Image of Sir Walter Scott


Lifetime: 1771 - 1832 Passed: ≈ 190 years ago


Historical, Novelist, Poet



Sir Walter Scott

Sir Walter Scott, 1st Baronet was a Scottish historical novelist, poet, playwright, and historian. Many of his works remain classics of both English-language literature and Scottish literature. Famous titles include The Lady of the Lake (narrative poem) and the novels WaverleyOld Mortality (or The Tale of Old Mortality), Rob RoyThe Heart of Mid-LothianThe Bride of Lammermoor, and Ivanhoe.

Although primarily remembered for his extensive literary works and his political engagement, Scott was an advocate, judge and legal administrator by profession, and throughout his career combined his writing and editing work with his daily occupation as Clerk of Session and Sheriff-Depute of Selkirkshire.

A prominent member of the Tory establishment in Edinburgh, Scott was an active member of the Highland Society, served a long term as President of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (1820–1832) and was a Vice President of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland (1827–1829).

Scott's knowledge of history, and his facility with literary technique, made him a seminal figure in the establishment of the historical novel genre, as well as an exemplar of European literary Romanticism.

He was created a baronet "of Abbotsford in the County of Roxburgh," Scotland, in the Baronetage of the United Kingdom on 22 April 1820, which title became extinct on the death of his son the 2nd Baronet in 1847.

Books by Sir Walter Scott

Ivanhoe Cover image


History Novel
Chivalric Romance Dispossession

Ivanhoe: A Romance by Walter Scott is a historical novel published in three volumes, in 1819, as one of the Waverley novels. At the time it was written, the novel represented a shift by Scott away from writing novels set in Scotland in the fairly rec...

Rob Roy Cover image

Rob Roy

Fiction Novel
Historical Fiction

Rob Roy is a historical novel by Walter Scott, one of the Waverley novels. It is probably set in 1715, the year of the first Jacobite uprising, and the social and economic background to that event are an important element in the novel, though it is n...

The Talisman Cover image

The Talisman

Romance Fiction Novel
Historical Fiction

The Talisman is one of the Waverley novels by Sir Walter Scott. Published in 1825 as the second of his Tales of the Crusaders, the first being The Betrothed, it is set during the Third Crusade and centres on the relationship between Richard I of Engl...

The Antiquary Cover image

The Antiquary

Fantasy Novel
Historical Fiction French Revolution

The Antiquary, the third of the Waverley novels by Walter Scott, centres on the character of an antiquary: an amateur historian, archaeologist and collector of items of dubious antiquity. He is the eponymous character and for all practical purposes t...

Kenilworth Cover image


Fiction Novel
Historical Fiction True Love Ambition

Kenilworth. A Romance is a historical romance novel by Sir Walter Scott, one of the Waverley novels, first published on 13 January 1821. Set in 1575, it leads up to the elaborate reception of Queen Elizabeth at Kenilworth Castle by the Earl of Leices...

Harold the Dauntless  Cover image

Harold the Dauntless

Romantic Love Spirit Tradition Poems Legend Spirituality Folk lore

Harold the Dauntless is a narrative poem in six short cantos by Walter Scott, published in 1817. It employs a variety of metres. Set in the Durham area, the poem tells of Harold's rejection of his father Witikind's acceptance of Christianity in retu...

Quentin Durward Cover image

Quentin Durward

Beauty Young Prison Adventure Life Discovery Wealth Historical

Quentin Durward is a historical novel by Sir Walter Scott, first published in 1823. The story concerns a Scottish archer in the service of the French King Louis XI (1423–1483) who plays a prominent part in the narrative.

Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft Cover image

Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft

19th century Influential Short Works Anthropology Letters

A series of letters written by Scott on the history of witchcraft and other supernatural events in England and other locations. He documents stories and discredits them with natural causes.

The Fortunes of Nigel Cover image

The Fortunes of Nigel

Adventure Fiction Novel
Murder Action Fortune Imaginative Culture Robbery Heritage Imprisonment

During the turbulent moment in English history involving King James 1 and 6, Nigel Olifaunt, a Scottish lord, seeks to protect his family home and holdings, but meets with recalcitrance and treachery, which eventually results in his imprisonment. But...

Peveril of the Peak Cover image

Peveril of the Peak

Fiction Novel
Marriage Dream Religion Politics Travelling Castle Restoration London

Peveril of the Peak (1823) is the longest novel by Sir Walter Scott. Along with Ivanhoe, Kenilworth, and Woodstock this is one of the English novels in the Waverley novels series, with the main action taking place around 1678 in the Peak District, th...

Old Mortality Cover image

Old Mortality

Fiction Novel
Independence Adventure political Religious Royalty Experiences

It is a conflict between the Covenanters, a group of Presbyterians who opposed the rule of Charles II, and the Royalists, who supported the monarchy. The protagonist of the book is Henry Morton, a young gentleman who becomes embroiled in the politic...

The Pirate Cover image

The Pirate

Love History Adventure Pirates Loyalty Struggle Desire Piracy Historical

It tells the story of a young Scottish nobleman who becomes embroiled in the dangerous and exciting world of piracy in the late 17th century. Written in 1822, "The Pirate" is set in the Orkney Islands off the coast of Scotland and is widely regarded...