appears to have been a lukewarm supporter of her husband. After wandering as a fugitive in the west highlands, Bruce took refuge in Rachrine, an island on the Antrim coast. Meanwhile Edward, despite his years, having heard at Winchester of the death of Comyn and rising of Bruce, came north with all the speed his health allowed, and displayed an energy which showed he knew he had to cope not with a single foe but a nation. In April, at Westminster, he knighted his son Edward and three hundred others to serve in the wars, and swore by God and the Swan that he would take vengeance on Bruce, and devote the remainder of his life to the crusades. The prince added that he would not sleep two nights in one place till he reached Scotland. Before he started, and in the course of his journey, Edward made grants of the Scotch estates of Bruce and his adherents. Annandale was given to the Earl of Hereford. A parliament was summoned to meet at Carlisle on 12 March, when a bull was published excommunicating Bruce, along with another releasing Edward from his obligations to observe the charters. The attempt to crush the liberty of Scotland went hand in hand with an endeavour to violate the nascent constitution of England. Edward's constant aim was to reduce the whole island to a centralised empire under a single head, untrammelled by the bonds of a constitutional monarchy. His oaths and vows were unavailing, and he died at Burgh-on-the-Sands on 7 July 1307, without touching the soil of Scotland. Before his death he showed what his vengeance would have been. Elizabeth the wife, Marjory the daughter, and Christina the sister of Bruce were surprised in the sanctuary of St. Duthac at Tain and sent prisoners to England, where they remained till after Bannockburn. The Countess of Buchan and Mary, another of his sisters, were confined in cages, the one at Berwick, the other at Roxburgh. The Bishops of St. Andrews and Glasgow and the Abbot of Scone were sent to England and suspended from their benefices; but the pope declined to bestow them on Edward's nominees. Nigel, Bruce's youngest brother, was beheaded at Berwick; Christopher Seton, his brother-in-law, at Dumfries; Alexander Seton at Newcastle. The Earl of Athole was sent to London and, being a cousin of the king, hanged on a gallows thirty feet higher than the pole on which the head of Wallace still stood and that of Sir Simon Fraser, executed at this time. The other brothers of Bruce, Thomas and Alexander dean of Glasgow, having been taken in Galloway, were sent to Edward at Carlisle and there executed, their heads being exposed on the gates and the tower. A little before this, John, a brother of William Wallace, was captured and sent to London, where he met his brother's fate. There were many victims of minor note. But, says the chronicler of Lanercost, the number of those who wished Bruce to be confirmed in the kingdom increased daily, notwithstanding this severity. He might have said because of it, for now every class, nobles and gentry, clergy and commons, with only one or two exceptions, as the Earl of Strathearn and Randolph, Bruce's nephew, saw what Edward meant. Life and limb, land and liberty, were all in peril, and common danger taught the necessity, not felt in the time of Wallace, of making common cause.
Edward's hatred of Scotland passed beyond the grave. On his tomb, by his order, was inscribed ‘Edwardus Primus, Scotorum Malleus: Pactum serva.’ One of his last requests was that his bones should be carried with the army whenever the Scotch rebelled, and only reinterred after they were subdued. This dying wish was disregarded by his weak heir, who wasted in the pomp of his funeral, followed by the dissipations of a youthful court, the critical moment of the war, fancying that, with Bruce an exile and his chief supporters in prison or on the gallows, it was over before it had really begun. Bruce meanwhile, like Alfred, was learning in adversity. The spider, according to the well-known story, taught him perseverance. After spending the winter in Rachrine he ventured in early spring to Arran in Scotland, and thence to Carrick, his own country, where he had many brave adventures and hair-breadth escapes, which should be read in the verses of Barbour or the tales of Scott. Scarcely certain history, they represent the popular conception of his character in the next and succeeding generations. On 10 May he defeated the Earl of Pembroke at Loudon Hill, but failed to take Ayr. Edward, in the end of August, roused himself; but a march to and back from Cumnock without an action was the whole inglorious campaign. His favour for Piers Gaveston and consequent quarrels with the chief barons of England, as well as his approaching marriage to Isabella, daughter of Philip the Fair, led him to quit Scotland. In his absence Bruce and his brother Edward reduced Galloway, and Bruce, leaving his brother in the south, transferred his own operations to Aberdeenshire. It was rumoured that Edward would have made peace on condition of getting aid against his own barons. The feeble conduct of the war on the English side, and frequent