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Prince Charles Edward Stuart, 1720 - 1788. Eldest son of Prince James Francis Edward Stuart

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Prince Charles Edward Stuart, 1720 - 1788. Eldest son of Prince James Francis Edward Stuart about 1750


  • Scottish Art
This engraving is one of several ‘Harlequin’ portraits of Bonnie Prince Charlie, so-called because of the bright colours and chequered pattern of the clothing. These portraits, by different artists, were probably inspired by one well-known painting of Prince Charles Edward wearing Highland dress; possibly the suit with trews (trousers) and plaid that was presented to him by the Duke of Perth. A sword and targe (shield) similar to those in the pictures were also part of the present. This colourful engraving is a close copy of a painting by an unknown artist who signed the work with ‘Wassdail’. The Harlequin theme is complete with associated weaponry, a castle in the background and several thistles, the Scottish symbol for strength and resistance.

Glossary Open


The printmaking technique in which an image is inscribed on a copper plate with a tool that cuts a groove in the surface. This groove holds the ink that creates the print when it is applied to paper. Also refers to the method of making an incision on a material such as glass.


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.

Engraving, Jacobite


  • Acc. No. BLAIKIE 9.8
  • Medium Coloured line engraving on paper
  • Size 30.50 x 18.40 cm
  • Credit On permanent loan from the National Library of Scotland