William Wallace the Brave
William Wallace was born around 1272 in
Ellerslie (which is now Elderslie) to Sir Malcolm Wallace and Margaret
de Crauford Wallace his elder brother also named Malcolm was heir to the
lands held by their father.William was born into a Scotland filled with
peace and prosperity.The current king Alexander was a good and just ruler
and during his reign many magnificent bridges,churches and abbeys were
built proving Scotland's prosperity agriculture flourished as did industry
with Scotland's shipbuilders making ships for the French almost exclusively.
Shortly after William's birth his future
arch-enemy Edward the First of the house of Plantagenet was crowned king
William who displayed a sharp intellect
and strong physical attributes was sent to the abbey in the city of Paisley
to study, by the time he was an adult the 6 foot 7 inch Wallace could speak
English,Latin,French and Gaelic seeing how his elder brother was heir to
their father's lands William was educated to be placed someday into the
priesthood however when he was a child world events were dictating a much
different future for him.
Wallace was but 10 when Edward I had taken
over Wales during this time Edward I had also taken interest in his lands
in France and after an absence there found corruption in his government
finding a easy scapegoat he blamed everything on the Jews in Britain and
had them all exiled in a harsh manner and in just four years tragedy struck
Scotland and nothing would ever be the same again.
King Alexander died.It was a dreary night
in Edinburgh and if it wasn't already enough there were prophecies warning
of this night.King Alexander in his 40's had just held a council feast
with his barons it was March 19,1286 he had the previous year married a
French princess named Joleta who was in her 20's.Despite an impending storm
he wanted to ride out to Kinghorn to be with her and rode into the tempest
with a group of his men.
He never made it.
Outside Pettycur on the rocky shore beneath
a cliff his body was found thrown from his horse down to the rocks below
his neck broken and his body shattered legend has it a soothsayer warned
him his horse would be the death of him but Alexander quelled this prophecy
of doom by having the horse killed yet many believe it was the remains
of that horse that so frightened his other steed nevertheless Joleta bore
him no children and no children meant no heir to the throne.
Joleta returned to France to live with
her father and the magnates and prelates of Scotland held an emergency
meeting all swearing allegiance to the only heir they could find Alexander's
granddaughter the child Margaret who lived in Norway.
Margaret at once was sent to Norway the
boat to fetch her was filled with pastries and sweetmeats and everything
a young girl could need but she became ill on the way and shortly after
her arrival in Orkney she died.Scotland under a fragile provisional government
had to find a new ruler out of 13 men with claims to the throne.
The only man who could decide who the
next king would be was the ambitious king of England Edward I.
Two-The Troubles Begin