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New book and website help solve the mystery of the Picts

3 December 2010

Historic Scotland has published a new book, The Picts, which aims to tell the story of the Picts in simple and accessible terms, from their origins in the 3rd century AD to their eventual absorption into the new nation of Alba around the 10th century.

The book, written by Jill Harden, is being launched in conjunction with a new Historic Scotland website,, which features interactive 3D scans of five carved Pictish stones,  produced using laser scanning technology. The website, designed for readers of all ages, also explores themes relating to the Picts and their stones.  It supports many aspects of the Curriculum for Excellence and also includes an interactive map to help people find the stones and other sites.

Fiona Hyslop, Minister for Culture said: “The Picts played a major role in shaping modern Scotland.  Their culture was very sophisticated and has captured the imagination of many people throughout our nation and beyond.

“This new book and website should help stimulate interest and increase our knowledge of these fascinating people.”  

The book also includes detailed guides to Historic Scotland’s carved stones museums at the important Pictish sites of Meigle and St Vigeans.  It also traces the development of the Picts and their political, cultural and religious life, and shows how this can be related to their amazing legacy of symbol stones, cross-slabs and jewellery.

The Picts by Jill Harden

80 pages, full colour, 192x272mm
New photography by Mike Brooks and David Henrie
New illustrations by Willie Rodger, Ian G Scott and Stephen Conlin

Cover price: £4.95

Available Winter 2010 from Historic Scotland properties or online from

Notes for Editors

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For further information

Jennifer Johnston Watt
Communications and Media Officer
Communications and Media
0131 668 8070 or 07827 956 866