"Travellers of repute regarded it as a matter of course that they should be allowed to view the seats of the aristocracy and gentry, and contemporary letters and journals aboud in descriptions of visits to notable houses. In an age of elegance and creative taste those who owned beautiful properties were proud and gratified for them to be shown to a small but discriminating public. The conducted tour was usuallly guided by the housekeeper, but for visitors to Blenheim there was a lyrically written and elegantly written guidebook entitled A New Description of Blenheim. Not only the gardens and park but also the Palace were open to visitors at stated times, even when the family was in residence."
The Profligate Duke by Mary Soames.