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Coordinates: 50°30′19″N 4°45′57″W / 50.505288°N 4.765751°W / 50.505288; -4.765751

Pencarrow, north Cornwall

Pencarrow (Cornish: Pennkarow[1]) is a country house in north Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. It is situated three miles (5 km) east-southeast of Wadebridge and three miles (5 km) north-northwest of Bodmin.[2] The house is approached by a driveway of almost a mile in length.

Construction of Pencarrow started in the 1760s, extending an older house on the site, by the fourth Sir John Molesworth, and then completed after his death in 1766, by his son the fifth Sir John Molesworth.[3] The architect was Robert Allanson and Pencarrow was probably his finest achievement.

The surrounding woodlands and gardens, laid out by Sir William Molesworth between 1831 and 1835, now contain 160 species of specimen conifers, 700 species of rhododendrons and 60 species of camellias, and an Italian garden, a granite rockery and lake. Araucaria araucana derives its popular name of "monkey puzzle tree" from what happened when a young specimen of it at Pencarrow was shown to a group of friends of the owner; one of them made the remark "It would puzzle a monkey to climb that"; as the species had no existing popular name, first 'monkey puzzler', then 'monkey puzzle' stuck.[4]

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