Old Calton Cemetery

This last abode of many world famous celebrities is a must seeñ, as it presents some curiosities.
At the foot of Calton Hill, we can see buildings decorated with niches or arcades which are repeated on the opposite side of the street as both sides of the street were part of what was the cemetery but it was later divided by the continuation of Princes Street.


After climbing the steps of the entrance we find a large obelisk, the monument of the “Martyrs of reform”: accused of “unconscious sedition” and betrayal after claiming the universal vote and the rights of the common man to decide their destinies. This obelisk is intended to guide the souls of Thomas Muir, Thomas Fyshe-Palmer, William Skirving, Maurice Margarot, and Joseph Gerrald. They have been deported and died in distant lands, so they could find their way back in order to rest, eternally, near their loved ones.
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To the right, we find a statue of Abraham Lincoln with a free slave at his feet holding a book, symbolizing that he not only achieved freedom but also education. It is the monument to the North American civil war, dedicated to those Scottish soldiers who fought in that war.

David Hume, behind the monument to the American Civil War, we found his mausoleum. Philosopher, historian, controversial and multifaceted, he has influenced several thinkers and renowned figures, including Adam Smith, the father of economics.
After his death, his tomb had to be watched for 8 days due to the great hostility he awoke during his lifetime as a known atheist, generating great opposition to his remains resting on sacred ground.
In his will D. Hume stated that his tomb be raised on his remains, with only his name the dates of his birth and death, leaving to posterity to add the rest. The tomb is a large cylindrical building, visible from several points of Edinburgh. A niece of his, who died several years later, also rests in that pantheon.

David Allan, the artist who painted portraits of historical figures has his grave in that same sector of the cemetery. His tomb is identifiable because the medallion with his image was added later, on the opposite side of the identification appears a kind of portrait formed by humidity, which despite the attempts to erase it, always reappears.

Robert Burn, the architect of the Nelson monument whose tomb is also located here.
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The memorial stone of John Gray, despite the time, this memorial stone is preserved in an admirable state.

John Playfair, a very famous scientist and mathematician in his time

Sir John Steell, acclaimed Scottish sculptor lies in an unmarked grave, in the pantheon of his family.

John Haig, owner of the Haig distillery, lies here with members of his prominent family.

Thomas Hamilton, 1784-1858, the architect of the Bank of Scotland on the Mound, the Physician’s Hall on Queen Street, the Dean Gallery or Gallery of Modern Art and many other beautiful and prominent buildings, especially in Edinburgh and Ayrshire. He was also the architect of the monument to the Martyrs a few meters beyond his pantheon, which he shares with other members of his family. The pantheon was unmarked until 1929 where the students of the Royal High School placed a plaque with their name in the centenary of that building.

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