The hosts outscored the Irish by three tries to two but a decisive penalty from Johnny Sexton – his fifth successful conversion from five attempts – with five minutes left on the clock settled an absorbing contest in the visitors favour.
The result ended Scotland’s hopes of challenging for the Six Nations title after a campaign which started so promisingly with a first victory over England at Twickenham since 1983 to claim the Calcutta Cup.
However, it is now two defeats from three matches for Gregor Townsend’s men following the 24-25 defeat to Wales last month.
Scotland still have two fixtures left to complete the 2021 competition, away to Italy next weekend while the France match postponed due to a Covid-19 outbreak in the French camp has yet to be rearranged.
The defeat leaves the Scots second bottom in the Six Nations table, six points ahead of Italy who remain pointless after four matches, while Ireland move up to second.
Wales are on course to reclaim the title from England as they sit top of the standings with 19 points from four games, eight ahead of second placed Ireland.
The full Six Nations table is:
1 Wales – played 4, 19 points
2 Ireland – played 4, 11 points
3 France – played 3, 10 points
4 England – played 4, 10 points
5 Scotland – played 3, 6 points
6 Italy – played 4, 0 points