Enfilade

New Book | Livery Halls of the City of London

Posted in books by Editor on April 5, 2019

Published by Merrell in association with the Worshipful Company of Chartered Architects:

Anya Lucas and Henry Russell, with photographs by Andreas von Einsiedel, Livery Halls of the City of London (London: Merrell, 2018), 280 pages, ISBN: 978-1858946702, £45 / $80.

For some 800 years, Livery Companies have played a leading role in commercial activities and social and political life in the City of London. These trade associations, each representing a particular craft or profession, were originally responsible for controlling, for example, wages and working conditions. Their headquarters—the Livery Halls—evolved from large medieval town houses to become an identifiable building type paralleled only by the guild houses of northern European mercantile cities and the Venetian scuole. This beautiful book is the first major exploration of these architecturally significant buildings. Dr Anya Lucas, who has studied the Halls in depth, provides an introduction and an illustrated history of the buildings that have been lost over the centuries, while Henry Russell surveys each of the 40 present-day Halls, from HQS Wellington, the headquarters of the Master Mariners, in the west to the Proof House, the home of the Gunmakers’ Company, in the east. The existing Livery Halls have been photographed especially for the project by the renowned interiors photographer Andreas von Einsiedel, making this a truly outstanding publication.

Anya Lucas (née Matthews) is an art and architectural historian specializing in 17th- and 18th-century Britain. Her PhD (2015) at the Courtauld Institute of Art, London, examined the architecture and political uses of London’s Livery Halls in the early modern period. She has written about the Livery Halls for Country Life magazine and the Georgian Group Journal, and contributed a chapter on the subject to the book Court, Country, City: British Art and Architecture, 1660–1735 (Yale University Press, 2016). She currently works as Research Curator for the Painted Hall at the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich, London, where a major conservation project on Sir James Thornhill’s vast baroque scheme is under way.

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