"A portrait is a picture in which there is just a tiny little something not quite right about the mouth." -- John Singer Sargent

Monday, September 5, 2016

Francis Scott Key

This 1881 sstatue of Francis Scott Key by Pompeo Coppini (working for Alexander Doyle) stands atop the tomb of Francis Scott Key and his wife Mary Tayloe Lloyd Key in Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Frederick Maryland.

A nearby historical marker says this about  the Keys and the Monument.
Francis Scott Key
Author of
'The Star Spangled Banner'

Born in Frederick County, Maryland, 1779. Died in Baltimore 1843 and there buried. Removed to Federick 1866 and interred in family lot. In 1898 the remains of Francis Scott Key and Mary Tayloe Lloyd Key, his wife, were placed within the crypt in the base of the monument erected by the Key Monument Association of Frederick, Maryland.
The National Register of Historic Places nomination form describes the statue this way.
The figure stands with arms raised, the manuscript of the National Anthem in his left hand, his right hand pointing to a nearby flag. The contrapposto stance, the gestures and the sweep of his coat create a dynamic composition.

The Smithsonian Art Inventory says that  Key is holding a hat not the National Anthem, and that's how it looks to me.

 Columbia sits at the base of the column.

"She holds a flag at her side and is flanked by a youth on her left, who rests his arms on the hilt of a sword and symbolizes Defense, and a child holding a lyre on her right, symbolizing Music and Song." -- National Register Form
 Below her, the Maryland State Seal surrounded by a laurel wreath in front of a palm frond.

A plaque at the back of the monument gives Key's birth and death dates and 4 verses of the The Star Spangled Banner.

Photo by Craig Swain, HMdb, modified by ACB

Written by
Francis Scott Key
Born August 9, 1880
Died January 14, 1843
O say, can you see by the dawns early light,
   What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars throught the perilous fight.
    O'r the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket's red glare, the bomb bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there;
O, say does that Star-Spangled Banner yet wave
O'r the land of the free and the home of the brave?

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