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date: 05 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

The tercentenary of the Scottish Parliament's approval of the Treaty of Union on January 16, 2007 coincided with a regular monthly press conference at 10 Downing Street. Asked why no major celebrations of the anniversary were being held, the prime minister, Tony Blair, replied that ‘the most important thing is not fireworks but ... giving a good reason as to why the union of England and Scotland is good for today's world and the future’. Several months later, the tercentenary of the Union coming into force on May 1 was overshadowed in Edinburgh by elections, the following day, to the devolved Scottish Parliament, which – aptly perhaps – returned a minority Scottish National Party administration. Seven and a half years previously, on July 1, 1999, the state opening of the new Parliament was choreographed to incorporate resonant echoes of the ceremonial ‘riding of Parliament’ before 1707, appealing to nostalgic notions that the Parliament was being reconvened, rather than created anew. This article provides an overview of Union historiographies three centuries after the Treaty of Union's enactment.

Keywords: Scotland, Treaty of Union, England, Union, historiographies, Parliament

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