Sir Christopher Wren PRS FRS was an English anatomist, astronomer and mathematician-physicist, as well as one of the most acclaimed English architects in history. He was accorded responsibility for rebuilding 52 churches in the City of London after the Great Fire in 1666, including what is regarded as his masterpiece, St Paul's Cathedral, on Ludgate Hill, completed in 1710; the principal creative responsibility for a number of the churches is now more attributed to others in his office Nicholas Hawksmoor. Other notable buildings by Wren include the Royal Naval College and the south front of Hampton Court Palace; the Wren Building, the main building at the College of William and Mary, Virginia, is attributed to Wren. Educated in Latin and Aristotelian physics at the University of Oxford, Wren was a founder of the Royal Society, his scientific work was regarded by Isaac Newton and Blaise Pascal. Wren was born in East Knoyle in Wiltshire, the only surviving son of Christopher Wren the Elder and Mary Cox, the only child of the Wiltshire squire Robert Cox from Fonthill Bishop.
Christopher Sr. was at that time the rector of East Knoyle and Dean of Windsor. It was, their son Christopher was born in 1632 two years another daughter named Elizabeth was born. Mary must have died shortly after the birth of Elizabeth, although there does not appear to be any surviving record of the date. Through Mary Cox, the family became well off financially for, as the only heir, she had inherited her father's estate; as a child Wren "seem'd consumptive." Although a sickly child, he would survive into robust old age. He was first taught at home by his father. After his father's royal appointment as Dean of Windsor in March 1635, his family spent part of each year there, but little is known about Wren's life at Windsor, he spent his first eight years at East Knoyle and was educated by the Rev. William Shepherd, a local clergyman. Little is known of Wren's schooling thereafter, during dangerous times when his father's Royal associations would have required the family to keep a low profile from the ruling Parliamentary authorities.
It was a tough time in his life, but one which would go on to have a significant impact upon his works. The story that he was at Westminster School between 1641 and 1646 is substantiated only by Parentalia, the biography compiled by his son, a fourth Christopher, which places him there "for some short time" before going up to Oxford; some of Wren's youthful exercises preserved or recorded showed that he received a thorough grounding in Latin and learned to draw. According to Parentalia, he was "initiated" in the principles of mathematics by Dr William Holder, who married Wren's elder sister Susan in 1643, his drawing was put to academic use in providing many of the anatomical drawings for the anatomy textbook of the brain, Cerebri Anatome, published by Thomas Willis, which coined the term "neurology." During this time period, Wren manifested an interest in the design and construction of mechanical instruments. It was through Holder that Wren met Sir Charles Scarburgh whom Wren assisted in his anatomical studies.
On 25 June 1650, Wren entered Wadham College, where he studied Latin and the works of Aristotle. It is anachronistic to imagine. However, Wren became associated with John Wilkins, the Warden of Wadham; the Wilkins circle was a group whose activities led to the formation of the Royal Society, comprising a number of distinguished mathematicians, creative workers and experimental philosophers. This connection influenced Wren's studies of science and mathematics at Oxford, he graduated B. A. in 1651, two years received M. A. Receiving his M. A. in 1653, Wren was elected a fellow of All Souls' College in the same year and began an active period of research and experiment in Oxford. His days as a fellow of All Souls ended when Wren was appointed Professor of Astronomy at Gresham College, London in 1657, he was provided with a set of rooms and a stipend and was required to give weekly lectures in both Latin and English to all who wished to attend. Wren took up this new work with enthusiasm, he continued to meet the men with.
They attended. It was from these meetings that the Royal Society, England's premier scientific body, was to develop, he undoubtedly played a major role in the early life of. In fact, the report on one of these meetings reads: Memorandum November 28, 1660; these persons following according to the usual custom of most of them, met together at Gresham College to hear Mr Wren's lecture, viz. The Lord Brouncker, Mr Boyle, Mr Bruce, Sir Robert Moray, Sir Paule Neile, Dr Wilkins, Dr Goddard, Dr Petty, Mr Ball, Mr Rooke, Mr Wren, Mr Hill, and after the lecture was ended they did according to the usual manner, withdraw for mutual converse. In 1662, they proposed a society "for the promotion of Physico-Mathe
Clarendon House was a town mansion which stood on Piccadilly in London, from the 1660s to the 1680s. It was built for the powerful politician Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon, was the grandest private London residence of its era. After the restoration of the English monarchy in 1660, new houses began to spring up in the West End to accommodate Charles II's courtiers. Piccadilly was little more than a country lane, but the land to the north of it was just beginning to be used for housing. Two other celebrated mansions were built close to Hyde's at around the same time. To the east Sir John Denham was building the house that became Burlington House, to the west Lord Berkeley was building Berkeley House Devonshire House. Lord Clarendon acquired the 8-acre site for his house by royal grant in 1664. In view of events he always maintained that he had been reluctant to build such an ostentatious house, but was unable to rent any suitable mansion. Clarendon House was built between 1667 to designs by Roger Pratt.
It was set well back from the street behind a courtyard. The central section had nine bays and the two side wings were each three bays wide; the house was built on the double pile plan, meaning that it was two rooms deep, had two main storeys of equal height. There was a tall attic storey with dormer windows above; the roof topped with a cupola. The style was typical of the English fashion of the day influenced by classical principles and pedimented, but lacking any classical orders. Little is known about the interior layout beyond what can be surmised from the exterior, from Pratt's other works, from the conventions of the time, it had a large top lit central staircase hall and a series of state apartments. It had 101 hearths. Clarendon House was praised both by contemporaries and by architectural critics. John Evelyn thought it was "the best contriv'd, the most useful and magnificent house in England". Three hundred years John Summerson wrote: "Clarendon House was among the first great classical houses to be built in London and the most striking of them."
It was to prove an influential model for future English houses, but its impact was felt much more in the design of country houses than London mansions. Belton House in Lincolnshire, sometimes said to be the exemplar of the English country house, was based on Clarendon House. In 1667, the same year that his house was finished, Clarendon fell from favour, his image had not been helped by the grandeur of his mansion, believed to have cost around £40,000. Among the many allegations against him it was charged that he has appropriated stone intended for repairs to St. Paul's Cathedral after the Great Fire to build his house; that same year, on 14 June 1667, Samuel Pepys recorded in his diary: "...some rude people have been... at my Lord Clarendon's where they cut down the trees before his house and broke his windows." In response to the allegations, the King abandoned his former favourite. In 1667, Clarendon fled to France, where he died in 1674. In 1675, his heirs sold Clarendon House to Christopher Monck, 2nd Duke of Albemarle, for £26,000, in 1683, Albemarle resold it to a consortium of investors led by Sir Thomas Bond.
Bond demolished it and built Dover Street, Albemarle Street, Bond Street on the site. Albemarle Street ran right through the centre of the site of the house, which had faced directly down St. James's Street; the building of the house and the resentment it caused are major elements in The Piccadilly Plot, the seventh of the Thomas Chaloner series of mystery novels by Susanna Gregory. London's Mansions by David Pearce, ISBN 0-7134-8702-X The London Rich by Peter Thorold ISBN 0-670-87480-9 Clarendon Estate, Victoria County History The Mirror of Literature and Instruction. Volume 13, No. 368, 2 May 1829. At Project Gutenberg
Coleshill House was a country house in England, near the village of Coleshill, in the Vale of White Horse. The house was located in Berkshire but since boundary changes in 1974 is located in Oxfordshire; the building may have been designed by Inigo Jones, built by Sir Roger Pratt around 1660. Nikolaus Pevsner described it as "the best Jonesian mid C17 house in England", it was gutted by fire in 1952 and demolished in 1958. The Coleshill Estate is now owned by the National Trust; the manor was owned by the Edingdon family. William Edington, Bishop of Winchester, gave the land to the Priory of Bonnes-Hommes of the Augustinian Brothers of Penitence, that he founded at Edington, Wiltshire in 1351; the priory was closed in the Dissolution of the Monasteries, acquired by Thomas Seymour, fourth husband of Henry VIII's widow Catherine Parr. After Catherine died in 1548, Seymour was executed for treason in 1549, the manor fell to Anne Seymour, Duchess of Somerset, Arthur Grey, 14th Baron Grey de Wilton.
By 1601 it was owned by Sir Thomas Freake, who sold it to Sir Henry Pratt, 1st Baronet in 1626. Pratt was an Alderman of the City of London, who became a baronet in 1641, but died in 1647, his son Sir George Pratt, 2nd Baronet built a new house. The building may have been designed by Inigo Jones, who died in 1652, but the work was undertaken by Pratt's cousin the architect Sir Roger Pratt in c.1660. The house was inherited by George's sister, their grandson was Sir Mark Stuart Pleydell, 1st Baronet. His only daughter Harriet was married in 1748 to William Bouverie, son of Jacob Bouverie, 1st Viscount Folkestone; the Earl's principal seat was near Salisbury. Coleshill House was double-pile building, influenced by Jones's Queens House in Greenwich, combining Italian, French and English architectural ideas, it measured 120 by 60 feet, with two main floors of nine bays, above a rusticated basement, an attic with seven prominent dormer windows and four tall chimneystacks on each side of the hipped roof.
The roof was topped by a flat deck surrounded by a balustrade with a central belvedere cupola. The main floors had equal proportions for storeys, unlike the Palladian emphasis on the piano nobile; the two main façades were similar, with external steps leading up to a central entrance. The pediment above the door for the main front was topped by a rounded segmental pediment, that to the garden at the rear with a triangular pediment; the dormers alternated triangular pediments. The entrance door from the main front led to the entrance hall, the entrance from the rear led to the salon, with the hall and salon taking up the central third of the house. From the hall, a grand staircase with flights to either side climbed to a first-floor landing leading to the dining room above the salon. Central corridors on each floor providing access to the other rooms. Several rooms were decorated with elaborate plaster ceilings; the services on the basement floor included an early example of a servants' hall, so the servants could eat away from the great hall.
During the Second World War, the house was requisitioned as the training headquarters for the Auxiliary Units, the secret British Resistance in the event of a German invasion. The house was sold by the Playdell-Bouverie family in 1946, bought by Ernest Cook, grandson of the travel agent Thomas Cook. Substantial renovations were complete by 1952, when the house was badly damaged by a fire that gutted the house within a matter of hours; the shell was demolished in 1958. Cook gave the estate to the National Trust. Coleshill House Post War, Coleshill Auxiliary Research Team Coleshill & its Owners, berkshirehistory.com Coleshill House, lostheritage.org.uk "Destruction of Coleshill House by Fire: The Fire of Coleshill House on 23rd September 1952", Highworth Historical Society Coleshill's Second World War secrets, National Trust Magna Britannia: Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire, Volume 1, Part 2 of Magna Britannia, by Samuel Lysons, T. Cadell and W. Davies, 1813 Seymour Pleydell Bouverie'Parishes: Coleshill', in A History of the County of Berkshire: Volume 4, ed. William Page and P H Ditchfield, pp. 517-523.
British History Online Coleshill HQ, Coleshill Auxiliary Research Team Berkshire, Nikolaus Pevsner, p.118-119
Ryston is a small village and civil parish in the English county of Norfolk. It once had its own railway station, it covers an area of 9.36 km2 and had a population of 93 in 34 households at the 2001 census, the population increasing to 178 at the 2011 census. For the purposes of local government, it falls within the district of King's West Norfolk. St Michael's parish church dates from the 12th century and was restored in 1901, it is a grade II* listed building. Ryston Hall is a grade II* listed country house, built 1669-72 by the architect Sir Roger Pratt as his own home in 1669, it was remodelled c.1780 by Sir John Soane and again by Anthony Salvin in 1867. The formal gardens and woodland walks are open to the public several times a year; the grounds contain one of the oak trees that are called Kett's Oak, is associated with Kett's Rebellion of 1549. Opened in 1882,Ryston had its own railway station, it was closed to passengers in 1930 Media related to Ryston at Wikimedia Commons
Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon
Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon was an English statesman who served as Lord Chancellor to King Charles II from 1658, two years before the Restoration of the Monarchy, until 1667. He was loyal to the king, built up the royalist cause, served as the chief minister after 1660, he was one of the most important historians of England, as author of the most influential contemporary history of the Civil War, The History of the Rebellion. He was the maternal grandfather of Queen Mary II and Queen Anne. Hyde was the third son of Henry Hyde of Dinton and Purton, both in Wiltshire, by his wife, Mary Langford, daughter and co-heiress of Edward Langford of Trowbridge. Henry's brother was Attorney General; the family of Hyde was long established at Norbury in Cheshire. Hyde was fond of his mother and idolised his father, whom he called "the best father, the best friend, the wisest man I have known." Clarendon's two cousins, Richard Rigby, Secretary of Jamaica, his son, Richard Rigby, Chief Secretary of Ireland and Paymaster of the Army, were successful politicians in the succeeding generations.
He was educated at Gillingham School, in 1622 entered Magdalen Hall, having been rejected by Magdalen College and graduated BA in 1626. Intended for holy orders in the Church of England, the death of two elder brothers made him his father's heir, on 1 February 1625/26 he entered the Middle Temple to study law, his abilities were more conspicuous than his industry, at the bar his time was devoted more to general reading and to the society of eminent scholars and writers than to the study of law treatises. This time was not wasted. In years, Clarendon declared that "next the immediate blessing and providence of God Almighty" he "owed all the little he knew and the little good, in him to the friendships and conversation... of the most excellent men in their several kinds that lived in that age." These included Ben Jonson, John Selden, Edmund Waller, John Hales and Lord Falkland, who became his best friend. From their influence and the wide reading in which he indulged, he doubtless drew the solid learning and literary talent which afterwards distinguished him.
The diarist Samuel Pepys wrote thirty years that he never knew anyone who could speak as well as Hyde. He was one of the most prominent members of the famous Great Tew Circle, a group of intellectuals who gathered at Lord Falkland's country house Great Tew, Oxfordshire. On 22 November 1633 he was called to the bar and obtained a good position and practice. Both his marriages gained him influential friends, in December 1634 he was made keeper of the writs and rolls of the Court of Common Pleas, his able conduct of the petition of the London merchants against Lord Treasurer Portland earned him the approval of Archbishop William Laud, with whom he developed a friendship. Hyde in his History explained that he admired Laud for his integrity and decency, excused his notorious rudeness and bad temper because of Laud's humble origins and because Hyde recognised the same weaknesses in himself. In April 1640, Hyde was elected Member of Parliament for both Shaftesbury and Wootton Bassett in the Short Parliament and chose to sit for Wootton Bassett.
In November 1640 he was elected MP for Saltash in the Long Parliament, Hyde was at first a moderate critic of King Charles I, but became more supportive of the king after he began to accept reforming bills from Parliament. Hyde opposed legislation restricting the power of the King to appoint his own advisors, viewing it unnecessary and an affront to the royal prerogative, he moved over towards the royalist side, championing the Church of England and opposing the execution of the Earl of Strafford, Charles's primary adviser. Following the Grand Remonstrance of 1641, Hyde became an informal adviser to the King, he rejoined the king at York. In February 1643, Hyde was knighted and was appointed to the Privy Council. Despite his own previous opposition to the King, he found it hard to forgive anyone a friend, who fought for Parliament, he severed many personal friendships as a result. With the possible exception of John Pym, he detested all the Parliamentary leaders, describing Oliver Cromwell as "a brave bad man" and John Hampden as a hypocrite, while Oliver St. John's "foxes and wolves" speech, in favour of the attainder of Strafford, he considered to be the depth of barbarism.
His view of the conflict and of his opponents was undoubtedly coloured by the death of his best friend Lord Falkland at the First Battle of Newbury in September 1643. Hyde mourned his death, which he called "a loss most infamous and execrable to all posterity", to the end of his own life, he was severe in his judgments of those Royalist commanders who in his view had contributed to the King's defeat. Indeed, his harshest words of all were reserved for George Goring, Lord Goring, whose loyalty to Charles I was not in doubt, whatever his other faults. Hyde described Goring as a man who would "without hesitation have broken any trust, or performed any act of treachery, to satisfy an ordinary passion or appetite, in truth wanted nothing but industry (for he had wit and courage and understanding and ambition, uncontrolled by any fear of God
Robert Hooke FRS was an English natural philosopher and polymath. His adult life comprised three distinct periods: as a scientific inquirer lacking money. At one time he was the curator of experiments of the Royal Society, a member of its council, Gresham Professor of Geometry, Surveyor to the City of London after the Great Fire of London, he was an important architect of his time – though few of his buildings now survive and some of those are misattributed – and was instrumental in devising a set of planning controls for London whose influence remains today. Allan Chapman has characterised him as "England's Leonardo". Hooke studied at Wadham College, Oxford during the Protectorate where he became one of a knit group of ardent Royalists led by John Wilkins. Here he was employed as an assistant to Thomas Willis and to Robert Boyle, for whom he built the vacuum pumps used in Boyle's gas law experiments, conducted the experiments themselves, he observed the rotations of Mars and Jupiter. In 1665 he inspired the use of microscopes for scientific exploration with Micrographia.
Based on his microscopic observations of fossils, Hooke was an early proponent of biological evolution. He investigated the phenomenon of refraction, deducing the wave theory of light, was the first to suggest that matter expands when heated and that air is made of small particles separated by large distances, he proposed. He performed pioneering work in the field of surveying and map-making and was involved in the work that led to the first modern plan-form map, though his plan for London on a grid system was rejected in favour of rebuilding along the existing routes, he came near to an experimental proof that gravity follows an inverse square law, first hypothesised that such a relation governs the motions of the planets, an idea, developed by Isaac Newton, formed part of a dispute between the two which caused Newton to try to erase Hooke's legacy. He originated the terraqueous globe theory of geology, disputed the literal Biblical account of the age of the earth, hypothesised the idea of extinction, wrote numerous times of the likelihood that fossils on hill and mountain tops had been raised there by "earthquakes", a general term of the time for geological processes.
Much of Hooke's scientific work was conducted in his capacity as curator of experiments of the Royal Society, a post he held from 1662, or as part of the household of Robert Boyle. Much of what is known of Hooke's early life comes from an autobiography that he commenced in 1696 but never completed. Richard Waller mentions it in his introduction to The Posthumous Works of Robert Hooke, M. D. S. R. S. Printed in 1705. In the chapter Of Dr. Dee's Book of Spirits, Hooke argues that John Dee made use of Trithemian steganography, to conceal his communication with Queen Elizabeth I; the work of Waller, along with John Ward's Lives of the Gresham Professors and John Aubrey's Brief Lives, form the major near-contemporaneous biographical accounts of Hooke. Robert Hooke was born in 1635 in Freshwater on the Isle of Wight to Cecily Gyles. Robert was the last of four children, two boys and two girls, there was an age difference of seven years between him and the next youngest, their father John was a Church of England priest, the curate of Freshwater's Church of All Saints, his two brothers were ministers.
Robert Hooke was expected to join the Church. John Hooke was in charge of a local school, so was able to teach Robert, at least at home due to the boy's frail health, he was a Royalist and certainly a member of a group who went to pay their respects to Charles I when he escaped to the Isle of Wight. Robert, grew up to be a staunch monarchist; as a youth, Robert Hooke was fascinated by observation, mechanical works, drawing, interests that he would pursue in various ways throughout his life. He dismantled a brass clock and built a wooden replica that, by all accounts, worked "well enough", he learned to draw, making his own materials from coal and ruddle. On his father's death in 1648, Robert was left a sum of forty pounds that enabled him to buy an apprenticeship. Hooke was an apt student, so although he went to London to take up an apprenticeship, studied with Samuel Cowper and Peter Lely, he was soon able to enter Westminster School in London, under Dr. Richard Busby. Hooke mastered Latin and Greek, made some study of Hebrew, mastered Euclid's Elements.
Here, too, he embarked on his lifelong study of mechanics. It appears that Hooke was one of a group of students whom Busby educated in parallel to the main work of the school. Contemporary accounts say he was "not much seen" in the school, this appears to be true of others in a similar position. Busby, an ardent and outspoken Royalist, was by all accounts trying to pre
Belton House is a Grade I listed country house in Belton near Grantham, England. The mansion is surrounded by formal gardens and a series of avenues leading to follies within a larger wooded park. Belton has been described as a compilation of all, finest of Carolean architecture, the only vernacular style of architecture that England had produced since the Tudor period; the house has been described as the most complete example of a typical English country house. Only Brympton d'Evercy has been lauded as the perfect English country house. For three hundred years, Belton House was the seat of the Brownlow and Cust family, who had first acquired land in the area in the late 16th century. Between 1685 and 1688 Sir John Brownlow and his wife had the present mansion built. Despite great wealth they chose to build a modest country house rather than a grand contemporary Baroque palace; the contemporary, if provincial, Carolean style was the selected choice of design. However, the new house was fitted with the latest innovations such as sash windows for the principal rooms, more completely separate areas for the staff.
As the Brownlows rose from baronets to barons upward to earls and once again became barons, successive generations made changes to the interior of the house which reflected their changing social position and tastes, yet the fabric and design of the house changed little. Following World War I, the Brownlows, like many of their peers, were faced with mounting financial problems. In 1984 they gave the house away—complete with most of its contents; the recipients of their gift, the National Trust, today open Belton to the public. It visited by many thousands of tourists each year; the Brownlow family, a dynasty of lawyers, began accumulating land in the Belton area from 1598. In 1609 they acquired the reversion of the manor of Belton itself from the Pakenham family, who sold the manor house to Sir John Brownlow I in 1619; the old house was situated near the church in the garden of the present house and remained unoccupied, since the family preferred their other houses elsewhere. John Brownlow was childless.
He became attached to two of his more distant blood relations: a great-nephew called John Brownlow, a great-niece, Alice Sherard. The two cousins married each other in 1676 when both were aged 16, they bought a town house in the newly fashionable Southampton Square in Bloomsbury, decided to build a new country house at Belton. Work on the new house began in 1685; the architect thought to have been responsible for the initial design is William Winde, although the house has been attributed to Sir Christopher Wren, while others believe the design to be so similar to Roger Pratt's Clarendon House, that it could have been the work of any talented draughtsman. The assumption popular today, that Winde was the architect, is based on the stylistic similarity between Belton and Coombe Abbey, remodelled by Winde between 1682 and 1685. Further evidence is a letter dated 1690, in which Winde recommends a plasterer who worked at Belton to another of his patrons. Whoever the architect, Belton follows the design of Clarendon House, completed in 1667.
This great London town house has been one of the most admired buildings of its era due to "its elegant symmetry and confident and common-sensical design". Sir John Summerson described Clarendon House as "the most influential house of its time among those who aimed at the grand manner" and Belton as "much the finest surviving example of its class". John and Alice Brownlow assembled one of the finest teams of craftsmen available at the time to work on the project; this dream team was headed by the master mason William Stanton. His second in command, John Thompson, had worked with Sir Christopher Wren on several of the latter's London churches, while the chief joiner John Sturges had worked at Chatsworth under William Talman; the wrought-ironworker John Warren worked under Stanton at Denham Place and the fine wrought iron gates and overthrow at Belton may be his. Thus so competent were the builders of Belton that Winde may have done little more than provide the original plans and drawings, leaving the interpretation to the on-site craftsmen.
This theory is further demonstrated by the external appearance of the adjoining stable block. More provincial, less masterful in proportion, it is known to have been the work of Stanton; the late 17th century in England was a time of great progress in design. Following the austere years of Commonwealth rule, a great flourishing and development in both architecture and the arts began after the restoration of the monarchy in 1660. Royalist exiles and wealthy young men who made the Grand Tour, returned home with new ideas—often extravagant variations on classical themes; this was, for England, the dawn of the Baroque era. The new wave of architects such as Roger Pratt, John Webb, Sir Christopher Wren were not just building vast edifices in Renaissance-inspired styles, but transforming existing older houses. Representative of the utilisation of older houses is Coleshill House in Berkshire, where Pratt transformed the me