THE CASTLE. 123 Along the deeply arched vault which leads into the Argyle Battery, may be traced the openings for two portcullises, and the hinges of several successive gates that formerly guarded this important pass. In Sandby’s view, already referred to, from which the vignette at the head of this chapter is copied, this gateway is shown as finished with an embattled parapet, and a flat roof, on which a guard could be statioued for its defence ; but since then it has been disfigured by the erection over it of an additional building, of a very unornamental character, intended for the use of the master carpenter. The apartment immediately above the long vaulted archway, is a place of peculiar interest, as the ancient state prison of the Castle. Within this gloomy stronghold, both the Marquis and Earl of Argyle were most probably confined previous to trial ; and here also many of lesser note have been held in captivity at different periods, down to the eventful year 1746, when numerous noble and gallant adherents of the house of Stuart were confined in it, as well as others suspected of an attachment to the same cause.l The last state prisoners lodged in this stronghold were Watt and Downie, accused of high treason, in 1794, the former of whom was condemned and executed. It was at first, intended to have fulfilled the sentence of the law at the ancient place of execution for traitors, on the Castle Hill, but this being considered liable to be construed into a betrayal of fear on the part of Government, as seeking to place themoelves under the protection of the Castle guns, he was ultimately executed in the Lawnmarket. The only other objects of ipterest in the outer fortress are the Governor’s House, a building probably erected in the reign of Queen Anne, and the Armoury, immediately behind it, where a well appointed store of arms \s preserved, neatly arranged, intermixed with some relics of ancient warfare. In the exterior fortificatione, to the west of the Armoury, may still be traced the archway of the ancient postern, which has been built up for many years. Here Viscount Dundee held his conference with the Duke of Gordon, when on his way to raise the Highland cla.ns in favour of King James, while the Convention were assembled in the Parliament House, and were proceeding to settle the crown upon William and Mary. With only thirty of his dragoons, he rode down Leith Wynd, and along what was called the Long-Gate, a road nearly on the present line of Princes Street, while the town was beating to arms to pursue him. Leaving his men at the Kirkbrae- head, he clambered .up the rock at this place, and urgently besought the Duke to accompany him to the HighlandR, and summon his numerous vassals to rise on behalf of King James. The Duke, however, preferred to remain and hold out the Castle for the terror of the Convention, and Dundee hastily pursued his way to Stirling.’ On this same site we may, with every probability, presume the ancient postern to have stood, through which the body of the pious Queen Margaret was secretly conveyed in the year 1093, while the fortress was besieged by Donald Bane, the usurper.* The most interesting buildings, however, in the Castle, are to be found, as might be ’ The rebel ladiw are also said to have been confined there, and Lady OgiMe made her escape in the drem of a * Minor Antiquitiea, p. 65. * Ante, p. 3. It has been stated (Walks in Edinburgh, p 52), but, we think, without su5cient evidence, that the Castle was without fortifications on the west and north siderr until recent period, tradition assigning their fimt erection to William 111. But the same walls that still exist appear in (lordon’s map, 1648, with the remains of ruinous buildinga attnched to them, proving their antiquity at that earlier date. washerwoman, brought by Wias Balmain, who remained in her stead ; she was allowed afterwards to go free.
1 24 MEMORIALS OF EDINBURGH. anticipated, on the loftiest and least accessible part of the rock on which it is built. Here, on the very edge of the precipitous cliff, overhanging the Old Town several hundred feet below, the ancient Royal Palace is reared, forming the south and east sides of a large quadrangle, called the Grand Parade. The chief portion of the southern side of this square consists of a large ancient edifice, long converted into an hospital for the garrison, but which had been ori,ginally the great hall of the Palace. Notwithstanding the numerous changes to which it has been subjected in adapting it to its present use, some remains of its ancient grandeur have been preserved. At the top of the principal staircase may be seen a very finely sculptured stone corbel, now somewhat mutilated, representing in front a female face of very good proportions, and ornamented on each with a volute and thistle. On this still rests the original oak beam ; and on either side of it there are smaller beamfl let into the wall, with shields carved on the front of each. The whole are now defaced with whitewash, but they afford evidence of the existence formerly of a fine open timbered roof to the great hall, and it is probable that much more of it still remains, though concealed by modern ceilings and partitions. From the occasional assembling of the Parliament here, while the Scottish Monarchs continued to reside in the Castle, it still retain8 the name of the Parliament House.’ The view from the windows on this side of the Palace is scarcely surpassed by any other in the capital. Immediately below are the picturesque old houses of the Grassmarket and West Port, crowned by the magnificent towers of Heriot’s Hospital. From this abyss, the hum of the neighbouring city rises up, mellowed by the distance, into one pleasing voice of life and industry; while, beyond, a gorgeous landscape is spread out, reaching almoat to the ancient landmarks of the kingdom, guarded on the far east by the old keep of Craigmillar Castle, and on the west by Merchiston Tower. Between these is still seen the wide expanse of the Borough Muir, on which the fanciful eye of one familiar with the national history will summon up the Scottish hosts marshalling for southern war ; as when the gallant Jameses looked forth from these same towers, and proudly beheld them gathering around the standard of (( the Ruddy Lion,” pitched in the massive (( Bore Stane,”’ still remaining at the Borough Muir Head. The windows in this part of the quadrangle have been very large, though now partly built up, and near the top of the building, there is a sculptured shield, much defaced, which seems to bear the Scottish Lion, with a crown over it. A stone tablet over the arch of the old doorway, with ’ Immediately to the east of this, the royal apartments are situated. In the Treasurer‘s Acoounta, various items occur, relating to the royal apartmenta in the Castle, e.g. AJJ. 1516, “for trein werk (timber work) for The Great Haw Windois in the Castell; gret gestis, doubill dalis, &c., for the Myd Chamer ;” and, again, r( to Robert Balye for fluring of the Lordis Haw in Davidis Tower of the Castell in Ed‘ ”-Pitcairn’s Crim. Trials, Appendix. The Hall is also alluded to in the survey of 1572, and ita locality deacribed aa “On the south syde wher the haule is,” &c.-Bann. Misc., vol. ii. p. 70. In a seriee of “One hundred and fifty select views, by P. Sandby,” published by Boydell, there is one of Edinburgh Castle from the south, dated 1779, in which two of the great hall windows remain ; they are lofty, extending through two stories of the building, as now arranged, and apparently divided by stone mullions. Bore Stane, so called from the hollow or Lore into which the staff of the royal standard was placed (vide Marmion, canto iv. v. 28). About a mile south of this, near the entrance to Morton Hall, is the Eare Stane (confounded by Maitland, p. 506, with the former). Various stones in Gloucestershire and other districta of England bear the same name, which an antiquarian friend suggests is probably derived from the Saxun I?&, signifying slaughter, and therefore indicating the site of an ancient battle. About a mile to the south of this, a huge h i d i c a l mass of red sandstone bears the name of Buck Stane. The two last are popularly believed to mark the rendezvous of the Court for coursing the hare or hunting the buck in “ The olden time.” The coping, supported on stone corbels, still remains a8 in the earliest views.