Sunday, August 12, 2007

eltham palace ... amazing what you can do with a few millions

Combining Art Deco and ocean liner style, Eltham Palace is a stunning masterpiece of twentieth-century design. Textile magnates Stephen and Virginia Courtauld built their glamorous London showpiece in 1936, next to the remains of a medieval royal palace which was originally Henry VIII’s boyhood home. The dining room features pink leather upholstered chairs and black-and-silver doors, portraying animals and birds from London Zoo. The Courtaulds’ home movie is another delight, showing them relaxing with their pet lemur. Discover many enticing features in the nineteen acres of surrounding gardens, including a sunken rose garden and medieval bridge ... it sez on the english heritage web site. The entrance to the house is a wonderful conception, with a three sided hall linking wings of the house that were offest by more than ninety degrees, doors and staircases carefully aligned to give long views through grand spaces, etc, etc. beneath a dome studded with what appear to be hundreds of lenses to bring down lots of daylight.

henry the seventh's lady chapel at westminster abbey ... infested with lions, dogs, and gryphons

do sailors still sing shanties ?

the quality of mercy ...

The quality of mercy is not strained.

It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven

Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest:

It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.

Tis mightiest in the mightiest; it becomes

The throned monarch better than his crown.

His scepter shows the force of temporal power,

The attribute to awe and majesty,

Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings.

But mercy is above this sceptered sway;

It is enthroned in the hearts of kings;

It is an attribute of God himself;

And earthly power doth then show like God's

When mercy seasons justice.