1st of March

St David, archbishop of Caerleon, patron of Wales, 544. St Albinus, of Angers, 549. St Monan, of Scotland, martyr, 374.


Born. – Dr David Bogue, Scottish missionary, 1750, Halidown
Died. – Francis Rabelais, French romanticist, 1553; Matthias, Emperor of Germany, 1619; Leopold II., Emperor of Germany, 1792, Prague; Manuel Johnson, astronomer, 1859, Oxford.


On this Day in Other Sources.


After the monkish fashion of copying into their register whatever excited their particular interest, whether connected immediately with the affairs of the monastery or no, we have in our Chartulary a fine contemporary copy of the famous deed of Edward III. and his council, in Parliament, renouncing all claim of superiority over Scotland.1 This deed was formerly a subject of great dispute, and apparently even of doubt. The Parliament of Scotland directed a transumpt, or authoritative copy of it, to be made for preservation, so lately as 1415. An old English chronicler, who gives the words of the deed faithfully enough (with the exception of the solemn authentication – By the King and Council in Parliament), adds, as a palliation, – we fear rather of Edward’s granting such a recognition, than of his violating it – “sednotandum quod hæc notanda acta sunt anno ætatis suæ decimo sexto.” 

– Sketches, pp.172-203

1  It is imperfect. The conclusion giving the date (1st March, an reg. 2), and the authority of the English commissioners to make oath for their king, are here wanting.


Parliament held at Perth, the first of March, this year [1427;] wherein, in presence of his whole estates, the King chides Alexander, Earl of Ross and Lord of the Isles, for his lewdness and disloyalty; but on promise of amendment dismisse[s] him, and shows him great favour; but no sooner at liberty and home, but anew leaps out in open rebellion. 

– Historical Works, pp.153-166.


This year, 1530, [John Blackadder] the Laird of Tulliallan was beheaded the first day of March, for killing Mr James Inglis, Abbot of Culross; and with him a monk of the same abbey, a chief author of the Abbots slaughter. 

– Historical Works, pp.238-275.


Mar. 1 [1621.] – On a complaint that coal had risen to eight shillings the load, the privy Council had interfered in the usual rash manner, and dictated a certain maximum price to be exacted for the article; namely, seven shillings the load – that is, horse-load; for coal was borne at this time, and for a long time after, on horseback. Certain coal-proprietors – Alexander, Master of Elphinstone; Samuel Johnston of Elphinstone; Sir James Richardson of Smeaton; Robert Richardson of Pencaitland; Jonet Lawson, Lady Fawside; and David Preston of Whitehill – now petitioned, setting forth that the cost of mining coal had greatly risen of late years, and that the dearth of the article to the public was much owing to the base fellows who act as carriers of coals. It was represented that some of the proprietors of ‘coal-heughs’ were £10,000, and some even £20,000 out of pocket. The Master of Elphinstone’s coal of Little Fawside had been on fire for several years; another mine of the same owner had caused an outlay of £8000. The Smeaton pits had been so unproductive for some years as scarcely to supply the laird’s house. The coal of Elphinstone had proved for nine years barren, and 20,000 merks had been sunk upon it, being more than it promised ever to repay. The coal of Mickle Fawside had undone the late laird’s estate, and ‘made him to sell ane part of his auld heritage:’ what with fire on the one hand and water on the other, it was a hopeless case. As for the coal of Pencaitland, it was wasted and decayed, past hope of recovery, but at such extraordinary charges as it was not worth having bestowed upon it. The basis of the evils complained of lay with the coal-carriers, who dealt fraudulently with the public. Had the particulars been rightly known, the Lords, it was assumed, would never have given a decreet against the complainers, ‘who are gentlemen of grit charge and burden,’ overlooking the faults of those base fellows who carry coals. 

– Domestic Annals, pp.177-227.


But, notwithstanding the obstacles presented by defective roadways, an attempt was made so early as 1678 to establish a regular stage coach service between the two cities. “The said William Hoome obliges him, with all diligence, to have in readiness ane sufficient strong coach, with sax able horses, to be driven with servants and furniture for the convenience of all travellers who shall think fit to make use thereof, for their journey betwixt Glasgow and Edinburgh; and which coach shall contain sax persons, and shall go ance ilk week betwixt the foresaid two places, or twyce a week if he shall have encouragement, beginning upon the first day of September next to come, and thereafter to continue for the space of five years allenarly… And that ilk person going passenger therein shall have liberty to take in ane block bag or portmanteau for carrying of their cloaks, linnings or sicklyke. And that ilk person paying to the said William Hoome, ilk time betwixt the said places, from the month of March to the first of September, being counted summer months, the sum of eight shilling Sterling, which is four pounds sixteen shillings Scots; and from the first of September to the first of March, being counted winter months, the sum of five pounds eight shillings Scots, and that by ilk person passing therein. And the said coach, horses, servants, and furniture foresaid, are to take journey ilk Monday and return ilk Saturday at night, whether there be persons to the number foresaid or none at all to pass therein. And that the burgesses of this Burgh be preferred to all others.” 

– Scots Lore, pp.264-266.


  THAT there are Post-Offices settled at Wigtoun and New-Galloway: Therefore all Letters and Pacquets must be given in at Wigtoun every Wednesday Morning, and at New-Galloway every Wednesday Night, and at Edinburgh every Saturday; the same to Commence March 1st. 1705. 

– Old and New Edinburgh, pp.282-290.


Mar. 1 [1728.] – At four o’clock in the morning, a smart shock of an earthquake was experienced in Edinburgh and throughout the south of Scotland, is not in other quarters. At Selkirk, every house was shaken, and some people were tumbled out of bed, but no damage was done. 

– Domestic Annals, pp.398-408.


THE following is a copy of a document endorsed “Proposals of White Fishers to settle at Garmouth, 1764,” and is interesting as shewing how settlements of fishermen were made in the Moray Firth a century or so ago, more especially as few particulars relating thereto have hitherto been forthcoming. It may be added that the big freighting boat referred to cost £50 sterling, and the small boat about £6 sterling:-  

“Sir, – We, William Prott, Michael Findlay and William Souter younger, all seamen and fishers in Burghead having communed with you as Factor for the Right Honourable James, Earl of Fife, anent our being bound to serve his Lordship as seamen and fishers in his new fisher town of Garmouth and having come to a resolution thereanent we hereby bind and oblige us conjunctly and severally and our heirs and successors to serve the said Earl well and honestly as seamen and fishers at the said port and fisher town of Garmouth for the space of seven years from and after the first day of Aprile next to come in this present year 1764 years and to provide so many others as shall make up a sufficient fishing crew to serve for the said space with us and on our terms and to pay to his Lordship yearly the said whole crew during the above space the sum of 100 merks Scots of rent at Whitsunday yearly beginning the first year’s payment at Whitsunday 1765 for the year immediately preceding and so on to continue in payment of the said yearly rent of 100 merks Scots at Whitsunday yearly during the said space of seven years or to make payment to the said Earl of such other higher yearly rent as the fishers of the shore of Buckie or other fishers in the neighbourhood pay to their masters with shore dues and other services. The said Earl being alwise bound against the said period of an entry to equip the fishing boat already built by him sufficiently in masts, saills, oars, and other tackling necessary for a fishing boat, the fishing tackling only excepted, and on our entry to make payment to us and the other persons of our crew to be provided by us being all eight in number £5 Sterling each of entry money and after our entry as said is with all convenient diligence to build and provide for us a sufficient freighting or large boat with a small fishing boat the expence of which we are either to give the said Earl our joint security for payment of with interest for the advance or to allow him a sufficient boat’s part to endemnifie him in his Lordship’s option and we are to have our houses in the same situation they presently are conform to comprising and are to uphold the same conform to such comprising on our own charges paying his Lordship for any pejoration that may happen during our residence aforesaid, and we farther demand two bolls oat meal at eight stone and ane half per boll to be paid by his Lordship to each of us and also to each of the other persons of our crew to be provided by us aforesaid at our entry which however we entirely submitt to his Lordship’s generosity and we hereby declare that this letter shall be binding on us to all intents and purposes, in case the said Earl or his factor shall be pleased to hold the above terms any time within one month after the date hereof under the penalty of 100 merks Scots money each of us by and attour performance and we are Sir your most obedt humble servants  
M. F.
Elgin 1st March 1764  
To Archibald Duff  
Factor of the Right Hon.  
The Earl of Fife at Elgin. 

– Scots Lore, pp.223-226

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