It is easy to overlook how much of our history is preserved all around us – the way the narrative of bygone days has been inscribed in fields, forests, hills and mountains, roads, railways, canals, lochs, buildings and settlements. Indeed, footprints of the past are to be found almost everywhere. The shapes of fields may reveal the brief presence of the Romans or the labours of medieval peasants; while great heaps of abandoned spoil or the remains of gargantuan holes in the ground mark the rapid decline of heavy industry in the recent past.
These evocative spaces provide unique evidence for the way this land and its wealth of resources has been lived in, worked on, ruined, abandoned, restored and celebrated – offering valuable clues that bring the past to life far more effectively than any written history.
A History of Scotland’s Landscapes explores the many ways that we have used, adapted and altered our environment over thousands of years. Full of maps, photographs and drawings, it offers a remarkable new perspective on Scotland – a unique guide to tracing memories, events and meanings in the forms and patterns of our surroundings.
Fiona Watson is a medieval historian and writer, and former Director of the Centre for Environmental History at the Universities of Stirling and St Andrews. She is author of the history books Scotland from Prehistory to the Present, Under the Hammer: Edward I and Scotland, Macbeth: A True Story and Robert the Bruce, and was presenter of In Search of Scotland, a BBC TV series on Scottish history.
Piers Dixon is an archaeologist with over thirty years of experience researching, investigating, recording and writing about Scotland’s landscapes.
272 pages hardback, 279x216mm
Longlisted for the Highland Book Prize