Madeleine of Valois

Madeleine of Valois
Madeleine de Valois by Corneille de la Haye
Queen consort of Scotland
Tenure1 January – 7 July 1537
Born10 August 1520
St. Germain-en-Laye, Paris, Kingdom of France
Died7 July 1537(1537-07-07) (aged 16)
Holyrood Palace, Edinburgh, Kingdom of Scotland
SpouseJames V of Scotland
FatherFrancis I of France
MotherClaude, Duchess of Brittany

Magdalene of Valois or Madeleine of Valois (10 August 1520 – 7 July 1537) was a French princess who became Queen of Scotland as the first spouse of King James V. The marriage was arranged as a condition of the Treaty of Rouen, and James was originally to be betrothed to another bride, but he preferred Madeleine. They married, but her health, poor since birth, failed and she died six months after the wedding, giving her the moniker the "Summer Queen" of Scots.

Early life

Madeleine (back right) with her mother and sisters, from the Book of Hours of Catherine de'Medici.

Madeleine was born at Saint-Germain-en-Laye, France, the fifth child and third daughter of King Francis I of France and Claude, Duchess of Brittany (daughter of King Louis XII of France and Anne, Duchess of Brittany). Very frail from birth, she grew up in the warm and temperate Loire Valley region of France, rather than at Paris, as her father feared that the cold would destroy her delicate health. Together with her sister Margaret, she was raised by her aunt, Marguerite de Navarre. This lasted until her father remarried and his new wife, Eleanor of Austria, took them into her own household.[1] By her sixteenth birthday, she had contracted tuberculosis.

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