Union of Crowns: The Forging of Europe's Most Independent State

Union of Crowns: The Forging of Europe's Most Independent State

Language: English

Pages: 364

ISBN: B0089NX73C

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Did the Scots really cower in the shadow of their powerful, aggressive English neighbour? This book reveals a very different picture. Scottish armies repeatedly invaded English-held territory, defying generations of Anglo-Norman kings, and it took many centuries to finally decide the fluid Border frontier. Sent homeward to think again ... ? The author spells out the financial and military factors that helped to ensure Scotland's independence from the time of the Romans in Britain through Saxon, Norse and Norman invasions, the ravages of Edward Longshanks and the savagery of Henry VIII's 'rough wooing'. How did the English people react to the Union of Crowns? Were the Scots incorporated against their will? This book explodes the myth that the crowns of England and Scotland were united in some sort of constitutional coincidence. It uncovers associations between many Scots and the English court and its secret service – lifting the lid on a murky underworld of collaborators, spies and assassins. Did the French love the Scots as much as they hated the English? The author reveals the implications of the Auld Alliance between Scotland and France, and the legacy of England's foreign wars. The mutually sacrificial and loveless marriage of England and Scotland, arranged by Protestant pragmatists, secured independence for both countries which might otherwise have become Catholic dominions of France or Spain. Who gained most from Britain's independence? Britain was just a small corner in a huge power struggle raging throughout Europe. The author reveals the ruthless, secular and political nature of religions that tortured and massacred men, women and children in their hundreds of thousands. Divided they might have fallen or been pushed into obscurity, but united the two countries stood as Europe's foremost independent Protestant state, the seat of democratic government and the foundation stone of much social and legal reform. Today, when many are asking if it's time to end the 305-year-old union and look increasingly to a united Europe, this book prompts a greater understanding of the warts-and-all origins of our ancestors' legacy.

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Remembering that this same king of Scots had broken an earlier oath. He certainly wasn’t impressed when Malcolm rode to Gloucester the following April, demanding that William keep his side of the bargain struck by Robert Curthose. He may have miscalculated when he refused even to speak with the Scots king. Malcolm was furious at this snub to his royal pride. He galloped back to Scotland, raised his forces, and made his fifth invasion of English territory late in 1093. By now, however, his.

Contact with the continent as a whole, both in terms of commerce, diplomacy and alliances. This was witnessed in 1174 by the arrival of that Flemish fleet in support of William the Lion’s abortive invasion of Northumberland. Scotland’s long struggle to integrate what is now Northumberland and Cumbria had failed, and this had serious consequences on the balance of power on the British mainland. If the north of England had become part of Scotland, then the two kingdoms would have been approaching.

Scotland. Some had lost all interest in fighting, and even surrendered themselves to English women bystanders. Oliver Sinclair was captured ‘fleeing full manfully’. James retreated, a broken man suffering from nervous exhaustion, finally arriving at Hallyards, the Fife home of his treasurer, Sir William Kirkaldy of Grange. When asked by a servant where he wanted to spend Christmas, he replied, ‘I cannot tell; choose ye the place. But this I can tell you, on Yule day, you will be masterless and.

Dispatch her quickly. ‘Lord, into thy hands I commend my spirit,’ were her last words. Mary heard of a second conspiracy when her agents discovered the secret dealings of various Protestants including Edward Courtenay, the Earl of Devon, who had been named as a prospective husband for Princess Elizabeth. On the same day that Lady Jane was executed, Mary had Elizabeth arrested, giving orders that she should be held in the Tower as a suspected traitor. Elizabeth was charged with being involved.

Who appeared so handsome, elegant and accomplished was truly weak-willed, vain and jealous. Mary was wise enough to recognise that those who were prepared to give this new king the benefit of the doubt could be encouraged, and some who did not could be bought over. In Scotland, it was ever thus. Mary’s various incomes allowed her to support a glittering renaissance Court and she became a noted patron of poetry, ensuring that the royal couple’s praises would be sung in the ‘popular press’ of that.

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