Tory Historian's blog: A visit to Hatfield House

Posted by Tory Historian Wednesday, September 30, 2015 ,

Hatfield House closes for the winter today but a couple of weeks ago Tory Historian went to visit that very fine home of generations of English, later British politicians, Conservative ever since that became possible. This blog will consist largely of pictures taken inside and outside the house, starting with the grand statue of the 3rd Marquess that greets visitors outside the main entrance to the estate.

Tory Historian is aware of some controversy about the latest addition, the fountain in front of the House itself but comes down on the side of those who like it. The title Renaissance recalls past glories and the golden globe that rises and falls in the water is a reminder of those elaborate renaissance structures as well as a play on the original meaning of the word, rebirth. Yes, it is very modern but that adds to the attraction. Hatfield House is still the home of the Marquess of Salisbury and his family; even the stately rooms are used for such events as Christmas dinner and the present holder of the title takes his duties to the name, the estate and the house seriously. That means adding new furniture, new structures, new decorations - Hatfield is part of English history and that goes on.



What of the pictures and furniture inside? Readers must forgive TH's particular interest but this Primrose League cover caused much delight.



A more recent involvement in British political and literary life by members of the Cecil family was illustrated in one of the drawing rooms by a display of copies of the Salisbury Review.



A lion that guards the entrance:


And a lion that makes music on the stairs:


For the moment we shall stop here. Another posting will have portraits of Queen Elizabeth I and of members of the Cecil family. 





1 Responses to Tory Historian's blog: A visit to Hatfield House

  1. Tory Historian raises a good point about historic residences, those that serve to remember a particular period of history and those that remain ‘living members’ of the community. I await the day that a member of the Royal Family invites me to tour either Buckingham Palace or Windsor Castle or any of the other regal residences — with my affection for Cardinal Wolsey, Hampton Court would also be most welcome.

    No doubt these edifices have all the contemporary conveniences, possible to the detriment of ancient artefacts that have been renovated or removed. Windsor, unfortunately, had its modernisation thrust upon it. Yet while I devour photographic appreciations of Versailles, the attempt to freeze the ch√Ęteau in the late 1700s is also rather sad. I much prefer a dynamic Buckingham Palace to Versailles’s static tribute to a vanquished dynasty.

     
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