Originally published in 1971, this book gives the real substance of Scotland at the time of Mary Queen of Scots. It describes in extensive and colourful detail the way people of all ranks of society lived, their homes, their food and amusements, the ways they earned their living, cared for the sick and punished offenders. Family life, religion, the structure and activities of the clans and the state of the arts are all discussed. The book gives a true picture of a disturbed and remote country in the sixteenth century – a picture of contrasts and contradictions, as Scotland at that time was a country in transition between the medievalism of the Roman Catholic Church and the new Scotland with a rising merchant class.

chapter Chapter One|18 pages

Backdrop to Scotland in the Sixteenth Century

chapter Chapter Two|20 pages

The Organization of Society

chapter Chapter Three|22 pages

The People in their Setting

chapter Chapter Four|19 pages

Family Life

chapter Chapter Five|16 pages

Earning a Living: On the Land

chapter Chapter Six|18 pages

Earning a Living: In the Towns and on the Sea

chapter Chapter Seven|28 pages


chapter Chapter Eight|18 pages

Feuds, Factions and Laws in the Highlands

chapter Chapter Nine|27 pages

Food and Fun

chapter Chapter Ten|26 pages

The Social Services

chapter Chapter Eleven|15 pages

Crime and Punishment

chapter Chapter Twelve|21 pages

The Arts

Literature, Painting, Sculpture, Music and Architecture