The Tenth Day of Christmas: Lords A-Leaping

This fine looking Lord, painted by William Mosman, isn’t leaping (although it would look amazing if he did in that outfit!) but he does have a fascinating history. Lord John Stuart (1713-1792) was the 3rd Earl of Bute, 8th Chancellor of Marischal College, and the first Scottish Prime minister of Great Britain. Quite a list!

Tenth

All these titles did not make him a popular Lord and his unpopularity as Prime Minster, due to sustaining extortionate taxes, led to widespread Scotophobia, riots, and eventually to him leaping out of office and resigning in 1763. A particularly telling nickname for him among his peers and the wider public was ‘Sir Pertinax MacSycophant’ in reference to the Roman Emperor Publius Helvius Pertinax, who was murdered three months after his meteoric ascent by his own bodyguard.

 The artist of this very fine portrait from the museums’ collection, William Mosman (1700-1771), was an Aberdonian portrait and landscape painter, who studied under William Aikman and in Rome under Francesco Imperiali alongside his fellow Scotsman Allan Ramsay. He in turn became a teacher, teaching drawing at both King’s and Marischal College during the 1760s.

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About uoamuseums

The University of Aberdeen's Museums include King’s Museum and the University's Zoology Museum. The museums can claim to be Scotland's oldest, with records of museums and collections as far back as the late 17th century. Thanks to their status as a Recognised Collection of national significance, the Zoology Museum’s displays are currently being improved, while King's Museum hosts changing exhibitions drawn from across the collections, particularly those formerly in Marischal Museum. Visitors are warmly welcomed to the museums, and there are no charges for admission. Marischal College now houses the Museums Collections Centre, caring for and conserving many of the collections.
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