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Saturday, 17 January 2009

Archbishop Sharp's Bridge Ceres Fife Scotland

Archbishop Sharp's Bridge, Ceres, Fife, Scotland. Running alongside the Bow Butts and the village green is the Ceres Burn, and spanning it is the attractive 17th century bridge, also known as the "Bishop's Bridge". Archbishop Sharp was one of the most hated men in the country. From being Presbyterian minister of Crail he had become Episcopalian Archbishop of St. Andrews and renowned for his severity towards the Covenanters. In may 1679, the Archbishop, accompanied by his daughter, in his grand coach with coachman, postillions and 4 serving men, came from Kennoway where he had slept the night on his journey from Edinburgh to St. Andrews. By the old waterless way he would come down the hill to Ceres and over the bridge to a building at the corner of the High Street where he smoked a pipe with the curate and then onwards towards Magus Moor, where, within sight of St. Andrews, he was brutally done to death by a group of Covenanters who had spent the previous night in a barn at Baldinnie. These men had received word that the Sheriff--Depute, by name Carmichael, and also hated for his treatment of Covenanters, would be hunting in the neighbourhood next day, but Carmichael had received a warning and was safely in his headquarters at Cupar. Just as the party were preparing to break up and go home, a message reached them that the Archbishop was nearby. Hardly able to believe their good fortune, the 12 men galloped after the coach, caught up with it and committed the murder. After searching the coach they cantered away but stopped after 3 miles to give thanks to God "for the awful deed they had been permitted to perpetrate."

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