About this artwork
Fuseli illustrates the moment immediately after Robert the Bruce kills his rival to the Scottish throne, John “Red” Comyn. This event took place in 1306 in the Franciscan monastery in Dumfries, Scotland. Fuseli places the swaggering Robert front stage, nonchalantly resheathing his sword. In the background, the dying Comyn has collapsed in the arms of the friars.
The figure of Robert—whose exaggerated musculature was inspired by both ancient Roman sculpture and Michelangelo—is seen from slightly below, emphasizing his dominance. Fuseli’s expert use of wash creates brilliant effects of sunlight and cast shadow, increasing the scene’s drama.
Currently Off View
- Prints and Drawings
- Henry Fuseli
- The Slaying of Red Comyn by Robert the Bruce
- Pen and brown iron gall ink, with brush and brown and gray wash, over chalk (recto), and black chalk (verso), on tan laid paper
- 315 × 206 mm
- Gift of Dorothy Braude Edinburg to the Harry B. and Bessie K. Braude Memorial Collection