The subjugation of Scotland

In 1296, Edward invaded Scotland in revenge for not helping him in France.

Action 1 - The Siege of Berwick

  • On March 12 1296, Edward 1 besieged the Scottish town of Berwick.
  • Edward gave the people of Berwick three days to surrender.
  • They refused to surrended and made fun of him instead.
  • Berwick was overrun and ransacked, and 10,000 of the population were killed.

Action 2 - The Battle of Dunbar

  • In April, one of Edward I’s nobles, Earl Warenne of Surrey was sent to capture Dunbar Castle for the English.
  • The Earl in control of the Castle had already agreed to surrender it, but his wife gave it to the Scottish forces.
  • Warenne decided to meet the Scottish army in battle near the Castle. While the English troops were manoeuvring, the Scots mistook this for a retreat and attacked.
  • The Scots were completely defeated because they had broken ranks.
  • Many Guardians and Scottish nobles were captured.

Action 3 – King John surrenders

  • By midsummer, Edward I had captured the majority of important Scottish castles, as far north as Elgin.
  • King John had fled north towards his family’s lands.
  • Even his own nobles would not support him.
  • John surrendered to Edward on 10 July 1296.
Back view of The Stone of Scone
The Stone of Destiny

Action 4 – The loss of Scottish independence

  • Edward I removed the Royal Badge from King John’s clothing, after which John became known as 'Toom Tabard' (meaning 'Empty Coat').
  • The English King also took the Scottish Crown Jewels, the Black Rood of St Margaret and the Stone of Destiny (or Stone of Scone), on which Scottish Kings were crowned.
  • Edward broke John’s Royal Seal.

Action 5 – The Ragman Roll

  • In August 1296, leading Scottish nobles and other important Scots swore a personal oath to the English king in writing - this document became known as the Ragman Roll.
  • They were made to add their seals to the document which meant that they were accepting Edward as their overlord.
  • Edward I of England was now in complete control of Scotland.
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