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14 Animals That Changed the World

Robert the Bruce's Spider

Robert the Bruce earned a place in history as one of Scotland's most successful and charismatic defenders, a leader who kickstarted the Wars of Independence against England. He reminds us of an older, more grizzled Robb Stark in that he was a King in the North, recognized and loved by his people, trying to gain freedom from the vipers of the English monarchy. But Robert may never have achieved what he did without an intrepid little spider. After some humiliating early defeats, Robert hid out in a cave on Rathlin Island in the winter of 1306. There he observed a spider attempt to build a web across the cave walls every day, only to have the harsh winter weather tear its work down. But the spider never quit, and one day, the web didn't either. Robert was so inspired that he returned to war with the English, determined to fight for Scotland until his homeland was free.

Tags: history, animals, slideshows, nature, books-and-comics, the roman empire

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Becky Ferreira

Becky Ferreira is a writer, performer, and raptor based in New York.

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