WHEN the solemnitie of this coronation was ended, he called before him againe all the
lords and péeres of his realme, of the which, part had aided him in the last warres, and
part had béene assistant vnto his aduersarie Grime: and there vsed the matter in such wise
amongst them, that he made them all friends, each one promising to other to forget all
Malcolme agréeth the nobles of his realme.
former offenses, displeasures, and controuersies past, which he did to auoid all intestine
trouble that might grow out of the rootes of such rancor and malice, as in time of the ciuill
discord had sproong vp among them. Further, for the better administration of iustice in
Malcolmes wisdome in ordeining officers.
due forme and maner, he bestowed publike offices vpon discréet persons, skilfull in the laws
and ordinances of the realme. Other offices perteining to the warres & defense of the
realme, he committed to such as were practised & trained in such exercises, so that iustice
was ministred on all sides throughout the kingdome, with such equitie and vprightnesse, as
had not beene heard of in anie age before him. Whilest the Scotish estate was gouerned
in such happie wise, by the prudent policie of king Malcolme; it chanced that Sueno king
Sueno king of Denmarke landed in England.
of Danes landed in England with a mightie nauie, in purpose to reuenge the iniuries done
before vnto his people by the Englishmen.
This Sueno (as appeareth more at large in the historie of Denmarke) first being an
earnest persecutor of christian men, and punished by the diuine prouidence for his crueltie
in that behalfe, shewed by sundrie ouerthrowes receiued at the enimies hands, as in being
thrise taken prisoner, and in the end driuen and expelled out of his kingdome, he came into
Scotland for reliefe and succour, where through the wholesome instruction of godlie and
Sueno cōuerted to the christian faith in Scotland.
vertuous men, he renounced his heathenish beléefe, and receiued the christian faith, and
being baptised, at length was restored home to his kingdome. Shortlie after with a mightie
armie of Danes, Gothes, Norwegians, and Swedeners, with other northerne people, he arriued (as is said) in England, and chased king Egeired into Northumberland, who there
Egeldred (or as the Scots write Eldred), chased into Northumberland, getteth aid from the Scots.
receiuing aid from the Scots, according to the league which latelie before he had contracted
with them, he determined eftsoones to trie the chance of battell with his enimies. Marching
forwards therefore towards them, he came to the riuer of Owse, néere to the banks whereof,
not farre from Yorke, he pitched downe his tents.
Then Sueno not forgetfull of the benefits and pleasures receiued but latelie at the
Suenos message to the Scots.
Scotishmens hands, sent an herald at armes vnto them, commanding them to depart their waies
home, and to refuse Egeldreds companie; either else to looke for most cruell battell at the
hands of the Danes, the Norwegians, and others the people of Germanie, there readie bent
to their destruction. Egeldred being aduertised that his aduersaries messenger was thus
come into his campe, caused him to be staied and arrested for a spie. And the same day
he brought foorth his battels readie ranged into the fields, to trie the matter by dint of
swoord, if Suene were so minded; who verie desirous to accept the offer, brought foorth
also his people in perfect order and well arraied to fight, so that there was no staie on either
part, but that togither they flue most fiercelie, & in such eger wise, that neither side had
The battell betwixt Egeldred & Sueno.
leasure to bestow their shot, but euen at the first they buckled togither at handblowes,
continuing certeine houres with great & cruell slaughter, till at length the Englishmen were put
The English men put to flight by the Danes.
to flight, leauing the Danes a verie déere and bloudie victorie. The murther also that day of
the Scots was great, but yet nothing to the number of the Englishmen. Egeldred himselfe
with a few other, got a bote and passed ouer Ouse, so escaping out of the enimies hands,
Egeldred escapeth by flight.
but the rest were for the most part either taken or slaine.
Thus Egeldred being vtterlie vanquished and despairing of all recouerie, fled out of England ouer into Normandie, where he was verie friendlie receiued of Richard as then duke
of Normandie, and afterwards purchased such fauour there amongst the Normans, that he
maried the ladie Emme, daughter vnto the said duke, and begot of hir two sonnes, Alured
and Edward, as in the English chronicles more at large it dooth appéere. Sueno hauing
thus ouercome his enimies, and now put in possesion of the whole realme of England, was
Suenos cruell imagination.
in mind to haue destroied all the English generation, so to establish the kingdome to him
and his posteritie for euer, without anie impeachment afterwards to be made by such as
should succéed of them that were then aliue. But the nobles of England aduertised of
The nobles of England their humble petition vnto Sueno.
Suenos determination, came humblie before his presence, & falling downe on their knées at
his féet, besought him in most pit full wise to haue compassion on their miserable estate,
who in times past being a most puissant nation, both by sea and land, were now satisfied (if
he would grant them life) to continue vnder what bondage and seruitude it should stand
with his pleasure to prescribe, for they desired neither possession of castels, townes, or other
souereignties, but onelie to liue with their wiues and children vnder subiection within their
owne natiue countrie, at the victors will and appointment.
Sueno, albeit he was of nature verie cruell, yet he qualified his displeasure by this humble submission of the English nobilitie; in such sort, that he vsed the victorie farre more
Under what conditions Sueno licenced the Englishmen to liue in their owne countrie.
gentlie, than at the first he had purposed, commanding that the whole English nation should
remaine in the countrie, but in such wise, as by no meanes they should presume to beare
anie armor or weapon, but to applie themselues vnto husbandrie, and other seruile occupations vnder the gouernement of the Danes, vnto whom they should resigne and deliuer all
their castels, forts, and strong holds: and taking an oth to be true liege men vnto Sueno,
as their souereigne lord and king; they should bring in (to be deliuered vnto his vse) all
their weapons and armor, with other munition for the warres, also all their gold and siluer,
aswell in plate as coine. If anie of the Englishmen refused thus to doo, proclamation was
made that he should immediatlie lose his life as a rebell and a disobedient person. These
conditions were hard, and hardlie vrged. The Englishmen were brought vnto such an extremitie, that they were faine to accept these conditions of peace, for other meane to auoid
present death they knew none. And thus was the dominion of England conquered by the
Danes, after the Saxons had reigned in the same 564 yéeres.
Such tyrannie also after this was vsed by the Danes, that none of the English nation was
The miserie of the Englishmen vnder the bondage of the Danes.
admitted to anie office or rule within the realme, either spirituall or temporall, but were
vtterlie remoued from the same, and some of them cast in prison and dailie put in hazard
of their liues. Finallie, the Englishmen were brought into such miserable thraldome, that
euerie housholder within the realme was constreined to receiue and find at his owne proper
costs and charges, one Dane, who should continuallie giue good watch what was said or
doone in the house, and to aduertise the king thereof, for doubt of conspiracies or treasons
to be contriued and practised against his person and roiall estate. This Dane by the good
man of the house and his familie, for honor sake, was called lord Dane, which woord was
afterwards turned to a name of reproch, as where anie idle person liued loitering, without
the vse of some honest exercise to get his liuing withall, the people were and yet are
The name of lordain how it came vp.
accustomed to call him a lordaine.
¶ Thus farre out of Hector Boetius we haue shewed of Suenos dooings in England, the
which although it agrée not in all points with our English histories, yet sith the historie of
Scotland in this place séemeth partlie to hang thereon, we haue thought good to set it
downe as we find it in the same Boetius: but aduertising the reader withall, that if our
histories be true, this which followeth touching Suenos inuading of Scotland, chanced before
that Egeldred, whome the Scotish writers name Eldred, was driuen to flée into Normandie.
For when that Sueno lastlie returned into England, and constreined Egeldred so to forsake
Sueno landed héere this last time of his comming foorth of Denmarke into England in Iulie, in the yéere 1013, & departed this life in the beginning of Februarie, in the yéere 1014.
the land, he liued not long after but departed this life about Candelmas, in the yéere 1014
(as in the English histories ye may read more at large) not hauing time to make anie such
iournie into Scotland: so that it may be thought, if he did enterprise anie such exploit
there, it was before this his last arriuall in England.
But now to procéed according to that which we find in the foresaid Boetius. Sueno
hauing spoiled the Englishmen of their liberties (in manner before remembred, or rather
brought them to become tributaries vnto him, as at the first time of his arriuall here he
did in deed, he thought it necessarie, for the more suertie of his estate in England, to conclude some peace or league with his neighbours the Normans, Britains, & Scots, vnder condition that they should not support anie Englishman against him. But forsomuch as he
could not compasse his intention héerein, he furnished all the castels and fortresses on the
sea-coasts, ouer against Normandie, with men, munition, and vittels, to resist all sudden inuasions that might be attempted on that side. And on the other part towards the north,
Sueno prepareth to inuade the Scots.
Olauus, and Onetus.
he made all the prouision he could deuise to make mortall wars vpon the Scots: and the
more to annoie his enimies, he sent commandement vnto Olauus his lieutenant in Norwaie,
and to Onetus his deputie in Denmarke, to come with all the power they might leauie into
Scotland, to make warres on his enimies there.
Wherevpon shortlie after those foresaid capteins arriued with an huge armie in the mouth
The Danes land in Scotland.
of Speie, and landed in such puissant order, that the inhabitants of Murrey land fled out of
their houses, with their wiues, children, and goods (such as they could conueie awaie with
them) into places where they thought to remaine most out of danger. But the Danes,
The crueltie of the Danes.
after their manner, burne and spoile all before them, aswell churches and chappels, as other
buildings and edifices. Such of the people as could not flée in time, but by chance fell
into their hands, were slaine without all mercie. Also all the strengths and holds in the
countrie were taken by the Danes, thrée castels onelie excepted: that is to say, Elgin, Fores,
and Narne, which the Danes named afterwards Burg, and for that they trusted (when the
same was woone) the other two would yeeld without anie further defense, they first laid siege
The castell of Narne besieged.
vnto this castell of Narne, inforsing themselues with all their power to win it: but in the
meane time, they were informed how Malcolme the Scotish king was come within fiue miles
of them with all the forces of his realme to giue them battell.
Incontinentlie herevpon they raised their siege, and hasted foorth to méet him, with no
lesse courage than if victorie were alreadie present in their hands. Shortlie after, there came
Malcolme sendeth ambassadors to the Danes.
The Danes slea the ambassadors.
vnto them heralds also from Malcolme, to vnderstand whie they had thus inuaded his realme
with open and most cruell warre, hauing no occasion giuen by him or his subiects so to
doo: who scarselie had doone their message, but that they were slaine foorth with by cruell
outrage of the Danes. Malcolme being sore mooued to vnderstand the law obserued by
all nations for the safetie of messengers to be thus violated by the enimies, kept on his
iournie with the more fierce courage, till he came to a medow a little beside Killos, where
he incamped for that night. Great noise and clamour was heard throughout the armie,
euerie man being desirous of battell, to reuenge the iniuries doone by the Danes against
their friends and countriemen: notwithstanding on the morrow, when they saw their
enimies in farre greater number, and in better order than euer had béene séene by anie of
The Scots through feare are astonied.
them before that time, their hart began to wax faint, hauing greater care which waie to saue
their owne liues, than to giue the onset vpon their enimies.
Malcolme perceiuing such dread to be entred into the harts of his people, that they were
Malcolms woords to his nobles.
now more like to run awaie than to fight, if he should bring them foorth to battell, got him
to a little hill, and calling his nobles about him, he declared vnto them how he could not
but detest their great cowardise, that were thus astonied at the first sight of their enimies,
without further triall of their forces. "¶ At home (said he) ye are most hardie and valiant,
where no danger appéereth. What rebuke then is it vnto you, to be thus faint harted
(now that ye are come where valiancie should be shewed) in degenerating so far from your
woorthie fathers and noble progenitors, the which at Loncart vnder the conduct of my
father Kenneth, obteined so famous a victorie of the selfe same nation, whose furious puissance ye séeme now so much to feare? There hath béene triall made in battell with this
enimie in our time, both within the bounds of Scotland, and also of England, to the great
honor and renowme of our elders. What discomfitures the Danes haue receiued are yet
fresh in memorie, so manie of them losing their liues amongst vs, that Albion may well be
Albion the sepulture of Danes.
reckoned the sepulture of Danes; as some of you can well record by your owne remembrance, and other haue heard by report of their forefathers and ancestors. Ye ought then
(said he) to be of good courage, rather than to faint now at néed, considering ye haue to
doo with those enimies, who are but the remnant of the other, which before haue béene
vanquished and ouerthrowne by Scotishmen, both at Loncart, and in diuerse other places;
yea and besides that, such as moouing warres now at this present without iust occasion,
haue violated the lawes both of God and man, deseruing thereby iust vengeance at Gods
hands, the punisher of all such vniust offendors. There is great hope therefore of victorie
(said he) left vnto all such as fight against these enimies, if we take manlie harts vnto vs,
and shew our selues in valiant constancie like to our elders, whereby it shall then appéere
what outragious follie remained in the Danes, to inuade vs without occasion of iniuries preceding. Therefore if ye haue not more regard to the safetie of your fraile bodies, which
must néedes at length perish, than to the defense and preseruation of your common countrie; why passe ye not forward, sith there is now no place nor time to take longer aduise
in the matter, as ye may well vnderstand by the presence of the enimie readie to ioine?"
The nobles mooued with these woords of their prince, began boldlie to exhort their people to battell. Incontinentlie whervpon rose such noise and raging furie through the armie,
that without measuring either their owne forces or their enimies, they rush foorth vpon them
The Scots without order rush foorth to battell.
without anie order or good araie. Olauus & Onetus beholding the Scots to come thus
furiouslie against them, boldlie incountred them with arraied battels. Wherevpon insued a
verie terrible fight, with great manhood shewd on both sides, nothing being let passe that
might apperteine to woorthie capteins: the Scots inforcing themselues to defend their countrie and ancient liberties on the one side, and the Danes dooing their best indeuour by
valiant hardinesse to saue their liues and honors on the other. At length, after huge murther
The Scots put to flight.
Malcolme is wounded.
& slaughter made on both parts, the Scots were put to flight, Malcolme was sore wounded,
& had his helmet so fast beaten to his head, that it might not well be got off, yet was he
conueied out of the field in maner for dead, and kept secret in a wood, till he was somewhat
amended, and then got him into places out of danger. The Danes hauing got this victorie,
and gathered the spoile of the field, returned to besiege eftsoones the castell of Narne, with
more force and violence than before.
This castell in those daies was inclosed on ech side with the sea, hauing one narrow passage
as an entrie vnto it, made by craft of man in manner of a bridge. Those that were within
it, hauing knowledge of the ouerthrow and losse of the field, rendered the fortresse, on
The castell of Narne rendred by composition.
The Danes breakers of faith and promise.
condition, that leauing all their armor, weapon, and other munitions behind them, they might
depart with their liues and other goods saued. Neuerthelesse the Danes, contrarie to their
faith giuen, being once entred the castell, hanged all those which they found within it ouer
the wals, in most despitefull manner. Thus was Narne woone by the Danes, the strongest
hold within Murrey land, and so garnished with men, munition, and vittels, that it was
thought impregnable. Then those souldiers which kept Elgin and Fores, hearing what
crueltie the Danes had thus vsed, fled out of those castels, and left them void without anie
Elgin and Fores left void.
person to defend them. The Danes reioising at this good fortune, trusted to establish themselues sure seates in Murrey land, and therevpon sent backe their ships into Norwaie and
Denmarke, to fetch from thence their wiues and children. In the meane time they constreined such Scots as they had laid hands on, to reape and inne the corne growing abroad
in the fields, vnto their vse and commoditie.
K. Malcolme being aduertised of all these things, doubting least by the arriuall of new aid,
his enimies might wax more puissant, in the beginning of the next summer he assembled a great
multitude of warriors, and came in good order and most warlike arraie vnto Murthlake, a
towne of Mar, where the first erection of the bishops sée of Abirden was founded. Héere
the one armie comming in sight of the other, they were suddenlie both amazed. For the Scots
The Scots and Danes one afraid of another.
hauing had too much experience of the crueltie shewed afore time by the Danes, were put in
no small feare now at the plaine & open sight of them. The Danes being farre off from the sea
side, and vpon an vnknowne ground, were more afraid of some guilefull practise, than of the
open violence and force of their enimies. Yet neuerthelesse in the end, by the incouragement
of the capteins on both sides, they buckled togither with great fiercenesse and most cruell malicious hatred on ech hand.
In the first brunt thrée valiant capteins, that is to say, Kenneth of Ila, Grime of Stratherne,
and Patrike of Dunbar, rushing ouer fiercelie on their enimies, were slaine, and gaue occasion
The Scots forced to retire.
to manie of the Scotishmen to flee, but the place was such, that they could not well make
their course anie waie foorth, by reason of the narrownesse thereof, fensed on either side with
deepe trenches full of water and mud: also in trauerse were laid sundrie trées, as it had béene
of purpose to impeach the passage, deuised in that sort (as was thought) in time of some ciuill
warres. Here though Malcolme like a valiant champion, did his best to staie them that fled,
yet was he borne backe with the preasse, till he came to the middest of this place, where stood
a chappell dedicated in the honor of saint Moloke, the which Malcolme beholding, cast vp his
hands towards heauen, making his praier on this wise. "¶ Great God of vertue, rewarder of
pietie, and punisher of sinne, we thy people seeking to defend our natiue countrie granted to
vs of thy beneuolence, as now destitute of all mortall helpe, and thus oppressed with the iniurious inuasion of Danes, doo flee vnto thée in this our extreme necessitie, beséeching thee to
haue compassion vpon our miserable estate: remooue (oh mercifull lord) this dreadfull terror
To you, that is to God, and our ladie, and saint Moloke, for so he ioined them togither according to the manner of that time.
from thy people. And oh thou mother of God, the sweet refuge of mortall people in their
distresse and miseries: and thou saint Moloke to whom this chappell was dedicate, helpe vs at
this present, and in the honor of you I héere make a vow to build a cathedrall church for a
bishops sée, to remaine as a monument, to testifie vnto our posteritie, that by your support our
realme hath béene defended."
Scarselie had Malcolme made an end of this praier, when diuers of the nobles with a lowd
voice, as though they had béene assured that his praier was heard, cried to their companies;
Stand good fellows, for suerlie it is the pleasure of almightie God, that we returne and renew
the battell against our enimies. Héerevpon rose a woonderfull noise amongst the souldiers,
The Scots oftentimes renew battell.
eth one incouraging other to withstand the enimies, and to fight in most manfull wise in defense of their countrie and ancient liberties, & foorthwith as it had béene by miracle they returned vpon their enimies, making great slaughter on ech side, without regard to their liues or
bloudie wounds, which they boldlie and without feare receiued. Heerewith Malcolme with
an ambushment of stout warriors came vpon Onetus, who was pransing vp and downe the
field without anie helmet on his head, as though the Scots had béene alreadie without recouerie clearelie discomfited, and so there was he beaten downe beside his horsse, and amongst
the footmen slaine out of hand. The residue of the Danes beholding the slaughter of their
Onetus is slaine.
capteine, staied from further pursute on the Scots. Heereofinsued great boldnese to the Scots,
and discouragement to the Danes: albeit the battell continued still a long space, the souldiers
dooing their best on either side, till at length the Danes were put to flight, manie of them
The Danes put to flight.
Olauus fléeth into Murrey land.
being slaine, and but few taken. Olauus beholding the discomfiture of his people, and how his
companion in authoritie was slaine, fled into Murrey land with a small companie about him.
The next day, Malcolme considering what a number of his most valiant capteins he had lost
in this battell, diuided the spoile of the field amongest his men, and ceassing from further
pursute of the Danes at that time, went into Angus, where he remained the residue of the yéere
within the castell of Forfair, taking counsell with his nobles touching the publike affaires of the
realme, and how to recouer his countrie of Murrey land out of the enimies hands.King
Sueno hearing in the meane time how infortunatelie his people had sped thus in Scotland at
Sueno prepareth a new armie to inuade Scotland.
the battell of Murthlake, in reuenge thereof determined to inuade the Scots with two mightie
nauies, the one to be rigged in England, and to come foorth of the riuer of Thames; and
the other to be sent from Denmarke, one Camus a Dane, verie expert in warlike knowledge,
Camus appointed capteine generall of the Danes.
being appointed to be gouernor of all the men of warre that should come from both those
The yeare next insuing, both these fléets according to commandement and order giuen, arriued and met togither within the mouth of the Forth, néere tosaint Ebbes head. Here Camus
Saint Ebbes head.
The Scots kéepe off the Danes from landing.
going about to land his men, was kept off by the stout resistance of the Scots, there assembled
for the same intent. Camus then plucking vp the sailes, directed his course vnto the Ile of
Sketh, where riding at anchor for the space of one moneth, and abiding for some prosperous
wind, at length when the same came once about, he passed from thence vnto the Redbraies,
called in Latine Rubrum promontorium,
& there landed his whole armie, before the countrie
Camus with his armie landeth at the Redbraies.
could be gathered to resist him. Camus being once landed, got him to the next hill, and beholding the ruine of the towne of Montros, which a few yeares before had béene destroied by
the Danes, he reioised not a little, for that his chance was to come on land in the selfe same
place, where the Danes had earst vanquished their enimies, hoping of like lucke in this his enterprise and present expedition.
After this, he tooke his iournie through Angus, sparing no maner of crueltie that might be
Camus marcheth through Angus.
The crueltie of the Danes.
The towne and church of Brechine destroied.
deuised: cities, townes, villages and churches, with all maner of other buildings publike and
priuat were consumed with fire. At his comming to Brechine, for that the castell there in
those daies was of such strength, that it might not be hastilie woone, he caused the towne and
church being right faire and sumptuouslie built in honor of the Trinitie (to whom it was dedicated) to be spoiled, & so raced to the earth, that one stone was not left standing vpon an
other. With these and the semblable cruelties, Camus raging both against God and man,
was finallie aduertised that king Malcolme was come to Dundée with all the power of Scotland.Then suddenlie he tooke the next way towards the sea side, comming the next day following vnto a village called Balbrid, where he pitched downe his tents. The same day, king
King Malcolme hasteth foreward to fight with the Danes.
Malcolme making all hast possible to succour his subiects, and preserue the countrie from the
cruell outrage of the Danes, came to the towne of Barre two little miles from the place, where
his enimies were incamped. In the morning he drew into the field, in purpose to giue them
But before he arraied his battels, he called his nobles and capteins togither, desiring them to
consider how they should match in fight against people blinded with vile auarice, liuing on the
spoile and pillage got by théeuerie, and not by anie iust warres: enimies not onelie to the
christian faith, but also to all innocent people, whome they sought vninstlie to inuade, without
hauing occasion so to doo, saue onelie vpon an iniurious meaning to liue by spoile of other
mens goods, wherein they haue no maner of propertie. He willed them therfore to remember how they were come thus against those enimies in defense of their natiue countrie, appointed vndoubtedlie by God to reuenge the cruell iniuries doone by the Danes against his
name, and people that professed the same. They ought not then to measure force in number
of souldiers, but rather in manhood and valiancie of heart. Camus likewise exhorted his
Camus exhorteth his Danes.
people, not vsing manie words, but yet pithie, desiring them to remember how it behooued them
either to win immortall fame by victorie, either else to die with miserie in an vncouth land, by
the hand of their most fierce and cruell enimies.
Herewith Malcolme imbattelling his people, brought them foorth stronglie ranged in good
order to incounter the Danes, which likewise approched towards him in good arraie of battell.
His heart was filled the more with hope of victorie, for that he had tried sundrie times before
the force of the enimies in diuers conflicts and encounters. For such is the nature of noble and
valiant stomachs, the more experience they haue in honorable enterprises, the more are they
The nature of valiant hearts and noble stomachs.
A bloudie battell.
kindled in desire to shew their powers in famous acts and woorthie attempts. The armies
herevpon on both sides, fiercelie rushing togither, began a battell right cruell & terrible, continuing certeine houres with such bloudshed, that the riuer of Lochtee ran with a purple hue
downe into the Almaine seas. The fields also where they fought, though they were full of
sand (as the nature of the soile giueth) yet were they made moist by the abundance of bloud
spilled in the same. Manie there were so earnestlie bent to be reuenged on the enimie, that
after they had their deaths wound, they would run themselues foreward vpon their aduersaries
weapon, till they might close with him, inforcing their vttermost powers to dispatch him also;
so that diuers were séene to fall to the ground togither fast grasping one another, and so immediatlie both of them to die withall: such burning hatred kindled their harts, that thus were they
wholie set on renenge. At length yet the honor of the field remained with Malcolme.
Malcolme winneth the field.
Camus perceiuing the discomfiture to light on his side, with a small companie about him
thought to haue escaped by flight vnto the next mounteins, but being pursued of his
enimies, he was slaine by them yer he was got two miles from the place of the battell.
Camus is slaine.
The place where he was slaine, is named after him vnto this day, and called Camestone, where is an obeliske set vp in memorie of the thing, with his picture grauen therein, and
likewise of those that slue him. The principall slear of Camus was one Keith, a yoong
The house of Keithes aduanced to honor.
gentleman of right hardie courage, whose seruice in the battell was verie notable, in recompense
whereof he was rewarded by king Malcolme, with sundrie lands and faire possessions in Louthian. His familie (saith Hector Boetius) bath and dooth continue in great honor amongest
Scotishmen euen vnto this day, and is decorated with the office of the marshalship of Scotland,
to the high renowme and fame thereof, amongest the chiefest péers of the realme.
An other companie of the Danes flieng from this ouerthrow were slaine at Abirlemnon, not
Danes slaine at Abirlemnon.
past foure miles from Brechin, where is set vp a great stone or obeliske, grauen with certeine
characters or letters, to aduertise them that passe that waies foorth, of this slaughter of Danes
there made by our woorthie elders. The residue of the Danes that escaped with life from the
field, hauing certeine Scotishmen to their guides corrupted with monie fled to their ships, declaring to their fellowes what mishap had fortuned. King Malcolme after he obteined this
The diuiding of the spoile.
famous victorie (as before is said) at Barre, he caused the spoile of the field to be diuided
amongest his souldiers, according to the laws of armes; and then caused the dead bodies of
the Danes to be buried in the place where the field had béene fought, and the bodies of the
Scotishmen which were found dead were conueied vnto the places of christian buriall, and
there buried with funerall obsequies in sundrie churches and churchyards. There are séene
Bones of Danes.
manie bones of the Danes in those places where they were buried, there lieng bare aboue
ground euen vnto this day, the sands (as it often chanceth) being blowen from them. The
other Danes, which escaped to their ships, pulled vp sailes to haue passed into Murrey land
vnto Olauus, but remaining on the seas the space of foure daies togither, tossed to and fro by
contrarie winds, at length by a streinable east wind they were driuen vpon the coast of Buchquhan, and through want of conuenable harbrough were in present danger to haue béene cast
away. At length, after they had ridden at anchor in the Firth there, to their great displeasure
a long space, and finding no prosperous winds to depart from the shore, for that their vittels
began to faile them, they set flue hundred of their best and lusuest souldiers on land, to
fetch in some bootie or preie of cattell, therewith to relieue their hunger and famine. They
that were thus sent foorth, being perfectlie appointed with armour and weapon, ranged abroad
till they had got togither a great number of beasts, with the which drawing towards their ships,
they were incountred by the way by Marnachus the thane of Buchquhane accompanied with
Marnachus thane of Buchquhane.
the power of that countrie, whose force when they saw how they were not well able to resist
without some aduantage of place, they got them vp into an high crag, where, with tumbling
downe stones vpon the Scotishmen as they mounted vp towards them, they caused them somewhat to staie; but at length through the earnest exhortation of Marnachus, the Scots (as people inflamed with wood desire to be reuenged) mounted the hill in despight of their enimies,
though diuers of them were slaine in that assault. Those which wan the height of the crag
vpon the Danes, made such a cruell battell with them, that there was not one Dane that
escaped their hands.
This conflict was fought néere vnto Gemmer a village or towne in Buchquhane, where, in
Danes slaine néere vnto Gemmer.
memorie thereof, lie manie great bones of the Danes to be séene yet euen vnto these daies. It
should appeare by the same bones, that men in former time were of more huge growth and
stature, than they be at this present. The other Danes which were on ship bord, vnderstanding what had happened to their fellowes (because they returned not againe to the ships) so
soone as the wind came about for their purpose, hoised vp sailes, and tooke their course foorthright towards Murrey land. In the meane time king Sueno hearing of these ouerthrowes,
Sueno prepareth the third time to inuade Scotland.
Canute brother vnto Sueno, appointed generall to come against the Scots.
which his people had in such sort receiued at the Scotishmens hands, as a prince of a right
haughtie courage, not lightlie ouercome with anie aduerse fortune, made preparation in all
spéedie wise to be reuenged, appointing his brother Canute, as then hauing the administration
of Denmarke, to come from thence with a new fléete and armie against the Scots. It is said,
that this Canute, according to order prescribed him by his brother Sueno, landed first in Buchquhane, and destroied a great part of that countrie by fire and sword, in reuenge of the slaughter of his countriemen the Danes, which had béene there made latelie before.
Malcolme sore kindled in wrath by these iniuries, though through continuance of the wars
King Malcolmes determination.
his power was greatlie decaied, yet did he assemble an armie with all spéed he could deuise,
and marched with the same towards the Danes, in purpose to staie them with often skirmishes and light incounters, but in no wise to ieopard with them in anie pitcht field or generall battell, for feare least if he had the ouerthrow, he should not be able to furnish a new
power for defense of his countrie, against the rage of the enimies. For the space therefore of
fiftéene daies togither, there was often skirmishing betwixt the parties. The which terme being
expired, the Scots beholding so huge murder of their countriemen and friends, with the spoile
of the fields, and destruction of the townes and villages, burning and blasing on each side before their faces, they come to king Malcolme, and desired him that he would grant them
The Scotishmens request vnto their king for licence to fight.
licence to fight with their enimies, protesting plainelie, that if he would not consent thereto, they
would giue battell at their owne choise.
Malcolme perceiuing the earnest minds of his people to incounter their enimies in plaine
field, and that he might no longer protract the time, he granted their petition, and therewith beseeching them to remember their honors and dueties: incontinentlie the onset was giuen with
The onset is giuen.
great hatred and malice on either part, so that most egerlie continuing in fight a long time,
they inforced themselues to rid each other out of life: so that all the nobles well néere on both
sides were slaine, the name of victorie rather than the victorie it selfe remaining with the Scots,
The Scots wan the name of victorie, rather than victorie it selfe.
who were so féeble and faint with long fight & slaughter, that in the end of the battell they were
not able to pursue those few of the Danes, which escaping with life fled faintlie out of the field.
And so for that night, which followed the day of this bloudie battell, they lodged heere and
there in seuerall places, at aduenture as well as they might.
On the morow after, when it was vnderstood on both parties, what losse they had susteined,
their minds were conuerted rather to peace than to renew battell, bicause they were not of power
Peace concluded for want of power to mainteine battell.
The articles of the peace betwixt the Danes and Scotishmen.
longer to mainteine it. Wherevpon by mediation of such as tooke vpon them to treat a
peace, the same was concluded with these articles. First, that the Danes should depart out
of Murrey land, Buchquhan, and all other the bounds of Scotland. That the warres should
clearelie ceasse betwixt the Danes and Scotishmen, during the naturall liues of Sueno and Malcolme, or either of them. That neither of those two nations should aid or in anie wise support the others enimies. That the field where the last battell was fought, should be hallowed for
christian buriall, within the which the Danes that were slaine in the same battell should be buried, and a church to be built there, and lands appointed foorth for the maintenance of priests,
to celebrate there according to the order of the christian religion, then vsed by both the
The holds in Scotland deliuered vp by the Danes into the Scotishmens hands.
people: for the Danes latelie before that season had also receiued the faith. This peace being ratified by the solemne othes of both the kings, Sueno and Malcolme, Canute with his Danes
resigning vp the possession of such holds and places as they held in Murrey land, Buchquhan, or
else where within anie part of the Scotish dominions, got him to his fléet, and departed with
Canute returneth into Denmarke.
the same home into Denmarke.
King Malcolme hauing thus restored his countrie vnto ioifull peace, thought nothing so
good as to performe the articles of the agréement accorded betwixt him and the Danes, and
therefore caused a church to be builded in the place appointed, dedicating the same in honor
A church builded.
of saint Olauus patrone of Denmarke and Norwaie, to signifie vnto such as came after, that
sundrie nobles of the Danes laie buried in that church. In memorie hereof, the lands that
were giuen to the same church, are called euen yet vnto these daies Crowdan, which
Crowdan, what it signifieth.
signifieth as much as if ye should say, The slaughter of Danes. The church which was first builded
there, chancing as often happeneth in those parties, to be ouercast with sands, an other was
erected in place not farre off, hauing a more commodious site. Sundrie of the bones of them
Bones of Danes.
that were buried in this place, being left bare by reason that the sands were blowne away besides them, Hector Boetius (the writer of the Scotish chronicle) beheld in the yeere 1521, which
séemed more like vnto giants bones, than to men of common stature (as he auoucheth) whereby it should appeare, that men in old time were of much greater stature and quantitie of bodie, than anie that are to be found in these our daies.
Malcolme being thus deliuered of his enimies the Danes, caused publike praiers generallie
to be made throughout the realme, in rendring thanks to almightie God, that it had pleased
him to deliuer his people from the troubles of warre. He tooke order also, that churches
The reparing of churches.
The restoring of lawes and iustice.
should be repared, which by the enimies in time of the warres had béene destroied. And further, he caused the administration of the lawes and wholsome ordinances of the realme to be
vsed and put in practise, according to the due forme of the same, which manie yéeres before
could haue no place, by reason of the warres, He caused an assemblie of all the estates of
A parlement at Bertha.
his realme to be called at Bertha castell, in those daies standing not farre from the place where
the towne of Perth now standeth. In which conuention were manie things enacted, both for
the setting foorth of Gods honor, and the weale of the realme, whereby Malcolme wan much
praise amongst his subiects, to the eternall memorie of his name.
After this, supposing it most honorable to aduance the bloud of such as had serued well in
the last warres, or had their fathers or other friends slaine in the same, he cailed a parlement
A parlement at Scone.
Diuision of the realme into baronies.
at Scone, in the which, causing partition to be made of the realme, by diuiding it into baronies, he bestowed it amongest the nobles, according to the qualitie of euerie one his merits, reseruing in maner nothing to the maintenance of the crowne, common entries onelie excepted,
with the mounteine wherein the marble chaire stood, and a few other possessions which he
purposed to giue vnto churches and chappels. The nobles on the other part, to the end the
king might haue sufficient wherewith to mainteine his roiall estate, granted vnto him and his
successors for euer the custodie and wardship of their heires, if they chanced to die leauing
The wardship of heires granted to the king.
them under the age of 21 yeeres: and in the meane time till the same heires came to the
said age, they agreed that the king and his successors should inioy the vse and profits
of their lands, whether they were men or women, and when they came to the age of 21
yeeres, that then they should enter into the possession of their lands, yéelding vnto him or
his successors one yéeres rent in name of a reliefe; and if they chanced not to be married
Mariage of wards.
before their fathers deceasse, then also should they marrie at the kings appointment, or else compound with him for the same.
Thus ended the parlement for that season, with great ioy and comfort on each hand, for
that the king had shewed such liberall bountiousnesse towards his barons, and they no lesse
mindfull of their duties had declared such beneuolent hearts, as appeared in that their frée and
large gift granted in forme and maner as before is expressed. Neither did Malcolme forget
the vow which he made at Murthlake, when he was in danger to haue receiued the ouerthrow
at the hand of the Danes. For according to the same vow, he caused a church to be built in
the same place, erecting a bishops see there, and indowed it with the lands & possessions of
The sée of Murthlake, otherwise Aberden.
these thrée places, Murthlake, Cleometh, and Dunmeth, with all ecclesiasticall iurisdictions
and tithes apperteining thereto. The bishops that sat in this sée were called the bishops
of Murthlake, till the daies of king Dauid the first, who changing the name, caused them
to be called the bishops of Abirden, augmenting the sée with sundrie faire reuenues to the
better maintenance thereof.
Malcolme thus hauing purchased rest from further troubles of warre, gouerned the realme a
certeine time after in good order of iustice, and caused a booke to bée set foorth, called Regia
The booke called Regia maiestas.
conteining the lawes and ordinances wherby the realme should be gouerned: and
assigning foorth in the same what fées also should be giuen vnto the chancellor, secretarie, constable, marshall, chamberleine, iustice, treasuror, register, comptroller, and other the officers
of his house. Such princelie dooings and noble vertues were found in this Malcolme for a
season, that if the same had continued with him in his latter age, there had neuer reigned anie
king in Scotland, that might haue bene thought to haue passed him in worthie fame: neuertheles his excellent qualities were stained at length by that reprochfull vice of vile auarice. For
Malcolme waxeth auaritious.
Couetousnes and age arriuing togither.
Malcolmes erueltie to purchase riches.
as it oftentimes happeneth, couetousnesse and age laid hold on him both at once. He then began to repent in that he had béene so liberall in giuing away his lands to his barons; & to recouer the same againe, he surmized feigned matter by vntrue suggestions against diuerse of
the chiefest nobles, putting some to death, & banishing other, that he might by this meanes
inioy their lands and goods as confiscate to the crowne for their supposed offenses.
The nobles hauing great indignation at such crueltie vsed by the king against them and their
linage, and that vpon no iust causes, but onelie vpon forged deuises, they conspired in
The conspiracie of the Scotish nobilitie against Malcolme.
Malcolme slaine at Glammis.
sundrie méetings secretlie appointed amongst them, to find some meanes to dispatch him out of
life. At length he chanced to haue some inkling whereabout they went, & doubting to fall
into their hands, fled for safegard of his life vnto Glammis, where diuerse of the conspirators
were brought into his lodging, by some of his owne houshold seruants, and there slue him in
reuenge of their friends, whome he before had wrongfullie put to death. These murtherers
with their complices incontinentlie fled with all spéed possible to auoid further danger for
this their act: but missing their way (for the ground was quite couered as then with snow)
they finallie came to the loch of Forfair, which was the same time frozen ouer. They therefore
thinking to passe ouer it, when they came into the midst, the ise brake vnder them, so that
sinking in, they were finallie drowned. Howbeit their bodies were afterwards drawne foorth
The murtherers drowned.
of the loch with drags, and dismembred, and their heads and quarters were sent to diuerse
townes of the realme, and there hoong vp for a signification of their wicked treason. This was
the end of king Malcolme in the 32 yéere of his reigne, if ye reckon from the death of
Constantine, or 25 after the death of Grime, and after the incarnation of our Sauiour 1034
yéeres. He was buried in Colmekill with his ancestors.
In this season was séene manie woonders and strange sights in Albion. On Christmas daie
there was an earthquake, and a great rift of the earth made therewith in the midst of Striueling towne, out of the which issued such an abundant streame of water, that it bare away the
next wood that was adioining to the riuer of Forth. In the summer the sea rose higher, &
flowed further into the land, than euer it had beene séene at anie other time. On Midsummer daie, which is the feast of St. Iohn Baptist, there was such a vehement frost, that the
corne and other fruits of the earth were blasted and killed, so that therevpon followed a great
dearth in all the countrie.