By Rosalind Mitchison

ISBN-10: 0203316975

ISBN-13: 9780203316979

ISBN-10: 0415278805

ISBN-13: 9780415278805

A fantastic quantity for a person in need of a brisk review of North Britain from the yr dot to the 20th century.

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He tried again in 1138 but was defeated at the famous Battle of the Standard after a campaign that led to a flood of atrocity stories in the English chronicles (it was the Galwegians particularly who annoyed the English). In spite of defeat, the uncertain position of Stephen enabled David to get hold of Carlisle and the earldom of Northumberland. But the year of the Standard marks a watershed in frontier history: the old community of northern Anglo-Saxon Britain was broken. In Yorkshire the Scots appeared as foreigners.

The revolt was general. It has all the appearance of a movement national in inspiration, caused by resentment of foreign domination and national humiliation. It ranks with other surprisingly nationalist movements of this period, the Sicilian Vespers of 1284 and the Matins of Bruges of 1302. But both Sicily and Flanders were parts of Europe with sophisticated cultures A HISTORY OF SCOTLAND 33 and a relatively advanced economy. Scotland was not. In fact one of its features that aided the rebellion was the great tract of forest over southern Scotland into which Wallace and his men could disappear and hide.

When therefore he became king he brought in the institutions he had met abroad. He transferred his friends and followers; some to smallish holdings as individual knights, some to bigger tracts of land such as the lordship of Annandale, given to the de Brus family. He built castles; examples of these are Roxburgh and Berwick. He borrowed the idea of officers of state from England, of Constable, Marischal, and Steward. The ‘sheriff’ was a useful servant though his function in Scotland was not as an administrator of a shire court, for these courts did not exist, but as a royal servant who looked after the king’s rents and held a royal castle,1 and who may have been an adaptation of the old thane.

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A History of Scotland by Rosalind Mitchison


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