The Library at Pemberley by Sharon Lathan, Novelist

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Look inside a Georgian townhouse
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Sharon Lathan
Kentucky
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March 22, 2015 - 10:03 PM
Member Since: April 24, 2011
Forum Posts: 216
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Ever wonder just what the inside of a typical London townhouse in an upper-crust neighborhood looked like? Of course there were variations in design, size, styling, and decor. These cutouts and floor plans give an idea of what was standard.

 

1750 London townhouse
1750 townhouse cutaway

 

The typical London townhouse of the 18th century was a brick-built, flat-fronted house on four or five floors with regularly spaced sash windows and often a canopy over the front door. As in the previous century, the ground floor was sometimes used as a shop or for running a business and the houses were built on the line of the pavement with no front garden.

 

Mayfair townhouse
A house on Charles Street in Berkeley Square
Georgian dollhouse
Georgian dollhouse (click for larger view)
1720 Georgian
Etching from 1720

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Regency Town House was built on what had already become the traditional layout for town houses. The domestic offices for the servants were in the basement, the formal rooms were on the ground and first floors and the bedrooms on the floors above. Due to higher land prices in towns, even large houses tended to be built upwards on long, narrow plots. At the back of the house there was a coach house, stable block and quarters for the coachmen and grooms.
Grosvenor planImage Enlarger

British History Online has several pages of house plans and descriptions for Grosvenor Square before 1926: HERE  Thanks to my pal and fellow Austen Author Jennifer Petkus for leading me to this site.

 

townhouse cutoutImage Enlarger

 

Not all Georgian townhouses were narrow, however. Wealth afforded wider street-front property in the posh residential neighborhoods such as Kensington, Mayfair, and St. James. Some of the mansions built within these districts leaned toward being independent houses rather than true townhouses with joined side walls. The image below of Lansdowne House on Berkeley Square is difficult to read, but note the corner location, enormous walled courtyard, and huge rooms. The map down further shows the location on a lovely single lot between two streets, another example of London city living.

 

1765 Lansdowne
Plans of Lansdowne (Shelbourne) House 1765, designed by Robert Adam as a private house and for most of its time as a residence it belonged to the Petty-FitzMaurice family, Marquesses of Lansdowne and earls of Shelbourne (hence the name Shelbourne on the plan).
Selfridge_LansdowneHouse_Greenwood
Note Lansdowne House between Charles & Bolton Streets, SW corner of Berkeley Square.

 

A wonderful resource on English houses through the eras is this book, written in 1864 by Robert Kerr and available on Google Books: The Gentleman’s House, or How to Plan English Residences.

 

Miss Darcy Falls in Love - 2014 World Book Night US selection! 
Historical romance novelist, author of The Darcy Saga
"Happily ever after comes true..."
John 3:16
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Look inside a Georgian townhouse | Historical Articles | The Library at Pemberley