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29 October 2014
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Mary Queen of Scots

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Lord Darnley
Fact Files | Biographies | Lord Darnley

Lord Darnley

Born 1545, died 1567, cousin and second husband of Mary Queen of Scots, and father of King James VI of Scotland, (later James I of England.)

Darnley had a claim to the thrones of both England and Scotland through his parents - a Scottish Lennox and an English Douglas.

Darnley was almost universally described in unflattering terms. Superficially attractive and renowned for being a charmer, any significant time spent in his company soon revealed him to be a shallow, arrogant, drunken low-life.

As the husband of Mary, Darnley was determined to have more royal authority than he possessed. His demands angered many nobles, and even Mary herself.

Darnley's death - Who-Dunnit?

Darnley had been ill. On the night of the 9th Feb 1567 he was resting overnight at a house chosen by Mary in Kirk o' Fields, near Edinburgh. At some point in the night a huge explosion demolished the house.

Darnley's body was found stripped naked in a courtyard. He had survived the explosion but had been suffocated with his own shirt.

The Earl of Bothwell and Mary were suspected of being involved in the murder. They had become close before Darnley's death and married months after it.

Although Bothwell is still the chief suspect for many people, the mystery of who killed Darnley still exists. The problem is that EVERYONE hated Darnley.


See the Bothwell biography in the fact file for more information on the Earl of Bothwell.


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