Art and Magic in the Court of the Stuarts by Vaughan Hart

By Vaughan Hart

Spanning from the innauguration of James I in 1603 to the execution of Charles I in 1649, the Stuart courtroom observed the emergence of a whole expression of Renaissance tradition in Britain. In paintings and Magic within the courtroom of the Stuarts, Vaughan Hart examines the impression of magic on Renaissance artwork and the way in its function as a component of royal propaganda, paintings used to be used to symbolize the ability of the monarch and replicate his obvious command over the hidden forces of nature.`Court artists sought to symbolize magic as an expression of the Stuart Kings' divine correct, and later in their coverage of Absolutism, via masques, sermons, heraldy, gardens, structure and processions. As such, magic of the sort enshrined in Neoplatonic philosophy and the court docket artwork which expressed its cosmology, performed their half within the complicated factors of the Civil conflict and the destruction of the Stuart photo which in its wake.

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Remember the Delphicall Oracle NOSCE TEIPSUM (Know thy selfe) so long agoe pronounced. (Dee 1570:ciiij) The transcendence of the soul was facilitated, in Dee’s view, through contemplation of the numerical and geometric basis of human proportion. 16 Anthropomorphic themes were later reflected in Henry Wotton’s Elements of Architecture (which also discussed the related elements of sculpture, painting, and garden design), published during the Stuart period itself, in 1624. On what he terms the ‘placing of the Parts’ in Vitruvian architecture, Wotton notes, I will propound a Rule of mine owne Collection, upon which I fell in this maner.

The Stuart monarchs projected their establishment of an empire separate from, but equal to, that of Rome since they saw themselves as receiving divine authority for their actions directly, as rulers by Divine Right, whilst this imperial mission served to emphasise their established Protestant role as the ‘Defenders of the Faith’. More specifically, however, Stuart expectations of a Golden Age and claims to Protestant imperial destiny were justified by Court apologists through reference to British legend, and to the tale of an Albion of magical virtue which would one day be restored.

And by that, wade further. Remember the Delphicall Oracle NOSCE TEIPSUM (Know thy selfe) so long agoe pronounced. (Dee 1570:ciiij) The transcendence of the soul was facilitated, in Dee’s view, through contemplation of the numerical and geometric basis of human proportion. 16 Anthropomorphic themes were later reflected in Henry Wotton’s Elements of Architecture (which also discussed the related elements of sculpture, painting, and garden design), published during the Stuart period itself, in 1624.

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