Collection of unique Mary Queen of Scots works to go on display
Childhood letters by Scotland’s last Catholic queen, Mary Queen of Scots, and other rare treasures go on display later this week for two days at an exhibition marking the anniversary of her execution.
The exhibition of items from the National Library of Scotland’s collections explore depictions of Mary Stuart through the ages, from the lavish engravings of a Mary Queen of Scots-themed masked ball in 1820s France to 20th and 21st-century film scripts and ephemera.
Visitors are able to see Mary Stuart’s childhood correspondence with her mother, Mary of Guise, and a letter to the French ambassador in England written in the early days of her captivity. There is also an early charter with Mary’s Great Seal.
It comes as Mary, Queen of Scots, starring Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie is on release in cinemas. The exhibition runs on Friday 8th February, and Saturday 9th February, marking the anniversary of her execution on 8th February 1587.
Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “This exhibit, which brings together Mary Queen of Scots items that have never before been seen together, shows that she was as much a household name during her lifetime as she is now.
“Highlights will undoubtedly be Mary Stuart’s handwritten letters which are held in the Library’s collections – opportunities to see treasures like these are almost as rare as the items themselves.”
Other items on display include a detailed series of engravings from 1791 depicting her execution, as well as a digitised presentation of her Last Letter complete with translation and interpretation.
The free exhibition at National Library of Scotland, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, is open from 10am to 4pm on both days.
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