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Society of Antiquaries of Scotland launches a free Digital Books platform

9th September 2019 | Categories: Publications, Research

We’ve launched a new online platform to make peer-reviewed academic books about Scottish archaeology and history freely available.

The first two titles available through Open Access are Portmahomack on Tarbat Ness (Carver et al., 2016) and The Scottish Antiquarian Tradition (Bell, 1981). Portmahomack on Tarbat Ness presents recent archaeological discoveries in one of the key centres of the Pictish nation, and reveals how the local society lived and changed up until the medieval period. The Scottish Antiquarian Tradition is a collection of essays that deal with the history of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland.

Portmahomack on Tarbat Ness: Changing Ideologies in North-East Scotland, Sixth to Sixteenth Century AD by Martin Carver et al.

A complete PDF ebook as well as individual chapters are available to download free of charge from The Society is planning to include several more out-of-print titles shortly, all under a CC-BY-NC licence.

The Society is also hoping to start publishing new books through the platform in the future. As the senior learned Society in Scotland for heritage and an independent publisher of academic research, the charity is aiming for full and immediate access to all scholarly publications.

Open Access has been part of the Society’s publishing programme for several years now, with both hybrid and full open access publication models – the journal back catalogue (1851–2015) is freely available online at and the archaeological reports are fully Open Access via

Founded in 1780 and incorporated by Royal Charter in 1783 the Society’s purpose is “to investigate both antiquities and natural and civil history in general, with the intention that the talents of mankind should be cultivated and that the study of natural and useful sciences should be promoted”. The Society is an independent publisher of peer-reviewed papers and books, runs an annual programme of lectures and conferences, and administers research grants and prizes.



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