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Abandoned Mansions of Ireland

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Abandoned Mansions of Ireland.pdf | Language: ENGLISH
    Tarquin Blake(Author)

    Book details


From the mid-eighteenth century Irish country houses flourished. Landowners generated easy income leasing land to tenants. As their wealth increased, so did the size of their country mansions. But factors such as the Great Famine, land reforms, the increasing expense of maintenance and the IRA targeting the houses during the War of Independence took their toll. Gradually, abandoned and forgotten, the houses sank into decay. In 2008 Tarquin Blake found his first abandoned 'Big House' and so began exploring the lost architecture of Ireland. Here, he documents what is left of fifty mansion houses with brief histories and beautiful photographs of the haunting ruins. Included are Mountpelier Lodge (Dublin Hellfire Club), the birthplaces of Daniel O'Connell and the Duke of Wellington, and the one-time homes of Grace O'Malley and of brewing family the Smithwicks of Kilkenny. The inclusion of details from the 1911 Census offers a glimpse of the closing days of the aristocracy and their mansions.

'Elegiac and beautiful book' --The Irish Times'Handsome volume' --Marcus Binney, The Times'Visually exciting'-- Books Ireland'Hauntingly beautiful pictures…are accompanied by fascinating historical information' --Irish American News'For anyone with an interest in ruins of the past and present, Abandoned Mansions of Ireland should prove to be an endlessly fascinating coffee table work' --The Midwest Book Review'Handsome volume' --Marcus Binney, The Times'Visually exciting' --Books Ireland

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Book details

  • PDF | 338 pages
  • Tarquin Blake(Author)
  • The Collins Press; Reprint edition (10 Oct. 2010)
  • English
  • 2
  • Art, Architecture & Photography

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Review Text

  • By henry george on 6 November 2010

    This is a wonderful book,and the photography is amazing, it is many years since I have gained so much information and enjoyment all in one book. I think anyone who loves Ireland and is interested in its history will gain hours of pleasure.It is a book to treasure and keep picking up to re read and look at the photographs.

  • By J. Eva on 29 January 2011

    I was immediately drawn into the wonderful photography within these pages. The evocation of a lost period of stunning architecture and elegance has been picked out in high definition 360o photography providing us with a glimpse into what were once Ireland's most distinguished homes. Anyone with an interest in Architectue, history, photography or a link to these houses, could not fail to be captured by this beautiful work of art, combined with thoroughly researched information on the occupants, their interesting links and lifestyles.

  • By San Franciscan on 10 October 2012

    This is a fine book, well worth owning for anyone involved in the preservation of historic and culturally important sites.However, the actual facts concerning the various homes is often thin. The tragedy of the impending destruction of these extraordinary architectural masterpieces would be more completely understood if there were reference photographs of the residences before roofs were pulled off to reduce taxes, the sale and looting of architectural fittings and deliberate dereliction. The ruin often began with the abandonment by their families, and the sale of their historic furnishings and libraries, so again, period photographs would help the reader understand what has been lost.Even so, this is a fine book with remarkable and beautiful photographs, worth owning.Greg Hubbard

  • By Korhomme on 16 November 2013

    You really need to get this with the companion volume 2. The second volume has a more comprehensive introduction about the how and why so many houses were abandoned; in a nutshell, a mixture of the famine, which bankrupted so many estates, and politics.There are potted histories of the houses and their occupants. It's clear that some of these people were very strange and eccentric; during the Famine, many were nasty, but a lot were very good to their tenants, even to the extent of bankrupting themselves. Some estates didn't have a direct heir, and passed to others; but very often with the requirement that the inheritors changed their names. Some of the information comes from the Census, but much is the result of research.No technical details of the digital photography are given, which is disappointing. The monochrome pictures are (faux) infra-red images. I don't think the 360º panoramas work that well; they used a spherical projection, where perhaps a rectilinear one would have been better. And anyway, such panoramas work much better as virtual reality, rather than being printed.An unabashed coffee table pair of books, but none the worse for that; to be dipped into rather than read through at a sitting.

  • By Malcolm on 13 May 2011

    I like this book. The photographs are excellent but I think it could have be massively improved by including a photograph of each house in its heyday. I don't think it would have been difficult to source period photographs for most properties and would have helped the reader to visualize how the houses looked when lived in.Very good but could have been much better

  • By Mr. V. Walsh on 12 April 2011

    A lovely book. Bigger than expected.The one question we all ask when seeing a derilect beautiful builing is: "How did it end up like this?"Thats what i liked about this book - it explained in a general sense why so many buildings around Ireland have fell into disrepair but also on a case by case study,documenting its history and demise.I also enjoyed reading the census info of who was recorded as living in a certain property at a certain time and with there jobs were.Would recommend it.

  • By Stawell Heard on 31 October 2010

    Abandoned Mansions of Ireland is a delightful book which illustratesand records the histories of many of the fine houses of Ireland which are now lost for ever. Mr Tarquin Blake, I understand, is now writing another book on the subject which I very much look forward to reading.

  • By Bernard Hughes on 29 December 2010

    After purchasing this book as a gift, i had to also buy a copy for myself, as i was just so impressed by its content. It really should be part of anyone with an interest in Irish Historys collection.Not only does it contain highly researched factual information, with numerous specific facts and figures, but also a plethora of quite evocative photographs that capture the true spirit of the lost heritage of Ireland.I would recommend this book to anyone looking to expand their knowledge of Irish architecture or just wanting to enjoy the stunning photography.


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