Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin (1812-1852) exercised a seminal influence on British architecture in the nineteenth century, though, as he himself acknowledged towards the end of his short life, it was probably more through his writing than through his buildings that he had 'revolushioned the Taste of England'. Pugin's important theoretical and polemical texts contain little by way of autobiography or description and comment on his own architecture. For these we must turn to his journalism and pamphlets. In The Present State of Ecclesiastical Architecture in England, he gives us some minutely detailed accounts with illustrations of his churches up to the year 1842. But his most revealing autobiographical writing is to be found in Some Remarks, published in 1850, which can be seen as essential for understanding the man and his collapse. It takes the story almost to the end of his life, includes an account of his conversion to Catholicism (1835), and describes many of the churches that he built between 1838 and 1850. Together they offer the most comprehensive contemporary guide to Pugin's architecture and a fascinating account of his campaign to revive the glories of the pre-Reformation Catholic Church in the context of the nineteenth-century Romantic Movement and the Catholic Revival. Never reprinted, Some Remarks is here presented in facsimile together with The Present State, and an introduction by the architectural historian and noted Pugin authority Dr Rory O'Donnell FSA - who has also written the introductions to the other volumes in this series of Pugin fascsimile editions.
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