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Attributed to after Belle, Alexis-Simon (French painter, 1674-1734) , Prince James Frances Edward Stuart

Core Record

Title Prince James Frances Edward Stuart
Collection National Trust for Scotland (Castle Fraser)
Artist Attributed to after Belle, Alexis-Simon (French painter, 1674-1734)
Previously attributed to circle of Belle, Alexis-Simon (French painter, 1674-1734)
Date Earliest about 1702
Date Latest about 1714
Description Prince James Frances Edward Stuart (1688-1766) was the son of James II. His birth was the impetus for the pro-Protestant 'Glorious Revolution' of 1688, resulting in his family's exile to France.

This oval-format portrait is after a depiction of him as titular king of Great Britain by the French court artist Alexis-Simon Belle (1674-1734) who painted him many times over several years. He is shown wearing armour, with the Order of the Garter sash over his shoulder. This presents the prince as the legitimate king and as a soldier, willing to fight for his birthright.

Current Accession Number Pending
Subject portrait (Prince James Frances Edward Stuart)
Measurements 73.5 x 61 cm (estimate)
Material oil on canvas
Acquisition Details Given by Major and Mrs Michael Smiley 1976
Notes The display of images played an important role in political allegiance, which resulted in the mass production of portraits of Prince James. Also, many of his British supporters had not seen him in the flesh and therefore desired visual reminders of the man they wanted to become their king. All of Belle's portrait types were thus copied and widely disseminated.

The location of the prime version of the present portrait ype is unknown, but versions are at the Palazzo Doria Pamphilij, Rome and at Chiddingstone Castle, Kent. The head type was repeated for diferent compositions (Government Art Collecton, London) including full-length types (Museo de San Carlos, Mexico City).

Rights Owner National Trust for Scotland
Author David Taylor



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