The Pleasures of Antiquity:
British Collections of Greece and Rome

Jonathan Scott

Price
£40
Type
Print
Publicaton Date
May 2003
Standard Number
9780300098549
Distributor
Yale University Press
Specifications
348 pages

By the nineteenth century, connoisseurs from the British Isles had assembled the richest collections of classical antiquities outside Rome. The galleries they created to house the spectacular Greek and Roman statues, ornaments, vases, bronzes, and gems were in many instances designed to be as magnificent as the artworks themselves. This delightful book examines how the great British antiquities collections were put together and displayed, from Lord Arundel’s collection of marbles in the seventeenth century to the Grand Tour acquisitions of the eighteenth century and the greatest art acquisition of all time, that of the Elgin Marbles from the Acropolis.

In this book, the first comprehensive history of the collecting of antiquities in Great Britain, Jonathan Scott gives portraits of the principal collectors, describes the mechanics of the art trade and collecting, and takes us to beautiful sculpture galleries that were created by such distinguished architects as Robert Adam and Jeffry Wyatville. With a generous selection of illustrations of the interiors of collectors’ houses, the book presents in unprecedented detail the story of private British antiquities collectors and their truly remarkable collections.