Scotland in the Early Middle Ages

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With all the great quizzes on Scottish history recently produced by the esteemed Dr Allan Kennedy, I thought there might be some people who'd appreciate something on the early medieval period too.

Quiz will cover some of the basics of early medieval 'Scotland', from 500 to 1100 broadly speaking, though there might be one or two more difficult ones to reward the nerdier of participants. Give the test a go, and see how you do.

Created by: Neil McGuigan

  1. The 'Dun' element common in Scottish place-names, as in Dundee, Dunnottar, Dunbar, Dumbarton, and so forth, is derived from a word in Celtic languages meaning roughly what?
  2. Which of these later regions is strongly associated with the early medieval 'Scottish' realm of Dál Riata (Dalriada)?
  3. St Columba is primarily associated with the foundation of a monastery in which island?
  4. St Columba was said by his biographer Adomnán to have anointed which king?
  5. A site named Alt Clut functioned as a political centre for the early medieval Britons of south-western Scotland. With what modern town is it associated?
  6. What was the name of the Pictish polity that became dominant in northern Britain in the later seventh century?
  7. In May 685 Bridei son of Beli, king of Fortriu, defeated and killed the Northumbrian ruler Ecgfrith. The site of the battle is described variously, but which of the following is NOT one of the battle's known names?
  8. By c. 1100, a Pictish king called Ungus (or Angus) was credited with the foundation of a great church in eastern Scotland, built in thanks for a victory over the English. What was that church?
  9. St Cuthbert, probably from the district of Lauderdale and later patron of Durham, entered monasticism at what house?
  10. Honoured by the famous scholar Alcuin of York and more familiar to later medieval Scots as St Baldred, which church is associated with the eighth-century Anglo-Saxon holy man Balthere?
  11. Which of these saints is associated with the churches of Aberdour, Aberlour, Deer, Halkirk, and Markinch?
  12. 'Sueno's Stone', thought to have been constructed by either the Picts or tenth century Scots, is one of the largest monuments from early medieval Scotland. Where is it located?
  13. Two seemingly independent written traditions appear to attest a battle between the Scots and the Northmen towards the end of the ninth century in which the Scots were defeated by an unusual occurrence. What was this occurrence?
  14. All tenth century Scottish kings were descended in the male-line from which 9th century ancestor?
  15. In 937 the Scottish king Constantine son of Áed was defeated by the English at the battle of Brunanburh. What was the name of the victorius English king?
  16. Who led the Scots at the battle of Carham, traditionally dated to 1018?
  17. What was the 'real name' of Macbeth's wife and queen, most familiar today as Lady Macbeth of Shakespeare?
  18. In the 1060s a certain Echmarcach mac Ragnaill accompanied King Donnchad of Munster on pilgrimage to Rome. Echmarcach is described as king of 'Na Renna', or 'The Rhins'. To which part of Scotland is 'Na Renna' thought to refer (at least in part)?
  19. In 1072, an army of Normans invaded the realm of Máel Coluim III. At what location did the Scots and Normans make peace that year? (HINT: associated with an Irish round tower and a church dedicated to St Brigid of Kildare).
  20. Where did Máel Coluim III meet his death in 1093?

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