Richard Boyle, 3rd Earl of Burlington

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Richard Boyle, 3rd Earl of Burlington and 4th Earl of Cork, 5th Baron Clifford PC (25 April 1694 – 15 December 1753), born in Yorkshire, England, was the son of Charles Boyle, 2nd Earl of Burlington and 3rd Earl of Cork. Burlington was called 'the Apollo of the Arts' and never took more than a passing interest in politics despite his position as a Privy councillor and a member of the House of Lords.


Life account

Lord Burlington, also known as "the architect Earl", was instrumental in the revival of Palladian architecture. He succeeded to the title and extensive estates in Yorkshire and Ireland at the age of ten. He showed an early love of music. Georg Frideric Handel dedicated two operas to him, while staying at Burlington House: Teseo and Amadigi di Gaula. Three foreign Grand Tours 1714 – 1719 and a further trip to Paris in 1726 gave him opportunities to develop his taste. His professional skill as an architect (always supported by a mason-contractor) was extraordinary in an English aristocrat. He carried his copy of Andrea Palladio's book I Quattro Libri dell'Architettura with him in touring the Veneto in 1719, and made copious notes in the margins. In 1719 he was one of main subscribers in the Royal Academy of Music (1719), a corporation that produced baroque opera on stage.[1] [2]

Burlington never closely inspected Roman ruins or made detailed drawings on the sites; he relied on Palladio and Scamozzi as his interpreters of the classic tradition. Another source of his inspiration were drawings he collected, some drawings of Palladio himself, which had belonged to Inigo Jones and many more of Inigo Jones' pupil John Webb, which Kent published in 1727 as Some Designs of Mr Inigo Jones... with Some Additional Designs that were by Kent and Burlington. The important role of Jones' pupil Webb in transmitting the palladian—neo-palladian heritage was not understood until the 20th century. Burlington's Palladio drawings include many reconstructions after Vitruvius of Roman buildings, which Burlington planned to publish. In the meantime, in 1723 he adapted the palazzo facade in the illustration for the London house of General Wade in Old Burlington Street, which was engraved for Vitruvius Britannicus iii (1725). The process put a previously unknown Palladio design into circulation.

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