This month’s Map of the Month celebrates the work of Alexander von Humboldt. The map Outlines of Botanical Geography appears in W.K. Johnston’s Physical Atlas (1848). Humboldt played an important part in the design and production of this map. Bearing an almost Faustian thirst for knowledge, Humboldt aimed to explore as much of the world as […]
The Empire Exhibition 1938 The Empire Exhibition ran from May to October 1938 at Bellahouston Park in Glasgow. King George VI with Queen Mary officially opened the Exhibition on the 3rd of May 1938 2017 marks seventy-nine years since the Exhibition. Reflecting on current political and social economic trends perhaps we can identify, more than […]
As you would expect the National Library of Scotland has academic journals on all disciplines and also Scottish magazines and serial publications ranging from influential 19th century literary journals such as “Blackwood’s Edinburgh magazine” to modern titles such as D C Thomson’s recently launched “Danger mouse” comic and the new Scottish football journal “Nutmeg”. What […]
Aurora Borealis – By Marco Ottobelli – Own work, [CC BY-SA 4.0] What does “Iceland” mean to you? To me the name conjures up the distinctive Icelandic style of knitting very cosy jumpers, Magnus and Sally Magnusson, long dark nights with the Northern Lights putting on a show, and nervously watching the latest up-dates on […]
Accurate, beautiful, clever, dangerous, exciting. Maps can be all of these things. They show us new places, help us re-imagine familiar haunts and even enable us to travel through time. A map is both a useful tool and a magic carpet to far-away places. In the cold winter months we can travel in our minds […]
I solemnly swear that I am up to no good! J.K. Rowling’s magnificent imagination conjured up the Marauder’s Map of Hogwarts Castle. This magical map is usually disguised as a blank piece of parchment, activated by the spell above. Once unlocked, the map reveals a detailed plan of Hogwarts, covered in named, moving dots which […]
Scotland and the photographically illustrated book 1845-1900 In October 1844 Henry Talbot, the inventor of the calotype negative (Talbotype) process of photography travelled to Scotland along with Nicolaas Henneman, his former valet who was now running his own Talbotype establishment in Reading. Talbot, with the aid of Henneman, was planning to take photographs to illustrate […]
Thomas Sturdy Law (1916-1997), a committed and powerful poet in the Scots language, was born in Lanarkshire one hundred years ago on Hallowe’en. Our current display in the main hall of our George IV Bridge building in Edinburgh notes the centenary of his birth, drawing on our extensive manuscript and published collections.
As the sun sets earlier and the nights are getting darker, now is the perfect time to look to the skies and locate different constellations. This would be impossible for the amateur astronomer without a handy constellation guide like Middleton’s Celestial Atlas.
Most people when they think of films probably think of the latest blockbusters showing at the cinema; fantastic stories far removed from everyday life, and rarely showing anything of Scotland. What many people don’t realise is that for four decades the National Library of Scotland’s Moving Image Archive has been collecting and preserving all kinds […]