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Author Topic:   Princess in Confinement?
posted 05-08-2001 04:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Moe   Click Here to Email Moe     Edit/Delete Message
Was there ever a young princess in confinement i.e. kept in her own castle as if it's a prison? Not being able to get out, with guards all around?

If so, what would it have been like?

posted 05-09-2001 06:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Levan   Click Here to Email Levan     Edit/Delete Message
Not so much a princess, but a Queen. Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned in several castles.

Other famous royal prisoners, males this time, include James I who was held in the Tower of London before his execution.

Richard III was reputed to have imprisoned and murdered the 'Princes of the Tower'. The princes were Edward (aged around 12) who upon the death of his father Edward IV became Edward V, and his younger brother (also Richard). Richard claimed that the boys were illegitimate.

I would have thought that France and Russia must have many examples of imprisoned, and ultimately executed, pricesses?


[This message has been edited by Levan (edited 05-09-2001).]

posted 05-09-2001 07:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Levan   Click Here to Email Levan     Edit/Delete Message
In Greek mythology, an Argive princess named Danae was imprisoned by her father Akrisios. Zeus visits her in a shower of golden rain (interpreted in art as coins). She is cast adrift with her child Perseus in a chest, which is washed up on Seriphos.


posted 05-09-2001 07:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Moe   Click Here to Email Moe     Edit/Delete Message
Thanks a million!
So what was it like for Mary Queen of Scots? Was she deprived of worldly goods/possesions when she was imprined in the/her castle?

Was there a purpose built castle to confine a royal like her?

I'd like to envision what daily life in a prison castle was lke for her? Any details?

posted 05-09-2001 03:59 PM           Edit/Delete Message
Mary spent one of her imprisonments on Loch Leven castle, and it's fair to say that she would have been less than comfortable by her own standards, lacking much of her own property and comforts. None of the castles in which she was imprisoned were built specifically for that purpose, though her quarters varied in quality. On Loch Leven, the castle originally occupied the entire island on which it stands, so the impression of a reasonably roomy island of present times is false, the water level has been lowered, and the water once lapped the walls of the castle.
Her conditions there would have certainly been restrictive, and whilst there she was forced to abdicate in favour of her infant son, James 6th, later 1st of England. She would have lacked the pleasantries of court, and other friendly company. She would have had the freedom of the castle grounds, such as they were, but must have had some sort of communication with the world outside since she contrived to escape. Read some of the old mails on conditions within a castle to get a fair picture of her discomfort, dampness, poor light and insanitary conditions would have been typical.
For info on Loch Leven,try http://www.webpak.net/%7Edouglasj/cdsna/landmarks/lochleven.htm

A minor point, Levan is quite correct in his statement on James 1st, though he was murdered in Perth after gaining his release from captivity in England, and after a long and apparently succesful reign in Scotland.
Numerous other Scottish Princes were held in captivity, or effectively so. Most notoriously, James 1st's elder brother, David Duke of Rothesay was held captive in Falkland Palace. He died in strange circumstances, apparently having been thrown into the dungeon and left to starve by his Uncle (Duke of Albany) who craved the power of the throne. David apparently prolonged his life with the aid of a nursing mother, who allowed her milk to seep through a crack in the wall. An unlikely, though typically romantic tale of the Stewart dynasty.

'Demeure par la verite'
Visit; Gordon's Scottish Castles Resource Page

[This message has been edited by Gordon (edited 05-09-2001).]

posted 05-11-2001 08:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Levan   Click Here to Email Levan     Edit/Delete Message
Hmm, Gordon you're so gracious - I actually meant Charles I of England!


posted 06-08-2001 10:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for penelope   Click Here to Email penelope     Edit/Delete Message
Moe; Although Elizabeth the Ist, was gracious and diplomatic, Edward the Ist, "The Longshanks" was not. After the battle of Kildrummy castle in '1307', Edward captured Nigel Bruce, younger brother of Robert the Bruce. He also held The Countess Buchan, Robert's wife, his twelve year old daughter Marjorie, and his sister Mary, wife of Sir Neil Campbell. Edward had Nigel hanged. The women were another matter, he ordered wooden cages built jutting from the battlements of Berwick and Roxbourgh castles. The Countess Buchan and Mary hung in their solitary cages exposed to the elements, and passers-by for the next four years, Edward's only concession to the ladies was the use of the privies behind the castle walls. Marjorie received similar treatment at the Tower of London, but public outrage made Edward recind his orders and sent her to a nunnery at Walton. I got the info from "Robert the Bruce" by;Ronald McNair Scott

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