Born in Duns 750 years ago this year, John Duns Scotus rose to become one of the leading philisophers of the Middle Ages, and a figure of international significance in his own time and ever since. Born in the humble surroundings of Duns, educated at Oxford and Paris, he was a leading figure in some of the great issues of his day. His followers earnt the name "Dunces" - the origin of the dunce's hat - not because they were stupid, but because they stuck to his teachings. Join us in a series of events to mark this occasion and awaken interest in this son of Duns.

The Life & Times of John Duns Scotus

From Saturday 17th September to Tuesday 8th November 2016 an exhibition will run in Duns Library Exhibition Room profiling the life and works of John Duns Scotus, his significance across the centuries since, and what Medieval Berwickshire and the life of the people was like in the late thirteenth and early fourteenth centuries. Open during normal library opening hours.



'Introduction to Duns Scotus'

Heard of John Duns Scotus, but don't really know what he did or why he is so famous? You're not alone! On the opening day of the festival Professor Alexander Brodie, University of Glasgow, will deliver an accessible, informative introduction to Scotus - at 2pm on Saturday 17th September 2016 in the Volunteer Hall. If you like, you can think of it as "Scotus for Dunces"!


Family Walk

To complete the opening weekend a family walk will visit the places associated with Scotus - starting beside his statue in the park, proceeding by the boardwalk (John Duns Scotus Way) past Grueldykes, up to Duns Castle, past his cairn and stone and the old town, finishing at the parish church.. Children (and adults if desired) - come in your habits and dunce's hats!



Duns Scotus Film

Did you know there is a feature film about the life of John Duns Scotus? Neither did we, so when we found out about it we just had to include it in the festival! Winner of multiple awards and widely acclaimed for its portrayal of the man himself, come to cinema night at the Volunteer Hall on Friday 23rd September 2016 (time tbc). £6/£5.



Scotus Portrait Lecture

There have been many portraits of John Duns Scotus over the years - several of which are still to be found in Duns! Professor John Thomas opens the Dunse History Society syllabus for 2016-17 with a multimedia lecture on the Duns Scotus Portraits. Open to the public, at the Masonic Hall, at 7:30pm on Wednesday 28th September 2016.



Sinfonia Concert

We are celebrating the life and times of John Duns Scotus in many ways, and one of the most prominent is by music and performance. First of these concerts is a visit from the renowned Yethom Sinfonia, not to be missed. It takes place in the spectacular Duns Parish Church on Sunday 2nd October 2016 (7:30pm). £7.50 / £5.



Choral Concert

Next up in the musical series comes a medley program by performers from Duns and beyond featuring in a choral concert at Christ Church, Friday 14th October (7:30pm). £7.50 / £5. This is the opening of the festival's middle weekend, followed by an academic study day and Historical Walk charting the famous people and sights of Duns.



Academic Conference

During the day on Saturday 15th October a host of academics, experts and locals will gather to hear a series of papers and discussions on the life, theology and significance of John Duns Scotus. Guest speakers come from across Scotland, England, Germany and the USA. £5 including lunch. Booking recommended.


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