Columns and Spyglass

Tom Gomez

Joined January 2008

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Historic Scotland Category A Listed Stuctures

Out for a pleasant days shooting on a rather grey winters day (7th February 2010) with some other RB members on the top of Calton Hill in Edinburgh, Scotland.

On the left, the National Monument, is Scotland’s memorial to those who died in the Napoleonic Wars.

It was designed by Charles Robert Cockerell and his collaborator William Henry Playfair and is modelled upon the Parthenon in Athens. Construction started in 1822.

The monument is famous for being only partially complete. According to documentary evidence, the monument was intended to be a full replica of the Parthenon, but money ran out midway through construction and only one side of the structure was completed. The city of Glasgow reportedly offered to cover the costs but Edinburgh was too proud to accept the other city’s charity. As a result, the monument is often given the nickname Edinburgh’s Disgrace or Edinburgh’s Folly.

However, some of the surviving plans for the monument by Cockerell and Playfair depict only the existing twelve columns, suggesting that the monument never reached an advanced stage of planning due to the lack of funds and political will.

Subsequent attempts to “complete” the National Monument have never borne fruit for reasons of either cost or lack of local enthusiasm. A proposal in 2004 was met with a very mixed reception.

Edinburgh’s National Monument is an Historic Scotland Category A Listed Building (HB Number 27820).

On the right, Nelson’s Monument replaced an existing mast with a signal-tower high enough to be visible to ships on the Firth of Forth and commemorates Admiral Lord Nelson death at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. it is shaped like a spy glass, and from the top (unlike Nelson himself, who saw no ships) you can see the ships on the River.

The stone structure is 106 ft high with 143 steps from a base 456 ft above sea level. The really smart aspect of this tower is the time signal installed at its top in 1852 to enable ships’ captains to set their chronometers accurately. A large time-ball drops on weekdays, at 12pm in Winter and 1pm in Summer coinciding with the firing of Edinburgh Castle’s One o’Clock Gun.

Nelson’s Monument is an Historic Scotland Category A Listed Building (HB Number 27823).

Camera: Canon EOS 450D (Digital Rebel XSi in the USA)
Lens: Canon 18-55mm IS
ISO: 200
Handheld

BEST VIEWED LARGER

Single RAW image Tonemapped in Photomatix Pro.

Related shots can be found at: Edinburgh or you can look at all my HDR shots.


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Artwork Comments

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