Friday, July 09, 2010

The Statues of Princes Street

I was riding on the bus the other day when I noticed a statue that I had never seen before. It was sitting in the shadow on a tree. A branch was near it's head, threatening to cover his face as if nature was slowly erasing the remembrance of this man.

No one wants to be forgotten, so here's another .15 seconds of fame for some of the statues on Princes Street in Edinburgh.

Wellington. Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington. 1769 – 1852. A statesman and one of the leading military and political figures of the nineteenth century. He is often simply referred to as "The Duke of Wellington".

Livingstone. 1813 – 1873. As in, "Dr, Livingstone I presume?". Born in Scotland, David Livingstone was an explorer and missionary.

Sir Walter Scott. 1771 – 1832. A prolific Scottish historical novelist and poet. Famous titles include Ivanhoe, Rob Roy, The Lady of The Lake, The Heart of Midlothian and The Bride of Lammermoor. He was born in Edinburgh and not only has a huge monument on Princes Street, but the Waverley train station which stands not far from this monument is the only train station to be named after a novel.
Sir Walter Scott
Sir Walter Scott

Adam Black. 1784 – 1874. Born in Edinburgh, he was a publisher, and founded the A & C Black publishing company. Twice Lord Provost of Edinburgh, and represented the city in parliament from 1856 to 1865.
Adam Black

John Wilson. 1785 - 1854. A Scottish writer who was for a time the principal writer of Blackwood's Magazine, a magazine printed from 1817 to 1980.
John Wilson

Allan Ramsay. 1686 -1758. An Edinburgh poet and publisher who was involved in the early 18th century revival of Scots vernacular poetry. Best remembered for his five-part work, "The Gentle Shepherd." The statue was unveiled in 1865.
Allan Ramsey
Allan Ramsay

Memorial of The Royal Scots Grey. Commemorates the Royal Scots Greys who left Edinburgh in 1899 to fight in the South African War.
Royal Scots Grey memorial
Memorial The Royal Scots Greys

Thomas Guthrie. 1803–1873. A Scottish philanthropist who was one of the most popular preachers of his day in Scotland.
His statue reads: An eloquent preacher of the gospel. Founder of the Edinburgh Original Ragged Industrial Schools, and by tongue and pen, the apostle of the movement elsewhere. One of the earliest temperance reformers. A friend of the poor and of the oppressed.
Thomas Guthrie
Thomas Guthrie

Sir James Young Simpson. 1811 – 1870. A Scottish doctor and an important figure in the history of medicine. Simpson discovered the anaesthetic properties of chloroform and successfully introduced it for general medical use.
James Young Simpson
Sir James Young Simpson

Maybe I'll take pictures of the statues on George Street soon


  1. Wow, I like these statues too!! I love the picture of the one peeking out from behind the leaves, it's a great one!

  2. You've only posted one 'unveiling' date for these. I'm curious about what was built when, it tells a whole other set of stories.