Tam's Tall Tales

- Ladies Can Now Speculate By Candlelight

Edinburgh University

Ladies Can Join Sir Walter Scott and Robert Louis Stevenson Debating Forum

The Speculative Society, which was founded in 1764, has now agreed to admit female members. There was

'The Spec', which enjoys the rent-free use of two rooms in Edinburgh University's Old College, is a debating club which meets, in candlelight, during the winter months. It is particularly popular with lawyers who, amazingly, are willing to opine without a fee. If their arguments fail to impress, their notes are consigned to the fireplace.

Although it has no rules against female members, none have ever been admitted, causing criticism of the university's continued informal connection with the club. The club counts Sir Walter Scott (on the left) and Robert Louis Stevenson (on the right) as former members.

My insider source says: " The university was uncomfortable about the all-male element and we voted by over 60 % to change that. The Spec has been accused of being a secretive society where dirty deals are hatched but that is complete nonsense. It is a debating group which meets in a couple of charming rooms and enjoy a convivial evening.

"Some of the artefacts are tremendous and add to the atmosphere. Sir Walter Scott's death mask is displayed as well as the flag from Robert Louis Stevenson's private yacht."

Please give me whatever feedback comes to mind via tamfromrampant@gmail.com.

Tam O'Ranter
May 2015

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