The artistic patronage of John Stuart, Duke of Albany, 1520–30

Vic-le-Comte, the last Sainte-Chapelle

Bryony Coombs (Author)


Keyword(s):
Church, Reliquary church, Chapel, Reliquary
Location(s):
L'eglise Saint-Pierre; Vic-le-Comte; Puy-de-Dôme; Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes; France
Period(s):
Tudor, Medieval

Abstract


The Sainte-Chapelle at Vic-le-Comte is one of the most important religious buildings surviving from the 16th century in the Auvergne. It was the last of ten French royal and ducal chapels founded, broadly following the precedent set by Louis IX’s foundation of the Parisian Sainte-Chapelle in 1248. The primary function of this, and the other Saintes-Chapelles, was to provide a dignified structure within which to house fragments of the Passion relics inherited from Louis IX. For their patrons, such foundations served as important public expressions of piety, advertised the patrons’ connections to the French crown, and simultaneously functioned as valuable diplomatic tools, encouraging important guests to venerate their relics. The Sainte-Chapelle at Vic-le-Comte has received limited scholarly attention, particularly in relation to its patron John Stuart, Duke of Albany, and his position as Regent of Scotland. This paper examines this foundation and its ambitious programme of decoration in relation to the aims and ambitions of its founder. The motivations behind the project are analysed in relation to Albany’s position in Scotland, his growing prominence in France, and his strengthening ties to the Florentine Medici family. Investigated in relation to other examples of his patronage, Albany’s foundation demonstrates how issues of ancient lineage, sacred kingship, and dynastic commemoration were of central importance.

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References

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Published
21-11-2018
How to Cite
Coombs, B. (2018). The artistic patronage of John Stuart, Duke of Albany, 1520–30. Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, 147, 175-217. https://doi.org/10.9750/PSAS.147.1251
Section
Articles