Adam's Reviews > The Castle of Otranto

The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole
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's review
May 13, 2012

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Until I read a recent review of this book on Goodreads, I had completely forgotten that I had read it many years ago in my late teens.

In those days I was fascinated by Gothic architecture as well as the neo-Gothic architecture of the nineteenth century, or 'Gothic Revival' as it is called by some. The art historian Kenneth Clark claimed in his 1928 book, "The Gothic Revival", that the Gothic tradition never actually died in Britain. He wrote:a tiny stream of the Gothic tradition was never lost, but flowed unbroken from Henry VII' s chapel to the Houses of Parliament.

However, the late eighteenth century, when Horace Walpole was writing the Castle of Otranto marked the beginning of a fascination with the Gothick. His own home at Twickenham, Strawberry Hill House, is a fine example of Gothic Revival architecture. It is said to have inspired Walpole's writing of this novel, which I remember reading alongside another Gothick novel, Vathek by William Beckford, whose home, Fonthill Abbey, was another masterpiece of Gothick Revival architecture.

Sadly, I remember little about either book apart from the fact that I enjoyed them.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Shovelmonkey1 Always time for a re-read, Adam!

Adam Shovelmonkey1 wrote: "Always time for a re-read, Adam!"

Not at my slow pace of reading!

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