Wednesday, September 11, 2013

It Keeps on Ticking

This astronomical clock hovers over life at Hampton Court Palace, a 16th century home originally built for Cardinal Wolsey, but he fell out of King Henry VIII's favor and the castle reverted to the King, who greatly enlarged it. Only two of the many palaces owned by Henry VIII survive, Hampton Court and St. James's Palace in London.

Beth visited Hampton when she was just 16 years old and remembers photographing this clock, which still keeps time five centuries later. Beth feels the black and white image does not do justice to the colorful beauty of the clock, which is shades of blue with gold and crimson details. I do like a black and white photo, but this one is a bit flat.

There is also a famous hedge maze at Hampton. It has been a feature of many novels, including one I read recently by Julia Stuart, The Pigeon Pie Mystery. In that story a grounds keeper sat on a high chair to direct lost souls who just couldn't find their way out. Beth visited the maze, but it has been trimmed so that one can see over the top now. I suppose they got tired of having to lead befuddled tourists out all the time.

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