House Opposite the Cathedral at Augsburg

H. W. Brewer

c. 1880

Signed with initials lower left

Source: Stevenson’s House Architecture, I, 40

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“SYMMETRY, which may be considered a species of proportion, is almost essential to the noblest buildings — at least when it is absent, whatever the other merits of the building, the highest dignity is unattainable. In every style, Greek, Gothic, and Renaissance, symmetry controlled the designs of temples and churches.

“In dwelling-houses, though often ruling the design as in this instance (fig. 9), it frequently gave way to the necessities of domestic convenience. It means that the parts on either side should be balanced and similar, not necessarily identical, like the two spires at the end of a modern church, both executed from the same drawing; but similar, like those of an old cathedral, each retaining its own individuality. Of late years symmetry has not been much in favour. In the last century it was a universally acknowledged principle. That the door should not be in the centre was inconceivable” (40).