YESTER, a parish, in the county of Haddington, 4 miles (S. by E.) from Haddington; containing, with Gifford, Long Yester, and Long Newton, 1069 inhabitants, of whom 525 are in the village of Gifford, about 140 in the hamlets of Long Yester and Long Newton, and the remainder in the rural districts of the parish. This place, of which the ancient name was St. Bothan's, derived its present name, soon after the Reformation, from the lands of the Marquess of Tweeddale, which lie partly within the limits of the parish, and consist of a fine valley on the banks of the Gifford water, and of which the Cambro-British Ystrad, now softened into Yester, is faithfully descriptive. These lands were granted by William the Lion to Hugh de Gifford, son of an English gentleman of that name, who in the reign of David I. had settled in East Lothian, and acquired extensive landed property. The Gifford family resided for a long period in the baronial castle of Yester, which is celebrated in Scott's poem of Marmion; but on failure of heirs male, in 1418, their wide estates were divided among four daughters, co-heiresses, of whom the eldest, who possessed the manor of Yester, conveyed that property to the Hay family, by marriage with Sir William Hay, of Locherwert, whose descendants were in 1488 created Lords Hay, of Yester, and in 1646 Earls, and in 1694 Marquesses, of Tweeddale. The parish is about six miles in length from east to west, and about five miles in breadth, and comprises 8928 acres, of which 5400 are arable, 946 woodland and plantations, sixty undivided common, and 2522 hill pasture. The surface is generally elevated, rising gradually from the sea-coast to the Lammermoor hills, of which Lammerlaw, the highest of the range, is 1700 feet above the level of the sea, and wholly within the parish. The vale of Yester is a tract of fertile land, through which the Gifford water flows, between banks richly crowned with wood and thriving plantations, and comprehending much pleasing scenery, and, in some parts, beautifully picturesque features. The Lammermoor hills are covered with heath, interspersed with only a few spots of verdure, but affording excellent pasturage for sheep; and from these heights descend numerous streams which, uniting at some distance from their base, form the Gifford water.
   The soil is principally a light loam intermixed with clay, and has been by good cultivation mostly rendered fertile, and in some parts adapted to the growth of wheat; but 300 acres more of the pasture or waste land might be reclaimed, and brought into tillage, at a moderate cost. The chief crops are barley, oats, and wheat, with potatoes and turnips. The system of agriculture is greatly improved; the lands have been drained and inclosed; bone-dust, rape, &c., are used as manures with success, and all the more recent improvements in implements of husbandry have been adopted. The farm houses and offices are substantial and commodious, and many of those recently erected are handsome. Great attention has been paid to the live-stock. About 4000 sheep, and nearly 1000 lambs, are annually reared; they are of the Cheviot and Leicestershire breeds, with a cross between the two. The cattle are of the shorthorned breed, with some of the native Highland and Shetland breeds; about 400 are annually fed. The woods consist of oak, ash, beech, elm, and lime, of which many fine trees are found on the lands of Yester House; the plantations are well managed and generally thriving. The substrata are principally limestone and clay; the former is worked at Kidlaw, in the southern part of the parish, and the clay is well adapted for making tiles for roofing and draining, for which purpose the Marquess of Tweeddale has erected a mill upon his lands. Yester House, the seat of the marquess, is a handsome mansion, beautifully situated on the banks of the stream, and surrounded by a spacious and richly wooded demesne. Newton Hall and Newhall are also good houses. The village of Gifford stands in the vale of Yester, and Long Yester and Long Newton at the foot of the Lammermoor hills; the nearest market-town is Haddington, which is the greatest market for grain in this part of the country. Fairs are held annually at Gifford, on the last Tuesday in March, the third Tuesday in June, and the first Tuesday in October; they are well attended, and generally from 3000 to 4000 sheep, 500 head of cattle, and about the same number of horses, are exposed for sale. During harvest, a statute-fair is held every Monday morning for hiring farm servants. A penny-post office has been established; and facility of intercourse is afforded by good roads, of which about three miles of turnpike-road pass through the parish, and about thirteen miles of common road kept in repair by statute labour. The rateable annual value of Yester is £5842.
   The parish is in the presbytery of Haddington, synod of Lothian and Tweeddale, and patronage of the Marquess of Tweeddale: the minister's stipend is about £240, with a manse, and the glebe is valued at £30 per annum. The church, situated in the village of Gifford, was erected in 1708, and repewed and thoroughly repaired in 1830; it is a neat substantial edifice, adapted to a congregation of 600 persons, and the seats are all free. The members of the Free Church have a place of worship. There are three parochial schools, respectively at Gifford, Long Yester, and Long Newton: the master of the Gifford school has a salary of £34. 4., with £40 fees, and a house and garden. The masters of Long Yester and Long Newton have each a smaller salary, with a house and garden; the school fees of the former are £18, and of the latter, £14. About a mile from the church, and in the grounds of Yester House, are the remains of the church of St. Bothan's, from which the parish derived its former name; it appears to have been a very elegant, though small, cruciform structure of red sandstone, displaying various styles of architecture, from the decorated to the later English. The transepts are of much earlier date than the nave: the pulpit, which is of oak, very richly carved, was removed to the present church. What remains of this ancient edifice is now appropriated as a place of sepulture to the Tweeddale family. At Duncanlaw, in the eastern part of the parish, was an ancient chapel dedicated to St. Nicholas, of which there exist no remains. The father of the reformer, John Knox, is supposed to have been born in the village of Gifford. It is also said that Sir Isaac Newton was descended from a branch of the Newtons, of Newton Hall.
   See Gifford.

A Topographical dictionary of Scotland. . 1856.

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  • Yester — ist der Name folgender Personen: Jerry Yester (* 1943), US amerikanischer Folkrock Musiker, Produzent und Arrangeur Emanuel Moravec (Pseudonym Stanislav Yester; 1893–1945), tschechischer Militär, Buchautor und Kollaborateur Siehe auch Jester …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Yester — Yes ter, a. [See {Yesterday}.] Last; last past; next before; of or pertaining to yesterday. [1913 Webster] [An enemy] whom yester sun beheld Mustering her charms. Dryden. [1913 Webster] Note: This word is now seldom used except in a few… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Yester — Yester, Villa des Grafen Tweedale in der schottischen Grafschaft Haddington; großer Park mit viel ausländischen Gewächsen …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • yester — [yes′tər] adv. [< YESTERDAY] 1. of yesterday 2. previous to this: Usually in combination [yestereve, yesteryear] …   English World dictionary

  • yester — /ˈjɛstə/ (say yestuh) adjective Archaic being that preceding the present: yester sun. {backformation from yesterday} …   Australian English dictionary

  • yester- — comb. form poet. or archaic of yesterday; that is the last past (yester eve). Etymology: OE geostran …   Useful english dictionary

  • yester — adjective Date: 1520 archaic of or relating to yesterday …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • yester — /yes teuhr/, adj. Archaic. of or pertaining to yesterday. Also, yestern. [1570 80; back formation from YESTERDAY, etc.] * * * …   Universalium

  • yester- — a combining form, now unproductive, occurring in words that denote an extent of time one period prior to the present period, the nature of the period being specified by the second element of the compound: yesterweek. [ME; OE geostran, giestron; c …   Universalium

  • yester — adverb Last; last past; next before; of or pertaining to yesterday …   Wiktionary

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