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Enlightenment's FrontierThe Scottish Highlands and the Origins of Environmentalism$
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Fredrik Albritton Jonsson

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780300162547

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300162547.001.0001

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“A Stationary Condition for Ever”

“A Stationary Condition for Ever”

(p.232) 10 “A Stationary Condition for Ever”
Enlightenment's Frontier

Fredrik Albritton Jonsson

Yale University Press

This chapter discusses the final crisis point reached by the colonization of the Highlands after the turn of the century. One of its main causes was the peaceful interval brought about by the Treaty of Amiens between Britain and France from 1801 to 1803, which acted as a vent for discontent and ambition in Highland society, and encouraged the first great wave of emigration since 1793. Commercial pressures gradually made the once managerial linchpin of the agrarian system, the old tacksman class within Gaelic society, obsolete, due to commercial pressures. Tacksman families took flight and went west, resulting in exacerbated reports of these departures that alarmed leading figures in the Highland Society, who suspected a demographic collapse. Henry Dundas and the Lord Advocate Charles Hope, to avoid a disaster, coordinated the most ambitious attempt at state intervention in Highland affairs since the era of the Annexed Estates.

Keywords:   Highlands, Treaty of Amiens, Britain, France, emigration, tacksman class, demographic collapse, Henry Dundas, Charles Hope

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