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Sketchbook of Drawings Made in the Highlands: A Meeting of the Board of Ordnance

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Sketchbook of Drawings Made in the Highlands: A Meeting of the Board of Ordnance About 1749

Not on display

  • Scottish Art
The drawings in this sketchbook were made in and around Fort George and Inverness, shortly after the 1745 Jacobite uprising. This amusing caricatured group shows a meeting of the Board of Ordnance – the fore-runner of the Ordnance Survey, who were responsible for making maps. The Board began their military survey of remote areas of the Scottish Highlands in September 1747, soon after which Sandby was appointed as draughtsman to the project. It was part of a wider campaign to restore peace and control to the area following the events of 1745. It was during this survey that Sandby made this humorous drawing of his fellow board members. It looks forward to the satires he made on his eventual return to the south.

Glossary Open

1745 Rising

An attempt by followers of Prince Charles Edward Stuart (or 'Bonnie Prince Charlie') to reclaim the British throne for the Stuart dynasty. The Prince landed in the Outer Hebrides from France in July 1745. With the support of many Highland chiefs he gathered an army and marched south. The rebels had significant victories against the Hanoverian troops and reached as far as Derby. There they turned back, unsure of their ability to take London, and were pursued by government forces. The final battle was held at Culloden in 1746 where Bonnie Prince Charlie was decisively beaten and hopes of a Jacobite restoration were dashed.


A portrait with the facial features exaggerated for comic or satirical effect.


The ability to draw skilfully, often refers to technical drawing.


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.


This refers to the use of irony and sarcasm as a means to ridicule the subject’s vices.

1745 Rising, Caricature , Draughtsmanship, Jacobite, Satire


  • Acc. No. D 5339 A
  • Medium Pen and ink and watercolour over pencil on paper
  • Size 16.30 x 25.50 cm; 17.50 x 26.00 cm
  • Credit Purchased 1993