King Richard III and Queen Anne

The Nature of Noble Loyalty

It’s spring in London and the flowers are bursting forth on Cheyne Walk, which skirts the edge of the River Thames until it gives way…

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Château de Rambouillet in 1987

My Porcelain Bucket List

When I am planning literary design adventures, I look for experiences that give me the feeling of transcendence—encounters during which I am conscious of having…

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Château Pédesclaux in Bordeaux

Architecture with Heart in Bordeaux

In the preface to the book Grand Bordeaux Châteaux: Inside the Fine Wine Estates of France, Philippe Chaix describes discovering Bordeaux as a bewitching act: on…

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The gardens at the Château Vaux-le-Vicomte

Heaven Shall Be Here

In the film A Little Chaos, Alan Rickman, who plays an unlikely Louis XIV, declares, “Heaven shall be here.” He’s speaking of a ballroom he…

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