Badminton House is a large country house and Grade I Listed Building in Badminton, Gloucestershire, England, and has been the principal seat of the Dukes of Beaufort since the late 17th century, when the family moved from Raglan Castle, which had been ruined in the English Civil War. The house gives its name to the sport of badminton.
In 1612 Edward Somerset, 4th Earl of Worcester, bought from Nicholas Boteler his manors of Great and Little Badminton, called 'Madmintune' [sic] in the Domesday Book while one century earlier the name 'Badimyncgtun' was recorded, held by that family since 1275. Edward Somerset's 3rd son Sir Thomas Somerset modernized the old house in the late 1620s, and built a new T-shaped gabled range. Evidence suggests he also built up on the present north and west fronts. The 3rd Duke of Beaufort adapted Sir Thomas Somerset's house by incorporating his several gabled ranges around the courtyard and extending the old house eastwards to provide a new set of domestic apartments. He raised a grand Jonesian centrepiece on the north front. The two-bay flanking elevations were five storeys high, and this was modified in 1713 when reduced to three storeys. Their domed crowning pavilions are by James Gibbs. For the fourth duke, who succeeded his brother in 1745, the architect William Kent renovated and extended the house in the Palladian style, but many earlier elements remain. The fourth duke was instrumental in bringing Canaletto to England: Canaletto's two views of Badminton remain in the house.
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