|Posted by Jody on March 30, 2013 at 5:00 AM|
In the spring of 1314 the smaller Scottish army led by King Robert de Brus met a much larger English force head, if only initially, by King Edward II and with skill and wit routed the English army and sent them backing as the Burns song goes. Many people believe that this was the end of the first Scottish war of independence and yet in 1318 the Scots were still fighting the English but had recaptured Berwick and essentially has driven out the English from Scotland. At this point it was important to Scotland and the monarchy of Robert Brus that the Papacy recognizes Scotland’s right to their own governance as a nation separate of England. The problem was in 1306 in the Border burgh of Dumfries, Robert Brus, and the Earl of Carrick killed or was part to the death of John Comyn a rival claimant to the Scottish crown. When Robert was crowned and soon after the Pope excommunicated him and the whole of Scotland as he killed Comyn in a Kirk. During Robert’s reign he was excommunicated a number of times during his monarchy, but receiving the Papacy’s recognition was paramount to Scotland that England but other European nations recognized their right to govern themselves.
Six years after the historical victory at Bannock burn near Stirling. King Robert had a document prepared by Bernard Linton, the Chancellor of Scotland at the Abby of Arbroath on April 6, 1320. This document, Scotland’s most treasured document was also the inspiration for the US Declaration of Independence, was signed by 38 of Scottish Lords at Arbroath Abby in the Fife, Scotland.
• To the most Holy Father and Lord in Christ, the Lord John, by divine providence Supreme Pontiff of the Holy Roman and Universal Church, his humble and devout sons Duncan, Earl of Fife, Thomas Randolph, Earl of Moray, Lord of Man and of Annandale, Patrick Dunbar, Earl of March, Malise, Earl of Strathearn, Malcolm, Earl of Lennox, William, Earl of Ross, Magnus, Earl of Caithness and Orkney, and William, Earl of Sutherland; Walter, Steward of Scotland, William Soules, Butler of Scotland, James, Lord of Douglas, Roger Mowbray, David, Lord of Brechin, David Graham, Ingram Umfraville, John Menteith, guardian of the earldom of Menteith, Alexander Fraser, Gilbert Hay, Constable of Scotland, Robert Keith, Marischal of Scotland, Henry Sinclair, John Graham, David Lindsay, William Oliphant, Patrick Graham, John Fenton, William Abernethy, David Wemyss, William Mushet, Fergus of Ardrossan, Eustace Maxwell, William Ramsay, William Mowat, Alan Murray, Donald Campbell, John Cameron, Reginald Cheyne, Alexander Seton, Andrew Leslie and Alexander Straiton, and the other barons and freeholders and the whole community of the realm of Scotland send all manner of filial reverence, with devout kisses of his blessed feet.
There are many notable parts to the declaration whose purpose was to urge the Pope to see things from a Scottish perspective and not to take the English claim on Scotland seriously. It used strong words, indicating that without acceptance of the Scottish case that the wars would continue and the resultant deaths would be the responsibility of the Pope. It was taken to Rome where the Pope accepted the Scottish cause and the monarchy of Robert I.
• But from these countless evils we have been set free, by the help of Him who though He afflicts yet heals and restores, by our most tireless prince, King and lord, the lord Robert. He, that his people and his heritage might be delivered out of the hands of our enemies, bore cheerfully toil and fatigue, hunger and peril, like another Maccabaeus or Joshua. Him, too, divine providence, the succession to his right according to our laws and customs which we shall maintain to the death, and the due consent and assent of us all have made our prince and king. To him, as to the man by whom salvation has been wrought unto our people, we are bound both by his right and by his merits that our freedom may be still maintained, and by him, come what may, we mean to stand.
• Yet if he should give up what he has begun, seeking to make us or our kingdom subject to the King of England or the English, we should exert ourselves at once to drive him out as our enemy and a subverter of his own right and ours, and make some other man who was well able to defend us our King; for, as long as a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be subjected to the lordship of the English. It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.
However, even with the Papacy’s acceptance the war between Scotland and England did not end until the Treaty of Northampton in 1328 where peace was declared between Robert I and Edward III acted upon by his mother Queen Isabella. To solidify the peace the heir of Scottish crown, David (II) de Brus married Princess Joan of England. But by 1331 with the Coronation of David the 2nd war of Scottish Independence was brewing with the return of Edward Balliol with the support of Edward III of England.
The connection between Scotland and the United States may have begun with the Declaration of Arbroath but it was the spirit of those early voices of freedom inspired by this document that became important in the America of the 17th and 18th century. The turmoil in Scotland and England in these centuries brought many immigrants from Scotland and Ulster Northern Ireland to our shores and helped to forge that independent spirit in American Revolution. We as a nation with 6 million American who claim Scots and Ulster Scots ancestry forged a new nation that has survived for 237 years: the American spirit is
• 1998, a Coalition of Scottish Americans with the Support of Senator Trent Lott, successfully lobbied the Senate for the designation of April 6 as National Tartan Day "to recognize the outstanding achievements and contributions made by Scottish Americans to the United States". Senate Resolution 155, passed on March 20, 1998, referred to the predominance of Scots among the founding fathers and claimed that the American Declaration of Independence was "modeled on" the Declaration of Arbroath.
• 2004, the National Capital Tartan Day Committee, a coalition of Scottish-American organizations, successfully lobbied the US House of Representatives.
• March 9, 2005, the US House of Representatives unanimously adopted House Resolution 41, which designates April 6 of each year as "National Tartan Day.”
• On April 4, 2008, President George Bush signed a Presidential Proclamation making April 6th National Tartan Day.
In honor of Tartan Day 2013, when I will proudly wear my Wallace tartan, we are having a contest from Saturday, March 30 to Sunday, April 7. On the Home page here at RINGS TRUE RESEACH… I will post a different picture of Scottish family tartan for you to research.
To be eligible for the prize of 3 hours of research or a fact-checking of 3 chapters of historical wip, you have until the next day when a new tartan is displayed to send me an email to [email protected] tartan contest in the subject line with the name of the Clan/Family of that particular tartan. Everyone who tries each day has his or her name put in the hat for a chance to win.
Only one guess, per day, per person. There are many sites with tartan images so have some fun. This is the site I used and the source for the contest. http://www.tartans.scotland.net/find_tartan.cfm.htm
Questions? send me an email