by Richard Oram
About the Book
David I was never expected to become king, but on succeeding to the Scottish throne in 1124 he quickly demonstrated that he had the skills, ruthlessness and ambition to become one of the kingdom’s greatest rulers. Drawing on the experiences and connections of his youth spent at the court of his brother-in-law, Henry I of England, and moulded by the dominant personality and intense piety of his mother, St Margaret, he set out to transform his inheritance and create a powerful and dynamic kingship.
After neutralising all challengers to his position and building a new powerbase that drew on support from both Scotland’s native nobles and the English and French knights whom he settled in his realm, David emerged as a power-broker in mid twelfth-century Britain as England descended into civil war. He pursued his wife Matilda’s lost inheritance in Northumbria, gaining control over much of northern England and giving him access to economic resources that allowed him to invest in patronage of the reformed monastic orders, and in the reconfiguration of the secular Church in Scotland. The peace and stability of his kingdom, coupled with the economic boom brought by burgeoning population during an era of benign climate conditions, secured him a reputation as a saintly visionary who achieved the cultural and political transformation of Scotland.
You may also like…
The legendary Scottish king Máel Coluim III, also known as ‘Malcolm Canmore’, is often held to epitomise Scotland’s ‘ancient Gaelic kings’. But Máel Coluim and his dynasty were in fact newcomers, and their legitimacy and status were far...
Winner of the Saltire Society Scottish History Book of the Year 2019 Presiding over an age of relative peace and prosperity, Alexander III represented the zenith of Scottish medieval kingship. The events which followed his early and unexpected...
By equal measure state-builder and political unifier and ruthless opportunist and bloody-handed aggressor, Alexander II has been praised or vilified by past historians but has rarely been viewed in the round. This book explores the king’s...
This is the inspiring and charming true story of one of the Second World War’s most unusual combatants – a 500-pound cigarettesmoking, beer-drinking brown bear. Originally adopted as a mascot by the Polish Army in Iran, Wojtek soon took...
Around 1885, Alfred Barnard was secretary of Harper’s Weekly Gazette, a journal dedicated to the wine and spirit trade. In order to provide his readers with the history and descriptions of the whisky-making process, Barnard decided to visit...
This is the remarkable story of Donald Caskie, minister of the Scots Kirk in Paris at the time of the German invasion of France in 1940. Although he had several opportunities to flee, Caskie stayed behind to help establish a network of safe houses...
This major project of the European Ethnological research Centre is planned in thirteen volumes, plus this bibliography. Their overall aim is to examine the interlocking strands of history, language and traditional culture, in their international...