- Introduction: The Study of Modern Scottish History
- Land and Sea: The Environment
- The Demographic Factor
- Mythical Scotland
- Religion and Society to <i>c</i>.1900
- The Literary Tradition
- The Clearances and the Transformation of the Scottish Countryside
- A Global Diaspora
- The Renaissance
- Reformed and Godly Scotland?
- The ‘Rise’ of the State?
- Reappraising the Early Modern Economy, 1500–1650
- Scotland restored and reshaped: Politics and Religion, <i>c</i>.1660–1712
- The Early Modern Family
- The Seventeenth-Century Irish Connection
- New Perspectives on Pre-union Scotland
- Migrant Destinations, 1500–1750
- Union Historiographies
- Scottish Jacobitism in its International Context
- The Rise (and fall?) of the Scottish Enlightenment
- The Barbarous North? Criminality in Early Modern Scotland
- Industrialization and the Scottish People
- Scotland and the Eighteenth-Century Empire
- The Challenge of Radicalism to 1832
- The Scottish Cities
- Identity within the Union State, 1800–1900
- The Scottish Diaspora since 1815
- The Impact of the Victorian Empire
- The Great War
- The Interwar Crisis: The Failure of Extremism
- The Religious Factor
- Gender and Nationhood in Modern Scottish Historiography
- The Stateless Nation and the British State since 1918
- Challenging the Union
- A New Scotland? The Economy
- A New Scotland? Society and Culture
Abstract and Keywords
Underpinning the transformation of the Scottish countryside during the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries, and forming a vital precondition for the Improving Movement, were far-reaching changes in the structure and layout of farms, and in the nature of the farm community. When first coined as a description of the changes that swept across the Highlands and Islands over the second half of the eighteenth first half of the nineteenth century, the meaning, chronology, and distribution of the clearances were all clearly defined. ‘Clearance’ was seen as a term that best captured the sudden and socially disruptive way in which many traditional communities in the Highlands were swept aside to make way for sheep. Establishing the build-up of market responsiveness is important when we come to look at the restructuring of towns. This article, which discusses Scotland's clearances and the transformation of the Scottish countryside, focusing on the Lowlands, Southern Uplands, and Highlands and Islands, also examines the persistence of small farms, crofts and townships, and the spread of new husbandries.
Robert Dodgshon, FBA, Emeritus Professor, Institute of Geography and Earth Science, Aberystwyth University
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