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View of Greenwich by Canaletto

Masterplan of buildings and designed landscapes

A prospect of Greenwich Hospital for Seamen

Attribute 2

The scheme to extend the remaining palace buildings to become a Royal Hospital, at the instigation of Queen Mary from 1693-94, fell to Christopher Wren. Starting with the Queen’s House and Webb’s existing range of what became the King Charles Court, Wren evolved a scheme to extend the north/south axial symmetry of the site already established by Le Notre in the formal planting behind the Queen’s House. The plan included three further courts set according to the axis, Queen Anne, King William and Queen Mary Courts including majestic domes to flank the squares which form the open centre of the composition. The masterplan is the dominant theme in the painting by Canaletto from what is now Island Gardens, probably painted within a year after the complex was finished in 1751. 


  • Greenwich Hospital
  • Old Royal Naval College
  • Royal Borough of Greenwich
  • Royal Museums Greenwich
  • The Royal Parks
  • St Alfege
  • Trinity Laban
  • University of Greenwich
  • Visit Greenwich