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New paperback edition of this popular Scottish reference book This authoritative, entertaining and eminently browsable reference book, arranged in easily accessible A-Z format, is an absorbing and imaginative feast of Scottish lore, language, history and culture, from the mythical origins of the Scots in Scythia to the contemporary Scotland of the Holyrood parliament and Trainspotting.
A 'museum of literary odds and ends', this classic work of 1870 elucidates the etymology of 20,000 words and phrases.
Who? What? Where? Why? Enquire within for a wealth of fascinating and authoritative information on the stories behind words, names, and sayings. - ;What is a ham-and-egger? What are Anglo-Saxon attitudes? Who or what is liable to jump the shark? Who first tried to nail jelly to the wall? The answers to these and many more questions are in this fascinating book. Here in one volume you can track down the stories behind the names and sayings you meet, whether in classic literature or today's news. Drawing on Oxford's unrivalled bank of reference and language online resources, this dictionary covers classical and other mythologies, history, religion, folk customs, superstitions, science and technology, philosophy, and popular culture. Extensive cross referencing makes it easy to trace specific information, while every page points to further paths to explore. A fascinating slice of cultural history, and a browser's delight from start to finish. What is the fog of war? Who first wanted to spend more time with one's family? When was the Dreamtime? How long since the first cry of Women and children first? Where might you find dark matter? Would you want the Midas touch? Should you worry about grey goo? -
Discusses the life, novels, and writing habits of J.K. Rowling, author of the popular "Harry Potter" novels.
Scotland's rich past and varied landscape have inspired an extraordinary array of legends and beliefs, and in The Lore of Scotland Jennifer Westwood and Sophia Kingshill bring together many of the finest and most intriguing: stories of heroes and bloody feuds, tales of giants, fairies, and witches, and accounts of local customs and traditions. Their range extends right across the country, from the Borders with their haunting ballads, via Glasgow, site of St Mungo's miracles, to the fateful battlefield of Culloden, and finally to the Shetlands, home of the seal-people. More than simply retelling these stories, The Lore of Scotland explores their origins, showing how and when they arose and investigating what basis - if any - they have in historical fact. In the process, it uncovers the events that inspired Shakespeare's Macbeth, probes the claim that Mary King's Close is the most haunted street in Edinburgh, and examines the surprising truth behind the fame of the MacCrimmons, Skye's unsurpassed bagpipers. Moreover, it reveals how generations of Picts, Vikings, Celtic saints and Presbyterian reformers shaped the myriad tales that still circulate, and, from across the country, it gathers together legends of such renowned figures as Sir William Wallace, St Columba, and the great warrior Fingal. The result is a thrilling journey through Scotland's legendary past and an endlessly fascinating account of the traditions and beliefs that play such an important role in its heritage.

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