antique clock

The clock which was 100 years too early

A marine chronometer developed by Alexander Bruce, 2nd Earl of Kincardine (1629-1680), has just been acquired by the National Museums of Scotland. A world first, Alexander’s sea-going pendulum clock was commissioned from the leading Dutch instrument maker, Severyn Osterwijck (1637-1694) in 1662. Seeking to improve navigation and promote international trade, Alexander collaborated with the Dutch mathematician, Christian Huygens (1629-95), to …

Eat Outside Day in Japanese style

Celebrate Eat Outside Day with this jubako or picnic set bought as souvenir by James Bruce, 8th Earl of Elgin during the first British diplomatic mission to the Empire of Japan in 1858 – perhaps to remind him of Japanese banquets, with their individual sets of dishes and delicacies. Picnicking has long been popular in Japan, with origins in the 16th …

Broomhall House and the world’s most prominent motoring icon

A visit from a spectacular array of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars to Broomhall House has further emphasised the incredible connection between the Bruce family and world motoring history. At the request of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Edinburgh – as part of The Leven Car Company – Broomhall hosted the full Rolls-Royce model range.

David II and St Monan’s – in the footsteps of King Arthur?

The sword of King Robert the Bruce was paraded at the Sea Queen Festival at St Monans in Fife. Opening the festival, Lord Bruce acknowledged the role of David II – son and successor to King Robert – who consecrated a church at St Monans in 1365. Several years earlier, the childless King David ensured the continuity of the Bruce …

The Broomhall House Collection: Indian photographs  

This is a wonderful photograph of Princess Jahan the Nawab Sultan Kaikhusrau Jahan Begum (1858-1930) as a child, who ruled as Begum of Bhopal (1901-1926). The Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, Bhopal , was one of the few Princely States of India which was ruled by a female dynasty. This matriarchal period of rule began in 1819 on the succession …

English Lessons from Scottish Writers

In the library at Broomhall House, are some important books written by eighteenth century Scottish writers: Hugh Blair’s Lectures on Rhetoric and Belles Lettres and Tobias Smollett’s Expedition of Humphry Clinker. Hugh Blair (1718-1800) was the first academic to teach English Literature as a stand-alone subject. For Scots seeking to take advantage of the Act of Union (1707) to travel …

The Bruce Family and Britain’s armed forces

Over several centuries prominent members of the Bruce Family have served the British armed forces in a variety of roles. Raising a regiment In 1794 Britain was plunged into war with revolutionary France. Landowners responded to the emergency by raising regiments. Thomas Bruce (7th Earl of Elgin) raised a Fencible regiment of 300 men. They were garrisoned in Ireland where …

Family Business United visits the Bruce Family at Broomhall House

Taking a tour of Scotland in March, Paul Andrews, CEO of Family Business United visited around 20 well established family firms including Johnstons of Elgin, Apex Hotels, and Little’s Chauffeurs. Completing his journey at Broomhall House, Paul together with Susannah Simpson, Private Business Partner at PwC, was welcomed by Charles Bruce and Sophia Bruce, and given a guided tour of …

Broomhall House, a target destination for top US travel advisors

Despite the arctic weather, a warm welcome was extended to an intrepid party of Destination and Travel Consultants drawn from all over the United States, who visited Broomhall House recently. Arriving at Broomhall on the last leg of their Scottish trip, the party was given a personal tour of the house and its collection by Lord Bruce. In anticipation of …