Books on Palaces
The ten extraordinary houses and castles featured in this book have all survived the vicissitudes of Scotlands history with almost all of their original families still in residence. Each house also represents a landmark in Scotlands architectural history, ranging from the early seventeenth to the early twentieth century. The architectural revelation is matched by sensational settings, which merge designed gardens and landscape with the unparalleled wildness and vistas of Scotland. All of these cherished houses are chockablock with memories of the past, from swagger portraits to sporrans, from vintage photographs to ancient weaponry, from curling stones to fading chintz. James Fennells masterly photographs capture the distinctive atmosphere of each residence. As he guides the reader on an intimate tour of the houses, Knox recounts their histories and profiles the colourful lairds, clan chiefs and nobles who have called them home.
- RRP £18.95
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ADAM Architecture has a worldwide reputation for traditional Western design. Although the practice is based in the UK, it has built award-winning projects of all types around the world, and is known for combining modern interpretations of the Classical tradition with the latest technology. Among its most admired work are its country houses, and 19 of these houses are the focus of this new book, written by architectural historian Jeremy Musson. Robert Adam co-founded the practice (as Winchester Design) in 1986, and has worked with technical director Paul Hanvey for more than 30 years (including at a previous incarnation of the practice). Adam now works with three other architect-directors Nigel Anderson, Hugh Petter and George Saumarez Smith to build country houses that are not period reproductions but creative interpretations of past traditions. Each director has his own architectural personality, together producing a body of work that uses historical precedents, including construction techniques, materials, layout and details, to give expression to thoroughly modern works. Their schemes address the modern-day realities of energy conservation, climate control, internet access, computer-managed systems and security all prerequisites in contemporary house design. Unlike country houses of the past, today s houses must be functional without live-in staff. Kitchens are now the focus of much family life and entertaining, rather than spaces to be kept from sight. These and numerous other practical considerations receive meticulous attention in an ADAM Architecture country house. The book begins with two forewords, with Clive Aslet and Calder Loth offering their interpretations of the ideal country house from a British and an American perspective respectively. The introduction provides an overview of the rich and varied tradition of the English country house, from the medieval manor house to houses of the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods, and the Classically inspired designs of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries through to the architecture of the Gothic Revival and then the Arts and Crafts Movement. Architects associated with the country house throughout the ages include, among others, John Vanburgh, William Chambers, Robert Adam, John Nash and Sir Edwin Lutyens. And now, today, ADAM Architecture is one of the leading practices designing and building new country houses."
- RRP £40.00
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This well-illustrated journey through 50 magnificent villas and palaces built by the Italian aristocracy covers country retreats in Tuscany and the Veneto, impressive residences in Rome and Siena, and fortress like castles and grand villas in Trieste and Sicily. Collected here for the first time, these world famous private residences are unsurpassed in their diversity and artistic grandeur. Italian Splendor offers both professional and lay readers a glimpse behind the closed doors of these family homes, which contain some of the world's most impressive and sumptuous designs.
- RRP £35.00
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From the mid-eighteenth century Irish country houses flourished. But factors such as the Great Famine, land reforms, the increasing expense of maintenance and the IRA targeting the houses during the War of Independence took their toll. Gradually, the houses sank into decay. In 2008 Tarquin Blake found his first abandoned 'Big House' and so began exploring the lost architecture of Ireland. Alongside his haunting photographs, Tarquin includes brief histories of these abandoned mansions and the people who lived there. He features mansions from all over Ireland, including Mountpelier Lodge (Dublin Hellfire Club), the birthplaces of Daniel O'Connell and the Duke of Wellington, and the one-time homes of Grace O'Malley and of brewing family the Smithwicks of Kilkenny. This lost period of stunning architecture and elegance is evoked in high-definition 360 photography, which provides us with a glimpse into what were once Ireland's most distinguished homes.
- RRP £21.99
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The history of England is inextricably linked with the stories of its leading aristocratic dynasties and the great seats they have occupied for centuries. As the current owners speak of the critical roles their ancestors have played in the nation, they bring history alive. All of these houses have survived great wars, economic upheavals, and, at times, scandal. Filled with stunning photography, this book is a remarkably intimate and lively look inside some of Britain's stateliest houses, with the modern-day aristocrats who live in them and keep them going in high style. This book presents a tour of some of England's finest residences, with many of the interiors shown here for the first time. It includes Blenheim Palace-seven acres under one roof, eclipsing the splendor of any of the British royal family's residences-property of the Dukes of Marlborough; the exquisite Old Vicarage in Derbyshire, last residence of the late Dowager Duchess of Devonshire (nee Deborah Mitford); Haddon Hall, a vast crenellated 900-year-old manor house belonging to the Dukes of Rutland that has been called the most romantic house in England; and the island paradises on Mustique and St. Lucia of the 3rd Baron Glenconner. This book is perfect for history buffs and lovers of traditional interior design and English country life.
- RRP £40.00
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Holkham Hall is a masterpiece of eighteenth-century Palladian architecture set in a large walled park bordered by the marshes and dunes of the North Norfolk coast. Built, owned and occupied by the Coke family since 1612, it is at the centre of a major agricultural estate; a treasure house whose paintings, classical sculpture, books, manuscripts and furniture are of international importance.Using the extensive documents kept by generations of staff and family, recording the daily life of the Hall and estate, Christine Hiskey has traced Holkham's history through four hundred years, adding considerably to existing knowledge.Surviving vicissitudes and accumulating property, the Coke family were able to establish themselves at Holkham in the seventeenth century. The vision of Thomas Coke, later 1st Earl of Leicester , inspired by his exceptionally fruitful Grand Tour, resulted in his spending twenty-five years in the mid-eighteenth century, building and furnishing the Hall, and Christine Hiskey records the work of the staff and craftsmen who brought his ideas to reality: the sourcing of materials, his application of advanced domestic technology, and, after his death, the dedication of his widow to completing his life's work. During the next 250 years, the Hall adapted to changing fashions, aspirations and economic circumstances in its domestic, social and public life. Fresh light is shed on the attitude towards the Hall of 'Coke of Norfolk', chiefly celebrated as an agriculturalist, and there are chapters on Victorian and twentieth-century Holkham which explore new areas for research.For the first time, the Hall and its setting are treated as an integrated whole. The creation, development and use of the park are examined, including a neglected area of research: the way in which the process of acquiring land reflected the owners' landscape and farming priorities. The changing fortunes of the two villages of the 'town' (subsumed during the eighteenth century but rather later than is often supposed) and the staithe (the origin of the present village) are traced in detail for the first time. New research also reveals the process whereby 350 years of intervention by the Coke family transformed the coastal landscape of marshes, dunes and creeks. A further 'overview' chapter discusses the Hall's relationship with public visitors, from the small groups who came to witness the building work in the 1750s to the tens of thousands who today are welcomed at the Hall by the present generation of the Coke family.
- RRP £60.00
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Ranging from Kentchurch Court, a former fortified medieval manor house that has been the seat of the Scudamore family for nearly 1,000 years, to a delightful Strawberry Hill-style Gothic house in rural Cornwall and car-crazed Goodwood House, this beautifully illustrated book showcases ten outstanding British country houses, all still in the hands of the original families. James Peill recounts the ups and downs of such deep-rooted clans as the Cracrofts, landowners in Lincolnshire since the 12th century, whose late 18th-century Hackthorn Hall is a perfect example of the kind of house Jane Austen describes in her novels (indeed, she appears on their family tree), as well as the relatively newly arrived Biddulphs, who constructed Rodmarton, an Arts & Crafts masterpiece, in the first decades of the last century. James Fennell has once again provided superb photographs of a wealth of gardens, charming interiors, bygone sporting trophies, fine art collections and fanciful family memorabilia, making The English Country House a delicious treat for Anglophiles and lovers of old houses.
- RRP £18.95
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On 18 July 1754, William Crichton Dalrymple, the 5th Earl of Dumfries, laid the foundation stone of Dumfries House. It was the first country house built by Robert, John and James Adam - the brothers whose architectural practice was to become the most famous in Britain. Dumfries House lies within its historic landscape in rolling farmland to the west of Cumnock. Completed in 1760, the house was adapted and altered over the years - most significantly and sympathetically by Robert Weir Schultz, a leading figure in the Arts and Crafts movement. Dumfries House is not only significant architecturally, it also contains one of the most spectacular collections of eighteenth century furniture in Britain, with works by Thomas Chippendale, and pieces by three renowned Edinburgh furniture-makers, Francis Brodie, Alexander Peter and William Mathie. In June 2007, HRH The Prince of Wales headed a consortium of charities and heritage bodies to buy the house, its contents and its estate, with the express aim of preserving it in its entirety and making it more accessible to the public. In this landmark book, author Simon Green draws on previously unpublished documents from the extensive archives of the Bute family, who lived in the house from the early nineteenth century until the death of Lady Bute in 1993, along with a wealth of photographs, plans and drawings from the National Trust for Scotland and the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. Exploring the people and the ideas behind a unique building, Dumfries House is the story of the survival of a treasured eighteenth century family residence - at once the 'homliest' of homes and 'a great undertaking, more bold than wise'.
- RRP £20.00
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Woburn Abbey: The Park and Gardens tells a fascinating story that illuminates both the history of English landscaping and the highs and lows of an aristocratic family that has been at the centre of British life for more than four centuries. Drawing on the enormous quantity of material available in the Woburn archives - as well as historic images preserved in the Abbey itself, and stunning newly commissioned photographs - landscape designer and historian Keir Davidson shows how the park and gardens developed, following the individual tastes of the owners as well as wider trends in gardening and landscaping. The Russell family has been in possession of Woburn Abbey since 1547, when Henry VIII gave the former monastery to John Russell, 1st Earl of Bedford. The ambitions (and passions) of more than one duke have caused financial embarrassment from time to time, but Woburn has survived impulses to sell and periodic neglect. The 5th Duke, following the fashion set at Versailles by Marie-Antoinette, built a Chinese-style dairy where ladies could play at being dairymaids. In 1810 the 6th Duke commissioned Humphry Repton to create a 'Menagerie' for exotic birds; by the end of the century the collection had expanded to include bison, wallabies and wild horses (setting a precedent for today's Safari Park). These animals had to be cleared from the airstrip created in 1928 by Mary, the 'Flying Duchess', for take-off and landing on her record-breaking flights. Over the centuries many gardens have been built at Woburn, and on the Russell estates in London and around the country, for successive dukes and duchesses. Almost all of the important figures in English landscaping - from Isaac de Caus to George London and Henry Wise, Charles Bridgeman and Humphry Repton - worked for the family at one time or another. In our own day, a ten-year programme of restoration of Repton's Pleasure Gardens initiated by the present Duchess is under way. When this is finished, in 2018, the result will be one of the most complete Repton pleasure grounds anywhere in the world. Keir Davidson brings the whole enthralling story to life, engaging the reader with historic gardens that are not simply part of a lost past, but can be experienced in all their glory today.
- RRP £40.00
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Hampton Court Palace, to the south-west of London, is one of the most famous and magnificent buildings in Britain. The original palace was begun by Cardinal Wolsey, but it soon attracted the attention of his Tudor king and became the centre of royal and political life for the next 200 years. In this new, lavishly illustrated history, the stories of the people who have inhabited the palace over the last five centuries take centre stage. Here Henry VIII and most of his six wives held court, Shakespeare and his players performed, and Charles I escaped arrest after his defeat in the Civil War. William III and Mary II introduced French court etiquette, and Georgian kings and princes argued violently amid the splendid interiors. Alongside the royal residents, there have been equally fascinating characters among courtiers and servants. Queen Victoria opened the palace to the public in the nineteenth century, and since then millions of visitors have been drawn to Hampton Court by its grandeur, its beauty and the many intriguing stories of those great and small who once lived here.
- RRP £19.95
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Charleston Saved 1979-1989 tells the remarkable story of how the home of key members of the Bloomsbury set was brought back from ruin and lovingly restored to life. When the painter Duncan Grant died in 1978, the house in East Sussex that he and Vanessa Bell had rented since the First World War was in a very sorry state. Amazingly, the original designs and decor the couple had created over the years were still in place - the wall surfaces, the furniture, the wood panels, the ceramics, the fabrics, the paintings and, of course, the garden - but damp, dirt and neglect had reduced all of these to a most wretched state. The nation risked losing a house of real historical, cultural and artistic significance. This reissue tells how Deborah Gage, a determined young woman in her twenties, set about saving this house by galvanizing support, raising money and masterminding the project. With the help of many individuals and despite setbacks, the restoration was a success. This account discusses the work in detail, giving a fascinating insight into the restoration of an historic building and gardens. Today, Charleston is open to the public - an extraordinary achievement, carried out with passion and conviction, and truly a fitting celebration of the lives of those who lived there.
- RRP £14.99
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A beautiful book of stunning images of the prettiest, most charming and best-loved Australian country homes, drawn from the pages of one of Australia's favourite magazines, Country Style. From the pages of Australia's favourite magazine, Country Style, comes a beautiful book featuring the most charming and appealing Australian country homes. From rustic hideaways to stately rural mansions, from quaint coastal cottages to converted churches, from romantic getaways to much-loved family nests, this book will have you yearning for your very own country home. Featuring stunning photography and the stories of the artists, cooks, gardeners, collectors, historians and farmers who have made these houses their homes, this is a book to inspire, delight and swoon over. 'Stunning photographs ...a feast for the eyes and the senses ...uniquely Australian' Ballarat Courier 'This elegant book will bring charm and warmth to the slickest inner-city coffee table' Brisbane News 'Guaranteed to bring on serious farmhouse fantasies' Hobart Mercury
- RRP £19.99
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The country houses lost from the landscape since the late nineteenth century exercise a peculiar grip on the English imagination, seeming to symbolise the passing of a world of taste and elegance, of stability and deference: a world destroyed by modernity. This important new book argues that most previous studies of the subject have been characterised by nostalgia and vagueness, and by a tendency to exaggerate the scale of the destruction and simplify its causes. It presents a balanced, systematic analysis of country house losses in Norfolk, discussing the scale and chronology of destruction. The authors argue that the loss of great houses was not an entirely new development of the twentieth century, they explain the varied reasons why houses were abandoned and destroyed, and they explore the archaeological traces which these places, their gardens and parks, have left in the modern landscape. Their arguments are illuminated by a full and lavishly-illustrated gazetteer. This book, the results of many years of fieldwork and documentary research, will be essential reading for all those interested in the history of the country house, in the development of the post-medieval landscape, and in the archaeology and history of the county of Norfolk. Tom Williamson is Professor of Landscape History at the University of East Anglia; Ivan Ringwood is an independent historical researcher; Sarah Spooner is Lecturer in Landscape History at the University of East Anglia.
- RRP £29.95
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Commissioned in 1750, the Palazzo Venier was planned as a testimony to the power and wealth of a great Venetian family, but the fortunes of the Venier family waned and the project was abandoned with only one storey complete. Empty, unfinished, and in a gradual state of decay, the building was considered an eyesore. Yet in the early 20th century the Unfinished Palazzo's quality of fairytale abandonment, and its potential for transformation, were to attract and inspire three fascinating women at key moments in their lives: Luisa Casati, Doris Castlerosse and Peggy Guggenheim. Each chose the Palazzo Venier as the stage on which to build her own world of art and imagination, surrounded by an amazing supporting cast, from d'Annunzio and Nijinsky, via Noel Coward and Cecil Beaton, to Yoko Ono. Luisa turned her home into an aesthete's fantasy where she hosted parties as extravagant and decadent as Renaissance court operas - spending small fortunes on her own costumes in her quest to become a 'living work of art' and muse to the artists of the late belle epoque and early modernist eras. Doris strove to make her mark in London and Venice during the glamorous, hedonistic interwar years, hosting film stars and royalty at glittering parties. In the postwar years, Peggy turned the Palazzo into a model of modernist simplicity that served as a home for her exquisite collection of modern art that today draws tourists and art-lovers from around the world. Mackrell tells each life story vividly in turn, weaving an intricate history of these legendary characters and the Unfinished Palazzo that they all at different times called home.
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The Lost Country Houses of Suffolk, well-researched and written and copiously illustrated, will help the reader to imagine the county's landscape refurnished with the many elegant mansions which are now sadly lost. JOHN BLATCHLY During the twentieth century some forty of Suffolk's finest country houses vanished forever, a few by fire, but more frequently through demolition, either because uneconomic to run, or through the deterioration of their fabric. This book relates their tragic stories, with lavish use of engravings, images and pictures to bring to life what has now gone forever. It offers an account of each house (its history, its family, its architect), with a description of the buildings, and particular information on how it came to be destroyed. The houses are put into their wider context by an introductory section, covering the economic and social circumstances which caused difficulties for the owners of country houses at the time, and comparing the loss in Suffolk with losses in England as a whole. Houses covered: Acton Place, Assington Hall, Barking Hall, Barton Hall, Boulge Hall, Bramford Hall, Branches Park, Bredfield House, Brome Hall, Campsea Ashe High House, Carlton Hall, Cavenham Hall, Chediston Hall, Downham Hall, Drinkstone Park, Easton Park, Edwardstone Hall, Flixton Hall, Fornham Hall, Hardwick House, Henham Hall, Hobland Hall, Holton Hall, Hunston Hall, Livermere Hall, The Manor House Mildenhall, Moulton Paddocks, Oakley Park, Ousden Hall, The Red House Ipswich, Redgrave Hall, Rendlesham Hall, Rougham Hall, Rushbrooke Hall, Stoke Park, Sudbourne Hall, Tendring Hall, Thorington Hall, Thornham Hall, Ufford Place.
- RRP £29.95
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Discover Britain's magnificent heritage of country houses in this lavishly illustrated guide to the architectural treasures of the United Kingdom. Spanning the years from 1714 to the start of the 21st century, this book includes the period's finest examples of architecture, such as Blenheim Palace, Arundel Castle and Clarence House. An in-depth guide to the history of every house features information on its design, construction and the stories of its best-known inhabitants, as well as profiles of celebrated architects. Timelines and maps trace the development of Britain's architectural legacy, while a glossary introduces key terms and an A-Z listing make it easy to find every property listed. This complete reference book will delight and inform in equal measure.
- RRP £9.99
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England's country houses have never been more popular with visitors. Most are packed with masterpieces of art and antiques, and they have vast landscaped gardens, often with lakes and fountains. They reflect all the splendour of England's glory years. Trevor Yorke, using original drawings, diagrams and photographs, takes the reader on a careful tour of the country house and describes its features, exterior and interior, upstairs and downstairs. He looks at the different periods of large country houses from the mid 1500s up to 1914, explaining the changing architectural styles. He describes the different rooms within the main house and their changing roles over the centuries. There is a glossary of architectural terms, and a quick reference time chart listing country house architects and the notable buildings they designed, with drawings of the period details that help to date them.
- RRP £9.95
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Some of England's grandest country houses are to be found in this prosperous rural county. The Elizabethan Renaissance Kirby Hall, the Jacobean mansion at Apethorpe, the late seventeenth-century French-inspired Boughton, Hawksmoor's stately Baroque Easton Neston and the interiors of Althorp provide a fascinating survey of changing taste through the centuries. Complementing them are smaller buildings of great character, supreme among them those of Sir Thomas Tresham: the eccentric and ingenious Triangular Lodge at Rushton and the evocative New Beild at Lyveden. Of no less interest are the fine churches, from Anglo-Saxon Brixworth to the noble Gothic of Warmington, Rushden and Finedon and from All Saints, Northampton, one of the grandest seventeenth-century churches outside London, to Comper's St Mary's, Wellingborough. Chief among the towns, Northampton not only has distinguished Victorian and Edwardian public, commercial and industrial buildings but also the principal work in England by Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
Built for Federico II Gonzaga Duke of Mantua between 1525 and 1536, Palazzo Te is the masterpiece of Renaissance artist, designer and architect Giulio Romano, the most accomplished and favoured of all Raphael's pupils. Ugo Bazzotti, former director of the Palazzo Te, takes the reader via superb photography through the atriums, halls, courtyards and gardens that constitute this elaborate masterpiece of Mannerist decoration, explaining its history and the inventiveness and versatility of its creator, Giulio Romano. From the erotic scenes of the Sala di Psiche to the famous Sala di Giganti, based on the mythological defeat of the Titans by the gods of Olympus, the High Renaissance ideal of classical harmony and balance is overtaken by breathtaking illusionist techniques, with images of giants, falling masonry and the gods thunderbolts filling the visitors imagination.
- RRP £60.00
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This book comes from ancient times to the Wars of the Roses and 1485. Britain's magnificent architectural history and heritage explored in an expert visual guide. It comes with more than 200 glorious photographs, fine-art paintings, reconstructions and maps. It is a comprehensive introduction and guide to over 90 of Britain's great medieval castles, palaces and manor houses, and the kings, queens and nobles who lived there. You can discover the beauty of World Heritage sites at William the Conqueror's Tower of London, Edward I's castles at Caernarvon and Conway, and the Palace of Westminster. Location maps and an A-Z property listing make it easy to find every building described in this excellent book. This lavish visual history traces and records Britain's finest secular buildings in the years up to 1485. It describes developments in method and style from ancient earthworks and Roman forts to splendid Norman and medieval castles and fortified manor houses with their great tower keeps and concentric groundplans. In this celebration of Britain's historic houses and national treasures, fact boxes focus on architectural features or the lives of famous inhabitants. Beautifully illustrated with over 200 photographs, drawings and maps, this will prove a valuable reference book for anyone who wishes to learn more about the castles, palaces and stately homes of Britain in the medieval period.
- RRP £6.99
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In the 17 years since the first Soho House opened its doors, we've learnt a bit about what works: how to make people feel at home, how to cook food they love, how to make a room stylish but welcoming, how to throw a party, get the lighting right, mix a cocktail, design a bedroom, build an art collection. We've even learnt how to grow our own down at Babington. Eat Drink Nap, a 300-page highly illustrated book, with a foreword from founder Nick Jones, and newly commissioned photography from leading food and interiors photographers Mark Seelen and Jean Cazals, will share with readers the secrets of the Soho House way of doing things. Contemporary, global yet with something quintessentially English and homely at its heart, this is Soho House style explained by its experts: the grit and the glamour, the style and the cosiness. Packed with recipes and design tips, Eat Drink Nap shows how to transport a slice of Soho House living home. Whether you want to recreate your favourite house regular macaroni cheese or choose the right sofa for your sitting room, the clubs' experts will share their blueprint for stylish, contemporary living the Soho House way.
- RRP £30.00
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A history of the most notable houses in England and Wales and the great families, seen as part of the houses they created, where their descendants, in many cases, still live today. Full of memorable characters and anecdotal insight, this book is a glorious tribute to what Evelyn Waugh called 'our chief national artistic achievement'. The original photographs show the unexpected as well as the familiar - the private rooms and the servants' quarters as well as the grand exteriors and state rooms, the gardens and noble landscapes. They include some of the most splendid examples of English art and architecture, illustrating the work of Inigo Jones, John Vanbrugh, Thomas Chippendale, Robert Adam and Lancelot 'Capability' Brown.
- RRP £40.00
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For 200 years the Thurn und Taxis family have called the palace of St. Emmeram home. Regarded as one of Germany's finest examples of historicist architecture, the Regensburg residence's myriad rooms trace centuries of distinctive styles: a Romanesque-Gothic cloister built between the twelfth and fourteenth centuries, a neo-Renaissance marble staircase, a number of Rococo and neo- Rococo staterooms, and a Baroque library frescoed in 1737. Celebrated photographer Todd Eberle captures the confluence of high art and grand architecture within the 500-room palace to reveal the curious tale of the Thurn und Taxis family. Complete with stately portraits and scenes of life at St. Emmeram, this monograph offers a glimpse into the world and glamour of one of the most important dynasties of the European aristocracy.
- RRP £60.00
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