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The works of Sir Joseph Paxton


Price: £30.00


by George Fletcher Chadwick

Published in 1961 and out of print for many years.

From the Fly-leaf
This is a definitive, documented study of the works of a talented, prodigiously enterprising man whose versatility enabled him to come to the forefront of any field in which he chose to work. Inevitably, the Great Exhibition building of 1851 springs to mind at the mention of Paxton's name: the immensely successful first Crystal Palace, afterwards rebuilt at Sydenham on an even more ambitious scale. But this latter building, with its elaborate park, also designed by Paxton, was only one of his largest works, and not necessarily the most characteristic of them.

The Crystal Palaces and their wooden-framed predecessor, the Great Conservatory at Chatsworth, were the fruit of steady development in the improvement of glasshouses. In the glasshouses of Chatsworth, Paxton reared exotic plants with spectacular success, and in the gardens round them he made his reputation as a gardener and landscape architect, with picturesque works far closer to the eighteenth-century tradition than those at Sydenham. With typical ingenuity and boldness, he also built the highest fountain jet in Europe, and moved mature trees from place to place. This reputation secured many commissions for public parks, which are among his most important works, and which were usually combined with housing layouts. He also practised as an architect, being responsible, inter alia, for two mansions for the Rothschilds, a castle in Ireland, and a complete village near Chatsworth.

As an M.P. he was a vigorous campaigner for metropolitan improvements and drew up a plan for the most sweeping one of all - the Great Victorian Way – an arcaded street flanked by houses and railways, girdling Central London.

Jacket design by Philip Thompson

PLEASE NOTE: All the copies have been purchased from high-class antique book dealers and are therefore of good quality. Previously owned books are however subject to the usual problems - light foxing and / or lightly stained pages, and the page edges, etc may not be perfect. The pages however are always fully secure. The best available copy of the book will be sent in all cases.

The jacket may not always be the original but a full colour full size photocopy of an original.

275 pages h/b over 50 illustrations