Basic Biographical Details

Name: William Aytoun
Died: 1645
Bio Notes: William Aytoun was a member of the family of Aytouns who make frequent appearances in the minute book of the Masons' Lodge which met at Aitchison's Haven near Musselburgh. William Aytoun senior and junior were prominent members of the lodge in the late 16th century. The William Aytoun who died about 1643 was probably the son of John Aytoun, mason in Musselburgh. He was articled to John Brown, mason in Edinburgh in January 1598/1599 and later became foreman or assistant to William Wallace. Wallace died in 1631 and he succeeded him as master mason on Heriot's Hospital, Edinburgh which had been begun in 1628 and was still incomplete. Aytoun was responsible for more or less completing the building by the 1640s. He also worked at Holyrood and at Innes House in Morayshire, the latter bearing some ressemblance to Heriot's Hospital in its detailing.

Aytoun became a burgess of Edinburgh in August 1640. In 1643 John Mylne succeeded him as master mason of Heriot's Hospital. A portrait of Aytoun is held by Heriot's.

Employment and Training


The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 2William Wallace Before 1631Assistant 
Item 2 of 2John Brown15981599Apprentice 

Buildings and Designs

This was involved with the following buildings or structures from the date specified (click on an item to view details):
 Date startedBuilding nameTown, district or villageIslandCity or countyCountryNotes
Item 1 of 31631George Heriot's Hospital  EdinburghScotland 
Item 2 of 31633Palace of Holyroodhouse  EdinburghScotlandWorking at Holyrood.
Item 3 of 31640Innes HouseElgin MorayshireScotlandProbably remodelling of 15th century house


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this :
Item 1 of 5Apprentices1906Register of Edinburgh Apprentices 1583-1666 Scottish Historical Societyp9
Item 2 of 5APSD The Dictionary of Architectureed Wyatt PapworthThe Architectural Publication Society (8v 1852-1892) 
Item 3 of 5Cart, H1954The Mason and the Burgh  p38
Item 4 of 5Colvin, Howard2008A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects 1600-1840 London: YUP. 4th edition 
Item 5 of 5MacGibbon and Ross Castellated and Domestic Architecture of Scotland  volume ii, p203; iv, p144, v, p560-1

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this :
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 1Country Life6 March 1975  Article by Alistair Rowan.

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this :
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 1New Register HouseWills and TestamentsCC 8/8/61, f 301.