The Wolf of Badenoch by Stephen Boardman

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Author
Stephen Boardman
Publisher
John Donald Publishers
Date of release
Pages
224
ISBN
9781906566289
Binding
Paperback
Illustrations
Format
PDF, EPUB, MOBI, TXT, DOC
Rating
4
25

Book review

This is the story of one of the most intriguing figures of late medieval Scotland, Alexander Stewart, earl of Buchan, the son of king Robert II (1371-1390), better known to history as the 'Wolf of Badenoch'. The book explores the life of the 'historical' Alexander, a man who built, and then disastrously lost, a great territorial and political lordship in Highland Scotland. It was Alexander's ferocious response to the political setbacks he suffered, most notably his burning of Elgin cathedral in 1390, that earned him his pejorative byname. In many ways, however, the study is also about the 'Wolf' as he was imagined and re-imagined by subsequent writers into the twenty-first century. The book outlines the development of Alexander's posthumous reputation, and the way he began to be portrayed as a black-hearted sociopath, a savage spirit associated with malign otherworldly powers, and traces the origins of this portrayal to the work of a nineteenth-century novelist, Thomas Dick Lauder.


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