Who were they?

Many Scottish foot soldiers were armed with swords, axes, and knives in case their spears broke while fighting in the schiltrons: a vicious and deadly combination. 

They were ready to attack anyone who managed to get past the spearheads of the other spearmen.  If any knights were thrown from their horses, they were on hand to dart out and stab into gaps in armour.  If a knight was dismounted, they would be dragged back into the schiltron and might held for a hefty ransom. 

At Bannockburn

On 24 June, Bruce ordered that no prisoners should be taken in battle until victory was clear, a common battlefield order in the fourteenth-century.  Even the rich and influential Earl of Gloucester was dispatched by the Scottish infantry. 

Many of the Scottish infantry would have come from the western island of Islay, following their leader Angus Óg MacDonald, in support of Bruce. They proved an effective and lethal part of Bruce’s infantry.