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As 8,000 Scottish soldiers, most of them spearmen, faced 18,000 English infantrymen, archers and mounted knights in June 1314 near the Bannock Burn, many would have thought that the result a foregone conclusion. But two days later, the English were routed, Edward II fled to the coast and took ship for home, and few English and Welsh soldiers escaped from Scotland unhurt. This emphatic victory was the moment that enabled Scotland to remain independent and pursue a different destiny. In this book, best-selling author Alistair Moffat offers fresh insights into one of the most famous battles in history, yet one which is surprisingly little understood. Where exactly was it fought; and what happened at the Scottish council of war the night before the second day to persuade the Scots to attack at dawn?
This book follows in detail the events of those two days that changed history, and captures all the fear, heroism, confusion and desperation as he describes the tactics and manoeuvres that led to a stunning and unexpected Scottish victory.
Alistair Moffat was born and bred in the Scottish Borders. A former Director of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and Director of Programmes at Scottish Television, he now runs the Borders Book Festival and the DNA testing company, BritainsDNA (britainsdna.com). He is also the author of numerous best-selling books.