This morning I visited the site at Cathcart, Glasgow where the unfortunate Queen Mary is said to have witnessed the defeat of her army at the Battle of Langside in 1568, an event which proved a critical turning point in her life. The video clip below shows the stone marking the relevant observation place.

Mary had a very chequered and unfortunate life:

  • Born 1542 and caught in a power struggle between Henry VIII of England and the Scottish establishment. Henry wanted Mary to marry Henry’s son, William.
  • In France 1548-61 where she briefly became Queen of both France and Scotland She returned to Scotland after the premature death of her husband, Francis II. During this period Mary’s mother, Mary of Guise assumed the Regency in Scotland and cemented a close relationship, the Auld Alliance, with France.
  • Ruled Scotland from 1561-1567. She was just 18 at the start of this period.
  • In 1565 Mary married the highly unsuitable Lord Darnley. The latter arranged the murder of Mary’s secretary Riccio. Darnley was subsequently found strangled in 1567.
  • Married Earl of Bothwell on May 15th 1567. The latter died of insanity as a fugitive in Denmark in 1576.
  • Mary’s half-brother Moray assumed Regency Aug 22nd 1567. Battle of Langside took place in 1568 (see above) after which Mary fled to England where she remained a fugitive through to 1587 until executed at Fotheringay Castle on orders of Queen Elizabeth
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