A new exhibition of rare and fascinating items collected in the Victorian era have gone on display at Bowhill, Selkirk – home of the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch.
Entitled ‘Love and Respect in the Victorian Age’, it will showcase a range of around 70 items including silver, porcelain, jewellery, books and manuscripts, paintings and miniatures.
Objects of immense value mingle with the practical and domestic to tell the story of Walter Francis Montagu Douglas Scott, 5th Duke of Buccleuch and 7th Duke of Queensberry and his wife, Charlotte-Anne, whose marriage in 1829 lasted until his death over half a century later.
As well as being the principle builders of Bowhill they were huge collectors of all forms of art. Highlights include the beautiful Mayflower Tiara – a diamond, gold and silver tiara made in the 1870s, which has been worn by many of the family’s brides on their wedding days. The antique headpiece can be disassembled to form nine brooches.
On show will be a silver-gilt plate, one of 12 engraved with the Parable of the Prodigal Son which dates from 1568, an incredibly rare survivor from Elizabeth I’s reign, and one of the ravishing, turquoise blue, dinner plates commissioned by Louis XV in 1751 from the Sèvres Porcelain Manufactory.
Curator Scott Macdonald, said: “While some of the items have been seen in a limited fashion, many such as the exquisite Mayflower Tiara and diamond earrings have never been seen by the public at large.
“A special treat will be the opportunity to see close up details on the immense solid silver candelabrum made in 1829 by Robert Garrard which tells the story of the Scotts of Buccleuch in silver figures and which weighs in at an astonishing 12 stone 4lbs.”
The exhibition is the first in Bowhill’s newly completed exhibition room, fully equipped with the latest museum display and lighting technology. Full details from www.bowhillhouse.co.uk.