The group from the drawing reappear almost unaltered in this painting, with the exception of the man looking over the door. The painted figures are actually the same size as those in the drawing. To illustrate the true identity of certain rioters, Drummond included more detail than he had in the drawing. The rioter assisting the lady from her chair wears fine leather shoes with a silk bow, revealing his gentlemanly status. His graceful, confident bow is is stark contrast to the humble stoop of the rough, tartan-clad chair bearer. In the drawing, Drummond had already anticipated how the interaction between this group would guide the viewer, but the additional details in the painting bring this into sharper focus.
Drummond was an accomplished artist and antiquarian, who specialised in Scottish history paintings. He studied at the Trustees' Academy in Edinburgh and made many fine drawings, reflecting his interests in arms, armour and architecture. He supported the preservation of Edinburgh's historic buildings, which often feature in his paintings. Drummond researched his subjects thoroughly and planned his compositions along strict academic lines. Detailed drawings of individual figures, figure groups and compositional sketches, in pencil and watercolour, preceded his final painting. Drummond was elected to the Royal Scottish Academy in 1852 and became curator of the National Gallery of Scotland in 1868.