About this artwork

James V, father of Mary, Queen of Scots, became king at seventeen months old when his own father, James IV, was killed at Flodden, fighting the English. Ignoring the urgings of his uncle, Henry VIII, who wished him to become a Protestant, James V strengthened Scotland's alliance with her traditional ally, France, by marrying the French king's daughter, Princess Madeleine. When she died, he took as his second wife Mary of Guise, another high-born French woman. James died at Falkland Palace in 1542, soon after his army's defeat by the English at Solway Moss. His six-day old daughter Mary succeeded to his throne.