070707.Bath, Lansdown CrescentJuly 7, 2007 at 5:24 AM | Posted in Architecture, Bath, Columns, Crescents, Ionic Order, somerset | 6 Comments
Immediately following Somerset House is Lansdown Crescent (1789-93): “a segment of twenty houses forming almost one-third of a circle, together with its convex flanking ranges, Lansdown Place West (No. 8 bombed and rebuilt by Mowbray Green, 1948 [Odd, I thought Mowbray Green died in 1946…perhaps rebuilt by zombie
Mowbray….]) and Lansdown Place East (1792-5), which step up toward the main crescent.
“John Palmer designed them for Charles Spackman, coachbuilder and developer, and they were built by various speculating builders, some of whom were ruined by the bank failures of 1793. “The convex-concave-convex plan is remarkable. The convex winds are separated from the crescent centre by carriageways to the mews, but the effect is of one continuous form snaking along the hillside.” –Michael Forsyth, Bath (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2003), 171-172.
“The convex-concave-convex plan is remarkable. The convex winds are separated from the crescent centre by carriageways to the mews, but the effect is of one continuous form snaking along the hillside. The architectural treatment of Lansdown Crecent is less superb that the earlier, more formal spaces in Bath. The pedimented four-pillaster Ionic centre with a wider space and a Venetian window in the middle is weak, as are the two bows at the ends, set just one bay in from the angle. But with its elevated position, its superb view over Bath, its fine overthrows and lamps (restored in the 1970s) and its patented stonework, magical at dusk, the crescent has unrivalled presence. Historically, the crescent in the winder would have floated, seemingly on clouds, above a pall of blue smoke from thousands of lodging-house chimneys. The details are simple (cost was crucial): ground-floor rustication, continuous first-floor sills (windows at the end houses extending down to the platband a Vitruvian scroll string course above the first floor, and an entablature with a plain frieze, modillioned cornice and balustraded parapet.)” –Michael Forsyth, Bath (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2003), 171-172.
posted by JosyC