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Birlinn

Birlinn Limited
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Scottish and general UK interest books, from biography to history, military history, and Scottish Gaelic. The name comes from the old Norse word ‘birlinn’, meaning a long boat or small galley used especially in the Hebrides and West Highlands of Scotland in the Middle Ages.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn12 днів тому
    The acclaimed Scottish historian offers a provocative reassessment of one of British royalty’s most famous figures in this authoritative biography.Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots, has long been portrayed as one of history’s romantically tragic figures. Devious, naive, beautiful and sexually voracious, often highly principled, she secured the Scottish throne and bolstered the position of the Catholic Church in Scotland. Her plotting, including probable involvement in the murder of her husband Lord Darnley, led to her flight from Scotland and imprisonment by her equally ambitious cousin and fellow queen, Elizabeth of England. Yet when Elizabeth ordered Mary’s execution in 1587 it was an act of exasperated frustration rather than political wrath.Unlike previous biographies of Mary, this masterly study eschews her romantic persona in order to shine a light on her role as a renaissance monarch. A leading historian of the period, Jenny Wormald traces the roots of Mary’s downfall to her way of dealing, or failing to deal, with the problems facing her as a ruler. She was tragic because she was born to supreme power yet wholly incapable of coping with its responsibilities.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn12 днів тому
    A medieval historian “cut[s] through centuries of confusion and complexity” to uncover the mystery behind the legendary wizard in King Arthur’s court (Undiscovered Scotland).Who was Merlin? Is the famous wizard of Arthurian legend based on a real person? In this book, Merlin’s origins are traced back to the story of Lailoken, a mysterious “wild man” who is said to have lived in the Scottish Lowlands in the sixth century AD. The book considers the question of whether Lailoken belongs to myth or reality. It looks at the historical background of his story and discusses key characters such as Saint Kentigern of Glasgow and King Rhydderch of Dumbarton, as well as important events such as the Battle of Arfderydd.Lailoken’s reappearance in medieval Welsh literature as the fabled prophet Myrddin is also examined. Myrddin himself was eventually transformed into Merlin the wizard, King Arthur’s friend and mentor. This is the Merlin we recognize today, not only in art and literature but also on screen. His earlier forms are less familiar, more remote, but can still be found among the lore and legend of the Dark Ages. Behind them we catch fleeting glimpses of an original figure who perhaps really did exist: a solitary fugitive, tormented by his experience of war, who roamed the hills and forests of southern Scotland long ago.“Merlin haunts the landscape like a shade, and we’ll never catch him. But, thanks to Tim Clarkson, we can enjoy the search.” —The Hazel Tree“Tim Clarkson should be congratulated on producing a book which marries together painstaking and detailed research with common-sense and open-minded analysis . . . deeply impressive.” —Undiscovered Scotland
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn12 днів тому
    John Bannerman (1932–2008) saw the history of Scotland from a Gaelic perspective, and his outstanding scholarship made that perspective impossible to ignore. As a historian, his natural home was the era between the Romans and the twelfth century when the Scottish kingdom first began to take shape, but he also wrote extensively on the MacDonald Lordship of the Isles in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, while his work on the Beatons, the notable Gaelic medical kindred, reached into the early eighteenth century. Across this long millennium, Bannerman ranged and wrote with authority and insight on what he termed the 'kin-based society', with special emphasis upon its church and culture, and its relationship with Ireland. This collection opens with Bannerman's ground-breaking and hugely influential edition and discussion of Senchus fer Alban (The History of the Men of Scotland), which featured in his Studies in the History of Dalriada (1974), now long out of print. To this have been added all of his published essays, plus an essay-length study of the Lordship of the Isles which first featured as an appendix in Late Medieval Monumental Sculpture in the West Highlands (1977). The book will be of interest to anyone who wants to know more about the Gaelic dimension to Scotland's past and present.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn12 днів тому
    Highly regarded in India and Persia to this day, Sir John Malcolm is remarkably little known in his native Scotland. This book describes his extraordinary journey from modest origins to become a leading player in the transformation of the East India Company from a largely commercial enterprise into an agent of imperial government, during a crucial period of British and Indian political history.
    Born in 1769, Malcolm was one of seventeen children of a tenant farmer in the Scottish Borders. Leaving school, family and country at thirteen, he achieved distinction in India over the next half-century. A quintessential all-rounder, he excelled in many fields: as a professional soldier he campaigned with Wellington in south India and rose to Major-General; as an administrator, he pacified Central India and later became Governor of Bombay. He led three Company missions to Persia in the early stages of diplomatic rivalry between Britain and Russia, the Great Game. He was fluent in several languages, and wrote nine influential books, including The History of Persia.
    Based on extensive research in Britain, India and Iran, this biography brings to life the story of a talented and ambitious man living in a dramatic era of imperial history.
  • John Malcolm
    Malcolm
    • 1
    en
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  • Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn12 днів тому
    A biography that delves into the life and influence of the medieval Gaelic monk and missionary known as one of the Twelve Apostles of Ireland.Who was Saint Columba? How did this Irish aristocrat become the most important figure in early Scottish Christianity? In seeking answers to these questions, this book examines the different roles played by the saint in life and death, tracing his career in Ireland and Scotland before looking at the development of his cult in later times. Here we encounter not only Columba the abbot and missionary but also Columba the politician and peacemaker. We see him at the center of a major controversy which led to his excommunication by an Irish synod. We follow him then to Scotland, to Iona, where he founded his principal monastery. It was from this small Hebridean isle that he undertook missionary work among the Picts and had dealings with powerful warrior-kings. It was from Iona, too, that his cult was vigorously promoted after his death in 597, most famously by Abbot Adomnan, whose writings provide our main source of information on Columba’s career. The final chapters of the book look at the evolution of the cult of Columba from the seventh century onwards, examining the important roles played by famous figures such as Cináed mac Ailpin, and ending with a study of the image of the saint in modern Scotland.Praise for the works of Tim Clarkson“Tim Clarkson should be congratulated on producing a book which marries together painstaking and detailed research with common-sense and open-minded analysis. . . . The book that emerges succeeds in cutting through centuries of confusion and complexity in a way that is deeply impressive.” —Undiscovered Scotland on Scotland’s Merlin“Very interesting and very readable.” —Facts and Fiction on The Picts: A History“A valuable resource.” —Scottish Genealogist on The Picts: A History
  • Tim Clarkson
    Columba
    • 1
    en
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  • Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn12 днів тому
    A history of Scotland’s relationship with France during the Age of Englightenment.Scotland has played an immense role in European high culture through the centuries, and among its cultural links, none have been greater than those with France. This book shows that the connections with France stretch back deep into the Middle Ages, and continue without a break into the eighteenth century, the Age of Enlightenment. In one way or another all the major figures of the Scottish Enlightenment were in close relation to France. Though this book attends to the broad picture of the cultural links binding the two countries, the focus is on certain individuals, especially David Hume, Thomas Reid, Adam Smith, and Adam Ferguson, and certain of their French counterparts such as Montesquieu, Madame de Condorcet, Victor Cousin, and Theodore Jouffroy. Prominent among the areas under discussion are skepticism and common sense, morality and the role of sympathy, and civil society and the question of what constitutes good citizenship. The book should appeal to all with an interest in the broad sweep of Scottish cultural history and more particularly in the country’s Age of Enlightenment and its links with France.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn12 днів тому
    An account of the triumphs and tragedies, personal and political, of the controversial thirteenth-century Scottish king from the medieval historian and author.In equal measure state-builder, political unifier, ruthless opportunist, and bloody-handed aggressor, Alexander II has been praised or vilified by past historians but has rarely been viewed in the round. This book explores the king’s successes and failures, presenting a fresh assessment of his contribution to the making of Scotland as a nation. It lifts the focus from an introspective national history to look at the man and his kingdom in wider British and European history, examining his international relationships and offering the first detailed analysis of the efforts to work out a lasting diplomatic solution to Anglo-Scottish conflict over his inherited claims to the northern counties of England. More than just a political narrative, the book also seeks to illuminate aspects of the king’s character and his relationships with those around him, especially his mother, his first wife, Joan Plantagenet, and the great magnates, clerics, and officials who served in his household and administration.The book illustrates the processes by which the mosaic of petty principalities and rival power bases that covered the map of late twelfth-century Scotland had become by the mid-thirteenth century a unified state, hybrid in culture(s) and multilingual but acknowledging a common identity as Scots.
  • Richard Oram
    Alexander II
    • 1
    • 1
    en
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  • Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn3 місяці тому
    Stories learned while growing up on an old blue bus wandering through Scotland, for readers of all ages who love travel and adventure.I have been a gatherer of tales for most of my life, and I suppose it all began when I was a wee girl. I shared a home with parents, seven sisters and a shaggy dog. It could be said that I lived a different sort of life from most other children, because “home” was an old blue bus. We were known as tinkers or travellers, descendants of those who have wandered the highways and byways of Scotland for two thousand years . . .In this book, the author of the autobiographical trilogy Jessie’s Journey is on a mission to pass on the stories she heard as a girl to the young readers of today. With these ancient oral tales of Scotland’s travelling people, she invites readers to come with her on the road, back to those days when it was time to pack up and get going, and to take the way of her ancestors. Reading this book is like being by the campfire listening to the magical Scottish stories that have been handed down through generations.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn4 місяці тому
    A powerful and mesmerizing novel, both mythic and intimate . . . a great accomplishment of imagination, insight and lyricism' — Amy Tan 'Lavishly imagined and skilfully narrated' — The Independent Under Fishbone Clouds is a love story and family saga interwoven with traditional folktales and stories from ancient Chinese history. Set against the backdrop of dramatic events of recent Chinese political history, we follow the lives of Jinyi and his wife Yuying.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn4 місяці тому
    From the author of the And All That Series, a collection of stories of Scotland during World War I.Acclaimed children’s author Allan Burnett turns his attention to the First World War in a book of explosively exciting and emotionally charged tales of bravery and adventure. Featuring the true exploits of soldiers, spies, pilots, sailors and many others, these stories, all based on interviews with these heroes themselves or their descendants, offer a unique, personal insight into the First World War that no conventional history book can ever hope to match.DESC>juvenile nonfiction;world war i history;the great war;wwi;ww1;military history;scottish history;scottish military history;scottish world war i history;european history;british history;united kingdom history;historical biography;world war i biography;people & places;scottish people;scottish life during world war i;scotland during world war i;life during war;life during wartime;world war i soldiers;world war i spies;world war i pilots;world war i sailorsJUVENILE NONFICTION / History / Military & WarsJUVENILE NONFICTION / History / EuropeJUVENILE NONFICTION / Biography & Autobiography / HistoricalJUVENILE NONFICTION / People & Places / Europe9780857901736Allan Guthrie
  • Allan Burnett
    World War I
    • 2
    • 1
    en
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  • Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn4 місяці тому
    'Human relationships, especially as seen from a woman's point of view, are central: attraction, pain, acceptance, loss, triumphs and deceptions, habits and surprises; always made immediate through a storyteller's concrete detail of place or voice or object or colour remembered or imagined' — Edwin Morgan 'Dreaming Frankenstein is a rare thing: a book of poems which sparkles' — The Scotsman '. . . one of the few poets writing today capable of encompassing the matter of contemporary life in terms that are both attractive and thought-provoking' — Books in Scotland Liz Lochhead has built an impressive reputation as poet, playwright and performer, attracting a large and admiring public. Dreaming Frankenstein and Collected Poems stands as a monument to her early work. Four collections — Memo for Spring (1972), Islands (1978) and Grimm Sisters (1981) and the title volume together provide a complete record of her poetry from 1967 to 1984. In Dreaming Frankenstein human relationships, especially as seen from a woman's point of view, are central. Attraction, pain, acceptance, loss, triumphs and deceptions are all made immediate through her imagery and acute powers of observation and through her flair as a storyteller.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn6 місяців тому
    Few cities can rival Glasgow for their contribution to the history of British humour. From the gladiatorial atmosphere of the old Empire Theatre, dubbed the 'graveyard of English comics', to the front-page controversies of Frankie Boyle today, the city and its citizens have trademarked their own two-fisted brand of confrontational, but always hilarious, comedy. In this, the first dedicated overview, Allan Brown gives a historical,kaleidoscopic and encyclopedic account of the people, places, performers and procedures that have made Glasgow a by-word for a certain kind of rough, tough quick-wittedness. Every facet of Glaswegian life is considered, viewed through the prism of the city's sense of humour; from the showbiz renown of Billy Connolly and Chic Murray, Kevin Bridges and Boyle, to the occasions the lighter side was seen in Glasgow's history of television, film, literature, football,law, science, academe, crime and art. Through profiles, criticism, tales and anecdotes, The Glasgow Smile — fittingly also the term for infamousGlasgow gang punishment — is a treasury of the city's past and present, and of its own very particular approach to the absurd.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn6 місяців тому
    Why did the young Protestant monarch William of Orange fail to make his mark on Scotland? How did a particularly hard-line 'Protester' branch of Presbyterianism (the last off-shoot of the Convenanting movement) become the established Church in Scotland? And how did it come about that Scotland suffered a kind of 'cultural revolution' after the Williamite revolution, nipping in the bud the proto-Enlightenment? This book reviews the political events that led to the abolition of episcopacy in 1689 and with it the concerted attack on the parish clergy. It explores for the first time the background and influences that led to the brutal 'rabbling of the curates' in south-west Scotland. It explores the mind-set of the notorious Covenanting tract Naphtali (1667), and of its author Sir James Stewart of Goodtrees, who was the author of the Act establishing hard-line Presbyterianism in 1690, and became Lord Advocate of Scotland in 1692. The purges of the universities after the 1690 Act led to a hardening of attitudes, and the on-going purging of the parishes led ultimately to the emptying of two-thirds of all the parishes of Scotland. The book suggests how these events contributed to the notion of 'King William's ill years'.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn6 місяців тому
    In the breadth of bitter-sweet Scottish history there is no more poignant, not more important, battle than Flodden. Before Scotland's disastrous defeat at the hands of the English under the Earl of Surrey, a proud country under its dynamic Stewart king, James IV, was emerging as a distinct and flourishing nation within Europe. With defeat the inevitability of Scotland's Reformation and union with England is hard to deny. Flodden was an ignominious and disastrous moment for the Scots, all the more so for being a largely unnecessary encounter, fought with superior numbers and arms, which left the country weak, exposed and leaderless. In this bestselling study of one of the most famous battles in history, Peter Reese recreates the drama and calamity of the battle fought just south of the River Tweed on 9 September 1513. Drawing together the political, military and historical background to the conflict, he examines the two armies and their leaders and explains the crucial tactical moves both before and during the encounter. The result is a thoroughly researched yet always accessible and realistic account of the battle Scotland has tried to forget.
  • Peter Reese
    Flodden
    • 1
    en
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  • Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn7 місяців тому
    In this hugely enlightening book, Carol Foreman investigates the origins of many of Glasgow's street names, examining the influences and inspirations for many of the city's most famous thoroughfares, from local association and sentimentality to the influence of royalty, distinguished individuals and historical events. There is a story in the name of almost every street and district in Glasgow, with some even bearing names bestowed on them in Pagan times, long before Glasgow could even be called a city.As well as street names, the origin of districts such as Cowcaddens, Gorbals and Polmadie are given along with those of the River Clyde, the Molendinar Burn and some buildings with unusual names such as the Bucks Head building in Argyle Street. This new revised edition examines the famous street names in the city centre from the M8 to the north bank of the River Clyde, to Glasgow Green and Bridgeton in the east and to Kingston Bridge in the west, with new material examining the Gorbals and the West End of the city, and with newly acquired illustrations and photography.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn7 місяців тому
    When Patrick Gillies graduated from the University of Edinburgh’s distinguished school of medicine with honours in 1890, a high profile career as a surgeon lay ahead of him. Any city across the world would have welcomed him, and his university mentors, including the famous
    Joseph Lister, urged him to take up one of these opportunities. Gillies defied them all and returned to his home town of Easdale, determined to continue the work his father had begun as a physician to the parishioners of the Slate Islands. Over the next 40 years Patrick Gillies worked tirelessly to sustain and improve the community services available in Argyll. Although he worked as a General Practitioner, Patrick involved himself in every aspect of the community, joining the Cullipool School Board, where he was determined to protest against its closure — a fight he eventually won. This early battle is indicative of the rest of Gillies’ life which he spent investigating everything, from the drainage systems to preventative medicine, and fighting for improvements, such as an isolation hospital for the Slate Islands and better medical provisions for school children. In later years he was able to apply his determination and sense in Army service in two wars.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn7 місяців тому
    Galloglas were mercenary warriors from the Hebrides and West Highlands who settled in Ireland in the later 13th century and achieved an extraordinary prominence on Irish battlefields throughout the three hundred years following. Fighting as heavy infantry — highly-disciplined, mail-armoured and wielding their characteristic weapon of the long-staved war-axe — they were the decisive military component in the Gaelic Irish resurgence of the 14th century and represented the cutting-edge of resistance to Tudor reconquest two hundred years later. Found first in the service of native Irish lords in Ulster and Connacht, they were later brought into Munster and Leinster by the gaelicised Anglo-Irish earls. By the 15th century they were established as Ireland's first professional warrior class and, like other professional classes in the Gaelic world, they were organized on the basis of kin-group. The names of hereditary commanders of galloglas entered in the Irish annals identify these mercenary warrior kindreds as the MacCabes, MacDonnels, MacDowells, MacRorys, MacSheehys and MacSweeneys, all of them families descended from the Gaelic-Norse aristocracy of Argyll and the Isles — and yet their story has been called “a forgotten chapter of West Highland history”. This account of the galloglas is written from a decidedly Scottish perspective, tracing the origins of six kindreds and investigating the circumstances which brought about their relocation to Ireland. It goes on to examine the galloglas as warriors, pointing to their distinctly Norse character and proposing their battle-fury as “the last unmistakable echo of the Scandinavian impact on the Celtic west”.
  • John Marsden
    Galloglas
    • 1
    • 1
    en
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  • Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn7 місяців тому
    The Truth about St Kilda is a unique record of the isolated way of life on St Kilda in the early part of the twentieth century, based on seven handwritten notebooks written by the Rev. Donald John Gillies, containing reminiscences of his childhood on the island of Hirta. It provides a first-hand account of the living conditions, social structure and economy of the community in the early 1900s, before the evacuation of the remaining residents in 1930. The memoirs describe in some detail the St Kildans' way of life, including religious life and the islanders' diet. The puritanical form of religion practised on St Kilda has often been interpreted by outsiders as austere and draconian, but Gillies' account of the islanders' religious practices makes clear the important role that these had in reinforcing the spiritual stamina of the community. This book is a lasting tribute to the adaptability and courage of a small Gaelic-speaking society which endured through two millennia on a remote cluster of islands, until its way of life could no longer be sustained.
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn7 місяців тому
    A desperate woman in Edwardian London finds an unlikely new job with an undercover spy organization in this charming historical thriller.London, 1905. Margaret Trant and her ailing mother have fallen on hard times. Living together in a dreary boarding house in St John’s Wood, Margaret’s job with a ramshackle import-export company barely keeps them afloat. Then Margaret spots a newspaper advertisement promising to ‘open new horizons beyond your wildest dreams!’.After a grueling interview, Margaret finds herself in a new position as a secretary in a dingy backstreet shop. But all is not as it seems; she is in fact working for a highly secret branch of the intelligence service, Bureau 8, whose mission is to track down and neutralize a ruthless band of anarchists known as The Scorpions.Margaret’s guilty love of detective fiction scarcely prepares her for the reality of true criminality. But she soon discovers that she’s far more resourceful and courageous than she ever imagined . . .
    Birlinn Limitedдодав книжку на полицюBirlinn7 місяців тому
    In this informative and beautifully illustrated book, Carol Foreman traces Glasgow's history primarily through buildings which have been demolished, but which played a central part in the city's story at one time or another. Beginning with the Medieval age, the book is comprised of four parts spanning more than eight centuries: the Medieval town; from Reformation to the Act of Union; the Merchant City, and finally the Victorian Age. “Lost Glasgow” provides a fascinating picture of how the city evolved and how major events throughout the centuries affected its trade, people and environment. Churches, banks and theatres as well as domestic buildings all feature in this illuminating journey through Glasgow's rich architectural past. Carol Foreman's picture research has been meticulous and she has crammed in almost 150 maps, drawings, engravings, watercolours and photographs documenting the lost structures.
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