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Lord Darnley
Lord Darnley.jpg
Biographical Information
Real Name: Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley
Title: King consort of Scots

Lord Darnley
Duke of Albany

Reign: 29 July 1565 – 10 February 1567
Born: 7 December 1545
Death: 10 February 1567
Age: 21
Gender: Male
Originally From: Yorkshire, England
Parents: Lord Lennox (Father)

Margaret Lennox (Mother)

Wife: Mary, Queen of Scots
Children: King James VI
TV Character Information
First appearance: With Friends Like These
Portrays: King Darnley
Portrayed by: Will Kemp

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Lord Darnley was King Regent of Scotland after marrying the young Mary, Queen of Scots.


Darnley was born in 1545, in Leeds, England. Through his parents, he had claim to both the Scottish and English Thrones, as he ffjkdfzbkfbgknfdknkdzgfknkhhnkznrkgfkgnkrnkrgknknfkNSKnkrnknkfskjsrkfknkEKng


On 3 February 1565 Darnley left London, England and 9 days later he was in Edinburgh, Scotland. On 17 February he presented himself to Mary, Queen of Scots at Wemyss Castle. John Knox preached he danced a galliard with Mary that night. From then on, he was constantly in Mary's company.

As a preliminary to the marriage, Darnley was made Lord of Ardmanoch and Earl of Ross at Stirling Castle on 15 May 1565. An entourage of 15 men were made knights, including one of Mary's half brothers, Sir Robert Stewart of Strathdon, Robert Drummond of Carnock, and James Stewart. Mary sent John Hay, Commendator of Balmerino, to speak to Queen Elizabeth; Elizabeth demanded Darnley's return and gave John Hay plainly to understand her small satisfaction.

A proclamation was made at the Cross of Edinburgh on 28 July that government would be in the joint names of the King and Queen of Scots, thus giving Darnley equality with, and precedence over, Mary.

On 29 July 1565, the marriage took place by Roman Catholic rites in Mary's private chapel at Holyrood, but Darnley (whose was raised Catholic, but later influenced by Protestantism) refused to accompany Mary to the nuptial mass after the wedding.

Later in Life

Soon after Mary, Queen of Scots married Darnley, she became aware of his vain, arrogant and unreliable qualities, which threatened the well-being of the state. He was unpopular with the other nobles and had a violent streak, aggravated by his drinking. Mary refused to grant Darnley the Crown Matrimonial, which would have made him the successor to the throne if she died childless. By August 1565, less than a month after the marriage, William Cecil heard Mary had become pregnant.

Mary's private secretary, David Rizzio was stabbed 56 times on 9 March 1566 by Lord Darnley and his confederates, Protestant Scottish nobles, lead by Lord Ruthven in the presence of the seven-months-pregnant Queen in her dining room. The murder (he was rumored to be the father of Mary's unborn child) was part of Darnley's bid to force Mary to cede The Crown Matrimonial.

When the Spanish Ambassador in Paris heard this news, the headlines were that Darnley "had murdered his wife, admitted the exiled heretics, and seized the kingdom." However, on 20 March, Darnley posted a declaration denying all knowledge of or complicity in the David Rizzio murder. Mary no longer trusted her husband, and he was disgraced by the kingdom.

Mary and Darnley's son Prince James was born on 19 June 1566 at Edinburgh Castle. His godparents were Charles IX of France, Elizabeth I of England and Emmanuel Philibert, Duke of Savoy.

Following the birth of Prince James, the succession was more secure; in late 1566 and early 1567, Darnley and Mary appeared to be close to reconciliation as she was often seen visiting his chambers. Darnley, however, alienated many who would otherwise have been his supporters through his erratic behavior.


Darnley was murdered eight months after Prince James's birth. On 9 February 1567, his body and that of his valet were discovered in Edinburgh, Scotland, where they had been staying.

During the weeks leading up to his death, Darnley was recovering from a bout of smallpox. Darnley stayed at Kirk o' Field while Mary, Queen of Scots attended the wedding of Bastian Pagez, one of her closest servants, at Holyrood. Around 2 am on the night of 10 February 1567, while Mary was away, two explosions rocked the foundation of Kirk o' Field. These explosions were later attributed to two barrels of gunpowder that had been placed in the small room under Darnley's sleeping quarters. Darnley's body and the body of his valet. Darnley was dressed only in his nightshirt. It was determined that the two men were killed by strangulation, believed to have taken place after the explosion.


Family Tree

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