I spent my last full day in England at Hampton Court, the palace established by Henry VIII (having had lunch on Wednesday with a colleague who is a fellow of a college and holder of a professorial chair all founded by same). It was squatter, more compact and less capacious than I was expecting, but it was still pretty spectacular and a good day out.
There are a lot of pictures of stained glass and English gardens following the jump. Consider yourself warned.
Even though there wasn't an active demonstration today (they happen something like only five times a year), I was excited to see the Tudor-period kitchens. Apparently Hampton Court Palace has become one of the major world centers of applied medieval food history, and these spaces are like massive medieval test kitchens for trying out recipes and technology.
There were Tudor-esque period cloaks available to be borrowed at the entrance by children and practitioners of creative anachronism of all stripes:
If you are setting yourself up as a successful ruler, it makes sense to emblazon the faces of Trajan and Hadrian above your moat:
The dining hall in Henry VIII's personal apartments:
I was surprised at how candid they were about the whole killing-off-lots-of-wives thing:
In addition to the loaner cloaks, they handled displaying material both for children and adults in a much superior way than in the exhibitions at Norwich castle. Owing to the slow and spontaneously-booting-me-off-of-it internet connection, I'll hold off on posting those images now, though.
My kingdom for a tripod!