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A History of Western Architecture Paperback – 12 Sep 2011


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Product details

  • Paperback: 720 pages
  • Publisher: Laurence King; 5 edition (12 Sep 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1856697908
  • ISBN-13: 978-1856697903
  • Product Dimensions: 19.7 x 4.4 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 76,501 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

Review

...an outstanding narrative history of architecture, the best currently available... -- Architectural Review --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

David Watkin is Emeritus Professor of the History of Architecture at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Peterhouse. He has written many books, among them: Morality and Architecture Revisited and Sir John Soane (1996), and is a leading authority on Classicism and its successive renewals in architecture.

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First Sentence
WESTERN CULTURE AND ARCHITECTURE DERIVE MUCH OF their richness and resonances from the fact that their origins lie outside of Europe. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Carina Mørch-storstein on 3 Mar 2009
Format: Paperback
I bought A History of Western Architecture for the course I am taking in Art History as it was one of the course's obligatory textbooks. I have to admit that, despite the very interesting subject matter, this is not one of the most pedagogical textbooks I have read. In fact, I believe a few things could defenitely be improved. Many complexe architectural terms are not explained or, if they are so in another chapter, there is no reference to where this explanation is. Some words are listed in the back of the book with definitions, but this does not emcompass all. Also, the authors mention many buildings without including images, plans or drawings of them. This book can, therefore, only be enjoyed if one has already knowledge about architecture or read other, better explained textbooks in advance.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Artsreadings on 25 April 2010
Format: Paperback
This book appropriately expands earlier versions to include Mesopotamia at the beginning of the survey and more recent material towards the end of the volume.

It is very clearly structured, by time periods, and within, by geographical areas like regions or countries, depending on the period.

The purpose is rather comprehensive with including all most significant names and places in the narrative with specific analyses. Not every building gets proper illustration but that is pretty much the law of the genre and nothing to worry too much about.

By the end of the volume, most readers should have obtained a well rounded impression of Western architecture from the origins to the present day.

Well recommended.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 23 Feb 2004
Format: Paperback
This book has prooved to be extremely useful in the history part of my degree. Obviously, this book cannot compare in detail and magnificance to Sir Banister-Fletchers' Bible ('A History of Architecture on the Comparative Method'), but it is a great deal more affordable. If an older version of Banister-Fletcher (ie, pre 18th edition) can be found then it is better to get that instead, but if not, this book is equally resourceful. All the descriptions and illustrations are there, though the detailing doesn't go to as much depth as B-F's. This book is ideal though if all you need is a brief reference to a particular historical movement.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Miguel A. Paez R. on 27 Oct 2014
Format: Paperback
A reference book for architectural studies at Edinburgh Unibersity
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Expanded Version of an Old Favorite 28 Sep 2005
By John Matlock - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is the fourth edition of this monumental book. This edition has been expanded to include additional coverage of Egyptian and Mesopotamian architecture at the early end, and the coverage of the architecture of the twentieth century has been greatly expanded. There is also expanded coverage of the architecture from Asia, particular that of Japan.

The book now has 50 color and 931 black and white photographs. Most of these are from Europe, but the rest of the world does have some coverage.

The increased size and scope of the book now presents a continuous coverage of the evolution of architecture from the earliest building, about 5000 B.C. to buildings constructed in the twenty first century. It is the most complete single volume history of architecture available and it's new edition is greatly improved.

The author, David Watkin is Professor of the History of Architecture at the University of Cambridge.
Great price for a great piece of knowledge. 14 Feb 2014
By yaknow05 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is tough to read, especially if you don't know anything about architecture. But with a tough path ahead of me, I appreciate the thoroughness of the text. Well-presented photos along with these text makes for an interesting read. I have only read up to chapter 3, and I am already excited to learn more about the history of architecture.

The vendor I got mine from was also very quick in the mailing process.
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
improper details 13 Feb 2003
By svitllana - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
First time I read D. Watkin's book almost 10 years ago. Basically, it is a comprehensive and detailed throughout. However, I was struck by one 'little' improper detail - instead of the picture of Haja Sophia (St. Sophia Cathedral) in Kiev built in 11 cent. I found a picture of a Neo-Byzantine style church which dates to the beginning of the 20 cent. I'm just curious is it that difficult for a recognized art historian to tell the difference? Or it's just a matter of 'neglegence'? In 1996 I wrote a letter to the Publishing house and recieved a nice answer saying that in the case of the third print they would definitely check and replace the picture with the proper one. No changes so far.
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HE knows what he's talking about... 13 Feb 2008
By Lucy M. Nunn - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Watkin knows his stuff. But I don't so I bought this book which didn't clear things up as much as I hoped. There are far too many details, not a sense of narrative through history. Then there are far too few photos of things he expose's so that I have to guess what he means. And no maps. My geographic knowledge is not that good. I think it could be improved by streamlining, photos near the text which refers to them, and a map at the start of each section. But his prose is beautiful sometimes.
great 2 Sep 2014
By Alex Russell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
great condition and great textbook
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