In 1670 two doctors – Robert Sibbald and Andrew Balfour – laid out a garden near the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh to grow herbs, flowers and plants for medical purposes. After the University of Oxford Botanic Garden, which had been founded earlier in 1621, it was the second botanic garden in Britain.
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. The photos were taken by me in 2019.
See the first photo.
Later, in 1684, a second Physic Garden was opened by these two Edinburgh doctors on a site that used to be occupied by Trinity Hospital and is today part of the Waverley railway station. Eventually, these two gardens were united in 1763 on the west side of one of the longest streets in Edinburgh, Leith Walk, before the Royal Botanic Garden was transferred north to its present location at Inverleith in 1820. It is worth a visit for tourists, as the photos show.
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. The photos were taken by me (Nils Zumbansen) in one of the Glasshouses in 2019.
See the first photo.
Turnbull, Michael T.R.B. Curious Edinburgh. Reprinted ed. Stroud. The History Press, 2010.
Louis-Charles Fougeret de Monbron was an 18th-century French writer. Among his works was the anti-British pamphlet Préservatif contre l’anglomanie (1757). He made the following statement:
“We are the only nation in the universe that the English do not despise. They rather do us the honor of hating us with all the heartiness possible. Their aversion against us is a sentiment with which they are inculcated from the cradle. Before they know that there is a God to worship, they know that there are Frenchmen to be detested.”
Although we know little about Saint George, he arguably served as a soldier and was martyred on this day (i.e. 23 April) in 303 during a persecution of Christians under the Roman Emperor Diocletian because he presumably refused to recant his faith. In legends and in iconography he is usually depicted as a dragon slayer.
St George has been the patron saint of England since the 14th century. King Edward III founded the prestigious Order of the Garter in 1348, choosing St George as its patron. For this reason, the cult of St George became immensely popular.
Cannon, John. Ed. Dictionary of British History. Rev. ed. Oxford: OUP, 2009.