Mansions are romanticized as homes of the landed aristocracy. You can picture warm fires and bookshelves full of volumes in various languages, such as Latin, French, and German. Portraits of family and ancestors line the walls, and various floors and rooms are flooded by people in elegant clothes, speaking in a very flowery prose. This is an age which has become the subject of much literature. Unfortunately, things weren't so rosy outside the mansion walls, and it was the winners who wrote history.