A Maritime History of Scotland, 1650-1790
Colourful characters and dramatic events abound in the history of Scottish seafaring during the period 1650 to 1790, whether the raids of John Paul Jones, the press gangs of the Royal Navy, English wars or trade wars. In this illustrated study Graham traces the development of the Scottish marine and argues that state intervention and warfare at sea in the pursuit of mercantilist goals largely determined Scottish maritime fortunes.
The Hunt for Rob Roy
The Man and the Myths
Rob Roy has been one of Scotland’s most successful exports, famed for his skill at evading capture and daring exploits; but what of the real Robert MacGregor (1671–1734)? In this acclaimed biography, Stevenson shatters the popular image of a man unjustly oppressed who fights back and wins. The ‘real’ Rob Roy was a fugitive debtor, never went into battle, and lost the only duel he ever fought – but his real struggle for survival was as remarkable as his mythical heroism.
Edinburgh: The Golden Age
The Golden Age
Mary Cosh's ‘biography of Edinburgh’ presents a richly detailed account of the city, from the inception of the New Town in the 1760s to the death of Walter Scott in 1832: ‘the years of Modern Athens in full flower’. The book covers every aspect of the city's social and cultural life; and describes the lives of residents ranging from the elite of the New Town and scholars of the great university, to the poor in the 'narrow wynds' of the Old Town.
The Clerk Maxwells and The Scottish Enlightenment
The physicist James Clerk Maxwell (1831–1879) was one of the ‘great men’ to emerge from the Scottish Enlightenment. Although prompted by Clerk Maxwell’s achievement, this study goes beyond his life to examine the family he emerged from and its wider connections. Covering the period following the religious and political turmoil of the 17th century, John Arthur explores how Scottish families such as the Clerk Maxwells and their associates produced the brilliant Scots of the Enlightenment and the 19th century.
Harpoon at a Venture
In 1945, Gavin Maxwell (1914–1969), best-known as the author of Ring of Bright Water, bought the island of Soay in the Inner Hebrides and set up a basking shark fishery. Harpoon at a Venture tells of his 'long adventure' and describes in detail the business of fishing for sharks. The fishery failed in 1948, but Maxwell's book remains a vivid portrait of the islands and their fishermen.
The Bumper Book of Look and Learn
Look and Learn magazine for children ran for 20 years, from 1962 to 1982, enjoying a massive circulation that gradually waned as television became more pervasive. Now, decades later, Stephen Pickles has selected articles, artworks and a story from The Rise and Fall of the Trigan Empire series from the magazine's archive. The book is packed with factual articles and illustrations that come from the pre-computer age, but retain the power to engage even today's most sophisticated children.
The Life and Legacy of a Hebridean Priest
The Catholic priest Father Allan MacDonald (1859-1905) was not only a much-loved champion of his Hebridean parishioners on Eriskay, but also an accomplished Gaelic poet and one of Scotland's greatest collectors of folklore. Hutchinson's beautifully written book recounts the life and work of this remarkable man against the richly evoked backdrop of an island landscape where myth and spirituality entwine.
The Story of an Island
In her prologue to this much-acclaimed study, Dressler writes of Eigg, ‘From the fierce struggles in clan times to the bleak period of famine and emigration, through to the modern-day fight to maintain a viable crofting community, the island has always been a microcosm of Highland history’. Drawing on oral history, legend and song, and written sources, Dressler’s book covers the story of the island from the coming of the Celts to life on Eigg since the 1997 community buy-out.
A Family's Story of Courage and Survival on Both Sides of the Berlin Wall
As the Second World War ended and the Soviets seized control of eastern Germany, Hanna, a teacher’s daughter, escaped to the West. Her parents and siblings remained in the East, and the family was separated. Forty years later, as the Berlin Wall was torn down, her daughter Nina, now a US intelligence officer, rediscovered her lost family. In this poignant memoir, she tells their remarkable story against the backdrop of events that shaped the world.
St Kilda and the Wider World
Tales of an Iconic Island
Once home to the most remote community in the British Isles and now a World Heritage Site, St Kilda is often seen as a tragedy; a doomed settlement that, after centuries of struggling to eke out a living on the edge of the Atlantic, finally abandoned the island in the evacuation of 1930. The landscape archaeologist Andrew Fleming questions those St Kilda ‘mythologies’ and ‘de-isolates’ the remote archipelago by setting its history within the wider context of northern Scotland. Off-mint.
The Great Tapestry of Scotland
‘The history of a nation written and made by a thousand people’, the Great Tapestry of Scotland, now in the Scottish Parliament, was the brainchild of author Alexander McCall Smith. The historian Alistair Moffat chose the subjects to tell Scotland’s story in 168 panels, which were drawn by Andrew Crummy, and stitched by a thousand volunteers, supervised by Dora Wilkie. After McCall Smith's foreword and introduction by Moffat, this volume illustrates each panel, with an historical commentary on its facing page.