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A tour of The Keats House, Hampstead, 1995.

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 12:17 am
by Saturn
Firstly, a few words from Malia by way of an introduction to what follows:

I think it's important to point out that these
pictures were taken 10 years ago, during the Keats
bicentennial [that would be 1995-Ed]. You can see from some of the pictures
that the house needed some sprucing up. I recently
read that Keats house was rennovated in 2003 and that
the interrior was stripped and re-painted to look as
it did when Keats actually lived there. Through the
restoration, they were able to discern that in Keats's
day the rooms' color scheme was off white and
green--quite different from what the rooms look like
in my pics.

When I was there, part of the house (the rooms above
the Brawne's sitting rooms) was not available to the
public--so I have no pics of those rooms. However, it
is my understanding that now after the rennovation
several rooms that were closed are open to the public.

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 12:40 am
by Saturn
Please Click on The images to enlarge them.

This is what a visitor would see when first
entering Keats House through the front door. The
front door was, in Keats's day, the entrance to the
Brawne's (or Dilke's) side of the house. You can see
in front of you the the Girometti Medallion.
Image

Here is a view of the front entrance taken while
standing in front of the Girometti Medallion.
Image

This is the narrow staircase leading upstairs to
Keats's bedroom (the only room that I remember being
open to me at the time I visited Keats House in 1995).
I was struck by just how narrow the staircase is.
Only one person could go up or down at a time.
Image
Here is a view of the Brawne's /Dilke's sitting
room from the dining area. The picture is a little
dark, but to the left you can see the fireplace and in
the corner is a bust of Keats.
Image

Another view of the Brawne's/Dilke's sitting and
dining rooms. The portrait on the wall near the
window is of Charles Wentworth Dilke and in the
cabinet near the portrait are Keats relics such as
locks of his hair (his hair was brownish red in
color), pictures of Fanny Brawne's children (who I
remember looking like outlaws from the Wild West--they
reminded me of Jesse and Frank James for some reason!
hehe) and other curiosities.
Image

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 12:49 am
by Saturn
Here's a somewhat washed out photo of a bust of
Keats surrounded by lillies. He looks rather Grecian
in this bust. I think whoever carved it was aiming
for the "Apollo look"
Image

Here is a shot of Keats's sitting room. The
chairs are set up in a manner he liked. He would sit
in the chair facing out toward the room and rest one
of his arms against the back of the chair facing the
window as he read. You can see on the wall near the
bookcase Keats's beloved print of Shakespeare.
Image

Here's a closeup shot of a bust of Charles Brown
taken in his parlor (this room was bigger than Keats's
sitting room). I believe the pictures to the right of
the bust are Hogarth prints.
Image

Here's a long view of the same bust of Charles
Brown. You can see in the curio cabinet that he had a
large collection of tassie seals. The cabinet also
contains other relics associated with Brown including
a portrait of his son, Carlino.
Image

Here is a view of the couch in Brown's parlor.
I can just imagine Keats lying on that couch in the
early months of 1820, looking out the
window--straining for a glimpse of Fanny Brawne as she
took a turn in the garden.
Image

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 12:52 am
by Saturn
Here's a shot of the upstairs hallway leading to
Keats's bedroom. The bedroom is on the right.
Image

Here's a shot of Keats's bed. I don't believe
it was the *actual* bed Keats slept in, but it is a
close recreation.
Image

Another view of Keats's bedroom. The small
table in front of the fireplace is from Keats's day,
though I don't know if it was actually used by Keats.
You can also see a dressing table near the window.
From this view, Keats's bed would be directly to the
right of the small round table.
Image

This room was added onto the house in the
1830's. Though I don't think you can see her very
well, the lady in the picture hanging over the
fireplace was the woman who built the addition when
she bought Wentworth Place. (Can't remember her name,
unfortunately.) The cases covered with heavy cloth
contain original manuscripts and letters from Keats.
Thus, in order to keep the ink on the documents from
fading, the curtains are closed unless someone taking
a tour of the house wants to take a peek at them. One
letter I remember being behind those curtains was
Keats's letter to Fanny Brawne's mother written while
he was on board the Maria Crowther. This is the
letter where Keats scribbled his last direct message
to Fanny: "Good bye Fanny! God bless you." It's
poignant to read the actual letter because you can see
in his handwriting the pain and despair he felt as he
wrote those words--they were written in a tiny scrawl
and the words "God bless you" seemed to fade out into
a scribble as if he could barely find the energy to
write them.
Image

Here's Brown's wine cellar which I'm sure was
filled with Chateaux Margeaux when Keats was in
residence!
Image

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 1:07 am
by Saturn
Here's a shot of the back of Keats House all
dappled in the autumn sunlight.
Image

A picture of a tree that represents the one
under which Keats wrote Ode to A Nightingale. The
poor thing looked a little sickly to me--I think it
had just been planted that year and was still a
sapling. Also, as it was autumn, the leaves were
beginning to turn and fall so it is somewhat difficult
to even *see* the tree amidst all the other foliage.
Image

A picture of Hampstead Heath where Keats used to
romp. The heath was beautiful and so relaxing to walk
upon! I swear I could almost feel his spirit as I
walked along. I felt his presence much more fully on
the heath than I did in the house.
Image

Another view of the heath as the autumn leaves
were turning.
Image

As I went to Keats House during the bicentennial
of his birth, he was everywhere! Here's a poster of
Keats I found on one of the walls of the London
Underground promoting an exhibition at the British
Library.
Image

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 1:08 am
by Saturn
In conclusion might I like to extend a very warm thanks to Malia for her paitence and diligence in providing these pictures for us. I hope I've done justice to your work :?

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 2:03 am
by Malia
Thanks so much for posting the pics, Stephen. They look great! I hope people enjoy the tour :)

If anyone else has pics (old or new) of Keats House or any other Keats-related site to share, please do post them!

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 6:25 am
by Credo Buffa
Wow, things have changed at the Keats House! The furnishings are much more sparse now, and a lot of the wallpaper has changed. It was kind of disappointing seeing the place as a "work in progress", but it's nice to know that they are working to preserve the house and make it look as much as possible like it would have when Keats lived there.

There's now a no picture policy inside the house, but I did get one (honestly, before I saw the "no photography" sign!). Most of the rooms are so small that it would be difficult to get good photos anyway. Yours are great, Malia!

In any case, this thread has inspired me to finally get it together and doctor and upload my pictures of the various Keats locales in London so that I can post them here. There are a lot, and I don't have thumbnails, so these are just links to the actual pictures themselves. Just a note: the pictures of the house itself are taken on two different days, due to the unpleasant clouds threatening rain on the day of my actual visit versus the beautiful sunshine the next morning :)

"Young cow and herdsmen" from the Parthenon frieze in the British Museum, inspiration for "Ode on a Grecian Urn":
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/GrecianUrn.jpg

Wider view of the Parthenon frieze:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Parthenonfrieze.jpg

The Keats Pharmacy! Located about a fourth of a mile up the street from the Keats House in Hampstead:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Keatspharmacy.jpg

Keats Grove sign:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/KeatsGrove.jpg

Looking down Keats Grove:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/KeatsGrovestreet.jpg

The Keats House. I always wondered why all photos of the house are from the same angle, but now I know that it's because all others will place a nice fat tree right in the middle of the shot :P
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Keatshousemorning.jpg

Wentworth Place gate:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Gate.jpg

My one indoor picture which I'm sure you all recognize:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Keatsreadingroom.jpg

The back of the house:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Keatshousebackgarden.jpg

A close-up of the front of the house. The leftmost window is where Keats sat when he was ill to watch the passersby outside:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Keatshousefront.jpg

The replanted plum tree under which Keats wrote "Ode to a Nightingale":
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Nightingaletree.jpg

A pond at the edge of Hampstead Heath:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/HampsteadHeathpond.jpg

An "ode to autumn" on the Heath:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/HampsteadHeathautumn.jpg

Well Walk. Note: this one is on my deviantART page because I took it as more of an art photo than anything, so if any of you want to use it for any reason, please ask me first!
http://www.deviantart.com/view/24699424/

A look down Well Walk, where Keats lived with his brothers for awhile:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/WellWalk.jpg

From the Vale of Heath, where Keats often went to visit Leigh Hunt:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/ValeofHeath.jpg

The Spaniards Inn, a favorite hangout for Keats. That road right in front is insanely busy. . . I could hardly cross it to get this picture!
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/TheSpaniardsInn.jpg

Interior of the Spaniards Inn:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/SpaniardsInninterior.jpg

The John Keats at Moorgate, formerly known as the Swan and Hoop. I was there during the lunch hour, and the place was packed! I also had a really great tuna melt and chips for a decent price, so I highly recommend it :)
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/formerSwanandHoop.jpg

The interior of the "Keats Bar":
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v176/ptacey/Moorgateinterior.jpg[/url]

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 10:07 am
by Saturn
Excellent photos Credo :D

All these photos make me wish I could go on my own pilgrimage there myself but these photos will probably be as close as I get.

I love the photo of Hampstead Heath and that shady walk with the trees overhanging - it's like a poem in itself - no wonder Keats was inspired by his walks on the heath.

I could quite easily imagine myself supping a pint or two at The Spaniards Inn too - it looks so comfy and relaxing :)

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 6:13 pm
by Malia
LOVE the pics, Credo Buffa! I was in such a rush when I visited Keats House in 1995, that I didn't really tour the surrounding area or else I'd probably have pics of Keats Pharmacy and Pub, too! LOL

I'm sorry to hear that you can't take pictures in Keats House anymore, thouhg :( When I was there, there wasn't a rule against it so I was a shutter bug. You're right--the rooms are so tiny in the house that it was hard to get one good shot of each room. I remember that very well.

Oh, now I reeaaallly want to take my "British authors and tea shoppe" walking tour!

PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 11:02 pm
by Saturn
You can't take photos in the Keats-Shelley Memorial House either [or at least not in 2003 when I was there :? ].

Maybe next time I'll tell the curator that I'm the administrator of Keats' own website and he'll let me take some snaps :D :wink:

Re: A tour of The Keats House, Hampstead, 1995.

PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2009 3:32 am
by BrokenLyre
Credo Buffa I just saw your January 2006 pictures of Keats's Hampstead, Well Walk, etc... and copied them as well. Hope you don't mind - but I had to have them on my computer! Thanks for sharing them with us - I don't know how I missed these pics before....
Big thank you!!!

Re: A tour of The Keats House, Hampstead, 1995.

PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 2:32 pm
by tarianz

Re: A tour of The Keats House, Hampstead, 1995.

PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 7:51 pm
by Raphael
I don't know how I missed them either Broken Lyre- they are lovely photos.

Re: A tour of The Keats House, Hampstead, 1995.

PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 10:32 am
by barrymorga
tarianz wrote:Well that is amazing! )

I have some similar photos from a few years back and I remember them being amazing, but I seem to have misplaced them while looking through Things To Do in Las Vegas such as Las Vegas Tourist Attractions. I will post them as soon I figure out where I saved them. :)
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