Battle of Solway Moss, 1542 Background Arthuret

The Battle of Solway Moss, which took place on 24 November 1542, was a huge defeat for the army of James V of Scotland, numbering up to 17,000 men, by a much smaller English force of 3,000. However, the precise location of the battle varies according to different sources. A map published in the Gentleman’s Magazine in 1771, and Donald’s 1774 map of Cumberland both show the battlefield to be on the plain between the rivers to the south of the Moss. But the 1st edition OS Map (published 1868) shows it as being in the middle of the Moss (and mistakenly dates it to 1543). Using information contained within the Hamilton papers published in 1890, English Heritage have recognised the site as being not on the Moss itself, but between the Rivers Lyne and Esk, near Longtown (which did not exist in 1542) in the Parish of Arthuret.


W. Nanson, 'Solway Moss', CW1, VIII (1886), 257-60

English Heritage Battlefield Report: Solway Moss 1542

English Heritage and Cumbria County Council, Extensive Urban Survey: Archaeological Assessment Report, Longtown