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The Great Houses of England and Wales Paperback – 1 Jan 2005

4.3 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Silverdale Books (1 Jan. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184509106X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845091064
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 16.8 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 702,318 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Never will you see English countryside and architecture more amorously photographed, nor the eccentricities of their owners more forgivingly celebrated -- Ferdinand Mount --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


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4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
A marvelous book. It covers about 25 treasure houses of England and Wales. There is a brief history of every house but its main focus is on the house as it it is today.
Each house is covered in about ten pages and there are a lot of beautiful photographs both from the outside and inside.
Most of these houses are like heaven on earth. The Arcitecture is Majestic, the gardens like arcadia and on the inside these houses are like art pieces from top to bottom. Then of course there is the splendid antique furniture, the brilliant sculptures and the paintings by past masters like for example Canaletto and Rembrant.
The houses that are visited in this book are: Alnwick Castle, Haddon Hall, Powis Castle, Penshurst Place, Syon House, Knole, Grimsthorphe Castle, Wilton House, Burghley House, Longleat, Hardwick Hall, Blickling Hall, Woburn Abbey, Tredegar House, Chatsworth, Petworth House, Boughton, Castle Howard, Blenheim Palace, Houghton Hall, Holkham Hall, Harewood House, Kedleston Hall, Belvoir Castle, Waddesdon Manor.
This book is a great introduction to the treasure houses of England because it covers briefly some of the most important houses and the topics related to them.
Highly Recomended, I have read it three times so far and I am continuously browsing through it.
Other authors who have written about similar matter and which I can recomend are, James Lees-Milne, Mark Girouard, Roy Strong, Candida Lycett Green, The Duchess of Devonshire and John Harris.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is a fantastic example of a top-quality coffee table book. Not only does the book cover 32 stately houses (some previously I'd not heard of : Compton Wynates), but it is equally divided between text and photography of each house. The text is richly detailed and explains both the history of the house in terms of the people who have lived in them and the actual building and construction (both interior and exterior) of each. The quality of the photography (whether exterior or interior) matches the text. One final reason why this book is of such a good quality is the actual quality of the paper - excellent 'glossy' paper that enhances the superb photography!
If you like the topic that this book covers, including the photography, I also recommend 'Great Houses of Scotland' and 'Great Houses of Ireland' each by the same publisher, author and photographer.
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Format: Hardcover
The travel writer Robin Bryans mentions in his memoir “ Let the Petals Fall” that the late Hugh Montgomery Massingberd, went to Tredegar Park in the 1990s during the time he was researching to compile this epic and glossy text book “Great Houses of England and Wales”

The House, the seat of the Morgan family, the Lords Tredegar is situated near Newport, South Wales. The male line of the Morgans died out in 1962 with the death of John Morgan, the 6th Baron. The most colourful member of the Morgan clan was the 4th Baron. Evan Frederic Morgan ( 1893-1949), who was also the 2nd Viscount Tredegar. A poet, homosexual and eccentric he held court there hosting many lavish house parties and country weekend stay overs for his London friends and his latest conquests. The House was a Catholic girls school for many years and in 1973 it was taken over by the local authority who opened it up to the public.

Robin Bryans notes that when Massingberd visited the House he over heard a woman guide tell a group of visitors:

'One of his Lordship's party tricks was to let a parrot crawl up his trouser-leggings and then peep out from his fly buttons.'

His Lordship was of course Evan. However with no regard to whether the story was accurate or not Massinberd swept the overheard story into his book and gave it credence. Thus a tall tale entered the public domain and since has been regularly repeated and believed .

Bryans, a loyal Evan aficionado comments on Evan's parrot trick:

“Not [a] very nice [ story] , was it? Alas, not very accurate either!

The parrot who is given credit for the extraordinary trouser leg feat is ‘Blue Boy’ a large blue Hyacinth Macaw, who was Evan Morgan’s familiar.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Concise version in smaller format than original hardcover version. Includes 24 house entries compared with the 36 entries of the original version in hardcover.
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