The Full Wiki

Edinburgh, Scotland: Wikis


Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.

Did you know ...

More interesting facts on Edinburgh, Scotland

Include this on your site/blog:


(Redirected to Edinburgh article)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

City of Edinburgh
Scottish Gaelic: Dùn Èideann
Scots: Edinburgh/Embra/Enburrie
—  Unitary Authority & City  —

Coat of arms

Logo of the City Council
Nickname(s): "Auld Reekie", "Athens of the North"
Motto: "Nisi Dominus Frustra" "Except the Lord in vain" associated with Edinburgh since 1647, it is a normal heraldic contraction of a verse from the 127th Psalm, "Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it. Except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain"
City of Edinburgh is located in Scotland
City of Edinburgh
Location in Scotland
Coordinates: 55°56′58″N 3°9′37″W / 55.94944°N 3.16028°W / 55.94944; -3.16028
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Constituent country Scotland
Lieutenancy area Edinburgh
Admin HQ Edinburgh City Centre
Founded 7th century
Burgh Charter 1125
City status 1889
 - Type Unitary Authority, City
 - Governing body City of Edinburgh Council
 - Lord Provost George Grubb
 - MSPs
 - MPs:
 - Unitary Authority & City 100.00 sq mi (259 km2)
Population (2008 est.)
 - Unitary Authority & City 471,650
 Urban 1,164,611
 - Urban Density 4,716/sq mi (1,820.9/km2)
Time zone Greenwich Mean Time (UTC+0)
 - Summer (DST) British Summer Time (UTC+1)
Postcode EH
Area code(s) 0131
ISO 3166-2 GB-EDH
ONS code 00QP
OS grid reference NT275735
Website (Official Council site) (Visitor-facing site)

Edinburgh (pronounced /ˈɛdɪnb(ə)rə/ ( listen), ED-in-brə or ED-in-bə-rə; (Scots: Edinburgh/Embra/Emburrie) (Gaelic:Dùn Èideann ) is the capital city of Scotland. It is the second largest city in Scotland and the seventh-most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Edinburgh Council is one of Scotland's 32 local government council areas. The city council area includes urban Edinburgh and a 30-square-mile (78 km2) rural area.

Located in the south-east of Scotland, Edinburgh lies on the east coast of the Central Belt, along the Firth of Forth, near the North Sea. Owing to its spectacular, rugged setting and vast collection of Medieval and Georgian architecture, including numerous stone tenements, it is often considered one of the most picturesque cities in Europe.

Edinburgh is the seat of the Scottish Parliament. The city was one of the major centres of the Enlightenment, led by the University of Edinburgh, earning it the nickname Athens of the North. The Old Town and New Town districts of Edinburgh were listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995. There are over 4,500 listed buildings within the city.[1] In the 2008 mid year population estimates, Edinburgh had a total resident population of 471,650.[2] Edinburgh is well-known for the annual Edinburgh Festival, a collection of official and independent festivals held annually over about four weeks from early August. The number of visitors attracted to Edinburgh for the Festival is roughly equal to the settled population of the city. The most famous of these events are the Edinburgh Fringe (the largest performing arts festival in the world), the Edinburgh International Festival, the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, and the Edinburgh International Book Festival. Other events include the Hogmanay street party (31 December), Burns Night (25 January), St. Andrew's Day (30 November), and the Beltane Fire Festival (30 April).

The city attracts 1 million overseas visitors a year, making it the second most visited tourist destination in the United Kingdom, after London.[3] In a 2009 YouGov poll, Edinburgh was voted the "most desirable city in which to live in the UK".[4] Edinburgh was also rated The Best Place to Live in Channel 4's 2007 4Homes survey, .[5]



Humans have settled the Edinburgh area from at least the Bronze Age, leaving traces of primitive stone settlements at Holyrood, Craiglockhart Hill and the Pentland Hills for example.[6] Influenced through the Iron Age by Hallstatt and La Tene Celtic cultures from central Europe, by the time the Romans arrived in Lothian at the beginning of the 1st millennium AD, they discovered a Celtic, Brythonic tribe whose name they recorded as Votadini, likely to be a Latin version of the name they called themselves.

The city's name is most likely Celtic (P-Celtic, Brythonic) in origin, possibly Cumbric or a variation of it. It is first mentioned in the late 6th century in the heroic poems of the Gododdin (a later Brythonic form of 'Votadini'), named as both Eidyn and Din Eidyn and also described as Eidyn ysgor or Eidyn gaer, i.e. the stronghold or fort of Eidyn. All these forms use 'Eidyn' as a proper name, and the same is true for later translations made by invading Bernicians and Scots, typified in a note from the 9th century's Life of St Monenna, 'Dunedene, which is in English, Edineburg'.[7][8]

This Celtic root is contrary to the often-cited theory that the city was named after the Bernician King of Northumbria, Edwin, who was killed in AD 633. However it is extremely unlikely that Edwin had any connection with Edinburgh, despite the expansion of his kingdom during his reign. Although centuries later some, such as Symeon of Durham in the 12th century, referred to the city in terms such as Edwinesburch, this hypothesis has been largely discredited as 'folk-etymology', the invention of a connection where there is none, most likely for political reasons. Indeed rigorous etymological research supports the Celtic route theory.[9]

Nevertheless there is no doubt that the Angles of Northumbria did have significant influence over south east Scotland, notably from AD 638 when it appears the Gododdin stronghold of Din Eidyn was sieged. Though far from exclusive (cf Picts and Scots), this influence continued over three centuries. It was not until c. AD 950 when, during the reign of Indulf, son of Constantine, the city, referred to at this time in the Pictish Chronicle as 'oppidum Eden',[9] fell to the Scots and finally remained under their jurisdiction.[10]

It is worth noting that during this period of Germanic influence in south east Scotland, when the city's name gained its Germanic suffix, 'burgh', the seeds for the language we know today as Scots were sown.

By the 12th century Edinburgh was well established, founded upon the famous castle rock, the volcanic crag and tail geological feature shaped by 2 million years of glacial activity. Flourishing alongside it to the east, another community developed around the Abbey of Holyrood, known as Canongate. In the 13th century these both became Royal Burghs and through the late medieval period Edinburgh grew quickly.

In 1492 King James IV of Scotland undertook to move the Royal Court from Stirling to Holyrood, making Edinburgh the national capital.

Edinburgh continued to flourish economically and culturally through the Renaissance period and was at the centre of the 16th century Scottish Reformation and the Wars of the Covenant a hundred years later.

In 1603 King James VI of Scotland succeeded to the English and Irish thrones, fulfilling his ambition to create a united kingdom under the Stuart Monarchy. Although he retained the Parliament of Scotland in Edinburgh, he marched to London to rule from his throne there. He ordered that every public building in the land should bear his family's emblem, the red lion rampant, and to this day the most common name for a public house in Britain is the Red Lion.

In 1639, disputes between the Presbyterian Covenanters and the Anglican Church led to the Bishops' Wars, the initial conflict of the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. During the Third English Civil War Edinburgh was taken by the Commonwealth forces of Oliver Cromwell prior to Charles II's eventual defeat at the Battle of Worcester.

In 17th century Edinburgh, a defensive wall, built in the 16th century, largely as protection against English invasion following James IV's defeat at Flodden (hence its moniker, the Flodden Wall) still defined the boundaries of the city . Due to the restricted land area available for development, the houses increased in height instead. Buildings of 11 stories were common, and there are records of buildings as high as 14 stories,[citation needed] an early version of the modern-day skyscraper. Many of the stone-built structures can still be seen today in the Old Town.

In 1707 the Act of Union was ratified by a narrow margin in the Parliament of Scotland, however many Scots had opposed it and the people of Edinburgh rioted at the news. It would be almost 300 years before the Parliament was reinstated.

From early times, and certainly from the 14th century, Edinburgh (like other royal burghs of Scotland) used armorial devices in many ways, including on seals. However in 1732, the ‘achievement’ or ‘coat of arms’ was formally granted by the Lord Lyon King of Arms. These arms were used by Edinburgh Town Council until the reorganisation of local government in Scotland in May 1975, when it was succeeded by the City of Edinburgh District Council and a new coat of arms, based on the earlier one, was granted. In 1996, further local government reorganisation resulted in the formation of the City of Edinburgh Council, and again the coat of arms was updated.[11]

During the Jacobite rising of 1745, Edinburgh was briefly occupied by Jacobite forces before their march into England.

An 1802 illustration of Edinburgh from the west.

However following their ultimate defeat at Culloden, there was a period of reprisals and pacification, largely directed at the Catholic Highlanders. In Edinburgh the Hanoverian monarch attempted to gain favour by supporting new developments to the north of the castle, naming streets in honour of the King and his family; George Street, Frederick Street, Hanover Street and Princes Street, named in honour of George IV's two sons.

Edinburgh is noted for its fine architecture, and the New Town for its Georgian architecture in particular.[citation needed]

The city was at the heart of the Scottish Enlightenment and renowned throughout Europe at this time, as a hotbed of talent and ideas and a beacon for progress.[citation needed] Celebrities from across the continent would be seen in the city streets, among them famous Scots such as David Hume, Walter Scott, Robert Adam, David Wilkie, Robert Burns, James Hutton and Adam Smith. Edinburgh became a major cultural centre, earning it the nickname Athens of the North because of the Greco-Roman style of the New Town's architecture, as well as the rise of the Scottish intellectual elite who were increasingly leading both Scottish and European intellectual thought.[citation needed]

Edinburgh today

In the 19th century, Edinburgh, like many cities, industrialised, but did not grow as fast as Scotland's second city, Glasgow, which replaced it as the largest city in the country, benefitting greatly at the height of the British Empire.


The city is affectionately nicknamed Auld Reekie[12] (Scots for Old Smoky), because when buildings were heated by coal and wood fires, chimneys would spew thick columns of smoke into the air. The colloquial pronunciation "Embra" or "Embro" has also been used[13] as in Robert Garioch's Embro to the Ploy.[14]

Some have called Edinburgh the Athens of the North. It is also known by several Latin names; Aneda or Edina. The adjectival form of the latter, Edinensis, can be seen inscribed on many educational buildings.[15][16][17][18][19]

Edinburgh has also been known as Dunedin, deriving from the Scottish Gaelic, Dùn Èideann. Dunedin, New Zealand, was originally called "New Edinburgh" and is still nicknamed the "Edinburgh of the South". The Scots poets Robert Burns and Robert Fergusson sometimes used the city's Latin name, Edina. Ben Jonson described it as Britain's other eye,[20] and Sir Walter Scott referred to the city as yon Empress of the North.[21] Robert Louis Stevenson, also a son of the city, wrote, "Edinburgh is what Paris ought to be".

Panorama of the Old Town and Southside of Edinburgh from the Nelson monument. The term panorama was originally coined by the painter Robert Barker to describe his panoramic paintings of Edinburgh.


Arthur's Seat viewed across southern parts of Edinburgh from Blackford Hill.

Bounded by the Firth of Forth to the north and the Pentland Hills, which skirt the periphery of the city to the south, Edinburgh lies in the eastern portion of the Central Lowlands of Scotland.[22] The city sprawls over a landscape which is the product of early volcanic activity and later periods of intensive glaciation.[23] Igneous activity between 350 and 400 million years ago, coupled with faulting led to the dispersion of tough basalt volcanic plugs, which predominate over much of the area.[23] One such example is Castle Rock which forced the advancing icepack to divide, sheltering the softer rock and forming a mile-long tail of material to the east, creating a distinctive crag and tail formation.[23] Glacial erosion on the northern side of the crag gouged a large valley resulting in the now drained Nor Loch. This structure, along with a ravine to the south, formed an ideal natural fortress which Edinburgh Castle was built upon.[23] Similarly, Arthur's Seat is the remains of a volcano system dating from the Carboniferous period, which was eroded by a glacier moving from west to east during the ice age.[23] Erosive action such as plucking and abrasion exposed the rocky crags to the west before leaving a tail of deposited glacial material swept to the east.[24] This process formed the distinctive Salisbury Crags, which formed a series of teschenite cliffs located between Arthur's Seat and the city centre.[25] The residential areas of Marchmont and Bruntsfield are built along a series of drumlin ridges located south of the city centre which were deposited as the glacier receded.[23]

Other viewpoints in the city such as Calton Hill and Corstorphine Hill are similar products of glacial erosion.[23] The Braid Hills and Blackford Hill are a series of small summits to the south west of the city commanding expansive views over the urban area of Edinburgh and northwards to the Forth.[23]

Climate chart (explanation)
average max. and min. temperatures in °C
precipitation totals in mm
source: Met Office

Edinburgh is drained by the Water of Leith, which finds its source at the Harperrig Reservoir in the Pentland Hills and runs for 29 km (18 miles) through the south and west of the city, emptying into the Firth of Forth at Leith.[26] The nearest the river gets to the city centre is at Dean Village on the edge of the New Town, where a deep gorge is spanned by the Dean Bridge, designed by Thomas Telford and built in 1832 for the road to Queensferry.[26] The Water of Leith Walkway is a mixed use trail that follows the river for 19.6 km (12.2 miles) from Balerno to Leith.[27]

Designated in 1957, Edinburgh is ringed by a green belt stretching from Dalmeny in the west to Prestongrange in the east.[28] With an average width of 3.2 km (2 miles) the principal objective of the green belt was to contain the outward expansion of Edinburgh and to prevent the agglomeration of urban areas.[28] Expansion within the green belt is strictly controlled but developments such as Edinburgh Airport and the Royal Highland Showground at Ingliston are located within the zone.[28] Similarly, urban villages such as Juniper Green and Balerno sit on green belt land.[28] One feature of the green belt in Edinburgh is the inclusion of parcels of land within the city which are designated as green belt even though they do not adjoin the main peripheral ring. Examples of these independent wedges of green belt include Holyrood Park and Corstorphine Hill.[28]

Like much of the rest of Scotland, Edinburgh has a temperate, maritime climate which is relatively mild despite its northerly latitude.[29] Winters are especially mild, with daytime temperatures rarely falling below freezing, and compare favourably with places such as Moscow, Labrador and Newfoundland which lie in similar latitudes.[29] Summer temperatures are normally moderate, with daily upper maxima rarely exceeding 22 °C.[29] The highest temperature ever recorded in the city was 31.4 °C on 4 August 1975.[29] The proximity of the city to the sea mitigates any large variations in temperature or extremes of climate. Given Edinburgh's position between the coast and hills, it is renowned as a windy city, with the prevailing wind direction coming from the south-west which is associated with warm, unstable air from the Gulf Stream that can give rise to rainfall - although considerably less than cities to the west, such as Glasgow.[29] Rainfall is distributed fairly evenly throughout the year.[29] Winds from an easterly direction are usually drier but colder. Vigorous Atlantic depressions, known as European windstorms, can affect the city between October and May.[29]



Old and New Towns of Edinburgh*
UNESCO World Heritage Site

View of Edinburgh from Calton Hill. The Dugald Stewart memorial is visible in the foreground.
Type Cultural
Criteria ii, iv
Reference 728
Region** Europe and North America
Inscription history
Inscription 1995  (19th Session)
* Name as inscribed on World Heritage List.
** Region as classified by UNESCO.
Map of the city, showing New Town, Old Town, and the West End.

Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, is divided into areas that generally encompass a park (sometimes known as "links"), a main local street (i.e. street of local retail shops), a high street (the historic main street, not always the same as the main local street, such as in Corstorphine) and residential buildings. In Edinburgh many residences are tenements, although the more southern and western parts of the city have traditionally been more affluent and have a greater number of detached and semi-detached villas.

The historic centre of Edinburgh is divided into two by the broad green swath of Princes Street Gardens. To the south the view is dominated by Edinburgh Castle, perched atop the extinct volcanic crag, and the long sweep of the Old Town trailing after it along the ridge. To the north lies Princes Street and the New Town. The gardens were begun in 1816 on bogland which had once been the Nor Loch.

To the immediate west of the castle lies the financial district, housing insurance and banking buildings. Probably the most noticeable building here is the circular sandstone building that is the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

Old Town

Looking down The Royal Mile

The Old Town has preserved its medieval plan and many Reformation-era buildings. One end is closed by the castle and the main artery, the Royal Mile, leads away from it; minor streets (called closes or wynds) lead downhill on either side of the main spine in a herringbone pattern. Large squares mark the location of markets or surround public buildings such as St. Giles' Cathedral and the Law Courts. Other notable places nearby include the Royal Museum of Scotland, Surgeons' Hall and McEwan Hall. The street layout is typical of the old quarters of many northern European cities, and where the castle perches on top of a rocky crag (the remnants of an extinct volcano) the Royal Mile runs down the crest of a ridge from it.

Due to space restrictions imposed by the narrowness of the "tail", the Old Town became home to some of the earliest "high rise" residential buildings. Multi-storey dwellings known as lands were the norm from the 1500s onwards with ten and eleven stories being typical and one even reaching fourteen stories. Additionally, numerous vaults below street level were inhabited to accommodate the influx of (mainly Irish) immigrants during the Industrial Revolution. These continue to fuel legends of an underground city to this day. Today there are tours of Edinburgh which take you into the underground city, Edinburgh Vaults.[30]

New Town

View of the New Town

The New Town was an 18th century solution to the problem of an increasingly crowded Old Town. The city had remained incredibly compact, confined to the ridge running down from the castle. In 1766 a competition to design the New Town was won by James Craig, a 22-year-old architect. The plan that was built created a rigid, ordered grid, which fitted well with enlightenment ideas of rationality. The principal street was to be George Street, which follows the natural ridge to the north of the Old Town. Either side of it are the other main streets of Princes Street and Queen Street. Princes Street has since become the main shopping street in Edinburgh, and few Georgian buildings survive on it. Linking these streets were a series of perpendicular streets. At the east and west ends are St. Andrew Square and Charlotte Square respectively. The latter was designed by Robert Adam and is often considered one of the finest Georgian squares in the world. Bute House, the official residence of the First Minister of Scotland, is on the north side of Charlotte Square. Sitting in the glen between the Old and New Towns was the Nor' Loch, which had been both the city's water supply and place for dumping sewage. By the 1820s it was drained. Some plans show that a canal was intended[citation needed], but Princes Street Gardens were created instead. Excess soil from the construction of the buildings was dumped into the loch, creating what is now The Mound. In the mid-19th century the National Gallery of Scotland and Royal Scottish Academy Building were built on The Mound, and tunnels to Waverley Station driven through it. The New Town was so successful that it was extended greatly. The grid pattern was not maintained, but rather a more picturesque layout was created. Today the New Town is considered by many to be one of the finest examples of Georgian architecture and planning in the world.

South side

A popular residential part of the city is its south side, comprising a number of areas including St Leonards, Marchmont, Newington, Sciennes, The Grange, Edinburgh "South side" is broadly analogous to the area covered by the Burgh Muir, and grew in popularity as a residential area following the opening of the South Bridge. These areas are particularly popular with families (many well-regarded[citation needed] state and private schools are located here), students (the central University of Edinburgh campus is based around George Square just north of Marchmont and the Meadows, and Napier University has major campuses around Merchiston & Morningside), and with festival-goers. These areas are also the subject of fictional work: Ian Rankin's Inspector Rebus lives in Marchmont and worked in St Leonards; and Morningside is the home of Muriel Spark's Miss Jean Brodie. Today, the literary connection continues, with the area being home to the authors J. K. Rowling, Ian Rankin, and Alexander McCall Smith.


Leith is the port of Edinburgh. It still retains a separate identity from Edinburgh, and it was a matter of great resentment when, in 1920, the burgh of Leith was merged[31] into the county of Edinburgh. Even today the parliamentary seat is known as 'Edinburgh North and Leith'. With the redevelopment of Leith, Edinburgh has gained the business of a number of cruise liner companies which now provide cruises to Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands. Leith also has the Royal Yacht Britannia, berthed behind the Ocean Terminal and Easter Road, the home ground of Hibernian.

Urban Area

The urban area of Edinburgh is almost entirely contained within the City of Edinburgh Council boundary, merging only with Musselburgh in East Lothian.


Edinburgh compared[32][33]
UK Census 2001 Edinburgh Lothian Scotland
Total population 448,624 778,367 5,062,011
Population Growth 1991–2001 7.1% 7.2% 1.3%
White 95.9% 97.2% 98.8%
Asian 2.6% 1.6% 1.3%
Under 16 years old 16.3% 18.6% 19.2%
Over 65 years old 15.4% 14.8% 16.0%
Christian 54.8% 58.1% 65.1%
Muslim 1.5% 1.1% 0.8%

At the United Kingdom Census 2001, Edinburgh had a population of 448,624, a rise of 7.1% on 1991.[32] Estimates in 2008 placed the total resident population at 471,650 split between 227,922 males and 243,728 females.[34] This makes Edinburgh the second largest city in Scotland after Glasgow.[32] According to the European Statistical agency, Eurostat, Edinburgh sits at the heart of a Larger Urban Zone covering 665 square miles (1,724 km2) with a population of 778,000.[35]

The cramped tenements of the Royal Mile were once home to most of Edinburgh's population.

Edinburgh has a higher proportion of those aged between 16 and 24 than the Scottish average, but has a lower proportion of those classified as elderly or pre-school.[34] Over 95% of Edinburgh respondents classed their ethnicity as White in 2001, with those identifying as being Indian and Chinese at 1.6% and 0.8% of the population respectively.[36] In 2001, 22% of the population were born outside Scotland with the largest group of immigrants coming from England at 12.1%.[36] Since the 2004 enlargement of the European Union, a large number of migrants from the accession states such as Poland, Lithuania and Latvia have settled in the city, with many working in the service industry.[37]

There is evidence of human habitation on Castle Rock from as early as 3,000 years ago.[38] A census conducted by the Edinburgh presbytery in 1592 estimated a population of 8,000 scattered equally north and south of the High Street which runs down the spine of the ridge leading from the Castle.[39] In the 18th and 19th Centuries, the population began to expand rapidly, rising from 49,000 in 1751 to 136,000 in 1831 primarily due to rural out-migration.[40] As the population swelled, overcrowding problems in the Old Town, particularly in the cramped tenements that lined the present day Royal Mile and Cowgate, were exacerbated.[40] Sanitary problems and disease were rife.[40] The construction of James Craig's masterplanned New Town from 1766 onwards witnessed the migration of the professional classes from the Old Town to the lower density, higher quality surroundings taking shape on land to the north.[41] Expansion southwards from the Royal Mile/Cowgate axis of the Old Town saw more tenements being built in the 19th century, giving rise to present day areas such as Marchmont, Newington and Bruntsfield.[42]

Early 20th century population growth coincided with lower density suburban development in areas such as Gilmerton, Liberton and South Gyle. As the city expanded to the south and west, detached and semi detached villas with large gardens replaced tenements as the predominant building style. Nonetheless, the 2001 census revealed that over 55% of Edinburgh's population live in tenements or high rise flats compared to the Scottish average of 33.5%.[43]

Throughout the early to mid 20th century many new estates were built in areas such as Craigmillar, Niddrie, Pilton, Muirhouse, Piershill and Sighthill, linked to slum clearances in the Old Town.



Pipers emerging from Edinburgh Castle during the Edinburgh Military Tattoo

Culturally, Edinburgh is best known for the Edinburgh Festival, although this is in fact a series of separate events, which run from the end of July until early September each year. The longest established festival is the Edinburgh International Festival, which first ran in 1947. The International Festival centres on a programme of high-profile theatre productions and classical music performances, featuring international directors, conductors, theatre companies and orchestras.

The International Festival has since been taken over in both size and popularity by the Edinburgh Fringe. What began as a programme of marginal acts has become the largest arts festival in the world, with 1867 different shows being staged in 2006, in 261 venues. Comedy is now one of the mainstays of the Fringe, with numerous notable comedians getting their 'break' here, often through receipt of the Perrier Award.

In 2008 the largest comedy venues on the Edinburgh Fringe launched as a festival within a festival, labelled the Edinburgh Comedy Festival. Already at its inception it was the largest comedy festival in the world.[44] Alongside these major festivals, there is also the Edinburgh Art Festival, Edinburgh International Film Festival (moved to June from 2008), the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival, and the Edinburgh International Book Festival. The Edge Festival (formerly known as T on the Fringe), a popular music offshoot of the Fringe, began in 2000, replacing the smaller Flux and Planet Pop series of shows.

Running concurrently with the summer festivals, the Edinburgh Military Tattoo occupies the Castle Esplanade every night, with massed pipers and fireworks.

The Edinburgh International Science Festival is held annually in April and is one of the most popular science festivals in the world.


A Viking longship being burnt during Edinburgh's annual Hogmanay celebrations.

Equally famous is the annual Hogmanay celebration. Originally simply a street party held on Princes Street and the Royal Mile, the Hogmanay event has been officially organised since 1993. In 1996, over 300,000 people attended, leading to ticketing of the main street party in later years, with a limit of 100,000 tickets. Hogmanay now covers four days of processions, concerts and fireworks, with the actual street party commencing on New Year's Eve. During the street party Princes Street is accessible by ticket only, allowing access into Princes Street where there are live bands playing, food and drink stalls, and a clear view of the castle and fireworks. Alternative tickets are available for entrance into the Princes Street Gardens concert and Ceilidh, where well known artists perform and ticket holders are invited to participate in traditional Scottish Ceilidh dancing. The event attracts thousands of people from all over the world. On the night of 30 April, the Beltane Fire Festival takes place on Edinburgh's Calton Hill. The festival involves a procession followed by the re-enactment of scenes inspired by pagan spring fertility celebrations.

Museums and libraries

Edinburgh is home to a large number of museums and libraries, many of which are national institutions. These include the Museum of Scotland, the Royal Museum, the National Library of Scotland, National War Museum of Scotland, the Museum of Edinburgh, Museum of Childhood and the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

Literature and philosophy

Edinburgh has a long literary tradition, going back to the Scottish Enlightenment. Edinburgh's Enlightenment produced philosopher David Hume and the pioneer of political economy, Adam Smith. Writers such as James Boswell, Robert Louis Stevenson, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Sir Walter Scott all lived and worked in Edinburgh. J K Rowling, author of the Harry Potter novels, is a resident of Edinburgh. Edinburgh has also become associated with the crime novels of Ian Rankin; and the work of Leith native Irvine Welsh, whose novels are mostly set in the city and are often written in colloquial Scots. Edinburgh is also home to Alexander McCall Smith and a number of his book series. Edinburgh has also been declared the first UNESCO City of Literature.

Music, theatre and film

Outside festival season, Edinburgh continues to support a number of theatres and production companies. The Royal Lyceum Theatre has its own company, while the King's Theatre, Edinburgh Festival Theatre, and Edinburgh Playhouse stage large touring shows. The Traverse Theatre presents a more contemporary programme of plays. Amateur theatre companies productions are staged at the Bedlam Theatre, Church Hill Theatre, and the King's Theatre amongst others. Youth Music Theatre: UK has a regional office in the city.

The Usher Hall is Edinburgh's premier venue for classical music, as well as the occasional prestige popular music gig. Other halls staging music and theatre include The Hub, the Assembly Rooms and the Queen's Hall. The Scottish Chamber Orchestra is based in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh has two repertory cinemas, the Edinburgh Filmhouse, and the Cameo, and the independent Dominion Cinema, as well as the usual range of multiplexes.

Edinburgh has a healthy popular music scene. Occasional large gigs are staged at Murrayfield and Meadowbank, whilst venues such as the Corn Exchange, HMV Picture House and the Liquid Room cater for smaller events.

Edinburgh is also home to a flourishing group of contemporary composers such as Nigel Osborne, Peter Nelson, Lyell Cresswell, Hafliði Hallgrímsson, Edward Harper, Robert Crawford, Robert Dow, and John McLeod[45] whose music is heard regularly on BBC Radio 3 and throughout the UK.

Edinburgh is also home to several of Scotland's galleries and organisations dedicated to contemporary visual art. Significant strands of this infrastructure include: The Scottish Arts Council, Inverleith House, Edinburgh College of Art, Talbot Rice Gallery (University of Edinburgh), The Travelling Gallery, Edinburgh Printmakers, WASPS, Artlink, Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop, Doggerfisher, Stills, Collective Gallery, Out of the Blue, The Embassy, Magnifitat, Sleeper, Total Kunst, OneZero, Standby, Portfolio Magazine, MAP magazine, Edinburgh's One O'Clock Gun Periodical and Product magazine and the Edinburgh Annuale.

Visual arts

Edinburgh is home to Scotland's five National Galleries as well as numerous smaller galleries. The national collection is housed in the National Gallery of Scotland, located on the Mound, and now linked to the Royal Scottish Academy, which holds regular major exhibitions of painting. The contemporary collections are shown in the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, and the nearby Dean Gallery. The Scottish National Portrait Gallery focuses on portraits and photography.

The council-owned City Arts Centre shows regular art exhibitions. Across the road, The Fruitmarket Gallery offers world class exhibitions of contemporary art, featuring work by British and international artists with both emerging and established international reputations.

There are world class private galleries, including: Doggerfisher and Ingleby Gallery, the latter serving up a constantly challenging exhibition program of Museum quality work.

Nightlife and shopping

Edinburgh has a large number of pubs, clubs and restaurants. The traditional areas were the Grassmarket, Lothian Road and surrounding streets, Rose Street and its surrounds and the Bridges. In recent years George Street in the New Town has grown in prominence, with a large number of new, upmarket public houses and nightclubs opening, along with a number on the parallel Queen Street. Stockbridge and the waterfront at Leith are also increasingly fashionable areas, with a number of pubs, clubs and restaurants.

The largest nightclubs are Lava & Ignite (formerly Cavendish) and City Nightclub, as well as Edinburgh University's student union, Potterrow. Smaller commercial venues include Base, Faith, Stereo, and Karma. In recent years night clubs on George Street such as Opal Lounge, Lulu's, Why Not and Shanghai have become popular.

The main alternative, indie and rock nights are hosted at The Hive, Opium and Studio 24. The Liquid Room is currently undergoing a full re-fit after being damaged by the fire that destroyed an Indian restaurant which was situated behind it in December 2008. It is expected to reopen within the year.

The underground nightclub scene playing music such as techno, house, electronica, drum & bass and dubstep has suffered in recent years with the closure of Wilkie House, The Honeycomb, The Venue, La Belle Angele (destroyed in the Cowgate fire) and Luna (formerly eGo). Cabaret Voltaire, The Bongo Club, and Sneaky Pete's now host the majority of underground events held in Edinburgh.

There are two dedicated gay clubs in Edinburgh, CC Blooms and GHQ; several other club venues have LGBT nights.

A fortnightly publication, The List, is dedicated to life in Edinburgh and around, and contains listings of all nightclubs, as well as music, theatrical and other events. The List also regularly produces specialist guides such as its Food and Drink guide and its guide to the Edinburgh Festivals.

Princes Street is the main shopping area in the city centre, with a wide range of stores from souvenir shops, from chains such as Boots and H&M and institutions like Jenners. George Street, north of Princes Street, is home to a number of upmarket chains and independent stores. The St. James Centre, at the eastern end of George Street and Princes Street, hosts a substantial number of national chains including a large John Lewis. Multrees Walk, adjacent to the St. James Centre, is a recent addition to the city centre, hosting brands such as Louis Vuitton, Emporio Armani, Mulberry and Calvin Klein, with Harvey Nichols anchoring the development.

Edinburgh also has substantial retail developments outside the city centre. These include The Gyle and Hermiston Gait in the west of the city, Cameron Toll, Straiton Retail Park and Fort Kinnaird in the south and east, and Ocean Terminal to the north, on the Leith waterfront. The Royal Yacht Britannia lies in dock here next to the centre.

Edinburgh Zoo

Edinburgh Zoo is a non-profit zoological park located in Corstorphine. The land lies on Corstorphine Hill and provides extensive views of the city. Built in 1913, and owned by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, it receives over 600,000 visitors a year, which makes it Scotland's second most popular paid-for tourist attraction, after Edinburgh Castle.[46] As well as catering to tourists and locals, the Zoo is involved in many scientific pursuits, such as captive breeding of endangered animals, researching into animal behaviour, and active participation in various conservation programs around the world.[47] The Zoo is the only zoo in Britain to house polar bears and koalas, as well as being the first zoo in the world to house and breed penguins.



Edinburgh has two professional football clubs - Hibernian and Heart of Midlothian. They are known locally as Hibs and Hearts and both teams currently play in the Scottish Premier League. Hibs play at Easter Road Stadium, which straddles the former boundary between Edinburgh and Leith, while Hearts play at Tynecastle Stadium in Gorgie.

Edinburgh was also home to senior sides St Bernard's, and Leith Athletic. Most recently, Meadowbank Thistle played at Meadowbank Stadium until 1995, when the club moved to Livingston, becoming Livingston F.C.. Previously, Meadowbank Thistle had been named Ferranti Thisle. The Scottish national team has occasionally played at Easter Road and Tynecastle.

Non-league sides include Spartans and Edinburgh City, who play in the East of Scotland League along with Civil Service Strollers F.C., Lothian Thistle F.C., Edinburgh University A.F.C., Edinburgh Athletic F.C., Tynecastle F.C., Craigroyston F.C. and Heriot-Watt University F.C.. Edinburgh United F.C. plays in the Scottish Junior Football Association, East Region.

Rugby Union

The Scotland national rugby union team plays at Murrayfield Stadium, which is owned by the Scottish Rugby Union and is also used as a venue for other events, including music concerts. Edinburgh's professional rugby team, Edinburgh Rugby, play in the Celtic Magners League at Murrayfield. It is the largest capacity stadium in Scotland. Raeburn Place held the first rugby international game between Scotland and England. Edinburgh is also home to numerous smaller rugby teams including The Edinburgh Academicals (who play at Raeburn Place), The Murrayfield Wanderers and several teams from the universities in Edinburgh.

Other sports

The Scottish cricket team, who represent Scotland at cricket internationally and in the Friends Provident Trophy, play their home matches at The Grange.

The Edinburgh Capitals are the latest of a succession of ice hockey clubs to represent the Scottish capital. Previously Edinburgh was represented by the Murrayfield Racers and the Edinburgh Racers. The club play their home games at the Murrayfield Ice Rink and are the sole Scottish representative in the Elite Ice Hockey League.

The Edinburgh Diamond Devils is a baseball club claiming its first Scottish Championship in 1991 as the "Reivers." 1992 saw the team repeat as national champions, becoming the first team to do so in league history and saw the start of the club's first youth team, the Blue Jays. The name of the club was changed in 1999.

Edinburgh has also hosted various national and international sports events including the World Student Games, the 1970 British Commonwealth Games, the 1986 Commonwealth Games and the inaugural 2000 Commonwealth Youth Games. For the Games in 1970 the city built major Olympic standard venues and facilities including the Royal Commonwealth Pool and the Meadowbank Stadium.

In American football, the Scottish Claymores played WLAF/NFL Europe games at Murrayfield, including their World Bowl 96 victory. From 1995 to 1997 they played all their games there, from 1998 to 2000 they split their home matches between Murrayfield and Glasgow's Hampden Park, then moved to Glasgow full-time, with one final Murrayfield appearance in 2002. The city's most successful non-professional team are the Edinburgh Wolves who currently play at Meadowbank Stadium.

The Edinburgh Marathon has been held in the city since 2003 with more than 13,000 taking part annually. The city also has a half-marathon, as well as a number of 10 km and 5 km races, including a 5 km race on the first of January each year.

Edinburgh has a speedway team, the Edinburgh Monarchs, which is currently based at the Lothian Arena in Armadale, West Lothian.

Edinburgh Eagles are a rugby league team who play in the Rugby League Conference Scotland Division. Murrayfield Stadium also hosts the Magic Weekend where all Super League matches are played(at Murrayfield) all on the one weekend.


Edinburgh has the strongest economy of any city in the UK outside London.[citation needed] The strength of Edinburgh's economy is reflected by its GVA per capita, which was measured at £28,238 in 2005.[48] The economy of Edinburgh and its hinterland has recently been announced as one of the fastest growing city regions in Europe.[citation needed] Education and health, finance and business services, retailing and tourism are the largest employers.[49] The economy of Edinburgh is largely based around the services sector — centred around banking, financial services, higher education, and tourism. Unemployment in Edinburgh is low at 1.9%, which has been consistently below the Scottish average.[50] Banking has been a part of the economic life of Edinburgh for over 300 years, with the establishment of the Bank of Scotland by an act of the original Parliament of Scotland in 1695. Today, together with the burgeoning financial services industry, with particular strengths in insurance and investment underpinned by the presence of Edinburgh based firms such as Scottish Widows and Standard Life, Edinburgh has emerged as Europe's sixth largest financial centre.[51] The Royal Bank of Scotland opened its new global headquarters at Gogarburn in the west of the city in October 2005; its registered office remains in St. Andrew Square.

Edinburgh Financial District

Manufacturing has never had as strong a presence in Edinburgh compared with Glasgow; however brewing, publishing, and nowadays electronics have maintained a foothold in the city. While brewing has been in decline in recent years, with the closure of the McEwan's Brewery in 2005, Caledonian Brewery remains as the largest, with Scottish and Newcastle retaining their headquarters in the city.

Tourism is an important economic mainstay in the city. As a World Heritage Site, tourists come to visit such historical sites as Edinburgh Castle, the Palace of Holyroodhouse and the Georgian New Town. This is augmented in August of each year with the presence of the Edinburgh Festivals, which bring in large numbers of visitors, generating in excess of £100 m for the Edinburgh economy.[52]

As the centre of Scotland's government, as well as its legal system, the public sector plays a central role in the economy of Edinburgh with many departments of the Scottish Government located in the city. Other major employers include NHS Scotland and local government administration.


Following local government reorganisation in 1996, Edinburgh constitutes one of the 32 Unitary Authorities of Scotland.[53] Today, the City of Edinburgh Council is the administrative body for the local authority and has its powers stipulated by the Local Government etc (Scotland) Act 1994.[54] Like all other unitary and island authorities in Scotland, the council has powers over most matters of local administration such as housing, planning, local transport, parks, economic development and regeneration.[54] The council is composed of 58 elected councillors, returned from 17 multi-member electoral wards in the city.[55] Each ward elects three or four councillors by the single transferable vote system, to produce a form of proportional representation. Following the 2007 Scottish Local Elections the incumbent Labour Party lost majority control of the council, after 23 years, to a Liberal Democrat/SNP coalition.[56]

Since 2007, the council has operated a committee structure, headed by the Lord Provost, who chairs the full council and acts as a figurehead for the city.[57] The Provost, currently George Grubb, also serves as ex officio the Lord Lieutenant of the city.[58] A Leader and Policy & Strategy Committee, appointed by the full council, are responsible for the day-to-day running of the city administration. Jenny Dawe has been the Council Leader since May 2007. Councillors are also appointed to sit on the boards of public bodies such as Lothian and Borders Police and the Forth Estuary Transport Authority.[57]

Edinburgh City Chambers is the headquarters of the City of Edinburgh Council.

In terms of national governance, Edinburgh is represented in the Scottish Parliament. For electoral purposes, the city area is divided between six of the nine constituencies in the Lothians electoral region.[59] Each constituency elects one Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) by the first past the post system of election, and the region elects seven additional MSPs, to produce a form of proportional representation.[59]

Edinburgh is also represented in the House of Commons by 5 Members of Parliament elected from single member constituencies by the plurality system. One of the local constituencies, Edinburgh South West, is represented by Alistair Darling, the current UK Chancellor of the Exchequer.[60]


Edinburgh Airport is the principal international gateway to the city, handling almost 9 million passengers in 2008. In anticipation of rising passenger numbers, the airport operator BAA outlined a draft masterplan in 2006 to provide for the expansion of the airfield and terminal building.[61] The possibility of building a second runway to cope with an increased number of aircraft movements has also been mooted.[61]

As an important hub on the East Coast Main Line, Edinburgh Waverley is the primary railway station serving the city. With more than 14 million passengers per year, the station is the second busiest in Scotland behind Glasgow Central.[62] Waverley serves as the terminus for trains arriving from London King's Cross and is the departure point for many rail services within Scotland operated by First ScotRail.

A First ScotRail Class 170 entering Edinburgh Waverley railway station

To the west of the city centre lies Haymarket railway station which is an important commuter stop. Opened in 2003, Edinburgh Park station serves the adjacent business park located in the west of the city and the nearby Gogarburn headquarters of the Royal Bank of Scotland. The Edinburgh Crossrail connects Edinburgh Park with Haymarket, Waverley and the suburban stations of Brunstane and Newcraighall in the east of the city.[63] There are also commuter lines to South Gyle and Dalmeny, which serves South Queensferry by the Forth Bridges, and to the south west of the city out to Wester Hailes and Curriehill

Lothian Buses operate the majority of city bus services within the City and to surrounding suburbs, with the majority of routes running via Princes Street. Services further afield operate from the Edinburgh Bus Station off St. Andrew Square. Lothian, as the successor company to the City's Corporation Trams, also operates all of the City's branded public tour bus services, the night bus network and airport buses.[64] Lothian's Mac Tours subsidiary has one of the largest remaining fleets of ex-London Routemaster buses in the UK, many converted to open top tour buses.[65] In 2007, the average daily ridership of Lothian Buses was over 312,000 - a 6% rise on the previous year.[64]

One of Lothian Buses fleet on Princes Street.

In order to tackle traffic congestion, Edinburgh is now served by six park and ride sites on the periphery of the city at Sheriffhall, Ingliston, Riccarton, Inverkeithing (in Fife) and Newcraighall. A new facility at Straiton opened in October 2008. A referendum of Edinburgh residents in February 2005 rejected a proposal to introduce congestion charging in the city.

Edinburgh has been without a tram system since 16 November 1956.[66] However, following parliamentary approval in 2007, construction began on a new Edinburgh tram network in early 2008, which has led to major disruption to transport services[citation needed]. The first stage of the project was expected to be operational by July 2011[67] but is unlikely to be working before the beginning of 2012.[68] The first phase will see trams running from the airport in the west of the city, through the centre of Edinburgh and down Leith Walk to Ocean Terminal and Newhaven.[69] The next phase of the project will see trams run from Haymarket through Ravelston and Craigleith to Granton on the waterfront.[69] Future proposals include a line going west from the airport to Ratho and Newbridge, and a line running along the length of the waterfront.[70]


There are four universities in Edinburgh with over 100,000 students studying in the city.[71] Established by Royal Charter in 1583, the University of Edinburgh is one of Scotland's ancient universities and is the fourth oldest in the country after St Andrews, Glasgow and Aberdeen.[72] Originally centred around Old College the university expanded to premises on The Mound, the Royal Mile and George Square.[72] Today, the King's Buildings in the south of the city contain most of the schools within the College of Science and Engineering. In 2002, the medical school moved to purpose built accommodation adjacent to the new Edinburgh Royal Infirmary at Little France. The University was voted 20th in the world in the 2009 THES World University Rankings.[73]

In the 1960s Heriot-Watt University and Napier Technical College were established.[72] Heriot-Watt traces its origins to 1821, when a school for technical education of the working classes was opened.[74] Based in Riccarton to the west of the city, Heriot-Watt specialises in the disciplines of engineering, business and mathematics.[75] Napier College was renamed Napier Polytechnic in 1986 and gained university status in 1992.[76] Edinburgh Napier University has campuses in the south and west of the city, including the former Craiglockhart Hydropathic and Merchiston Tower.[76] It is home to the Screen Academy Scotland.

The former Craiglockhart Hydropathic Building now forms part of the Napier University campus.

Further education colleges in the city include Jewel and Esk College (incorporating Leith Nautical College founded in 1903), Telford College, opened in 1968, and Stevenson College, opened in 1970. The Scottish Agricultural College also has a campus in south Edinburgh. Awarded university status in January 2007, Queen Margaret University was founded in 1875, as The Edinburgh School of Cookery and Domestic Economy, by Christian Guthrie Wright and Louisa Stevenson.[77]

Other notable institutions include the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh which were established by Royal Charter, in 1506 and 1681 respectively. The Trustees Drawing Academy of Edinburgh was founded in 1760 - an institution that became the Edinburgh College of Art in 1907.[78]

There are 18 nursery, 94 primary and 23 secondary schools in Edinburgh administered by the city council.[79] In addition, the city is home to a large number of independent, fee-paying schools including George Heriot's School, Fettes College, Merchiston Castle School, George Watson's College, Edinburgh Academy and Stewart's Melville College.


The Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh is the main public hospital for the city.

Hospitals in Edinburgh include the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, which includes Edinburgh University Medical School, and the Western General Hospital, which includes a large cancer treatment centre and the nurse-led Minor Injuries Clinic. There is one private hospital, Murrayfield Hospital, owned by Spire Healthcare. The Royal Infirmary is the main Accident & Emergency hospital not just for Edinburgh but also Midlothian and East Lothian, and is the headquarters of NHS Lothian, making it a centric focus for Edinburgh and its hinterland. The Royal Edinburgh Hospital specialises in mental health; it is situated in Morningside. The Royal Hospital for Sick Children is located in Sciennes Road; it is popularly known as the 'Sick Kids'.

Religious communities

The fan vaulted ceiling dominates the interior of St John's Church in central Edinburgh.


The Church of Scotland claims the largest membership of any religious denomination in Edinburgh. Its most important and historical church is St Giles' Cathedral; others include Greyfriars Kirk, Barclay Church, Canongate Kirk and St Andrew's and St George's Church. In the south east of the city is the 12th century Duddingston Kirk. The Church of Scotland Offices are located in Edinburgh, as is the Assembly Hall and New College on The Mound.

The Roman Catholic Church also has a sizeable presence in the city. Its notable structures include St Mary's Cathedral at the top of Leith Walk, the Sacred Heart of Jesus, St Patrick's, St. Columba's, St. Peter's and Star of the Sea. The Roman Catholic community in Edinburgh is part of the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh, which is led by Keith Cardinal O'Brien, considered to be the leader of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland.

The Free Church of Scotland (Reformed and Presbyterian) has congregations on the Royal Mile and Crosscauseway; its offices and training college are located on the Mound.

The Scottish Episcopal Church is part of the Anglican Communion. Its centre is the resplendent St Mary's Cathedral, Palmerston Place in the west end.

In addition, there are a number of independent churches situated throughout the city; these churches tend to have a high percentage of student congregants and include Destiny Church, The Rock Elim Church, Charlotte Chapel, Carrubbers Christian Centre, Morningside Baptist Church and Bellevue Chapel.

Other faiths

Edinburgh Central Mosque - Edinburgh's main mosque and Islamic Centre is located on Potterrow on the city's southside, near Bristo Square. It was opened in the late 1990s and the construction was largely financed by a gift from King Fahd of Saudi Arabia.[80] The first recorded presence of a Jewish community in Edinburgh dates back to the late 17th century.[citation needed] Edinburgh's Orthodox synagogue is located in Salisbury Road, which was opened in 1932 and can accommodate a congregation of 2000. A Liberal congregation also meets in the city. There is also a Sikh Gurdwara and Hindu Mandir in the city which are both located in the Leith district. Edinburgh Buddhist Centre, part of the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order, is situated by the Meadows.

Notable residents

Scotland has a rich history in science and engineering, with Edinburgh contributing its fair share of famous names. James Clerk Maxwell, the founder of the modern theory of electromagnetism, was born here and educated at the Edinburgh Academy and University of Edinburgh, as was the engineer and telephone pioneer Alexander Graham Bell.[81] Other names connected to the city include Max Born, physicist and Nobel laureate; Charles Darwin, the biologist who discovered natural selection; David Hume, a philosopher, economist and historian; James Hutton, regarded as the "Father of Geology"; John Napier inventor of logarithms;[82] chemist and one of the founders of thermodynamics Joseph Black; pioneering medical researchers Joseph Lister and James Young Simpson; chemist and discoverer of the element nitrogen, Daniel Rutherford; mathematician and developer of the maclaurin series, Colin Maclaurin and Ian Wilmut, the geneticist involved in the cloning of Dolly the sheep just outside Edinburgh. The stuffed carcass of Dolly the sheep is now on display in the National Museum of Scotland.

The lighthouse engineering family, the Stevenson family was based in Edinburgh.

Famous authors of the city include Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes, Ian Rankin, author of the Inspector Rebus series of crime thrillers, J. K. Rowling, the author of Harry Potter, who wrote her first book in an Edinburgh coffee shop (Nicolson's Cafe,[83][84] the Elephant House and Black Medicine), Adam Smith, economist, born in Kirkcaldy, and author of The Wealth of Nations, Walter Scott, the author of famous titles such as Rob Roy and Ivanhoe, Robert Louis Stevenson, creator of Treasure Island and the Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.

Edinburgh has been home to the actor Sir Sean Connery, famed as the first cinematic James Bond;[85] Ronnie Corbett, a comedian and actor, best known as one of The Two Ronnies;[86] and Dylan Moran, the Irish comedian. Famous city artists include the portrait painters Sir Henry Raeburn, Sir David Wilkie and Allan Ramsay. Historians such as Douglas Johnson and Arthur Marwick had roots here.

The city has produced or been home to musicians that have been extremely successful in modern times, particularly Ian Anderson, frontman of the band Jethro Tull; Wattie Buchan, lead singer and founding member of punk band The Exploited; Shirley Manson, lead singer for the band Garbage; The Proclaimers; the Bay City Rollers; Boards of Canada and Idlewild.

Edinburgh is the hometown of the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Tony Blair, who was born in the city and attended Fettes College;[87] Robin Harper the co-convener of the Scottish Green Party; and John Witherspoon, the only clergyman to sign the United States Declaration of Independence, and later president of Princeton University.[88]

On the more sinister side, famous criminals from Edinburgh's history include Deacon Brodie, pillar of society by day and burglar by night, who is said to have influenced Robert Louis Stevenson's story, the Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde[89] the murderers Burke and Hare[90] who provided fresh corpses for anatomical dissection by the famous surgeon Robert Knox[91] and Major Weir a notorious warlock.

Twinning arrangements

The City of Edinburgh has entered into 11 international twinning arrangements since 1954.[92] Most of the arrangements are styled as 'Twin Cities', but the agreement with Kraków is designated as a 'Partner City'.[92] The agreement with the Kyoto Prefecture, concluded in 1994, is officially styled as a 'Friendship Link', reflecting its status as the only region to be twinned with Edinburgh.[92]

Country City or municipality Subdivision Date of agreement
 Germany Munich Bavaria 1954
 France Nice Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur 1958
 Italy Florence Tuscany 1964
 New Zealand Dunedin Otago 1974
 Canada Vancouver British Columbia 1977
 USA San Diego California 1977
 Spain Segovia Castile and León 1985
 China Xi'an Shaanxi 1985
 Ukraine Kiev Kiev Oblast 1989
 Denmark Aalborg Nordjylland 1991
 Japan Kyoto Prefecture Kansai 1994
 Poland Kraków Lesser Poland Voivodeship 1995[93]

See also



  1. ^ "Conservation in Edinburgh". The City of Edinburgh Council. Archived from the original on 2007-05-22. Retrieved 2007-05-20. 
  2. ^ "General Register Office for Scotland - mid 2008 population estimates by sex, age and administrative area". 
  3. ^ "National Statistics Online - International Visits". ONS. Retrieved 2009-07-19. 
  4. ^ Edinburgh voted most desirable city to live in, 14 August 2009
  5. ^
  6. ^ Coghill, Hamish Lost Edinburgh pp. 1/2.
  7. ^ Harris, The Place Names of Edinburgh(1996)
  8. ^ Lownie, Auld Reekie, An Edinburgh Anthology (2004), p.10
  9. ^ a b Watson, The Celtic Place Names of Scotland (1926), p.340
  10. ^ Lynch et al., The Oxford Companion to Scottish History (2001), p.658
  11. ^ "Council coat of arms". Retrieved 2010-01-25. 
  12. ^ "Scottish Vernacular Dictionary". 
  13. ^ "Embro, Embro - the hidden history of Edinburgh in its music". Retrieved 2009-07-08. 
  14. ^ "Makars Literary Tour | Robert Garioch". Retrieved 2009-07-08. 
  15. ^ "Orbis Latinus: Letter A". Retrieved 2009-07-08. 
  16. ^ List of Latin place names in the British Isles
  17. ^ Vivas Schola Regia
  18. ^ Royal High School (Edinburgh)
  19. ^ "Pharmaceutical Latin Abbreviations". Retrieved 2009-07-08. 
  20. ^ The Cambridge Companion to Ben Jonson. Retrieved 17 April 2007.
  21. ^ Marmion A Tale of Flodden Field by Walter Scott. Retrieved 17 April 2007.
  22. ^ "Overview of Edinburgh". Gazetteer for Scotland, University of Edinburgh. Retrieved 2009-03-15. 
  23. ^ a b c d e f g h J Stuart Murray in Edwards & Jenkins (2005); p64-65
  24. ^ Stuart Piggott (1982). Scotland before History. Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 0-85224-470-3. 
  25. ^ "Holyrood Park Geology". Department of Geography, University of Edinburgh. Retrieved 2007-07-20. 
  26. ^ a b "Overview of the Water of Leith". Gazetteer for Scotland, Institute of Geography, University of Edinburgh. Retrieved 2009-04-19. 
  27. ^ "The Water of Leith Walkway". Water of Leith Conservation Trust. Retrieved 2009-04-19. 
  28. ^ a b c d e G. Bramley, C. Hague, K. Kirk, A. Prior, J. Raemaekers and H. Smith (2004-08-11). "Review of Green Belt policy in Scotland - Edinburgh and Midlothian". Scottish Government. Retrieved 2009-04-10. 
  29. ^ a b c d e f g "Regional Climate - Eastern Scotland". Met Office. Retrieved 2009-04-19. 
  30. ^ Campbell, Donald (2003). Edinburgh – A Cultural and Literacy History. Oxford: Signal Books. ISBN 1-902669-73-8. 
  31. ^ "The Story of Leith XXXIII. How Leith was Governed". 
  32. ^ a b c "Edinburgh Comparisons - Population and Age Structure". City of Edinburgh Council. Retrieved 2009-01-31. 
  33. ^ "Comparative Population Profile - Edinburgh Locality". Scotland's Census Results Online (SCROL). Retrieved 2009-01-31. 
  34. ^ a b "Mid-2008 Population Estimates Scotland". General Register Office for Scotland, 2008. Retrieved 2009-04-28. 
  35. ^ "Urban Audit City Profiles - Edinburgh". Eurostat. Retrieved 2009-01-31. 
  36. ^ a b "Edinburgh Comparisons - Ethnicity, Country of Birth & Migration". City of Edinburgh Council. Retrieved 2009-02-13. 
  37. ^ Orchard, Pam; Szymanski, A. and Vlahova, N. (2007-12-20). "A Community Profile of EU8 Migrants in Edinburgh and an Evaluation of their Access to Key Services". Scottish Government. Retrieved 2009-02-28. 
  38. ^ Edwards, B. & Jenkins, P. (2005) p21
  39. ^ Lynch, M. (2001), p219
  40. ^ a b c Edwards, B. & Jenkins, P. (2005), p9
  41. ^ Edwards, B. & Jenkins, P. (2005) p46
  42. ^ Robinson, P. in Edwards, B. & Jenkins, P. (2005), p46
  43. ^ "Edinburgh Comparisons - Dwellings". City of Edinburgh Council. Retrieved 2009-02-08. 
  44. ^ "Edinburgh Comedy Festival 2008 Introduction". Official site of the Edinburgh Comedy Festival. Archived from the original on 2008-06-26. Retrieved 2008-02-04. 
  45. ^ "John McLeod: Composer". Retrieved 2009-07-08. 
  46. ^ "Zoo Beginnings". Edinburgh Zoo website. Archived from the original on 2008-01-31. Retrieved 2007-06-15. 
  47. ^ "Animals & Conservation". Edinburgh Zoo website. Archived from the original on 2008-01-04. Retrieved 2008-01-03. 
  48. ^ "Regional GVA - NUTS3 GVA (1995-2005) Data". ONS. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  49. ^ "Edinburgh City of Learning". Learning Towns and Cities. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  50. ^ "Unemployment Bulletin September 2008". City of Edinburgh Council. Archived from the original on 2008-01-02. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  51. ^ "Information for Journalists". Edinburgh Brand. Archived from the original on 2007-10-11. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  52. ^ "2004 Festival Economic Impact Study results". Edinburgh Festival Fringe. 2005-10-14. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  53. ^ "Schedule 1 - New Local Government Areas - Local Government etc (Scotland) Act 1994". Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI). 1994-11-03. Retrieved 2008-06-08. 
  54. ^ a b "Chapter 6 - Functions - Local Government etc (Scotland) Act 1994". Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI). 1994-11-03. Retrieved 2008-06-08. 
  55. ^ "Find Your Local Councillor". City of Edinburgh Council. Retrieved 2008-06-08. 
  56. ^ "Council Business - Rt Hon. George Grubb". City of Edinburgh Council. 2007-05-17. Retrieved 2008-06-08. 
  57. ^ a b "How the council works". City of Edinburgh Council. 2007-05-11. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  58. ^ "How the council works". City of Edinburgh Council. 2007-05-11. Retrieved 2009-01-14. 
  59. ^ a b "Scottish Parliament election results 2007". Elections Office - City of Edinburgh Council. 2007-05-03. Retrieved 2009-01-14. 
  60. ^ "About Us - Rt Hon. Alistair Darling MP". HM Treasury. Retrieved 2009-01-14. 
  61. ^ a b "Edinburgh Airport Master Plan". British Airports Authority (BAA). July 2006. Retrieved 2008-05-25. 
  62. ^ "Edinburgh Waverley". Network Rail. Retrieved 2008-05-25. 
  63. ^ "Edinburgh CrossRail project". Scottish Government. 2001-12-04. Retrieved 2008-05-25. 
  64. ^ a b "Lothian Buses - The Company". Lothian Buses. 2008. Retrieved 2009-03-21. 
  65. ^ "Edinburgh Bus Tours - History on the move". Lothian Buses. 2008. Retrieved 2009-03-21. 
  66. ^ Wiseman, Richard Joseph Stewart (2005). Edinburgh's Trams: The Last years. Catrine: Stenlake Publishing. pp. Pg. 2–3. ISBN 184033343X. 
  67. ^ "Edinburgh Tram Project Contracts Closure and Infrastructure Construction Commences". City of Edinburgh Council. 2008-05-13. Retrieved 2008-05-25. 
  68. ^ "Train interchange delay threatens to push back tram project". 2009-06-18. Retrieved 2010-01-25. 
  69. ^ a b "Trams for Edinburgh". Transport Initiatives Edinburgh (tie). Retrieved 2008-05-25. 
  70. ^ "Trams background information". City of Edinburgh Council. 2008-05-20. Retrieved 2008-05-25. 
  71. ^ "Edinburgh Life". Napier University. Retrieved 2008-05-29. 
  72. ^ a b c Lynch, Michael (2001). The Oxford Companion to Scottish History. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. Pg. 610–615. ISBN 0192116967. 
  73. ^ "Education news, resources and university jobs for the academic world". Times Higher Education. Retrieved 2010-01-25. 
  74. ^ "The History of Heriot-Watt University". Heriot-Watt University. Archived from the original on 2008-02-15. Retrieved 2008-05-30. 
  75. ^ "About Heriot-Watt University". Heriot-Watt University Careers Service. Retrieved 2008-05-26. 
  76. ^ a b "Napier University History". Napier University. Retrieved 2008-05-30. 
  77. ^ "History: From Edinburgh School of Cookery to Queen Margaret University". Queen Margaret University. Archived from the original on 2008-02-08. Retrieved 2007-04-11. 
  78. ^ "Trustees Academy School of Art, Edinburgh". Gateway to the Archives of Scottish Higher Education (GASHE). Archived from the original on 2007-12-11. Retrieved 2007-04-17. 
  79. ^ "Primary Schools". City of Edinburgh Council. July 2006. Archived from the original on 2008-01-12. Retrieved 2008-05-26. 
  80. ^ "Financing the project". Edinburgh Islamic Centre. Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  81. ^ "Alexander Graham Bell". University of Toronto. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  82. ^ J J O'Connor and E F Robertson (April 1998). "John Napier". University of St Andrews. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  83. ^ Stephen McGinty (2003-06-16). "The JK Rowling story". Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  84. ^ Rosalind Gibb & John Gibson (2006-10-10). "Plaque spells out Harry's birthplace". Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  85. ^ "Connery: Bond and beyond". BBC News. 1999-12-21. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  86. ^ Hannah Stephenson (2006-11-04). "I will not say goodnight yet...". Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  87. ^ "Blair's birthplace is bulldozed in Edinburgh". 2006-08-09. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  88. ^ W. Frank Craven (1978). "John Witherspoon". Princeton University Press. Retrieved 2007-03-23. 
  89. ^ "Stevenson, Robert Louis, 1850-1894. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Electronic Text Center, University of Virginia Library". 
  90. ^ "The Worlds of Burke and Hare". 
  91. ^ Rosner, Lisa (2010). The Anatomy Murders. University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 0812241916. 
  92. ^ a b c "Twin and Partner Cities". City of Edinburgh Council. Retrieved 2009-01-16. 
  93. ^ "Kraków otwarty na świat". Retrieved 2009-07-19. 


External links


Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address