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Edward J. Gillin, The Victorian Palace of Science: Scientific Knowledge and the Building of the Houses of Parliament, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017, 325 pages, 38 b&w ills., $99.99 (hardback).
G. A. Bremner1
Although the history of science has been a subject of academic inquiry for a very long time now—first pursued by enthusiastic individuals, then as a sub-branch of history proper, before becoming both an independent specialty and part of the broad, cross-disciplinary field loosely known today as science and technology studies—it seems only to have had a minimal impact on the history of the built environment. This is surprising given that the putting up of buildings is in part a scientific endeavour. The dynamics of structure, not to mention material and environmental controls, involves scientific and technological knowledge in the form of physics, geology, chemistry, and acoustics. Indeed, the engineering aspect of architecture dates back to the very origins and...
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