Page:Robert the Bruce and the struggle for Scottish independence - 1909.djvu/72

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Robert the Bruce.

[1286 A.D.-

conceived the statesmanlike project of bringing about the union of England and Scotland under one Crown, and thus laying to perpetual rest the thorny question of the suzerainty, by marrying his son and heir to the young Queen of Scots. With this end in view, he entered into negotiations with King Eric of Norway, who owed him a large sum of money, and was by so much the more disposed to listen to Edward's proposals. The four Guardians of Scotland disagreed among themselves, probably on the question of the projected marriage, which, if carried into effect, would, of course, put an end to the cherished schemes of the parties of de Brus and de Balliol. King Eric sent plenipotentiaries in 1289 to treat with the King of England, who appointed the Bishops of Durham and Winchester and the Earls of Pembroke and Warenne to meet them. A conference took place at Salisbury on November 6th, at which the Scottish nation was represented by the Bishops of St. Andrews and Glasgow, Comyn, Lord of Badenoch (being three out of the four Guardians), and Robert de Brus, Lord of Annandale, who had composed their differences for the occasion. Here it was agreed on the part of the Norwegians that Queen Margaret should be conveyed immediately, either to her own realm of Scotland, or to England, but free from all matrimonial engagement. On the part of the English it was agreed that, if King Edward received Margaret from her father, he should deliver her free to the Scottish people, provided law and order were restored in that country (quant le reaume de Escosse serra bien asseuré et en