Graphics illustrating historical themes

From Mary Queen of Scots' last letter, written six hours before her execution, to photographs of the First World War, learn about the history of Scotland and the wider world through National Library of Scotland resources.

Discover the past and understand people, past events and societies.

Learning resources

Specially designed to support classroom teaching using our collections.

Drawing of a rat

Learn about the history of the plague in Scotland and see Scotland's first printed medical book. Written in Scots and published in 1568, you can browse through each page online.


Illustration of a woman with a basket of food

'Lifting the lid on Scottish food history explores Scotland's natural larder through items in the National Library of Scotland's collections.


A suffragette

'A guid cause: The women's suffrage movement in Scotland' learning resource with activities for secondary school students.


Map detail

'A home away from home' interactive learning resource based on our emigration archive.


The 'Women in the Great War' resource looks at women's role in the First World War, using archive material from the National Library of Scotland collections.


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Library video guides

Man using laptop seated at table

Watch our video guides to find out how to access National Library of Scotland resources from home, school or in person.

1715 Jacobite Rising

The 1715 Jacobite Rising

Learn more about the key characters and events that led to the 1715 Jacobite Rising.

Library favourites

Nicola Stratton

Find out about the Scottish witch hunts in this fascinating insight by Curator Nicola Stratton. Watch video.

Library learning for you

If there's a topic you'd like more information about or if you have any suggestions for learning, email us.

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