Queen Mary was born Princess Victoria Mary Augusta Louise Olga Pauline Claudine Agnes May in Kensington Palace on May 26, 1867 to Duke Francis and Duchess Mary of Teck. Young Mary was the great-granddaughter of George III and a second cousin to Queen Victoria.
She and her family lived a quiet life in England, forced to exist on the money that Duchess Mary`s mother the Duchess of Cambridge was able to give them. Unfortunately the money was not enough to keep the creditors away and in 1883 the family moved around Europe, settling in Italy for awhile.
They went around Europe for two years before settling again in London. After this May as she was called became her mother`s unofficial secretary. May spent much of her time corresponding to her family including her Aunt that lived in Germany. She also corresponded to her cousin(and future sister in law) Maude(the daughter of future King Edward VII). Maude wrote to May because she was in love with May`s brother Frank, but he did not care for Maude.
In 1891 at the behest of Queen Victoria May was engaged to Queen Victoria`s grandson and second in line Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence. Unfortunitly Albert died several weeks later. Queen Victoria however had an idea. Albert`s brother George was now next in line and the Queen suggested that May marry him instead.
Although it was an arranged marriage George and May were deeply in love and on July 6, 1893 they were married.
Over the course of their marriage the Yorks (they were Duke and Duchess of York until his father became King) had six children: Prince Edward in 1894, Prince Albert in 1895, May in 1897, George Duke of Kent in 1902, and Prince Johnn in 1905.
In January 1901 Queen Victoria died and May`s father in law became King Edward VII. This led May and George to be Prince and Princess of Wales about a year later.
Because Edward VII himself was not well prepared for the role of King because of his mother he wanted his son to be prepared. However George was not noted to be very smart, so while Princess of Wales May helped her husband read and interpret some state documents.
In 1910 her father-in-law died and May became Queen Mary. As Queen she still helped her husband with his new role as King. She was the Queen Consort for about 25 years before her husband died in January of 1936.
Her oldest son Edward became Edward VIII after the death of George V. Shortly afterwards she was shocked and saddened to hear that her son would renounce his throne to marry Wallis Warfield Simpson.
Her second son, Albert then became King choosing to name himself King George VI. She supported her son and his wife in their new role being the first dowager Queen to go to a successor`s coronation. While the new King and Queen traveled around the British Commonwealth, Queen Mary helped look after their two young daughters, Elizabeth and Margaret.
During World War Two the King was worried about his mother`s safety and he suggested that she move somewhere in the country where it would be safer. She did what he asked and went to live with her niece, only leaving the house shortly after the war in Europe was over.
She spent the remaining years of her life devoting herself to charities. She also liked obtaining jewels including the jewels of Empress Marie of Russia( Nicholas II`s mother). During this time she also spent time with her great-grandchildren Charles and Anne helping look after them when their parents (Elizabeth and Prince Phillip) were away helping the ailing king.
In 1952 her son King George VI died of lung cancer. She was sick at the time with lung cancer as well, and shortly before the coronation of her granddaughter Elizabeth she died.
Full Name at Birth
Victoria Mary Augusta Louise Olga Pauline Claudine Agnes
85 (age at death)
Date of Birth
Date of Death
Location of Death
31 March 1953St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle
Queen Consort, Queen of England
Other Family Members