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Dynasty Of Malcolm

On the death of Malcolm the contest for the Crown lay between his brother, Donald Ban, supported by the Celts; his son Duncan by his first wife, a Norse woman, Duncan being then a hostage at the English Court, who was backed by William Rufus; and thirdly, Malcolm’s eldest son by Margaret, Eadmund, the favourite with the anglicised south of the country. Donald Ban, after a brief period of power, was driven out by Duncan (1094); Duncan was then slain by the Celts (1094). Donald was next restored, north of Forth, Eadmund ruling in the south, but was dispossessed and blinded by Malcolm’s son Eadgar, who reigned for ten years (1097-1107), while Eadmund died in an English cloister. Eadgar had trouble enough on all sides, but the process of anglicising continued, under himself, and later, under his brother, Alexander I., who ruled north of Forth and Clyde; while the youngest brother, David, held Lothian and Cumberland, with the title of Earl. The sister of those sons of Malcolm, Eadgyth (Matilda), married Henry I. of England in 1100. There seemed a chance that, north of Clyde and Forth, there would be a Celtic kingdom; while Lothian and Cumbria would be merged in England. Alexander was mainly engaged in fighting the Moray claimants of his crown in the north and in planting his religious houses, notably St Andrews, with English Augustinian canons from York. Canterbury and York contended for ecclesiastical superiority over Scotland; after various adventures, Robert, the prior of the Augustinians at Scone, was made Bishop of St Andrews, being consecrated by Canterbury, in 1124; while York consecrated David’s bishop in Glasgow. Thanks to the quarrels of the sees of York and Canterbury, the Scottish clergy managed to secure their ecclesiastical independence from either English see; and became, finally, the most useful combatants in the long struggle for the independence of the nation. Rome, on the whole, backed that cause. The Scottish Catholic churchmen, in fact, pursued the old patriotic policy of resistance to England till the years just preceding the Reformation, when the people leaned to the reformed doctrines, and when Scottish national freedom was endangered more by France than by England.

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