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Ian Gow, The Scottish Interior , Edinburgh University Press, 1992, hardback, £25.00, ISBN 0 7486 0220 8

Ian Gow, The Scottish Interior , Edinburgh University Press, 1992, hardback, £25.00, ISBN 0 7486... BOOK REVIEWS Gow,The Scottish Interior, Edinburgh University Press, 1992, hardback, £25.00, Ian ISBN 0 7486 0220 8 The inescapable fate of all but a tiny fraction of domestic interiors is that they will change appearance with extraordinary frequency. As a consequence they pose a tremendous challenge to the historian, who all too often has to resort to guess-work when attempting to recreate past arrangements. True, a great deal of information can be gleaned from inventories, but, even when these exist, they invariably fall short of conjuring up the reality of the lived-in home, telling us little, for example, about furniture arrangements or patterns and colours of wall hangings. Visual records, whether comprising paintings, engravings, drawings or photographs, are quite another matter and, supported by a sequence of informative and sharply observed essays, provide the basis for The Scottish Interior, in the shape of over two hundred images selected from the collections of the National Monuments Record of Scotland. Selection has been based, in virtually every case, on historical reliability, an eminently sensible strategy that has been adhered to in the face of quite serious obstacles. The most immediately obvious of these is that it inevitably precludes all but http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Architectural Heritage Edinburgh University Press

Ian Gow, The Scottish Interior , Edinburgh University Press, 1992, hardback, £25.00, ISBN 0 7486 0220 8

Architectural Heritage , Volume 4 (4): 125 – Jan 1, 1993

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
Copyright © Edinburgh University Press
Subject
Book Reviews
ISSN
1350-7524
eISSN
1755-1641
DOI
10.3366/arch.1993.4.4.125
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

BOOK REVIEWS Gow,The Scottish Interior, Edinburgh University Press, 1992, hardback, £25.00, Ian ISBN 0 7486 0220 8 The inescapable fate of all but a tiny fraction of domestic interiors is that they will change appearance with extraordinary frequency. As a consequence they pose a tremendous challenge to the historian, who all too often has to resort to guess-work when attempting to recreate past arrangements. True, a great deal of information can be gleaned from inventories, but, even when these exist, they invariably fall short of conjuring up the reality of the lived-in home, telling us little, for example, about furniture arrangements or patterns and colours of wall hangings. Visual records, whether comprising paintings, engravings, drawings or photographs, are quite another matter and, supported by a sequence of informative and sharply observed essays, provide the basis for The Scottish Interior, in the shape of over two hundred images selected from the collections of the National Monuments Record of Scotland. Selection has been based, in virtually every case, on historical reliability, an eminently sensible strategy that has been adhered to in the face of quite serious obstacles. The most immediately obvious of these is that it inevitably precludes all but

Journal

Architectural HeritageEdinburgh University Press

Published: Jan 1, 1993

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