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which the heathen Saxons attacked under Ælla, “and slew all that dwelt therein, nor was there one Briton left.” The mediæval castle within the walls is that of the Honour of the Eagle—so named from the powerful house of Aquila, which at one time possessed it. The place thus retains the evidences of a double conquest. Of the beginning of the first we can say little. Of that of the second we have the record in the Bayeux Tapestry, where the landing of William is depicted, with the legend “Hic Willelm venit ad Pevensæ.”

Pevensey was a “limb” of the Cinque Port Hastings, and, like other members, it had its seal, with the emblems of a seaport, surrounded by an invocation to St. Nicholas, the patron of the town. The seals of the Cinque Ports differed little from those of other maritime towns in England, in France, or in Flanders. All for the most part have a ship, variously represented, with additions of a religious or heraldic character. An excellent illustration is the great seal of Dover, which seems to have been engraved in the reign of Edward III. It bears a ship, with the sail furled, and a sailor climbing to the masthead. The rudder is at the side, and the fore and stern castles are stages raised on arches, In the fore-castle stand a pair of trumpeters. In the stern-castle is the banner of the Cinque Ports, bearing gules three lions of England, “demediated,” in heraldic language --that is, “halved”—with as many galleys. Around is the inscription, “Sigillum commune baronum de Dovoria” (The common seal of the barons of Dover).

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Journey to Dunfermline from Edinburgh-History of Dunfermline-Malcolm Canmore and St. Margaret-Anglo-Saxon

Scotland – The Abbey Church-Comparison with Durham-Date of Nave-Traditions of St. Margaret—The PalaceThe Town



HEN, on a certain occasion, Sir Walter Scott was approaching

the Isle of Skye, with a large party of friends, he had the curiosity to ask of what each was thinking. It turned out that to every one, including himself, the island had suggested the Latin ode to Mrs. Thrale—“Thralia dulcis," which Dr. Johnson wrote on reaching it, and which is set forth length in the pages of Boswell. It is probable that, now-adays at least, the impression would not always be so uniform; but there are some Scottish names which are still pretty sure to raise the same images or to bring back the same words. Dunfermline is an important historical centre. It was a chief

residence and stronghold of the early Scottish kings, and the burial-place of the later monarchs; and until the Reformation it contained one of the principal religious shrines north of the Tweed, if not quite the most frequented. But to most of us any mention of the place is sure to recall the opening verse of the old ballad


“ The king sits in Dunfermline tower,

Drinking the blood-red wine;
Where will I get a skeely skipper

To sail this ship of mine?"

So great is the power of association and of ancient verse; for whatever may be the date at which “Sir Patrick Spens” was written, it has all the haunting charm of the most primitive minstrelsy.

Dunfermline has but little connection, after all, with Sir Patrick. We must visit it as representing, conjointly with Edinburgh, the earlier period of the historical Scotland—that Scotland which, as the Celtic kings recognised more and more the value of the Lothians and of the neighbouring districts which became Anglicised in various ways, gradually formed a state “with a dark and mysterious Celtic background, but which, as it appears in history, is English in laws, language, and manners; more truly English indeed in many respects than England itself remained after the Norman Conquest.”* The Lothians, as we know, were English from the time when the earldom, which at first formed part of Northumberland, was granted to the King of Scots. The adjoining region of Fife was among the first to fall under English influences, and, as we shall see, the great patrons of Dunfermline, Malcolm and Margaret, were the chief extenders of those influences.

* See Freeman's “ History of the Norman Conquest,” Vol. I., p. 140 et seq.; and for the cession of Lothian, the Appendix to the same volume, Note B.



Edinburgh, the strong fortress of the Lothians, with its unrivalled position, increased as the power of Scotland itself increased, and has remained the great capital of the country. Dunfermline, while the remains of its venerable monastic church still speak plainly of its ancient importance, continued so late as the seventeenth century to be a favourite royal residence; but it is only of late years that the town has largely developed, and has become important for its trade and its manufactures. Edinburgh has advanced steadily altogether, and the foundations of her modern prosperity lie far back in her earlier history. Dunfermline has two distinct periods of importance, sharply separated. To the first belongs her earlier and mediæval history, to the second her manufactures and her tall chimneys—of recent growth, and still rapidly extending.

Dunfermline is best reached from Edinburgh, whence it is distant about seventeen miles. The traveller will pass Ravelstone and Craigerook-houses famous in the social recollections of Edinburgh ; Cramond Bridge, over the Almond Water, where James V. was saved from a night attack by a countryman at work in his barn ; Dalmeny Park and Dundas Castle ; and so reaches the South Queensferry : happily, with little chance of such delay on his journey as at that place fell to the lot of the ingenious Mr. Oldbuck and the friend with whom he travelled in the “Queensferry Diligence.” The width of the ferry to the opposite shore of Fife is about two miles. The royal name, and the traditions connected with the coast, belong to the earlier story of Dunfermline, and will best be explained in connection with that. From the landing-place at North Queensferry the road winds round the hills where Cromwell fought the battle of Inverkeithing, in 1657; and passing that royal burgh, comes at length within sight of the town and the towers of Dunfermline. The country is marked by rolling bills which nowhere attain any great height. The town itself stands on an eminence, and is so far imposing in appearance. The church towers rise above tiled roofs of small houses on the outskirts. Westward lies the wooded valley in which stand the remains of the royal palace; and beyond stretches the old town, with its modern additions-factories and tall chimneys, the smoke from which overhangs too heavily, and somewhat interferes with, the earlier associations of the scene. In Scotland, however, the history of the past has always been regarded with more interest, and its traditions have been preserved with more zeal, than on the southern side of the Border; and, notwithstanding the stir, the smoke and bustle of the factories, the figures of King Malcolm and St. Margaret are still not only most prominent in the mind's eye of the visitor, but are those which recur most frequently in the legends and recollections of the folk of Dunfermline.

Before we make our way to the church and to the ruins of the palace, it is well to consider the history of the place, so far as that can be gathered from the older writers. Dunfermline—the name has been variously interpreted as “Dun faire linne,” the watch-tower or “dun” on the stream ; or “Dun fiar linne,” the tower of the crooked or winding stream—seems to be first recorded by name in a passage from a contemporary Life of St. Margaret inserted by Fordun in his “Scottish History.” It is there mentioned as the place at which the marriage of Malcolm and Margaret was celebrated. says the writer, who was personally acquainted with it, a position" of great natural strength, surrounded by thick forests, protected by lofty rocks. In the midst was

It was,


fair plain, also defended by rocks and streams, so that the old verse might almost be applied to it :

Non homini facilis, vix adeunda feris.'”

This description is somewhat imaginative, since it is not easy to discover the "fair plain,” unless we take it to be the flat but narrow surface of the rock on which the ancient tower (not the palace) was built. But it sufficiently shows us a stronghold in the midst of a wide forest country, where all the beasts of chase may have abounded, and which was readily accessible by sea, and from the greater fortress of Edinburgh. It is clear that Dunfermline was a favourite resort of the Scottish kings long before the marriage, and the consequent foundation of the abbey, gave the place a new significance. This famous marriage, the results of which on the fortunes and civilisation of Scotland were



so lasting and so important, took place in the year 1070. When, after the conquest of England was complete, the Conqueror had withdrawn from the wasted lands of York and Durham, the Scottish king, Malcolm Canmore (Great Head), invaded the miserable country south of Tweed, which seemed already to have been given up to utter ruin. During this expedition, and whilst his followers were ravaging the district about the mouth of the Wear, news was brought to Malcolm that ships bearing the English exiles who had fled from conquered York had put into the haven of Wearmouth. The chief of these exiles were the Ætheling Edgar, his mother Agatha, and his sisters Margaret and Christina. Malcolm “met them in person, gave them his fullest peace, and bade them dwell in his realm as long as it might please them. They sailed on toward Scotland, he

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