Politics, administration and diplomacy : the Anglo-Scottish border 1550-1560
The administration of the Anglo-Scottish border posed a perennial problem for successive Tudor governments. Yet, it was one to which they devoted close attention. A prodigious amount of thought and effort were expended on the seemingly endless complexities of border administration, often to little avail. The importance of these attempts, their successes and failures warrant a detailed analysis. This study has set out to achieve two aims. it is first concerned with the impact of the border policies over the decade of three successive Tudor governments. The French presence in Scotland during the same period and the more often than not hostile reaction of the English regime meant that the border became an important focus for much diplomatic activity. To understand the political problems of the border during the period due weight must be given to Anglo- Scottish and indeed Anglo-French relations. Therefore, the second aim has been to set the border firmly in a diplomatic context. The geographical difficulties facing the Crown in this peripheral region of the kingdom have been dealt with. In addition, it is essential to grasp something of the complexity of border society to enable us to understand the problems of government. Therefore, consideration has been given to the social and economic background of the border. The administrative and judicial structure of the border is examined in order to assess the significance of the government's attempts at reform in these areas. A concomitant preoccupation with officials and administrators produces important bases which further illuminate Crown policy and the inter relationship of the government with the locality. Finally, the decade was one of war and military tension, and so much discussion has been devoted to the diplomatic side of the conflict as well as to the campaigns themselves.