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Portrait of Queen Elizabeth I reveals secret snake
bbc ^ | 4 March 2010

Posted on 03/06/2010 6:39:04 AM PST by JoeProBono

A mysterious image of a coiled snake has appeared in a 16th century painting of Queen Elizabeth I, the National Portrait Gallery has said. The Tudor queen was depicted with the snake clasped in her fingers in an original version of the work, but it was replaced with a bunch of roses.

The paint has deteriorated over the years to reveal the serpent's outline. The painting will go on display at the London gallery on 13 March for the first time since 1921. It will form part of the Concealed and Revealed: The Changing Faces of Elizabeth I exhibition, which runs until 26 September.

Original sin

The portrait was created by an unknown artist in the 1580s or early 1590s. The gallery suggested the snake's removal may have been due to the ambiguity of the emblem. It may have represented wisdom, but snakes are also linked to notions of Satan and original sin.

(Excerpt) Read more at news.bbc.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Arts/Photography
KEYWORDS: jpb; queen; queenelizabeth; snake; virginqueen

The painting today (left) and an artist's impression of how the snake may have originally looked


1 posted on 03/06/2010 6:39:04 AM PST by JoeProBono
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To: JoeProBono

2 posted on 03/06/2010 6:42:20 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

David Icke is smiling today.


3 posted on 03/06/2010 6:43:43 AM PST by FReepaholic
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To: JoeProBono

Kings were often pictured with a sword or dagger which symbolized their power over life and death. It appears that the snake in the hands of a Queen conveys the same power.


4 posted on 03/06/2010 6:44:01 AM PST by Young Werther (wtih)
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To: FReepaholic

British author exposes the reptilian bloodline that rules the world.


5 posted on 03/06/2010 6:47:53 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono
was replaced with a bunch of roses

How long ago was that?

It would seem that some political correctness was splattered on the painting at one time.
6 posted on 03/06/2010 6:49:06 AM PST by TomGuy
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To: Young Werther
The Egyptian Pharaohs wore a crown with a serpent in the front to symbolize their power to strike at an enemy.
7 posted on 03/06/2010 6:50:00 AM PST by PUGACHEV
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To: Young Werther
Queen Snake


8 posted on 03/06/2010 6:51:33 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono
Related link....

A serpent repents in Queen Elizabeth I’s hand

9 posted on 03/06/2010 6:54:20 AM PST by mewzilla (I'm not a socialist. Heck, yes, I hope Barry fails. Sheesh.)
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To: JoeProBono

I’m thinking the snake might have respresented Spain, Englands most powerful enemy before the smashing of the planned invasion.


10 posted on 03/06/2010 6:55:38 AM PST by Lockbar (March toward the sound of the guns.)
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To: mewzilla
Thanks!


11 posted on 03/06/2010 7:03:53 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

Very interesting.


12 posted on 03/06/2010 7:07:56 AM PST by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: Lockbar

13 posted on 03/06/2010 7:13:35 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

Hmmm...a woman in control of a snake. It doesn’t take Freud to understand what that means!


14 posted on 03/06/2010 7:21:01 AM PST by poindexter
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To: poindexter

15 posted on 03/06/2010 7:25:09 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

Doesn’t look like a very good rendition of a snake. It looks more like a infant wyrm...ya know, a DRAGON.


16 posted on 03/06/2010 7:31:29 AM PST by Birdsbane ("Onward through the fog!" ... Oat Willie)
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To: JoeProBono

...or even an infant Lock Ness Monster. Snake? I doubt it.


17 posted on 03/06/2010 7:33:00 AM PST by Birdsbane ("Onward through the fog!" ... Oat Willie)
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To: Birdsbane
Interesting


18 posted on 03/06/2010 7:34:45 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

Yup, I think the case is cracked.


19 posted on 03/06/2010 7:41:05 AM PST by Birdsbane ("Onward through the fog!" ... Oat Willie)
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To: JoeProBono

I wonder if this could have been a veiled contemporary reference by the painter to the doubt and confusion about Queen Elizabeth’s sexuality.


20 posted on 03/06/2010 7:48:27 AM PST by Burkean (.)
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To: JoeProBono
It's a cobra! Is the artist blind?!

Just look up "cobra" on google images, and you will see.

21 posted on 03/06/2010 8:52:04 AM PST by my_pointy_head_is_sharp (Message to the Feds: Get your stinkin' mitts off my vitamins!!!)
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To: Burkean

“She’s a man, baby!”


22 posted on 03/06/2010 9:28:17 AM PST by GoDuke
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To: JoeProBono

Thanks for the interesting post. Many possibilities to ponder.


23 posted on 03/06/2010 10:08:39 AM PST by NorwegianViking
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To: NorwegianViking

;-{)


24 posted on 03/06/2010 10:09:47 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: my_pointy_head_is_sharp

Notice the lack of scales. Note the rubbery looking skin. Then take a good look at the attention to detail in the rest of the painting. Snake?


25 posted on 03/06/2010 11:50:08 AM PST by Birdsbane ("Onward through the fog!" ... Oat Willie)
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To: GoDuke; SunkenCiv

Actually, she does look rather mannish in this portrait.

In fact, the features resemble one of the paintings of William Shakespeare.

Another Shakespeare mystery????


26 posted on 03/06/2010 1:10:33 PM PST by wildbill (You're just jealous because the Voices talk only to me.)
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To: JoeProBono

The serpentine nature of the usurper Elizabeth is well known, especially to Catholics.

Cate Blanchett she wasn’t.


27 posted on 03/06/2010 2:44:37 PM PST by B-Chan (Catholic. Monarchist. Texan. Any questions?)
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To: JoeProBono

The possibility exists, and cannot be casually discharged, that the whole painting was re-purposed and the subject herself is also part of the revision. Artistic conventions of this period tended to be rather formulaic.


28 posted on 03/06/2010 2:55:49 PM PST by Brass Lamp
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To: JoeProBono
After Lord Blackadder's death, the Queen could no longer bear to look upon the black snake.
29 posted on 03/06/2010 9:33:55 PM PST by Pilsner
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To: GoDuke

My supposition from studying the history of this period is that something was physically abnormal about Queen Elizabeth. Modern speculation is that she had androgen insensitivity syndrome. Whatever the cause, I think she must have known she could not bear children. She played the game well, keeping a number of suitors dangling and always holding out the possibility to foreign governments that an alliance through marriage was possible. This worked until she was in her early forties and then the possibility was not feasible anymore.

If she was merely fearful of marriage or wanted to use her marriageability to its fullest in negotiations I can see the prudence of waiting until mid thirties to marry. But at some point it is more worth it to produce an heir, even if it’s just with some flunky courtier like Mary Queen of Scots picked, than to age past the possibility of having a child. The 1580s and 1590s were a remarkably volatile time because it was obvious she would not produce an heir. She lost power little by little—power that she could have sustained by producing an heir.

So I think she knew she couldn’t have a child (most probably because she didn’t menstruate) and she made the best of a bad situation.


30 posted on 03/07/2010 2:53:10 PM PST by Burkean (.)
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