His capital work was the façade of St. Sulpice, but the enormous masses of stone which he has heaped on the tops of the towers, and which are considerable enough to disfigure the view of the city itself, destroy the result of so superb a frontispiece.
was born in Yorkshire, and executed such considerable works that he must not be omitted, though he wanted taste and fell under the lash of lasting satire. Pope 2 has twice mentioned him—
"Who builds a bridge, that never drove a pile?
Should Ripley venture, all the world would smile,"
Imit. Horace, Ep. ii. v. 186.
"And needs no rod but Ripley with a rule."
Essay on Taste, p. 18.
The truth is, politics and partiality concurred to help on these censures. Ripley was employed by the minister, and had not the countenance of Lord Burlington, the patron of Pope. It is no less true, that the Admiralty is a most ugly edifice, and deservedly veiled by Mr. Adam's handsome screen. Yet Ripley, in the mechanic part, and in the disposition of apartments and conveniences, was unluckily superior to the earl himself. Lord Orford's, at Houghton, of which Campbell gave the original design, but which was much improved by Ripley; 3 and Lord Walpole's at Wool-____________________
"Houghton is a stately heavy building, joined by colonnades to large wings— the whole extending 250 feet."—Gilpin. It offers an example of a front lengthened by two wings connected with the main building by porticos or corridors. Several of these wings standing before the line of the main building, formed a kind of crescent. Kent burrowed this plan, and Thorndon, in Essex, by Payne, is a late instance. The original idea occurs in Palladio's works.
Walpole complimented his father, and published an account of his palace and his collection of pictures. (Ædes Walpolianœ, 4to. 1752.) In the dedication he
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Publication information: Book title: Anecdotes of Painting in England: With Some Account of the Principal Artists. Volume: 3. Contributors: Horace Walpole - Author. Publisher: Swan Sonnenschein. Place of publication: London. Publication year: 1888. Page number: 49.
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