21st of April

St Eingan, or Enean, King of Scots, about 590. St Anastasius, surnamed the Younger, patriarch of Antioch, 610. St Anastasius, the Sinaite, anchoret, after 678. St Beuno, abbot of Clynnog, in Carnarvonshire, 7th century. St Malrubius, martyr, of Ireland, 721.

Born. – Prince George of Denmark, 1653. 
Died. – Alexander the Great, B.C. 323, bur. Alexandria; Diogenes the cynic, B.C. 323, Corinth; Peter Abelard, eminent French scholar, 1142; Jean Racine, French dramatic poet, 1699; David Mallet, poet, 1765, Drury Lane, London.

On this Day in Other Sources.

It is recorded that at the final court, held at the Hund hill on the 21st of April, 1385, “throw Sir Patrick Gray lorde of the chefe barony of Langforgande, mony nobilles thare beande, with consale of tha nobillis and of his curt, he wele awisit that the forsayde personaris contenyt in his prosces souch hym nother with grace lufe na with lauch to edlay him dome na his proces, with consale of the forsayde curt and noblis that thare was, throw the moutht of Robert Louranson than dempstare of oure lord the kingis curt and of his, it was diffyn for dome that the Lytilton and Lourandston of Ouchtercomane suld dwell in the handis of the forsayde Sir Patrick and his ayeris quhill the tyme that all the forsaydis personaris, and all thaire namys nemmyt, suld recouir the landys othir be grace, trety, or prosces of law: and thus endyt the proces.”1

– Old Glasgow, pp.56-68. 

1  Third Report of Royal Commission on Historical MSS., App., p. 410.

The following note in the recent edition of Dunbar (Scot. Text Society Intro. app. cclvi) gathers up the editorial conjectures which have accumulated during the fully a century and a half:- “The name Sir John the Ross is so peculiar that there appears little doubt that he is John the Ross to whom twenty unicorns* were paid in February, 1490, and who also received another payment of which the amount cannot be read in the Treasurer’s accounts on 21 April, 1498…”

– Scots Lore, pp.293-307.

*  Unicorns were a form of Scottish coinage from 1484 to 1525.

The first Mint House had been originally erected in the outer court of the palace of Holyrood, somewhere near the Horse Wynd, from whence, for greater safety, it was removed to the castle, in which a new Mint House had been built in 1559, as shown by the following entry in the accounts of the High Treasurer, under the date February, 1563:-

“Item, allowit to the carpenter, be payment maid to Johne Achesoun, Maister Congreave, to Maister William McDowgale, Maister of Werk, for expensis maide be him vpon the bigging of the çwnge-house, within the castell of Edinburgh, and beting of the çwnge-hous within the Palice of Halierud-house, fra the xi. day of Februar, 1559, zeris, to the 21 of April, 1560, £460 4s. 1.” 

Old and New Edinburgh, pp.266-274.

On the 21st of April [1567] the queen, [Mary,] went to Stirling to visit her son. On her return Bothwell, with 800 men, intercepted her at Fountainbridge, near Edinburgh, and carried her off to Dunbar. It has been said that the queen was seized by her own consent, but the evidence of this is not clear.

– A History of Scotland, Chapter XIV.

[Fishermen] formed very much, no doubt, a community by themselves, and at an early period the magistrates established a court, which was held at the Broomielaw, called the Coble Court, which took cognizance of disputes among the fishermen, and of other matters relating to the river. Under date 21st April, 1589, is a minute of “the Coble court of Glasgw halden at ye Brumelaw thairof be honorabill men James Flemyng and Robert Rowat baillees – Dempster Johnne Maxvell.” On this occasion Niniane Hucheson, a fisherman, is decerned to pay to John Clarke, another fisherman, nineteen shillings as the price of “twa salmound fische,” which he had taken from him “in a wrangous and maisterfull way.” According to the value of money at that time this was equal to one shilling for each salmon. 

– Old Glasgow, pp.150-161.

Apr. 21 [1629]. – John Hart, printer in Edinburgh, being about to bring out an edition of the Bible, the town-council gave him formal permission to take a new apprentice ‘for the advancement of the said wark,’ ‘notwithstanding the time of three years be not past since he replaced an apprentice last;’ ‘providing always it sall not be lawful to him to tak and have ane other prentice before the expiring of six years.’ – Ed. Coun. Reg

– Domestic Annals, pp.228-256.

56. JOHN AIRD, Junior.

Born about 1655; died, 1730.

Merchant in Glasgow. Bailie, 1692, 1697, 1701; Dean of Guild, 1695, 1696, 1699, 1700, 1703, 1704; and Provost, 1705, 1706, 1709, 1710, 1713, 1714, 1717, 1718, 1721, 1722. Commanded the Glasgow regiment of 600 men which garrisoned Stirling during the rebellion of 1715. He married Katherine Campbell, sister of Sir James Campbell of Houstoun, but left no issue. His widow married, second, Alexander Cunninghame of Craigends, and died, 1757. “Mortified to the poor of this House several tenements of land paying of yearly rent £621 11s. 8d. Scots, whereof £100 Scots to be paid yearly to a poor merchant and £200 Scots equally among three poor merchants’ or ministers’ widows of this city; who died 21st April, 1730, in the 76th year of his age.” 

– Memorial Catalogue, Gallery 1.

II. And be it further enacted, That from and after the Twenty-first Day of April One thousand eight hundred and thirty-two there shall be allowed and paid, for and upon every Gallon of Spirits, and so in proportion for any greater or less Quantity of Spirits, of the Strength of Hydrometer Proof, and so in proportion for any greater or less Strength, distilled in Scotland or Ireland from malted Corn only, not being mixed with any unmalted Corn or Grain whatever, after the Rate of Two Gallons of such Spirits for every Bushel of Barley Malt, or One Bushel and One Fourth of a Bushel and One Third Part of a Gallon of Malt made from Bear or Bigg only, in respect of which Spirits any Distiller in Scotland or Ireland shall be charged with Duty, during the Time that such Distiller shall use Malt only, an Allowance of Eight-pence.

– Acts Relating to Scotland, William IV., Chapter XXIX.


   THE House of Lords is made up of about five hundred members, to which number Scotland contributes but a small proportion. At the time of the Union in 1707 all the English Lords retained their seats in Parliament, but as the Scottish Lords were for the most part adherents of the House of Stuart, they were not permitted to enter Parliament as a body lest they should endanger the stability of the Revolution Settlement; and they had to be content with being represented there by sixteen elected members. That the proud aristocracy of Scotland, the numbering a hundred and fifty-five, should have submitted to such a degradation of their order as this process involved has always appeared to us a wonderful problem; but those of the Scottish Commissioners who were nobles were induced to swallow the bitter pill by a promise that they would be invested with English peerages, which would secure for them a place in the British Senate; and that by-and-by the same privilege would be extended to all the nobility of Scotland. This latter promise, we need scarcely say, was never fulfilled; had it been so, such contemptible proceedings as are witnessed every now and again in Holyrood Palace when the ceremony of an election is performed, would never have taken place, to elicit a sigh or provoke a sneer. Were the election of Peers a bona fide affair, carried out according to the terms of the Treaty of Union between two kingdoms, it would be viewed with respect, however much it might remind us that the gold of Scotland’s ancient and once illustrious nobility had become dim; but the votes, as a rule, are not the free suffrages of independent men, but rather acts of homage rendered by patrician serfs to a feudal superior, His Grace the Duke of Buccleuch; and therefore the election has come to be looked upon as little better than a farce.” 

– Dumfries and Galloway Standard, Wednesday 21st April, 1880.

– Treaty of Union Articles, 1875-1900.

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