Knights Templar Origins

  Wallace (Scotland) laid siege to Dundee. This move threatened Stirling Castle, thus the English had to respond. An experienced English navy of fifty thousand foot and a thousand cavalry moved to meet Wallace's army of less than forty thousand foot and a mere hundred and eighl horses. Wal1ace was a guerrilla fighter, the English were not. The English leader was John de Warenne, Earl of Surrey and Governor of Scotland. For armour the Scots used rags stuffed in their shirts. were bare foot, only axes, clubs, etc. for fighting, but they had one important tool, hatred of the English.
   Wallace knew the English would march from Stirling Castle to the River Forth over Stirling Bridge, a wooden structure with no more than two horsemen abreast. Wallace placed his men in dense undergrowth. The Earl of De Warrene wanted to go up stream by three miles but Bishop Cressingham the King's treasurer and tax collector said it would be too costly, he had his way and the English army started across the bridge. Once over the bridge they fanned out on the Scottish side in a semi-circular to guard the crossing, then came the foot soldiers. Wallace gave the signal and out of the underbrush poured thousands of barefoot men, women and children with spears, axes, clubs and blood curdling screams. The horsemen of the English were thrown off their horses by the frightened animals, thus they were defenceless, the foot soldiers turned to go back over the bridge only to be met by thousands of soldiers trying to cross the bridge.
   The hapless de Warenne watched as his army was cut to pieces. He gave the order to retreat. Wallace sent his men after the running English who had no time to stop for food or sleep. Prisoners were of no problem as the Scots only wanted to kill. Bishop Cressingham was captured, flayed and his skin presented to Wallace as a covering for his sword. De Warrene gathered his defeated army, marched to the crossing he wanted to cross in the first place, crossed over the river, attacked Wallace guerrilla army using his archers with the long bow. The Scots were no defence against this type of armour. Arrows flew at speeds fast enough to pierce light metal armour, flights of arrows met the Scots who fled. Wallace was chased Into a thicket by Sir Brian de Jay. Master of the English Templars. Wallace killed him. After the battle, ten thousand Scots lay dead. Noblemen of Scotland disgraced who later refused to follow Wallace. Wallace then asked the King of France to aid him, he agreed. By way of response King Philip of France put Wallace in jail. Edward, King of England expressed his gratitude by asking the King of France to hold Wallace for him. Philip changed his mind and released Wallace.
   In 1304. John Stewart of Montelth a Supporter of Wallace had gone over to the English, who in turn contacted a man called Jack Short, a servant of Wallace, who agreed to turn Wallace over to the English for a reward by sitting at a table with a Ioaf of bread. He was to turn the bread toward Wallace. As the soldiers entered. Monteith picked up the loaf, turned it around, whereby Wallace was seized.

by the late Howard Warren

Knights Templar Origins