Yolande of Dreux, Queen of Scotland

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Yolande of Dreux
Sceau de Yolande d'Ecosse - Duchesse de Bretagne.png
Yolande of Dreux
Countess of Montfort
Tenure 1311–1322
Predecessor Beatrice
Successor John II
Queen Consort of Scotland
Tenure 1285–1286
Spouse Alexander III of Scotland
Arthur II, Duke of Brittany
Issue
more...
John IV, Duke of Brittany
Father Robert IV, Count of Dreux
Mother Beatrice, Countess of Montfort
Born 1263
Died 2 August 1322(1322-08-02)

Yolande of Dreux (1263 – 2 August 1322) was Countess of Montfort in her own right. Through her first marriage to Alexander III of Scotland, Yolande became Queen consort of the Kingdom of Scotland. Through her second marriage to Arthur II, Duke of Brittany, she became Duchess Consort of Brittany. She was the daughter of Robert IV, Count of Dreux, and Beatrice, Countess of Montfort.

Life[edit]

Coat of arms (House of Dreux)

Yolande belonged to the Capetian dynasty and had close ties to other prominent noble families. Her father was a patrilineal descendant of King Louis VI of France, her paternal grandmother Marie de Bourbon was a cousin of Guy of Dampierre, Count of Flanders, while her mother Beatrice was the only child of Count John I of Montfort-l'Amaury and his wife Jeanne, Dame de Chateaudun. Yolande succeeded her mother as suo iure Countess of Montfort.

Yolande was the second wife of Alexander III, King of Scots, who married her in search of an heir. Yolande's marriage to Alexander followed the death of the last surviving child of his marriage to Margaret, daughter of Henry III of England, a son who was also named Alexander. In addition to providing an heir for the Kingdom of Scotland, Alexander's marriage to Yolande represented a move to distance Alexander from his neighbour Edward I of England, and to emphasize Scottish independence from England. Yolande was related to her husband Alexander III, through shared ancestry in the French noble houses of Coucy and Dreux. The marriage was celebrated on 15 October 1285 at Jedburgh Abbey.

Alexander died on either 18 March or 19 March 1286, after falling from his horse, while riding from his court at Edinburgh to join Yolande at Kinghorn. It appears that by this time the Queen was believed to be pregnant with the expected heir. The Guardians of Scotland were elected by a parliament held at Scone, Perth and Kinross on 2 April or 28 April 1286 to govern the kingdom pending the birth of the child. It is unclear what happened to her pregnancy; most likely she had a miscarriage. However by one account the Guardians gathered at Clackmannan on Saint Catherine's Day — 25 November 1286 — to witness the birth, but the child was stillborn. [a] [b]

Family[edit]

Yolande's second marriage to Arthur II, was from 1292 to his death in 1312. Yolande and Arthur had at least six children:

  • John, born c. 1294, later Count of Montfort - known as Jean de Montfort
  • Beatrice, born c. 1295, married Guy X of Laval
  • Joan, born c. 1296, married Robert, son of Robert III of Flanders
  • Alice, born c. 1297–1377, married Bouchard VI of Vendôme
  • Blanche, born c. 1300, died young
  • Marie, born c. 1302, entered a convent

Arthur died in 1312, being succeeded by his son John III, Duke of Brittany, born of his first marriage and not to be confused with his son by Yolande who was also named John. Yolande survived Arthur, dying on 2 August 1322. Her county of Montfort passed to her son John, who would later fight for his claim to his father's duchy in the Breton War of Succession.

Ancestry[edit]


Note[edit]

  1. ^ It is also possible she had a phantom pregnancy, and according to one dubious English account she was faking pregnancy.
  2. ^ see Peter Traquair Freedom's Sword

References[edit]

  • Duncan, A.A.M., The Kingship of the Scots 842–1292: Succession and Independence. Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh, 2002. ISBN 0-7486-1626-8
  • Macdougall, Norman, "L'Écosse à la fin du XIIIe sieclè: un royaume menacé" in James Laidlaw (ed.) The Auld Alliance: France and Scotland over 700 Years. Edinburgh University, Edinburgh, 1999. ISBN 0-9534945-0-0
Yolande of Dreux, Queen of Scotland
Born: 1263 Died: 2 August 1322
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Beatrice
Countess of Montfort
1311–1322
with Arthur (1311–1312)
Succeeded by
John II
Royal titles
Vacant
Title last held by
Margaret of England
Queen consort of Scotland
1285–1286
Vacant
Title next held by
Elizabeth de Burgh
Vacant
Title last held by
Blanche of Navarre
Duchess consort of Brittany
1305–1312
Succeeded by
Isabella of Aragon