21st of March

St Serapion (called the Sindonite), about 388. St Serapion (the scholastic), Bishop in Egypt, 4th century. St Serapion, abbot. St Benedict (or Bennet), abbot of Mount Casino, patriarch of the Western monks, 543. St Enna, abbot in Ireland, 6th century.

Born. – Robert Bruce, King of Scotland, 1274; John Sebastian Bach, musical composer, 1685, Eisenach; J. B. J Fourier, mathematician, 1768. 
Died. – Peter Ernest, Count de Mansfield, 1604, Luxembourg; Tomasso Campanella, Dominican metaphysician and politician, 1639, Paris; Archbishop Usher, 1656, Reigate, Surrey; Charlotte Tremouille, Countess of Derby, heroic defender of Latham House, and of the Isle of Man, 1663, Ormskirk; Duc d’Enghien, shot at Vincennes, 1804; Baron La Motte-Fouqué, poet and novelist, 1843.

On this Day in Other Sources.

On the 21st March the castle of Edinburgh was rendered to Cockburn of Skirling, by the Queen’s commands, as we know from Birrel’s Diary, supported, by the wardrobe record, which contains Cockburn’s receipt, for the delivery of the castle to him. 

– Life of Mary, pp.151-155.

Taken seriatim, the records of the Tolbooth contain volumes of entries made in the following brief fashion:- 

“- March 21 [1663.] – Aucht Qwakers; liberated, certifying if again troubling the place, the next prison shall be the Correction House.”

– Old and New Edinburgh, pp.123-138.

[JOHN ANDERSON, Elder of Dowhill,] married, second, 21st March, 1667, Rebecca Hamilton, who died, 1699. M’Ure mentions him as one of the earlier “sea adventurers,” and as a partner in the soap-work established in 1667. Sir John Moore (No. 226) was his descendant through Marion Anderson (daughter of his son Provost John Anderson, Younger of Dowhill), who married the Reverend Charles Moore of Stirling, the father of Dr. John Moore (No. 136). 

– Memorial Catalogue, Gallery 1.

To facilitate the establishment of a uniform course, each University gave in a report of the studies actually followed. The statement of King’s College is very short. 

“Courses taught yeirly in the King’s College of Aberdine:- The Colledge sitteth downe in the beginning of October, and for the space of a moneth till the studentis be weill convened, both masters and schollaris are exercised with repetitiones and examinationis, quhich being done, the courses are begun about the first or second day of November. 

“1. To the first classe is taught Clenard, Antesignanus; the greatest part of the New Testament; Basilius Magnus his epistle; ane oration of Isocrates; ane other of Demosthenes; a buik of Homer; Phoncyllides: some of Nonni paraphrasis. 
“2. To the second classe, Rami dialectica; Vossii retorica; some elements of arithmetick; Porphyrie; Aristotill his categories, de interpretatione and prior analyticks, both text and questiones. 
“3. To the third classe, the rest of the logicks; twa first books of the ethicks; five chapteris of the third, with a compend of the particular writtis; the first fyve books of the generall phisicks, with some elements of geometrie. 
“4. To the fourt classe, the bookes de cœlo, de ortu et interitu, de anima, the meteoris; sphera Jo. de Sacro bosco, with some beginningis of geography and insight in the globs and mappes. 
“This is to be understood, ordinarly, and in peaceable tymes.”1

– Sketches, pp.254-324.

1  Minutes, 21st March 1798, 16th March, and 23d March 1799.

GLASGOW ARCHAEOLOGICAL SOCIETY (21st March [1895]). – Dr. David Murray from the chair made fitting reference to the great loss which the society had sustained by the death of their president, Mr. C. D. Donald. Mr. Donald, he said, had been cut off suddenly and in the midst of his days, just when his faculties had come to full maturity, and when reading and thought, experience and observation, were bearing fruit in a firm grasp of affairs and a deep insight into life and action. It was but four months since they welcomed him to the president’s chair, but he had long been a member of the society. Mr. Donald was not a specialist in any branch of archaeology, but he was well acquainted with the trend of archaeological science, and had a thorough grip of the principles. He was the founder and the heart and soul of the Regality Club. He was author of many of its papers – a series of graphic and accurate accounts of the Glasgow of last century. Mr. J. Dalrymple Duncan and Dr. J. O. Mitchell also spoke in appropriate and feeling terms.  

Mr. George Neilson read a paper on “Caudatus Anglicus: A Curious Mediaeval Slander,” dealing with the origin and history of the term Caudatus applied to Englishmen. It was shewn to have been in use from the end of the twelfth century, invariably applied to Englishmen, and in a great mass of cases, in conjunction with sarcastic references to the possession of tails. Divergent theories had been propounded to explain this remarkable belief of the middle ages. The two most important were – first, an etymological explanation which accounted for caudatus as signifying a coward and connected with a tail between the legs; second, that given by mediaeval chroniclers and ancient legend. These latter authorities said that when St. Augustine came into England the inhabitants of a southern county mocked him by affixing fish tails to his garments, and that in divine revenge the inhabitants of the district ever afterwards carried tails. Many curious citations illustrative of mediaeval wit were given, proving the use to which this epithet was put. It was demonstrated to have been frequently applied by Frenchmen and Scotsmen to Englishmen from twelfth to the sixteenth century. It was utilised continually for purposes of international satire, and thus formed a somewhat spicy part in the epigrammatic quarrels between representatives of the antagonistic nations. Mr. Neilson’s opinion was that the etymological explanation was inadequate, and that the term was the evidence of a widely existing belief of early ages that in certain parts of England men had been punished by the infliction of tails. In Scotland ill luck had attended its use, for in each of three historical instances of the Scots thus taunting the English, the English had enjoyed the revenge of inflicting an immediate defeat. Professor Lodge, and other speakers as well as the chairman, expressed concurrence in this view, indicating further that the belief in tailed men was of very old standing amongst mankind, and had persisted down to relatively recent times even in Britain. 

– Scots Lore, pp.231-236.

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