16th-century Edinburgh digitally brought back to life

Researchers have digitally reconstructed and brought back to life the lost townscape of 16th-century Edinburgh, Scotland.

Scene from the reconstruction (by Smart History)

The reconstruction has been created by researchers of the University of St Andrews. It is based on a drawing from 1544, thought to be the earliest accurate depiction of Scotland’s capital made by Richard Lee, an English military engineer who later designed the massive artillery defences at Berwick-upon-Tweed. Lee accompanied the Earl of Hertford’s forces to Edinburgh in 1544, and his drawing is thought to be the first realistic portrayal of Scotland’s capital. The animation is the result of a collaboration between St Andrews historians, art historians, computer scientists and University spinout company Smart History. The interactive tour of the capital as it appeared in 1544, shows the city just before it was sacked and burned by an English army led by Edward Seymour, Earl of Hertford.

Scene from the reconstruction (by Smart History)

The new reconstruction gives an overview of the townscape of the entire sixteenth-century city, with a particular focus on the Royal Mile – the historic spine of Edinburgh. The preview can be seen  below, while the full version of the reconstruction is scheduled for public access on May 1st.

(after Smart History & Scottish Construction Now!)

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