HATFIELD HOUSE: THE SOUTH FRONT.
Hatfield House is situated just east of the town of Hatfield, and, as everybody knows, is the residence of the Marquis of Salisbury. This stately home was built by Robert Cecil, first Earl of Salisbury, in 1611, and is a noble example of Jacobean architecture. It was preceded by a palace, dating from the twelfth century, and belonging to the Bishops of Ely, and this was afterwards converted into a royal residence, in which Princess Elizabeth was sequestered for a time during the reign of Queen Mary. In Hatfield House are many portraits and historical manuscripts of the greatest interest, and these may be inspected when the family are away. The widow of the first Marquis was burnt to death in a fire that raged in the west wing in 1835.
source: The Queen's London : a Pictorial and Descriptive Record of the Streets, Buildings, Parks and Scenery of the Great Metropolis, 1896