History 2173 Lecture Notes - Andrew Moray, Plate Armour, Cavalry Tactics

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Published on 2 Mar 2013
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Feb, 28, 2013
The Scottish Wars of Independence and the Battle of Bannockburn
Alexander III:
-Scotland was an independent realm but this changed at the death of Alexander III in 1286
-After his hair was his granddaughter Margaret the Maid of Norway and she came to power when she was only
three years old and she was uncommon as a ruler because she was a woman and she was very sickly
-It was agreed that she had to come over from Norway but she died on the way in 1290 and this provoked a major
succession crisis because many wanted the position and it all depended on what succession system they were to
follow and this was a hard situation
-Even Margaret’s father who had no blood relation put forth a claim while Edward I was king of England and the
Scots wanted to see his advice but he had his own agenda and he wanted his son to take over
-There were 14 claimants to the throne but there were only two significant ones and they were John Balliol and
Robert the Bruce and each was preferred by the different succession methods
-Edward I and other kings had been trying to assert feudal overlord-ship over Scotland but they had been kicked
out and he wanted acknowledgement so a court was appointed and 18 months later came down on the side of
Balliol and he paid homage to Edward I swearing faithfulness to him (became underling of someone else)
-Edward I had strong views about what he wanted to do and he started to hear appeals against rulings of the
Scottish royal courts and this again showed England’s power and military support was mandated against France
-The Scottish aristocrats weren’t happy with this and they didn’t want to go to war just to please Edward and they
thought Balliol was becoming too feudal and they forced him to agree to an alliance with France against Edward I
-Edward’s reaction was to go to war and he went north and laid siege to Berwick and he was successful
-Then he went to Dunbar and he won again by a large margin and he proceeded through the lowland and central
Scotland without serious opposition because their army had almost been destroyed and Balliol was taken by the
English and sent south to a prison
-The campaign became about destroying the kingdom of Scotland and cementing English control and Edward took
the Stone of Destiny and this was a slap in the face to Scottish sovereignty and he also took many royal archives as
well as part of “the” cross that was St. Margaret’s
-He set up English procedures and offices in Scotland and castles were taken by him and every substantial
landholder was forced to swear allegiance to England but resistance did grow against him
William Wallace and Andrew Moray:
-Wallace was one of the men who raised a rebellion against Edward I and his family was well established in
southern Scotland but he was only the son of a knight so he had a lower status
-Moray also led a rebellion from the north east and he was well connected
-Their combined force successfully defeated an English army at the battle of Stirling Bridge and the two were able
to write a letter to the merchants of northern Germany called to Lubeck Letter in 1297 to say Scotland was free
and opened for business with them
-Moray died shortly after this battle from wounds sustained there and most of the glory went to Wallace
-Wallace was loyal to Balliol and he didn’t want to take over himself and he was an unlikely leader of the people
because of social status
-After Stirling Bridge Edward gathered a huge army but Wallace employed a scorched earth policy and the English
army to the east were supplied by the sea but in 1298 they were in short supply and they were contemplating
retreat when they head the Scots were close by at Falkirk and Wallace finally decided to fight pitched battle
-He must have thought he could defeat them even though it was dangerous and he was outnumbered and there
was word the Welsh part of the English army was ready to desert
-The battle of Falkirk was a shattering defeat for Wallace who had a highly trained infantry that was destroyed and
he lost moral authority of the other fighters and he voluntarily left his guardianship but continued to fight
-He was pursued by the English and was eventually captured and killed in 1305 very brutally
-The sword at the Wallace monument cannot actually be his sword because it is a two handed design that did not
come into use until the 16th century
-The victory at Falkirk did not save the English’s position and in Scotland over the next few years there was only
inconclusive campaigns and in the north there was still a government running in the name of Balliol
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Document Summary

The scottish wars of independence and the battle of bannockburn. Scotland was an independent realm but this changed at the death of alexander iii in 1286. Even margaret"s father who had no blood relation put forth a claim while edward i was king of england and the. Scots wanted to see his advice but he had his own agenda and he wanted his son to take over. There were 14 claimants to the throne but there were only two significant ones and they were john balliol and. Robert the bruce and each was preferred by the different succession methods. Edward i and other kings had been trying to assert feudal overlord-ship over scotland but they had been kicked out and he wanted acknowledgement so a court was appointed and 18 months later came down on the side of. Balliol and he paid homage to edward i swearing faithfulness to him (became underling of someone else)

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