Monday 29 January 2018

Monday is Queens Day: 16: Mary Queen of Scots

We all know the story of Mary, Queen of Scots - beheaded by her cousin (first cousin once removed, actually), most unfair Boo!!

Her early story is quite amazing - Queen of Scotland when she was six days old but lived in France from the age of 5, and married to the French Dauphin at age 15. For 18 months she was simultaneously Queen of Scotland and Queen Consort of France, all whilst laying claim to the throne of England.

And that was before her life started getting complicated and messy!

While she was Queen consort of France, France effectively ruled Scotland.  Furthermore, a secret clause in the marriage contract stated that if Mary and Francois II died without children the Scottish crown would pass to France. This caused trouble with the nobles in Scotland, and set Mary up for endless strife when she returned after Francois death.

It may be that she wasn't quite as power hungry as she at first appears, and that she was manipulated into her subsequant marriages (2 of them, both very messy) and ill advised power grabs by the men around her. Certainly the woman blamed for her head being cut off always claimed it was planned by her advisors and that it wasn't her own intention .

The Jardin du Luxembourg has statues of 20 French Queens and Illustrious women. The subjects were chosen by Louis-Philippe I in 1843. This statue was created by Jean-Louis Brian 1848. To see Mary looking complete you have to go here.

Eventually all 20 statues will be featured here.

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