This is one of a series of detailed reviews I have written about Burghley House.
Turning right at the top of the Roman staircase takes you to State Rooms in the north wing. The first room is the BILLIARD ROOM dominated by a massive billiard table and red plush seats along the walls. The billiard table is mid C19th and was made from wood from the wreck of the battleship Royal George which sank at Spithead in 1782. The walls are covered with wood panelling with family portraits and it has a lovely plaster ceiling, designed by Lancelot Brown.
This leads into the BOW ROOM with a big bay window with views across the park. All available walls and ceiling are painted and even doors are painted to hide them. The paintings show classical scenes and are the work of Louis Laguerre for the 5th Earl, who used the room as a grand dining room. It was later used as a music room by the 9th Earl. It is now virtually empty of furniture which makes the room feel even larger.
Beyond the Billiard Room is the BROWN DRAWING ROOM with its plaster ceiling, chandelier and more portraits and paintings. The small day bed was used by Princess Victoria when she visited Burghley with her mother. Off is a small closet.
Next is the BLACK AND YELLOW BEDROOM with its splendid black and yellow hangings and an C18th state bed which has been used by royalty when they have stayed at Burghley. Again the room has a plaster ceiling. Walls are panelled with paintings, with a tapestry on the long wall facing the inner courtyard. It has a warm and cosy feel.
The MARQUETRY ROOM is a small display room at the corner of the north and west wings, and gets its name from the marquetry furniture on display. It has a corner fireplace specially designed to display Chinese or Japanese porcelain which was very much in favour at the time. The false marble decoration is a recreation of the original decoration.
The lovely collection of majolica plates down the side of the window were brought from Italy by the 9th Earl. The delicate wood carving of a dead bird is late C18th French.
This leads into the rooms along the west wing and the next review.