William Wallace- A National Hero
William Wallace was a popular and brave Scottish knight and a martial hero who fought and died for the country’s independence from the English. As per the tales, he led the Scots to a grand victory against the English army in 1297 at the Battle of Stirling Bridge. He was the chief inspiration for Scot’s resistance to Edward I.
Early Life and The Battle of Stirling Bridge
Records say William Wallace was the son of Sir Malcolm Wallace. In the year 1296, England’s King Edward I imprisoned John De Balliol, the Scottish King, and became the king of Scotland. That led to sporadic resistance. In 1297, William Wallace and his team of 30 killed an English sheriff and burned Lanark. By teaming up with Sir William Douglas, he then marched on Scone and attacked the garrisons between the River Tay and Forth.
He was a master of military tactics. The Stirling bridge was very narrow, and only two persons could cross at the same time. William Wallace and his partner Andrew Moray waited near the bridge until half of the English army made the crossing and then launched an attack. The army on the north side was trapped by them. More than 5000 English soldiers were killed by the Scots. He was also called the Guardian of Scotland.
The Battle of Falkirk
The battle ruined William’s military reputation as thousands of Scots were killed by the English army during the battle. Besides, among the dead were Sir John De Graham and Sir John Stewart. As per some data, more than 20,000 Scots died in the battle. After this battle, William resigned his role as the Guardian of Scotland.
Capture and Execution of William Wallace
Some historical sources said William Wallace, in 1299, went to France and then returned to Scotland, where he acted as a solitary guerrilla leader. On 5th August 1305, Sir John Menteith arrested William Wallace. Then he was taken to Dumbarton Castle, and then he was carried to London.
On 23rd August 1305, he was conveyed to Westminster Hall, and there he was sentenced to death. As he was already declared a traitor, no trial was held. However, he clearly denied the allegation. On that same day, William Wallace was hanged and beheaded and then quartered at Smithfield. As per the sources, his limbs were exposed at Stirling, Berwick, Perth, and Newcastle, and William’s head was set on London Bridge.
Influence and The Legacy Of William Wallace
Well, Willian Wallace was unmarried. You will not find any portrait of William, and there is also no contemporary description that can describe William’s appearance. Most of the stories related to William Wallace can be traced to the 15th to 16th centuries. Even though there is no documentary evidence to support the tales of Wallace, people still respect him. A large monument of William Wallace can be seen atop Abbey Craig, located near Stirling. When you are in Scotland, you should never miss out on the chance to see the statue of William Wallace, the greatest martial hero in Scottish history.