Was Scotland ever conquered by England?

Conquered implies subjugation of the entire country by military force, and you'd think we'd have noticed if this had happened. But quite often, as it turns out, English forces were sufficient to cause the Scottish crown to "bend the knee" to the English one.

Malcolm I, for example, acknowledged Cnut the Great as his liege lord in the 10th century, and Malcolm III did much the same to William II in the 11th. But neither lasted very long, with Malcolm III's nominal subjugation lasting only a couple of years. Scotland was conquered outright in the 13th century by Edward I (who'd also conquered Wales) during a succession crisis after Alexander III's death; but this didn't last long either, with Wallace and de Brus effectively re-establishing Scotland's independence, and finalizing the same during the curtailed reign of Edward II. Despite some military victories in the 14th century by Edward III, Scotland wasn't reconquered until Oliver Cromwell during the Interregnum, by which time there had been a lasting personal union of the crowns. Worth noting that many of these English attacks were triggered by various Scottish kings either refusing to place their English holdings under the English crown, or indeed expanding them militarily - the border between England and Scotland was pretty fluid, and fluidly interpreted to boot.

As for the Union, and creation of Great Britain, that was initiated by James VI/I, who treated the two kingdoms as one British kingdom throughout his lifetime, and created the first Union Flag. However, moves to ratify this were consistently rejected by England, since England's throne was by that time already a constitutional monarchy, whereas Scotland's was considerably more absolutist. This friction would come to a head in James's son, Charles I, and the Civil War.

The Union ended up coming about via the pressures of two things: Scotland needed to recover its economy, which had lagged behind England's for some time, exacerbated by the Darien Scheme, itself with the root cause that England's trade and colonies were distinct from Scotland's. England, on the other hand, needed to secure the succession of the Crowns - Anne had no children, and a succession crisis might split the personal Union, generally considered a disaster to both sides. In fact, Scotland had passed the Act of Security 1704, which - more or less - said that Scotland would split the Union unless England granted full access to trade - the Act of 1707 did this, thus one might argue that Scotland forced the Union on England.


Well the history concerning this question is very long and complicated but hears the short version England and Scotland had been engaged in a long series of conflicts with one and other for a very long time which neither side had the will or means to commit to hole heartedly in the long term since Scotland had become a comparatively poor nation and laked significant external support its leadership was also divided and indecisive and England although a rich nation with a well established military was also engaged in dire conflicts with several other nations which sapped Englands resources it was the English leadership being more economicly advanced that first decided that the conflict with the Scottish was a terrible investment and that it made no sense to continue it economicly or strategicly since there other engagements wer considered more pressing and so the English approached Scotland with offers of wealth and security several times but the Scottish did not respond well at first but eventually the leadership of both sides realised just how lucrative and beneficial a union could be so thay paned out an offer that Scotland couldn't refuse it was to unite under one flag as equal party's of one empire when the agreement was finalised the United Kingdom of great Britain and the British empire was born it is called this because the region between England and Scotland was once called Britain and the new flag was created by combining the English and Scottish flags you may notice it doesn't contain components of the Welsh flag that is because Wales capitulated to England prior to the union it is also important to note that the union was devised by the wealthy Lords of England and Scotland and was to initialy benafit them most of all the common people who had been taught to hate one and other wer widely and openly appalled by the union so much so that it led to riots in Scotland since the Scottish commoners wer more accustomed to getting thair own way by such means but the English Lords had allredy payed handsomely for the Scottish Lords votes and in time even the poorest peasants began to reep the benafits of the union



Apart from the Cromwellian Interregnum , Scotland was never at any time conquered by England. On the contrary , the results of wars between the Countries were as follows;

1 1st Scottish War of Independence- crushing Scots victory. By its end Scottish armies were terrorizing the north of England, with Bruce routing Edward 11 ay Byland as he had done at Bannockburn.

2. Second War of Independence-Scotland retained her independence.

3. Hundred Years War- allies of France and aided in the expulsion of England from France. A Scottish Army helped to turn the tide at Bauge , winning a victory and killing the Duke of Clarence. Many of the Maids troops were Scots and were showered with honours, becoming Dukes and Bishops in France.

4. 1st Bishops War- Scottish Victory, England backed down.

5. 2nd Bishops War- emphatic Scottish Victory, Northumberland and Durham occupied and assistance given to the English Parliament in the subsequent Civil War through the Solemn League.

Scotland 5 - England 0


England did launch successive attacks against the Scots in medieval times but Scotland also invaded England and came very close to victory check out bonnie prince Charlie - if he had not been so cautious he could have claimed the crown Whilst out German king was readying his ship to depart leaving London defenceless, instead the prince feared a trap and marched his army all the way back to Scotland.

Scotland and England unified after Scotland became bankrupt due to the Panama Canal venture which went extremely wrong - London agreed to cover all of the financial loss in return for Union which is what happened!


The answer is 'not really'. Battles where lost or won, but there was never sufficient committment or resources invested for effective colonial domination because Scoland was too poor, undeveloped, sparsely populated and lacking in treasure for it to be worthwhile or to be followed through and sustained.

From the English point of view, Scotland was not seen as the potential rich spoils of war to be expolited but more like a rash or insect bite needing scratched from time to time and then forgotten till the next time it caused a problem

It still is.

Most of the Bannockburn myth has been shown to be wrong through study of English sources, maps and the terrain. Elenkus Publishing Ltd. The English still lost though, in the view of one military expert, due mainly to the Scots effective use of 'GROUND'.


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