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The Character Statues

Davie Deans

Found on the north facade of the Scott Monument.

Davie Deans (from the novel 'The Heart of Midlothian', 1818) stands erect and upright in his greatcoat and flat bonnet, a plain-looking man with a careworn appearance.

"Douce Davie", the father of Jeanie and Effie, is "a staunch Presbyterian of the most rigid and unbending adherence to what he conceives to be the only possible straight line". He is profoundly shamed and pained by the disgrace of Effie's imprisonment and conviction for child-murder, not least because "the lightsome and profane" would "take up their song and reproach, when they see that the children of professors are liable to as foul backsliding as the offspring of Belial".

But if he is constantly disappointed by Effie, he is strengthened by the integrity and courage of Jeanie, and when "the venerable patriarch of St Leonard's" dies, "full of age and honour", it is "in the arms of his beloved daughter, thankful for all the blessings which Providence had vouchsafed to him while in this valley of strife and toil".

About the Sculptor

Thomas Stuart Burnett (1851 to 1888)

T.S. Burnett was born Edinburgh. He was the son of a lithographic printer who studied under William Brodie and at the School of the Board of Trustees (of the Royal Scottish Academy) where he won the Gold Medal in 1875.

In 1876 he entered the RSA Life School, won a share of the Stuart prize in 1880 and was elected ARSA (Associate of the Royal Scottish Academy) in 1883. He died in Edinburgh in 1888.

He was also responsible for a bronze bas-relief depicting the Life of the Duke of Buccleuch for his monument in Parliament Square, and a memorial to Robert Bryson at Warriston Cemetery. His statues of Rob Roy and General Gordon can be found at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.

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