Mary, Queen of Scots
Mary, Queen of Scots
after Cornelius and William Cure
plaster cast of front of head, 1870, based on a work of 1606-1616
10 1/2 in. (267 mm) high
Sitterback to top
- Mary, Queen of Scots (1542-1587), Reigned 1542-67. Sitter associated with 151 portraits.
Artistback to top
- Cornelius and William Cure (active 1606-1616), Sculptor. Artist associated with 3 portraits.
This portraitback to top
Commissioned by the Gallery in the late nineteenth century as an aid to the study of portraiture. This cast is taken from Mary, Queen of Scots' effigy in Westminster Abbey. The likeness portrayed in her tomb effigy derives from a version of her painted portrait, such as NPG 429, because it was the best image from which the sculptors could work when making the tomb monument many years after her death. It is likely that the original source was a miniature by Nicholas Hilliard, which was made during her imprisonment in England. The Italian mould maker, Domenico Brucciani, took plaster casts that were then made into electrotypes by the Birmingham firm Elkington & Co. The process used an electric current to deposit metal onto a mould made from the cast, which made an exact copy of the original sculpture.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 417
- Strong, Roy, Tudor and Jacobean Portraits, 1969, p. 217
Events of 1606back to top
Current affairsThe Lord Chief Justice Sir John Popham sentences Guy Fawkes to be hanged, drawn and quartered in the Old Palace Yard opposite Parliament.
Creation of a union flag of England and Scotland prompts complaints from Scottish shipowners that the St. George cross obscures the saltire of St. Andrew.
Art and scienceThe Stationers' Company Register, which allowed publishers to register their rights to produce printed works, notes a performance of William Shakespeare's tragedy King Lear, possibly the play's first appearance.
Benjamin Johnson comic masterpiece, Volpone, premiers at the Globe Theatre.
InternationalThree ships belonging to The London Company set sail from London, to establish colonial settlements in North America. Richard Bancroft, Archbishop of Canterbury, enlists Robert Hunt as chaplain for the expedition. Hunt probably conducted the first known holy communion service in North America.
View a wide collection of video content on our YouTube channel from past projects to our latest films.
Artist and sitter interviews
Get insights into creating portraiture from BP Portrait Award 2020 artists and their sitters.
Watch our film created to say ‘goodbye’ to the Gallery before we closed for our major transformation project.