Bowhill: The House, its People and its Paintings
By Richard Buccleuch, Richard Scott
By Fritz von der Schulenburg
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Bowhill started life as a modest Georgian villa bought for political reasons. The art collection was consolidated when Henry, the enlightened 3rd Duke, and his wife, Elizabeth, united three great families of Montagu, Douglas and Scott. They left to later generations to transform Bowhill into a huge mansion and add great treasures to its collection.
With its simple form and dark greywacke stone, its great mass spread along a plain grassy platform above the Ettrick Valley, Bowhill might be thought to verge on the austere. For the approaching visitor there is no hint of a family whose ties thread for centuries back through the histories of Scotland and England, little to encourage hope that rich and varied art collections might lie within, or even that these solid stones might have resonated with festivities and celebrations, the setting for warm sentiments and deeper emotions. Bowhill is a most deceptive house.
This book falls into two parts, a history of the family, the Scotts of Buccleuch, and the building of Bowhill, and tour of its spectacular rooms.