On This Day

Mary, Queen of Scots

Queen of Scotland Mary, Queen of Scots
Portrait by Fran├žois Clouet

Full Name: Mary Stuart
Profession: Queen of Scotland


Biography: Queen regnant of Scotland from 14 December 1542 to 24 July 1567 Princess Mary ascended to the throne on the death of her father, King James V, despite being only 6 days old.

Raised at the French court, Mary grew to be over 6 feet. She married the French dauphin Francis II aged 16, becoming queen of both countries. After Francis' early death Mary returned to Scotland in 1651 as a Catholic regent in a Protestant country.

Her relationship to her cousin Elizabeth I of England began cordially with the two exchanging correspondence. Mary's second and third marriages to men who sought greater power soured their relationship and Mary's with the Scottish people. Mary was arrested in 1567 and forced to abdicate in favor of her infant son the future James VI of Scotland and James I of England.

Mary famously escaped her capture a year later, only to be imprisoned in England on her arrival. She then lived under house arrest for 18 years before Elizabeth ordered her execution in 1587.

Born: December 8, 1542
Birthplace: Linlithgow, Scotland
Star Sign: Sagittarius

Died: February 8, 1587 (aged 44)
Cause of Death: Decapitation

Articles and Photos

Married Life

  • 1558-04-24 Mary, Queen of Scots (15) marries French dauphin Francis (14) at Notre Dame cathedral in Paris
  • 1565-07-29 Mary, Queen of Scots marries her cousin, Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley
  • 1567-05-15 Mary, Queen of Scots marries James Hepburn, Earl of Bothwell

Historical Events

  • 1542-12-14 Princess Mary Stuart succeeds her father James V and becomes Queen Mary I of Scotland at 6 days old
  • 1543-09-09 Mary Stuart, at nine months old, is crowned "Queen of Scots" in the central Scottish town of Stirling
  • 1547-09-10 English demand Edward VI (10) wed Mary Queen of Scots (5)
  • 1561-08-19 Mary Queen of Scots arrives in Leith, Scotland to assume the throne after spending 13 years in France
  • 1567-06-16 Mary, Queen of Scots, imprisoned in Lochleven Castle prison, Scotland
  • 1567-07-24 Mary Queen of Scots is forced to abdicate; her 1-year-old son becomes King James VI of Scots
  • 1568-05-13 Mary Queen of Scots is defeated at Battle of Langside
  • 1568-05-16 Mary Queen of Scots flees to England
  • 1568-05-19 English Queen Elizabeth I arrests Mary, Queen of Scots
  • 1568-10-05 Conference of York begins: trial against Mary, Queen of Scots
  • 1569-10-01 Duke of Norfolk arrested by Queen Elizabeth I for conspiring to marry Mary Queen of Scots
  • 1586-10-14 Mary Queen of Scots goes on trial for conspiracy against Elizabeth
  • 1587-02-01 Queen Elizabeth I of England signs death warrant for her cousin, Mary, Queen of Scots
  • 1587-02-08 Mary, Queen of Scots, is beheaded at Fotheringhay Castle aged 44 after being convicted of plotting to assassinate Elizabeth I in the Babington Plot

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