Possibly the only piece of furniture to survive from the Tudor palace of Westminster, we are delighted to display the Paradise State Bed to the public for the first time. Re-discovered in 2010 by Ian Coulson of the Langley Collection, this is arguably an unrivalled masterpiece of fifteenth century oak carving.
A subject of ongoing academic debate as to its origins and provenance, Auckland Castle has a mission to bring issues such as these to public attention. Artistic interpretation and historic paint analysis suggests a very early Tudor date, but radiocarbon and dendrochronology has been inconclusive. This exhibition outlines the evidence for you, the public, to decide.
The bed was most likely commissioned almost immediately after Henry VII’s accession, to celebrate his marriage to Elizabeth of York and the end of the War of the Roses. The headboard depicts Adam and Eve in likeness of the King and Queen, surrounded by the fruits of paradise which would symbolize fertility and the couple’s hope for an heir. No Tudor state beds survive to the present for comparison. The Paradise State Bed could therefore be one of the most significant artefacts of early Tudor history.
The Paradise State Bed is connected to Auckland Castle through Richard Foxe, Bishop of Durham 1494 – 1501. Foxe was a key supporter of Henry Tudor’s claim to the throne of England who met Henry whilst exiled in France, fought with him at Bosworth Field, and was a member of the commission that designed Henry’s state apartments. He was also Henry’s key diplomatic advisor and set up the marriage of his daughter, Margaret, to King James IV of Scotland.
The Paradise State Bed Exhibition is included within the standard ticket to visit Auckland Castle. You can visit the exhibition during our usual seasonal opening hours until 30th September 2014. It is the subject of a BBC4 documentary, SECRET KNOWLEDGE: THE KING’S LOST BED, presented by historian Dr Jonathan Foyle.
I’m wrapped in the depths of these deeds that have made me
I can’t bring a sound from my head though I try
I can’t seem to find my way up from the basement
A demon holds my place on earth til I die
All night, all I hear, all I hear’s your heart
How come, how come
star wars: the clone wars meme: (2/7) relationships → Anakin and Ahsoka
"You’re reckless, little one. You never would have made it as Obi-Wan’s Padawan. But you might make it as mine."
'Sister Moon' by Amiee Stewart
We’ve been here all of four minutes and you guys have already forgotten everything I said! Party huddle, stat!