Re: Re: ‘Dutch Billys’

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@gunter wrote:

OK, you’re saying that the present full top storey [and twin roof structure] replaced an original attic storey/roof structure?

. . . not that these houses lost a higher attic storey, I mean, it’s one or the other, right?

You’re doing it again. I didn’t say anything about what the present top storey replaced. For the purpose of this point, it’s not really relevant what the present top storey replaced; it may not have replaced anything, since the buildings with their early panelling were quite possibly of smaller three-storey scale to begin with. The point is that the buildings received that four-storey external (facade and roof envelope) makeover in the Georgian period.

This type of treatment, as is well known, was very common in Dublin. There’s a building further up the quays at Upr. Ormond Quay which has pre-Georgian internal features which stop abruptly at 2nd floor level. Externally, the building has a diminishing, four-storey brick facade and front-to-back pitched roof (a ‘single’ version of the Bachelors Walk and other twin roofs, if you like). The building is visible in its earlier three-storey gabled form in a 1782 print of Dublin port (posted in post 417 of this thread three pages ago).

@gunter wrote:

If we follow this through, the curious thing now is that, in almost every case where a twin-roofed house survives, or where we have good records of one, the rear elevation is finished in gables and it retains a little ‘Billy’ like return complete with it’s characteristic rear gable also. If there was the level of rebuilding that you’re suggesting ………

Oh no you don’t!!! We’re just talking about three houses on Bachelors Walk here. We’re not suddenly maintaining the same layered alterations occured to all the other twin roof examples familiar to this thread, thank you very much!

@gunter wrote:

Now that I understand what the stumbling block is, it should be possible to unearth some definitive information to put this matter to bed. If twin-roofed houses like 32 Thomas St, 25 James St, or 120 Cork Street were the product of a programme of alterations that transformed their previous attic storeys into full top floors, this will have left a trace in the fabric of the upper walls and that will be our answer.

And he tries it again in the next paragraph! 32 Thomas Street and 120 Cork Street are I would maintain almost certainly new builds of the second half of the 18th century, in their original design format. As covered earlier, it’s not particular remarkable that they should have what you refer to as ‘billy type features’ (corner fireplace construction and the gabled ‘nib’ return), as this construction is known to extend way into the latter 18th century, even found as late as 1800. 25 James Street is more of an oddball.

@gunter wrote:

If we follow this through, the curious thing now is that, in almost every case where a twin-roofed house survives, or where we have good records of one, the rear elevation is finished in gables …

Btw, I think you need to make a distinction here between gables as a functional product of pitched-roof construction and gables as part of architectural style. Many historic roofs come to a gable at the rear, or the side. It doesn’t make them part of the gabled architectural style or tradition. The Ormond Quay building with the Georgian makeover mentioned above is “finished in a gable” at the rear.

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