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Old 28th November 2022, 06:33 PM   #12
Peter Hudson
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 136

Originally Posted by Jim McDougall View Post
An interesting item I found as I continue researching aspects of the Reivers topic,refers to the term 'marches'.

I discovered that 'marches' refer to the regional divisions of border territories indicating the 'border' was not just a simple line of division between Scotland and England, but a well buffered expanse that seems akin to a DMZ.

Jim, it also points to similar rules across Europe as I discovered by applying for a definition at Wikipedia" I QUOTE. "

British Isles

: Welsh Marches and Scottish Marches
The name of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom in the midlands of England was Mercia. The name "Mercia" comes from the Old English for "boundary folk", and the traditional interpretation was that the kingdom originated along the frontier between the Welsh and the Anglo-Saxon invaders, although P. Hunter Blair has argued an alternative interpretation that they emerged along the frontier between the Kingdom of Northumbria and the inhabitants of the River Trent valley.

Latinizing the Anglo-Saxon term mearc, the border areas between England and Wales were collectively known as the Welsh Marches (marchia Wallia), while the native Welsh lands to the west were considered Wales Proper (pura Wallia). The Norman lords in the Welsh Marches were to become the new Marcher Lords.

The title Earl of March is at least two distinct feudal titles: one in the northern marches, as an alternative title for the Earl of Dunbar (c. 1290 in the Peerage of Scotland); and one, that was held by the family of Mortimer (1328 in the Peerage of England), in the west Welsh Marches.

The Scottish Marches is a term for the border regions on both sides of the border between England and Scotland. From the Norman conquest of England until the reign of King James VI of Scotland, who also became King James I of England, border clashes were common and the monarchs of both countries relied on Marcher Lords to defend the frontier areas known as the Marches. They were hand-picked for their suitability for the challenges the responsibilities presented.

Patrick Dunbar, 8th Earl of Dunbar, a descendant of the Earls of Northumbria was recognized in the end of the 13th century to use the name March as his earldom in Scotland, otherwise known as Dunbar, Lothian, and Northumbrian border.

Roger Mortimer, 1st Earl of March, Regent of England together with Isabella of France during the minority of her son, Edward III, was a usurper who had deposed, and allegedly arranged the murder of, King Edward II. He was created an earl in September 1328 at the height of his de facto rule. His wife was Joan de Geneville, 2nd Baroness Geneville, whose mother, Jeanne of Lusignan was one of the heiresses of the French Counts of La Marche and Angouleme.

His family, Mortimer Lords of Wigmore, had been border lords and leaders of defenders of Welsh marches for centuries. He selected March as the name of his earldom for several reasons: Welsh marches referred to several counties, whereby the title signified superiority compared to usual single county-based earldoms. Mercia was an ancient kingdom. His wife's ancestors had been Counts of La Marche and Angouleme in France.

In Ireland, a hybrid system of marches existed which was condemned as barbaric at the time.[a] The Irish marches constituted the territory between English and Irish-dominated lands, which appeared as soon as the English did and were called by King John to be fortified.[10] By the 14th century, they had become defined as the land between The Pale and the rest of Ireland.[11] Local Anglo-Irish and Gaelic chieftains who acted as powerful spokespeople were recognised by the Crown and given a degree of independence. Uniquely, the keepers of the marches were given the power to terminate indictments. In later years, wardens of the Irish marches took Irish tenants.[12][13][14]".UNQUOTE.

Peter Hudson.
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