Callum Macdonald Award winner announced
The 2005 Callum Macdonald Memorial Award has been won by Gill McConnell for her poetry pamphlet Garden Party, published by Woodburn Press. One one of the most sought-after prizes in Scottish poetry pamphlet publishing, the award is presented annually by the National Library of Scotland, and this year attracted its highest level of entries.
Gill McConnell, who also designed and illustrated her pamphlet, was presented with the top prize of £500 and the Callum Macdonald Quaich at a ceremony in the Library on Thursday 19 May. Joint runners up were Jim Carruth, for Bovine Pastoral (published by Ludovic Press), and Hamish Whyte, for Passage/An Pasaiste by James McGonigal (Mariscat Press). All entries submitted will join the Library's collection of contemporary Scottish poetry pamphlets.
Read details of the shortlisted entries for 2005 in our press release.
26 May 2005
Medieval theme for family fun
from Murthly Hours folio 4r
Perth Museum and Art Gallery is the venue for a family event with an 'olde worlde' flavour taking place later this month.
Organised by the museum and the National Library of Scotland, the 'Medieval Family Day' on Saturday 28 May promises activities to interest children and adults alike.
A juggler and a 'medieval knight' will make a personal appearance. Visitors can watch chain mail being made, have a go at calligraphy and learn about food from the period. They can also find out about one of the National Library's manuscript treasures from Perthshire. The Murthly Hours is a richly illustrated book of prayer dated 1280, which visitors can explore via an exhibition and online access to our digitised version.
See our Events page for further details.
18 May 2005
Why is Scotland supernatural?
A talk on Scottish interest in the supernatural is one of the key events of a new Edinburgh festival being launched this month on Friday 13.
At the National Library of Scotland on Wednesday 18 May, historian, broadcaster and former NLS curator Louise Yeoman will explore supernatural tales that have been popular with Scots for centuries. Part of Mary King's Ghost Fest, the event is part of a series that also includes paranormal investigations, parapsychology experiments, and night vigils. The Library is in the vicinity of Mary King's Close, the underground 17th-century street off the Royal Mile which is regarded as one of the most haunted places in Scotland.
During her time at NLS, Louise Yeoman uncovered in our manuscripts collections contemporary accounts of witchcraft and witch-hunting. She was also involved in the Survey of Scottish Witchcraft: 1563-1736, which showed that more witches were accused in early modern Scotland than was previously thought.
'Why is Scotland supernatural?' is a free event, but ticketed. Booking information is on our Events page.
12 May 2005
Making Friends with The Questions
It's described as 'the new, fun way to meet people', and there's a chance to find out what it's all about at the National Library of Scotland this month.
The Questions: 101 ways to sort the pearls from the swine is an amusing series of 'either/or' questions designed to discover people's preferences on anything from TV sitcoms to philosophy. It's a direct way to help people to get a conversation going or to determine quickly if the person they've just met is a potential friend or a soulmate. For instance, do they prefer the Beatles to the Rolling Stones? Tea or coffee? Monopoly or Scrabble? Nigella Lawson or Delia Smith?
The idea has been catching on rapidly since The Questions were published in a 'Classic' and a 'Retro' edition last November. Authors Fiona McCabe, William O'Leary and Cath Sutton will be at the Library on Thursday 12 May to explain how it all began and show what fun it can be getting to know people. Tickets are free, but you're advised to book in advance: see our Events page for details.
5 May 2005