The collaboration between celebrated architectural historian Maurice Craig and his son Michael Craig, a master draughtsman, will stand for most readers as both an introduction to this fascinating subject and the last word upon it.
In thirty-three exquisitely rendered plates, Michael Craig illustrates the pyramids, chapels, classical and oriental temples, follies and pillar-boxes in which the grandees of Georgian and Victorian Ireland interred themselves. If the inhabitants of these extraordinary tombs have not in every instance achieved the immortal fame the mausolea were intended to bestow, the structures themselves – now increasingly suffering from vandalism – are immortalized in these plates in all their macabre splendour.
Maurice Craig modestly describes Mausolea Hibernica as a ‘picture book’, but his commentaries on the plates are much more than mere captions, and his introductory essay is a tour de force of scholarship lightly worn, examining the mausolea in all their architectural and socio-cultural mutations.
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