About this artwork

Lord Lewis followed the example of his father by actively supporting the Jacobite cause. In October 1745 he abandoned his career in the Royal Navy and swore allegiance to Prince Charles Edward Stuart. He was appointed lord lieutenant of Aberdeen and Banffshire, with orders to raise another Jacobite army in the north. When the main army headed south to England in November, Lord Lewis remained in Scotland where he recruited, with difficulty, a regiment and defeated government troops at Inverurie on 23 December 1745. After the Battle of Culloden, Lord Lewis escaped to France. He became increasingly mentally unstable and died in exile in Montreuil, not yet thirty.

John Alexander

John Alexander

John Alexander, son of an Aberdeen doctor, was the great-grandson of George Jamesone, the most famous Scottish painter of the seventeenth century. After some time in London, Alexander travelled to Italy in 1711 where he studied under Giuseppe Chiari and received commissions from the Stuart court in exile. When he returned to Scotland in 1720 he worked for the Duke of Gordon, a Catholic and a staunch Jacobite, and produced his most ambitious work, a ceiling painting for Gordon Castle. Most of his clients were from the north-east of Scotland and many were Jacobites. He took up arms for Prince Charles in the 1745 Rising and became a fugitive after Culloden but was back in Edinburgh working openly by 1748.