By Siobhan Talbott
Utilizing untapped archival resources from Britain, France and the United States, Talbott offers a comparative view of British family members with France over the lengthy 17th century.
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Additional info for Conflict, Commerce and Franco-Scottish Relations, 1560-1713
After 1560, specific commercial privileges continued to be confirmed. 88 Not only did this commercial activity remain significant enough that James believed potential revenue to be lucrative, but the ‘old liberties and privileges’ persisted more than three decades after the Scottish Reformation. 89 In 1606, James VI and I concluded a formal commercial treaty with France. This treaty, ‘for the more commodious entercourse in traffique betweene their subjects’, reasserted the ‘amitie and intelligence between the two princes’.
108 That the exact terms of the continuing Franco-Scottish relationship remained elusive to contemporaries suggests that the alliance did, inevitably, change from its original form. 109 There appears to have been no firm legislation to which mercantile agents could refer to support their claim to trading rights in France. This rarely mattered. That there had been ‘no occasion to demand them’ suggests a belief that they had continued inherently regardless of a lack of formal documentation. As later chapters will confirm, the continuation of these privileges lived on firmly in the hearts and minds of those involved in Franco-Scottish commerce, as well as those responsible for its regulation.
17 The events of the previous year did lead, it would seem, to concerns that Scotland’s allegiance would shift from France to England, but Noalins’s advance indicates an immediate desire that the historic, ‘ancient league’ remain unchanged. It is all the more interesting that the first overtures to secure the continuation of the Franco-Scottish alliance were instigated by France. 21 Scotland’s reaction to French overtures tells a story that belies her apparently inferior status in the relationship, for rather than bending to France’s desire she used the opportunity to strengthen her political position within the British Isles.