Mary Stuart’s upbringing played a large part in her political and religious positions, as well as her position as a female ruler in a land dominated by the whims of men. Mary is often portrayed as a passionate woman whose life was dominated by her emotions. At 6 days old Mary inherited the throne to Scotland, a highly contested region located directly above the ever-expanding realm of England. Mary spent much of her time in France, being raised as the Dauphiness to strengthen the ties of Catholic monarchs. Historians like John Guy and Antonia Frasier frame this as a very formative time for Mary. In her stead, her mother, Mary de Guise, was left to preserve the peace in Scotland for her young daughter. During this time Scotland’s religious climate flipped and, upon Mary’s return to her homeland, she was virtually an outsider. It is disputed on whether Mary truly felt this way, and this paper will explore different views on the subject. Mary’s relationship with Elizabeth is often focused on and both Guy and Jane Dunn have studies that take slightly different stances on this relationship. As Mary had her own claim to the English throne through Margaret Tudor this relationship was quite interesting. Mary was seen by many to be the rightful successor to the English throne due to the execution of Elizabeth Tudor’s mother, Anne Boleyn. As Europe faced a turbulent transition to its modern period its monarchs like Mary faced turbulence as well.
Harris, Latayzia and Thompson, Kyle, "Mary Stuart: Turbulence in Politics & Religion" (2019). Posters. 26.