The teeming nature of life in eighteenth-century Edinburgh elevated the Old Town's taverns to a critical role in the city's social life, and there was `no superabundance of sobriety in the town'. Much of the business life of the city was carried out in taverns where it was even normal for doctors to consult their patients.
The Edinburgh taverns of the eighteenth century are described as having `a coarse and darksome snugness which was courted by their worshippers'. These earlier basic hostelries were swept away during the period 1880-1910, which is recognised as the golden age of pub design. These new pubs were decorated with an abundance of spectacular ornaments to attract customers into their shining interiors.
This book won't tell you how many real ales or malts the pubs stock or whether the burgers are worth popping in for. What it does provide is a record of Edinburgh Pubs that are architectural gems of exceptional quality or which have a particularly interesting historical association.
Jack Gillon is a long term resident of Edinburgh and has worked as a Town Planner involved in the conservation of the city's heritage of historic buildings for around thirty years and has an extensive knowledge of the city's history and architecture. He writes extensively on the historical heritage of Scotland and has had several books published by Amberley.