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News > School News > Remembering George Heriot

Remembering George Heriot

Marking 400 years since George Heriot died.
12 Feb 2024
Written by Julie Beattie
School News

Today, the 12 February, marks the 400-year anniversary of the death of George Heriot, who died at the age of 60, in London and is buried at St Martin-in-the-Fields.

George Heriot started his life and career as a goldsmith here in Edinburgh. It was obvious from a young age that Heriot’s talent was superior, he was elected to senior roles within the Edinburgh and Scottish Trade Council from the tender age of 24.

Through his talent and successful craftsmanship, Heriot was appointed to be the official goldsmith to Queen Anne of Denmark in 1597 and then to King James VI in 1601. During his career Heriot amassed a personal fortune through creating and selling exquisite jewellery to the royals and nobles of the time.

When Heriot passed away, he left the bulk of his wealth to build a purpose-built hospital to educate “Fatherless bairns” in Edinburgh. 400 years later, we continue to celebrate George Heriot’s legacy which lives on, and with the help of generous donors enables the School to still provide fully funded Foundation places to children who have lost a parent.

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