Something about Mary: A podcast interview with the co-directors of “In my End is my Beginning”

Today’s blog showcases the recent interview by our project’s co-directors Dr Steven Reid and Anne Dulau-Beveridge for the popular The Tudor History and Travel Guide website. The interview was conducted with Dr Sarah Morris over the phone during the most recent Covid-lockdown and is now a podcast entitled Mary, Queen of Scots: The Making of an Icon with Dr Steven Reid and Anne Dulau.

Whether you are new to the ‘In my End is my Beginning’: The Memorialisation and Cultural Afterlife of Mary Queen of Scots, 1567-2019 project or you have been following it over the past five years, the recent podcast interview with our co-directors gives a broad overview of the project and some of its central questions: What is it about Mary that fascinates people? Why has Mary been remembered and her story told and re-told in so many different ways over the past centuries? What happens when we shift away from questions of historical accuracy and start to think about the ways in which people have taken liberties with Mary’s story or played with its narrative? How has Mary been remembered and fictionalised and what does this tell us about the societies telling her story? Listen to the podcast here and find out more about the the project’s efforts to go in search of Mary and to uncover the memorialisation and cultural afterlife of the Queen of Scots.

Mary has been memorialised in different ways and in different media over the centuries. You can see a range of the objects that Steven and Anne discuss in the podcast below, so listen to the podcast and follow along!

Engraving of Mary Queen of Scots after Thomas de Leu (post-1587)
J. Leipold, late 16th-early 17th century
Print of Mary Queen of Scots, from engraving by G Vertue, lent by John Kirsop. 1735. The Hunterian Collections, TEMP.2072

Princess Alexandra as Mary, Queen of Scots, 1871. Private Collection
The King’s Bedchamber at the Palace of Holyroodhouse, showing the seventeenth-century tester bed hung with red damask in the centre of the room (RCIN 27918)
Royal Collection Trust/ © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2020
Gavin Hamilton, The Abdication of Mary Queen of Scots, 1765-1773, oil on canvas. The Hunterian
The death mask of Mary, Queen of Scots. Lennoxlove House collection. https://www.lennoxlove.com/
Mary Queen of Scots’ death mask at the Mary, Queen of Scots Visitor Centre in Jedburgh. See https://www.visitscotland.com/info/see-do/mary-queen-of-scots-visitor-centre-p253091
The Argyll papers bundle 3251, 5 letters from Mary Queen of Scots to Archibald 5th earl of Argyll in the Argyll Estate collection. The Maitland publication of the letters is available electronically
on the National Library of Scotland digital library pages: https://digital.nls.uk/publications-by-scottish-clubs/archive/80270668
Sapphire ring on gold loop with a 17th century inscription on the back of the bezel, reading ‘Sent by Queen Mary of Scotland at her death’. On the hoop are the words ‘to John, Mar(quis) Hamilton’ Lennoxlove House collection https://www.lennoxlove.com/. Photo: Anne Dulau-Beveridge.
Gold and bloodstone signet ring associated with Mary Queen of Scots purchased by Lady Augusta, 4th Marchioness of Bute in 1912 from Geraldine Chichester (née Villiers-Stuart), the great grand daughter of the 1st Marquess of Bute. Mount Stuart Collection
Vellum bound manuscript containing description of execution of Mary, Queen of Scots, 1586. Mount Stuart Collection. https://www.mountstuart.com/
French silver casket said to have contained the Casket Letters of Mary, Queen of Scots. It was made in the 15th century and given to Mary by her husband François II, King of France. Lennoxlove House collection https://www.lennoxlove.com/
Display case at Traquair House, with 2 purses and a shoe believed to have been left by MQS during one of her stays at Traquair House, and death mask. https://www.traquair.co.uk/. Photo: Anne Dulau-Beveridge

For more on the wide range of topics mentioned within the interview (from the iconography of Mary as a Catholic martyr to the fictional meetings of Mary and Elizabeth in opera and plays), check out the past blogs on this website.

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