Re: Re: ‘Dutch Billys’

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Anonymous
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I’ve had some feedback on the High Petergate houses in York which suggests that the terrace in question was built around 1700, or just before, and somewhat in spite of Pevsner, there may be a growing consensus that these houses were curvilinear gabled to the street also, originally.

When time permits, I’ll get out the crayons and see if I can have a go at a photo-montage.

According to my doctorate laden York source, there could also be a spot of revisionism going on in English domestic architectural history circles at the moment which may be beginning to acknowledge that the gabled tradition there may in fact have continued on into the first two or three decades of the 18th century and that the ascendancy of the Georgian style may not have been all plain sailing, initially anyway.

I sense however that the wheels turn exceedingly slowly in academia, so there may be no immediate prospect of heads appearing above the flat parapet.

If these High Petergate houses were, as I suspect, originally a pair of five bay houses sporting –10 Mill St.– style twin gables, the existance of this house type in the, presumably shared, building tradition would begin to explain how houses of this type appeared to spring up, fully formed, in the Irish building record at the same time.

And there must have been something in the general European ether at this time too because in a city like Lubeck which had been ornately gabled in the Hanseatic tradition since about 1400, the only example of a genuinely twin gabled house that I can find dates from 1726, if a plaque on the wall is to be believed.


The Haase house and courtyard built between 1726 and 1729 on Dr. Julius Leberstrasse.

To whatever extent we can say that there was a shared building tradition between urban Ireland and provincial England or even further afield to northern Europe, the differences are still startling and in this regard it is the characteristically ‘Dutch’ appearance of the Irish gabled houses that still stands out.

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