The Death Of the Dauphin


On 24th April 1558, Mary married the Dauphin, Francis, at the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris. The word Dauphin means 'the eldest son of the King of France'. Francis was set to inherit the kingdom from his father, and was therefore a good match for Mary. She was fifteen and Francis was fourteen. A few months later Elizabeth Tudor, a Protestant, became Elizabeth 1, Queen of England. This was very important for Mary. Many years later, Elizabeth had her cousin Mary executed.

On 15th July 1559 the Dauphin Francis became King of France with Mary beside him as Queen of both Scotland and France.

Tragically, Mary's mother died so Mary had to rule Scotland on her own. Then, sadly Francis became ill and died after only one year into their marriage which also meant Mary wasn't Queen of France any more. Now she had lost the two people she loved most in life.

Mary decided that there wasn't a place for her in France any more so she decided she had to return and rule the place she hardly knew, Scotland. On 19th August 1561, Mary arrived in Leith Harbour.

Mary had been brought up as a Catholic but Scotland was a Protestant country. Mary announced that she would allow Protestants to continue to worship as they liked, but said she would remain a Roman Catholic.

For a while the scenery was strange to Mary - actually, the whole of Scotland was strange to her. It was very different from the France she knew and loved, whose areas and life were so much more varied than what she was used to. Scotland was a poor, cold country and had few large towns. But still Mary was determined to do well.





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