Hello! I'm Hetty and I'm a real history geek. I love all aspects of Scottish history especially people, buildings, culture, landscapes and the environment. In this Edinburgh focused blog I'll be exploring how these have changed over time and their influence on our world today. In particular I'll be looking at how these changes affected both the city and its ordinary inhabitants.
Mainstream history often concentrates on what I like to call 'big' history - the rich and powerful, the exceptional, the major battles, the defining political moments. Of course, a lot of 'big' history has happened in Edinburgh (after all it is over 900 years old and has been the capital of Scotland since the 15th century) and 'big' history is important, but for me its only part of the story.
"History is about ordinary people living their ordinary lives, just as we do today, while all around the world is changing." - Vicky Adin
I'm far more interested in the 'small' history, that is the ordinary people, their everyday lives and how they were affected by 'big' history. Why? Well, the majority of people in history were not the powerful, or the rich, or the exceptional, and so this blog will look at various topics that touch upon Edinburgh's rich social and urban history. Topics such as architecture, food and clothing, work and leisure, religion, education, folk-lore, land use, urban development and more, as well as broader aspects of Scottish culture and the influence of the wider world.
Ordinary people going about their everyday lives - a typical Old Town street scene from Cassell's Old and New Edinburgh, published in 1881. (Image in public domain)
By looking at the 'small' history I hope to uncover more about Edinburgh long past, from it's tiny medieval beginnings to the vibrant cultural capital it is today. How and why the city developed? What influences shaped peoples lives? What were living conditions really like? Why does the city look the way it does? How did people cope with the changing world around them?
I hope you enjoy reading my blog posts - let me know by leaving a comment below, joining me on social media or hitting the RSS feed to subscribe.