EDINBURGH. 66. Route. 517
Frid., 10-4, 6d.) contains a good collection of paintings of the
Italian, Spanish, and British Schools, some wax models by Michael
Angelo, fine examples of Gainsborough and Rembrandt, and water-
colours by Williams and others (catalogue 6d., illustrated 4s. 6rf.).
The annual Exhibition of the Scottish Academy is held here in spring
(15th Feb. to 15th May; adm. Is.). — At the corner of West Princes
Street Gardens next the Mound is a statue of the Scottish poet
Allan Ramsay (d. 1758), whose house (Ramsay Lodge) is now in¬
corporated with the new 'University Settlement' on the Castle Hill,
in a direct line with the statue and overlooking the gardens.
On the S. side of the valley occupied by the West Princes Street
Gardens rises the *Castle (PL D, 4; 430 ft.), the ancient seat of
the Scottish kings, grandly situated on the summit of a bold rock,
sloping gradually to Holyrood on the E. but descending almost
perpendicularly on the other three sides. From Princes St. we
ascend the Mound (to the left the Bank of Scotland, p. 522) and
follow the first street to the right, between the Free Church College
(in the courtyard of which is a Statue of John Knox) and Princes
Street Gardens. At the top of the steep hill we again turn to the
right and cross the Esplanade to the castle-gate (open fr,»e all day,
on Sun. f rom.3.30 p.m.; adm. to crown-room etc. 10-4, in winter 10-3).
We enter by a drawbridge, crossing the old moat and passing under
a portcullis, and follow the main road to the highest part of the enclo¬
sure, where stand the Crown Room, containing the Scottish Regalia; Queen
Mary's Room, in which James I. of England was born in 1566; the Old
Parliament Hall (restored in 1592), with a museum and armoury; and
St. Margaret's Chapel, the oldest building in Edinburgh (ca. 1100). In front
of the chapel is '_»* Meg', a huge cannon, resembling the 'Dulle Griethe'
at Ghent, formerly believed to have been cast at Mons in Belgium, but
now ascribed to native skill (1455). The other buildings, with the excep¬
tion of the Argyll Tower, once a state-prison, are not shown. A magni¬
ficent 'View of the city and the Firth of Forth, with the Highland hills
in the background, is obtained from the Bomb Battery. A time-gun is
fired daily from the Half-Moon Battery, at 1 p.m., by electrical commun¬
ication with the Observatory on Calton Hill. — History, see p. 515.
We now follow the series of quaint old streets (Castle Hill,
Lairnmarket, High Street, and Canongate), which descend in a
straight line from the Castle to (l1^ M.) Holyrood and give some
idea of Old Edinburgh, though many of the most picturesque
houses have lately been removed. The visitor should inspect one
of the characteristic, narrow closes, or wynds, which diverge on
either side (especially on the N.). To the left, below the end of
the Esplanade, is the University Settlement (see above). To the right,
at the end of Castle Hill, stands the Assembly Hall (PL D, 4), where
the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland takes place in May.
The Free Church Assembly Hall is on the opposite side of the street.
A descent from this point leads to the right to the Grassmarket
(PL D, 5), the scene of the Porteous Riots in 1736. Lady Stair's
House, in Lawnmarket, the scene of Scott's tale 'My Aunt Mar¬
garet's Mirror', was restored by Lord Rosebery in 1897.