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Thursday, August 14, 2014

Scottish independence and movies

A national referendum in September 2014 will let voters in Scotland decide if they want to have an independent country. Here's what actor Sean Connery had to say about it ... Sean Connery on Scottish independence: “Simply put – there is no more creative an act than creating a new nation”

I know a bit about Scottish history from college classes but you can also get an idea of some of the high points through movies (though of course you have to check them for historical inaccuracies) ...

Braveheart tells of ... William Wallace, a 13th-century Scottish warrior who led the Scots in the First War of Scottish Independence against King Edward I of England. The story is based on Blind Harry's epic poem The Actes and Deidis of the Illustre and Vallyeant Campioun Schir William Wallace. The Bruce also shows up in the movie and I recall a few years ago he and Pope Benedict were in the news: Benedict XVI should address the papacy’s treatment of Robert the Bruce (he had been excommunicated).

- - marker for burial of the heart of Robert the Bruce at Melrose Abbey

There was border fighting between England and Scotland for centuries after and Scotland remained independent for the most part, but from 1603 the two countries had the same king. How that came about is shown in the film, Mary, Queen of Scots. It told of Queen Elizabeth of England's efforts to destabilize the Scottish monarchy led by Mary, her capture by England and her execution. Mary's son, James (of bible fame) became king of both lands, ruling from England, and Scotland was no longer independent. One of the interesting things about the movie was the animosity between Catholicism and Protestantism and John Knox appears in the film ...

[Knox] led the Protestant Reformation in Scotland, in partnership with the Scottish Protestant nobility. The movement may be seen as a revolution, since it led to the ousting of Mary of Guise, who governed the country in the name of her young daughter Mary, Queen of Scots. Knox helped write the new confession of faith and the ecclesiastical order for the newly created reformed church, the Kirk. He continued to serve as the religious leader of the Protestants throughout Mary's reign. In several interviews with the Queen, Knox admonished her for supporting Catholic practices. When she was imprisoned for her alleged role in the murder of her husband Lord Darnley, and King James VI enthroned in her stead, he openly called for her execution.

- Knox is on the far R of Reformation Wall

I don't know what all the implications of Scotland being independent would be, but as someone from a former British colony ;) I think I agree with Sean Connery.


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