Friday, July 18, 2014

Chatsworth House

Today Courtney and I visited Chatsworth House. It is located right outside of Sheffield, England. This house was used as Pemberley in the 2005 film Pride and Prejudice. It is also said to have been the inspiration for Pemberley in the novel by Jane Austen. This house was incredible to visit as a Jane Austen fan and a library student, because it was like stepping into the pages of a book.
Chatsworth House

This was the most beautiful house I've ever been to! I thought Stowe House was fancy until I saw Chatsworth House. There was a beautiful grand staircase, and every ceiling had a painting on it. The furniture was ornate and richly upholstered. There is also a copy of the famous portrait of Henry VIII by Hans Holbein. In fact, they believe that Holbein himself worked on this copy because it is so detailed.

However, one of the best features of the house was the library. It was incredible! The library holds over 30,000 books. The room was converted into a library in 1815. The books were extremely old and beautiful as well. There were also some books that were almost two feet tall. In the library there is also a statue of a veiled woman. It is the Veiled Vestal Virgin by Raphaelle Monti. It is so expertly carved that the veil looks see through, even though it is all just stone. In fact, this sculpture appears in the Pride and Prejudice film!
The Veiled Vestal Virgin

Interestingly, the house was used as a school during World War II for children from London. One of the employees told us that a few years ago an elderly lady came to visit the house. She had actually been a student during the war, and told them one of her friends had spilled some ink in a corner of the dining room. The employees all helped the woman look for the ink stain, and they actually found it!
The ink stain! 

 Another amazing room was the sculpture gallery. It is used in the film, and there are many stone sculptures. Two of the most incredible sculptures are at the end of the room before the exit. They are huge stone lions, and the detail is amazing. There are also sculptures of dogs and people as well.
One of the lion statues

The house wasn't the only incredible part of Chatsworth House. There was also an extensive garden. This garden was similar to Stowe House, because it was man made to look wild and natural. They had several water features throughout the gardens, including fountains and streams. Chatsworth House also has a simple hedge maze.
A portion of the gardens

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