Alexander III of Scotland

Alexander III. ( Alexander the Glorious; born September 4, 1241 Roxburgh, † March 19, 1286 at Kinghorn ) was Scottish king of 1249 to his death. He was the son of Alexander II and his second wife Marie de Coucy.


His father died on July 6, 1249, when Alexander was not even eight years old. The coronation took place exactly one week later in Scone Abbey in Perthshire instead. The first years of his minority were marked by the struggle for power between two warring parties. Walter Comyn, Earl of Menteith, fought here against the counsel Alan Durward, who ruled the country in the name of Alexander.

When Alexander was married in 1251 with the English princess Margaret, asked Henry III. by his son- depositing a vow, but Alexander refused. 1255 agreed the English and the Scottish king in Kelso, to act jointly against Comyn. Finally, the uprising was quelled.

1262 Alexander gained his majority. He planned to integrate the Outer Hebrides to the Scottish kingdom. His father had already had the same intention thirteen years before, but the invasion was canceled due to his sudden death. Alexander argued before the Norwegian king Haakon IV his claim, but was rejected. 1263 answered the Norwegians with an invasion. Haakon sailed with his fleet around Scotland and held off the island of Arran, whereupon negotiations began.

Alexander to delay negotiations until the time of the autumn storms succeeded. Haakon lost patience and launched an attack, but was caught in a heavy storm which severely damaged his ships. The Battle of Largs beginning in October 1263 did not yield any decision yet Haakon could not continue the invasion. He returned to Norway, but died on 15 December in the Orkneys. His successor Magnus VI. 1266 signed the Treaty of Perth. This gave Norway to the Isle of Man, Caithness and the Hebrides to 4000 marks and an annual output of 100 marks. In return, Scotland recognized the Norwegian sovereignty over Orkney and Shetland the.

Alexander's wife Margaret died in 1275 She had borne him three children.:

  • Margarete (* February 28, 1261, † April 9, 1283 ) ∞ King Erik II of Norway
  • Alexander (* December 21, 1264; † January 28, 1284 )
  • David (* March 20, 1272, † June 1281 )

Within a few years all the children of Alexander died. In 1284 he persuaded the " Estates ", the Scottish Parliament, his granddaughter Margaret to accept (the " Maid of Norway ") as the heir to the throne. The need for a male heir led to a marriage with Jolanda from Dreux on November 1, 1285th

Alexander died on March 19, 1286 at Kinghorn on the way to the Queen when he fell during a storm from his horse and fell down the cliffs; he was not found until the following day. As Margaret on the crossing to Scotland also died four years later, began the dispute over the succession, which ultimately resulted in the Scottish Wars of Independence.