The Fair Maid of Perth
Found on the west facade of the Scott Monument.
The Fair Maid of Perth (from the novel of the same name, 1828)
is wearing a long plain dress possibly trimmed with fur, and a purse
hanging on her right hip.
Catharine, daughter of Simon Glover, one of the burgesses of Perth,
is "universally acknowledged to be the most beautiful young
woman of the city or its vicinity". She is much admired by
the "young gallants of the royal court" but is unimpressed
by their attentions, her beauty being, "notwithstanding her
natural kindness and gentleness of disposition, rather allied to
reserve than to gaiety".
She is wooed by Harry Gow, the blacksmith, and also passionately
loved by Glover's apprentice Conachar. Disturbed by Harry's "vanity
and wrath" and his inability to stay out of fights, she rejects
his suit although she does in fact love him, especially since he
has defended her from attempted abduction by the Duke of Rothesay
and his villainous accomplice Sir John Ramorny.
Catharine is appalled by the violence and brutality of the age,
and consents to marry Harry Gow only after he hangs up his broadsword.
About the Sculptor
David Watson Stevenson (1842 to 1904)
Stevenson was born in Ratho, Midlothian on 25 March 1842 and died
in Edinburgh on 18 March 1904. He trained at the Trustees School
and Life School, and later also in Rome, before working under William
Brodie for eight years.
While assistant to Sir John Steell, he did statues of ‘Science’,
‘Learning’ and ‘Labour’ for the Scottish
National Memorial to the Prince Consort in Charlotte Square. His
statue of Robert Burns (1898) is in Bernard Street, Leith. Others
include ‘Sir John Steell when sculptor to Her Majesty for
Scotland’ (1887) and ‘Napier of Murchiston’(1898)
both now in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.
Also on the Scott Monument, the figures of Queen Mary, James VI,
Charles I, Halbert Glendinning and Montrose.
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