Open Access Articles- Top Results for Moss-trooper


Moss-troopers were brigands who operated in Scotland during and after the period of the English Commonwealth in the mid-17th century.

Many moss-troopers were disbanded or deserting soldiers from one of the Scottish armies of the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. They had kept their weapons and lived a life of brigandage, attacking both civilians and Parliamentary soldiers for supplies during the Royalist rising of 1651 to 1654 when English Parliamentarian troops under George Monck occupied Scotland. Moss-troopers usually operated in small bands, either on the fringes of the Highlands or in the border regions.[1] Many Highland lairds complained of moss-troopers' cattle-stealing and of how they incurred military reprisals against the Highlands as a whole.

Some moss-troopers may[original research?] have had a national-political as well as an economic motivation, believing in resisting the Cromwellian occupation of Scotland - much as their Irish contemporaries, the "tories", in part resisted English occupation.

See also

  • rapparees - Irish guerrillas who fought for James II after the Revolution of 1688 and who on his defeat degenerated into brigands
  • Sergeant Mor, who fought on after the 1745 rebellion until his capture and execution in 1753.


  1. Penney, Norman, ed. (1925). The Short Journal and Itinerary Journals of George Fox. Cambridge University Press. p. 33. 

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