Page last updated at 12:31 GMT, Friday, 18 September 2009 13:31 UK

Visitors flock to Queen's letter

The letter is being held in a glass case
The letter is being held in a glass case

The last letter written by Mary Queen of Scots, which is on display in Edinburgh, has been visited by more than 1,000 people a day.

They have been flocking to the National Library of Scotland to see the 422-year-old manuscript, written just six hours before the monarch's execution.

The priceless letter went on public display on Tuesday.

It will be displayed for just a week, to mark the official opening of the library's new visitor centre.

The letter is addressed to Henri III of France, brother of her first husband.

It is very rarely on public display for preservation reasons.

Martyn Wade, a National Library of Scotland librarian, said: "People have been pouring through our doors since we unveiled Mary Queen of Scots' last letter.

"One of our senior curators was saying that we haven't seen this many visitors since we put the Dead Sea Scrolls on display in the 1960s.

"It really is fantastic to see such passion and enthusiasm for this amazing piece of Scotland's history. It has also given people a chance to see our great new facilities, which enhance the visitor experience considerably."

It is unknown if or when it will go on public display again.

Print Sponsor

Queen's letter marks new chapter
14 Sep 09 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife
Queen Mary's body 'should return'
12 Oct 08 |  South of Scotland
Queen's death warrant copy saved
19 Feb 08 |  Scotland
Queen's death mask goes on show
01 Aug 06 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2017 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific