Mary Queen of Scots was the Scottish queen for about 25 years, she lived a very notorious life before being executed at the age of 45. She was born the only child of the Scottish King James V. At the age of 6 months the parliament passed the Treaty of Greenwich which would force her to marry Henry VIII's son. The Treaty was signed between representatives of Scotland and England in the hopes of keeping the nations united, however the Scottish Queen rejected the law. Scottish and English relations continued to be rocky during this time period particularly after Henry VII arrested some Scottish workers for trading with the French. Henry would lead a series of battles into French and Scottish territory, in order to secure the marriage of Mary the Queen of Scots and his son Edward.
The most infamous battle was the Battle of Pinkie Cleugh, also known as Black Saturday, it occurred on the 10th of September 1547 as the Scottish and English armies fought a long gruesome battle. The English utilized their naval artillery, cannons, archers and arquebusiers to help them win the battle, which many historians consider the first modern skirmish fought in Scotland. Despite coming out victorious in the battle, Henry VII still could not force the Scottish government to meet his demands. Baby Queen Mary was smuggled out of Scotland and into France where her parents agreed to let her wed Dauphin Francis. Their wishes became official when she got married to Dauphin Francis in 24 April 1558.
Mary would later return back to Scotland after her husband's death. Scotland was still facing religious factions at this time between the Catholics and Protestants. She was still under constant pressure to ratify the Treaty of Edinburg, however she refused. She would later go on to marry her first cousin Lord Darnley because that back in those times it was alright to do that. Queen Elizabeth of England was fuming because after they got married both Mary and Darnley could claim the English throne; however they would divorce after Darnley became jealous of Mary's secretary David Rizzio and murdered him in front of her. It's believed that Mary would later plan and succeed in assassinating her husband Darnley.
A few years later Mary was kidnapped by Bothwell and raped by him but she must not have been traumatized that much because a few months later she would go on to marry Bothwell using Protestant rites. The aristocracy and general public of Scotland turned against the couple and arrested both of them on 15 of June 1567. Mary was jailed in Loch Leven Castle and was forced to give her throne to her son James who was only 1 years old. Mary would later escape, build up an army and run away to England after her army was defeated in the Battle of Langside. Upon arriving in England, Queen Elizabeth greeted her warmly by imprisoning her in the Carlisle Castle.
Queen Elizabeth would have her stand trial for Darnley's murder in one of the weirdest trials in history. Elizabeth saw Mary as a threat and tried to convict of multiple crimes including murder. Her main source of evidence against Mary were the 'Casket letters' which were letters written by Mary to Bothwell. After the trial Mary would be imprisoned for 18 more years before being executed. Bothwell was jailed in Denmark and would become mentally ill before passing away in an asylum.
Execution at Fotheringay
The night before Mary was executed, she wrote a letter to her brother-in-law, King Henry of France. Here is an excerpt from this famous letter:
'You ought to rejoice and not to weep for that the end of Mary Stuart's troubles is now done... all this world is but vanity and full of troubles and sorrows. Carry this message from me and tell my friends that I died a true woman to my religion, and like a true Scottish woman and a true French woman; but God forgive them that have long desired my end.'
Until the moment she passed a way, Mary felt that she was being killed because of her faith.