portrait of Christopher Wren
Oil on canvas by Sir Godfrey Kneller (1711)

All archives
Previous Issue (19 October 2000) | Current month | Next Issue (21 October 2000)

Quotes of the Day for 20 October 2000 – Christopher Wren

Sir Christopher Wren, the English architect that planned the rebuilding of London after the Great Fire of 1666, was born on this day in 1632. Here are some comments on Wren and the field of architecture.

Van's signature

You will find an expanded profile, photo, additional biographical links, and all quotes from this author on the author's Notable Quotable page.


The quotes:

We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us.
     - Winston Churchill

Words mean what they're generally believed to mean. When Charles II saw Christopher Wren's St. Paul's Cathedral for the first time, he called it "awful, pompous, and artificial." Meaning roughly: Awesome, majestic, and ingenious.
     - S. M. Stirling

Architecture is the triumph of Human Imagination over materials, methods, and men, to put man into possession of his own Earth. It is at least the geometric pattern of things, of life, of the human and social world. It is at best that magic framework of reality that we sometimes touch upon when we use the word 'order.'
     - Frank Lloyd Wright

Raphael paints wisdom; Handel sings it, Phidias carves it, Shakespeare writes it, Wren builds it, Columbus sails it, Luther preaches it, Washington arms it, Watt mechanizes it.
     - Ralph Waldo Emerson


Do you see an error on this page? A typo, a character that is messed up, a misattribution? Please let us know!