English Victorian Churches
Title Details

240 Pages

24.6 x 18.9 cm

131 colour, 7 b/w illus.

Imprint: John Hudson Publishing

English Victorian Churches

Architecture, Faith, & Revival

by James Stevens Curl

  • Description
  • Contents
  • Author
  • Reviews
Victorian churches were often of high quality, reflecting in physical terms the intense theological debates of the time. This highly-illustrated book by a leading authority describes many of the finest examples.

Many churches were built in England during the reign of Queen Victoria: most were in various varieties of Gothic Revival. Often exquisitely furnished, they were visible expressions of the presence and importance of religion at the time. Their architectural qualities reflected aspirations of clergy, laity, and individual benefactors. The finest were the results of passionate commitment to an architecture soundly based on scholarly studies known as Ecclesiology. James Stevens Curl places English churches of the period in their complex social and denominational settings, giving comprehensive accounts of the religious atmosphere and controversies of the times. He charts the progress and development of the Gothic Revival, explains differences in the architecture of various denominations, outlines the influences of the chief protagonists involved, and describes the demands made on craftsmen and industry to produce the materials, furnishings, and fittings necessary in making some of the finest buildings ever created in England. He reveals something of the individuals and events that shaped the religious climate of the epoch, while specially commissioned illustrations reveal the rich variety found in Victorian churches.
Preface and acknowledgements
Foreword - Rev Barry A Orford
1 - An Introduction to Denominations and Victorian Churches
2 - Architecture, Antiquarianism, and Styles
3 - The Religious Atmosphere in the 1830s and 1840s
4 - Recusants, Goths, Converts, Ultramontanes, and Controversies
5 - The Anglican Revival
6 - The Search for an Ideal
7 - Church Architecture of the 1850s, 1860s, and early 1870s
8 - The Late-Victorian Anglican Church in Several Manifestations
9 - Non-Anglican Buildings for Religious Observance
10 - Epilogue
Bibliography
Index

Professor James Stevens Curl has an international reputation as an architectural historian whose publications span Classical, Georgian and Victorian architecture, and with Susan Wilson he wrote the Oxford Dictionary of Architecture, published by Oxford University Press in 2016. His Making Dystopia; The Strange Rise and Survival of Architectural Barbarism (OUP, 2018) is a combative critique of the Modernist movement and, while controversial, asks questions about our urban landscapes to which answers are long overdue.

"Beautifully illustrated study that makes a valuable contribution to the recognition of Catholic churches." Elena Curti, THE TABLET
"[The book] can be read as a work of scholarship; one that spans two distinct but related disciplines, namely Victorian church architecture and nineteenth-century ecclesiology. As an authoritative survey and critique of the finest examples of nineteenth-century English church building, it would be difficult to better." Graham Cunningham, Journal of Victorian Culture
"A very full and eloquent guide ... The architectural theories are clearly set in the developing ideas-aesthetic and ecclesiastical-of the time." Selby Whittingham, THE JACKDAW
"Illustrated with large numbers of excellent colour images, it sets churches of the period in historical context and crosses the denominational divides that so often obscure an overall understanding of what was going on. It is a timely reminder of the extraordinary riches of English church buildings." John Goodall, COUNTRY LIFE
"We should be grateful that Professor Curl and John Hudson Publishing have produced such an attractive book between them." Michael Hodges, Catholic Herald
"Curl has produced the best study to date of Victorian church architecture and has been well served by his publisher: the book is a model of clear and elegant design, well served by a high standard of production." Kenneth Powell, New Directions
"Curl is as expert in dealing with the doctrinal traditions......
Curl's knowledge is breath-taking....
Curl has strong views and doesn't pull punches...." Bernard Richards, Oxford Magazine
"This is an enriching read, replete with a full glossary (including pocket essays on "Gothic" and "Gothic Revival") and excellent illustrations. It's worth singling out the physical qualities of this book, too. In an age in which limp and drear print-on-demand books become ever more common, this carefully designed and well-made volume is a pleasure." Roger Bowdler, The Critic
"the book is a magnificent sweep of the history of one of the great ages of church-building" Jeremy Musson, ECCLESIOLOGY TODAY

Hardcover

9781739822934

October 2022

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9781739822941

October 2022

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Title Details

240 Pages

2.46 x 1.89 cm

131 colour, 7 b/w illus.

Imprint: John Hudson Publishing