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. This was followed by an agreement which was made with Henry VIII, King of England, for Mary to marry Prince Edward, Henry's heir. Henry also wanted Mary to be placed under his protection in England. Although the Earl of Arran initially agreed to the conditions, the agreement was abandoned by the Scottish people who did not want the country to be ruled by the English King.
Escape to France
Enraged by the refusal of the agreement, Henry ordered that an army should be sent into Scotland. 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.