Click for Bookshop

Jenny Geddes


1600 - 1660

Three-legged stool; sculpture in memory of Jenny Geddes, St. Giles Cathedral
©2016 Gazetteer for Scotland

Three-legged stool; sculpture in memory of Jenny Geddes, St. Giles Cathedral

An Edinburgh stall-holder, famous for a solitary act of defiance. Geddes kept a green-grocer's stall outside the Tron Kirk. In 1637, she threw a stool at the Dean of Edinburgh in St. Giles Kirk as a protest at the introduction of the much resented English prayer-book, which was regarded as verging on Roman Catholicism by post-Reformation Scottish Presbyterians. Her words on the occasion were "Villain! Dost thou say Mass at ma lug?" and her actions almost started a riot, with the Dean and Bishop having to quickly withdraw to the street followed by a volley of sticks and stones.


Use the tabs on the right of this page to see other parts of this entry arrow

If you have found this information useful please consider making
a donation to help maintain and improve this resource. More info...

By using our site you agree to accept cookies, which help us serve you better