PICRYL
PICRYLThe World's Largest Public Domain Source
  • homeHome
  • searchSearch
  • photo_albumStories
  • collectionsCollections
  • infoAbout
  • star_rateUpgrade
  • account_boxLogin

Old Edinburgh

By the first half of the 18th century, Edinburgh was one of Europe's most densely populated and overcrowded towns. Various social classes shared the same urban space, even inhabiting the same tenement buildings with lower classes occupying cellars and garrets, and the more established classes occupied the more expensive middle stories.

In the second half of the 18th century, the city was at the heart of the Scottish Enlightenment. It became a "hotbed of genius", a major intellectual center, "Athens of the North" because of its numerous neo-classical buildings and reputation for learning, recalling ancient Athens.

From the 1770s onwards, the professional and business classes gradually deserted the Old Town in favor of one-family residences of the New Town, changing the city's social character. "Unity of social feeling was one of the most valuable heritages of old Edinburgh, and its disappearance was widely and properly lamented."

Although Edinburgh's traditional industries of printing, brewing, and distilling continued to grow in the 19th century and were joined by new rubber works and engineering works, there was little industrialization compared with other cities in Britain. The Old Town became an increasingly dilapidated and overcrowded slum so Lord Provost William Chambers in the 1860s began the transformation of the central part of the city into the Victorian Old Town that exists today.
North Bridge from "Cassell's Old and New Edinburgh, etc"
1632
1632
slider-holder
1930
slider-holder
1930
607 Media in collectionpage 4 of 7
Rev. W. W. Duncan, Peebles (Sweet William)

Rev. W. W. Duncan, Peebles (Sweet William)

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Rev. Dr. William Hamilton Burns

Rev. Dr. William Hamilton Burns

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Miss Munro

Miss Munro

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Newhaven Fishwives

Newhaven Fishwives

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Dr. Smyttan

Dr. Smyttan

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Newhaven Fishwives

Newhaven Fishwives

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Lindlithgow Castle

Lindlithgow Castle

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

[Old Royal High School, Calton Hill, Edinburgh]

[Old Royal High School, Calton Hill, Edinburgh]

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Archibald Butler of Faskally

Archibald Butler of Faskally

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Newhaven Fishwives

Newhaven Fishwives

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

John Wilson

John Wilson

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

[Man]

[Man]

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Dr. Cook

Dr. Cook

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Sir John Boilleau

Sir John Boilleau

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Mrs. Jameson

Mrs. Jameson

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Dr. Sampson of York

Dr. Sampson of York

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Sir John Robert Steell

Sir John Robert Steell

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Newhaven Fishwives

Newhaven Fishwives

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Mrs. Watson

Mrs. Watson

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Laird of Portmoak

Laird of Portmoak

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

St. Andrews. The Fore Tower of the Castle

St. Andrews. The Fore Tower of the Castle

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Presbytery of Dundee

Presbytery of Dundee

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

John Henning as Edie Ochiltree from Sir Walter Scott's "The Antiquary"
Edinburgh. Greyfriars' Churchyard

Edinburgh. Greyfriars' Churchyard

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

[Man]

[Man]

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

St. Andrews. The Pends

St. Andrews. The Pends

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Rev. Thomas Jolly of Bowden

Rev. Thomas Jolly of Bowden

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Rev. Dr. Thomas Chalmers and Thomas Chalmers Hanna

Rev. Dr. Thomas Chalmers and Thomas Chalmers Hanna

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Mrs. Rigby

Mrs. Rigby

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

St. Andrews. Blackfriars' Chapel

St. Andrews. Blackfriars' Chapel

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Couple Seated, Woman Reading

Couple Seated, Woman Reading

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Sir William Allan

Sir William Allan

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Edinburgh.  Greyfriars' Churchyard

Edinburgh. Greyfriars' Churchyard

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Rev. John Julius Wood

Rev. John Julius Wood

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Rev. R. Brewster of Craig

Rev. R. Brewster of Craig

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

[Man]

[Man]

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Jacob Abbott

Jacob Abbott

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

[Man, Full-length]

[Man, Full-length]

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

St. Andrews.  The West Port

St. Andrews. The West Port

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

St. Andrews

St. Andrews

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Dr. Inglis, Halifax

Dr. Inglis, Halifax

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Newhaven Fishermen

Newhaven Fishermen

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Sir John McNeill

Sir John McNeill

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Hartcourt (Brother of Archbishop of York)

Hartcourt (Brother of Archbishop of York)

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Sobieski Stuart

Sobieski Stuart

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

William Leighton Leitch

William Leighton Leitch

Hill and Adamson (British, active 1843–1848)

Sir David Brewster

Sir David Brewster

An eminent physicist at St. Andrews University in Scotland, Sir David Brewster was among Talbot's scientific correspondents and one of the first to receive reports and samples of the new art. By 1841 Brewster a... more

Scott Monument before Completion, Edinburgh

Scott Monument before Completion, Edinburgh

William Henry Fox Talbot (British, Dorset 1800–1877 Lacock)

Lady Ruthven

Lady Ruthven

The vast majority of Hill and Adamson photographs show the ministers of the Free Church, notable residents of Edinburgh and distinguished visitors, or the hardy fisherfolk of Newhaven and Saint Andrews. On occa... more

[Newhaven Fishwives]

[Newhaven Fishwives]

Among the first to produce a large body of self-consciously artistic photographs, the painter Hill and the photographer Adamson are best known for the hundreds of Rembrandtesque portraits made during their brie... more

The Scott Monument

The Scott Monument

Robert Adamson, David Octavius Hill..about 1845..Accession no. PGP HA 434 .Medium Calotype print .Size Arched top: 15.80 x 20.60 cm .Credit Provenance unknown ..For more information please select here ( http://... more

David Young and Unknown Man, Newhaven

David Young and Unknown Man, Newhaven

This double portrait by the painter David OctaviusHill and the early photographer Robert Adamson is one of some 130 images they would make of the inhabitants of Newhaven and other small fishing villages near Ed... more

Leith docks with the ship 'Cockburn' tied up

Leith docks with the ship 'Cockburn' tied up

Robert Adamson, Michael and Barbara Gray, David Octavius Hill..1843 - 1846 (print made 1991)..Accession no. PGP HA 366 .Medium Modern calotype print .Size 18.20 x 24.00 cm .Credit Commissioned 1991..For more in... more

92nd Gordon Highlanders at Edinburgh Castle

92nd Gordon Highlanders at Edinburgh Castle

Robert Adamson, David Octavius Hill..April 1846..Accession no. PGP HA 347 .Medium Calotype print .Size 19.00 x 14.10 cm .Credit Provenance unknown ..For more information please select here ( http://www.national... more

[Officer of the 92nd Gordon Highlanders Reading to the Troops, Edinburgh Castle]

[Officer of the 92nd Gordon Highlanders Reading to the Troops, Edinbur...

On occasion Hill and Adamson ventured into full-blown genre, costuming and staging literary scenes reminiscent of popular tableaux vivants, but in other cases such as this, the artists found authentically engag... more

The Fairy Tree at Colinton

The Fairy Tree at Colinton

Although Hill was primarily a painter of land- and townscapes, he and Adamson made few photographs of those subjects. In several cases where they did, the choice of subject is understandable: their photograph o... more

architecture from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time"

architecture from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time"

This image has been taken from scan 000099 from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time". The title and subject terms of this image have been generated from tags, created by users of the British Library's fli... more

map from "An Essay on the Sources of the Nile in the Mountains of the Moon. [With a map. Reprinted from the Edinburgh New Philosophical Journal.]"

map from "An Essay on the Sources of the Nile in the Mountains of the ...

This image has been taken from scan 000043 from "An Essay on the Sources of the Nile in the Mountains of the Moon. [With a map. Reprinted from the Edinburgh New Philosophical Journal.]". The title and subject t... more

Edinburgh from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time"

Edinburgh from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time"

This image has been taken from scan 000559 from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time". The title and subject terms of this image have been generated from tags, created by users of the British Library's fli... more

map from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time"

map from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time"

This image has been taken from scan 000551 from "Memorials of Edinburgh in the olden time". The title and subject terms of this image have been generated from tags, created by users of the British Library's fli... more

Edinburgh from "The Pictorial History of England (to the death of George III) ... By G. L. Craik and Charles MacFarlane, assisted by other contributors. [Edited by G. L. Craik.] (Standard edition.)"

Edinburgh from "The Pictorial History of England (to the death of Geor...

This image has been taken from scan 000208 from volume 03 of "The Pictorial History of England (to the death of George III) ... By G. L. Craik and Charles MacFarlane, assisted by other contributors. [Edited by ... more

Piper and Drummer of the 92nd Gordon Highlanders, Edinburgh Castle

Piper and Drummer of the 92nd Gordon Highlanders, Edinburgh Castle

Robert Adamson, David Octavius Hill..April 1846..Accession no. PGP HA 346 .Medium Calotype print .Size 20.80 x 15.70 cm .Credit Provenance unknown ..For more information please select here ( http://www.national... more

Edinburgh from the Castle

Edinburgh from the Castle

James Ross and John Thompson..About 1850..Accession no. PGP R 201 .Medium Albumen print .Size 17 x 24.6 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985..For more information please sele... more

edinburgh from "The Mound improvement, with a plan and elevations; also an appendix, containing correspondence with Dr. Chalmers, the city authorities, etc. on the same subject. Concluded with a review. [With MS. note by Lord Cockburn.]"

edinburgh from "The Mound improvement, with a plan and elevations; als...

This image has been taken from scan 000025 from "The Mound improvement, with a plan and elevations; also an appendix, containing correspondence with Dr. Chalmers, the city authorities, etc. on the same subject.... more

Tolbooth and Canongate, Edinburgh

Tolbooth and Canongate, Edinburgh

James Valentine..Accession no. PGP R 644 .Medium Albumen print .Size 28.9 x 19.1 cm (paper: 31.9 x 22.4 cm) .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985..For more information please sel... more

map from "A History of Edinburgh from the Earliest Period to the Completion of the Half Century, 1850, with brief notices of eminent or remarkable individuals. [With a map.]"

map from "A History of Edinburgh from the Earliest Period to the Compl...

This image has been taken from scan 000009 from "A History of Edinburgh from the Earliest Period to the Completion of the Half Century, 1850, with brief notices of eminent or remarkable individuals. [With a map... more

Edinburgh from "[The Poetical Works of Sir Walter Scott ... With a memoir of the author. Illustrated by many engravings, etc.]"

Edinburgh from "[The Poetical Works of Sir Walter Scott ... With a mem...

This image has been taken from scan 000148 from "[The Poetical Works of Sir Walter Scott ... With a memoir of the author. Illustrated by many engravings, etc.]". The title and subject terms of this image have b... more

Pulpit Rocks, Warrior Ridge, Huntingdon Co. / Lehman ; printed in colours by W. & A.K. Johnston, Edinburgh.

Pulpit Rocks, Warrior Ridge, Huntingdon Co. / Lehman ; printed in colo...

Print shows rock formations and cliffs at the Pulpit Rocks on Warrior Ridge in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania.

Princes Street, the Scott Monument and the Royal Institution

Princes Street, the Scott Monument and the Royal Institution

William Donaldson Clark..1858..Accession no. PGP R 124 .Medium Albumen print .Size 21.60 x 27.50 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985..For more information please select here... more

The National Gallery and Royal Institution (Royal Scottish Academy), Edinburgh

The National Gallery and Royal Institution (Royal Scottish Academy), E...

William Donaldson Clark..about 1858..Accession no. PGP R 128 .Medium Albumen print .Size 21.10 x 26.30 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell, 1985 ..For more information please sel... more

Edinburgh. Castle

Edinburgh. Castle

Rear view of Edinburgh Castle as seen from the street.

The Cowgate Arch of George IV Bridge, Edinburgh

The Cowgate Arch of George IV Bridge, Edinburgh

William Donaldson Clark..1860..Accession no. PGP R 113 .Medium Albumen print .Size 21.10 x 27.40 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985..For more information please select here... more

Edinburg. Holyrood Palace. Arthurs Seat

Edinburg. Holyrood Palace. Arthurs Seat

View of Edinburgh, showing Holyrood Palace, Arthur's Seat (a volcanic rock formation), and factories.

Edinburg. Canongate Tolbooth, 1591

Edinburg. Canongate Tolbooth, 1591

Street in Canongate section of Edinburgh; Canongate Tolbooth (with clock) in center of photograph.

Grassmarket, Edinburgh

Grassmarket, Edinburgh

William Donaldson Clark..about 1860..Accession no. PGP R 121 .Medium Albumen print .Size 25.60 x 21.00 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell, 1985 ..For more information please sel... more

Rosslyn Chapel Apprentice Pillar

Rosslyn Chapel Apprentice Pillar

William Donaldson Clark..about 1860..Accession no. PGP R 141 .Medium Albumen print .Size 21.90 x 27.00 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell, 1985 ..For more information please sel... more

map from "Precognition of Witnesses examined at the instance of the Procurator-Fiscal for the City of Edinburgh, regarding the falling of the tenement Nos. 99 to 103 High Street, on Nov. 24, 1861"

map from "Precognition of Witnesses examined at the instance of the Pr...

This image has been taken from scan 000069 from "Precognition of Witnesses examined at the instance of the Procurator-Fiscal for the City of Edinburgh, regarding the falling of the tenement Nos. 99 to 103 High ... more

Greyfriars Bobby

Greyfriars Bobby

Unknown..about 1865..Accession no. PGP R 831 .Medium Albumen print .Size 9.1 x 5.9 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985 ..For more information please select here ( http://www... more

Grand golf tournament by professional players--On Leith links 17th May 1867

Grand golf tournament by professional players--On Leith links 17th May...

Eleven golfers posed on Leith golf links, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Cardinal Beaton's House, the Cowgate, Edinburgh

Cardinal Beaton's House, the Cowgate, Edinburgh

Archibald Burns..1868..Accession no. PGP R 814 .Medium Albumen print .Size 10.6 x 8.5 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985..For more information please select here ( http://w... more

Skating, St Margaret's Loch

Skating, St Margaret's Loch

John Patrick..Accession no. PGP R 1649 .Medium Albumen print .Size 19.30 x 28.10 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell, 1985 ..For more information please select here ( http://www.... more

Old Town Edinburgh from the Calton Hill

Old Town Edinburgh from the Calton Hill

George Washington Wilson..1870s..Accession no. PGP R 204 .Medium Albumen print .Size 16.8 x 24.3 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985..For more information please select here... more

Leith Pier

Leith Pier

George Washington Wilson..about 1870..Accession no. PGP R 205 .Medium Albumen print .Size 16.3 x 24.2 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985 ..For more information please selec... more

The Cowgate, Edinburgh

The Cowgate, Edinburgh

Archibald Burns..1871..Accession no. PGP R 214 .Medium Salt print .Size 23.4 x 18.6 cm .Credit Gift of Mrs. Riddell in memory of Peter Fletcher Riddell 1985..For more information please select here ( http://www... more

map from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh"

map from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh"

This image has been taken from scan 000010 from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh". The title and subject terms of this image have been generated from tags, created by users of the British Library's flickr photostream.

advertisement from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh"

advertisement from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh"

This image has been taken from scan 000008 from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh". The title and subject terms of this image have been generated from tags, created by users of the British Library's flickr photostream.

cover from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh"

cover from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh"

This image has been taken from scan 000007 from "Paterson's Guide to Edinburgh". The title and subject terms of this image have been generated from tags, created by users of the British Library's flickr photostream.

North Bridge from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]"

North Bridge from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and su...

This image has been taken from scan 000130 from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]". The title and subject ... more

Edinburgh from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]"

Edinburgh from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surro...

This image has been taken from scan 000098 from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]". The title and subject ... more

David Hume from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]"

David Hume from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surr...

This image has been taken from scan 000074 from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]". The title and subject ... more

Firth of Forth from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]"

Firth of Forth from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and ...

This image has been taken from scan 000186 from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]". The title and subject ... more

Edinburgh from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]"

Edinburgh from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surro...

This image has been taken from scan 000045 from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]". The title and subject ... more

Barnbougle Castle from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]"

Barnbougle Castle from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations a...

This image has been taken from scan 000178 from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]". The title and subject ... more

Midlothian from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]"

Midlothian from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surr...

This image has been taken from scan 000241 from "Edinburgh Past and Present, its associations and surroundings. Drawn with pen and pencil. [By various artists. Edited by W. Ballingall.]". The title and subject ... more