April 16, 1746-Battle of Culloden

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April 16, 1746-Battle of Culloden

Written by Matthew Mendez, Journalist

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April 16, 1746 C.E.

The bodies of countless Highlander men litter the blood soaked earth. British troops scour the battlefield for any surviving rebels. One man, gasping for breath, clutches the fallen flag of his clan, desperate for reassurance that his people, the people of Scotland, will one day see their rightful king returned to the throne…

After spending many years in the court of France, Charles Edward Stuart landed on the Western Isles of Scotland in order to reclaim the British throne for his father, the exiled James Stuart. With the support of the Jacobite Scots and many English, Irish, and French volunteers, Charles led a final attack on the British troops led by the Duke of Perth at Culloden Moor, northwest of Inverness. However, during the battle, Charles made various tactical errors, such as ordering the Jacobites to charge the British troops head on in muddy conditions. In addition, superior training and military equipment gave the British forces the edge against the ferocious yet woefully untrained and undisciplined Jacobite troops. The Battle of Culloden ultimately ended with a decisive British victory, and resulted in the collapse of the Jacobite cause. In order to prevent future rebellions, the British began a new campaign to fully integrate Scotland into the empire, which included measures such as the dismantling of the traditional Scottish clan system and the banning of the Gaelic language and customs. Thus, with the end of the Jacobite cause came the end of Scottish independence and the ancient traditions of the Scottish Gaelic people.