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Blackfriars Street (south side) led to the monastery of the Blackfriars, founded by Alexander II. in 1230.
This thoroughfare, or rather the older and narrower Blackfriars Wynd, was the scene of the brawl between the supporters of Arran and of Angus, known as "Cleanse the Causeway", which took place in 30 April 1520.
Cardinal Beaton's house, at the foot of the Wynd, is now demolished, but on the west side the house of the Regent Morton, with its sculptured doorway, may still be seen. Morton was beheaded for being implicated in Darnley's murder.
The tenement facing High Street at South Gray's Close (a few doors below Blackfriars Street) was the birthplace of the Honourable Henry Erskine (1746 - 1817), a famous Whig politician and lawyer who effectively created the modern adversarial, and also of his brother Thomas (1750 - 1823), afterwards Lord Chancellor of England.
The next close is Hyndford's, where lived the mother of Lady Anne Barnard, authoress of "Auld Robin Gray" ; Jane, Duchess of Gordon, the undisputed queen of fashion; and Sir Walter Scott's maternal uncle, Dr. Rutherford Scott himself was made a Freemason here.
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