About this artwork

This drawing – or cartoon – is a study for a section of the processional frieze in the main hall of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. William Hole, who was commissioned to decorate the gallery’s main hall, produced numerous sketches for every part of the scheme. This section can be found on the south wall and runs chronologically from right to left. It starts with Mary of Guise, mother of Mary Queen of Scots who is the third figure in this section. Lord Darnley and the Earl of Bothwell, husbands of Mary Queen of Scots, also feature, as does David Rizzio, her murdered secretary. In the middle appears church-reformer John Knox, with familiar cap and long beard. The section finishes with James VI of Scotland, who in 1603 became the first King of Great Britain.

William Brassey Hole

William Brassey Hole