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The Architecture of England refers to the architecture practiced in the territory of the present-day country of England, and in the historic Kingdom of England. Most villages, towns and cities have a rich mix of buildings dating from different periods. These aren’t neatly arranged: medieval churches abut twentieth-century tower blocks; Tudor town houses lean next to Victorian department stores; and neat Georgian terraces terminate with Art Deco cinemas.
Medieval buildings For many, 1066 is the date when the Middle Ages began. Centuries of castles, cathedrals and churches followed, busy with chivalry, the Crusades and crop-rotation, all ending around 1500. The church was central to everyday life. Usually the most impressive building in the neighborhood was the parish church.
White Tower, at the heart of the Tower of London, was begun by Bishop Gundulf in 1078 on the orders of William the Conqueror. The structure was completed in 1097. White Tower - a powerful symbol of Norman domination. Durham Cathedral was begun by Bishop William de St Carilef in 1093 and completed about 1175. The choir was extended in the Gothic style between 1242 and 1280.
Haddon Hall, Derbyshire, was probably begun in the 12th century, but was remodeled and adapted at various times right through to the 16th century. It was then carefully restored in the early 20th century. Haddon shows the quality which characterizes the great medieval house.
Tudor and Stuarts buildings Between 1500 and 1660 Britain experienced tremendous change. The architecture of this period reflects these changes. Сhurch building declined dramatically. Gradually, medieval Gothic architectural forms were dropped, although buildings remained varied and playful. Eventually, Inigo Jones designed Britain’s first classically-inspired buildings.
Longleat House, Wiltshire, which was completed in 1580, exemplifies the confidence of Tudor craftsmen in a society that was more stable than that of their medieval ancestors. Hardwick Hall, Derbyshire (1591-97). This is late-Elizabethan house: tall, compact and beautiful. It was designed, probably by Robert Smythson, for Elizabeth, Countess of Shrewsbury.
Buildings of the 17th century The Queens House, Greenwich, was begun for Queen Anne between 1616 and 1619 and completed for Henrietta Maria between 1630 and 1635. Greenwich Hospital was built from 1696 onwards. The Queens House is by Inigo Jones and the Hospital is largely Christopher Wren's.
St Paul's Cathedral, London, (1675-1710) is not only one of the most perfect expressions of the English Baroque, but also one of the greatest buildings anywhere in England. It was designed by Wren to replace the old cathedral which had been devastated during the Fire of London in 1666. Blenheim Palace. Built in the 18th century, the ideology behind Blenheim Palace in Oxford shire lies firmly in the 17th century. Conceived as a monumental homage to the Duke of Marlborough.
The Houses of Parliament (Charles Barry and A.W.N. Pugin, 1840-60) replaced the building destroyed by fire in 1834. Gothic in detailing, carried out with scrupulous adherence to the architectural detail of the Tudor period. Philip Webb's Red House at Bexleyheath (1859-60) is the building which started the Arts and Crafts movement. It was originally designed for newly-weds William and Janey Morris.
Twentieth century buildings It is difficult to sum up architecture in Britain in the 20th century. New types of buildings have emerged and the scale of buildings and developments has become more varied than ever before: from fifty-storey skyscrapers to different buildings. The twentieth-century built environment includes much more than shiny skyscrapers and shopping malls.
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