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The Art of Monarchy

A collaboration with BBC Radio 4 to mark Her Majesty The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee

Sutton Nicholls (active 1680-1740)

An exact prospect of Hampton Court c.1700

RCIN 702878

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During the reign of William and Mary, Sir Christopher Wren (1632–1723) was commissioned to rebuild the south and east sides of Hampton Court Palace. The Palace was originally built for Cardinal Wolsey (c.1473–1530), Lord Chancellor to Henry VIII, in around 1514. After Wolsey’s fall from power, the palace passed to Henry VIII who greatly enlarged it. Hampton Court – on the river Thames between Windsor and London – was to be used as a royal residence throughout the Tudor and Stuart periods. Although William and Mary intended that the entire Tudor palace, apart from the Great Hall, should be demolished and rebuilt, funds were only available for the rebuilding of the King’s and Queen’s Apartments on the southern and eastern sides. Work commenced in May 1689 and was still in progress over ten years later, having been halted for a period after the death of Queen Mary in 1694. This print by Sutton Nicholls probably dates from around 1700, and was issued by the publisher John King. It shows the elaborate parterre of box hedges and fountains in front of the new east façade.