Charles II of England
Charles II was king of England and Ireland. He was king of Scotland from 1649 until his deposition in 1651, king of England and Ireland from the restoration of the monarchy in 1660 until his death. Charles II's father, Charles I, was executed at Whitehall on 30 January 1649, at the climax of the English Civil War. Although the Parliament of Scotland proclaimed Charles II king on 5 February 1649, England entered the period known as the English Interregnum or the English Commonwealth, the country was a de facto republic, led by Oliver Cromwell. Cromwell defeated Charles II at the Battle of Worcester on 3 September 1651, Charles fled to mainland Europe. Cromwell became virtual dictator of England and Ireland. Charles spent the next nine years in exile in France, the Dutch Republic and the Spanish Netherlands. A political crisis that followed the death of Cromwell in 1658 resulted in the restoration of the monarchy, Charles was invited to return to Britain. On 29 May 1660, his 30th birthday, he was received in London to public acclaim.
After 1660, all legal documents were dated as if he had succeeded his father as king in 1649. Charles's English parliament enacted laws known as the Clarendon Code, designed to shore up the position of the re-established Church of England. Charles acquiesced to the Clarendon Code though he favoured a policy of religious tolerance; the major foreign policy issue of his early reign was the Second Anglo-Dutch War. In 1670, he entered into the Treaty of Dover, an alliance with his first cousin King Louis XIV of France. Louis agreed to aid him in the Third Anglo-Dutch War and pay him a pension, Charles secretly promised to convert to Catholicism at an unspecified future date. Charles attempted to introduce religious freedom for Catholics and Protestant dissenters with his 1672 Royal Declaration of Indulgence, but the English Parliament forced him to withdraw it. In 1679, Titus Oates's revelations of a supposed Popish Plot sparked the Exclusion Crisis when it was revealed that Charles's brother and heir, Duke of York, was a Catholic.
The crisis saw the birth of anti-exclusion Tory parties. Charles sided with the Tories, following the discovery of the Rye House Plot to murder Charles and James in 1683, some Whig leaders were executed or forced into exile. Charles dissolved the English Parliament in 1681, ruled alone until his death on 6 February 1685, he was received into the Catholic Church on his deathbed. Charles was one of the most popular and beloved kings of England, known as the Merry Monarch, in reference to both the liveliness and hedonism of his court and the general relief at the return to normality after over a decade of rule by Cromwell and the Puritans. Charles's wife, Catherine of Braganza, bore no live children, but Charles acknowledged at least twelve illegitimate children by various mistresses, he was succeeded by his brother James. Charles II was born at St James's Palace on 29 May 1630, his parents were Charles I, who ruled the three kingdoms of England and Ireland, Henrietta Maria, the sister of the French king Louis XIII.
Charles was their second child. Their first son died within a day. England and Ireland were predominantly Anglican and Catholic. Charles was baptised in the Chapel Royal, on 27 June, by the Anglican Bishop of London, William Laud, he was brought up in the care of the Protestant Countess of Dorset, though his godparents included his maternal uncle Louis XIII and his maternal grandmother, Marie de' Medici, the Dowager Queen of France, both of whom were Catholics. At birth, Charles automatically became Duke of Cornwall and Duke of Rothesay, along with several other associated titles. At or around his eighth birthday, he was designated Prince of Wales, though he was never formally invested. During the 1640s, when Charles was still young, his father fought Parliamentary and Puritan forces in the English Civil War. Charles accompanied his father during the Battle of Edgehill and, at the age of fourteen, participated in the campaigns of 1645, when he was made titular commander of the English forces in the West Country.
By spring 1646, his father was losing the war, Charles left England due to fears for his safety. Setting off from Falmouth after staying at Pendennis Castle, he went first to the Isles of Scilly to Jersey, to France, where his mother was living in exile and his first cousin, eight-year-old Louis XIV, was king. Charles I surrendered into captivity in May 1646. In 1648, during the Second English Civil War, Charles moved to The Hague, where his sister Mary and his brother-in-law William II, Prince of Orange, seemed more to provide substantial aid to the royalist cause than his mother's French relations. However, the royalist fleet that came under Charles's control was not used to any advantage, did not reach Scotland in time to join up with the royalist Engager army of the Duke of Hamilton before it was defeated at the Battle of Preston by the Parliamentarians. At The Hague, Charles had a brief affair with Lucy Walter, who falsely claimed that they had secretly married, her son, James Crofts, was one of Charles's many illegitimate children who became prominent in British society.
Despite his son's diplomatic efforts to save him, King Charles I was beheaded in January 1649, England became a republic. On 5 February, the Covenanter Parliament of Scotland proclaimed Charles II "King of Great Britain and Ireland" at the Mercat Cross, but refused to allow him to enter Scotland unless he accepted the imposition of Presbyterianism throughout Britain and Ireland; when negotiations with the Scot
Robert the Bruce
Robert I, popularly known as Robert the Bruce, was King of Scots from 1306 until his death in 1329. Robert was one of the most famous warriors of his generation, led Scotland during the First War of Scottish Independence against England, he fought during his reign to regain Scotland's place as an independent country and is today revered in Scotland as a national hero. Descended from the Anglo-Norman and Gaelic nobility, his paternal fourth great-grandfather was King David I. Robert's grandfather, Robert de Brus, 5th Lord of Annandale, was one of the claimants to the Scottish throne during the "Great Cause"; as Earl of Carrick, Robert the Bruce supported his family's claim to the Scottish throne and took part in William Wallace's revolt against Edward I of England. Appointed in 1298 as a Guardian of Scotland alongside his chief rival for the throne, John III Comyn, Lord of Badenoch, William Lamberton, Bishop of St Andrews, Robert resigned in 1300 due to his quarrels with Comyn and the imminent restoration of John Balliol to the Scottish throne.
After submitting to Edward I in 1302 and returning to "the king's peace", Robert inherited his family's claim to the Scottish throne upon his father's death. In February 1306, having wounded Comyn, rushed from the church where they had met and encountered his attendants outside, he told them what had happened and said, "I must be off, for I doubt I have slain the Red Comyn." "Doubt?" Roger de Kirkpatrick of Closeburn answered, "I mak sikker," and, rushing into the church, killed Comyn. For this Bruce was excommunicated by the Pope. Bruce moved to seize the throne and was crowned king of Scots on 25 March 1306. Edward I's forces defeated Robert in battle, forcing him to flee into hiding before re-emerging in 1307 to defeat an English army at Loudoun Hill and wage a successful guerrilla war against the English. Bruce defeated his other Scots enemies, destroying their strongholds and devastating their lands, in 1309 held his first parliament. A series of military victories between 1310 and 1314 won him control of much of Scotland, at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314, Robert defeated a much larger English army under Edward II of England, confirming the re-establishment of an independent Scottish kingdom.
The battle marked a significant turning point, with Robert's armies now free to launch devastating raids throughout northern England, while extending his war against the English to Ireland by sending an army to invade there and by appealing to the Irish to rise against Edward II's rule. Despite Bannockburn and the capture of the final English stronghold at Berwick in 1318, Edward II refused to renounce his claim to the overlordship of Scotland. In 1320, the Scottish nobility submitted the Declaration of Arbroath to Pope John XXII, declaring Robert as their rightful monarch and asserting Scotland's status as an independent kingdom. In 1324, the Pope recognised Robert I as king of an independent Scotland, in 1326, the Franco-Scottish alliance was renewed in the Treaty of Corbeil. In 1327, the English deposed Edward II in favour of his son, Edward III, peace was concluded between Scotland and England with the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton, by which Edward III renounced all claims to sovereignty over Scotland.
Robert died in June 1329. His body is buried in Dunfermline Abbey, while his heart was interred in Melrose Abbey and his internal organs embalmed and placed in St Serf’s Chapel, site of the medieval Cardross Parish church. Robert de Brus, 1st Lord of Annandale, the first of the Bruce, or de Brus, line arrived in Scotland with David I in 1124 and was given the lands of Annandale in Dumfries and Galloway. Several members of the Bruce family were called Robert, the future king was one of ten children, the eldest son, of Robert de Brus, 6th Lord of Annandale, Marjorie, Countess of Carrick, claimed the Scottish throne as a fourth great-grandson of David I, his mother was by all accounts a formidable woman who, legend would have it, kept Robert Bruce's father captive until he agreed to marry her. From his mother, he inherited the Earldom of Carrick, through his father, a royal lineage that would give him a claim to the Scottish throne; the Bruces held substantial estates in Aberdeenshire, County Antrim, County Durham, Essex and Yorkshire.
Although Robert the Bruce's date of birth is known, his place of birth is less certain, although it is most to have been Turnberry Castle in Ayrshire, the head of his mother's earldom. However there are claims that he may have been born in Lochmaben in Dumfriesshire, or Writtle in Essex. Little is known of his youth, he was brought up in a mixture of the Anglo-Norman culture of northern England and south-eastern Scotland, the Gaelic culture of south-west Scotland and most of Scotland north of the River Forth. Annandale was feudalised and the form of Northern Middle English that would develop into the Scots language was spoken throughout the region. Carrick was an integral part of Galloway, though the earls of Carrick had achieved some feudalisation, the society of Carrick at the end of the thirteenth century remained emphatically Celtic and Gaelic speaking. Robert the Bruce would most have become trilingual at an early age, he would have been schooled to speak and write in the Anglo-Norman language of his Scots-Norman peers and his father's family.
He would have spoken both the Gaeli
A clan badge, sometimes called a plant badge, is a badge or emblem a sprig of a specific plant, used to identify a member of a particular Scottish clan. They are worn in a bonnet behind the Scottish crest badge, or attached at the shoulder of a lady's tartan sash. According to popular lore clan badges were used by Scottish clans as a means of identification in battle. An authentic example of plants being used in this way were the sprigs of oats used by troops under the command of Montrose during the sack of Aberdeen. Similar items are known to have been used by military forces in Scotland, like paper, or the "White Cockade" of the Jacobites. Despite popular lore, many clan badges attributed to Scottish clans would be impractical for use as a means of identification. Many would be unsuitable for a modern clan gathering, let alone a raging clan battle. A number of the plants attributed as clan badges are only available during certain times of year. Though it is maintained that clan badges were used long before the Scottish crest badges used today, according to a former Lord Lyon King of Arms the oldest symbols used at gatherings were heraldic flags such as the banner and pinsel.
There is much confusion as to. Several 19th century writers variously attributed plants to clans, many times contradicting each other, it has been claimed by one writer that if a clan gained new lands it may have acquired that district's "badge" and used it along with their own clan badge. It is clear however, that there are several large groups of clans which share badges and share a historical connection; the Clan Donald group and clans/septs which have been associated with Clan Donald all have common heath attributed as their badge. Another large group is the Clan Chattan group which have been attributed red whortleberry, or bearberry, or boxwood; the leaves of these three plants are similar, at least one writer has claimed that whatever plant which happened to be available was used. One group, the Siol Alpin group, of clans are said to have claimed or are thought to share a common descent; the Siol Alpin clans are all attributed the clan badge of pine. In some cases, clan badges are derived from the heraldry of clan chiefs.
For example, the Farquharsons have pine attributed as a clan badge of theirs. Pine was used in the Invercauld Arms as a mark of cadencing to the basic Shaw-Mackintosh Arms. Scottish crest badge Flora of Scotland Language of flowers
Pitsligo Castle is a ruined castle half a mile east of Rosehearty, Scotland. It was described by W. Douglas Simpson as one of the nine castles of the Knuckle, referring to the rocky headland of north-east Aberdeenshire, it originated. There is an arched gateway in the west wall of the outer court, with the date 1656 and the arms of the Forbeses and Erskines. In the inner court the date is shown as 1663. At the north-east angle of the courtyard there is a tall flanking drum-tower; the main tower had three vaulted stories, but all above the lowest has disappeared. There is a stair tower at the north-east corner, better preserved. There are panels dated 1577 over the courtyard doorway, it is listed by Historic Environment Scotland as a scheduled monument. List of castles in Scotland Scheduled monuments in Aberdeenshire Engraving of Pitsligo castle by James Fittler in the digitised copy of Scotia Depicta, or the antiquities, public buildings and gentlemen's seats, cities and picturesque scenery of Scotland, 1804 at National Library of Scotland
Oliver Castle was a medieval tower house, located in the upper Tweed Valley in the Scottish Borders. The site of the hillfort known as Oliver Castle is to the north of the village of Tweedsmuir, although the site of the tower house is less certain. Mentioned in a document of c.1200, it was part of the line of peel towers along the Tweed Valley. It was replaced in the seventeenth century by a house, itself replaced in the late 18th century by the present Oliver House. For most of its existence the property has been owned by members of the Tweedie family; the castle was associated with Clan Fraser, was named for Oliver Fraser, who gave lands to Newbattle Abbey as recorded in its register. The lines of descent from Oliver and his nephew Adam are uncertain, but the Frasers continued to exert power from Oliver Castle with Sir Bernard Fraser and Sir Gilbert Fraser, who held in turn the hereditary office of Sheriff of Tweeddale. A descendant, Sir Simon Fraser of Oliver and Neidpath, Knight Banneret, fought in the Wars of Scottish Independence.
Oliver passed to the Tweedies through a marriage to Sir Simon Fraser's daughter or granddaughter, by which they gained Drumelzier. The legendary lawlessness of the Scottish Marches revolved around bitter inter-family feuds and conflict over livestock. In an incident characteristic of the times, Thomas Porteus of nearby Hawkshaw was arraigned on 16 February 1489 for having lifted seventy-four lambs from the lands of Oliver Castle, belonging to William Tweedie and Lawrence Tweedie. In the 17th or 18th century a new house was built by the Tweedies, itself replaced by the present Oliver House, begun in about 1780 by Thomas Tweedie of Oliver. Both houses are to have reused stone from the medieval tower house; the site of the prehistoric hillfort is protected as a scheduled monument. It is on a low knoll, some 60 metres above the valley floor, covered an area around 60 by 55 metres; the two lines of defence are visible as little more than grassy banks. Inside, possible timber house sites have been noted as well as stone foundations.
The association of these remains with the medieval castle has not been confirmed by excavation, though tradition places the castle on the hillfort site. The present Oliver House is located on lower ground, around 200 metres to the south-west of the hillfort, remains occupied, it incorporates a heraldic panel, brought from the earlier house, which stands some 50 metres to the north-west. The old house is a typical laird's residence, it bears the date 1734, with the initials of his wife Margeret Ewart. An older date of 1649 is recorded as being inscribed on the old house. Tweedie, Michael Forbes; the History of the Tweedie, or Tweedy, Family. W. P. Griffith & Sons. List of places in the Scottish Borders List of places in Scotland
Royal National Lifeboat Institution
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the largest charity that saves lives at sea around the coasts of the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, as well as on some inland waterways. There are numerous other lifeboat services operating in the same area. Founded in 1824 as the National Institution for the Preservation of Life from Shipwreck, the RNLI was granted a Royal Charter in 1860, it is a charity in the Republic of Ireland. Queen Elizabeth II is Patron; the RNLI is principally funded by legacies and donations, most of the members of its lifeboat crews are unpaid volunteers. The RNLI operates 444 lifeboats. Crews rescued on average 22 people a day in 2015. RNLI Lifeguards operate on more than 200 beaches, they are paid by local authorities, while the RNLI provides training. The Institution operates Flood Rescue Teams nationally and internationally, the latter prepared to travel to emergencies overseas at short notice. Considerable effort is put into training and education by the Institution for young people.
The Institution has saved some 140,000 lives since its foundation, at a cost of more than 600 lives lost in service. Sir William Hillary moved to the Isle of Man in 1808. Being aware of the treacherous nature of the Irish Sea, with many ships being wrecked around the Manx coast, he drew up plans for a national lifeboat service manned by trained crews, he received little response from the Admiralty. However, on appealing to the more philanthropic members of London society, the plans were adopted and, with the help of Member of Parliament Thomas Wilson and former MP and merchant George Hibbert, the National Institution for the Preservation of Life from Shipwreck was founded in 1824. At the age of 60, Sir William took part in the 1830 rescue of the packet St George, which had foundered on Conister Rock at the entrance to Douglas Harbour, he commanded the lifeboat and was washed overboard with others of the lifeboat crew, yet everyone aboard the St George was rescued with no loss of life. It was this incident which prompted Sir William to set up a scheme to build The Tower of Refuge on Conister Rock – a project completed in 1832 which stands to this day at the entrance to Douglas Harbour.
In 1854 the institution's name changed to the Royal National Lifeboat Institution and the first of the new lifeboats to be built was stationed at Douglas in recognition of the work of Sir William. In its first year the RNLI raised £10,000, however by 1849, income had dropped to £354. Finding itself in financial difficulties, the RNLI accepted a government subsidy of £2,000, which rose in subsequent years; this lasted until 1869, when the RNLI ceased accepting subsidies – it had found that voluntary donations had fallen by more than the subsidies. It was the loss of 27 lifeboat crew of Southport and St Annes in 1886 that gave new impetus to fundraising and an 1889 appeal raised £10,000; the first Lifeboat Saturday was held in that year. During World War I, lifeboat crews launched 1,808 times. With many younger men on active service, the average age of a lifeboatman was over 50. Many launches were to ships, torpedoed or struck mines, including naval or merchant vessels on war duty. World War II placed considerable extra demands on the RNLI in south and east England where the threat of invasion and enemy activity was ever-present, rescuing downed aircrew a frequent occurrence, the constant danger of mines.
During the war 6,376 lives were saved. Nineteen RNLI lifeboats sailed to Dunkirk between 27 May and 4 June 1940 to assist with the Dunkirk evacuation. Lifeboats from Ramsgate and Margate went directly to France with their own crews; the crew of Ramsgate's Prudential collected 2,800 troops. Margate's Coxswain, Edward Parker, was awarded a Distinguished Service Medal for his work taking the RNLB Lord Southborough to the beaches. Of the other lifeboats and crews summoned to Dover by the Admiralty, the first arrivals questioned – reasonably in their view – the details of the service, in particular the impracticality of running heavy lifeboats on to the beach, loading them with soldiers floating them off; the dispute resulted in the first three crews being sent home. Subsequent lifeboats arriving were commandeered without discussion, much to the disappointment of many lifeboatmen. A RNLI investigation resulted in the dismissal of two Hythe crew members, who were vindicated in one aspect of their criticism, as Hythe's Viscountess Wakefield was run on to the beach and unable to be refloated.
Some RNLI crew members stayed in Dover for the emergency to provide repair and refuelling facilities, after the end of the evacuation most lifeboats returned to their stations with varying levels of damage and continued their lifesaving services. The RNLI's lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved more than 140,000 lives since 1824; the RNLI makes a distinction between people aided and lives saved. There were 8,462 lifeboat launches in 2014, rescuing 8,727 people, including saving 460 lives. Lifeguards rescued 19,353 people. Flood rescuers deployed seven times. In 2015 crews rescued on average 22 people a day; the bi
Fraser of Muchalls
The Frasers of Muchal-in Mar, sometimes referred to as the Frasers of Muchalls, were a branch of the Fraser family in Scotland. In 1366 Thomas Fraser, a descendant of Sir Alexander Fraser of Cornton brother of Sir Richard Fraser of Touch-Fraser, exchanged the lands in Petyndreich, Stirlingshire for those of Kinmundy, Aberdeenshire, his grandson Thomas exchanged the estate of Cornton for Muchalls in Aberdeenshire. It was Thomas who erected the towerhouse stronghold overlooking the North Sea, now known as Muchalls Castle, having undergone expansion by the Burnetts of Leys in 1617, his descendant, Andrew Fraser, created Lord Fraser in 1633, completed Castle Fraser in 1636. The title became dormant following the premature death in 1716 of Charles, 4th Lord Fraser, a Jacobite who, while trying to escape from Government troops, fell over the cliffs at Pennan, near Peterhead. Castle Fraser, near Inverurie, has been under the care of the National Trust for Scotland since 1976. Clan Fraser Frasers of Muchalls from Baronage Press