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Easter in the Royal Collection

Explore Easter imagery in the Royal Collection

Keyl reported in a letter that he had learned from Sir Edwin Landseer that 'The Queen was quite delighted with my Lambs brought them herself with her own hands into his bedroom – thought it quite Preraphaelite'.
Signed and dated: F.W. Keyl / 1868.
April: Lambs in the Home Park at Windsor ©
b/w. Queen and Dean of Westminster ; followed by Philip and other clergymen ; leaving Westminster Abbey after Maundy service, passing Guard of Honour of the Yeomen of the Guard.

The Queen distributes Royal Maundy. ©

Easter is the oldest Christian tradition. It celebrates the resurrection of Christ. It is the culmination of Holy Week, during which Christians remember the key events leading up to Jesus' death and Resurrection, as told in biblical accounts. For Christians and non-Christians alike, it is a period associated with rebirth, Easter eggs and springtime blossoms.

Easter celebrations begin on Maundy Thursday. Each year on this occasion, The Queen travels to a different cathedral across the country and hands out Maundy Money to individuals, in recognition of their service to their community. Good Friday marks the day that Christ was crucified on the cross. Today it is commemorated by eating hot cross buns.

Easter Sunday is the culmination of this holiday period, marking the Resurrection of Christ. The Queen usually attends a service at St George’s Chapel, a fourteenth-century chapel located at the Lower Ward of Windsor Castle. Many of us will mark the day with an Easter egg hunt –a tradition that may actually originate in a Medieval Anglo-Saxon festival, which welcomed spring and renewal following the winter months. The Queen does not take part in an official Easter egg hunt but her great-great grandmother, Queen Victoria, described many happy Easter Sundays pursuing such activities:

Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

The head of Judas

Friedrich Wilhelm Keyl (1823-71)

April: Lambs in the Home Park at Windsor

Henrik Immanuel Wigström (1862-1923)


Bedford Master (active c. early 15th century)

The Sobieski Hours

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Rembrandt van Rijn (Leiden 1606-Amsterdam 1669)

Christ and St Mary Magdalen at the Tomb

Queen Victoria, Queen of the United Kingdom (1819-1901)

Sketches of the Royal Children by V.R. from 1841-1859

Michelangelo Buonarroti (Caprese 1475-Rome 1564)

The Risen Christ

Lambert Doomer (1624-1700)

The Angel opening Christ's tomb