ary Stuart was the daughter of James V of Scotland and Mary of Guise. Mary Stuart became Queen of Scotland only days after her birth when her father died in December of 1542. As Mary was too young to rule, James Hamilton, the Earl of Arran was chosen as regent of Scotland. An agreement was made with Henry VIII, King of England, for Mary to marry Prince Edward, Henry's heir, but this agreement was abandoned by the Scots.
Escape to France
When the English invaded Scotland and defeated the Scots at the Battle of Pinkie Cleugh in 1547 Mary was secretly moved for her safety to Inchmahome Priory located on an island on lake Menteith. The abbey was home for the young queen for a few months before an agreement with France was reached whereby the French would assist the Scots against the English and Mary would marry the French Dauphin. Mary was moved to Dumbarton Castle on the River Clyde before sailing for France in August of 1548.
Growing up in France
Mary was brought up in the French court along with Francis, the future king of France and her future husband. Mary learnt to speak French and was given a varied education suitable for a European monarch. An agreement was reached between the Scottish commissioners and the French king Henry II for the marriage of Mary and Francis. The terms of the agreement allowed the Scots to maintain their traditional rights and would become united with France when Francis became King of France. It was also agreed that if Mary died without having children the Scottish throne would go to the Earl of Arran. But a secret marriage agreement was signed by Mary giving control of Scotland to France if she died without having children.
Marriage and Deaths
Mary and Francis were married in April of 1558. A year later Henry II, the King of France, was killed in a tournament jousting accident leaving Francis and Mary as the new King and Queen of France. Francis had always suffered from poor health and just over a year into his reign he fell ill and died. Mary's mother, Mary of Guise had died a few months before Francis.
Return to France
After the death of Francis Mary had a proposal of marriage from Don Carlos of Spain. Don carlos was a Catholic like Mary and the Mary approved of the idea, but the Scots refused and Mary decided to return to Scotland.
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|Early Modern Period (1500-1800)|
|1542||Dec 8||Birth of Mary, Queen of Scots|
|Mary Stuart was born at Linlithgow Palace in West Lothian, Scotland. She was the daughter of James V, king of Scotland and Mary of Guise, from France. James V died a week after Mary was born and she became Queen of Scotland.|
|Dec 14||Death of James V of Scotland|
|The defeat of the Scottish army at Solway Moss a few weeks earlier is supposed to have shocked James V so much that he died. His daughter Mary was only a week or so old when he died and she became queen, known as Mary Queen of Scots. James Hamilton, Earl of Arran became regent of Scotland as Mary was too young to rule.|
|1543||Jul||1yrs||Treaties of Greenwich|
|A treaty was signed by the Scots and Henry VIII swearing firstly peace between the two nations and secondly the agreement that Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots, should marry Henry's son Edward. Although these two treaties were initially agreed they had been rejected by the Scots by the end of the year.|
|Sep 9||Queen Mary's Coronation|
|The coronation of Mary, Queen of Scots, took place at Stirling.|
|1547||Sep 10||5yrs||Battle of Pinkie Cleugh|
|Thousands of Scots gathered near the town of Musselburgh, just to the east of Edinburgh. They faced an English army led by the Duke of Somerset. The Scots had a good position on the battle field but wasted it when they attacked. The Scots were heavily defeated. The defeat at Pinkie Cleugh was a threat to Queen Mary and so she was secretly moved from Stirling Castle to the Augustinian Inchmahome Priory located on an island on lake Menteith.|
|1548||Qtr 1||6yrs||Queen Mary moved to Dumbarton Castle|
|To comply with the agreement to marry Mary to the French Dauphin, the young queen was moved from Inchmahome Priory to Dumbarton Castle on the banks of the River Clyde on the west of Scotland. It was here that she waited before sailing to France.|
|Jul||The French arrive in Scotland|
|The request of the Scottish Regent, Mary of Guise, for help to fight the English was answered by the arrival of a army of several thousand French. The assistance came on condition that her daughter Mary should marry the French Dauphin, Francis.|
|Aug 7||Mary Stuart leaves for France|
|Queen Mary was places aboard the French ship at Dumbarton with a large number of her attendants. Along with her went the four Marys. Although the English fleet were directed to stop her they did not manage to find the French ship. A stormy crossing to France left many of the travellers sick.|
|Aug 13||Queen Mary arrives in France|
|Queen Mary arrived in France. Four girls all also called Mary and coming from noble families were chosen to accompany the Queen. Known as the 'Four Maries' the girls were Mary Beaton, Mary Fleming, Mary Livingston and Mary Seton. They landed, possibly, at Roscoff on the north-west coast of France.|