Exploring the Middle Ages   | Travels in the UK   | The Merkat Cross
Online since 1998
About   | Site Map   | Accessibility   | Legal Matters   | Privacy   |

Blind Harry's Wallace: Synopsis

The Life and Heroick Actions of the Renoun'd Sir William Wallace,
General and Governour of Scotland
by William Hamilton of Gilbertfield

Book VI, Chapter I

Winter is over and summer is advancing. Wallace returns again to Lanark to visit Miranda; they marry.

During the time Wallace is courting and marrying Miranda the English have occupied and taken possession of all the castles and towns in Scotland. Wallace, preparing to do battle with the English again has a conversation with Miranda in Lanark, during which she begs him to take her with him. She weeps and pleads, reminding him that the English Sheriff of Lanark, Heselrig, killed her brother, and tells Wallace that, as his wife, she's doubly in danger from the man. He refuses to let her go with him.

As morning dawns, Wallace goes out to the fields, where he prays for success in the upcoming battle. He sees a meteor and "from the sight a happy omen drew;" he blows his horn to call his followers together. They all agree with Wallace's plans and make preparations to go to war. The English, under the command of Hesilrig and Thorn, attack; the Scots, vastly outnumbered retreat to Cartlane Crags.

As night falls, Hesilrig kills Wallace's wife. Wallace, grieving and enraged returns to Lanark and kills Thorn, Hesilrig and all the Englishmen in Lanark.

Read Book VI, Chapter I in its original dialect.

Book VI, Chapter II
The Battle of Biggar

King Edward, having been informed of the incident in Lanark, gathers a large army and travels to Biggar. Wallace's army has regrouped and grown to numbers enough to fight and defeat the English. After the battle, Edward's spies report to him that Wallace's men have been drinking wine that was left in camp and are drunk. The English attack again, and are defeated again.

After this, Wallace takes a castle on a craggy hill, killing the English soldiers that defend it. The English, soundly defeated, call a meeting at Rutherglen Kirk, where an agreement for a year-long truce is agreed upon.

Read Book VI, Chapter II in its original dialect.

Next page: Synopsis continued