This blog, written by Thomas E. Rutledge, focuses primarily on business entity law in Kentucky. Postings on contract law, contractual and statutory construction, and the entity law of other jurisdictions appear as well. There may as well be some random discussions of classical, medieval and renaissance history.
Friday, August 23, 2019
The Death of William Wallace
of William Wallace
Today marks the anniversary of the death
(execution), in 1305, of William Wallace.
Most people in this age, to the extent
they know anything about William Wallace, learned it from the movie in which
Mel Gibson played that role. The movie is entirely correct that William Wallace
lived and fought for an independent Scotland. The movie is correct in that the
he was opposed by King Edward I, who was known by the nickname “long shanks”
(he was quite tall for the age). It is true, as depicted in the movie, that
William Wallace was executed by being drawn and quartered, that being the
accepted method of execution for traitors.
Almost everything else in the movie is
incorrect. For example:
►Piers Galveston, the “friend” of Edward II, was never thrown
from a window by Edward I. Rather, Galveston lived well into the reign of
Edward II, although he was ultimately killed as a component of a revolt of the
nobles upset about their relationship and Piers’ access to royal largess.
►In all likelihood, William Wallace and Robert the Bruce (the
7th) never met.
►Isabella of France did not marry Edward II until 1308, well
after the death of William Wallace.
►Likewise, Isabella of France never negotiated with William
Wallace for the treatment of York or anything else; she was born in 1295 and in
consequence would have been less than 10 years old at the time of Wallace’s
►The moniker “Braveheart” was attributed not to Wallace, but
rather to Robert the Bruce. In fact, after his death, his heart was cut out and
carried in a chest by Scottish forces going into battle.