« AnteriorContinuar »
He hied him to the head of the house,
He blew his trumpet loud and schill,
Her father locked the door at night,
And when he heard the trumpet sound,
'' My father dear, I pray forbear,
And reproach no more your Annie: For I*d rather hear that cow to low, Than hae all the kine in Fyvie.
"I would not for my braw new gown,
"But if ye strike me, I will cry,
At the same time, the Lord came in; He said, "Whatails thee, Annie?" "'Tis all for love now I must die, For bonnie Andrew Lammic."
"Pray Mill of Tifty, gie consent, And let your daughter marry."
"It will be with some higher match Than the Trumpeter of Fyvie."
"If she were come of as high kind,
'It's Fyvie's lands are fair and wide,
Her father struck her wondrous sore,
As also did her mother;
But woe be to her brother.
Her brother struck her wondrous sore,
He brake her neck in the hall-door
'Alas! my father and mother dear
"0 mother dear, make yc my bed,
"Ye neighbours hear, both far and near,
"No kind of vice ere stained my life,
Her mother then she made her bed,
Her tender heart it soon did break,
But the word soon went up and down,
That she was dead and buried.
Lord Fyvie he did wring his hands,
The fairest flower's cut down by love,
'Oh ! woe betide Mill o' Tifty's pride!
Her father sorely now laments,
The loss of his dear Annie, And wishes he had gien consent
To wed with Andrew Lammie.
Her mother grieves, both air and late, Her sisters, cause they'd scorned her;
Surely her brother doth mourn and grieve For the cruel usage he'd gien her. .
But now, alas 1 it was too late,
Through life unhappy is their fate,
When Andrew hame from Edinbro' cainc, With meikle grief and sorrow; "My love has died for me to-day, I'll die for her to.morrow.
"Now I will on to Tifty's den,
Where the burn rins clear and bonnie; With tears I'll, view the Bridge of Skeugh, Where I parted last with Annie*
"Then will I speed to the churchyard,
Ye parents grave, who children have,
In crushing them be cannie;
Remember Titty's Annie.
'' The Duke of Cumberland marched through the grounds of Fyvie on his way to the North, previous to the battle of Culloden, Lord Lewis Gordon being then a distinguished officer under the banner of Prince Charles Edward. The Countess of Aberdeen, but'a few months a widow, placed herself on the roadside, accompanied by her eldest son, to see the passage of his army. The Duke addressed her, and asked her name; her answer was, 'I am the sister of Lord Lewis Gordon !' a reply characteristic of the firmness, as it was of the loyalty, mistaken or otherwise, of this noble lady."—(Hay.)
On the 24th October 1644 Montrose occupied the castle, and had a skirmish with the forces of the Covenanters under Argyle. He, however, did not think the castle tenable against the superior force of Argyle, and retreated to an eminence a little to the northeastward, on the right of the gate. "The entrenchments," says the "New Statistical Report," "are still distinctly to be seen, and the ground goes by the name of Montrose's Camp. One of Argyll's encampments also, on the lands of Ardlogie, is still called the Campfold."
"13th Aug. 1875, Fyvie. — There is a beautiful lake, and the gardens are very fine. The situation lovely. On a broad level grassy plateau, washed by the Ythan, which runs within a few feet of the castle wall, rise the massive towers of this huge fortress. Strategically the situation is bad, for it is commanded on all sides by high ground. These steep braes are, however, now covered with noble woods, and make the scene exquisitely beautiful. The main entrance to the north is under a fine towered gateway, covered with ivy."
3J miles from Fyvie.
As we approach the station of Auchterless we see on the left the massive square keep of the old castle of Towie Barclay, now the property of the governors of Robert Gordon's Hospital, Aberdeen. The building is very old, and the castle was of great extent and importance. Over the chief entrance is the inscription—
"Sir Alexander Barclay of Tolly, foundator, decessit Anno Domini 1136."
and on other parts these—
"D In tim of valth all men B
and higher up the building on a scroll,
"Sir Valter Barclay foundit Tollie Mills 1210."
Hay tells us that the: j were other inscriptions, which are now removed or obliterated. The venerable building, he adds, continued in a tolerably entire state until about the year 1792, when Mr. Irvine, the then tenant, took off the roof, removed the turrets and embrazures, and razed two stories from its height, placing upon the dilapidated castle a vulgar modern roof. He also filled up the fosse, which constituted the only remaining feature of former baronial consequence.
Notwithstanding the destruction to which it has been subjected, the keep of Towie Barclay still presents an imposing appearance; and this although now it forms only the purlieus of a modern farm-house. One of the vaulted rooms of the ground-floor is used as a cellar for paraffin, and another asa milkhouse. The lofty hall, with its groined and vaulted ceiling, circular arches, and severe ornaments, is fitted up as a church, and is used for Sabbath evening services by the several ministers of the neighbourhood alternately.
The Barclays, to whom this ancient castle belonged, were a very distinguished family, and stand out prominently in the history of Scotland from the days of Malcolm Canmore till the days of Mary Queen of Scots, whose side they espoused. About that time they became connected with the Gartly family, and Hay tells us:—"In the reign of Mary both families were warm partisans of that unfortunate princess; they shared in all the plots of the times, and, amongst others, joined heart and hand with the Earls of Huntly and Erroll in their rebellions against the Regent; and Colonel Barclay, who resided in Spain, conducted the negotiations with that Court in what was called The Spanish Plot. In consequence, on the suppression of this imprudent rebellion, their estates were seized, and the males of the race of any consequence were obliged to take refuge in France and Spain. It is to this time that the inscription 'In time of valth,' etc., refers; and not to the erection of the castle, which, from its style, evidently belongs to the 13th or 14th century.
"'Tollie Barclay of the glen, Happy to the maids, but never to the men,'
is said to have been the weird of Thomas the Rhymer to the lords of this now ruinous stronghold."
This weird "was said to follow the family in the death of the heir-male, who seldom survived his father; and so strong a hold had this in the belief of the people, that it was by them assigned as the reason for the sale of the estate in 1753. It was then purchased by the Earl of Findlater for his second son, who died a few years after, and when little more than of age. His death was considered another verification of the prediction of Thomas the Rhymer; and Lord Findlater, one of the ablest men of his day, was so far from being above the current superstition that ever after on his journeys to and from the South, when arriving upon the estate at either boundary, he closed the blinds of his carriage till he had passed tho fated territory, and in the year 1792 he sold the estate to the trustees of Robert Gordon's Hospital, Aberdeen."
About two miles beyond Towio Barclay, on a gentle slope to the right, and embosomed among fine woods, is Hatton Castle, the residence of Garden
W. Duff, whose family bought the estate from the Mowatts in 1727. It stands on the site of the ancient castle of Balquholly, and was built about 1814.
Directly west from it, on the left of the railway, is Gask House, once the property of the Forbeses and others, and now belonging to the Earl of Fife.
4 miles from Auchterless. 18 „ „ Inveramsay. 38J „ Aberdeen.
"Turriff is a burgh of barony, a market town, the seat of Justice of the Peace and Sheriff Small Debt Courts, and a place of historical and ecclesiastical note. It is situated on a rising ground, on the north bank of the burn or water of Turriff, about half a mile from its junction with the Deveron, and has a fine southern exposure; but, being built of red freestone, has a somewhat dingy aspect. The streets of the main body of the town, comprising the old part, are irregular and confined; but in the newer parts are more spacious, and on something like a regular plan. A market cross stands in the principal street; and there are some good shops." There are four banks, two or more inns. Near the town is a brick and tile work, north - west of which are the Free Church and Manse, and Chalmers' Schools; these last built and endowed from a bequest left by Mr. Chalmers, a merchant of the town, for the education of poor children of Turriff. A little north of the town stands the Parish Church, a plain red freestone edifice, and a little beyond the station is the Episcopalian Chapel in the pointed style. To the antiquary the most interesting object in the town is the old Parish Church, standing in the burial-ground at the west end of the principal street. It was dedicated to Congan, now ordinarily pronounced Cowan. "The old church was a building of some note (says Pratt), being 120 feet long by 18 feet wide. The date of its erection is not known, but is supposed to have been in the 11th century and in tho time of Malcolm Canmore. From the 'Old Statistical Account' we learn that 'the east end was formerly divided from the rest of the building by a row of balusters,' by which, no doubt, is meant a chancel screen. The only part of the structure which now remains, as we learn from the 'New Statistical Account,' is 'the eastern part of the building, called the quire and the belfry, which is rather a handsome piece of architecture and contains a fine-toned bell, bearing the date 1557.' On the north wall of the church is a tablet in memory of one of the Barclays of Towie, of date 1636, and in the burying ground are several monuments worthy of notice. In consequence of the dilapidated state of the churchyard wall, a mason was employed in 1861 to repair it, and by way of economy to take the materials from the remains of the old church! Near the spot in the south wall, where the work of demolition was going on, there had been a window, which, along with others, had been built up at some time. One side of this window fell along with the ruin, but the other remained intact, and displayed, to the astonished gaze of the workmen, a fresco painting of a mitred abbot, on the bay of the window. The colours were wonderfully fresh. It represented an Episcopal figure, fully habited, his pastoral staff in his left hand, his right hand being elevated in the act of benediction, with an inscription above, 'S. Ninianus.' A similar fresco was on the opposite splay, which, as we have said, was destroyed in the pulling down of the wall. There is reason to believe that there had been a series of pictures all round the church. From the history of the Abbots of Kinloss by Forrarius, we learn that certain paintings, apparently in oil, were executed for Abbot Robert Reid at Kinloss about the year 1540. The historian adds that the artist also painted the chamber and oratory of the Abbot, 'sed pictura leviore qua? nunc est per Scotiam receptissima.' It is thought that these expressions are descriptive of fresco painting. The fragment of S. Ninian thus discovered is of especial value as a specimen of Scotch ecclesiastical frescoes, of which wc know so little." The
Banffshire Journal of Dec. 24, 1861, thus describes this fresco :—'' The ecclesiastical robes of the ancient church were represented in this fresco. The alb, or under dress, over the feet, white ; the chasuble, descending from the shoulders, of a leaden colour, but believed to have been black originally; the habit over the chasuble, yellow; the scapular, a kind of apron, Venetian red ; the stole, which should be partly seen on cither side of tne bottom of the chasuble, is not distinguishable in colour from the scapular in the fresco ; the amice, over the left arm, white; the crosier, yellow ; the mitre, black, with yellow stripes." It has been carefully described by Dr. John Stuart, in the Preface to The Book of Deer, where he has introduced a facsimile of it in coloured lithography.
The Knights Templar seem to have had an establishment in Turriff. There are the Templar's Brae and the Templar's Feu, which are indicative of their existence here at one time.
The Erroll family were superiors of Turriff from 1412 to 1762, three hundred and fifty years. A house still called the Lodging was probably their residence.
"Till about the middle of the last century there were the remains of several towers about the place, one of which still exists in the gateway and vaults of an old and now almost ruinous building, which goes by the name of Castle Bainy. No records remain of their origin or purpose."—(Pratt.)
Immediately to the north - east is Delgaty Castle, formerly a seat of the Hays, now that of Mr. Ainslie. A Sir Wm Hay of Dalgetty was the intimate of Montrose, and associated with him in his execution, and also in what were termed his "True Funerals," when, after the Restoration, his remains were collected from the various places where they had been exposed, and reburied with circumstances of great pomp in the church of St. Giles at Edinburgh. "The castle stands on the west bank of a valley, the eastern verge of which abruptly rises into a hill, covered with wood. From an inscription on one part of the building, the date of its erection is 1579 ; but we can scarcely think that this is the age of the original castle, the style of which is Norman. Some alterations and additions were made by the late Sir Alexander Duff, in good keeping with the earlier parts of the structure. This venerable pile now combines all the grandeur of the baronial mansion of former times with the refinements and elegancies of the present day. It is a regularly castellated building, about 66 feet in height, parts of the walls being at least 7 feet in thickness. Some of the original rooms are groined, having the bosses embellished with the arms of its former occupants, the Hays of Erroll. Immediately adjoining the castle are the remains of the chapel, in which are stones with inscriptions now scarcely legible. The view from the castle battlements is very fine, embracingthe immediate grounds andgardens, and commanding an extensive view of the surrounding country."
About three miles to the north of Delgaty is Craigston Castle. It was founded in 1604 and completed in 1607 by John Urquhart, well known in the local history of the time as the Tutor of Cromarty; and it still remains in the possession of his lineal descendants the Pollard-Urquharts. "The building, with the massive walls and vaulted roofs of the lower apartments, and the strength and solidity so invariably characteristic of the Scottish country houses of that period, is distinguished by much florid architectural ornament. The most remarkable part of the edifice is a lofty arch, which connects two wings that project from the main body of the building, so as to form the highest part of the castle into a compact square, whereas it was originally an oblong, with the two wings above mentioned thrown out. The lower part of the vacant space has been, by one of the more recent proprietors, filled up with an entrance-hall, which, at the same time, adds to the comfort and improves the symmetry of the building. The front of this lofty arch is adorned by grotesque effigies, bearing crowns, or grasping warlike or musical instruments, with a richly carved pediment of red sandstone. The inside of the
castle is remarkable for a spacious hall, now converted into a handsome drawing-room, containing numerous specimens of curiously carved oak panelling of the same age as the building, and the remains of its original decoration. These present the effigies of a very miscellaneous assemblage of heroes, kings, cardinal virtues, and evangelists. Amongst others one room contains the sovereigns of the Stuart family down to James the Sixth; and another, the carved likeness of Prince Henry, the heir to the Crown when the castle was erected, also of his brother Prince Charles, both being represented as children. Among the pictures in the castle are three by Jamesone; of these one is a portrait of General David Leslie, another that of William Forbes, Bishop of Edinburgh, and the third that of Sir Alexander Fraser of Philorth. There are also portraits of the last four members of the royal family of Stuart, namely, James, Prince of AVales, and his princess, Clementina Sobieski, with their sons, the Prince Charles Edward, and Henry, Cardinal de York. These, with full-length pictures of the last Earl Marischal and of Captain John Urquhart of Cromarty and Craigston, are originals, and painted about the year 1735 by Francesco Trevisani, an eminent portrait-painter of Rome "— (Hay.)
The following extract from a letter of 1746, printed in the 4th vol. of the '' Miscellany of the Spalding Club," refers to an interesting feature of this castle. The writer is giving his opinion as to the best means of capturing fugitive Jacobites.
'' Craigston has a secret, which hid three men ; as ye goe ben the hall, it is in the thickeness of the wall annent your face, att the backe of the end of the table, next the inner chamber door, as ye stand looking out at the window, which window is closs at the chamber door. Its closs at your right hand, it enters from the room above ; goe up stair from the inner chamber, as ye enter the chamber at the hall thcrs a private room, off that room for a chamber box, under which box a pavement lifts up and so if there were a strong