Reidford Genealogy
King William I the Lion [2704]
Ermengarde [2711]
King Alexander II [2710]
Marie DE COURCEY [2712]
King Alexander III [2713]


Family Links

Margaret [2725]

King Alexander III [2713]

  • Born: 1241
  • Marriage: Margaret [2725]
  • Died: 19 Mar 1286, Firth Of Forth aged 45

bullet  General Notes:

Born in 1241, the only son of Alexander II and his second wife, Marie de Coucy, Alexander became king at the age of seven, on the death of his father. On Christmas Day 1251, when he was ten, he was knighted at York by Henry III, and the following day he was married to the English monarch's eldest daughter Princess Margaret. Alexander proved a strong-willed king who, despite the English influence in his youth, refused to swear homage for his kingdom. He continued his father's efforts to establish Scottish mastery of the Isles. In 1263 his army inflicted a notable defeat on Haco, King of Norway at the Battle of Largs in Ayrshire. The Norwegians were subsequently forced to concede to him the Western Isles and the Isle of Man, under the treaty of Perth in 1266. Alexander established good relations with his brother-in-law Edward I. On 19 August 1274, Alexander and Margaret attended the coronation of her brother in Westminster Abbey. Margaret died six months later, leaving three children. Within a few years, Alexander suffered a further series of family tragedies. His younger son David died in 1281 at the age of eight, his daughter Margaret, who had married King Eric of Norway, died in childbirth in 1283, and his elder son Alexander died childless in 1284 after a long illness. A week after the prince's death, the Scottish Parliament recognised Margaret, the little daughter of Eric and Margaret, as the heir presumptive to the Scottish throne.

Alexander was only 44, and so he decided that the best way to avoid a constitutional crisis was to remarry and have more sons. On 14 October 1285 he therefore took as his wife Yolande, Comtesse de Montfort, daughter of Robert IV, Comte de Dreux. Five months later, on 19 March 1286, Alexander's horse stumbled and he fell from a cliff near Kinghorn, Fife. The king was killed, leaving the Scots to mourn an energetic, effective monarch who had brought them peace and prosperity. Alexander III (1249-1286)

King of Scotland from 1249 to 1286, the last major ruler of the dynasty of kings descended from Malcolm III Canmore (reigned 1058-93), who consolidated royal power in Scotland. Alexander left his kingdom independent, united, and prosperous, and his reign was viewed as a golden age by Scots caught up in the long, bloody conflict with England after his death.

The only son of King Alexander II (reigned 1214-49), Alexander III was seven years old when he came to the throne. In 1251 he was married to Margaret (d. 1275), the 11-year-old daughter of England's King Henry III. Henry immediately began plotting to obtain suzerainty over Scotland. In 1255 a pro-English party in Scotland seized Alexander, but two years later the anti-English party gained the upper hand and controlled the government until Alexander came of age the year 1262.

In 1263 Alexander repulsed an invasion by the Norwegian king Haakon IV, who ruled the islands along Scotland's west coast. Haakon's son, King Magnus V, in 1266 ceded to Alexander the Hebrides and the Isle of Man. Alexander was killed in 1286 when his horse fell over a cliff. Because his children were all dead, his infant grandchild Margaret "the Maid of Norway" (d. 1290) succeeded to the throne.


Alexander married Margaret [2725], daughter of King Henry III [2715] and Unknown.


Jim Reidford - Copyright 2012
Last updated 20 August 2012

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