By Richard Barras
This two-volume ebook explores how the good constructions of britain undergo witness to 1000 years of the nation’s historical past. In all ages, funding in iconic structures reaches a climax while the existing mode of construction is working so much successfully, surplus wealth is such a lot abundant, and the dominant type ideas ideally suited. in the course of such sessions of balance and prosperity, the call for for brand spanking new constructions is robust, structural and stylistic thoughts abound, and there's fierce festival to construct for lasting reputation. every one such climax produces a special classic of hegemonic constructions which are monuments to the wealth and tool of these who governed their global.
this primary quantity offers an advent to the learn of wealth accumulation over the last millennium. There persist with 3 case stories of iconic construction funding from the 11th to the 17th century. throughout the 11th and 12th centuries the conquering Norman kings and barons erected castles in the course of the kingdom to cement their feudal strength. in the course of the 13th and fourteenth centuries the good wealth of the ecclesiastical estates funded the lavish development of Gothic cathedrals and abbeys. throughout the 16th and early 17th centuries Tudor and Jacobean magnates vied to construct the main fantastic palaces and prodigy homes. The English Revolution introduced this period to a close.
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Additional info for A Wealth of Buildings: Marking the Rhythm of English History: Volume I: 1066–1688
At the same time, the urban landscape can be interpreted as a manifestation of the changing functions performed within the town by its stock of buildings. The physical form of the town is a record of its past history and its present functions. There is a disequilibrium inherent in urbanization. It arises from the tension between the relatively rapid processes of innovation which transform urban functions, and the much slower processes of accumulation which modify and expand urban form. Despite the powerful forces promoting urban innovation, the permanence and rigidity of buildings act as a brake on the rate at which the fabric of the town can change.
Both series are expressed in terms of prices at 1688, the year of the first comprehensive survey of the British economy by the contemporary statistician Gregory King. Because of the variability of the year on year estimates, particularly in the earlier centuries, both series have been smoothed using a five-year moving average. In the middle of the thirteenth century, a building craftsman such as a mason or carpenter was earning something like three (old) pence per day. By the late seventeenth century, this rate had increased to around 18 pence per day.
Despite its growing complexity, the essential character of the survey has remained unchanged. It has become both a cultural phenomenon and an essential work of reference. To be listed in Pevsner is a mark of distinction for a building; to visit any part of the country without taking the relevant volume of Pevsner is unthinkable for a growing body of devotees. To understand what made Pevsner the phenomenon, we need to understand what made Pevsner the scholar (Draper 2004; Harries 2011). He was born in Leipzig in 1902, of Russian Jewish stock.
A Wealth of Buildings: Marking the Rhythm of English History: Volume I: 1066–1688 by Richard Barras