About the BookThis new edition of Michael Fry's remarkable book charts the involvement of the Scots in the British empire from its earliest days to the end of the twentieth century. It is a tale of dramatic extremes and craggy characters and of a huge range of concerns - from education, evangelism and philanthropy to spying, swindling and drug running. Stories of Scottish regiments on the rampage, cannibalism and other atrocities are contrasted with the deeds of heroic pioneers such as David Livingstone and Mary Slessor. Above all it tells how the British empire came to be dominated and run by the Scots, and how it truly became a Scottish empire. As the empire transformed Scotland beyond recognition, so was the Empire shaped by the Scots - a remarkable achievement from the population of so small a country, which was itself neither nation nor fully province, neither fully colonizer nor fully colonized. Michael Fry's energetic and colourful account is one of the classics of modern Scottish history.
Michael Fry was educated at Oxford and Hamburg Universities. He has held academic positions in Scotland at Strathclyde and Edinburgh Universities, in the US at Brown University, and in Germany at Leipzig University and the Max Franck Institute, Frankfurt. He is the author of ten books on modern Scottish history, including The Dundas Despotism (1993), The Scottish Empire (2001), Wild Scots, Four Hundred Years of Highland History (2005) and Edinburgh, a History of the City (2009). He has contributed to most major Scottish and British newspapers, and has been a regular columnist for The Scotsman, the Herald and The Sunday Times.