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Book of Scottish Story
Historical, Humorous, Legendary, Imaginative
by Standard Scottish Writers (1896)
Our thanks to John Henderson for scanning this in for us

The Book of Scottish Story
Historical, Humorous, Legendary, Imaginative
by Standard Scottish Writers Published by Thomas D. Morison, 1896 London, Glasgow.


NEXT to its Ballads and Songs, the Stories of Scottish Literature are the most characteristic exponents of the national spirit. Allowing for the changes which time and the progress of civilization have effected in the national manners and character since the beginning of the present century— the era to which the Stories chiefly refer—they shall be found to delineate the social and domestic features of Scottish life as faithfully as the Ballads do the spirit and sentiment of an earlier age; or as the daily press reflects, rather than portrays, those of the present day. While Songs—the simple expressions of feelings and sentiments, musically rendered—change, in so far as they exhibit habits and manners, yet their form is lasting. Not so the Ballads, whose true historical successors are Prose Stories, as Novels are those of Romances.

Whether we account for it on the theory that a larger infusion of the imaginative and romantic elements, characteristic of the Celtic race, gives additional fervour to the Scottish character, or otherwise, it is a fact that in no other community, on the same social level as that of the peasantry and working-classes of Scotland, has this form of literature had so enthusiastic a reception. There can be no doubt that this widely diffused and keen appreciation, by an earnest and self-respecting people, of Stories which are largely graphic delineations of their own national features, has been the chief stimulus to the production of so large and excellent a supply as our literature contains.

The present Selection is made on the principle of giving the best specimens of the most popular authors, with as great a variety, as to subjects, as is compatible with these conditions.

The favourable reception of the issue in the serial form, both by the press and the public, is looked upon by the projectors as an earnest—now that the book is completed—that its further reception will be such as to assure them that they have not fallen short of the aim announced in their prospectus, viz., to form a Collection of Standard Scottish Tales calculated to delight the imagination, to convey interesting information, and to elevate and strengthen the moral principles of the young.


Lights and Shadows of Scottish Life
A selection from the Papers of the Late Arthur Austin

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