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much better preserved. Though now merely "showOur notice of the remaining manor-houses must be rooms," the apartments at Knole are in perfect condivery brief. Knole park is immediately contiguous to tion, and, better than almost any others that are open the quiet old market-town of Sevenoaks, and about six to the public, exemplifying the magnificence of the Enmiles from Tonbridge. You enter the gates opposite glish nobles of Elizabeth and James. The great hall is, as the church, and shortly arrive at a long avenue, which has been seen, of some two centuries later date than that leads you in time to the mansion. It is an admirable at Penshurst, and very different from it in style: it is a way of approach. The road, or a path you may take magnificent room, and in excellent condition-only the after following it some distance, conducts you up a gentle ugly close stove that stands out in the room (like the elevation, from the summit of which you for the first more hideous one at Hampton Court) interfering with time gain a view of the house, with a wide stretch of its antique appearance. A long table, which was foropen park in front of it. Before you quite enter upon merly used for the game of Shovelboard-our primitive the open space, some splendid beeches make a frame to billiards-still occupies its place on one side of the hall. the picture, and add not a little to its pleasing effect. Probably when this table was erected the custom of (Cut No. 5.) Knole House is an imposing structure, dining in a common hall was already passing away: but rather from its extent, however, than from any parti- the "houskeeping” was on at least as expensive a scale, cular grace or grandeur. The principal front is plain in though probably it did not, as in former time, "win style, having little other ornament than the gables which great favour of the commons." The third Earl of appear in the upper story. This front consists of a Dorset, for example, lived at Knole in great splenlofty central gatehouse, embattled, and having square dour: from household books, quoted by Bridgman, towers at the angles; and two uniform wings. The we can form a conception of the state maintained by a buildings are very extensive, covering an area of above nobleman in the reign of James I.
says: three acres. The principal parts form a spacious quad- lord's table sat daily eight persons; at the parlour table rangle, behind which the inferior buildings are arranged twenty-one, including ladies-in-waiting, chaplain, secreirregularly.
tary, pages, &c.; at the clerk's table in the hall, twenty, In the reign of Henry VI. Knole was purchased consisting of the principal household officers ; in the by Fiennes, Lord Say and Sele, whose tragical fate nursery, four; at the long table in the hall, forty-eight, during Jack Cade's rebellion forms so ludicrous an being attendants, footmen, and other inferior domestics ; episode in the story of the Kentish captain's mo- at the laundry-maid's table, twelve; and in the kitchen mentary triumph. Lord Say's son sold Knole, in and scullery, six-in all a constant household of one 1456, to Thomas Bourchier, Archbishop of Canter- hundred and nineteen persons, independently of vibury; to whose successors it appertained till Cranmer sitors.” found it necessary to make a voluntary surrender of it Perhaps the state bed-rooms at Knole are as striking to the rapacious Henry VIII. It was transferred from, examples of the enormous sums expended at this time and forfeited to the crown several times after this, before on grand entertainments, as anything well can be. Elizabeth, about 1569, granted the reversion of it to One is called the King's bed-room, from having been Thomas Sackville, afterwards Earl of Dorset ; whose expressly fitted up for James I., and only used by him. family have since retained possession of it-though for The state bed alone is said to have cost £8,000; and a while the freehold was alienated.
the room altogether £20,000—a sum of course relaThe mansion is of different dates. At what time tively very much larger than a like sum would be now. the oldest portions were erected is not known : Bour- Of course where so much was spent upon the room in chier is said to have rebuilt the house about the middle which he was to sleep, the entertainments prepared for of the 15th century, but an examination of it leads to the King would be on a proportionate scale. the belief that some portions of the older edifice were be conceived, the furniture of this room is very splendid; merely altered. The principal front is supposed to have the bedstead itself is covered with furniture of gold been added by Archbishop Morton, towards the close of and silver tissue, lined with richly-embroidered satin ; the 15th century; and the great hall by the first Earl of and the chairs and stools have similar covering. The Dorset, in the 16th century. Since 1604, no material | tables, the frames of the mirrors, and the candle sconces change has been made : some tasteless “improvements" are of chased silver. There is also a chased silver of the last century have been of late judiciously removed, toilet service, but it is said that it did not form part of and the whole is now in an excellent state of preserva- the original furniture. The walls are hung with tapestry, tion. (Cut No. 6.)
and altogether the room is a splendid example of the That part of Knole which is so generously and freely taste of the age. Besides the articles mentioned, it opened to the public is of such extent that it will be has many other silver ornaments, and also a couple of quite impossible here to go through the rooms; and if ebony cabinets ; one of which is very curious, and conwe could do so, it would be a tedious labour alike to tains some pretty little feminine nick-nackeries. Anowriter and reader. Generally we may state that the ther state bed-room has furniture also of this time, but rooms are more spacious than those of Penshurst, and it did not belong originally to Knole, having been prefrom the house having been always occupied by the sented by James I. to the Earl of Middlesex. This, descendants of the first earl, the rich furniture has been which is called the Spangled Bed-room, though inferior
As may 20
to the other, is also a splendid apartment. There is yet Countess of Dorset, and some others, by Vandyke ; another that will bear looking at, even after them ; it and several of the more famous of the productions of was prepared for James II. ; but he did not visit Knole, Sir Joshua Reynolds—among others, the Ugolino,' the and it now bears the name of the Ambassador's Room, 'Fortune Teller,' the 'Robinetta,' and a 'Samuel. Our from its having been slept in by Molino, the Venetian English master holds his place well amidst the older Ambassador. The coverings of the furniture here are men of renown. The ball-room is devoted to family of green velvet, and there is a larger display of carving. portraits, in many respects a noteworthy collection. There is a dressing-room en suite, in which are some The Leicester Gallery has some splendid Vandykes ; good paintings; among others, several portraits by one of them,—the portrait of Sir Kenelm DigbyReynolds (one of which is a fancy portrait of 'pretty worthy to be placed alongside the famous Gevartius in Peg Woffington'), and a portrait by Mytens, of ' Anne, the National Gallery: it ought not to be permitted to Countess of Dorset, Pembroke and Montgomery,' of hang in its present wretched position. The Countess epistolary fame.
of Bedford is one of his graceful female portraits. Many of the other apartments are also both magni- There are also in this gallery several portraits by ficent and interesting. The Retainers' Gallery is one of Mytens, who was much patronized by the Earl of the most curious, with its singular carved-oak roof and Dorset : the most noticeable is a large full-length panelling. The principal apartments are the Leicester of James I., painted during his visit here. It is a Gallery, the ball-room, and the crimson drawing-room : marvellous work : the broad silly stare is hit off to all have antique furniture (though, of course, not all perfection, and yet with an evident unconsciousness of it the original furniture of the rooms), and conse- on the part of the artist that he was doing anything quently wear a very pleasing old-fashioned air. Much extraordinary. It, and the ‘Fortunes of Nigel,' will of this furniture is of a very costly description, and will give as lively an idea of our British Solomon as though repay examination.
The 'fire-dogs' should not be we had talked with him. The Cartoon Gallery is a overlooked : Knole is very rich in these curious old room, so called from its containing a set of copies made articles. Some of them are of richly chased silver ; by Mytens of the Cartoons at Hampton Court. In it is that in the hall has the badge of Anne Boleyn : it was one of Lawrence's portraits of George IV. We may pass bought at the sale at Hever. In the Leicester Gallery ov the hundred and one portraits in the Brown Galare two immense parchment rolls of the pedigree of the lery (though the visitor will not); but we must not pass Sackvilles ; they are mounted on stout oak stands, and over those in the Dining-parlour, which is filled entirely unrolled by a winch. In all these rooms, and indeed all with the portraits of poets or other eminent literary throughout the house, the walls are thickly hung with characters. The Sackvilles have themselves a poetic pictures. Some of them are by the great masters, un- fame: the first earl was the author of "Gorboduc' and doubtedly genuine, and of a very high order of merit; the designer of the Mirror for Magistrates,' to which and Knole would amply repay a visit, were there he wrote the Induction ; both works of great importnothing beyond the pictures to see in it. The chief ance in the history of English dramatic poetry, and paintings are in the drawing-room, where are some by containing - the latter especially-passages of very the old masters ; a charming portrait of the fifth powerful genius. Had he devoted his life to literature
instead of public employments, he would probably have It ran thus : "I promise to pay Mr. John Dryden, on stood in a foremost rank. Charles, the sixth earl— demand, the sum of £500. Dorset.”
Among the portraits in this room is that of “Glorious Dorset, the grace of courts, the Muse's pride”—
John,” by Kneller. Dorset himself, by the same owes more to the lavish praises of the poets who had artist, is also here : as are portraits by him of Newexperienced his generosity than to his own verses : yet ton, Locke, and Hobbes. Several of the most interestthey are always lively and agreeable, and they aimed ing of Sir Joshua Reynolds' portraits are in this room, at being nothing more. His liberality to literary men including himself, Goldsmith, Garrick, Burke, and was indeed profuse, and he appears to have bestowed Johnson—all excellent and characteristic, but the last his bounty with a frankness that was very agreeable to savouring a little too strongly of those peculiarities the recipients. Dorset not only patronized the poets which tempted the doctor to complain that his friend of his day, but he delighted to have them share his had made him look like “Blinking Sam :" “It is not social bours. A very good story (if true) is told in friendly, Sir," he growled, " to hand down to posterity connection with one of Dryden's visits to Knole. the imperfections of any man." This is a duplicate o During an interval in the conversation, when the wine the Duke of Sutherland's picture. One or two of the failed to loose the tongue, it was proposed that the portraits are attributed to Vandyke. Waller, Addison, company should try which could write the best im- and some others, are by Pope's 'Jarvis.' Among the promptu, and the poet was appointed judge. While the minor pictures is a portrait of Tom Durfey, and a others applied themselves with due gravity to their task, "Conversation piece," by Vandergucht, representing Dorset merely scrawled a few words carelessly on his Durfey, the artist, and some of the household at Knole, paper, and handed it to Dryden. When the other carousing. Tom Durfey deserves a place here among papers were collected, Dryden said he thought it would his betters.
In his lifetime he had an apartment be useless to read them, as he supposed no one would allotted to him at Knole, and he rendered his company doubt, when he heard it read, that the earl's was best. very agreeable to the earl and his friends by his con
7.- COBHAM HALL.
vivial talents. Poor Tom was one of the sprightliest | the house : where to find it they are not told. From of the small wits of his day, and he has contrived to the broken ground along the outskirts of the park you irradiate the very worst of his occasional pieces with get the first glimpse of the Hall, which from this some scintillations of his unfailing liveliness; and some distance looks very well (Cut No. 7). The road from of his songs are a good deal above the average standard Brewer's Gate leads by a magnificent cedar, on passing of song merit. He was not forgetful of Knole, or its which you find yourself close to the mansion. master : he has praised his patron with as good heart The building is different in date, arrangement, and as any of his flatterers; and he has commemorated his appearance from those we have yet visited. Though stay at the house by a song on "the incomparable the later parts of both Penshurst and Knole are almost strong beer at Knole.” “Such beer,” he says, “as without defensive appliances, it is not so with the earlier all wine must control :"
portions. Cobham is entirely domestic in character: "Such beer, fine as Burgundy, lifts high my soul even the entrances are without battlements. They too
When bumpers are filled for the glory of Knole.” are built of stone, Cobham of brick. The main buildHe merited a place in Knole's Gallery of Poets. ing consists of two extensive wings, with lofty octagonal
Knole park is on a higher site, more varied in sur- turrets in the middle and at the extremities. These face, and even more beautiful than Penshurst. It is wings bear on them their respective dates of erection, very extensive, abundantly stocked with deer, and 1582 and 1594. They are united by a central building, richly wooded. The beeches are perhaps hardly else- designed by Inigo Jones; the ground plan of the ediwhere to be equalled for number, size, health, and fice being thus in the form of a capital H. As a whole beauty. One near, what is called the Duchess's Walk, it is both striking and picturesque. The arrangement is very remarkable : the trunk is of prodigious girth, allows of bold masses of light and shadow; while the and ascends to a great altitude; whilst the branches numerous turrets, the many stacks of variously-carved overshadow a vast space. It is quite sound and chimney-shafts, the quaint gables, and handsome bay flourishing, in every respect the finest beech we re
windows, produce great richness of effect, and a very member to have seen. Not far from it is a very large pleasing play of outline. oak, said by Mr. Brady to have been known two cen- ' But before we enter, we must just recal the names of turies ago as “The Old Oak :' the trunk, which is a few of the owners of Cobham. From the first year now a mere shell, is thirty feet in circumference. The of the reign of John till the ninth of Henry IV. it bestranger should, if he have time, stroll awhile about longed to a series of male descendants of a Norman the park--the paths across it are freely open. At any knight, hight Cobham. It then passed to a lady, who rate he should endeavour to reach the end of the noble transferred the manor in succession to five husbands, all avenue, which leads to the high-ground at the south- of whom she outlived. Her fourth husband was the western extremity of the park, for the sake of one of celebrated Lollard martyr, Sir John Oldcastle, who asthe finest prospects in Kent-a county famous for its sumed the title of Lord Cobham on his marriage with splendid scenery. We wish him a fair day for the view. her. This formidable lady left a daughter, whose de
This is a very imperfect sketch of Knole, but we scendants retained the estate till the reign of James I., have the less compunction in offering it because, if we when it was forfeited to the crown by the last of them, have succeeded in indicating its character, the visitor the wretched Lord Cobham, whose evidence condemned can easily fill up the details, by providing himself with Raleigh. He saved his life by his cowardly compliance the excellent Guide to Knole, by J. H. Brady, F.S.A." with the king's desire, but he saved nothing else.
We may just mention while here, that Mote House, Cobham was left to drag on a degraded existence in the at Ightham, about five miles from Knole, is another deepest poverty; fain, if we may trust a contemporary, specimen of a moated manor house of a date not later to beg scraps from a trencher-scraper to save himself than that at Hever. It has never been so important a from starving, while the king gave the estate to his kinsbuilding as Hever Castle, but it is well worth seeing. man Darnley, Earl of Lennox. The Earl of Darnley, The hall and chapel are remarkably fine.
the present owner of Cobham, is the descendant of a
gentleman named Bligh, who in 1714 married the heiress COBHAM HALL.
of the Lennoxes. Cobham Hall is about four miles south-east of The rooms which are shown at Cobham have little Gravesend. Very beautiful is the approach to it; and of the air of antiquity which was so attractive in those especially refreshing after newly escaping from the smoke we have hitherto visited. In the early part of the of London, and Gravesend's dusty highways. Outside present century the whole house underwent a Wyatthe limits of the park, proper, is a woody tract which villian improvement; when, as far as the interior is has gained wondrous beauty from a few years' judicious concerned, almost all the original character was improved neglect. The road lies through this wood, under a thick away. The rooms were, however, rendered more concanopy of luxuriant foliage-affording a delicious stroll venient, and more consonant to modern habits ; many on a fine autumnal day. When you reach the end of of them are very elegant apartments, and they are the wood, it will be well to ask,—if you can see any furnished with considerable splendour. The diningbody to ask,—for Brewer's Gate, that being the gate room, into which the visitor is first led, will give him strangers are directed to pass through when they visit a favourable impression of modern style; it is chastely