<I>Florimène</I>:Note on Whitehall

Florimène at the Court of Charles I

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Whitehall Palace

Between 1581 and 1642, masques at Whitehall Palace were presented in one of three Banqueting Houses, and in the Hall.

  1. A temporary and short-lived wooden structure, was ordered built by Queen Elizabeth I in 1581.

  2. The 1581 structure was ordered destroyed and a new Banqueting Hall built by James I in 1606. This was designed by David Cunningham. The building was destroyed by fire in 1619.

  3. A new banqueting house was designed by Inigo Jones and first used for masquing in 1622.

Additionally, the Hall of Whitehall Palace "was used during the period when the new Whitehall Banqueting House was being built in 1607-08 and 1620-21 and on the unique occasion in 1613" when masques were presented in both the Banqueting House and the Hall. The Hall was also the site of Florimène, performed by Queen Henrietta Maria's Ladies.

[Reference: Orgel, Stephen and Roy Strong, Inigo Jones: The Theatre of the Stuart Court. University of California Press, 1973 pp. 79-80]

Jack Wolcott