1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Margaret, Maid of Norway

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MARGARET (1283–1290), titular queen of Scotland, and generally known as the “maid of Norway,” was the daughter of Eric II. king of Norway, and Margaret, daughter of Alexander III. king of Scotland. Her mother died soon after Margaret’s birth, and in 1284 the estates of Scotland decided that if Alexander died childless the crown should pass to his granddaughter. In March 1286 Alexander was killed and Margaret became queen. The English king Edward I. was closely watching affairs in Scotland, and in 1289 a marriage was arranged between the infant queen and Edward’s son, afterwards Edward II. Margaret sailed from Norway and reached the Orkneys, where she died about the end of September 1290. The news of this occurrence was first made known in a letter dated the 7th of October 1290. Some mystery, however, surrounded her death, and about 1300 a woman from Leipzig declared she was Queen Margaret. The impostor, if she were such, was burned as a witch at Bergen.

See A. Lang, History of Scotland, vol. i. (Edinburgh, 1904).