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Bourbon Restoration: 1780s-1800s

Posted by Malindi Pender on June 14, 2018
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The French Revolution (1788-1789) ushered in a new era for government, culture, art and of course, architecture. With the church, nobility and lower class citizens all in competition for power, the physical layout of Paris was bound to change. After having such an artistic period full of colors, expression, gold plated furnishings and flair, culture in Paris yet again shifted- this time to a more straight edge style called Neoclassicism. Neoclassicism was inspired by Greek and Roman history and architecture. In addition, this was viewed as a shift in the moral fabric of Paris. Manifestos and essays were writing in favor of architects using more plain and pure form for their designs which was viewed as a shift in moral values. The less showy and over-the-top the better. The more logical the better. One prime example is the Panthéon. It was a revolt against aristocratic social and political norms which was also a rejection of the flashy and grand Baroque and Rococo styles. Architecture that represented those ideals was burned down, looted and destroyed during the revolution. Unfortunately, not only were royal and aristocratic homes burned, ordinary apartments were also destroyed in the revolution. The new vision for Paris ensued and references towards ancient Greece and Rome returned in architecture putting an end to Baroque. Fortunately, these new projects employed many Parisians. Streets and homes were now organized by number. After his exile, King Louis XVIII ordered the construction of thousands of new residences in all areas of the city. Residential buildings (as opposed to single houses) were constructed wider and taller with a sloped roofs, iron shutters and balconies, large windows. Some newly constructed homes were considered Troubadour style which was a bit classical with a picturesque twist. There was less uniformity between homes.

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