Construction of this church (the first to be built in Edinburgh after the reformation) began in 1602 and it was opened in 1620. It gets its name from the fact that it stands in the grounds of what was once a Franciscan convent. In 1638 the National Covenant was signed in front of the pulpit. This document was a declaration of opposition to the introduction of the Episcopal faith introduced by Charles I and lead to religious war in Scotland. The church was further modified in 1722 by Alexander McGill and housed two congregations back-to-back. The church was restored in 1938 by Henry Kerr and the church was physically unified with the removal of the dividing wall. The congregation united with Highland Tolbooth St. John's in 1979 (the full name of the church is now Greyfriars Tolbooth and Highland Kirk). The graveyard contains the Covenanter's Memorial, the Covenanter's Prison (which is said to be haunted by the ghost of Sir George Mackenzie, known as 'Bluidy Mackenzie', who persecuted the Covenanters ruthlessly) and the graves of various notable people (such as Captain Porteous, John Gray, William McGonagall and Allan Ramsay) and one dog (Greyfriar's Bobby).