Scotland: History and Modernity


Farmers and monument builders. The foundation of St. Andrew`s University. Mary the Queen of Scots. Political and cultural life after merger of Scotland and England. The Jacobite Rebellions. The main characteristics of Scotland in the modern era.

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Учреждение образования

«Гомельский государственный университет

имени Франциска Скорины»

Факультет иностранных языков

Кафедра теории и практики английского языка

Scotland: History and Modernity

Курсовая работа


студент группы А-24 В.С. Атрошкина

Научный руководитель

преподаватель О. И. Шеремет

Гомель 2012


Курсовая работа 39 страниц, 26 источников

Key words: hunter-gatherers, farmers and monument builders, the Picts, the Scots, the Angles, the Wars of Independence, the foundation of St. Andrew`s University, Mary the Queen of Scots, the Scottish reformation, John Knox, James VI, the Union of the Crowns, the Jacobite Rebellions, modern literature, Scottish tourism

The object of work: to study the history of Scotland, its political, religious and cultural aspects, to retrace the historical change of Scotland

Methods of research: study of special literature including books, magazines, articles. Comparison of the material from different sources. Use of some official Scottish web-sites

Findings: increased general knowledge of Scottish culture and history

Field of application: this work contains brief, but versatile information about Scottish history and culture since AD until present. It can be used to introduce Scotland to tourists and people who want to find out more about this land. This work also includes historical facts and analysis of statistics



1. Scotland`s first settlers

1.1 Prehistoric Scotland

1.1.1 Before modern humans

1.1.2 Hunter-gatherers

1.1.3 Farmers and monument builders

1.1.4 Skara Brae: c.2500 BC

1.2 Scotland to the 11th century AD

1.2.1 Pre-Roman Scotland to the 1st century AD

1.2.2 The Picts

1.2.3 The Scots

1.2.4 The Angles

1.2.5 The Vikings and the British Isles: 9th - 10th century AD

1.2.6 The MacAlpin dynasty: AD 843-1057

1.2.7 Duncan and Macbeth: AD 1034-1057

2. The kingdom of Scotland in the 11th - 16th century

2.1 The Wars of Independence

2.2 The foundation of St. Andrew`s University

2.3 Mary the Queen of Scots

3. Scotland`s nation

3.1 John Knox - the leader of the Scottish reformation8

3.2 James VI and The Union of the Crowns (1603)0

4. Political and cultural life after merger of Scotland and England. The Jacobite Rebellions

5. Modern life of Scotland

5.1 The main characteristics of Scotland in the modern era

5.2 The modern literature

5.3 Tourism in Scotland

5.3.1 The main features

5.3.2 Tourist destinations in Scotland




Scotland has always been a land with its own identity, unique culture and rich history. Since the first settlers it has been shaped by many nations, political and cultural events and now it is an incredible and vibrant land, which we are going to introduce. In the first chapter we want to tell about Scotland`s first settlers (Prehistoric Scotland, Scotland before modern humans, hunter-gatherers, farmers and monument builders, one of the first settlements - Skara Brae and so on). The first settlers occupied Scottish territories and founded settlements in spite of scarce soil, extreme weather conditions and heavy-going mountains. During the neolithic period Scotland shares with the Atlantic coast of Europe the tradition of massive stone architecture, of which Skara Brae is a rare domestic example, village about 2500 BC. There is no wood on the island, so the walls of the one-room dwellings are made of stone and the built-in furniture too. There are stone beds and shelves and recessed cupboards, with a hearth in each hut. Nevertheless Scottish territories were available for fishing and farming, because of mild winter. Comfortable geographical location such as lowlands - sheltered from Northern winds by mountains. It has become an important trading route later. Impact of Nordic invasion - it had a direct impact on Scottish lifestyle, settlement organization, local people developed fortification system, armory etc. That way Scottish vernacular settlements embraced Nordic traditions and applied them to the local lifestyle. Many factors such as impact of religion, cultural and social transformations lead to the emerging united nation and a new kingdom foundation. As outcome religious transformations, development of trading, cultural and social development took place and become a trigger for a kingdom future development.

In the second chapter we want to introduce you to The kingdom of Scotland 11th - 16th century (the Wars of Independence, the foundation of St. Andrew`s University and Mary the Queen of Scots). Such events as transformations within the Kingdom, interaction with the neighbouring nations and lands, the wars for independence can be considered as a logical process for a developing kingdom. Whilst participating in wars nation required strong, well-educated leaders and this is one of the primary reasons for foundation of the first universities. The oldest and most famous university of Scotland is St. Andrews, it was founded in 1410 when a charter of incorporation was bestowed upon the Augustinian priory of St Andrews Cathedral. One of the greatest person in these centuries was Mary the Queen of Scots. In 1562 - 1563 she officially admitted the Reformed faith as the state religion of Scotland though a relationship with Rome was not broken. The Queen was continuing the correspondence with the Holy Father and the Roman Catholic mass was being sung at court. Finally the beginning of the rule of Mary the Queen of Scots was distinguished as the relative political stability. It was a very important time when the stable rule of the kingdom was formed. Alongside with cultural development and social transformations it had a direct impact on religion.

The third chapter contains information about Scotland`s nation (John Knox - the leader of the Scottish reformation, James VI and The Union of the Crowns). The Scottish Reformation was Scotland's formal break with the Papacy in 1560, and the events surrounding this. It was part of the wider European Protestant Reformation; and in Scotland's case culminated ecclesiastically in the re-establishment of the church along Reformed lines, and politically in the triumph of English influence over that of the Kingdom of France. The Reformation Parliament of 1560, which repudiated the pope's authority, forbade the celebration of the Mass and approved a Protestant Confession of Faith, was made possible by a revolution against French hegemony. The Scottish Reformation decisively shaped the Church of Scotland and, through it, all other Presbyterian churches worldwide. John Knox is regarded as the leader of the Scottish reformation. The Union of the Crowns (March 1603) was the accession of James VI, King of Scots, to the throne of England, and the consequential unification of Scotland and England under one monarch. The Union of the Crowns followed the death of James' unmarried and childless first cousin twice removed, Queen Elizabeth I of England--the last monarch of the Tudor dynasty. In the end the union of Scotland and England was to be successful but it was never a marriage of equals. James promised that he would return to his ancient kingdom every three years. In the end he came back only once -- in 1617 -- and even then his English councillors pleaded with him to remain in London. Scotland, up to the full parliamentary Union of 1707, may have retained its institutional independence, but it lost control of vital areas of policy, most notably foreign relations, which remained the prerogative of the crown. This meant, in practice, that policy matters were inevitably tied to English rather than Scottish interests.

In the fourth chapter we want to consider political and cultural life after merger of Scotland and England. This period in history can be described as “Scotland being British”. The cultural differences, historical background, religious controversies - these are conditions which made this union between Scotland and England quite specific and complicated. Although Englang became powerful - colonies, strong economy, cultural revival - it affected Scotland in many ways. Cultural, social, economical interactions had a positive impact for the people of Britain.

The fifth chapter describes the modern life of Scotland, its literature and development of tourism. In the early modern era royal...