Lord Bute's Bathroom

Lord Bute's Bathroom

Designer: William Burges, 1827-1881

1870s

Walnut, coloured marble, enamelled metal

Cardiff Castle

Wales

Photograph, caption, and commentary below by Jacqueline Banerjee

[You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the person who scanned the image and (2) link your document to this URL.]

Lord Bute's Bathroom, just off his bedroom in Bute Tower, Cardiff Castle. William Burges. c.1870. This walnut-panelled bathroom with 36 different types of marble insets and highly decorated hand-basin is unique, the only one that Burges is known to have designed (see "Cardiff Castle"). The hand-basin, which is set into a marble slab, is particularly splendid: "A mermaid combs her hair in the bottom of the bowl and monsters swim above her under an arcade of stone arches" (Crook 41). Mermaids were another of Burges's favourite motifs. Adjoining the bathroom was a flush water closet supplied by the sanitary engineer George Jennings.