Events in Scottish History
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1 July 1782
Repeal of the Act of Proscription of Tartan that followed the 1745 Rising.
1 July 1916 Listen to the Pipe Tune "The Battle of the Somme"
The first day of the Battle of the Somme saw the worst losses in the history of the British Army. Nearly 20,000 men lost their lives and more than 40,000 were wounded. The 16th Battalion of The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment), known after their Commanding Officer as “McCrae’s Own” were in the the thick of the action and almost three-quarters  became casualties, including several Heart of Midlothian footballers who had volunteered in 1914. Despite their heavy losses this battalion gained the most ground that day.
This was remembered in the week of the 90th Anniversary of the Battle by a documentary "Supreme Sacrifice", based on Historian, Jack Alexander's history of McRae's Battalion, broadcast on BBC2 Scotland.
2 July 1266 Treaty of Perth. Norway transfers sovereignty of the Hebrides and the Isle of Man to Scotland.
2 July 1644 The Scots and Parliamentarian Army defeated Charles I at the Battle of Marston Moor.
2 July 1645 Battle Hill, Alford
The Battle of Alford, Aberdeenshire. The Marquis of Montrose, Charles I's Commander in Scotland defeated Alford West KirkGeneral Baillie's Army on what is now called Battle Hill opposite the old West Kirk. Modern Alford grew up around the old railway station.  The battle took place near the Bridge of Alford. The victory was marred by the death of George, Lord Gordon, and the Alford's local history society has marked with a plaque the "Gordon Stane" where he lay mortally wounded .

3 July 1582 James Crichton "The Admirable Crichton", scholar, soldier and adventurer, died.
3 July 1728 Scottish Architect Robert Adam born in Kirkcaldy.
3 July 1928 John Logie Baird transmits the world's first colour television pictures.
4 July 1913 Oswald Wynd, author of "The Ginger Tree", born to Scottish Missionary parents in Tokyo. He graduated from Edinburgh University, joined the Scots Guards at the outbreak of WWII, and was commissioned into the Intelligence Corps. He was captured in Malaya and became a Prisoner of War in Japan.
5 July 1820 William John Macquorn Rankine, civil engineer, born in Edinburgh. He was the first president of the Institution of Engineers in Scotland.
6 July 1560 The Treaty of Edinburgh saw the withdrawal of French and English Troops from Scotland.
6 July 1747
John Paul Jones, founder of the United States' Navy  born in Scotland.
6 July 1988
"PIPER ALPHA" disaster. 167 lives were lost following an explosion and fire on the North Sea platform off Aberdeen.

7 July 1548 The Treaty of Haddington proclaimed the betrothal of Mary Queen of Scots  to François, the Dauphin of France.
7 July 1559
John Knox was appointed as the first Protestant minister in Edinburgh.
7 July 1814
First publication of Sir Walter Scott's Waverley novels.
7 July 1930
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle author of the Sherlock Holmes detective stories, died.
8 July 1249 Alexander II  buried at Melrose having died on the island of Kerrera, Argyllshire  whilst preparing to take the Hebrides from Norway.
Ref: A History Book for Scots, selections from Walter Bower's Scotichronicon, p. 144 ISBN 978-1-873644-84-3

8 July 1296
John Balliol abdicated at Montrose, Angus.
8 July 1758
The 42nd Regiment (Later The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) and now 3 SCOTS) took part in either the  Battle of Ticonderoga or Battle of Carillon, a French victory which saw heavy American and British losses.


8 July 1773
The "HECTOR" left Loch Broom, near Ullapool, carrying around 200 emigrants bound for Pictou, Nova Scotia,  the start of a wave of Scottish immigration to Canada.
8 July 1823 Sir Henry Raeburn, artist and portrait painter,  died.
9 July 1917
"HMS VANGUARD" blew up in Scapa Flow with the loss of all but 3 of her crew of 670.
10 July 1451
The future  James III born in Stirling Castle.
10 July 1560 Following the Treaty of Edinburgh on the 6th July the Scottish Parliament (otherwise known as the Reformation Parliament convened in Edinburgh on 10 July 1560, attended by 14 earls, 6 bishops, 19 lords, 21 abbots, 22 burgh commissioners, and over 100 lairds.
10 July 1633 The "BLESSING OF BURNTISLAND" sank off Burntisland in the Firth of Forth carrying gold, silver and jewellery belonging to Charles I.
11 July 1274
Robert I, The Bruce, born at Turnberry Castle, Ayrshire.
11 July 1370 Marjorie Stewart, daughter of Robert II, received Papal Dispensation to marry her cousin, John Dunbar, later created the Earl of Moray.
11 July 1774
Robert Jameson, mineralogist and naturalist, born in Leith.
12 July 1570 Matthew Stuart, 4th Earl of Lennox and father of Lord Darnley made Regent of Scotland.
12 July 1850
Robert Stevenson, died. He is best known as a builder of lighthouses and was the engineer in charge of the construction of the  Bell Rock, and grandfather of the novelist, Robert Louis Stevenson.
13 July 1174
William the Lion captured by the English at his siege of Alnwick Castle.
13 July 1249
Alexander III crowned at Scone.
13 July 1469
James III married Margaret Oldenburg, Princess of Denmark.
14 July 1779

The Great Siege of Gibraltar began, which would last 3 years 7 months and 12 days, ending in February 1783. Gibraltar is defended by a determined Scot, George Augustus Eliott, one of the few Scots remembered by the issue of a postage stamp outside Scotland.
14 July 1927
Scottish National War Memorial opened.
15 July 1889
Scottish National Portrait Gallery opened.
15 July 1914
Gavin Maxwell, author of  "A Ring of Bright Water", born.
16 July 1832
31 Shetland "sixareens" were lost, with a total of 105 men.  This is still remembered in Shetland as "The Bad Day".
Sixareen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Shetland Museum and Archives: Sixareen
17 July 1453 The Battle of Castillon from Alliance France-Ecosse
Battle of Castillon.  The last battle of the 100 Years War. The French with Scots allies defeat the English.
17 July 1652 The Great Fire of Glasgow destroyed one third of the City.
17 July 1695 The Bank of Scotland was founded.
17 July 1790
Adam Smith, known as "the father of economics", author of the "The Wealth of Nations" died.
18 July 1290
Treaty of Birgham. The Scots agreed that Margaret, the Maid of Norway, the heiress to the Scots Throne, should marry Prince Edward, eldest son of Edward I. Scottish independence is guaranteed.
See also the Treaty of Salisbury.
Records of the Parliaments of Scotland
18 July 1743
Three men  from the 43rd Regiment (Later the 42nd Regiment and finally The Black Watch(The Royal Highland Regiment)) (now part of The Royal Regiment of Scotland) were shot at the Tower of London having been found guilty of mutiny and desertion. The Regiment were being posted to  Flanders as reinforcements though they had been raised for service in the Highlands, but a rumour spread that they were being sent to the West Indies, and  over 100 turned around at Finchley Common  to head home. 104  were arrested near Northampton and sent to the Tower.  Corporals Samuel Macpherson and Malcolm Macpherson and Private Farquhar Shaw, were shot by the Regiment of Footguards,  then on duty in the Tower, unusually within the Tower, and their remains are interred under a grey and black striped marble slab by the corner of the Chapel Royal of St Peter ad Vincula. In 2010 the slab was raised, revealing three coffins.  The slab was replaced without further inspection. Several of the deserters made good their escape, though one was thought to have died en route, and the remaining prisoners were posted to other regiments in the Colonies. The 43rd Regiment continued to Flanders as planned.

19 July 1333
Battle of Halidon Hill near Berwick. The Scots Army led by Sir Archibald Douglas were defeated by the English Army led by Edward III and Edward Balliol.  The Scots lost some 4,000 including their leader, mainly due to the Welsh longbows.
19 July 1896 A J Cronin born, best known for his "Dr Finlay" books.
20 July 1651 Battle of Inverkeithing or Pitreavie. The Royalist Army lead by Generals Brown and Holborn was defeated by the Cromwellian Army lead by Generals Overton and Lambert.
20 July 1889 John Charles Walsham Reith, later Lord Reith, born in Stonehaven, son of a Church of Scotland Minister.  He was General Manager/Managing Director of the BBC from 1922 to 1927 and set the non commercial model for the corporation that has continued to this day. The Reith Lectures are held in his Memory.

21 July 1796
Robert Burns, the National Bard, died. Despite saying in his last hours  to fellow member of the Dumfries Volunteers, John Gibson, "John, don't let the awkward squad fire over me," his funeral was with full military honours.  His request gave rise to the term "the awkward squad".
22 July 1298 The Battle of Falkirk.  William Wallace defeated by Edward I.
22 July 1484 The Battle of Lochmaben Fair. A party of cavalry led by the rebel Earl of Douglas and the Duke of Albany, crossed from England and clashed with local forces loyal to James III, the Scottish king. The raiders were defeated; and while Albany managed to escape Douglas was captured, spending what remained of his life as a royal prisoner.
23 July 1637
Jenny Geddes hurled her stool at the Dean of St Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh calling "Daur ye say mass at my lug?", protesting at the new unpopular form of service introduced by Charles I, which led to the signing of the National Covenant.
St Giles Cathedral
23 July 1745
Prince Charles Edward Stuart "The Young Pretender" lands on Eriskay with eight supporters, no supplies and no funds at the start of the '45 Rising.
23 July 1773
Sir Thomas Makdougall Brisbane (1773-1860), 6th Governor of New South Wales, was born  at Brisbane House, near Largs, Ayrshire.
24 July 1411
The Battle of Harlaw.   In a dispute over the Earldom of Ross, Donald II, The Lord of the Isles brought the Highland Army into Aberdeenshire,  where the Earl of Mar gathered his forces at Inverurie to prevent them attacking Aberdeen. The action was intense, but though no clear victor emerged, the Highland Army withdraw to the Highlands and Aberdeen was safe. The battle is remembered in folklore and song.
Harlaw Monument
24 July 1874
Oswald Chambers, minister and teacher, author of the devotional My Utmost for His Highest born in Aberdeen.
25 July 1843 Charles Macintosh who patented the waterproof cloth he was using
to make raincoats, died.
26 July 1513 AA

James IV in response to a request from France in accordance with the “Auld Alliance” declared war on England, sending a letter to Henry VIII with the Ross Herald.   James was also displeased at the English seizure of two Scottish ships in a dispute over the payment of the dowry for his wife, Margaret Tudor.  This  would lead to the disaster at Flodden in September that year, when James and “The Flower of Scotland” were to lose their lives.

27 July 1689

The Battle of Killiecrankie.  The Government sent an Army north under General Mackay to stop the advance of the Jacobite Army led by John Graham of Claverhouse, “Bonnie Dundee”.  The Armies met at the pass of Killiecrankie, near Blair Atholl, and the Government soldiers were scattered by a Highland charge lead by Claverhouse.  Their victory was short lived as John Graham was felled by a ball from a leather cannon carried as light artillery by the Government infantry, and his Army was subsequently defeated at Dunkeld.  The bullet hole in his breastplate now at Blair Castle is a later addition for dramatic effect. 

27 July 1777
Thomas Campbell, poet, born in Glasgow. He married his cousin, Matilda Sinclair in 1803 or 1804.  Link to Poet's Corner.
27 July 1896  Air Vice Marshal  Sir Robert Allingham George, Governor of South Australia, born in Ross and Cromarty.
28 July 1683

Anne Stuart married Prince George of Denmark. The second daughter of James II, she was raised a protestant by her uncle, Charles II.  None of her children survived her, and she died without an heir.

28 July 1914 The First World War began with Austria-Hungary's declaration of war with Serbia.
29 July 1567

 James VI was crowned at Stirling.  The one year old James was crowned James VI of Scotland in a Protestant ceremony in the Church of the Holy Rude, close to the Castle.  John Knox preached the sermon.

29 July 1763
Admiral Sir Philip Charles Calderwood Henderson Durham born Largo Fife.
30 July 1547

The Protestants who were responsible for the murder of Cardinal David Beaton surrendered St Andrews Castle to French forces.  Cardinal Beaton had executed Protestant Preacher George Wishart in 1546 and the Protestants leaders reacted by seizing the castle and killing Beaton.  They held out for a year.  One of their number, John Knox, served subsequently for 19 months on French galleys, but eventually he and the others, but for one who died either escaped or were released.

The mine dug under the castle wall above during the siege

31 July 1423 Memorial to the Battle of Cravant from the Alliance France-Ecosse
Battle of Cravant. 4,500 French and Scots soldiers, commanded by John Stewart, Earl of Buchan and Seigneur of Aubigny fell in defence of the town against the English.
31 July 1786
First publication of the "Kilmarnock Edition" of the poems of Robert Burns "Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect".






Updated 13/07/2024