William Wallace is one of Scotland's greatest national heroes, undisputed leader of the Scottish resistance forces during the first years of the long and ultimately successful struggle to free Scotland from English rule at the end of the 13th Century.
Wallace was born in around 1270, in Ayrshire, Scotland. His father was Sir Malcolm Wallace, a small landowner and little-known Scottish knight who lived a peaceful life.
Initially William Wallace was educated at home by his mother, then given schooling and religious education by monks. Though William Wallace could read and write he was probably more interested in activities such as horsemanship, hunting and swordmanship - sparring with his elder brother.
William Wallace also grew up to become a powerful and sturdy young man, with a height of 6 foot 7 inches and a physique to match, he too was a giant of a man. It is often debated that it would have been impossible for such a man to exist in a time when the average height of a man was little over 5 feet.