Palladian architecture

Palladian architecture is a European architectural style derived from and inspired by the designs of the Venetian architect Andrea Palladio (1508–1580). What is recognised as Palladian architecture today is an evolution of his original concepts. Palladio's work was strongly based on the symmetry, perspective, and values of the formal classical temple architecture of the Ancient Greeks and Romans. From the 17th century Palladio's interpretation of this classical architecture was adapted as the style known as "Palladianism". It continued to develop until the end of the 18th century.

A villa with a superimposed portico, from Book IV of Palladio's I quattro libri dell'architettura, in an English translation published in London, 1736.
Plan for Palladio's Villa Rotonda. Features of the house were to become incorporated in numerous Palladian style houses throughout Europe over the following centuries.

In Britain, Palladianism was briefly in vogue during the 17th century, but its flowering was cut short by the onset of the English Civil War and the imposition of austerity which followed. In the early 18th century it returned to fashion, not only in England but also, directly influenced from Britain, in Prussia. Count Francesco Algarotti may have written to Lord Burlington from Berlin that he was recommending to Frederick the Great the adoption in Prussia of the architectural style Burlington had introduced in England,[1] but Knobelsdorff's opera house on the Unter den Linden boulevard, based on Campbell's Wanstead House, had been constructed from 1741. Later in the century, when the style was falling from favour in Europe, it had a surge in popularity throughout the British colonies in North America, highlighted by examples such as Drayton Hall in South Carolina, the Redwood Library in Newport, Rhode Island, the Morris-Jumel Mansion in New York City, the Hammond-Harwood House in Annapolis, Maryland and Thomas Jefferson's Monticello and Poplar Forest in Virginia.[2]

The style continued to be utilized in Europe throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, where it was frequently employed in the design of public and municipal buildings. From the latter half of the 19th century it was rivalled by the Gothic revival in the English-speaking world, whose champions such as Augustus Pugin, remembering the origins of Palladianism in ancient temples, deemed it too pagan for Anglican and Anglo-Catholic worship.[3] However, as an architectural style it has continued to be popular and to evolve; its pediments, symmetry and proportions are clearly evident in the design of many modern buildings today.