Sunday, 1 January 2017

Summer Queen

North transept rose window - Notre-Dame Cathedral

On January 1st 1537, 16 year old Princess Madeleine de Valois, daughter of King Francis I of France married
25 year old King James V of Scotland in Notre-Dame Cathedral, Paris.

Madeleine was frequently in poor health and when James asked for her hand in marriage her father was
at first reluctant to agree. It would appear however that Madeleine persuaded him to
change his mind - that and current power politics!  

Notre-Dame Cathedral - photo by Morelle Smith

At 10 am the wedding party, led by musicians, heralds and church dignitaries, proceeded along a specially constructed raised

 platform to a stage at the west door of the cathedral. There Madeleine and James were married by the Cardinal of Bourbon.
They then entered the church for the nuptual mass.

Afterwards a sumptuous dinner was served at the Bishop's palace, followed in the evening by more feasting and dancing at the
Palais de Justice. Rich cloths and tapestries decorated the banqueting halls and food was served on gold and silver plates.

Madeleine and James

Two more weeks of celebrations followed at the Louvre and Tournelles palaces.
Events included jousts, tournaments,feasts, plays,with airborne fire breathing dragons
and mock naval battles. 

The Louvre Palace prior to remodelling in Renaissance style in the 1540s .....

How James may have looked then  .....

Aristocratic dress of the time.

The couple stayed in France until May when it was decided that Madeleine was fit to travel.

The Scottish king's ships left France accompanied by ten French ships accommodating Madeleine's
extensive entourage. She found the voyage uncomfortable and on arrival at Leith had to rest
for two days before proceeding to Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh, where she 
until her death seven weeks later.
 Consumption is now thought to be the cause of death.

I would love to have seen the convoy sailing up the Firth of Forth, led by the king's flagship
......   but I can day dream!

The ships would have looked similar to those in this painting depicting
Henry VIII (uncle of James) embarking at Dover  .....

Holyrood Palace in Renaissance style

.....  and now, with the ruined abbey behind.

Photo taken from the hill above in the Royal Park created by James.
I've shown the Royal Park in a previous post  ....    HERE

Holyrood Abbey

The distraught James ordered a grand funeral for his queen.
The abbey interior was hung with black cloth and her coffin draped in purple and black.
Candles were kept alight around the tomb for two years afterwards.
James celebrated mass on the day of Madeleine's death every year until
his own death five years later.

A year after her death he married Mary of Guise.
20 years later their daughter Mary Queen of Scots would marry the Dauphin of France at
Notre-Dame de Paris in a celebration equalling that of Madeleine and James. 

Queen Madeleine lived in Scotland for only two brief summer months but her story touched
the hearts the people who named her the "Summer Queen".

Thank you for visiting  -   Happy New Year!

Sharedwith :     All Seasons       Mosaic Monday     Our World Tuesday   
                       Tuesday's Treasures     Image-in-ing

Image source  -  1,3,4,5,6,7,8,9  -  Wikipedia


The Furry Gnome said...

What an interesting bit of Scottish history! Well presented. Bring us more! I was reading about the Stewart dynasty just tonight, fascinating stories you can go back to over and over.

Rajesh said...

Beautiful cathedral. The first shot is amazing.

biebkriebels said...

A Happy New Year to you, interesting historical post.

Maggie said...

Oh what a lovely story but so sad too. Notre Dame Cathedral is my favourite place to visit in Paris and I'll never forget our tour of Holyrood in 2014. The very stones of the place simply ooze history!
Thank you for joining me for the fist MM of 2017, sending best wishes for a very Happy New Year.

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

Thank you so much for telling that story and sharing this history with us. The Summer touching. Beautiful photos. Happy new year, Diane

Sarah said...

Thanks! I love reading this history. Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

Love your post, Ruby! Haha, and we are upset by current political changes -it's nothing compared to what you showed in this series of the past. Thank you much for sharing these beautiful captures of all the paintings for ALL SEASONS, Ruby:)
Hope you had an enjoyable Christmas, and wishing you a great New Year with great art endeavors and full of pleasant surprises.

Fun60 said...

An interesting historical period. Well told and illustrated.

bettyl-NZ said...

I've always been jealous of life back then! How cool it must have been to do nothing but party for two weeks! Thanks for the history lesson and lovely photos. May the new year bring you great things!

Tammie Lee said...

thank you for sharing this history.
it is so different from what most of us will ever experience.
their story lives on and on, a kind of magic.
lovely new year to you!

Alexa T said...

Very interesting and so sensitive historical story! I really enjoyed reading and watching pictures of your photo essay and I learn new things related to this day! Many thanks for sharing of this informative post.
Best regards and a Happy New Year with lots of joys!

lotusleaf said...

Very interesting bit of history. Beautiful photos too!

Judith @ Lavender Cottage said...

An enchanting history of the summer queen.

Handmade in Israel said...

What an interesting story. I have been to Notre Dam and Edinburgh which makes it all the more fascinating. Sadly I didn't visit Holyrood. The rest of my family were not keen :(

Tom said...

Ruby, what historic beauty! It's wonderful that building remain for us to enjoy today. Thanks for being here today and I hope to see you again.

Small City Scenes said...

Fantastic story--and beautiful buildings and great photos----wow ya got it all.

NC Sue said...

Thanks for the informative and beautiful post!
So glad you shared at

carol l mckenna said...

Fascinating post and wonderful photography ~ thanks !

Wishing you a Happy and Healthy New Year ~ ^_^

Rose said...


Felicia said...

that is a neat story and so sad too, only married a few weeks.

Lady Fi said...

Fabulous shot of the stained glass window.

Klara S said...

Interesting post ans awesome pictures. I like Holyrood Palace photo the most.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

That first picture of the window is so stunning I almost couldn't take my eyes off of it... glad I the whole post was fascinating. Great narrative ...beautiful pictures and I learned something new! Thank you.

dritanje said...

Sad story about the young queen Madelaine but it is interesting that the Franco-Scottish connection continued, with James V's daughter, Mary, who spent time in France and married the Dauphin, before returning, after he died, to Scotland. Where she was popular, with some anyway, but it didn't work too well for her either!
M xx

Minoru Saito said...

Happy New Year! Wishing you wonderful days this year too. Notre-Dame Cathedral photo is very beautiful.
I like your last photo very much. Thanks for sharing.

Gattina said...

Interesting post and beautiful pictures !I just imagine to go to a supermarket in such dresses ! Scotland is a beautiful country have been there twice !

Jeeran said...

Beautiful Images. Thanks for sharing this post...

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