Page:Robert the Bruce and the struggle for Scottish independence - 1909.djvu/56

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Robert the Bruce.

[844 A.D.-

tish of Cumbria, namely, the counties of Dumfries, Lanark, north Ayrshire, Renfrew, and Dunbarton. Thus by his own act the King of Scots deliberately divided the kingdom which it had cost so much hard fighting to put together. This partition of the realm endured till the death of Alexander the Fierce[1] in 1124.

David was now the only surviving son of Malcolm Canmore. His sister Matilda had become Queen of England in 1100 by her marriage with Henry I., and David had spent much of his youth at her Court, a circumstance that was to have much influence on the current of events in the northern kingdom. For it was there that young David became acquainted with Norman civilisation, and easily acquired the idea of feudal rule, which presented itself to him with all the glamour of chivalry. His brother-in-law, King Henry, bestowed on him in marriage Matilda, daughter of Waltheof, Earl of Northumberland, and widow of Simon, Earl of Northampton. The latter earldom, with the honour of Huntingdon, David enjoyed during his wife's life. Now an earldom in Norman days was not the barren honour it has become in modern times. It carried with it feudal power and almost absolute jurisdiction over the manors attached to it, besides such revenues as they might produce. Consequently, David was as much a Norman baron in fact, as he had already become in sympathy. He did homage to King

  1. "Hys legys all
    Oysid hym Alysandyr the Fers to call."
    Wyntoun, bk. vii., c. 5.