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Quincentenary Scrolls

The University of St Andrews' Quincentenary Scrolls are part of the archive of the 500th anniversary celebrations of 1911. We are delighted to make available a small selection of these beautiful items as we approach the culmination of the celebrations for our 600th anniversary in 2013. The 500th anniversary was celebrated in grand style during one week in September 1911. Invitations were sent out around the world and many travelled to this small corner of Fife on the east coast of Scotland to share in the festivities.
Delegates brought with them the official greetings of universities, learned societies and august bodies from across higher education at that time. These greetings were in the form of carefully prepared addresses. A special ceremony at which they were officially presented to the University took place in front of over 3000 people.
The addresses came in a variety of shapes and sizes. Some were rolled inside beautiful, velvet-covered, embossed or gilded tubes. Some were bound into folders, specially boxed or framed. Many were tied with ribbon and bore seals and heraldic insignia. Each address was handed to the Chancellor of the University, Lord Balfour of Burleigh, to the accompaniment of appropriate music provided by the Band of the Scots Guards. The Chancellor passed the address to the Principal, Sir James Donaldson.
After the celebrations the Quincentenary scrolls were preserved with the University Archive as part of the permanent record of this most significant event. They represent the affiliation of the University of St Andrews with the world of scholarship and academic endeavour at that time.
More information can be found on the University Library's Special Collections blog and in the Online Archive Catalogue.