Jacobite Sympathy Opaque Twist Wine Glass c1760
Heading : Georgian opaque twist wine glass
Date : c1760
Period : George III
Origin : England
Colour : Clear
Bowl : A round funnel bowl engraved with a carnation, leaves and a moth
Stem : Double series opaque twist consisting of a pair of spiral threads outwith a solid cable
Foot : Conical
Pontil : Snapped
Glass Type : Lead
Size : 14.3cm tall with a 5.1cm bowl and a 6.7cm foot
Condition : Excellent
Restoration : None
Weight : 114 grams
Carnations and the Jacobite cause
All collectors of Jacobite glass will be familiar with engraved Tudor or Stuart roses. Fewer are aware of the significance of Carnations. We don’t know precisely when this association between carnations and the Jacobites was first established however there are some historical pointers.
Bonnie Prince Charlie was born on 31st December 1720. The following January was unseasonably warm and the Jacobite Times records...
“The year 1721 began with a burst of spring which terrified nervous people. ' Strange and ominous,' was the comment on the suburban fields full of flowers, and on the peas and beans in full bloom at Peterborough House, Milbank. When the carnations budded in January, there was ' general amazement ' even among people who cut coarse jokes on the suicides, which attended the bursting of the South Sea bubble. The papers were quite funny, too, at the devastation, which an outbreak of smallpox was making among the young beauties of aristocratic families. The disease had silenced the scandal at tea tables, by carrying off the guests, and poor epigrams were made upon them. Dying, dead, or ruined, everyone was laughed at.”
1720 was the low point for the Jacobite cause. A small combined Spanish and Highlander force had been defeated at the battle of Glenshiel the previous summer and it was fully four years since Prince James had set sail from Montrose following the 1715 uprising. James 111 was in his papal palace at the Piazza dei Santi Apostili and was consuming the funds of supporters. The very early budding of Carnations was a “sign”.
Carnations had been associated with “the cause” for quite some time. One of the earliest references we have found is from the first decade of the century.
In the first picture attached, you will see a portrait of Princess Louise the princess royal or “Princess over the water” (youngest daughter of King James II and VII) which was painted about 1704.
The Scottish National Portrait Gallery owns this painting. In this, Louise wears a gold brocade dress with a white and a red carnation. In her hair are diamonds and further prominent red carnations. Why so much rouge and prominently painted lips on white skin? Was this simply fashion? You have to remember that this was painted at a time when a message and hidden meaning was intended in the way a lady held her fan alone and Red and White were the colours of the Stuart battle standard…could this be a mere coincidence?
There are numerous references in the chronicles and literature to later Jacobite parades being lead by “crosses of carnations” where the tomb of both pretenders were strewn with carnations each year as late as 1898. But why carnations?
A most infromative tome about the Jacobites was written by a Professor Murray Pittock who hails from Scotland.
From material culture and Sedition 1688-1760. Treacherous objects, secret places - Murray GH Pittock and Jacobitism (British History in Perspective). We have previously contacted Professor Pittock at the University of Glasgow. His email is below.
Subject: Re: Red Carnations & The Jacobite Cause
'Carnation' was used for 'coronation'. As virtually all risk of prosecution arose from language, references deriving from Latin, off rhymes, symbols or puns were used extensively to circumvent the law. The colour white was used-usually via roses- as a sign of the House of Bourbon and of the Dukes of York (white rose) and Albany (white land, code for Scotland in Charles I's court masques and praise poetry). The Stuart battle standard-certainly in 1745- was red and white. Red symbolized high status, being the first among colours, the first of the spectrum. It was in such a context the colour of the king; used by supporters of the Crown and the legitimate succession in the Exclusion Crisis. Also used together with green, symbolic of fertility and love: ‘The man that should our king hae been, /He wore the royal red and green’ (‘Welcome, Royal Charlie’).
Hope this helps
Professor Murray Pittock D. Litt. FEA FRHistS FRSA FRSE
Vice-Principal & Head of the College of Arts
6 University Gardens,
University of Glasgow G12 8QH
- Product Code: 2018043017
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