public entry into Perth, and Auchtev- 
arder, Blackford, Dunning, and Muthil were burnt. Argyle being now rein- 
forced by 6000 Dutch and Newton's and Stanhope's dragoons, on the 29th of 
January marched to Dunblane Braes and TuUibardine, where, hearing that the 
Pretender had left Perth, he took possession of it, and at the head of a part of 
his army marched to Errol and Dundee, and from thence in two divisions, one 
by Brechin and the other by Arbroath, to Aberdeen. 

In 1745 General Cope, having marched from Edinburgh by Dunblane, 
Drummond, and Blair to Dalwhinnie and to Inverness, the Pretender passed 
him and seized Dunkeld, where he proclaimed his father, and being joined by 
the Lords Perth and TuUibardine took possession of Perth on the 5th of 

On the 3rd of February, 1746, the rebels left Perth and retired towards 
Montrose. The King's troops arrived here on the 6th, and sent two detach- 
ments, one under Sir Andrew Agnew to Dunkeld, and the other under Colonel 
Leighton to Castle Menzies. Lord George Murray descended from the High- 
lands and attacked Blair, while another party of rebels fell upon Castle 
Menzies. But Sir Andrew, holding out till the 3rd of April, was relieved by 
Colonel Crawford, and the rebels retired to Ruthven, to which they were 
followed by the Prince of Hesse, who arrived there on the 4th of April, 1746. 

§ VII. Or ITS Agkiculture, Manufacture, and Trades. 

Its extent and situation have been already treated of 

Its natural objects and its antiquities have been before discussed. 

Its establishment as a shire and its civil history have been already illustrated. 
(In Sect. VI.) 

Its superficies is mountainous, and its soil is various. 

Its climate might be taken in its popular sense, and implies meteorological 
observations on the state of the atmosphere with respect to rain and wind and 
heat and cold, which affect the fertility of the soil, the temperature of the sea- 
sons, and the health of the inhabitants, independent of the latitude of a country. 
Perthshire being situated in the middle of Scotland is neither so warm as the 
southern shires nor so cold as the counties of the north ; but as it is situated 
at the narrowest part of the country, so as to reach across the island, being 
farther beyond the tideway on the east coast than it is from it on the west, it 
may be supposed to have all the varieties of climate which are experienced on 
those coasts. Easterly winds bring unsettled weather and rain on Stormont, 
the Carse of Gowrie, Strathardie, and Glenshee, while the weather is dry and 
serene on the west, and westerly winds waft the clouds from the Atlantic over 

174 An ACCOUNT [Oh. Ylll.— Perthshire. 

Monteith, Breadalbane, Glenlyon, and Eannoch, while not a drop of rain 
refreshes the eastern districts. The midland parts of this extensive country- 
are not so much affected with a change of weather either, by those winds, as 
the extremities which He on the opposite coasts, the clouds from either sea 
being generally spent before they arrive at the heart of this unequal country. 
It ought to be acknowledged that the narrow situation of Perthshire occasions 
such frequent changes in the state of the atmosphere, and such varieties of 
weather, as baffles all calculations on this subject, as it is deduced from fixed 
principles. When the causes are so unexpected, and so irregular that they 
cannot be traced by any known rule, the effects which they produce must be 
equally capricious, irregular, and sudden. 

Of the state of property in this shire it may be observed, that the noblemen 
have large estates ; many of the gentlemen have very independent fortunes ; 
the generality of proprietors who reside on their estates conduct their tenants 
in the course of improvements, are on the road to wealth, and have formed the 
true rule of promoting their own interests, while they promote the prosperity of 
their people. A proprietor holding immediately of the crown, and having his 
lands erected into a free barony, is the only person, who in Scotch law, is 
denominated a baron. Before the 25th of March 1748, the powers of his juris- 
diction were extensive. Whatever jurisdictions may have been abolished by 
statute, wherever he has a right to hold fairs and markets, he can by himself 
or his baillie exercise the same on a jurisdiction, which may be necessary for 
repressing disturbances, for determining disputes between dealers, and other- 
wise maintaining good order on such public occasions. Justices of the Peace, 
under the Act of 1795, can perform all those powers more effectually and settle 
debts under £3 5s. 8d. sterling. 

There are quarterly meetings of the whole Justices of the county at the shire 
town, which have power to revise by appeal the adjudications of the special 
meetings, which may have been held in the several districts. The baron baillie 
is annexed to the estate over which he has been appointed ; but the Sheriff is 
a judge over the whole county over which he has been appointed. 

The husbandry of Perthshire was in a most wretched condition even so late 
as the epoch of 1758. The whole land was occupied by runrig, not only in the 
farms, but frequently in the estates. 

The first deviation from runrig was by dividing the forms into kavels (d), or 
kenches, by which every field of the same quality was split into as many lots 

(d) Doctor Jamieson has kavel, in the sense of mean fallow ; as to kenches, I have never seen the 
■woi'd in any other place. Kench is said to signify a larger portion of land than a ridge. Genl. View 
of Perth Agriculture, 62. Kavels still exist in many parts of Perthshire. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, 4-c.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 175 

as there were tenants on the farm. This was a real improvement as far as it 
went ; every farmer had his own lot in each field, to be managed according to 
tlie best of his judgment, during the existence of his farm. 

Previous to the year 1735 even the fertile soil of the Carse of Gowrie was 
very unproductive, in comparison of its present state. The land in many places 
was overrun with rushes or disfigured with pools of water, and the people were 
subject to the ague. The outfield was cultivated as long as it produced three 
or four bolls to the acre. The infield was generally cultivated in four 
directions, wheat, barley, and oats, with pease and beans. About that period 
some gentlemen and farmers in that district difiused a spirit of improvement 
among all ranks in their neighbourhood, and the rushes, the lapwings, and ague 
have now wholly disappeared. Towards the moorland parts of the country, 
and even in many parts of the lowlands, the outfields were manured by con- 
fining the cattle in folds upon that portion of the farm which was generally a 
ninth part of the whole, and designed for the plough during the subsequent 
spring. In some parts of Strathearn, Strathallan, and in some other places, 
the outfields were watered. Three crops of oats, and sometimes more were 
taken from these outfields, until the land was exhausted in such a degree 
that during the two first years of its beiiig in pasture it produced very scanty 
crops of grass ; and if the fields had any declination the finest particles of the 
soil were washed away' during the rainy seasons for want of sward. Lint was 
generally sown in the best parts of outfields, especially after it had been watei'ed. 

The old system of outfield and infield still prevails in many parts of the 
country, especially towards the north and west, which are adjacent to the 
Grampians, and along the Ochill and Sidlaw hills. Although most proprietors 
may have within these thirty years inserted in their leases better regulations 
of husbandry, yet owing to various causes such regulations have been very 
little enforced. Nothing can be more evident than this position, that no estate 
can possibly be improved whatever regulations may be inserted in their leases, 
unless the landlord shall either superintend his own estate, or his agent be 
acquainted with husbandry, and submit to the arduous task of directing 
agricultural improvements. 

Of the size of farms, and the characters of farmers, it may be observed without 
taking notice of diminutive possessions which are called pendicles, as they are 
small portions of the land allotted by a farmer to cottagers, labourers and 
servants, and therefore appendages of the farm, the extent of what may be 
properly called the farm, is from 30 to 500 acres. These may be considered as 
tbe extremes where the land is arable. The general average of farms under a 
regular system of husbandry is irom 100 to 300 acres. 

176 AnAGOOUNT [Oh. yi\l.— Perthshire. 

In the highlands, and in some parts of the low country, the farms were in 
former times so crowded with inhabitants, that the holdings were extremely 
small. It was very common to see four farmers, such as they were, with their 
four families, and some cottagers occupying one plough gate of land. Half a 
plough was considered as a distinguished holding and a whole plough as a very 
rare thing. The country was thus crowded with inhabitants, which state of 
population still remains unchanged in some districts. This to a stranger who 
considers not the cause, may appear to have been both absurd in itself, and to 
derogate from the good sense of the proprietors. But under the feudal system 
every baron valued himself and was valued by the state not so much by the 
largeness of the rental, as by the number of followers he could bring into the 
field. The farms were divided and subdivided to make room for a greater 
number of soldiers, and the whole country was frittered down to the atoms, in 
which the farms in many places still appear at this day. 

Where the country is best improved, every vestige of the feudal holdings is 
abolished, and the tenants are wealthy and intelligent. In the Carse of Gowrie, 
in the lower parts of Strathearn, along the Tay, from Perth to Dunkeld, and 
on the banks of the Isla, especially about Meigle, some of the farms contain 
more than 400 acres of Scottish measure (e), and often amount to 500 acres of 
arable land. On the skirts of moors and hills it is not uncommon to have a 
large tract of grass or pasture ground annexed to an arable farm. Possessions 
of this description are very frequent on the confines of the Ochills and Sidlaws, 
and in all the valleys of the highlands which intersect the Grampians. The 
proportion of pasture and arable land varies always according to local circum- 
stances, but in the most forbidding situations, at the very head of the glens, 
there is some arable ground, where the possessor has his house and garden with 
a little growing corn. The farms, however, in those mountainous parts of the 
country are more frequently reckoned by miles than by acres, and the stocks 
are in proportion to their extent. Formerly they were depastured by mixed 
stocks, partly black cattle, partly a small breed of hill-horses, and partly sheep. 
At present the sheep stock prevails. * 

(e) In the course of Dr. Eobertson's report of the Perth agriculture the Scottish measure is meant 
when applied to land, which is about one-fifth more than the English acre ; or more accurately, as a 
Scottish acre is 6084-44 square yards, an English acre is 4840 square yards. 

* Note. — In the author's original manuscript there occurs at this point a long dissertation on the 
general practice of agriculture, manifestly written with a view to the improvement of agricultural 
methods in Perthshire early in the present century. As this has no interest for present-day enquirers, 
the matter being much better treated in the various reports issued by Eobertson and the Highland 
Society, it has been thought advisable to omit a large portion of this extraneous padding. — Ed. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, ^c.J OfNOETH-BEITAIN, 177 

The first object that opened the eyes of Perthshire to perceive the benefit of 
proper roads, was the salutary purpose of making military roads through a part 
of the county of Perth and other shires, from Stirling to Fort-William by 
Callander and Tyndrum ; another northward through the heart of Scotland 
from Stirling to Inverness and to Fort-George ; another in a direct line across 
the county from Fort-George to Fort-William ; and a fourth, whiph is a 
diagonal line, diverging from the Inverness road to Fort-Augustus, and taking 
its departure at Dalwhinnie in Badenoch, through the wildest and most stormy 
mountains in Scotland. The two principal lines of those roads hold the direc- 
tion of this county, the western one for sixty miles, and the northern to near 
one hundred. The policy of such roads being perfectly understood, roads of 
every kind were ere long made, so as to give the most effectual benefit to the 
whole shire. It is said with much propriety that the public roads in the High- 
lands of Perthshire, considering the nature of the country, are remarkably 
level, beyond comparison more so than those of Devonshire and other districts 
whose hills are much lower. The Highland roads seldom mount or climb the 
hills. In most cases the general ridge of hill has been happily rent, so as to 
give an easy passage to the highway across the hill from one strath to another ; 
and it is equally observable as to the Highland roads, and indeed to those of 
Scotland, that they are more easily kept in repair than the highways of Eng- 
land, where long teams are in use, because in the former seldom more than one 
horse is seen in a carriage of burden, and the land of course is proportionally 
light. There are no navigable canals in the county of Perth, whatever brooks 
may have been straightened, though no vessels ply upon them for the purpose 
of commerce. There now follow a number of canals and embankments, which 
have obtained for the proprietors various acquisitions of lands, from the rivers. 
In addition to those acquirements, the proprietors are enriched by the frequent 
fairs and weekly markets, and the consequent commerce with the fisheries in 
the rivers and lochs. 

To those may be added the various manufactures, with the bleachfields and 
spinning mills. Of linen which was stamped for sale, it may be said to have 
increased to nearly 3,000,000 yards ; and those manufactories were carried on 
by the women of this shire, from the highest to the lowest. 

Of the trade of Perthshire it may be truly said that every town and village 
have their fairs and weekly markets for the accommodation of the inhabitants. 
All villages in Breadalbane, Strathearn, and Monteith have their fairs for wool- 
yarn, butter, cheese, meal, grain, horses, cattle, sheep, lambs, and also for 
engaging servants and reapers. This, however, is not a commercial county in 
comparison with many others. Our extensive pastures in the valleys and 
7 23 

178 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. Ylll.— Perthshire. 

mountains of the Grampians send down immense droves of black cattle for sale 
in the spring and autumn of every year, and since the sheep system has been 
adopted on a progressive scale their numbers are yearly increasing. Linen and 
woollen yarn bring a great return in cash from the manufacturers of checked 
goods, carpet manufacturers, and others, besides the linen and woollen stuffs 
which are wove in this shire and exported for sale. Great quantities of grain 
are exported from Strathearn, from that district of Strathmore which is 
included in this shire, from Monteith, from the vicinity of TuUiallan and 
Culross, and from the Carse of Gowrie. 

Kincardine, in the parish of Tulliallan, and Culross are the only towns that 
are situated on the Forth, belonging to this shire, which can be said to have 
any oversea trade. To the port of Kincardine belong seventy-six vessels, which 
at an average are computed between eighty-five and ninety tons. In summer 
they are employed in carrying coals to London and the cities on the shore of 
the Baltic, and they return laden with corn and wood to Leith and to the sea- 
lock near Carron. In winter they carry coals to Dundee, Perth, Montrose, and 
to the towns on the north-west coast of Scotland. At Culross and Torryburn 
together there are only eight or ten vessels, which are employed in the same 
trade. Perth has never been a port that abounded with shipping. In 1792 
this town had belonging to it only thirty-five vessels, carrying 2889 tons {g). 
The importation of lime at this port and the precincts thereof is of such magni- 
tude, and so beneficial to the agriculture of the county, that it may be pre- 
sumed that a comparative statement of that article for the three subjoined 
years will be acceptable. 

Landed in 1784, of lime, - 2,330 chalders. 

„ in 1789, „ - 4,940 

„ in 1794, „ - - 8,042 

As the improvement of husbandry within Perthshire may be inferred in some 
measure from the above statement, so may be the corn which was shipped 
from the port of Perth, be seen from the subjoined table : — 

Shipped outward. 





Pease and Beans. 






In 1784 





In 1789 






In 1794 






{g) The Custom House Eegister. 

Sect. VII — Of its Agriculture, ^c] Or NOETH-BEITAIN. 


It will give some idea of the trade, to consider the following state of the 
number of cargoes which were shipped from, and landed at Perth during the 
3 years following : — 

Cargoes inwards. 

From Ports inly Britain. 

From For. Ports. 

The number. 

The number. 

In 1784 



In 1789 



In 1794 



Cargoes outwards. 

For Brit. Ports. 

For For. Ports. 

The number. 

The number. 

In 1784 


In 1789 


In 1794 



The manufactures of Perth are chiefly those of flax, cotton, and leather. I 
have therefore subjoined an account of the quantity of linen, cotton, and 
leather shoes which have been cleared out from the custom house at Perth : — 



Cotton. . 





Shipped in 1784 
in 1789 
in 1794 







Leather shoes 
and boots. 
Doz. pairs. 


Of all arts which employ the ingenuity and labour of men, agriculture is not 
only the most ancient, but the most useful. Upon this all other arts depend, 
and men in every rank of society are supported by its fruits. Agriculture is a 
complicated art, and admits of different degrees of perfection. Without 
experience, without application, without capital, it cannot be prosecuted with 

No man can be a farmer, a manufacturer, or a trader without personal ex- 
perience. Books will not suffice, and occasional directions which may be 
founded on the skiU and experience of different persons will create such a 
variety of notions, such confusion of plans, and such a contrariety of procedure, 
that no effects can follow, but chagrin and disappointment. Experience and 
application are the best masters, nor is there any profession wherein we do not 
receive instruction even from our faults. 

180 AnACOOUNT [Oh. VIII — Perthshire. 

§ VIII. Of its Ecclesiastical History. 

All the Scottish Churches belonged either to Kegulars or Seculars. The Regu- 
lars followed the rule of St. Augustine, the bishop of Hippo in Africa, St. Bennet, 
or some private statutes, which were approved by the Pope ; and lived, slept, 
and took their diet together under the same roof They were either canons, 
monks, or friars, and their houses were called abbacies, priories, or convents. 

The seculars had their private rules, which were composed by their chapters 
or borrowed from other colleges abroad, which statutes were not commonly 
approved of at Rome. They lived separately in their cloisters, or in private 
houses near to their churches, and were governed by a Dean (Decanus) or a 
Provost (Propositus). Those that followed St. Augustine's rule were (1) the 
Regular Canons of St. Augustine, who were so called from their founder or 
reformer ; (2) the Premonstratensis ; (3) the Red Friars ; (4) the Dominicans, 
or Black Friars ; (5) the Lazarites ; (6) the Canons of St. Anthony. 

The others, who followed St. Rennet's Rule, were (l) the Benedictines of 
Marmontier ; (2) of Cluny, named Cluniacensis ; (3) of Tyrone, or Tyronensis, 
who were so called from their principal houses in France ; (4) the Cistercians, 
otherwise called Bernardines ; and (5) those who were designed of the convent 
of Vallis-caulium, in the diocese of Langres in France. 

The White Friars, or Carmelites, who had their origin and name from Mount 
Carmel in Syria, which was renowned for the dwelling of Elias and Elisha the 
prophet, who, as tbey pretend, were their founders. Albartus, the Patriarch 
of Jerusalem, and native of the diocese of Amiens, closed them in cloisters and 
gave them some rules or statutes in 1205, which were confirmed by Pope 
Honorius III. in 1217, and since by several of his successors. 

The Franciscans were so named from St. Francis of Assisi in Italy, who 
established themselves in 1206. They followed the rule that St. Francis com- 
posed for them, and that was confirmed by Pope Innocent III. in 1209. 

The Carthusians, who were established upon the Carthusian mountains in 
the diocese of Grenoble in Dauphine, who follow also their private constitutions 
which were given them by their founder, and approved of by Pope Alexander 
III. in 1 1 76, and by the succeeding Popes. 

All those religious orders were either endowed with sufiicient rents for their 
maintainance, or allowed to beg for their living. Whence arose a new division 
of churchmen, who were mendicants, and who had little or nothing settled on 
them. The first were the canons regular, the monks of different orders, which 
were specified above ; as Benedictines, Cistercians, Carthusians, Vallis-cauliums, 
and the Red Friars. The others were the Black, Gray, and White Friars (h). 

(A) See Keitla's Hist, of the religious houses at the epoch of the Eeformation in Scotland. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 181 

Inchmahome, an island in the Loch of Monteith, was an abbey which was 
founded for canons of Cambuskenneth. It was united by James IV. to the 
royal chapel at Stirling, but was disjoined by James V. and bestowed on John 
Lord Erskine, who was commendator thereof, and who was chosen Regent in 
1571. Although this house be mentioned among the religious establishments 
of old, as a distinct monastery from that of the Insula Sti Calmoci, yet were 
they one and the same. 

Inchaffray was an abbey founded by Gilbert the Earl of Strathearn, in 
Perthshire, in 1200, the canons whereof were brought from Scone. Maurice 
the abbot of Inchaffray was present with Bruce at the battle of Bannockburn, 
as chaplain of James Drummond the son of David. Lord Drummond, having 
acquired a right to this monastery from Alexander Gordon, the bishop of 
Galloway, who was commendator of it, was by James YI. in 1607 created a 
temporal lordship by the title of Lord Madderty. 

Strathfillan and Abernethy in this shire, and Scarinch in the Lewis isle, were 
cells belonging to Inchaffray. 

Strathfillan, in the western extremity of Perthshire was a priory founded by 
King Robert Bruce, and consecrated to St. Fillan, by that gallant King for 
Saint Fillan's aid at Bannockburn, and was given at the Reformation to Camp- 
bell of Glenorchy, the ancestor of the Earl of Breadalbane, in whose possession 
it still remains. 

On an isle of Loch Tay near the eastern end of the lake was a cell which 
belonged to Scone, and which was founded by Alexander I. in 1122, where 
Sybilla, his queen died, and lies interred. 

Scone was an abbey which was founded by Alexander I. in 1114, which had 
formerly belonged to the Culdees. 

Abernethy, which is said to have been the chief seat of the Pictish Kings, 
near the confluence of the Earn, was founded first as a retreat for St. Brigid, 
who died here about 518 A.D., and became afterwards a bishop's seat ; and 
afterwards was the residence of Culdees. It thereafter was a priory of canons 
from Inchaffray in 1273 {i). 

Elcho was a monastery of the Cistercians, which is situated on the Tay below 
Perth, and was founded by David Lindsay of Glenesk. Madoch the Earl of 
Strathearn gave the lands of Kinnaird in Fife to this religious house. 

At Perth was a monastery of Black Friars, which was founded here by 
Alexander II. in 1231, who, with Robert Bruce, gave large revenues out of the 
imports of Perth and Dundee. In this convent was James I. murdered, and 
was buried in the Carthusian monastery which he himself built. 

{i) Keith, 141, Fordun, Ixx., 33. 

182 AnACOOUNT [Ch. Mill.— Perthshire. 

The Gray Friars had a house which was founded near the walls of the town 
by Lord Oliphaut in 1460. 

At Coupar was a house of Cistercians which was founded by Malcolm IV. in 
1 164. The Hays of Errol were the principal benefactors to this house. After 
the Eeformation James YI. created the second son of Secretary Elphinston 
Lord Coupar, in 1607, but he dying without issue, the honour devolved upon 
Lord Balmerino. 

St. Leonards was an ancient priory, which was founded at Perth in 1296. 
It was suppressed by James I. and annexed to the charter house at Perth. 

Foulis Easter was a collegiate church which was founded on the confines of 
Angus-shire by Sir Andrew Gray of Foulis, who was ancestor to Lord Gray 
during James II. reign. 

Methven was a collegiate church which was founded in 1433, for a provost 
and prebendaries, by Walter Stewart, the Earl of Athole, one of the younger 
sons of Ptobert II. 

Tullibardine was an establishment of the same kind, which was founded in 
1446 by Sir David Murray, the ancestor of the Dukes of Athole. 

Culross was a Cistercian abbey which was founded by Malcolm the Earl of 
Fife in 1217, and was dedicated to the Virgin Mary and to Saint Sewan the 
Confessor, whose festival was kept on the 1st of July long after the Reforma- 
tion. The Earls of Argyle, who lived at Castle Campbell, were heritable 
baillies of this abbey, an office which they transferred to the Colvilles of Ochil- 
tree, m whose hands it was until the heritable jurisdictions were abolished. 

Dunblane, whose cathedral was founded on the eastern bank of the Allan, 
overlooks the town. It was here placed by David I. in 1142. To this see 
were annexed considerable revenues in Scotland, exclusive of the lands which 
it enjoyed in England. The cathedral is unroofed and going fast to decay, yet 
it is remarkably grand, as many of its ruins remain. The choir is preserved 
as a parochial church, at the west end whereof are thirty-two of the prebendal 

Constantine III., King of the Picts, instituted a monastery of Culdees at 
Dunkeld about 729 a.d., in honour of Saint Columba, the tutelary saint of the 
nation. These Culdees were probably named so from Cuildich, or hermits or 
retired persons. David I. expelled the Culdees from Dunkeld, and changed 
the monastery into a cathedral church about the year 1127 [j). They are sup- 
posed to have continued near a hundred years longer at Dunblane. Such, then, 
are the religious houses of Perthshire. 

(7) See Keith's Religious Houses and Bishops, and Eobertson's Agricult., Appx. No. II. 

Sect. 1111.— Of its Ecclesiastical History.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 183 

We need not be surprised that the origin of parishes should be obscure when 
the rise and progress of bishoprics are involved in peculiar darkness. In Perth- 
shire there are only two dioceses : Dunkeld, which was founded by David I. in 
1127, and Dunblane, which was settled by whatever king before the year 1160. 

Of the first, Cormack was chosen bishop in 1115, under Alexander I. (li). 
Cormack was succeeded by Gregory, who flourished here under David I. {I). 
After sitting here as bishop forty-two years, Gregory died in 1169. 

He was succeeded as bishop of Dunkeld by Richard, who lived here under 
several kings and various bishops of St. Andrews, but died in 1178 (m). 

Bichard was succeeded by Cormac, and he was followed by Gregory, who 
had for his successor Walter de Bidun ; and he was succeeded by John Scot, 
an Englishman, and archdeacon of St. Andrews in 1187, a monk of Newbattle, 
where he died in 1204, if we may believe Fordun, after he had sat five and 
twenty years (n). 

Osbert succeeded John, as we learn from the Chartulary of Coupar. Osbert 
was followed by Richard, one of the king's clerks (o). Bishop Bichard is said 
to have died in 1210. He was succeeded by John, archdeacon of Lothian, in 
1211, and died in 1214. 

Hugh, a monk of Arbroath, was now chosen as the successor of John, and 
was bishop of Dunkeld under Alexander II. (p). Hugh was called the poor 
man's bishop, and died in 1228 {q). 

Mathew was elected upon the death of Bishop Hugh, but he died before he 
was consecrated in 1229 (r). Gilbert, who had been chaplain to Bishop Hugh,^ 
became bishop of Dunkeld in 1229, and continued as bishop till his decease in 

Galfrid, one of the King's clerks, was now chosen the bishop of Dunkeld, 
and continued here as bishop till 1249. Galfrid was succeeded by Bichard,. 
who enjoyed his preferment only a twelvemonth ; and it is certain David (s) 
was elected in his stead, and died probably without consecration in December, 

Richard de Inverkeithen, a prebendary of this see and chamberlain to the 
King, was elected to this see in 1250, and after various vicissitudes died bishop 
in 1272. 

Robert de Stutavilla, the dean of Dunkeld, is celebrated by Abbot Mill, and 

Qc) Innes's MS. Ohron., which quotes Sir James Dalrymple's Col., 244. {I) Dal. Col., 247-387. 

(m) Chron. Mail., 174. (n) Chart. Newbattle, 119. (o) See Chart, of Coupar, No. 35. 

(p) See the Chart, of Aberdeen and of Glasgow. {q) Fordun, ix., c. 47. (r) Id. 

(s) Bishop David witnessed a charter of Alexander II. to Inverness, 3rd December, 1250, wherein 
David is called Elect of Dunkeld. See Wight on Parlts., 412. 

184 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. Nlll.— Perthshire. 

by Mill is stated as duly elected into the see of St. Andrews, but being opposed 
by the King he continued bishop of Dunkeld till 1288, when Matthew de 
Crambeth appears to have succeeded him, and continued to be bishop of Dun- 
keld, on the 12th of August, 1289 (t), and died sometime before 1300 {u). 

The succeeding bishop of Dunkeld was William Sinclair, who was much 
opposed, but finally succeeded as bishop of Dunkeld, and continued bishop here 
till he died about the year 1323. Walter was in fact bishop of Dunkeld during 
the year 1324 {v), and it seems that this Walter died within this same year 
1324, so as to let in another William within the year, who died before the 8th 
of November, 1339. 

Duncan seems to have now succeeded to this bishopric, and was pretty cer- 
tainly bishop in 1349. He was also bishop of Dunkeld in 1354 {w), and must 
have died early in 1356. John was the bishop of this see in 1356. He was 
bishop in 1360 {x). John was bishop here in 1362 {y), and so continued in 

Michael of Monymusk was the next bishop of this see, he was bishop here in 
1373, and sat in the parliament of Scone on the 3rd April in that year. This 
bishop died on the 1st March 1376. 

John of Peeblis, a canon of Glasgow, and doctor of law, drew up the famous 
act recognizing the title of Robert II. to the crown. He was afterwards 
engaged in many negotiations which he performed with great success. He 
became archdeacon of St. Andrews, and was constituted the chancellor in 1377. 
He became bishop towards the end of 1378, and so continued till his death in 

Robert de Cairney, the son of Duncan de Cairney or Garden, or Gardeny, is 
said to have obtained this elevation through the affection which the King 
bore to his sister. He did much good during his enjoyment of this see, and 
died on the 7th of January 1436, in an advanced age (z). 

Donald MacNaughton, a son of the ancient family of the same, and Doctor of 
Decretals, and dean of Dunkeld, nephew to the preceding bishop ; and during 
whose lifetime he had shown himself a most faithful promoter of church affairs, 
was elected bishop by his chapter, but James I. not liking the choice which 
they had made, the bishop elect died on his journey to Rome, for which he had 
set out in hopes of obtaining a confirmation from the Pope. 

{t) MS. OoL, 40. (m) Eym. Foedera, sub An. 300. 

{v) Chart. Glasgow. (w) Chart. Kelso. {x) Eym. Fosd., 831. («/) Chart. Glasgow. 

{z) Bower, xvi., 26. Theatre of Mortality, 229. Robert Bishop of Dunkeld was one of the 
■hostages for the redemption of James I. on the 31st May 1424. Eym. Feed., 10, 125. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 185 

James Kennedy, the son of the laird of Dunure, was preferred to the see of 
Dunkeld, whence after he had sat two years he was translated to the see of 
St. Andrews. Fordun says that he was nephew to King James I. by his sister 
the Countess of Angus, in 1438. 

Alexander Lauder, the rector of Ratho, the son of Sir Alexander Lauder of 
Haltoun, and brother-german to bishop Lauder of Glasgow, was promoted to 
this see in May 1440, and died on the 11th of October thereafter, at Edinburgh, 
and was interred at the church of Lauder with his ancestors [a). 

James Bruce the son of Sir Robert Bruce of Clackmannan, whom David 
Bruce recognised as his relation, was first rector of Kilmeny in Fife, about the 
year 1438, and upon the death of bishop Lauder was advanced to the see of 
Dunkeld and consecrated in 1441. In 1444 he was made chancellor, and 
accordingly we find him chancellor in 1444. But notwithstanding his high 
character, Reoch Macdonachie ventured to ravage his lands of Little Dunkeld, 
belonging to the bishopric, whereupon ensued a deadly feud, and some men 
were killed on both sides. But matters were at length compromised by the 
intervention of the Lord Glamis. This Reoch Macdonachie was the predecessor 
of the Robertsons of Strowan, whose tribe is still called Macdonachie men among 
the Highlanders. After the death of bishop Cameron of Glasgow, the chan- 
cellor was translated to that see ; but before the necessary forms were com- 
pleted he died in 1447 (6). 

William TurnbuU, the archdeacon of Lothian, and keeper of the Privy Seal, 
was nominated to the see of Dunkeld (c) ; but bishop Bruce the chancellor 
dying in the meantime, TurnbuU was promoted to the see of Glasgow, before 
his consecration for Dunkeld [d). 

John Raulston, who was of a small but very ancient family of the same 
designation in the shire of Renfrew, where it continues in good repute, was 
first rector of Cambuslang and sacrist of Glasgow, next provost of Bothwell, 
and then the dean of Dunkeld; when about 1440, Doctor of Laws. In the 
year 1444 he was preferred to be the King's Secretary, and likewise the 
Keeper of the Privy Seal in 1447; and bishop of this see, to which he was con- 
secrated on the 4th of April, 1448, and we perceive him the bishop here and 
Keeper of the Privy Seal in that year; and John was there bishop in 1448, 
wherein he was constituted Treasurer of Scotland, when he resigned his former 
offices of Secretary and Privy Seal. During the same year this prelate, with 
divers other bishops and lords, was sent to England in order to renew the 
truce between the two nations, which they accomplished on the 1st of Novem- 

(a) Fordun, Ixvi., 26. (6) Fordun. (c) Fordun's Continuator. (d) Bower, xvi., 26. 

7 24 

186 AnACCOUNT [Oh. VIII — Perthshire. 

ber, though without fixing it to any determinate period ; only the kings of the 
two nations were obUged by the treaty to advertise each other 180 days before 
they should give their respective subjects notice to commit hostilities (e). 
Before the end of November, 1449 (/), the bishop surrendered the treasurer's 
office. In 1451 this prelate was again employed in an embassy to England, 
and died in 1452, though he was certainly alive after the 6th November, 1452, 
for on the said day he was a witness to a charter under the Great Seal. 

Thomas Lauder, the Master of Soltre and tutor to James II. {g), was next 
preferred to this see, and exercised his functions very laboriously until the year 
1476, when not being any longer able to endure the fatigue by reason of his 
advanced age, he resigned the see of Dunkeld in favour of James Livingstone 
the dean. This act of Bishop Lauder gives clear light to the title of a charter 
in the Register {h). He was master of the hospital of Soltre in 1437-8. This 
bishop built a bridge over the river Tay near to his own palace. He obtained 
the bishop's lands on the north side of that river to be erected into a barony, 
by the name of the barony of Dunkeld ; as likewise his lands on the south side 
of that river to be called the barony of Aberlady. He founded several chap- 
lainries and prebends, partly in Edinburgh and partly in Dunkeld ; and pur- 
chased two lodgings, one in Edinburgh and another in Perth, for himself and 
his successors. In this bishop's time Mr. Mill, the canon of this see, lived, who 
afterwards wrote the lives of its bishops {i). 

James Livingston, of the family of Saltcoats, in East Lothian, was originally 
rector of Forteviot and Weems, then dean of Dunkeld, and at length bishop of 
this see, by the resignation of Bishop Lauder into the Pope's hands, during the 
year 1476, in favour of his dean, of whom he had justly conceived a good 
opinion, and he was consecrated by Hepburne of Dunblane, Balfour of Brechin, 
and old Bishop of Lauder, in the cathedral of Dunkeld. In 1471 James the 
bishop of Dunkeld founded a chaplaincy in St. Giles Church at Edinburgh [j) ; 
and as his many good qualities were observed, he was constituted chancellor 
on the 18th of February 1483. But he enjoyed this high office only a very short 
time, as he died at Edinburgh on the 28th of August 1483 (/c). 

(e) Eym. Feed., xi., p. 237-9, 242. (/) lb., 244-5. 

(jj) See the legitimation of Thomas the bishop of Dunkeld on the 20th of February 1472-3. 
Eegister, b. vii., 231. 

(h) B. ix.. No. 50. Carta confirmationis super cartam per Thomam olim Episcopum Dunkeldensis ; 
et nunc Episcopim, in universali ecolesia, 13th March 1480, factum. See Macfar. MS. Col., 316. 

{i) Dempster, See Mackenzie ii., 530. {j) Maitland, 271. 

(Ic) Alexander Inglis, the dean of Dunkeld, archdeacon of St. Andrews, and Keeper of the Rolls, was 
next chosen by the chapter, but the Pope being displeased that he had not been first consulted, 
annulled the election, Pari. Eec, 318. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 187 

The bishop elect of Dunkeld appears in the parliament roll on the 24th of 
February 1483-4, and Robert, the bishop of Dunkeld, with William, the bishop 
of Aberdeen, in a charter of appraising by James III., of the lands of Bordland 
of Ketnis, from James, the Earl of Buchan to Robert Lord Lisle on the 18th 
of May 1485. 

George Brown, the Chancellor of Aberdeen, and Rector of Tyninghame, was 
consecrated the bishop of Dunkeld by Sixtus lY. in 1384. He died on the 
14th of January 1414-15, aged 76 {I). 

Andrew Stewart, the son of John Earl of Athole, and prebendary of Craig, 
was postulated the bishop of this see ; yet he never obtained possession of it. 

Gavin Douglas, the brother to the Earl of Angus, was preferred by Leo. X. 
to the government of this diocese. He had been formerly the pi-ovost of Saint 
Giles Church in Edinburgh, a place of dignity and revenue. He was afterwards 
Rector of Heriot in Midlothian. He was nominated by the Regent Queen to 
the archbishopric of St. Andrews, 1514, but a stronger party opposed him, who 
of course defeated his object. Yet the same Queen Regent soon after presented 
him to the see of Dunkeld, but the adversaries of the family of Angus created 
him much trouble even here; at length however he was consecrated at Glasgow, 
by Archbishop Beaton. He was bishop of Dunkeld in 1516. He, Patrick 
Panter, the chancellor of his diocese, abbot of Cambuskenneth, and Secretary 
to the Kings James lY. and Y., were sent by the states of Scotland to attend 
and give advice to the Duke of Albany, when he went to France to renew 
the ancient league. Douglas translated Yirgil's ^Eneid, and died at London in 
April 1522. 

George Crichton was the next bishop of this see of Dunkeld, and was Keeper 
of the Privy Seal. Angus who had now the whole government, obtained for 
him on the 21st of June 1526, the King's letter of recommendation to the Pope 
for promoting him to the see of Dunkeld (m). He was bishop of Dunkeld in 
February 1527-8. In 1528 and 1529 he was bishop of Aberdeen. He was 
bishop here in 1527, and bishop and Privy Seal in 1529. He died in January 

John Hamilton, the natural son of James I. Earl of Arran, at that time 
abbot of Paisley, was next by the interest of the Earl of Arran created the 
bishop of Dunkeld. The abbacy of Paisley he appears to have resigned to his 
brother James Hamilton, another natural son of the same family, in 1544. 
But, though the governor had early recommended his brother to the Pope for 
this see, yet do we find, that his success was still doubtful in December 1544. 
John was bishop here in August 1546, and John was the bishop of Dunkeld, 
(l) Innes MS. Chron. (m) Pari. Eec, 561. 

188 AnACOOUNT [Oh. Mill.— Perthshire. 

and Treasurer, in October 1547, and in June 1540. So that Hamilton was not 
so early placed in the Church of St. Andrew, as is commonly believed. 

Eobert Crichton, the nephew to the former bishop George Crichton, had 
made great influence at Rome for his advancement to this see upon the resigna- 
tion of his uncle in his favour, and likewise after his uncle's death, but he was 
disappointed in his designs at that time, by the stronger interest of the 
Governor Arran, who was now promoted to this see, which had been vacant in 
1550-1-2-3 (ri), and continued bishop here in December 1561. This bishop 
was appointed a commissioner on the 27th of Api-il 1567, for divorcing the 
Earl of Both well from lady Jane Gordon (o). Remonstrances on the 14th of 
October 1553 to the Pope against Robert Crichton attempting to obtain the 
bishopric of Dunkeld (p). On the 7th of January 1553-4 the see of Dunkeld 
was still vacant (q). Robert the bishop of Dunkeld was forfeited in parliament 
which was held by Lennox at Stirling (r). 

In the month of September 1571, James Paton received a Ratification 
by the young king of his election into the see of Dunkeld, proceeding upon 
a license royal, in the month of February beforehand ; and at both those dates 
the see was declared to be void, through process of forfeiture which had been 
led against Robert, sometime Bishop thereof ; (s) so that Robert Crichton was 
still alive at that time (t). 

It is generally reported that Bishop Paton was deprived in the year 1575 
for dilapidation of his benefice [u). I have seen a Seal of Bishop Paton, by 
the favour of one of his name, but the armorial bearing is much obliterated, 
and seems to have been contained in a small compass. However, the legend 
is plain enough, viz. : — So Jacobi Episcopi de Dunkeld. This bishop was the 
lineal representative of the family of Ballilisk in the parish of Muckhart. His 
gravestone there bears this inscription : Jacobus Paton de Middle- Ballilisk, 
quondam episcopus de Dunkeld qui obit 20 July 1596. The word quondam 
would indeed denote that this person had not been a bishop at his death ; and 
the story of his extrusion is thus told among his relations. They say that 
before his collation to the bishopric, he had purchased from the family of 
Douglas a small farm pertaining to it called Muckhart mill ; that disputes 
happening to arise between two great families whose lands lay contiguous, 
they destroyed his castle, and that the Earl of Argyle had the art to 

(n) Privy Seal Eegister of the 14th October 1553. 

(o) Eobertson's Add. App., 128. {p) Privy Seal Reg. xxvi., fo. 35-6. (g) lb., 27. 

(r) Bannatyne, 258. The Earl of Montrose obtained a grant of his Escheat. Note on the same, 259. 
(s) He was forfeited on the 30th August 1571, in the Parliament held by Lennox, at Stirling. 
Bannatyne, 258. (t) Eegister of gifts, etc. (m) Hay's MS. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.'] OpNOETH -BRITAIN. 18& 

persuade bishop Pa ton to transfer that piece of land to him, and in return 
the Earl promised to procure for him the bishopric of Dunkeld Avith this 
proviso, also, that the bishop should give the Earl a certain share of the tithes. 
Mr. Paton complied with this vicious stipulation, but a change happening at 
Court, Argyle's interest began to fail, and the Bishop in order to avoid a 
prosecution for simony, either suri-endered the bishopric or was dismissed {v). 

Peter Pollock was chosen bishop of Dunkeld by James VI., and on the 19th 
of May, 1596, he was appointed an extra Lord of Session, and he accompanied 
the King into England in 1603, whei-e he was naturalized. The Patronage 
of Cramond Church was vested in the Bishops of Dunkeld, till 1597; when 
Peter Pollock of Polton in this parish, and bishop of that see made a 
resignation of that patronage into the King's hands (tv). 

James Nicolson the parson of Meigle was preferred to this see, in 1606, and 
he died on the 16th of August, 1607 {x). 

Alexander Lindsay of Evelick, and parson of St. Madoes, was promoted, 
after the decease of Bishop Nicolson, and continued in this bishopric till the 
year 1638, when he abjured episcopacy and adopted presbyterianism, and 
accepted from the ruling powers his former church of St. Madoes. 

George Halyburton the parson of Perth was constituted the bishop of 
Dunkeld by letters patent from Charles II. of the 18th of January 1662 ; and 
was consecrated by Archbishop Sharp, on the 7th of May 16611. He died at 
Perth on the 5th of April 1665 {y). 

Henry Guthrie, who was of the family of Guthrie in Forfarshire, was 
chaplain to the Earl of Mar, and minister of Stirling. Whatever may have 
been his principles and his moderation, he was expelled by the ruling faction, 
in November 1648. He now lived quietly till the Restoration, when he was 
also restored to the church of Kilspindie ; and he was consecrated on the 24th 
of August 1665, bishop of Dunkeld, which he enjoyed till his death in 
1676-7 (z). 

William Lyndsay, the son of James Lyndsay of Dowhill and the minister of 
Perth, was consecrated Bishop of Dunkeld on the 7th of May 1677. He died 
in 1679. 

Andrew Bruce, the Archdeacon of St. Andrews, was preferred to the see of 
Dunkeld in 1679 ; and was deprived in 1686, for not complying with the 
King's measures. There is in the Books of Privy Council, a letter from the 
King, dispensing with Doctor Bruce the late bishop of Dunkeld for exercising 

{y) Paton was the first bishop of Dunkeld after the Eeformation. 

{w) Wood's Cramond, 77. (rr) Oalderwood, 670. {y) Lamont, 184-223. 

(z) He wrote Memoirs of Scots affairs, from the year 1637 till the sad demise of Charles I. 

190 An ACCOUNT [Gh. yUL—Ferthshire. 

the functions of the ministry. One of the strange measures this of a stranger 
government. On the 4th of May 1688, however, a conge d'elire to the 
chapter of Orkney, and nomination of Andrew late bishop of Duukeld, to be 
by the chapter elected bishop of Orkney. There remains an order dated on 
the 23rd of October, from the King, granting to this bishop of Orkney £100 
sterling yearly. 

John Hamilton, the son of Hamilton of Blair, was consecrated the bishop of 
Dunkeld, on the 19th of October 1686. He survived the Revolution and be- 
came one of the ministers of Edinburgh. He died in October 1689. Such 
then were the bishops of Dunkeld. 

We are now arrived at the see of Dunblane, a name which was derived from 
St. Blane, who was superior of this Convent, during the reign of Kenneth IV., 
and from him the diocese derived its name. The documents of this see have 
been so destroyed or neglected, that no light can be derived to guide us aright, 
in making up the list of its ancient bishops. And, moreover, there are so 
many visible blanks, with anachronisms in such imperfect collections, that it is 
in vain to expect an accurate detail of the prelates of this See. 

1155. M was a bishop here as early as Pope Adrian IV., who died 

on the first of Septemiber 1159 ; after ruling from the 4th December, 
4 years, 8 months, 29 days. 

1160. Lawrence was a bishop of this See, and a witness saith Arnold, the 
bishop of St. Andrews, in a charter to the abbey of Dunfermline (a). 

1117. Simon is bishop of Dunblane, as a contemporary with Robert, Adam 
and Guide, the abbots of Scone and Cupar, and Lindores : and he 
was bishop here during the reign of William the Lion. 

1218. William must have preceded Jonathan who was archdeacon under 

bishop William (b). 

Jonathan, the archdeacon of Dunblane, and he was bishop here, during 
the time of Gilbert the prior of St. Andrews, who was promoted to 
that affair in 1196, and died in 1210. 

1219. Abraham, who was chaplin to Gilbert the Earl of Strathearn, before 

1200 when Jonathan was bishop, (c). 

The following bishops of the See of Dunkeld may be clearly seen in sufficient 
detail from the subjoined list : — 

1229. Rudolph, elect of Dunblane. 1258. Robert. 

1230. Osbert. 1249-50. Alpin. 
1233. Clement. 1290. William. 

(a) Dalrymp. Col., 274. (6) Chart. Oambusk., 127. (c) Chart, of Inchafifray. 

Sect. VIII — Of its Ecclesiastical History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 191 

1307. Nicolas de Balmyle. 1422. William Stephen. 

1319. Mourice Moray. 1430. Michael Ochiltree. 

1353. William, the bishop. 1448. Robert Lauder. 

1362. Walter Cambuslang. 1459. Thomas, the bishop. 

1373. Andreas, the bishop. 1467. John Hepburn. 

1389. Dougal, the bishop. 1486. James Chisholm. 

1406. Finlay Dermock. 1527. William Chisholm. 
1564. William Chisholm, the nephew of the former. 

Subsequent to the Reformation. 
1575. Andrew Graham. 1661. Robert Leiffhton. 

1604. George Graham. 1673. James Ramsay. 

1615. Adam Bellenden. 1684. Robert Douglas. 

1636. James Wedderburn. 

Such, then, were the successive prelates of Dunblane during the long 
existence of this diocese. It is time to advert to the Scotican Councils, which 
were held at Perth. 

The first council, which the industry and learning of the late Lord Hailes 
discovered was an agreement, which was entered into near Scone, between 
Constantine, the King, and Kellach, the bishop. 

In 1201, John of Salerno, a Cardinal priest, held a Council at Perth of four 
days continuance. In this council it was decreed that all men should cease 
from their secular avocations, on Saturday at noon, and not resume them until 
Monday morning. Boece assures us that this decree was ratified by the 
Scottish Parliament {d). 

During 1206, in April there appears to have been a general Synod held at 
Perth (e). 

In 1211, William Malreoisin, the bishop of St. Andrews, and Walter, the 
bishop of Glasgow, who possessed legatine powers from Innocent III., held a 
Council at Perth. In it there assembled a great number of the bishops and clergy 
of Scotland, and of the other Estates, by the King's Warrant, as is the custom. 
The purpose of this Council was to induce the people of Scotland to take iq^oii 
them the Cross, in the then fashionable sense of the phrase. A great multitude 
consented ; but not many persons were rich or powerful. 

In 1221, Magister Jacobus, Canon, of St. Victor at Paris, plenitentionary of 
the Apostolic See, and legate in Scotland, and in Ireland, assembled all the 
prelates of Scotland at Perth, and there held a provincial council [f). 

(d) Hist. Scot. B. 13, Fol. 227 b. 

(e) Innes, Pict Enc[uiry, 589, whicli quotes for the fact a writing in the possession of the Viscount 
of Arbuthnot. (/) Chart. Morov. fol. 36, and Lord Hailes' Coancils, 10. 

192 An ACCOUNT [Oh. Ylll.— Perthshire. 

In 1242, a Provincial Council was held at Perth; but no Papal Legate 
appeared. David Bernham, the Bishop of St. Andrews, presided. The King 
himself was present, and enjoined his knights and barons, under severe penal- 
ties, to abstain from injuring the clergy, or encroaching upon the customary 
privileges of the Church. This Council published certain canons which were 
ratified by the King and the Estates ; and remained in observance until the 
-abolition of Popery (g). 

In 1268, Ottobon, a cardinal deacon, and papal Legate in England, attempted 
to assemble a Council of the Scotican Church. He summoned all the Scottish 
Bishops to attend him in England. He also required the Scottish Clergy to 
send two abbots or two priors of their representation. This was an illtimed 
attempt to subject the Scottish Church to a foreign jurisdiction ; and it proved 
unsuccessful. Tlie Scottish Bishops sent two of their number, the other clergy 
as many, to watch over the proceedings of this council. The Legate procured 
several canons to be made, but the Scottish Clergy absolutely disclaimed obedi- 
ence. In 1269, accordingly, a provincial council was held at Perth in presence 
of the King and the chief persons of the realm. Hugh Benham, the bishop of 
Aberdeen, presided. The clergy and the people were then at variance concern- 
ing that perpetual subject of controversy, the small tithes. The clergy de- 
manded certain tithes in virtue of the Papal decrees ; the people pleaded 
exemption by the usage of the realm. Boece says that bishop Benham was em- 
powered to determine the matters in debate. By this Council the former 
provincial canons were confirmed ; others, with universal approbation, were added 
for the benefit of religion, and every cause of dissention was removed. In this 
Council the abbot of Melrose and most of his conventual brethren were solemnly 
excommunicated. The crimes laid to their charge were, that they had violated 
the peace of Wedale, assaulted some houses belonging to the bishop of St. 
Andrews, murdered one clergyman and wounded many others. 

There can be little doubt, said Lord Hailes, that the canons of the Councils 
of 1242 and 1269 ai'e those which are prescribed in the Chartulary of Aber- 
deen, and from that Chartulary published by Wilkins in his Concilia Brit- 
tannice (h) . I am persuaded, says he, that none of the writers on our law ever 
perused them yet ; they well deserve the title of " The Scottish Ecclesiastical 

{g) Lord Hailes' Councils, 15. 

(A) See Tome I., 607-618. A national Council was held at Perth, says the Scotichronicon, LX. e. 33. 
(i) They were lately offered to the public by Lord Hailes, with some explanatory notes, but, he 
iidds, only twenty-five copies were sold. 

^6ci.Ylll.— Of its Ecclesiastical History.'] Of NORTH- BRITAIN. 193 

The year 1275 is a remarkable era in the Scottish Church. An ecclesiastic, 
whom Fordun calls Magister Bagimundus, came into Scotland, in the name of 
the Pope, to collect the tenth of all the ecclesiastical benefices for relief of the 
Holy Land. He held a Council at Perth. All the clergy, except the Cister- 
tians, paid the tenth, upon oath and under the terror of excommunication. 
The Cistertian order had granted a general aid of 50,000 marks ; so that it 
would seem the extent of their revenues throughout Europe remained un- 
known (y ). Bagimundus, at the request of the Scottish clergy, repaired to 
Rome in order to obtain an abatement of the tax, but in vain. At that period 
the diminution of taxes was not so easily obtained from the See of Rome as a 
commutation for any crime. 

In 1280 a national Council was holden at the Black Friars of Perth, on 
Monday after St. Bartholomew's day in August, which was mentioned in a 
sentence of Archibald, the bishop of Moray (k). The fierce contest for the suc- 
cession to the Crown, and the heavy burden of a foreign usurper, interrupted 
for many years the assemblies of the Scottish clergy. As soon as government 
was restored, they appear in a light which reflects great honour on their char- 
acters (l). 

In 1321 a Provincial Council was held at Perth in the month of July, the 
Parliament then sitting at the same place. I know not, saith Lord Hailes, 
whether public business was transacted at this Provincial Council (m). In 1324 
a Provincial Council was held at Scone in March. It is called Concilium 
Generate, but this expression, saith Lord Hailes, may denote a Parliament as 
well as a Provincial Council (n). 

In 1357 the Scottish bishops, with consent of their respective chapters and 
of the clergy of Scotland, became bound to pay 100,000 marks sterling for the 
ransom of that weak and unfortunate prisoner, David II. This bond was dated 
at Edinburgh, on the 26th of September, 1357. The Scots, saith Lord Hailes, 
are accused of having once sold a king at too cheap a rate : on this occasion, it 

(j ) Fordun, 1. X. c. 35. 

(k) Chart, vetus Eccles. Moray., f. 46. The bishop of Moray addressed a letter to the bishops, 
^abbots, priors, deans, archdeacons, and other prelates of the Church. This, saith Lord Hailes, serves 
to show who were the constituent members of a Scottish Provincial Council at that period. 

(l) In 1309, on the 14th of February, a Provincial Council was held at Dundee. In it the clergy 
issued a declaration to all the faithful, bearing that the Scottish nation, seeing the kingdom betrayed, 
enslaved, and left without a leader, had assumed Robert Bruce for their sovereign, and that the clergy 
had willingly done homage to him in that character. 

(nj) Its proceedings are mentioned in the Rolls of Arbuth., I. ex Collect., Com. de Panmure, No. 
iXXX., p. 65. 

(n) Chart, of Glasgow. 

7 25 

194 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. NYU..— Perthshire. 

must be acknowledged, saith his lordship, that they bought a king at an exor- 
bitant rate. 

In 1420, on the 16th of July, a Provincial Council was held at Perth by 
William, the bishop of Dunblane, the conservator, and in that quality was 
president of the Council. There is an Act of this Council concerning Testaments. 
This Act is in the original Chartulary of Brechin (o). 

In 1428, as it appears from the 86th Statute of James I, there was a Pro- 
vincial Council held at Perth during the sitting of Parliament. 

In 1436 Anthony, the bishop of Urbino, the Pope's legate, was received by 
the king and clergy in a Provincial Council, which was held at Perth on the 
4th of February in that year. 

In 1450 the last General Council was held at Perth in presence of the Three 
Estates (p). 

In 1457 a Provincial Council was held at Perth. It was therein declared 
that, by ancient custom, the King might present to all benefices of ecclesias- 
tical patronage, sede vacante (q). 

In 1459 a Provisional Council was held at Perth in July. Thomas Spense, 
the bishop of Aberdeen, presided. At the King's request this Council granted 
a declaration of what had passed in the Council of 1457. This was done after 
an inquisition upon oath, although the former declaration was so recent (r). 

In 1465 the annual Council of the clergy was held at Perth, on the day of 
St. Kyrelin, the martyr, according to laudable and ancient custom, and with 
permission of the papal see (s). 

Thus much, then, with regard to those Provincial Councils which were held 
at Perth. 

The ecclesiastical revenues of Perthshire may be inferred from the subjoined 
statements (t) : — 

The sum total of the tithes and benefices within the 

Church and Diocese of Dunblane amounted to - £84 13 4 

The sum of the tithes and benefices within the Church 

and Diocese of Dunkeld, - 218 13 4 

The same of the churches in Gowrie, - - 16 6 8 

But whatever there may be in these statements, the Reformation made con- 
siderable changes in the divisions and revenues. At present Perth and Stirling 

(o) The Chartulary of Brechin is in the Archives of the Earl of Panmure. 

(p) Chart. Dunfermline, II., f. 39. (g) Eec. Pari., Ja. III., f. 75. (r) Pari. Eec., ibid. 

(s) Chart. Aberbrothock, II. f. 70. (t) Ab. Bissat's Eolment of Courtis. 

Sect. IX.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] Ob-NORTH-BEITAIN. 195 

form the 7th Synod, which is composed of five presbyteries. The Presbytery 
of Dunkeld, containing eighteen parishes ; the Presbytery of Perth consists of 
twenty country parishes and of four within the town of Perth ; the Presbytery 
of Auchterarder, of fifteen parishes ; the Presbytery of Dunblane of twelve 
parishes ; and Stirling Presbytery, which does not lie within the shire of Perth, 
consists of two parishes within the shire town, and ten within the County. 

§ IX. Of its Agriculture, etc. 

In Perthshire, which abounds with lakes and with rivers, it is natural to expect 
a considerable proportion of marshy and soft land, which is unfit for tillage. 
This is the most common designation of a meadow in this country, it is per- 
haps more proper to name all land, from which hay is taken, meadow. Where 
there is a fall, drains have been made, the soil was laid dry, and very abundant 
crops were raised ; but, in situations where draining is difficult or impracticable, 
the ground has been employed in meadows, or pastures, which are more or less 
productive, according to the quality of the soil and the quantity of its moisture. 

These meadows are most frequent at the upper end of lakes where the 
principal river that feeds the lake has been carrying down soil, and other loose 
materials for ages, encroaching on its dimensions every year, and forming a 
general addition to the solid land. The brooks also, which descend from glens, 
that are situated on the sides of lakes, have in course of time carried down the 
stones, gravel, and soil, of those glens into the lakes, forming triangular 
promontories of very rich land, more or less extensive, according to the weight 
of the water, which is the cause. The larger brooks likewise, which fall at 
right angles into rivers, whose banks are not very high, and whose course is 
not very rapid, in many instances choke the course of those rivers, and throw 
back the water, forming temporary lakes or morasses, and render the adjacent 
land unfit for tillage. In all these cases, the heavier materials sink deepest, 
while the finest particles of the soil are deposited on the surface. Hence the 
natural cause of the extreme fertility of some meadows. 

In all countries, where there are many valleys, the declination small, and the 
rivers flowing smoothly, meadows are frequent, and in the inland districts of 
this shire, there is such an extent of this kind of ground, that it might appear 
tedious, and uninteresting to descend to particular instances. 

In many places the meadows are very much neglected where something 
might have been done to render them more useful. They are overcharged with 
water the greatest part of the year. The grass is coarse, unpalatable to cattle 
and unfit for hay. 

Little or nothing grows except rushes, flags, willows, and other aquatic 

196 AnACOOUNT [Ch. NTIl.— Perthshire. 

plants. In many parts of the country the meadows are abandoned as incurable, 
when some cultivation seems to be applied to the arable ground. There are 
other instances where industry has turned its attention to this species of 
cultivation. Willows, alders, and other brushwood are grubbed up ; and the 
hillocks that grow about their roots by the accretion of mud, are shaved off, to 
enable the mower to pass his scythe over them with ease. In other places the 
superlative moisture, wherewith the meadow land was overcharged is carried 
off by draining, where that improvement is practicable ; and the fairer species 
of meadow grasses rising spontaneously, occupy the room of flags and rushes. 

Unless meadow ground can be laid dry, in such a manner as to bring it 
under the plough, in a regular rotation of cropping, it ought if possible, to be 
so far drained, as to relieve it of superfluous moisture which is unfriendly to 
the common meadow grasses, and to be flooded occasionally with fresh water 
fraught with sediment. The sediment of calcarious earth is of all others the 
most fertilizing ; but that of minerals will cheapen vegetation. This is the 
highest improvement of which that land is capable, and the cheapest manure it 
can receive. But, it must not be flooded when the grass is long, and intended 
for hay ; because the quality of the hay is lessened. There is a chance of some 
sand adhering to the stalks, which renders it injurious to cattle, and of the hay 
being so much warped if the crop be heavy, that it becomes difficult to be 
mown. Neither ought a field to be flooded soon before cattle are let in upon 
it when in pasture ; because in this case it would be liable to parching. Nor 
ought the water to remain long at once, especially in the warm season, because 
the water would gather a green scum, which lies down on grass like a sheet, 
even after the water is discharged, and prevents vegetation, by excluding free 
air, and preventing the influence of the sun. It is not only improper in 
flooding meadows to let the water remain upon them any longer than till the 
sediment has wholly subsided ; but attention should be paid to bring in the 
water when it is most muddy, which generally happens in the spring and 
autumn. In severe winters the land is in danger of Ibeing too much chilled, 
especially if the water is locked in by frost ; and in summer the unfavourable 
circumstances which are already taken notice of, may occur. Water that has 
been strained, that is, water that has already deposited its fertilizing particles 
in one meadow, is not so valuable a manure for another, as fresh water from 
the brook. 

When the field is almost horizontal all over it, or the declination against 
draining it up in small ridges with the spade in the form of potatoe lazybeds, 
from six to ten feet in breadth, according to the swampiness of the ground, 
digging the trenches between the ridges of such depth as is needful may render 

Sect. IX Of its Agriculture, etc.] Oi-NOETH-BEITAIN. 197 

the ridges dry. If this be done in spring, a crop of potatoes may be obtained 
the same season which will bring the ground into fine tilth for sowing grass 
seeds and cultivating grain next season ; or, if the work be done in summer, it 
may be sown at any time with the seeds of meadow grasses. Of these the 
meadow foxtail and the rough-stalked meadow grass are most proper for wet 
seasons, and they do very well when sown together, because the latter expands 
itself more than the former. The meadow fesene and the sweet-scented vernal 
grass, which also spread in different degrees, form a mixture for moist land. 
Smooth-stalked meadow grass and the crested dogtail are well adapted for dry 
pasture. Besides these, there is a variety of other meadow grasses, some of 
which are valuable for being early, others for being hardy, others for bringing 
a weighty crop, and others for suiting the nature of different soils and climates. 
Whoever wishes to have his meadows in good order must clear them of all 
obstructions to their being cut in hay or used for pasture. 

In situations where water cannot be commanded, some other manures ought 
to be laid on grass grounds which are intended for hay. Marie, or lime, or 
ashes, will make an excellent top dressing where the soil is dry ; but where it 
is moist, it will be more proper to use manure, and this manure ought not to 
be long or mixed with much litter, or newly made, because it will soon become 
parched, and the juices will be exhaled by the sun and wind before its virtues 
are absorbed by the soil. 

The channels for conveying water to flooded meadows should have such a 
gentle declination that the force of the current may not carry stones or gravel 
to choke the canals themselves, or carry that trumpery down on the flooded 
land. And the smaller channels by which the water is divided and spread 
ought to be made with the same precaution. The drains, also, for carrying it 
off ought to be made in the same manner, that the water may retire slowly, 
without carrying any of the soil away, and as little as possible of the sediment. 

Pasture in more elevated situations than those hitherto alluded to are every- 
where to be met with in the Highland districts of this shire. These consist 
partly of land exhausted, by scourging crops, till the land can yield no more to 
the gripe of avarice, which then is left to go into spontaneous grass. They 
consist, also, of green ground which had never been reclaimed, in situations 
that admit not of the operations of agriculture. It is to be hoped that, owing 
to the spirit of cultivation which has gone forth, the period is not far distant 
when all the arable land which is left in pasture will be sown out with white 
clover and other grasses corresponding to its nature, and that it will be enriched 
occasionally by water or some other fertilizing substance. 

Many thousand acres of the very best arable ground, both in this shire and 

198 An ACCOUNT [Ch. YIll.— Perthshire. 

in all the other counties of the kingdom, are lying in pasture around the houses 
of wealthy proprietors, which have not carried an ear of corn for many years, 
and may continue indefinitely in the same style. In sullen and solitary mag- 
nificence the owner sits alone, surrounded with sheep in place of men. 

If the public have any interest in the land of individuals, and any right to 
enquire into the manner in which they are occupied, and into the uses to which 
they are applied, which, it is presumed, ought to be the case in every well 
regulated society, and under every government that is established on liberal 
principles, this practice of laying half of a parish waste should claim the 
cognizance of the legislature. On a small scale the injury to the public is not so 
hurtful, but, when carried to excess, it requires but little penetration to 
discern that it is a national evil of the first magnitude, and every man must 
acknowledge its ruinous consequences, who esteem men to be preferable to 

In many parts of Scotland, whole districts are laid waste, the inhabitants are 
driven away, and there is nothing to be seen, except enormous sheep farms. 
It beautifies a country to have well dressed lawns around the mansions of the 
^reat ; nor is the injury to the community so hurtful when these lawns are of 
moderate extent. But, there is no apology, except avarice, for reducing large 
tracts of the country to a solitude, by converting good arable ground into 
sheep farms of immense extent. 

While the government in 1796, gave a bounty for the importation of corn, 
Avhile all ranks were obliged to reduce the quantity and quality of their bread, 
while the humane were either parochially or individually finding it necessary to 
purchase meal for the poor, to keep them from starving ; while all distillation 
of corn was prohibited, under the most severe penalties, and the public lost the 
revenue arising from that branch of excise ; while these and other circumstances 
demonstrated the alarm that had seized the public mind from an apprehension 
of scarcity, there was an extent of land lying unproductive of corn, which had 
been in tillage thirty or forty years theretofore, that would have produced 
grain more than sufficient to supply the defect at the usual prices, without im- 
portation. An appeal to a single fact proves this, without further reasoning. 
Not a third part of those grass lands were broken up in spring, 1796 ; and yet, 
in 1797, when this crop came to market there was such plenty in the country 
that the prices fell more than 50 per cent. 

May not this evil be remedied by ordaining that beyond a stated number of 
acres of grass ground, specified according to the circumstances and situation of 
different classes of men, every acre of arable land, in the possession of any 
person, which shall not revert under the plough, in a certain number of years, 

Sect. IX.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 199 

shall pay a tax to government ; and that this tax shall either increase yearly, 
so long as this surplus of arable land shall continue in grass ; or that the tax 
be laid on, in the first instance, proportionably to surplus, in a geometrical 
progression, according to the tenor of the tax on windows. 

Few taxes can be proposed which are not objectionable in some respect or 
other. Those are the most hurtful which militate against the national prosperity ; 
whereas those laid on the luxuries of life are liable to fewest objections, in so 
far as many of them give bread to the industrious, and affect neither our popu- 
lation nor our commerce. This tax may be objected to, also, but no man can 
pretend to say that it will either cut the sinews of industry, cramp our trade, 
send our money out of the country, grind the face of the poor, or lessen the 
population. Nay, it would operate powerfully in an opposite direction, and 
must eventually contribute greatly to the common good. 

In some of these reports, and in other publications on this subject, it is main- 
tained that the balance between grass and corn will find its own level, that is, 
when corn rises to a high price, grass lands will be ploughed ; and when the 
price of grain is low, more land will return to grass. This reasoning is very 
common ; but I doubt that it is more specious than solid. If the population 
were always stationary, the argument would be conclusive. 

Of gardens and orchards, it may be remarked that horticulture is making a 
rapid progress in Perthshire. But where there is such an extent of territory ; 
such a variety of climate, and diversity of soil, it naturally follows that this 
species of improvement is more attainable in some districts than in others. 

Next to the Carse of Gowrie, the best exposure in this county for raising 
fruit, is the foot of the Ochills from the Bridge of Allan to Dollar. In the 
vicinity of Perth, in the tract of the Tay, and of the course of the Isla, and in 
many parts of Monteith, the ingenuity of man has seconded the benignity of" 
nature in cultivating different kinds of fruit. 

The Highlands of Scotland, like other countries where the land is not over- 
charged with water, was at one period, completely under wood. Tillage and 
other causes have removed the vestiges of trees ; but their roots and trunks are 
found almost everywhere, in the mosses, both in the flat land, in the valleys, 
and on the very tops of hills. The progress of population, the necessity for 
cultivating land to obtain farinacious food, destroying the haunts of wild beasts, 
and the fastnesses of lawless men, all contributed their share, in laying the 
country naked, by the destruction of the tallest forests. Even in the bottom 
of Moss Flanders, in Monteith, which in most places is from 10 to 12 feet deep, 
the roots of trees are said to have marks of the hatchet. The crowded popu- 
lation, which the feudal system, a military establishment, encouraged in latter 

200 An account [Oh. Ylll.—PerthsJiire. 

times, and the exigencies of the State, in requiring so often a multitude of 
soldiers, unproportioned to the extent or fertihty of Scotland, in order to resist 
fierce invasions, and to contend with powerful neighbours, brought every inch 
of land into tillage which, according to the ideas of those times, was capable of 
producing grain. Nothing was left unploughed where the rude husbandry of 
our fathers supposed an ear of corn could grow. The woods were banished into 
the steep declivities of glens, or among rocks, and stones, and other places, that 
were deemed incapable of cultivation. The open country was wholly divested 
of cover, as the growth of timber was considered as an obstacle to the abun- 
dance of food, or in other words, to the multitude of people. The ancient 
barons more eager for warfare, and for the extension of their property, than for 
improvement, conspired with the spirit of the times to desolate the woods. 

About the beginning of this century, woods began to claim some attention. 
For fifty or sixty years, before 1797, the possessors of some estates in this 
county thought of repairing the devastation which had formerly been permitted, 
and encouraged the growing of timber. They saved what remained of their 
woods, and made new plantations in places convenient for that purpose. 

Within these last thirty years (before 1797) plantations have increased 
rapidly, both in size and number. In Stormont, in Athol, in Breadalbane, in 
Strathearn, in Strathallan, in the Carse of Gowrie, in the vicinity of Culross, in 
Monteith, and almost in every corner of the county, there are thriving planta- 
tions, which consist of a variety of forest trees, adapted to the nature of the 
soil, that do honour to the spirit and judgment of the owners. They are 
already an ornament to the county and a profit to the possessors. 

In former times a few favourite trees might be seen about the residence of 
some great men, some of which may have stood for centuries, and may have 
become venerable for their years, but the scale has been greatly enlarged in 
this part of the empire beyond all example at any period or in any age. 

The Scots fir is the most common pine in these plantations. It is extremely 
hardy, is naturally suited to all climates, and almost to all soils, although it 
seems to prefer the colder regions, being found to thrive within the frigid zone. 
The larch has, many years ago, been introduced into this county as a variety 
of our plantations. In the survey of the central Highlands in 1792, it was 
remarked that " There are larches at Blair of Athol and Dunkeld, which were 
planted about 1742, which measure full eight feet in circumference, at five feet 
from the ground, and that a similar luxuriance of growth has taken place at 
Taymouth. The largest larches in this county, or in perhaps several oounties 
around, are at Monzie, which measure five feet in diameter, and about fifteen 
in circumference. There are larches of a great size at Blair-Drummond, Glen- 

Sect. IX.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 201 

eagle, Rossie, and many other places in Perthshire. I saw larches, which were 
planted forty-seven years ago, two feet and a half diameter, and at five feet 
from the ground, corresponding very nearly to what has been just said — & size 
this to which no other species in this country would arrive in the same time. 
The boards had very little white timber at the edge. Posts of larch which had 
been put into a moist soil about 1781 seemed still to be fresh and strong. It 
is only of late that this tree has been generally planted, and its excellence 
sufficiently known in this country. It is the most rapid in its growth of any 
tree they have, and the most valuable species of the pine. It is closer in the 
pores, has fewer knots, and the wood is more durable than the common fir, and 
withall it increases double the number of cubical feet in any given time, which 
is a singular excellence. 

Larches are well adapted to the climate of Perthshire, and are said to have 
been brought into Scotland by one of the Dukes of Athol from the frozen 
mountains of Carniola, which are a continuation of the Alps, which is bounded 
by the Gulf of Venice. This wood makes excellent floors and beams for house 
building, and is used in Venice and in Switzerland for that purpose. It is said 
that the vessels of the lake of Geneva are made of larch ! Painters have 
trusted their works to this wood, as being proof against the worm, for which 
reason Pliny calls it immortale lignum, and he adds that it was imported into 
Europe from Sardis. 

Ash, elm, plane, beeches, oak, laburnum, and a variety of different kinds of 
trees, are intermixed in our plantations, which have a fine effect by diversifying 
the appearance, and relieving the eye from a disagreeable sameness, which 
never fails to fatigue. The ash and the elm are the most useful for the purposes 
of husbandry, the pine claims the next place. The oak is excellent for ship- 
building, and the bark brings a great price for the purpose of tannery. The 
ash and the elm turn their backs to the storm when planted single, as do the 
larch and the beech ; but the plane stands spreading its branches equally on 
all sides in defiance of the storm. The same may be said of the hardy oak. 
In large plantations there are varieties of soil and exposure, and every kind of 
timber thrives best in a soil peculiar to itself The trees which keep the leaf 
in winter, afford the best cover where shelter is wanted ; and of all these the 
.spruce continues longest to carry branches near the root. Taste in planting is 
discovered by the variety, and the judgment is shown by having trees of a 
plantation in that soil which corresponds to its nature. 

The oak prevails in the valleys of the Grampians, where there is a genial 
•climate and the soil is light and dry. Ash grows spontaneously on the sides of 
■every brook, river, or lake. The alder delights in sprouty ground and swamps, 
7 26 

202 Ak ACCOUNT [Ch. Ylll.—FerthsMre. 

and the birch chmbs boldly to the brow of every hill. In the low country 
there are many natural woods, where the plants found cover, and the situation 
of the ground was unfriendly to the operations of the plough ; but in many of 
the most bleak and exposed places hardly a shrub can be seen to afford shelter 
from the colds, or to hide the sterility of the soil. 

In choosing plants of forest trees, or indeed of any other kind, it is proper to 
bring them from a nursery, as similar in the quality of soil and exposure as 
possible to the soil and climate where they are to be planted. 

The best ground for a nursery is a free rich soil, in an exposed situation ; the 
freeness and richness of the soil give the plants many small fibres, and the 
situation being exposed prevents the plants from being delicate. Many planta- 
tions have failed by bringing young trees from rich and warm nurseries near 
great towns to a poor soil and bleak climate, and many have also failed by 
putting down trees in ground unsuitable to their qualities. 

Natural fir woods are frequent in the north of Scotland, although they are 
rare in this country ; yet ought not this topic to be passed over in silence. 
There is, however, on Loch Rannoch a fir wood of great extent, from which the 
proprietor derives a considerable revenue. His natural firwood covers two 
thousand five hundred and sixty six acres of land, which is the most extensive 
forest in one continued tract within Perthshire. His detached woods of oak, 
birch, alder, which are intermixed cover three thousand eight hundred and 
sixty-nine acres. 

There are mor-e oak woods and of greater value in this county than in all the 
rest of Scotland. The copse of oak is cut once in twenty-four or twenty-six 
years. A few .spare trees of the most promising appearance, and of the best 
figure, are left at proper distances, from one cutting to another, and sometimes 
for three or four cuttings. The straightest are generally spared without 
attending to this circumstance that crooked oak is more eagerly sought after 
by shipbuilders, and brings a higher price, than oak which is straight. Yet, as 
copice is the object, straight trees injure it least. Scots oak has been found in 
general too close in the grain to bend for ship sides ; and even, for the same 
reason, it is found to snap over when used as ribs to a ship ; its closeness in the 
grain is the effect of slower growth owing to frequent checks by early and late 

When the bark of those trees is dried it is sent off to the tanners ; and if 
they reside any where upon the coast, it is carried to the nearest port. Some 
years before 1797, one shilling was accounted a good price for the stone of 171 
English, now one shilling and sixpence is very common, and the price is fre- 
quently rising. The crooked timber of a proper size is sent to the ship 

Sect. IX. — Of its AgriGulture, etc.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 203 

carpenters inthe difierent dock-yards, the other timber is either made into 
spokes, and sent to the great towns for the use of the coachmakers, or sold to 
the country people for various uses, or reduced to charcoal for the foundries. 
But the practice of charring timber does not prevail so much as formerly, because 
the manager of the furnaces char the pi tcoal which is found in their neighbour- 
hood and use it in place of the other, which saves the expense of along carriage. 

The bark of the birch tree was formerly more used in tanning leather than 
at present, because it seems its virtues are less than that of the oak. It gives 
the leather a beautiful light brown or yellow colour. The bark of the willow 
and of the mountain ash is used equally with oak bark. The last is a powerful 
astringent ; it is said not to be much inferior to the Peruvian bark, and to be a 
good substitute for it. Tanners esteem it chiefly because it excites a fermenta- 
tion in their pools. 

For some years back from 1797, in cutting woods on most estates, the stocks 
are peeled to the ground ; whereas according to former practice, the bark was 
never allowed to be taken off below the axe, or the place where the tree was 
cut. By the present method the young shoots are better spread, and have 
more air than when they grew all in one bush. They are nearer the earth, 
each standing on its own base ; by which means they resist the winds more 
firmly, and acquire the nourishment from the ground more directly and plenti- 
fully than through the medium of the present stock, or by forming a crust of 
new timber around it. Care should, however, be taken not to allow the stocks 
of oak to be peeled below the ground, which might happen either by intention 
or neglect when a strong slice of bark is drawn off; because the new shoots 
spring only from such parts of the stock as have bark above ground, or very 
near the surface, where the air can very freely circulate. 

Oak-woods which are newly cut are commonly enclosed either with a stone 
wall or railed in with part of their own timber, and are preserved from cattle 
for the space of five, six, or seven years, according to the option of different 
proprietors. But unless the soil be uncommonly rich, in five years, or even in 
six, the young shoots are neither high enough to be out of the reach of cows, 
which eat them greedily, nor strong enough to resist their weight when they 
press upon them in order to reach at the succulent buds at the top. Horses 
are not so apt to do so much mischief unless they are pressed with hunger. 
When oak woods are eaten or cropt by cattle they will never thrive until they 
are cut over at the ground, and in this case the sooner it is done the better. 

Oak seems of all others the fittest tree for those purposes in an inland situa- 
tion, because the bark yields a quick return, from the successive cuttings of 
the copse every twenty-six years, nearly equal to the value of the land whereon 

204 AnACCOUNT [Oh. Ylll.— Perthshire. 

it grows, and the timber serves the ordinary purposes of the country, whereas 
other timber may not find a market, if remote from water carriage. While the 
attention of gentlemen is directed to adorning their residences, no species of 
trees is so well adapted for this purpose as that which springs from the stock 
and is a permanent beauty. If ornament were alone the proprietor's object, 
although other forest trees should not be excluded, the oak seems to deserve a 
preference, by being allowed to rise to its full stature. It is the longest lived 
tree known in this part of the world, the yew alone excepted, and in its aspect 
imitates the boldness and grandeur and duration of our hills. 

Before agricultural improvements were so well understood, as they are of late, 
or occupied so much of the attention of all ranks in this country, many moorish 
tracts of land were deemed incapable of cultivation, or of making a return in 
any other way, equal to their being planted. Proprietors even in the Carse of 
Gowrie and in Stormont, actuated by this principle, about the year 1777, 
planted the waste ground upon their estates with Scots firs. They have now 
found that this soil by being wrought will make good arable land, and will be 
more profitably employed in tillage. Some thousands of acres have accordingly 
been cleared, the plantations rooted up, the soil subjected to the plough and let 
at a progressive rent, in some cases amounting already to twenty shillings the 
acre. Between Coupar and Perth, a tract of thirteen miles, the plantations on 
two thousand acres, upon both sides of the public road, have been grabbed up, 
and the operation is still going on both there and in other places. 

So powerful is the principle of imitation, that we all go frequently one way, 
until we have gone too far. All men can imitate example, but all men cannot 
reason so as to form a principle of action for themselves. 

In a cei-tain degree this operation is salutary, but if carried to excess it will 
leave the face of the country uncovered, and perhaps in all cases the cost is not 
counted, nor the balance fairly stated between the plantation and the produce 
arising from poor soils, by any system ; yet it must be admitted that no trees 
are equal in value to corn and grass, either to the landlord or to the public, 
where the cultivation of these can be prosecuted with success. 

Of wastes, it may be said that all unproductive land which is abandoned as 
unimprovable, whether it be considered as waste, nature has, been so kind to 
some spots, especially lowlying meadows, where there is plenty and no more 
than plenty of moisture for raising the meadow grasses, that it is doubtful in 
many cases whether the industry of man can render them more productive than 
the benignity of nature has already done. Many such tracts of meadow ground 
in this country might be pointed out, which might be traced in a great measure 
from what has been said. 

Sect. IX.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 205 

Improvable is but an indefinite term, and the last generation of improvers 
thought many grounds unworthy of culture which we now see converted into 
good arable land. There may happen to be a piece of very indifferent land 
lying near a gentleman's door, whose barren appearance is an eyesore, and which 
he must improve at any expense. 

The nature of mosses (the original formation of peat earth) is so well ascertained 
and so well described in every treatise on agriculture, that it is unnecessary to 
enter on any details touching such a subject. The most useful question relative 
to this species of land is, what can be made of mosses, and how can they be made 

Mosses of small extent, where there is a mixture of other soil, and the fall is- 
considerable, are generally pared and burnt with profit ; but, if there be little 
or no fall, they may be planted with potatoes, in lazybeds, for a first crop, and 
. the furrows left open for drains. With the first or second white crop the seed 
of common grasses, which is always to be met with in meadow land, ought to 
be sown, which will yield a heavy crop of hay for some years, and afterwards a 
plentiful growth of strong coarse pasture, consisting mostly of aquatic plants. 

Where there is plenty of brushwood, deep mosses, with a good fall, are most 
commonly drained and drawn into ridges like other land. The drains may be 
made with faggots, which are put in either longitudinally and sloping, having 
the slope of the truncheon always in the direction of the fall ; or they may be 
laid transversely, in the shape of a St. Andrews Cross, and the land always 
pared, burnt, and levelled. 

Of moors or wasteland there is a great tract, which is unfit for any useful 
purpose, except for plantation, between Auchterarder and TuUibardine, lying 
westward to the military road and farther. A few starved sheep may be seen 
in some places on its skirts, but the great body of the moor, in its pi-esent state, 
is useful to neither man nor beast. A small plantation of Scots firs has grown 
several years in one place of this moor, to a considerable size, and many other 
spots are planted, by different proprietors, which are generally in a thriving 
condition, and show that it is a proper soil for firs. As this moor is already 
divided, if the conterminous heritors would place permanent land marks on their 
respective limitf, and would be at the joint expense of a bounding fence round 
the whole, each paying in proportion to the number of acres of his property en- 
closed, this great plantation would raise such a forest as would shelter the bleak 
country around it, and would be productive of a vast return. And although 
pine woods are not esteemed beautiful objects, yet they certainly are as pleasant 
to the eye as a gloomy heath. 

Any grass within the confines of this moor is, no doubt, leased to the tenantry. 

206 An ACCOUNT [Gh. Ylll.—Ferthshire. 

by whose farms it Is surrounded, and tliey probably may have a privilege of 
casting fuel upon it ; but these servitudes might easily be compounded with 
the tenants if the proprietors were in earnest. 

At present every acre of heath is, on an average, scarcely worth a sixpence 
of rent, but let it be called one shilling, which is more than the value. If it 
were planted, we may suppose every tree which grows up to timber would in 
eighty years be at least worth five shillings. There are firs in this part of the 
country which were planted between sixty-five and seventy years ago, which 
are selling at present from ten to fifteen shillings, and some of them bring 
twenty shillings, but allow eighty years for any difference which may be in soil 
and climate, and take only one half of the lowest price. 

Suppose what might be planted of the moor before mentioned to be seven 
miles, and three miles on two sides, and three miles on the other two, 
the bounding fence would be twenty miles long ; but, on the supposition that 
the figure be somewhat irregular, having exterior and interior angles, let the 
fence be called thirty miles in length, which is a large allowance. The area of 
this moor, seven miles by three, is twenty-one square miles, which is nearly 
equal to ten thousand seven hundred acres ! Every acre will plant three 
thousand four hundred and twenty-two trees allowing sixteen square feet to 
each. At an early period, which depends on the strength of the soil, and the 
progress of the young trees, one third should be taken out when they begin to 
interfere, and each of the remaining trees will occupy twenty-four square feet. 
At a second weeding, when it appears necessary, another third of the original 
number may be cut down ; and the remainder, being one thousand one hun- 
dred and forty, which are left to grow to timber, will each of them occupy a. 
space of forty-eight square feet, which is sufficient for any ordinary fir ; many 
lar'ge firs grow vigorously in less room. This moor is differently denominated 
from the properties of the gentlemen who have an interest in it ; for the sake 
of brevity it may be called the Moor of Orchill. 

After allowing the value of the weedings to go for backbone trees and other 
contingent expenses not adverted to, which is surely enough, the profit is 
beyond conception, unless one were at the pains to make a calculation, which 
in the present case has been done with all possible accuracy, in order to set 
this important subject in a clear point of view. 

Whenever the land will not let at more than one shilling or one and six- 
pence the acre, and is unfriendly to cultivation by the plough, it is much the 
best method of turning it to account to plant it full of trees which are suitable 
to its nature. Even common firs in this way will bring a sum equal to six 
shillings an acre of yearly rent, and, moreover, it is of no small consideration 

Sect. IX.— 0/ its A cjriniUure, etc.'] OfNOETH- BRITAIN. 207 

that the most barren and bleak moor, hj this management, will be rendered 
perfectly green, and if depastured by sheep when the trees are cut down it will 
remain green, and continue to let at an adequate rent. 

It is a presumptive proof that this country was warmer of old and the tem- 
perature of the air more mild than at present, when our very mountains pro- 
duced grain. This mildness of the climate was occasioned by nothing else than 
the woodiness of the country during that era. Restore the course and the 
effect will follow. The more wood thei-e is in a country in northern latitude 
the more temperate will be the climate and the more genial the influence of 
the air ; add to this, that in point of beauty there is no comparison between a 
bleak moor, which is covered with stunted heath, and a waving forest that is 
clad with the livery of nature. 

There is a certain barrenness of soil in which the heath delights, and when- 
ever that barrenness is removed it does not thrive, neither does it thrive in the 
other extreme of the poorest soil and most exposed situation. To every plant 
there is a particular quality of soil, a certain degree of moisture, of warmth, 
and of exposure, which is natural. Different plants as well as different animals 
have peculiar climates which are accommodated to their several constitutions, 
and even in the same country one species of plants are found in the valleys and 
another in the hills, nay, in the same field and soil ; if its nature and qualities 
be changed by cultivation, its production will change of course. Allow your 
drains to stop, in a field which had once been properly dressed, let it become 
sour and spouty, it becomes instantly filled with sprits, rushes, and other 

Drain and cultivate the same field again, these coarse grasses will disappear, and 
others which are peculiar to dry land will succeed in their place. Fold sheep, 
lead rivulets, or lay the most enriching manure on the most barren ground 
which is not overcharged with water, and the richest carpet of close fine grass 
will spring up spontaneously. Kemove these before it be fully saturated and 
it will gradually return to its former sterility. Were all plants suited by 
nature to thrive only in the same circumstances, we should have at least the 
half of the globe without any plants at all, what might therefore appear, 
by superficial observation, to be a nigardliness in nature, or a defect in the 
bounty of Heaven, is, upon a closer inspection, recognized to be the effect of 
consummate wisdom and of goodness without bounds. From the frozen tops of 
the highest mountains down to the bottom of the warmest valleys every degree 
of heat and cold, of barrenness and fertility, or wetness and dryness of soil. 
Providence has adapted to the nature of particular plants which come to per- 
fection where another species could not live ; and these various plants are the 

208 An ACCOUNT [Ch. YUl.—Ferthshire. 

food of different animals, that no creature might be deprived of nourishment 
which is peculiar to its kind. It is therefore probable that the food of all 
plants is not the same, but that some of them prefer one kind of food and some 
another, and these in various degrees. At any rate, vphatever their natural 
aliment is, or where the earth is brought by industry to have that aliment, 
there we uniformly see them making their appearance, and yet we cannot 
rightly tell how. 

We are now arrived at Improvements, one of the most important topics of 
husbandry ; and Draining of land is a species of improvement which is much 
practised, and much desired where it is necessary. Where the fields are hori- 
zontal, or where much superfluous water is to be carried off, open drains are 
used. In the upland, where round stones are at hand, rumbling drains are 
most in use. The former kind prevails in the Carse of Gowrie, on the banks 
of the Isla, in Monteith, and in many other places, the latter kind on the 
slopes of hills, and in general within the Highland districts. 

Much draining is still wanted in every part of Perthshire, nor is it easy to 
say what is the good of land, for raising any crop which is known in this 
country, nor what the benefit of manure can be, while the ground lies in water. 
As the knowledge of farming advances, there is no doubt but that draining will 
be also carried on ; but if ground be incurably wet and so poor as not to defray 
the expense of laying it dry, to plant trees of the poplar seem to be the best 
mode of bringing it to some account. Any other trees will not thrive without 
small cuts to carry off the water. 

Draining and inclosing are not only essential, but permanent improvements 
of land, and, of course, are the first steps taken where the process is planned 
with judgment ; for this reason the proprietor ought to execute Draining and 
Inclosing himself If done otherwise they are seldom effectual, unless the 
tenant be a person of uncommon spirit, and by length of his lease have a pros- 
pect of reaping the full benefit of those operations. If those improvements be 
carried on during the duration of the lease, a certain interest may be necessary 
on the sum that may have been laid out ; but when the lease is renewed 
it is proper to add this per centage to the aggregate sum of the rent, and to 
charge the whole under the general denomination of rent. 

Paring and burning were formerly more practised in this part of the country 
than have been done during late years ; and in the eastern districts, I did not 
learn that it had ever been much in use. The best farmers say, that the 
oleoginous parts of the surface, whether plants, or earth, are dissipated and lost 
in the operation of burning, and that only the earthy parts remain. This 

Sect. IX.— Of its Agriculture, etc.] OfNORTH-BEITAIN. 2 09 

cannot be denied ; and is a material objection to that mode of cultivation in 
many cases. 

The objections to paring and burning have almost entirely arisen from its 
being principally practised, with a view to a system of scourging crops ; and 
where marie or lime are used for the same purpose, they deserve equally to be 
reprobated. Paring and burning will do more in one year towards bringing 
good grass, or providing for a green crop and a subsequent good rotation than 
can in most situations be accomplished, in five or six years, with lime or marie. 
I mean in point of extent, because as much paring and burning can be done 
in one year as is wished for. 

It is observed of embanking that the junction of the Earn and the Tay, when 
banked off, has formed an island of twenty-one acres, and the spirited farmer 
has made a road two chains long, between this island and the mainland 
through a depth of twelve feet, at low water. Six feet of sludge had, in the 
year 1798, gathered in the bottom of the gulf or crack, where the water 
stagnates ; and in a short time the island will be annexed to his farm by a 
tract of solid land. The same farmer has also banked about a mile on the sides 
of both those rivers, where the shore was low, and the land was exposed to 
inundations. This bank is six or seven feet high at an average ; corresponding 
to the rising or falling of the surface whereon it is made, and from fourteen to 
thirty in the base ; the whole was performed at his own expense. Lord 
Wemyss has near the same place made a bulwark of stone ; to join another 
island to the mainland. The river Earn overflows the land, not only at its 
mouth, but in many places, from Comrie to the sea. It is an object of import- 
ance both to heritors and tenantry, to endeavour to defend the soil and the 
crop from such destructive inundations. 

Of manuring it is remarked wherever the earth contains the greatest quantity 
of putrid matter either from animal or vegetable substances, that is the richest 
soil, and it is rich or poor in the proportion wherein it contains more or less of 
these, in a state of decomposition, Hence the astonishing fertility of all new 
soil, or what is called virgin earth, which is the only circumstance that gives 
probability to the accounts which we receive of the products of new countries, 
and where the soil has been acquiring since the creation an accretion of vege- 
table food, without losing any by being depastured, or by cropping. 

The use of manure is in proportion to the industry and the intelligence of the 
tenantry. The indolent never think of such mixtures ; the diligent collect all 
useless vegetables which they can command before the seed upon them has 
ripened, mixed with quicklime, to increase the quality of manure ; knowing that 
this will increase their quality of grain. In making these mixtures that soil is 
7 27 

210 AnACCOUNT [Oh. Yin.— Perthshire. 

preferable, and ought to be introduced upon a field which consists of a quality 
opposite to the field itself 

Lime is a manure in general use where there is fuel to burn it. If it be 
distant the farmers endeavour to carry it in shells, while the water is dissipated, 
and the lime is light. It is always an object of attention to remove the shells 
as soon as possible after the lime is drawn from the kiln, for it is known from 
experiment that a ton of lime which is exposed twenty two days to the air, 
after calcination, is augmented in weight to thirty hundred weight ; and some 
kinds of lime even to thirty-five, which is little less than double. 

Limestone, when beat small, makes an excellent manure, and might supply 
the place of calcined limestone where fuel is scarce. In Rannoch, a district in 
this shire, which is very remote from coal, a machine was erected by the late 
Commissioners of Annexed Estates for this purpose, which was driven by water. 
The effects of it were visible upon the ground, which several gentlemen saw and 
approved. The quantity of lime which is imported at Perth, and the annual 
increase of that quantity may be easily ascertained. Nothing can be clearer 
evidence of the progressive improvement, and of the obvious prosperity of the 
country, than facts of this nature. Various quarries of limestone have been 
lately opened. 

There is nothing more common, and perhaps few things more difficult to be 
accounted for, than when lime is spread on short heath or other barren grouiid 
which has a dry bottom, to see white clover and daisies rising spontaneously and 
plentifully on the second or third spring thereafter, where not a vestige of 
either nor even a blade of grass was to be seen before. 

It is altogether contrary to common sense to have recourse to the doctrine of 
spontaneous generation, by imagining that anything can produce itself, or that 
the seed of grasses can be produced without a cause. 

This doctrine is universally exploded. The ways and the works of God are 
dark and intricate ; and we often attempt to investigate them in vain. Our 
most profound are frequently nothing better than guessing at the causes of the 
phenomena that appear in the course of Providence. Perhaps the seeds of all 
plants were created at the same time with the earth itself, and deposited in the 
earth, to remain there until they are called forth by that degree of fecundity in 
the soil and warmth in the sun, together with the moisture and exposure, and 
other circumstances which correspond to their nature. 

Of marie all the different kinds partake of the quality of lime, and act on the 
soil nearly in the same manner. Stone and clay marles are slower in stimulating 
the ground, because they require longer time to fall into powder. Calcarious 
marles are somewhat quicker, but shell marie is the quickest of all. Marie, as 

Sect. IX.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.'] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 211 

well as lime, being a stimulus, ought not to be repeated very often. The land 
will soon be exhausted, unless it either hath time to recover itself by lying out 
or otherwise receive a supply of vegetable food. The danger of exhaustion is, 
however, greater when the land is naturally light and easily stimulated, than 
when it is heavy, sluggish, and stiff. Shell marie is found in many parts of 
Perthshire in great quantities. The ordinary allowance for an acre is from 
forty to sixty bolls. The most experienced improvers allow forty bolls for a 
second marling after an interval of fourteen years. The interval now adopted 
in Stormont is nineteen years. On all light lands its effects are powerful and 
immediate, but it requires to be managed with caution. Many places of Perth- 
shire have been almost laid waste by the excessive application of this 
stimulating manure, and by over-cropping the ground. In some parts of 
the moorlands of Perthshire, which had not been ploughed at all, the heath 
was extirpated in three years by a top-dressing of marie, and was succeeded by 
a fine grass. Marie has been found under almost every kind of substance, but 
the most common is on moss, or soft mud, or sand ; more rarely has it been 
discovered under clay or gravel. The methods which are taken to get out 
marie are draining, pitting, throwing out, or pumping off the water, or dragging 
the marie into boats and emptying the load upon piers. 

212 An account [Oh. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

A berdeenshire. 

§ I. Of its Name. — This appellation is plainly significant in the British 
language of the Original people. 

Aber, in the ancient British, or in the present Welsh, signifies the issue or 
efflux of a river. Aberdon would be the issue of the Don, and Aberdee would 
be in the same manner the issue of the Dee. 

Aberdeen, the Highlanders call Aber-doi-avon, the mouth of the two rivers 
— Aber-dau-Avon-maod in Welsh ; Aber-dwy-Avon-feud in Welsh — as we are 
assured by the ingenious and learned Owen. Aber-dwy-Avon has been pro- 
bably contracted into Aberdeen. 

At the mouth of the Tay there is an islet called Abertay, as we learn from 
Armstrong's Map. It is quite apparent the names of the two towns near the 
issues of the Don and the Dee were Aberdon and Aberdee, the final and 
pleonastic (n) being added by the vulgar (a). 

The Latin translation of the names of the two towns is Aberdonensis, and 
not Aberdenensis, or Aberdeenensis. In stating this, it is to be lamented that 
the Charters of David I. have been suspected of fabrication. In the unsus- 
pected Charter of Alexander I. to Scone, from the Begister, there is a mansion 
granted " apud Aberdeen " (6). In the Diplomatic Scotia, we may see 
Aberdonensis, Episcopus Gilbertus (c). 

Aberdeen was a place of coinage during the reigns of David II. , Robert III. , 
James I., James II., James lY. (d). Yilla Aberdon on David Bruce's coins ; 
Villa Aberdene upon Robert III. ; Villa Aberden upon James I. coins ; Villa de 
Abbden on James II. coins (e). 

Mr. Astle has engraved the Seal of Aberdeen ; the legend whereof is — 
" Sigillum de communi Aberdonensi " {/) 

(a). See Owen's Diet, in Vo. aber. 

(b). In Sir Ja. Dalrymple'a Ool. app. II. sub. an. III. 5. This is the oldest charter which has been dis- 

(c) Tab. 60-62. (d) Oardonel, p. 6. («) lb. 52-3-4-62-67-75-86. (/) PI. II. No. 5. 

Sect. II.— Its Situation and Extent.} OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 213 

The Gaelic name for Aberdeen is Oheirreadhain, whicli is pronounced 
Oberrayn, this vocable, according to some etymologists is resolved into abair 
(aber) the mouth of a river, and Deadhain (Dain) the Don : according to others 
it is compounded of Abair, the bank or space of ground near the entrance, and 
Da-abhuim (Daawiny) two rivei's, namely, the Dee and the Don, an analysis 
exactly descriptive of the local circumstance (g). This learned Gaelic note is 
from Mr. McLachlan of the King's College, whose erudite researches regarding 
the Celtic is well known. 

I have looked over the map of Ireland with a magnifying glass, in quest of 
the word aber, but without success. In Shaw's Gaelic Dictionary we do not 
see Aher or Ahher ; but he has Abar, a marsh or boggy piece of land. Owen, 
in his erudite Welsh and English Dictionary, has Abar under the various sig- 
nifications of — a confluence of water ; the junction of rivers ; the fall of a lesser 
river into a greater, or into the sea. By metaphor, a port or harbour. The 
Cornish have aber, a gulf or whirlpool, a place where two or more rivers meet (h). 

In the map of Scotland there are many abers as the prefixes in the names of 
places. Loch-aber is quite a different word ; and the aber herein, is the name 
of a lake, and Loch-aber is the name of a district. Upon the whole, I infer 
that the word aber is not in the Gaelic language of Scotland or Ireland. The 
frequent use of Aber as a prefix in the names of places in the map of Scotland, 
evinces that Aber was a word in the tongue of the Aborigines of Northern 
Britain, and goes to prove that the British speech was of old spoken in every 
district of the British island. 

§ n. — Its Situation and Extent. This extensive county is bounded on 
the North and East by the German Ocean ; on the South, by the shires of 
Kincardine, Angus, and Perth ; and on the West by Banff, Moray, and Inver- 

It extends, in length about 90 miles, from South-west to North-east, and 
about 46 miles in breadth, from the mouth of the Dee to where the district is 
bounded by Banfishire. Its extent, in square miles, may be estimated at 1170. 
It comprehends in its ample bounds the districts of Mar, Garioch, Formartin, 
and a great part of Buchan. The district of Mar, which may be considered as 
the centre of Scotland, is wild, rugged, and mountainous ; some of the hills 
rising precipitously to the height of 3,000 feet above the level of the sea. The 
sloping sides of the hUls, however, are covered with extensive natural forest ; 
yet, in many places, are impenetrable to human footsteps. Buchan is less hilly, 
and not much more fertile, being bleak to the view and inhospitable to the 

(g) See Kennedy's Hist. Aberdeen, I. p. 5. (h) See Piyoe. 

214 AnACCOUNT [Oh. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

enjoyment. The remainder of the shire is more fertile, having a gradual 
descent from the central district eastward to the sea. According to Temple- 
man's Survey, this county contains 1170 square miles or 718 statute acres (i). 
By a measurement on Ainslie's large map of Scotland, and on the map in 
Armstrong's 4° Atlas, this shire is in length, from Rattray head on the North- 
east, to the top of Braemar on the South-west, about 8 6 miles ; and the 
average breadth is about 26, including the parishes of Gamrie and St. Fergus, 
which, though in Buchan are in Banffshire. By the above measurement, the 
county appears to be situated between 56° 53' and 57° 37' North Latitude, and 
in 1° 30' Longitude East, and 0° 40' West of the meridian of Edinburgh. The 
Latitude of the City of Aberdeen, according to Dr. Mackie's Observations, is 
57° 8' 59i", and the Longitude 0'^ 8' 32" of time, or 2° 8' West of Green wich(y). 
In the "View of Aberdeen Agriculture , V. 4. , Dr, Anderson states the latitude 
between 57° 10' and 57° 4'. In doing this he probably fixed on the mouth of 
the Dee as the South point of latitude ; whereas the hilly country which joins 
Forfarshire south of Glen-Taner forest, stretches much further south than the 

The superficies from Templeman's Survey is certainly much too small. The 
length of 86 and breadth of 26 miles as stated would give about 2,236 square 
miles, being 1,431,040 English acres. But deduct the contents of Gamrie 
and of St. Fergus parishes lying in Banffshire, though in Buchan, of 17,920, 
there appear 1,413,120 English acres in Aberdeenshire. 

English acres, 1,431,040 


Assume 2,200 square miles, or 1,408,000 English acres, and the population 
in 1795 being 123,800, gives 56-st^wit souls to a square mile. The whole 
population of Aberdeenshire in 1811 was 135,075, and in 1821 was 155,287 

§ III. Its Natural Objects. — The first of these are its heights. The dis- 
trict of Mar, which may be considered as the centre of Scotland, is rugged and 
mountainous, some of the hills rising precipitously to 3000 feet above the 
level of the sea : one of the highest hills is Benochie, from the summit of which 

(i) View of the Agricult. of Aberdeenshire, IV. 9. 

(j) See the Transactions of the R.S. of Edinburgh Vol. 4, p. 30 ; and Dr. Mackie's two letters on 
the latitude and longitude of Aberdeen in the same Volume ; and the Stat. Account, 19 V. p. 140. 

Sect. III.— Us Natural Objects.] OrNORTH-BEITAIN. 215 

there are some noble prospects. The next of the natural objects are the rivers, 
— the Dee, the Don, the Ythan, the Ugie, the Doveran, and the Boggie; nor are 
any of these of great magnitude, though, in so narrow a county, some of them 
must be accounted considerable streams, and produce salmon to so great a 
number as to rent yearly to a considerable amount. The Ythan produces 
precious stones, which have been disposed of for much money. There are a 
dozen lochs, though none of them are of any great extent or value. 

Of mineral waters or springs there is a most powerful chalybeate mineral 
well at Peterhead, which has been much resorted to. There is another at 
Fraserburgh which is called the Well of Spa, and at both places there are 
both hot and cold baths. At Aberdeen there are also two springs, one a 
chalybeate, which is called the Well of Spa, and another near Old Aberdeen, 
containing a small proportion of sulphur, with a great portion of steel. And 
in the upper part of Mar, the Wells of Pananich, another chalybeate, which is 
much resorted to by the people of middle ranks in life. 

With regard to minerals, little profit has hitherto been obtained from them. 
The granite quarries are of much more value ; and from the quarries of Aber- 
deen have been produced excellent millstones. A quarry of blue slate is 
wrought in Culsalmond Parish, and a vein of amyanthus has been discovered to 
a great extent ; it is easily wrought, and is often formed into snuffboxes and 
other trinkets. Other precious stones of great value are sometimes found ; 
and rock crystals have been found on the estate of Invercauld. Besides those 
minerals, asbestos, tulc, mica, schistus, and other curious minerals are found in 
many parts of this shire. Several mountains of Mar show evident signs of 
volcanic origin. There are many mineral waters of great celebrity, and those 
of Peterhead and Glendee are deservedly celebrated for their efficacy in curing 

Between Fraserburgh and Banff are found many large blocks of pure 
white quartz, lying upon the surface of the ground, and many of these blocks 
have been transported to Newcastle, to be employed in the glass-works. In 
that part of this country has also been found a very good quarry of millstones 
of the plum-pudding stone, which is very hard and free from grit. In the 
higher parts of the Garioch, near to Craig, is found striated asbestos in con- 
siderable quantities, and in that neighbourhood is also found a quarry of very 
fine freestone, the only one that is known to be in this shire ; and of this 
quarry has been obtained the stones of which Kildrummy Castle was built, 
which have withstood the weather for many centuries. Nor is the stone of 
that Castle in the least impaired by the weather, but retains its pure white 
colour to the last, from which circumstance one of the towers obtained the 

216 AnACOOUNT [Oh. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

name of the snow tower. A quarry of blue slate is wrought in the parish of 
Culsalmond, and a vein of manganese has been discovered in the neighbourhood 
of Old Aberdeen. In Huntly parish there are many indications of metallic ores 
and considerable quantities of plumbago or block lead have been lately dis- 
covered, but the want of pit coal is the want of many useful objects. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — The aboriginal settlers and their speech are the 
most singular antiquities, as they were all Celtic. The grey stones, of what- 
ever shape or size, position or establishment, are antiquities belonging to these 
settlers, whether they related to their defences, their worship, or their sepul- 
chral monuments. The Roman roads and Roman stations, or camps, are anti- 
quities which demand great attention (o). There has been discovered, within 
this shire, in a deep moss, a four cornered vessel of molten brass, which has 
been supposed to have been a Roman measure (b). 

Its Cathedral Church and many religious houses, however ruinous, are 
proofs of the piety of the good people of this shire, and of the instability of 
all sublunary things. The bridge of Don, which was built about 1320 by 
Bishop Cheyne, in one large Gothic arch, is upon the great high-road 
leading northward from the shiretown. The munificent Bishop Elphinstone 
bequeathed a considerable legacy towards the building of a bridge over the 
Dee. Gavin Dunbar, the son of Sir James Dunbar of Cumnock, by Elizabeth, 
the daughter of the Earl of Sutherland, having succeeded to the Bishopric of 
Aberdeen in 1518, not only collected the legacy of Elphinstone, but applied 
his own property, and caused to be erected the bridge upon the Dee, in seven 
arches, about the year 1530, though it was not quite finished at his demise. 
This very useful bridge was rebuilt by the Town Council of Aberdeen, at the 
expense of the funds belonging to the bridge itself. Such are the constant 
evidences of the good works of good men. The ruined castles of Kildrummy, 
of Huntly, of Inverugy, of Slains, and other respectable seats, are the remains 
of feudal times, wherein was practised that hospitality which, " for common 
humanity's sake, all the nations of the earth should embrace." 

§ v. Its Establishment as a Shiee. — This settlement took place probably 
as early as the reign of David I., yet the first Sheriff of the shire, who appears 
in 1264, is Andrew de Garioch, in giving in his account to the Chamberlain of 
Scotland for the revenues due to the Crown (c). 

In 1305 Norman de Lesley was the Sheriff of Aberdeenshire (d). In 1383 
John Eraser de Forglen was the Sheriff of Aberdeen (e). In 1477 Alexander 

(a) See Caledonia I., Book I. The Eoman Period. (b) Sibbald's Fife. 

(cj Kennedy's Hist., 11, 489-90. (dj Ryley's Placita, 505^ (ej Chart. Aberd., 213. 

Sect. VI.— 0/ its Civil History. 1 OfNOETH-BRITAIN. 217 

Lesley of Wardeis was Sheriff of Aberdeenshire (/), the office of Sheriff of 
Aberdeenshire, having been conferred by James II. as a reward for his merito- 
rious services in subduing the rebelhous Earl of Crawford. The office of Sheriff 
remained in the family until 1629, when the Marquis of Huntly was induced 
to surrender it for a promise of £5000, which was never performed {g). 

In March 1748, Mr. David Dalrymple, Advocate, the son of Lord Dunmore, 
was appointed the Deputy Sheriff of Aberdeen at a salary of £200 a year Qi). 

§ VI. Op its Civil History. — There are records of stone which demonstrate 
that this county was settled in very early times, though strangers came in 
during subsequent ages upon the aboriginal colonists, which affected their 
speech and their establishments. 

Tradition, if we were to follow her devious course, would carry us back in 
our researches to the reign of Gregory, vulgarly called the Great. It is on 
such occasions that we regret the loss of records and the vitiosity of charters. 

With the commencement of the Scoto-Saxon period, or somewhat earlier, 
begins the genuine history of Aberdeenshire. Malcolm, the son of Duncan, 
having fled into England, on the murder of his father by Macbeth, returned in 
1056, and with the aid of Macduff, the Marmoar of Fife, and Siward the Earl 
of Northumberland, attacked the usurper in his fastnesses, at Lumphanan, to 
which he had retreated and was there defeated and slain. Lubach, the son of 
Grusch and Gilcomgain, reigned from December 1056 to April 1057, when he 
was slain at Elie by Malcolm III. Lubach left a daughter who had a son 
Angus, who was the chief of Moray, and going into insurrection was slain in 
IISO. We are thus conducted by the guilty means of murder and warfare, 
usurpation and rebellion, to the commencement of the Scoto-Saxon period. 

The year 1127 is the epoch of the removal of the seat of the bishopric from 
Mortlach to Aberdon, an event this of important effects. At this period neither 
Aberdon nor Aberdeen were more than villages of four ploughs, whatever may 
be said of their commercial consequence. The reign of William the Lion began 
in December 1165, and this King sometimes resided at Aberdeen, when the 
town acquired some show and obtained some prosperity. 

At the great epoch of 1306, Robert Bruce, being surrounded by his enemies, 
sent his wife and family to his Castle of Kildrummy under the escort of his 
brother Nigel ; bnt she, being afraid of being besieged, retired northward to 

(f) Man's MS. Notes. 

(g) Kennedy's Hist, of Aberdeen, II., 257. Wood's Peer., I., 661. Orawf. Peer., 174. 

(hj Scots. Mag., 1748, 155 ; and Ken. Hist. II., 257-8, for the continuance of those Sheriffs of royal 

7 28 *^ 

218 An account [Ch. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

Tain. The Earls of Hertford and Lancaster followed them thither, and took 
the town, with Bruce's family. Nigel was carried to Berwick and was there 

The Earls of Buchan and Mowbray were defeated in 1308, at Inverury, by 
Bruce. The Earl of Athole, who was besieging the Castle of Kildrummy for 
Edward III., was surprised by Moray, March, and Douglas, and retiring to the 
forest of Kilblain was there surprised and slain. In 1336, Thomas Roushene, 
having landed at Dunbar with some English troops on behalf of Edward III., 
was there attacked by the citizens of Aberdeen, who were repulsed ; but 
Edward III., on his return from Inverness, attacked the citizens of Aberdeen 
and laid the town in ashes. Edward proceeded to Dunbar, which he fortified. 

In 1361, David II., being obliged by the plague to retire into Aberdeenshire, 
where he met the Earl of Mar, with whom having some quarrel, he besieged 
and took the Earl's Castle of Kildrummy. 

In 1410, Donald, the Lord of the Isles, after seizing by force the Earldom of 
Ross, overran Moray, Strathbogie, and the Garioch, intending thereby to en- 
rich his followers by the plunder of Aberdeen, was defeated at Harlaw by 
Alexander Earl of Mar. 

In 1562, the Earl of Huntly, being driven into rebellion by the weakness of 
Mary, and the violence of Moray, her minister, marched towards Aberdeen in 
the hopes of surprising both ; but he was surprised by Moray and the Queen's 
troops on the hill of Correchie, and there defeated and slain. 

Aberdeen now remained for some time quiet ; but in 1639, the Earls of Mon- 
trose and Leslie assembled the Covenanters' army at Turriff, and Huntly on the 
other side took Aberdeen ; whereupon a meeting ensued at Inverury between 
the two factions, when both sides agreed to disband their troops ; but 
the Earl of Argyle joining Montrose, invited Huntly to a conference at Aber- 
deen, made Huntly and his eldest son prisoners. The Royalists, now choosing 
Sir John Gordon and Sir Gray Ogilvie their leaders, surprised the Covenanters 
at Turriflf and took Aberdeen, where Lord Aloyn, the second son of Huntly, 
joined them with 3000 foot and 500 cavalry ; but being betrayed by his second 
officer, Green, this army, after a skirmish at the Bridge of Dee, dispersed. In 
1640, Monro, at the head of the Covenanters overran the country and destroyed 
Sir George Ogilvie's estate at Banff. 

Montrose, after his second victory near Aberdeen, being obliged to quit the 
town on the approach of the Earl of Argyle, was surprised in 1644 by Argyle 
and Lord Lothian ; but after the most obstinate conflict, he forced the 
Covenanters to retreat, and secured his own passage into the Highlands. Mon- 
trose having defeated Mary at Aldvarne, in Inverness-shire, retreats to Bal- 

Sect. VII. — Of its Agriculture, etc.] OfNORTH- BRITAIN. 219 

venie, and being attacked by Baillie at Alford, on the Don, he again obtained 
a complete victory on the 2nd of July, 1645 {i). Yet was the victory dearly 
bought by the loss of his friend Gordon in the conflict. 

Aberdeen as well as some of the neighbouring counties concurred in the 
Eevolution {h), though they seem not to have acted on that occasion with the 
same energy as the western shires. The same observation may be made with 
respect to the Union. Aberdeenshire concurred in it without displaying any 
ardour of approbation {I). 

The Earl of Mar, on the 6th of September, 1715, at the head of 500 High- 
landers, in Biaemar, raised the Pretender's standard. On the 22nd of Decem- 
ber the Pretender landed at Peterhead, whence he immediately proceeded to 
Newburgh in the dress of a naval officer, and from it passed through Aberdeen 
in disguise to Fetteresso. On the 6th of February, 1716, the rebel army under 
General Gordon reached Aberdeen, when several officers embarked at Peter- 
head, knowing that they had nothing to hope for but disappointment and dis- 

But the Pretender did not yet lose all heart and hope ; a new rebellion broke 
out in 1745. General Sir John Cope marched his troops from Inverness to 
Aberdeen, where he embarked them for Dunbar. In the subsequent year, the 
Duke of Cumberland, having arrived at Aberdeen in pursuit of the rebels, on 
the 25th of February, 1746, detached Lord Ancrum to destroy a magazine 
which had been established at Cargarfi" on the higher streams of the Don. 
After marching through Aberdeenshire, the Duke quelled this rebellious insur- 
rection on CuUoden Moor, upon the 16th of April, 1746. 

§ VII. Of its Agkicultuke, Manufacture, and Trade. — With regard to 
the surface of Aberdeenshire, it may be considered as alternations of hill and 
dale, yet is rather hilly than mountainous. It may be sufficient to mention 
here, that in general, the mountains and hills of this county rise gradually 
from their base and increase in altitude as they recede from the German Sea. 
The two hills of Dum-o-deer and Noath have on their sununits vitrified forts 
of great antiquity. It may be remarked that the soil of all those hills is deeper 
on the north than on the south sides. 

(j) A man in armour on horseback has been discovered in one of the mosses in the district, who is 
supposed to have been drowned in attempting to escape from the battle of Alford above mentioned. 

{h) In the Convention Parliament of 1688, there were Commissioners from Kincardine, Aberdeen, 
Banff, Moray, and Nairn. Pari. Proceedings, 23rd July, 1689. The Earls of Strathmore, Southesk, 
and Aberdeen sat in that Convention. Pari. Proceedings, No. 49. 

{I) De Foe's Hist, of the Union. 

220 An account [Oh. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

It was formerly divided into four districts, namely, Mar, Fortmartin, Buchan, 
and the Garioch. Mar comprehends the extensive country lying between the 
Dee and the Don, but of the highest elevation, and this district is again sub- 
divided into Braemar, the upper, and Cromar, which comprehends Old Aber- 
deen and New Aberdeen. Mar must be allowed to be the most mountainous, 
and of course the most barren, particularly the lower divisions near the two 
towns of Aberdeen and Aberdon; but by the skill and labour of the inhabitants 
a considerable portion of that rugged country has been converted into fertile 
fields at whatever expense of skill and perseverance. The higher and southern 
portions of this district abound with natural woods, and here also have been 
made many plantations during the days of improvement. 

That division of this shire which is called Fortmartin extends along the coast 
from the Don to the Ythen, and on the west is bounded by a ridge of low hills 
near Old Meldrum, which separate it from the Garioch. In this division there 
are no hills but many knolls. On the southern part, near to the Don, it is of 
the same barren nature as the former division and much intersected by mossy 
bogs, but nearer the Ythen it becomes more uniform, and consists of an excel- 
lent clayey soil and is very capable of good husbandry. 

Buchan is the most northern division ; and includes all that country lying 
between the Ythan and the Deveron. This is in general a low and flat country, 
which is almost everywhere cultivatable by the plough. The only eminence 
within this district is what is commonly called Mormond, and forms a landmark 
at sea. In this portion the soil is for the most part a clay that is capable of a 
high degree of improvement. In some places it is already productive, but in 
general it has a cold and bleak aspect, owing to the want of trees around the 
hamlets, or hedges of any sort, the sombre appearance of mosses, and the 
marshy appearance of the low grounds, which are everywhere in want of surface 

The Garioch forms the fourth division of this shire. It is an inland division, 
and chiefly consists of an extensive vale, which is bounded on every side by a 
range of hills, moderate in their height, beginning near Old Meldrum, and 
extending westward about 20 miles. This vale is in general from 8 to 10 miles 
in breadth, though it be frequently intersected by little knolls, some of which, 
especially Dun-o-deer, which rises superior to the others, and has a picturesque 
appearance. This vale is upon the whole good arable land of a sharp loamy soil, 
and being sheltered by the surrounding hills it has a comfortable appearance. 
Contrary to what generally happens, the harvests are here more early than in 
the lower lands of Buchan along the sea coast, though the corn crops, from the 
particular circumstances of the vale, are more liable to be frost-bitten in their 

Sect. YIL— Of iU Agriculture, etc.] OfNORTH-BEITAIN. 221 

progress to harvest. The highest hill on the boundaries of the vale is called 
Benochie, which, though near thirty miles from the coast, is a good land-mark 
for seamen, from the top of which is seen a very extensive prospect over this 
and some adjacent shires. There are, moreover, some lesser divisions within 
those districts — such as Strathdon, Strathbogie, which are narrow vales on the 
side of some stream, from which they took their name, — the word Strath being 
a Gaelic term for low lying meadows, along their several rivulets. 

We are thus conducted to the Climate of Aberdeen. 

From the high latitude of this shire, and the general opinion that is enter- 
tained of the inhospitable nature of those northern regions, most persons are 
inclined to believe that a much greater degree of cold takes place in this shire 
than is ever experienced. Being washed on two sides, the County of Aberdeen 
experiences of temperature, in winter, even greater moderation than most parts 
of the island. Snow in the lower parts of the County seldom lies long, and it 
may be considered as a pretty general rule, that when the snow is one foot deep 
at Aberdeen, it is nearly two feet deep at Newcastle-upon-Tyne. In the year 
1762, when the frost was so severe in England that the Thames at London was 
frozen over for many weeks together, the weather was so mild in Aberdeenshire 
as scarcely to interrupt the ordinary operations of agriculture ; and though a 
little snow lay for some weeks on the surface of the ground, there was not a 
day during the whole season that a plough could not have gone. Nor is this 
an uncommon case. For, I have reason to believe, that the frost is seldom so 
intense in the lower parts of Aberdeenshire as at London. But if the winter's 
cold be less severe than in many of the southern districts of the island, the 
summer heats are here perhaps still less intense. In short, there is a smaller 
variation between the heat and cold at different seasons ; and of course, there 
are many crops that may be brought to maturity in the south of Britain which 
are seldom found to ripen here. Grapes there are none, without artificial heat ; 
and French beans can scarcely be brought to ripen their seeds in the best 
sheltered garden, unless a very favourable season. This circumstance marks the 
degree of summer heat with great precision. 

The principal disadvantage attending the climate of Aberdeenshire, and of 
Scotland in general, when compared with that of the southern parts of the 
island, is the lateness of the spring, owing to the prevalence of the east winds 
and the too frequent fogs and rains at this season, which often render the seed 
time both late and ungenial ; and the stormy weather, in autumn, frequently 
accompanied with heavy falls of rain, which require a degree of exertion and 
skill in the husbandman to protect his crop from damage, to which the English 
farmer is totally a stranger. These inconveniences are all felt in Aberdeenshire. 

222 An account [Ch. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

But the crops are so seldom hurt by frosts, in summer or autumn, in the lowest 
parts of the county at least, that in the course of 30 years nearly I never saw 
a single instance of frosted corn, except in the singularly intemperate year 1782, 
nor have any of the people who have resided there all their lives, and were better 
acquainted with that phenomenon. The spring frosts seldom hurt anything 
but the blossom of fruit trees occasionally. As a proof that the climate is not 
uncommonly backward, we may observe that one season we had a dish of peas 
gathered from the open field, cultivated by the plough, on the King's birth- 
day, the 4th of June. This was a very early season, but green peas are 
commonly ripe in the garden not long after that period. On the whole, the 
climate of the lower part of Aberdeenshire is certainly moderate in this respect, 
that it is not nearly so warm in summer nor so cold in winter as that of the 
County of Middlesex. 

As to the size of farms in this shire, there are, in Aberdeenshire, the 
greatest diversity. The practice of leasing larger farms than formerly is in 
general gaining ground. And this is of the more importance as there is not 
perhaps an extensive corn county in the globe in which the farms are in general 
so small as in Aberdeenshire, these being in general from two pounds of rent to 
one hundred ; but as farms of this last size are rare, they cannot, on an 
average, exceed fifteen or twenty pounds. As this district is by no means in 
that state of cultivation which admits of small farms being managed to advan- 
tage, it becomes a matter of some importance to endeavour to trace the cause 
of this peculiarity. 

During the middle of the last century the farms of Aberdeenshire were of 
much greater extent than they are at present, and from any incidental circum- 
stances that occurred, the farmers were then, in general, a more wealthy and 
respectable body of men than they are at present, and it is very obvious that 
many extensive tracts of land which were then under the plough are now 
abandoned as wasted, and covered with heath. 

The circumstance that seems to have occasioned such a remarkable change in 
the internal state was a scarcity of grain for a succession of seven years, which 
prevailed at the close of the last century. This series of dear years is spoken 
of till this day by the name of the fatal seasons. The crops during that time 
were so defective, and the true principles of commerce were so little understood 
here, that a famine prevailed to such a degree as to impoverish all, and greatly 
to diminish the numbers of the people. Many substantial tenants were at that 
time reduced to proverty ; their farms were thrown on the hands of the owners, 
a.nd other tenants, who were capable of stocking them, could not be found. To 
induce poor men, the only persons then to be found, to take farms, they were 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 223 

made small, to adopt them more nearly to the circumstances of the tenants ; 
and even then it frequently happened that the landlord was fain to give a team 
of oxen, or some milk cows, in a present, to induce the tenant to accept of these 
small farms. At that period sheep were entirely banished from the lower dis- 
tricts of the county, for although, when the farms were large, such flocks were 
kept as could afford the expense of a shepherd to tend them ; when they be- 
came small this could not be done, and as money to purchase a flock could 
not then be easily commanded, those two considerations concurring banished 
the sheep entirely, and with them the corn, that was to be produced from 
their fold. Since that time the stocking manufacture has afforded a ready re- 
source to those who had a small piece of land to produce a little meal, and a 
cow to give the family some milk, so that many persons chose rather to betake 
themselves to that mode of life, than to continue labouring servants. Servants 
of course became scarce, and their wages high. The business of a large 
farmer became then a very disagreeable one. From the difficulty of obtain- 
ing extensive markets, farming became a retail business, instead of a wholesale. 
Servants soon acquired as much money as to enable them to take one of 
these small possessions at from two to five pounds rent, for farms they are not 
called ; and many proprietors, tempted by an offer of rent, seemingly high for 
these small patches, broke down their farms into minute allotments, and this 
has gradually reduced the occupiers of land to that degraded state they hold 
at present ; the consequences thereof, as to this county, have been extremely 

Many treatises have been written by speculative men, to prove the numerous 
advantages to be derived to the community from small farms, rather than large 
ones, without their seeming to have once taken a glance at those circum- 
stances which are necessary to fit land to be farmed with advantage in 
small lots, or those which render it impossible to cultivate the soil with any 
degree of propriety, unless when it is done upon a large scale, for there are 
natural bounds in this case which cannot be disregarded with impunity. 

When ground, which is naturally good, has been enriched by frequent manur- 
ance, so as to have obtained a high degree of fertility, it can then be cultivated 
without the aid of beasts of labour of any sort ; and if it be near a market, for 
all the articles of produce, it may then be let, in allotments, that are no larger 
than is just sufficient to maintain the single family which cultivates them. In 
these circumstances and under this management, the greatest possible population 
may be maintained, by a given extent of soil ; but, where the lands are poor, 
and have never been fertilized, the case is quite different. The scanty herbage 
naturally produced on such bare fields, must be consumed by domestic animals. 

224 An ACCOUNT [Oh. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

which must have a wide range to pick up their poor pittance. These animals 
must be tended, by some person, and their dung collected, into a narrow com- 
pass, to fertilize a small portion of the soil. A considerable number of these 
creatures can be guarded at the same expense as a few ; so that if one flock 
were divided into ten, the loss that must be incurred by the want of economy 
is obvious. Beasts must, also, be kept for the purpose of labouring ; and the 
teams must be of such strength as to perform the rugged operations that are 
necessary ! The same expense must nearly be incurred for ploughing a few 
acres, as for doing as many as the teams would manage properly during the 
season. Nor can a single team only be employed with economy in many cases, 
as a variety of the necessary operations in those cases require occasionally a 
much greater power than that could afibrd. If stones are to be taken out of 
the ground, where such obstructions are of great magnitude, they require many 
hands, expensive tools, much time, and great dexterity to affect it. In the 
same manner draining, inclosing, collecting manures, cannot be done at all in 
many cases, but upon a farm of considerable extent. To talk, then, of small 
farms, in these circumstances is absurd. Wheresoever they take place, the im- 
provement of the country must be at a stand, and of course it must be doomed to 
tedious sterility. 

Nor are these the only circumstances in which a considerable strength is 
required upon a farm. Nor is a state of sterility the only circumstance that 
makes it necessary to have a certain extent of farm to carry on the ordinary 
operations with economy and an attention to economical management in all the 
operations of farming, where the greatest profit from the farm is expected. 
Thus, in ploughing for barley, where it is necessary, to sow it as quickly after 
the plough as possible ; in order to insure its germinating, one person must be 
kept for sowing, another for harrowing, and several for ploughing. From such 
considerations, it is obvious that no determinate size of farms can be considered 
as invariably the best, but that this must be regulated by circumstances ; and 
it is evident that Aberdeenshire, in general, is far from being in that state 
which can admit of their being reduced with economy to a small size. No 
determinate size can be considered as invariable, but this must be regulated 
by circumstances ; though in Aberdeenshire, in general, the farms are too 
small in the internal parts of the county. The case is very different with 
respect to the cultivated lauds near Aberdeen. There it is entirely owing to 
their small size, to the great quantity of street manure, and to the mixture of 
the spade with the plough husbandry that the poor thin soil is so very produc- 
tive. No large farmer, cultivating the ground with the plough alone, could 
raise nearly so great a crop on the three thousand acres, which lie in the 

Sect. VII.— Of its Agriculture, etc.] OfNOETH-BRITAIN. 225 

neighbourhood of that city, as is raised by, at least, three hundred small farmers 
by the spade alone, or by the spade and plough united, or used alternately. 
And no power of horses with a number of men attending them could remove 
those masses, and level those hills of granite which the spade, the mattock, the 
lever, the wedge, and sometimes the boring-iron, followed by gunpowder, can 
easily reduce. In short, when the plough alone is used, large farms are prefer- 
able in most cases. When the ground is broken, and lies detached, or when 
the spade alone, or when a mixture of the spade and plough is used, small farms 
are most eligible. 

The character of the farmers. The cultivators of the soil, independently of 
those in the vicinity of Aberdeen, belong to three distinct classes, who have 
each their discriminating characters. The ancient farmers of the county, such 
as are far advanced in life, or dwell at a distance from the towns, are generally 
honest and sensible men. Some of them are very simple in their manners, and 
plain in their dress. Others of them are shrewd and acute, but all of them are 
distinguished by civility to strangers, though many of them are rather indolent 
in the management of their farms, especially in some of the higher districts. 
They are generally good judges of black-cattle, and many of them can pretty well 
judge pretty accurately of the qualities of horses, though the faculty is not so 
common, probably from raising fewer of them. They are too little attentive to 
a proper rotation of cropping, because very few of these old farmers have 
studied the principles of agriculture, but retained the wretched husbandry of 
their fathers, till dire necessity made them better practical farmers than they 
were formerly. They are in general fond of going to markets and public places 
of resort, and they mix together frequently in society, especially in the winter 
months. When employed shooting at a mark, which was much practised 60 or 
70 years ago, their fathers were excellent marksmen. And they decided all 
raffles or lotteries, which about the Christmas season are now most commonly 
determined by the less manly amusements of cards and dice. In those good 
old times playing at football was generally practised at Shrovetide. In some 
places the first practice has been revived, and from the necessity of the times it 
deserved to be encouraged, but in too many cases cards and dice are substituted 
in the room of the more manly exercise of the fowling piece and football. These 
ancient farmers used a great deal of malt liquor, and more lately a considerable 
quantity of ardent spirits ; but though they occasionally indulge in a social 
glass, they are now in general temperate, though they are sometimes accused 
of beinof irascible and fond of lawsuits. 

Of the Rents, which is an article of great importance. The rent of land in 
Aberdeenshire is very different in different places. It depends, indeed, more 
7 29 

226 An ACCOUNT [Oh. IX.— Aberdeenshire. 

on the local situation of the ground, than on the fertility of the soil. The 
average rate of every acre, taking into the account the moors and improvable 
grounds, as well as the arable lands, does not exceed three shillings and six- 
pence, or, at the utmost, of three shillings and sixpence per English, or four 
shillings and threepence per Scotch acre. But, in fact, the mountains are not 
let by measure, a right of pasturing upon them being enjoyed in common by all 
those who possess any arable land in the neighbourhood. Even those farmers, 
or rather graziers, who have an exclusive right to the pasturage of certain districts 
rent them as bounded by hills or mountains, and not according to any known 
extent or measure. The most considerable portion of land that is rented by 
one person is the farm of Dalavora, or the Earl's Vale, about sixty-four miles 
from Aberdeen, and situated on the banks of the Dee. This farm includes 
the Doubrach and all the mountains of the Scarsoch, between the Dee and 
the boundaries of Perth and Inverness-shires. The whole arable ground is 
about two-and-twenty English acres, but attached to this is the pasturage of 
nearly 40,000 English acres. The rent is £260, a little more than three half- 
pence per English acre. The higliest rent of any acre of land in this county is 
a small patch of ground belonging to Mr. Chalmers, of Westfield, in the vicinage 
of Aberdeen town, and rented by George Walker, the nui'seryman, at £20 an 
acre. At two miles distance from that city, William Stevenson, another nursery- 
man, who pays £17 an acre to Mr. James Forbes, of Seaton. Hence the highest 
rent near the city of Aberdeen is about 2500 times as much as in the moun- 
tainous regions in the S.-W. extremity of the county ; and yet from the small 
number of black cattle in that district, Mr. Machardy finds it difficult to pay 
his rent, however low it may appear. 

The arable lands near Aberdeen are of two descriptions : the first is that in 
the immediate vicinity of that city, and in the parish of St. Nicholas, lying 
near to the village of Footdee. These rent for above £10 an acre on an aver- 
age, and some of the same ground lets as high as £14. 

These diff'erent kinds of land are variously rented in different places, and 
where the tenant has an old lease, are let at a cheaper rate than where they 
have been set in a lease within these few years, and especially where the lease 
is expired, and where the farmer enters upon a treaty for a new lease of 19 or 
21 years. The rent of land is now rising rapidly, except such as is paid in corn 
or meal, in which case the additional price of the articles which are paid in kind 
has virtually become a rise of rent. After making these distinctions, the rent 
in this county may now be stated as follows : — 

In the lower parts of Aberdeenshire the old croftland called infield is rented 

Sect. VII — Of its Agriculture, etc.] OfNORTH-BEITAIN. 227 

in new leases at from £l 10s. to £2 10s. per acre. The burgh roads or ground 
in the vicinity of Kintore and Inverury, and that in the neighbourhood of 
Peterhead and Old Meldrum is about £2 10s., and in some cases lets at £4 per 
acre ; but only a small portion of the arable land in this county is rented at 
this high rate. In the upper part of the Garioch, where the soil is rich and 
the ground is sheltered by the hills of Foudland and other bounding hills, the 
best infield land is let from £2 2s. to £2 10s. per acre in several new leases, 
but the old croftland, at an average of the county, is not above £1 10s. per 
acre. The outfield in new leases varies from 10s. to £1 10s., and a medium 
of the county is probably 15s. ; but where the soil is good and the ground has 
been improved, the distinction between infield and outfield is abolished where 
farms let at £1 10s. The haughs (here including low wet lands called haughs, 
and burnt lands) vary from four to ten shillings in new leases, and are perhaps eight 
shillings at a medium. The hills, or benty moor, and other coarse lands 
which are not worth the expense of cultivation are generally thrown in the 
lump along with the arable lands. Even in the higher parts of Mar and in 
Strathbogie, at a great distance from the sea coast, the old croft or infield lands 
are let in several instances at £2 per acre ; but in general great tracts of hiUy 
land and a liberty of pasturage in common with others on the neighbouring 
hills and mountains are added as privileges belonging to the arable lands of 
the Highland farmers. These afford nourishment to their sheep and black 
cattle for several months of the summer, and when the heath flower, provin- 
cially the heather- bell, is in season, the mountains produce very fattening 
nourishment to sheep and to black cattle ; hence, in the autumn, the mutton 
of the Highland sheep is very delicious. The goats also feed on various herbs 
and grasses on the mountains, and both their milk and their carcases enable 
the Highlanders to pay their rents, which in their remote situation are com- 
paratively high. 

One general remark concerning the rent of land presents itself to the mind 
of the reporter, and may deserve the attention of the reader. It is this : — 

The land measurers or appraisers almost uniformly value the inferior land 
too high and the good land at too low a rate. As land is worth no more than 
what its produce will pay, after clearing all expenses of cultivation and man- 
agement, from the late great rise in the money price of labour and the com- 
paratively inferior produce as well as the greater expenses of cultivating and 
improving unfertile and rough soils, the farmers who rent poor lands are never 
opulent. Even in fruitful seasons they can save but little ; they can pay their 
rent only when the season is not unfavourable, and one calamitous year, both 
by the defective crop and the bad quality of the seed, generally overwhelms 

228 AnACCOUNT [Oh. IX.— Aberdeenshire. 

them. On the other hand, where the soil is fertile and the farmer has once 
acquired a capital, he can always pay a much higher rent, and in unfruitful 
seasons he is able to endure an occasional loss (even though he feel this for a 
few years) without being overset by one or two unprofitable crops. 

The rental of land in Aberdeenshire has been doubled within thirty years, 
and it is still rapidly increasing ; but it may be a long time before it can rise 
so high as that of the southern counties of Scotland, which are now so much 
employed in raising wheat and barley, and where the demand is so great and 
the access to market is so easy. Here oats and big only can be generally 
raised, and the culture of wheat and barley is not so congenial either to the 
soil or climate of Aberdeenshire, while the demand is less and the markets are 
more distant. Yet, as our soil in general is well adapted to the raising of tur- 
nips and the sown grasses, if from the increase of luxury the prices of butcher 
meat rise in proportion to that of corn, and if the landed proprietors encourage 
their tenants during the first year of their leases to improve their lands, the 
farmers of this shire will be able to pay a much higher rent than they pay at 
present under their new leases ; but if from any cause the price of black cattle 
and of butcher meat shall be permanently reduced, the present rents will not 
long be paid by many of the farmers. 

It deserves here to be noticed that owing to the introduction of the turnip 
husbandry, black cattle are now fattened at a much less expense than they 
were 200 years ago, when they were fed on corn chiefly, and that the price of 
butcher meat which was bought for the household of Henry the Prince of 
Wales was 5d. per pound. From various causes the money price of corn has 
not risen in proportion to the money price of labour since 1609, and since the 
introduction of turnip husbandry the price of butcher meat has not increased 
in the same proportion as that of corn. Wheat also pays much better than any 
other crop, and hence land adapted to the raising of wheat will always be 
rented much higher than land that is fit only for raising barley oats, turnips, 
and sown grasses. 

Luxury in Britain has a different efiect from what it had in ancient Rome. 
There, from the largess of corn given to the common people the price of corn 
was reduced too low, the most valuable crop was good pasture, and the least 
valuable was good tillage. Here, from the high prices of wheat, lands which 
are fit for raising this species of corn are most valuable, and except in the 
neighbourhood of large towns, turnip and grass are of comparatively inferior 

Of Leases. When treating of different tenures it was mentioned that the 
most usual period is 19 years, though longer leases with one or two rises of 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 229 

rent are frequently granted, but that leases for life, which were formerly used, 
are now seldom asked, owing to a late decision of the Court of Session respect- 
ing life-rents. 

The usual term of entry to farms in this shire is at Whitsunday, or the 26th 
of May, as the terms for the removal of tenants are regulated by the old style. 
This is certainly a very inconvenient term, as the tenants in general have no 
right to anything at entry, excepting the small garden for planting cabbages, 
and the grass of the outfields when they are not in crop. And a number of 
tenants, by ploughing and liming their outfield contrive to get them treated as 
infield, or old croft lands, and plough up the greatest part of them. 
Under the old system of husbandry the half of all the arable land, 
except the infield, was left to the entering tenant, and belonged of 
right to him. Till the proprietor of the soil change the term of entry, from 
Whitsunday to Martinmas, and fix certain rules respecting the quantity 
of land, that is the proportion of land on each farm to be left in grass, and 
also in turnips and fallow, the tenants who enter into new leases for farms which 
they did not formerly occupy, will be in a very disagreeable situation for the 
first sixteen or seventeen months after their entry. The only remedy is for the 
landholder to bargain with the removing tenant, and get a right to the farm 
manure for the ground which is allotted for turnips, and a certain proportion of 
land for grass and for fallow. 

Some of the proprietors of the soil, though with a temporary sacrifice of their 
interest, or the loss of a part of a year's rent, have already changed the term of 
entry and removal from Whitsunday to Martinmas, a practice this deserving of 
general imitation. And a few of them have already bound their tenants on 
their removal to deliver the manure of the farm for the turnip crop to the 
successor, and a certain proportion of sown grass, both on appreciation by 
arbiters mutually chosen. The other usual conditions or prestations commonly 
contained in a lease, besides the payment of the money rent, are to deliver that 
part of the rent which is paid in oatmeal or other products, generally farm bear, 
at the port of Aberdeen, or any place at the like distance from the farm, to 
pay a certain number of poultry and a certain measure of peats, or of coals, 
which are to be carried to the landlord's dwelling : to drive a certain number 
of carriages to the same place, and also the tenant's proportion of slates, lime, 
clay, and sand, either to the landlord's house and ofiices, or to the church, the 
minister's manse and offices, and to the schoolhouse of the parish. Some land- 
lords insert restrictions against breaking up meadow grass, and other landlords 
lay down certain regulations in regard to cropping. But it must be acknow- 
ledged that these are too general and obscure, and give rise to low rents, or 

230 An account [Oh. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

that they are not suited to the soil and climate of this shire. When such 
stipulations are expressed in general terms, they bind the tenant not to out- 
lahour, or mislahour, but to manage the tillage in a farmer-like manner. When 
the parties enter into minute articles, the landlords commonly allow two white 
crops to be taken even on the thin, gravelly soil along the banks of the river 
Dee, where two successive white crops ought not on any account to be allowed. 
The landlords also frequently insist on three crops of grass being taken, two of 
which must be pasture, before the pasture is broken up for sowing corn. Other 
landlords, in their partiality for a grass crop, admit of only one crop of oats 
before turnip, then bear, or oats, to be laid down with grass seeds, followed by 
one crop of hay and two years pasture. This is certainly an excellent method 
for improving the ground, though a tenant on such stipulations cannot pay 
above two-thirds of the rent, nor above three-fourths of what he could pay 
under regulations of less rigour. 

As long as there is encouragement for raising green crops and rearing 
black cattle, the agriculture of this shire will probably continue in a pro- 
gressive state of improvement, and more land of inferior quality will be brought 
into cultivation, because the quantity of putrescent matter obtained from 
turnips and sown grasses, especially where sown grass is allowed in general 
to continue for three years, is much greater than can be obtained from a 
greater proportion of white crops, whatever attention be paid to the rotting 
of the straw and the making of dung. But whenever the rent is raised 
higher than what turnips and black cattle can pay, the farmers will have 
recourse to the raising greater quantities of corn. The rearing of cattle will 
then be more generally practised in the Highlands, unless the progress of 
luxury shall render hay and pasture as valuable as a crop of wheat or 

On a general view, the total capital employed in agriculture within the shire 
of Aberdeen, calculated on the data of the proportion of the valued to the 
real rents, and of the live stock, is very nearly £2,000,000 sterling, and 
shows the importance both of the rearing of cattle and of an improved 
system of agriculture. 

We are thus led forward to the Manufactures of Aberdeenshire, for which 
it has been long celebrated. 

About 1660 Aberdeen manufactured a kind of cloth, which was cs^edjingrams, 
for the foreign market ; and both sages and serges for the use of the inhabitants. 
The manufacture of fingrams was succeeded by a still more valuable one, the 
hnitting oj stockings. Many years have elapsed since that manufacture brought 
£120,000 into Aberdeenshire yearly. It raised the rent of the land above a 

Sect. VII.— Of its Agriculture, etc.'] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 231 

third part ; and in the then imperfect state of our agriculture was particularly 
adapted to the situation of this shire. The long continued wars in the north of 
Europe, which was the great staple for this manufacture, has deeply injured the 
traffic in stockings. 

While the knitting of stockings was successfully practised in this shire, par- 
ticularly in the three divisions of Mar, the Garioch, and Formartin, a few 
spirited merchants in Aberdeen, and enterprising manufacturers in Huntly 
and Peterhead, introduced and carried on with various success the linen manu- 
factory and the spinning and bleaching of threads. This manufacture spi'ead 
over the two divisions of Buchan and of Peterhead ; but for several years past the 
want or high price of flax and of linseed has also deeply injured this manufac- 
ture as carried on by the wheel and manual labour. 

These two manufactures of stockings and linen, which formerly produced from 
£150,000 to £160,000, do not now produce one half of that sum. 

But since the introduction of machinery, which abridges human labour, the 
manufactures of this shire (though they employ fewer hands) are carried on to 
a very considerable amount ; and great companies have succeeded, who have 
erected spacious buildings, and employ a number of persons at their manufac- 
tories, besides those to whom employment is given in their own houses. 

The three principal branches of these are the woollen, the linen, and the 
cotton ; the last whereof was only introduced about the year 1808. The 
woollen consists of two branches, the hosiery and the manufactory of cloth. The 
whole of these manufactories employ more or less constantly above 7000 per- 
sons, and assist in supporting, where they do not entirely maintain, 20,000 

The manufacture of flax consists also of two branches ; the making of linen 
cloth, and the spinning or bleaching of thread for various purposes. The linen 
manufacture has varied greatly during late times. In 1808 the quantity manu- 
factured amounted to : — 

Yards. Ster. 

314,556, worth £31,000. 
In 1809, it fell to 102,292, worth 10,000. 
In 1814, it rose to 153,336, worth 12,000. 

A linen thread manufactory has been carried on at Peterhead since 1765 by 
the Miss Parks, whose goods always found a ready sale at a high price. Other 
persons carried on the thread and linen manufacture at the same place^ and at 
Strathbogie, and other places. The whole manufacturers in flax in this shire 
give employment to above 3000 families, and bread to 10,000 individuals. 

The cotton manufacture was first introduced into Aberdeenshire in 1779, and 

232 An ACCOUNT [Gh. IX.— Aberdeenshire. 

for about 20 years was carried on most exclusively by one company, by whose 
exertions it was spread over the county. It now employs a great number of 
men, women, and children, in Aberdeen and its neighbourhood, in many of the 
villages in the interior of the shire, as well as in the towns along the coast. 
In twelve years afterwards several new companies have been formed, who are 
now prosecuting this manufacture, and whose united trade is said to be equal to 
that of the oldest company. The whole cotton trade employs about four 
thousand persons. The rents of houses, of gardens, and of grass lands, and 
green crops, in the vicinity of those manufactures are considerably increased, 
because potatoes, milk, and vegetables are indispensably necessary. Poor rates 
are not known in this shire. 

A manufactory of sail cloth has been established for above twenty years, and 
bids fair to supply us with an article of the first necessity to a trading nation. 

There is also an inkle manufactory in Aberdeen, which is of recent institu- 
tion. Its linen tapes are equal in quality to those of any manufactory in Great 
Britain. Formerly the tapes used in this county were made in Holland, but 
are now made with greater perfection in this city, and in the present state of 
Europe the importation of foreign tapes, as well as all linen cloth ought, per- 
haps, to be prohibited. 

There are three paper mills within this county which carry on that manu- 
facture to a considerable amount. The oldest is at Peterculter, where Mr. L. 
Smith, the owner of the work, uses patent machinery, whereby paper is made 
like a web. In the second, at Stouywood, on the Don, Mr. A. Pirie, who uses 
the old plan of vats and wire frames, and who does a good deal of business. In 
the third, near Aberdeen, belonging to John Dingwal, formerly Provost of that 
city, who also uses wire frames. The three paper mills in 1810 paid in duties 
to Government £6178 12s. 1^. 

Different ropeworks are carried on in Aberdeen and Peterhead. They em- 
ploy 250 ropemakers, and give bread to 600 individuals. 

There is also a nail manufactory in Aberdeen, which usually employs from 
20 to 30 workmen ; but as several of the workmen enlisted in the militia dur- 
ing the late war, there are only a few at present. 

There are also several breweries, tanneries, soap works, and candleworks in 
Aberdeen and its neighbourhood. The first brewery was established at Gil- 
comston m 1768, and is a very complete work. Another, which is called the 
Devanha-brewery, on the banks of the Dee, is conducted by M. W. Black and 
Company. It deserves to be mentioned here that its porter has acquired great 
celebrity, not only at Aberdeen, Edinburgh, and Glasgow, but it frequently 
finds its way to London, There are several other breweries in New Aberdeen 

Sect. YIl.~Ofits Agriculture, etc.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 233 

and Old Aberdeen and in their vicinity, also at Peterhead, Old Meldrum, and 
Huntly, which are carried on with various success. The brewing of ale in 
private families within towns and in the farmers' houses has much declined, but 
that of the public breweries in Aberdeen and in other towns has increased with 
the trade of those places and with the luxuries of the age. 

Shipbuilding is carried on both at Aberdeen and at Peterhead, and employs 
a number of carpenters, who are at once useful in building and repairing ships 
and boats of all descriptions, and also as a nursery for the public docks and for 
carpenters to the ships of war. 

A straw-hat manufactory has been for some time carried on with success at 

Even pin-making has been introduced into Aberdeen. 

While the various denominations of manufacturers deserve to be mentioned, 
it should ever be remembered that the shoemakers, tailors, house-carpenters, 
plough and cartwrights, block-smiths, and artificers of every description, who 
either reside in the different towns or are scattered over the county (though 
the earnings of each individual cannot be ascertained) add much to the wealth 
and comfort of the community. 

On a general review of the several articles of the section, and without wish- 
ing, in the present state of the manufacturing interests, to distinguish the 
capital or profits of the different manufacturers, it may be remarked that owing 
to the abundance of the excellent granite, the buildings of the principal manu- 
facturers are spacious, valuable, and durable ; that we have comparatively few 
speculations ; that our principal manufacturing companies are possessed of large 
capitals ; and that the annual produce of the labour of their servants and 
apprentices is probably above £700,000, and in some years has exceeded 
£800,000. The duties paid to the Excise of those articles, which are excisable, 
were, in 1800, £51,231 7s. 7d. 

To all this may be added that Aberdeen was pretty early distinguished for 
the art and practice of printing. Raban was one of the first printers. There 
are now three printing offices in Aberdeen. There are two newspapers printed 
weekly — the Aberdeen Journal which was early established. 

Of fisheries in Aberdeenshire there are many on the Dee, on the Don, on the 
Ugie, and Ythan, and along the coast ; of salmon, of sea fish, of the whale, for 
which Aberdeen and Peterhead have successfully adventured. The whole 
fisheries which are connected with this shire yield from £80,000 to £100,000 

With fishery is naturally connected commerce. The whole trade in Aber- 
deen was — 

7 3° 


An account [Ch. IX. — Aberdeenshire. 

In 1794, £442,460. 

In 1809 it was rather more than 887,250. 

The trade of Peterhead in 1794, 1 00,000. 

The same with the coast of Buchan in 1709, 200,000. 

The export oi granite to London employs yearly above 70 ships of 7000 tons 
and 400 men. An intelligent Customhouse clerk said that the import of stones 
when delivered at London was equal to all the tea and sugar which were im- 
ported into Aberdeen. The same clerk said that he considered the taking of 
stones instead of ballast reduced the price of coals 15 per cent. 

Of the shipping of this shire during 1656, 

Aberdeen had 9 vessels, 

1 of 80 tons, 

1 of 70 

1 of 60 

3 of 50 

2 of 30 

1 of 20 

Fraserburgh had 

4 of 20 

Peterhead had 

1 of 20 

(Such was Tucker's account.) 

But a great change for the better had taken place before September, 1792, 
amidst long wars and various changes. At that epoch the port of Aberdeen 

Vessels. Tons. 
Possessed 187 13,512 

Aberdeen was then the third port for its ships, and is now the first. 



Aberdeen had in 1823, 



Greenock, in 1823, 



Leith, in 1823, 



Dundee, in 1823, 



To inquire whether commerce be convenient or useful to agriculture would 
be a question very idle. It would be much more idle to ask whether banks 
would not be highly important to agriculture, manufactures, and trade. Among 
the country banks, the Aberdeen bank was among the first, though its useful- 
ness was not perceived by the landlords of Aberdeenshire. At present Aberdeen 
city seems to enjoy the benefit of three banks — 1st, a branch of the Commercial 
Bank of Scotland, under the management of Alexander Blackie ; 2nd, the Aber- 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 235 

deen Bank, under the care of J. Brand as cashier ; the 3rd, or Commercial 

Bank, under the charge of Chivas. These three banks evince how the 

people of Aberdeenshire during recent times acquired capital for carrying on so 
many and such important enterprises. 

§ VIII. OF ITS Ecclesiastical History. — Notices with regard to ecclesiastical 
afiairs are by some writers carried back almost into the regions of fiction. But 
ages passed away before the several tribes, who at length formed one people, 
sat down in quiet to cultivate the arts of peace. 

One of the earliest facts which apply to ecclesiastical annals is the conversion 
of the Southern Picts to Christianity by Ninian, about the year 412 a.d. Yet 
ages elapsed before Nectan, who reigned over the Picts from 710 a.d. to 724, 
applied to the rulei's of Northumberland to send masons into the north to 
build him a Church. This event was followed in twenty years by the union of 
the Picts and Scots, which formed a remarkable epoch in the year 843. One 
truth seems to be certain that there were in North Britain, bishops, presbyters, 
and deacons before there were parishes. 

Begn, the first bishop of Mortlach or Old Aberdeen, was consecrated in 1010, 
and ruled this diocese, being the origin of that of Aberdeen, during two and 
thirty years. Begn was enrolled among the Saints on the 16th of December, 
and is said to have died in the year 1047. After Begn, succeeded Donart, who 
died in 1098. In succession to Donart was consecrated a person of great 
prudence, said Boece, who ruled this diocese thirty-nine years with great 
ability. His successor was Nectan in 1106, during the last years of Alexander I., 
and governed his see during almost the whole reign of David I., who removed 
this bishopric from Mortlach to Aberdeen, which was of old called the Kirktown, 
and was dedicated to Saint Naebar (a). From this epoch there were in his see, 
prior to the Reformation, including the admirable Bishop Elphinston, who founded 
the King's College ; and nine more prior to the Revolution, including Bishop 
Dunbar, who built the bridge of seven arches upon the Dee (6). 

Clarendon records with great satisfaction the meritorious conduct of the Aber- 
deen Doctors in opposition to the new reformers, which the fanatical clergy of 
that disastrous period attempted to introduce. It is worthy of observation 
that the intolerance and persecution of those new reformers was prohibited by 
a military order : ' ' Whereas I am informed, said General Monk (on the 6th of 
" October, 1651, at Dundee), that divers persons within this nation have of late 

(a) There is in Keith Bishop's 8", p. 559, a charter of Malcolm, King of Scotland, with testa meipso, 
apud Forfar. Such a testing change renders this short charter very suspicious. 

(b) Ibid., 103-134. 

236 An ACCOUNT [Ch. JX.— Aberdeenshire. 

" gone about to ensnare men's consciences by enforcing of oaths and covenants 
" upon them ; whoever tenders any oath or covenant without order from the 
" Commonwealth of England. . . . This salutary declaration of Monk was 
" proclaimed on the Market Cross of Aberdeen, upon the 22nd of October, 
1651" (c). A similar spirit to that of the new reformers, which was thus 
quashed by Monk, prevailed at Edinburgh during the reign of Anne. But it 
was equally quashed by the House of Lords, upon the appeal of Greenshiels. (d) 
The Court of Appeal merely deciding that the civil courts could not imprison 
the minister for merely exercising his proper functions. 

The Reformation and the Revolution introduced into Scotland a new system of 
ecclesiastical authority. Aberdeen is the 10th Synod under that jurisdiction ; 
and this Synod comprehends eight Presbyteries, or divisions thereof, and these 
Presbyteries contain 85 parishes, or parts thereof (e). 

(c) An extract from the Aberdeen Records. 

(cZ) The proceedings against an Episcopal minister, before the passing of the Toleration Act 10th, 
account, 10th ch. 7, who had been imprisoned for exercising his profession. Robert's Eeports on 
Appeal Cases, 12. 

(«) The Presbytery No. 54 is that of Fordyce in Banffshire, and No. 67 is that of Strathbogie in the 
Synod of Moray. 



§ I. Of its Name. — The etymology of this appellation is difficult. Ban, in 
composition, signifies high ; Ban-er, Ban-og, Ban-gor, Ban -bury ; Aff in the Cor- 
nish vocabulary signifies / or me ; War-aff, on me (a). Kinn-efFon the shore of 
Kincardineshire is a headland, and there is the parish of KinnefF. Ef or Effor Aff" 
is not in Shaw's word book, nor in Llhuyd's Irish-English vocabulary. In the 
parish of Bervie, in Kincardineshire, there are East Banfi", W. Banff, and Banfi- 
Park. In the charter of David I. he granted to Nechtan, the Bishop of 
Aberdeen, the tithes within the shires of Aberdeen and Banfi" (6). This charter 
was confirmed by several grants of Malcolm IV. (c). The rental of Alexander 
III. within Banffshire may be seen in the Chartulary of Aberdeen {d). Such 
then was the origin of the name of Banffshire. This name was first affixed to 
the town, and from it was transferred to the shire. 

§ II. Of its Situation and Extent.^ — Banffshire is bounded on the north 
by the sea, on the west by the shires of Moray and Inverness, on the east and 
south by Aberdeen. From Ainslie's large map of Scotland we may infer that 
Banffshire lies between 57° 5' and 57° 39' N. latitude. And including the 
parish of Gamrie, on the eastern side of the Deveron, the longitude is from 1° 2' 
east to 0° 23' west of the meridian of Edinburgh. But, exclusive of Gamrie, it 
is from 0° 50' to 0° 23' west of the meridian of Edinburgh. 

From the Craig of Boyne, or from CuUen Bay, on the north, to Loch Avon, 
at the south-east point is about 52 miles ; yet the average breadth is about 18 
miles, exclusive of the parishes of Gamrie and St. Fergus, which lie in Buchan. 
This would give the result of 136 square miles, being 599,040 English acres. 
Gamrie may be about 16, and St. Fergus 12 square miles, being 17,920 English 
acres, which added to the general contents, which are mentioned above, the 
whole county would of course contain in the whole about 616,960 English 

(a) Borlase. (b) Chart, of Aberdeen, 215. 

(c) See a confirmation of William the Lion, Chart. Aberdeen, 216-218. (d) lb. p. 444. 

238 AnACOOUNT [Oh. X.— Banffshire. 

The population in 1795 being 38,992, giving as the result 40 Iff souls to a 
square acre. 

But the number of souls, in 1811, was 36,668. 
The same „ ,, in 1821, was 43,561. 

The Celtic divisions, or countries, in Banffshire, are the Boyne, the Enzie, 
Strath-Isla, Glen Fiddich, Strath Avon, and the two small divisions of Glen- 
rinnes and Glenlivet. 

§ III. Its Natural Objects. — The surface of this shire is agreeably diversi- 
fied with hill and dale, is well watered with rivulets, and ornamented with 
plantations and seats. The southern part of the county is very mountainous, 
but the northern part is level, and the soil is very fertile. There is within 
Banffshire some remarkable mountains — as Cairngorm (4,080 ft.), which is one of 
the highest ; Benrinnes rises 2,753 feet above the sea level ; and the Knock-hill 
is 1,409 feet above the sea. At Portsoy is a beautiful vein of serpentine, which 
is commonly called Portsoy Marble ; and also a species of granite, which, when 
polished, exhibits the resemblance of Arabic and Hebrew characters. Valuable 
minerals are often found in this shire. Limestone is very plenty, and a hill in 
Balveny district supplies whetstones, which are sufficient to supply the whole 

The rivers are — the Spey, the Deveron, the Isla, the Conglas, the Avon, and 
the Fiddich. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — The original planters of this shire, and their 
Celtic language, which may be still traced on the maps, are the earliest anti- 
quities. This northern shire was originally peopled from the South, and they 
encountered Csesar when he landed on their coast. The names of the rivers 
are all Celtic and not Gothic. 

On the Roman road — which carried the Boman armies through the shire — 
Roman coins have been found a little below the tower of Deskford ; and the 
Roman camp, near the Kirk of Bellie, which overlooked the outrageous Spey, 
are all interesting antiquities. Along the coast from the shire town to Spey- 
mouth are frequent tumuli and Caledonian monuments. In this country, says 
the traveller Pennant, are several cairns or barrows, the place of interment of 
the ancient Caledonians or the Danes, for the method was common to both 
nations. A hillock near Glassaugh was a very remarkable one, which was 
demolished about fourteen years ago. The diameter was sixty feet, and the 
height sixteen, and is formed entirely of stones which were brought from the 
shore. The whole was covered with a layer of earth, and finished with a nice 

Sect, v.— 0/ its Establishment as a Shire.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 239 

coat of green sod inclosing the whole. On breaking open this cairn on the 
summit of the stony heap, beneath the integument of earth was found a stone 
coffin, which was formed of long flags, and in it the complete skeleton of a 
human body lying at full length. Three other cairns were soon after opened 
near the same place. An urn was found in a cairn on the hill of Durn, over- 
looking the Deveron and the shire town of Banff. There is a numerous assem- 
blage of cairns on the Cotton Hill, a mile south of Birkenbog, in memory, 
perhaps, of the slain in the victory obtained in 916 by Indulphus over the 
Danes, when the Scottish King lost his life. The battle raged chiefly on a 
moor near Cullen, where there are similar barrows. 

Not far from these are two circles of long stones, which are called Gaelic- 
cross ; perhaps these may have been erected after that battle, and as Gael is 
the word for a stranger or enemy, as the Danes were, I am the more inclined 
to suppose that may have been the fact. Nor is there wanting a retreat for 
the inhabitants in time of war, for round the top of the hill of Durn is a triple 
entrenchment, which is still very distinct ; the middle one of stone is very 
strong in the most accessible place, and such fastnesses were far from being 
unnecessary in a tract which was continually exposed to the ravages of the 
Danes. Thus far from Pennant's Tour, 1767. 

We may judge of the manners and of the property that opulent families 
enjoyed formerly from the marriage contract of Sir John Grant of Grant with 
Margaret Ogilvie, the daughter of Sir James Ogilvie of Deskford. The mar- 
riage portion given by Sir James Ogilvie with his daughter to the Laird of 
Grant was three hundred marks, which was payable at five terms, that is £40 
Scots yearly ; and the jointure which was stipulated by the said Sir John to 
his lady, together with the provision for the children to be procreated between 
them, was twenty marks worth of land yearly. Such was the friendship 
between the two families of Grant and Ogilvie that they entered into a bond of 
association " to maintain one another's quarrels, and to keep from robbing, 
thigging, sorning, or taking one another's possessions, by themselves, friends, 
or dependants," as the marriage contract bears, dated at Bogg of Geith, 
1484 (e). 

§ V. Of its Establishment as a Shire. — It was probably settled under the 
municipal form as a shire as early as Aberdeen. In the charter of David I. to 
Nechtan during the year 1137, it appears that Aberdeen and Banff" formed two 
shires -(/). There is some reason to doubt the authenticity of this charter, yet 

(e) From the Genealogy of the House of Grant, which was written by the Eev. James Chapman, the 
minister of Cromdale, in my library. ( /) Vicecomitatibus de Aberdeen and Banff. 

240 AnACOOUNT [Oh. -S..— Banffshire. 

is it not confirmed by two charters from Malcolm IV. and by a charter from 
William the Lion. In the well-known ordinance of Edward I., in 1305, 
" Wanter de Berkcle was Viscounte de Ban£" {g). There are several charters 
of David II. which show that Banff was then a separate shire. The charters 
of Robert I. clearly establish the fact that Banffshire was in this xeign a sepa- 
rate sheriffdom. Qi). 

In 1547, John Stuart, the son and heir of John, Earl of Buchan, had a grant 
to him, his heirs, and assigns, of the offices of Sheriff and Coroner of Banff (i). 
The ofilces thus granted in fee and heritage would descend to posterity of the 
grantee, yet I do not perceive that any claim was made in 1747, when such 
offices were to be abolished and the claimants paid a reasonable satisfaction. 

In pursuance of that wise policy, during March, 1748, Mr. Robert Pringle, 
an advocate, was appointed Sheriff-Depute of Banffshire at a salary of £150 a 
year (j). 

§ VI. Of its Civil History. — The people who originally settled the town 
and shire of Banff were undoubtedly Celtic, as the name imports. A castle 
upon the high grounds above the mouth of the Deveron, gave rise to the town 
upon the declivity. 

Towards the close of the eighth century, the Danish rovers began to issue 
from the Baltic in quest of adventures and in search of prey. At the beginning 
of the subsequent ages the Danish shipmen made themselves felt along the 
Caledonian coasts. The various tumuli, which are even now seen along these 
shores, are supposed by the people of the country to contain the remains of the 
warriors who fought and fell in defending their country from the ravages of the 
Vikings, and invasions are still recollected in the traditions of the country. In 
the year 961 the Danish rovers were defeated at Inverculan (CuUen of the 
present time), by the vigorous inhabitants of that district. In 971 the Nor- 
wegians are said to have repulsed the Scots, and in 1010 A.D., Malcolm II. is 
said to have defeated the Danes at Mortlach, which shows that the barbarous 
intruders had advanced some distance into the rugged country (k) ; but whether 
those statements can be regarded as historical facts may still admit of some 

During the months of September and October, 1562, the Queen of Scots per- 
formed her notorious journies throughout Banffshire. The Queen, on the 1st 
September, departed on her journey to Inverness, and as she did choose to visit 

{g) Eyley's Placita, 505. {h) Eobertson's Index, p. 12-16. 

(t) Chart, in Sir Eobert Gordon's Case, app., No. 20. 

(j) Scots Mag., Vol. 10, p. 155. {k) Shaw's Moray, 211-12. 

Sect. Vn.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 241 

Huntly Castle, she slept at Boquhane ; the morrow she journied by Grange, 
where she slept ; and on the subsequent day she passed the Spey to Balveny ; 
and on the morrow went on to Elgin, without seeing or hearing of any disturb- 
ances. On the 8th of September the Queen went to Kinloss, where she slept. 
On the 11th of September she arrived at Inverness with her train. The keep- 
ing of the Castle at Inverness belonged of right to Lord Gordon, and as his 
deputy governor had received no instructions he refused to deliver the posses- 
sion to strangers. The Castle was taken by assault, and the deputy governor was 
hanged. The Queen and her train now returned south eastward. On the 17th 
of September she arrived at Spynie Castle, the seat of the Bishopric of Moray. 
The Queen, with 2000 followers, again passed the Spey at Fochabers, without 
seeing or hearing of any disturbances. She was now in the country of the 
Gordons, but seeing no one she passed on through Banffshire to Cullen, and she 
now demanded possession of the Castles of Findlater and Deskford, which 
belonged to Sir John Gordon. The keys of both were offered to the Queen, but 
she declined to receive them. From the Laird of Banff s house she proceeded 
on the 20th September to the Shire town, where she slept ; and on the 22nd 
she arrived at Aberdeen, where she was well received, and was presented with 
a guild cup and 500 crowns. If Huntly had not died at the skirmish of Cor- 
rochie, the events of this farcial journey would evince how well the Queen could 
play the simpleton, and her ministers act as knaves. The whole exhibits an 
admirable display of the most vexatious misrule of a distracted people. 

In October, 1594, the Earl of Huntly defeated the Earl of Argyle, at 
Glenlivet (l). 

In August, 1640, the lands and house of Gordon of Glassaugh were wasted 
and rifled, by Munro's soldiers on their march from Strathbogie to Banff, On 
the same march Lord Banff's fine house and gardens were destroyed by the 
same soldiers and Munro. 

§ VII. Of its Agmcultube, Manufacture, and Trade. — The whole shire, 
except the tract along the sea-shore, may be properly described as a hilly and 
mountainous country, interpersed, indeed, with many fertile valleys, which are 
well adapted to the cultivation of corn and grass. The hiUs are either covered 
with heath or moss, a,nd of course afford but little pasture of any kind. In 
several of these valleys where cultivation has hitherto been found impracticable, 
there is abundance of excellent pasture, on which young cattle are reared to 
great advantage, the grounds being well sheltered by natural woods of oak, 
birch, elder, and other woodlands. 

(P) Dunlop's MS. Hist, of Battles. 
7 31 

242 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. X..— Banffshire. 

The arable land, which bears but a small proportion to the waste, lies on the 
sides and towards the bottom of the higher hills, or on the sides of those valleys 
through which the waters have their courses, or on the narrow level plains on 
the banks of those waters. 

Taking a general view of the whole shire, the soil may be described as of 
three qualities. That of the plains, on the banks of the waters, where it has 
not been mixed with sand by the washing of the streams, is a stiff deep clay ; on 
the sides of the valley, it is a deep black loam, on a bed of rock, generally of 
limestone. On the sides of the hills, and in the higher part of the county, 
where cultivation has taken place, the soil is either the same as just described, 
or a mixture of moss and gravel on a red tilly bottom, and is, as may be sup- 
posed, very retentive of water. 

From the nature of the soil, as above described, as well as from its exposed 
situation and the great height of some of the mountains, the shire is often sub- 
jected to all the evils of a cold and rainy climate. The harvests are often 
interrupted and precarious : and if not completed before the end of October, the 
crops in the interior and more remote parts of the shire are for the most part 
damaged by rains, which about that season often set in for some weeks, and 
are frequently succeeded without any interval of good weather by frosts and 
falls of snow, and often suspend the operations of husbandry for many of the 
winter months. In the year 1782 and 1787, the harvest continued for near 
three months. From this statement, however, the lower part of the county, 
from Duffhouse to Forglen, and Kinardy, a tract of about twelve miles along 
the river side, and from Banff to Gordon Castle, including the districts of Boyne 
and Enzie, must be excepted, being nearly equal to the climate of Moray, and 
greatly surpassing the most part of that county in the fertility of its soil, the 
improvements of its agriculture, and the richness of its productions. 

In this shire, oats, peas, and beans are sown from the beginning of March to 
the middle of April. Barley seed commences about the beginning of May, and 
the sowing of wheat in October, though sometimes as late as November. The 
harvest generally commences in the first week of September, and in ordinary 
seasons it is completed in six or seven weeks, during which period the corns are 
all stacked in the farmyard. 

In this shire there are three proprietors, each of whose estates amount from 
£7,000 to £12,000. There are eight others who possess from £600 to £1,000 ; 
and the other estates are valued from £300 to £400 yearly, amounting in all, 
including £1,200 for the fishings, to £43,500. 

Though the family seats of the great proprietors are chiefly situated within 
this shire, yet, from necessary attendance in Parliament and from other avoca- 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 243 

tions, there are none of them who reside here above a few months in the year. 
In addition to the parks and pleasure grounds around their mansion houses, 
they each retain a certain extent of arable farm, which is managed on the most 
approved principles. Many of the proprietors are employed in the army or 
navy, or in some department of the law ; so that there are but few who reside 
within the shire, or have time or opportunity for giving that degree of attention 
to the growing improvements of their own estates, or to the country at large, 
which the importance of the object justly merits ; while that proper connection 
which ought to subsist between landlords and tenants, and which uniformly 
takes place in all countries where improvements in agriculture have been 
successfully carried on, is here attended to only by a few individuals, who, by a 
proper attention to their own interests, have learned that such a conduct 
alone can secure the introduction of a general spirit of improvement among all 
classes of tenants in any country. 

The rent of the arable lands within this shire may be accounted at 12s. an 
acre, exclusive of natural pasture, and exclusive also of the lands adjoining to 
the several towns and villages, which from local situation and other advantages 
give from £2 to £4 the acre. The rents are paid partly in money, and partly 
in barley and oatmeal. The money rent is always paid at the term of 
Martinmas, after reaping the crop ; and the barley and oatmeal between the 
term of Christmas and Candlemas thereafter. The only term of entry to a 
farm is at Whitsunday, as to the houses, garden, and meadow grass ; and to 
the arable land at the separation of that year's crop from the ground. The 
leases endure generally for nineteen years, though there are several farms on 
the Findlater estate, between Banff and Cullen, of which leases were granted 
about the year 1759 for two nineteen years, with the lifetime of the tenant, in 
case he should survive that period. The farmhouses and offices are valued to 
the tenant on his entry, and he is bound to uphold them, so as to be of equal 
value at his removal, or he must pay the deficiency in money to the next 
incoming tenant. A liberty is reserved by the proprietor to work all mines 
and minerals, and to cut drains through the farm for the purpose of draining 
any other farm on the estate ; the tenant being entitled to recover any damage 
that may be done to the surface, as the same may be ascertained by arbiters to 
be mutually chosen. Proprietors also reserve liberty of planting any moor or 
pasture grounds within the limits of the farm, which they may incline to plant 
at any period during the lease, and without making any discount of rent to the 
tenant for the lands so taken off. The only clause which is contained in the 
lease in regard to the management of the land is, that the tenant shall not 
waste it by improper cropping. 

244 An ACCOUNT [Ch. X.—Banffshirt. 

The tenants are in general bound to pay cess, taxes, schoolmasters' salary, 
and all public burdens imposed, or to be imposed : and further, to be amenable 
to the decisions of the Baron Bailie in all questions relating to the preservation 
of growing timber, cutting meadow ground, winter herding, mill exactions, and 
such other matters as naturally fall under the cognizance of this court. 

Astrictions to mills are here with a few exceptions in full force, and the 
tenants are bound by their leases to grind their corn at particular mills, where 
in general from the eighth to the fifteenth part of the corns so grinded is 
exacted, but on an average about the twelfth, though every farmer is obliged to 
be at the expense of a kiln on his farm for drying his coi-ns, and of sending his 
servants to the mill to assist in manufacturing them into meal. He is further 
bound to perform his proportion of labour with the other tenants in supporting 
the fabric of the mill, and keeping the drains and water courses in order. 

The Earl of Fife, in respect to his estates in this shire, has relinquished the 
astrictions to his mills for a small commutation in money. His lordship has 
also very wisely abolished all customs and services which were due by his 
tenants, and converted the same for a payment in money on very moderate 

It appears not that any improvements were attempted in this shire before the 
year 1748. In former times the mode of agricultural management was the same 
here as was then universally practised throughout the north of Scotland. The 
arable lands on every farm were divided into what was called outfield and 
infield. To the infield, being that part which was nearest to the farmstead, the 
whole manure was regularly applied. The only crops which were cultivated on 
the infield land were oats, bear, and peas ; and the lands were kept so long 
under tillage as they would produce two or three returns of the seed sown ; and 
when a field became so reduced and so full of weeds as not to yield this return, 
it was allowed to lie in natural pasture for a year or two, after which it was 
again brought under cultivation and again treated as formerly. The outfield 
lands were wasted by a succession of oats after oats, as long as the crops would 
pay for seed and labour, and afibrd a small allowance of oatmeal for the family. 
They were then allowed to remain in a state of absolute sterility, producing 
only thistles and other weeds, till after having rested in this state for some 
years, the farmer thought proper to bring them again under cultivation, when, 
from the mode of management before described, a few scanty crops were 

Oxen ploughs only were used, and when the barley seed was finished, the 
cattle were either sold to dealers or sent to the glens or valleys in the remote 
parts of the shire, where they were grazed for three or four months, in summer. 

Beet. Vn.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.'] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 2 15 

at the low rate of Is. or Is. 6d. each ; and during this period the plough was 
laid aside, and the farmers, servants, and horses, were employed in collecting the 
necessary fuel, and in gathering moss or clay to be mixed with the dung 
produced by the cattle the preceding winter. The horses were either tethered 
on the best of the infield pasture, or trusted to the management of a herd ; and 
as it may easily be supposed, those animals often went beyond the bounds of 
the pasture allotted to them, and committed depredations on the adjoining 
corn fields. 

About the before mentioned epoch, the late Earl of Findlater, who was then 
Lord Deskford, appeared among the respectable body of improvers. It was he 
who first introduced the spirit and the practice of improvement into this shire. 
He first gave long leases to tenants on the conditions of improvement. He 
obliged them to practice summer fallows and to sow grass seeds. It was he 
also who introduced the turnip husbandry. Peas and beans are not cultivated 
here in great quantities. They succeed wheat or oats, and are generally sown 
after a furrow, which is given sometimes in spring and sometimes in autumn. 
Potatoes were first introduced into Banffshire about the year 1753, and turnips 
about 1748. 

Flax is cultivated in the shire to a considerable extent, and to some 

All the improved implements of husbandry have been introduced here by Lord 
Findlater ; the threshing machines have been almost generally adopted ; 
and the old and awkward implements of carriage have been laid aside for the 
more commodious carts. 

But without roads it is in vain to expect improvements in agriculture. The 
public and parochial roads in this shire are very wretched. Many of the rivulets 
are still without bridges of any kind. This was said, and truly said, in 1793. 

There are weekly markets in all the burghs of barony within the shire of 
Banff for the sale of the products of the county. It is not easy to ascertain 
the number and value of the black cattle which are annually sold from this dis- 
trict. It is certain, however, that there is more money brought into Banffshire 
for the sale of cattle than for the export of grain and oatmeal. 

This shire has long been famous for the best breed of black cattle in the 
north of Scotland. The increased demand for this species of stock and conse- 
quent high prices, induced the intelligent farmers to pay more attention to the 
improvement of the breed, and of late years, some of the most respectable pro- 
prietors have spared no expense in introducing from time to time the most 
valuable breeds of cattle. 

Although the treatment of hlach cattle by the poorer tenants in this shire is 

246 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. X.— Banffshire. 

Still much the same as it was fifty years ago (in 1743), yet the above circum- 
stances, joined to the attention which is now paid to preserving the most pro- 
mising for the market, and for the propagation of the stock, the general intro- 
duction of husbandry, the attention excited in other districts to this important 
object, and the improvements which have been lately introduced here of 
managing the plough and cart by a pair of oxen, have tended in no small 
degree to the improvement of the cattle in point of size and figure, so that the 
price has been considerably advanced, perhaps nearly doubled, within these 
twenty years. (1773). The average price of oxen which are sold in this shire 
may be reckoned at five guineas each. Middle-sized oxen, when fat, weigh 
thirty-six stone Amsterdam. 

Horses have been employed on the larger farms for several years past in 
preference to oxen. Wherever that has happened particular attention has been 
paid to improve the breed, and considering that the country is, in general, still 
open and uninclosed, it is surprising to what an extent the farmers have suc- 
ceeded in improving the size and shape of this species of stock. The ordinary 
price of the best horses which were used for draught, twenty or thirty years 
ago, did not exceed £10 or £20, while at present £18 or £20 are by no means 
considered an extraordinary price. 

In the higher parts of this shire where oxen ploughs are still commonly used, 
and among the poorer tenants all over the district, a good young horse for the 
cart may be purchased at £8 or £9, and it is worthy of remark that many such 
might be found in this shire, which, if taken up before being worked, and kept 
properly for a year or two, would make excellent ponies for the saddle. 

Of sheep, some of the more substantial farmers in the low division of the 
shire have introduced the Northumberland, or Culley's breed of sheep, produc- 
ing a fleece weighing from eight to twelve pounds Amsterdam, and from six- 
teen to twenty pounds a quarter. These sheep when first introduced into 
Banfishire sold for 80s. or 40s. each, but they have since fallen considerably in 
price, and from that circumstance, added to the extra expense of maintenance 
and the additional care of them which is necessary, it begins now to be doubted 
in this county whether they are the most profitable breed for this shire. In 
the higher parts of this shire a considerable number of the blackfaced or Linton 
breed may be seen. Their properties are so well known as to render any 
description here unnecessary. The only other breed is a small white-faced 
kind, the ancient breed of the county, and though not equal either in weight 
or value of fleece to the Linton breed, yet by proper management, their wool, 
which is very fine, might be greatly improved ; but it must be acknowledged 
that great ignorance and inattention prevail here in regard to the proper 

Sect. VII.— Of its Agriculture, etc.] Oi-NOETH-BEITAIN. 247 

management of these useful animals, numbers of them perishing yearly owing 
to the rot or scab, which might be prevented by an ordinary degree of care. 

Swine are reared in considerable numbers at all the mills and distilleries in 
this shire, and a few are to be seen in the farmyards of the principal tenants ; 
but as pork and bacon are by no means the favourite food of the inhabitants, 
and the aversion of not a few, the market for the sale of them is very limited. 
Yet for many years past butchers from Aberdeen have been in the practice of 
coming into this shire every year, for the purpose of purchasing all that they 
can find, which are fit for their purpose ; and it is not uncommon to see herds 
of two or three hundred driven away at a time. It should be observed that 
Aberdeen has long been noted for salted and pickled pork, and it forms no in- 
considerable article of export from that mart. 

Of woods and plantations there were scarcely any, at least in the lower 
country, till the year 1753, when the spirit of plantation began. But along the 
coast there are now a great many extensive plantations. Little attention, 
however, seems to have been paid to shelter the arable lands, so as to improve 
the climate. There are perhaps few countries where this mode of planting 
would be attended with more beneficial consequence, as from the high and ex- 
posed situation of a great proportion of the cornfields, as hath been observed, 
the climate must naturally be cold and late ; and if by any means the harvests 
could be brought forward ten days or a fortnight earlier, the damage which so 
often happens to the latter part of the crops would seldom take place ; as in general 
the weather in the first two or three weeks of the harvest is as favourable here as in 
any part of the north of Scotland. It is, however, impossible to carry on this 
mode of improvement to any extent, unless the lands were classed together into 
regular farms, and inclosed and subdivided ; were this done and belts and 
clumps of trees planted in proper situations, there is every reason to believe 
that the climate would in time be thereby much improved. It may, however, 
be here proper to remark that the higher and more exposed the lands are the 
belts of planting ought to be the broader, as in such situations trees will not 
thrive unless they are planted thick, so as to afford shelter to each other. In 
order to encourage the tenants to preserve such plantations from any damage 
by their cattle, it might be proper to follow the plan of the late Earl of 
Findlater with several of his tenants, of giving them at the expiration of the 
lease every third tree, or the value thereof in money, which has been planted 
during the currency of their lease. Interest is the tie which has the surest 
hold of mankind, and a compact on this principle between landlord and tenant 
is much more likely to secure the preservation of trees, than any other measure 
that can be adopted. 

248 AnACOOUNT [Oh. X.— Banffshire. 

In other remote parts of this shire there are considerable tracts of natural 
woods, consisting of oak, alder, birch, etc., on the side of almost every rivulet ; 
particularly on the banks of the Avon, the Li vet, the Fiddich, and the Dulnan, 
of which natural woods many of the implements of husbandry are made. There 
is but a small proportion of the Scots fir arrived of such an age as to be fit for 
domestic purposes, and therefore a great part of the country is still supplied with 
wood which is floated down from the forests of Strathspey. The period, how- 
ever, is not far distant when this shire will be able to supply itself, and also to 
spare some for exportation. 

The whole proprietors of this shire seem at present to possess an active spirit 
for planting, and if in place of covering extensive tracts of barren heath with 
trees, which only tend to the improvement of those particular spots, they were 
to plant stripes and clumps of trees among the arable fields, it would not only 
ornament the country but improve the climate, which must be acknowledged by 
all to be an object of the greatest importance to this shire, and which if attained 
would be cheaply purchased on almost any terms. 

The climate of this shire, it will be generally acknowledged, is more favour- 
able to the cultivation of grass than grain ; and to introduce a rotation of 
cropping, by which one half of the farm was to be constantly under sown grass 
and turnip, would turn out to be a measure highly favourable to the interests 
of landlords and tenants, as from the best information there is every reason to 
believe that for a series of 70 or 80 years back such rainy late seasons have re- 
curred once in four or five years as have greatly damaged and, on some occasions, 
almost totally ruined the crops ; the corn often remaining on the fields till the 
middle or end of December. Such tenants as have their farms inclosed and 
subdivided pursue nearly the above mentioned system, and after several years 
experience have found its advantage in their doing so, not only from the 
superior crops of grain which the farmers reap, but also in the improvement of 
their live stock. It being obvious that cattle reared in sheltered inclosures 
enjoying plenty of food and their natural freedom, must rise in bone, figure, and 
value, greatly above those which are reared in an open exposed pasture, re- 
stricted often to a narrow field and pent up every night in a fold. The superior 
price which Banfishire cattle are sold for in the south country markets compared 
to the breed of any other district in the north, and the quantity of butter which 
is annually exported, amount to complete evidence of its being an excellent 
grazing country, and should induce the proprietors to try by every possible 
means to introduce this system of husbandry into more general practice ; but it 
is impossible to do this with effect unless the farms are enlarged, inclosed, and 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 249 

In general there is abundance of stone quarries in this shire, but in some par- 
ticular places stone is not to be had without great expense ; hedge and ditch 
might be substituted in the place of stone fences. It may be safely stated that 
if the farms were inclosed every available acre in the district would yield the 
proprietor, on an average, from five to six shillings additional rent, and the 
tenants at the same time would live more comfortably, and become more useful 
members of the State. This great improvement can only be effected in one of 
two ways. The first by the proprietors being at the whole outlay on receiving 
a reasonable interest from their tenants for the money so expended, or by 
granting leases of such duration, and on such equitable terms to substantial 
and intelligent farmers as to induce them to undertake the business at their 
own expense, which has hitherto been the practice in this district. Were this 
plan to be adopted, it is impossible to state with any degree of certainty the 
advantages both of a public and private nature that would necessarily result 
from it. But if reference be had to those countries where such improvements 
have been made, some idea of the extent may be gained. 

The draining of land seems to be a mode of improvement very little practised 
or known here, though there are few countries where it could be done at less 
expense, and perhaps none in which greater advantages would result from 
proper and well constructed drains. The arable lands generally lie more or less 
in a sloping direction, which allows a ready descent to the water which falls 
from the clouds, and would of course render the drains less expensive ; and the 
nature of the soil, which is in general- retentive of water, would be much 
improved by keeping the lands free from surface water during the winter and 
spring, and planting belts and clumps of trees so as to procure shelter. There 
can be no doubt but the climate would be thereby improved, which, from what 
has been stated, must appear to be an object of the very first importance to 
every person concerned in the cultivation of the soil. 

Though there are few countries which possess a more abundant stock of 
limestone, and indeed very few in which a greater quantity of lime is manu- 
factured, yet it has by no means come into general use as a manure. Those 
who possess the most improved farms do indeed use it, and from experience 
find that it answers their most sanguine expectations ; but the general run of 
tenants, particularly in Stryla, otherwise Strathisla, though they manufacture 
forty or fifty thousand bolls yearly, and sell at the low price of 6d. or 8d. the boll, 
which is equal to 64 Scots pints of powdered lime, after the trouble and expense 
of carrying it ten or fifteen miles, yet they rarely ever think of applying it as a 
manure to their own farms. Though this trade of manufacturing lime for other 
shires no doubt brings some money into this district, and enables the same 
7 32 

250 A N ;A C U N T [Oh. S..— Banffshire. 

farmers who are employed in it to pay their rents, yet, considering the disad- 
vantages under which they labour, no one will pretend to say but that these 
manufactures of lime could be more usefully and more profitably employed both 
for themselves and the public in other employments of life. In place of burn- 
ing the limestone in small, open, ill-constructed kilns, which is the practice at 
present, and by which perhaps nearly the double quantity of fuel is consumed 
than would be requisite if the kilns were built larger and were built longer, and 
of a more perfect construction, and in place of a greater number of people being 
thus employed who possess small farms, and who generally cultivate them in 
the worst possible manner, it would be no doubt for the interest of the 
proprietors were they to erect proper kilns at their own expense, and employ 
experienced persons to manufacture lime, as it cannot be supposed that those 
small farmers can do as much work as the same number would do if by a proper 
division of labour, and under proper directions, they were confined each to the 
part of the work to which they were accustomed. The tenants should also be 
bound by their leases to lay on a specified quantity of lime yearly on their 
farms, under such regulations as are adopted, and have been found by experi- 
ence to answer in other shires. Lime, by this mode of management, could be 
ofiered at a lower price, the use of it as a manure be more generally introduced, 
and the situation of the small farmers who are now employed in that trade, 
would become more comfortable by their being at liberty to devote their whole 
time and attention to the proper cultivation and improvement of their farms, 
or their being employed in manufactories. 

But of agriculture enough ! Let us now advert to the manufactures of 

Manufactures were first introduced into this county by the late Lord Find- 
later, the same nobleman who introduced the improvements in agriculture into 
this county. At the beginning their progress was slow and of little value, but 
of late years they have become of considerable importance. 

In the course of the last seven years, namely, from the year 1785, it appears 
that besides every great quantity of linen yarn and coarse linen cloth which is 
exported overland from this county, generally to Aberdeen, Glasgow, and 
Paisley, there has, during that period, been shipped from Banff, Portsoy, and 
Macduff, a sea-town in this shire, though it be situated on the south side of 
Deveron, 710,000 spindles of linen yarn, 509,108 pounds weight of white and 
coloured threads, 8,755 dozen pairs of thread and worsted stockings, and 725 
dozen pairs of leather shoes. The linen yarn and thread were made partly 
of fiax, the growth of this shire. There was a possibility of ascertaining the 
quantity of each kind manufactured, but when it is considered that in the 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OpNOETH-BRITAIN. 251 

neighbourhood of Keith alone there are four mills erected for scutching flax, 
and at each of these 1000 to 1500 stones are annually dressed, there can be no 
doubt but that a very considerable quantity of flax is yearly raised in this 
shire beyond what is necessary for the use of the inhabitants. The following 
is a statement of the linen stamped for sale in the following years : — 

Yards. Value. 

From Nov. 1797, to Nov. 1798, there were of linen cloth 

stamped for sale, - . 64,608 £5,209 

From Nov. 1798, to Nov. 1799, there were also stamped 

for sale, - . . 41,217 3,985 

From Nov. 1799, to Nov. 1800, there were also stamped 

for sale, - - - 48,168 4,779 

There are several bleachfields in this shire. One in the neighbourhood of 
Cullen has been long established, and at which about 1500 pieces of linen and 
1700 spindles of yarn are whitened yearly. The stockings and shoes are ex- 
ported to foreign markets, the white and coloured threads are disposed of in 
London, and the linen yarn is sent to Aberdeen, and other places on the east 
coast of Scotland. 

Analogous to manufactures axe fisheries. 

Several of the villages in this shire, being situated upon the shore of the 
Moray Frith, are chiefly inhabited by fishermen, who pursue fishery as a trade. 
They fish for cod, ling, skate, mackerel, whiting, and haddocks, which latter 
are sometimes very plentiful and often very scarce ; and besides supplying the 
county of Banff, a great quantity of dried fish is distributed into the shires of 
Aberdeen and Elgin, and the remainder, amounting to several thousand dozens 
of salt cod, ling, skate, and haddock, is annually exported by the fishermen 
themselves to Montrose, Arbroath, Dundee, Perth, and the towns along the 
Forth, to the value of more than £3,000 sterling yearly. A considerable part 
of this sum the fishers expend in purchasing coal, salt, and other articles, as 
they judge they can purchase cheaper than they do at home ; with the re- 
mainder they buy clothes, meat, and other necessaries which they stand in 
need of; and from this fund also the rent is paid to the proprietor of the vil- 
lages in which they reside. The general terms of agreement between a pro- 
prietor of one of those villages and a boats' crew are as follows .• — The fishing 
boat complete, which generally costs £22, is furnished by the proprietor ; the 
crew, which consists of six men, become jointly bound to employ the boat for 
seven years in the white fishing on the coast, and to pay a rent of five guineas 
yearly for the boat, and for a small piece of ground, in order to build their 

252 AnACOOUNT [Oh. "S..— Banffshire. 

houses, which they do at their own expense, and for gardens which are equally 
useful. They are obliged to uphold the boat during the seven years, at the 
end of which period the proprietor furnishes the hull of a new boat, which 
generally costs about £11 ; but in the event of a boat not lasting seven years, 
the proprietor furnishes a new one at his own expense, and the crew agree to 
pay a yearly advance of rent above the five guineas in proportion to the period 
which was to run of the seven years when the former boat became unservice- 
able. In case of the death of any of the boatmen, some person who is agree- 
able to the proprietor and to the other fishermen, obtains possession of the 
house and garden of the deceased, with his share of the profits of the concern ; 
but a newcomer is obliged to pay to the widow or relations of the deceased a 
certain consideration for the house, and for any improvements that may have 
been made in the garden. 

In the course of seven years, which preceded January 1794, there were ex- 
ported from this shire 429,571 dried cod and ling, 366 of salted cod, 15,800 
dried skate, and 148,700 dried haddocks, all which were disposed of on the 
south-east coast of Scotland as before mentioned. The export of salmon, in the 
same period, exclusive of the Spey fishings, have been 2630 barrels of salted 
salmon, and 20,905 kits of fresh salmon. The first is generally sent to the 
Mediterranean, and the last find a ready sale at a London market (in). 

In this shire there are two Royal Burghs, viz. , Banff and Cullen, situated on 
the coast, at the distance of twelve miles from each other. Banff Burgh and 
Parish contained of people, in 1711, 3,603; the same in 1721, 3,855 souls; 
Cullen contains only 1,451 persons. Keith, which is a mere manufacturing 
town, contains 3,926 persons. Fordyce parish, comprehending Portsoy, con- 
tains 3,245 persons; but Rathven parish, containing several fishing towns, con- 
tains 5,364 inhabitants. 

Two of the principal districts of Banffshire are the Boyne and Enzie, lying 
along the shire of the county, and during the fourteenth century these two dis- 
tricts vjere free forests, which were partly wooded and partially cultivated. 

Gilbert de Hay of Locherward obtained of Robert I. a grant of the office of 
forester of the forests of Awne and Boyne, and he acquired from the same King 
a grant of the lands of the forests of Awne and Boyne {n). On the 1 6th of 
January, 1362-3, John de Hay of Tulybody obtained from David II. a charter 
giving him liberty to reduce into culture the lands between the River Spey and 

(m) These details are from the Customhouse books. 

(n) Eobertson's Index, 16, and a charter in Haddington's Collection. Philip de Meldrum obtained 
from David II. a grant of the forest of Awne. Eobertson's Index, 32. William de Wans obtained 
from David II. a grant of the keeping of the forests of Boyne and Awne. Id. 45. 

Sect. VII Of its Agriculture, etc.] OirNOETH-BEITAIN. 253 

the rivulet of Tynot in the forest of Awne, and to hold the same lands of which 
his predecessor (Gilbert de Hay) obtained a charter from Robert I. (o). The 
same John de Hay obtained from David II. a charter of the lands of the forests 
of Enzie and Boyne, to be held in a free forest by the service of vs^ard and 
relief, with power to reduce the said lands to culture, and to sow grains in 
them {p). 

John de Hay of Tulybody, who died before June, 1418 {q), left an only child 
and heiress, Giles Hay, who married, in 1426, Alexander Seton of Gordon, to 
whom she brought the lands and barony of Tulybody, in Clackmananshire • 
Kinmundie, in Aberdeenshire ; Culswarthy and the forests of Awne and 
Boyne, in Banffshire. By his second wife, Alexander Seton of Gordon had a 
son. Sir Alexander Seton, who inherited his mother's property, and was pro- 
genitor of the Setons of Touch. Alexander Seton of Gordon was created Earl 
of Huntly in 1445, and having married a third wife, Elizabeth, the daughter of 
William, Lord Crichton, Chancellor of Scotland, by whom he had several sons 
and daughters, who took the surname of Gordon, the Earldom of Huntly and 
the estates belonging to it were settled on the issue of this third marriage by a 
charter of James II. upon the 29th January, 1449-50 (r). Upon the death of 
Alexander, the first Earl of Huntly, on the 15th of July, 1470, he was suc- 
ceeded in that earldom by George, Lord Gordon, the eldest son of this third 
marriage. By an agreement made on the 10th of April, 1470, George, Lord 
Gordon, obtained from his half-brother, Sir Alexander Seton of Tulybody, a 
resignation of the lands of Culsworthy and the forests of Boyne and Enzie, 
and he obtained a charter for these lands from the King on the 21st of May, 
1470 (s). This property was afterwards held by the Earls of Huntly as a lord- 
ship, called the lordship of Enzie ; and when the Earl of Huntly was raised to 
the dignity of a marquis in 1599, he was created Marquis of Huntly and Earl 
of Enzie. 

George, the second Earl of Huntly, who thus acquired the forests of Enzie 

(o) Eeg. Mag. Sig., B. i., 22. The tract between the Spey and the rivulet forms the western part 
of the district of Enzie, and the south-western part of this tract now forms the domain of Goidon. 

(p) Charter of James IV. to Alexander, the Earl of Huntly, 17th April, 1506, reciting and declaring 
the charter of David II., which was burnt with other deeds in the Earl's lodging, in Holyrood House, 
in April, 1606. Eeg. Mag. Sig., XIV., 210 ; Gordon's Hist, of the Gordons, I,, 408. 

(2) In June, 1418, the lands of the forests of Boyne and Awne, and the barony of Keith, were in the 
King's hands, by reason of ward, from the death of the late John de Hay, the proprietor. Chart.. 
Aberdeen, p. 564. 

(r) Eeg. Mag. Sig., IV., 106. 

(s) Eeg. Mag. Sig., VII., 215 ; and XIV., 849. 

254 A N A U N T [Oh. -K.— Banffshire. 

and Boyne in 1470, built a castle on the eastern bank of the Spey, on the 
south-west extremity of the district called the Enzie. This castle was built 
some time between 1470 and 1488. On the 15th of October, 1490, George, 
the Earl of Huntly, obtained a new charter to himself and Elizabeth Hay, his 
spouse, of the lands of the lordship and forest of Enzie, with the castle of the 
same {t). This castle was the manor-place of the lordship of Enzie {u). George, 
the second Earl of Huntly, who built this castle, died on the 8th of June, 1501, 
and it was called Bog of Gight from the name of the place where it was 
erected. An obligation by Andrew, Lord Gray, Justiciary of Scotland, to 
Eleanor Gordon, the daughter of the late George, Earl of Huntly, was executed 
"At the New Warh on Spey, called the Bog of Gight, on the 8th of April, 
1504, in presence of Alexander, Earl of Huntly, William, the master of Errol, 
and others." [w). It continued to bear this name in the seventeenth century, 
but after the Marquis of Huntly was created the Duke of Gordon in 1684, it 
was called Castle Gordon, and, during recent times, Gordon Castle. This 
castle was, from its first erection, an occasional residence of the Gordon family, 
and after the defacement of Huntly Castle in 1594, the Castle of Bog of Gight 
became the chief seat of that great family. The magnificent Castle of Huntly, 
which was the manor-place of the lordship of Strathbogie and Earldom of 
Huntly, was partly demolished in October, 1594, by the forces which the King 
marched into the North against the Popish Earls of Huntly and Errol. Ran- 
dolph, the English Ambassador, who attended the Scottish Queen on her 
northern tour, wrote to CecU on the 18th of September, 1562: "At the 
Queen's coming noi'thward, passing within four miles of Huntly's Castle (at 
Strathbogie), after that he could by no entreaty cause the Queen to come into 
his house he desired her to give leave to Lord Argyle to bring me thither, 
where we were two nights. His house is fair ; the best furnished that I have 
seen in this country ; his cheer is marvellous great." Huntly's great cheer 
seems thus to have induced Randolph to write the truth. After Huntly's 
fall his household furniture was brought into the Queen's wardrobe, and from 
the printed wardrobe account we may now see that it was quite equal to the 
Queen's {x). 

Gordon Castle stands within the Hmits of Banffshire, but the adjacent town 
and lands of Fochabers are, and always have been, in the shire of Elgin, which 
here includes a considerable extent of lands on the eastern side of the Spey, 
from Fochabers southward. 

{t) Eeg. Mag. Sig., XI., 225. (u) Inquis. Special Banff, 78 

{w) The Errol Writs. (a;) Chalmers's Life of Mary, I., 129. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 255 

§ VIII. Of its Ecclesiastical History. — The church antiquities of this shire, 
like those of other counties, are very obscure. The doctrine of Christ was pro- 
pagated here during the earliest times by itinerant preachers rather than by 
settled teachers. Hence we may infer that there were bishops before there 
were priests, that there were dioceses before there were parishes. Both existed 
somewhat earlier than the commencement of the Scoto-Saxon period in 1097. 
David I. made a greater number of modifications than had been made by any 
one authority, either before or since his reign. 

The Reformation and the Revolution undoubtedly made not so much modifica- 
tion as changes. Dioceses were relinquished with episcopacy, but the number 
of parishes was enlarged. The shire of Banff lay certainly under the diocese 
of Mortlach and Aberdeen. This county lies at present within two Synods, 
namely, of Aberdeen and of Moray ; and within seven Presbyteries, or parts 
thereof; and comprehending twenty -three parishes, or portions thereof. 

The shiretown of Banff lies within the Presbytery of Fordyce. It is a royal 
burgh, and is pleasantly situated on the side of a hill at the mouth of the 
Deveron. Tradition reports it to have been founded by Malcolm Canmore in 
1163, which was, however, the eleventh year of Malcolm the IV., the great 
grandson of Malcolm Canmore, being the son of Earl Henry. It was erected 
into a royal burgh, and endowed with the same privileges as Aberdeen, by 
Robert II., which was confirmed by grants from James VI. and Charles II. 
The town is governed by a provost, 4 bailies, and 12 councillors. Its annual 
revenue amounts to about £300. It joins with Elgin, CuUen, Inverury, and 
Kintore, in sending a representative to Parliament, It gives the title of baron 
to the Ogilvie family. 

Fordyce, the seat of the Presbytery, lies along the sea coast on each side, 
being nearly 6 miles long. It contains the Knockhill and two contiguous 
eminences called the hills of Fordyce and of Durn. The Kirktown of Fordyce 
is situated about half-a-mile from the sea, and was erected into a burgh of barony in 
1499, at the request of Bishop Elphinston of Aberdeen. The superiority of this 
village was vested in the Earl of Findlater. At Portsoy is found that sort of 
jasper which is called Portsoy marble. On the hill of Durn is a triple fosse 
and rampart which appears to have completely surrounded it, and there are the 
several remains of tumuli and Druid temples. Archbishop Sharpe is said to 
have been born in this parish. This district contained 1765 souls during the year 

Turriff, the seat of another Presbytery in this county, is situated within Aber- 
deenshire. Gamrie is the next parish within this county, and exposes to the 
sea a very bold front ; it contains the town of Macduff and the village of Gor- 

256 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. S..— Banffshire. 

donstown. The inhabitants are chiefly fishermen. There are caves among the 
rocks of this shire which are visited by strangers, and there is a mineral spring 
which is strangely impregnated with neutral salt, which is stUl more visited. 
Gamrie parish contained in 1821 of souls 3716. 

The third Presbytery in this shire has for its seat Strathbogie, which lies 
within Aberdeenshire. But the parish of Bellie, or at least the greater part of 
it, lies in the shire of Elgin. The church has been removed to New Fochabers, 
a baronial barony, and ruled by a baron bailie, who is appointed by the Duke 
of Gordon. This parish contained in 1821 2235 inhabitants. 

Aberlour, the seat of the fourth Presbytery within this shire, is situated in 
the western parts of this county. In this parish stands the hill of Belrinnes, 
which rises 2755 feet above the level of the sea. This parish has scarcely any 
minerals ; and it has no antiquities. Aberlour parish contains 1059 inhabitants. 


§ I. Of its Name. — The designation of this county is somewhat difficult of 

Elgin, indeed, or Elin, in the Welsh, means a point or angle. The root is 
El, and the (g) prefixed doth not change the general meaning of the word, but 
serves to appropriate the usual meaning of the idea, says the learned William 
Owen, in the British language of ancient times. So, eel, and celg, etc. And 
we may see in Whitaker's history of Manchester, (p. 130-249) some pretty 
strong general reasoning to show Elgin conveying the name of a peninsula, {a). 

On the North Esk, above Dalkeith, there may be seen Elgin-haugh, near to 
which Elgin is applied to a reduplication of the river, whence is the proper name 
of that reduplication, forming a peninsula. 

The original name of this country was no doubt Murray, or rather Moray ; 
and the Moravienses, from Moravi, says Boece absurdly. Mor-av, adds the 
learned historian of the shire, signifies in the vulgar language the seaside. The 
only name by which I have found the country called is Moravia, or Moray, 
saith the Gaelic Shaw, the learned historian of this county. But Hector Boece 
states what he does not know to be true, that in the first century a colony from 
Moravia, in Germany, settled in this county, and gave it the name of the 
country from which they came. This fiction is worthy of such a fabler as 
Hector Boece. But he did not consider that during so early an age the county 
called Moravia was denominated Marcomania, and the inhabitants were called 
Marcomanirs, and Quadi. 

Others finding the word Muref in some ancient manuscripts, and Rief 
signifying Bent, would have it called Mureff, from the abundance of such grass 
growing on the sea shore. But in my opinion, saith Shaw, those have changed 
the V into /, and so made the name Mureff, instead of Murev, or Murav. The 
Highlanders call it Murav, or Morav, from the Celtic words Mu:' , or Mor, the 

(a) And see Grant's Stat. Acct., Vol. I. Elgain signifies also, supremely fair or elegant. (Owen's 
W. Diet.) 

7 33 

258 A N -A U N T [Ob. XL.— Elginshire. 

sea, and Faohh, or Fav, the side. This, I think, says Shaw, is the true notation 
of the name, answering to the situation of the country, by the side of the sea. 
This much, then, from the intelligent Lauchlan Shaw, who died on the 20th of 
February, 1777, in the 85th year of his age, and the 61st of his ministry. 
Morva, in Welsh, saith the most learned William Owen, signifies a beach or sea 
shore, mor, a sea, and va, or ma, a place ; but it means such a coast as is an 
extensive level or marsh. 

Such then is the name of this county, whether it be derived from the name 
of Elgin, the shiretown, or Morva, the sea coast, which certainly applies to the 
localities of the country. 

" Curav. i morva, a i in3nirez." 

I love its sea coast, and its mountains. 

Hywel ap Owen Ghiynez. 

This quotation goes to support the etymon of Moray by Lauchlan Shaw. 
Morva, a sea place, a sea marsh. 

§ II. Or ITS Situation and Extent. — The district between the rivers Find- 
horn and Spey, comprehending the great body of the county of Elgin, is situated 
between 57° and 58° of north latitude. It extends from east to west along the 
shore of the Moray Frith, which is its natural boundary for about 24 English 
miles ; but becoming narrower as it approximates the sources of those rivers, 
till it extends in breadth to about 1 6 miles towards its extremity at the south- 
west, a right line stretching southerly from the shore of the Frith to Aviemore 
gives it the mean length of about 40 miles, making a superficies of about 800 
square miles, or 512,000 English acres {a). 

On Ainslie's large map of Scotland the County of Elgin lies between 57° 8", 
and 57° 41" north latitude ; and the longitude from 0° 12" west of the meridian 
of Edinburgh. The length from Speymouth, N.N.E., to the source of Dulnain 
Water, the south-west extremity of the country, is about 50 miles, and the 
average breadth is about 14. This gives a superficies of 700 square, miles, or 
448,000 English acres within Elginshire (6). The population of this county in 
1795 being 27,843, ascertains the proportion of 3914^ souls to a square mile. 
Its inhabitants in 1821 were 31,162. 

As to its boundaries, it has the Moray Frith on the north ; it has Nairn and 
Inverness-shire on the south ; and Banfishire on the east. The boundaries of 
this county, except along the shore of the Moray Frith, seem to have been 
determined by political and ecclesiastical considerations rather than by natural 

(a) The View of the Agricult. of Elginshire. {b) From a measurement on Ainslie's map. 

Sect. III.— 0/ its Natural Objects.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 259 

§ III. Oe its Natural Objects. — About 600 miles in extent of the superficies 
must be regarded as a hilly country. Although there are many lakes in this 
shire, it is only necessary in an agricultural view to notice the Loch of Spynie, 
and the bay of Findhorn. The former though of considerable depth covers 
about two thousand acres of rich land. The bay of Findhorn, containing about 
one thousand acres of a stifi" clay soil is only covered by the flux of the tide, while 
a bar of sand which lies across the mouth of the river would prevent all violence 
of surge upon any embankment that might be formed. The draining any other 
lake in this district could be undertaken only in the view of finding marie. The 
sea has for near half a century been making encroachments on the Moray side 
of the Frith, between Findhorn and Burghhead. 

The rivers in this shire are the Findhorn, the Lossie, and the Spey. Though 
none of these rivers are navigable — the Spey and Findhorn, on account of 
their salmon fishings — yet the timber from the forests in Strathspey is floated 
down the Spey to Garmouth. The rivers Tay, Spey, and Lochy take their rise 
very near one another ; and these rivers, in different directions, discharge 
themselves into the sea at Dundee, Garmouth, and Fort- William, circumstances 
these which evince that those rivers have their sources from the highest grounds 
within the countries through which they flow. 

The climate which prevails generally throughout the lowlands of Moray, 
participates, upon the whole, of the fair weather which is felt along the eastern 
coast of the kingdom. It is in this respect, moreover, favoured by a peculiarity 
of situation, being a level country lying between the mountains of Sutherland 
and those in the high-lands of the counties of Banff and Aberdeen. The clouds 
are borne aloft by the winds, from the one chain of mountains to the other, and 
pass over the subjacent plain, which offers no object high enough either to at- 
tract or impede their course. This circumstance, together with its vicinity to 
the sea, may also account for the falls of snow being less frequent and of shorter 
continuance on the ground, when it does fall, than in the mountainous parts of 
the country ; in so much that the operations of agriculture are comparatively 
little interrupted by the inclemency of the weather, and the harvests are almost 
exempted from the effects of the winds, there being scarcely an instance 
between the years 1744 and 1782, wherein any considerable damage was occa- 
sioned by the rains, and in the warm season the heat is always moderated by a 
gentle breeze, which rises about noon, from the sea. The most uncomfortable 
weather is towards the end of spring, when a frosty east wind often prevails 
for several weeks, which in this county, where there are few hedges or inclo- 
sures, is extremely prejudicial to vegetation. The earliness of the season in 

260 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. XL— Elginshire. 

this shire may be distinctly conceived from the earlier periods at which the 
harvests have commenced during the last ten years. 

In the hilly parts of this district, however, the seasons are considerably later 
and the harvests more precarious. The operations of husbandry are long sus- 
pended in winter by frost and snow, which often encroach upon the spring, 
while frequent rains, or damp foggy weather, in the autumnal months, retard 
the harvest and often injure the crops. 

It may also be observed that the noted rapidity of the Spey takes place only 
during the last thirty miles of its course. In the country of Strathspey this 
river, with all its branches, flows through channels nearly level, from which, in 
many seasons, towards the evening of sultry days in August, a most pernicious 
mildew appears to arise, which, being confined by the overhanging hills, hovers 
over the low grounds, and settling on the unripe corn, blasts the milky sub- 
stance of the ear, and sometimes destroys in one night the expectation of the 
most promising crop, and which can alone be saved either by a brisk wind or a 
heavy rain clearing ofi" the clammy vapour before its poison is fixed in the stem, 
assisted by the power of the next day's sun. 

This unfortunate circumstance, which it is believed arises from still running 
water rather than from swamps or lakes, is unfelt both in the open country 
and on the banks of rapid rivers, and might in all probability be prevented by 
deepening the shallows or narrowing the course of the waters. 

§ IV. Of its Antiquities. — The most splendid antiquity in Elginshire is the 
elegant remains of its Cathedral, whose length was about 260 feet, and up- 
wards of 34 feet in breadth, a structure this which was not excelled by any 
building within the shire, or indeed within any shire in Great Britain. Near 
the shire-town, on the Ladyhill, are the remains of a fortification which existed 
during the reign of William the Lion. The ruins of the Priory of Pluscardine 
still exhibit extraordinary magnificence. There is an obelisk on the roadside, 
but by whom or wherefore erected cannot be easily ascertained. Near Forres 
are the remains of the Abbey of Kinloss, which evince what skill and expense 
had been employed in its erection. The Castle of Spynie shows in its remains 
what elegance were afiected by the dignified clergy of those rude times. The 
ruins in the burgh of Moray were partly owing to the Komans, and full as 
much to the government of this country in subsequent times. Calder Castle 
shows by its ruins what houses the barons lived in when protection and inde- 
pendence were wholly owing to the exertions of the proprietors. Darnaway 
Castle, belonging to the Earl of Moray, was of still greater magnitude, in pro- 
portion to the power and opulence of the builder. 

Sect. IV.— 0/ its Antiquities.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 261 

It appears from the charter granting Moray to Sir Thomas Randolph, the 
nephew of Robert I., that Moray had an appropriate standard, which the 
Moraymen were obliged to follow into the field, and to fight under its cogni- 
zance. Among the Harleian charters No. 43, B. 8, in the British Museum, 
there is "carta Edwardi Regis de hominibus de Moravia." In 1797, when the 
streets of Forres were dug up for the purpose of reparation, there were dis- 
covered several Roman coins and a Roman medallion, in soft metal resembling 
a mixture of lead and tin, which were presented to the Antiquarian Society of 
Edinburgh (c). It did not require this additional fact to prove that the 
Romans in early times traversed this country, and even resided in the neigh- 
bourhood of Forres. 

Of old there was a bridge over the rapid Spey at a place which is still known 
by the name oi Boat of Brigq, immediately above St. Nicolas 's Hospital, which 
stood at Inver-Orchil, from the influx of a small stream called Orchil into the 
Spey in this vicinity {d). 

There were formerly in this shire a Thanedom of Moray which comprehended 
the Ligate, Newton, and Argasich (e). There was a thane of Brodie, the 
ancestor, of the family of Broda {/). There were William, thane of Calder, and 
John, thane of Brodie, who are among the arbitrators in a submission between 
Andrew, Bishop of Moray, and Hugh Ross, of Kilravock, in 1492 [g). A 
thanage of the King was a certain part of the King's land or property, whereof 
the governor was called Thane. As both the thing and the name are derived 
from the Saxon language and policy, so both must have been introduced here 
after the prevalence of the Saxon or English people in this Celtic country. 

In Cordiner (39-42) may be seen three accurate delineations of the pillar of 
Forres. This majestic column on account of its size, 25 feet in height, three 
and a half broad or about four at the base, is the most remarkableof the ancient 
obeHsks which now remains in North Britain. From its magnitude and the 
elaborate workmanship wherewith it is adorned, in some early ages it may have 
been a work of national concern to celebrate the conclusion of some peace. 
Several authors have been profuse in their conjectures concerning the trans- 
actions in memory whereof it has been raised, as it has no date. 

(c) On the 8th of December, 1797, Mr. Brodie of Brodie informed me of the fact. 

(d) Alexander II. in the 14th year of his reign granted a charter giving "ad sustentationem pontis 
de Spey terram de Eobenfield, by its right divisions and pertinents, in pure and perpetual alms. 
Chart. Moray., p. 233. 

(«) Survey of Moray, 13. (/) Id. (</) diart. Moray, p. 392-3-4-5. 

262 An ACCOUNT [Qh. XI.— Elginshire. 

§ V. Or ITS Establishment as a Shire. — This event is obscure, though it is 
pretty certain to have been effected by the salutary pohcy of David I. In' 
1263 Gilbert de Rule or Roule was Sheriff of this county. It is certain from 
the record that in 1305 William Wiseman was Viscount of this shire (h). On 
the 26th of June, 1726, the Earl of Moray entailed the heritable office of the 
Sheriffship of Elgin and Forres, and he did this preparatory to resigning the 
fortification called the citadel of Inverness (i). In 1747 when the proprietors 
of such property were to be paid a cornpensation for the abolition of such offices, 
James Stewart, the Earl of Moray, claimed for the Sheriffship of the shire of 
Moray, or Elgin and Forres, £8000, for which he was allowed £3000 ; and as 
lord of the royalty over the citadel of Inverness, £1000 (j), for which he was 
allowed nothing. In March, 1748, Mr. John Grant, the son of Lord Elchies, 
was appointed Deputy- Sheriff of Elgin and Nairn, at a salary of £150 sterling 
a year (7c). 

In a roll of David II. there is a charter granted by the Earl of March to 
William de Wallibus of the Sheriffship and constabulary of Elgin ( I). By im- 
memorial practice, though not by a special grant, the Magistrates of Elgin have 
a Sheriffship within the town's liberties. 

§ VI. Of its Civil History. — The history of this shire during the three first 
periods of the Scottish annals has been already treated of. The discovery of 
Roman medals in the streets of Forres has been already mentioned, and has a 
tendency to strengthen the notices of the Roman armies within northern 
Britain. But without record what can be told of the Moray-men during the 
two subsequent periods. The stone pillar which remains in Rafford parish, and 
is commonly called the Forres pillar, seems to be the monument of a peace ; but 
when or by whom appeareth not, as there is no date, which would have been 
of fifty times more importance than the sculptured ornaments, whatever may be 
their ingenuity (m). 

In 1180 Angus, who, without authority, is called the Earl of Moray, and who 
was probably the bastard son of Alexander I., went into rebellion against the 
Scots government, during the reign of David L, and was slain, while his 
followers were routed. On that occasion David I. changed the constitution of 
the country. By the Celtic jurisprudence the forfeitures became the property 
of the Crown. On that occasion David I. seized Moray as forfeited to himself 

In 1150 David I. founded an abbey of Cistercians at Kinloss. In 1153 the 

(ft) Eyley's Plaoita, 505. (ij Shaw's Index, 94. (j) Scots. Mag., 175, 583. 

(kj lb. 1758, p. 155. (l) Eobertson's Index, 42 ; Shaw's Hist., 195. 

(m) See Oordiner's Euins, No. 43-47. 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 263 

abbey of Dunfermline was annexed by David to the priory of Urquhart. The 
inhabitants of Moray having often rebelled against their Sovereign, Malcolm IV. 
marched against them and dispersed the insurgents. In 1229, one Gillespie 
having committed some depredations in Moray, and slain Thomas de Thirle- 
stane, was taken and condemned by the chief justiciary , the Earl of Buchan. 

In 1249 a monastery for Dominicans was founded by Alexander II. at Elgin. 

In 1296, Edward I., in order to carry his purpose into execution, marched 
into the north of Scotland. The Scottish barons crowded around him in order 
to swear fealty. He was at Kincardine on the 2nd of July in that year {n). 
He arrived at Elgin on the 26th July during the same year. From thence 
Edward returned into the South (o). In the meantime he issued a Commission 
to Eobert de Soulis, empowering him to receive the Moray men to the King's 
peace (p). 

In 1389 the Earl of Buchan, the son of Robert II., quarreUing with the Bis- 
hop of Moray, set fire to the Cathedral of Elgin. In 1452, Douglas, the Earl 
of Moray, taking the advantage of the absence of the Earl of Huntly, overran 
the estates of the Royalists ; but Huntly, returning from the Battle of Brechin, 
expelled the said earl from his own county of Moray. 

In 1402 Alexander of the Isles spoiled and burnt the College and part of the 
town of Elgin. 

In 1640, Monro, at the head of the Covenanters, marched from Aberdeen 
into Moray, and wasted the estates of the Royalists and dispossessed the 
Bishop of Moray of his episcopal Palace of Spynie. 

In 1590, two frigates having been sent by James II. from Dublin with some 
officers and amunition, under Colonel Buchan, to the assistance of the High- 
landers, those reinforcements marched to Cromdale, where they were surprised 
and defeated by Sir Thomas Livingstone, King William's ofiicer. 

In 1716 the insurgents, under General Gordon and Earl Mareschal, marched 
from Aberdeen, through Strathspey, to the hills of Badenoch, where they 
found it necessary to disperse. Lord Duflfus, Sir George Sinclair, General 
Eclin, and about 160 inferior officers, forced their way through Moray, and, 
embarking in some boats, made their escape with great difficulty. 

§ VII. Of its Agkiculture, Manufactures, and Trade. — The soil of a 
great proportion of the lowlands of Moray is a deep, rich, clay, which under 
proper management would be equal in fertility to the similar soil of the Carse 
of Gowrie. A considerable proportion of the soil of this shire is a deep black 

(«) Eymer Feed., II., 720. (o) Lord Hailes Ant., 241-2. {p) Chart. Bib. Harl., 43, b. 8, p. 41. 

264 AnAOOOUNT [Ch. XI.— Elginshire. 

loam, and tlie remainder may be considered as light and sandy, which is 
extremely well adapted to the Norfolk system of husbandry. The soil of the 
low grounds in the valleys of the hilly district has been principally formed by 
the washings of the stre,ams, which more or less participate of the qualities of 
the various soils of the low lands, the clay being made much more feeble by a 
mixture of earth and sand. The loam often, from similar mixtures, is of a red- 
dish colour, and the sandy soil is greatly mixed with gravel and large pebbles, 
which in many places abound. In that part of the country where cultivation 
has taken place on the sides of the hills, above the reach of the water, the soil 
may be described as of a moorish quality, more or less blended with moss. 

Thus much with regard to the soil of Elginshire. It is now proper to advert 
to the state of property. In this county, regarded in its political extent, there 
are six proprietoi'S, who possess from two to six thousand pounds of yearly rent 
each ; ten proprietors possess from five to fifteen hundred pounds of yearly 
rent ; the remainder is shared amongst proprietors possessing from fifty to four 
hundred pounds a year — amounting in all to about £33,000 sterling, exclusive 
of woods, which may be nearly £1,800 sterling, and salmon fishing, which may 
amount to £3,000 sterling a year. Of the great proprietors, only one or two 
reside in the country, and a small proportion, therefore, of the annual revenue 
arising from the lands is expended there. This tends to relax the connection 
and to diminish the intercourse between the landlord and tenant, which cir- 
cumstances are not favourable to improvements. 

Of the Rent and Leases, it may be observed that the lands, except about the 
towns of Elgin and Forres, which, from local advantages, yields two or three 
pounds, lets at from 5s. to 20s. per acre, but the average rent of the arable land 
of the shire maybe counted at 14s. an acre, without reckoning natural pas- 
tures. The rents are paid partly in money and partly in victuals ; the money 
is paid at Martinmas, and the victuals at Candlemas. 

The tenant enters on the possession of the farm by having access to houses, 
garden, and meadow pasture, on the 26th of May, and afterwards to the arable 
land at the ingathering of the year's crop. The lease in general is extended on 
stamped paper, and enduring, with few exceptions, for nineteen years. In 
many cases the poorer tenants, who pay but a few pounds of rent, trusting to 
the honour of the landlords, possess their lands without a written lease. The 
lower and middling class of tenants hold their lands under a minute of lease, 
written in a book which is kept for the purpose by the proprietor or his agent. 

The houses are valued to the tenant, at the entry, by persons who are mutu- 
ally chosen by him and his predecessor, and they must be supported so as to be 
of equal value at the expiration of the lease, or the estimated damage paid in 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] Of NORTH- BRITAIN. 


money. Where new houses are requisite, the landlord allows a certain sum, 
generally about one or two years rent of the farm, which is usually paid at his 
removal by the succeeding tenant. The tenants are bound to grind their corn 
at a particular mill, for which in some cases the eighth or tenth part of the 
corn so manufactured is exacted, but more generally only the sixteenth part, 
besides the requisite services for supporting the fabric of the mill and keeping 
the dam and water courses efficient. Upon the estates of great proprietors the 
tenants are made amenable to the baron bailie in questions respecting the pre- 
servation of growing timber, cutting up meadow grounds, mill exactions, and 
winter herding. In general the tenants are debarred by their leases both from 
sub-letting and assigning their farms. 

Of the size of farms in this shire, it may be observed that here the most ex- 
tensive contain from one hundred to one hundred and fifty acres of arable land. 
The farms in general, however, contain only from thirty to fifty acres. And 
possessions, which are occupied by the poorer people, particularly in the hilly 
and more remote parts of the country, extend only from five to about fifteen or 
twenty acres. 

Previous to the year 1746 the mode of mainagement was universally the same 
over the whole district. The arable land was universally cultivated for corn ; 
the cattle, and horses, and sheep were maintained on the natural and common 
pasturage in summer, and upon the straw in winter ; and when the cattle 
required for consuming the straw could not be maintained in this way through 
the summer, they were sent off to the common pasturages of the hilly country 
of this district, and to those of the neighbouring counties of Banff and Aberdeen. 

In those days the crops, with few exceptions, even in the most fertile parts 
of the low country, were solely reduced to oats, barley, and rye. 

The most approved and general mode of management was to apply the whole 
manure to the land, intended for the barley crop, which was supposed to occupy 
the fourth part of each farm. In order to procure the qua,ntity of manure 
which was necessary, the whole labours of the husbandmen were applied 
through the summer, except during the time that was requisite for securing a 
sufficient stock of fuel, in collecting sand, moss, or clay to be mixed with the 
dung, arising from the fodder which had to be consumed in winter, and the 
manure procured by flooring the sheep cots from time to time with turf, and it 
may be observed here that a small stock was then deemed indispensably neces- 
sary upon every farm. 

From that time (1746) the ideas of improvement began to ground. At first the 
change was slow and unimportant, making little progress until about the year 
1768, when some considerable persons, in order to promote the melioration of 
7 34 

266 AnACCOUNT [Oh. ^l.— Elginshire. 

the country, began to grant leases to intelligent farmers of lands which had been 
formerly occupied by four or five tenants. This example was rapidly followed 
by the other proprietors, and the system of agriculture and the appearance of 
the country are now infinitely improved ; the ridges being heightened, the 
fields better drained, and in general properly laid out by ditches and earthen 
fences, solely at the expense of the tenant, but still susceptible of far greater 

In the present system of agriculture there is no fixed or steady rotation on 
any farm in the country, but in all the large farms some proportion is annually 
followed : some laid down with turnips and other green crops, and the whole 
grass amounting generally to a third or fourth part, consists of clover rye grass 
and rib grass. 

In the small farms the only alteration in the system hitherto introduced, con- 
sists in some little proportion in sown grass seeds and potatoes. In Strathspey 
the spirit of improvement now gains ground. Here, for the last seven years, 
that is from about the year 1786, on an average from 2500 to 3000 bolls of lime 
have been manufactured and applied as a manure ; but for each of the three 
last years of the same period upwards of 5000 boUs have been applied, which in 
every instance has produced plentiful crops of grain and grass. 

Of late years some of the improving farmers have imported lime from Sunder- 
land, from different ports on the Forth, and some have brought lime sixteen 
miles from Banffshire, which when applied as manm^e has in every instance 
answered expectation. But when the immediate expense of this is considered 
and the distance from the sea ports, together with the shortness of the leases, 
we must suppose that this species of manure will not probably soon be 
generally adopted. On some farms, indeed, marl, though frequently an impure 
quality, has been discovered ; and when the quality was good has been applied 
with success, but so partially as hardly yet to merit notice. Along the coast of 
Moray Frith the seaweed, which is thrown ashore in considerable quantities, is 
applied to the barley and to the turnip fields. 

There being here no settled rotation of crops, it is only proper to state the 
modes adopted for raising the different species of grain. Wheat, which by the 
climate is restricted to the low ground, was cultivated to a greater extent a few 
years ago than it is at present. The demand for cattle has induced the 
farmer to cultivate more grass lands, and the checks given to smuggling by 
preventing the import of foreign spirits, have advanced the price of barley. 
Fallow, to which manure is always applied, is here regarded as the most 
approved preparation for wheat. It may further be observed that the only 
species of wheat which is sown in this country is the white sort, and which 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] Or NOETH-BEITAIN. 


degenerates, if not frequently changed by a supply from the London market, 
and this under the present law cannot be obtained. 

Oats is sown after wheat, barley, peas and clover, and the general oat seed 
season is from the middle of March to the end of April nearly, according to the 
season. The average return of oats in this district may be estimated at from four 
to five bolls an acre. 

Peas and beans are sown during the same season with the oats. Where the 
beans are sown alone they are generally hand hoed. The kind of beans culti- 
vated is for the most part the horse bean, and this is restricted to the low part of 
the country. The early peas have been introduced into the high country ; both 
early and late are cultivated in the low country. 

Potatoes were introduced here soon after the famine of the year 1740. In a 
few years afterwards, instead of occupying a corner of the garden, they were 
cultivated in the open field, and are now raised in considerable quantities. 
Upon farms of every description they are planted in the month of April, some- 
times in drills from three to four feet distance, and sometimes in trenched 
ground in irregular and close rows. Manure is seldom applied in cultivating 
this root, and the returns on an average from an acre are from twenty-five to 
thirty bolls of 32 stone, Amsterdam weight. The red kind which was at first 
introduced into this country has long since disappeared, and the white kidney is 
now almost universally cultivated. 

Barley is generally sown in May. The land is ploughed three times, and 
manure always applied, and when it succeeds a green crop one ploughing is 
sufl&cient. The quantity of seed is about three firlots to the acre, and the return 
throughout the district is about six bolls from the acre ; but Scottish bear being 
a more hardy grain, and earlier, is generally sown in the high country. The 
return in like circumstances is supposed equal to that of barley, but the weight 
and quality are deemed to be somewhat inferior, though there are instances of 
the one yielding as much meal and as much spirits as the other. The weight 
of a boll of barley is in general seventeen stone, Amsterdam. 

Turnips have been long but partially cultivated throughout this shire. Of 
late the quantity begins to increase, and sowing them in drills has been intro- 
duced. The land is ploughed three or four times, and they are sown about the 
end of June. They are generally consumed by the young cattle, as the sale of 
fat cattle is upon the whole trifling and uncertain. 

Artificial grasses were introduced many years ago ; but there being a great 
proportion of land in the high country in which red clover will not grow till 
lime has been applied, it may be said to have come into frequent use within this 
district only of late years. At present, however, there is more hay stacked for 

268 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. XL—Elginshire. 

the market than perhaps in any other district in the kingdom ; the vicinity only 
of great towns excepted. Grass seeds are generally sown with barley, though 
sometimes with oats. The quantity of seed being about 12 or 16 pounds of 
white, and the same quantity of red clover, and one-and-a-half or two bushels 
of rye grass an acre. The quantity of hay which is mowed about the end of 
July rarely exceeds two hundred stone the acre. 

The implements of husbandry about thirty years ago were here of the very 
worst construction. Soon after that period the plough was improved into the 
form used in England, and was known by the appellation of the English plough. 
Of late those implements are all formed on the principle of those made by Mr. 
Crichton of Edinburgh, and those of the late Mr. Small, at Ford, in the neigh- 
bourhood of that city, and they cost from thirty to fifty shillings. 

Fanners and rollers, and the other implements of husbandry which are used 
in the southern parts of the kingdom have also been, though partially, intro- 
duced here. Thrashing machines have been lately erected in the low part of the 

It is worthy of remark that Mr. Thomas Duncan was the first who intro- 
duced fanners into the country, and Mr. George Duncan, his son, the first who 
built a thrashing machine, and used the cast-iron mould board on the plough. 

There being no manufactures of any consideration in this district, the great 
body of the people are consequently employed in husbandry ; yet the price of 
labour has in the course of the last fifteen years risen to nearly double wh!@,t it 
was before that period, and this may be accounted for in a great measure by 
the emigration of numbers of both sexes in that class to the manufacturing 
parts of the kingdom. The wages of a common ploughman are from six to 
seven pounds sterling. The wages of a female servant from two pounds to two 
pounds ten shillings by the year, exclusive of their maintenance, which is in 
general provided for them in the family. There is so little farming work done 
by the piece that it is not requisite to notice it. In summer the labour com- 
mences at six in the morning, and ends at the same hour in the evening ; and 
in winter at sun-rising and sun-setting. The horses in summer are worked for 
about three hours in the morning and for the same length of time in the after- 
noon, and in the short days of winter for about four hours in the day. 

Of roads and bridges there have been but little alteration within this shire 
for many years, and, excepting in a few instances, the proprietors bestow very 
little attention on these branches of police. The little which is done is under 
the Statute, 1669, by which the labour of the tenants and other inhabitants 
are required for six days in the year, as compensation for the deficiency in 
money. The post-road between the Spey and Findhorn, though carried 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 269 

through the driest ground in the county, yet is, from want of attention, 
covered in many large parts with water, particularly eastward of the town of 
Forres. This evil, with a little skill and a very trifling sum of money, might 
be completely removed. The road leading from the different quarters of the 
interior of the county to the harbour of Lossiemouth, where a great quantity 
of grain is annually shipped, are if possible in a still worse condition, and seem 
in a particular manner to demand the attention of the proprietors and of those 
who are entrusted with the management of their estates, as there is no doubt 
but that even under this statute, in such a closely inhabited country, if the 
labour was regularly exacted and judiciously applied, the roads might in a few 
years be much improved, which would render the access from one part of the 
country to another easy and commodious. 

In Strathspey, where some difficulty must of necessity have occurred in 
forming the roads, the accommodation in this particular is much superior to 
that of the low country, there being a good road from one end of this district 
to the other on both sides of the Spey, and which now, by facilitating the car- 
riage of lime from the different quarries lately opened in that quarter, must 
tend greatly to the speedy improvement of that part of the country. Upon 
the post road there is no cause to complain of the want of bridges except across 
the Spey and Findhorn. On every intervening brook there is a stone arch, 
and over the river Lossie near Elgin there has long been a handsome substan- 
tial bridge of one arch, which was lately rebuilt at the expense of the land- 
holders of the county. The great deficiency, therefore, in this respect is at the 
Spey (p) and Findhorn, than which there are no rivers in the kingdom which 
run with more rapidity, and on this account, when swelled by floods, the pro- 
gress of the traveller was often interrupted for days, and on some occasions 
lives were lost. The year 1782 is remembered with grief, when thirteen per- 
sons in passing the Findhorn were drowned. The advantage of a bridge in an 
agricultural view, by opening the communications of the country, from this ex- 
tensive district to the westward, are so obvious as not to require a particular 
enumeration here. 

It is obvious that if this road and bridge vvere completed, the farmers who 
reside on the north side of the Spey would have it in their power to procure 
lime on very easy terms from the lime quarries of Banffshire, which alone should 
induce the proprietors in that part of the country to exert themselves in efi'ect- 
ing an object which, in every point of view, would tend so much to the improve- 
ment of their estates and of the country at large. 

(p) There has been erected an excellent bridge at Fochabers. 

270 AnACOOUNT [Oh. XL— Elginshire. 

There are weekly markets in the two royal burghs of Elgin and Forres for 
the sale of butchers' meat, poultry, etc. There are six fairs for the sale of 
black cattle, horses, and merchandise, held yearly in each of those towns, and 
at some of the villages in the county there are also similar fairs but of less 

It may easily be perceived that from the mode in which black cattle were 
treated in the low country, before the system of improvement commenced, that 
the breed must have been of an inferior quality. Attempts were made to ob- 
tain cattle of better breeds, but without much success. Breeds of any sort of 
useful animals are procured in vain unless proper food be previously provided. 
Since the introduction of artificial grasses and turnips black cattle are con- 
siderably raised in bone, but by proper treatment and care they might be still 
further improved in weight and value. A great number of such cattle from all 
parts of this district are yearly disposed of in England and in the south of 

During the period when the whole arable land was continually under a corn 
crop, it was thought requisite to have eight or ten oxen yoked in the plough, 
and the horses were then only regarded in a secondary view, they being chiefly 
employed to harrow in the seed, or bring home the fuel from the moss, and 
sand, soil, or clay, to the dunghills. When the extent of farms was enlarged 
and a portion was laid out in artificial grass the oxen were discharged from the 
plough, which was thereupon managed by four horses, and in a short time 
thereafter only by two, in consequence whereof the breed in the low country 
has been greatly improved both in size and shape. 

Of sheep, thei-e are but few of this species of stock in the low country, though 
in the hilly part of this district, where the poorer tenants reside, an inconsider- 
able number of the small white-faced breed is still to be seen. In Strathspey, 
or the upper country, there are a considerable number of the black-faced breed, 
but as both these kinds will be treated of when this important subject comes 
more properly before the reader, more need not be here insisted on. 

From the diversity of ground in the lower part of this district, perhaps no 
country of so wide an extend in Scotland afforded so many means of embellish- 
ment by ornamental plantations. Tlie several proprietors seem to have dis- 
played their taste and promoted their interests by making very considerable 
plantations and cultivating extensive woods. Of natural woods, indeed, there 
are but little of this kind of wood, except one considerable tract of copse wood 
oak upon an estate near Elgin, which is at present in a very thriving state, 
being well fenced and properly cared for. In the Highlands there are very 
considerable forests of Scots fir on the estates of Rothiemurcus, the Duke of 

Sect. VII.— 0/ its Agriculture, etc.] OpNOETH-BRITAIN. 271 

Gordon, and Sir James Grant. The first attempt to convert these forests into 
any commercial purpose was made by the York building company about the 
year 1724, who erected an iron foundry at Coulnacoil, a part of Sir James 
Grant's estate in the parish of Abernethy ; which, however, was only supported 
for a short time. In this state matters remained, merely accommodating the 
domestic circumstances of the county, till about the year 1784, when a company 
of merchants from Yorkshire contracted with the Duke of Gordon for all the 
marketable timber in the forest of Glenmore, to be felled within the space of 
twenty-six years, at the sum of £10,000. This forest afforded masts for vessels 
of great burden, and even for the Royal Navy. 

It would perhaps have been impracticable to carry such trees into the river 
Spey, but for an expedient of some ingenuity which has been devised and made 
effectual at a considerable expense. The tallest and most valuable trees stood 
on the borders of a lake in the forest, distant from the river more than four 
miles, into which it discharged itself by a small brook, to which the heavy 
timber was floated on the lake, where a dam and sluices are constructed to form 
at pleasure an artificial flood, by which mea,ns the timber was conducted into the 
river along the course of the brook, which had been straightened and deepened 
for that purpose. 

When the timber from this and the other forests in Strathspey arrives at 
Garmouth, after supplying a great extent of country, it has of late been 
exported in considerable quantities to other markets both in Scotland and in 

This company have also formed a dock-yard, and built several vessels, some 
of them four or five hundred tons burden, entirely of this timber. 

It is worthy of remark that before the Commissioners of the Navy purchased 
any of this wood, they tried several experiments in order to ascertain the 
quality, and it was at last found to be equal, if not superior, to any ever im- 
ported from the Baltic. 

The forests of natural Scotch fir in this part of the district may contain 
nearly twenty thousand acres. 

It may be, moreover, remarked that there are many plantations of thrivmg^ 
trees in the low country of Moray, yet, these being all on barren moors and 
rising grounds, it is certain that the fields are still naked and exposed, on which 
account the crop as well as the cattle are greatly injured. The distance in 
general from the quarries must deter from erecting fences of stone, though on 
the estates of Monachty, Aslisk, and Burgy, there is a great deal of ground 
which is here called baulks, or mearings, interspersed among the arable fields. 

272 i^NAOOOUNT [Oh. XI.— Elginshire. 

the stone oc which would inclose the whole lands around them, and give a 
great addition of arable field. 

Many farmers, some years ago, attempted to enclose with turf, but experience 
has shown the insufficiency of this kind of fence, and after outlays, to them 
considerable, these ai^e now generally abandoned. 

Although a lease of nineteen years is considered as a proper term, both for 
landlord and tenant, in a country which is thoroughly improved, yet it can never 
be expected that a tenant will attempt to raise hedges, the only mode whereby 
the country can be inclosed, upon a lease of such duration. The plan, therefore, 
which appears most likely to be effectual, is that the proprietors should be at 
the first expense of planting hedges, which should be afterwards attended toby 
persons retained for the purpose, in number proportioned to the extent of each 
estate, and who should be maintained at the joint expense of landlord and 
tenant ; and there being now abundance of wood in the country for the rails, 
the expense of either party must be inconsiderable. Perhaps the importance 
of their improvement is not generally attended to, for it may be here observed 
that experience has fully proved how impracticable it is to raise black cattle, or 
horses, in open fields, to within twenty or thirty per cent, of the value which 
they attain when reared in proper inclosures. In the high country, particularly 
in Strathspey, where there is plenty of stone, and where the valleys are better 
sheltered, stone fences would answer all the ends, and are therefore preferable, 
because they can at once be completed. The inclosing of this county might also 
be effected were the landlord to quarry the stones and build the walls at his 
expense, and the tenant to carry the materials and pay interest for the money 
that may have been advanced by the landlord. The wall should be afterwards 
upheld at their mutual expense, the landlord reserving also the right of order- 
ing repairs when he should see cause. 

For some years past a considerable quantity of lime has been manufactured 
and used as manure in Strathspey. There is no county better supplied with 
lime quarries, and all that is necessary to be done there in order to introduce 
the general use of this valuable manure is that the proprietor should, at his 
own expense, erect proper kilns and supply people experienced in burning lime- 
stone. By this means the tenant might be supplied with any quantity they 
might have occasion for, at a more moderate expense than they can manufac- 
ture it themselves, and without any trouble beyond that of carrying from the 
kiln to the farm. 

Although the soil was formerly mentioned as being of three kinds, yet in 
considering this particular it is only necessary to keep in view the clay and the 
sand soils, because the loam, participating of each, may be treated in the same 

Beot.Yll.~Ofits Affriculture, etc.] f N OE T H-B R I T A I N. 273 

manner as that to which it is most allied. On the clay soils, perhaps, it would 
be most proper that each farm should be divided into six parts, to be thus 
managed — the first year, fallow ; the second year, wheat ; the third year, peas 
or other green crop ; the fourth year, barley, sown with clover seed and rye 
grass ; and the sixth, oats, so as that one-sixth part shall be regularly in 

On the sandy or light lands the following rotation might be adopted— the 
first year, turnip, or other green crop to which manure is applied ; the second, 
barley sown with grass seeds ; the third, fourth, and fifth year, grass ; the 
sixth, oats; seventh, barley, without manure, so that three-seventh parts of the 
farm should be regularly in artificial grass, two-sevenlhs under barley, one- 
seventh in oats, and the other seventh part under turnips and such grass crops. 
Thus much, then, with regard to the rotation of crops. 

As to the obstacles to improvements, the first of these may be reckoned the 
expense to which an improving farmer is subjected in erecting or acrj airing the 
requisite accommodation of his house and offices, which on a farm of eighty or 
a hundred acres generally amounts to from £200 to £300 sterling ; which, as 
appears above, he must advance, and which added to the term of paying the 
money rent so long before the corn can be brought to market, usually diverges 
or encroaches so far upon his funds as to depress his spirit for improvement, and 
consequently in all countries wherein improvements have been successfully 
carried on, the proprietors have built the houses at their own expense, and put 
ofi" the payment of the rent for six or eight months after harvest. In this 
shire the poorer tenants are obliged to sell their corn at an under value for the 
payment of their rent, so that the value of grain is always very low about the 
term of Martinmas, and the grain which is then sold is distmguished by the 
epithet of the poor man's holl. 

The astriction to mills has long been accounted a discouragement to a spirited 
agriculture, and in this county astriction is considered as a great grievance, and 
having been taken off in every district in an advanced state of cultivation, it is 
obvious that this complaint might also, by a proper concert, be easily removed 
in this. 

Upon the whole, it is certain that a spirit of improvement has been pretty 
generally introduced among the farmers of this shire. 

Were the proprietors to attend to the removal of these and other less dis- 
couragements, and were the tenants encouraged to more exertion either by 
means of a greater length of lease or by a conventional indemnification, if 
removed before the advantages of any spirited expenditure could be recovered, 
it is certain that the interest of both parties would be advanced, the value of 
7 35 

274 AnAOOOUNT [Oh. XL— Elginshire. 

land and of stock very considerably raised, and the whole country would soon 
become a scene of rural industry, peculiarly distinguished for agricultural skill, 
cultivation and improvement. 

In addition to what has been already stated respecting the plantations in the 
lowlands of Moray, it may be proper to add, for the proprietors of this shire, 
that in 1772 the Earl of Findlater planted a small hill, called the Birkenhill, 
near Elgin, containing sixty-six acres, and that from the weedings of the com- 
mon fir, which were taken out to make room for more valuable trees, there have 
been obtained for the last four years above £40 annually, besides the expense 
of cutting ; and, if the whole were not sold off, this plantation would yield at 
the rate of thirty shillings the acre for the land since it was first planted. This 
hill was originally a dry, black moor, which was covered with a stunted kind of 
heath, and in fact did not yield a penny the acre to the proprietor, so that this 
valuable improvement was effected without any diminution of the rent roll. 

It has already been observed that notwithstanding the great number of 
plantations in the low part of this shire, yet the arable land remains still in a 
great measure naked and exposed, and that the crops, as well as the cattle, are 
injured thereby. Were his lordship's example to be followed by the other pro- 
prietors it would not only tend to the ornament of the country, but also to its 
real improvement. 

It is now proper to advert to the manufactures of this shire, which were 
first introduced here by the same spirit of improvement which produced such 
salutary effects in agriculture. At the beginning their progress was slow and 
of little value, as must necessarily occur in most establishments. 

The quantity of linen cloth which was stamped for sale 

In 1787 was 54,523 yards, valued at £3,047 11 6. 

In 1788 was 56,571 „ „ 3,686 13 2. 

In 1799 was 30,769 „ „ 2,072 2 0. 

In 1800 was 35,413 „ „ 3,145 3 9. 

From this detail we may perceive that this shire cannot boast much of its 

The natural seats of manufacture are the towns in every county. In Elgin- 
shire there are two Eoyal burghs — Elgin, the shiretown, and Forres — which 
are situated at the distance of twelve miles from each other, and both are sur- 
rounded by a wide extent of fertile land. The population of Elgin and its 
parish amounts to 5808, and that of Forres, with the country round it, to 3540, 
besides the villages at the harbours of Garmouth, Lossiemouth, and Findhorn. 
There are moreover the fishing villages of Stotfield and Burghhead, at both of 

Beet. VIII.— Of its Ecclesiastical History.] OpNORTH-BEITAIN. 2 75 

which very commodious and safe harbours might be formed at a small expense, 
particularly at Stotfield, where there is a sand-bay which is well sheltered by a 
headland on both sides, to the east and west. In the inland part of the country 
there are four villages— Urquhart, Rothes, Ballintomb, and Grantown— which 
may contain from fifty to a hundred souls in each. The number of inhabitants 
in the whole shire, as the same have been ascertained by the last enumeration, 
amounts to 31,162. 

Of its shipping and oversea trade little can be said. In 1656 Garmouth had 
one vessel of 12 tons. During more recent times vessels of much larger tonnage 
have been built at the same harbour, as we have seen. 

Oi forests — Laundforgan forest — a petition vras presented to the King by 
John Despanydeng, Canon of Elgin, for 20 oaks from his forest of Laundmor- 
gund to build his church of Duffus, whereof he is Canon, which the King 
granted. Alexander II. in 1236 granted a charter giving to Andrew, the 
Bishop of Moray, three davachs of Tynlarg in Strathspey, in exchange for the 
forest, which was called Kawode, and also gave to a chaplain at Logy Fetherynch 
and his successors pasturage for six cows and eight bullocks in the royal forest 
next to the eastern part of Tyndarn (r). In a charter by Alexander II. 
Findhorn is called Invereren and Eren, and the water is called Eren (s). In a 
charter of protection, circa 1189, by Richard, the Bishop of Moray, it is also 
called Invereren and Eren. The country on the upper part of Findhorn water 
is to this day callled Stratheren. Erne, the same as the Welsh Aeron, of which 
there are several of the same name, means a bright or foaming stream, saith 
William Owen. The Findhorn is a clear water, and perhaps the most rapid in 
Scotland. The old castle of Ernside has probably derived its name from this 
Erne. In a charter of William the Lion to Richard, the Bishop of Moray, the 
King granted the Bishop several tofts in Erne, Elgin, Forres, and other 
burghs (t). 

§ VIII. Of its Ecclesiastical History. — In such a history the first step of 
any importance is the conversion of the people to Christianity. Saint Columba 
is said to have come from Ireland, and in 565 a.d. to have converted the 
Southern Picts. If we might, however, believe what was said by John Hard- 
ing, of the wild Scots of Moray during the recent period of Edward IV. of 
England, that the people of Moray were not very firmly established in their faith 
even during recent times when the King's son burnt the Cathedral of Moray, 

(r) Chart. Moray, p. 68-169. (s) See MS. Charters of Kinlossie, etc. 190-91. 

(t) Chart, of Moray, 50-158. 

276 AnACCOUNT [Ch. XI.— Elginshire. 

and was allowed to live after the commission of such an offence against all law, 
in defiance of every principle of religion, and in contempt of every rule of morals. 

The Eeformation, which cast the religious establishments of the province of 
Moray into new forms, may have effected some salutary change. When the 
Queen of Scots traversed this county soon after her return from France, she 
saw no other disturbance than her ministers, the Morays, the Mortons, and the 
Maitlands had introduced into the country, and who all died by violent means 
partly owing to their misdeeds. 

The missionaries, who were chiefly bishops, and effected the greatest number 
of conversions, preceded any establishments (t) ; but they had yet no dioceses, 
neither were there any parishes or presbyteries for many an age after the con- 
versions above mentioned. Such establishments cannot be traced beyond the 
ninth century ; and the See of Moray perhaps is not older than the reign of 
the worthy David, who is said, by a learned king, to have been a sair saint to 
the Crown. In this diocese there were six and twenty bishops before the 
Reformation, and eight from that epoch to the era of the Kevolution. 

Annotatio Moravien. Diocesis : 

" Sanct Garvade was confessor and bishop of Moray in Scotland, the 8th day 
of November in the zeir of God 812: Leo III. and 98th Paip : Charles 
L'magne beand onlie King of France, and thereafter was Emperoure ; and 
Achaius, the 65 Scottis-Kiug for the tyme " (w). 


















Subdeconatus, - 


















(t) See the Kalendar of Soots Saints. Keith, 375. 

(«) Some grains of allowance must be made for this statement. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OpNOETH-BEITAIN. 277 




3 6 



Vicaria de Elgyne, 


3 6 
6 13 



6 13 



Agnew et Crudell, 

2 13 




















Suma decimarum Capitili Moravian., £171 13 4 

Extra ecclesiam Moravien., 

Vicaria de Innernes, 
Vicarie de Abirchirdoure, 
Vicaria de Duffus, 
Rectoria de Lundichtie, 
Rectoria de Rothes, 
Vicaria de Gartlie, 

Suma decimarum Mor9,v. dioces. bene- 

fic. extra ecclesia, 
Suma tot. decim. Moravien. Dioces., - 

• In Cordiner may be seen the splendid ruins of the Cathedral of Moray, the 
foundation whereof vras laid in 1224, and for several years contributions were 
made to adorn this splendid building in a sumptuous style of building ; it ex- 
tended 264 feet in length, 114 feet in breadth, and the height of the central 
tower, including the spire, was 198 feet. A broad pavement surrounded the in- 
closure of the church, and on the outside were arranged the houses of the dig- 
nified clergy, which thus formed a spacious oblong square 900 yards in circum- 
ference, while a lofty wall in which were four gates, well contrived for security 
and defence, inclosed the whole, and gave it the effect of a strong fortress, 
guarding the sanctuaries of devotion. 

At Urquhart, near Elgin, was a cell or priory belonging to Dunfermline, 
which was founded in 1124 by David I. ; and to the prior and brethren therein 
serving God, Fochspar, according to its true divisions, with common of pasture 
and a piscary in Spey, together with twenty shillings from the firm of the 
burgh of Elgin, and also with authority over their men who are in Fochspar. 

2. Kynloss, or rather Keanloch, in Moray, was a remarkable abbey which 

278 AnAOCOUNT [Oh. Xi..— Elginshire. 

was founded in 1150 by David I. There is a charter of confirmation of three 
charters of Robert Bruce to the monks of Kinloss ; (1) of all their lands in 
Moray and their burgage lands ; (2) a grant of liberty to cut the earth and 
draw the water to their monastery ; (3) a grant of the fishery in the Findhorn 
wherein the King renounces for ever his right to three last of salmon yearly. 
In Cordiner (41) is a delineation of the splendid ruins of this abbey. The 
revenue of the abbey in 1561 amounted to £1,152 Scots, and near 60 chalders 
of victuals, besides tithes of sheep, capons, and poultry. It had been otherwise 
sumptuously endowed, for among many pieces of plate and sacred furniture 
which belonged to it, a silver laver is mentioned which weighed two hundred 
and forty ounces. Robert Red. the abbot of this place, was official of Moray in 
1530, Comraendator of Beaulieu in 1535, Bishop of Orkney in 1537, and Presi- 
dent of the Court of Sessions. 

3. Pluscarden, in Moray, was situated about six miles above Elgin, on the 
north side of the Lochy river, which falls into the Lossie at Pittendreich, and 
was a rich priory founded by Alexander II. in 1230. There is a grant to the 
Abbot of Pluscarden of the lands of Easter Fochabers and Wester Fochabers, 
of Ardedarroch, and of Auldquhash, in Elginshire, extending to £22 yearly, by 
the resignation of James Dunbar of Cumnock on the 23rd of October 1499. 

There is in Cordiner (17) a sketch of the ruins of Pluscarden Abbey, the 
establishment whereof was obtained at the Reformation by the Earl of 
Dunfermline in 1595. 

4. A convent situated upon the river Lossie, which was founded in 1479 by 
John Innes. 

5. A convent founded at Elgin in 1233-4 by Alexander II. 

6. The Hospital of St. Nicholas, of which the bishops of Moray were patrons, 
was founded near the bridge upon the Spey, by one of the bishops of 
Moray {v). ■ 

Under the Reformed Establishment Moray gave a name to a Synod. This 
Synod of Moray comprehends seven Presbyteries. And these seven Presby- 
teries are formed by fifty parishes, though only 17 parishes and 6 parts of 
parishes belong properly to this shire. 

Elgin is the shiretown. The etymology of its name has been already ascer- 
tained. The town stands on the south bank of the river Lossie, which has, 
indeed, somewhat departed from its neighbourhood. On the middle of the 
street, near the Cross, stands the High Church, an edifice which, from its size 
and beauty, is surpassed by few in the kingdom. It was dedicated to St. Giles. 

(y) Keith's Eelig. Houses, 477. 

Sect. VIII.— 0/ its Ecclesiastical History.] OrNOETHBEITAIN. 279 

To the east end of it is joined the little church where worship is performed on 
days of work. On the 22nd of June, 1679, a day remarkable for the conflict ot 
Bothwell Bridge, after the parishioners had returned from church the whole 
fabric fell down except the four pillars and vault, which supported the steeple. 
The rebuilding of this church was finished in 1684, at the expense of the heritors 
and some private contributors. 

Andrew, the Bishop of Moray, in 1224 translated the seat of the bishopric or 
Moray from Spynie to Elgin, and thereby constituted the Church of the Holy 
Trinity to be the Cathedral. But the Cathedral was destroyed by Alexander, 
the lord of Badenoch, the King's son, who escaped punishment, while he ought 
to have lost his head, whatever his rank might be. He was properly denomi- 
nated the Wolf of Badenoch. About the year 1414 the Cathedral was 
completely rebuilt in a singular style of great magnificence. From its ruins it 
appears to have been indeed a very splendid building, in the Gothic style, and 
in length about 260 feet, and upwards of 34 feet in breadth, and upon the 
whole was not surpassed by any ecclesiastical edifice in the kingdom, which 
abounded in such buildings. The revenues of this episcopate were considerable. 
For after several estates were leased for long terms, there remained at the 
Reformation what would now produce an income of £4000 sterling. The 
population of this parish, which amounted to 5,045 in 1755, had only increased 
before 1821 to 5,308 in 1821, an advance this which merely shows a feeble 

The parish of Spynie, or New Spynie, is situated between the river Lossie 
and the Loch of Spynie, within a mile of Elgin. This parish stretches about 
three miles in length and one in breadth The church stood in the eastern 
extremity, but was transplanted to Quarrelwood in 1736, and now called New 
Spynie. This parish was mostly bishop's land, and on the east corner, on the 
bank of the Loch of Spynie, stood the Bishop's Palace, which was once a magnifi- 
cent building. Its parishioners have increased from 865 in 1775, to 996 in 1821. 

The parish of Alves lies on the west of Spynie, extending three miles from 
north to south, and as much from east to west. The church stands near the 
centre, four miles westward from Elgin. Near the church is Kirktown. The 
parishioners of Alves have declined in numbers from 1,691 in 1755, to 947 in 
1821. In this parish there is a large cairn, near which have been found warlike 
arms, a sure token this of the people having been involved in warfare. On the 
contrary there is a monumental inscription in the churchyard, dated in 1590, 
to this efiect : — " Here lie Anderson of Pentensere, Mayor of the Earldom of 
Moray, with his wife Marjory, whilk him never displeased." 

Duffus, or in the Celtic Duhh-ins, the stagnating water, is a parish lying west 

280 An ACCOUNT [Ch. XL— Elginshire. 

of Kinnedar, between Loch Spynie and the sea shore. The church stands in 
the middle of the parish, a mile west of Kinnedar. The village of Duffus is 
regularly built, having a square with a church in the centre of it. There is an 
obelisk near the small village of Kaim, which is said to be a memorial of the 
defeat of the Danes by Malcolm II., and on the north-west border of Loch 
Spynie, on an artificial mount, are still standing the walls of an old castle which 
was called Old Duffus. The parishioners have increased from 1,670 in 1755, to 
1,950 in 1821. 

Drainie parish is situated on a peninsula formed by the Moray Frith and 
Spynie Loch. The general appearance of the district is low and flat. Scarcely 
one half of it is arable, the greater part being barren moor. It is watered how- 
ever by the Lossie, at the issue whereof is a small fishing village, which is 
called Lossie-mouth. The number of parishioners of Drainie has decreased from 
1,174 in 1755, to 1,060 in 1821 ; not having active and constant employment. 

The Parish of St. Andreivs and Lhanhryde lies northward of Elgin on both 
the banks of the Lossie. The church stands on the north side of the river, one 
and a half miles from Elgin. West of the river, at the lower end, is Pitga- 
venie, a part of the bishop's lands, which has passed through the possession of 
various proprietors. The parishioners have declined from 1,132 in 1755, to 
934 in 1821. 

Urquhart parish lies along the shore of the Moray Firth, between the rivers 
Spey and Lossie. The church stands near the south-end of the district, three 
miles from Speymoiith and one mile north from Lhanbryde. The lands were a 
part of the possessions of the priory of Urquhart, and were converted into a 
temporal barony in favour of the son of Lord Winton, the Chancellor of Scot- 
land, in 1591. Here was formerly situated the Priory of Urquhart, which was 
founded in the year 1125, and was a dependency of the Abbey of Dunfermline. 
The site of the priory of Urquhart is now converted into a cornfield, and the 
abbey well is the only memorial of it which now remains. The number of the 
parishioners has declined from 1,110 in 1755, to 1,103 in 1821. 

Speymouth, which derives its name from, its local situation, is at the issue 
of this outrageous river. The church of this parish stands nearly opposite the 
old church of Bellie, and distant about half a mile from it, with the great stream 
between them. Till the year 1731 this parish made two parishes, namely, 
Essil and Dipple, in the north end. At the mouth of the river is the harbour 
and town of <Tarmouth, a burgh of barony, containing sixty dwellings. South 
of the town are the lands of Essil, forming an essential part of this parish. 
The parishioners of this district, which amounted in 1755 to 994, had increased 
before 1821 to 1401. 

Sect. VIII. — Of its Ecclesiastical History.] OfNOETH-BEITAIN. 281 

Birnie parish, which was anciently called Brenoth, a brae or high ground, 
extended three miles along the Lossie, on the east, from north to south. The 
church stands near the river, two miles south from Elgin. The whole parish 
was a part of the bishop's lands of the diocese of Moray. The small parish of 
Birnie contained, in 1755, 525 parishioners, and became fewer in 1821, amount- 
ing only to 384. Thus much, then, with regard to the several parishes in the 
Presbytery of Elgin. 

We now proceed to the Presbytery of Forres. This town is a royal burgh, 
deriving its appellation from its neighbourhood to the water, and is called in 
the Gaelic Far-ins. The parish extends from the bay of Kinloss, southward 
upon the river, three miles. Forres stands two miles north-west of Kafford, 
and a mile and a half from Kinloss. Near the west-end of this commodious 
town, the seat of its presbytery, stands the church, and beyond it the Castle- 
hill, which, with other lands near it, has long belonged to Grant of Grant. 
This town seems to have prospered during late times, having been inhabited in 
1755 by 1,393 people, and in 1821 by 3,540 people. 

Di/kc and Moy form a parish three miles in length, and as much in breadth, 
bounded by the river on the east, and by the sea on the north. The church 
stands nearly in the centre, two miles west from Forres. In this parish the 
Prior of Pluscarden had a grange, and monks to manage it. In this parish, 
also, stands Darnaway, the celebrated seat of the Earls of Moray. The pari- 
shioners of Dyke amounted in 1755 to 1,826, and in 1821 to 1,460. 

Kinloss parish forms the head of the hay, and, from the burgh of Findhorn, 
runs within land a mile and a half, and near as much in breadth. Here the 
Erne empties itself into the firth. The parish of Kinloss lies on the east side 
of the bay. The church stands near the head of the bay, about a mile and a 
half north of Forres. 

At the mouth or issue of the Findhorn stands the town of Invererne, a 
burgh of barony, and it is the seaport of Forres. The south-end of the parish 
was abbey lands, which have long since passed into lay hands. This parish 
contained 1,191 souls in 1755, and in 1821 those inhabitants had diminished 
to 1,071. 

Rafford parish lies south-east from Forres. The church stands near the 
centre, two miles south-east of Forres. The lands whereof the parish consists 
have passed through the hands of many individuals, while the parishioners have 
declined from the number of 1,313 in 1755, to 970 in 1821. In this parish 
stands the singular Stone of Forres, which like other such stones war^ting a 
date, loses one half of its curiosity and value. 

The parish of Edinkillie, or in the Gaelic, the face of the wood, was probably 
7 36 

282 A N A U N T [Oh. XL— Elginshire. 

of old a forest, lies on both sides of the Erne. The church stands oii a brook 
called _ Duvie, five miles southward from Forres, and there are the ruins of 
several ancient caStles. . The parishioners of Edinkillie have decreased in num- 
bers from 1443 in 1755 to 1233 in 1821. 

Dallas, or Dale-uis, the water valley, is surrounded with hills, except on the 
east towards Birnie, and a small portion of it to the north-west. The church 
stands on the west bank of the Lossie,' about four miles south-west of Birnie. 
In the lower part of the parish is Killess, which is church land, and for more 
than a century the heritage. of Farquharson of Killess, but whose family is 
now extinct. The population of Dallas has increased from 700 people in 1755 
to 1015 in 1821. This is the last of the parishes in the Presbytery of Forres. 
We are now to consider the several parishes in the Presbytery of Rothes. 

In the Gaelic Rothes is called Ranis, or rather Randh-uis, or Red Water, 
from the red banks of the river and brooks. It extends on Speyside from 
N.N.E. to S.S.W., about two miles ; and in the lower end a defile called the 
Glen of Rothes stretches among the hills three miles to the N.N. -west. The 
church stands upon the side of a brook, a quarter of a mile from the Spey, and 
half a mile from the north end of the parish. The population of Rothes has 
increased from 1340 in 1755 to 1642 in 1821. 

KnocMands, in Gaelic Knoc-cannoch, or the market-hill, is a parish of Moray- 
shire, which is bounded by the Spey to the south and east, by the hills to the 
north and west, and extends by the river side about 6 miles, and generally one 
mile in breadth, and in some places indeed two miles. The church stands a 
quarter of a mile from the river, 2 miles below the south-west end of the parish, 
2 miles north of Inveravon, 5 miles south-west of Rothes, and about 3 miles 
south-west of Aberlour. In the lower end of the parish, on the borders of 
Rothes, is a rocky hill which is called the Craig-Elachie, that is the echoing 
craig. The population of the parish of Knocklands rose from 1267 souls in 1755 
to 1414 in 1821. • 

A part of Inveravon only lies in this shire. It is an extensive parish, running 
on the bank of the Spey from north-east to south-west above three miles and a 
half, and then south south-east above 8 miles. The church stands on the bank 
of Spey, a furlong east from the mouth of the Avon. About 128 parishioners 
dwell only in Morayshire. 

The barony of Ballindalloch lies in the shire of Moray. The rest of this 
parish lies in Banffshire. 

Boharnis, a parish situated partly in Banffshire and partly in Morayshire ; 
and this latter part, which is in Moray, contains from 500 to 600 souls. 

Such are the inhabitants of the several parishes and parts of pai'ishes lying 

BeotYIIL— Of its Ecclesiastical History.] Of NOETg.BEITAIN. 


in Morayshire. That part of the Presbytery of Abemethy, which Ues in the 
county of Moray,, contains only about 3013 people. And that part of Bellie 
parish, which is comprehended in Morayshire, contains at -least 1148 inhabi- 
tants. But such details would be better understood if thrown into a tabular