The #FriFotos* theme this week is shapes. As per usual, I close my eyes and focus on the first thing that pops up. This time, it’s the fabulously Gothic Scott monument in Edinburgh.
Wandering along Princes’ Street, Edinburgh’s main thoroughfare, you can’t help but gaze upon this grandiose structure (or bump into it, if you like to walk and read at the same time, as I do). At first you might think it’s an alien aircraft, a space ship, left here on Tellus for unknown reasons. Then you have a closer look – and notice that’s it’s dedicated to Sir Walter Scott, one of Scotland’s most famous sons, author of tomes such as Ivanhoe. And Rob Roy.
Why such a mountainous marker, Sir Walter? Well, he wouldn’t know, would he? The monument was constructed after his death. Unlike many great artists, Scott didn’t have to wait until his death for fame, he was popular during his lifetime. Even the king adored him. A design competition for a monument to this beloved author was held and, interestingly, a self-taught artist submitted the winning entry. I think there’s something very egalitarian and, well, likeable about that.
Here’s the Scott monument from a different angle:
Scott Monument practicals
- The monument is 61 metres tall and located in Princes Street Gardens, opposite Jenners (Edinburgh’s last independent department store, which sadly threw in the towel about 10 years ago, and is now a part of the House of Fraser group).
- For a modest £4, you can climb the 287 spiral steps to the top for fantastic views of this gorgeous Georgian city.
Does any author (or indeed, any artist) anywhere, have such an ostentatious monument in their honour?
*FriFotos is a weekly Twitter chat where travellers share their favourite photos. Each week has a theme.
Great photos 🙂
Thanks, I quite like that first one myself 🙂
What an interesting monument Sophie. I wasn’t quite expecting one as tall from from your first picture. Bigger is obviously better in Scotland!
Not sure that’s true for Scotland in general, but the Scott monument certainly.
That’s one massive monument. I love the first photo looking up at it. I thought it was a church at first. Also love the fact that a nobody won the design competition.
Loved that particular little titbit, too 🙂
Bravo to the self-taught artist who designed this monument. Ostentatious it definitely is. Wonder how the also-rans looked. I’d never have picked it for a monument though. Looks more like a cathedral.
Your post made me curious enough about the designer that I looked him up. I was sure he would have gone on to design some cathedrals in Europe. Sadly, the poor guy died before the monument was completed.
Proof again that the perspective of a photo can tell such different stories! Loved the two photos and thanks for the info on the FriFotos.
My pleasure. The themes often provide fun inspiration, I find.
Love the viewpoint from below, gives it a different feel than an ordinary frontal image…monuments are boring unless you play around with different angles and give it a different look from your efforts to bring it alive!
Monuments can indeed be boring. Searching for the curious ones.
A beautiful photo of a beautiful city!
Very photogenic Edinburgh is.
I must tell you: I am following your excellent site since 2007 and I adore it! I would just like you to write a bit about my Croatia 😀
Anyway, keep up the good work and keep pumping us with good articles!
Lovre from Split, Croatia
You’re right, I haven’t written nearly enough about Croatia. Mostly because I haven’t been there in 6 – 7 years. Much too long.
First picture looks so big and intimidating .
I like it – it is fabulous in the mythical sense.
It is 🙂
Edinburgh has got some really fantastic structures which are old classic style and are a real joy as well as fun to visit. Ofcourse the light burning event is world famous of edinburgh. Cheers on this great post as I really enjoyed the article. Thanks!
Thanks for stopping by. And you mean the torchlight procession at Hogmanay, right?
This sight looks amazing in Edinburgh, definitly a must visit.
I think so. And besides, you couldn’t miss it, even if you tried.
I saw this for the first time earlier this month on my first visit to Scotland. Very impressive! Though I unfortunately didn’t mange to see it in the sunshine, so my photos aren’t quite as nice as yours!
More moody, rainy, overcast photos 🙂