St Gilesí Cathedral - St Gilesí Cathedral information and pictures

St Gilesí Cathedral is the most prominent structure at the Royal Mile with its distinctive hollow-crown tower. St Gilesí Cathedral is also known as the High Kirk (church) and has gothic faÁade and turbulent 900 years history.

The oldest part of the church is four pillars at the center of it dating back at 1120. St Gilesí Cathedral has beautiful stained glass windows dating from the 19 century. The central tower with the rib-vaulted roof dates back from the 15th century. John Knox whose house is a little further down the Royal Mile directed the Scottish Reformation and the establishing of the Presbyterian Church in 1560. Today St Gilesís is still called a Cathedral though it is considered the mother church of Presbyterianism.

The Thistle Chapel Ė The Order of the Thistle has roots in the Middle Ages and a membership is considered the highest honor in Scotland. The Order was created by King James II in 1687. The Thistle Chapel was designed by Robert Lorimer and was finished in 1911. The chapel is lavishly decorated with great attention to detail and stained glass windows. Other highlights of the cathedral are the tombs of the Marquis of Montrose, James Graham, and the Marquis of Argyll, Archibald Campbell. The Heart of the Midlothian represents a heart-shaped mosaic, placed next to the western door of the cathedral. Visitors traditionally spit on the mosaic for good luck.
St Gilesí Cathedral Edinburgh
St Gilesí Cathedral Edinburgh
Where is St Gilesí Cathedral: Royal Mile, High Street

Opening hours: May-September
Monday - Friday 09.00-19.00
Saturday 09.00-17.00
Sunday 13.00-17.00

Monday - Saturday 09.00-17.00
Sunday 13.00-17.00

St Gilesí Cathedral Edinburgh
St Gilesí Cathedral, stained glass, Edinburgh

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