Old Observatory & Dugald Stewart Memorial, Calton Hill, Edinburgh, Scotland

Old Observatory & Dugald Stewart Memorial, Calton Hill, Edinburgh, Scotland

Calton Hill does have a certain under-planned feel with its scattering of monuments and other noteworthy constructions with contributions from such renowned architects as James Craig and William Playfair, both of whom made many a contribution to how Edinburgh appears to the visitor today. Here's a close up view of two of them as seen from the Old Calton Burying Ground. To the front is a monument that appears in many photos of Edinburgh because of the westward line of sight down Princes Street and its world-famous surroundings. The fact that it is a memorial to Dugald Stewart, a former professor of philosophy at the University of Edinburgh, may be lost to many who stand beside it because of its usefulness as a vantage point.

Behind it is the Gothic tower of an installation variously known as the Old Observatory, the City Observatory or the Calton Hill Observatory. Until air pollution stymied astronomical observations from the site, it was the forbear to today's Royal Observatory on Blackford Hill. Light pollution cannot help its cause these days either although students of astronomy apparently still train there.

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