This lecture is generously sponsored by the English-Speaking Union of the United States.
Presented by Jeremy Musson, British author and historian; former Architectural Editor of Country Life
As they became icons of power, civilization and luxury, English country houses depended on an intricate hierarchy of servants to maintain them in their splendor. Great estates such as Chatsworth, Knole, Holkham Hall, and Waddesdon Manor became emblems of a certain elegance and elitism that seem quintessentially English.
In this richly illustrated talk based on his book, Up and Down Stairs (John Murray, 2009), Jeremy Musson will look at 600 years of domestic service in the English country house. Drawing on both published and unpublished sources, Musson will celebrate the authentic voices of the servants who ran these vast houses, and will explore some of the elaborate rituals and hierarchies of noble households, some of which are still in place today.
Admission is open to the public and free with general museum admission. A reception and book signing will follow the program.