Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Battle of Loudoun Hill

'...The efforts of Bruce were not uniformly successful. Two of his brothers, Thomas and Alexander, had landed in Galloway, but were defeated and made prisoners by Roland Macdougal, a chief of that country who was devoted to England. He sent the unfortunate brothers to Edward, who executed them both, and became thus accountable to Bruce for the death of three of his brethren. This accident rendered the king's condition more precarious than it had been, and encouraged the Gallovidians to make many attempts against his person, in some of which they made use of bloodhounds. At one time he escaped so narrowly, that his banner was taken, and, as it happened, by his own nephew, Thomas Randolph, then employed in the ranks of the English. When pressed upon on this and similar occasions, it was the custom of Bruce to elude the efforts of the enemy by dispersing his followers, who, each shifting for himself, knew where to meet again at some place of rendezvous, and often surprised and put to the sword some part of the enemy which were lying in full assurance of safety.
At length, after repeated actions and a long series of marching and counter-marching, Pembroke was forced lo abandon Ayrshire to the Bruce, as Percy had done before him. Douglas on his part was successful in Lanarkshire,  and the numerous patriots resumed the courage which they had possessed under Wallace. A battle was fought at Loudoun-hill, in consequence of an express appointment between Bruce and his old enemy the earl of Pembroke, who was returning to the west with considerable reinforcements, the 10th of May, 1307. in which the Scottish king completely avenged the defeat at Methven...'
The Battle of Loudon Hill was the first major victory over the English, for Robert Bruce as King of Scotland.  Bruce's forces were approximately 600 strong.  English troops, under Aymer de Valence, number 3,000.  Bruce's brother Edward also fought at Loudoun Hill.  The text above is from Sir Walter Scott's "The History of Scotland".  The battle took place on May 10, 1307.

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