08 January 1313
In the early hours of this day, Robert Bruce recaptured Perth from the English, who had fortified the town with stone walls and towers. Perth was one of the toughest Scottish towns to attack, for augmenting the built defences, the River Tay guarded the approaches to the east, while there was a deep moat on the other three sides. Sir William Oliphant, King Balliol’s doughty defender of Stirling, commanded the garrison. When Bruce arrived the siege was a few weeks old and he gave orders for the men to withdraw. The defenders jeered. Bruce marched them a few miles away and returned a few days later under cover of darkness. On the night of 7th January he led the men through the throat high water of the icy moat, scaled the walls and overwhelmed the garrison. The walls were razed and Oliphant captured.
1751, Norman Ross hanged in Edinburgh for murdering his mistress; 1803, Russian galliot Mararnyema wrecked at Cairnbulg; 1661, first newspaper in Scotland published, Mercurius Caledonius, it covered ‘the Affairs now in Agitation in Scotland, with a survey of Foreign Intelligence’ but it stopped publication after only nine issues, ; 1707, Earl of Stair, important mover in massacre fo Glencoe, died; 1729, Edinburgh, two women were arrested for wearing men’s clothing; 1946, Lord Hardie of Blackford, Lord Advocate, born.