16 Facts About Greek Revival


Greek Revival was an architectural movement of the late 18th and early 19th centuries, predominantly in northern Europe and the United States.

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Greek Revival architecture took a different course in a number of countries, lasting until the 1860s and the Civil War in the United States and even later in Scotland.

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The monuments of Greek Revival antiquity were known chiefly from Pausanias and other literary sources.

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Stuart was commissioned after his return from Greece by George Lyttelton to produce the first Greek Revival building in England, the garden temple at Hagley Hall .

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William Wilkins's winning design for the public competition for Downing College, Cambridge announced the Greek Revival style was to become a dominant idiom in architecture, especially for public buildings of this sort.

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Nevertheless, Greek Revival continued to be in favour in Scotland well into the 1870s in the singular figure of Alexander Thomson, known as "Greek Revival Thomson".

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In Germany, Greek Revival architecture is predominantly found in two centres, Berlin and Munich.

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The earliest Greek Revival building was the Brandenburg Gate by Carl Gotthard Langhans, who modelled it on the Propylaea.

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Greek Revival never practiced in the style, but he played an important role introducing Greek Revival architecture to the United States.

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Greek Revival did notable work on the Supreme Court interior, and his masterpiece was the Basilica of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, Baltimore .

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Second phase in American Greek Revival saw the pupils of Latrobe create a monumental national style under the patronage of banker and philhellene Nicholas Biddle, including such works as the Second Bank of the United States by William Strickland, Biddle's home "Andalusia" by Thomas U Walter, and Girard College, by Walter .

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From 1820 to 1850, the Greek Revival style dominated the United States, such as the Benjamin F Clough House in Waltham, Massachusetts.

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Examples of vernacular Greek Revival continued to be built even farther west, such as in Charles City, Iowa.

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In Canada, Montreal architect John Ostell designed a number of prominent Greek Revival buildings, including the first building on the McGill University campus and Montreal's original Custom House, now part of the Pointe-a-Calliere Museum.

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Similarly, Henri Labrouste proposed a reconstruction of the temples at Paestum to the Academie des Beaux-Arts in 1829, decked out in startling colour, inverting the accepted chronology of the three Doric temples, thereby implying that the development of the Greek orders did not increase in formal complexity over time, i e, the evolution from Doric to Corinthian was not inexorable.

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The emerging understanding that Greek Revival art was subject to changing forces of environment and culture was a direct assault on the architectural rationalism of the day.

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