Page:Robert the Bruce and the struggle for Scottish independence - 1909.djvu/133

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1298 A.D.]

The Campaign of Wallace.


these affairs were running their course, by certain letters lately published. One of these, dated July 3d, three weeks before the battle of Falkirk, is a request to King Edward by the Earl of Carrick for a renewal of protection for three knights who are with him on the King's service in Galloway.[1] In another document, he is commanded by the King to bring 1000 picked men of Carrick and Galloway to join an expedition about to be made into Scotland.[2] Seeing, however, that there is some doubt about the exact date of these papers, de Brus's attitude during 1298 must be considered uncertain. The testimony of Scottish and English chroniclers is equally untrustworthy, for it was the aim of each, though with different object, to make it appear that he attached himself early to the national cause.

King Edward rested at Stirling till about August 9th; by September 10th he had reached Carlisle, and on November 19th, being then at Newcastle, he appointed Patrick de Dunbar, Earl of March, his captain of the forces and castles in the east of Scotland. The war went on in a desultory sort of way through the remainder of that year.

Cumberland continued to suffer from raids by parties of Scots, and Carlisle being blockaded closely for twenty-eight days ending December 8, 1297, when the approach of Edward from the north caused the invaders to move off.[3] Record has been pre-

  1. Bain, ii., 255.
  2. Undated, but assigned by Bain (ii., 268) to the autumn of 1298, though Stevenson (ii., 178) puts it among the papers of 1297.
  3. Raine, 155.