Bonnie Prince Charlie’s sword to go on display in Perth

Bonnie Prince Charlie’s sword and a rare Jacobite wine glass will go on display in Perth next year.

The public will be able to see the Jacobite treasures at Perth Museum, which opens next March.

The solid-silver-hilted broadsword was made by Perth craftsman James Brown, believed to have been given to him in 1739 by James Drummond, the 3rd Duke of Perth. 

It would have been an important symbol of Charles Edward Stuart’s claim to the Scottish throne whilst the Jacobite court was in exile in Rome in 1739.

It will be the first time the sword has returned to Scotland since it was made in Perth in 1739.

The stunning Jacobite wine glass will also be seen at Perth Museum for the first time and features the Duke of Perth’s family motto, ‘Gang Warily’. 

Lucy Brayson, Collections Assistant’ at Perth Museum holds an 18th century Jacobite Glass. Credit: Julie Howden

James Drummond, Duke of Perth, played a vital role in the last Jacobite Rising of 1745-6. 

He raised a regiment in Crieff and met Charles Edward Stuart in Perth in September 1745 where he was appointed joint commander of the Jacobite forces.

Although Drummond was well-liked by the prince and his men, he was an inexperienced soldier. 

He was a member of the Jacobite ‘Council of War’ for the invasion of England, and attempted, but failed, to induce the clans to charge at the enemy during the final defeat at Culloden. 

He escaped but died a few weeks later at sea in May 1746.

‘We are thrilled to be able to publicly display these two significant pieces of Jacobite history for the first time,’ said JP Reid from Culture Perth & Kinross.

‘Perthshire sits at the heart of the Jacobite story: the scene of large-scale pitched battles like Killiecrankie and Sheriffmuir, besieged homes, scorched-earth warfare and warring kinsfolk.

‘The Drummonds are key players in the 50 years of uprisings from 1689 – 1746. 

‘Three generations of committed Perthshire Jacobites, they gambled and lost everything in their support of the exiled Stuarts.’

Perth Museum will be a £27million redevelopment of the former city hall and aims to tell the story of Perth as Scotland’s first capital.

Other important objects coming to the new museum include the Stone of Destiny – also known as the Stone of Scone.

Render of Perth Museum West Facade. Credit: Mecanoo

It is returning to Perthshire from Edinburgh Castle, close to its origins at nearby Scone, for the first time in over 700 years. As the centrepiece of the new museum, the Stone will be free for all to visit.

Charles Kinnoull, chairman of Culture Perth & Kinross, said: ‘The collections held here in Perth and Kinross are recognised for their national significance and are in constant development. 

‘The opportunity to bring new objects such as this beautiful Jacobite glass and sword alongside loans from national partners and the existing collections and the Stone of Destiny, all within a stunning new home in the former City Hall is one which I could not be more excited about.

‘The collaboration between many different partners to bring all this about in the heart of one of Scotland’s oldest cities has been outstanding.’

Read more on Scottish Field’s News pages. 

Plus, don’t miss the November issue of Scottish Field magazine.