A collection of historical and genalogical records
History of the House of Douglas, Volume 1
The popular "Game of Thrones" series by George R. R. Martin imagines a medieval world of warfare and political intrigue wherein powerful families vie for control of a kingdom. In medieval Scotland such a world was no fantasy. Powerful dynastic families struggled with one another for the Scottish Throne. Of those families three lineages defined the struggle for control of Scotland more than any others in the late middle ages: The House of Bruce and Stuart, The Plantagenets and Tudors of England and the House of Douglas. Many bloody wars would be fought between these three families. The tide of fortune that raised and lowered the star of Douglas resembles all too closely the House of Stark in Martin's tale. At its apogee the House of Douglas eclipsed the power of its rival Stuart and was instrumental in bringing about the Union of Scotland and England. Today's Queen of England is a direct descendant of Archibald Douglas, the 6th Earl of Angus. And it was James Douglas, 2nd Duke of Queensbury, that hammered out the deal (not without controversy) that united the two kingdoms of England and Scotland.
The house of Douglas was propelled to power during the Wars for Scottish Independence. Born in bloodshed the Earls and Lords of Douglas excelled in the Arts of War. Their history is a tale of knights and duels; sieges and battles; political intrigue and betrayal. Stories that fueled the imagination of generation after generation of writers like Sir Walter Scott and Nigel Trantor. And even the esteemed Tolkien, a noted medievalist at Oxford, drew heavily on the imagery that grew out of such great events as the battle of Bannockburn to inform his world of the "Lord of the Rings".
This eBook restoration of the seminal history compiled by Sir Herbert Maxwell of the House of Douglas is an essential text for students of medieval Britain. In it Maxwell exhaustively recounts story after story of the exploits and failures of this important family that shaped the character of Scotland. Not only does Maxwell recount the stories but he also illustrates it with beautiful hand coloured pictures and etchings of important monuments and people.
In creating this restoration the editor has expanded upon Maxwell's text and included more footnotes as well as relevant pictures and text that help illuminate stories that many children have heard since childhood such as the Battle of Otterburn and the legend of Black Agnes of Dunbar. Maxwell was constrained by the printed page and the technology of the late 19th century. Today his work can serve as the base for a larger telling.
The source for this publication is a two volume set of the first edition. All of the illustrations have been scanned and included at high resolution. The text has been entered as real text, not just scans, and is completely searchable. Every attempt has been made to reproduce the look and feel of the original text but all text flows and will format itself according to the capabilities of the eReader that it is viewed on. The person reading can control the font and size of font if desired for easier reading.
The first book of the two volume set deals with the rise of the House of Douglas from its earliest record and its propulsion to power during the Scottish Wars of Independence. Following the offspring of William "le Hardi" Douglas that constitute the Black Douglases and the Douglases of Morton, Book one examines the origins of the family and its rise to power under James "the Good" Douglas and his friendship and aid to Robert the Bruce in his rise to power. Book 1 ends with the Regency of another James Douglas, Earl of Morton and Regent of Scotland during the captivity and eventual execution of Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots.
Anyone who seeks to know more about the history of the Scots would do well to read this work. It is enjoyable, informative and above all inexpensive quality entertainment.
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