As several of the Scottish Kings are referred to in the text as 'bench-marks' for the chronology, the following table might assist the reader to get a better historical perspective. The table only goes back far enough to cover the latter discussed in the following pages.
Duncan I 1034 - 1040 Killed by Macbeth.
Macbeth 1040 - 1057 Killed by Malcolm III. Cousin of Duncan I.
Malcolm III 1057 - 1093 Killed by Robert de Mowbray. b. c.1031. Elder son of Duncan I. Canmore
Donald Bane 1093 - 1004 Brother of Malcolm III, and younger son of Duncan I. Deposed by Duncan II.
Duncan II 1094 - 1094 Son of Malcolm III. Deposed his uncle - Donald Bane, who in turn arranged the killing of Duncan II.
Donald Bane 1095 - 1097 Restored to throne.
Edgar 1097 - 1107 Son of Malcolm III by 2nd marriage to (Saint) Margaret
Alexander 1 1107 - 1124 4th Son of Malcolm III by 2nd marriage to (Saint) Margaret
David 1 1124 - 1153 6th Son of Malcolm III by 2nd marriage to (Saint) Margaret
Malcolm IV 1153 - 1165 'The Maiden' - grandson of David I.
William I 1165 - 1214 'The Lion' - brother of Malcolm IV.
Alexander II 1214 - 1249 Son of William I.
Alexander III 1249 - 1286 Son of Alexander II
Queen Margaret 1286 - 1290 'Maid of Norway' - grand-daughter of Alexander III
Interregnum 1290 - 1292 13 Claimants haggling re succession to throne.
John de Balliol 1292 - 1296 desc. from brother of 'The Lion' Taken prisoner by Richard I of England.
Interregnum 1296 - 1306 Scotland ruled from England by Edward I. (1296 - 1306)
Robert I 1306 - 1329 = Robert Bruce, in revolt had himself crowned.
David II 1329 - 1371 Only son of Robert I, 5 yr.of age at accession. Married twice, no issue.
Robert II 1371 - 1390 Son of sister of David II.
Robert III 1390 - 1406 = John. Son of Robert II.
James 1 1406 - 1437 Son of Robert III. Murdered in Perth.
James II 1437 - 1460 Son of James I, 6 yr of age at accession. Killed at siege of Roxburgh.
James III 1460 - 1488 Son of James II, 8 yr of age at accession. Murdered by nobles.
James IV 1488 - 1513 Son of James III, 15 yr of age at accession. Killed at Flodden Field.
James V 1513 - 1542 Son of James IV, one year old at accession.
Mary Q. of Scots 1542 - 1567 Daughter of James V, one week. Old at accession, abdicated 1567 and after confinement in castles in Scotland and England bedbeheaded in 1587.
James VI 1567 - 1625 Son of Mary, Q. of Scots. 1 year of age at accession. = James I of England, from 1603.
In the early history of Scotland the Royal succession was governed by a system known as Tanistry. Encyc. Britannica defines the latter as: "an early Irish law of succession by which the heir or successor of a chief or king is a pointed during the lifetime of the reigning chief is not necessarily his oldest son, is generally the worthiest and wisest of the male relatives of the chief, and is elected by the people from eligible candidates; because of resultant bloody feuds and wars between families, tanistry was declared illegal by a decision of the Anglo-Irish judges in the first year of James I. (1406)
From the above it can be easily understood why so many of the early nobility suffered from the medical Complaint, broadly classed as murder. From the time of James I, the English system of PRIMOGENITURE was observed in the matter of royal succession. About the the time of Duncan I there was a tradition that the succession should alternate between two branches of the family line. Duncan I was crown out of his turn, and this precipitated the campaign of blood-letting.
It should be noted as well that the border between England and Scotland fluctuated greatly during the period covered by the above table, due to violent political and military activity.
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