6/14/17

Postcards from Britain - Blenheim Palace, Part 2

When you enter the Blenheim Palace grounds from the main streets of Woodstock you go through a triumphal arch gateway that was commissioned by the first Duchess, Sarah Churchill. The gateway is a memorial to her husband John Churchill, the first Duke, and was built about 20 or so years after his all too early death.


The inscription on the top (of the other side) of the arch reads: This gate was built the year after the death of the most illustrious John, Duke of Marlborough, by order of Sarah his most beloved wife, to whom he left the sole direction of the many things that remained unfinished of this fabric. The services of this great man to his country the pillar will tell you which the Duchess has erected for a lasting monument of his glory and her affection to him. 1723

We will get to the "pillar" she references in a second, but the image below is the quintessential view of Blenheim Palace and Park that you see upon entering through the gate and looking to your right. Pretty sweet.


The "pillar" Sarah referenced in the gate inscription is a large triumphal column she had built a good distance away from, but directly in front of the main entrance to Blenheim Palace itself. It resembles Nelsons column in Trafalgar Square, only its much larger. It too serves notice of the great service to England done by the first Duke, John Churchill. He stands on top, clad of course in Roman style gear. Here are a few of my shots of the pillar...

Blenheim Palace is behind us and way off in the distance is the pillar.

A long, lovely walk awaits those who take the time to go right up to the pillar.

John Churchill: Victor of the Battle of Blenheim and the war of Spanish succession.

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