Mary Queen Of Scots and the Archaeology Of Sheffield Castle

Here’s a wonderful document for you to enjoy, our very own Professor John Moreland and Martin Gorman present the results of archaeological excavations and research at the remains of Sheffield castle in South Yorkshire, an important site in the study of Scottish history due to its status as a long term prison of Mary Queen of Scots

Our thanks to History Scotland for permission to share this.

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2 Responses

  1. I wish people would stop calling Mary Stuart a “prisoner” whilst in Sheffield.
    She was no prisoner, but in protective custody. The same as any person who’s life was in danger from a modern day trial. She asked for this protection too!
    Yes it would have seemed like being a prisoner, but that’s what anyone would have said even these days if they HAD to have guards around them all the time.
    Technically speaking she wasn’t even a Queen anymore. She had resigned. However Queen Elizabeth and the English Court did not except that resignation on the grounds it seemed forced.
    Mary did finally become a prisoner after the Babbington plot, she stood trail after the court had ruled that she was a “private” woman and not a Queen.

    Calling her a prisoner reduces the status of both Sheffield Castle and the Manor (especially) since that was rebuilt to house her staff. If you want to call her Queen, then they are Royal Palaces fit for a Queen to live in.

  2. The only tangible artifacts ever discovered regarding Mary in Sheffield are two letters written in 1571 by her secretary dictated by her and signed Marie R in her own hand.They are addressed to the Laird of Barnbarroch written when she was lodged in Sheffield Castle.Both are preserved in Sheffield Archives.

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External Information

Here are some links to information about the castle available on other sites. Gatehouse page Manor Lodge’s page Prospectus for Sheffield Castle Sheffield City Council’s

Bishops Hous

Plasterwork in Bishops House

This plaster overmantle is on the wall of the bedroom in Bishops House. The room was built around 1650 and in 1648, William Blythe paid

Archaeological Investigations

Here is some information about previous excavations. You can also download pdf documents produced by ARCUS on two pieces of fieldwork. Trial trenching of Sheffield

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