Audley End Collection

When Audley End was built by Thomas Howard, 1st Earl of Suffolk, between 1605 and 1614, it was the size of a palace, suitable for a royal visit. Only the architectural and interior features from this period survive, not the furnishings. In 1762, when Sir John Griffin Griffin inherited the house from his aunt, he employed the architect Robert Adam to create a suite of furnished reception rooms. The service areas to the north of the house are now dressed to demonstrate their original use, from the kitchens to larders and laundries.

The painting collection was mostly put together by Richard, 3rd Baron Braybrooke. It contains a large number of early English portraits, as well as many Old Masters. Additional paintings came to the collection when Braybrooke married Lady Jane Cornwallis in 1819. When he inherited the house in 1825, he also developed the furnishings and recreated the Jacobean state rooms.

The 4th Baron was an archaeologist and contributed one of the best surviving taxidermy collections in the country to the treasures of the house. Although Audley End is in the care of English Heritage, much of its collection still belongs to the Braybrooke family.

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