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Sinclair date - 20 August 1542 - an explanation
Haddon Rig , 20 August 1542. Following this battle in the same month was
the Battle of Solway Moss in which the Scots Army led by Oliver Sinclair
'dinna do verra well" Since Oliver was the King's favorite and the other
lords would not follow his leadership the battle fought in swamp -
"Moss" was lost and then the Scots were harried by the Grahams in gettng
away from the battle field.
At Hadden Rig the English were defeated, the Scots then decided to
attack England from the Southwest, thus avoiding the remaining English
army. The battle at Solway Moss, as we know, turned into a fiasco.
By 1540, war between England and Scotland was almost inevitable. Henry
VIII was having no joy in bringing King James into line with his
religious views. He was encouraging the English reivers to harass the
Scottish border. His temper was made worse when James arranged to meet
him at York, where Henry hoped to sway him. Henry arrived in the city,
then James failed to appear for the meeting, a huge diplomatic snub and
blunder. James' reason not appearing was in part because he feared being
At the same time, one of the Armstrongs was creating havoc on the
English side of the border. The English borderers were itching for
revenge. The Scots occupation of the Debateable Land (neutral territory)
was enough for Wharton to propose a raid, but to Henry's chagrin the
border remained quiet.
1541 drew to a close, with tension rising on both sides of the border.
In the summer of 1542 the English Warden of the English East March,
Robert Bowes, mounted a great raid in company with the traitor Scot, the
Earl of Angus and the Douglases. With 3000 riders he descended on
Teviotdale, burning and looting (this may be where Kelso and Roxburgh
only 11 miles E.N.E of Haddon which the English burned after losing at
Haddon). Bowes planned his main ambush at Hadden, and sent the Redesdale
and Tynedale riders out to scour the country for booty in order to lure
the Scots into his ambush.
This party, returning with their booty of sheep and cattle were
attacked by a force under George Gordon. Gordon's men came between the
raiders and the English main force at Hadden, the English leadership
failed and their forces were thrown into confusion.
The English borderers, in true reiver style, concentrated on their
booty, rather than the main battle. A rout ensued with Bowes and Heron
taken, Angus fought his way out. Henry was livid and vowed the
destruction of the Scots. 20,000 were gathered at York. Badly organised,
the raid did damage, but not as much as was hoped, and, short of
provisions, the English were back at Berwick after only a week (Oct 26).
James passed up the chance to hit back at this time, but raised another
force, and while spreading rumours that the attack was to be in the
East, actually took his force towards Cumberland and
the debacle of Solway Moss. Oliver Sinclair, the Protestant Earls
Cassillis and Glencairn were taken prisoner and ransomed. James V lying
ill at Falkland, died there on 11 December 1542. His hope of an heir (2
infant sons already dead)gone, he was given news of the birth of a
daughter (Mary) born at Linlithgow, which brought him no joy. He is said
to have said "It came with a lass (Marjorie Bruce) and it will pass with
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