Archaeology, Education, Medical,& Charitable Institutions of Glasgow (Classic Reprint)

Archaeology, Education, Medical,& Charitable Institutions of Glasgow (Classic Reprint)
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Excerpt from Archaeology, Education, Medical,& Charitable Institutions of Glasgow

Athe district which he first ruled as earl. Each of these burghs was placed on the royal domain, in close proximity to the king’s castle, and they probably mark the sites which Earl David used for residence and the exercise of justice, even before he succeeded to the throne. The inhabitants of Scottish burghs, termed burgesses, were originally crown tenants paying to the king for their holdings a yearly rent called burgh maill and though the seven burghs in question might not, strictly speaking, be regarded as royal burghs till after the king’s accession, the inhabitants may even before that time have been paying their maills to the earl’s bailies and enjoying the privileges of free burgesses. Besides their individual holdings, burgesses had usually a considerable tract of land held in commonty, and used for pasturage or cultivation. But the privileges of the burgesses were not confined within these limits. Often they had the exclusive privilege of buying and selling and of levying custom over a wide extent of country, and many of the early charters provide that goods belonging to the burgesses themselves should be exempt from custom throughout the kingdom. Wool and hides seem to have been at first the staple commodities of commerce, and the subsequent processes of manufacture through which the raw material passed gave employment to craftsmen in the burghs. There are several old burgh laws giving burgesses a monopoly in articles of commerce.

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