Edinburgh - the heart of Scotland referat


Scotland is one of four constituent nations which form the United Kingdom. He forms the northern part of the island.

Scotland is 78,768 square kilometre in area and it has 5.2 million inhabitants. The official lan­guage is English, although Gaelic is spoken, primarily in the North and West of Scotland. The Scots language, which has many similarities to English, but also draws on French and Gaelic is also spoken. Gaelic is the language of the Highlands and Islands, Scots is the language of the Lowlands.

Scotland is divided in three main regions: the Highlands, The Midland Valley and the Southern Uplands. Most of the population and the majority of Scotland’s industry is located within the Midland valley. This broad valley averages 100 kilometre across and runs across the centre of the country. Scotland includes 787 islands, of which most belong to groups known as the Hebrides, Orkney and Shetland. Only 62 exceet three square miles in area. Of 26 rivers flowing directly into the sea. The rivers Clyde, Forth and Tay open into significant estuaries and sup­port three of the major cities of Scotland. Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee. Scotland is also noted for its lochs (this name is generally used for lakes in Scotland). Much of the west coast of the country is intersected by Sea Lochs, the longest of which, Loch Fyne, penetrates more than 80 kilometre inland.

Government in Scotland is in four tiers. A new Scottish Parliament was elected in 1999, fol­lowing devolution of powers from the United Kingdom Parliament in London. This is the first time Scotland has had its own parliament in 300 Jears. The Scottish Parliament, which sits in Edinburgh, is responsible for most aspects of Scottish life. It is led by a First Minister. Scotland had its own legal system, judiciary and an education system. He has also its own banking sys­tem and its own banknotes.

Scotland has given rise to many famous people, notable in the arts, literature, the sciences and as inventors, philosophers, architects and so on.

Edinburgh - the heart of Scotland

Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland and it is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. It has 440 000 inhabitants. In the most countries, the capital city reflects the history, culture and per­sonality of the nation. Nowhere is this more true than in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh, is named after Edwin, a king of ancient Northumbria. It has been a Royal Burgh since at least the twelfth century, and has been recognised as the capital of Scotland since the fifteenth.

Scotland History

-The Midland Valley of Scotland represented the most northern extent of the Romans conquest    of Britain after 79 AD Remnants of the Antonine Wall, which the Romans built between the River Forth and the River Clyde to defend this, frontier, can be still seen. The lands to the north were occupied by a war- like tribe called the Picts. Little is known of the Picts, whether they were a Celtic or Germanic race and what language they spoke is still debated. The more famous Hadrian’s Wall which is over 200 kilometre long and lies close to the current border between England and Scotland, was built by the retreating Romans around 119 AD.

-In the 5th century the „Scots“ came from their home in Ireland and settled in the West of Scotland.

-After centuries of wars with the Picts, they put the crown of Scots and Picts on the head of

their king, Kenneth MacAlpin, in 843.

-The reign of Malcolm Canmore (1057-93) was a time of great social, political and religious revolution. Malcolm had spent much time in England and he and his saintly queen encouraged the introduction of English customs, civilisation, the English language and settlers. Many Nor­man’s brought French culture to Scotland.

- Scotland was a wealthy country through until the beginning of the 14th century, when Ed­ward I of England was determined to incorporate Scotland into English crown.

-The defeat of Edward II at Bannockburn in 1314 was a great victory, reflected in the songs and spirit of Scottish nationalism until present times. The desire to preserve independence was embodied in a plea to the Pope, known as the Declaration of Aborath. Long, bloody and de­structive wars over the succeeding 300 years ensured that, while Scotland remained free, it was also poor.

-John Knox, the Edinburgh churchman, played his part in the reformation in Scotland, which adopted a Presbyterian tradition losing the link between church and state.

-England and Scotland were linked through James VI of Scotland acceding to the English throne in 1603, following the death of Queen Elizabeth I of England. Elizabeth had persecuted and finally executed James’ mother and her own cousin, Mary Queen of Scots, but died child­less.

-Succeeding English monarchs were not as well disposed towards Scotland as James had been. Following the formal Act of Union in 1707, displeasure particularly amongst Highland Scots, supported the rebellions of 1715 and 1745 which attempted to restore respectively the Old and Young Pretenders to the throne of Scotland

- After the 1745 rebellion, which was effectively a Civil War, the Highland Clearances began. Thousands were evicted from their rented crofts and the immigration of Scots to other parts of the world began. Despite the popularist view that the landlords were English, the majority were Scots, but not of the gaelic- speaking, Roman Catholic tradition who had fought for the ‘Bonnie Price’.

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