Scottish Painted Ceilings Photos

Wealthier Scots in Medieval times up to the late 1700s had their ceilings and walls painted with colourful, themed series of figures and patterns. Since ceilings at the time were supported by wooden beams, the beams were often painted with the text of poems or biblical passages with larger figures in the recesses between. The figures were mostly outlined in black by Scottish artists with the colors filled in by assistants. This style of ceiling disappeared after plaster sculpted Adamesque designs were introduced in the Georgian era.

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Coat of arms of King James VI & I painting by John Anderson in king's birth chamber in royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.Date 1566 painted on wall of birth chamber of King James VI & I in royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted ceiling of birth chamber of King James VI & I in royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted coats of arms in Laich Hall at royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.
Coat of arms of King James VI & I painting (1617) by John Anderson in king's birth chamber in royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.Date 1566 painted on wall of birth chamber of King James VI & I in royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted ceiling of birth chamber of King James VI & I in royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted coats of arms in Laich Hall at royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.
Painted coats of arms in Laich Hall at royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.Renaissance painted ceiling in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.Renaissance painted ceiling with exotic fruits in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.Detail of Renaissance painted ceiling with exotic fruits in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.
Painted coats of arms in Laich Hall at royal apartments at Edinburgh Castle. Edinburgh, Scotland.Renaissance painted ceiling in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.Renaissance painted ceiling with exotic fruits in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.Detail of Renaissance painted ceiling with exotic fruits in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.
Detail of Renaissance painted ceiling with exotic fruits in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.Wall mural in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted ceiling panel shows Daughters of Lot from Dean House Edinburgh building at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Oak room paneling details at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.
Detail of Renaissance painted ceiling with exotic fruits in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.Wall mural in painted chamber at Gladstone's Land tenement house. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted ceiling panel shows Daughters of Lot (16th C) from Dean House Edinburgh building at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Oak room paneling details at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.
Landscape painting in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Ceiling painting with winged woman in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Ceiling painting with bearded creature in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Ceiling painting of lobster in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.
Landscape painting (18th C) in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Ceiling painting with winged woman (17th C) in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Ceiling painting with bearded creature (c1600) in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Ceiling painting of lobster (c1600) in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.
Ceiling painting of hawk & rabbit in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted ceiling panel shows Cain & Abel from Dean House Edinburgh building at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Carved oak panel with lion at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted walls in principal strangers room at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.
Ceiling painting of hawk & rabbit (c1600) in Oak room at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted ceiling panel shows Cain & Abel (17th C) from Dean House Edinburgh building at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Carved oak panel with lion (1561) at John Knox House. Edinburgh, Scotland.Painted walls (16thC) in principal strangers room at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.
Barrel vault in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Barrel vault in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Sirens painted ceiling panel in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Let not the sun go down upon your wrath painted ceiling panel in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.
Barrel vault in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Barrel vault in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Sirens painted ceiling panel in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Let not the sun go down upon your wrath painted ceiling panel in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.
Torture of love painted ceiling panel in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Wood structure holding barrel ceiling of painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Painted ceiling & walls in North building at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Painted ceiling details in North building at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.
Torture of love painted ceiling panel in painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Wood structure holding barrel ceiling of painted chamber at Culross Palace at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Painted ceiling & walls in North building at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Painted ceiling details in North building at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.
Painted wall details in North building at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Painted ceiling in North building at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Painted ceiling, a fine example of Scottish decoration, at The Study. Culross, Scotland.Detail of painted ceiling at The Study. Culross, Scotland.
Painted wall details in North building at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Painted ceiling in North building at Culross Palace. Culross, Scotland.Painted ceiling, a fine example of Scottish decoration, at The Study. Culross, Scotland.Detail of painted ceiling at The Study. Culross, Scotland.
Painted ceiling beams over fireplace at The Study. Culross, Scotland.Barrel ceiling painted with last judgment from Guthrie Collegiate Church of Angus at National Museum of Scotland. Edinburgh, Scotland.High Hall at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Remaining section of High Hall ceiling paintings & chain mail at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Painted ceiling beams over fireplace at The Study. Culross, Scotland.Barrel ceiling painted with last judgment (15th C) from Guthrie Collegiate Church of Angus at National Museum of Scotland. Edinburgh, Scotland.High Hall at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Remaining section of High Hall ceiling paintings (16th or 17th C) & chain mail at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Burnett coat of arms ceiling painting in High Hall at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Family coat of arms ceiling painting in High Hall at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Painted ceiling beams with biblical text in stair chamber at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Painted ceiling beams with biblical text in stair chamber at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Burnett coat of arms ceiling painting in High Hall at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Family coat of arms ceiling painting in High Hall at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Painted ceiling beams with biblical text in stair chamber at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Painted ceiling beams with biblical text in stair chamber at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Ceiling painted with nine nobles at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Hector of Troy ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.King David ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Julius Cesar ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Ceiling painted with nine nobles at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Hector of Troy ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.King David ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Julius Cesar ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Judas Maccabeus ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Joshua - noble Chiftan of Israell ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Alexander the Great ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Gallery with oak panel ceiling at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Judas Maccabeus ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Joshua - noble Chiftan of Israell ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Alexander the Great (coquerior) ceiling painting in nine nobles room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Gallery with oak panel ceiling (1670s) at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Family crest on Gallery ceiling at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Arms of Alexander Burnett & Katherine Gordon on Gallery ceiling at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Family crest on Gallery ceiling at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Gallery with oak panel ceiling at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Family crest on Gallery ceiling at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Arms of Alexander Burnett & Katherine Gordon on Gallery ceiling at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Family crest on Gallery ceiling at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Gallery with oak panel ceiling (1670s) at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Figures on ceiling painting thought to be by Scottish artist in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Figure on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Female figure on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Sultan-like figure on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Figures on ceiling painting thought to be by Scottish artist in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Figure on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Female figure on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Sultan-like figure on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Bearded figure on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Cow's head on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Mythical face on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Color designs on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Bearded figure on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Cow's head on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Mythical face on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Color designs on ceiling painting in Green Lady's room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Fabric embroidered wall hanging with foliage & animals at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Ceiling painting with figures & poetry in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Ceiling painting with figures & poetry in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Beams & designs of ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Fabric embroidered wall hanging with foliage & animals at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Ceiling painting with figures & poetry in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Ceiling painting with figures & poetry in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Beams & designs of ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Katherine Burnett's coat of arms on ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Polyhymnia playing claichord ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Erato playing cittern ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Melpomene playing bas viol ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Katherine Burnett's coat of arms on ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Polyhymnia (muse of hymns) playing claichord ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Erato (muse of erotic poetry) playing cittern ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Melpomene (muse of singing & tragedy) playing bas viol ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Two-headed dog ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Clio writing in book ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Charity as bare breasted matron holding child ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Hope holding anchor ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Two-headed dog ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Clio (muse of history) writing in book ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Charity as bare breasted matron holding child ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Hope holding anchor ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.
Faith holding church & ten commandments ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Painted ceiling at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling in Keeper's bedroom at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.
Faith holding church & ten commandments ceiling painting in Muses room at Crathes Castle. Crathes, Scotland.Painted ceiling at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling in Keeper's bedroom at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.
Upper wall painted design in Chapel Royal at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling in Edwardian Library at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Latin inscriptions painted on ceiling in Edwardian Library at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling in Edwardian Library at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.
Upper wall painted design in Chapel Royal at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling in Edwardian Library (1895) at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Latin inscriptions painted on ceiling in Edwardian Library (1895) at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling in Edwardian Library (1895) at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.
Trophy heads on wallpapered arch in Edwardian Library at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted ceiling at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted ceiling detail at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.
Trophy heads on wallpapered arch in Edwardian Library (1895) at Falkland Palace. Falkland, Scotland.Painted ceiling at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted ceiling at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted ceiling detail at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.
Painted ceiling detail at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted wall detail of deer at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted wall detail of winged man at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted wall detail of rabbit at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.
Painted ceiling detail at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted wall detail of deer at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted wall detail of winged man at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted wall detail of rabbit at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.
Painted ceiling detail of flower at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted ceiling detail at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Wall painting at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.
Painted ceiling detail of flower at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Painted ceiling detail at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.Wall painting at Huntingtower Castle. Perth, Scotland.

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All photos on this page are originals by & copyrighted by Jim Steinhart.
All rights reserved. Permission required to use.