This book focuses on the design and manufacture of Scottish arms and armour from the Middle Ages to the end of the Jacobite rebellions. The book covers edged and missile weapons, firearms, body armour and targes (shields), as well as looking at the appearance of Highland and Lowland soldiers.
Cannan dispels some of the myths that surround the evocative figure of the Highlander, looking in detail at the actual weapons used in the Highlands at different periods – the preponderance of firearms in the Jacobite army at Culloden being one interesting example. One of the most interesting themes of this book looks at the smith, an almost mystic figure at his peak, tracing the history of some impressively long-lived families of smiths.
Cannan has maintained a good focus throughout and has successfully avoided getting bogged down in lengthy accounts of battles, although he does examine the effectiveness of the equipment being discussed.
The text is lavishly illustrated, all in colour and with a very high quality of photograph. I found the section on the pistol especially effective, with some fantastically elaborately examples show. This will be a useful book for anyone who has an interest in Scottish military history or in the history of weapons.
The Beginnings of Scottish Arms and Armour
The Middle Ages
Gaelic Blacksmiths and Men of Art
Firearms and the Lowland and Burgh Workshops
Union of the Crowns
The Jacobite Wars
A New Scotland
Places to Visit
Author: Fergus Cannan
Publisher: Shire Publications