Holy Trinity Church
The Parish Church of Holy Trinity is
open for regular services and
on a limited schedule (including Saturdays at 10AM) for visting.
I am grateful to Mr. Wilson(elder) for assistance in taking this
Mention of Holy Trinity Church has been
found as early as 1163. At that time it was located closer to
the cathedral. The present building
dates (in parts) from around 1412. John Knox preached here with
considerable vigor, inciting crowds to ransack the cathedral
in 1559. An unlikely legend says that the pulpit from which Knox
preached is now located in St. Salvator's
Chapel. Above the Iona marble pulpit hangs the battalion
standard of the 2nd Fifeshire Militia, which was formed in St.
Andrews at the time of a threatened invasion by Napoleon.
In 1800 the church was greatly altered
from it's 1412 design, but it was restored again in 1909 to much
of its former (1412) layout.
Even today the church is indeed a museum
of St. Andrews' history, containing such artifacts as the relatively
benign "penitant stools" to the more macbre instruments
called "branks" used to silence the tongues of those
found guilty of gossip or blasphemy. Archbishop
Sharp is said to have ordered their use on a woman who opposed
his preaching in 1673.
An original wooden pew bearing the royal
coat of arms of Mary Queen of Scots is still in the church.
The church tower was at one time also used
as a prison.
On the east wall of the south aisle
is the marble tomb of Archbishop James Sharp, murdered by Covenanters
on Magus Muir in 1679. When the tomb was opened in 1849 there
was no trace of Sharp's bones. What became of them nobody knows
though one theory is that the presbyterian kirk session could
not stand the idea of an Episcopal bishop lying in state in the
church and gave some sort of cooperation to whoever bore off
Archbishop Sharp's Tomb, with translation
from Latin of the inscription.
The tomb was comissioned by his son Sir William
Sharp, was constructed of Greek and Italian marble in Holland,
and placed in the church in the same year as his murder ... 1679