Room 4: Early Stuart Britain
See the portraits currently on display in Room 4 here
© The National Portrait Gallery, London
With the death of Elizabeth I in 1603 the Tudor dynasty came to an end. James VI of Scotland, a cousin of Elizabeth's, succeeded to the English throne, becoming James I of England. The Stuart family was to reign for over a century, a period of great achievements but also of civil upheaval on an unprecedented scale.
Literary culture flourished as never before. James, a prolific writer himself, commissioned the hugely influential 'King James' translation of the Bible; his queen, Anne, patronised dramatists and poets; and the public theatres experienced enormous popularity.