The troubles of Scotland have their roots deep in past history – that is, in the long series of events which have made Scotland and England what they are. The English take a proper pride in their own history and are prepared to justify all sorts of political oddities on historical grounds. Legends do not cling too closely to historical facts, but they give a picture, generally an ideal picture, of how a nation appears to itself; and this is itself a historical fact. The English and Scottish legends, as is only natural, differ greatly: they differ at least as much as the British and American legends, for their roots go much deeper. Patriotic historians defend the misdeeds of their country by appealing to necessities of State and the moral standards of the time; but they are not so ready to show the same indulgence to countries other than their own.