Euphemia (I) Countess of Ross 2
- Born: About 1343
- Marriage (1): LESLIE, Walter Earl of Ross, jure uxoris in 1365 1
- Marriage (2): STEWART, Alexander Lord of Badenoch then Earl of Buchan in 1382 2
- Died: After 5 September 1394 3
- Buried: Fortrose Cathedral, Scotland 4
User ID: K181.
TWO WOMEN NAMED EUPHEMIA
Two women, in medieval Scottish history, who are regularly confused in popular references, were both named Euphemia. Both were born in the early to middle part of the 14th century; and both lived till the latter decades of the century. Both had more than one husband; and both were granted a papal dispensation to marry one of their husbands. Both married a man surnamed Stewart, of the Royal House of Scotland. In fact one Stewart was the father of the other! Of the two, Queen Euphemia lived in the generation prior to Countess Euphemia of the O'Beolan family. The two women were:
1 EUPHEMIA DE ROSS, COUNTESS OF MORAY then QUEEN OF SCOTS (c1329-1386)
Euphemia de Ross was a member of the clan Ross; her parents were Aodh or Hugh, Earl of Ross and Margaret Graham, the earl's second wife. Euphemia married John Randolph, 3rd earl of Moray, but had no children by him. By this marriage she became Countess of Moray. Randolph was killed in 1346 at the Battle of Neville's Cross in Durham in England. Euphemia then remained a widow for about nine years.
After grieving Randolph's death and having been granted a papal dispensation on account of affinity, Euphemia married Robert Stewart, Earl of Strathearn, in 1355, as his second wife. Robert became Robert II, King of Scots in 1371, so Euphemia then, by right, became his Queen. She was crowned at Scone in Perthshire by Alexander de Kyninmund II, Bishop of Aberdeen, in 1372 and was queen until her death in 1386. The royal couple had four children. Neither of her sons became king, since the law of primogeniture then dictated that the first-born son of Robert's first marriage should succeed him.
2 EUPHEMIA O'BEOLAN, COUNTESS OF ROSS by birth (c1343-after1394)
Euphemia is often referred to as Euphemia of Ross, Euphemia Ross or Euphemia I. She was the elder of two daughters of Uilleam III, the last O'Beolan Mormaer of Ross (William III, earl of Ross), and since she had no brothers she inherited from her father and became Countess of Ross in her own right. The 'Mormaer', translated from the Gaelic as 'earl', and second only to the king, was the ruler of the province of Ross in Scotland. Uilleam III was a descendant of Ferquhard, from the Irish Ó Beólláin (O'Beolain, Boland, Bolan) family. The family is also referred to as Ross after the province itself, or sometimes Gillander or MacTaggart for historical or socio-cultural reasons.
Euphemia married Sir Walter Leslie, by papal dispensation, and, following the medieval practice, Leslie took possession of, for himself, by marriage, the title his wife had acquired by birth. After his marriage to Euphemia, therefore, he became Earl of Ross, a title which was then inherited by his descendants.
Leslie died in 1382, and Euphemia married for a second time. Her husband was Alexander Stewart, 1st Earl of Buchan, nicknamed "The Wolf of Badenoch". He was the son of Robert II, King of Scots and Elizabeth Mure of Rowallan, the king's first wife, and had been given the lordships of Badenoch and Lochindorb by his father. The marriage to Euphemia gave Alexander control of large tracts of land from the Cromarty Firth to Torridon, making him one of the greatest landholders in Scotland, though it did not give him the title of Earl of Ross. He was a determined and at times violent man, his most infamous public act being the burning down of Elgin cathedral to thwart his perceived enemy, the Bishop of Moray. The match between Euphemia and Alexander was failing on account of his behaviour; it produced no children, and Alexander eventually had to accept the annullment of his marriage by the Pope. 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
Euphemia married Walter LESLIE Earl of Ross, jure uxoris, son of Sir Andrew DE LESLIE 6th of that Ilk and Mary ABERNETHY co-heiress, in 1365.1 (Walter LESLIE Earl of Ross, jure uxoris was born about 1318 and died by 1382 2.)
"There is a charter in the possession of the Earl of Strathmore, by which Andrew de Leslie, Dominus Ejusdem, confirms a charter from Walter de Leslie, Dominus de Philorth, of all the lands which the said Walter had in territorio de Monergood, to John Lyon de Terteviot. In this charter Sir Andrew de Leslie calls Sir Walter de Leslie his uncle - viz., 'Sciatis nos vidisse cartam dilecti patrui nostri Walteri de Lesley de Philorth, &c.' There is no date in this charter of confirmation, but it must have been granted between 1365, the year in which Sir Walter de Leslie married Euphemia, daughter of the Earl of Ross, and assumed the title of Lord of Philorth, and the year 1372, when he became Earl of Ross in right of his wife, on the death of William, Earl of Ross, his father-in--law."
from Family of Leslie 1
Euphemia had a relationship with Alexander STEWART Lord of Badenoch then Earl of Buchan, son of Robert II STEWART King of Scots and Elizabeth MURE 'of Rowallan'.2 (Alexander STEWART Lord of Badenoch then Earl of Buchan was born about 1343 and died by 24 March 1406 2.)
"He (Alexander Stewart) deserted his wife for a woman named Mariota, who may have been the mother of his illegitimate children..... For deserting his wife he was reprimanded and excommunicated, 2 November 1389, by the Bishops of Moray and Ross, and ordered to adhere to his wife and not illtreat her, under a penalty of £200. In revenge he burned the towns of Forres and Elgin, and the Cathedral of Elgin in 1390. Ecclesiastical penalties made him humbly submissive, and after satisfying the Bishop of Moray, and doing penance at the church of Blackfriars Monastery at Perth in presence of his father the King he received absolution from the Bishop of St. Andrews."
from Scots Peerage (vol 2)
"Mariota. She is supposed to be the 'Mariota filia Athyn' handfasted to Alexander Stewart, Lord of Badenoch, and to be the mother of his children."
from Scots Peerage (vol 7) 2