The First Cod War

London, 1883, and the respected biologist Thomas Huxley rose to address the assembled delegates at the International Fisheries Exhibition government. Since 1858 Huxley had been closely involved with the British … Continue reading

May 6, 2015 · Leave a comment

‘Iceland’s Pompeii’: Þjóðveldisbærinn Stöng

In 1104 Iceland’s most famous volcano Hekla erupted, covering the local area with tephra and destroying an entire district of farm complexes in the Þjórsárdalur valley. Among them was the farmhouse named … Continue reading

April 12, 2015 · Leave a comment

Kútmagar – Icelandic stuffed cod’s stomach

This is apparently an old Icelandic dish that uses cod offal to make a savoury pudding a la saumagen, haggis, or any other of the world’s variations on a stuffed stomach lining. … Continue reading

March 31, 2015 · 1 Comment

Scotland invented the bicycle (?)

Back in 2005 the British Broadcasting Corporation invited the listeners of its You and Yours programme to vote for their favourite invention. The winner by a country mile was the … Continue reading

March 21, 2015 · 1 Comment

The Soldier’s Wife by Jean Guthrie-Smith (1895-1949)

Jean Guthrie-Smith was 22 years old when she married the love of her life, Laurence Neal, on 1 May 1918. Her husband was wounded twice in the war, surviving a … Continue reading

March 14, 2015 · Leave a comment

‘The Apprehension of Sundrye Witches’ : The Prosecution of Witchcraft in Scotland, 1590-1727

Sixteenth and Seventeenth century Scotland, along with the rest of the British Isles and Continental Europe, saw a previously unparalleled increase in the number of people brought to trial and … Continue reading

March 3, 2015 · Leave a comment

The Antonine Wall

The Vallum Antonini or Antonine Wall runs for 39 miles west to east from Old Kilpatrick on the Firth of Clyde to Bo’ness on the Firth of Forth. Built between 142 … Continue reading

February 20, 2015 · Leave a comment