Basic Site Details

Name: Holyrood Abbey
City or county: Edinburgh
Country: Scotland
Grid ref:
Notes: Proposed restoration of nave in 1906-7 was under the will of the Earl of Leven and Melville

Building Type Classification

The building is classified under the following categories:
 ClassificationOriginal classification?Notes
Item 1 of 1Church  


The following date-based events are associated with this building:
 FromToEvent typeNotes
Item 1 of 61688 Build/constructionAbbey Church fiitted up as Chapel Royal for King James II.
Item 2 of 6Late 1688 Destruction/demolitionDestroyed by mob.
Item 3 of 6Mid 1750s RepairEstimate by Douglas for reapairing roof of Abbey Church. Work not carried out because of the death of 6th Duke of Hamilton, hereditary keeper of the palace.
Item 4 of 61835  Restoration proposed
Item 5 of 61877  Design for rebuilding.
Item 6 of 619061907 Proposed restoration of nave


Design and Construction

The following individuals or organisations have carried out design/construction work. Where architects or practices worked together, matching letters appear beside their names in the Partnership Group column.
 NameRolePartnership GroupFromToNotes
Item 1 of 8James Smith D1688 Fitted up Abbey Church as Chapel Royal for King James II. Destroyed by mob later in 1688. Smith was in charge as Surveyor of the Royal Works and was presumably responsible for the designs. In December 1687 after a visit to James II in Whitehall he was paid an extra 120 as the experssion of the king's satisfaction with 'the preformance of his duty'. William Morgan recently employed on Chelsea Hospital was the master carver and 'three images for the high altar' were carved by Grinling Gibbons'.
Item 2 of 8John Douglas CMid 1750s Estimate for repairing the roof of the Abbey Church. Replacement of roof truss with diaphram walls. Collapsed 2 December 1768.
Item 3 of 8Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin B1835 Restoration proposed. Drawings by Pugin.
Item 4 of 8James Gillespie Graham B1835 Restoration proposed
Item 5 of 8(Sir) Robert Rowand Anderson  1877 Design for rebuilding
Item 6 of 8Alfred Lightly MacGibbon A19061907Proposed restoration of nave
Item 7 of 8MacGibbon & Ross A19061907Proposed restoration of nave
Item 8 of 8Thomas Ross A19061907Proposed restoration of nave


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this building:
Item 1 of 3Colvin, Howard2008A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects 1600-1840 London: YUP. 4th edition 
Item 2 of 3Gifford, John, McWilliam, Colin and Walker, David M1984Edinburgh (The Buildings of Scotland) Harmondsworth: Penguin Books Ltdp129
Item 3 of 3Harrison, J1919The history of the Monastery of the Holy-Rood and of the Palace of Holyrood House  p239

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this building:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 2Architectural History198427 pp410-11. Article by James Macaulay.
Item 2 of 2Journal of Architectural Engineering20039(3) Article 'Case Study of the Failure of a Cross Vault' by D Theodossopoulos, B P Sinha, and A S Usmani.

Amierican Society of Civil Engineers.

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this building:
 SourceArchive nameSource catalogue no.Notes
Item 1 of 9NASRecords prefixed SPSP 57/13p181
Item 2 of 9NAS National Archives of ScotlandVarious accounts: imprestsE418/13; E342/9E418/13: 1-2. 1758, Aug 5-7 & 1758-1760: Receipts by John Douglas, architect in Edinburgh and James McPherson, mason in Dean, for payments under contract with Andrew Stuart, writer in Edinburgh.
E342/9 Sums due to John Douglas
Item 3 of 9National Archives of Scotland (formerly SRO)Gifts and deposits GD40/4/494/3
Item 4 of 9National Archives of Scotland (formerly SRO)Register House PlansRHP 92691-4 
Item 5 of 9National Archives of Scotland (NAS)Records Prefixed 'E'E 26/12/3pp187, 190, 288
Item 6 of 9National Archives of Scotland (NAS)Records Prefixed 'E'E 28/369/54; 28/477/2 
Item 7 of 9National Library of ScotlandManuscript CollectionMS 5371, ff196-209 
Item 8 of 9National Library of ScotlandRoss Collection Plans and site notes
Item 9 of 9National Monuments Record of Scotland/NMRS, RCAHMSPress Cuttings Album about Holyrood Abbey restoration (made uo by Thomas Ross) Thomas Ross proposed restoration