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Prince James Francis Edward Stuart; Princess Louisa Maria Theresa Stuart

1 of 9 portraits of Princess Louisa Maria Theresa Stuart

Prince James Francis Edward Stuart; Princess Louisa Maria Theresa Stuart, by Nicolas de Largillière, 1695 - NPG 976 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Prince James Francis Edward Stuart; Princess Louisa Maria Theresa Stuart

by Nicolas de Largillière
oil on canvas, 1695
75 7/8 in. x 57 3/8 in. (1928 mm x 1457 mm)
Bequeathed by Horatio William Walpole, 4th Earl of Orford, 1895
Primary Collection
NPG 976


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Known as 'The Old Pretender', James Stuart was the only surviving son of James II and Mary of Modena. He was secretly conveyed to France when his father abandoned the throne in 1688. On his father's death in 1701 his supporters in exile proclaimed him king of England, and five years later he made the first of several attempts to reclaim the English throne. He was deeply attached to his younger sister Louisa Maria, who was born at the exiled court at St. Germain-en-Laye. James II commissioned this portrait of his children from Largillière when the family was living in exile. The inscription on the urn tells us that James was seven and Louisa three at the time at which it was painted. Both Louisa and the large greyhound that her brother strokes direct the viewer to look at the prince and to acknowledge him as the rightful inheritor of the British throne. The dog is one of the many elements in the portrait which symbolise both the loyalty of Louisa to her brother and of the Jacobins to James II and his son. More detailed information on this portrait is available in a National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue, John Kerslake's Early Georgian Portraits (1977, out of print).

Related worksback to top

  • NPG D11540: Prince James Francis Edward Stuart (after)
  • NPG D11539: Prince James Francis Edward Stuart; Princess Louisa Maria Theresa Stuart (after)
  • NPG D34723: Prince James Francis Edward Stuart; Princess Louisa Maria Theresa Stuart (after)

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