A History of Scotland

A History of Scotland

2008, History  -   55 Comments
8.08
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Ratings: 8.08/10 from 87 users.

A History of ScotlandLandmark documentary series presented by Neil Oliver.

The Last of the Free - At the dawn of the first millennia, there was no Scotland or England.

Hammers of the Scots - Oliver charts the 13th century story of the two men who helped transform the Gaelic kingdom of Alba into the Scotland of today.

Bishop makes King - Robert Bruce's 22-year struggle to secure the Scots' independence is one of the most important chapters in Scotland's story.

Language is Power - At one time, Gaelic Scotland - the people and the language - was central to the identity of Scots.

Project Britain - Oliver describes how the ambitions of two of Scotland's Stuart monarchs were the driving force that united two ancient enemies, and set them on the road to the Great Britain we know today.

God's Chosen People - Neil Oliver continues his journey through Scotland's past with the story of the Covenanters, whose profound religious beliefs were declared in the National Covenant of 1638.

Let's Pretend - Bitterly divided by politics and religion for centuries, this is the infamous story of how Scotland and England came together in 1707 to form Great Britain.

The Price of Progress - Through the winning and losing of an American empire and the impact of the Scottish Enlightenment, Neil Oliver reveals how in the second half of the 18th century Scotland was transformed from a poor northern backwater with a serious image problem into one of the richest nations on Earth.

This Land Is Our Land - At the start of the 19th century, everything familiar was swept away. People fled from the countryside into the industrial towns of Scotland's central belt.

Project Scotland - As a partner in the British Empire, Scotland began the 20th century with an advanced economy and a world-beating heavy industry.

Despite being hailed by BBC Scotland as "one of its most ambitious projects ever", the show has not been without controversy. There have been some claims, on the website of the BBC, that the programme made some errors.

Further, the 10-part series has come under fire over claims that it is too "anglocentric". The failure to front it with a historian (Neil Oliver is an archaeologist) has also been attacked. A couple of Scottish academic advisers also resigned before some programmes were completed.

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Karin Schmitt
Karin Schmitt
6 months ago

Love it - but I seem to be unable to find the next film in this series. What am i missing?

Morgan
Morgan
3 years ago

The only downside is he keeps saying "Christianity" instead of what it actually was at the time, which was "Catholicism"
It didn't become Christianity until the Reformation and the great Schism. But BBC and England can't have the Catholics taking credit where it is due.

steve roy
steve roy
3 years ago

great info thnx

adam zapel
adam zapel
10 years ago

Good series and probably the only work you'll see that has the facts that Scotland won the Wars of Independence against England. English folk, I find, like to tell people the world over that they basically rule the UK, and have just being their 'mighty' English self to force Scotland into being a part of Great Britain. Online I like to correct them that they never won either wars of independence against Scotland, when they spout off about kicking Scotlands arse, when they absolutely never. Facts are facts, which English chroniclers of the past loved to try cover up, ie- Longshanks - Hammer of the Scots - a name given to him in the 1600s, 300 years after he died, as to try cover up the fact that he died an absolute failure, he got kicked out of Scotland by Wallace and had to rely on a traitor for Wallaces capture, all in all he left the English kingdom in absolute turmoil, losing the war against Scotland and France.

Giacomo della Svezia
Giacomo della Svezia
11 years ago

Alba gu brath: Scotland for ever
Saor Alba: Free Scotland

I love the Scottish accent in English, but I don't speak Scottish.

Tanzanos Eleytheros
Tanzanos Eleytheros
11 years ago

As always BBC excels in documentaries!

Nicole Aguilar
Nicole Aguilar
11 years ago

I love the emotion Oliver brings to this documentary and really opens my eyes to true Scottish history. My Gran used to tell me stories of her life back in "Alba" as she called it. My Gran was a bit of a history buff as well but the only thing that was not new to me was William Wallace and the British Flag.

Truly a document worth watching and let me tell you that accent is to die for. My Gran had all but lost hers by time I came around and Southern Alabama drawl had all but taken over. All in all, a great film. :)

BrandiBoo
BrandiBoo
11 years ago

My thanks to Neil Oliver and the rest of the crew. I enjoyed this show. I loved how it was presented.

Ben
Ben
12 years ago

Even if it is inaccurate, one should never use a single source for history. If the same information pops up from a variety of sources, it's probably safe to accept it as fact.

David Kipper
David Kipper
12 years ago

This show is rad!

Deals34
Deals34
12 years ago

I've always wondered whether my last name, Calloway, was Scottish or English. This doc is fascinating, nonetheless.

Michael Ruane
Michael Ruane
12 years ago

Fabulous music...beautiful photography... well worth watching if one can overlook the fascistic, nationalistic, perverse and morally reprehensible twaddle that passes for history in this picture postcard infotainment era...

Tommy
Tommy
12 years ago

The British empire was build with Scotland and Scotland is much loved by the English. Wallace is considered an amazing person by both countries and when I lived in Scotland the people joked about my english backround but never hated me for it.

jimmi johnson
jimmi johnson
12 years ago

I have only watched this through once before, and the memory of it is hazy, but I am failing to see the anglocentricism as I watch it for the second time. Does anyone here have any arguments to support the claim of this being anglocentric?

Beau1952
Beau1952
12 years ago

Question; does anyone know what town in Scotland used to behead English prisoners to use their heads to run through the town, today it is still done but with a ball, it was on a documentary within the last week [05/09/2011-15/09/2011] but I can't remember what town was stated, many thanks in advance for any help. Anne of Aberdeenshire.

seanmf667
seanmf667
12 years ago

Clár iontach taiteann sé sin go mór liom. Go leor pointe conspóideach ann, tá sé an-suimúil na shean nascanna idir ar dhá thír a feicáil. Sláinte ó Éireann. Éire Abú, Alban Abú :)

Layla Phelps
Layla Phelps
13 years ago

Okay woah that's crazy. Here I was all this time thinking William Wallace was some kind of hero. To find out he wasn't was just woah.

Layla Phelps
Layla Phelps
13 years ago

Who cares if he's an ass. Its the contents of the show I care about. And I find it really irritating that people find it amusing to run around trying to convert people into what they deem as the correct religion. I will never convert into Christianity.

Ross
Ross
13 years ago

Ive seen Neil Oliver on location of making this and the other series and i must tell you all..He is an arrogant vain twat!
Praise to the researchers for making Neils script, but the host "can get tae!"

BEN
BEN
13 years ago

ABSOLUTLY ONE OF THE BEST DOCUMENTARIES I HAVE EVER SEEN -THANKS VLAKO & THANKS NEIL, I AM MORE PROUD OF MY SCOTTISH ANCESTRY THAN BEFORE, PLUS NOW I CAN UNDERSTAND HOW AND WHY MY GRAND-DAD CAME HERE TO AMERICA..."BUT ALAS A MELANCHOLY DOTH FILL MY HEART...TO BE IN SCOTLAND SOMEDAYS." =CHARLES CAMPBELL. OH AND LAIN - GOD BLESS SCOTLAND.

Iain
Iain
13 years ago

SAOR ALBA!

Iain
Iain
13 years ago

Most of Scotlands top historians refused to have anything to do with this series as it was so Anglocentric and gives the impression that Scotland was nothing until we became a part of the abomination that was,and is,the British Empire! If you want an unbiased,non-British Establishment History of Scotland then avoid this like the plague! Neil Oliver isn't even a trained Historian for God's sake,he's an Archaeologist!

Jo McKay
Jo McKay
13 years ago

Thank you so much for this documentary. I have been doing a lot of research on Scotland lately and this helped tremendously. WOW. It is so true that history is WHO does the writing...now I will have to watch all 8 hours a couple more times (next time take some notes)... Beautiful visuals and commentary.

fifimsp
fifimsp
13 years ago

I'm sorry, but this host is just too cute for words. Even my husband thought he was adorable.

macca420
macca420
13 years ago

@Imightberiding

actually "we all" clearly do not,by above posts but thanks for be so observant

christopher.miller
christopher.miller
13 years ago

Thank you so much V. This has brought me back in touch with my heritage and for that I could never thank you enough. I went ahead and downloaded them all for safe keeping and to show my entire family that is Scottish. They will love it too.

Imightberiding
Imightberiding
13 years ago

@macca420
OK? You copied from the above description. What was the comment you intended to leave regarding this doc? We all read the above description prior to viewing the video.

macca420
macca420
13 years ago

Despite being hailed by BBC Scotland as “one of its most ambitious projects ever”, the show has not been without controversy. There have been some claims, on the website of the BBC, that the programme made some errors.

Further, the 10-part series has come under fire over claims that it is too “anglocentric”. The failure to front it with a historian (Neil Oliver is an archaeologist) has also been attacked. A couple of Scottish academic advisers also resigned before some programmes were completed.

copied from above discription

stevie
stevie
13 years ago

scratch that last comment,the song is at 7:08 and its on the second part of the first vid

stevie
stevie
13 years ago

the song @8:12,any one know what its called?

Waldo
Waldo
13 years ago

You tube must be swamped tonight, in fact it has been running much slower than usual for me all holiday weekend. Is it just me, or is everyone noticing?

Sweevo
Sweevo
13 years ago

Aye I watched this series it was great and a highly recomended watch, even for Scots like me :)

ProudinUS
ProudinUS
13 years ago

This was the most beautiful and articulat Doc. I have ever seen.Good job with the narration and the beautiful aireal seens.Scotland is truly one of the worlds most gorgeous countries .I was truly honored to watch and hear the history of this country.

A must see!

Waldo
Waldo
13 years ago

Wow, I had Scottish history all wrong. I study history religiously, have a associates degree in western civ., but almost everything I had read or heard about Scottish history was completely false. Just goes to show you, this is what they mean when they say history goes to the victor. An excellent documentary that tells the true story of how Scotland came about and how it had to defend itself against the English, Romans (at this point they were not called Scottland, but they sure looked like the classic image of the Scottish warrior- beautiful and terrifying)and themselves. Even tells the real story of Wlliam Wallace, instead of the Mel Gibson story. He was a much more flawed man, but still very brave and capable. In fact I have much more respect for his character this way, he seems real now- not so much the Holly Wood archeatype anymore. This gets a ten out of ten in my book, a must see.

RareJunk
RareJunk
13 years ago

A quality un-Anglicised doc from the perspective of Scotland and her people.

Atheist ruler
Atheist ruler
13 years ago

good docu about the brawe scots:D