Flora Macdonald [Fionnghal nighean Raghnaill ’ic Aonghais Òig], 1722 - 1790. Jacobite heroine
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Flora Macdonald [Fionnghal nighean Raghnaill ’ic Aonghais Òig], 1722 - 1790. Jacobite heroine about 1747
  • Scottish Art
Flora Macdonald was a famous Jacobite heroine. After the defeat of Prince Charles Edward Stewart at Culloden, she helped him escape to the Isle of Skye by supplying him with female servant clothes. Although her involvement was brief, over time she has become one of the best-known characters of the Jacobite myth. This chalk drawing of Flora Macdonald was made by the famous eighteenth-century portrait painter Allan Ramsay. According to the inscription at the bottom, it was ‘for a picture’, but the only painting of Macdonald by Ramsay bears little resemblance to this sketch. Ramsay’s Flora takes on a classical pose and the rural costume and flowers in her hair, and the royal standard she proudly holds, are reminiscent of the portrayal of mythological shepherdesses.

Glossary Open

Battle of Culloden

A battle fought on Culloden Moor near Inverness in 1746 between supporters of the exiled House of Stuart - led by the Young Pretender, Prince Charles Edward Stuart - and government troops led by the Duke of Cumberland. The government victory effectively brought the 1745 Jacobite Rebellion to an end and resulted in a repression of Highland culture as punishment.

Inscription

Text written on a book, document or artwork. Examples include the added information such as edition number and date on a print, or a dedication written in a book.

Jacobite

Jacobitism was a movement to restore the descendants of the Stuart King James VII and II to the British throne. The first claimant, Prince James Francis Edward (known as 'the Old Pretender') was exiled first in France, then Italy, from where he planned unsuccessful attempts to claim the throne. His son Prince Charles Edward (known as 'Bonnie Prince Charlie' or 'the Young Pretender') famously invaded Britain in 1745, but after some military successes was finally defeated at Culloden in 1746.

Battle of Culloden, Inscription, Jacobite

Details

  • Acc. No. PG 1665
  • Medium Chalk on paper
  • Size 35.50 x 25.40 cm
  • Credit Bequeathed by W.F. Watson 1886