Legend of Pot Sunk Ann, The
DESCRIPTION: Baron Keith and Ann Crawford marry and have a son. King Edward of England, pursuing the Scottish crown, visits them. He falls in love with Ann. Ann dreams of trouble. Her gipsy advisor tells her to flee. In a storm she tries to cross a stream but drowns.
AUTHOR: William Lillie (source: GreigDuncan2)
EARLIEST DATE: 1905 (GreigDuncan2)
KEYWORDS: drowning dream storm England Scotland wife royalty
FOUND IN: Britain(Scotland(Aber))
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Greig #56, pp. 1-2, "The Legend of Pot Sunk Ann" (1 text)
GreigDuncan2 343, "The Legend of Pot Sunk Ann" (1 texts plus an additional stanza on p. 586)
NOTES [285 words]: Greig: "Pot Sunken, as it is now most commonly called, is a deep sluggish pool in the bend of the river Ugie almost immediately below Inverugie Castle." The Baron's castle, Ravenscraig, is nearby.
The English king here is Edward I and the time the period following the death of Margaret, in 1290, Edward's support of John Balliol as King of Scotland, and his 1296 attack of Scotland. The ballad has Edward ready to divorce Eleanor in order to marry Ann but Eleanor would have already died in 1290. (Source for dates: Earle, "The Plantagenets (Edward I 1272-1307)" in The Lives of the Kings and Queens of England, ed. Fraser (London, 1975)) - BS
Eleanor of Castile did indeed die in 1290, the same year as Margaret the Maid of Norway (for background on this, see "Sir Patrick Spens" [Child 58]). But Edward I did remarry (to Margaret daughter of Philip III of France) in 1299. By the time John Balliol had been pushed aside (for this, see the notes to "Gude Wallace" [Child 157]), Edward would theoretically have been in position to divorce another wife. And he was still capable of siring children -- he and Margaret had three. And he was certainly in Scotland many times in his later years!
And yet, such evidence as we have makes Edward pretty faithful to his wives. According to Mike Ashley, British Kings and Queens, Barnes & Noble, 2000 (originally published as The Mammoth Book of British Kings and Queens, 1998), p. 589, there is only one report of an illegitimate child, and that "suspect." B. Wilkinson, The Later Middle Ages in England, 1216-1485, Longmans, 1969 (I use the 1980 paperback edition), p. 83, declares him a "dutiful husband." So I think this must be labelled simply fiction. - RBW
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