The Thirteenth Century

1204:  The Scots attack the newly built English fort at Tweedmouth, overlooking the key Scots port of Berwick-Upon-Tweed.

1209: The Treaty of Norham between William I and King John of England stops the building of the Tweedmouth fort, but at the cost of a £10,000 payment to the English: and William’s two oldest daughters, who John later marries to English nobles.

King John excommunicated.

Jul 1214:  Battle of Bouvines

4 December 1214: Alexander II succeeds to the Scottish throne.

May 1215:  Rebels capture London.

15 Jun 1215: Magna Carta signed at Runnymede.

1215: Alexander II of Scotland takes advantage of King John’s weakness after the signing of the Magna Carta to try to capture Northumberland. He is beaten back and a period of cross border warfare follows until John’s death in 1216.

May 1216:  Prince Louis of France welcomed into London unopposed.

19 Oct 1216: King John dies at Newark.  Henry III claims the throne.

11 Nov 1216: William Marshall formally chosen by the King’s Council to act as regent.

20 May 1217:  Lincoln Fair.  William Marshall, in his 70s, leads the charge against Lincoln’s french defenders.  Wins battle.

11 Sept 1217: Treaty with the French.

Xmas 1217: King Henry III spends Christmas at Bristol with William Marshall.

14 May 1219:  William Marshall dies.

1237: The Treaty of York.

1239: Hexham receives a charter for a fair.

1240: Alexander II marries Marie de Coucy, a member of the French royal family, following the death of Joan in 1238.

1244: Cross border tension with the English leads to the betrothal of the three year old future Alexander III and four year old Margaret, daughter of Henry III.


1249: The Scots invade the Norwegian territories in Western Scotland and the Hebrides. On 8 July Alexander II of Scotland dies on Kerrera in Oban Bay. 

13 July 1249: Alexander III  of Scotland succeeds his father at the age of 8.


December 1251:York – Alexander III of Scotland meets Henry III and marry his daughter, Margaret. Alexander evades Henry’s efforts to have him do homage for the Kingdom of Scotland.


2 July 1266: The Treaty of Perth. The Norwegians cede the Western Isles and the Isle of Man to the Scots in return for £2,500 and guarantees about future Norwegian rights over Orkney and the Shetlands.

17 January 1284: Alexander’s eldest son, also named Alexander, dies aged 20 without children. His younger son had died in 1281, and his daughter, Margaret, in 1283, leaving him with an infant granddaughter, also called Margaret, living in Norway. Alexander’s wife Margaret had died in 1275.

14 October 1285: Alexander III Marries Yolande de Dreux.

19 March 1286: Alexander III dies in a fall from his horse en route to be with his new bride in Fife. His granddaughter, Margaret, “The Maid of Norway” becomes Queen of Scots at the age of three.

September 1290: Margaret sails from Bergen for Leith and an arranged marriage with Edward the young heir to the English throne. This will ensure a stable future relationship between England and Scotland. On 26 September she dies of sea sickness en route, aged seven.

November 1292: Edward I of England oversees the selection between competing claims to the Scottish throne, on condition he is acknowledged as Lord Superior of Scotland. 13 competitors are narrowed down to two.

30 November 1292:  John Balliol crowned King of the Scots.

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