Did You Know?
- Greyfriar's Bobby

Greyfriar's Bobby

According to the commonly accepted story, Bobby was a Skye Terrier dog belonging to a Jock Gray, a farmer from the Pentland Hills, who regularly dined at an inn in Grassmarket, not far from Greyfriar's Churchyard.

When Jock Gray, died in 1858, the dog refused to leave his master's grave. He turned up regularly for 14 years at the inn at Grassmarket which had been frequented by his master and was fed there by locals who were taken by the dog's devotion. The story may have been embellished by John Traill, the owner of the restaurant.

Other versions suggest that the dog belonged to a local policeman and that while the dog was frequently found in the churchyard, it was also looked after by residents in the houses in nearby Candlemaker's Row, including Colour Sergeant Donald MacNab Scott, serving in the Royal Engineers Survey Company and Royal Artillery priming the 1 o’clock time gun.

Greyfriar's Bobby died on 14 January 1872.

The story first came to prominence in the 1890s when Eleanor Atkinson, an American, first wrote the story which became a first reading book for a generation of many Americans who now love the story so much.

The cute life-size statue to Bobby (undoubtedly the most photographed dog in Edinburgh) was erected on top of a drinking fountain outside Greyfriar's Churchyard shortly after the dog's death and in more recent times Walt Disney made a film about the dog's devotion.

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