In 1745, the Scots rose to the banner of Charles Edward Stuart who returned from exile to overturn the rule of London and reclaim the Scottish throne from George II. That dream and The ’45 rebellion came to an abrupt end on Culloden Moor on the 16th April 1746, when the Scots were utterly crushed by an English force led by George’s brother, the Duke of Cumberland.
Fleeing for his life, Charlie was spirited across the sea to Skye and on to freedom in France. The crossing from the Scottish mainland owed all to one faithful heroine, Flora MacDonald, who disguised her king as her maidservant.
Many a Scottish patriot died in years to come, still believing that their “darling” Charlie would come again. But he never did – slipping, instead, into the pages of Scottish folklore.
“Twas on a Monday morning, Right early in the year, That Charlie came to our town, The young Chevalier.
….It's up yon heathery mountain, An' down yon scroggie glen, We daur na gang a milking, For Charlie and his men”.