By Richard Barras
This two-volume e-book explores how the nice structures of britain endure witness to one thousand years of the nation’s heritage. In all ages, funding in iconic constructions reaches a climax while the present mode of construction is working such a lot successfully, surplus wealth is so much abundant, and the dominant category principles best. in the course of such sessions of balance and prosperity, the call for for brand new structures is robust, structural and stylistic ideas abound, and there's fierce pageant to construct for lasting popularity. each one such climax produces a special classic of hegemonic constructions which are monuments to the wealth and tool of these who governed their international.
this primary quantity presents an creation to the learn of wealth accumulation during the last millennium. There stick to 3 case reports of iconic development funding from the 11th to the 17th century. through the 11th and 12th centuries the conquering Norman kings and barons erected castles during the state to cement their feudal energy. through the 13th and fourteenth centuries the good wealth of the ecclesiastical estates funded the lavish building of Gothic cathedrals and abbeys. in the course of the 16th and early 17th centuries Tudor and Jacobean magnates vied to construct the main exceptional palaces and prodigy homes. The English Revolution introduced this period to a close.
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Additional resources for A Wealth of Buildings: Marking the Rhythm of English History: Volume I: 1066–1688
In real terms, however, the increase in wages has been far more modest. 4 Real wages of building craftsmen, 1210–2010 Sources: Farmer (1988, 1991); O’Donoghue et al. 5 Consumer price index, 1210–2010 Sources: Farmer (1988, 1991); O’Donoghue et al. (2004); ONS; Phelps Brown and Hopkins (1956) Log price index (1688=100) 10 1 Of Works and Monuments 29 30 A Wealth of Buildings: Marking the Rhythm of English History onwards; before industrialization became fully established the real wage merely tended to fluctuate around subsistence level.
The practical function of the Gothic cathedrals erected by the bishops of the medieval church was to house huge congregations of the faithful, while through their beauty and grandeur these structures spoke not only to the majesty of God but also to the glory of his representatives on Earth. The great country houses of Georgian England operated as gentry residence, estate headquarters, and political power base, and in so doing they were designed to express the supremacy of the landed elite. A contemporary example of the symbolic power of buildings is to be found in the office towers that dominate the skyline of the City of London; typically these are built, owned, and occupied by international banks, and in their phallic display they proclaim the essence of today’s casino capitalism.
So who has built England? We can identify a hierarchy which starts at the top with the patron or investor who controls the wealth, down through the master masons, engineers and architects who design the buildings, to the craftsmen and labourers who undertake their construction. Since the focus in subsequent chapters is on the iconic buildings of the ruling class, particular attention is paid to their patrons and designers. This means the temporal and spiritual lords responsible for medieval castles, cathedrals, and palaces, the landed gentry who built country houses, the industrialists who constructed factories and town halls, and the bankers who have invested in office towers.
A Wealth of Buildings: Marking the Rhythm of English History: Volume I: 1066–1688 by Richard Barras