June 24th, 1314: A Good Day for Scotland, a Vital Day for Unionism

24 June 2009

6:58 PM

24 June 2009

6:58 PM

Robert Bruce (1274 – 1329), King of Scots from 1306, breaks the handle of his battleaxe as he kills the English knight Sir Henry de Bohun with a blow to the head before the Battle of Bannockburn, June 1314. Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty Images.

Mercy, how can one forget that this is the 695th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn? Scottish nationalists, naturally, like to claim the day for themselves and there’s an annual (and I suspect, dreary and chippy) nationalist rally at the battlefield but it’s not theirs to claim as their exclusive property. Far from it.


Because, in the end, Bannockburn was a great Unionist victory too. For without it, there’d have been no Union, merely the Incorporation of Scotland into England. As it was, the King of Scots became the King of England opening the way to the more-or-less happy Union we’ve enjoyed, if at times also endured, ever since. This, then, is an anniversary for Scots of all political persuasions to celebrate and one that English Unionists might also consider worth a glass or two.

[Thanks to Nathan O for the reminder]

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Show comments
  • Dirty Euro

    This shows the benefit of the EU so we do not have nationalist wars anymore without larger nations trying to exploit smaller nations in geopolitical battles between the English and French.
    Maybe this time next year we will have another bannockburn. With English euroskeptics trying to take our oil.

  • Alf Tupper C.R.O.F.

    Any finer point about Union or Incorporation, about Scots or English nationalism, is surely made redundant if we are to be subsumed without so much as a swing of a battleaxe, into the Eurabian Empire.

  • Chris Harrison

    200 hundred years after William’s conquest, the Normans are still fighting over the spoils. One Norman knocks another Norman on the head and 700 years later we like to pretend that one of these Normans was English and the other was a Scot; it’s all very strange!

  • Andre

    How much has it cost the long suffering English tax payer ever since? High time the union, such as it is, was sundered and Scotland, along with Wales and Ulster, set free to pay their own way in the world. The 60+million English would then enjoy an in build conservative and progressive commerce-friendly government and see an end to the moss troopers, rogues and mc’charlatans that control the parliament. Although Scots by blood I am now a Hadrianista

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