Date of Award

Spring 5-10-2017

Document Type

Honors Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Art and Art History

First Advisor

Och, Marjorie

Major or Concentration

Art History


The Banqueting House ceiling by Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) that was commissioned by Charles I (1600-1649) embodied the power that the Stuart monarchy thought they had and they intended to display that power. The Banqueting House is the only surviving building of Whitehall Palace in London. The ceiling completed between the years 1632 to 1634 clearly demonstrated the idea of divine monarchy that was part of a wider European tradition. The main narrative of the ceiling is the triumphal and peaceful kingship of Charles I's father James I of England (1566-1625). In the paintings the king is depicted as a wise ruler who favored peace and united the two kingdoms of England and Scotland. The Banqueting House was also influenced by the classical and Renaissance art as well as Rubens's work with Marie de' Medici whose daughter was Henrietta Maria, Queen of England (1609-1669). Rubens' Banqueting House was created in the continental European Baroque style to show that the Stuart Monarchy was divinely chosen to rule over Great Britain.