This book is about the changing form of royal government in the kingdom of the Scots in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries and the role aristocratic power played within it. The introduction to this book provides a brief narrative of the dynastic politics within the kingdom of the Scots and how the kingdom expanded geopolitically. It sets out some of the main questions which have preoccupied other historians, most notably, the role of English influence on the form of royal government, the political, social and cultural effect of migration from England, Normandy and elsewhere, and the importance of the reign of David I in shaping the form of Scottish government. It sets out how it will depart from these narratives, problematizes the concept of statehood, and explains the bipartite structure of the book.
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