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King Alexander II 'the Peaceful' of Scotland
Marie de Coucy
King Henry III Plantagenet of England
Eleanore de Provence Bérenger
(Abt 1217-1291)
King Alexander III 'the Glorius' of Scotland
Margaret Plantagenet
Margaret Of Scotland


Family Links

King Erik II "The Priesthater" Magnusson of Norway

Margaret Of Scotland

  • Born: 28 Feb 1260
  • Marriage: King Erik II "The Priesthater" Magnusson of Norway in 1281
  • Died: 9 Apr 1283 at age 23
  • Buried: 1283, Bergen, Bergen, Hordaland, Norway

  General Notes:

Alexander was only 8 when he inherited the kingdom of Scotland from
his father. A regent was to be appointed but the nobles could not
agree and the country suffered internal turmoil until Alexander came
of age. At 10 he married Henry III's daughter, Margaret. During his
childhood he established good relations with Edward I, his
brother-in-law. At this time Scotland had a population of about
400,000 and was enjoying an age of prosperity. Berwick was growing
rich on foreign trade. Wool, fur and fish were exported. The
ownership of the Western Isles was the first problem he faced after
his coronation. The Earl of Ross had declared war upon King Haakon of
Norway to try and regain possession of the Western Isles. This
terrified the local people for they could remember the fierce Viking
raids which persisted into the 13th century. Haakon sailed from
Norway in 1263 with a fleet of over 100 ships. The ships were of
solid oak with a golden dragon at the bow and stern, an impressive
sight. Astronomers have confirmed that the day after his arrival in
the Orkneys there was a total eclipse of the sun. The Norwegian
soldiers considered the eclipse to be a bad omen. Haakon, however,
continued to advance. Alexander in the meanwhile reinforced all the
castles on the shore and gathered a large army at the place where he
thought Haakon would come ashore. He waited, knowing that there was a
probability of terrible storms during September and October. As it
happened a great storm did blow through Haakon's ships. The Norwegians
believed that the storm was caused by the magic of Scottish witches.
The Scots on the other hand felt that the storm had been sent by St.
Margaret to save their country. A battle did take place on land but
Haakon's fleet had been so decimated by the storms that he decided to
retreat and he returned home. Haakon died shortly after that and
Alexander III secured a treaty with his successor, King Magnus. This
was the Treaty of Perth whereby Alexander regained the Western Isles
by paying 4000 merks to the Norwegians and 100 merks a year for an
indefinite period. The yearly payment continued into the 14th century.
Orkney and Shetland remained under the control of the Norwegians and
it was a long time before they too became a part of Scotland. His wife
Margaret, and soon after two of their sons died (one source saying
that two sons died and then his wife, Margaret, died). Alexander took
a second wife, Yolande in hopes of producing a male heir. He had only
been married to Yolande for about 5 months when eager to be with her
he rode at night during a storm against advice. His horse stumbled
and threw him over a cliff to his death. This left his granddaughter
Margaret, Maid of Norway, as heir apparent. Alexander's only
daughter, also named Margaret, had married King Eric II of Norway as
part of the Treaty of Perth. The daughter died in childbirth, leaving
an infant daughter as heir to the Scottish throne. At the time of
Alexander's death, the granddaughter was still in Norway. He had made
his lords swear to accept Margaret as Queen and they had agreed that
until she came of age, the country would be governed by the
"Guardians", the wisest and most important of the bishops and barons.
Among the six guardians chosen, Robert Bruce the elder was excluded,
although he had been recognized as heir in 1238 when Alexander II had
lost his first wife without issue. Bruce the elder was the senior
male descendant of David I. Because of the events that followed, it
would take nearly half a century for Scotland to regain its own
monarch and sovereignty.

Margaret married King Erik II "The Priesthater" Magnusson of Norway, son of King Magnus VI Lagabøte "The Lawmender" of Norway and Ingeborg Eriksdatter, in 1281. (King Erik II "The Priesthater" Magnusson of Norway was born in 1268 in Norway and died in 1299.)

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