Dynasticism and diplomacy : the political career of Marie de Guise in Scotland, 1548-1560
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This thesis examines the political career of Marie de Guise in Scotland during the period 1548-1560. Challenging the conventional interpretation of Guise as the defender of Catholicism whose régime climaxed with the Reformation Rebellion, this study shows that she was, on the contrary, a shrewd and effective politique, whose own dynastic interests and those of her daughter took precedence over her personal and religious convictions. Dynasticism, not Catholicism, was the prime motivational force behind her policy and it is from this perspective that her regime is considered. The eight chapters of the thesis focus on two main themes. Firstly, that Marie de Guise's dynasticism, and political career as a whole, were inextricably associated with those of Mary, Queen of Scots, whose Scottish sovereignty, Catholic claim to the English throne and betrothal to the Dauphin of France carried with it notions of Franco- British Imperialism. And secondly, that Marie de Guise's policy in Scotland was dictated by European dynastic politics and, specifically, by the Franco-Scottish alliance of 1548-1560. Significantly more than a betrothal contract, the treaty of Haddington established a 'protectoral' relationship between the 'auld allies' whereby Henri II was able to assume control over Scottish military affairs, diplomacy and foreign policy as the 'protector' of Scotland. Guise's assumption of the regency in 1554 completed the process of establishing French power in Scotland, which was later consolidated, albeit briefly, by the marriage of Mary Stewart to François Valois in 1558. The overall success of Guise's dynastic and domestic policies, however, was limited. International considerations undermined her policies and weakened her administration. Yet the collapse of her regime came not with the outbreak of the Reformation Rebellion or her alleged defeat at the hands of the Congregation. Only with her death, did Marie de Guise's regime and French power in Scotland truly collapse.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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