In the wake of the release of the film 'Braveheart' in 1995, the Dundee Courier published an article on September 5th 1995, which outlined Wallace's connections with Dundee, of which more below. It mentions his meeting with John Blair at school, whose writings about Wallace, sadly since lost, are mentioned by the later poet Blind Harry as his source. The Wallace Stones at Longforgan are described, his attacks on the English garrison at Dundee Castle (later razed by Robert the Bruce) and a charter he granted in the name of King John Balliol in Dundee. As the article points out, this charter was proof he was acting in the name of the then king, and gives the lie to the English charges of treason against a king to whom he was in no way subject. Read the article below (click on the picture to see the article full-sized).

The charter itself is long lost, but an interesting source records its existence. To quote from it: "Here you will find a repository of the ancient manuscripts of Scotland. All documents reproduced are from the 1869-71 version of the "National Manuscripts of Scotland", photozincographed by the Ordnance Survey. The manuscripts are taken from a variety of sources, some of which are in Scotland, and sadly many more in collections in England. A full provenance of each and every one is given."

Source: Facsimiles of National Manuscripts of Scotland, Part 1
Published by the Ordnance Survey Office, Southampton 1867
Ninth Century to 1296

Charter by Sir William Wallace Guardian of Scotland and General of its Army, in the name of King John, granting to Alexander, called Skirmischur, the Constabulary of Dundee, AD 1298

Recorded from a previous engraving, original had been lost by 1867

This is the Charter preserved in Book 1 of the National Manuscripts of Scotland:

With transcription in the original French, and a translation into English below:

As with the Courier article above, clicking on the pictures will allow you to see the documents in a larger size.

The story of the Wallace Stones mentioned above is recorded on another page - here.

Having the lifted the seige of Dundee Castle to join with Andrew de Moray and his troops to rebuff the English assault at Stirling, Wallace returned to wreak his vengeance.

Source: J.Thomson, "History of Dundee" published 1847, p.27

"Wallace, intent upon the complete liberation of his country, spent no time in idleness. From Stirling he impatiently retraced his steps to renew the seige of Dundee; and, with weapons still reeking with the blood of their fallen enemies, he, and his victorious bands, presented themselves once more before its gates, The garrison, terrified at the re-appearance of their formidable foes, rendered still more formidable by their recent victory, and unwilling to expose themselves to their fury, if exasperated by a useless resistance, surrendered the castle upon condition of having their lives spared. This inglorious convention prevented an assault, and the dastardly garrison departed for England."

To return to the mention of John Blair in the opening paragraph, and his association as Blind Harry's source, we quote the last 8 lines of his epic poem, taken from the 1998 Luath Press edition of William Hamilton of Gilbertfield's "Blind Harry's Wallace".

Thus in defence, that hero ends his days,
Of Scotland's right, to his immortal praise;
Whose valiant acts were all recorded fair,
Written in Latin by the famous Blair;
Who at the time the champion did attend,
Was an eye-witness and his chaplain then,
And after that as history does tell,
Confirm'd by Sinclair, Bishop of Dunkell.


The only official acknowledgement of Wallace's connections with Dundee is in the form of a small plaque in front of St Paul's Episcopal Church, which stands on the site of the original Dundee Castle. As can be seen, the information on it is sparse, and the plaque itself is partially obscured by a modern statue of Admiral Duncan.

In the McManus Galleries, Dundee, is a magnificent stained glass window to Wallace, designed by Sir Edward Burne-Jones and produced by William Morris & Co. in 1889.


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The Society of William Wallace is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation Registration number SC045959