From the mock pageantry of the Highlanders to the carefully stage-managed rediscovery of the Scottish Regalia, this trip was a key event in the creation of romantic Scotland. Behind it all lay the great stage manager, Sir Walter Scott. This was the first visit of a British monarch to Scotland for nearly two hundred years, following only two years after the grim horror of the Radical Insurrection, which saw the last armed rebellion in British history when sixty thousand workers went on strike. The Highland clans that Scott called to Edinburgh were, even as they marched, the subjects of eviction and persecution in their homeland. And yet in this stirring blend of pomp and pageantry, Scott was able to override the grim reality of day-to-day life in a surge of support for a monarch and monarchy, even in England, the subject of ridicule and derision. Prebble brilliantly reveals the rotten heart of corruption, betrayal, and intrigue at the heart of the ceremony of this great occasion, and from it all emerges a vision of Scotland that remains with us today.
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About the Author
John Prebble was born in Middlesex in 1915 but spent his boyhood in Saskatchewan, Canada. He became a journalist in 1934 and is now a historian, novelist, film-writer and the auhtor of several highly praised plays and dramatized documentaries for BBC television and radio. During the war he served for six years in the ranks with the Royal Artillery and later wrote a war novel, The Edge of Darkness, based on his experiences. He is the author of Age Without Pity, The Mather Story, The High Girders, an account of the Tay Bridge Disaster, The Buffalo Soldiers, which won an award in the United States for the best historical novel of the American West, and Culloden, a subject he became interested in when he was a boy in a predominantly Scottish township in Canada. Culloden was subsequently made into a successful television film. His other books include The Highland Clearances, Glencoe, The Darien Disaster, The Lion in the North, Mutiny: Highland Regiments in Revolt, John Prebble's Scotland and Landscapes and Memeories: An Intermittent Autobiography, for which he was awarded the McVitie Prize for Scottish Writer of the Year, 1993.