Basics of Scottish History Quiz: Scotland and the World

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Scotland is one of the oldest nations in the world, having been around, more or less, for well over a millennium. That has given the Scots ample time to forge linkages with other parts of the world, and this they have done with industry and enthusiasm. Scotland, as a result, has long been a highly connected country - a lot more so, indeed, than even many of its own citizens realise.

But what did these worldwide connections look like? This quiz will test you on the whole gamut of Scotland's global interactions from the Middle Ages to the 20th century. It covers everything from politics and warfare to culture and trade. Are you an expert on global Scotland? Or will you show yourself up as completely clueless. There's only one way to find out...

Created by: Dr Allan Kennedy of Centre for Scottish Culture
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  1. Where was St Margaret (d.1093) born?
  2. In which year is the 'Auld Alliance' between Scotland and France generally said to have started?
  3. At which battle in 1318 was Edward Bruce (brother of King Robert I) killed, ending his bid to be recognised as High King of Ireland?
  4. The 15th-century Trinity Alter Panels, containing depictions of both James III and his wife, Queen Margaret, are typically attributed to which Flemish artist?
  5. What was the name of the Italian alchemist who frequented the court of James IV, and who in 1507 famously made an unsuccessful experiment in mechanical flight from the walls of Stirling Castle?
  6. To which of these French kings was Mary I (Mary, Queen of Scots) married?
  7. Which Dutch town served as a Scottish staple port from the 16th to the 18th centuries?
  8. Dunfermline-born Princess Elizabeth, the famous 'Winter Queen', was briefly queen of which state in 1619-20?
  9. In which territory did William Alexander of Menstrie spearhead an effort to settle a Scottish colony during the 1620s?
  10. In which town was the first Scottish associational club in North America fouded in 1657?
  11. In which year was the ill-fated Scottish colony at Darien, on the Isthmus of Panama, finally abandoned?
  12. Aberdeen-born sailor Thomas Gordon (1658-1741) became a senior admiral in the navy of which European country?
  13. Purchased in 1748 by a consortium of merchants led by Scotsmen Alexander Grant and Richard Oswald, what was the name of the small island in the Sierra Leone River that was an important processing point in the transatlantic slave trade?
  14. The explorer Sir Alexander Mackenzie in 1793 become the first person to complete an overland crossing of which continent?
  15. In which Asian city was a tradition of annual St Andrews Day dinners initiated in 1837, soon to be followed by similar foundations in many other cities?
  16. Fraserburgh-born merchant Thomas Blake Glover (1838-1911) is generally seen as a key influence in the modernisation and industrialisation of which country?
  17. In which modern African country did Mary Slessor (1848-1915) conduct most of her missionary work?
  18. RRS Discovery, famously used in Ernest Shackleton's Antarctic exploration mission of 1901-4, was built in which Scottish town?
  19. Born in Tain, who served as Prime Minister of New Zealand from 1940 to 1949?
  20. In which year was 'Tartan Day' (6 April) given official recognition in the United States?

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