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History of Scotland

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[[Stirling Castle
]]Humans have lived in Scotland since the end of the last glaciation, around ten thousand years ago. Of the stone, bronze, and iron age civilisations which occupied the country many artifacts, but little writing, remains, and the written History of Scotland largely begins with the arrival of the Roman Empire in Britain. From a classical viewpoint Scotland has seemed a peripheral country, slow to gain advances filtering out from the Mediterranean fount of civilisation, but as knowledge of the past increases it seems remarkable how early and advanced some developments have been, and how important the seaways were to Scottish history. The country's perpetual struggle with its more powerful neighbour to the south repeatedly forced it to establish trading, cultural, and often strategic, ties with a number of European powers. With the advent of the Scottish Enlightenment and later the Industrial Revolution, Scotland became one of the commercial and industrial powerhouses of Europe. Its industrial decline following the Second World War was particularly acute, but in recent decades the country has enjoyed something of a cultural and economic renaissance, fuelled in part by a resurgent financial services sector, the proceeds of North Sea oil and gas, and latterly a devolved parliament.

Table of contents
1 Prehistoric settlement
2 Roman Invasion
3 Post-Roman Scotland
4 Rise of Scotland
5 English Influence
6 War with England
7 Late Mediaeval events
8 Mary, Queen of Scots
9 Protestant Reformation
10 English Civil War
11 Glorious Revolution
12 Scottish overseas colonies
13 The Stuart Rebellions
14 Industrial Revolution, Clearance, and Enlightenment
15 20th Century Scotland
16 See also

Prehistoric settlement



dwellings at Skara Brae, Orkney]] During the last interglacial, around 126,000 - 118,000 BC, the climate in Europe was warmer than it is today, and it is possible that early humans made their way to Scotland, though no traces have been found. Glaciers then scoured their way across most of Britain, and it was only after the ice retreated that Scotland again became habitable, around 9600 BC.

People lived in Scotland for at least 8500 years before recorded history came to these islands. This period is covered in more detail in Prehistoric Scotland.

Mesolithic hunter-gatherer encampments formed the first settlements, and an example at Cramond near Edinburgh has been dated to around 8500 BC. Numerous other sites found around Scotland build up a picture of highly mobile boat using people making tools from bone, stone and antler.

Neolithic farming brought permanent settlements, and the wonderfully well preserved stone house at Knap of Howar on Papa Westray dated from 3500 BC predates by about 500 years the village of similar houses at Skara Brae on the Mainland of the Orkney Islands. These farming people introduced chambered cairn tombs, a prime example being Maes Howe from around 3500 BC, and from about 3000 BC the many standing stones and circles such as the Ring of Brodgar on Orkney and Callanish on Lewis. These form part of the Europe wide Megalithic culture which also produced Stonehenge in Wiltshire, and are now interpreted as showing sophisticated use of astronomical observations.

The cairns and Megalithic monuments continued into the Bronze age, and hill forts were introduced, such as Eildon Hill near Melrose in the Scottish Borders which goes back to around 1000 BC and which accommodated several hundred houses on a fortified hilltop.

Brythonic Celtic culture and language spread into the Scotland at some time after the 8th century BC, possibly through cultural contact rather than mass invasion, and systems of kingdoms developed. 

From around 700 BC the Iron age brought numerous hill forts, brochs and fortified settlements which support the image of quarrelsome tribes and petty kingdoms later recorded by the Romans, though evidence that at times occupants neglected the defences might suggest that symbolic power was as significant as warfare.

Roman Invasion

[[Hadrian's WallEnlarge

[[Hadrian's Wall

]] Written history finally reached Scotland during Roman times. After a series of military successes in the south, forces led by Gnaeus Julius Agricola entered Scotland in 79 AD. The Romans met with fierce resistance from the local population of Caledonians and proved unable to pacify the entire country.

A series of invasions failed to conquer Caledonia, and in 121 AD the Roman emperor Hadrian fixed the border on a line running from the River Tyne to the Solway Firth. Twenty years later the Roman governor Lollius Urbicus built the Antonine Wall (so-named after the Roman emperor at the time, Antoninus Pius) further north, across the Forth-Clyde isthmus. At half the length of Hadrian's Wall, this considerably shorter border appeared easier to defend, but nevertheless it represented the northern reach of the Roman Empire for only the next two decades. By approximately 160 AD the border once again ran along Hadrian's, and stayed there until the 4th century withdrawal of the Romans from Britain.

The failure of the Romans to conquer Caledonia can be seen as a triumph of the Caledonians and perhaps even as a source of national pride. Over the next thousand years Scotland remained linked to Celtic cultures, while England came under Anglo-Saxon domination.

Post-Roman Scotland

In the wake of the Roman withdrawal Scotland's population comprised two main groups:
  1. the Picts, a Brythonic Celtic people of uncertain origin who occupied most of Scotland north of the Firth of Clyde and the Firth of Forth: the area known as "Pictavia"
  2. the Britons formed a Roman-influenced native culture in the south, with the kingdom of Y Strad Glud (Strathclyde) from the Firth of Clyde southwards, Rheged in Cumbria and the Votadini or Gododdin from the Firth of Forth down to the Tweed

Invasions brought three more groups, though the extent to which they replaced native populations is unknown
  1. the Gaelic-speaking Scotti (Irish) or more specifically, the Dal Riatans, had recently arrived from Ireland, taking possession of the Western Isles and the west coast in the Kingdom of Dalriada
  2. the Angles, from Bernicia, took Gododdin in the 7th Century
  3. the Norse Jarls of Orkney took the Western Isles, Caithness and Sutherland

The British Saint Ninian conducted the first Christian mission in Scotland. From his base, the Candida Casa (present-day Whithorn) on the Solway Firth, he spread the faith in the south and east of Scotland and in the north of England. However, according to the writings of Saint Patrick and Saint Columba, the Picts appear to have renounced Christianity in the century between Ninian's death (432) and the arrival of Saint Columba in 563. The reason is not known. The Gaels re-introduced Christianity into Pictish Scotland, gradually pushing out worship of the older Celtic gods. The most famous evangelist of that period, Saint Columba, came to Scotland in 563 AD and settled on the island of Iona. Some consider his (possibly apocryphal) conversion of the Pictish King Brude the turning point in the Christianization of Scotland.

The Scotti began their rise to prominence in Scotland at the expense of the Britons and Picts. In the 7th and 8th centuries, Pictavia suffered invasions by Norsemen, a preoccupation which allowed the Scots King Kenneth Mac Alpin to make himself King of the Picts in 843 by inviting all rival claimants to a banquet and then killing them. The resulting unified Scottish/Pictish Kingdom became known as Alba.

Rise of Scotland

At first this new kingdom corresponded to Scotland north of the Rivers Forth and Clyde. Southwest Scotland remained under the control of the Strathclyde Britons and Southeast Scotland was under the control from around 638 AD of the proto-English kingdom of Bernicia, then of the Kingdom of Northumbria. This portion of Scotland only fell into Scottish hands in 1018, when Malcolm II attacked the English and pushed the border as far south as the River Tweed. This remains the south-eastern border to this day.

Scotland, in the geographical sense it has retained for nearly a millennium, completed its expansion by the gradual subsumation of the Britons' kingdom of Strathclyde into Alba. In 1034, Duncan I, descended from Irish Ui Neill monastery protectors and appointed to the crown of Strathclyde some years earlier, inherited Alba from his maternal grandfather, Malcolm II. With the exception of Orkney, the Western Isles, Caithness and Sutherland, which had come under the sway of the Norse, Scotland stood unified.

Macbeth, the Pictish candidate for the throne whose family had been suppressed by Malcolm II, defeated Duncan in battle in 1040. Macbeth then ruled for seventeen years before Duncan's son Malcolm III, more commonly known as Malcolm Canmore, overthrew him. (William Shakespeare later immortalized these events (in a heavily fictionalized way) in his play Macbeth. For a more accurate fictional account, it is better to read Nigel Tranter's Macbeth.)

English Influence

Malcolm's victory foreshadowed what became a major thread of Scottish history for the next thousand years, however. He had relied on English assistance to return to the throne, and from then on Scotland at no time remained very far from the thoughts of England's rulers. The reciprocal condition equally applied.

In 1066 the Norman Conquest shook England to its foundations, and one of the claimants of the English throne opposing William the Conqueror, Edgar, came to Scotland. Malcolm married Edgar's sister Margaret, and thus came into opposition to William. When Malcolm died in 1093, his brother Donald III succeeded to the throne, but William II of England backed Malcolm's son by his first marriage (Duncan) as a pretender. With the English behind him Duncan briefly seized power as Duncan II, but was murdered within a few months and Donald returned to the throne. The eldest son of Malcolm's marriage to Margaret supported him, but the next two younger sons fled to England, and returned supported once again by the English. Victorious, the invaders imprisoned Donald III and the eldest son for life, and the elder of the two refugees became King Edgar in 1097.

[[Cambuskenneth AbbeyEnlarge

[[Cambuskenneth Abbey

, an Augustinian abbey]]

Margaret achieved fame for another action: the restoration of the Scottish church to the rule of Rome. Invasions by the pagan Norse and Danish in the centuries previous had cut Scotland and Ireland off from the bulk of European Christianity, and their local Churches had evolved along their own paths. Margaret, however, as an Englishwoman, had a background steeped in the Roman Catholic church. At her instigation, the Benedictine order founded a monastery at Dunfermline, and the rites of the Scottish church became gradually folded back into Catholicism from that base.

When Edgar died in 1107, Margaret's third son Alexander became king, and when he in turn passed away in 1124, the crown passed to her fourth son David I. Half-English, David had a large hand in the spread of Scots in the Lowlands of Scotland, thus introducing the second great thread in Scottish history up until the middle of the 18th century: the tensions between the Scots-speaking Lowlands and Gaelic Highlands.

The governmental and cultural innovations introduced by the Norman conquerors of England impressed David greatly, and he arranged for several notables to come north and take up places within the Scottish aristocracy. With this act, Scotland became finally wedded to the mainstream of European civilization, after having been relegated to beyond the fringe as far back as Roman times.

In a mirror of the invitation of the Normans northwards, David received lands south of the border in fee from the English kings. This meant that the Kings of Scotland also functioned as Earls of Huntingdon, and that the Earls paid ceremonial homage to the English kings for the lands received. This homage proved problematic, however, as Malcolm Canmore as the King of Scotland had paid homage to the Kings of England twice after defeats during his various campaigns against the English on behalf of Margaret's brother. The English maintained that this meant Scotland had become subordinate to England.

David himself during his reign fended off this claim, but Henry II defeated David's grandson, William the Lion and hauled him off to the English holdings in Normandy. There William had to swear fealty in 1174, not as Earl but as King. For the first time, Scotland became nominally unified with England. The vow was nullified in 1189 when Richard I accepted a payment from William, needed for Richard's crusade to the Middle East, but the submission hung over the Scottish kings for some time afterwards.

In 1263 Scotland and Norway fought the Battle of Largs for control over the Western Isles. The battle proved a success for the Scots, and in 1266 the Norwegian king Magnus VI of Norway signed the Treaty of Perth, which acknowledged Scottish suzerainty over the islands.

A series of deaths in the line of succession in the 1280s, followed by King Alexander III's death in 1286 left the Scottish crown in disarray. His grand-daughter Margaret, the "Maid of Norway, a four-year old girl, became Queen of Scots.

Edward I of England, as Margaret's great-uncle, suggested that his son (also a child) and Margaret should marry, stabilizing the Scottish line of succession. In 1290 Margaret's guardians agreed to this, but Margaret herself died in Orkney on her voyage from Norway to Scotland before either her coronation or her marriage could take place.

War with England

Resistance leader Sir [[William Wallace
]] Margaret's death (1290) now left the Scottish throne with no clear successor, and Edward became the arbitrator between the various claimants to the crown. He immediately stated that any claimant to the throne would have to acknowledge him as overlord. With a bevy of claimants, it was not difficult to find one who would accept: Edward selected him, and
John Balliol became king.

Balliol soon tried to back out of the arrangement, largely because Edward put considerable ingenuity into ways of emphasising his alleged position as the Scottish king's formal overlord. In 1295 John renounced his allegiance and entered into an alliance with France. This renewed the Auld Alliance first arranged by William the Lion.

Edward invaded Scotland in 1296 and swiftly brought Balliol to heel, moving to establish full English control over Scotland. In this environment William Wallace raised parts of Scotland into rebellion. Wallace's army defeated the English army at the Battle of Stirling Bridge, and for a short time Wallace ruled Scotland in the name of John Balliol.

Edward retaliated in 1298 and defeated Wallace, who escaped but lost control of Scotland to John Comyn and Robert the Bruce, the latter the grandson of a failed claimant to the throne during Edward's arbitration years earlier. In 1304, English troops forced all Scottish notables into giving homage to Edward. Wallace, betrayed, fell into the hands of the English, who executed him (1305).

From this low point, the Scots regained and reinforced their independence from England during the first two decades of the 14th century. Robert the Bruce quarrelled with John Comyn for unknown reasons in 1306 and stabbed him to death. Facing murder charges in England, he instead opted for rebellion. He had himself crowned as King in 1307, and his forces soon overran the country. By 1314 the English held only Bothwell and Stirling. Edward I had died in 1307, and his heir Edward II moved an army north to try once again to end Scottish intransigence. Robert defeated that army at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314, securing de facto independence. In 1320 an appeal to the Pope from the nobles of Scotland (the Declaration of Arbroath) then nullified the various acts of submission by Scottish kings to English ones.

In 1326, the first full Scottish Parliament met. The parliament had evolved from an earlier council of nobility and clergy, the colloquium, constituted around 1235, but in 1326 representatives of the burghs -- the burgh commissioners -- joined them to form the Three Estates.

In 1328, Edward III signed the Treaty of Northampton acknowledging Scottish independence under the rule of Robert the Bruce. However after Robert's death in 1329, England once more invaded on the pretext of restoring the "Rightful King" -- Edward Balliol, son of John Balliol -- to the Scottish throne, thus starting the Second War of Independence. In the absence of a leader with the military competence of Wallace or of The Bruce, Scotland remained under English control, directly or indirectly, for over thirty years, and only fully regained its independence under David II after Balliol's death, mainly because Edward III's attention had by then turned to France and to the Hundred Years War.

Late Mediaeval events

After David's death, Robert II, the first of the Stuart kings, came to throne. He was followed by his ailing son John, who, due to the hatred inspired by the previous King John (Balliol), took the regnal name Robert III. During Robert III's reign (1390 - 1406), actual power rested largely in the hands of his brother, also named Robert, the Duke of Albany. In 1396 during this king's reign, the last trial by combat in Europe, the Battle of the Clans took place before the King in Perth.

However problems with England continued. In 1406, the future James I went to France for safety after the assassination of his elder brother. Unfortunately the English captured him en route and he spent the next 18 years as a prisoner held for ransom. As a result, after the death of Robert III, regents ruled Scotland: firstly, the Duke of Albany; latterly his son, during whose office the country fell into near anarchy. When Scotland finally paid the ransom in 1424, James returned at the age of 32, with his English bride. He was determined to restore justice and the rule of law and to deal with his enemies. He set about this immediately and ruthlessly, using military measures, reforming the parliamentary and court systems, and killing anyone who threatened his authority, including his cousin Albany. This resulted in a great improvement in Scottish government over anything preceding it, but the process led to great unpopularity for James and finally to his assassination in 1437. His son James II (reigned 1437 - 1460), when he came of age in 1449, continued his father's policy of weakening the great noble families, most notably taking on the great House of Douglas that had come to prominence at the time of the Bruce.

Scotland advanced markedly in educational terms during the fifteenth century with the founding of the University of St Andrews in 1413, the University of Glasgow in 1450 and the University of Aberdeen in 1494, and with the passing of the Education Act (1496).

In 1468 the last great acquisition of Scottish territory occurred when James III married Margaret of Denmark, receiving the Orkney Islands and the Shetland Islands in payment of her dowry.

After the death of James III (1488), again by assassination, his successor James IV successfully ended the quasi-independent rule of the Lord of the Isles, bringing the Western Isles under effective Royal control for the first time. In 1503, he married Henry VII's daughter, Margaret Tudor, thus laying the foundation for the 17th century Union of the Crowns.

In 1512 under a treaty extending the Auld Alliance, all nationals of Scotland and France also became nationals of each other's countries, a status not repealed in France until 1903 and which may never have been repealed in Scotland. However a year later, the Auld Alliance had more disastrous effects when James IV was required to launch an invasion of England to support the French when they were attacked by the English under Henry VIII. The invasion was stopped decisively at the battle of Flodden Field during which the King, many of his nobles, and over 10,000 troops -- The Flooers o the Forest -- were killed. The extent of the disaster impacted throughout Scotland because of the large numbers killed, and once again Scotland's government lay in the hands of regents.

When James V finally managed to escape from the clutches of the regents with the aid of his redoubtable mother in 1528, he once again set about subduing the rebellious Highlands, Western and Northern isles, as his father had had to do. His second marriage, to the French noblewoman Marie de Guise, brought him a daughter, Mary, only days before his death in 1542 shortly after the battle of Solway Moss. Once again Scotland was in the hands of a regent, James Hamilton, Earl of Arran.

Mary, Queen of Scots

Within two years, the Rough Wooing, Henry VIII's military attempt to force a marriage between Mary and his son, Edward, had begun. This took the form of border skirmishing and it was at this time that the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed was finally taken by the English. To avoid the "wooing", Mary was sent to France at the age of five, as the intended bride of the heir to the French throne. Her mother stayed in Scotland to look after the interests of Mary -- and of France - although the Earl of Arran acted officially as regent.

In 1547, after the death of Henry VIII, forces under the English regent Thomas Somerset were victorious at the battle of Pinkie Cleugh, the climax of the Rough Wooing and followed up by occupying Edinburgh. However it was to no avail since Queen Mary was in France and Marie de Guise called on French reinforcements who helped stiffen resistance to the English occupation. By 1550, after a change of regent in England, the English withdrew from Scotland completely.

From 1554, Marie took over the regency and continued to advance French interests in Scotland -- one result being the large influx of French vocabulary into Scots -- in the face of growing resistance, particularly from Protestants whose natural allies were the English. In 1560 she died and with her death the Auld Alliance also died at the Treaty of Edinburgh. Mary, now nineteen and recently widowed, returned to take up the government of Scotland in a hostile environment. She did not do well and after only seven turbulent years at the end of which Protestants had gained complete control of Scotland she was forced to abdicate and fled to England, leaving her young son, James VI, in the hands of regents.

Protestant Reformation

John Knox]] During the 16th century, Scotland was caught up in the throes of the Protestant Reformation. John Knox was the primary figure in this battle. A disciple of John Calvin, Knox's fierce battles with the forces of Catholic orthodoxy eventually converted the country to Presbyterianism, a spartan reformulation of Christianity. Only the most distant parts of the Highlands retained a taste for older forms. Presbyterianism first gained a foothold in 1556 but it didn't really get going until John Knox's firebrand oratory started stirring people up, most notably in Perth, when he roused the townsfolk so much that a mob scoured the countryside for Papists after one of his sermons, destroying the old abbey at Scone in the process. Within a few years Parliament had legislated for a National Presbyterian church, the Catholic Queen was gone, Scotland's main ally was Protestant England rather than Catholic France, and the infant King was being raised under the firm, guiding, and above all godly, hands of Presbyterian tutors.

In 1603, following the death of the childless Queen Elizabeth I, the crown of England was passed to the Stuart family, then the current rulers of Scotland. James VI of Scotland took the title James I of England, thus unifying the two countries under his personal rule. For the moment, this remained the sole connection between two independent nations, but it foreshadowed the eventual union of Scotland and England under the banner of the United Kingdom.

One of the primary differences between the two countries involved religion. While both had technically Protestant national Churches, they differred almost as much as two sects under that banner could. The Church of England broke with Catholicism primarily for political reasons. Thus they replaced very little traditional Catholic theology, except to substitute the Crown for the Pope as the head of the Church. The Scots on the other hand were primarily Presbyterian, a movement which was the result of a strong theological rejection of certain Catholic teachings. In particular they were sceptical of the authority of the Pope and priesthood generally, which they rejected in favour of the priesthood of all believers. This doctrine was seen by both sides as radically undermining the authority not just of the priestly class, but of the aristocracy since it was essentially democratic.

Inevitably this led to conflict with the Church of England as well as the British monarchs. While James challenged the status quo, he had sufficient wisdom not to force the issue when the Scots roundly ignored his efforts to promote the Church of England in Scotland. His son Charles I did not act with such restraint.

English Civil War

[[Oliver CromwellEnlarge

[[Oliver Cromwell

]] Shortly after his reign began, Charles attempted to impose Anglican-style church services on Scotland. Representatives of various sections of Scottish society drew up the National Covenant, asserting their right to worship in the Presbyterian manner. Charles declared war, but lost his nerve on the eve of his invasion, settling for more negotiations. When the Scottish notables continued to stymie his efforts he declared war again, as a result of which he was forced to summon the English Parliament to appeal for funds. This belligerent Long Parliament eventually provoked the English Civil War, and Charles then had more problems to deal with than Scottish obstinacy.

Perversely, towards the end of the Civil War, Scotland became the stronghold of support for the King. The Stuarts came of Scottish descent, after all, and Charles even promised the Presbyterian church a chance to spread into England in return for an alliance. After Charles' execution in 1648, his eldest son was proclaimed King Charles II in Edinburgh. Oliver Cromwell invaded in 1650 to assert the English Parliament's control, and defeated the Scottish army in a series of battles. Charles II fled to France.

From 1652 to 1658, Scotland formed an integral part of the puritan Commonwealth. Upon its collapse, nominal independence returned with the restoration of Charles II to the throne.

Charles largely ignored Scotland for the next two decades, concentrating on extending his power in England. He did, however, continue his father's policy of introducing Anglican worship into Scotland. This eventually provoked another rebellion in 1679. Charles largely contained the rebellion, but despite the subsequent "Killing Times" made little progress in stamping out Presbyterianism. When he died in 1685 and his Catholic brother, James II succeeded him, matters came to a head.

Glorious Revolution

When James attempted to introduce religious toleration to his kingdoms, Protestants widely perceived this as the first step towards the reimposition of Catholicism on England. William of Orange -- simultaneously the Dutch Stadtholder, the son-in-law of James, and a Protestant -- intervened in England. Facing sympathetic rebellions throughout England, James fled for France with barely a shot fired. While primarily an English event, this "Glorious Revolution" shaped Scottish history for the next several decades.

The Lowland Scots acquiesced in the new royal family, but the Highland Scots remained sympathetic to the Scottish-descended Stuarts. The Highlands rapidly developed into the primary hotbed of Jacobitism, and a series of attempts to restore the Stuarts to the throne soon followed.

Despite the Jacobite forces defeating William's forces at the Battle of Killiecrankie in 1689, the uprising did not achieve its objective owing to the death of its leader (and main driving force) at the battle. Future strife was hinted at, however, when King Louis XIV of France declared his support for the Stuart family. The English soon stamped out matching Jacobite rebellions in Ireland, then staved off an attempted French invasion, and peace descended on the British Isles for a few decades.

The late 17th century was difficult economically for the Scots. A number of remedies for the desperate situation were enacted by the Parliament of 1695. The Bank of Scotland was established. The Act for the Settling of Schools established a parish-based system of public education throughout Scotland. Given the late development and deplorable state of banking and public education in the rest of the world, this gave a substantial advantage to Scots for centuries to come. The Company of Scotland was chartered with capital to be raised by public subscription to trade with "Africa and the Indies."

Scottish overseas colonies

In attempts to expand the Scots had earlier sent settlers to the English colony of New Jersey and had established an abortive colony at Stuart's Town in what is now South Carolina. The Company of Scotland soon became involved with the Darién Scheme, an ambitious plan devised by William Paterson to establish a colony on the Isthmus of Panama in the hope of establishing trade with the Far East -- the principle that led to the construction of the Panama Canal much later. The Company of Scotland easily raised subscriptions in London for the scheme. But the English government opposed the idea: involved in the War of the Grand Alliance from 1689 to 1697 against France, it did not want to offend Spain, which claimed the territory as part of New Granada. The English investors had perforce to withdraw. Returning to Edinburgh, the Company raised 400,000 pounds in a few weeks. Three small fleets with a total of 3000 men eventually set out for Panama in 1698. The exercise proved a disaster. Poorly equipped; beset by incessant rain; under attack by the Spanish from nearby Cartagena; and refused aid by the English in the West Indies, the colonists abandoned their project in 1700. Only 1000 survived and only one ship managed to return to Scotland. A desperate ship from the colony which called at Port Royal treceived no assistance -- on the orders of the English government. Realising the dangers of the conflicting claims and aims of two independent kingdoms at odds with one another, William of Orange called for a union of the two countries. It did not happen. Union, when it did come in 1707, provided for free trade between the countries and gave the Scots access to the burgeoning British Empire. And they did very well indeed.

The Stuart Rebellions

<em>, [[Charles Edward Stuart" >
]] By
1700, the Protestant monarchy seemed in danger of coming to an end with the childless Stuart queen, Queen Anne. Since the direct heir to the throne espoused Catholicism, the English parliament passed the Act of Settlement, making the Protestant descendants of Sophia of Hanover next in the line of succession. In Scotland, however, the Scottish parliament passed the Act of Security, which allowed for a Stuart return so long as the heir converted to Protestantism. Rather than risk the possible return of the scion James III, then living in France, the English parliament opened negotiations for the formal amalgamation of the two countries. In 1707, the two parliaments merged and confirmed the succession of the Hanoverians. Scotland took 45 seats in the Parliament at Westminster, and the Scottish legal system and church remained intact, but for all intents and purposes, Scotland became subsumed in the Kingdom of Great Britain.

The Stuart royal family refused to acquiesce, however, and continued their attempts to regain the throne of the united Kingdom of Great Britain. An abortive uprising took place in 1708, then a more serious one occurred in 1715.

"The Fifteen", as the second revolt became known, involved planned simultaneous uprisings in the south-west of England and in Scotland, but the former failed to materialize. James III landed in Scotland and advanced on Newcastle, but f to take the city. England itself and much of Lowland Scotland remained staunchly behind the House of Hanover, and James eventually had to return to France.

In 1745, the son of James III, Charles Stuart (commonly known as "Bonnie Prince Charlie"), entered Great Britain via Scotland. Several Highland clans joined his cause, and his army took Edinburgh and fought its way south as far as Derby, England. The Jacobite army became over-extended, however, and retreated back to Scotland.

The Duke of Cumberland crushed "the Forty-Five" and the immediate hopes of the Jacobites in the Battle of Culloden (16 April 1746). Charles hid in Scotland with the aid of the Highlanders until September 1746, when he escaped back to France with the help of Flora Macdonald. France expelled him in accordance with the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle (1748), effectively ending any realistic chance of a Stuart restoration.

Industrial Revolution, Clearance, and Enlightenment

In the wake of the rebellion, British authorities were anxious to uproot Highland culture in an effort to prevent yet another rebellion. Numerous legislative attempts were made to stamp out or alter aspects of Scottish society, and were largely successful, though there is reason to believe that the first glimmerings of the Industrial Revolution and a modern money economy had much to do with the final breakdown.

At the same time, the Agricultural Revolution was beginning to change the face of southern Scotland and transforming the traditional system of subsistence farming into a stable and productive agricultural system which was to make Scotland the envy of Europe. This, however, had dramatic effects on the population, and precipitated a huge migration of Lowlanders which is now being recognised as the Lowland Clearances.

[[Adam SmithEnlarge

[[Adam Smith

, father of modern Economics]] In the years to follow, Scotland's fate became tied to that of the United Kingdom as a whole. Shortly after Culloden, the British fought in the Seven Years' War (1756 - 1763), at the end of which their star appeared in the ascendant. As a partner in the new Kingdom, Scotland began to flourish in ways that she never had as an independent nation. As the memory of the Jacobite rebellion faded away, the 1770s and 80s saw the repeal of most of the draconian laws passed earlier. Economically, Glasgow and Edinburgh began to grow at a tremendous rate. A flowering of culture and science helped this growth, spearheaded by names such as Adam Smith, David Hume and James Boswell in the former category, and by James Watt and James Hutton on the technological side.

Pre-eminient in this Scottish Enlightenment, however, stood Sir Walter Scott. Scots by birth and a prolific writer of historical novels, he more or less single-handedly set off a pan-European fad for all things Scottish in the first part of the 19th century. His unfortunately less-than-accurate portrayals of Scottish life in centuries past continue to have a disproportionate effect on the public perception of "authentic Scottish culture," even though his books no longer reach such a wide readership. George MacDonald also influenced British and American views of Scotland in the latter parts of the 19th century.

While Lowland Scotland charged ahead, the Highlands declined. Continuing a process that had been taking place all over Europe for the previous few centuries, landowners enclosed many of the small Highland farming communities and converted the areas to sheep pasture. The crofters sufferred dire consequences, as many faced forcible removal from their land (the so-called "Highland Clearances") and the population of the Scottish Highlands dropped precipitously. Significant numbers of Highlanders relocated to the Lowlands and to elsewhere in the British Empire, particularly Nova Scotia, the Eastern Townships of Quebec, and Upper Canada (later known as Ontario).

As the 19th century wore on, Lowland Scotland turned more and more towards heavy industry. Glasgow and the mouth of the River Clyde became a major ship-building centre, to the point that Glasgow was briefly one of the largest cities in the world and the second largest city in the British Empire after London.

20th Century Scotland

[[Charles Rennie MackintoshEnlarge

[[Charles Rennie Mackintosh

's Glasgow School of Art]] Tied as it was to the health of the British Empire, Scotland suffered after the First World War as it had gained beforehand. In the Highlands, which, for cultural reasons, had provided a disproportionate number of recruits for the British army, a whole generation of young men were lost, and many villages and communities suffered greatly. In the Lowlands, particularly Glasgow, the terrible working and living conditions for the industrial workers, many of whom did not agree with the motives of the war, led to industrial and political unrest. John MacLean became a key political figure in Red Clydeside and on Bloody Friday January 31st 1919, the British Government was so fearful of a revolutionary uprising in Glasgow that tanks and soldiers were stationed in George Square.

During the 1920s and 1930s, as ship-building and other industrial pursuits came to be more profitable outwith the British Isles, Glasgow and Clydebank slowly decayed and fell into economic depression.

Scotland's location on the north-western periphery of Europe did not mean the country had a small part in the Second World War. The shipyards and heavy engineering factories in Glasgow and Clydeside played a key role in the war effort, and soon became targets for the Luftwaffe. The town of Clydebank in particular suffered great destruction and loss of life during the blitz. The Highlands again provided a disproportionate number of troops for the war effort. Many thousands of Commandos and resistance fighters received training in the harsh conditions of the Lochaber mountains.

Scotland also had great strategic importance in the battle of the North Atlantic, as most trans-atlantic voyages involved negotiating the waters around the north-west of Scotland. As in World War I, Scapa Flow in Orkney became an important base for the Royal Navy. Shetland's relative proximity to Norway and its cultural links, resulted in the Shetland Bus - the name given to the fishing boats which helped many Norwegians flee the Nazis, and other expeditions to cross the North Sea to assist saboteurs. Perhaps the most unusual wartime event on Scotland's shores occurred in 1941 when Rudolf Hess flew to Scotland in an attempt to broker a peace deal via the Duke of Hamilton, whom he had met at the Berlin Olympics.



, the zenith of Clydeside shipbuilding]]

After World War II Scotland's economic situation became progressively worse until the 1970s, and only began to turn around after the discovery and development of North Sea oil and gas. During this period the Scottish National Party refocused their arguments for Scottish independence around their "It's Scotland's Oil" campaign.

As the Cold War intensified the Holy Loch became internationally famous when in 1961 the U.S depot ship USS Proteus brought Polaris ballistic missiles, submarines, and CND protesters to the Firth of Clyde. A Royal Navy nuclear submarine base at nearby Faslane on the Gare Loch followed, and is still there with Trident missiles, but in 1992 the U.S. base was withdrawn following the demise of the Soviet Union.

In 1997, the Labour government of the United Kingdom arranged for a referendum on the issue of devolution: the creation of national assemblies in each of the three nations of the UK besides England. All three, including Scotland, voted in the affirmative, reversing parts of the three-hundred year old Union of the Parliaments. The new Scottish Parliament stands next to Holyrood House in Edinburgh.

See also