Postcards of old Edinburgh (in 1824 and 1845)

This afternoon I came across these few postcards of old Edinburgh.

Edinburgh from the West End

1824

Edinburgh from the West End of Princes Street, 1824

Edinburgh from the West End of Princes Street, 1824. Aquatint by T Sutherland, after J Gendall

I thought it would be fun to compare that image with the same view captured in Google StreetView.

2008

Edinburgh from the West End of Princes Street, 2012 - Google StreetView

Edinburgh from the West End of Princes Street, 2012 - Google StreetView

St John’s, Princes Street

St John's Chapel, Princes Street, from Castle Terrace. Coloured lithograph by Nicol after W Mason, c.1845

St John's Chapel, Princes Street, from Castle Terrace. Coloured lithograph by Nicol after W Mason, c.1845

There wasn’t much to see in the Google StreetView of the image above: mostly trees.

Edinburgh from the Castle looking east

Edinburgh from the Castle looking East. Coloured Aquatint by T Sutherland after J Gendall, c.1824

Edinburgh from the Castle looking east. Coloured Aquatint by T Sutherland after J Gendall, c.1824

The thing I find most astonishing about this view from Edinburgh Castle is the space once occupied by the Nor Loch, to the left of the picture. The Nor Loch was filled in and the land reclaimed to create Princes Street Gardens. The road up The Mound, and the Waverley Bridge are quite prominent in the absence of other buildings, particularly the Scottish National Gallery and the National Gallery of Scotland. And how few buildings to the south-east of the castle, south of the Old Town.

View of the Old Town from Princes Street

View of the Old Town from Princes Street

View of the Old Town from Princes Street, looking West. Coloured aquatint by I. Clark after A. Kay, c.1814

2 thoughts on “Postcards of old Edinburgh (in 1824 and 1845)

  1. I am compiling a book currently about Edinburgh that has been lost and I am fascinated by the early stages of the new town. I hadn’t seen the picture of St John’s and St Cuthbert’s from Castle Terr before, nor the view from where Caledonian Hotel now stands. I was reading that , in order to build the latter, a large house called Kirkbraehead and it’s cottages had to removed.

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