The Early Georgian style refers to the reign of George I, and saw a revival of Palladianism in England. The trend spreaded to Italy and thence throughout most of Europe and the American colonies.
the meaning of GEORGIAN style
Georgian style, the various styles in the architecture, interior design, and decorative arts of Britain during the reigns of the first four members of the house of Hanover, between the accession of George I in 1714 and the death of George IV in 1830. There was such diversification and oscillation in artistic style during this period that it is perhaps more accurate to speak of “Georgian styles”: Early georgian and late georgian.
Info source: https://www.britannica.com/art/Georgian-style
What inspired the creation of the Early Georgian style ?
The excesses of the Baroque had created a distaste for over-decoration, infact, the baroque style (popular in continental Europe) was never truly to the English taste. It was quickly superseded when, in the first quarter of the 18th century, four books were published in Britain which highlighted the simplicity and purity of classical architecture. These were:
- Vitruvius Britannicus published by Colen Campbell, 1715 (the most important of these)
- Palladio’s Four Books of Architecture translated by Giacomo Leoni, published from 1715 onwards.
- Leone Battista Alberti’s De Re Aedificatoria, translated by Giacomo Leoni, published 1726.
- The Designs of Inigo Jones… with Some Additional Designs, published by William Kent in 1727.
The publication of these books coincides with the adoption of classicism, infact, the models for the architecture of this period were no longer the buildings of the Italian Renaissance, but those of Classical Greece and Rome.
There was a political element to this change of taste: Baroque was associated with the Counter-Reformation, the Hanoverians were a firmly Protestant dynasty.
Early Georgian Style Characteristics:
In the Early georgian style, Andrea Palladio’s Renaissance villas were admired as reflecting the pure lines of Classical architecture.
Georgian buildings are characterised by:
- symmetry and regularity of detail
- massive pediments
- masks, and sphinxes
- colonnades inspired by ancient Greek and Roman temples.
Later, in the Late Georgian period will come the sash window.
At the forefront of the new school of design was the aristocratic “architect earl”, Richard Boyle, 3rd Earl of Burlington. Lord Burlington, who designed the fine villa above for himself at Chiswick in 1729, was a leader of the Palladianism revival movement.
This House was a reinterpretation of Palladio’s Villa Capra, but purified of 16th century elements and ornament.
Due to his book Vitruvius Britannicus, Colen Campbell was chosen as the architect for banker Henry Hoare I’s Stourhead house (1720-1724), a masterpiece that became the inspiration for dozens of similar houses across England.