A group of political reformers who were persecuted for their beliefs during the period of unrest in Scotland in the 1790s. In 1792 a Society for the Friends of the People was formed to promote parliamentary reform. The government reacted strongly and Thomas Muir, a member of the society, was convicted of treason. In October 1793 a meeting of the Society was broken up by force, three of its delegates being subsequently sentenced to long terms of transportation. A group of radical reformers calling themselves the United Scotsmen continued to meet in secret, but after further trials the movement broke up.
Subjects: Literature — History.