Saturday, December 9, 2017

Hiraeth 2016: Dydd 20, Edinburgh (in a clearly Celtic land)

Scotland is full of our Celtic Cousins, so we're fine. I have a maternal line that goes back there. And Edinburgh is a very unique city. For one thing, it is built on several different levels like three-dimensional chess or maybe an Escher drawing.

We've got about about three street levels here.
It is also dark, enlightened, and ancient. Monuments to philosophers, poets, and warriors abound.

And there is a beautiful cemetery across from where J.K. Rowling wrote some Harry Potter. She took names from the monuments for some of her characters.

There is also a darker corner of this cemetery where a religious minority was walled in until they starved or died of exposure.
Of course we headed up the hill to the Castle.

The entrance to Edinburgh Castle
The castle is built of and on stone.

And the views from that rock up there were fantastic!

St. Giles Cathedral and the Firth of Forth
Arthur's Seat above Edinburgh
St. Giles Cathedral on the Royal Mile.
If you take my mom's, mom's, mom's line back maternally, you get to solid Scots. At least they were lowland Scots centered in Bo'Ness which is not far from Edinborgh on the Firth of Forth. And one of those lines goes back to a famous Reformer, John Knox, credited with founding the Scot's Kirk, Church of Scotland, or Scottish Presbyterianism. He preached in St. Giles.

Many Great-Grandpa John Knox and Me.
The podium stand where John Knox preached Calvinism (it was better than some of the alternatives.)
Stained glass showing Knox preaching from the pulpit
The Nave of St. Giles
Near the end of the Royal Mile and below Arthur's Seat is the Scottish Parliament.
The Welsh Assembly is more impressive which we will see in a few days . . . .
At the very bottom of the Royal Mile is the Queen's Residence of Holyrood.
So, the Saxon Royals still hold Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood. I'm not sure how the Stuarts feel about this.
Edinburgh Castle from below

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