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By Graeme Morton, Trevor Griffiths

The authors discover the political, spiritual, and highbrow personality of Scottish lifestyles, within which the extreme impinged at the usual.

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Uk. SOURCES By the nineteenth century, the sources – particularly archival material – which can be drawn on to construct a picture of the countryside, country life and land management become richer, more detailed and more widespread. Estate records become voluminous, providing extensive records of the minutiae of estate organisation and management. However, there is no doubt that they principally and inevitably depict a one-sided view of society: that of the landowners. There exists in the documentary evidence little detail regarding the tenantry’s opinions and preoccupations, and even less on the subordinate cottars and servants.

This seasonality also dictated the way the people who spent most of their working lives on the land carried out their everyday lives. 1 An expansion of towns and villages in the countryside, where agriculture still formed a part of daily life, if only with the keeping of a cow and raising of subsistence vegetables such as kale and potatoes, ensured a retention of a land-centred culture. Smaller burghs like Nairn and Elgin, at the bottom of the urban hierarchy for most of their history, continued to have an important agricultural function – both arable and pastoral – after 1800.

Davis and M. N. McLane, ‘Orality and Public Poetry’, in I. Brown, S. Manning, M. Pittock and T. Clancy (eds), Edinburgh History of Scottish Literature, Vol. II (Edinburgh, 2006), p. 125. D. E. Meek, ‘Gaelic Literature in the Nineteenth Century’, in Brown et al. (eds), Edinburgh History of Scottish Literature, p. 253. W. Donaldson, The Language of the People: Scots Prose from the Victorian Revival (Aberdeen, 1989), p. 7. Introduction 21 20 See Donaldson’s edited version of this book and of Alexander’s My Uncle the Baillie; W.

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