Monday, August 3, 2009

Robert the Bruce

I am currently working on a post(s), about the Comyn’s, but it requires quite a bit more work.
Some of you may be wondering what there is to say, about the “losers”, that takes so long, but I believe there are several important aspects of the history of the Comyns, which help explain the actions of Robert, after the battle of Barra. Also they deserve to have their side of the story told.

I do not intend to do the same for Robert the Bruce, he has been well served by biographers, and his life and adventures are told in countless volumes. I will however offer this list of my favourites.

Firstly are the two “classics”, one medieval the other modern:

“The Bruce” - by John Barbour. (The one I have used during my work on this blog is the Canongate Classics 1997 edition edited and translated by A.A.M. Duncan). There are also a number of versions available in various formats online.

“Robert Bruce & the community of the Realm of Scotland” – By G.W.S.Barrow ( Edinburgh University Press 1988 edition)

“Robert the Bruce” - by Ronald McNair Scott (Canongate 1988)

“Robert the Bruce” – by Caroline Bingham (Constable 1998. This book was completed just before her death )

“On the trail of Robert the Bruce” – by David R. Ross (Luath Press 1999 This is the tale of David’s personal journey on the trail of Robert the Bruce – he did have a motor bike [David that is])

For those who may find the histories a little dry there is always Nigel Tranter’s “Bruce trilogy”. Whilst generally historically accurate, it is also a “ripping yarn”, of daring-do, as Robert and his lieutenants win Scotland’s freedom, “which no honest man gives up but with life itself.”.

I would like to close by quoting from the forepiece of Caroline Bingham’s book

“His faults were of his time, his virtues were all his own”

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