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March 13, 2004

Edinburgh Vaults

A forgotten city lies beneath Edinburgh forming an historic and literal underworld. The place sounds like Camden stables market catacombs. There is plenty more underground goodness to be found at Subterranea Britannica (note to self: return to London for shopping purposes).

"There are no written records of who lived in these vaults, although there is ample anecdotal evidence that thousands of people lived and died here, some probably never even seeing the outside world," said tour guide Jim Lennie. "The chances are that few of the people who lived in the Georgian part of the city above knew they were there. The existence of the vaults was wiped from the city's records until they were rediscovered in 1985," explained Lennie on a recent tour.

The vaults are formed by the 19 arches of the South Bridge, built between 1785 and 1788 across the Cowgate ravine as the cramped ancient city began to expand. Bricked in and built around, the vaults became a warren of nooks, crannies and tunnels forming the historic city's underworld.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at March 13, 2004 07:14 AM

Comments

canIsee a picture of the Edinburgh Vaults?

Posted by: joanne at March 19, 2004 08:32 PM