Knole: an architectural and social history of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s house, 1456-1538

Gregory, Alden John Dudley (2011) Knole: an architectural and social history of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s house, 1456-1538. Doctoral thesis (DPhil), University of Sussex.

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Abstract

This thesis analyses new evidence for both the architectural and social histories of
the late-medieval Archbishops of Canterburys‘ house at Knole in Sevenoaks, Kent.
Built and occupied by a succession of archbishops between 1456 and 1538, Knole is
today regarded as one of the most significant medieval houses in Great Britain.
Using newly discovered summary building accounts the thesis suggests a new
interpretation of the building phases of the house. This has reattributed most of the
major phases to Archbishop Bourchier (c.1411 – 1486) and suggests that by the time of
his death much of the extant fabric had been completed. Significantly it also suggests,
for the first time, that Bourchier may have been responsible for building the ranges
surrounding Green Court; a part of the house that has previously been attributed to later
owners of Knole.
The thesis also suggests that of Bourchier‘s successors at Knole only Archbishop
Warham (c.1450 – 1532) made any significant alterations to the building and attributes
to him the timber-framed ranges around Pheasant Court and the east front, including the
Brown Gallery.
In addition to its architecture, the thesis also considers how a house like Knole
was used by the archbishops and discusses the evidence for its differing functions. It
compares Knole to other late-medieval houses and palaces, most significantly to the
nearby house at Otford; another property built by the Archbishops of Canterbury. The
thesis concludes that, alongside some ritual and business functions, Knole‘s primary
role was as a country retreat away from the demands of Court and politics.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > Art History
Subjects: N Fine Arts > NA Architecture
N Fine Arts > NA Architecture > NA4100 Special classes of buildings > NA4170 Public buildings > NA4590 Religious architecture
N Fine Arts > NA Architecture > NA4100 Special classes of buildings > NA7100 Domestic architecture. Houses. Dwellings
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 06 May 2011 10:07
Last Modified: 14 Aug 2015 12:49
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/6896

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