Culloden, the 1746 battle that saw Bonnie Prince Charlie's hopes of reestablishing Stuart supremacy brutally quashed, captured the imaginations of British artists in much the same way as the Royalist cause in the English Civil War. 'The Young Pretender' and elder son of the exiled Prince James Francis Edward Stuart, was forced to flee as it became evident that the Hanovarian army would truly adhere to its chilling dictum of 'no quarter given'. The Prince was assisted in his escape by Flora MacDonald, and returned to France in September 1746.
Lidderdale's depiction of a girl watching over a Jacobite soldier, exhausted after his flight, makes an implicit allusion to the Prince's story. The Art Journal commented: 'We have, from time to time, observed upon the promise given by C.S.Lidderdale, and now, at length, in some good degree, we realise this promise in the artist's best work, "Hiding, after Culloden"; here we have intention, expression, power in hand as in colour.'
The critical reception perhaps prompted Lidderdale to rework the composition in The Scottish Vigil of 1871, which shows both a father and daughter keeping watch over the soldier. (See Christie's, London, The Forbes Collection of Victorian Pictures and Works of Art, 20 February 2003, lot 63, £16,730).