House of Stuart  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The House of Stuart, also known as the House of Stewart, is an important European royal house. Founded by Robert II of Scotland, the Stewarts first became monarchs of the Kingdom of Scotland during the late 14th century. Their direct ancestors (from Brittany) had held the title High Steward of Scotland since the 12th century, after arriving by route of Norman England. The dynasty inherited further territory by the 17th century which covered the entire British Isles, including the Kingdom of England and Kingdom of Ireland, also upholding a claim to the Kingdom of France.

In total, nine Stuart monarchs ruled just Scotland from 1371 until 1603. After this there was a Union of the Crowns under James VI & I who had become the senior genealogical claimant to all of the holdings of the extinct House of Tudor. Thus there were six Stuart monarchs who ruled both England and Scotland as well as Ireland (although the Stuart era was interrupted by an interregnum lasting from 1649-1660, as a result of the English Civil War). Additionally at the foundation of the Kingdom of Great Britain after the Acts of Union, which politically united England and Scotland, the first monarch was Anne of Great Britain. However, she died without issue and all the holdings passed to the House of Hanover, under the terms of the Act of Settlement 1701.

During the reign of the Stuarts, Scotland developed from a relatively poor and feudal country into a prosperous, fairly modern and centralized state. They ruled during a time in European history of transition from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. Monarchs such as James IV were known for sponsoring exponents of the Northern Renaissance such as poet Robert Henryson. After gaining control of all of Great Britain the arts and sciences continued to develop; William Shakespeare's best known plays were authored during the Jacobean era, while institutions such as the Royal Society and Royal Mail were established during the reign of Charles II.




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "House of Stuart" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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