Division: History & Politics
The Political and Local Consequences of the Decline and Fall of the earls of Mar in north-east Scotland during the 15th Century
Having spent the majority of my formative years living in Saudi Arabia, I returned to the UK on a permanent basis when I was 15. Finishing my secondary education at a boarding school in Cumbria, I began an undergraduate degree at Stirling University in Scottish History, which I completed in 2011. I then remained at Stirling to undertake the Masters in Historical Research, which I completed in 2012, beginning my PhD soon after.
My research interests lie mainly in the exercise of power and lordship in medieval Scotland, focussing on the north east of Scotland. My undergraduate and M.Res degrees analysed the lands and lordship of the families of Gordon and Forbes respectively, paying particular attention to the bitter feud which existed between the two families between the thirteenth and seventeenth centuries. My PhD topic, a continuation of the research done for both my undergraduate degree and my Masters, seeks to explore the political and local consequences of the decline and fall of the earls of Mar in north-east Scotland during the fifteenth century, which families the crown chose to raise up to replace them, and the struggle for territorial dominance that followed. This proposed study is a departure from the dominant historiographical focus on ‘living’ earldoms or lordships in medieval Scotland and Ireland, but its purpose is not to concentrate on providing a history of the earldom of Mar, but focus on the extinction of the native line of earls and the consequences which followed their downfall. By predominantly building my study around the ‘decline and fall’ of the Mar earls, I am hoping to provide an insight into a theme which is often incorporated into wider studies seeking to provide a broad analysis of the history and organization of a medieval earldom or lordship over a large period.
Supervisors: Dr Alasdair Ross and Dr Alastair Mann