NQ Scottish History


Edward I was nicknamed the Hammer of the Scots, and for many years the Scottish Wars of Independence have been credited with the creation of a sense of Scottish identity.

There is certainly some evidence to suggest this: 

  • During the Wars there was always some level of support for the resistance to Edward. Despite what appears to be a crushing victory for Edward in 1296, the cause of independence doesn’t go away. Similarly the final capitulation of the nobles in 1305 merely gives way to the rebellion by Bruce a year later.

  • Some historians have identified certain groups, particularly the middle classes and the Scottish Church, as consistently supporting the cause of independence, while the nobles were often inconsistent with their support.

  • Yet despite the lack of consistent noble patriotism, or a sense of national spirit, there were always those willing to lead the resistance, the Douglases, the Murrays and of course Wallace and Bruce.

  • Photograph of the Wallace Monument near Stirling.

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Scottish Identity

Historians' views