Dool and wae for the order sent our lads to the
The English, for ance, by guile wan the day:
The Flowers of the Forest, that foucht aye the
The prime of our land, are cauld in the clay.
We'll hear nae mair lilting at the ewe milking
Women and bairns are
heartless and wae:
Sighing and moaning on ilka green loaning—
Flowers of the Forest are a' wede away.'
KING JAMES had loved Sir Andrew, and when he heard of
his death he was sad, and angry too. He sent to King Henry, demanding that
he should pay for all the damage and loss, and return the Lion.
'The death of a pirate can never be the cause of
quarrel between princes,' replied Henry haughtily ; so the quarrel was made
worse instead of better. There were many other causes for anger between the
two Kings. One was that Henry would not give up the jewels and money which
his father had left. to Queen Margaret when he died.
Then the French and the English began to quarrel.
The Scots had always been friends with the French. Now
the Queen of France wrote a pretty letter to James, calling him her knight,
telling him that she was a lady in distress, and begging him to fight in her
cause, and to advance, if but three steps, into England, for her sake.
James, as gallant a knight as ever lived, could not
say 'no' to such a letter, so in an evil hour he sent his fleet to France,
and determined himself to march over the Border into England. What became of
the fleet is not known, and little more was heard of Scotland's splendid
The King's wise men and counsellors tried hard to
persuade him not to go to war with England. But James would not listen. He
was very angry with Henry, and the Queen of France had roused all his
knightly feelings. He was determined to fight. So all over Scotland a
proclamation was made that every man between sixteen and sixty should be
ready, within twenty days, to pass with the King into England. And for love
of their King a great army gathered to him. Yet still they tried to prevent
him going to war.
One evening .James knelt in the church at Linlithgow,
praying, when a man suddenly appeared before him. This man was dressed in a
long blue robe, with a linen belt about his waist, and sandals upon his
feet. His hair was long and fair, his face grave and commanding. Standing
before the King, this man bent over him and spoke;
'Sir King,' he said, ' my mother bath sent me to you, desiring you not to
pass at this time where you purpose to go. For if you do, you will not fare
well in your journey, neither you nor any that are with you.
When the man had ceased speaking, the King paused a moment in wonder. But
even as he did so the figure vanished away, as if he had been a blink of the
sun, or a puff of wind. Search how they might, no man could find him or any
trace of him. it was thought by some, that King .James had really seen a
vision of St. .John, who had been sent to warn him. But many people think
that it was merely some one who had dressed himself in this strange fashion
in order to make the King believe that he had seen a vision, and so turn
from his purpose.
But nothing any one could do or say was of the least use, and James with his
great army passed into England. Queen Margaret from her high turret chamber
in Linlithgow castle, sadly watched him go to fight against her brother.
King Henry was away fighting in France, so the English army was led by the
Had of Surrey. Upon the field of Floddeii in Northumberland the armies met,
and a great battle was fought on September 9, 1513 A.D.
Even at the last minute, the lords tried to persuade the King to go away to
a safe place, and let them fight the English. But at this James was
'My lords,' he cried, 'I shall fight this day against England although you
have sworn the contrary. Though you should all flee from me and shame
yourselves, you shall not shame me.'
So the battle began and raged, and when night fell, King James lay dead upon
the field with all his best knights around him. Bishops and abbots, earls,
lords and knights, lay there, having given, in vain, their lives to save
'I'II not at length it put in memory,
I never read in tragedy nor story
At one tourney, so many nobles slain
For the defence and love of their
In Scotland, the women and the children and the old men waited for news of
their King and army. The Queen sat lonely in Linlithgow, and wept and
watched through the long weary days. But at last one bright September
morning news came—news of disaster and death. Scotland was turned into a
land of tears. From castle to cottage, there was scarce a home but where
there was wailing for the loss of some dear one.
"O the blackest day for Scotland—
That she ever saw before!
King—the good, the noble,
Shalt we see him never more?
Woe to us and
woe to Scotland!
o our sons, our sons and men
Surely some have 'scaped
Surely some will come again.
* * * * *
And the bells are tolling fiercely,
And the Cry comes louder in
Mothers wailing for their children
Sisters for their slaughtered kin.'