From: Niven Sinclair <email@example.com>|
Date: Wed, 26 Apr 2000 11:19:22 +0100
John Sinclair Quarterman in his steady catalogue of "Sinclair Dates" reminds us
that the Scottish Parliament met at Scone on April 28th, 1286 to elect
but this Parliament was a Parliament of the Estates of Scotland and Norway
where it was decided that, in the event of Alexander III of Scotland dying
without male issue, the throne of Scotland would go to the "Maid of
Norway". During her minority the country would be governed by a Regent.
Robert 'the Bruce' was the nearest male relative to Alexander III.
In 1290 Princess Margaret, the "Maid of Norway", (then only seven years
despatched to Scotland but died at sea off the Orkney Isles. It is said
that he body
was returned to Norway but others maintain that she was buried at Harold's
in Caithness which you will eventually be able to see on one of the three
we are making for the Sinclair Millennium Gathering.
There is a mournful couplet about the death of the "Maid of Norway" which
"The north wind sobs where Margaret sleeps
And still in tears of blood her memory Scotland steeps"
In order to understand why the "Maid of Norway" should have been considered
heir to the Scottish throne, she was the daughter of the daughter of
(another Margaret) who had married King Eric of Norway.
With the "Maid of Norway" dead there was no heir so Robert 'the Bruce', in
strengthen his position, married his sister, Isabella, to King Eric when
King Eric's first wife died in 1293.
The purpose of the above information is to demonstrate how closely linked
and the Norwegians were through their principal families and how the idea
of a Northern
Commonwealth as ultimately envisaged between Queen Margrette of Norway
and her premier Earl,
Prince Henry Sinclair,
made sense - given the political and economic pressures at the time.
The Norse Northern Commonwealth would have included:
Norway, Sweden and Denmark (which had been united by the Treaty of
Scotland plus Prince Henry Sinclair's 'jarldom' of Orkney,
Shetland and the Faeroes
Greenland and Iceland - then part of the Norwegian realm.
Markland (Newfoundland), Helluland (Labrador) and Vinland (New England)
This was essentially a power bloc to combat the growing influence of the
Hanseatic League which was stretching its tentacles out into the North
Atlantic which was already being referred to as Oceanus Germanicus.
Henry Sinclair's voyage to the New World in 1398 was an attempt to cement
of a Northern Commonwealth which collapsed with his death and that of Queen
because, her adopted nephew, King Eric, was unable to hold the Scandinavian
alliance together. It was at this time that Earl William Sinclair, the
grandson of Prince Henry, was
being seriously considered as a contender for the throne of Norway because
by belonging to the House of More, in Norway, wwere seen as the premier
'jarls' of that
The reception given to the
Earl of Caithness during his recent visit to
that country also
served to illustrate the abiding affection and affiliation which the
Norwegians feel for the