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The Jacobites

The word Jacobite comes from Jacobus, the latin form of James, so literally meant a supporter of the line of James. James VI of Scotland, from the House of Stewart (or Stuart, the French spelling) was crowned King of England in 1603 and the Stuarts reigned over both Scotland and England until the death of Queen Anne in 1714.

James VII (and II) was forced to abdicate in favour of his daughter, Mary, and her husband William of Orange. James' son was still a minor when Anne succeeded and, at her death, he was passed over for the Protestant George I of Hanover. Two Jacobite risings on behalf of James and his son, Charles Edward Stuart - popularly known as 'Bonnie Prince Charlie' - failed to overthrow the next Hanoverian George II.

By the time of the death of Bonnie Prince Charlie's brother, Henry, Cardinal Duke of York, support for the Jacobite cause had waned and few regarded anyone but George III as the natural successor.

The West Highland Museum has an outstanding collection of objects relating to Bonnie Prince Charlie and the Jacobite Cause. Have a look at our featured objects and enjoy their stories.

We are finding that fans of the Outlander books and TV series are making our Museum a 'must see' destination to learn more about the Jacobites and we can give them an excellent insight. As a guide we have produced this Outlander leaflet.

In all his finery

The West Highland Museum holds a fine collection of clothing and objects that once belonged to Bonnie Prince Charlie, as well as objects that are said to have belonged to him, or have been attributed to him and the Jacobite cause. As well as various items of clothing (including his jacket, bonnet, shoe buckles, sleevelinks and shoe buckles), the museum holds his death mask, his sword, and a large collection of Jacobite glass, miniatures, portraiture and paraphernalia.

The silk waistcoat pictured belonged to Prince Charles Edward and was given by him to his doctor in Rome.

Bonnie Prince Charlie's waistcoat