Listed Building

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MAGUS MUIR, MEMORIAL TO FIVE COVENANTERS AND ARCHBISHOP SHARP MEMORIALLB15808

Status: Designated

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Summary

Category
C
Date Added
22/10/1984
Local Authority
Fife
Planning Authority
Fife
Parish
St Andrews And St Leonards
NGR
NO 45543 15109
Coordinates
345543, 715109

Description

MEMORIAL TO FIVE COVENANTERS: (Map Ref: NO 45543, 15109): 1877 by John Whyte-Melville; restored late 20th century. Inscribed upright stone slab with double-sequential head. Rectangular enclosure with parapet walls, rusticated cope and cast-iron railings.

Inscription: Here lies Thomas Brown, James Wood, Andrew Sword, John Weddell and John Clyde who suffered martyrdom on Magus Muir for their adherence to the Word of God and Scotland's Covenanted work of Reformation.

ARCHBISHOP SHARP MEMORIAL: (Map Ref: NO 45618, 15152): 1877 by John Whyte-Melville; restored late 20th century. Rubble pyramidal monument with inset granite rectangular tablet with Latin inscription in relief letters.

Statement of Special Interest

Two historically associated memorials erected in 1877 at Magus Muir, an area of farm and woodland near St Andrews. They commemorate significant events in the history of the post-Reformation church in Scotland, relating specifically to the assassination/murder of Archbishop James Sharp of St Andrews by a group of Covenanters at this location in 1679.

The five Covenanters were taken prisoner at the battle of Bothwell Bridge in June 1679. They were executed at Magus Muir 5 months later in a vengeful response to the killing of the Archbishop. The 1877 memorial stone is a renewal of an 17th century stone marker at the site. The pyramid-shaped memorial in the woods nearby serves as a further marker of the related events. Its Latin inscription states that near this place, James Sharp, Archbishop of St Andrews was murdered by his enemies in 1679.

Archbishop Sharp has been the subject of criticism for his part in the persecution of those who had signed the National Covenant in 1638 to confirm their opposition to the interference by the Stuart kings in the affairs of the Presbyterian Church.

Half a kilometre to the south at Claremont farm, local land owner and freemason, John Whyte-Melville also restored and re-set an 18th century memorial stone to Andrew Guillan (see separate listing). Guillane, a weaver from Balmerino, was one of two men executed in 1683 for being present at the killing of Archbishop Sharp.

Archbishop Sharp Memorial formerly a Sheduled Monument (SM 9701), removed 2013.

Memorial to Five Covenanters, Magus Muir formerly a Scheduled Monument (SM 9702), removed 2013.

Previously listed as 'Grave of 5 Covenanters, Magus Muir'. Change of Statutory Listing Address and list description revised, 2013.

References

Bibliography

Rev Charles Rose, History of St Andrews (1849) p65. D H Fleming, Guide to St Andrews (1881).

About Listed Buildings

Listing is the way that a building or structure of special architectural or historic interest is recognised by law through the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings of special architectural or historic interest using the criteria published in the Historic Environment Scotland Policy Statement.

The statutory listing address is the legal part of the listing. The information in the listed building record gives an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building(s). It is not a definitive historical account or a complete description of the building(s). The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

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