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Life in the French country house af Mark…

Life in the French country house (udgave 2000)

af Mark Girouard

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1093201,250 (3.73)Ingen
An account of upper class French society through the centuries showing how its setting - the chateaux and manoirs of the French countryside evolved in concert with their inhabitants.
Titel:Life in the French country house
Forfattere:Mark Girouard
Info:New York: Knopf, 2000. 352 p. ill. (some col.) ; 28 cm.
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
Nøgleord:Architecture, France

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Life in the French Country House af Mark Girouard


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A book remarkably dense about the seats of power of the French aristocracy.

How permanent fixtures of medieval architectonic aristocratic privileges, towers, moats, coats of arms, stags and hounds representations, got carried over through the centuries to make those who owned them apart from the masses.

How small in numbers were the aristocrats who found their death during the 1789 French revolution; 1200 out of 160,000 individuals executed/guillotined..

It seems according this author that most who received the invention of Dr. Guillotin were non-aristocrats (think Danton and Hebert).

How overinflated their numbers in France compared to English peerage due to adding robe nobility to the existing sword nobility as criteria to become aristocrat.
Political nobility also added several thousands (Napoleon, Louis-Philippe).

Girouard shows with accurate perception and compelling visual arguments, a society ranked through the material possessions of its members, castle or country house, or through the right to wield intangibles, such as raising taxes, receiving vassal homage, rendering high and low justice.
Looking forward to read its counterpart; life in the English Country House. ( )
  Artymedon | Jan 5, 2014 |
"Concerned with how French chateaux and seigneurial residences were lived in from the fourteenth to the twentieth centuries, and how the way in which they were used was reflected in their planning and architecture". from the Foreword.Copiously illustrated, a readable and comprehensive overview of the subject. ( )
  Lynley | Apr 18, 2011 |
I bought this book quite a while ago, because I was familiar with the author's other works on country houses, and because I was interested to learn about the French context, in the wake of having visited a slew of Loire Valley chateaux. I know a good bit about English country houses (thanks to authorities like Mark Girouard), and was quite surprised to learn about some of the important differences between England and France in this regard. For instance, the significance of the farmyard (basse-cour), which is always close to the chateau in France, but banished out of sight in England.

This is quite a scholarly work, and a bit heavy for the casual reader, I think. But the tone is lightened by the series of "interludes" at the end, which present fascinating, esoteric facets of domestic architecture à la française. If you've ever wanted to know how and where eighteenth-century French aristocrats managed to pee, take baths, or sup, this is the book for you!
2 stem Panopticon2 | Feb 12, 2011 |
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An account of upper class French society through the centuries showing how its setting - the chateaux and manoirs of the French countryside evolved in concert with their inhabitants.

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