The archetypal image of an unsmiling, bejewelled Henry VIII staring directly out of Hans Holbein’s famous painting with his legs spread wide apart was a mastermind of propaganda for the Tudor monarchy. Centuries after his death, coming face to face with a life size copy of the painting can be intimidating. The image was designed to show the king’s power, his riches and his divine right to rule.
In the Tudor era, it was well known that a dog represented faithfulness and that the Tudors were represented by a greyhound. This hidden meaning would be as familiar to some one born in the sixteenth century as a car logo or a symbol for a top brand is to us today.