Windsor Castle, William Shakespeare and England's Rose

In the spirit of the Diamond Jubilee
I spent the day at Windsor Castle on my own.
I had planned it that way...
I wanted to take my time and do it my way. :)

I learned many facts about Windsor Castle...
Built by William the Conqueror (r.1066-87)
It has stood it's ground for 900 years.
Today it is the largest occupied castle in the world.
Occupies 13 acres (5 hectares).

Official residence of The Queen
Often used by The Queen to host State Visits.
If you go, be sure to see: the State Apartments
On exhibition now, a must see..
You can visit Windsor Castle via video here.

St. George's Chapel holds the tombs of ten sovereigns 
including Henry VIII and his third wife Jane Seymour, 
and Charles I. Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, 
King George VI and Princess Margaret also lie buried in the Chapel.

The castle is so rich in history, it requires a good read and visit to take it all in.
I am not sure if even then, one could fully grasp the full scope of this magnificent castle.

Interior shots are not I had to make due with what I discovered outside.
If you would like to explore Windsor Castle in more detail...start here.
I promise you, the interior is most definitely worth a visit.

My discoveries....
Up, up and away.. after all, it is a castle. :)

     "Oh Romeo, Romeo...wherefore art thou Romeo?
Deny thy father and refuse thy name;
Or if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love
And I'll no longer be a Capulet." 
William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet 

Windsor Castle has a way of making you think like that.

Here lies the Moat Path which leads to the Moat Garden.

Since the eighteenth century, the moat surrounding the 
Round Tower has featured an ornamental garden.

It is one of those scenes that leaves you grounded to your spot...
for the want of taking in every detail.

 There is so much to take in.... it is just a matter of what resonates with you most.

"Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date".
William Shakespeare, Sonnet 18

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet. "
William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

                      Before passing through The Norman Gate, I looked to my right...

 and up the stairs to something that intrigued me..

I zoomed...

 and zoomed....

and zoomed...until I found my prize.
A garden statue... a knight of the Round Table perhaps?
I like to think of it as King Arthur standing guard over
his garden kingdom. Yes, I know it is a bit corny...but
it's a castle and I enjoy stories of lore, so there you go. 

and Salisbury Cathedral have been among my favorites places of worship to visit. 
I have to say, St. George's Chapel has now been bumped to the top of my list.

The present Chapel started under the guidance of Edward IV in 1475 
and was completed under Henry VIII in 1528. Dates which are inconceivable to me, 
until I stepped into the Chapel. You need to sit down when you enter, it is that beautiful.
From the Royal tombs and memorials to The Most Noble Order of the Garter, it is captivating.

The Albert Memorial Chapel, an adjunct to St. George Chapel 
is to commemorate Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria.

"Be not afraid of greatness: some are born great, some achieve greatness,
and some have greatness thrust upon 'em."
William Shakespeare, Twelth Night

I left Windsor Castle not as I entered. I have a much finer
appreciation for the history of England and it's Queen.
To that end, I offer the words to "Rose of England"
with thoughts of the Diamond Jubilee and Queen Elizabeth.
'Thou shalt blossom to the end of time.'

Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Rose of England
Grown in one land alone
Where proud winds have blown
There's not a flower born of the shower
Braver than England's own
Though gales of winter blow
Piercing hail and snow
Shining she stays bright as in the days of yore
Old England's pride still blossoms
Fresh on England's shore

Rose of England thou shall fade not here
Proud and bright from growing year to year
Red shall thy petals be as rich wine untold
Share by thy warriors who served thee of old
Rose of England breathing England's air
Flower of chivalry beyond compare
While hand and heart endure to cherish they prime
Thou shalt blossom to the end of time

Rose of England breathing England's air
Flower of liberty beyond compare
While hand and heart endure to cherish they prime
Thou shalt blossom to the end of time

Written by Ivor Novello, 1937

One last an earlier post, I could not make up my mind
which commemorative items to purchase. If you are looking for
a special item have a look here. I found what I was looking for. 


Best wishes to one and all for a lovely weekend!
Happy Jubilee!

Jeanne xx

except where noted

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