Birth: 1046 in Hungary
Note: Died age 47
Death: 16 NOV 1093 in Edinburgh, Scotland
Burial: Befor high altar, Dunfermline, Scotland
Cause: Died of grief at her husband and son?s death.
Change Date: 31 OCT 2005
Saint Margaret?s name signifies pearl, ?a fitting name,? says Theodoric, her confessor and her first biographer, ?for one such as she.? Her soul was like a precious pearl; a life spent amidst the luxury of a royal court never dimmed its luster or estranged it from Him who had bought it with His blood. She was the granddaughter of an English king; in 1070 she became the bride of Malcolm of Scotland, thereafter reigning as Queen until her death in 1093.
How did she become a Saint in a position where sanctity is so difficult? First, she burned with zeal for the house of God. She built churches and monasteries; she occupied herself by making vestments; she could not rest until she saw the laws of God and His Church observed throughout her realm. Next, amid a thousand cares, she found time to converse with God, ordering her piety with such sweetness and discretion that she won her husband to sanctity like her own. He would rise at night to pray with her; he loved to kiss the holy books she used, and sometimes would take them away with him, bringing them back later to his wife covered with jewels. Lastly, despite Saint Margaret?s great virtue, she wept constantly over her sins and begged her confessor to correct her faults.
Saint Margaret did not neglect her duties in the world even if she was not of the world. God blessed this marriage with eight children, six princes and two princesses who did not fail to respond to their mother?s teaching and examples. Never was there a better mother; she spared no pains in their education, and their sanctity was the fruit of her prudence and her zeal. And never was there a better queen. She was the most trusted counselor of her husband, who always found her counsels of great utility, and she labored with him for the spiritual and material improvement of the land. Malcolm, after having pacified his domains for several years, saw to the building of the cathedral of Durham and founded a monastery at Dumfermlin.
Living in the midst of all the world?s pleasures, Saint Margaret sighed for the true homeland and viewed death as a release. On her deathbed she learned that her husband and their eldest son had been slain in battle. She thanked God for sending this last affliction as a penance for her sins. After receiving Holy Viaticum, she repeated the prayer from the Missal, ?O Lord Jesus Christ, who by Thy death didst give life to the world, deliver me.? And at the words ?deliver me,? says her biographer, her soul took flight to Christ, in 1093, in her forty-seventh year.
Father of Margaret of Scotland was Edward the Atheling, also known as Edward the Exile. He was the son of King Edmund II Ironside of England, who was in turn son of Ethelred II "the Unready"
Mother of Margaret of Scotland was Agatha of Hungary, who was related to Gisela, wife of St. Stephen of Hungary
Margaret of Scotland's brother was Edgar the Atheling, the only of the Anglo-Saxon princes to survive the Norman invasion, acknowledged as King of England by some but never crowned.
Margaret of Scotland's Marriage: Margaret of Scotland met her future husband, Malcolm, when she was fleeing with her brother from William the Conqueror's invading army in 1066. Their ship was wrecked on the Scottish coast.
Malcolm Canmore was the son of King Duncan. Duncan had been killed by Macbeth, and Malcolm in turn defeated and killed Macbeth after living for some years in England -- a series of events fictionalized by Shakespeare. Malcolm had been married previously to Ingibjorg, the daughter of the Earl of Orkney.
Malcolm invaded England at least five times. William the Conqueror forced him to swear allegiance in 1072 but Malcolm died in a skirmish with the English forces of King William II Rufus in 1093. Only three days later, his queen, Margaret of Scotland, also died.
Margaret of Scotland's Contributions to History: Margaret of Scotland is known to history for her work to reform the Scottish church by bringing it into line with Roman practices and replacing Celtic practices. Margaret brought many English priests to Scotland as one method of achieving this goal. She was a supporter of Archbishop Anselm.
Margaret of Scotland's Children: Of the eight children of Margaret of Scotland, one, Edith, renamed Matilda or Maud, married Henry I of England, uniting the Anglo-Saxon royal line with the Norman royal line. Three of her sons -- Edgar, Alexander I, and David I -- ruled as kings of Scotland. David, the youngest, reigned for almost 30 years. Her other daughter, Mary, married the Count of Boulogne and Mary's daughter Matilda became Queen of England as wife of King Stephen.
After Her Death: A biography of St. Margaret appeared soon after her death. It is usually credited to Turgot, Archbishop of St. Andrews, but is sometimes said to have been written by Theodoric, a monk. Of her relics, Mary, Queen of Scots, later had possession of Saint Margaret's head.
Descendants of Margaret of Scotland: Descendents of Margaret of Scotland and Duncan reigned in Scotland, except for a brief reign after Duncan's death by his brother, until 1290, with the death of another.
Father: Edward ?the Exile? of England
Mother: Agatha of Hungary b: in Bavaria
Malcolm III of Scotland b: ABT 1031
- Matilda b: OCT 1079 in Dunfermline, Scotland
- David I of Scotland b: ABT 1080
- Alexander I ?The Fierce? of Scotland
- Mary of Scotland