An introduction to the geography of scotland

Coinage began by following English usage in regard to types and weights: Gold nobles and… Land Scotland is bounded by England to the south, the Atlantic Ocean to the west and north, and the North Sea to the east. The west coast is fringed by deep indentations sea lochs or fjords and by numerous islands, varying in size from mere rocks to the large landmasses of Lewis and HarrisSkyeand Mull. The island clusters of Orkney and Shetland lie to the north.

An introduction to the geography of scotland

See Article History Alternative Titles: Dun Eideann, Duneideann Edinburgh, Gaelic Dun Eideann, capital city of Scotlandlocated in southeastern Scotland with its centre near the southern shore of the Firth of Forth, an arm of the North Sea that thrusts westward into the Scottish Lowlands.

The city and its immediate surroundings constitute an independent council area. The city and most of the council area, including the busy port of Leith on the Firth of Forth, lie within the historic county of Midlothianbut the council area also includes an area in the northwest, around South Queensferry, in the historic county of West Lothian.

Edinburgh has been a military stronghold, the capital of an independent country, and a centre of intellectual activity. Although it has repeatedly experienced the vicissitudes of fortune, the city has always renewed itself.

An introduction to the geography of scotland

Today it is the seat of the Scottish Parliament and the Scottish Executive, and it remains a major centre for finance, law, tourism, education, and cultural affairs.

Area council area, square miles square km. Character of the city Although Edinburgh absorbed surrounding villages and the Firth of Forth ports between andits aesthetic and political heart still lies in its small historic core, comprising the Old Town and the New Town.

The Old Town, built up in the Middle Ages when the fear of attack was constant, huddles high on the Castle Rock overlooking the surrounding plain. The New Town, in contrast, spreads out in a magnificent succession of streets, crescents, and terraces.

Historically, its citizens have also been capable of great passion, especially in matters royal or religious. Infor example, a mob spurred by the fiery Protestant preacher John Knox tried to break into the private chapel in the Palace of Holyroodhouse, where MaryQueen of Scots —67newly returned from Francewas attending a Roman Catholic mass.

In a riot in the cathedral of St. In the burgh nearly lost its royal charter following the lynching of John Porteous, captain of the city guard. The Porteous riots and lynching were a type of violent gesture common to the history of most old cities.

Yet, even in this moment of deranged passion, the city manifested its complex character: A city long renowned for a somewhat inflexible respectability—when West Princes Street Gardens were turned over to the general public insmoking was forbidden—Edinburgh concurrently maintained a fascinating netherworld of ribaldry and drunkenness.

A poet, jurist, or novelist of sufficient distinction might succeed in inhabiting both worlds. One who clearly did was William Brodie, a member of respectable society—deacon of the Incorporation of Wrights and Masons and a town councillor—who by night was the mastermind behind a gang of burglars.

With the subsequent relapse of the city into a more provincial role, such noted eccentrics became virtually extinct. Landscape City site Edinburgh occupies some 7 miles 11 km of north-facing slope between the Pentland Hills and the broad Firth of Forth estuary, where it merges with the once-independent seaport of Leith.

Upthrusts of lava punctuate this slope. The valleys between these striking hills were scoured deep and clean by glacial action in the Pleistocene Epoch.

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Edinburgh has been built on top of and around these obstacles so that the nearer one comes to the city centre, the more spectacular is the juxtaposition of natural and built environmentwith terraces of stone confronting soaring thrust.

It stands feet 76 metres above the valley floor and is crowned by the famous Edinburgh Castle, which, subtly floodlit every night, stirs even the habituated townsfolk. Along the crest of this tail, and down its steep sides, the Old Town was built from the 12th century onward.

Some feet metres north of the Castle Rock, across the valley that is now Princes Street Gardens, lies the New Town, a district that was planned and built in successive phases between and Its design was overly regular to begin with, but later developments—as can be seen at the west end of Princes Street—paid more respect to natural contours and softened the regimentation of the right angle with curves and crescents.

These villages, which sprang up largely as industrial centres with paper and textile mills, are now embedded in the 19th-century matrix of the town, providing fashionable, bijou residences.

Climate Edinburgh has a mild climate. Its proximity to the sea mitigates temperature extremes. The prevailing easterly winds are often cold but relatively dry; warmer southwesterly winds coming off the North Atlantic Current often bring rain.

Annual precipitation is moderate, averaging 27 inches mmand is evenly distributed throughout the year. Edinburgh lacks prolonged sunshine: But its ever-changing cloudscape partly compensates for this. City layout Until the late 18th century, Edinburgh followed a common European pattern by continually renewing itself on its original site, and the lack of space for outward expansion compelled each successive phase to conform to the original layout.Scotland - Bibliography - links and information.

For information on Scottish family history publications, look in the appropriate sections on this page, or look in the . Scotland Accounted For: An Introduction To The 'Old' () And The New () Statistical Accounts Of Scotland by Charles W J Withers, Professor of Historical Geography at the University of Edinburgh.

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