Abstract of the Rules and Regulations for the Students in the College of Aquhorties …

Edinburgh, J. Moir, [1799?].

Large broadside (c. 550 x 444 mm), wove paper watermarked 1799 in each corner (John Moir was active at this address 1793–1801), printed on one side in four columns with a drop-head title; in very good condition, edges untrimmed, folded neatly in quarters with minor wear at folds and edges, very light dampstains.


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Abstract of the Rules and Regulations for the Students in the College of Aquhorties …

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Broadside rules for the newly established Aquhorties College, the only Roman Catholic college in Scotland, presumably designed to be posted up around the school.

In 1796 the farm of Aquhorties near Inverurie, Aberdeenshire, the property of the staunchly Catholic Leslie family, was taken on a ninety-nine year lease by Bishop Hay, Vicar-Apostolic of the Lowlands. There he built a seminary for the education of young men destined for the priesthood to serve on the Scottish mission, the French Revolution having obliged the colleges at Paris and Douai to close. The building was completed in 1799, and staff and students transferred there from the smaller seminary at Scalan.

There are eighty-three rules in eight chapters, of which twenty-eight are concerned with the division of the students’ day (with exams for 3½ hours every Sunday). Others govern behaviour to peers (‘There must be no distinction of Rank’, ‘There must be no private Friendship among them, much less must they be divided into little Parties or Cabals’, ‘None must rally, nor mimick, nor mock, any of his Companions’); studies (‘They must read no Books … without the Knowledge and Approbation of their Masters’); obedience; and recreation (‘When the season or the weather will allow it, their Employments in the hours of Recreation should all be without doors, in taking a walk, playing at Ball, or any innocent bodily Exercise’; ‘Cards and Dice are absolutely forbidden’).

‘They must avoid, with abhorrence, all obscene and immodest Language, all Scurrility and indecent Buffoonery’, also ‘Quarrelling, Contentions and Reproaches … Wrangling and Obstinacy in defending their own Opinions’. Communication with ‘Seculars’, including the students’ own families, is forbidden, and monetary remissions must be handed over to the Master. ‘One chapter of the whole Rules must be read at Table, in the time of Dinner, every Sunday, instead of the Scripture, in a continual Rotation.’

Aquhorties remained the only Catholic college in Scotland until 1829 when, no longer adequate for the number of students it attracted, it transferred to Blairs in Kincardineshire.

ESTC T183603, showing institutional copies at BL, NLS, and Yale only.

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