The History of Leith

February 21, 2007

A heart of darkness

‘THERE ARE no stars so lovely as Edinburgh street lamps,” Robert Louis Stevenson once wrote in a fit of affection for the home town whose perfidious climate drove him into exile. A bit rich, one can’t help thinking, coming from the man who wrote The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, which, while ostensibly set in London, is as Edinburgh as you can get in its classic portrayal of the good/evil dichotomy.

Stevenson’s “fine bogey tale”, as he called it, was very much the creation of an Edinburgh author and his stony-hearted city, and one regarded as encapsulating the dark duality of Scotland’s capital. Edinburgh can boast Princes Street Gardens, the largest arts festival in the world, and history by the acre, but also such notably duplicitous characters as Deacon Brodie, Burke and Hare, and Major Weir. for more click here

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