Noted in correspondence in the December 1999 issue of the Scots Magazine, the term North Britain appears to have been an invention of the Hanoverian government to eliminate any possible references to Scotland's independence after the 1745 uprising.
The term is said to have been used to assert that the country was established under the unity of one crown and one parliament, and is said to appear in the parish registers of settlements in the Borders and Northumberland regions, in entries made up to the middle of the 19th century.
An alternative reference gives another source for the term arising from the railway, and refers to the first railway line to cross the border in the 1840s, the North British Railway. This line was eventually extended to reach the Western Highlands and Fort Augustus, and Queen Victoria's travels from London to Scotland in 1851 have been referred to as The Tour of North Britain in some accounts.
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