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Robert the Bruce, 21st Great-Grandfather

February 21, 2017 14 Comments

birthplace, Turnberry Castle

birthplace, Turnberry Castle

This is one of the ways I descend from the famous badass, Robert the Bruce:

Robert Bruce (1274 – 1329)
21st great-grandfather
Marjorie Bruce (1297 – 1316)
daughter of Robert Bruce
Robert II, King of Scotland, Stewart (1316 – 1390)
son of Marjorie Bruce
Robert Scotland Stewart (1337 – 1406)
son of Robert II, King of Scotland, Stewart
James I Scotland Stewart (1394 – 1434)
son of Robert Scotland Stewart
Joan Stewart (1428 – 1486)
daughter of James I Scotland Stewart
John Gordon (1450 – 1517)
son of Joan Stewart
Robert Lord Gordon (1475 – 1525)
son of John Gordon
Catherine Gordon (1497 – 1537)
daughter of Robert Lord Gordon
Lady Elizabeth Ashton (1524 – 1588)
daughter of Catherine Gordon
Capt Roger Dudley (1535 – 1585)
son of Lady Elizabeth Ashton
Gov Thomas Dudley (1576 – 1653)
son of Capt Roger Dudley
Anne Dudley (1612 – 1672)
daughter of Gov Thomas Dudley
John Bradstreet (1652 – 1718)
son of Anne Dudley
Mercy Bradstreet (1689 – 1725)
daughter of John Bradstreet
Caleb Hazen (1720 – 1777)
son of Mercy Bradstreet
Mercy Hazen (1747 – 1819)
daughter of Caleb Hazen
Martha Mead (1784 – 1860)
daughter of Mercy Hazen
Abner Morse (1808 – 1838)
son of Martha Mead
Daniel Rowland Morse (1838 – 1910)
son of Abner Morse
Jason A Morse (1862 – 1932)
son of Daniel Rowland Morse
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
son of Jason A Morse
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
son of Ernest Abner Morse
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Richard Arden Morse

Robert The Bruce was born on 11 July 1274, probably in Turnberry Castle. He was descended from Scots, Gaelic and English nobility. His mother, Countess Marjorie of Carrick, was heir to a Gaelic earldom.

Robert’s grandfather, Robert Bruce ‘The Competitor’, was one of the claimants to the Scots throne. Bruce’s father, Robert de Brus of Annandale, fought in Wales for Edward I, was made governor of Carlisle Castle and fought on Edward’s side at the Battle of Dunbar in 1296. The Bruces refused to support John Balliol’s kingship and stayed close to Edward I. Balliol gave Bruce lands to the Comyns.

In 1298 Robert the Bruce became a guardian of Scotland alongside his great rival John ‘Red’ Comyn of Badenoch, and William Lamberton, Bishop of St Andrews. When Bruce and Comyn quarrelled Bruce resigned as guardian. In 1302 Bruce submitted to Edward I and returned ‘to the King’s peace’. Bruce married Elizabeth de Burgh.

Robert the Bruce’s father died in 1304. Bruce now had a viable claim to the throne. On 10 February 1306 Bruce met John Comyn of Badenoch at Greyfriars Kirk in Dumfries. A fight broke out, daggers were drawn and Bruce killed Red Comyn by the altar. The Pope excommunicated Bruce but Robert Wishart, Bishop of Glasgow, absolved him and made plans for Bruce to quickly take the throne. On 27 March 1306, Isobel of Fife, Countess of Buchan, crowned Bruce at Scone. His inauguration was small and hastily arranged but Robert Bruce was now King of Scots.

To Edward I the usurper King Robert was a rebel to be crushed. Edward’s reprisals were swift and brutal. Bruce was defeated at Methven. His wife, daughter and sisters were captured and imprisoned in England. Countess Isobel was locked in an iron cage at Berwick while Bruce’s brothers were hanged, drawn and beheaded. Bruce fled Edward’s wrath and spent a long winter hiding on the islands off the west coast and Ireland.

Bruce began a guerrilla war and struck at his enemies. His forces defeated Edward’s men at Glen Trool and Loudon Hill, then Edward I finally died in July 1307 – Bruce now faced Longshanks’ son, Edward II.

Bruce attacked his Scots enemies – destroying Comyn strongholds along the Great Glen and harrowing Buchan and the north east. His men cut a bloody swathe through Galloway and the south west.

One by one Scotland’s castles fell to Bruce and his supporters. Bruce had the castles ‘slighted’ – walls were torn down and defences were raised to the ground – the fortresses were made useless to an invading English army. As more castles fell more nobles pledged support to Bruce.

In 1314 Bruce watched Edward II’s army march toward Stirling Castle. Edward II had been given a year to relieve the besieged English force at Stirling or surrender the castle. Their forces met at the Battle of Bannockburn on 23 and 24 June 1314. Thousands died as the Scots defeated Edward’s army. The river was choked with the dead as Edward II fled the field and returned to England.

Bannockburn was not the end of Bruce’s struggle but it was a turning point. Captured English nobles were traded for his family and King Robert I gained international recognition. The Scots took the final English stronghold at Berwick in 1318 but Edward II still claimed overlordship of Scotland. Two years later the Scots sent a letter to the Pope – the Declaration of Arbroath – as part of an ongoing battle of words.

In 1327 Edward II was deposed by his Queen, Isabella. He was murdered in captivity. The English made peace with the Scots and renounced their claim of overlordship. The Black Rood, taken by Edward I, was returned to the Scots. It seemed that Bruce had finally won.

Robert the Bruce retired to Cardross near Dumbarton on the Firth of Clyde. He lived peacefully in a comfortable mansion house until his death on 7 June 1329. He asked that James Douglas take his heart on crusade. Bruce’s body was buried at Dunfermline Abbey, by his wife Elizabeth’s side, beneath an alabaster tomb. Bruce’s heart was finally buried at Melrose Abbey.

In the 1370s the Scots poet John Barbour wrote of Bruce, the hero-king, in ‘The Brus’.

Robert I, known as Robert the Bruce, was the king of the Scots who secured Scotland’s independence from England.

Here is another lineage:

Robert I “The Bruce” Bruce, King of Scotland (1274 – 1329)
21st great-grandfather
Margaret Bruce (1307 – 1346)
daughter of Robert I “The Bruce” Bruce, King of Scotland
John Glen (1349 – 1419)
son of Margaret Bruce
Isabel Glen (1380 – 1421)
daughter of John Glen
Isabel Ogilvie (1406 – 1484)
daughter of Isabel Glen
Elizabeth Kennedy (1434 – 1475)
daughter of Isabel Ogilvie
Isabella Vaus (1451 – 1510)
daughter of Elizabeth Kennedy
Marion Accarson (1478 – 1538)
daughter of Isabella Vaus
Catherine Gordon (1497 – 1537)
daughter of Marion Accarson
Lady Elizabeth Ashton (1524 – 1588)
daughter of Catherine Gordon
Capt Roger Dudley (1535 – 1585)
son of Lady Elizabeth Ashton
Gov Thomas Dudley (1576 – 1653)
son of Capt Roger Dudley
Anne Dudley (1612 – 1672)
daughter of Gov Thomas Dudley
John Bradstreet (1652 – 1718)
son of Anne Dudley
Mercy Bradstreet (1689 – 1725)
daughter of John Bradstreet
Caleb Hazen (1720 – 1777)
son of Mercy Bradstreet
Mercy Hazen (1747 – 1819)
daughter of Caleb Hazen
Martha Mead (1784 – 1860)
daughter of Mercy Hazen
Abner Morse (1808 – 1838)
son of Martha Mead
Daniel Rowland Morse (1838 – 1910)
son of Abner Morse
Jason A Morse (1862 – 1932)
son of Daniel Rowland Morse
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
son of Jason A Morse
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
son of Ernest Abner Morse
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Richard Arden Morse

Both connect with Anne Dudley, my famous poet ancestor. One went through the Gordons for many generations, and the other went though the Kennedy family.

Robert's grave

Robert’s grave

Robert was born on 11 July 1274 into an aristocratic Scottish family. Through his father he was distantly related to the Scottish royal family. His mother had Gaelic antecedents. Bruce’s grandfather was one of the claimants to the Scottish throne during a succession dispute in 1290 – 1292. The English king, Edward I, was asked to arbitrate and chose John Balliol to be king. Both Bruce and his father refused to back Balliol and supported Edward I’s invasion of Scotland in 1296 to force Balliol to abdicate. Edward then ruled Scotland as a province of England.

Bruce then supported William Wallace’s uprising against the English. After Wallace was defeated, Bruce’s lands were not confiscated and in 1298, Bruce became a guardian of Scotland, with John Comyn, Balliol’s nephew and Bruce’s greatest rival for the Scottish throne In 1306, Bruce quarrelled with Comyn and stabbed him in a church in Dumfries. He was outlawed by Edward and excommunicated by the pope. Bruce now proclaimed his right to the throne and on 27 March was crowned king at Scone. The following year, Bruce was deposed by Edward’s army and forced to flee. His wife and daughters were imprisoned and three of his brothers executed. Robert spent the winter on the island off the coast of Antrim (Northern Ireland).

Returning to Scotland, Robert waged a highly successful guerrilla war against the English. At the Battle of Bannockburn in June 1314, he defeated a much larger English army under Edward II, confirming the re-establishment of an independent Scottish monarchy. Two years later, his brother Edward Bruce was inaugurated as high king of Ireland but was killed in battle in 1318. Even after Bannockburn and the Scottish capture of Berwick in 1318, Edward II refused to give up his claim to the overlordship of Scotland. In 1320, the Scottish earls, barons and the ‘community of the realm’ sent a letter to Pope John XXII declaring that Robert was their rightful monarch. This was the ‘Declaration of Arbroath’ and it asserted the antiquity of the Scottish people and their monarchy.

Four years later, Robert received papal recognition as king of an independent Scotland. The Franco-Scottish alliance was renewed in the Treaty of Corbeil, by which the Scots were obliged to make war on England should hostilities break out between England and France. In 1327, the English deposed Edward II in favour of his son and peace was made with Scotland. This included a total renunciation of all English claims to superiority over Scotland. Robert died on 7 June 1329. He was buried at Dunfermline. He requested that his heart be taken to the Holy Land, but it only got as far as Spain. It was returned to Scotland and buried in Melrose Abbey.

James, 5th High Steward, Stewart

December 20, 2013 5 Comments

James Stewart

James Stewart

James Stewart (d 1309), high steward of Scotland, was the son of Alexander, high steward, by Jean, daughter and heiress of James, son of Angus Macrory or Roderick, lord of Bute. He succeeded his father in 1283, and the same year was present in the assembly which acknowledged the maid of Norway as heir to the throne. After the death of Alexander III on 9 March 1286, he was on 11 April chose one of the six guardians of the kingdom under Queen Margaret. The same year he signed the band of Robert Bruce and other nobles for mutual defence. In the war which followed between Balliol and Bruce he took part on the side of Bruce. He attended in 1290 the parliament at Brigham at which a marriage was arranged between Prince Edward of England and the Maid of Norway; but her death in Orkney in October of the same year completely altered the political outlook. Being continued one of the guardians of the kingdom after her death, he agreed with the other guardians to submit the rival claimes of the competitors for the Scottish throne to the arbitration of Edward I of England; but he afterwards joined with the party who resolved at all hazards to break with Edward, and his seal as a baron is appended to the ratification of the treaty with France in 1295. On 7 July 1297 he, however, came to terms with Edward, and, having on 9 July confessd his rebellion and placed himself at Edward’s disposal, he became a guarantor for the loyalty of the Earl of Carrick, until he delivered up his daughter Marjory as hostage. The service he had rendered Edward, in inducing many barons to submit, caused Edward to place considerable confidence in his loyalty; but this confidence was soon belied. On the outbreak shortly afterwards of the rebelion under Wallace, he pretended to side with the English, and before the battle of Stirling was, along with the Earl Of Lennox, sent by Surrey, the English commander, to treat with Wallace; but probably his main purpose was rather to supply Wallace with information than induce him to make submission. At any rate the negotiations failed, and as soon as the tide of battle turned in favour of the Scots he joined in the pursuit. Consequently, on 31 Aug 1298, he was deprived of his lands, which were granted by Edward to Alexander De Lindsay. In 1302 he was, with six other commissioners, sent to Paris to endeavour to secure that the interests of Scotland would be respected in the proposed treaty between England and France, but the mission was unsuccessful. On 17 Feb 1303-4 he had a safe-conduct to go to England to treat of peace; and having submitted himself absolutely to the king’s will in November 1305, he on 23 Oct 1306 subscribed an oath of submission and fealty. Nevertheless he was one of the Scots barons who on 16 March 1309 wrote to Philip, king of France, recognising Bruce’s right to the Scottish throne. He died on 16 July 1309, and was buried at Paisley.

Source:  Dictionary of National Biography (XVIII:1181-1182).

James 5th high steward Stewart (1243 – 1309)
is my 21st great grandfather
Walter the High Steward Stewart (1293 – 1326)
son of James 5th high steward Stewart
Robert II, King of Scotland, Stewart (1316 – 1390)
son of Walter the High Steward Stewart
Robert Scotland Stewart (1337 – 1406)
son of Robert II, King of Scotland, Stewart
James I Scotland Stewart (1394 – 1434)
son of Robert Scotland Stewart
Joan Stewart (1428 – 1486)
daughter of James I Scotland Stewart
John Gordon (1450 – 1517)
son of Joan Stewart
Robert Lord Gordon (1475 – 1525)
son of John Gordon
Catherine Gordon (1497 – 1537)
daughter of Robert Lord Gordon
Lady Elizabeth Ashton (1524 – 1588)
daughter of Catherine Gordon
Capt Roger Dudley (1535 – 1585)
son of Lady Elizabeth Ashton
Gov Thomas Dudley (1576 – 1653)
son of Capt Roger Dudley
Anne Dudley (1612 – 1672)
daughter of Gov Thomas Dudley
John Bradstreet (1652 – 1718)
son of Anne Dudley
Mercy Bradstreet (1689 – 1725)
daughter of John Bradstreet
Caleb Hazen (1720 – 1777)
son of Mercy Bradstreet
Mercy Hazen (1747 – 1819)
daughter of Caleb Hazen
Martha Mead (1784 – 1860)
daughter of Mercy Hazen
Abner Morse (1808 – 1838)
son of Martha Mead
Daniel Rowland Morse (1838 – 1910)
son of Abner Morse
Jason A Morse (1862 – 1932)
son of Daniel Rowland Morse
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
son of Jason A Morse
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
son of Ernest Abner Morse
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Richard Arden Morse

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