The son of Catherine de Medici, François was the first husband of Mary, Queen of Scots. In 1559, a year after the marriage, François succeeded to the French throne. This could have proved a very important marriage as future kings of France would not only have had a claim to the Scottish throne but also the throne of England, via Mary’s great-grandfather Henry VII. However, François died in 1560 aged just sixteen. He is shown here before he became king, with the text surrounding his portrait referring to him as the son of the most Christian king of France, Henri II.