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Hart, Vaughan, 1960–
Christopher Wren : in search of eastern antiquity / Vaughan Hart.
London : Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, 2020.
New Haven : Distributed by Yale University Press
Physical Description:
xxi, 209 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 29 cm
Reference Library
NJ18.W92 H37 2020 (LC) Oversize
Accessible in the Reference Library [Hours]
Note: Please contact the Reference Library to schedule an appointment [Email ycba.reference@yale.edu]

Includes bibliographical references (pages 185-202) and index.
"In this revelatory study of one of the great architects in British history, Vaughan Hart considers Christopher Wren's (1632-1723) interest in Eastern antiquity and Ottoman architecture, an interest that would animate much of his theory and practice. As the early modern understanding of antiquity broadened to include new discoveries at Palmyra and Persepolis, Wren disputed common assumptions about the European origins of Classical and Gothic architecture, tracing these building traditions not to the pagan Greeks or barbaric Germans but to the stonemasons of the biblical East. In a deft analysis, Hart contextualizes Wren's use of classical elements-columns, domes, and cross plans-within his enthusiasm for the East and the broader Anglican interest in the Eastern church. A careful study of diary records reappraises Wren's working relationship with Robert Hooke (1635-1703), who shared in many of Wren's theoretical commitments. The result is a new, deepened understanding of Wren's work"-- Provided by publisher.
Subject Terms:
Architecture, Gothic.
Architecture, Greek.
Architecture, Ottoman -- History.
Classicism in architecture.
Hooke, Robert, 1635-1703 -- Relations with Sir Christopher Wren.
Wren, Christopher, Sir, 1632-1723 -- Criticism and interpretation.

  • Acknowledgements
  • Preface: 'Towards a new history of architecture'
  • Introduction: 'East meets West at the Royal Society'
  • Classical orders and lanterns
  • Gothic arches and towers
  • Greek crosses and domes
  • Monumental columns and colonnades
  • Conclusion: 'Eastern wonders and national identity'.