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Old January 14th, 2017, 04:59 AM   #31

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People who worry about style are people with too much money.
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Old January 14th, 2017, 07:44 AM   #32

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A "Lack of Style" is a style.

It is practical, functional, and economic in appearance and use. It is not necessarily frugal, which one might associate with "cheap", rather it's craftsmanship rooted in durable simplicity.

It's easier to describe this lack of style by what it is NOT. It's not ostentatious, salacious, or boastful. This is especially important when, on a personal level, time, energy, and money are necessary to create an ostentatious style in the home and in one's dress. If one must raise crops, make meals, tend animals, find and cut firewood, build shelters, clear land, and everything else that goes with avoiding starvation and surviving, there's little time for hand-sewing fine garments, let alone the fine blue silk scarf that scoundrel of St. James Park wore last Sunday. There's no time or resources to hand-carve fine mouldings for the farmhouse over-mantle, either.

On a national scale, when the population is mainly agrarian and craftsmen producing precious little and mostly by hand for a few meager sheckles per year, it's an insult and short-sighted to spend their taxes on public buildings displaying elaborate architectural ornamentation and fanciful stonework that serve no useful purpose. Kings, Czars, and Dictators don't consider such things - they simply raise rents and taxes.

Last edited by StoryMan; January 14th, 2017 at 07:46 AM. Reason: Added "over-mantle" cuz I like that word.
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Old January 14th, 2017, 03:59 PM   #33
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America did not have that much ego until after the second world war.

What it had back then, was Principles.

Among these was the nobility of the common man, who lived a simple life. Washington laid out the capital and the executive mansion... but the White House that was built was, in fact, a model of understatement compared to the villas, chateaus and palaces of the aristocracy in Europe.

It was PURPOSELY austere, restrained, and relatively unembellished. A Model of Stoic moderation.

Jefferson- in building montecello- purposely endeavored to make a three story house look like a one story house from without, to try and keep a less grandiose, less overwhelming impression than the manor houses he had seen built on the european model.

So- sorry,OP but your thesis is flawed at the core.

The US has been, until recently, a nation that prided itself on the idea that the common man and his common life bore more merit and were better valued than all the gold leafed follies of the ultra elitist ruling classes.

The "STYLE" of the US was one of utility. Of minimalism. and of simplicity.
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Old January 14th, 2017, 04:06 PM   #34

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Besides there being many better uses for US tax dollars than building the president an opulent palace he doesn't need, Versailles is garish.

Last edited by Scaeva; January 14th, 2017 at 04:12 PM.
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Old January 14th, 2017, 04:59 PM   #35

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Originally Posted by johnincornwall View Post
1500 is a bit early for your ire isn't it?
That was my thought too.

Aztec cities?
Inca temples?
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Old June 8th, 2017, 02:08 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by zincwarrior View Post
We did. What we didn't do was make an imperial palace. Now compare the Whitehouse to the British PM's residence.

Also a better comparison would be the Parliament vs. the Capital Building (or more properly the Texas Statehouse which is intentionally just slightly taller heh heh heh)
...and designed by an architect from Detroit who also designed the Colorado and Michigan state capitols and the Richmond, VA city hall.
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Old June 8th, 2017, 02:11 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by Earl_of_Rochester View Post
American was founded on the frontier myth, ergo the look was always going to be more rough and ready -racoon skin hats and Davy Crocket etc. The founding fathers also rejected monarchy so there was no personal vanity of monarchs to consider. Pre 76 it didn't matter because the monarch lived in London and America was a distant colony. The fancy houses are for governors.

The fine buildings in America follow the Neo Classical design. Congress, White House, Lincoln Memorial & IIRC Franklin's house?

America was also a bit of a rural backwater until around 1918-43. Farmers and lawyers have no need of a Versailles. That's for Princes and aristocrats and is why those grand houses mostly exist in Europe.
Oh, there were plenty of grand mansions built by private individuals during the Gilded Age.

Last edited by royal744; June 8th, 2017 at 02:22 PM.
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