The following is from The Brus by John Barbour (c.1316-1395):
[King Robert goes to Ireland.]
Quhen Schyr Edward, as Ik said ar,
Had discomfyt Richard of Clar
And of Irland all the barnage
Thris throu his worthi vasselag
And syne with all his men of mayn
Till Cragfergus wes cummyn agayn,
The gud erle of Murreff Thomas
Tuk leyff in Scotland for to pas,
And he him levyt with a gruching,
And syne him chargyt to the king
To pray him specialli that he
Cum intill Irland him to se,
For war thai bath into that land
Thai suld fynd nane suld thaim withstand.
The erle furth thane his way has tane
And till his schipping is he gayn
And sayllyt weill out-our the se.
Intill Scotland sone aryvit he,
Syne till the king he went in hy,
And he resavyt him glaidsumly
And speryt of his brodyr fayr
And of journayis that thai had thar,
And he him tauld all but lesing.
Quhen the king left had the spering
His charge to the gud king tauld he,
And he said he wald blythly se
Hys brother and se the affer
Off that cuntre and off thar wer.
A gret mengye then gaderyt he,
And twa lordys of gret bounte
The tane the Stewart Walter was
The tother James of Douglas
Wardanys in his absence maid he
For to maynteyme wele the countre,
Syne to the se he tuk the way
And at Lochriane in Galloway
He schippyt with all his menye,
To Cragfergus sone cummyn is he.
Schyr Edward of his come wes blyth
And went doun to mete him swyth
And welcummyt him with glaidsome cher,
Sa did he all that with him wer
And specially the erle Thomas
Off Murreff that his nevo was,
Syne till the castell went thai yar
And maid thaim mekill fest and far.
Thai sojournyt that dayis thre
And that in myrth and jolyte.
[The Scots march south and an ambush is prepared for them.]
King Robert apon this kyn wis
Intill Irland aryvit is,
And quhen in Cragfergus had he
With his men sojournyt dayis thre
Thai tuk to consaill that thai wald
With thar folk thar wayis hald
Throu all Irland fra end till other.
Schyr Edward than the kingis brother
Befor in the avaward raid,
The king himselff the rerward maid
That had intill his cumpany
The erle Thomas that wes worthi.
Thar wayis southwart haff thai tane
And sone ar passyt Inderwillane.
This wes in the moneth of May
Quhen byrdis syngis in ilk spray
Melland thar notis with seymly soune
For softnes of the swet sesoun,
And levys off the branchys spredis
And blomys brycht besid tham bredis
And feldis ar strowyt with flouris
Well saverand of ser colouris
And all thing worthis blyth and gay,
Quhen that this gud king tuk his way
To rid southwart as I said ar.
The wardane than Richard of Clar
Wyst the king wes aryvyt sua
And wyst that he schup him to ta
His way towart the south contre,
And of all Irland assemblit he
Bath burges and chevalry
And hobilleris and yhumanry
Quhill he had ner fourty thousand.
Bot he wald nocht yet tak on hand
With all his fayis in feld to fycht
Bot he umbethocht him of ane slycht,
That he with all his gret menye
Wald in a wod enbuschit be
All prively besid the way
Quhar that thar fayis suld away,
And lat the avaward pas fer by
And syne assembill hardely
On the rerward with all thar men.
Thai did as thai divisyt then,
In ane wod thai enbuschit wer,
The Scottis ost raid by thaim ner
Bot thai na schawing of thaim maid.
[The ambush of King Robert's men; the folly of Colin Campbell.]
Schyr Edward weill fer forouth rad
With thaim that war of his menye,
To the rerward na tent tuk he,
And Schyr Richard of Clar in hy
Quhen Schyr Edward wes passyt by
Send lycht yomen that weill couth schout
To bykkyr the rerward apon fute.
Then twa of thaim that send furth war
At the wod sid thaim bykkerit thar
And schot amang the Scottismen.
The king that had thar with him then
Weill fyve thousand wicht and worthi
Saw thai twa sa abandounly
Schut amang thaim and cum sa ner.
He wist rycht weill withoutyn wer
That thai rycht ner suppowall had,
Tharfor a bidding has he mad
That na man sall be sa hardy
To prik at thaim, bot sarraly
Rid redy ay into bataill
To defend gif men wald assail,
'For we sall sone, Ik undreta,'
He said, 'haf for to do with ma.'
Bot Schyr Colyne Cambell, that ner
Was by quhar thai twa yhumen wer
Schoutand amang thaim hardily,
Prykyt on thaim in full gret hy
And sone the tane has our-tane
And with the sper him sone has slane,
The tother turnyt and schot agayne
And at the schot his hors has slane.
With that the king come hastily
And intill his malancoly
With a trounsoun intill hys new
To Schyr Colyne sic dusche he geve
That he dynnyt on his arsoun,
Than bad he smertly tit him doun.
Bot other lordis that war him by
Ameyssyt the king into party,
And he said, 'Breking of bidding
Mycht caus all our discumfiting.
Weyne ye yone ribaldis durst assaill
Us sa ner intill our bataill
Bot giff thai had suppowaill ner.
I wate rycht weill withoutyn wer
That we sall haf to do in hy,
Tharfor luk ilk man be redy.'
With that weill neir thretty or ma
Off bowmen come and bykyrit sua
That thai hurt off the kingis men.
The king has gert his archeris then
Schoute for to put thai men agayn.
With that thai entryt in a playn
And saw arayit agayn thaim stand
In four bataillis fourty thousand.
The king said, 'Now, lordingis, lat se
Quha worthy in this fycht sall be,
On thaim foroutyn mar abaid.'
[The fight and victory of King Robert.]
Sa stoutly than on thaim thai raid
And assemblyt sa hardely
That off thar fayis a gret party
War laid at erd at thar meting.
Thar wes off speris sic bristing
As ather apon other raid
That it a wele gret frusch has maid,
Hors come thar fruschand heid for heid
Sua that fele on the ground felle deid.
Mony a wycht and worthi man
As ather apon other ran
War duschyt dede doun to the ground,
The red blud out off mony a wound
Ruschyt in sa gret foysoun than
That off the blud the stremys ran.
And thai that wraith war and angry
Dang on other sa hardily
With wapnys that war brycht and bar
That mony a gud man deyit thar,
For thai that hardy war and wycht
And frontlynys with thar fayis gan fycht
Pressyt thaim formast for to be.
Thar mycht men cruell bargane se
And hard bataill. Ik tak on hand
In all the wer off Irland
Sa hard a fechting wes nocht sene,
The-quhether of gret victours nynteyne
Schyr Edward has withoutyn wer,
And into les than in thre yer,
And in syndry bataillis of tha
Vencussyt thretty thousand and ma
With trappyt hors rycht to the fete,
Bot in all tymys he wes yete
Ay ane for fyve quhen lest wes he.
Bot the king into this melle
Had alwayis aucht of his fa-men
For ane, bot he sua bar him then
That his gud deid and his bounte
Confortyt sua all his menye
That the mast coward hardy wes,
For quhar he saw the thikkest pres
Sa hardely on thaim he raid
That thar about him roume he maid,
And Erle Thomas the worthi
Wes in all tyme ner him by
And faucht as he war in a rage,
Sua that for thar gret vasselage
Thar men sic gret hardyment gan tak
That thai na perell wald forsak
Bot thaim abandound sa stoutly
And dang apon thaim sa hardely
That all thar fayis affrayit war.
And thai that saw weill be thar far
That thai eschewyt sumdele the fycht
Than dang thai on with all thar mycht
And pressit thame dyngand so fast
That thai the bak gaf at the last,
And thai that saw thaim tak the flicht
Pressit thame than with all thare mycht
And in thar fleyng fele gan sla.
The kingis men has chassyt sua
That thai war scalyt everilkane.
Rychard off Clar the way has tane
To Devillyne into full gret hy
With other lordys that fled him by
And warnysyt bath castellis and townys
That war in thar possessiounys.
Thai war sa felly fleyit thar
That I trow Schyr Richard off Clar
Sall haiff na will to faynd his mycht
In bataill na in fors to fycht
Quhill King Robert and his menye
Is dwelland in that cuntre.
Thai stuffyt strenthis on this wis,
And the king that wes to pris
Saw in the feld rycht mony slane,
And ane of thaim that thar wes tane
That wes arayit jolyly
He saw greyt wonder tenderly,
And askyt him quhy he maid sic cher.
He said him, 'Schyr, withoutyn wer
It is na wonder thocht I gret.
I se fele her lossyt the suet,
The flour of all north Irland
That hardyast war of thar hand
And mast doutyt in hard assay.'
The king said, 'Thou dois wrang perfay,
Thou has mar caus myrthis to ma
For thou the dede eschapyt sua.'
[Edward Bruce upbraided; the Scots' journey, and the wait for the laundress.
Richard off Clar on this maner
And all his folk discomfyt wer
With few folk, as I to you tauld,
And quhen Edward the Bruys the bauld
Wyst at the king had fochtyn sua
With sa fele folk, and he tharfra,
Mycht na man se a waer man.
Bot the gud king said till him than
That it wes his awne foly
For he raid sua unwittely
Sa far befor, and na vaward
Maid to thaim of the rerward,
For he said quha on wer wald rid
In a vaward he suld na tid
Pas fra his rerward fer of sycht
For gret perell sua fall thar mycht.
Off this fycht will we spek no mar,
Bot the king and all that thar war
Raid furthwartis in bettyr aray
And nerar togidder than er did thai.
Throu all the land playnly thai raid,
Thai fand nane that thaim obstakill maid.
Thai raid evyn forouth Drochindra
And forouth Devillyne syne alsua
And to giff battaill nane thai fand,
Syne went thai southwart in the land
And rycht till Lynrike held thar way
That is the southmaist toun perfay
That in Irland may fundyn be.
Thar lay thai dayis twa or thre
And buskyt syne agayn to far,
And quhen that thai all redy war
The king has hard a woman cry,
He askyt quhat that wes in hy.
'It is the laynder, schyr,' said ane,
'That hyr child-ill rycht now has tane
And mon leve now behind us her,
Tharfor scho makys yone ivill cher.'
The king said, 'Certis, it war pite
That scho in that poynt left suld be,
For certis I trow thar is no man
That he ne will rew a woman than.'
His ost all thar arestyt he
And gert a tent sone stentit be
And gert hyr gang in hastily,
And other wemen to be hyr by.
Quhill scho wes deliver he bad
And syne furth on his wayis raid,
And how scho furth suld caryit be
Or ever he furth fur ordanyt he.
This wes a full gret curtasy
That swilk a king and sa mychty
Gert his men dwell on this maner
Bot for a pouer lauender.
Agayne northwart thai tuk thar way
Throu all Irland than perfay,
Throu all Connach rycht to Devillyne,
And throu all Myth and Irell syne
And Monester and Lenester,
And syne haly throu Ulsister,
To Cragfergus foroutyn bataill,
For thar wes nane durst thaim assaill.
[Edward Bruce and the Irish kings; his failings.]
The kingis off Irchery
Come to Schyr Edward halily
And thar manredyn gan him ma
Bot giff that it war ane or twa.
Till Cragfergus thai come again,
In all that way wes nane bargain
Bot giff that ony poynye wer
That is nocht for to spek of her.
The Irsche kingis than everilkane
Hame till thar awne repayr ar gane,
And undretuk in allkyn thing
For till obey to the bidding
Off Schyr Edward that thar king callit thay.
He wes now weill set in gud way
To conquer the land halyly,
For he had apon his party
The Irschery and Ulsyster,
And he wes sa furth on his wer
That he wes passyt throu Irland
Fra end till uthyr throu strenth of hand.
Couth he haf governyt him throu skill
And folowyt nocht to fast his will
Bot with mesur haf led his dede
It wes weill lik withoutyn drede
That he mycht haiff conqueryt weill
The land of Irland ilkadele,
Bot his outrageous sucquedry
And will that wes mar than hardy
Off purpose lettyt him perfay,
As Ik herefter sall you say,
[Douglas at Lintalee; Sir Thomas Richmond proposes to cut down Jedworth Forest.]
Now leve we her the noble king
All at his ese and his liking,
And spek we of the lord of Douglas
That left to kep the marches was.
He gert set wrychtis that war sleye
And in the halche of Lintaile
He gert thaim mak a fayr maner,
And quhen the housis biggit wer
He gert purvay him rycht weill thar
For he thoucht to mak ane infar
And to mak gud cher till his men.
In Rychmound wes wonnand then
Ane erle that men callit Schyr Thomas,
He had invy at the Douglas
And said gif that he his baner
Mycht se displayit apon wer
That sone assemble on it suld he.
He hard how the Douglas thocht to be
At Lyntailey and fest to ma,
And he had wittering weill alsua
That the king and a gret menye
War passyt than of the countre
And the erle of Murref Thomas,
Tharfor he thocht the countre was
Febill of men for to withstand
Men that thame soucht with stalwart hand,
And of the marchis than had he
The governaile and the pouste.
He gaderyt folk about him then
Quhill he wes ner ten thousand men,
And wod-axys gert with him tak
For he thocht he his men wald mak
To hew Jedwort Forrest sa clene
That na tre suld tharin be sene.
Thai held thaim forthwart on thar way,
Bot the gud lord Douglas that ay
Had spyis out on ilka sid
Had gud wittering that thai wald rid
And cum apon him suddanly.
Than gaderyt he rycht hastily
Thaim that he moucht of his menye,
I trow that than with him had he
Fyfty that worthy war and wicht
At all poynt armyt weill and dycht,
And off archeris a gret menye
Assemblyt als with him had he.
A place thar was thar in the way
Quhar he thocht weill thai suld away
That had wod apon athyr sid,
The entre wes weill large and wid
And as a scheild it narowit ay
Quhill at intill a place the way
Wes nocht a pennystane cast of breid.
The lord of Douglas thidder yeid
Quhen he wyst thai war ner cummand,
And a-lauch on the ta hand
All his archeris enbuschit he
And bad thaim hald thaim all preve
Quhill that thai hard him rays the cry,
And than suld schut hardely
Amang thar fayis and sow thaim sar
Quhill that he throu thaim passyt war,
And syne with him furth hald suld thai.
Than byrkis on athyr sid the way
That young and thik war growand ner
He knyt togidder on sic maner
That men moucht nocht weill throu thaim rid.
[Douglas defeats and kills Richmond, then drives off his clerk from Lintalee.]
Quhen this wes done he gan abid
Apon the tother half the way,
And Richmound in gud aray
Come ridand in the fyrst escheill.
The lord Douglas has sene him weill
And gert his men all hald thaim still
Quhill at thar hand thai come thaim till
And entryt in the narow way,
Than with a schout on thaim schot thai
And criyt on hycht, 'Douglas! Douglas!'
The Richmound than that worthi was
Quhen he has hard sua rais the cry
And Douglas baner saw planly
He dressyt thidderwart in hy
And thai come on sa hardily
That thai throu thaim maid thaim the way,
All that thai met till erd bar thai.
The Richmound borne doun thar was,
On him arestyt the Douglas
And him reversyt and with a knyff
Rycht in that place reft him the lyff.
Ane hat apon his helm he bar
And that tuk with him Douglas thar
In taknyng, for it furryt was,
And syne in hy thar wayis tays
Quhill in the wod thai entryt war.
The archeris weill has borne thaim thar
For weill and hardily schot thai.
The Inglis rout in gret affray
War set, for Douglas suddanly
With all thaim of his cumpany
Or ever thai wyst wes in thar rout
And thyrlyt thaim weill ner throchout,
And had almast all doyn his deid
Or thai to help thaim couth tak heid.
And quhen thai saw thar lord slayn
Thai tuk him up and turnyt agayn
To draw thaim fra the schot away,
Than in a plane assemblit thai
And for thar lord that thar wes dede
Thai schup thaim in that ilk sted
For to tak herbery all that nycht.
And than the Douglas that wes wicht
Gat wytteryng ane clerk Elys
With weill thre hunder ennymys
All straucht to Lintaile war gayn
And herbery for thar ost had tane.
Than thidder is he went in hy
With all thaim of his cumpany
And fand clerk Elys at the mete
And his round about him set,
And thai come on thaim stoutly thar
And with swerdis that scharply schar
Thai servyt thaim full egrely.
Slayn war thai full grevously
That wele ner eschapyt nane,
Thai servyt thaim on sa gret wane
With scherand swerdis and with knyffis
That weile ner all left the lyvys.
Thai had a felloun efter mes,
That sourchargis to chargand wes.
Thai that eschapyt thar throu cas
Rycht till the ost the wayis tais
And tauld how that thar men war slayn
Sa clene that ner eschapyt nane.
And quhen thai of thar ost had herd
How that the Douglas with thaim ferd
That had thar herbryouris slane
And ruschyt all thaim self agayn
And slew thar lord in-myd thar rout,
Thar wes nane of thaim all sa stout
That mar will than had till assaile
The Douglas, tharfor to consaill
Thai yeid and to purpose has tane
To wend hamwart, and hamwart ar gan
And sped thaim sua apon thar way
That in Ingland sone cummyn ar thai.
The forest left thai standand still,
To hew it than thai had na will
Specially quhill the Douglas
Sua ner-hand by thar nychtbur was.
And he that saw thaim torne agayn
Persavyt weill thar lord wes slayn
And be the hat that he had tane
He wist alsua weill, for ane
That takyn wes said him suthly
That Rychmound commounly
Wes wount that furryt hat to wer.
Than Douglas blythar wes than er
For he wist weill that Rychmound
His felloun fa wes brocht to the ground.
[A comparison of Douglas's exploits.]
Schyr James of Douglas on this wis
Throu his worschip and his empris
Defendyt worthely the land.
This poynt of wer, I tak on hand,
Wes undretane full apertly
And eschevyt rycht hardely,
For he stonayit foroutyn wer
That folk that well ten thousand wer
With fyfty armyt men but ma.
I can als tell you other twa
Poyntis that wele eschevit wer
With fyfty men, and but wer
Thai war done sua rycht hardely
That thai war prisit soveranly
Atour all othir poyntis of wer
That in that tym eschevit wer
This wes the fyrst that sua stoutly
Wes brocht till end wele with fifty
Into Galloway the tother fell
Quhen as ye forouth herd me tell
Schyr Edward the Bruys with fifty
Vencussyt of Sanct Jhon Schyr Amery
And fyften hunder men be tale.
The thrid fell intill Esdaill
Quhen that Schyr Jhone the Soullis was
The governour of all that place,
That to Schyr Androw Hardclay
With fifty men withset the way
That had thar in his cumpany
Thre hunder horsyt jolyly.
This Schyr Jhone intill playn melle
Throu soverane hardiment and bounte
Vencussyt thaim sturdely ilkan
And Schyr Andrew in hand has tane,
I will nocht rehers the maner
For quha-sa likis thai may her
Young wemen quhen thai will play
Syng it amang thaim ilk day.
Thir war the worthi poyntis thre
That I trow evermar sall be
Prissyt quhile men may on thaim mene.
It is well worth foroutyn wene
That thar namys for evermar,
That in thar tym sua worthi war
That men till her yeit has daynte,
For thar worschip and thar bounte
Be lestand ay furth in loving,
Quhar He that is of hevynnys king
Bring thaim he up till hevynnys blis
Quhar allwayis lestand loving is.
[English ships come to Fife; the Scots let them land.]
In this tym that the Richmound
Was on this maner brocht to ground
Men off the cost off Ingland
That dwelt on Humbre or nerhand
Gaderyt thaim a gret mengne
And went in schippes to the se,
And towart Scotland went in hy
And in the Fyrth come hastely.
Thai wend till haiff all thar liking
For thai wist weile that the king
Wes then fer out of the countre,
With him mony of gret bounte,
Tharfor into the Fyrth come thai
And endlang it up held thai
Quhill thai besid Ennerkething
On west half towart Dunferlyng
Tuk land and fast begouth to ryve.
The erle of Fyff and the schyrreff
Saw to thar cost schippis approchand
Thai gaderyt to defend thar land
And a-forgayn the schippis ay
As thai saillyt thai held thar way
And thocht to let thaim land to tak.
And quhen the schipmen saw thaim mak
Swilk contenance in sic aray
Thai said amang thaim all that thai
Wald nocht let for thaim land to ta,
Than to the land thai sped thaim sua
That thai come thar in full gret hy
And aryvyt full hardely.
The Scottismen saw thar cummyng
And had of thaim sic abasing
That thai all samyn raid thaim fra
And the land letles lete thaim ta.
Thai durst nocht fecht with thaim, forthi
Thai withdrew thaim all halily
The-quhethyr thai war fyve hunder ner.
[The bishop of Dunkeld drives the English to their ships.]
Quhen thai away thus ridand wer
And na defens begouth to schape,
Off Dunkeldyn the gud byschap
That men callyt Wilyam the Sanctecler
Come with a rout in gud maner.
I trow on hors thai war sexty,
Himselff was armyt jolyly
And raid apon a stalwart sted,
A chemer for till hele his wed
Apon his armour had he then
And armyt weill als war his men.
The erle and the schyrreff met he
Awaywart with thar gret menye,
And askyt thaim weill sone quhat hy
Maid thaim to turne sa hastily.
Thai said thar fayis with stalwart hand
Had in sic foysoun takyn the land
That thai thocht thaim all out to fele
And thaim to few with thaim to dele.
Quhen the bischap hard it wes sua
He said, 'The king aucht weill to ma
Off you, that takys sa wele on hand
In his absence to wer his land.
Certis giff he gert serff you weill
The gilt spuris rycht be the hele
He suld in hy ger hew you fra,
Rycht wald with cowartis men did sua.
Quha luffis his lord or his cuntre
Turne smertly now agayne with me.'
With that he kest of his chemer
And hynt in hand a stalwart sper
And raid towart his fayis in hy,
All turnyt with him halyly
For he had thaim reprovyt sua
That off thaim all nane fled him fra.
He raid befor thaim sturdely
And thai him folowyt sarraly
Quhill that thai come ner approchand
To thar fayis that had tane land,
And sum war knyt in gud aray
And sum war went to the foray.
The gud bischap quhen he thaim saw
He said, 'Lordingis, but drede or aw
Pryk we apon thaim hardely
And we sall haf thaim wele lychtly.
Se thai us cum but abaysing
Sua that we mak her na stinting
Thai sall weill sone discumfyt be.
Now dois weill, for men sall se
Quha luffis the kingis mensk today.'
Than all togidder in gud aray
Thai prekyt apon thaim sturdely,
The byschap that wes rycht hardy
And mekill and stark raid forouth ay.
Than in a frusche assemblit thai,
And thai that at the fryst meting
Feld off the speris sa sar sowing
Wandyst and wald haiff bene away,
Towart thar schippis in hy held thai,
And thai thaim chassyt fellounly
And slew thaim sua dispitously
That all the feldis strowyt war
Off Inglismen that slane war thar,
And thai yeyt that held unslayne
Pressyt to the se agayne,
And Scottismen that chassyt sua
Slew all that ever thai mycht ourta.
Bot thai that fled yeit nocht-forthi
Sua to thar schippis gan thaim hy,
And in sum barge sua fele gan ga
And thar fayis hastyt thaim sua
That thai our-tumblyt and the men
That war tharin war drownyt then.
Thar did ane Inglisman perfay
A weill gret strenth as Ik hard say,
For quhen he chassyt wes till his bat
A Scottisman that him handlyt hat
He hynt than be the armys twa,
And, war him wele or war him wa,
He evyn apon his bak him slang
And with him to the bat gan gang
And kest him in all mawgre his,
This wes a wele gret strenth i-wis.
The Inglismen that wan away
To thar schippis in hy went thai
And saylyt hame angry and wa
That thai had bene rebutyt sua.
[The bishop is praised; the king returns from Ireland.]
Quhen that the schipmen on this wis
War discumfyt as I devys
The byschap that sa weill him bar
That he all hartyt that thar war
Was yeyt into the fechtyn-sted
Quhar that fyve hunder ner war ded
Foroutyn thaim that drownyt war,
And quhen the feld was spulyeit bar
Thai went all hame to thar repar.
To the byschap is fallyn fayr
That throu his price and his bounte
Wes eschevyt swilk a journé.
The king tharfor ay fra that day
Him luffyt and prisyt and honoryt ay
And held him in suylk daynte
That his awne bischop him callit he.
Thus thai defendyt the countre
Apon bath halffis the Scottis se
Quhill that the king wes out off land
That than as Ik haf borne on hand
Throu all Irland his cours had maid
And agane to Cragfergus raid.
And quhen his broder as he war king
Had all the Irschery at bidding
And haly Ulsistre alsua
He buskyt hame his way to ta.
Off his men that war mast hardy
And prisyt mast of chevalry
With his broder gret part left he,
And syne is went him to the se.
Quhen thar levys on ather party
Wes tane he went to schip him in hy,
The Erle Thomas with him he had,
Thai raissyt sayllis but abaid
And in land off Galloway
Forout perell aryvyt thai.