Thomas Randolph, 1st Earl of Moray

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The Earl of Moray
Thomas Randolph I inscription.jpg
Memorial to the Earl of Moray at Edinburgh Castle
Bornc. 1278 (?)
Died20 July 1332
Musselburgh, East Lothian, Scotland
Spouse(s)Isabel Stewart of Bonkyll
Issue
FatherSir Thomas Randolph
MotherIsobel Bruce (?)

Thomas Randolph, Earl of Moray (c. 1278 (?) – 20 July 1332) was a soldier and diplomat in the Wars of Scottish Independence, who later served as regent of Scotland.

Wars of Scottish Independence war of national liberation

The Wars of Scottish Independence were a series of military campaigns fought between the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England in the late 13th and early 14th centuries.

A regent is a person appointed to govern a state because the monarch is a minor, is absent or is incapacitated. The rule of a regent or regents is called a regency. A regent or regency council may be formed ad hoc or in accordance with a constitutional rule. Regent is sometimes a formal title. If the regent is holding his position due to his position in the line of succession, the compound term prince regent is often used; if the regent of a minor is his mother, she is often referred to as queen regent.

Contents

Early life

Thomas was the son of another Thomas, who was Chamberlain of Scotland and Sheriff of Roxburgh, and the grandson of the Randulf or Ranulf who gave the family their surname. [1] It is known that the younger Thomas was the nephew of King Robert the Bruce, but it is uncertain which of Robert's sisters was his mother. [2] The traditional view is that she was of the first marriage of Marjorie of Carrick, who was mother of Robert the Bruce by her second marriage. There has been conjecture that the King's father Robert married again after Marjorie's death and had with his second wife a daughter, Isabel, who married the elder Thomas; however, because Marjorie of Carrick did not die until 1292 and Thomas the younger was at the coronation of John Balliol in 1292, this is impossible. [3] [4]

Roxburgh village in the Scottish Borders area of Scotland

Roxburgh, also known as Rosbroch, is a civil parish and now-destroyed royal burgh, in the historic county of Roxburghshire in the Scottish Borders. It was an important trading burgh in High Medieval to early modern Scotland. In the Middle Ages it had at least as much importance as Edinburgh, Stirling, Perth, or Berwick-upon-Tweed, for a time acting as de facto capital.

War of Independence

Earl Thomas's coat of arms consisted of three cushions within a double tressure. The symbolism of the cushions is not known, but they may have represented wealth and luxury. The tressure was added by Thomas to show his royal connection: the same symbol appeared on King Robert's arms Moray Coat of Arms.svg
Earl Thomas's coat of arms consisted of three cushions within a double tressure. The symbolism of the cushions is not known, but they may have represented wealth and luxury. The tressure was added by Thomas to show his royal connection: the same symbol appeared on King Robert's arms

Thomas supported Robert in his attempt to take the throne, and was present at his uncle's coronation in 1306. He was probably knighted by the king then or shortly after. [5] Following the Scottish defeat at the Battle of Methven, he was taken prisoner by the English, coming under the custody first of Sir Adam Gordon and then of the Earl of Lincoln. During his confinement he joined the English cause, and remained attached to them until he was captured by Sir James Douglas in 1308, and persuaded to rejoin the Scottish side. His defection came to the attention of Edward II of England, who forfeited all his lands, bestowing them on his favourite Hugh le Despencer. [1]

The Battle of Methven took place at Methven, Scotland on 19 June 1306, during the Wars of Scottish Independence. The battlefield was researched to be included in the Inventory of Historic Battlefields in Scotland and protected by Historic Scotland under the Scottish Historical Environment Policy of 2009, but was excluded due to the uncertainty of its location.

Sir Adam de Gordon, lord of Gordon, was a Scottish statesman and soldier.

Henry de Lacy, 3rd Earl of Lincoln English noble

Henry de Lacy, 3rd Earl of Lincoln, Baron of Pontefract was an English nobleman and confidant of King Edward I 'Longshanks'. He served Edward in Wales, France, and Scotland, both as a soldier and a diplomat.

In 1312 Robert created him Earl of Moray, and he became ruler of a large swathe of land in the north of Scotland, far exceeding his southern possessions. He was also made lord of the Isle of Man, in exchange for a reddendo[ clarification needed ] of six ships of 26 oars and 100 silver marks [ clarification needed ][ silver marks weren't issued until later? ], to be paid at Inverness. [1] Around this time he became one of Robert's most trusted lieutenants, and he seems to have accompanied him on most of his campaigns. His most famous achievement was on 14 March 1314 when he carried out a daring attack on Edinburgh Castle. [6] This was one of a handful of castles in Scotland still in English hands, and stood on top of an apparently unscalable rock. Amongst Moray's men was William Francis, the son of a former governor of the castle, who knew of a secret path up the rock. Moray used this path to reach the castle, and successfully retook it for the Scots. [7]

Earl of Moray

The title Earl of Moray ("Murray") has been created several times in the Peerage of Scotland. It has been held by Clan Stewart since the 16th century, when James Stewart, illegitimate son of James V, was granted the title.

Isle of Man British Crown dependency

The Isle of Man, sometimes referred to simply as Mann, is a self-governing British Crown dependency in the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. The head of state, Queen Elizabeth II, holds the title of Lord of Mann and is represented by a lieutenant governor. Defence is the responsibility of the United Kingdom.

Moray played an important role in the Scottish victory at the Battle of Bannockburn, where he commanded one of the three divisions (schiltrons) of the infantry, the others being commanded by King Robert and Edward Bruce, the king's brother. [8] [9] [10] [11] John Barbour, however, said there were four schiltrons, one commanded by James Douglas.

Battle of Bannockburn 1314 battle during the First War of Scottish Independence

The Battle of Bannockburn on 23 and 24 June 1314 was a victory of the army of King of Scots Robert the Bruce over the army of King Edward II of England in the First War of Scottish Independence. Though it did not bring overall victory in the war, which would go on for 14 more years, it was a landmark in Scottish history.

A schiltron is a compact body of troops forming a battle array, shield wall or phalanx. The term is most often associated with Scottish pike formations during the Wars of Scottish Independence in the late 13th and early 14th centuries.

Edward Bruce High king of ireland

Edward Bruce, Earl of Carrick, was a younger brother of Robert the Bruce, King of Scots. He supported his brother in the struggle for the Scottish crown, then pursued his own claims in Ireland. He was proclaimed High King of Ireland, but was eventually defeated and killed at the Battle of Faughart.

Ireland

In 1315 Moray accompanied Edward Bruce, the king's brother, during his invasion of Ireland. He was one of the principal leaders in the war against the English settlers in Ireland. He returned twice to Scotland during the war to obtain reinforcements and to get Robert's personal presence in Ireland. [1]

Ireland Island in north-west Europe, 20th largest in world, politically divided into the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland (a part of the UK)

Ireland is an island in the North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, and St George's Channel. Ireland is the second-largest island of the British Isles, the third-largest in Europe, and the twentieth-largest on Earth.

Diplomatic career

Moray's name appears directly after Robert's on the famous Declaration of Arbroath, which was sent to the Pope by the nobles of Scotland to persuade him to recognise Scotland as an independent nation. Later, in 1324, he was sent to meet the Pope in person at his court in Avignon. At this meeting he successfully persuaded the Pope to recognise Robert as King of Scots. The next year the Pope wrote to Moray declaring his hope and trust in his efforts to make peace between England and Scotland, and gave permission for him to visit the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. [1]

Moray was again sent to France in 1325, this time to persuade King Charles IV to sign the Treaty of Corbeil renewing the Franco-Scottish alliance, which he did successfully. [12]

After his return to Scotland he had a commanding role in the Battle of Stanhope Park against the English. The English suffered a humiliating defeat, and were forced to sign the Treaty of Edinburgh–Northampton, by which Scotland's independence was finally acknowledged. [1]

Regent

During the King's final years, Moray had been a constant companion, and had superintended the household of the young heir to the throne, David. Before his death, Robert decreed that Moray would serve as regent for David, who was only five years old when he succeeded as king. Moray performed this role justly and wisely, but died at Musselburgh three years later while on his way to repel an invasion by Edward Balliol and his supporters. At the time it was said that he had been poisoned by the English, but some modern historians believe that it is more likely that he died from a kidney stone. [1] His successor as regent was Donald, Earl of Mar. [11]

Marriage and family

Thomas married Isabel, only daughter of Margaret and John Stewart of Bonkyll (killed at the Battle of Falkirk), a brother of James, High Steward of Scotland. [13] [14] [15] They had two sons and two daughters: [1]

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References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Paul, Sir James (1909). The Scots Peerage. Edinburgh: David Douglas. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  2. Bain, Joseph, FSA (Scot)., The Edwards in Scotland, 1296 - 1377, Edinburgh, 1901:61 & 66
  3. Weis, Fredk., Lewis, et al., The Magna Charta Sureties 1215, 5th edition, Baltimore, 2002: 50
  4. Richardson, Douglas, Plantagenet Ancestry, Baltimore, Md., 2004: 682
  5. Penman, Michael Robert the Bruce: King of the Scots p. 98
  6. Tabraham, Christopher, 'Edinburgh Castle Official Souvenir Guide'
  7. Barbour, John (1375). Barbour, Johne (1375), Skeat, Walter W., ed., The Bruce; or, The Book of the most excellent and noble prince, Robert de Broyss, King of Scots. Early English Text Society, 1870, retrieved 2008-08-17 - in Scots with Modern English annotations.
  8. Barbour, The Bruce, p 216.
  9. Ross, David R., James the Good, pp. 61-83.
  10. Scott, Ronald McNair, Robert the Bruce, pp. 149-152.
  11. 1 2 Traquair, Peter Freedom's Sword. Collins, 1998. ISBN   978-0-00-472079-1
  12. Ronald McNair Scott: Robert the Bruce, King of Scots, Hutchinson & Co 1982, p 216
  13. Anderson, William, The Scottish Nation, Edinburgh, 1867, vol.vii: 200.
  14. Mackenzie, A.M., M.A., D.Litt., The Rise of the Stewarts, London, 1935: 14n.
  15. Simpson, David, The Genealogical and Chronological History of the Stuarts, Edinburgh, 1713: 64-5.