Execution of Lady Jane Grey, Paul Delaroche, 1833, Painting, First exhibited in the Paris Salon in 1834, Now in the National Gallery, London.
This painting struck me when I was looking through images on the internet; first because it depicted an execution of a young girl, and secondly because of the interesting choice of colors. Paul Delaroche put the execution victim in all white and contrasted this by dressing all others present in darker less vibrant colors. The colors could be a symbol to show that Lady Jane Grey was wrongly executed and that her soul was in fact pure. The attire in the painting also highlights that this event did not happen in 1833 but much earlier so this could be a comment on an event in history that has left an impact on the audience for whom this painting was made for. The man with the ax looks on as though her execution is not something to note yet the two women to the left of the painting are devastated so there seems to be a divided opinion on the morality of this execution. The man standing behind Lady Jane Grey looks as though he is a religious figure who is comforting her. The placement of the religious figure in the center of the painting makes it very likely that the cause of this event came from a religious background. Even after close examination I am left wondering why this young woman dressed in white is about to be beheaded keeping the painting intriguing.