Scotia was originally the
Latinname for Ireland, known to the Romans as Hibernia. Use of the name shifted in the Middle Agesto designate Scotland, since many of the Irish "Scotii" colonised that area which the Romans referred to as Caledonia.
Scotia was never one fixed place in the Middle Ages. It was a way of saying "Land of the Gaels"; compare "Angli", Anglia; "Franci", Francia; "Romani", Romania; etc. Hence, it once could be used to mean
Ireland, as when Isidore of Seville says "Scotia eadem et Hibernia, "Scotland and Ireland are the same country" (Isidore, lib. xii. c. 6)", but the connotation is still ethnic. This is how it is used, for instance, by King Robert I of Scotlandand Domhnall Ua Neill during the Scottish Wars of Independence, when Ireland was called "Scotia Maior", and Scotland"Scotia Minor". In this way, the usage of the word "Scotia" in the Middle Agesmight be compared with the 21st century usage of the word Gaidhealtachd. They both mean the same thing descriptively; and like "Scotia", " Gàidhealtachd" has obtained an official and fixed meaning while retaining something of a descriptive meaning (i.e. the territory of Highland Councilor the Highlands in general coincides with no linguistic frontier; and neither do the Gaeltachtaí of Ireland).
However, after the 11th century, "Scotia" was used mostly for northern Britain, and in this way became fixed. As a translation of
Alba, Scotia could mean both the whole Kingdom belonging to the "rex Scottorum", or just Scotland north of the Forth.
In the bureaucratic world of the
Roman Catholic Church, Pope Leo Xeventually granted Scotland exclusive right over the word, and this led to Anglo-Scottish takeovers of continental Gaelic monasteries (e.g. the Schottenklöster).
It is from "Scotia" that all Romance names for Scotland derive, names such as the Romanian "Scoţia", the Italian "Scozia", the Spanish "Escocia", the Portuguese "Escócia" and the French "Écosse".
The term is also used in a Canadian province named
Nova Scotia(New Scotland); the village of Scotia in New York State, the Scotia Seabetween Antarctica and South America, and in Scotiabank, a trade name for the Bank of Nova Scotia.
The term also is used to describe a piece of wood millwork that is used at the base of columns and in stair construction.
Scotia is also rarely used as a feminine first name.
Scotia Gas Networks(SGN) is the holding company of Scotland Gas Networks, Southern Gas Networks, SGN Connections, SGN Contracting and SGN Metering, in the UK.
In Irish sources
Geoffrey Keating's " Foras Feasa ar Éirinn" Ireland's "ninth appellation it received likewise from the sons of Milesius, who named it Scotia, from their mother's name, Scota, who was the daughter of Pharoah Nectonibus, king of AEgypt; or perhaps from themselves, they being originally of the Scythianrace."
According to the
Middle Irish languagesynthetic history Lebor Gabála Érennshe was the daughter of Pharaoh Necho IIof Egypt. - see entry on Scota.
Other sources say that Scota was the daughter of
Pharaoh Neferhotep Iof Egypt and his wife Senebsen, and was the wife of Míl, that is Milesius, and the mother of Éber Donn and Érimón. Míl had given Neferhotep military aid against ancient Ethiopia and was given Scota in marriage as a reward for his services. Writing in 1571, Edmund Campionnamed the pharaoh Amenophis; Keating named him Cincrisor Forann.
Scotia Gas Networks
* [http://www.electricscotland.com/history/genhist/hist1.html A history of Romans in Scotland]
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