Great Houses of Scotland

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Great Houses of Scotland: A History and a Guide provides the historic traveler with a witty, visually spectacular guide to more than twenty-five of the greatest houses in Scotland, some of which appear here for the first time ever on public view. Writer Hugh Montgomery-Massingberd and photographer Christopher Simon Sykes, the team responsible for the popular guide Great Houses of England and Wales, return to provide this humorous, poetic view of the development of architectural style in Scotland.

From old tower houses such as Cawdor and Traquair, to the burgeoning bartizans of Glamis, this book will lead travelers to delightful historic surprises. Beloved old architectural favorites such as Blair, Hopetoun, Mellerstain, and Abbotsford are seen from the inside out, accompanied by views of spectacular Baroque examples such as Drumlanrig, or pioneering classicist edifices like Kinross. A selection of work by famed architect William Adam is included, seen in his little-known masterpieces such as Arniston, the House of Dun, and the palatial Duff House.

In the Spectator, Patrick James commended Sykes's "Well-trained eye, always scanning an unusual view or a forgotten corner," as well as Massingberd's wit and authoritative view on opulent Edwardian artifacts such as Manderston and Ardkinglas. "Another bull's eye!" wrote John McEwan in the Literary Review. "As before, it is the charm that tells, the humorous and poetic eye for idiosyncrasy which distinguishes both the writing and the photography."

Whether traveling to Scotland or traveling by armchair, aficionados of great house style will appreciate the lush, detailed photographs of each manor's interior and exterior. Informational and approachable, Great Houses of Scotland: A History and a Guide is an ideal travel companion and guide through the fascinating social, political, and architectural history that constructed the magnificent great houses of Scotland.

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About the author (2001)

Hugh Montgomery-Massingberd has been writing about country houses and their owners since the 1960s. He was the instigator and editor of an acclaimed four volume Guide to Country Houses, and wrote a weekly Heritage column for over twenty years, first for The Field and then for the Weekend section of The Daily Telegraph. He served on the research committee of the Historic Houses Association and edited its survey, The Disintegration of a Heritage. His many other books on heritage subjects include The Country Life Book of Royal Palaces, Castles, Residences and Homes; The Field Book of Country Houses and Their Owners: Family Seats of the British Isles; Heritage of Royal Britain; Royal Palaces of Europe; Blenheim Revisited; Great Houses of England & Wales; Great Houses of Scotland and Great Houses of Ireland.

Christopher Simon Sykes specializes in the photography of architecture and interiors, and is the author of numerous books including The Visitors' Book; Country House Camera; Black Sheep; Private Palaces; The Perfect House; English Country; Scottish Country; Ancient English Houses; Living with Art and Living with Books. His photographs appear regularly in many periodicals, including The World of Interiors, House & Garden, Town & Country, Vogue, Vanity Fair and The Sunday Telegraph Magazine. In 1998 he presented his own television series, Upper Crust, and he is currently writing a biography of his family's house Sledmere in Yorkshire, England.

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