The Garden Guide

Book: Designs for the pavilion at Brighton, 1808
Chapter: An Inquiry Into The Changes In Architecture

Modern architectural style

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THE MODERN STYLE. THE numerous difficulties in reconciling the internal convenience of a house to the external application of Grecian columns of any order, at length banished columns altogether, and introduced a new style, which is, strictly, of no character. This consists of a plain building, with rows of square windows at equal distances; and if to these be added a Grecian cornice, it is called a GRECIAN BUILDING: if, instead of the cornice, certain notches are cut in the top of the wall, it is called a GOTHIC BUILDING. Thus has the rage for simplicity, the dread of mixing dates, and the difficulty of adding ornament to utility, alike corrupted and exploded both the Grecian and the Gothic style in our modern buildings. Without a bigoted attachment to EITHER, every one must confess, that there are a thousand beauties and graces in EACH, which deserve our admiration, although they cannot, without violence, be made subservient to modern residence. In this inquiry, no mention has yet been made of the difference of climate, and the influence it may be supposed to have on the different styles, because grace and beauty of form, in ornament and decorations, may be considered, without always annexing ideas of utility; if they can be blended, it is the perfection of art in every province; and, in the choice and adaptation of new forms to new uses, consists the genius of the artist.