THE HIGH STREET AND NETHER BOW. 271 the front land ; and owing to the alteration in the level of floors, and other changes consequent on the wedding of this wrinkled dowager of the sixteenth century with its spruce partner of the eighteenth, an explorer of its intricate labyrinths finds himself beset by as many inconveniences as Mr Love1 experienced on his first introduction to the mitred Abbot of Trotcosey’s Grange, at Monkbarns. On ascending the winding stair, by which he reaches the door of the first floor, he has then to descend another ; and after threading a dark passage on this lower level, somewhat in the form of the letter Z, he reaches a third flight of steps equally zigzag in their direction, whose ascent-if he have courage to persevere EO far, lands him in “ that other tenement of land, commonly called the Fountain, a little above-the Nether Bow, on the south side of the High Street of Edinburgh; and which tenement of land, formerly called the Backland, some time belonged to Nicol and Alexander Bassandene, lawful sons to Michael Bassandene, lying in the closs called Bassandene’s Closs,” &c. Such is the description of this ancient fabric, as given in the earlier title-deeds of the present proprietor. The same building is repeatedly referred to in the evidence of the accomplices of the Earl of Bothwell in the murder of Darnley, an event which took place in the lifetime of the old printer. In the deposition of George Dalgleish, one of those who was executed for his share i; that crime, it is stated, that ‘‘ eftir thay enterit within the [Nether Bow] Port, thai zeid up abone Bassyntine’s house, on the south side of the gait, and knockit at ane dur beneth the sword slippers, and callit for the Laird of Ormestounes, and one within answerit he was not thare ; and thai passit down a cloiss beneth Frier Wynd, and enterit in at the zet of the Black Friers.”l This reference clearly indicates the tenement which we have described ; the only question is, whether it was that of Thomas Bassendyne, the printer, referred to in the imprint of his rare 4to edition of Sir David Lindsay’s Poems, printed in 1574, while “ dwelland at the Nether BOW.” In the statement of debts appended to his will, there was “ awand to Alesoun Tod, mother to the defunct, for half ane zeiris male of the house iiii 1. ; ” while there was due to him, “be Michael Bassinden, bruther to the said vmquhile Thomas, of byrun annuellis, the soume of ane hundreth ten pundia.” From this, it seems probable that his mother was liferented in that part of the house which formed the printer’s dwelling and establishment, while the remainder, belonging to himself, was occupied by his brother. At all events he leaves in his will, “his thrid, the ane half thairof to his wyf, and the vthir half to his mother, and Michael, and his bairnes ; ” in which we presume to have been included the house, which we find both he and his bairns afterwards possessing, and for which no rent would appear to have been exacted during the lifetime of the printer. The name of the Fountain, by which the old tenement is distinguished in the titles, is curious. The well, which nom bears the same name, had in all probability formerly stood either in front of this building, or more probably-from the speciality of the name, and the narrowness of the street at that point-it had formed a portion of the building itself; for it is not styled the Fountain Land, according to usual custom, but simply Tde Fountain. In the evidence of the Earl of Bothwell’s accomplices, already referred to, it is stated by William Powrie, that after thai hard the crack, thai past away togidder out at the Frier Yet, and sinderit quhen thai came to the Cowgate, pairt up the Blackfrier . Pitcairn’s Criminal Trials, Supplement, p, 495. Bannatyne Misc., vol. ii p. 202
272 MEMORIALS OF EDINBURGH. Wynd, and paid up the cloiss which is under the Endmyleis Well.9’ 1 Jvhether this be the same well is doubtful, as no close lower down appears as a thoroughfare in early or later maps ; it is evident, however, that the name of the Fountain Close is derived from some other, and probably much more -mportant, conduit than the plain structure beside John Knox’s house, which has long borne the same designation. On the east side of the close, directly opposite the entrance to Bassendyne’s house, an ancient entrance of a highly ornamental character appears. It consists of two doorways, &th narrow pilasters on each side supporting the architrave, which is adorned with a variety of inscriptions, as represented in the accompanying woodcut, and altogether forms a remarkably neat and elegant design. “his is the mansion of Adam Fullerton, whose name is carved over the left doorway-an eminent and influential citizen in the reign of Queen Mary, and an active colleague and coadjutor of Edward Hope in the cause of the &formation. In 1561, his name appears as one of the bailies of Edinburgh, who, along with Archibald Douglas of Kilspindie, the provost, laid hold of a poor craftsman who had been guilty of the enormity of playing Robin Hood, and condemned him to be hangeda procedure which ended in the mob becoming masters of the town, and compelling the magistrates to sue for the mediation of the Governor of the Castle, and at length fairly to succumb to the rioters.’ Only two months after this commotion, Queen Mary landed at Leith, and was loyally entertained by the town of Edinburgh-Adam Fullerton, doubtless, taking a prominent part among her civic hosts. In the General Assembly held at Leith, January 16, 1571, his name occur8 as commissioner of the town of Edinb~rgh.~ On the 23d of June following, during the memorable siege of Edinburgh by the Regent Mar, in the name of the infant King, the burgesses of the capital who favoured the Regent, to the number of two hundred men, united themselves into a band, and passing privately to Leith, which was then held by the Regent’s forces; they there made choice of Adam Fullerton for their captain.l The consequence of this was his being “ denuncit our souerane ladiea rebell, and put to the horne ” on the 18th of August following ; and “ vpoun the tuantie nynt day of the said moneth, James Duke .of Chattellarault, George Erle of Huntlie, Alexander Lord Home, accumpanyit with diuerse prelatis and barronis, past to the tolbuith of Edinburgh; and thair sittand in parliament, the thrie estaitts being convenit, foirfaltit Matho Erle of Lennox, James Erle of Mortoun, John Erle of Mar,” and many other nobles, knights, and burgesses, of the Parliament, foremost among the latter of whom ia Adam Fullerton, burgess of Edinburgh, “ and decernit ilk ane of thame to Pitcairn’s Criminal Trials, Supplement, p. 567. Diurnal of Occurrents, p, 283 ; ante, p. 69. Booke of the Univeraall Kirk, p. 208. ‘ Diurnal of Occurrenta, p. 227. Ibid, p. 239.