The story goes that John Gray – a night watchman or shepherd depending on the account – was inseparable from his beloved canine pal until passing away from tuberculosis on 15 February 1858.
The morning after ‘Auld Jock’ was buried in an unmarked grave in Greyfriars Kirkyard the curator, James Brown, found Bobby on the newly-filled plot.
He was quickly removed because dogs were not allowed on the grounds, but the stubborn wee dog kept on returning and was eventually given the run of the Kirkyard, becoming a popular local figure.
It’s said that he would run to the local inn – now named in his honour – for a free feed when he heard the One O’clock Gun each day.
A year after his death in 1872, at the grand old age of 16, a memorial statue incorporating a drinking fountain for both canines and people was erected at the junction of George IV Bridge and Candlemaker Row.
It remains there to this day and is a popular tourist attraction, while numerous films and books have retold Greyfriars Bobby’s story – making him one of the world’s most famous dogs.
There are those who question the veracity of the story but it remains a much-loved part of Edinburgh’s past, as these 24 pictures show.
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