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Osprey Men-at-Arms 279 : The Border Reivers

From the wars of King Edward I, 'the Hammer of the Scots', in the 13th century until the early 17th century the Border Marches of England and Scotland were torn by a vicious and almost continuous cycle of raid, reprisal and blood feud - in effect they were a bloody frontier buffer state. Hailing from all levels of society the Reiver was a professional cattle thief, a guerilla soldier skilled at raiding, tracking and ambush and a well organised "gangster". For well over a century the Reivers were the best cavalry of their time and fought in France and Holland as well as playing decisive roles in such battles as Flodden and Solway Moss. These men belonged to the great riding families; and with 'lang spear' and 'steill bonnet', they 'rode with the moonlight' and plundered the Borderland. They were Armstrongs, Grahams, Bells, Charltons, Robsons, Nixons, Maxwells, Scotts, Milburns and others - history remembers them as the Border Reivers., Keith Durham explores the colourful history of these remarkable people accompanied by eight full page colour plates by Angus McBride, as well as numerous other illustrations.

    Contents
  • Introduction - The Border
  • 'Arrayed in a Most Warlike Manner'
  • 'Strenghes' and 'Bastells'
  • 'Spears, Northern on Horseback'
  • 'To Chastise Those Borders' - 1603
  • The End of the Reiver
  • The Plates

 

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