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Building Styles

Period Revivals (1900 - 2014)

Origins --- --- Tudor, Elizabethan and Jacobean --

Tudor Revival------London___Erindale --- Hamilton - Simcoe - Hamilton

Elizabethan Revival --- Hamilton---

Jacobean Revival --- Toronto Power Station--- ThunderBay--- Galt-

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Origins

Colonial Revivals in Canadian architecture are inspired by North American models and Period Revivals are inspired by European. English inspiration for cottages or manor houses is largely Tudor, Elizabethan, or Jacobean - relating to James I (1603-25) - sometimes with a mixture of these with Renaissance simplicity. Private clubs and law offices also took this style.

The French equivalents come from country houses in Brittany and Normandy. In the early years of the century, the materials and building practices were quite accurately copied. Near the end of the century building methods deteriorate: half-timbered garrisons can be seen with painted timbers, snap-on glazing bars decorate large plate glass, and vinyl siding replaces wood.

Tudor architecture ranges from the late middle ages, 1485, to 1603, the end of the Elizabethan era. During the period there were six Tudor monarchs, Henry VII, Hemry VIII, Edward VI, Jane Grey, Mary i, and Elizabeth I. The architecture of the era reflects the diminishing importance of the church in the lives of the British people and the growing tendency towards residential properties for individuals.

Elizabethan architecture ranges from the end of Henry VIII's reign to the end of the Jacobean reign. Elizabeth was actually on the throne from 1559 to 1603.

The Jacobean era corresponds to the reign of James VI and I. James, the son of Mary Queen of Scots and Henry Stuart. James was king of Scotland from 1567 - 1625 and King of England and Ireland from 1603 to 1625. The entire period from 1567 to 1625 is called the Jacobean era.

Tudor Revival

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The Tudor period, beginning with Henry VII of England, was a period when the church was becoming less important. The great accesses of the middle ages and the Gothis period with their huge building projects and emphasis on the power of the clergy were coming to an end. As the middle classes started growing in power, helped by the good governing of Henry Viii and his daughter Elizabeth, they started building comfortable but safe houses for themselves. The country was entering a period of relative safety for the individual. The ground level of the buildings was still made of stone or brick, but the upper levels were made of wood with quite a few windows. The quantity of windows grew during the Elizabethan period.

 

Half-timbered houses were the norm during this era. Timber built houses were constructed in Europe from the very earliest times, but due to the perishable nature of the material, not many survive from before the 14th century. Timber built houses generally have a stone foundation. The large timbers are usually carried on a Breats summer if they are above the ground floor or on a sill plate, often cantilevered, if they are lower than the first floor roof.

The skeleton of the building would be constructed in wood, then filled in with wattle and daub or some other insulation. This was then covered with stucco or brick. The small squares of linen used to help keep the stucco in place were called diapers, thus the term diapering.

Click Hotpoints for descriptions of terms in both text and images.

London

With the exception of the windows, doors and some half timber work, this house is made entirely of stone, from the rubble stone walls and chimney to the beautiful cut stone shingles on the steep gabled roof. It resembles a medieval postcard perfect country cottage.

The dormers are modest and made in an almost authentic half-timber method. The oriel window is multi-paned and sports a copper hood. The larger windows on the first floor are multi-paned as well.

Medieval Revival

London Ontario

London

Like many Tudor Revival homes, it is best seen in the winter because it is completely surrounded by mature trees and bushes.

The windows are all casement windows. Sash windows replaced casements in England starting around 1670, with the influx of the Neo-classical style. Sash windows became the required window of the Georgian period. Casement windows were revived in the first half of the 18th century when the medieval period became, once again, popular.

Medieval Revival

London Ontario

London

The facade of the house is composed of half timbering - large wooden members filled in with white stucco. Traditionally, the white stucco would cover a mixture of horse hair, horse and cow manure, and soil. This was medieval insulation.

The details on this house are where the real magic lies. Under the sill, acting as a bracket, is a medieval antic figure: commingled animal, human and floral parts used to terminate moldings and decorate brackets and corbels.

Medieval Revival

London Ontario

Erindale

Lislehurst was built by the Schreiber family in the 1880s. It was bought by the University of Toronto in 1964, and is now the residence of the president of Erindale College. It is a very early example of Tudor Revival.

The gable has a loop hole opening, used in medieval times for shooting at approaching enemies, but now, probably, used only for admitting light. The multiple chimneys show the age of the building plus the wealth of the original owners who would have heated the house with wood. The door is a Tudor arch, and the door surround has a drip mold and label stops. The windows have strong sills and the leaded glass has been maintained.

Tudor Revival Erinale

Erindale Ontario

Hamilton

This house is largely stone on the front with half timbering on the sides. The front gable has a walk out onto a castellated balcony. The doors on the upper level have a hood mold.

The bay has two sets of casement leaded windows. The casings for the windows are splayed in the medieval manner.

The lower set of windows has a fixed upper window which contains a heraldic crest.

Tudor Revival

Hamilton Ontario

Hamilton

The upper windows on this bay are fixed. They have leaded glass. Within the glass is a heraldic crest.

The lower windows are casement windows. They are also leaded. The casing for the windows is stone.

Tudor Revival

Hamilton Ontario

Hamilton

Along the sides of the house are half timbered jetties. A jettie is something that hangs out over or is cantileveredover the lower story. In this case the jetty is held in place by a breast summer. This is a massive beam that acts like a lintel, but, as seen here, supports the whole superstructure of the building.

The upper floor is half-timbered, a typical Tudor treatment. Large wooden members are filled with insulation then finished in orough cast stucco.

Tudor Revival Cornice Bay Crest

Hamilton Ontario

Hamilton

The breast summer extends the full length of the upper story. Vertical wooden members are attached to it, then the sill for the window and the window ledge are built. Vertical members are often braced by diagonals.

Period revival in Hamilton

Kitchener Ontario

Simcoe

The stone on this building is slightly more rustic than in the examples above.

The front gable is a "shaped gable", a gable composed of convex and concave gables, with steps between them and a semi-circular top. The voussoirs are pronounced, and there is a large keystone in each flat arch. The windows without flat arches have heavy stone lintels. All the windows have heavy stone sills.

The building is constructed almost exclusively of stone with stone bands along the sills of the first and second floors. There is a pronounced cantilevered overhang over the front door.

Tudor Revival

Simcoe Ontario

Ottawa

This house represents the most popular of the Period Revivals, the Tudor Revival. The attention to detail in this charming house provides an authentic recapturing of medieval methods using modern materials.

This house has half-timbered elements, a gabled roof, a jerkin-head roof on the dormer, plain vergeboarding, and leaded multi-paned glass. The doorway is a Tudor arch with a hoodmold, a carved reveal, and decorative molding. Twisted chimney pots complete the picturesque quality of this charming house.

Tudor Revival in Ottawa

Ottawa Ontario

Ottawa

A completely different and much later Period Revival, this house is like a small castle with corner towers, machicolation, scalloping, and simple window surrounds. This fanciful house is reminiscent of the early medieval age when thick walls and fortification were necessary. The towers would have been advantageous for repelling advancing enemies.

The fortress-like floorplan is offset by a fairly Classical portico that has clustered Ionic columns, dentils, and an architrave. The portico provides the base for a second storey balcony with a wrought iron railing. The mixture of Gothic and Classical elements first started during the Elizabethan and Jacobean eras, thus, this type of mixture is sometimes called Jacobethan.

Gothic Revival Cottage

Ottawa Ontario

Waterloo

Elaborate gables are usually found in Northern European buildings -Flemish or German. The gables have loops or loopholes found in medieval architecture as a place for launching arrows. Under the gables are paired windows with triangular arches, dripmolds, and roundels. The lower floor has rectangular windows with large window cornices. On the roof is a dormer with a roundel containing a trefoil.

The front entrance has a two-centered pointed arch with dripmolds and label stops. The door itself is new; sadly no attempt has been made to make it contextual.

 

Tudor Revival Waterloo

Waterloo Ontario

Waterloo

This is one of thousands of reproductions of an English vernacular cottage. There are many variations on the steeply pitched cross-gabled roof, either in single, or in double version as in this example.

Apart from the gables, the most notable feature is the solid wood round-headed door and heavy stone door surround. The voussoirs are carefully placed giving the impression of hand-crafted work.

The building is of dark brick with heavy concrete window sills. The garden on this home looks as much like an English post card as the house does.

Period Revival Waterloo

Waterloo Ontario

Simcoe

Like the image above, this, somewhat larger, house has a sweeping bell-cast roof with offset roof overhangs. A jetty - a projecting timber-framed room overhanging a wall - held in place by beams gives it a medieval touch. The cedar shingle roof has a dormer with a half-hip roof.

Under the lower roof overhang is a round-headed window with a keystone and stones at the spring.

Tudor Revival

Simcoe Ontario

Port Credit

In 1943, Anthony Adamson, one of Canada's most noteworthy architectural historians and restoration architects, took possession of this house built in 1920. The Flemish influence is immediately obvious in the ornamented, shaped gables and the U-shaped floor plan. The window treatment is minimal; on the upper floor are slightly recessed semi-circular arches. On the lower floor there is only a minimal sill.

The estate has a splendid location on Lake Ontario. It is open to the public as a park and is used by the Royal Conservatory of Music.

Flemish Baronial

Port Credit Ontario

Sault Ste. Marie

Here is a somewhat newer version of the Tudor Revival with stone base and pseudo half-timbering. The gables have vergeboarding; the central ornament is called a pendulum.

There are ornate gold crests along the front façade by the entrance and under one window. The entrance is recessed and protected, better suited for the northern climates where this style originated. The windows are new, but they maintain the size that would be appropriate for this style.

Period Revival Mansion

Sault Ste. Marie Ontario

Aldershot

This revival has the most spectacular river stone chimney in the province. The shingle roof and leaded glass window add to the old world appeal, but it is really the setting that makes this house so special.

This is such a good revival that it is difficult to say what year it was built. It could be 1890s or 1930s. The garage fits in so well that the house could have been built in 1975.

Tudor Revival

Aldershot Ontario

Oakville

This is an early example of a public building constructed in the Tudor Revival period with brick and stone. This may be called Jacobethan because of the mixture of styles.

There is a very small gable with a decorative loophole on the central portion of the building. Under this is a small band. The large frontispiece is supported by buttresses; there is a buttress supporting the back entrance.

The doors and windows have Classical surrounds, in the Georgian manner, but the arch on the door is a Tudor arch.

Tudor Revival

Oakville Ontario

Ancaster

Here is a beautiful example of a Jacobean Revival house that, when built, was perfect in every detail. This has real, not pseudo, half-timbering, with an outward-curving ceiling entrance and hand- carved brackets. The interior of the house was equally authentic with solid oak wall panels and hand carved newel posts. The room layout and the construction processes, while allowing for central heating and plumbing, were done according to medieval building methods.

Jacobean Residence in Ancaster

Ancaster Ontario

Hamilton

This is an example of a very splendid 'revival' that is clearly different than those above. The spaces between the half timbers are bricked. There is carved detailing around the windows. There is more detail on the vergeboard. The lower floor has many more windows than those above. This is an example of Elizabethan Revival. The effect is more opulent and a little more ornate that the Tudor Revival.

Jacobean Residence in Ancaster

Hamilton Ontario

Simcoe

Here is a beautifully designed Tudor Revival house that has been well maintained and cared for. The half-timbering is authentic looking, and the owners have been careful to keep the original window glass with small muntin bars. The frontispiece has a winged gable and the entrance is framed by a Tudor arch.

The house was occupied by the original owner, Mr. Pond, until he was well into his 90s, then it was taken over by a family that has a similar respect for good architecture.

 

Tudor Revival

Simcoe Ontario

Kitchener

This Period Revival reflects traditional rural traditions, like those above, but this reflects a more French flair. From the bell-cast roof and dormers to the long, front, covered porch this is reminiscent of the French Regime period of the Eastern Provinces, and the rural architecture of Normandy and Brittany.

The dormers show pseudo half timbered detail. The front door and windows are pointed three point arches from the late Gothic period. The windows in the door are multi-paned.

The manor house has a series of chimneys for fireplaces in many rooms. This is a beautifully maintained old building.

Period revival in Kitchener

Kitchener Ontario

Period Revival Extra Reading and Films

Books

Blumenson, John. Ontario Architecture A Guide to Styles and Terms. 1978


 

 

For information on Period Revival architecture in specific areas within Ontario there are some very good books listed under the About page.

Films

Elizabeth: The Golden Age -

The Tudors


 

 

 

 

Modillions Balconette Paired Windows Cornice Return Gable Bay Castellation Scalloping Macchicolations Tower Columns Railing Dentils Oriel Chimney Dormer Fractable Fractable Buttress Dripmould or Hoodmold Balcony Arch Gable Half Timbering Jerkin Head Roof Reveal Dripmold or Hoodmold Fractable Dripmold or Hoodmold Dormer Arch Half-Timbered Gable Muntins Half - Timber Dormer Gable Drip Mold or Hood Mold Label Stop Chimney Gable Voussoir Door Surround Half-timber Crest Vergeboard Gable Window Surround Buttress Band Door Surround Gable Dormer Overhang Frontispiece Dormer Half Timber gable Castellation bay half timbering