A MONK OF FIFE
Norman Leslie of Pitcullo, whose narrative the reader has in his
hands, refers more than once to his unfinished Latin Chronicle.
That work, usually known as "The Book of Pluscarden," has been
edited by Mr. Felix Skene, in the series of "Historians of Scotland"
(vol. vii.). To Mr. Skene's introduction and notes the curious are
referred. Here it may suffice to say that the original MS. of the
Latin Chronicle is lost; that of six known manuscript copies none is
older than 1480; that two of these copies contain a Prologue; and
that the Prologue tells us all that has hitherto been known about
The date of the lost Latin original is 1461, as the author himself
avers. He also, in his Prologue, states the purpose of his work.
At the bidding of an unnamed Abbot of Dunfermline, who must have
been Richard Bothwell, he is to abbreviate "The Great Chronicle,"
and "bring it up to date," as we now say. He is to recount the
events of his own time, "with certain other miraculous deeds, which
I who write have had cognisance of, seen, and heard, beyond the
bounds of this realm. Also, lastly, concerning a certain marvellous
Maiden, who recovered the kingdom of France out of the hands of the
tyrant, Henry, King of England. The aforesaid Maiden I saw, was