To the left of this image of the Palace of Whitehall is the imposing building of the Banqueting House. Just right of the Banqueting House is the Holbein Gate. The inscription beneath the image states that it also includes:
‘…some still more antient [sic] remains of the palace, which adjoined the North end of the Banqueting Room [Banqueting House], and, which are to be found in no other view extant.’
Old Whitehall Palace was destroyed by fire in 1698. However, Banqueting House, designed by Inigo Jones in 1619 as part of the Palace and completed in 1622, is the only part of the Old Palace above ground, which survives today. It remains the property of the Queen, although it is now run by the charity Historic Royal Palaces and is open to the public. Originally known as the King's Gate or the Cockpit Gate, the Holbein Gate was built by Henry VIII and is named after Hans Holbein, who was thought to have designed it but probably only occupied lodgings within the gate.
Wenceslaus Hollar, draughtsman and etcher, was born in Prague; the son of an official. It is thought he had no formal training. He left Prague at 20 and resided in Stuttgart (1627-29), Strasbourg (1629-30), Frankfurt-am-Main (1631) and Cologne (1632-38), where Abraham Hogenberg published his portraits and views of Prague and the Dutch coast. Thomas Howard, Second Earl of Arundel, met Hollar in Cologne and returned to London with him in 1636. He produced prints of works in the Earl’s collection and married a servant to the Earl’s wife. He moved to Antwerp in 1644, returning in 1651/52. In 1669 he was the official artist on an embassy to Tangier with Lord Henry Howard, which resulted in two series of etchings. He died in Westminster aged 70.
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