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Robert the Bruce

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Introduction --- Kings of Alba --- Macbeth --- David I --- Robert --- Stewarts

After the Maid of Norway died (see previous page), there was no obvious successor. John of Balliol and Robert the Bruce both had a claim to the crown, based on descent from David I (see previous page), but these descents are through five or six generations, so there is a break in the family tree at this point. The numbers in brackets are the dates of the reigns, so anyone without numbers was not a king. This is all AD, of course.

John I (1292-1296)          Robert I (1306-1329)
                                             |                     
                                 ----------------------
                                |                      |
                        David II (1329-1371)   Marjorie Bruce 
                                                       |
                                              Robert II (1371-1390)
NameReignedLength of reignAge at startMarried
John I1292-12964 43Isabella de Warenne
1296-130610
Robert I1306-132923 32Isabella of Mar, Elizabeth de Burgh
David II1329-137142 5Joan of England, Margaret Drummond
Robert II1371-139019 55Elizabeth Mure, Euphemia de Ross

After the death of the Maid of Norway died (see previous page), the competing claims of John of Balliol and Robert the Bruce threatened civil war. It was decided to ask Edward I of England to decide who should be king. Edward set up a court which decided that John of Balliol had the best claim, and he became John I. However, Edward I undermined John's authority, as Edward wanted to become overlord of Scotland. John's advisors made a treaty of mutual assistance with France, which became known as the Auld Alliance. In retaliation, Edward invaded Scotland. John abdicated. The next ten years, Scotland did not have a king, and the Scottish nobles paid homage to Edward I as King of England. The Stone of Destiny (where Scottish kings were crowned) was moved from Scone Abbey to Westminster Abbey. However revolts soon broke out, led by William Wallace and others supporting the exiled John of Balliol. The Scots won at Stirling Bridge, but lost at Falkirk. Wallace was captured and executed.

Robert the Bruce (see right) now took up the fight. To begin with, he was unsuccessful, but then started winning battles. Edward I died, and the Scots won at Bannockburn against Edward II, and Robert I became king. In 1320, the Declaration of Arbroath was sent by a group of Scottish nobles to the Pope affirming Scottish independence from England.

Robert the Bruce

David II became king of Scotland at the age of 5. While he was still a minor, the son of John Balliol, Edward Balliol, invaded Scotland, supported by Edward III of England. David was sent to France for safety. He returned in 1341. He then led a raid into England, supporting the French king, as part of the Auld Alliance. He was captured, and Scotland had to pay a heavy ransom for him. He had no children, and so was succeeded by his nephew Robert II, of the house of Stewart.

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