[Method and manner of the riding of parliament]

The method and manner of riding the parliament, with the orders and rules appointed relating thereto.

I. The lord register is to call the rolls of the parliament at the palace of Holyrood House as the same were called the last parliament, and if any of the members think themselves prejudiced, they may protest to save their rights, and apply themselves to the parliament if they think fit.

II. In the shires where there are double elections, none of the members controverted are to ride, but in such shires where there is one or more chosen undoubtedly by both parties controverting, they are to ride.

III. The magistrates of Edinburgh are to cause clean the streets of all stones, timber or rubbish from the weigh-house to the Nether Bow, and the bailies of the Canongate are to take care the same to be done from the Nether Bow to the palace, and the magistrates of Edinburgh are to cause rail the streets from the Parliament Close to the Nether Bow on both sides of the street.

IV. The magistrates of Edinburgh are ordained to make a lane of their citizens in arms and best order from the Lady Steps to the Nether Bow, the captains, lieutenants and ensigns being within the rails and the rest without. Her majesty's foot guards are to make the lane from the Nether Bow to the palace.

V. The said magistrates are appointed to order that there be no shooting or any displaying of ensigns nor beating of drums during the cavalcade, nor any coaches, carts, sleds or coal horses to be seen within the ports of Edinburgh after 10 o'clock in the morning until the whole solemnity be over, under all highest pains, and that the magistrates of the Canongate and officers of her majesty's foot guards take care that no coaches, carts, sleds or coal horses be seen or suffered to be on the streets from the Nether Bow to the abbey, or in the Abbey Close after 10 o'clock in the morning that day the parliament is ridden. The said magistrates of Edinburgh are to cause make and place two banks of timber within the Abbey Close for mounting on horseback, and two at the Lady Steps for mounting on horseback and dismounting.

VI. The constable and marischal guards of partisans are to make a lane from the Lady Steps, those of the constables without and those of the marischal within the house, allowing the constable six of his guards within doors, according to the former practice.

VII. Every member of parliament must ride, and the absents incur fining, according to the acts of parliament.

VIII. Where there are double elections of commissioners, none of those controverted are to ride.

IX. The nobility are to ride in their robes and with foot mantles.

X. The officers of state who are not noblemen and who have gowns peculiar to their offices are to ride in these gowns and with foot mantles.

XI. The whole members are to ride covered, except those who carry the honours.

XII. The lyon, heralds, pursuivants and trumpets ride immediately before the honours, the lyon in his coat and robe, chain and baton alone, and immediately before the sword, the rest in their coats and foot mantles bareheaded, in their accustomed order.

XIII. The two macers of council and four macers of session ride on each side of the honours bareheaded with foot mantles, the two macers of council attending the crown and the four macers of session the sceptre and sword.

XIV. The higher degree and most honourable of that degree is to ride always last.

XV. Every duke is to have eight lackeys, every marquis six, every earl four, every viscount three, every lord three, every commissioner for a shire two, and every commissioner from burghs one; and every nobleman is to have a gentleman bareheaded to bear up his train, and those gentlemen are at their entry to the house to stand without the bar.

XVI. The noblemen's lackeys may have over their liveries velvet coats with their badges, i.e. their crests and mottos done on plate, or embroidered on their back and breast, according to ancient custom, or their ordinary liveries.

XVII. The constable and marischal are in the morning to wait on her majesty's high commissioner at the palace, and to receive his orders, and from thence, returning privately, the constable is to come out of his lodgings on foot, and having viewed the rooms under and above Parliament House, puts on his robes, and having his baton in his hand, sets himself in a chair at the entry of the close at the Lady Steps by the outmost of his guards, and from which he is to arise and salute the members as they alight from their horses, and to recommend them to the gentlemen of his guards, to be conducted to the marischal guards.

XVIII. The marischal is also to attend in his robes, being set in a chair at the head of his guards, and to receive the members (having his baton in his hand) as they enter the door.

XIX. The officers of state who are noblemen, so many of them as are in the kingdom, are to ride up from the abbey in their robes about half an hour before the cavalcade, and to wait in the Parliament House until the high commissioner come, and then the high chancellor is to take his own purse in his hand, and to usher him between the bar and the throne.

XX. The whole members of parliament are to wait upon her majesty's high commissioner in the Guard Hall at 10 o'clock in the morning, the nobility being in their robes, and the servants and horses are to attend in the outer close.

XXI. The lyon king at arms in his coat, robe, chain and baton (to whose charge the order of the riding is committed) with six heralds, six pursuivants and six trumpets in their coats attend likewise.

XXII. When her majesty's high commissioner is ready, the lord register (or such as he shall appoint) and lyon standing together, each of them having a roll in his hand, and the rolls being read, the lyon is to call the names of such of them as are to ride according to their order, and a herald is to call aloud at one of the windows, and another herald is to stand at the gate and see them do accordingly.

XXIII. The members are to ride two and two, each degree by itself at some distance, without mixing with any other degree, so that if there falls to be one odd member of one degree, he must ride alone.

XXIV. The lord register is to make up the rolls of parliament, both for the riding and calling in the Parliament House according to the rolls of the last parliament, whereof he is to give the lyon a just duplicate, except where there is just ground to alter the same; and the members are to ride as they are called, but if they think themselves prejudiced they may protest in the same manner as at the calling of the rolls in the house, and may afterwards, as they think fit, apply themselves to parliament for a remedy.

XXV. The honours are to be carried immediately before the high commissioner, the crown by [Archibald Douglas], earl of Forfar, because of [Archibald Douglas], marquis of Douglas' minority, the sceptre next to it by the eldest earl present, and the sword before it by the earl next in order, and the bearers are to ride one by one bareheaded.

XXVI. The dukes and marquises are to ride after the high commissioner at some distance, according to former custom.

XXVII. When her majesty's high commissioner alights from his horse, the lord constable is to receive him and to attend him to the marischal guards; and then both constable and marischal are to convey him bareheaded to the throne and are in the same manner to attend him in his return to his horse.

XXVIII. When the members alight, the servants and horses are to remove and stand in the Land Mercat between the tolbooth and the weigh-house, until the high commissioner be upon his return to the palace, and the members again to be called two by two, and the servants with the horses to be called accordingly from the Land Mercat for their orderly mounting and returning to the palace.

XXIX. The return to the palace is to be in the same manner, with these two alterations, namely: first, the constable and marischal ride on the high commissioner's right and left hand, with capes of permission, the constable on the right and the marischal on the left. Secondly, the officers of state who are noblemen are not to mount their horses until the high commissioner be gone, and then are to ride at some distance after the guards.

Order of proceeding on horseback, to be performed the first day of the ensuing parliament by all the members of parliament in convoying his grace her majesty's high commissioner from the abbey of Holyrood House to the Parliament Close, and back again to the palace, 6 May 1703

About the space of half an hour before the riding begins, the lord high chancellor, with the other officers of state who are noblemen, are to ride up in their robes, the lord high chancellor having the purse and mace before him, and, for this time and place, the lord president of the privy council on his right hand and the lord privy seal on his left hand.

Before the commissioners from the burghs, the troop of horse grenadiers are to ride up.

Two trumpets in their coats and banners, bareheaded.

Two pursuivants in their coats and foot mantles, bareheaded.

The commissioners of burghs, two and two.

The commissioners for shires, two and two.

The officers of state who are not noblemen, two and two.

The lords or barons of parliament, two and two.

The viscounts, two and two.

The earls, two and two.

Four trumpets, in their coats and banners, bareheaded, two and two.

Four pursuivants, in their coats and foot mantles, bareheaded, two and two.

Six heralds, in their coats and foot mantles, bareheaded, two and two.

The lyon king at arms, in his coat, robe, collar, baton and foot mantle, bareheaded.

The sword of state, born by the earl of [...], bareheaded.

The sceptre, born by the earl of [...], bareheaded.

The crown, carried by [Archibald Douglas], earl of Forfar, bareheaded, because of [Archibald Douglas], marquis of Douglas' minority.

Three macers, with their maces and foot mantles, bareheaded.

[...], bearing the purse with his grace's commission.

His grace her majesty's high commissioner attended with his servants, pages and footmen, and in the return to the palace, having the high constable on his right hand and the marischal on his left, with capes of permission and their robes.

The dukes and marquises attending her majesty's high commissioner in their robes.

The captain of her majesty's guards on the head of the troop of guards.

  1. NAS. PA3/7, 1-4. Another copy at NLS. Ferg. 191 (84). Printed copy.