Fans of St. Margaret of Scotland, who made it into the Faithful Four in Lent Madness this year, might enjoy reading about her daughter, Matilda of Scotland, Queen of England. So will fans of strong women and feminist firsts:
For the 18 years of her marriage, [Matilda] was part of the king’s council and participated in policy decisions. Henry would name her head of the council when he traveled to Normandy to administer his dukedom there. She issued judgments and charters. Her family connections with her brothers in Scotland kept the two kingdoms at peace. The historians state she played a vital role in affairs of the kingdom. Her position amounted to being vice-regal. She was the deputy of the king, acting in his name. It is arguable but she may have been the one medieval queen to wield so much power. Matilda was very skilled and effective in persuading Henry to follow her advice and do her will and may have relished in her power. In 1111, there is affirmation of a seal used by Matilda to verify a document. This is the first use of a seal by a European Queen and a rare use of a seal by a queen-consort.