R.A. Marks, A Database of Scots in the Italian Peninsular during the Thirty Years War c.1600-1650 [SI Database]

This database was originally created as a research tool to accompany a publication on the same topic [R.A. Marks, ‘The Scots in the Italian Peninsular during the Thirty Years’ War,’ in ed. T. O'Connor and M.A. Lyons, The Ulster earls and Baroque Europe, (Dublin, 2009)]. Publishing this database and allowing direct access to information on specific Scots will hopefully aid further other research on both Italy and the Scots abroad more generally. Research and understanding on this topic has progressed dramatically in the last decade and work is still being pursued (For example by The St Andrews Institute of Scottish Historical Research Scotland and the Wider World Project). The Scots in Italy were a relatively small part of the Scots diaspora within Europe but their presence, along with Scots in French and Habsburg service, does serve to illustrate that a number did not simply go north to Sweden and Denmark as is traditionally thought. The number of Scottish Religious exiles in Italy during the period is high (in comparison to other motivations to travel to the peninsular) and this database will further serve to emphasise their role and influence inside the Papacy. It must be emphasised this database is not a definitive list of Scots in Italy and is in may ways a work in progress.

I would like to thank Adam Carr, Alexia Grosjean and Peter Maxwell-Stuart for their translations. I would also like to thank my parents for their assistance with the creation of this database and Duncan Davidson for his help in hosting it. Most of all though I must thank my supervisor Steve Murdoch for his continual help throughout this project.

Instructions for Accessing and Using this Database

  1. Download the database and unzip. Then open it using Microsoft Access. You will be prompted “Security Warning: Unsafe Expressions are not Blocked, Do you want to block Unsafe Expressions?” Press No
  2. You will the be prompted with a Security Warning asking whether you wish to continue opening or cancel, press open.
  3. The Menu screen will then open. From here you can select to either read the instructions, information about the database or view the guidelines to the fields used. Pressing ‘Return to Menu’ at any time will take you back to this screen.
  4. If you click ‘open database’ you will be taken directly to the entries sorted in alphabetical order by surname. Here you can scroll forwards and backwards through each record individually using the mouse wheel. Pressing print will print out the entry you are currently viewing.
  5. To find the Scots present in Italy during a specific year return to the Menu and click ‘Search for Scots in Italy in a specific Year.’ You will be prompted to enter the year and after doing this the records of all Scots present in that year will be displayed in a similar form to above (do not leave the year field blank). You can also re-enter a new year and print individual entries from this screen.

Explanation of Guidelines used for the creation of the SI Database

The Database focuses on the period of the Thirty Years War but extends to encompass 1600-1650. The departure and arrival dates are the years I have found documentary evidence for. As is stated in many of the entries it is highly likely some were present longer than these dates but there is no documentary evidence to support this.
Purpose of Visit
This applies to what I perceive to be the Scots principle reason for being in Italy. There are obviously some Scots who could have been placed differently. The Scots attending the Scots College in Rome have been categorised as religious exiles since from 1615 the primary purpose of the College was training missionaries to return to Scotland.
The location is the primary location of the Scot in Italy, or the state he was in the service of (this particularly applies to Venice). Details, where known, of these are given in the comments field of the database.
Comments and Sources
The comments and sources for each Scot are included in the record and serve to provide any information known about what specifically each person did during their period in Italy.