Author and historian Nigel Tranter was born in Glasgow, Scotland on November 23, 1909. He was educated at the George Heriot's School in Edinburgh and later trained as an accountant. He worked for his uncle's insurance company for ten years before joining the Royal Artillery during World War II. His first book, The Fortalices and Early Mansions of Southern Scotland, was published in 1935. He wrote both historical fiction and nonfiction works. He died on January 9, 2000.