joy magnetism: From Beckham to the Tudors, all in a day

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Sunday, July 11, 2010

From Beckham to the Tudors, all in a day

Magnet #870 - Hampton Court Palace

I've been hanging on to this supercute magnet for a while now. During the family trip to London, we did one day trip out to Hampton Court Palace, and were totally blown away.

The original buildings on the property date back to the 1200s and a religious order, the Knights Hospitallers of St John Jerusalem. But then in 1514, it was leased to Cardinal Thomas Wolsey who used it as a country home. He transformed it into quite the palace, including guest quarters for his pal, King Henry VIII.

But then, after episode after episode after episode of The Tudors of not being able to convince the Pope to grant a divorce to King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon, Wolsey pretty much lost everything from his place at court to his superdupercool palace to the king.

The palace flourished under Henry VIII, who proceeded to make it into the grand estate it is now. It should, he poured the equivalent of almost US$30 million into it over the course of ten years there. Crazy!

They have these cool audioguides for the various areas of the palace, so you're able to learn as much or as little about your surroundings and the rooms you're walking through. And my second favorite part is when they actually had dayplayers dressed as the cardinal and the king to come out and talk to the people. Kinda weird seeing them in the courtyards, because it totally takes you back in time.

Of course, my favorite part is really just walking through the old hallways and passages and living quarters and gardens. It's quite amazing to think of the people who lived there back in the 1500s, and to know you're walking in their steps.

I picked this magnet for today, mainly because rather than watching the World Cup finals, I stumbled upon Bend it like Beckham for like the thousandth time. And instead of watching Bride & Prejudice right afterward, like I was going to, I went on a Jonathan Rhys Meyers kick. Yay for Netflix having Season 1 of The Tudors on Instant Watch.

It's been on my docket for ages to eventually watch, so that's pretty much how I've spent my Sunday, getting lost in the world of Henry VIII, the machinations and treachery of the court, and the marvelous costumes of the day.

Of course, I can't figure out why they keep showing me the CGI version of Hampton Court, unless it's because they needed to get all the modern details totally out of the way. Still. It's odd to see it and think, dudes, that building's still there!
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