Cardinal Wolsey, influential Archbishop of York to Henry VIII, started constructing Hampton Court within the early sixteenth century. Initially it was not a royal palace, but was meant as Wolsey’s riverside country house. Later, in 1528, Hampton Court was seized by the king when Wolsey fell from royal favor. The buildings and gardens have been then twice rebuilt and extended right into a grand palace, first by Henry himself and then, within the 1690s, by William III and Mary II, who employed Christopher Wren as architect.
There’s a striking distinction between Wren’s Classical royal flats and the Tudor turrets, gables, and chimneys elsewhere. The inspiration for the gardens as they’re at the moment comes largely from the time of William and Mary, for whom Wren created an enormous, formal Baroque landscape, with radiating avenues of majestic limes and lots of collections of exotic plants.
TENNIS COURT AND THE GARDENS
Henry VIII had the Royal Tennis Court constructed within the sixteenth century, as he was very keen on the sport. Legend says that he was enjoying tennis at Hampton Court while his second spouse, Anne Boleyn, was being executed. When William III moved into the palace in 1689, he had the gardens and the buildings transformed. Wren’s design for the gardens included the Fountain Garden and the Maze. The Maze was planted with hornbeams till the 18th century, when they have been replaced with yews and hollies.
THE CHAPEL ROYAL
Cardinal Wolsey had the Chapel Royal constructed throughout his time at Hampton Court Palace. As soon as King Henry VIII moved in, he refurbished the chapel and put in its spectacular vaulted ceiling in 1535-6. The chapel subsequently grew to become the placement for a lot of decisive moments in Henry’s life-it was right here that he learned of his fifth spouse Katherine Howard’s infidelity and married his last wife, Catherine Parr. The Great Hall, with its pleasant hammerbeam roof and Gothic fireplaces, was additionally a part of Henry’s rebuilding of Hampton Court. Stained-glass windows had been added to the gorgeous corridor, displaying the king flanked by the coats of arms of his six wives.