Research & Projects

The Society promotes the understanding of Scotland’s past by supporting original research through grants and awards, innovative projects like ScARF and Dig It! and high-quality publications.

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Runestone Project

A Viking age Swedish runestone in Edinburgh with an interesting story to tell is on the move!

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Ritual and Funerary Rites in Later Prehistoric Scotland

Faunal analysis from the Covesea Caves highlight the diversity of the species composition

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Attending the 42nd International Symposium on Archaeometry, Mérida, Mexico

A Young and Student Fellow Grant helped support attendance and a presentation at an international scientific conference

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Friaries in Scotland

Visits supported to produce an up to date gazetteer and background summary regarding Scotland’s medieval friaries

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‘A Football and Banquet at Fastern’s Eve’

Research into civic sponsorship of festival football in Late Medieval and Early Modern Scotland.

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The Lunanhead Palaeolithic Project

Analysis of Scottish lithic artefacts confirms they are Late Upper Palaeolithic in date

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Excavation and survey of Early Neolithic chambered cairn on Islay

Society funded excavations were carried out on a chambered cairn on Islay

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‘Swords with Stories’

A Society award allowed the completion of a project researching a sword discovered at Annan Museum.

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Follow the Thread: Investigation of a Lint Mill at Baldernock

Excavation and archival research have uncovered the remains of milling infrastructure at Milngavie

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West Plean Object Review

Reanalysis of objects has offered for the first time a very tentative Roman date for the West Plean Homestead

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Excavations in the museum store: Naken chaetrie

Research into Gypsy Traveller objects in the Highland Folk Museum

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“In your chain of friends”

A Gunning Jubilee Gift travel-grant to visit the Regional Museum of Lapland

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Hiberno-Scandinavian strap-fittings of Scotland

A Gunning Jubilee Award is enabling collaborative work on a Scottish corpus of Hiberno-Scandinavian strap-fittings

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Discovering the godly in rural Scotland, 1650-1660

Archival work funded by the Gunning Jubilee Gift grant uncovers the complexities of parish disputes in seventeenth-century Scotland

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Grieve Collection, the analysis of a flint scatter

Research on a museum collection has confirmed it is importance for lithic studies

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Male Sexual Violence in Interwar Scotland

The Gunning Jubilee Gift was instrumental in funding data collection at National Records Scotland,

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Male Violence in Interwar Scotland

Research into judicial cases in the early 20th century reveals attitudes to sexual crimes.

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A Scottish Spy: John Cairncross and the Cambridge Spy-ring

Research funded by the Society provided vital insights into the early life of this Soviet agent.

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Geophysical survey at the Roman forts at Golden Hill, Duntocher and Croy Hill

A grant enabled the geophysical survey of Roman forts on the Antonine Wall

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Radiocarbon Dating the Queen Mary Harp

Radiocarbon dating has clarified the structure and dating of this important early stringed instrument.

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Scotland and the Burgundian Low Countries, c.1384-1477

Supporting research investigating links between Scotland and the Burgundian Netherlands

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The Lismore Nave Project

Excavations on Lismore are exploring the nave of the important church there.

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Women and the materiality of social history, 1880-1960

Research into the collections at Highland Folk Museum and Mitchell Library

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Bringing landscapes alive: The Atlantic Roundhouses of the Tarbat Peninsula

Reconstruction images of excavated Atlantic roundhouses funded by the Society

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Crannogs in north-east Scotland: Ballater to Banchory

The Society grant-aided a small excavation into a suspected crannog

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Finds in context – investigating the long Iron Age at Clarkly Hill, Moray

Society funding helped excavate a rich Iron Age site in Moray.

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Key Pattern on Pictish sculpture

A Gunning Jubilee Gift enabled an early career researcher to study Pictish sculpture at Groam House Museum and Nigg Old Church

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The Historical Archaeology Research project on Staffa

The first archaeological excavations on Staffa were funded by the Society

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The Achavanich Beaker Burial project

The Society helped transform an early Bronze Age burial into one of the best researched of its kind.

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Medieval and Post Medieval window glass in Scotland

Scientific analysis of window glass fragments interrogates their composition and manufacture.

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Investigating human-cetacean relationships in the Outer Hebrides

The Society funded the identification of whale bone from Cladh Hallan, South Uist.

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Stevenson In Vulcano

Investigating 19th century Scottish industry abroad and within a European context using a Society grant

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Analysis of floor surface deposits at the Ness of Brodgar, Orkney

A Society grant funded thin-section analysis of deposits excavated at the Ness of Brodgar.

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An environmental history of the Anglo-Scottish Union of 1707

Research into the archives of the Royal Bank of Scotland and the Public Records Office

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Geophysical survey of the Roman fort at Duntocher

A Society grant enabled the geophysical survey of a Roman fort on the Antonine Wall.

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White collars and black coats

A grant from the Society enabled the gathering of information from two important organisations.

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Glenshee Archaeology Project: exploring early medieval turf longhouses

The Society’s grant contributed to macrofossil analysis and radiocarbon dating costs for the project.

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The Covesea Caves Project

Grant from the Society is helping to uncover a Late Bronze Age coastal mortuary complex along the Moray coast.

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Earliest Image of St Columba Project

Visit to the Stiftsbibliothek was only possible thanks to a grant from the Society

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Rock art surveys 2014

A Society grant is crucial in this project to record Bronze Age rock art.

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Cawdor Castle archive

Grant funding enabled research into the private Cawdor Estate archive

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Scottish Urn and Burial Newspaper Project 2011-12

The Society helped fund transcription of reports and the creation of a database

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Dumyat Survey

Society grant funding enabled a modern survey of this impressive dun

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Daily activities and resource use in Neolithic Orkney

Micromorphology funded by the Society to investigate spatial differences in activities across the Ness of Brodgar

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Building Ancient Lives : Roundhouse Characterisation

Grant support from the Society demonstrated the importance of the local HER

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Urban Renewal and Child Welfare

Interim report on research by Dr Elizabeth Darling funded by the Society

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The Galloway Picts Project

The Society grant aided the detailed laser scanning of the Pictish symbol stone

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Culdee Archaeology Project 2011-12: Dunkeld Cathedral

A Society grant helped to support geophysical survey at Dunkeld Cathedral

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Research Trip to Tamil Nadu Archives, Chennai

The Gunning Jubilee Gift enabled the study of the East India Company’s manuscripts

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Early Pictish Power Centres and Symbol Stones of Aberdeenshire

The Society funded geophysical survey at two Pictish symbol stones

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Useful and Social Pots: residue analysis of Iron Age pottery

The Society grant covered the laboratory costs for analysing sherds of Iron Age pottery

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Dingwall Thing Project

The Society grant aided a ground penetrating radar survey of this potentially important Viking site

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Finds in context – the long Iron Age at Clarkly Hill, Moray

The Society helped fund excavations at an Iron Age site in Moray

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Glenshee Archaeology Project: Pictish longhouse excavation

The Society’s grant contributed to radiocarbon dating costs for the project

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Lub Dubh Aird: a prehistoric landscape

The Society helped fund this survey looking for signs of early humans in Scotland.

Help us to do more

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