37 episodes

Susan Morrison explores the rich and sometimes murky depths of Scotland's past.

Time Travels BBC Radio Scotland

    • History
    • 5.0 • 14 Ratings

Susan Morrison explores the rich and sometimes murky depths of Scotland's past.

    Vikings and Fluorescent Bunnies

    Vikings and Fluorescent Bunnies

    Yes we’ve all heard about Vikings and monasteries but there’s a lot more to it than that - they might make you a business offer you couldn’t refuse but their fashion and language really caught on. Dr Adrián Maldonado of National Museums of Scotland, author of 'Crucible of Nations: Scotland from Viking age to Medieval kingdoms' chats to Susan Morrison about the new cultures emerging in 9th-11th century ‘Scotland’. Norse culture in the Northern isles produced striking carved stones and in the 20th century a Shetlander with a love of carving stone heads came to Montrose asylum - Adam Christie - he’s just one of the people whose work is represented in the Art Extraordinary collection which Dr Cheryl McGeachan is so fascinated by. It’s art work made by people in asylums who had a yearning to create - from Adam Christie’s stone heads to Mrs McGilp’s fluorescent bunnies from Aberdeen.

    • 28 min
    The Caribbean and ‘Chivalry’

    The Caribbean and ‘Chivalry’

    Susan Morrison explores with Dr Callum Watson how King Robert Bruce and Sir James Douglas were best chivalric buddies in the wars of independence and how chivalry was nothing to do with throwing down cloaks for ladies over muddy puddles. Dr Désha Osborne and Lisa Williams introduce us to the Garifuna people and the horrific colonial violence they faced in 18th century St Vincent. Scots settlers trying to make their fortunes played a prominent part. Moving back in time, Susan talks to Dr Adrián Maldonado of National Museums of Scotland about what was going on up here before the Vikings got a foothold.

    • 28 min
    Seditious Sonnets and Groovy Togs

    Seditious Sonnets and Groovy Togs

    Dr Jade Halbert of the University of Huddersfield would have loved to be alive in the sixties! She introduces Susan Morrison to the glories of Glasgow’s boutique culture where you could finally buy trendy clothes your mum wouldn’t be seen dead in and listen to music your dad would shout at. Emily Hay of Glasgow University heads for the not-so-swinging 1560s and looks at why you might use a sonnet sequence to help frame a queen for murder. Did Mary Queen of Scots have her own poems taken down and twisted against her? And is she a much more important Scottish female author than we realise?

    • 28 min
    Curious Cures and Life on the Road

    Curious Cures and Life on the Road

    Susan Morrison catches up with Dr Katie Barclay of Adelaide University to find out what life was like for Scotland’s travelling poor in the 18th century - were we more generous back then, and how hard a life was it for women tramping the road? But if it gave you sore feet, might there have been an ancient remedy for that? Dr Sharon Arbuthnot of Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, Scotland’s National Centre for Gaelic Language in the Isle of Skye has been digging into the Gaelic medical manuscripts of the middle ages. They’re a treasure trove of cures, charms and surprising uses for bits of bird and animal - all plugged into the learned culture of Europe, and we meet someone who might have used the services of the learned medical men who wrote the books - Christina MacRuairi - a key supporter of King Robert Bruce. Dr Callum Watson of National Trust for Scotland has the story.

    • 28 min
    A Witch Hunt In The Family

    A Witch Hunt In The Family

    Susan Morrison gets to grips with the South Queensferry witch-hunt. We know about the horrors which people accused of witchcraft suffered but we very rarely get to see what happens to their families. How could you try to save your accused loved ones? Who did you have to take on and what could they do to you in return? Dr Ciaran Jones and Dr Louise Yeoman follow one family in the South Queensferry witch hunt of 1643-44 with Susan and look at how they took on the authorities and with what results. Moving forward in time to 1813 in Glasgow, we find another family - the Hastings who want to keep a wee ten year old boy they’ve adopted called John Fee but then John’s dad turns up and he isn’t happy. Dr Katie Barclay of Adelaide University helps us look at child stealing and what counts as a good home for a child among the very poorest people in Scottish society.

    • 28 min
    Playing At Soldiers

    Playing At Soldiers

    Susan Morrison reckons you can’t have a mediaeval Hollywood movie without knights in shining armour but wants to know when did the Norman knight come to Scotland and who was hiring him? Dr Fiona Watson has the answers and it’s earlier than you might think. But if you wanted to refight those historic battles on your living room carpet, you’d need some toy soldiers. They’ve always had a topical side to them too, reflecting whatever conflict was going on at the time. The great age of the lead toy soldier covered the big conflicts of the 20th century and sparked controversy about war toys - did they cause war-mongering or were they good for your kid’s mental development? Euan Loarridge of Glasgow University has been in the miniature trenches examining their campaigns. And we’re kicking off an investigation into a witch-hunt in South Queensferry with Dr Ciaran Jones - more on that next time.

    • 27 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
14 Ratings

14 Ratings

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