Travels of Cosmo III: Audley End

Audley End in 1669

Audley End, Essex, in 1669. From Count L. Magalotti, Travels of Cosmo the Third, Grand Duke of Tuscany, through England during the Reign of King Charles the Second 1669 (1821). There are two other views of Audley End in the book.

Built by the 1st Earl of Suffolk between 1603 and 1616, Audley End was the most palatial of the Jacobean courtier houses. Designed for entertaining royalty, it seems fitting that Charles II bought the house in 1668 a base conveniently close to the races at Newmarket. After it returned to the Earls of Suffolk in 1701, it was cut down to a less extravagant size. Audley End was designed around two courtyards. The view above looks through the main gates across the outer courtyard, demolished in 1708, to the core of the house which remains today, in the care of English Heritage.