The House from a circa 1903 postcard
Built / Designed For: Sir Robert Worsley
House & Family History: Appuldurcombe was once the grandest house on the Isle of Wight. The House is today largely a shell, though the East Facade of 1701 has been restored. Even in its current state Appuldurcombe is still an important example of English Baroque architecture.
Collections: Appuldurcombe once contained, in the Library, a set of eight armchairs in a Greek-inspired pattern, each of the top-rails being centered in a small Etruscan Wedgwood portrait medallion depicting a writer. Sir Richard Worsley (1751-1805) of Appuldurcombe was British ambassador in Venice in the late 18th century; in that role he was Sir William Hamilton's diplomatic counterpart in Venice (Hamilton was ambassador to Naples). Sir Richard purchased most of Sir William's second collection of antique gems circa 1791 and subsequently published "Museum Worsleyanum" 1798-1802. This folio publication illustrated not only Sir Richard's collection of antique gems, but also other antiquities, including drawings of the sculptures of the Parthenon by William Pars. The text, in English and Italian, was largely written by E.Q. Visconti (1751-1818). Sir Richard died in 1805 and his collection, together with the house (Appuldurcombe) and all its contents, was inherited by his niece, Miss Simpson. Miss Simpson later married the Earl of Yarborough, and, through her, Sir Richard's collection came to Brocklesby Park in Lincolnshire, the Yarborough family seat. At Brocklesby Sir Richard's collection of antique gems was joined by antiquities previously collected by the 1st Baron Yarborough. Virtually all of the antique gems have been sold from Brocklesby.
Garden & Outbuildings: Capability Brown landscaped the Park.
Architect: William TalmanDate: Circa 1700
Architect: John JamesDate: Circa 1700
Title: Vases and Volcanoes: Sir William Hamilton and His Collection
Author: Jenkins, Ian; Sloan, Kim
Year Published: 1996
Reference: pgs. 45, 101, 102, 103, 207
Publisher: London: British Museum Press
Book Type: Softback
Title: Country Houses of Gloucestershire: Volume Two, 1660-1830, The
Author: Kingsley, Nicholas
Year Published: 1992
Reference: pg. 63
Publisher: Sussex: Phillimore & Co. Ltd.
Book Type: Hardback
Author: Wills, Geoffrey
Year Published: NA
Publisher: London: Chancellor Press
Book Type: Hardback
House Listed: Grade I
Park Listed: Grade II
Past Seat of: Sir Robert Worsley, early 18th century; Sir Richard Worsley, late 18th century. Charles Anderson-Pelham, 1st Earl of Yarborough, 19th century.
Current Ownership Type: English Heritage
Primary Current Ownership Use: Visitor Attraction