NQ Scottish History


Union with England had varied consequences for the Scots. Certainly in the first few decades there was little apparent benefit from the Union. The Jacobite risings accelerated the decline in a distinctive highland way of life. However by the second half of the 18th century, Scots began to become heavily involved in the growing British Empire. As Scotland industrialised in the 19th century there was increased urbanisation. Scots were to go in vast numbers to parts of the British Empire, some as a result of the Highland Clearances but also many in search of better opportunities.

Some distinctive Scottish institutions survived the Union such as the law, the Kirk and the education system. These helped maintain something of a distinct Scottish identity. As the 20th century progressed there was a slow movement to bring back to Scotland more say in her domestic affairs. This culminated in the establishment of the new Scottish parliament in 1999, almost 300 years after the signing of the treaty by Queen Anne. This was a devolved parliament, giving Scotland more control over her domestic policy while remaining part of the United Kingdom.