This room is so large and elaborate that photographs don’t do it justice. The theme on the frieze depicts a forest with the court of Diana, amid attendant deer, lions, elephants, camels and other animals along with scenes of country life and deer and boar hunting.

The court of Diana, the virgin goddess and huntress, is probably a deliberate allusion to Elizabeth, the Virgin Queen.

To either side of the window recess, and rather more skilfully modelled than the rest of the frieze, are allegorical figures of Venus chastising Cupid, and Summer, based on Flemish engravings by Crispin van der Passe from designs by Martin de Vos. The hunting scenes elsewhere in the frieze are based on engravings by Philip Galle after Johannes Stradanus. *

Bess would have sat under a canopy like this although this one actually made in the early seventeenth century and pre-dates her. It was placed here by the bachelor Duke in the nineteenth century.

Loyalty in Plaster



*From the National Trust guidebook.

12 Comments CherryPie on Aug 15th 2010

12 Responses to “Hardwick Hall – The High Great Chamber”

  1. MTG says:

    If she were around today I doubt Bess of Hardwick would be impressed with the minimalist look, CP.

  2. Marcie says:

    What absolutely stunning interiors. WOW!

  3. This is a wonderfull place, i already mentioned that propabilly …

  4. That is absolutely amazing Cherie!

  5. Ruth says:

    Mostly a bit over the top for my taste ;-) ……but I do LOVE that fireplace!

  6. Ellee says:

    Can you imagine a house being built to this specification today?