BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

29 October 2014
Accessibility help
Text only
Mary Queen of Scots

BBC Homepage
Scotland Home
Education Scotland
Mary Queen of Scots
Mary's Minority
Rough Wooing
The Treaty of Edinburgh
Mary in Scotland
The Darnley murder
Mary in Exile
Mary in England
Mary the captive
Mary and the Catholic plots
Fact Files
Skill Zone
Info Page
Web Links

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!

Mary and Elizabeth
Fact Files

Mary and Elizabeth

Mary's great ambition was to be named as heir to Elizabeth I, and ultimately be Queen of England. She may have had the Scottish crown but her thoughts always seemed to turned towards England.

Many English Roman Catholics believed that the current Queen of England, Elizabeth, was illegitimate and, therefore, not the true Queen.

From Elizabeth's point of view, Mary, as a Roman Catholic and a claimant to the English throne, was a very real threat to her life.

Elizabeth never knew what to do with Mary. While Mary was alive she was the focal point for Roman Catholic plots. Having her killed, however, might give her own English nobles ideas of getting rid of monarchs, should they ever stand up to her.

The Babington Plot eventually settled Elizabeth's dilemma. Despite her misgivings and anxieties, Elizabeth ordered Mary executed.

Mary and Elizabeth

About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy