Relics of a Franco-Scotland: Three 16th century armorial roundels for sale at Bonhams

Marie de Guise-Lorraine 1515-2025

It’s a pretty grand discovery. At the end of March, browsing my Twitter account, I stumbled upon BonhamsDunrobin Attic Sale in Edinburgh on Tuesday 20 April 2021. I started a quick research on Dunrobin Castle, family seat of the 25th Earl of Sutherland, “the Highlands’ premier ducal palace” and “one of Scotland’s grandest and most historic castles”, says Charlie Thomas, Director of House Sales at Bonhams. Skimming through the auctioneers’ website, amidst paintings and portraits, marble sculptures, dinner services and furniture, there appeared lot 381 and I read, holding my breath: “An important set of carved oak armorial panels, from the Queen Regent’s House, Blythe’s Close, Edinburgh”.

The Dunrobin Attic Sale, 20 April 2021, lot 381. © bonhams.com

This “Queen Regent” is Marie of Lorraine, Queen consort of James V, King of Scots (1512-1542), dowager queen and later Queen Regent of Scotland (1554-1560)…

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