The Garden Guide

Book: Observations on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, 1803
Chapter: Chapter XIII. Ancient Mansions

Elizabethan gothic architecture

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At the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII., a new species of architecture was adopted, and most of the old mansions now remaining in England, were either built, or repaired, about the end of that reign, or in the reign of Queen Elizabeth: hence, it has acquired, in our days, the name of Elizabeth's Gothic; and although, in the latter part of that reign, and in the unsettled times which followed, bad taste had corrupted the original purity of its character, by introducing fragments of Grecian architecture in its ornaments, yet, the general character and effect of those houses is perfectly Gothic; and the bold projections, the broad masses, the richness of their windows, and the irregular outline of their roofs, turrets, and tall chimneys, produce a play of light and shadow wonderfully picturesque, and, in a painter's eye, amply compensating for those occasional inaccuracies urged against them as specimens of regular architecture.