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Situating Status

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Abstract

Building a house fit for a gentleman presupposed land for it to sit on. The example of Paradise in Gloucestershire highlights important issues related to the settings of individual houses, their connections with urban and rural environments, and the character of their immediate landscapes and gardens. As a property, Paradise did not serve as a country house subsisting on rents from land. Its income of £35 per annum was insufficient to guarantee the independent existence of the gentleman it sought for an owner. At the same time, the house resulted from William Townsend’s manufacturing of cloth, a trade centred in the Stroudwater valleys but which had important, indeed necessary, links with the great commercial centre of London.1 Without these links and the resulting financial resources, the house would not have existed. Paradise had its aesthetic merits as well. The house’s ‘West Country baroque’ architecture likely took its cue from Bristol. It was ‘pleasantly situated’ with a ‘beautiful prospect’, providing an agreeable place of residence for a genteel owner. Factors of location, property, setting, and urban connection all helped to make Paradise ‘fit for a gentleman’.

Keywords

Eighteenth Century Rural Environment Situate Status Port City Primary Residence 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

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Copyright information

© Stephen Hague 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Rowan UniversityUSA

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