James V

Mary of Guise

Francis II

Mary was born in 1542. She was the daughter of King James V of Scotland. On the death of her father in the same year, the infant Mary became Queen of Scotland and her mother, Mary of Guise, ruled Scotland on her behalf.

Since Mary of Guise was French and a strong Catholic, it is not surprising that Mary was brought up in the Catholic faith. Nor is it surprising that a marriage was arranged in 1548 between Mary and Francis, son of Henry II of France and heir to the French throne.

In August 1548, Mary was sent to live in France, leaving her mother to rule Scotland. Mary's marriage to Francis took place in 1558, the same year that Elizabeth, her cousin, succeeded to the English throne. With the death of Henry II in the following year, Mary's husband became Francis II, King of France. This meant that she was now queen of both Scotland and France.