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rebuilt by King Edward the First, or about his time, and that the Welsh, while under their own princes, wanted money, skill, and even a sufficiency of workmen, for the erection of extensive and substantial edifices. Asserlions of so sweeping and exceptless a description, are generally proved erroueous by subsequent. careful investigation. That the most splendid and powerful castles in Wales were erected by that king, or in imitation of his style, will scarcely be denied; but the remains of many fortified buildings, of great strength and magnitude, are found in almost every division of the principality, which, on data arising from historical testimony, and from evidence of architectural character, must be assigned to periods long antecedent to the reign of Edward..
Amongst the numerous ruins that add picturesque beauty to the heights and passes of this fine country, occur the remains of fortresses, which, from the absence of all record, are possibly of a British origin;* while there are reasons for supposing that parts of structures equally remote in date, were often worked into the stronger castles erected by arbitrary Norman lords.
The castles, either wholly constructed, or re-edified, in Wales, by the Anglo-Normans, previous to the reign of Edward the First, were, unquestionably, possessed of formidable strength, and, in many instances; were of magnificent dimensions. Those of Cardiff,+ Pembroke, and Kidwelly,ş may be adduced as proofs of the justice of these assertions. But it is sufficieutly obvious that, during the numerous wars
" Mr. King's conjectures respecting the imitations of various early styles observable in some remaining Welsh buildings, are slightly noticed in my remarks on the military architecture of the Anglo Saxons. The opinions of a writer so fond of hypothesis as Mr. King, most, however, be received with much caution. A rich field of antiquarian enquiry is still open, in regard to the ruins of ancient castles in Wales. · + Beauties for South Wales, p. 614.
South Wales, p. 798. -- South Wales, p. 571.
in which the principality was engaged, its fortresses were exposed to frequent partial demolition; and, consequently, we often see a restitution of parts, sometimes with additional fortifications, in the modes of various subsequent ages. Many of these renovations and improvements, undoubtedly took place in the reign of Edward the First; and to the military architecture of his era must be frequently attributed a portion of the splendid outworks, which now, amalgamated in one mass of ruin, are blended, by the cursory observer, with the original keep, of a date far more distant.
It appears that, in particular instances, these additions of fortification were continued even down to the reign of Henry the Seventh. And, when the necessity for defence happily ceased to exist, the style of castellated domestic architecture was adopted in this country, as well as in England. · In the Beauties for Wules are, also, described several examples of that noble character of mansion which succeeded to the ostentation of an embattled aspect, without interior means of de fence; and which, under Elizabeth and James the First, formed the secure and capacious residence of the courteous baron, and hospitable country gentleman of the first order.
ON THE POINTED, OR ENGLISH, STYLE OF
The pointed style of architecture is a grateful subject of investigation with those who employ a tasteful leisure from more serious studies, in enquiries concerning the antiquities of England and Wales. Its importance with the architect by. profession is so truly great, and so very obvious, that it would scarcely be
necessary to advert to this circumstance, if we did not perceive - the neglect with which it is treated, or the mistaken view in which
it is contemplated, through the medium of those incongruous fabrics- heterogeneous and deformed, whether massy or Alimsy
which are too often raised in modern days, and are nominally at tributed by their builders to this style.
Notwithstanding the virulence and declamation of those who were engaged in reviving Grecian architecture, the pointed mode of building remains the great boast of English art. It cannot be traced to any servility of imitation. Its origin may be disputed; the powerful rivalry of a neighbouring country may not be denied; but no cavils of fastidious writers have socceeded in shewing the prototype of our great national instances of excellence in this style. Wherever the first suggestion might arise, some of the fairest and most stupendous examples are to be found in the countries, to a consideration of whose antiquities these pages are in tended to act as an introduction. This mode of architecture was, andoubtedly, the pride of our ancestry- the favourite child of art on which they lavished indulgence. And the structures erected in this style are equally the pride of the existing period, since, in the assemblage of their several perfections, they present the single sarprising instance in which the middle ages were enabled to produce an excellence in the ornamental arts, independant of all imitation of the sublime simplicity of Greece and Rome.
It would be superfluous to dwell long on the fascinating influence of this style of architecture, which may appear, at the first view, to be wild and devious, but which was, in fact, artificially progressive, and moved onwards in degrees of embellishment, as regularly as the classical orders.
Its scientific claims to admiration will meet with some remark in a future page; and its interest with the topograpker needs scarcely to be insisted upon in this, or any other place. The examiner of any cathedral instance of English architecture; of. our principal parochial churches; our highly-wrought chapels ; or those few great collegiate churches which escaped the injerious hand of persons intrusted with the task of reformation; will necessarily imbibe an ardent desite of becoming acquainted with the rise of a style in architecture, so impressive, and well-suited to the inspiration of solemu religious feeling.
The chief information required by such an examiner appears to de implicated in remarks on the following heads :-the origin of this architectural mode; the principles of art which are employed in producing so grand an effect, and such an involuntary awe in the spectator; the progressive advancement of the architect, in a pracLice of his novel study, froin simplicity to fulness, from abundance to fantastical superfluity of decoration; and the architectonie marks by which the date of a struclure may usually be recognised.
The priucipal divisions into which this section is arranged, will, consequently, be adapted to these presumed wishes for informa. tion in the reader. But it is to be regretted that in such an essay, by whatever pen it might be performed, much must be left subject to incertitude. It will speedily be shewn that the origin of this style—the architectural prodigy of Europe!-is quite open to conjecture; and that the principles of art by which its practitioners assuredly were regulated, are so little known, that many persons have not scrupled to doubt whether they really worked on any elementary and ruling system.
The opinions of the most acceplable writers shall be stated, in regard to each head of discussion; and some examples be given of the style prevailing in the several reigns between those of Henry the Second, and Henry the Eighth ; together with a reference to those parts of the Beauties of England and Wales in which such examples are noticed, and a brief outline of intelligence, concerning the general characteristics of style which distinguish the respective chronological classes.
This pleasing task must necessarily commence with some remarks on the VARIETY OF APPELLATIONS bestowed, by different writers, on this architectural mode.
In preceding sections, appropriated to discussions respecting different styles of our ancient architecture, I have found occasion to regret the want of such a rational Nomenclature as might sim. plify the study of architectural antiquities. The investigatiou of these is, indeed, involved, at present, in a painful labyrinth,
repulsive repulsive to the polite or desultory student, from such a want of specific terms, or landmarks of intelligence.
The inconvenience experienced by the enquirer, from the apo plication of the term Saxon to all buildings in the circular style, las been already noticed. But the indiscriminate use of the appellation of Gothic, is productive of a more serious impediment to the acquisition of correct knowledge. So various is the application of this term, that it is attended with no distinct idea; and I feel assured that the reader of the present page, will find difficulty in anticipating the point of bearing in which its use shall be censured by the writer.
The term of Gothic was first bestowed on some species of ecclesiastical architecture, as an epithet of obloquy; and was intended to signify its supposed barbarous deviation from the Grecian or Roman modes, not to imply its procedure from the Goths, who, in fact, possessed no national mode of architecture, and, when in Italy, profited by Italian artists.
Once admitted as a term, its vituperative intention would be forgotten, if ils designation were unequivocal. But, not being derived from any characteristical attributes of style, it has been applied, with a laxity amounting to very blainable carelessness, to all modes of architecture not Grecian or Roman, either collectively or particularly, as favoured the judolence of respective writers. Such a want of attention to the first principle which should be used in efforts to convey intelligence, – that of employ. ing no word which does not communicate a clear and positive idea-has led to a confusion in the essays of many writers upon this subject, which renders their works nearly useless. It would be easy to name these instances; and, anfortunately, such an enumeration would implicate works recently published. *
..For the justice of these assertions I refer the reader to the great majority of publications on the ancient architecture of England. After labouring iu the perplexed pages of such works, we must be greatly surprised to find the following remarks proceed from the pen of Mr. Kerrich.-" In later times it