Marie Antoinette at Versailles: The Petit Trianon & Queen’s Hamlet

Among the grounds of Versailles, Le petit Trianon and its hamlet were Marie-Antoinette’s turn at the provincial life – as a hobbyist might take up historical re-enactment. A living, breathing, working set: Complete with rustic exteriors, windmill, bridge and players. The hamlet was a blend of fancy and function; as closely as it could be … Continue reading Marie Antoinette at Versailles: The Petit Trianon & Queen’s Hamlet

The Elizabethan Country House And The Cult Of Sovereignty

From 1570 – 1620 one can chart the ‘Elizabethan building boom’[1]. Here, we see an unprecedented rise in the building of ‘proud, ambitious heaps’[2] and the beginnings of the ‘architect’ as an entity in the cultural, economic and social landscape. Architectural historian Sir John Summerson credits ‘the most daring of all English buildings’[3] as the … Continue reading The Elizabethan Country House And The Cult Of Sovereignty

Porcelain, Palaces and the Dutch Influence in 17th Century England

Royal incentive enabled trends to catch across Europe in the interests of fashion and Queen Mary II and King William III's arrival in England as co-regents swore in the Dutch decorative taste, fresh from their residences in the Netherlands. The King and Queen's collection of palaces followed the sequential pattern of those in France, decked … Continue reading Porcelain, Palaces and the Dutch Influence in 17th Century England