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.|