George Wishart, 1513-1546
A famous member of the Pitarrow family was the martyr
George Wishart, a powerful Protestant preacher, confidant and mentor of John
While preaching the Protestant Reform in 1546 he was betrayed to Cardinal David Beaton and imprisoned in the bottle dungeon at the Castle in St. Andrews. Subsequently he was tried for heresy, condemned to death and burnt at the stake outside the Castle.
Some weeks later George Wishart's friends conspired against the Cardinal and gained entry to the Castle by subterfuge. They found Cardinal Beaton in his room, killed him and hung his body from the battlements.
It is said that afterwards they formed, in the Castle, the first congregation of the Church of Scotland.
The spot where George Wishart died is marked by the letters GW in cobblestones outside the Castle, and commemorated by a plaque nearby (erected jointly by the St. Andrews Preservation Trust and the Wishart Society).
He is also recorded on the Martyr's Monument at St. Andrews, and in a painting by John Drummond entitled "George Wishart on his way to Execution Administering the Sacrament for the First Time in Scotland after the Protestant Reform".
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