This article is about the building in Greenwich, United Kingdom. For other uses, see.
Queen's House is a former built between 1616 and 1635 in, a few miles down-river from the then City of and now a. Its architect was, for whom it was a crucial early commission, for, the queen of. Queen's House is one of the most important buildings in history, being the first consciously building to have been constructed in the country. It was Jones's first major commission after returning from his 1613–1615 of,, and in Italy.
Some earlier English buildings, such as and, had made borrowings from the classical style, but these were restricted to small details not applied in a systematic way, or the building may be a mix of different styles. Furthermore, the form of these buildings was not informed by an understanding of classical precedents. Queen's House would have appeared revolutionary to English eyes in its day. Jones is credited with the introduction of with the construction of Queen's House, although it diverges from the mathematical constraints of Palladio, and it is likely that the immediate precedent for the H-shaped plan straddling a road is the Villa Medici at by.
Today the building is both a Grade I and a, a status that includes the 115-foot-wide (35 m), axial vista to the. The house now forms part of the and is used to display parts of their substantial collection of maritime paintings and portraits. It was used as a VIP centre during the.
Early historyThe Tulip Stairs and lantern; the first centrally unsupported helical stairs constructed in England. The stairs are supported by a combination queen anne style house photo of support by from the walls and each tread resting on the one below.
The Queen's House is located in. It was built as an adjunct to the Tudor, previously known, before its redevelopment by as the Palace of Placentia, which was a rambling, mainly red-brick building in a more vernacular style. This would have presented a dramatic contrast of appearance to the newer, white-painted House, although the latter was much smaller and really a modern version of an older tradition of private 'garden houses', not a public building, and one used only by the queen's privileged inner circle.Plans of the Queen's House. The salon is a 40-foot (12.2 m) cube.
Construction of the house began in 1616 but work on the house stopped in April 1618 when Anne became ill and died the next year. Work restarted when the house was given to the queen consort in 1629 by King, and the house was structurally complete by 1635.
However, the House's original use was short – no more than seven years – before the began in 1642 and swept away the court culture from which it sprang. Of its interiors, three ceilings and some wall decorations survive in part, but no interior remains in its original state. This process began as early as 1662, when masons removed a niche and term figures and a chimneypiece.
Paintings commissioned by Charles I for the house from, but now elsewhere, include a ceiling Allegory of Peace and the Arts, now installed at, London, a large Finding of Moses, now on loan from a private collection to the, and a matching Joseph and 's Wife still in the.
The Queen's House, though it was scarcely being used, provided the distant focal centre for Sir Christopher Wren's, with a logic and grandeur that has seemed inevitable to architectural historians but in fact depended on 's insistence that the vista to the water from the Queen's House not be impaired.
Construction of the Greenwich HospitalThe Queen's House and the Greenwich Hospital in the painting London from Greenwich Park, in 1809, by
Although the House survived as an official building—being used for the lying-in-state of Commonwealth Generals-at-Sea Richard Dean (1653) and (1657)—the main palace was progressively demolished from the 1660s to 1690s and replaced by the, built 1696–1751 to the master-plan of Sir. This is now called the, after its later use from 1873 to 1998. The position of the House, and Queen 's order that it retain its view to the river (only gained on demolition of the older Palace), dictated Wren's Hospital design of two matching pairs of 'courts' separated by a grand 'visto' exactly the width of the House (115 ft). The whole forms an impressive architectural ensemble that stretches from the to and is one of the principal features that in 1997 led to inscribe 'Maritime Greenwich' as a.
19th Century additions
From 1806 the House itself was the centre of what, from 1892, became the for the sons of seamen. This necessitated new accommodation, and a flanking pair to east and west were added and connected to the House by from 1807 (designed by architect ), with further surviving extensions up to 1876. In 1933 the school moved to. Its Greenwich buildings, including the House, were converted and restored to become the new (NMM), created by in 1934 and opened in 1937.
The grounds immediately to the north of the House were reinstated in the late 1870s following construction of the tunnel between and stations. The tunnel comprised the continuation of the and opened in 1878.The Queen's House viewed from the foot of Observatory Hill, showing the original house (1635) and the additional wings linked by colonnades (1807)
Recent yearsThe Queen's House, Greenwich
The House underwent a 14-month restoration beginning in 2015, and reopened on October 11, 2016. One controversial feature was a new ceiling in the main hall created by artist Richard Wright, a Turner prize winner. The House had previously been restored between 1986 and 1999, with contemporary insertions that modernised the building. In some quarters, it provoked some debate: An editorial in, November 1995, alluded to "the recent transformation of the Queen's House into a theme-park interior of fake furniture and fireplaces, tatty modern plaster casts and clip-on chandeliers". It is now largely used to display the Museum's substantial collection of marine paintings and portraits of the 17th to 20th centuries, and for other public and private events. It is normally open to the public daily, free of charge, along with the other museum galleries and the 17th-century, which is also part of the National Maritime Museum.
In 2012, the grounds behind the Queen's House were used to house a stadium for the events of the Olympic Games. The was also staged in the grounds of. The Queen's House itself was used as a VIP centre for the games. Work to prepare the Queen's House involved some internal re-modelling and work on the lead roof to prepare it for security and camera installations.
- The phrase 'Grand Tour' was unknown until approximately 1670, but in essence, Jones's tour of Germany, Italy and France, incorporated many of the elements of the later tour.
- (1970). An outline of European architecture. Penguin Books. pp. 304–310. .
- The Palace of Placentia was redeveloped circa 1500
- . Royal Museums Greenwich.
- Detailed accounts of the building project are given in London County Council, Survey of London, Howard Colvin, ed. The History of The King's Works, Volume IV, 1485–1660, Part II 9) and in John Bold, Greenwich: An Architectural History of the Royal Hospital for Seamen and the Queen's House (Yale University Press) 2000.
- John Newman, noting this, identified a chimneypiece likely to have come from the Queen's House, at, barely three miles away; for its design it drew upon an engraving in 's Livre d'architecture (1633); Newman, "Strayed from the Queen's House?" Architectural History 27, Design and Practice in British Architecture: Studies in Architectural History Presented to Howard Colvin (1984:33–35).
- R.W. Bissell, Orazio Gentileschi and the Poetic Tradition in Caravaggiesque Painting, cat. no. 70, pp 195–98.
- 7 January 2009 at the.
- , The Queen's Pictures, Royal Collectors through the centuries, p.102, National Gallery Publications, 1991, . This is usually at.
- Bold 2000.
- The Royal Hospital for Seamen is usually known as Greenwich Hospital.
- . Quartz. 8 October 2016.
- "Greenwich grotesquerie", The Burlington Magazine 137 No. 1112 (November 1995:719); the occasion was the Ministry of Defense and the Department of National Heritage's issuance of a glossy brochure through estate agents soliciting long-term leases for Wren's, Greenwich.
- 4 June 2009 at the. See "Greenwich Park Brochure"
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