Emblems in Scotland

Motifs and Meanings


Emblems in the visual arts use motifs which have meanings, and in Emblems in Scotland Michael Bath, leading authority on Renaissance emblem books, shows how such symbolic motifs address major historical issues of Anglo-Scottish relations, the Reformation of the Church and the Union of the Crowns. Emblems are enigmas, and successive chapters ask for instance: Why does a late-medieval rood-screen show a jester at the Crucifixion? Why did Elizabeth I send Mary Queen of Scots tapestries showing the power of women to build a feminist City of God? Why did a presbyterian minister of Stirling decorate his manse with hieroglyphics? And why in the twentieth-century did Ian Hamilton Finlay publish a collection of Heroic Emblems?

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Biographical Note
Michael Bath, Emeritus Professor of Renaissance Studies in the University of Strathclyde and Senior Research Fellow, University of Glasgow, is President of the Society for Emblem Studies. He is author of numerous books and articles on art history, emblem studies and Reading Poetry.
Table of contents
List of Illustrations

1 A Jester at the Crucifixion? The Fool at Fowlis

2 A City of Famous Women: Esther Inglis, Georgette de Montenay, and Christine de Pisan

3 Protestant Emblems: Building the House

4 ‘Rare shewes and singular inventions’: Court Festivals and Royal Baptisms

5 Alexander Seton’s Suburban Villa: Neostoical Emblems and United Nations

6 Presbyterian Preaching: Hieroglyphical Paintings in Stirling

7 Quarles Comes North: Scottish Reception of the Emblemes

8 Mobilising the Gap: Ian Hamilton Finlay’s Inheritance

Photograph Credits
Learned readers and scholars interested in emblems, the Renaissance and Scottish cultural studies.
Index Card
Collection Information