The Stuarts’ Memorial in Rome

 

As a follow-up to two earlier posts about the Jacobites in Edinburgh (here and here), these photos from St Peter’s Basilica in Rome show the memorial created in 1819 to three Stuarts: James, and his sons Charles (aka Bonnie Prince Charlie, the only one of the three who set foot in Edinburgh) and Henry.

St Peter's Stuarts 06

On it James is styled James III (of Great Britain), and while he was recognised as such by many European states he never actually sat on the throne. After his death in 1766 some contemporary Jacobite diehards liked to refer his sons as Charles III and, following Charles’ death, Henry IX, but diplomatically and realistically the Roman memorial foregoes such  numerical aspirations.

St Peter's Stuarts 01

The text above the door between the angels attempts to offer some consolation for their exile and failure to ascend a throne they believed was rightly theirs: it translates roughly as ‘blessed are the dead who die in the Lord’.St Peter's Stuarts 04

Immediately opposite it, above a doorway, sits an elaborate memorial to Maria Clementina Sobieska, daughter of the Polish king Jan III, who was unhappily married to James, was the mother of Charles and Henry. She died aged 32 in 1735.

St Peter's Maria Clementina

 

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