(Donizetti: Maria Stuarda). Ten. Appointed by Queen Elizabeth I as ambassador to France. Mary Stuart, held captive in Fotheringay Castle, appeals to Leicester for help and he begs the Queen to visit her in gaol. He prepares Mary for the visit, counselling her to ask the Queen for forgiveness. The meeting is a disaster and Leicester's pleas for clemency for Mary are ignored as Elizabeth signs the death warrant. Suspecting that Leicester loves Mary, she orders him to witness the execution. Created (1834, as Buondelmonte) by Francesco Pedrazzi; (1835) by Domenico Reina.