Scott and Scotland

Scots hold four men high in the glory of their country's story - Wallace and Bruce, Burns and Scott. Wallace and Bruce forged the independent nation, Scotland. Burns and Scott gave that nation an assured place in world literature.

Carlyle, another great Scottish writer, said of Sir Walter: 'No Scotchman of his time was more entirely Scottish than Walter Scott.' Indeed if ever a nation found expression in one man, it was in the case of Scotland and Scott. Till his time the Highlanders and the Lowlanders of Scotland looked on each other with distrust and dislike. It was Scott who changed all this. It was Scott who made them both sons of Scotland. It was Scott who made all Soots proud of their language, whether Gaelic or Broad Scots, of their country and of themselves. Then came the Peninsular War against Napoleon in the first decade of the nineteenth century. The Highland Clansmen charged on the battlefields along with the warriors from the Lothians and the west, Tweeddale and the east. Now instead of Lowlanders, Borderers or Highlanders, all whether MacDonalds, Camerons, Frasers, Stewarts, Carruths, Burns or Scotts called themselves simply Scots. All this is due in the main to Sir Walter Scott. High honour indeed.

So we now take our leave of the great Scott, who makes one humbly grateful to be a Scot.

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