In is a subject of interest to me that the buildings of the Victorian era are still evident in many places in the world. From Alaska to Tasmania, there can be found a Victorian structure that has been restored and is used to this day. I have seen Victorian homes in New Zealand, countries in Africa, Europe, Canada and even Hawaii. It not only has had a lasting presence but a lasting appeal!
I remember though, in the 1950's how some people were burning down such houses, which were called "painted laidies" to make room for modern housing and tract homes that would make more money. A society was formed to step in and rescue any house that was a hundred years old, and some houses that were 50 years old. This was called the Historical Society and they were able to put a stop to the razing of these houses.
These homes have endured the various climates and social upheaval and remain for us to admire today. Even countries as far away as Norway and Sweden have historic areas where one can see the beautiful homes built in the 1800's.
As I explained in a previous article, the Victorian architecture was not necessarily "Victorian," because they borrowed from other known styles of the past. That is why the houses were so different from one another. Some had Gothic characteristics. Others had Italian or Roman qualities. Still others were called Gothic Revival
Jacobethan (the precursor to the Queen Anne style)
When I post here of my interest in Victorian homes, it is for several different reasons. One is that it was never one particular style, but rather the time frame (the period of time in which Victorian was Queen of the British Empire), and another was the versatility of the styles. They looked good in different settings, whether they were by the sea or in the mountains. They could take on different national qualities, depending on the country, the climate, and the materials available where they were built.
Everywhere you go, you can see them. There are in Russia and India, for example, still beautiful Victorian homes. These plans are still used today. I was walking around in a new housing development not long ago, which was entirely Victorian in nature, and yet could name some of the styles listed above. These houses had several things in common.
One of particular importance that modern homes do not always include, is the front porch that people may sit on. It was important in past centuries to have this as an extra room. There they could keep an eye on their neighborhood and their children and keep in touch with others. The front porch went by the way when some of the more modern homes began to be built. However, in the 1960's-1990's houses, many people are giving them a facelift, by adding porches and upstairs sections, creating a more Victorian look.
The reason I like the Victorian houses is that I know that the era was so staunchly family oriented. The home was considered the most important element of society. As the home goes, so goes the nation, they said. It was a time when a man's greatest accomplishment was to provide a nice house for his family, and women felt dignified by having a home all their own to take care of. It was a time when church and family were the highest order of society.
Todays painters are busily putting the image of these houses on canvas, as you can see by the painting above called Victorian Seaside by George Bjorkland who paints many beautiful scenes today. In fact, the painters of today paint beautiful paintings of the Victorian gardens, houses, carriages and fashions. The newer housing developments are using similar plans to the Victorian houses and creating the feeling of the old fashioned neighborhoods and country homes, once again.
Note: at the request of a special friend, I enabled comments for this post. Before you object, please observe:
I did not say Victorian homes were perfect.
I did not say Victorian houses were the only ones worth living in.
I did not say we should all live in Victorian times.
I did not say I hated futuristic modern homes (although I dont like them)
I did not insult any person.
I did not say you are wrong if you don't like what I like.
Even if you don't like the Victorians or their houses, please allow us the freedom to express our views and the courtesy of a kind reply. Dissenting , complaining, and discontented comments will be immediately cast into outer darkness, via the convenient rubbish can that only blog editors can see.