King Robert The Bruce / First King of Scotland
'The Bruce' fought for years to unify his nation, and finally succeeded. The Battle of Bannockburn (Blàr Allt a' Bhonnaich in Gaelic) 24 June 1314, was a significant Scottish victory in the Wars of Scottish Independence. For more details, try this URL: http://www.google.com/search?q=bannockburn+1314&rls=com.microsoft:en-us:IE-SearchBox&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&sourceid=ie7&rlz=1I7GGLR
My version of TheBruce stems from several sources. One of the oldest paintings of King Robert depicts him in armor with great sword and new wife, sporting a full handlebar moustache. A later stained glass image depicts a powerful redhaired man. Today's ancestors of Bruce in the U.S. and the Elgins of Kincardine, tend to have that acquiline nose, blue eyes and receding hairlines. The cast of King Robert's skull shows definite signs of blows received, therefore the indentation of the brow and eye-squint.
Bruce was undoubtedly a powerful personality, with an indomitable will and an overbearing presence, which reminds me of a more recent Scottish warrior, General Sam Houston of Texas. Houston possessed the same indomitable will, but was gifted with an abiding sense of humor-- a winning combination, if you would command the loyalty of men. So, my version of King Robert has a bit of geniality.
Here's an image from the magnificent pageant staged at Edinburgh Castle to end the 2009 Gathering. Star of the event was King Robert The Bruce, and the Scots who suffered and persevered, often in farflung places.
Notice the great sword in my painting, and in the photograph below...
That Great sword provides a Caldwell connection to King Robert the Bruce and Scotland's great bard, Robert Burns. Allen Bruce of Georgia reports that Mrs. Katherine Bruce of Clackmannan, a descendent from Robert the Bruce and a fan of Robert Burns, "knighted” Robert Burns with the great sword of the Bruce during a visit. My connection-- I handled the sword and photographed it at Lord Elgin's home in 2006.
I delivered the original painting of King Robert to Lord Andrew Elgin. It was in a place of honor at the Bruce tent during the 2009 Gathering.
The Robert Burns Connection / The Immortal Bard, by all accounts, was as powerful a personality as Robert The Bruce, in a more peaceful way. Here's the Caldwell version of Robert Burns, wielding book instead of sword.
While in Scotland for the Gathering, I delivered a large Gclee print of the Robert Burns painting to John F. Haining, Director of the Robert Burns World Federation.
For more on the Robert Burns painting, click on his red book.