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Hopetoun House

Hopetoun House
©2014 Gazetteer for Scotland

Hopetoun House

Hopetoun House, more of a Palace than a country house, is located in 40 ha (100 acres) of parkland 2½ miles (4 km) west of South Queensferry and 11 miles (18 km) west of Edinburgh. Originally built in 1699 for the Hope family by the architect Sir William Bruce (1630 - 1710), along similar lines to his Kinross House built just a few years earlier. Following the death of John Hope at sea (1682), the house and estates were developed by his wife Margaret, daughter of the 4th Earl of Haddington. Their son, the 1st Earl of Hopetoun, decided he needed a grander home and in 1721 commissioned William Adam (1689 - 1748) to enlarge the house. Adam, ably assisted by his sons Robert and John, added flanking wings, colonnades and pavilions to the north and south, a grand entrance and remodelled the original house outside and in. So extensive was the work it was not completed until 1748, the year of William Adam's death. Robert Adam accompanied the 2nd Earl on a 'Grand Tour', an experience which had a profound effect on his work and subsequent architectural practise in Britain. Further work was carried out by James Gillespie Graham (1776 - 1855) in the early 19th Century to create the Regency-style State Dining Room. In 1822, King George IV knighted the artist Henry Raeburn (1756 - 1823) at Hopetoun during his visit to Scotland and was appropriately impressed by the grandeur of the house.

Today Hopetoun remains the Hope family home, in the form of the 4th Marquis of Linlithgow, and its apartments are replete with 18th Century furniture and paintings, including works by Canaletto and Gainsborough. Several rooms have silk wall coverings and magnificent rococo coved ceilings. Features from William Bruce's original interior remain, including the panelled main staircase and the Bruce Bedchamber. The Hopetoun House Preservation Trust was created by the 3rd Marquis to maintain the house for future generations, with corporate entertaining ensuring an income stream.


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