Scotland, all periods, Bibliography

copyright 1997 by Historical Novelists Center

This isn't just for red coats and phillebegs. If anything, we tend to slight the post-Union Scots in the favour of Medieval Scots, even Picts. Look for continuing volumes in the Historic Scotland series from Batsford.

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Photographic Memories of Scotland; A Gallery of Change ****
Select Editions
Victorian photographs of rural and urban Scotland give you a black and white time machine. T3

Bannerman, J.

Studies in the History of Dalriada
Edinburgh, 1974

Barron, Evan Macleod

The Scottish War of Independence ***
1914; now from Barnes & Noble; 499 pgs
A good detailed look at the events and major figures in detail from 1285 to 1328, that has been worth keeping in print all this time. T2

Barrow, G. W. S.

The Kingdom of the Scots
London, 1973

Baxter, Colin

Scotland: The Light & the Land ****
David & Charles, 93 pg
Solid landscape photos for those who can't make the trip or want to be reminded, or didn't see that area under this sort of weather. T2

Bevan, Brian

King James VI of Scotland & I of England ****
Rubicon, London
Detail biography of the first Stuart king of England, and those who affected his regime. T2

Boucher, Francois

Twenty Thousand Years of Fashion; the History of Costume and Personal Adornment ****
Harry N. Abrams, 1966; 440 pg, index, glossary
Very strong on the emergence of the clan tartan, and its appearance in doublets, hose, etc. not just the red-leg Scot's great kilt. T1

Brander, Michael

The Scottish Highlanders and Their Regiments ****
Barnes & Noble, NY
Plenty of basic material on the Highland Regiments. T2

Breeze, David J.

Roman Scotland ***
B. T. Batsford Ltd/Historic Scotland, bibliography
The Romans never really held Scotland proper to speak of, having to hold at the line of fortifications known as the Antonine Wall. This archeaologically based book will tell you as much about the Romans and the northern Britains as about the British and Pictish tribes they fought. T2

Cummins, W. A.

The Age of the Picts ****
Alan Sutton
Recent look at the Picts, in relation to the Romans and the Scots (the folks from Scotia, that is, Ireland). T1

Donaldson, Gordon

Scottish Kings ***
Barnes & Noble
Solid history, badly mistitled as it is only the Stewart monarchs from 1371 who are covered. T1

Donaldson, Gordon, and Robert S. Morpeth

Who's Who in Scottish History ****
Welsh Academic; bibliography, idex
Bravo for the authors! They resisted the urge to alphabetize and instead put over 200 entries in chronological order. If you have to find a name with no temporal clue, what's an index for?

Douglas, Hugh

Flora MacDonald: The Most Loyal Rebel ***
Alan Sutton; 256 pgs
Detail biography of the the woman best remembered for helping "Bonnie Prince Charlie" escape after the defeat at Culloden, only one incident in a fascinating life. T2

Foster, Sally M.

Picts, Gaels and Scots ****
B. T. Batsford, Ltd./Historic Scotland series, 1997; 128 pgs
Basically covering the 400's to 900's, and the development of the Pictish kingdom and the Gaellic kingdom of Dal Riada into the Scottish culture. Excellent use of archeological sources. T2

Fry, Peter & Fiona Somerset

The History of Scotland ***
Barnes & Noble
Heavily Scottish Independence, the Northern viewpoint of this work is therefore an excellent corrective to the usual history, where Scotland only matters when it goes to war with England. T2

Gray, D. J.

William Wallace: The King's Enemy ****
Barnes & Noble
Good basic biography for almost anyone. T2

Ingraham, Holly

People's Names: A Cross-cultural Reference Guide to the Proper Use of Over 40,000 Personal and Familial Names in Over 100 Cultures *****!
McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers, Jefferson, NC; 1997; 613 pgs, index, select annotated bibliography
The Scottish chapter has the highland clans and sub-families organized rather than scattered alphabetically, so you can give allies appropriate names. In the historical section, ancient Irish names will do for the early Dal Riadans. T1

Kaplan, W., ed.

Scottish Art & Design: 5,000 Years ***
B&W and color illos of Scottish art from the prehistoric to the modern. T3

Keay, John, & Julia Keay

Collins Encyclopaedia of Scotland ***
Like most encyclopedias, the subject suffers from being dismembered and scattered alphabetically. Good for a cruise, or to locate a recurring place or event on which you can otherwise not get a handle. T1

Laing, Lloyd & Jennifer

The Picts and the Scots ****
Alan Sutton; 172 pgs
Uses archeological as well as historic evidence to show both the autochthonous Pictish culture back into the earliest (Roman) period, and the invasive Scots from Scotia (modern Ireland), and how they eventually melded. T1

MacDonald, Michael

The Clans of Scotland ***
Lots of atmospheric photos illustrate a text on the history and battles of the clans, repleat with tartan and badge information. T2

Mackay, James

William Wallace: Brave Heart ****
A fine recent biography of one of the great Scots. T2

McNair, Ronald

Robert the Bruce: King of Scots ****
Excellent recent reconstruction of the life and deeds of the man who saved Scotland from an early medieval union with England. T2

McNamee, Colin

The Wars of the Bruces: Scotland, England & Ireland, 1306-1328 ****
New outlook on the period of Scottish expansionism, with investigations of the near success of the Bruces in uniting Ireland under one of them, and such ignored aspects of the war as the effect of commerce-raiding (piracy of Germans and Flemings, encouraged by the Scots) on the British. T2

Milligan, Jean C.

Introducing Scottish Country Dancing ****
Collins, 1968; 96 pg, index, illos by Irene B. Stewart
Contra-dancing, very popular in the late Renaissance, and related to the minuet, its stuffy cousin, continued in use through the arrival of the waltz in England in 1814. Corrupted into "country dancing" as it moved out of fashionable circles, it survived in Scotland. The reels and such you may recognize from Colonial American practice, and as the ancestors of square dancing. Be sure and date the tunes before you mention them -- otherwise you can describe the patterns without naming the music. T3

also in the series

99 More Scottish Country Dances ***

101 Scottish Country Dances ***

Murray, W. H.

Rob Roy MacGregor, His Life and Times ****
Barnes & Noble, NY
This is the historical rather than romantic Rob Roy, with all his failures and victories. T2

O'Cuiv, B., editor

The Impact of the Scandinavian Invasions on the Celtic-Speaking Peoples, c. 800-1000 AD <sic>
Dublin, 1962

Osprey Military Books

The worst book out by Osprey still gets three stars. The best are five stars and a bang. These are each a dense, military monograph on weapons, tactics, strategy, and history, with some little cultural background. Rarely at libraries, you will usually find these where military miniatures are sold. T2

Purser, John

Scotland's Music ****
Nice to see something in music covered besides bagpipes! T2

Ritchie, Anna

Viking Scotland ****
B. T. Batsford Ltd/Historic Scotland, 1993; 143 pg, index, glossary, bibliography
A lot of Scotland was held by the Norse. The Western Isles spoke Norn, a Norse dialect, until the 18th century. many "Scottish" words like bairn or spae-wife or snae for snow are directly from Norse. A strongly pictorial book, it has a great deal to show about the Norse free farm family throughout the Viking world. T2

Sadler, John

Scottish Battles: From Mons Graupius to Culloden ***
Heavy on the military science: detailed battle plans, discussions of tactics, etc. T3

Salmonson, Jessica Amanda

The Encyclopedia of Amazons: Women Warriors from Antiquity to the Modern Era *****!
Paragon House, NY, 1991; 290 pg, no index, bibliography
Scottish women have taken up arms since Pictish times. Many were noted down the centuries for defending their castles, raising and leading troops, or fighting as common soldiers. T2

Scott, Paul H., ed.

Scotland: A Concise Cultural History ****
Covers the achievements of Scots in almost every field of endeavour. T1

Scot, Ronald McNair

Robert the Bruce: King of Scots

Sims, Clifford Stanley

The Origins and Signification of Scottish Surnames, with a Vocabulary of Christian Names ****
Genealogical Publishing Company, Baltimore, MD, 1968
Lists all the Highland families, grouped into clans, but not the Lowlanders, who for some reason consider themselves Scots, too. Valuable for the inclusion of personal names with their history of use. T2

Speck, W. A.

The Butcher: The Duke of Cumberland and the Suppression of the 45 ****
Welsh Academic Press
Despite the title, gives an excellent view of why the Hanoverians repression took the form it did. T3

Steel, David & Judy

Mary Stuart's Scotland ****
An excellent modern tour of the places Mary would have to be set: Linlithgow Palace, Edinburgh's Renaissance surviving buildings, Stirling Castle, the English Borderlands, etc. The text gives her activities there as well as background on the place. Excellent photos. T3

Tranter, Nigel

Tales and Traditions of Scottish Castles ***
Barnes & Noble, NY
May give you just the odd bit you've been needing to build a story. T1

Warner, Philip

Famous Scottish Battles
Barnes & Noble
Covers from Stirling Bridge in 1297 to Culloden in 1746. T1

Way, G.

Collins Scottish Clan and Family Encyclopedia ****
Way & Squire; 512 pg
This history of over 300 clans and families was written in conjunction with the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs. Gives tartans, crests, badges, etc., too.

Yeoman, Peter

Medieval Scotland *****!
B. T. Batsford Ltd/Historic Scotland, bibliography
Not just another history of border squabbles! Lots on the life of commoners in the countryside, the importance of religious communities, life in the burghs. Relys greatly on archeaology. T2


Of course, you have to have some pipes! But don't forget fiddles and singers, too.

All the Best from Scotland

Includes pibroch, "Scotland the Brave," "Highland Laddie" and other classics.

The Scottish Fiddle Orchestra

The Northern Lights ****
VHS; 65 min.
All right, it's got video portions, too, but you watch this to hear the music. T2


The Battle of Bannockburn ***

VHS; 55 min.
Documentary good for the basic images and events. T1

Culloden Moor ****

VHS; 55 min.
Battle re-enactments, as well as a tour of the battlefield as it stands today. T1

Rob Roy: The True Story ***

VHS; 55 min.
Documentary which also borrows some footage from "Chasing the Deer" T2

Scotland Forever ***

VHS; 55 min
The evolution of the Scottish soldier is traced from Bannockburn to Flanders Field, with a little material to bring it up to date. Plenty of re-enactment. T1

Three Faces of Scotland ****

VHS; 3 tapes, 60 min. each
Excellent scenery and city tours, with historical basics in narration. T1-2

William Wallace: The True Story ****

VHS; 55 min
Re-enactment battles add valuable insights to this documentary. T2

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Ancient World Web *****!

Superb linksite, which it would be silly to try and duplicate here. Check here for Picts and other Celts.


H-GIG Historical Times & Places ***

A thorough-going linksite maintained by the University of California at Riverside, H-GIG sorts by area, by era (ancient, Medieval, early Modern, Modern, and 20th C), or by topic (military, women, etc.). It's a good place to start a hunt for books and essays online.

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