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Edinburgh, 322, 324, 326 And 328 Lawnmarket, Riddle's Close And Court

Tenement (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Edinburgh, 322, 324, 326 And 328 Lawnmarket, Riddle's Close And Court

Classification Tenement (Period Unassigned)

Alternative Name(s) Town And Gown Association

Canmore ID 52289

Site Number NT27SE 269

NGR NT 2555 7354

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Edinburgh, City Of
  • Parish Edinburgh (Edinburgh, City Of)
  • Former Region Lothian
  • Former District City Of Edinburgh
  • Former County Midlothian

Archaeology Notes

NT27SE 269 2555 7354

Built by Captain George Riddell, wright, in 1726. Five-storey and attic; ground floor as shops. Stair tower at rear of 324 with date 1726 over doorway. Renovated S Henbest Capper 1893 and again in 1958-9 as flats, J Wilson Paterson.

RCAHMS 1951.

Architecture Notes

Riddle's Close was named for George Riddell, wright and burgess, who rebuilt the foreland in 1726. It was in a flat in theis Riddal's Land that the forty-year-old philosopher David Hume first set himself up as a householder. In 1730 the close was referred to as "Sir James Smith's Close, now Royston's Close"; the first referring to Sir James Smith of Groathill, Provost 1643-46, who lived in the cross house between the two courtyards; while the later name was for Sir James Mackenzie, who lived in the lower part of the MacMorran mansion and sat as Lord Royston in the Court of Session 1710-44. Yet another name for the close was Shaw's Close, evidently for Bernard Shawe, one of the resident owners in 1635. While the northern courtyard is modern, created by clearances in 1893, the buildings round the North, West and South sides of the south courtyard (Riddle's Court is a misnomer) were built about 1587 by John MacMorran, merchant burgess.

(from Stuart Harris, "Place Names in Edinburgh", 1996, pages 527-8).


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