Saturday, February 27, 2010

Battle of Ancrum Moor

The Battle of Ancrum Moor occurred on February 27, 1545.  Sir Walter Scott coined the term "Wars of the Rough Wooing" for the 16th century wars between England and Scotland.  The wooing referred to Henry VIII's efforts to force a marriage between his son Edward, and Mary I of Scotland (Mary, Queen of Scots).  These wars ended with the Union of the Crowns in 1603.

Scott's great-grandfather, Sir Walter Scott (3rd Lord) of Buccleuch was part of the battle that day.  Buccleuch opposed Mary's marrying Edward, and was part of the Scottish forces, led by the Earl of Douglas at Ancrum Moor.

This battle was significant to Sir Walter Scott through his direct ancestral line.  In Scott's Journal, there is a reference to:

May 1.(1827) —Brought Andrew Shortreed to copy some things I want. Maxpopple came with us as far as Lessudden, and we stopped and made a pilgrimage to Fair Maiden Lilliard's Stone, which has been restored lately, to the credit of Mr. Walker of Muirhouselaw.

The rude inscription on the stone placed over the grave of this Border amazon, slain at Ancrum Moor, A.D. 1545, ran thus—

"Fair maiden Lilliard lies under this stane,
Little was her stature but great was her fame,
Upon the English louns she laid many thumps,
And when her legs were cuttet off she fought upon her stumps."

See New Stat. Account Scot., "Roxburgh," p. 244.

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