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Taking the hint

David Craig, 5 January 1989

The King’s Jaunt: George IV in Scotland, 1822 
by John Prebble.
Collins, 399 pp., £15, November 1988, 0 00 215404 8
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... seal-fur sporran, had I been able (aged nine) to find out from such a book as this latest work of John Prebble’s that all these tartans were nothing but hype: a stunt devised chiefly by Scott to make George IV’s visit to Edinburgh in August 1822 as splendiferous as possible. In his anonymous shilling pamphlet ‘HINTS addressed to the INHABITANTS OF ...


Kathleen Jamie: In the West Highlands, 14 July 2011

... furniture; a deep window ledge held a small number of books: The Highland Clearances by John Prebble, pamphlets on local flora, a field guide to birds, Gavin Maxwell’s Ring of Bright Water. After we’d unpacked, we went for a stroll over the salt marsh. The tide was out, leaving creeks and channels. A bridge spanned the river that ...

Shining Pink

Tam Dalyell, 23 May 1985

Death of a Rose-Grower: Who killed Hilda Murrell? 
by Graham Smith.
Cecil Woolf, 96 pp., £5.95, April 1985, 0 900821 76 0
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... Tale’, which chronicles the work done by three investigative reporters, Stuart Prebble of World in Action, and John Osmond and David Williams of Harlech Television. Along with a police reconstruction on the BBC’s Crime-watch, they have ensured that literally millions of people are familiar with the ...

A Country Emptied

Ian Jack: The Highland Clearances, 7 March 2019

The Scottish Clearances: A History of the Dispossessed 1600-1900 
by T.M. Devine.
Allen Lane, 464 pp., £25, October 2018, 978 0 241 30410 5
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... more famous than the lyrics. Then in the 19th century an otherwise obscure genre painter called John Watson Nicol (1856-1926) gave the same name to his only famous picture. Exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1883, Nicol’s Lochaber No More depicts a miserable farewell to the Highlands. A man with a heavy plaid around his shoulders stands at a ship’s rail ...

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