Mary Queen of Scots, 1542-1587

Francois II & Mary Stewart,
Queen of Scotland, his wife
after Clouet, circa 1558

Queen of Scotland at six days old, grandaughter of Henry VIII’s elder sister, and betrothed to the Dauphin of France at three, Mary’s life would have seemed destined for fortune. Alas, having been brought up in France, married to the Dauphin at fourteen, Queen of France at sixteen, Francis, the king, would die shortly after of an ear infection, leaving her to return to her waring and embittered country of Scotland. Mary, a staunch catholic, was bewildered to find her home country tight in the grip of protestant fervor, and thus no friend to her. An extremely passionate and politically stupid person, she made one disastrous marriage after another, and was even accused of abetting the murder of her second husband to make room for the third.
In a revolution led by her bastard brother, she was imprisoned by her father’s old concubine in an old tower in the middle of a large lake known as Loch Leven.

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