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Posthumous portrait of Mary Queen of Scots

The chambers at Holyrood are filled with items associated with Mary

Livinus de Vogelaare (active c. 1551-1600)

The Memorial of Lord Darnley Dated 1567

Oil on canvas | 142.3 x 224.0 cm | RCIN 401230

Mary, Queen of Scots' Outer Chamber, Palace of Holyroodhouse

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Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley was the second husband of Mary, Queen of Scots and the father of James VI and 1. He died a violent death on the night of 9 February 1567 when, after a visit from Mary, the house in which he was staying just outside Edinburgh was blown up by gunpowder. In the morning the bodies of Darnley and a page were found strangled in an adjoining garden.

This painting was commissioned by Darnley’s parents, the Earl and Countess of Lennox, who are pictured kneeling beside the tomb of their son. In the corner is an inset picture of the encounter at Carberry Hill (15 June 1567), where Mary is seen surrendering to supporters of the Lennox family. Livinus de Vogelaare's picture can be read as a damning indictment of the part played by Mary, Queen of Scots, in the murder of her husband.

  • Creator(s)

    Livinus de Vogelaare (active c. 1551-1600) (artist)

  • 142.3 x 224.0 cm (support, canvas/panel/str external)

    150.7 x 232.7 x 6.5 cm (frame, external)

  • The Memorial of Henry Stewart, Lord Darnley (1545-67)

  • Presented to Queen Caroline

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