Thomas Wolsey, Archbishop of York, Chief Minister and favorite of Henry VIII, took over the site of Hampton Court Palace in 1514. Over the following 7 years, Wolsey spent lavishly to build the finest palace in England at Hampton Court. Today, little of Wolsey's building work remains unchanged. The first courtyard, the Base Court, was his creation, as was the second, inner gatehouse which leads to the Clock Court. Henry VIII stayed in the state apartments as Wolsey's guest immediately after their completion in 1525. The architectural historian Sir John Summerson asserts that the palace shows "the essence of Wolsey — the plain English churchman who nevertheless made his sovereign the arbiter of Europe and who built and furnished Hampton Court to show foreign embassies that Henry VIII's chief minister knew how to live as graciously as any cardinal in Rome." Whatever the concepts were, the architecture is an excellent and rare example of a 30-year era when English architecture was in a harmonious transition from domestic Tudor, strongly influenced by perpendicular Gothic, to the Italian Renaissance classical style. Wolsey was only to enjoy his palace for a few years. In 1528, knowing his enemies and the King were engineering his downfall, he passed the palace to the King as a gift. Wolsey died two years later in 1530. Wikipedia.