Page:Robert the Bruce and the struggle for Scottish independence - 1909.djvu/65

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1286 A.D.]
35
The Making of Scotland.

Henry III., thus adding one more to the many bonds of consanguinity which united the royal houses of England and Scotland.

Alexander was only ten years of age at the time of this marriage, and King Henry thought it a good opportunity to renew the defunct claim to the homage of Scotland, "according to the usage recorded in many chronicles." But King Alexander, acting under advice of his ministers, wisely made answer that "he had been invited to York to marry the Princess of England, not to treat of affairs of State, and that he could not take such an important step without the knowledge and approbation of his Parliament."

The claim of the English Kings to the homage of Scotland was renewed from time to time, completely ignoring the renunciation by Richard Coeur de Lion. Henry III. died in 1272. In 1278 King Alexander did homage to Edward I. in general terms, and by proxy. Robert de Brus, afterwards to become famous as "the Competitor," performed the ceremony in place of the King of Scots, using the formula — "for the services due on account of the lands and tenements which I hold of the King of England." King Edward accepted it, though certain discrepancies in the record, which contains a clause " saving the claim of homage for the kingdom of Scotland whenever that question might be raised," have caused grave doubts as to its authenticity.[1]

King Alexander's first Queen, Margaret of Eng-

  1. Robertson's Scotland under her Early Kings, ii., p. 425.