A sundials tour at Heriot’s and the Museum in Edinburgh

Sundial sculpture in bronze with sun symbolsThis marvellous small sundial sculpture sits on a wall of one of the classrooms for the youngest children at George Heriot’s School in Edinburgh. We looked at it closely during our tour of sundials in the school this morning. The sculptor and probably the children as well have introduced a number of lovely features into this piece. There is the beautifully modelled hawk and globe, which is an ancient Egyptian symbol of the sun god, there is the mouse and some lines of poetry from Robert Burns, and there is the T-square remembering the late architect Bob Clunas who designed the building.

Our tour was part of a fund-raising project for young people by members of Greenbank Church of Scotland in Edinburgh. We saw all sorts of different sundials placed high on the walls of George Heriot’s historic school buildings and positioned around the grounds. Then we were admitted through the private gate that leads directly into the churchyard of Greyfriars Kirk, a very privileged shortcut to our next visit at the National Museum of Scotland across the road. On the outside wall of the museum there is a unique modern sundial commissioned for the building’s opening in 2001, and inside there is a carefully chosen exhibit of distinctive sundials from Scotland’s past centuries. The final entertainment for us was seeing the museum’s Millennium Clock doing its fantastical and musical kinetic performance at the hour of noon.