Edinburgh International festival was started in 1947, it was thought that just after ww11 morale was low and the economy could also do with a boost, so the city fathers decide to have a musical festival. The performers were to be invited, but some students came along uninvited and did some shows, the next year this was picked up by a journalist, and he commented that I see again this year we have students doing performances on the Fringe of the festival, so the birth of the Fringe it became a society in 1959.
The other two elements of the festival month are the International Edinburgh Military Tattoo, that started on the castle esplanade in 1950, and has never cancelled a performance no matter what the weather is like, and in the 1970's a bomb went off in the castle during a performance the show went on !!!
Not sure that would happen today. The Edinburgh International Book Festival began in 1983 and is now a key event in the August Festival season, celebrated annually in Scotland's capital city. Biennial at first, the Book Festival became a yearly celebration in 1997. This year over 800 writers will attend.