Virtus on Whitehall: the politics of Palladianism in William Kent's Treasury Building, 1733-6.
Journal of Historical Sociology, 18(4),
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The development of the modern state in the eighteenth century had a material as well as a socio-political dimension. The 1730s saw the domination of neo-Palladianism in the Office of Works and the establishment of a prominent and permanent administrative centre whose style made an architectural statement about the conduct of Walpole's government. The nature of this statement is only comprehensible when viewed in the context of contemporary political debate. William Kent's Treasury invoked antique Rome in order to emphasise the government's competence and assert the independence of its officers from patronage and their commitment to the common good.
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