Scottish

Scottish

Symposium scheduled to pinpoint location of Battle of Brunanburh

In 937, a deciding battle was fought which changed the course of British history forever. The Battle of Brunanburh, one of the UK's bloodiest, was fought between the Scots and the Saxons, establishing England's identity. Unfortunately, no one knows where the battle took place.

"Organic lump" holds rare Celtic brooch

In 1891, the British Museum acquired a lump of organic material found at a Viking burial site in Lilleberge, Norway. The material had metal pieces in it, but no one took the time to examine it further - until recently when Curator Barry Ager took a second look and ordered the material x-rayed. (photo)

Scottish hillfort speaks of post-Roman unrest

A team of archaeologists from Rampart Scotland has discovered evidence of a post-Roman hillfort at Sheriffside, 20 miles to the east of Edinburgh, Scotland. Experts believe that the fort, and its 2.80m deep ditch, were constructed to defend against frequent raids by Scots and Picts against local tribes.

Antonine Wall to benefit from Historic Scotland 5-year plan

Central Scotland's Antonine Wall has never enjoyed the reputation as a tourist destination that its southern cousin, Hadrian’s Wall, has had, but a new 5-year plan proposed by Historic Scotland may change that fact. The development plan provides a "framework" for conservation and promotion.

Clan Macneil aids in restoration of Kisimul Castle

Members of Clan Macneil have joined forces with Historic Scotland to raise UK£200,000 for the restoration of Kisimul Castle in Barra. The 15th century fortress was the stronghold of the clan in the Western Isles.

Scottish Thing identified

Experts working on excavations at Dingwall's Cromartie Memorial car park have confirmed that the site was the location of an 11th century Thing, or Norse parliament. The structure may have been built at the instruction of Thorfinn the Mighty.

Scotland's Tapestry Project

Needleworkers in Scotland have created a very cool tapestry project, the world's largest, according to the BBC.

Scottish battle anniversaries focus of tourism industry

September 9, 2013 marked the 500th anniversary of the Battle of Flodden (the English won), while 2014 will be the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn (the Scots took that one), two events destined to bring tourists flocking to Scotland and northern England. Sophie Campbell of The Telegraph has a feature story.

Ammunition tells of attack on Mingary Castle

Archaeologists excavating Mingary Castle in west Ardnamurchan, Scotland have recovered a musket ball and canonball in the moat of the castle, speaking of an attack sometime in its past. Mingary is considered to be "the best preserved 13th-century castle in Scotland."

Re-enactors "make history accessible and fun"

"Re-enactors are a strange breed, pretty eccentric but all with a passion for history, which I guess makes them my kind of people,” said archaeologist Dr Tony Pollard at the recent Celebration of the Centuries at Fort George, near Inverness, Scotland.

Medieval handbell re-created

Archaeologists know what early medieval handbells looked like from the "rusty shadows in the museum case" that still exist, but not what these bells sounded like. Now a team of experts from the National Museum of Scotland has re-created such a bell, "used by Scottish monks more than 1,000 years ago." (photo)

Archaeologists consider meaning of Mingary Castle arrowhead

Mingary Castle, overlooking the Sound of Mull in Scotland, may have had a more violent past than once believed, according to experts pondering the discovery of an iron arrowhead. (photo)

Archaeologists search for graves at Flodden

In September 1513, thousands of bodies were buried on or around the battlefield of Flodden in Northumberland, England. Now, 500 years later, excavation has taken place to locate and protect the remains and to declare the burials as war dead.

500th anniversary of the Battle of Flodden marked

14,000 individuals -- 10,000 Scots and 4,000 English -- lost their lives in the Battle of Flodden which took place in 1513 in Northumberland, England. Among them was King James IV of Scotland. This year re-enactors and others are marking the 500th anniversary of the history-changing battle. (photo)

Modelling Mary

The team who created the 3D face of Richard III, have now been comissioned to produce a virtual face of Mary, Queen of Scots as she would have looked in her 20s. The image is part of the new exhibition at the Scottish National Museum in Edinburgh. (photo)

Drum Castle's "chamber of secrets"

For centuries, a secret medieval chamber, complete with its own guarderobe, lay hidden behind the walls of Drum Castle near Banchory, Scotland, but now all has been revealed. The room appears to have been covered during later renovations. Drum, home of Clan Irvine, is Scotland's oldest castle.

Renaissance satire takes on Scottish independence

The Satire of the Three Estates by Sir David Lyndsay is considered Scotland's only surviving Renaissance play. Now the six-hour-long political satire is being performed at Linlithgow Palace in West Lothian. (video)

Winter storms may point experts to 13th century Cromarty

The 2012 winter storm surge has been a boon for archaeologists working near Cromarty in the Scottish Highlands. The storms washed away part of the shore, revealing what may be part of the 13th century town.

The faces of Mary, Queen of Scots

In conjunction with a new exhibition at the National Museum of Scotland, the BBC has created a website which offers a gallery of portraits and artifacts relating to Mary, Queen of Scots, including portraits, her tomb, and the document demanding her death.

Fort search hopes to change perception of Romans in Scotland

"People are always surprised when I tell them about the Roman occupation of the area - they think the Romans never got any further than the Antonine Wall or even Hadrian's Wall which simply isn't true," said Dr Birgitta Hoffmann who leads an effort to discover a "lost" Roman fort in Scotland.

"Dear Edward, Leave the Scots alone!"

A copy of a previously unknown letter from Robert the Bruce to King Edward II has been discovered at the British Library. The letter, written in 1310 during the build-up to the Battle of Bannockburn, requests that Edward recognise Scottish independence and end persecution of its people. (video)

Archaeologists seek lost Pictish kingdom

A team of archaeologists from Aberdeen are looking for a lost kingdom -- not in some exotic country, but in their own backyard. The experts are seeking Fortriu, "one of the most powerful Kingdoms of the 'painted people,'” now believed to have been located in the Moray Firth area.

Spooky Rait Castle still mystifies

Rait Castle, on an island in a loch near Naim, Scotland, is haunted, or so say some of its admirers, by the ghost of a handless girl, killed by her father for loving a son of the enemy.

Archaeologists search for the body of James IV at Flodden

On 19 September 1513, Scottish King James IV was killed at the Battle of Flodden in Northumberland, England, along with 10,000 other Scots. Now archaeologists are scouring the battlefield, hoping to find the remains of the king. The project marks the 500th anniversary of the battle.

Perthshire community pitches in to excavate Pictish longhouse

Residents of Perthshire, Scotland will have a unique opportunity in June 2013 to re-discover their own heritage when archaeologists will undertake the excavation of a Pictish longhouse. In addition to the chance to help in the dig, the project will include workshops, guided walks, presentations, and demonstrations.

Scottish "wall" built fifty years before Hadrian's

BBC History Magazine reports that archaeologists have identified a first century Roman defense system that extended 120 miles across Scotland. The series of forts, watchtowers and defensive ditches predates Hadrian's Wall by 50 years, and the Antonine Wall by 20. (photos and map)

Experts use mathematics to study Pictish language

A new study, presented to the Royal Society A, by Rob Lee, Philip Jonathan and Pauline Ziman describes the Pictish inscriptions found on stones in Scotland as a language apart from Celtic Ogham. The characters on the stones are considered to "part of a lexigraphic writing, containing symbols that represent parts of speech.

Scots mercenary tradition

Since the Middle Ages, Scottish men have been involved in military pursuits, often on foreign soil. Fierce fighters, especially from the western islands, were particularly prized by the armies of Denmark, the Netherlands, Spain and France. Steven McKenzie of the BBC looks at their history.

A tour of the Border Abbeys

Planning a trip to Scotland? You may want to visit the four Border Abbeys, Melrose, Jedburgh, Dryburgh and Kelso, founded by King David I of Scotland in the 12th Century. A recent BBC article looks at the history of the religious sites in a troubled area. (photos)

Heraldic badge found at Scottish battlefield

A heraldic badge showing the Scottish crown has been found at the site of the Battle of Flodden. The badge may have been worn by someone closely affiliated with King James IV.