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  • Cornelius Johnson
Robert, Lord Bruce, later 2nd Earl of Elgin and 1st Earl of Ailesbury (1626 - 1685)

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Robert, Lord Bruce, later 2nd Earl of Elgin and 1st Earl of Ailesbury (1626 - 1685) 1633


  • Scottish Art
This fashionably dressed young sitter is Robert, Lord Bruce, the only child and heir of the Scottish nobleman Thomas Bruce, 1st Earl of Elgin. As a boy Bruce received little formal education, but in his teens travelled to Europe becoming one of the first Scots to embark on the Grand Tour. By 1659 Bruce was an active royalist conspirator and was involved in plans for an uprising against the government, which led to his arrest. However following the Restoration his loyalty was recognised by Charles II and he was appointed to a number of prestigious posts at court and within parliament. Later he earned the confidence of James VII and II and bore the St Edward’s sceptre at his coronation in 1685.

Glossary Open

Grand Tour

An educational tour of Europe, especially through France and Italy taken by (particularly British) aristocratic youth from the 17th to the 19th centuries. Such tours were seen as essential for a full understanding of classical civilisation. They were also important opportunities for collecting art and antiquities.


Re-establishment of the British monarchy in 1660 after Parliamentarian rule following the English Civil War years. The term also denotes the subsequent rule of Charles II from 1660 -1685.

Grand Tour, Restoration


  • Acc. No. PG 3724
  • Medium Oil on canvas
  • Size 73.50 x 62.00 cm
  • Credit Purchased 2013