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Doe Lea, Derbyshire

Doe Lea, Derbyshire
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Hardwick Hall

An Elizabethan Masterpiece

Built in 1590-9 by Robert Smythson for Elizabeth Talbot, Countess of Shrewsbury.

Elizabeth was more famously known as ‘Bess of Hardwick’ one of the most formidable women of Elizabethan England and the matriarch of the Cavendish family.

Hardwick is one of the earliest English interpretations of Italian Renaissance architecture, and stands as one of the greatest of all Elizabethan houses.

Huge grids of glass are used to great effect in this rectangular, turreted building, which caused leading observers of that time to rhyme: ‘Hardwick Hall, more window than wall’.

The impressive twin towers are each crowned with a balustrade incorporating an ‘E.S.’ motif (for Elizabeth Shrewsbury) and, unusually, each of the 3 main storeys has a ceiling higher than the one below.

Hardwick boasts arguably the most spectacular Elizabethan interiors in England, with plasterwork by Abraham Smith, overmantels by Thomas Accres, and a classical screen by William Griffin, all dating from the 1590s.

Hardwick was transferred to the National Trust from Bess’s descendants, the Dukes of Devonshire, in 1959.

Grade l listed.

My Image

Detail of an exquisitely carved 'du Cerceau' Cabinet – so called because it is based on designs by Jacques Androuet du Cerceau a well-known French designer of furniture. Circa 1570.
Date: 2018-04-28 07:02:57

Doe Lea Chesterfield Hardwick Hall Derbyshire England UK United Kingdom © John Ward Panasonic Lumix GH3 MFT Micro Four Thirds Micro 4/3 Countess of Shrewsbury Bess of Hardwick 9th Duke of Devonshire 9th Duchess of Devonshire Stately Homes Cabinets Carvings Carved Cabinets Jacques Androuet du Cercea National Trust Listed Building Grade I Listed

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