March 1700: Following their arrival in Caledonia in November 1699, the second Darien expedition faces skirmishes with the Spanish and is eventually forced to abandon their efforts in the face of these superior forces. The Darien venture costs Scotland many hundreds of lives and a quarter of its total available resources. It coincides with a series of failed harvests in Scotland that leaves up to a quarter of the population dying of starvation.
12 April 1700: Scottish colonists finally abandon the failed settlement at Darien in Panama.
23 May 1701: Captain William Kidd is hung at Wapping for murder and piracy.
Summer 1701: The English Parliament passes the Act of Settlement. The heir to the crowns of England and Ireland, after William and Mary's surviving heir Anne, is to be the Protestant grand-daughter of King James I/VI, Sophie, the Electress of Hanover. The succession will then pass in turn her 40 year old son, Prince George of Hanover. The Scottish Parliament is not consulted.
16 September 1701: James VII/II dies in France. His claim to the throne and the Jacobite cause pass to his 13 year old son, James Francis Edward Stewart. He is recognised by the French King as King James VIII/III of Great Britain, in effect declaring war on King William.
April 1703: The Edinburgh Fire Brigade is formed.
1703: The Scottish Parliament passes the Act of Security, under which Scotland will not in future be bound to accept the same monarch as England unless Scotland is accorded completely free trade with England and the colonies. Royal Assent is refused by the Queen's Commissioner.
21 April 1703: A "Company for the Quenching of Fire" is formed in Edinburgh, the ancestor of the modern fire service.
5 August 1704: The Scottish Parliament refuses to raise taxes and threatens to withdraw troops from Marlborough's army in France unless the crown accepts the Act of Security and it is given Royal Assent. It is.
5 February 1705: The English Parliament pass the Alien Act designed to secure English interests from what they see as the subversion of the Scottish Parliament. In effect, the Scots are invited to negotiate a full union with England, on pain of seizure of Scottish assets and the ending of Scottish exports to England if they do not.
Spring 1705: Three crew of the English ship Worcester are hanged in Edinburgh on suspicion of piracy against a Scottish Darien Company ship.
Spring 1706: The Anglo-Scottish Parliamentary Commission meets to agree a draft Treaty of Union.
3 October 1706: The Scottish Parliament begins its debate on the Treaty of Union between Scotland and England.
16 January 1707: The Scottish Parliament agrees the Treaty of Union by 110 votes to 67. The debate preceding it is carried out against a backdrop of growing anti-union unrest across Scotland. The outcome is driven by economic necessity, by overt compensation for Scotland's national debts and the losses of Darien investors, and, allegedly, by covert bribes for key participants.
19 March 1707: The English Parliament ratifies the Treaty of Union.
25 March 1707: The Scottish Parliament adjourns, and is dissolved three days later. It will not reconvene for 292 years, until 12 May 1999.
1 May 1707: The Treaty of Union comes into effect. Queen Anne became the first sovereign of the Kingdom of Great Britain.
5 September 1707: The birth near Dunfermline of Brigadier General John Forbes, the a British Army officer best known for his role in the French and Indian War, the North American end of the Seven Years' War.
23 October 1707: The first Parliament of Great Britain meets in London.
23 March 1708: A French fleet carrying James Francis Edward Stuart, "The Pretender", arrives in the Firth of Forth and seeks to land an invasion force of 5,000 men in Fife. They are prevented from doing so by a squadron of English warships under Admiral Byng, and head back towards Dunkirk without landing.
2 February 1709: Alexander Selkirk, famous for spending four years as a castaway on the uninhabited Juan Fernández Islands is rescued.
1710: Sir William Bruce, the leading Scottish architect of his generation, dies.
25 October 1714: The birth of James Burnett, Lord Monboddo, a lawyer, judge, and patron of the arts, who is primarily remembered as a pioneer of the science of comparative historical linguistics.
13 November 1715: A Jacobite uprising in northern England is cornered and defeated in Preston.
31 January 1716: The Jacobites abandon Perth in the face of reinforced government forces.
23 February 1716: Lady Winifred Maxwell, Countess of Nithsdale, effects the escape of her husband William from the Tower of London, where he is condemned to be executed for treason as a Jacobite the following day, by dressing him in women's clothes.
13 April 1719: A small Spanish force, believing itself to be part of a much larger invasion planned for England to return the Jacobites to power, lands in Loch Duich, east of the site of modern Kyle of Lochalsh.
10 May 1719: Royal Navy ships bombard Spanish troops holding Eilean Donan Castle and subsequently destroy the castle.
10 June 1719: Spanish troops, supported by 1,000 Jacobites clansmen, are defeated at the Battle of Glen Shiel which takes place on the steep mountainsides flanking the glen. The Spanish surrender but their part in the battle is remembered by the name of the overlooking mountain, Sgurr nan Spainnteach, or "Peak of the Spaniards".
1 September 1719: The marriage takes place James Francis Edward Stuart, "The Old Pretender", and the Polish Princess Maria Clementina Sobieska at Montefiascone in Italy.
1720: The Earl of Islay is appointed Secretary of Scotland.
1723: The Society of Improvers in the Knowledge of Agriculture in Scotland is formed to help improve farming methods. Its main aim is to find ways to make the Highlands more economically productive and it is instrumental in the clearances that begin later in the century.
25 December 1724: General George Wade is appointed Chief of His Majesty's forces, castles, forts and barracks in North Britain,. He begins the construction of hundreds of miles of good "military" roads and stone bridges designed to allow government troops to counter future uprisings with greater ease.
23 June 1725: Serious rioting breaks out in Glasgow in protest at Westminster-imposed taxes on Scottish malt.
1725: The Disarming Act forbids Highlanders from carrying arms in public, a long standing custom.
16 April 1728: The birth in Bordeaux in France of Joseph Black, the eminent Scottish physicist and chemist, renowned teacher, and practicing medical doctor.
30 April 1728: The Royal Bank of Scotland agrees to the world's first overdraft when it allows the merchant William Hog to take £1,000 more from his account than he has in it (well over £60,000 in today's money).
21 March 1729: The death in Venice of John Law, the economist sometimes described as the father of finance, who rose to control, then ruin, the economy of France.
1730: The first systematic emigration begins from highland areas to American colonies, largely in response to rent increases.
19 January 1736: The birth of the engineer and inventor James Watt, whose improvements to the steam engine are fundamental in bringing about the industrial revolution.
7 September 1736: An Edinburgh crowd hear that Captain Porteous, Captain of the Edinburgh City Guard, has been pardoned following his conviction for murder. That night they break into his cell and publicly lynch him. None of those responsible is caught and the City of Edinburgh is fined £2,000 over the incident.
8 November 1736: Scotland's first public theatre opens in Carruber's Close, Edinburgh.
9 February 1739: Publication of the first edition of the Scots Magazine, originally established as a current affairs and news magazine.