~ Scottish Jacobite Uprising 1747 Corsican Volunteer Named Powder Horn ~
This is a mid 18th century cow horn piece, the name on it is a Corsican one – ‘Antonio Erancescu Bastelica’ – and it is also dated 1747. ‘Erancescu’ is an alternate spelling of ‘Francesco’. All the lettering is in the same hand and has worn smooth with age.
The association between the Corsican name and Scottish design would relate to the second Jacobite uprising organised by Charles Edward Stuart, the son of the ‘Old Pretender’.
The fact that the name on the horn is Corsican would suggest that the person was allied and active in the Jacobite rebellion by Spanish supporting ties. The date of 1747, one year after the battle of Culloden, would also support this.
The horn has an integral suspension ring as well as a further iron one.
The horn is highly engraved to one side only, the dragonfly in the upper heart is a known Scottish symbol as is the roundel design and the other heart. Three faces appear, one in long flowing locks, depicting presumably Charles Edward Stuart (‘Bonnie Prince Charlie’).
~ Jacobite Links ~
We know today that after the failed invasion of the Jacobites, supported by the Spanish in 1719, the loyalists exiled themselves to France, Spain and Italian provinces. In 1741 Corsica was administrated by Genoa under the protection of Spain, after the 1726-1736 Corsican revolution. In 1745, with Spanish and French aid, the Jacobite rising known as The ‘Forty-Five began.
Charles Edward Stuart, son of the Old Pretender, often referred to as Bonnie Prince Charlie or the Young Pretender, landed on the island of Eriskay in the Outer Hebrides, bringing with him some of his supporters from Europe.
Several clans unenthusiastically joined him. At the outset he was successful, taking Edinburgh and then defeating the only government army in Scotland at the Battle of Prestonpans.
The Jacobite army marched into England, took Carlisle and advanced as far as south as Derby. However, it became increasingly evident that England would not support a Roman Catholic Stuart monarch.
The Jacobite leadership had a crisis of confidence and they retreated to Scotland as two English armies closed in and Hanoverian troops began to return from the continent.
Charles’ position in Scotland began to deteriorate as the Whig supporters rallied and regained control of Edinburgh.
After an unsuccessful attempt on Stirling, he retreated north towards Inverness. He was pursued by the Duke of Cumberland and gave battle with an exhausted army at Culloden on 16 April 1746, where the Jacobite cause was crushed.
Charles hid in Scotland with the aid of Highlanders until September 1746, when he escaped back to France.
There were bloody reprisals against his supporters and foreign powers abandoned the Jacobite cause, with the court in exile forced to leave France. The Old Pretender died in 1760 and the Young Pretender, without legitimate issue, in 1788. When his brother, Henry, Cardinal of York, died in 1807, the Jacobite cause was at an end.
Ex-Peter Dale collection, a noted militaria dealer of Burlington Arcade, London.
~ Dimensions ~
The horn’s length is 15.5 inches (39.4 cm) and its width is 3.5 inches (8.9 cm). It weighs 275 grams.
~ Condition ~
The horn is excellent for its age. The decorations are clear. On the reverse (undecorated) side are dimples, these most likely are not damage but natural inclusions in the natural cow horn, the best side was kept for the decorated front. There is no stopper.