Mysterious snake appears in painting of Queen Elizabeth I
2010-03-10 0:00


A late 16th century portrait of Queen Elizabeth I has reveled over time and degradation that she was originally depicted holding a coiled serpent in her hand instead of the innocuous nosegay she holds now. When an earlier image that has been painted over begins to show through, that is known as a pentimento, which means repentance in Italian.

The portrait, painted by an unknown artist, some time in the 1580s or early 1590s, has not been on display at the National Portrait Gallery since 1921. You can clearly see the shadow of the serpentís coming up from between her fingers and his tail coiling above her hand.

The serpent was a symbol of wisdom and reasoned judgment ó as on the rod of Aesculapius, the physiciansí emblem ó so thatís probably where our unknown artist was going with the imagery. He changed his mind, though (possibly in consideration of the common association of snakes with the devil and original sin), and quickly painted it over with a strangely-shaped but perfectly inoffensive little bouquet of roses.

Paint analysis shows that the snake was definitely made at the same time as the rest of the portrait. There is no varnish between the snake and flower layers, so we know it was painted right over.

The painting today (left) and an artistís impression of how the snake may have originally looked.

The artist repented of his creation, if you will, and now the serpent is repenting him right back.

Thatís not the only pentimento showing through, though. X-rays show that a portrait of an unknown woman lies underneath Elizabeth. Her head is higher and sheís facing the opposite way.[...]you can actually see her eye and nose in the left side of Elizabethís forehead and temple where the paint has chipped off. It looks like an absorbed twin.

Image altered to illustrate secondary face.

Again the painter is unknown, but heís definitely not the same person who would paint Elizabeth on the panel later. Itís very thoroughly painted but not quite complete. This lady is wearing a French hood, a garment fashionable from 1570 to 1580, so she might have been on the recycling heap for 10 to 20 years before getting royally repurposed.

The serpent portrait will go on display starting on March 13th along with 3 other interestingly altered paintings of Elizabeth I in an exhibit called Concealed and Revealed: The Changing Faces of Elizabeth I.

The four works range in date from the 1560s until just after her death in 1603. They were all modified in their time and have recently been re-examined using advanced scientific techniques of paint analysis, infrared and x-Ray photography so we can see more of what Elizabeth painters had hidden.

The most famous portrait of Elizabeth in the group, the Darnley portrait, originally showed the Queen with pink and rosy cheeks, so the image of the Virgin Queen always made up with white face and hands may turn out to be more of an artifact of faded paint than Elizabeth beauty standards.

Article from:

Portrait of Queen Alexandra and her favoured serpent bracelet.

Video from:

Also tune into:

Gene Matlock - The Ancient Connection between Turkey, India, & the Mayans

Edmund Marriage - Kharsag, Garden of Eden and Stars and Stones Forum

Andy Lloyd - Dark Star Mythology, Symbolism in Alchemy & Freemasonry

Michael Tsarion - Sorcerers and Magicians: Amenists, Atonists, Druids and Scythians

Michael Tsarion - The Druids, Culdeans, Gaels & The Creation of Christianity

Michael Tsarion - Astro-Theology

Michael Tsarion - Sorcery & Magic

Philip Gardiner - Secrets of the Serpent, Symbology and Myth

Philip Gardiner - Secret Societies and the Knights of the Temple

Related Articles
Serpent Symbolism - Wikipedia
The serpent in Freemasonry
Snake Cults Dominated Early Arabia
Deciphering of earliest Semitic text reveals talk of snakes and spells
The Serpent and the Real Origins of Freemasonry
Biscione - Italian Serpent Symbolism strikingly similar to Quetzalcoatl in Mayan Mythology
Sky Serpents
Crop Circle depicting Quetzalcoatl, The Feathered Serpent?
Megan Foxís golden serpent dress.
Princess Michael of Kentís book: " The Serpent and the Moon"
1882 Queen Emma wearing a snake bracelet while with Wilhelmina (Image)

Latest News from our Front Page

ISIS to France: "We will be coming. Victory has been promised to us by Allah"
2015-11-26 3:33
Homegrown French ISIS fighters have issued a chilling threat of new attacks on France just 24 hours after the terrorist group used movie footage of the Eiffel Tower's collapse in another video.  A balaclava-clad militant is seen warning 'we will be coming, we will come to crush your country' in footage posted on Twitter earlier today. It is unclear where the film ...
ISIS teenage 'poster girl' Samra Kesinovic 'beaten to death' as she tried to flee the group
2015-11-26 1:07
She appeared in social media images for the group carrying a Kalashnikov and surrounded by armed men A teenage girl who ran away from her Vienna home to join Isis in Syria has reportedly been beaten to death by the group after trying to escape. Samra Kesinovic, 17, travelled to Syria last year with her friend Sabina Selimovic, 15. The two became a ...
The Right Stuff's flagship podcast "The Daily Shoah" has been censored by Soundcloud
2015-11-25 22:56
Editor's note: The PC corporate moral police strike again. Just as Radio 3Fourteen & Red Ice Radio were censored from iTunes, The Daily Shoah was pulled from Soundcloud today. As per usual, there is a double standard, they allow any kind of anti-White material: No counter culture humor making fun of the genocidal mainstream garbage is allowed! ... From: Soundcloud took it upon ...
Merkel Welcomes A Million More: Vows To Stand By Refugee Policy Despite Security Fears
2015-11-25 21:05
Chancellor Angela Merkel vowed on Wednesday to stick to her open-door refugee policy, defying criticism at home and abroad which has intensified due to growing fears about a potential security risk after the Islamist attacks in Paris. Conservative Merkel faces splits in her right-left coalition and pressure from EU states, including France, over her insistence that Germany can cope with up ...
Paris Terrorist Was Gay 'Rent Boy', On The Run From Islamic State And Police
2015-11-25 20:16
The elusive eighth Paris attacker and one of three brothers implicated in the atrocity reportedly frequented gay clubs before the attack. He may have backed out of his mission at the last minute, and is possibly on the run from Islamic State as well as authorities. “We had him down as a rent boy, he was always hanging out with that ...
More News »