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Title: Crowns, Wedding Rings, and Processions: Continuity and Change in Representations of Scottish Royal Authority in State Ceremony, c.1214 - c.1603
Author(s): Dean, Lucinda H S
Supervisor(s): Penman, Michael A
Mann, Alastair
Keywords: Ceremony
Scottish History
Early Modern
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: University of Stirling
Abstract: This inter-disciplinary thesis addresses the long term continuity and change found in representations of Scottish royal authority through state ceremonial bridging the gap between medieval and early modern across four centuries. Royal ceremony in Scotland has received very haphazard research to date, with few attempts to draw comparisons that explore how these crucial moments for the representation of royal authority developed over the course of a number of centuries. Three key royal ceremonies – inaugurations/coronations, funerals and weddings (with consort coronations) – form the core of this study of the Scottish monarchy from c.1214 to c.1603, and were chosen due to their integral position in the reign of each monarch. The issues of succession and security of hereditary monarchy dictate that the ceremonies of death and accession are inescapably intertwined, and funerals and coronations have been studied in unison together for other European comparators. However, the frequency of minor accessions, early and violent deaths, absentee kingship and political upheaval in Scotland across the time period determined from an early stage that weddings – often the first occasion for Scottish monarchs to project their personal adult authority and the point at which Scotland had the widest European audience for their display – were essential to forming a rounded view of developments. By offering a detailed analysis of these ceremonial developments across time, this study will provide the framework from which further research into royal ceremony and its place as essential platform for the dissemination of royal power can be undertaken. The thesis focuses upon key questions to illuminate the developments of these ceremonies as both reflectors of a distinct Scottish royal identity and representative of their integration within a broader European language of ceremony. How did these ceremonies reflect the ideals of Scottish kingship? How were they shaped to function within the parameters of Scottish governance and traditions? How was the Scottish crown influenced by other monarchies and the papacy? How did it hope to be perceived by the wider European community and how was royal power exercised over its subjects in this transitional period of Scottish history? The focus upon Scotland’s visual forays on the international stage and varied relations with European actors has required a continual comparison with other European countries across this time period, with particular attention being paid to England, France, Ireland and the Low Countries. Within the context of a highly public and interactive era of display and posturing by great leaders across Europe, crucial points this thesis engages with include: what made the Scottish ceremonies unique? And how can this further our understanding of that which lay beneath such representations of royal authority?
Type: Thesis or Dissertation

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