The Very Bath: King George III’s tub, rediscovered?

The bath used for the therapy of that troubled monarch, King George III, may have been rediscovered in a small palace on the Thames.

Its identity was pieced together by archaeologists and historians at Historic Royal Palaces, the non-profit conservation organisation which manages Hampton Court Palace and The Tower of London.

The bath was found at Kew Palace – a country mansion on the Thames in Kew Gardens.

The palace was a favourite of George III, and was where he often repaired when suffering from his bouts of mental instability. Research has since suggested he was suffering from the blood disease porphyria.

King George used to take baths as part of recommended therapy for his illness.

King George III’s house keeper told a visitor of the time that King George used to take his baths not in the main palace but in the kitchen block, which was separate from the main palace.

It is said he did this to save the servants the bother of carrying hot water to the main building.

During the restoration of the kitchens in 2012 a high-status bath was discovered in the kitchen buildings, dating from the period when the King used to take warm baths.

And you see it here.

Here’s a tour of the rest of the house and buildings…

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2 comments

  1. What an interesting find. Thanks for sharing it with us Kate.

    1. I was so excited when I saw it…such an iconic piece!

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