The Georgian style of architecture, traditionally dated from 1690 to 1790, is the earliest distinctive style of European construction developed by North American settlers. After attaining a level of stability and prosperity that finally allowed them to turn their attention to a more stylized form of construction, they made use of more architectural details such as historical and geographical referencing, as well as more ornamentation. The Georgian style is named for the four British monarchs named George. It was King George III, the ruler from 1760 until his death in 1820, who lost the majority of the British territories in North America. Despite the great political divide that ensued between England and the emerging United States, cultural connections between the two countries remained strong, as evidenced by the great popularity of the Georgian architectural style, which in its later stages can also be called the Federal style. Georgian architecture, inspired by the Italian Renaissance architect Palladio as well as the English Baroque architect Christopher Wren and his successor John Vanbrugh, is characterized by a brick building of classical symmetry and proportion with a small portico at the center, rectangular windows trimmed in white and with nine or 12 panes of glass, and a hipped roof flanked by a chimney on either side. Earlier, more modest wood Colonial homes from the late 17th century, such as the Paul Revere house in Boston, were often renovated in the Georgian style with the addition of a taller, hipped roofline and the imposition of a more symmetrical appearance to the façade.

Historical Dictionaries of Literature and the Arts. . 2008.

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