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Wallace: Man and Myth

analytical Essay
1684 words
1684 words
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William Wallace is a name steeped in meaning. He is a symbol of freedom and courage too many but why? Well know for his part in the rebellion against English forces during the War of Independence William Wallace’s is thought of as more than just a leader of the Scots he is Scotland’s Guardian (pg3 fisher) hero of the realm but why is he remembered so well? The answer is the legend that has been perpetuated by writers of old such as Blind Harry and then continued by modern historians. To understand why he became so well know and his name so long lived one must first look at the historical context before, during, and after his time. Tensions between England and Scotland raged for centuries. In the thirteenth century that proceeded the War of Independence and Wallace, a Golden Age was kept by Alexander II and his son Alexander III according to John of Fordun in 1380. (Magnus) Though this was a relatively peaceful time in Scotland tension with the English continued over the lands of northern England that had previously belonged to the Scots. Some small battles were fought but with the death of King John of England and crowning of Henry the III the disputes were settled with the marriage of Henry’s elder sister Joan in 1221 and the Treaty of York in 1237. (pg 91-92 magnus) The marriage gave Alexander more royal standing among other sovereign nations but on the flip side one sees the close relationship between England and Scotland that will cause struggle over the line of succession in future years. The Treaty of York gave boundary lands from Tweed to Solway everything south of this belonged to England and everything north belonged to the Scottish. After this a relatively peaceful relationship resided between the Scots and the En... ... middle of paper ... ...om under Scottish rule passed on to him the responsebiility to protect that right and when the old Kings of Scotland died off and the countries sovereignty taken away he rose to reclaim the honor of his nation. Through tireless war he made his name known and even death was the stuff of legend. William Wallace is made legend not do to the man he was but for the man people have made him. His rebellion against the English gives him exactly the role model the Scottish people wanted. Years of tension and oppression from England made a hero much needed. Wallace is the blank slate that the characteristics of a hero can be etched on too his lack of personality know make him relatable to all who read or hear of him because they can assign whatever personality they want. He lives on in story even in modern times and is remember for his amazing acts of bravery and heroism.

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that william wallace is a symbol of freedom and courage too many but why he is remembered so well?
  • Analyzes how tensions between england and scotland raged for centuries in the thirteenth century that proceeded the war of independence and wallace.
  • Explains that margaret alexander's granddaughter was crowned queen of the scots in 1286. the six guardians of scotland were appointed to care for scotland during her minority.
  • Analyzes how john balliol and robert bruce came to scotland in the twelfth century during the reign of david i. the scots asked edward i king of england to judge the case.
  • Analyzes how andrew fisher describes the horrid death of wallace, which is why he is known as scotland's greatest hero.
  • Analyzes how wallace's unrelenting nature is what makes him a perfect scottish nationalist symbol.
  • Analyzes how wallace was given the title of guardian after the battle of river forth. the battle of falkirk was the closet any scot every came to defeating edward i.
  • Explains that wallace was a man forced into action to defend against the tyranny of english rule. his rebellion against england gave him exactly the role model the scottish people wanted.
  • Describes the events and tales that make up the legend that is william wallace. his heroic death, tireless efforts to return balliol to the throne, and his passionate love for his wife killed by heselrig give people the idea that he is somehow more than man.
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