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Scottish Maritime Warfare, 1513–1560

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Chapter Summary

The Scottish fleet consisted of some 38 ships either built, gifted or captured, of which some 15 could properly be considered warships. These included four main vessels, Michael, Margaret, Treasurer and James. Scottish maritime warfare was conducted over a 47 year period. Having opened 1513 with a significant capital fleet, the Scottish authorities, through desperation or design, reduced this to an appreciably smaller navy in the reign of James V which, after his death, ultimately lost its four main assets to the English in the 1540s. Nicholas Rodger, one of the doyens of the history of British maritime warfare, went further and stated that 'As a matter of historical fact, Scotland owed more to sea power than England, certainly up to the 1580s, but it does not seem that the sea ever gained that social status which it had in England by the 1590s'.

Keywords: England; James; Margaret; Michael; Scottish maritime warfare



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