Margaret of Scotland, Countess of Kent

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Margaret of Scotland (1193–1259) was a princess of Scotland and an English noblewoman.

Margaret was born at Haddington, East Lothian, the first child of William I of Scotland and his wife Ermengarde de Beaumont. She was an older sister of Alexander II of Scotland.

Her father had battled with Henry II of England as well as his younger son John of England. As a result, in 1209, William was forced to send Margaret and her younger sister Isabella as hostages; they were imprisoned at Corfe Castle along with Eleanor, Fair Maid of Brittany, who had been under house arrest to prevent her claim on England. In June 1213, John sent green robes, lambskin-trimmed cloaks, and summer slippers to the three noble ladies.[1] The ladies were sometimes allowed to ride out under the strictest guard.

On 19 June 1221, Margaret married Hubert de Burgh. At the time of their marriage Hubert was effectively the Regent of the Kingdom of England since Henry III was too young to carry out the duties of King. Henry III finally came of age in 1227 and Hubert retired from his duties as Regent. He was awarded the title of Earl of Kent and remained one of the most influential people at court.

They had only one known daughter:

  • Margaret de Burgh (c. 1227–1237). Also known as "Megotta", she married Richard de Clare, 5th Earl of Hertford, but left no issue. Margaret of Scotland's line thus became extinct in 1237.

She survived her husband by sixteen years and died in 1259. She was buried at the Church of the Black Friars of London.

From her birth to her death was Margaret was arguably either first or second heir to the throne of the Kingdom of Scotland as one of the few living, legitimate descendants of William I. However, cognatic primogeniture was not yet the norm in Scotland and more distant relatives could well claim the throne, as they in fact did in the Succession Crisis of 1290 to 1292.



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