Greyfriars Bobby

Greyfriars Bobby was a wee Skye terrier who pined at his masters graveside in the nearby cemetery.

Greyfriars Bobby at the top of Candlemaker RowGreyfriar's Bobby, Candlemaker Row /George IV Bridge.

A column of polished Shap granite with a bronze sculpture of the Skye Terrier 'Bobby' on top.

William Brodie RSA designed this drinking fountain at the instigation of Baroness Angela Burdett-Coutts, the wealthy daughter of a former Edinburgh Lord Provost.

The Town Council granted her permission to erect the fountain opposite Greyfriars Churchyard where Bobby, a Skye Terrier maintained a vigil, pining at his master's graveside until his demise. It was unveiled on November 15, 1873.

There are bronze plaques with the coat of arms of Edinburgh and of Burdett-Coutts (a stag's head and arrow for Coutts, and three martlets for Burdett.) It has an octagonal lower drinking basin for dogs, and an upper spout for humans. In 1957 the water supply was discontinued due to public health concerns.

The main plaque on the fountain reads:

"A TRIBUTE TO THE AFFECTIONATE FIDELITY OF GREYFRIAR'S BOBBY. IN 1858, THIS FAITHFUL DOG FOLLOWED THE REMAINS OF HIS MASTER TO GREYFRIAR'S CHURCHYARD AND LINGERED NEAR THE SPOT UNTIL HIS DEATH IN 1872 WITH PERMISSION, ERECTED BY THE BARONESS BURDETT- COUTTS"

Also on the bronze sculpture: "GREYFRIAR'S BOBBY, FROM THE LIFE JUST BEFORE HIS DEATH" and "W.H. Brodie Sc RSA 1872".

More information about Greyfriars Bobby and other aspects of industrial and urban Scotland can be found on the Learning and Teaching Scotland website.

Close map