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Braveheart - WALLACE THE LEADER

Now the Scots had a leader. According to the contemporary chronicler Henry Knighton, even the Scottish nobles (who had sworn allegiance to Edward) backed Wallace with their hearts. The stage was set for serious resistance against English rule.

Rebellion started with Scottish pocketbooks. Earl Cressingham could not collect taxes. After the skirmish at Lanark, people refused to pay. Asking for 2000 pounds, the treasurer wrote to the king:

Not one of the sheriffs, bailiffs or officials can raise a penny of the revenues on account of a multitude of different perils which daily and continually threaten them

But Longshanks did not think the Scottish rebellion would amount to anything. Recalling the Welsh subjection, Edward thought he had little to worry about. It was not the first time he was wrong about the Scots' commitment to freedom.

By September of 1297, Wallace was able to amass a substantial army of men who were fed up with English domination. He had been successful with other skirmishes during the summer. He had even attracted the interest of several Scottish nobles who were ready to stand and fight with him. Robert the Bruce, the future king, was one of those nobles. Their loyalty was short-lived, however. The nobles didn't think it was appropriate to be led by someone who was inferior to them.

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5124stories and lessons created

Original Release: May 01, 2001

Updated Last Revision: Jul 03, 2015


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