Our greatest but most turgid novelist may no longer set the heather on fire in Scotland.
But - thanks, I suspect, to translators who tidy up his prose - his tartanised histories still have their fans in Russia.
The result: indyref coverage laced with whisky, frilly-sleeved Jacobites and the fate of poor old beheaded Mary Queen of Scots.
Russians, like much of the rest of the world, spent last week watching the arrival of another royal, wee Prince George.
An international statesman, he has inspired demands for freedom plebiscites, most recently in Catalunya after telling Spain rulers "to let the people decide".
Meet David Cameron, world separatist pin-up.
The British prime minister may seem an unlikely nationalist hero on these shores.
But internationally his Edinburgh Agreement with Scottish counterpart Alex Salmond is often seen as Britain "allowing" Scots a vote on their destiny.
And that, in many places, is simply revolutionary.