Humanities › History & Culture Mary, Queen of Scots, in Pictures Share Flipboard Email Print History & Culture Women's History Important Figures History Of Feminism Key Events Women's Suffrage Women & War Laws & Womens Rights Feminism & Pop Culture Feminist Texts American History African American History African History Ancient History and Culture Asian History European History Genealogy Inventions Latin American History Medieval & Renaissance History Military History The 20th Century View More By Jone Johnson Lewis Women's History Writer B.A., Mundelein College M.Div., Meadville/Lombard Theological School Jone Johnson Lewis is a women's history writer who has been involved with the women's movement since the late 1960s. She is a former faculty member of the Humanist Institute. our editorial process Jone Johnson Lewis Updated September 17, 2019 She was briefly Queen of France, and became Queen of Scotland from her infancy. Mary, Queen of Scots, was considered a rival for the throne of Queen Elizabeth I—a particular threat because Mary was a Catholic and Elizabeth a Protestant. Mary's choices in marriage were questionable and tragic, and she was accused of plotting to overthrow Elizabeth. Mary Stuart's son, James VI of Scotland, was the first Stuart King of England, named by Elizabeth as her successor. 01 of 13 Mary Stuart, Dauphine of France Public Domain Born in 1542, the young Mary was sent to France when she was five years old to be raised with her future husband, Francis (1544–1560). Mary was queen consort from July 1559, when Francis became king at the death of his father, Henry II, until December 1560, when the always-sickly Francis died. 02 of 13 Mary, Queen of Scots, with Francis II Public Domain Mary, Queen of France, with her husband Francis II, during their brief reign (September 21, 1559–December 5, 1560), in a portrait from the Book of Hours owned by Catherine of Medici, mother of Francis. 03 of 13 Dowager Queen of France Getty Images / Hulton Archive With the sudden death of Francis II, Mary, Queen of Scots, found herself the widow of the King of France at the age of 18. She wore a mourning outfit of white, leading to her nickname La Reine Blanche (the White Queen). 04 of 13 Mary, Queen of Scots Public Domain 1823 engraving after a painting of Mary, Queen of Scots. 05 of 13 Mary, Queen of Scots and Lord Darnley Public Domain Mary impetuously married her cousin, Henry Stuart (Lord Darnley 1545–1567) against the wishes of Scottish nobles. Queen Elizabeth could see their marriage as a threat, as both were descended from Henry VIII's sister Margaret and thus could assert a claim to Elizabeth's crown. However, Mary's affection for him soon failed and he was murdered in 1567. Whether Mary was involved in the murder of Darnley has been a controversy ever since the murder happened. Bothwell—Mary's third husband—has often been blamed, and sometimes Mary herself. 06 of 13 Apartment at Holyrood Palace Rosaline Orme Masson Mary's Italian secretary, David Rizzio (1533–1566), was dragged from Mary's apartment, illustrated here, and then murdered by a group of nobles including her husband, Darnley. Darnley probably intended to imprison Mary and rule in her place, but she convinced him to escape with her. The other conspirators produced a paper with Darnley's signature that confirmed that Darnley had been in on the planning. The son of Mary and Darnley, James (1566–1625), was born three months after the murder of Rizzio. 07 of 13 Mary, Queen of Scots, and James VI/I Public Domain Mary's son by her second husband, Lord Darnley, succeeded her as James VI of Scotland (in 1567), and succeeded Queen Elizabeth I as James I (1603), beginning Stuart rule. Though Mary is depicted here with her son James, she did not actually see her son after he was taken from her by Scottish nobles in 1567, when he was less than a year old. He was under the care of her half-brother and enemy, the Earl of Moray (1531–1570), and he received little emotional connection or love as a child. When he became king, he had her body moved to Westminster Abbey. 08 of 13 Fictional Meeting with Elizabeth I Public Domain This illustration depicts a meeting that never happened, between cousins Mary, Queen of Scots, and Elizabeth I. 09 of 13 House Arrest Public Domain Mary Stuart was held under house arrest for 19 years (1567–1587) on orders of Queen Elizabeth, who saw her as a dangerous rival for the throne. 10 of 13 Execution Public Domain Letters linking Mary, Queen of Scots, to a proposed uprising by Catholics, prompted Queen Elizabeth to order the execution of her cousin. 11 of 13 Posthumous Depictions Mary, Queen of Scots, in an 1885 engraving. Public Domain Long after her death, artists have continued to depict Mary, Queen of Scots. 12 of 13 Costumes Public Domain An image of Mary, Queen of Scots, from an 1875 book on costume. 13 of 13 Idealized Images Stock Montage / Getty Images In this artist's image of Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots, she is shown at sea, holding a book. This image depicts her before her abdication in favor of her son, in 1567.