Sir Walter Scott Monunent, detail of the statue

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Sir Walter Scott Monunent, detail of the statue ( 480x640 )
Scott Monument is a monument dedicated to the Scottish novelist Sir Walter Scott. It stands in Prince Street, close to the Edinburgh Waverley Railway Station, across the road from Jenners’ Department Store. It is created of tower and a statue of the writer, seated, resting from writing one of his works with a quill pen and his dog Maida by his side.

A competition to design the monument for Sir William Scott was set four years after his death, in 1836. The tower was designed by George Meikle Kemp and the statue by Sir John Steel. The foundation stone was laid on 15 August 1840 (the anniversary of Scott’s birthday) and the construction started a year later. Unfortunately, Kemp died before the construction was ended. After his death, work continued under the supervision of his brother-in-law, William Bonnar. The monument was finished in 1844 and inaugurated exactly on 15 August. A lot of people gathered to see it.

It is a Victorian Gothic monument. The tower is more than 61 metres tall and it is able to clime to its top. There is a series of viewing decks reached by narrow spiral staircases. 287 steps lead to the top. The monument was built from Binnie shale. The oil which continues to leech from its matrix together with the atmosphere in Edinburgh made the tower sooty-black. The statue is of Carrera marble. There are 64 statues on the monument, mostly characters from Scott's novels, with some figures from Scottish history.

The monument was restored in 1990 and some additional work was done in 1998/99. Nowadays it is administered by the museums department of Edinburgh City Council.
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