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A 700-year-old parchment letter which gives a “tantalising glimpse” into the life of William Wallace is to go on public display.

The letter, one of only two surviving documents with a personal connection to the famous Scot, will be on show at the National Records of Scotland (NRS) in Edinburgh.


700-year-old letter gives `tantalising glimpse´ into life of William Wallace


By PRESS ASSOCIATION
24 September 2018
MailOnline

A 700-year-old parchment letter which gives a “tantalising glimpse” into the life of William Wallace is to go on public display.

The letter, one of only two surviving documents with a personal connection to the famous Scot, will be on show at the National Records of Scotland (NRS) in Edinburgh.

The fragile document, which can only be shown under controlled conditions, has not been on public viewing since 2014.


The letter was sent from King Philip IV of France to his agents in Rome (NRS/PA)

The letter was sent from King Philip IV of France to his agents in Rome, commanding them to ask Pope Boniface VIII to view William Wallace favourably.

NRS archivist Tristram Clarke said: “Written in November 1300, the document offers a tantalising glimpse into a mysterious period of Wallace’s career.

“The letter proves Wallace played a role in the turbulent politics of medieval Europe, when the Pope was trying to encourage peace between England and France, and to challenge England’s claim to control Scotland.”

Wallace was betrayed, captured by the English and executed in London in 1305 – with the letter from King Philip discovered in the Tower of London in the 1830s.

Research by expert historians and archivists concluded it was likely to have been in Wallace’s possession when he was captured.



The document is currently on loan to the NRS from The National Archives in London.

It will go on show in Edinburgh on Saturday September 29 as part of the city’s Doors Open Day event.

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