Culross - 'The Prospect of ye House and Town of Colross'

Culross (pronounced 'Kew-ross'), in Fife, is viewed from rocks in the River Forth.

Much of the 16th-century village is still intact today. On top of the hill, to the right, is Culross Abbey House and extensive walled gardens, built in 1608. It was later demolished and rebuilt in 1830. Next to the house are the Abbey Church and the ruins of Culross Abbey.

This image shows how Slezer sometimes distorted the perspective in a prospect. The rocks in the foreground are much larger than they should be in relation to the figures he has placed on them. One of the figures appears to be shooting at some birds (possibly ducks) on the right with a very long rifle. Another figure, even smaller, is seated in a small boat smoking a long pipe.

Much of the 16th-century village is still intact today.

Image from Theatrum Scotiae by John Slezer, 1693.

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  Read what Robert Sibbald wrote in Theatrum Scotiae about Culross


To the Right Honourable Alexander Earl of Kincardin, Lord Bruce, &c.


Hath its Name from Cul, which signifies a Bank or Border, and Rosse, which was the ancient Name of Fife, because it lies in the Western Corner of that Shire.

It is situated on a Descent at the side of the River of Forth, its Chief Commodities being Salt and Coals. That which chiefly adorns it, is the stately Buildings of the Earl of Kincardin; with the Gardens and Terrace Walks about it, having a pleasant Prospect to the very Mouth of the River Forth. Near unto these Buildings are to be seen the Ruins of an Ancient Monastery.

Who was Robert Sibbald?

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