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Sylvan House

A little B-listed mansion in the Marchmont district of Edinburgh, Sylvan House gives its name to Sylvan Place, behind the tenements of which it now finds itself hidden. Standing in its own garden, this two-storey house is built in rubble with ashlar dressings. Over the years it has been much-altered but was sympathetically restored in 1983, when it was given a white lime-harl, and remains a private residence. It was most-likely built around 1740 for advocate Joseph Williamson, who served as Town Clerk of Edinburgh and famously refused to surrender the keys of the city to Prince Charles Edward Stuart in 1745. In the 1790s, it became the summer home of Joseph Black (1728-99), Professor of Chemistry at the University of Edinburgh, who notably discovered the gas Carbon Dioxide. Black is remembered by a plaque on the wall.


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