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This book is an explanation, with illustrations, of the cool, simple, linear, rational, geometric, secular, civic moralizing art we call Neo-Classicism (which its contemporaries called the “true” art, reflecting their idealism), and its subsequent downfall with the Revolution, Napoleon and romanticist reaction. Honour writes well and weaves the various talents (architecture, design, painting, sculpture, writing) together seamlessly. I didn’t appreciate many of the black and white reproductions —...more
The scholarship in this book is superb, it's well organized and there are enough primary sources to really support what Honour is talking about, but it just can't makeup for the fact that I hate Neo-Classicism. If it's your thing, I recommend checking it out, but I'm way too much of a Romantic for this.