Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 47.djvu/14

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commissioners on the competing schemes for the new houses of parliament was issued. No design had been sent in under Pugin's name, but it was well known that he had assisted one of the competitors, Gillespie Graham. The design of Charles (afterwards Sir Charles) Barry [q. v.] was chosen, and Barry was appointed the architect for the new building. Barry employed Pugin in the gigantic task of providing the detail drawings during six or seven following years. In 1867, after both Pugin and Barry were dead, the former's son, Edward Welby Pugin [q. v.], claimed that his father originated the design which Sir Charles Barry submitted in the competition, and was the guiding spirit of the design as carried out. Edward Pugin declared that Barry adopted a scheme of his father's conception, and sent it in after it had been redrawn in his own office in order to conceal its likeness in handiwork to the design which was nominally Graham's. This claim was hardly substantiated; but it is probable that while Barry initiated the design—and he must in any case be allowed the whole credit of the arrangement of the plan—Pugin was called in as a skilled draughtsman to assist in the completion of Barry's half-finished drawings. In such work a man of his originality could hardly have acted as a mere copyist; and it may therefore be concluded that he had at least a share at this stage in the elegance and artistic merit which won for Barry's design the first place in the competition. With regard to the working drawings prepared after the competition, every witness, including Sir Charles Barry, acknowledges that the detail drawings all came from Pugin's hand; and when it is considered how largely the effect of that building is due to its details, no critic will deny to Pugin an all-important share in the credit of the completed work (cf. Edward Welby Pugin, Who was the Art Architect of the Houses of Parliament? 1867; Alfred Barry, The Architect of the New Palace of Westminster, 1867; E. W. Pugin, Notes on Dr. Barry's Reply to the ‘Infatuated Statements’ made by E. W. P., 1867).

Pugin's practice rapidly increased. Working with little assistance, and largely without the usual instruments (he never used a T square), he achieved a vast amount of work. In 1839, besides Alton Towers, he was engaged upon St. Chad's Church at Birmingham, Downside Priory near Bath, and the churches of St. Mary, Derby, and St. Oswald, Liverpool; while the churches of St. Mary, Stockton-on-Tees, St. Wilfrid, Hulme, near Manchester, St. Mary, Dudley, St. Mary, Uttoxeter, St. Giles, Cheadle, St. Anne, Keighley, St. Mary-on-the-Sands, Southport, and St. Alban, Macclesfield, belong to about the same period. In 1841 appeared Pugin's ‘True Principles of Pointed or Christian Architecture’ (London, 4to), a book which shows that the author combined with his enthusiasm a remarkable power of logical analysis. There followed ‘An Apology for the Revival of Christian Architecture in England’ (London, 4to, 1843), the ‘Glossary of Ecclesiastical Ornament and Costume’ (London, 4to, 1844), and two articles in the ‘Dublin Review’ on ‘The Present State of Ecclesiastical Architecture in England’ (republished separately 1843). These articles, which he did not sign, met with some severe and not undeserved criticism. They largely consist of appreciative accounts, with illustrations, of the works of Pugin himself.

Pugin had already made many sketching tours in France and the Netherlands, and his masterly sketches are not the least of his artistic achievements (see AYLING'S reproductions of the sketches, 2 vols. 8vo, 1865). In 1847 he made, for the first time, a tour in Italy. He visited Florence, Rome (with which he was disappointed), Assisi, Perugia, Arezzo, Cortona, and Verona, besides many French towns—Avignon, Carcassonne, Mülhausen, Besançon. Although his practice at this period was in full vigour, and the pressure on his time, powers, and eyesight was terrific, he published in 1849 a work in chromolithograph on ‘Floriated Ornament’ (London, 8vo), and in 1850 ‘Remarks on Articles in the “Rambler”’ (a pamphlet containing some autobiographical notes). In 1851 he was appointed a commissioner of fine arts for the Great Exhibition, but before the close of the year his mind, overwrought with excess of occupation, became unhinged. Next year found him a patient in a private asylum, whence he was subsequently removed to Bedlam. On 14 Sept. 1852 he died in his own house at Ramsgate. His second wife had died in 1844, and, after paying addresses to two other ladies, for one of whom he had designed as a wedding gift the jewellery shown by him at the Great Exhibition, he married, in 1849, a third wife, daughter of Thomas Knill. She survived him, with eight children; she died 15 Feb. 1909, aged 82. His son, Edward Welby Pugin [q. v.], had taken charge of his professional work during his last illness.

Pugin was never a candidate for personal honour, and when his name was proposed for the associateship of the Royal Academy, it was without his sanction. The Pugin travelling studentship, controlled by the