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John Graham of Claverhouse, Viscount Dundee, about 1649 - 1689. Jacobite leader

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John Graham of Claverhouse, Viscount Dundee, about 1649 - 1689. Jacobite leader About 1675

Not on display

  • Scottish Art
This painting is one of many likenesses of John Graham of Claverhouse and resembles the ‘Melville’ portrait, so named after its present owner. An able military commander, Claverhouse was known as ‘Bonnie Dundee’ because of his good looks. He earned his other nickname, ‘Bloody Clavers’, for his persecution of Scottish Presbyterians. When William of Orange invaded England in 1688, Claverhouse stood by the Stuart monarchy. For this, King James VII and II rewarded him with the title Viscount Dundee. After James fled to France, Claverhouse raised the Highland clans to fight for the Jacobite cause. His army won a resounding victory at the Battle of Killiecrankie on 27 July 1689, but Claverhouse was killed and opposition to William faded away.

Glossary Open


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.

The Stuarts (The Stewarts)

The Stewarts / Stuarts were a Scottish royal dynasty that began with Robert II in the late fourteenth century. In 1603, with the Union of the Crowns of Scotland and England, James VI became James I of England. The Stuart reign saw a brief interruption with the republican Commonwealth due to the English Civil War, which followed Charles I’s execution in 1649, but it was restored in 1660 with Charles II as king. After the 1707 Acts of Union, the Stuarts became the heads of state of the newly created Great Britain. However, with childless Queen Anne’s death in 1714 the crown passed to the House of Hanover. The variant in spelling, from Stewart to Stuart, was due to Mary, Queen of Scots adopting the latter, French spelling, when she lived in France. This became the standard for future generations.

Jacobite, The Stuarts (The Stewarts)


  • Acc. No. PG 2183
  • Medium Oil on canvas
  • Size 74.30 x 62.00 cm (framed: 82.20 x 69.80 x 4.00 cm)
  • Credit Purchased 1970