'Dutch Billys'

Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby ctesiphon » Tue Apr 01, 2008 3:06 pm

It's Art Deco-ish, but I don't know the date. I suspect gunter might?

Interestingly, although it appears to be used as a warehouse, one Sunday a few months ago while I was giving a friend a guided bike tour of parts of the city we noticed that it seems to be some sort of church for Africans- families were coming out of a 'goods entrance' in the most fantastic outfits, and the kids were running around the square. One of the few signs of real life in that part of town (I don't count tyre skid marks).
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby Paul Clerkin » Tue Apr 01, 2008 3:24 pm

Devin wrote:
Image

The early-18th century gabled house on Montpelier Hill deserves an appearance in the thread.


Someone made a huge effort restoring that a few years ago - my business partner's house is also in the picture so am very familiar with that street - some lovely period houses on it
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby GrahamH » Tue Apr 01, 2008 3:43 pm

Yes absolutely. The render around the opes has clearly been touched up following the insertion of what are perfect reproduction windows. What a gem of a house.

Though, eh, how do you get into it? Is it amalgamated with an adjoining house? Is it that little far door that's actually in the other house?!
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby johnglas » Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:29 pm

The houses on Montpelier would be immensely improved if either the cement render was removed or they were painted in almost any colour other than grey (and the trailing wires were removed, but I've given up commenting on that).
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby Paul Clerkin » Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:42 pm

Graham - its the little door
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby GrahamH » Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:48 pm

ooooh - I want it! :)
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby Paul Clerkin » Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:59 pm

It's a big house - great backyard on that side.. slope down to back of garage on Parkgate street
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby Devin » Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:30 pm

What a weird, unexpected street Montpelier Hill is.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby GrahamH » Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:32 pm

Cool. It looks quite big alright. You can easily see how everything else grew up around it too.

Thanks for that info gunter about Molesworth Street. Yes the print I referred to was that Penny Journal one you posted (I just couldn't be bothered scanning it lol).

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It would certainly explain a fact from Lost Dublin I found hard to reconcile with the street: when it was suggested that three c. 1800 houses now occupy the site of Speaker Foster's house. It seemed excessive. Yes poor old Lisle House, utterly gutted and with a flat roof now too. I'd no idea it was Foster's house - in hindsight it matches perfectly.

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It was also a coincidence that the yellow building happens to roughly match that adjoining Foster's in the picture, hence the confusion.

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Now that we know the yellow building is indeed that smaller gabled house pictured above, as far as I know the panelling inside survives to the side entrance hall in the building, which would match with the location of the doorcase seen above. I must check that out. Out of interest, how did you know Lisle House was Foster's house, gunter?
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby gunter » Tue Apr 01, 2008 7:54 pm

GrahamH wrote:Yes the print I referred to was that Penny Journal one you posted (I just couldn't be bothered scanning it lol).
Out of interest, how did you know Lisle House was Foster's house, gunter?


You just couldn't be bothered scanning the single most important print of Dutch Billys in existence! You'd rather hold discussions on coffee emporia!

We'll move on.

On the Speaker Foster's house, when I saw the1970s photograph with the three roof ridges peeping up over the parapet, the penny dropped.

For a bit of confirmation, the disposition of the windows on the back elevation of no. 32 is strikingly similar to the arrangement on the front elevation as shown in the Penny Journal print, which is the point that you were making at the start, surely no. 32 is a gabled house.

My render skills are primitive, but one of these days I want to have a go at creating a decent render of this stretch of Molesworth Street as it would have been originally using the the surviving fabric as a template.

missarchi could probably knock this up in a couple of hours.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby GrahamH » Sat Apr 05, 2008 8:10 pm

Thanks for that (and I don't recall talking about coffee outlets :confused:)

We have of course the most famous former Dutch Billies in the city, on St. Stephen's Green south.

They couldn't have made it more obvious if they tried really, could they? The 1750's equivalent of sticking a fibreglass portico onto your Corpo house.

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The attic storey clearly refaced yet again at a later date.

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And their delightful Dublin merchant doorcases.

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And next door - in this case it's possible the attic storey is an entirely new storey, in spite of the clustered windows.

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And half way down the Green, Georgian London makes a fleeting visit to Dublin.

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Suspicious goings-on here. Also note the trademark enormous (partially crudely rebuilt) shared chimney stack which literally holds the buildings up.

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Something very odd with this one too - anyone care to hazard a theory?

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Its development looks upside down. I suspect this is an early parapeted house, c. 1740, built with many windows across the facade originally. Then it was modernised to the lower facade later in the 18th century and the brick unified across all floors, thus leaving the old-fashioned fenestration stranded above in an otherwise late Georgian elevation...
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby gunter » Sun Apr 06, 2008 12:06 pm

GrahamH wrote:And half way down the Green, Georgian London makes a fleeting visit to Dublin.

Image



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Graham, these are great photos. I think these two are the first of the terrace of five gabled houses we can see behind the tree on the right in the Malton view of Stephen's Green to the right of the square block of 'Newman House'. The first four are nice straight forward, four storey, 'Dutch Billys,' but the fifth one, if Malton is accurate, must have been a stunning five storey 'Billy' with an Amsterdam scale gable and pediment.

There are three more good 'Billys' on the east side of the Green beside the Bank of Ireland on the corner with Merrion Row, two standard cruciform roofed, four storey, houses and a little double gabled gem with a cute doodcase (the gables re-done as Victorian dormers). The interior of the double gabled house looks in mint condition. It was up for sale last year and if the Lotto had come through, this would now be gunter's house.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby johnglas » Sun Apr 06, 2008 12:55 pm

Yes, Graham, great shots of these delightful houses. Just to the left you can see the polychrome brick entrance to the University Church - incongruent, but magnificently so. But that bellcote! Just stuck between the two gables and quietly oxydising away; an interesting rebuild project.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby alonso » Sun Apr 06, 2008 8:46 pm

anyone else prefer the open-ness of the Green in that picture to today's model? Not the entire prairie nature but there's a good argument for opening it up more - remove the railings and give some visual permeability. Anyway great thread but that's all I have to contribute ;)
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby gunter » Mon Apr 07, 2008 12:05 pm

I've been waiting for CologneMike to post this photograph of 'Dutch Billys' in Limerick, which was published in 'Historic Limerick' by Laurence Walsh in 1984, (a booklet that he clearly has), but since CologneMike is in denial of Limerick's 'Dutch Billy' past, I''ll post it up myself.

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Together with other glimpses of 'Dutch Billys' in paintings and prints of Limerick, the photograph shows how thoroughly the curvilinear gabled architectural movement had penetrated the urban areas of Ireland by the first half of the 18th century. I'm trying to trace a similar photograph, or possibly a print, that I saw once of a terrace of gabled houses in Belfast, which was described in a caption as 'Dublin style houses'.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby newgrange » Fri Apr 11, 2008 9:47 pm

Here's a scan from 'The New Neighbourhood of Dublin' showing gable-fronted houses in Hendrick Street in 1952.
Apolgies for the quality of the scan.

Anyone any opinions on the two Parnell Street buildings with single windows on the top floor?
Apologies for the ubiquitous buses.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby gunter » Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:12 pm

newgrange wrote:
Anyone any opinions on the two Parnell Street buildings with single windows on the top floor?
Apologies for the ubiquitous buses.


I think you're right about the Parnell St. pair.

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There isn't a good vantage point to get a clear shot at the rear, but the stairs/return arrangement and the slightly arched window heads are consistent with gabled houses.

Rocque's map shows these two as having right hand returns, but they actually have a central 'paired' return. The massive central chimney stack is a good indicator that the pair belong to the gabled tradition.

The most facinating thing about this pair though, is the three roofs. Peter Walsh has a note in his 'Liberties of Dublin' Dutch Billys in the Liberties article to the effect that there was an ' . . example where three gables spanned two houses . . . in Bishop Street'. I can't find any pictures of the Bishop Street example, but I think this could be another example here on Parnell Street.

The Parnell Street houses are not in great condition, and it's really important that they get surveyed in detail before anything bad happens to them. If we're right about these houses being another variation in the 'Dutch Billy' repertoire, it shows again, not only how widespread these houses were in Dublin, by the middle of the 18th century, but also, the degree to which the architectural language had developed, either to resolve issues that had emerged, like the troublesome shared valley gutter situation, or just to intensify the rhythm of the gables on the street frontage.

If this was, in fact, a pair of houses designed to form a triple gabled composition, it's probable that the single windows on the upper floors were more closely lined up with the left and right roof volumes and that some kind of blind window , or panel, was inserted in the central gable. Around this time, or slightly later, something similar was being done with the pair of classical 'Georgian' houses on Stephen's Green, near the College of Surgeons.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby gunter » Sun Apr 13, 2008 9:48 pm

newgrange:

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That shot of Hendrick street is a puzzle. I didn't think there were that many houses on Hendrick St.

Rocque just shows six conventional, probably gabled, houses and four shallower, probably vernacular type, house towards the corner with queen Street.

None of the houses in the photograph seems to match the one surviving house on Hendrick Street, which lost it's gable a long time ago, and which had a real butcher job done on it around 1990 when a developer (possibly Zoe) absorbed it into an apartment scheme.

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A drawing from the mid 80s shows the same last house on Hendrick Street (looking towards Haymarket with St Michan's tower in the background) with original flush window frames and something odd going on with the entrance door, all of which were dumped or mutilated in the renovation. Back in the 1990s this probably counted as a 'conservation gain',
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby gunter » Tue Apr 15, 2008 11:09 am

On Hendrick St. I thought I had posed up this recent pic of the last surviving gabled house (less it's gable) on Hendrick Street for comparison with the 1980s sketch, a couple of days ago, but, since it didn't stick, here it is again.
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In slightly better condition, but this time altered almost beyond recognition by our 18th and 19th century predecessors, are these three, former 'Billys' on the east side of Stephen's Green, near the Merrion Row corner.

At a guess, I think the cute one with the doll's house door may have been a twin gabled composition, with the Victorian dormers replacing the original gable windows. The frilly plaster window surrounds are another example of the Victorians not being able to keep their grubby hands off other peoples' buildings. The interior seems to be pretty intact, as was mentioned earlier in this thread.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby ctesiphon » Tue Apr 15, 2008 12:14 pm

gunter wrote:something odd going on with the entrance door,


Wouldn't that be a carriage arch beside the front door in that drawing?
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby tommyt » Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:59 pm

One of the well informed and intrepid posters on here should go down and check out No. 38 Fenian Street. It's beside the gingerman pub. I have been intrigued by this building since this thread got a new lease of life
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby KerryBog2 » Tue Apr 15, 2008 8:45 pm

Let us not forget The Kingdom ; here is a Dutch gable (front entrance) on a house in South Kerry
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby ctesiphon » Wed Apr 16, 2008 8:52 am

That was a house? It looks like some sentinel from McCaig's Tower in Oban. :)

Where is it in Kerry? I might be down Tralee way this weekend.

tommyt- I have plans re your request. Pray the rain keeps off.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby gunter » Wed Apr 16, 2008 10:41 pm

tommyt wrote:One of the well informed and intrepid posters on here should go down and check out No. 38 Fenian Street. It's beside the gingerman pub. I have been intrigued by this building since this thread got a new lease of life


Not sure about this one tommyt. This one is just outside the range of the Rocque maps, so we don't have that base level of certainty to rely on. The rule of thumb is 'Dutch Billys' stopped being built, even on secondary streets, by about 1745 and Rocque is 1756, so if its not on Rocque, it's not a Dutch Billy.

The front is 19th century yellow brick and the window arrangement doesn't really give any cause to believe that the the present simple triangular gable represents a rebuilding of an earlier 'Dutch Billy' gable. Having said that, the rear elevation retains one flush window frame which could just push it back into gabled house territory. Further east on Fenian Street is a fine early 5 bay, three storey over basement house, which I remember had a similar neighbour to the right which was destroyed by fire, maybe ten or fifteen years ago.
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I hope that the office development that the auctioneers sign appears to advertise on this property doesn't involve the demolition or disfigurement of this house. It would be unforgivable if a rare early house like this was lost, or diminished at this stage.

Dedicated 'Dutch Billy' anoraks might be interested in that fabled 19th century photograph of no. 10 Mill Street that was discussed earlier in this thread. I think I have a copy of it tracked down and if it comes through, I'll post it up.
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Re: 'Dutch Billys'

Postby tommyt » Wed Apr 16, 2008 11:37 pm

cheers gunter- much obliged for the info. 'Marita's' house I hope will retain some layout features at the very least. IIRC when you went into the shop for a sandwich the ground floor was laid out on 2 levels behind the counter from what you could make out. I can't recall the story behind Cumberland House from 'The Destruction of Dublin' but the usual shenanigans went on when it was constructed that I would presume lost buildings of a similar calibre on the streetscape.
Coincedently I got the complete Rocque 1756 Map on 4 x A2 sheets the other day , I look forward to finally going over it in proper detail...
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