Burns and the Scottish People
Nineteenth-century Scotland had other heroes besides Robert Burns (1759–96), notably William Wallace and Sir Walter Scott, but the ‘ploughman poet’ was first among equals, a figure who inspired pilgrimage, relic-collectors, ‘Burns suppers’, commemorative editions, monuments and statues. In investigating what Burns meant to ordinary Scots and how he was read and understood, Whatley treats the afterlife of the poet, not only as a literary phenomenon, but as a moving force within the mainstream of Scottish history.
A Frontier Region
The ‘frontier’ between Scotland and the English invaders of medieval times, the principal battlefield of the Wars of Independence, and a region rife with ferocious family feuds, Dumfriesshire had a long and often violent history until the Act of Union in 1707, which brought not only peace, but land improvement, agricultural development and industrialization. Andrew McCulloch, a native of south-west Scotland, presents a comprehensive history of the region, from the Stone Age to devolution and the 2016 Independence referendum.
Images of the Scottish Borders
In addition to capturing the rolling landscapes of the border region in all seasons, and the sheep, ponies, cattle and deer that inhabit it, this collection contains picturesque views of Abbotsford, the home of Sir Walter Scott; towns such as Hawick, Galashiels and Jedburgh; and portraits of the area's isolated and romantic castles.
The 'Kingdom' of Fife boasts Scotland's oldest university and the home of golf at St Andrews as well as picturesque fishing villages, ancient monuments and a beautiful rural heartland. Liz Hanson's photographs range from views of the Forth Bridge across the estuary and the mining and manufacturing towns around Dunfermline to the world-famous golfing country of the east coast.
For Alistair Moffat Edinburgh is quite simply ‘the most beautiful city in the world’, and Liz Hanson’s photographs show how he might have come to that conclusion. Moffat, a former Director of the Edinburgh Festival, explains how geology and history made the city as he traces its history from ancient volcanoes to fringe musicians performing in the street; while Liz Hanson’s camera peers into medieval closes as well as looking out over the Firth of Forth from the city’s lofty crags.
Crime in 19th Century Scotland
Malcolm Archibald investigates some of the lesser-known murders, robberies and misdemeanours committed in 19th-century Scotland, contrasting the romantic ‘glens and bens’ notion of the country with the reality of its criminal underworld. As well as dealing with themes in crime, such as poisonings, rural murder and ‘wild women’, the book has chapters devoted to celebrated cases including the Dundee Museum Robbery and the Siege of John Street.
Tir a' Mhurain
The Outer Hebrides of Scotland
In 1954, when the world was living under the shadow of nuclear war, the acclaimed modernist photographer Paul Strand spent three months among the people of the Outer Hebridean island of South Uist, a community whose traditional way of life was under threat from a plan to build an American missile base. This collection of black-and-white portraits of Scottish people, landscapes and architectural details documents his stay.
The Gathering Stream
The Story of the Moray Firth
Scotland's largest firth or inlet, the Moray Firth defines an area of coastline stretching from John o'Groats on the northern tip of the mainland to Fraserburgh in Aberdeenshire. With the natural advantages of fertile soil, availability of grain, timber and cattle, and an abundance of fish, the area has been contested by five cultures: Pictish, Gaelic, Norse, Anglo-Saxon and Norman-Flemish. James Miller's illustrated study explores the region's history over a period of 2000 years.
Scotland for Gardeners
The Ultimate Guide to Scottish Gardens, Nurseries and Garden Centres
Arranged by geographical area and illustrated with colour photographs, this comprehensive guide to Scottish gardens includes a detailed description of each location, recommendations on the best time of year to visit and what to look out for, an introduction to the history of gardening in Scotland and information about specialist nurseries, garden centres, wildflower walks and public parks.
Not a Plack the Richer
Argyll's Mining Story
After explaining the geology of the Argyll region and why mining minerals there proved so frustrating for the landowners and prospectors who complained that they never made a plack (a four-penny piece) from the mines, Marian Pallister’s history of Argyll mining for coal, lead, copper, zinc, silver, nickel and gold, silica and strontium, looks at the working conditions and the lives of the miners and their families, the decline of the mines and their legacy to the region.
The Summer Walkers
Travelling People and Pearl-Fishers in the Highlands of Scotland
Known to the Highlands crofters as ‘the Summer Walkers’, the travelling tinsmiths, hawkers, horse-dealers and pearl-fishers are indigenous, Gaelic-speaking Scots who go from village to village, buying, selling and entertaining. First published in 1996, this book documents a way of life vanishing even then: the work, songs and stories of the Travelling People – mainly of Sutherland and Ross-shire – are described in their own words and with their photographs. Finally, there are notes on Traveller origins, ‘cover tongue’, routes and campsites.
The Great Garden
Castles at Achinduin and Coeffin, an Iron Age broch at Tirfuir, two Bronze Age cairns, the remains of the medieval cathedral of Argyll, and evidence of lime-burning industry at Sailean: the relatively fertile island of Lismore (Lios Mòr, ‘the great garden’) at the mouth of the Great Glen has attracted settlement since the Neolithic era. From prehistory to the present, Robert Hay traces the fortunes of the island and the conflicts over its possession, from Vikings to Campbells.
The Finest Road in the World
The Story of Travel and Transport in the Scottish Highlands
The ‘finest road’ is a metaphor for the passage forged across the rugged Highlands of Scotland since the 1700s. This history describes the progress of changing modes of travel and transport, by foot, horse, train, boat or by air, alongside the growth of related infrastructures, such as the telegraph. The account is both sequential and thematic, with sections on drovers and smugglers, canals and fisheries, military roads and public highways.
An Island and Its People
On the southern end of the Outer Hebrides, Mingulay was abandoned by its inhabitants in 1912 and is now owned by the National Trust for Scotland. Ben Buxton, who investigated its archaeological sites in the 1990s, tells the story of the island and its three neighbours, Berneray, Pabbay and Sandray, since the earliest human occupation; and he describes the lives, work, lore and religion of its isolated population and the hardships that forced them to leave.
A History from Earliest Times
Alistair Moffat offers a comprehensive and very readable history of Scotland, drawing on sources ranging from the lives of saints and medieval chronicles to reports of sporting events, contemporary popular culture and the independence referendum of 2014. Throughout the narrative Moffat uses text boxes to profile personalities including John Capellanus, Robert Adam and Jo Grimond, or to describe events such as the fate of the Blessing of Burntisland (a ferry) in 1633, and the Lockerbie disaster of 1988.
And the Plan for Edinburgh's Third New Town
Rising just beyond the centre of Edinburgh, the once rural Calton Hill was developed in the late 18th century to extend the city towards the port of Leith. The site’s contrasting architectural styles are often perceived as a commentary on the friction between Scottish and British nationalism, reflecting the nuances that define Scotland’s sense of identity within Britain. In this well-illustrated study, the author investigates Calton Hill’s creation, its history, and its symbolism for Scotland today.
The Corruption of Power
The most significant Scottish politician of the late Stewart age and a man of great learning and ability, John Maitland (1616–1682), ‘King Lauderdale’, served on the Westminster Assembly and the Committee of Both Kingdoms and became Secretary of State for Scotland and a member of Charles II's 'Cabal'. Paterson’s study is both a balanced portrayal of Maitland and a lucid analysis of late 17th-century political life. Off-mint.
An Island Journey
A writer and activist involved in issues including land reform, globalization and non-violence, Alastair McIntosh returned to the islands of the Outer Hebrides – Harris and his native Lewis – on a twelve-day, 60-mile journey of pilgrimage in 2009. This book is an account of the rigours of his journey; the people, landscape and ancient relics he encountered; stories from the islands’ history and lore; and thoughts of his own past and present.
On Foot Through Clydesdale
Despite its long industrial history, Clydesdale has areas of great natural beauty, including the spectacular Falls of Clyde. Lees introduces the region's culture, folklore and history as he rambles through a landscape ‘where every square inch is rich in romance’. First published in 1932.
The northern border of East Lothian faces the Forth Estuary and the North Sea and this portfolio explores the 40-mile coastline, encompassing the harbour towns of Cockenzie, North Berwick and Dunbar and the famous golf links of Musselburgh and Gullane, as well as the rural hinterland and the Lammermuir Hills to the south.