Late-Nineteenth Century Architecture

In the latter part of the nineteenth century the restraints of classicism were being shaken off and architects experimented with a wide range of revival styles from past ages. The Gothic, Tudor, Jacobean and Italian pasts were all plundered for new styles and motifs. The sheer austerity of the plain classical country house was to be rejected in favour of lighter, more florid and more frivolous decoration for the ordinary house-owner.

Italianate decoration, which up until now was restricted to the interiors of the country house, began to appear on the facades of quite everyday houses and village shops.

The ability of cement, lime and sand plasters to achieve nice decorative effects cheaply proved an enormous attraction. There were many craftsmen in the country who could offer their individual designs, and the work of the same person can often be observed throughout a particular region.

It was in the southern half of the country that the practice of plaster decoration was most common, particularly in the south-west, and many examples can still be seen. The doorway of this house in the village of Durrow is especially fine.

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