19. “And Cattle Upon a Thousand Hills”: Putting Transhumance at the Heart of the Highland Economy

19. “And Cattle Upon a Thousand Hills”: Putting Transhumance at the Heart of the Highland Economy

19. “And Cattle Upon a Thousand Hills”: Putting Transhumance at the Heart of the Highland Economy

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by Dr. David Taylor

Synopsis

Passing through Badenoch in 1762 Bishop Forbes commented, ‘all along the words of the Psalmist came often into my mind, “And Cattle upon a thousand Hills” [Psalm 50]’. It was an evocative image of a long-gone economy when cattle dominated the central Highland landscape from glen to mountain-top, while also reminding us that Highland hills were not the leisure playground of today, but the everyday workplace of the common people. This talk will explore the rationale behind the shieling system, suggesting that transhumance not only underpinned the entire regional economy from peasant to aristocrat, but involved the sophisticated management of what is now somewhat erroneously termed ‘wild land’.

Image caption: A shieling site on the remote Loch Caoldair in Badenoch. Source: David Taylor

About the speaker

David Taylor graduated in Scottish Historical Studies from Edinburgh University in 1972. He was Principal Teacher of History in Kingussie for thirty years, spending much of that time exploring the ruins of the Badenoch landscape. After retiring he undertook a PhD on Badenoch history with the UHI, graduating in 2014 and subsequently converting that research into two books and various articles.

How to participate

This talk will begin at 7.30 pm (GMT) and last up to one hour, followed by questions. As the audience for each talk will be limited to 100, please register in plenty of time by e-mailing us (click either on the ‘Register for Events’ button above, or click here click here ). You will then be sent a code to allow you to join the talk.

  • Participation in these lectures is free to members of the Society and to students.
  • Non-members (other than students) are politely requested to make a donation of £5 to society funds.

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Date And Time

14-Dec-2023 @ 19:30
 

Registration End Date

14-Dec-2023
 

Location

Online event
 

Event Types