MIDDLETON, Charles. ~ The Architect and Builder’s Miscellany, or pocket Library; containing picturesque Designs in Architecture, of Plans and Elevations for Cottages, Farm, Country and Town Houses, public Buildings, Temples, Greenhouses, Bridges, Lodges and Gates for the Entrances to Parks and Pleasure Grounds, Stables, Monumental Tombs, Garden Seats, &c. London: Printed for the Author; and sold by J. Taylor, 1812.
8vo (189 × 110 mm), pp. , 60 hand coloured etched, drypoint and aquatint plates. Contemporary sprinkled calf, gilt panelled spine, black morocco label. Expert repair to head and tail of spine. Nineteenth-century inscription ‘Radford’ in pencil to front free endpaper, engraved bookplate of the Bibliothèque du Palais Abbatial de Royaumont. A very good copy.
Second edition, a reissue of the 1799 edition with a new title. Middleton’s designs include several cottages ornés, typical of the contemporary Picturesque movement, substantial villas, a public bath, a court house, an observatory, greenhouses, an aviary, a ‘gothick chapel’ and tea houses in the form of a Chinese temple and a Turkish temple. ‘…Middleton adopted a manner of illustration that was peculiarly his own. The designs are etched in a nervous line that obscures smaller details but delineates significant features of the building design and surrounding scenery, but also contributes an uncommon liveliness and animation to the illustration as a whole. The plates are further distinguished by bright, sometimes garish color in in ocher, salmon, pale green, bright green and bright blue tints.’ (Archer, Literature of British domestic Architecture 1715-1842, 1985, 206.4 (1799 edition with identical plates).
Middleton trained in architectural draughtsmanship under James Paine, gaining admission to the Royal Academy in 1779, before being employed by Henry Holland around 1783. He superintended Holland’s works at Carlton House.
cf. RIBA, Early printed Books, 1478-1840, 2117 (1799 edition).