Glasgow - Church Histories
Registration. —The districts into which for registration purposes Glasgow, Kinning Park, Govan, and Partick are now divided, with their populations in 1891, are :— Bridgeton (44,342), Camlachie (43,690), Dennistoun (63,888), Calton (36,154), Blackfriars (31,610), St Rollox (50,426), Blythswood (29,311), Milton (38,737), Kelvin (67,634), Anderston (42,263), Hutchesontown (59,750), Gorbals (49,939), Tradeston (27,436), Kinning Park (33,291), Maryhill (26,674), Partick (50,466), Cathcart (16,589), Plantation (22,980), Govan (41,735), Eastwood (16,042, of whom, however, the greater portion are in the landward division), and Shettleston (12,591, of whom, however, only 18 are in the Glasgow portion of the parish).
From Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland, 1892-96
Ecclesiastical Affairs.— Established Churches. — The early division of Glasgow ecclesiastically has been noticed in the last section, and since then the separation of quoad sacra parishes has gone on apace in City, Barony, and Govan parishes, as well as in Calton and the parts of Springburn and Maryhill adjoining the city, till there were in 1896 in the city and suburbs 75 charges and 9 mission churches, a number of which are at present in course of conversion into separate ecclesiastical districts. The original City parish, which comprised 988·624 acres, has now been carved into the Inner High, the Robertson Memorial, St Paul’s, St James’, St George’s, St Andrew’s, St David’s, St Enoch’s, St John’s, Tron (St Mary’s), Blackfriars (College), St Peter’s, Chalmers’ Memorial, and Bridgegate quoad sacra parishes. Macleod, Martyrs’, St.George’s-in-the-Fields, and Wellpark have been formed partly from the City parish and partly from the Barony. Barony itself, which comprised 3295·612 acres, has been broken up into Barony (proper), Kelvinside, Kelvinhaugh, Sandyford, Park, St Vincent’s, Anderston, St Mark’s, St Matthew’s, Blythswood, St Stephen’s, Milton, Port Dundas, St Columba’s, Dalmarnock, St Clement’s, Bluevale, Parkhead, Possil Park, and Shettleston. The divisions of Govan are noticed in that article. Calton, SE of the City parish, has been divided into Calton (proper), St Luke’s, Newlands, Greenhead, Barrowfield, Bridgeton, Newhall, and St Thomas. Springburn has had cut off from its SW corner the parish of Townhead.
From Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland, 1892-96
The Cathedral—The parent church of Glasgow, the Cathedral, is particularly interesting as being, along with the churches at Kirkwall and Old Aberdeen, one of the few perfect examples of early architecture which the zeal of the Reformers and the more praiseworthy, but equally objectionable, zeal of the early restorers of the nineteenth century have left for us in anything like the original condition. Like all cathedral churches the form is that of a Latin cross, with nave, aisles, transepts, choir, lady-chapel, crypt, and chapter-house. Here the outline has rather an unwonted bareness arising from the fact that the transepts, owing to the non-completion of the original design, project but so slightly beyond the aisles that the long straight sweep of the side walls is hardly broken by them at all. That they were intended to project farther is evident from the Blackadder crypt, which would have afforded support to a S transept. The style is Early English, and all competent authorities are agreed that the building is a very fine example of that period. The best views of the exterior are to be had from the SE corner and from the Bridge of Sighs leading to the Necropolis. The entire length of the building is 319 feet, the breadth 63 feet, and the height 90 feet; while at the junction of the nave and transepts a massive square tower with octagonal spire rises to a height of 225 feet. This central tower measures 30 feet each way in the basement, and rises about 30 feet above the lofty roof of the nave and choir. It presents a four-light window on each of its faces, and terminates in a balustrade with pinnacles at the corners, while the spire rises in four successive stages, with ornamental bands between. The aisles are narrow but lofty, and have a row of windows with double mullions. The clerestory windows are much the same, but have not all double mullions. Over the principal doorway at the W end is the great western window, with four openings separated by beautifully carved mullions, and the great windows of the N and S transepts are much the same. There are massive buttresses all round. On the wall above the spaces between is a line of gargoyles, each showing a monstrous mouth, with a grotesque face sculptured on the underside. However bare may be the look of the exterior all idea of such a feeling vanishes at once on reaching the interior, and taking in at one glance the whole majestic sweep of the nave, which is 155 feet in length, 30 in breadth between the columns, and 90 high. On each side is a series of seven elegant, but massive, clustered columns supporting the triforium, and above this is a row of clerestory windows. At the intersection of the nave, transepts, and choir are four pillars supporting the arches of the tower, and from the angles groins spring towards the centre, leaving there, however, a circular opening for the purpose of raising heavy materials or bells to the upper part of the tower. Up till 1835 a partiton wall of rough masonry construction cut the nave in two from N to S, and the western section was fitted up as a church for the congregation of the Outer High parish. This was, however, removed, together with the fittings of the church, on the erection of the new church of St Paul’s, and the nave is now once more to be seen in all its original grandeur. At the E end of the nave beneath the arches supporting the tower is a richly carved rood-screen separating the nave and choir. On either side are niches, and flights of steps, with carved balustrades, leading to the crypt. In the centre is a low elliptic-arched doorway, through which a flight of steps leads to the higher level of the choir, which is 127 feet long, 30 wide between the columns, and about 80 high. On each side are five arches supported on clustered pillars, with beautiful and richly carved capitals with the usual foliage designs, and each differing from all the others. In the restoration operations carried out previous to 1856, this portion of the building was judiciously and successfully altered. The old unseemly seats and galleries were removed; and their place supplied by richly-carved oak fittings in the modern cathedral style; and a fine pulpit constructed from the old oak beams of the roof now occupies the site of the high altar. The floor is executed in tessellated tile-work. During the restoration operations the grave of one of the old bishops was found near the site of the high altar. The remains, which were possibly those of Bishop Joceline, had been wrapped in a cloth embroidered with gold, some of which still adhered to the bones.
At the E end of the choir is the Lady chapel, which is one of the most beautiful parts of the building. Externally it is a low flat-roofed building resting on the eastern part of the crypt. Internally there is a profusion of elaborate ornament, while the columns consist of clusters of slender and graceful shafts, with richly carved an beautiful capitals. It contains a monument to the Protestant Archbishop Law (1615-32). Opening from the N side of the Lady chapel is the chapter-house. It also rests on the crypt, but it is crowned by a high-pitched root The interior is 28 feet square, with the roof supported by a central pillar, on which are the arms of the founder, Bishop Lauder (1408-1425). The floor is now laid with tesselated tile-work, and all round are oak seats. Beneath the buildings just described is a series of magnificent crypts, forming in themselves a beautiful and perfect structure. These, which vary very much in height, extend beneath the choir, the Lady chapel, the chapter-house, and beyond the S transept. The portion under the first two is known as Joceline’s crypt, that under the chapter-house as Lauder’s crypt, and that under the unfinished S transept as Blackadder’s crypt. The latter has the roof supported by three richly clustered columns with fine capitals, and exhibits some of the best work in the whole cathedral, while all three show such solidity of construction, such richness of groining, and such beauty of detail in the pillars and varied capitals, as render them artistically of the highest value, and the finest thing of the kind in the kingdom. The crypt known as Blackadder’s, under the S transept, ought more properly to be called Fergus’ aisle or crypt, for it seems to have been dedicated to the Fergus whose body St Mungo brought with him to Cathures; Mr Macgeorge having pointed out that on a stone in the roof over the entrance is carved a rude representation of the dead saint extended on a vehicle, and beside it the inscription cut in long Gothic letters, ‘this is the ile of car fergus.’ At the E end of Joceline’s crypt on a raised platform is a tomb with headless and handless recumbent effigy, which tradition, without the slightest grounds, indicates as the tomb of St Mungo himself. There are also two stone coffins, one of them with a shamrock round the margin, dug up within the building, and believed to be as old as the 6th century. In the SE corner is a well 24 feet deep, and with 3 to 4 feet of water in it, known as St Mungo’s Well. It was supposed to possess special healing qualities. Originally a place of sepulture, the crypt became after the Reformation, as we have already seen, the church of the Barony parish, and from that time till the beginning of the nineteenth century it was one of the most extraordinary places of worship in the country. Sir Walter Scott in Roy makes it the meeting-place of the outlaw himself and Francis Osbaldistone. ‘We entered,’ he makes Francis say, ‘a small, low-arched door, secured by a wicket, which a grave-looking person seemed on the point of closing, and descended several steps as if into the funeral vaults beneath the church. It was even so; for in these subterranean precincts—why chosen for such a purpose I know not—was established a very singular place of worship. Conceive an extensive range of low-browed, dark, and twilight vaults, such as are used for sepulchres in other countries, and had long been dedicated to the same purpose in this, a portion of which was seated with pews and used as a church. The part of the vaults thus occupied, though capable of containing a congregation of many hundreds, bore a small proportion to the darker and more extensive caverns which yawned around what may be termed the inhabited space. In those waste regions of oblivion, dusky banners and tattered escutcheons indicated the graves of those who were doubtless “princes in Israel.” ... Surrounded by these receptacles of the last remains of mortality, I found a numerous congregation engaged in the act of prayer.’ After the erection of a separate church for the Barony congregation in 1801 the crypts again became a place of burial, and got into such an unsightly condition that the shafts of the flue columns were covered to a depth of 5 feet by the accumulation of debris, while the walls were daubed over with unsightly marks—a state of matters which lasted till about 1835.
After the restoration operations had been completed in 1856, a proposal was made to fill the windows of the cathedral with stained glass, and this was taken up so readily by a large and influential body of subscribers that in 1859 the first window was placed in the church, and in 1864 all the windows were filled except those in the clerestory, and that, too, has now been in part similarly treated. In all 113 windows are thus filled—44 in the nave, transepts, choir, and Lady chapel, 14 in the clerestory, 7 in the chapter-house, 27 in Joceline’s crypt, 12 in Lauder’s crypt, and 9 in Blackadder’s crypt. The great E window was furnished by the Queen, the great W window by the Bairds of Gartsherrie, and the N and S transept windows by respectively the late Duke of Hamilton and Mrs Cecilia Douglas of Orbiston. These represent in order (1) the Four Evangelists ; (2) the Giving of the Law; the Entrance into the Promised Land; the Dedication of the Temple, and the Captivity of Babylon; (3.) the prophets Moses, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Malachi, and John the Baptist; (4.) in the lower divisions Noah issuing from the ark, the gathering of manna, Melchisedec offering bread and wine, Isaac ascending Mount Moriah with the wood of sacrifice, and the priest offering the first fruits; and, in the corresponding compartments above, Christ baptized, Christ the true bread from heaven, Christ instituting the Sacrament, Christ bearing his cross to Calvary, and Christ rising from the dead. The windows in the nave beginning at the NW angle contain a series of Old Testament characters in chronological order; the choir, illustrations of the parables and precepts of Christ; the Lady chapel, the apostles; the chapter-house, acts of charity and mercy; Joceline’s Crypt and Blackadder’s crypt, various scriptural incidents mainly relating to the life of Christ; and two showing King Rhydderch, St Mungo, and St Columba, and Archbishops Boyd, Burnet, and Paterson; while Lauder’s crypt has a series of representations of angels bearing emblems of Christ and the Evangelists. Many of the windows were executed at the royal glass-painting factory at Munich, but a few were made in London and Edinburgh. The flue organ was made in London, and was erected in 1880, having been presented by the minister of the church, the late Rev. Dr Burns. The oak communion table (1891) was the gift of a member of the church, and the somewhat out-of-place looking marble reredos (1893), with figures of St Ninian and St Kentigern, was erected by Dame Jane Maxwell in memory of her husband, the tenth baronet of Calderwood.
In dealing with the bishops in the historical section, notice has already been taken of the early history of the cathedral. Mr Honeyman, in his Age of Glasgow Cathedral, is of opinion that the only portion of the building of 1197 is a small pillar and part of the vaulting in the SW corner of the crypt, and the probability is that the present building was commenced by Bishop Bondington (1233-58), in whose time the crypt and choir were completed. The building was still unfinished in 1277, in Wyschard’s time, and the erection of the steeple was begun by Bishop Lauder, and continued and probably completed by Bishop Cameron. The date of the nave cannot be determined, but it was probably built subsequently to the crypt and choir. At the NW end of the nave there was formerly a massive and imposing square tower, 120 feet high and having on each side near the top two fine windows, with rounded arches, and also some grotesque sculptures now lying in the crypt. At the SW corner was another erection not carried up into a tower but finished with gables. It was called the consistory house, and was probably of the same date as the tower opposite, the lower stage of which Mr Billings regarded as forming, along with the W door of the nave, the oldest part of the whole building. The consistory house was picturesque and interesting, but, this notwithstanding, and though both it and the tower were in a perfect state of preservation, they were in 1854 removed by order of Her Majesty’s First Commissioner of Works as excrescences on the original building—a removal which, notwithstanding all that has been alleged to the contrary, must, we fear, be regarded as an act of great barbarity and vandalism.
The buildings were old enough and intimately enough associated with the history and original design of the cathedral to have inspired greater reverence, and, besides, Mr Macgeorge asserts, and probably rightly, that ‘the tower was really essential to the proper balance of the structure.’
Soon after the Reformation the cathedral was ‘purged’ of all its altars, images, and other appendages that might remind the people of the old ritual and worship; and so zealous or rather furious were the Reformers in this work of purification, that they also swept away all the monuments which had been erected not only to patriotic prelates, but to eminent laymen, with the single exception of the tomb of the Stewarts of Minto, a family which had supplied provosts and magistrates to the city through several generations. Though this insane destruction was not altogether the work of a rabble glorying in mischief under any pretext, it is but fair to state that the government, in issuing an order for the destruction of all ‘monuments of idolatry,’ strongly enjoined the preservation of the buildings themselves, as will be seen from the order:
‘To the Magistrates of Burghs.
‘Our traist freindis, after maist hearty commendacion, we pray ye fail not to pass incontinent to the Kirk [of Glasgow or other such edifice as might require attention] ad tak down the haill images thereof, and bring furth to the kirkzyard, and burn them openly. And siclyke cast down the alteris, and purge the kirk of all kynd of monuments of idolatrye. And this ye fail not to do as ye will do us singular emplesur; and so committus you to the protection of God.
‘From Edinburgh the xii of August, 1560.
‘Fail not bot ye tak guld heyd that neither the dasks, windocks, nor durris be ony ways hurt or broken, either glassin work or iron work.’
Though the occurrence of such an important part of the mandate in a postscript might perhaps be considered as a little significant, yet it was probably the desire of the Lords of the Congregation at this time that the work of demolition should go a certain length, and no farther; but they had raised a spirit which they could not lay again, and the harangues of any furious preacher were received with much greater acceptance than the comparatively moderate injunctions of the civil rulers. The more ardent among the Reformers were not content with a partial demolition, and they resolved that every trace of the Romish superstition should be swept away at the expense of those magnificent structures which had been long the pride and glory of the land. An act was accordingly passed in 1574 by the Estates, at the instigation of the Assembly, authorising a still further purification or dismantling of those churches which had hitherto escaped, and ‘thereupon,’ says Spottiswoode, ‘ensued a pitiful devastation of churches and church buildings throughout all parts of the realm, for every one made bold to put to their hands—the meaner sort imitating the ensample of the greater, and those who were in authority. No difference was made, but all the churches either defaced or pulled to the ground. The holy vessels, and whatsoever else men could make gain of, as timber, lead, and bells, were put up to sale. The very sepulchres of the dead were not spared. The registers of the church and bibliotheques cast into the fire. In a word, all was ruined, and what had escaped in the time of the first tumult did now undergo the common calamity, which was so much the worse, that the violences committed al this time were coloured with the warrant of publick authority. Some ill-advised preachers did likewise animate people in these their barbarous proceeding crying out——“That the places where idols had been worshipped and that the sparing of them was the reserving of things execrable.” ’
The execution of the above-mentioned act for the West was committed to the Earls of Arran, Argyll, and Glencairn, and they, at the intercession of the inhabitants of Glasgow, had spared the cathedral, but Andrew Melvil, acting with more zeal than discretion, kept urging the magistrates to order it to be pulled down so that three churches might be built with the materials. They at length consented, and the narrow escape of the cathedral in 1579 is thus told by Spottiswoode: ‘In Glasgow the next spring there happened little disturbance by this occasion.’ The magistrates at the city, by the earnest dealing of Mr Andrew Melvil and other ministers, had condescended to demolish the cathedral, and build with the materials thereof some little churches in other parts for the case of the citizens. Divers reasons were given for it; such as the resort of superstitious people to do their devotion in that place; the huge vastness of the church, and that the voice of a preacher could not be heard by the multitudes that convened to sermon; the more commodious service of the people; and the removing of that idolatrous monument (so they called it), which was, of all the cathedrals of the country, only left unruined and in a possibility to be repaired. To do this work a number of quarriers, masons, and other workmen was conduced, and the day assigned when it should take beginning. Intimation being given thereof and the workmen by sound of drum warned to go unto their work, the crafts of the city in a tumult took armes, swearing with many oathes that he who did cast down the first stone, should beburied under it. Neither could they be pacified till the workmen were discharged by the magistrates. A cimpaint was hereupon made, and the principals cited before the council for insurrection, when the king, not as then thirteen years of age, taking the protection of the crafts, did allow the opposition they had made, and inhibited the ministers (for they were the complainers) to meddle any more in that business, saying, “That too many churches had been already destroyed, and that he would not tolerate more abuses of that kind”. The truth of this statement has been questioned, as no entry regarding the intended destruction of the cathedral stands in the council minutes of the day, and because no other historian mentions the affair. It may be presumed, however, that there were good reasons why no notice of the destructive resolution of the magistrates, and of the events which followed, should be placed on the records; and further Spottiswoode is a trustworthy chronicler, and the tradition has been one of almost universal acceptance in Glasgow in nearly three centuries. The details may be slightly inaccurate, but the main fact of the great peril to the cathedral and of its rescue by the crafts seems to be worthy of all credit. There is indeed reason to believe that the silence may arise from the consent of the council having been passive rather than active, and that Captain Crawford of Jordanhill, then provost of Glasgow, and the other magistrates yielded even thus far with considerable reluctance, and only that they might clear themselves from any imputation of having an undue tenderness for the memorials of Popery. Newte, in his Tour in England and Scotland (1791), goes farther, and says that the chief magistrate remonstrated and said, ‘I am for pulling down the High Church, but not till we have first built a new one.’ The respect that the greater part of the citizens bore to it is evidenced by the provost and council having in 1574 met with the deacons of the crafts and others to consider the ruinous condition of the cathedral, throuch taking awaye of the leid sclait and wther grayth thairof in thir trublus tyme bygane, sua that sick ane greit monument will all uterlie fall doun and dekey without it be remedit, and becaus the helping thairof is so greit . . . . all in ane voce has consentit to ane taxt and impositioun of twa hundredtht pundis money to be taxt and payit be the tounschip and remen thairof for helping to repair the said kirk and haldyng it wattirfast.’ In Rob Roy Sir Walter Scott gives a slightly different but decidedly picturesque account of the incident:
‘Ay!’ says Alldrew Fairservice, ‘it’s a braw kirk—nane o’ your whigmalieries, and curliwurlies, and open steek hems about it—a’ solid, well-jointed mason-wark, that will stand as lang as the world, keep hands and gunpowther aff it. It had amaist a douncome langsyne at the Reformation, when they pu’d doun the kirks of St Andrews and Perth and thereawa’, to cleanse them o’ papery, and idolatry, and image worship and surplices, and siclike rags o’ the muckle hure that sitteth on seven hills, as if ane wasna braid eneuch for her auld hinder end. Sae the commons o’ Renfrew, and of the Barony and the Gorbals, and a’ about, they behoved to come into Glasgow, ae fair morning, to try their hands in purging the High Kirk of Papish nick-nackets. But the tounsmen of Glasgow, they were feared their auld edifice might slip the girths in gaun through siccan rough playsic, sae they rang the common bell, and assembled the train-bands wi’ tuck o’ drum. By good luck, the worthy James Rabat was Dean o’ Guild* that year (and a guid mason he was himsell, made him the keener to keep up the auld biggin’); and the trades assembled and offered dounright battle to the commons, rather than their kirk should coup the crans, as others had done elsewhere, It wasna for love o’ Papery—na na—nane could ever say that o’ the trades o’ Glasgow. Sae they sune cam to an agreement to tak a’ the idolatrous statues o’ saints (sorrow be on them) out o’ their neuks. And sae the bits o stane idols were broken in pieces by Scripture warrant and flung into the Molendinar Burn, and the auld kirk stood as crouse as a cat when the flaes are kaimed aff her, and a’ body was alike pleased.’
The repairs continued to occupy the attention of the council from time to time during the rest of the 16th and the early part of the 17th centuries, and the minutes on the subject are numerous, and, before the meeting of the General Assembly in 1638, considerable repairs and improvements were actually made by them, while some of the Protestant archbishops seem to have also, out of their scanty revenues, done what they could; but the building remained in a very dilapidated condition till 1829, when Dr Cleland called attention to its state, and a subscription was started for the repair of the nave. It was in some way interrupted, and nothing more was lone till 1854, when the Commissioners of Woods and Forests took up the matter, and under their care the restoration was, by 1856, completely effected, in a manner which—excepting or the removal of the W tower and the consistory house—is worthy of the highest praise. The building is the property of the Crown, but the corporation draw the seat-rents of the High Church—it being one of the ten city churches—and they have also the care of the churchyard. There are several bells in the tower, and the largest one has an inscription somewhat worthy of notice: ‘In the year of grace 1594, Marcus Knox, a merchant in Glasgow, zealous for the interest of the reformed religion, caused me to be fabricated in Holland for the use of his fellow-citizens of Glasgow, and placed me with solemnity in the tower of their cathedral. My function was announced by the impress on my bosom, and I was taught to proclaim the hours of unheeded time. One hundred and ninety-five years had I sounded these awful warnings, when 1 was broken by the hands of inconsiderate and unskilful men. In the year 1790 I was cast into the furnace, refounded at London, and returned to my sacred vocation. Reader, thou also shalt know a resurrection: may it be unto eternal life! “In 1897 John Garroway, Esq., presented a fine-toned new bell to the Cathedral.
In the interior, on the lower part of the walls, there are a number of military and other monuments. One is a memorial to the oflicers and men of the 93rd Sutherl and Highianders who fell during the Crimean campaign. Over it are placed the old colours of the regiment, pres ented to it by the first Duke of Wellington. Another marble is inscribed to the officers and men of the 71st high landers who Jell on the NW frontier of India in 1863; and another (with a spirited representation of Tel-el-Kebir) to the officers and men of the 2nd Battalion Highland Light Infantry (74th) who were killed or mortally wounded at the battle of Tel-el-Kebir. It was erected in 1884, and is - surmounted by the old colours of the regiment, including the original ‘Assaye’ flag—the special honorary colour which this regiment, along with the 78th, is entitled to carry; these having been the only two European regiments employed on the ‘glorious occasion’ of the battle from which the banner takes its name. In a case is the last stand of colours carried by the 26th Cameronian regiment before it became the 1st Battalion of the Cameronians. In the NE corner of the nave is a marble bust of Dr Chrystal, rector of Glasgow Grammar School, who died in 1830, and on the opposite side a bust of Sir James Watson (1801-89). On the S side of the nave is the memorial brass of the Stewarts of Minto—one of the oldest brasses in Scotland. The oldest stone in the churchyard is said to date from 1223 and the next from 1383. On the E side of the S entrance to the cathedral is the tomb of Thomas Hutcheson, one of the founders of Hutchesons’ Hospital. The monument dates from 1670, but was restored in 1857. On the opposite side of the doorway is the tomb of the founder of the Baillie Trust, who died in 1873. Rudely scratched on the wall near the N transept is a representation of a gallows, with a figure dangling from it, and the date 1769. It marks the ‘malefactors burying-ground.’ The monument of Dr Peter Low, founder of the Faculty of Physicians and Surgeons, near the SW corner of the ground, bears date 1612, and has the following curious inscription:—
‘Stay, passenger, and view this stone,
For under it lyes such a one
Who cured many whill he lived,
So gracious he no man grieved.
Zea when his phisics force oft fayled,
His pleasant purpose then prevailed;
For of his God he gott the grace
To live in mirth and dye in peace.
Heaven has his soul, his corps this stone.
Sygh, passinger, and so be gone.’
‘Ah me, I gravell am and dust,
And to the grave deshend I most;
O painted peice of liveing clay,
Man, be not proud of thy short day.’
On another belonging to the Hamiltons of Holmhead, with the date 1616, the following tribute is paid to a wife :—
‘Yee gazers on this trophie of a tomb,
Send out ane grone for want of her whose life
Once born of earth, and now lies in earth’s womb,
Liv’d long a virgin, then a spotless wife.
Here lyes enclosed man’s griefe, earth’s loss, friends’ paine,
Religion’s lampe, virtue’s light, heaven’s gaine.
Dumb senseless statue of some lyfeless stones,
Rear’d up for memorie of a blessed soule.
Thou holds but Adam, Adam’s blood bemones
Her loss, she’s fled, none can her joys controule.
O happy thou, fur zeale and christian love,
On earth beloved, and now in heaven above.’
Other Established Churches.—St Paul’s Church, built in 1835-36 for the congregation of St Paul’s or the Outer High parish, which formerly worshipped in the nave of the cathedral, is in John Street. It is a plain building with a belfry. Blackfriars or College Church stood on the E side of High Street, close to the S side of the old University buildings. It was a quaint edifice, built in 1699, on the site of the previous Gothic building (already described), which was destroyed by lightning in 1688. When this site had to be abandoned to the Union railway, the new church was erected at Wester Craigs Street in 1876-77, and received a chime of bells in 1885. The steeple of the old church was at one time used as a prison. St Mary’s or the Tron Church stands on the S side of the Trongate behind the Tron steeple, and is on the site of the old church of St Mary’s already described. After the Reformation the latter building fell into disrepair, but was in 1592 ordered to be set to rights, and from that date till 1793, when it was destroyed by fire, it was in use as a place of worship. The present plain structure was erected in 1794, and the pulpit was from 1815 till 1819 occupied by Dr Chalmers. St David’s or the Ramshorn Church is on the N side of Ingram Street It is cruciform in shape, has a massive square pinnacled tower, 120 feet high, and is a good example of florid Perpendicular Gothic. The name Ramshorn is taken from the old name of the lands, and is traditionally derived from a miraculous incident connected with St Mungo. A sheep belonging to the Saint’s flock having been carried off and killed by some robbers, one of them found his hand permanently encumbered with the head of the animal, and he had to go to St Mungo and confess his crime before he could get rid of his uncomfortable burden, and the lands where the incident took place received the name of ‘Ramys Horne.’ The first St David’s Church—which was then the fifth in Glasgow— was built in 1724 on the same site as the present edifice, which was erected in 1824. Extensive internal changes were made in 1887, when a number of stained-glass memorial windows were inserted. St Andrew’s Church stands in the centre of St Andrew’s Square, and was built in 1756. With the exception of the tower, it presents a general resemblance to the church of St Martin’s- in-the-Fields in London, and has a hexastyle composite portico, with the city arms sculptured on the tympanum of the pediment. The tower has three stages, and is crowned with a cupolar spire. St Enoch’s Church stands at the S end of St Enoch’s Square. The chapel in this quarter, dedicated to St Thenew, has been already noticed. The first Presbyterian church, of which the small but elegant steeple still remains, was erected here in 1780-1782, and was in 1827 replaced by the present building. St George’s Church is in St George’s Place, on the W side of Buchanan Street, in a line with George Street and West George Street, and was erected in 1807. It is an oblong classic building, and has a steeple 162 feet high, of a rather peculiar design, there being four obelisk finials on the angles, while another surmounts the open cupolar centre. The bell is about 3 feet in diameter, and is inscribed ‘I to the church the people call, and to the grave I summon all, 1808.’ St John’s Church, in Graeme Street, was erected in 1817-19 at a cost of about £9000, and the parish had for its first minister from 1819 to 1824 Dr Chalmers, who here inaugurated his celebrated movement in support of the opinion that it was the duty of each parish voluntarily to maintain its own poor. The building is Decorated Gothic, and it has a massive square tower with pinnacles. St James’ Church is on the S side of Great Hamilton Street. It was built in 1816 as a Methodist Chapel, but when St James parish was constituted in 1820 it became the parish church. It is a very plain building. The above-mentioned nine parish churches, along with the cathedral—which is the parish church of the Inner high parish—constitute the churches of the original divisions of the old City parish, and the whole are known as the ten city churches, and are under the charge of the town council. Although the Barony was erected into a parish in 1599, and a minister had been appointed in 1595, the erection was made on the condition that the town was not to be ‘burdenit with seaten or biggin of kirks, nor furnishing nae mae ministers nor they hae already,’ and so the congregation worshipped in the crypt of the cathedral, and had no separate church till 1798, when a very ungainly building was erected in what is now Cathedral Square. This was pulled down in 1889. when the new church, in Castle Street, opposite the old site, was opened. It is one of the handsomest ecclesiastical edifices in the city, is Early English in style, and built of red sandstone. One hundred feet long and 60 wide, it has 1300 sittings arranged in nave, transept, and chancel, with overflow chapel, session house, vestry, and congregational hall. The Barony parish has had connected with it a number of eminent ministers, one of the earliest being the celebrated Zachary Boyd, and one of the later, the eloquent, genial, and warm-hearted Dr Norman Macleod. Besides these there are the churches of Abbotsford, Anderston, Barrowfield, Bellahouston, Bluevale, Blythswood, Bridgegate, Bridgeton, Calton, Chalmers, Dalmarnock, Dean Park, Elder Park, Gorbals, Govan, Govanhill, Greenhead, Hillhead, iloggan field, Hutchesontown, Kelvinhaugh, Kelvinside, Kingston, Kinning Park, Laurieston, Macleod, Martyrs’, Maryhill, Maxwell, Milton, Newlands, Newhall, Oatlands, Park, Parkhead, Partick and Partick St Mary’s, Plantation, Pollokshields, Port Dundas, Possil Park, Queen’s Park, Robertson Memorial, St Bernard’s, St Clement’s, St Columba’s, St George’s-in-the Fields, St Kiaran’s, St Luke’s, St Mark’s, St Matthew’s, St Ninian’s, St Peter’s, St Stephen’s, St Thomas’, St Vincent’s, Sandyford, Shettleston, Springburn, Strathbungo, Townhead, Wellpark, and Whiteinch parishes. There are also the chapels of ease (gradually being conv erted into quod sacra parishes) of Garnethill, in Barony; Woodside, in Park; Hyndland and Titwood, in Govan; Langside, in Cathcart; Brownfield, in St George’s; Belmont, in Hillhead; Cowlairs, in Springburn; and Cobden Street, in Townhead. Few of these fabrics call for particular comment, though many of them are very beautiful examples of different styles of Gothic architecture. The number of communicants in the whole of the Established churches in Glasgow was, in 1895 over 67,000.
The Established Church Presbytery of Glasgow comprises all the above-mentioned parishes, and also the adjoining parishes of Banton, Cadder, Campsie, Carmunnock, Cathcart, Chryston, Condorrat, Cumbernauld, Eaglesham, Kilsyth, Kirkintilloch and Kirkintilloch St David’s, Lenzie, Rutherglen, Wardlawhill, and West Rutherglen, the Milton of Campsie chapel of ease, and the mission station of Greenhill Road (Rutherglen). Extension schemes are in progress both in connection with the Established and Free Churhes, by which several new churches are to be built in the city.
The Synod of Glasgow and Ayr, which meets at Glasgow and Irvine, comprises the Presbyteries of Ayr, Irvine, Paisley, Greenock, Hamilton, Lanark, Dumbarton, and Glasgow, which in 1895 included 356 charges and mission stations.
Free Churches.—The Free College Church has been already noticed in connection with the Free Church divinity hail, beside which it stands. The most prominent of the others are St George’s, in Elderslie Street, a quasi-cruciform structure; St John’s, in George Street, opposite the Technical College, which has a lofty and well-proportioned steeple, and is a good specimen of modem Gothic; St Matthew’s, at the W end of Bath Street, a handsome church with a very good spire; St Peter’s in Mains Street, in the Blythswood district; Renfield, in Bath Street, E of St Matthew’s, a Decorated Gothic building with pierced octagonal spire; Tron, in Dundas Street; Kelvinside, in Hillhead, near the Botanic Gardens, which has a very fine steeple; Wellpark, in Duke Street; Barony, an ambitious Norman edifice with a square tower; Anderston, in University Avenue, a fine Early English building, with a beautiful interior; Cowcaddens, in the Italian style; and Blochairn, at the junction of Garngad and Blochairn Roads; and connected with this denomination, there are also the Argyle (Gaelic), Augustine, Barrowfield, Bridgegate, Bridgeton, Buchanan Memorial, Campbell Street, Candlish Memorial, Chalmers’, Cranstonhill, Cunningham, Dennistoun, Duke Street, Eastpark, Fairbairn, Finniest on, Gorbals (formerly the parish church), Great Hamilton Street, Hope Street, Hutchesontown, John Knox’s, Jordanhill, Kinning Park, Langside, London Road, Lyon Street, Macdonald, Martyrs’, Maryhill, Millerston, Milton. North Woodside, Paisley Road, Partick, Partick Dowanvale, Partick Gaelic, Partick High, Pollokshields, Possil Park, Queen’s Park, Renwick, Rose Street, St David’s, St Enoch’s, St George’s Road, St James’s, St Luke’s, St Mark’s, St Paul’s, St Stephen’s, Sherbrooke, Shettleston, Sighthill, Somerville Memorial, Springburn, Stockwell, Tollcross, Trinity, Union, Victoria, West, Westbourne, Whiteinch, White Memorial, Whitevale, Wynd, and Young Street churches.
The Free church Presbytery of Glasgow comprises all the above churches, and also those at Bearsden, Bishopbriggs, Busby, Campsie, Carntyne, Cathcart, Chryston, CumbernauId, Glenboig, Govan, Govan St Columba’s, and Govan St Mary’s; Kilsyth, Kirkintilloch St Andrew’s and Kirkintilloch St David’s, Rutherglen, and Rutherglen East. The presbytery meets on the first Wednesday of the month at Holmhead Street, in the presbytery house at St Mary’s (Free Tron) Church.
The Free church Synod of Glasgow and Ayr, which meets at Glasgow on the second Tuesday of April and Oct., comprises the presbyteries of Ayr, Irvine, Paisley, Greenock, Hamilton, Lanark, Dumbarton, and Glasgow, and in 1893 included 256 charges and mission stations.
United Presbyterian Churches.—Albert Street church is a French Gothic building, with medallions of Knox, Ebenezer Erskine, and Dr Chalmers on the front gable. Anderston church, built in 1839, is in the E end of Anderston. It is a plain Italian building, and superseded a previous building erected in 1769 by the first Relief congregation in Glasgow. Greyfriars Church is on the E side of North Albion Street, and is a handsome edifice with a Grecian portico. It superseded a previous church in Shuttle Street, built in 1740 by the first Secession congregation in Glasgow. John Street church stands at the corner of John Street and Cochrane Street. It has a handsome Ionic colonnade, and superseded a Relief church built on the same site in 1798. Lansdowne Church, on the N side of the Great Western Road, is a cruciform Gothic building, with a spire rising to a height of 220 feet, of good design except for its excessive slenderness. It has a beautiful interior, and a number of stained glass memorial windows. Kelvingrove Church is at the S side of the Kelvingrove Park at the corner of Derby Street and Kelvingrove Street, and is a very handsome Gothic building. St Vincent Street church is on the S side of St Vincent Street at nearly the highest point, and cost about £15,000. It forms an imposing feature in the western views of the city, and has a lofty Egyptian cupola-capped tower. The style is partly Egyptian and partly Ionic. Woodlands Church is at the corner of Woodlands Road and Woodlands Street, and is one of the most handsome and tasteful Gothic churches in the city. It cost about £14,000, exclusive of the site. There is a well-proportioned and tasteful spire. Wellington Church, formerly in Wellington Street but now in University Avenue, Hillhead, is one of the handsomest ecclesiastical buildings in Glasgow. Erected in 1881-84 at a cost of about £30,000, it is a massive structure in the Corinthian style, with five lofty fluted columns along each side, while the chief entrance, to the S, has a large portico with a double row of columns (the same as those at the sides, the first row with six and the second with four pillars with pilasters behind) surmounted by entablature and pediment. The site is commanding, and the main entrance is approached by two flights of steps, which terminate at a platform half-way up, whence there are rows of steps the whole width of the portico. The number of sittings is about 1100. Caledonia Road church is a Greco-Egyptian building, with a lofty campanie surmounted by a Latin Cross. Besides these there are also the Alexandra Parade, Bath Street, Belhaven, Bellgrove, Berkeley Street, Burnbank, Calton, Cambridge Street, Campbell Street, Camphill, Cathedral Square, Claremont, Cranstonhill, Cumberland Street, Dalmarnock Road, Dennistoun, Eglinton Street, Elgin Street, Erskine, Gillespie, Govan bill, Greenhead, Hutchesontown, Ibrox, Kelvinside, Kent Road, Langside Road, London Road, Maryhill, Mount Florida, Nithsdale, Oatlands, Overnewton, Parkhead, Plantation, Pollok Street, Pollokshields, Pollokshields Trinity, Queen’s Park, Regent Place, Renfield Street, Rockvilla, St George’s Road, St Rollox, Sandyford, Shamrock Street, Springbank, Springburn, Sydney Place, Tollcross, and Whitevale churches.
The U. P. Presbytery of Glasgow meets on the second Tuesday of every month in the hall, St Vincent Street, and comprises all the above congregations, as well as those at Airdrie (2), Baillieston, Barrhead, Bishopbriggs, Bothwell, Busby, Cambuslang, Campsie, Cathcart, Coatbridge (3), Eaglesham, Govan (2), Kirkintilloch, Lenzie, Lismore, Mearns, Milngavie, New Kilpatrick, Oban, Partick (4), Pollokshaws, Portree, Rutherglen, Stornoway, Thornliebank, and Uddingston.
The United Original Secession Church have three churches in Glasgow at Bcdlbrd Street, Laurieston Mains Street, oft’ Argyle Street; and William Street, in Bridgeton. The presbytery of Glasgow includes these churches and also others at Kirkintilloch, Paisley, Pollokshaws, and Shottsburn. The divinity hall is in Glasgow, and the session Opens in the beginning of June. The synod meets at Edinburgh in May. The Reformed Presbyterian Church of Scotland has one congregation in Nicholson Street, and this charge, along with those of Paisley, Greenock, and Stranraer, forms the presbytery of Glasgow. The synod meets in Glasgow early in May. There are also congregations of the Free Episcopal Church of England (Croft Street, Camlachie, and Trinity Church, Keppochhill Road), of the Church of Christ (Brown Street, Cathcart Road, Great Wellington Street, Gallowgate, and Windsor Street), of the Old Scots Independents (Oswald Street), of the Society of Friends (North Portland Street), of the John Knox Kirk of Scotland (Margaret Street), of the Free Gospel Church (Govanhill), of the Catholic Apostolic Church (Catherine Street and Butterbiggins Road), and of the Swedenborgians or New Jerusalem Church (Cathedral Street and Queen’s Drive), as well as two congregations of Unitarians (St Vincent Street and South St Mungo Street), a German Protestant Church (Woodside Road), a deaf and dumb congregation, a Jewish Synagogue (Garnethill), a seamen’s chapel (Brown Street), and barracks in various parts of the town for the Salvation Army, which has its headquarters in Hope Street.
The United Evangelistic Hall is at the corner of Steel Street and James Morrison Street, the main front being to the former. It was erected in 1876-77 at a cost of about £13,000, provides accommodation in the area and galleries for over 2000 persons, and contains, besides, large committee rooms, 2 rooms for workers, etc.
Congregational Churches.—There are in Glasgow eleven places of worship in connection with the Congregational Union. These are at Elgin Place, Hillhead, Great Hamilton Street, Eglinton Street, New City Road, Claremont Street, Beligrove Street (Wardlaw), Bernard Street (Bridgeton), Overnewton (Immanuel), Hutchesontown, and Parkhead. Elgin Place church (1856) at the corner of Elgin Place and Bath Street, is a large and massive, but dignified and handsome, Ionic building, with a good hexastyle portico. Claremont Street church is Decorated Gothic, with a square tower and a lofty octagonal spire. Hillhead church, at the corner of Gibson Street and University Avenue, is a good building, Early English in style, opened in 1889.
Evangelical Union Churches.—There are in Glasgow in connection with this denomination congregations at North Dundas Street; Muslin Street, Bridgeton; Montrose Street; Meadowpark Street; Moncur Street (Guthrie Memorial); West Street, Calton; Nelson Street, Tradeston; Cathcart Road, Govanhill; Springburn; and Pitt Street (Ebenezer)—10 in all. The pulpit of the Dundas Street church was occupied till his death in 1893 by the Rev. Dr. Morison, the originator of the Union in 1843, when he quitted the Secession Church, in which he had formerly been a minister, his charge being at Kilmarnock. The Theological Hall of the body is also at Glasgow, and has a principal and professors of New Testament Exegesis, Systematic Theology, and Hebrew. The Congregational and Evangelical Union churches were amalgamated in Jan. 1897.
Baptist Churches.—There are in Glasgow, in connection with the Baptist Union of Scotland, congregations at Adelaide Place (Bath Street), Cambridge Street, North Frederick Street, Gorbals, Govan, Hillhead, Hutchesontown, John Street, John Knox Street, Queen’s Park, Sister Street, Calton; and Springburn.
The Wesleyan Methodists have places of worship in Sauchiehall Street (St John’s), Claremont Street, Gallowgate (St Thomas’), Cathcart Road, Paisley Road, and Windsor Halls (Great Western Road)—6 in all. The Methodists rented a hall in Stockwell Street in 1779, and there John Wesley himself preached from time to time. St John’s Church was built in 1880 in Sauchiehall Street. There is also in the city one church connected with the Church of England, viz., St Silas.
The Episcopal Church in Scotland.—There are in Glasgow 8 charges, viz.,—St Andrew’s at Willowacre, near the Green; St Barnabas, Bath Crescent; Christ Church, in Brook Street, Mile-End; St John the Evangelist, in Dumbarton Road; St Luke’s, Grafton Street; St Mary the Virgin, Holyrood Crescent; St Michael’s, Whitefield Road, Govan; St Ninian’s in Pollokshaws Road; and a number of missions. St Andrew’s, dating from 1750, is the oldest church of the Scottish Episcopal communion. Its altar, crucifix, and candle sticks are made of oak from Bishop Rae’s 14th century bridge; and in the centre of the altar is the last piece of the high altar of Iona. St Mary’s, on the N side o the Great Western Road, a little E of the bridge across the Kelvin, belongs to the Second Pointed style, and was built in 1870-71 after designs by Sir George Gilbert Scott. The estimated cost was £35,000, and the steeple, a massive square tower, with pinnacles and octagonal spire rising to a height of 205 feet, was added in 1892-93. The church consists of a nave (100 feet long), with aisles, transepts, and chancel, and has a fine interior, with some handsome memorial windows. These churches are in the United Diocese of Glasgow and Galloway, which also contains the Episcopal charges at Annan, Ardrossan, Ayr, Baillieston, Castle-Douglas, Challoch (Newton Stewart), Coatbridge, Dalbeattie, Dumbarton, Dumfries, Girvan, Gourock, Greenock, Hamilton, Helensburgh, Johnstone, Kilmarnock, Lanark, Largs, Lenzie, Moffat, Motherwell, Newton, Paisley, Port-Glasgow, an1 Uddingston; missions at Cartsdyke, Clydebank, Dairy, Ecclefechan, Maybole, Harthill, Irvine, Kipford, Kirkcudbright, Maxwelltown; Lockerbie Maybole, New Galloway, Portpatrick, Renfrew, Vale of Leven, West Kilbride, and Wishaw; and private chapels licensed by the bishop at Ardgowan, Cally, Colzium, Coodham, Dolphinton, Douglas Castle, Lamington, Langholm Lodge, and Glaisnock House.
Roman Catholic Churches.—The Roman Catholic Church has a strong following in Glasgow, in the poorer, and particularly in the Irish, quarters of the town. There are altogether the following 20 churches in Glasgow and the suburbs :—St Andrew’s Pro-Cathedral, in Great Clyde Street; St Alphonsus’, in Great Hamilton Street; St John’s, in Portugal Street; St Joseph’s, in North Woodside Road; St Aloysius’, at Garnethill; St Mary’s, in Abercromby Street; St Mungo’s, in Parson Street; St Patrick’s, in Hill Street, Anderston; St Vincent’s, in Duke Street; St Francis’, in Cumberland Street; Sacred Heart, in Old Dalmarnock Road; Our Lady and St Margaret’s, in Kinning Park; St Michael’s, at Parkhead; St Peter’s, at Partick; St Aloysius’, at Springburn; Immaculate Conception, at Maryhill; St Agnes, Lambhill; St Paul’s, at Shettleston; Holy Cross, at Govanhill; and St Antony, Govan. St Andrew’s Church, in Great Clyde Street, superseded an old church built in the Gallowgate in 1797, and the first open place of Roman Catholic worship in the city subsequent to the Reformation. At the time of its erection it cost £13,000, but since 1871 a large sum of money has been spent in altering and improving it. The style is Decorated Gothic, and the building has a fine S front with a richly carved doorway and window, crocketed pinnacles, two graceful octagonal turrets, and, in a niche, a figure of St Andrew. St Mungo’s was erected in 1869 to the NW of Glasgow Cathedral, and has, adjoining it, a monastery (St Mungo’s Retreat), erected in 1890-92, by the Passionist Fathers in charge of the church. It is a handsome red sandstone building, with accommodation for sixteen priests. The Franciscan church of St Francis, designed by Messrs Pugin & Pugin, at present consists of only an aisled six-bayed nave, Early Decorated in style, but it will, when completed, form one of the finest ecclesiastical structures in the city. There are also a Convent of Mercy, at Garnethill; Franciscan convents, in Charlotte Street and Orchard, Crosshill; the Convent of Notre Dame, Dowanhill; the Convent of the Good Shepherd, at Dalbeth; St Peter’s College, Bearsden; and a Reformatory at West Thorn. The churches in Glasgow, with others at Airdrie, Alexandria, Baillieston, Barrhead, Blantyre, Busby, Cadzow, Cambuslang, Cardowan, Carfin, Carluke, Chapelhall, Cleland, Clydebank, Coatbridge (2), Dalry, Dumbarton, Duntocher, Gourock, Greenock (2), Hamilton, Helensburgh, Houston, Johnstone, Kilbirnie, Kirkintilloch, Larkhall, Longriggend, Milngavie, Mossend, Motherwell, Neilston, Paisley (2), Pollokshaws, Port-Glasgow, Renfrew, Rutherglen, Saltcoats, Shieldmuir, Shotts, Strathaven, Uddingston, Whifflet, and Wishaw, form the Diocese of Glasgow, presided over by an archbishop.
From Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland, 1892-96