[From Manx Soc vol IV,VII & IX]


A.D. 1770.

THE Scandinavians, now masters of the northern ocean, and flushed with success, became possessed at different times, of all the islands in those seas. Thus, while the Danes were reducing England, the Norwegians conquered a considerable part of Scotland, together with the Orkneys, the Hebrides, and the Shetland isles. Towards the end of the eleventh century Magnus Barefoot, the son of Olaf, one of their princes, filled that part of the world with the renown of his arms

In the year 1266 king Magnus Lagabätter sold the Hebrides, and the Isle of Man to Alexander III. of Scotland for 4000 marks sterling, but the Norwegian sovereignty over the Orkney and Shetland islands continued until the year 1468, when it was mortgaged to James III. by Christian I., king of Norway, Denmark, and Sweden for 50,000 Renish florens, this sum being part of the dowry he had stipulated to give his daughter Margaret on her marriage with the Scottish monarch. In 1549 an assessment was levied in Norway to redeem the mortgaged sovereignty, and after that period several Danish kings asserted their right to redeem it ; but it is needless to observe that the Scotch were unwilling to listen to any proposals that tended to deprive them of these important dependencies. The island continued to be governed by the laws and customs of Norway, and their inhabitants to speak the Norse language, until the seven~ teenth century ; and the substitution of the Scotch weights and measures for the Norwegian, together with the augmentation of the public burdens, formed a subject of complaint down to a much later period.


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