Record number 03/2600
Author Gibbs, James, 1682 - 1754
TitleA Book Of Architecture, Containing Designs Of Buildings And Ornaments. By James Gibbs.
ImprintLondon:: Printed, MDCCXXVIII.
Physical Description[4], xxviii p., 150 pl. (4 dble.); 505 mm. (Folio).
Content Format Note[T.-p., dedic.] - Introduction [with explanations of the plates] - A List Of The Subscribers - [Plates].
Summary NoteThe plates show: churches, steeples (1-35); the Public Building, Cambridge (36-7); Houses (38-66); Pavilions, obelisks, columns, gates (67-90); chimney-pieces (91-97); doors, windows, niches (98-110); sepulchral monuments (111-127); compartments for inscriptions (128-135); urns, vases, cisterns (136-146); tables (147), pedestals (148-150).

The present work is the first major eighteenth-century British architectural treatise to exhibit only the author's own designs.

The Preface states that it is not 'the richness ... nor the gaudiness of the finishing that give the grace or beauty and grandeur to a building, but the proportion of the parts', yet Gibbs's designs rely less on exactness of proportion than those of his Palladian contemporaries, and show what John Archer has described as 'a livelier disposition of massing and plan' - reflecting perhaps his studies in Rome under Carlo Fontana and the example of Wren and Archer.

In London Gibbs built St Mary-le-Strand, St Martin in the Fields and the forecourt of Burlington House; in Cambridge, the Senate House and the Fellows' Building at King's; in Oxford, the Radcliffe library; and several country houses. His work was not included in Campbell's survey, Vitruvius Britannicus (1715-25); but his designs were taken as models not only in Britain but wherever British influence was felt, from India to the Americas.

A second edition of this work was published in 1739. Many of Gibbs's drawings survive at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.
Responsibility NoteAll plates (except nos. 8, 13) are signed as designed by Gibbs, and engraved by E. Kirkall, H. Hulsbergh, J. Harris, I. Mynde, G. Vertue or B. Baron.

The book was printed by William Bowyer (Bowyer ledgers).

The work is dedicated by the author to John, Duke of Argyll.
SubjectArchitecture - Churches - Houses - Country Houses - Garden structures - Sepulchral monuments - Vases - Great Britain - History - 18th century
Pattern books - Great Britain - 18th century
Pictorial works - Great Britain - 18th century
ReproductionsA microfilm version was published in 2005 (Woodbridge, Conn.: Primary Source Microfilm). A facsimile was published in 1968 (New York: B. Blom).
ReferencesRIBA, Early printed books, 2 (1995), 1206; E. Harris and N. Savage, British Architectural Books (1990), 257; J. Archer, Literature of British domestic architecture (1985), 88.1; Johns Hopkins University, The Fowler Architectural Collection (1961), no. 138, p.118.

T. Friedman, James Gibbs (1984).
ESTC T22978
Binding Note19th-century half black morocco,black paper-covered boards; spine lettered 'Book Of Architecture - Gibbs R.A. 1728.'
ProvenanceRecorded in RAA Library, Catalogue, 1802.
Contributors Bowyer, William, the younger, 1699 - 1777, printer
Kirkall, Elisha, 1681 - 1742, engraver
Hulsbergh, Henry, 1729, engraver
Harris, John, the elder, fl. 1693 - 1740?, engraver
Mynde, James, 1702 - 1771, engraver
Vertue, George, 1684 - 1756, engraver
Baron, Bernard, 1696 - 1762, engraver
Argyll, John Campbell, 2nd Duke of, 1680 - 1743, dedicatee
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