Mayfair, London

Home of William Cavendish, the 6th Duke of Devonshire


Devonshire House 1896

Devonshire House 1906



The mansion was criticized for having an austere, purely functional exterior, "like an East India warehouse". It was renowned for a sumptuous interior. Devonshire House had some of the most ornate rooms in London, as the historical sketch below suggests. The brick wall along the Piccadilly front was unpopular. Passers-by found this barrier unattractive and unsociable.

In the story... Diana arrives here in December 1854, her first time south of Derbyshire. She is the guest of the bachelor 6th Duke of Devonshire. His great-niece, Louisa Cavendish, usually serves as his chatelaine here. When her father takes seriously ill, she goes home to Lancashire to care for him. Diana steps in to serve as chatelaine.





A ball at Devonshire House in 1850, from the Illustrated London News




The gates in the 1906 photo are now down Piccadilly a short distance as an entrance to Green Park. They were moved here after Devonshire House was demolished in 1924.





A map from 1746

The house and garden took up almost all the territory between Piccadilly and Berkeley Square. Still true in 1854. The open area at the bottom of the map is Green Park.