Craftsmen of Mary's Chapel before the Palace of Holyrood

This painting shows representatives of the ten crafts embraced by the two incorporations of Wrights and Masons, who together comprise the United Incorporations of Mary’s Chapel.

They are depicted working at their respective callings in front of the Palace of Holyrood, the five crafts of the Masons on the left and those of the Wrights on the right.

This painting is by Roderick Chalmers, painted in Edinburgh in 1720 and is a copy of an earlier one by the Dutch artist Jacob de Witt (1641 – 1697), which was probably painted between 1685 and 1688.  But there is a difference. De Witt has included himself in the picture actually painting. Chalmers was clearly having none of it and substituted de Witt for himself, dressed in the latest fashions of the time!

It is interesting to note that everyone apart from the artist is wearing some form of headgear.  It is very probable that the headgear was made by craftsmen who were all members of the Incorporation of Bonnetmakers & Dyers of Edinburgh.

This painting belongs to the United Incorporations of Mary’s Chapel and hangs in the home of the Convenery of the Trades of Edinburgh, being at Ashfield, 61 Melville Street, Edinburgh.