I captained my prep school and then went to Eton, happy and successful days, boxing for Eton and member of a rowing eight that won several trophies in the major Thames regattas..."
"...I like the many contrasting atmospheres of the house. The Great Hall is authentic Elizabethan with its unique feeling, the living heart of the house in the late 16th century, a constant activity of feasting and dancing, mummers and minstrels. The ornate Minstrel's Gallery was built about 1600 and the Small Gallery added when Charles II brought Queen Catherine and his entire court to stay for a night. The Old Library has a Queen Anne atmosphere, there are seven libraries at Longleat containing more than 40,000 books, now regarded as one of the most importatnt collections in Europe still in private hands.
The Great Staircase has a Regency atmosphere and is the most spectacular of the alterations to Longleat made by the 2nd Marquess at the beginning of the 19th century. The family tree, commencing in 1215, is displayed at the foot of the stairs. The State Dining Room has a Victorian feel, redecorated by the 4th Marquess in the late 19th century, one of the three magnificent State Rooms used to entertain royalty and other important visitors beginning with Queen Elizabeth I in 1547 while our present Queen came to Longleat in 1980..."
The State Dining Room,
used for entertaining
royalty (top left); the
Great Hall, one of the few
rooms at Longleat;
the Grand Staircase
Photo ŠLongleat Enterprises.
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IN BRITAIN Magazine Index is created by
Risto Hurmalainen, updated September 29, 1999
Back to October 1997 issue