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United again with his family, and now 17 years old, something else was to happen which would take William into the care of the church. During the time of his education (14 - 16 years old), John Balliol had been exiled and in order to restore the Gaurdians of Scotland back into govern Scotland they first had to pay homage to Longshanks. The taking of this oath had to be outright, and the deadline for taking the oath was set for July of that year. Responsibility for administering the oath for Ayrshire fell upon the hands of Sir Ranald Craufurd, William's grandfather - his mothers father. Anyone not paying homage to Longshanks was in for severe penalties, and when Sir Ranald noticed that Sir Malcolm Wallace's name was not on the list, and realising that retribution from the English garrisons, which now governed Ayr and Irvine (where they were), was about to descend upon Malcolm he took his daughter and her younger sons under his care. Sir Malcolm and his oldest son fled north leaving his wife Margaret and two youngest sons William and John behind. After a short while with Margaret's father Sir Ranald, he sent them all to Kilspindie in the Carse of Gowrie where they were kept by another uncle of William's - probably a brother of his mothers. As was the custom in those days, the younger brothers followed the education of the church while the eldest would inherit lands and title's. The uncle which he was now with was also a priest of the district and it was here, now at the age of 17 or 18 that William continued his education in Dundee. It was here that William met John Blair, who soon after became a Benedictine monk, following that he eventually left his monastery to attend his friend William and become his chaplain and comrade in arms. In this church school William also met and became friends with Duncan of Lorn and Sir Neil Campbell of Lochawe, both young men like William who were to take a major part in William's first exploits. Why such a well built and physically strong youth would follow the career of a priest is easily answered. As I have already said it was the custom for both the Wallace family (his fathers side) and the Craufurd family (his mothers side) to send the youngest sons to the church for their education, and in unsettled times as there were, it was prudent to have a firm grasp on languages and politics and the learning's of the church, as the church was a major power. Also with his older brother Malcolm and his father Sir Malcolm on the run in the north it was clear that William, being the largest and strongest family member would be in a good place to take care of his mother and his younger brother John. Oddly enough, Dundee was also one of the few places at this time where there was little revolt against the English takeover - he could sleep safely out of the way of the troubles. In the film 'Braveheart', both writer Randall Wallace and Director Mel Gibson will have you learn that William's mother was already dead. They also do not mention his younger brother John, and in the first half hour or so they kill off his father and older brother when William was just a small boy. This is of course not true. However, in saying that, it is clear to see from the brief outlook I have given you here that should they have gone into this in any detail at all then the film would have easily been twice as long and we could have all been fast asleep by the time all the good bits started! They may have felt, in their judgment, that these points were fairly insignificant compared to William Wallace's feats and daring. Personally I feel that it wouldn't have taken too much time to explain the situation surrounding his education and his family in a more accurate light. These comments in mind, it would make the situation of him traveling south after his families death to live with his uncle and his graveside meeting with Murron totally fictitious. But it did make for a good movie.
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