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Glasgow, Dominican Friary

Friary (13th Century)

Site Name Glasgow, Dominican Friary

Classification Friary (13th Century)

Canmore ID 44093

Site Number NS56NE 31

NGR NS 5989 6508

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Glasgow, City Of
  • Parish Glasgow (City Of Glasgow)
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District City Of Glasgow
  • Former County Lanarkshire

Archaeology Notes

NS56NE 31 5989 6508.

(NS 5989 6508) Blackfriars' Chapel (NR) (site of)

OS 25" map, (1966)

The Dominican (Blackfriars) Friary in Glasgow was founded in 1246, and secularised in 1566-7 (Easson 1957). It lay on the E side of the present High Street, midway between the Market Cross and the Cathedral. D E Easson 1957; R Renwick and J Lindsay 1921; R Renwick 1908.

In 1622, the church was rebuilt, and it became known as the College Church. It was burned down in 1666, and rebuilt in 1699. The railway company acquired the church in 1875, demolishing it in the following year and the site is now occupied by College Station.

H Scott et al 1915-61; A Millar 1896.


Publication Account (1990)

A Dominican house was under construction on the east side of the thoroughfare that became known as the High Street of Glasgow by 1246. 1 In 1304 Bishop Robert Wishart granted to the friars the meadowwell in Deanside, and water was channelled from there to the friary precincts. 2 A chapel or church associated with the order was probably founded early in 1487 the provincial chapter established a perpetual chantry at the high altar. With this came the promise to construct houses for the use of the friars between the church and the dormitory on the south side of the cloister. 3 There were ten friars resident in 1557 and eight in 1558, 4 but by 1560 the prior and sub-prior feued a tenement 'because the place of the order has become broken up and the brothers dispersed during times of trouble and danger' . 5 In 1567 all the Dominican possessions were bestowed on the town6 and in 1573 transferred to the college. 7 The conventual church, however, continued in existence, being assimilated into the college complex built further north. It was destroyed by lightning c.1670.


1. Glas. Friars., No. 2.

2. Ibid., No. 5.

3. Glas. Chrs., i' pt ii, 73-74.

4. Cowan and Easson, 118.

5. Ibid; RMS iv, No. 1790

6. GUA 16485. Bl 287.

7. Glas. Chrs., ii ' No lx ii.

8. Cowan and Easson, 118.

Information from ‘Historic Glasgow: The Archaeological Implications of Development’, (1990).


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