Online Encyclopedia

LEVEN

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V16, Page 507 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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LEVEN, a police burgh of Fifeshire, Scotland. Pop. (1901) 5577. It is situated on the Firth of Forth, at the mouth of the Leven, 54m. E. by N. of Thornton Junction by the North British railway. The public buildings include the town hall, public hall and people's institute, in the grounds of which the old town cross has been erected. The industries are numerous, comprising flax-spinning, brewing, linen-weaving, paper-making, seed-crushing and rope-making, besides salt-works, a foundry, saw-mill and brick-works. The wet dock is not much used, owing to the constant accumulation of sand. The golf-links extending for 2 M. to Lundin are among the best in Scotland. Two miles N.E. is Lundin Mill and Drumochie, usually called LuNnIN (pop. 570), at the mouth of Kiel Burn, with a station on the Links. The three famous standing stones are supposed to be either of " Druidical " origin or to mark the site of a battle with the Danes. In the vicinity are the remains of an old house of the Lundins, dating from the reign of David II. To the N.W. of Leven lies the parish of KENNOWAY (pop. 870). In Captain Seton's house, which still stands in the village of Kennoway, Archbishop Sharp spent the night before his assassination (1679). One mile east of Lundin lies LARGO (pop. of parish 2046), consisting of Upper Largo, or Kirkton of Largo, and Lower Largo. The public buildings include Simpson institute, with a public hall, library, reading-room, bowling-green and lawn-tennis court, and John Wood's hospital, founded in 1659 for poor persons bearing his name. A statue of Alexander Selkirk, or Selcraig (1676-1721), the prototype of " Robinson Crusoe," who was born here, was erected in 1886. Sir John Leslie (1766-1832), the natural philosopher, was also a native. Largo claims two famous sailors, Admiral Sir Philip Durham (1763-1845), commander-in-chief at Portsmouth from 1836 to 1839, and Sir Andrew Wood (d. 1515), the trusted servant of James III. and James IV., who sailed the " Great Michael," the largest ship of its time. When he was past active service he had a canal cut from his house to the parish church, to which he was rowed every Sunday in an eight-oared barge. Largo House was granted to him by James III., and the tower of the original structure still exists. About r 2 m. from the coast rises the height of Largo Law (948 ft.). Kellie Law lies some 5z M. to the east.
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