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Anglo-Scottish Relations from 1603 to 1900$
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T C Smout

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780197263303

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197263303.001.0001

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Scottish-English Connections in British Radicalism in the 1790s

Scottish-English Connections in British Radicalism in the 1790s

(p.188) (p.189) 10 Scottish-English Connections in British Radicalism in the 1790s
Anglo-Scottish Relations from 1603 to 1900

Bob Harris

British Academy

This chapter discusses the frame for radical co-operation in the age of the Friends of the People and later. The links to radicalism south of the Border have tended to be relegated to the margins of historical debate. Through the agency of Thomas Muir, links with the leading Irish radical society, the United Irishmen, were established at a relatively early stage, although the precise nature of these remains obscure. The emphasis on the Scots-Irish connection reflects the formative affect on Irish presbyterian radicals of an education provided by the Scottish universities. The influence of the English reform movement on the emergence of an organised campaign for parliamentary reform in Scotland in the 1790s has not always been fully appreciated, although it appears to have been a significant one. Correspondence and personal contacts across national boundaries were intermittent; the flow of print, in both ways, was continual. During the 1790s, union was a crucial element of radical strategy and tactics in Britain.

Keywords:   British radicalism, Friends of the People, English reform movement, United Irishmen, parliamentary reform, Thomas Muir

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