When you enter Holyrood Park from the Meadowbank side via Duke’s Walk, you will find yourself walking past a strange pile of rocks which looks like an unfinished rockery:

Muschat’s Cairn was created after a  young woman was killed on this spot by her cruel husband: a surgeon named Nichol Muschat.

Muschat confessed to the savage killing, saying that he dispatched his young wife because he had simply “grown weary of her”.He was sentenced to death for the murder and hanged in the Grassmarket. His accomplice Campbell was transported to Australia.

Muschat was described by Sir Walter Scott in a footnote to his novel The Heart of Mid-Lothian as “a debauched and profligate wretch” who “having conceived a hatred against his wife, entered into conspiracy with another brutal libertine and gambler named Campbell of Burnbank, by which Campbell undertook to destroy the woman’s character, so as to enable Muschat, on false pretences to obtain a divorce from her.”

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