The Seven Lamps of Architecture
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The Seven Lamps of Architecture

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  341 ratings  ·  11 reviews
In August of 1848, John Ruskin and his new bride visited northern France, for the gifted young critic wished to write a book that would examine the essence of Gothic architecture. By the following April, the book was finished. Titled The Seven Lamps of Architecture, it was far more than a treatise on the Gothic style; instead, it elaborated Ruskin's deepest convictions of...more
Paperback, 496 pages
Published June 28th 2005 by Adamant Media Corporation (first published January 1st 1907)
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What I learned?
The Importance of Being Ornamental.
THE SEVEN LAMPS OF ARCHITECTURE. (1849). John Ruskin. ***.
Ruskin was one of the most famous men of the Victorian Age. He was a writer, a critic, a painter, and a lecturer of note. He was clearly responsible for the definition of ‘taste’ in both the fine and decorative arts. This book combines a series of lectures on architecture. He manages to illuminate what is good in this field from what is bad. The ‘lamps’ he uses for this illumination consist of his opinions that apply under Sacrifice, Trut...more
Though I see from reading this how Ruskin might have been an inspiration to the Arts and Crafts movement, it's hard to believe that Frank Lloyd Wright read this book also! Ruskin was at heart a reactionary...I suppose against the Industrial Revolution and the threats the concept of liberty posed to the established social order. What modern American could possibly read "The Lamp of Obedience" without wincing?

Still, it's always worthwhile to read such an influential work. Ruskin's style is a bit c...more
Haythem Bastawy
Definitely an experience, a very different read. The Seven Lamps of Architecture is one of Ruskin's many books on art, sculpture and architecture. He writes beautifully but reignlessly and could keep going on around the same point ceaselessly. It is fascinating though the extremely pious tone he speaks through, knowing that later in life he gave up his faith.

The Seven Lamps of Architecture is a fascinating keen depiction of the degenration of European civilisation from the Renaissance onwards th...more
Grey Walker
It's slow reading, because I have to put myself in Ruskin "headspace" whenever I pick it up. I remember blitzing through it in college, but I was taking a Victorian lit class, and it was all Victorian English, all the time.
Pretentious twaddle, much of which seems to have been disproved by later architectural events. Must have imagined it had some virtue when I picked it up, but so glad I only tackled this as a flying/waiting at airport filler.
I didn't quite finish this one. I'm wanting to try reading it again once I know a little more about architecture.
I found John Ruskin to be a bit irritating. This isn't the sort of book you read for fun.
Brittany Petruzzi
Might just win in the fisticuffs against Vitruvius for best book on architecture.
Steven Felicelli
as postmodernist, this book is hard to read now
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John Ruskin was born on 8 February 1819 at 54 Hunter Street, London, the only child of Margaret and John James Ruskin. His father, a prosperous, self-made man who was a founding partner of Pedro Domecq sherries, collected art and encouraged his son's literary activities, while his mother, a devout evangelical Protestant, early dedicated her son to the service of God and devoutly wished him to beco...more
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“To speak and act truth with constancy and precision is nearly as difficult, and perhaps as meretorious, as to speak it under intimidation or penalty” 12 likes
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