period: Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots

Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots

Mary Stuart (1542–1587), better known as Mary queen of Scots, reigned as Mary I of Scotland 1542 to 1567 and as Queen Consort of France from 1559 to 1560.

She became queen of Scots when she was six days old; she was betrothed to the dauphin of France at eight and sent to live in France to be safe from the English; she returned to Scotland a widow at eighteen– her mother-in-law, Catherine de Medici, had become regent and France had withdrawn its support of Mary’s claim to the throne of England.

On her return to Scotland she found a religiously and politically divided realm and a nobility, and especially a half-brother, unwilling to hand over power to an eighteen year-old girl who seemed more French than Scots. She went through a further two husbands (and was suspected of involvement in the murder of the first of them) before being forced to abdicate in favour of her infant son.

In 1568 she fled to England where she was imprisoned and eventually executed by her cousin Elizabeth I.

The movies & TV shows

The Virgin Queen (2005): The captive Mary, queen of Scots (Charlotte Winner) had a very minor role in this mini-series – appearing only to get executed. Neill Gorton was responsible for the prosthetic makeup. Karen Hartley-Thomas was makeup designer; Laura [Loz] Schiavo was makeup artist; Maureen McGill & Anna Morena were hair stylist/makeup artists.

Kevyn Aucoin photoshoot (2000): Kevyn Aucoin transformed Tori Amos into Mary, Queen of Scots.. This was one of two images of Tori Amos intended to ‘focus attention on her multi-ethnic background’ which included both Scots and Cherokee ancestry – the second image portrayed her as Ton’ingina, a cherokee with tan skin and long brown hair