Your job is to comment and keep me motivated! Let me know you’re out there and following along. Can she make it? Will she? Of course she will! With you as my cheering section, I won’t be stumped by J or Q or even X.
So without further ado, here is today’s post.
Z is for New Zealand. Yes, to finish the Blogging from A to Z Challenge, we’re going just about as far from Scotland as it is possible to get on the planet. As many Scots did, as part of the Scottish diaspora that has continued to this day.
Actually, Captain James Cook, who first circumnavigated and mapped New Zealand, was half-Scottish, and among his crew were many Scotsmen. After them came sealers and whalers, some of whom stayed, establishing settlements.
Organized settlements began in the 1840s. Most Scots were Lowlanders or former Highlanders who’d been forced off their land earlier and moved to the Lowlands, and who adopted Highland activities and symbols such as clans, kilts, bagpipes and games, considered more interesting and romantic than the history and culture of the Lowlands.
They came for religious and economic reasons. They were farmers, artisans, miners, weavers, shipbuilders and carpenters, gold miners, and tradespeople of all kinds, looking for a better life than economic conditions in Scotland allowed.
Gaelic (see G is for Gaelic) was spoken by some but did not withstand the onslaught of English, though some Gaelic terms continue to be used. Robert Burns’s poetry (see R is for Robert) and Burns Night is celebrated on Jan 25.
For more on the subject of Scots in New Zealand, click here.
Participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge this month has been a lot of fun. I’ve enjoyed it and learned a lot in the process of researching these short posts. I hope you have, too!
Interested in finding the other nearly 2000 blogs participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge? Click on the title, then scroll down to find the sign-up list.