A very large proportior of the Scottish nobility regarded Bruce as a usurper who had opened his career with murder and sacrilege, and either openly opposed him or denied him help. His resources were small, and it was only by constant effort, often chequered by failures, that he gradually fought down his local adversaries, and reduced the English garrisons one by one.
It was often the policy of kings to increase the social privileges and legal exemptions of the nobility while taking away all political power, so that it is necessary in the history of institutions to distinguish sharply between these nobilities and the feudal baronage proper.
In the 18th century the nobility of France and the nobility of Poland alike answered to the very strictest definition of nobility; but the political positions of the two were as broadly contrasted as the positions of any two classes of men could be.
At the diet of 1789 Fersen marshalled the nobility around him for a combat d outrance against the throne and that, too, at a time when Sweden was involved in two dangerous foreign wars, and national unity was absolutely indispensable.
In strictness nobility and gentry are the same thing.
Half the nobility of Scotland had been captured in the battle, and Northumberland intended to fill his coffers with their ransoms; but the king looked upon them as state prisoners and announced his intention of taking them out of the earls hands.
The Sadducean nobility continued in power under his brother and successor Alexander Jannaeus (103-78); and the breach between the king and the mass of the people widened.
But in no part of Europe can the existing nobility trace itself to this immemorial nobility of primitive days; the nobility of medieval and modern days springs from the later nobility of office.
A second attempt of the king to mediate between them foundered on the suspicions of the estate of burgesses; and, on the 24th of February 1772, the nobility yielded from sheer weariness.
He sought the establishment of a Czech kingdom which should include Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia, and in his zeal for Czech autonomy he even entered into an alliance with the Conservative nobility and with the extreme Catholics.