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The intriguing story of John Napier (1550-1617), who designed the horoscope stone you can now see on the south west corner of Lauriston Castle.  He was the son of Archibald Napier, who built the tower house at Lauriston in 1593. John designed the horoscope stone for his half-brother, Alexander, who inherited the tower house.  You may have heard for John Napier as the inventor if logarithms, but did you also know he was rumoured to have dabbled in the dark arts? There were whispers he was a warlock, with a pet black cockerel as a familiar. To others though, such as the 18th century philosopher David Hume, John was ‘The person to whom the title of a Great Man is more justly due than to any other whom his country ever produced.’ Tomorrow we wish happy Birthday to Alexander Napier – John’s half-brother who inherited the castle.

Tracy Robertson is Steward of Lauriston Castle and is researching lots of different histories and stories about the house and former residents.

Focus on John Napier: One of the Many Notable figures Associated with Lauriston Castle’s Past