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20 January 2016

As one of the most important places in Scotland’s history, Stirling Castle has drawn countless visitors over the centuries...

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Stirling Heads Gallery

See the Stirling Heads close up and discover the meaning behind each Head.

The Stirling Heads Gallery - 'Image-makers for the King’ exhibition

The Stirling Heads were dispersed after the Palace ceilings were taken down in 1777. Some were lost, but most have been gathered, and are now displayed in a gallery on the upper floor of the Palace.

The Stirling Heads Gallery

The Original Carvings

After experiencing the amazing richness of the painted replica Heads in the King’s Inner Hall, visitors can go upstairs to see the originals on which they were based. These have been assembled from numerous sources, including private collections, and painstakingly conserved.

The Stirling Heads gallery

The 16th-century carvings are now unpainted, but a few traces of paint have been found on them. They were almost certainly painted in bright colours, like the replicas downstairs.

Subjects & Themes

The original Stirling Heads can be divided into several categories, and are displayed by subject - find out more about the Stirling Heads.