"Practical and Pure, The Irish Palladian."

Uglum, Kimberlin, Architectural History - School of Architecture, University of Virginia
Wilson, Richard, AR-Arch History Dept, University of Virginia
Wilson, Richard, AR-Arch History Dept, University of Virginia

In the eighteenth century, growing international building trends introduced Palladianism to Europe. Growing in Britain and Prussian circles, the symmetrical and simplistic classical style established itself as a part of the language of power and refinement. Sites like the Berlin State Opera, built in 1742, was commissioned by Frederick II of Prussia shortly after his accession to the throne, appears to be based on designs from Colen Campbell’s Vitruvius Britannicus. When the style was falling out of favor in Europe, it experienced a surge in North America at places like Drayton Hall in South Carolina, the Redwood Library in Newport, Rhode Island, and Monticello in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Initially, Palladianism had a pure origin when introduced to England by Inigo Jones in the early seventeenth century. However, when the style lost popularity due to the English Civil war, the Baroque and other influences from the continent could fill the vacuum until the style reappeared in the early eighteenth century. The Burlington circle was fluent in Palladian vocabulary but had other aesthetic options to incorporate when designing new architectural features. Architects in Ireland applied Palladianism in a purer form than their precedents or contemporaries, adhering strictly to the rules of symmetry and decoration regarding plan and appearance. Edward Lovett Pearce and Richard Castle, the two leading architects in Ireland at the time, chose to ignore other design options, despite their education suggesting a potential for other influences. Irish patrons also did little in comparison to their English counterparts in landscaping due to the lusher environment. As a result, the Irish Palladian country house was closer to Palladio’s own creations in materials and construction, adherence to the rules laid out by Palladio, and their situation in a functional landscape.

MARH (Master of Architectural History)
Palladio , Ireland, Eighteenth Century, Sir Edward Lovett Pearce, Richard Castle
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