The Blenheim Tapestry occupies pride of place in the Green Writing Room, but there's a poignant story about the 1st Duke, whose victory it celebrates.
The portrait below left shows the 1st Duke in all his splendid prime. It's said that in later years, the ageing Duke stopped and gazed at his former self and murmured "That was once a man".
When you visit the Green Writing Room, be sure to notice that the decadent green silk damask wall covering features the Malborough family coat of arms in the pattern.
This is the main piece of the priceless, world-renowned Marlborough Taprestries known as the 'Victories' series, depicting the first Duke of Marlborough's victory at the Battle of Blenheim. They were commissioned by the first Duke himself, and are supreme examples of the weavers' art.
The Duke appears in all but one the tapestries. He is easily spotted because he wears a red coat with gold buttons and has gold spurs. He can also be identified by the Baton of Office he always carries in his hand.
The rest of the series hang in the First, Second and Third State Rooms, with each depicting different scenes of the battle after which the Palace is named and the French surrender.
The first Sir Winston Churchill was the father of the 1st Duke of Marlborough. He was a Royalist, and at the end of the Civil War in England, he lost his fortune.
However, when King Charles II was restored to the throne, although he never got his money back, Sir Winston was made welcome again at Court. He created the family motto, ‘Fiel Pero Desdichado’, which means ‘Faithful but Unfortunate’.
You can see this motto as you look around the Palace. It may help if you look for our two friendly wyverns, Grinling and Gibbons, because where they are, the motto is seldom far away.
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