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The Tragedy of James Third. Traditional Cache

Hidden : 07/09/2009
1.5 out of 5
1.5 out of 5

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Geocache Description:

The Tragedy of James Third.

James III was King of Scots from 1460 to 1488. James was an unpopular and ineffective monarch owing to an unwillingness to administer justice fairly, a policy of pursuing alliance with the Kingdom of England, and a disastrous relationship with nearly all his extended family.

In the 1470s conflict developed between the king and his two brothers. By 1479 the alliance was collapsing, and war with England existed on an intermittent level between 1480-1482. In 1482 Edward launched a full-scale invasion, led by the Duke of Gloucester, the future Richard III, and including the Duke of Albany, styled "Alexander IV", as part of the invasion party.

James, in attempting to lead his subjects against the invasion, was arrested by a group of disaffected nobles, at Lauder Bridge in July 1482. It has been suggested that the nobles were already in league with Albany. The king was imprisoned in Edinburgh Castle, and a new regime, led by 'lieutenant-general' Albany, became established during the autumn of 1482. Meanwhile the English army, unable to take Edinburgh Castle, ran out of money and returned to England, having taken Berwick-upon-Tweed for the last time.

Despite his lucky escape in 1482, when he easily could have been murdered or executed in an attempt to bring his son to the throne, James did not reform his behaviour. Obsessive attempts to secure alliance with England continued, although they made little sense given the prevailing politics.
He continued to favour a group of 'familiars', unpopular with the more powerful magnates. He refused to travel for the implementation of justice, and remained invariably resident in Edinburgh. He was also estranged from his wife, Margaret of Denmark, who lived in Stirling, and increasingly his eldest son.

Instead he favoured his second son.

Matters came to a head in 1488 when he faced an army raised by the disaffected nobles, and many former councillors at the Battle of Sauchieburn, and was defeated and killed. His heir, the future James IV, took arms against his father, provoked by the favouritism given to his younger brother.

On the eve of the Battle of Sauchieburn, Sir David Lindsay, son of Sir John, Lord Lindsay of the Byres, presented James III with a "great grey horse" that would carry him faster than any other horse into or away from the battle.

In the course of the fighting that ensued James's horse bolted and threw him. James was badly injured by the fall.

The tragedy of James is that he fled the battle after being wounded and escaped to this Millhouse near this spot.

The miller's frantic wife ran out, shouting for a priest to administer last rites to the dying King. A small party of insurgents had been tracking the King, so dutifully answered the woman’s pleas for help. One of the men, avowing he was a priest, entered the miller’s house but instead of giving him last rites, the so-called priest stabbed the King several times. Eventually the royal corpse was discovered and carried to Stirling Castle, then laid to rest in Cambuskenneth Abbey, near the body of Queen Margaret who had preceded him in death.

Unfortunately the house fell into a ruinous state and no longer exists as a vandal burned it to the ground.
A plaque marks this spot.

James is buried at Cambuskenneth Abbey.

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

Haqre ebpx oruvaq yrsg unaq fvqr.

Decryption Key


(letter above equals below, and vice versa)