Scotland the Brave Land: 10,000 Years of Scotland in Story

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Every indulgence that can be given to you shall be given. Jenny followed her husband right onto the battlefield before being advised by the colonel and the doctor to return to camp. It proved to be timely advice, she narrowly escaped a heavy bombardment as she returned to shelter. Following the battle, she learned that Lewis was missing, presumed wounded. She frantically scoured the crowded hospitals, searching for him. After two days, her family was reunited when she found her wounded husband. Lewis was tragically killed in a quarry accident in Jenny outlived him by 40 years and went on to remarry.

She was the mother to nine children and died in April at the age of Although he was from Lanarkshire, he joined a Highland Regiment — the 97th Cameron Highlanders — and, at 22 years old, had never been in any action before he fought at Waterloo.

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They held the line at 2pm with the Gordons and Black Watch and were saved by the famous cavalry charge. They had been on the point of breaking after 8pm when the Prussian reinforcements turned the tide of the battle.

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Dixon was shot in the face and lost his right eye. He lay among the wounded and dying all night, presumed dead, before he was discovered.

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We have often beat our foes, Will they beat us? Ah never!


Following the war, Dixon won many cash prizes for inventing agricultural machinery and wrote his memoirs. At Waterloo, he was a year-old Sergeant. At Quatre Bras, he was given orders directly by Wellington and at Waterloo found himself twice in the front line at critical moments of the battle. At 5pm, in the British squares, Robertson was suddenly in command of his company in the face of a massive French attack by 10, cavalry.

There was scarcely an officer left in our regiment — so the command of the company fell upon me. I now began to reflect on what should be done in case of a retreat. It would be difficult to keep the men together, as they had never retreated before. Brave in combat, his memoirs show him to be a sensitive and humane man. After the battle he was horrified when ordered to march his men off the field.

Others were calling on us not to leave them to breathe their last in a land of strangers, with no friendly hand to comfort them and close their eyes in death. A giant Highlander whose ancestors had been Jacobites, Macdonell was the third son of a clan chief and an able and experienced officer. When the young queen of Scotland, known as the 'Maid of Norway' died, there was no direct heir to the Scottish throne. Edward I, the English king was quick to promote the cause of John Balliol, and just as quickly demanded he do homage to the English King for all the lands in Scotland, which no Scottish king had ever submitted to before.

Balliol paid homage, but refused to provide soldiers to help Edward fight France, since Scotland was a long-time ally of France. Using Balliol's refusal as justification, Edward campaigned in Scotland, first reducing the fortress at Berwick-on-Tweed, and then defeating a large Scottish army at Dunbar. After these smashing victories, Edward experienced little further resistance, and much of the country submitted without further bloodshed.

Scotland the Brave Land : 10,000 Years of Scotland in Story

The English governors imposed on the country by Edward however, had little regard for the rights of the Scots, and within a year, William Wallace, a commoner whose wife was murdered by a local English sheriff, had raised a rebellion across the country. The great victory of Wallace was at the Battle of Stirling Bridge, where his band of infantry soundly defeated an English Army.

This was followed by the battle of Falkirk which would have likely gone in favor of the Scots, had more of the Scottish nobles decided to fight for the Scots instead of the English. Falkirk was victory for the English, but a relatively barren one, although it did convince Wallace of the futility of raising an army of commoners unsupported by the local barons. Wallace was later hunted down and killed and for several years, England reigned supreme in Scotland. Instead of fighting for his independence Bruce tried to gain influence under Edward I. With the murder of Red Comyn however, who had been scheming with Edward against Bruce, he had burned his bridges with the English king.

Bruce then openly defied Edward by having himself crowned king of Scotland without his leave.


Edward immediately sent an army against Bruce, and in their first encounter, the Scots were routed so badly that Bruce needed to go into hiding for a year. When he finally re-emerged, he took a new approach to fighting the English, and had considerable success as a guerrilla fighter. Once Bruce started winning battles, many Scots who had previously hesitated joined his cause. He took castle after castle, with many towns and fortresses garrisoned by Scots instead of Englishmen, surrendering without a fight.

To add to his good fortune, Edward I was in very ill health and his son Edward II, had no compelling interesting in the Scottish war and willingly made peace. For several years after the death of Edward I, his son did not oppose Bruce's growing influence in Scotland, although neither Britain, nor any other monarchical power in Europe recognized him as an independent king. In however, Bruce besieged Stirling Castle, and the governor there agreed to submit to him on a certain date if England did not relieve him. This compelled the reluctant Edward II into action, and he raised an enormous army to meet the rebellious Scots in battle, and the famous battle of Bannockburn ensued.

The Scots were outnumbered, outgunned, and nearly without cavalry, but they won a decisive victory against the English and followed this up with several incursions into English territory. Reluctantly England agreed to recognize Scotland as an independent kingdom, owing only a nominal allegiance to England.

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Under the reign of a strong king, Robert the Bruce, Scotland re-established its independence from England. He would not submit to the humiliation of losing Scotland, and with the help of Edward Balliol, grandson of the former 'King' of Scotland, he attempted to launch another war on Scotland. In general, the pitched battles during the second war of Independence went badly for Scotland, but the project of getting Scotland to submit went badly for England.

Much of the country side was ravaged. Much of the population had retreated to the mountains, and fifteen years of war accomplished little other than to destroy much of the Scotland lowlands, and further impoverish the people.

Scotland the Brave Land

The war was greatly complicated by the fact that England and France were also at war, so the French offered to "help" the Scots resist the English, but their main objective was to move the battle to Scotland rather than France. David II was either exiled, or imprisoned for much of his reign, and during this time Scotland was really ruled by Robert Stuart, the Grandson of Robert Bruce.

Under Robert II, the war with England degenerated into periodic border raids, that are better described as ongoing. For the next century England was primarily occupied with the Hundred-Years War in France, and although Scottish-English relations were not good, and the Kings of England continually interfered in the affairs of Scotland, the Stuart line was not contested.

The Scots were defeated, with a loss of 10, men. This defeat led to the surrender of Balliol, and Edward was proclaimed King of Scotland. Wallace fell upon the English army as it was crossing a narrow bridge over the Forth, and practically annihilated it. This battle is also called the Battle of Cambuskenneth. The Scots, who were greatly inferior in numbers, were strongly posted behind a morass, which at first greatly hampered the English attack.