Portraits of James I and James II, kings of Scots

some comparisons and a conjecture

Frederick Hepburn (Author)

Portrait sets, Renaissance, Medieval, Scotland, Kings, Portraits
Portraits, Kings, Scotland, Medieval, Renaissance, Portrait sets


This paper presents an inquiry into the origins of some painted portrait images of James I and James II of Scotland which are first attested in the late 16th century. That the likenesses are not authentic is shown by comparisons with images of the two kings which have a demonstrable claim to authenticity, and by a consideration of the costumes depicted: the latter were evidently derived from sources which, although of 15th-century date, were too late in the century to have been authentic for these particular rulers. On the evidence of the sets of portraits to which these paintings belong, one in Edinburgh and another in Munich, it is suggested that the faces of James I and II were based on those of the (authentic) images of James III and IV respectively.


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How to Cite
Hepburn, F. (2019). Portraits of James I and James II, kings of Scots. Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, 148, 209-229. https://doi.org/10.9750/PSAS.148.1260