The sum of £50o,000 was voted for the purchase of the manor and the erection of the building, a huge pile built by Sir John Vanbrugh, in a heavy Italo-Corinthian style.
An important exhibition of Italo-Byzantine art was held here in 1905-1906.
Vast numbers of specimens have since been added to it both by purchase and from excavations, and it is now unique as a treasure house of Italo-Greek and Roman antiquities, besides containing a fine library and an important collection of pictures.
Both in and out of office he exercised his influence against an Italo-French alliance and for an immediate advance upon Rome, and in 1870 was sent to London and Vienna by the Lanza-Sella Cabinet to organize a league of neutral powers on the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War.
During the Italo-Turkish War he served in Tripoli on the staff, receiving special promotion to major after the battle of Zanzur in June 1912.