The Garden Guide

Book: Fragments on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, 1816
Chapter: Fragment XIII. Concerning Interiors.

Town house windows and doors

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Fourthly. The position of the windows and doors very much contributes to the comfort and cheerfulness of a room, and requires very different management in town and country. A room, longer than it is wide, will be best lighted by three sashes in the long side opposite to the fire-place, because the light is more generally spread over the whole area, and a looking-glass over the chimney will increase the light, and double the landscape, in the country; but, in a town-house, where such rooms are more frequently used by candle-light, the looking-glass may be placed betwixt the piers, as the light from the lustres and girandoles will be increased by mirrors so placed; and, if the windows be at the end of a long room, which is often necessary in town-houses, the light of candles will be more central, by being reflected from a mirror betwixt two such windows; but, in the country, the daylight is to be studied, and this will be found very defective in a long room, lighted by two windows at the farther end; because the central pier will extend its increasing shadow till it casts a gloom over the dark end of the room. In such cases, the cross light will be found a most enlivening remedy to the dulness of a room, or, I might rather say, to one so darkened by a central pier, which, if it contains a looking-glass, will increase the gloom, by reflecting the dark end of the room.