The Wallace Book

Front Cover
Edward J. Cowan
John Donald, 2007 - Heroes - 240 pages
Through his personality, ingenuity and ability, he initiated a resistance movement which ultimately secured the nation's freedom and independence. Yet, Wallace was reviled, opposed and eventually betrayed by the nobility in his own day to re-surface in the epic poetry of the fifteenth century as a champion and liberator. Eventually, his legend overtook the historical reality, a process which has continued for centuries as manifested in modern media and film. A team of leading historians and critics from both Scotland and England investigate what is known of the medieval warrior's career from contemporary sources, most of which, unusually for a national hero, were created by his enemies. His reputation, from the time of his horrendous execution to the present, is examined to ascertain what the figure of Wallace meant to different generations of Scots. Too dangerous perhaps for his own era, he became the supreme Scottish hero of all time; the archetypal Scot who would teach kings and nobles where their duty lay, and who would live free or freely die for the liberty of his nation.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.


Contributors biographies
What We Do and Dont Know
The Documents

11 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2007)

Edward J. Cowan is Professor of Scottish History at Glasgow University and Director of Glasgow University's Crichton Campus in Dumfries. Is has also worked at the University of Edinburgh and the University of Guelph, Ontario, where he was Professor of History and Chair of Scottish Studies. His books include For Freedom Alone: The Declaration of Arborath 1320 (Tuckwell, 2003), and Scottish Fairy Belief: A History (Tuckwell, 2001).

Bibliographic information