MARGARET OF SCOTLAND

By: Brittany Quiring

Top Ten Facts:

1. Margaret was born in Hungary around 1046. She was born in Southern Hungary in a village called Mecseknadas. Her parents were Edward Atheling and Agatha and she had two siblings: Edgar and Christian.

2. Edward was chosen to be the King of England. The English people wanted a king of their own blood so they chose him. Margaret had to leave Hungary at the age of 10 with her family and head to England. However, right when they got there, Edward died and left Margaret and her family at the dependence of the court.

3. Norman forces drove Margaret and her family back to Hungary. Edgar was going to be crowned king after the Battle of Hastings because Harold, the current king, died. However, the Norman forces were too strong so he was advised to leave and go back to Hungary with his family. On their way back, they shipwrecked on the Scottish coast. King Malcolm of Scotland welcomed them.

4. Margaret married King Malcolm of Scotland. She was about 20 years old and Malcolm was about 40 years old. They got married in 1070. Margaret and Malcolm had eight children, six sons and two daughters.

Malcolm and Margaret

5. Margaret helped Malcolm be a good king. Malcolm was a good person, but he was rough and uncultured. Margaret was able to calm Malcolm down because of his love for her. She also improved his manners. Malcolm let her settle all domestic affairs and asked her for advise in state matters.

Margaret helping Malcolm out

6. Margaret stayed detached from the world. She kept her private life strictly simple. Margaret had set times for reading scripture and praying. In order to save time for devotions, she kept her sleeping and eating to the minimum.

7. Margaret did much for Scotland. Margaret improved her country by promoting arts and education. She encouraged synods and went to a lot of discussions that were about correcting religious abuses. Margaret always helped out the poor. She was always surrounded by beggars in public and never refused any of them. It is said that she didn't eat until she fed nine orphans and 24 adults.

Margaret helping the poor

8. Margaret and Malcolm founded many churches. Margaret liked to make the churches beautiful to honor God. One of the churches she founded was Abbey of Dunfermline. This church was built to enshrine her greatest treasure, a relic of the true cross.

Abbey of Dunfermline

9. Margaret died in 1093. King William Rufus made a surprise attack on Alnwick castle. During this attack, King Malcolm and his oldest son, Edward, were killed. Margaret had been sick for a while already and died four days after their deaths. She was around 50 years old when she died and it is said that her last words were spent praising God.

10. Margaret became a Saint. Margaret was canonized by Innocent IV in 1250 and named patron of Scotland in 1673. Today, the church celebrates the feast day of St. Margaret, Queen of Scotland on November 16. Her feast day was originally June 10, but was moved to November 16, the day of her death, because of the renewal of the church's Lirutgical calendar.

St. Margaret of Scotland

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