23 December 2012

Execution of Mary Queen of Scots

Mary Queen of Scots met her date with the executioner with great courage.  Many of Queen Elizabeth's staunchest supporters could not help but admire the bravery she displayed at meeting so gruesome a  fate.

The years leading up to Mary's execution were filled with personal heartache, isolation and misery.  Elizabeth hadn't known exactly what to do with the tall beauty from the time she arrived as her most unwanted 'guest.' The feeling was quite mutual and both women distrusted the other intensely. Though closely related, the two cousins couldn't have been more different, both in physical looks and personal temperament. A satisfactory understanding would never be accomplished between the two queens. Mary Queen of Scot's claim to the throne was strong enough to make Queen Elizabeth extremely uneasy toward her cousin. Mary was equally resentful as she knew full well that she might sit on Elizabeth's throne had circumstances been different. In typical form Elizabeth veered dramatically in her approach toward handling Mary, and thus confounded her council.

Eventually, in a roundabout yet final way, the death warrant for the unfortunate Mary Queen of Scots was executed. She would meet her death with grace and a calm resignation. It is not hard to imagine that Mary had likely all but given up having any hope of happiness in her earthly life. Clearly, Mary was looking ahead to the eternal world, having suffered almost nothing but painful disappointment and disaster in her life. Her three marriages had all ended in heartache. She had been separated from her son James almost immediately after his birth. Mary would never see her son again, and the attitude revealed in his correspondence was that of a child who's mother was a mere stranger to him. In Mary's last years her ladies and her beloved pet dog were her true family. Living in close confinement, always watched and monitored, Mary and her ladies were not unlike a lonely widowed mother surrounded by wholly devoted daughters. Mary's ladies were utterly bereft and grief stricken when they lost their mistress in such a horrifying manner.

Controversy still surrounds the queen's death, and her actual culpability is extremely complicated.. One thing was clear:  Queen Elizabeth would live to regret her decision to sign the death warrant for Mary Queen of Scots, and she would attempt to distance herself from her own choice.

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