Farewell to Eliza
The Story:(Click on images to enlarge)
This piece takes its name from the poem of the same title by Robert Burns. The year is 1757 and a young Highland soldier is telling his lass that his regiment is to be shipped to North America to fight the French. He wants her to come with him. Will she go?
After the French and Indian War, the Highland Scots were given the choice to go back to Scotland or take up bounty land in the colonies. It was an easy choice as most all had lost everything in the “’45 Rising”. Today many Americans and Canadians are descended from these Gaelic soldier-settlers.
The inscription below reads "Aye, the regiment be bound t' the Americas. O', lass will'n ye no be a'comin' o'er wi' me?"
As in “Blessing of the Blades”, Harvey shows his mastery of detail. This young soldier is armed with his “Long Land Service Pattern” or Brown Bess musket in .75 caliber with bayonet, typical British issue. He carries a government issue basket hilt sword, patterned after the finer-made Highland basket hilts popular with Scottish clansmen. On his back, he carries the leather-covered and brass-tacked wooden targe, a personal shield used with the basket hilt. His dirk hangs on his belt in front. His haversack and British-issue canteen lay at his feet. An issue “ramshorn” butt all-metal Highland pistol rests on the haversack.
In 1746, King George II made a law against wearing Highland plaid, playing bagpipes, carrying Highland arms, and, in general, showing any affection for the old ways. A decade later, young Eliza brazenly appears in tartan and even displays a white Jacobite cockade on her hat. Deep in some areas of the Highlands, away from “Geordie’s Law”, some still played the pipes, wore a bit of tartan, and took their swords and dirks out from their hiding places in rafters and chimneys to polish. Some Scottish officials and military officers even had their portraits painted with full Highland regalia (and got away with it). Then there were some who were caught, arrested, tried, found guilty, “transported”, and sold as indentured servants. Oh well.
Eliza wears a chatelaine at her waist with her scissors, thimble, needle case, and an important-looking key. Around her shoulders, she wears a tonag, a short wrap or shawl. She is herding sheep, symbolizing the “Highland clearing” of the tenant farmers from the land for the raising of sheep. Her laddie is asking her to make a decision. She grips the musket barrel tightly, as if to keep him from leaving. He likewise firmly grasps her shepherd's crook to convince her to come with him. Eliza has set her basket, full of eggs, by his musket. What do you think? Maybe her little dog, barking at the annoying rooster on the wall, may find colonial turkeys just as entertaining as Scottish chickens.
Each giclée print is 20" x 24" (image size 16" x 20") on high-quality archival acid-free paper, numbered and signed by the artist. Prints are available in a limited edition of 200 from the original art.
Artist proofs are available with remarque, enhancement, signed and specially numbered by the artist, in limited editions of 10 from each original. Artist proofs are $500 each and available by phone order only.
Each print is shipped in acid-free archival packaging.
Printed by Heartland Printworks of Indianapolis, IN
The online image is purposely faded and watermarked to discourage online theft. The actual print is rich and vibrant with color and detail.
Hilt & Brand Ink ** Phone: 317-299-1090 ** Email: email@example.com