This Day in History: 1319-09-20

On 20th September 1319 (some sources say the 12th), at the Battle of Myton, a makeshift army of Yorkshire clergy and townspeople was completely defeated by Sir James Douglas and Thomas Randolph, Earl of Moray, two of King Robert Bruce’s most able commanders. Nicknamed the Chapter of Myton or The White Battle due to the number of clergy involved, the Scots failed to capture Queen Isabella, their main objective, but were able to press south and to reach Castleford, just north of Pontefract. Reputedly, the English losses were 1,000 killed including 300 ‘priests’ (the Chronicle of Lanercost puts the number of priests killed alone at 4,000 with another 1,000 drowned in the Swale!).