So, who’s ever seen the newest version of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice with Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfayden? Yea, a lot of us have… Whether you like this version, or the old BBC version, its a pretty well accepted fact, that the house Jane Austen used for Pemberley, Mr. Darcy’s home, is the Chatsworth House, the same house filmed in the movie. During the summer that Jane Austen wrote the book, she traveled in the Peak District and toured Chatsworth House. There are so many similarities in between Pemberley and Chatsworth, that it is highly likely that Chatsworth is “Pemberley.” So, whether or not you are a fan of the late Pride and Prejudice movie, the Chatsworth House is still a must see.
Viewing the house in the beginning of August isn’t the best time, as far as tourists go… The grounds were packed with people, as was the house. The tickets for viewing the house and/or grounds, are rather expensive as well. Since dogs aren’t allowed, and since men don’t particularly care for Pride and Prejudice, my friend stayed outside with Rusty while I bought a ticket for just the house. I only cared to see the sculptures. The rest of the house looked gorgeous, but those were my priority. Ever since I first saw the movie, I have always been enthralled with the Veiled Vestal Virgin sculpture that Elizabeth stares at in the movie. Something about the veil has always amazed me, how absolutely real it looks, and yet its stone… I spoke with one of the employees in the house, a hostess or whatever you might call her, and asked how to get to the sculpture room via the quickest way. When she understood that was all I wanted to see, she informed me it was the last few rooms, and to follow her. She took me behind the scenes, up some stairways not for public use and back to the room I wanted. I was rather impressed she did all that for me!
To my delight, the room looks almost identical to the way it did in the movie, a room full of sculptures. However, the Veiled Vestal Virgin is in another little room off of the main one, and doesn’t quite have the nice backdrop for pictures. But, to make up for that, the sculpture of Mr. Darcy from the movie was in the same little room! I didn’t realize they’d have that! So of course I got my picture with Mr. Darcy. I also got some good chuckles over the little sign below him that read, “Please do not kiss!” Speaking with another “hostess,” she told me that people really do try to kiss him, silly people!