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Bowood House

A Grade I Listed Building in Calne Without, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.4286 / 51°25'42"N

Longitude: -2.0376 / 2°2'15"W

OS Eastings: 397481

OS Northings: 169950

OS Grid: ST974699

Mapcode National: GBR 2T0.7PW

Mapcode Global: VHB41.MCN6

Plus Code: 9C3VCXH6+CX

Entry Name: Bowood House

Listing Date: 5 September 1972

Grade: I

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1253268

English Heritage Legacy ID: 436231

ID on this website: 101253268

Location: Wiltshire, SN11

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Calne Without

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Derry Hill Christ Church

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury

Tagged with: English country house Country house hotel Country house Baroque architecture

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5/12 Bowood House



Country house, 1755-61 by H. Keene and 1768-74 by R. Adam for the
1st Marquess of Lansdowne, built as service courts and orangery to
the main house, demolished 1955. Conversion to main residence
1955-7 by F.S. Samuels. Ashlar with slate roofs. E-plan pair of
service courts by Keene, 2-storey with 4 raised angle pavilions,
screened across south by Adam's single storey orangery range, the
'Diocletian Wing'. Part of the centre arm of Keene's courts
remodelled as chapel 1822-4 by C.R. Cockerell with prominent stone
lantern on the ridge added 1860 by Sir C. Barry. South front is
framed by Keene's pyramid-roofed pavilions, 3-window with modillion
pediments applied against attic storey, plain attic cornice and
parapet. Centre openings with architraves, ground floor centre
with pediments on consoles, Adam's range between, 4-1-4-1-4-1-4-
bays, has high pedimented projecting centre, with paired columns
flanking tall arched doorway and carved eagle on apex block.
Glazed doors with panelled piers and side lights, large radiating-
bar fanlight over. Fluted frieze with paterae. Wings have centre
pavilion with similar attached columns, cornice and flat parapet,
recessed arch with paterae in spandrels framing circular light over
plain doorway. Four-bays each side of centres have attached Roman
Doric colonnade and balustrade over, moulded arched openings, fully
glazed to orangery bays each side of main portico, recessed arched
glazing-bar windows in outer bays. This south front is a major
work in the development of Adam's mature style incorporating some
neo-classical elements, notably the composite capitals of the
columns derived from Diocletian's palace at Spalato. East front by
Keene, 3-7-3-bays, is framed by pavilions as on south front, the
centre 2-storey with modillion cornice and arched ground floor
openings. Moulded architraves to centre openings of pavilions and
main range, pediments to ground floor openings. Tall ashlar
stacks. Inner courts have similar cornice, 4-3-4-bay pedimented
rear ranges and 7-bay side ranges. Various arched ground floor
openings and lunettes divided by applied pilasters. Centre range
has south end altered for 3 long arched lights to chapel. Barry's
lantern, at north end of chapel, has rusticated plinth, moulded
base with clock faces and open arched cupola with attached columns,
cornice, finials over columns and slated square dome. West front
is plain version of east front with flanking pavilions. North
front is rubble stone with 1899 stone conservatory attached to
north of north-east pavilion, verandah on Roman Doric columns to
right. Attached are reset ornate c1851 iron gates from forecourt
of demolished main house.
Interiors: Adam orangery has plastered vaults and Ionic screens
each side of centre entry. Fine Greek revival doorcase and bronzed
doors to chapel. Beyond orangery to east is Laboratory where J.
Priestley, librarian and tutor at Bowood 1773-80 discovered oxygen
gas 1774 and Dr Jan Ingenhousz (1730-99) discovered photosynthesis
of plants 1779. East end of Adam range contains fine Library by
C.R. Cockerell. Chapel by Cockerell has severe Greek revival
interior with coffered ceilings. Reredos is C18 former organ case
installed 1899. Bowood was a notable political and literary centre
in the C18 and C19. The 1st Marquess (1737-1805) was Prime
Minister 1782-3, friend of Johnson, Goldsmith, Hume and Franklin.
The 3rd Marquess (1780-1863) was a leading Whig politician, anti-
slaver and promoter of Catholic Emancipation, friend of T. Moore
and Lord Macaulay. The 5th Marquess (1845-1927) was a Liberal
politician, Governor General of Canada 1883-8, Viceroy of India
1888-94, Foreign Secretary 1900-5 and leader of the Liberal
Unionists against Irish home rule.
(Country Life, 8-22.6.1972)

Listing NGR: ST9752869945

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