Nice Prepare For Collapse photos

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A few nice prepare for collapse images I found:

Tusculum c.1831
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Image by Sydney Heritage
See where this picture was taken. [?]

Tusculum was named by its original owner, Alexander Brodie Spark (1792-1856), after a town in the Alban Hills, 10 kilometres south-east of Rome where wealthy Romans built luxurious villas – that of Cicero being especially famous. The name of A.B. Spark’s other property, ‘Tempe’ also has classical origins.

The building of the house signified Spark’s rise to good fortune during the 1820’s. He arrived in Sydney as free settler in 1823. His success in shipping and commerce meant that he was quickly accepted as an influential member of colonial society. Spark had received a literary education, which may account for the naming of his villa. His 1828 grant of over 9 acres was one of the few original grants made to a private citizen. John Verge’s plan for Tusculum was approved by Governor Darling in 1830. Spark probably built it as an investment property, as he only lived there for a brief period. The villa was under construction from 1831-5.

His failure to occupy it symbolised Spark’s financial decline, the collapse of the Bank of Australia and the depression of the 1840s. Spark sent a plan of his proposed house to the Colonial Secretary on 1st June 1830, explaining that the plan had been prepared for some time, but that he had wanted to make it more ‘ornamental’. This is 10 months prior to the first reference to Spark’s house in John Verge’s ledger. It is possible that Spark may have had the earlier plan prepared independently, and engaged Verge to assist in making it ‘more ornamental’. John Verge’s Ledger records details of the commission from ‘Plans’ in 1831 to ‘Details for Pilasters front door of’ shortly before completion in 1836.

Alterations were made in 1836 to suit its first tenant, Bishop Broughton. The Broughtons made Tusculum a centre of hospitality and, after Government House, it was the most important domestic building in the colony. The Broughton papers contain several references to the unfinished state of the house when he moved in during 1836, and the alterations and improvements he undertook ‘to bring the premises into a state of decency.’

In Broughton’s early years at Tusculum a garden was established – there are references to a kitchen garden, rose trees from England etc. In 1839 he had shelves put up for his library so that his books could be ‘released from captivity, and placed in security from damp and dust’.

An interesting letter from Emily Crawley (nee Broughton) to Phoebe Boydell, dated 22nd September 1850, describes the accommodation arrangements at Tusculum for the Conference of Australasian Bishops held in October that year. Bishop Broughton lived at Tusculum from 1836 to 1851 – for almost the full length of his episcopacy. He appears to have been occasionally unsettled by his accommodation, with numerous references in his letters to his desire to relocate. Broughton had difficulty in obtaining suitable alternative accommodation, and became resigned to the circumstances of Tusculum.

Broughton took out another lease on the property for seven years in 1848 at (Pounds) 300 p.a. ‘lt is a sad, imperfect place and anything but episcopal in pretensions: but it is in a cheerful situation and good air, and answers my, purposes tolerably well.’

By 1843 there was a serious financial crisis in the colony, and the Darlinghurst grantees suffered. They pressed for the freedom to subdivide their land, and Sydney’s first exclusive suburb opened up to investors. From the early 1850s, the Gold Rush boosted the economy, and interest in the land available at Darlinghurst grew. The first subdivisions occurred around the edges of the original grants, with blocks of a size that allowed other grand houses to be built and new streets formed. In the 1870s, heavy land taxes imposed by the administration of the Premier, Sir Henry Parkes, led to another wave of subdivisions of the original grants. The late 19th century saw the final demise of the grounds surrounding the original villas, and in some cases, the villas themselves.

Broughton was no longer living at Tusculum in 1851, the year prior to his departure. Tusculum was then purchased by William Long.

The authorship of the substantial alterations undertaken at Tusculum for William Long is not certain. It is likely that John F. Hilly may have been the architect. Hilly did a lot of work in the Potts Point, Darlinghurst and Woolloomooloo areas and owned a local quarry. The cast iron balustrade design on the verandahs at Tusculum is very similar to those at Fiona, Edgecliff (1864), Guntawang (1869-70) and the Prince of Wales Theatre (1863) all works of Hilly.

Tusculum was auctioned on 21st October 1904. Lewis Edward Isaacs bid (Pounds) 3,750 for Lot 1 which included the house. Isaacs engaged the architect, John Burcham Clamp to undertake extensive alterations to the staircase and stair hall and a tender was let to Mr. John White. Tusculum was purchased by Orwell and Alfred Phillips in 1906. Orwell later purchased his brother’s share in the property. It is likely that Burcham Clamp was also responsible for the Billiard Room addition. He did other work for the Phillips family.

In the 1920s and 1930s, the original villas and the later grand 19th century residences were demolished to make way for blocks of flats, hotels and later, soaring towers of units. Today only 5 of the original 17 villas still stand, with the lost villas and other grand houses commemorated in the names of the streets of Potts Point, Darlinghurst and Kings Cross.

Following its use as a serviceman’s club during WW2 and a private nursing home, the building fell into disrepair and was the subject of a compulsory resumption in 1983, being the first under the provisions of the (then) recently gazetted NSW Heritage Act 1977.

Subsequently, the Royal Australian Institute of Architects leased Tusculum for 99 years, on the condition that it will be responsible as custodian for the restoration and maintenance of the building and for making it available for public enjoyment. In addition, the Government sold the freehold of the back section of the Tusculum site to the RAIA and the Heritage Council gave permission for a new building to be constructed adjoining the villa. The new building, which was the subject of a national competition, won by the architectural firm Levine & Durbach, houses the RAIA and subsidiary organisations, a 143 seat auditorium, and offices.

The restored villa is used for meeting rooms, a gallery and for receptions.

The two buildings operate as one complex, a combination of restored nineteenth century heritage and quality 1980s architecture. Clive Lucas, OBE, FRAIA, a prominent conservation architect and the leading authority on John Verge was commissioned by the RAIA to undertake the conservation work. The restoration is intended to evoke the early to mid Victorian period and was completed in 1987 in accordance with the ‘Draft Conservation Policy’ in Reference 1. Both buildings were officially opened by the Premier of NSW on 11 March 1988.

040 – The Knight of the Golden Calf or captain of the early and late slaughtering times, in procession to the Oracle of Delphi
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Image by blacque_jacques
[The Chevalier of the Golden Calf, or Captain of the early and late slaughtering time, in procession to the Oracle of Delphos.]

A Dutch Satire on John Law of Lauriston. [1720]

It’s November 1720; the Bubble has collapsed. But the unsuccessful hunter has bagged a gilded calf. It’s the late-autumn slaughter and he leads it to the altar. With roast, fish, cakes and other dainties he plans to fill his plate. Let others warn or stop the Wind-trade; it’s all too little, too late.

Details below:

The design represents a stout humpbacked man riding on a calf, around the neck of which is placed a wreath of laurel, a pun on the name of Law; on the man’s hump is a large "A" (Arlequyn? Aesop?); the horns of the calf bear an orange stuck on each end; the animal drops coins from its mouth, as, preceded by a trumpeter and drummer, it slowly paces past an altar, and draws behind it a sledge with its burden. The hunchback is armed with a gun, carries a young pig (Weesp) under his arm, has a bugle slung across his shoulders, together with two herrings (Enkhuizen) and a bunch of carrots (Hoorn); he is crowned with a Three Kings’ cake and St.-Martin’s goose (referring to feast days in November); the man’s left arm holds out a fool’s cap with wings like those like Mercury’s cap.

In the sledge is a man using a bellows to inflate the animal from the rear (to produce the aforementioned coins); the man’s coat is embroidered with turnips. (This could be John Law again, with fashionably big sleeves and the turnip pattern parodying the French fleur-de-lis.) In the sledge are a leaky barrel, a peacock, a basket of tobacco-pipes, a roll of Virginia tobacco, a canister of sweetmeats (?), a large fishtail, a dish of oysters (?), and several cheeses. In the distance, on our left, a man is trying to bell a cat. Near him lie a key and a spade.

The altar is topped by a rampant unicorn within a fence made of rolls of tobacco, with a small gate (symbolizing England and tobacco from the Virginia colony).

On the banner attached to the trumpet used by one of the heralds of the calf is written: "Al ons geschater / Is wind en water".
[All our trumpeting is mere Wind and water.]

Below the feet of the drummer is written:
"Uit het vel van ’t half / Puurd men narren zalf".
[From the skin of the calf / extract for fools a salve.]

Below the hoofs of the calf is:
"’t Brood dronken beest / Diend ons ter feest"
[The wanton beast / served for us a feast]

In the middle distance is a stork chasing a rat; in the distance is "Kuylenburg" (Culemborg, across the River Lek from Vianen. Both towns were havens for debtors.) In the air Fame descends rapidly, tossing away her trumpet and laurel wreath. In the sky the "Orakel van Delfos" (Oracle of Delphos) is shown by means of a humpbacked man (Aesop?) kneeling at the feet of Apollo. In the sky on the opposite side to the latter is a part of the zodiac, with "De Zon in de Schutter" (The sun in the sign of Sagittarius, the Archer. November-December).

The Dutch verses below the design have been translated as follows:
"I missed many a bird, and did not catch much game; however, the wind out
of this tube made the tame beast fall. I hit it accidentally in the dark, and use it
now to sacrifice it, to be slaughtered with much noise and trumpeting, whilst I
hang Mercury’s cap in the garden. The bells have been sewn on by Law’s
companions, whose springing animal has spoiled the trade. I carry the Greek
Alpha on my hunchback as a hint to many. All the best things have been
prepared for my feast : herrings, suckling pig, venison, pies, Schoonhoven salmon, and innumerable other dainties. Mr. Steward, if the calf gets lean from dragging the goods then blow wind into his gate, for you see all the work is puffery now; Fame drops her trumpet and laurel; they are no more esteemed; everyone goes his own way in his own manner; Long-leg (the stork) would devour the hurtful Stock-animal, but it escapes his grasp. Look, at the other side an impoverished fellow begins to dig and, so that others may pause, tries to bell the cat. I am going to the Delphic Oracle, famous for its wisdom, for good advice in these confusing days. And if that wisdom does not satisfy my doubtful questions, I am going to trade in nothing, good for dark eyes."

This engraved satire on the share mania of 1720 and the few preceding years, comprises a design and two columns of Dutch verse. It is No. 67 in vol. i. of "Het Groote Tafereel der Dwaasheid", a collection of Dutch satires on the South Sea, Mississippi and other bubble companies of the period.

Source: Prints and Drawings in the British Museum, Division I. Political and Personal Satires, Volume II June 1689-1733, Chiswick Press (1873). `Catalogue No. 1676. pp 534-535. 10-1/2 X 8-1/4 in.

Dutch verses:

Ik schoot menig vogel mis; ‘k heb ook schaars wild gengen.
De Wind myns roers nochtans deed zwymen dit mak beest,
In ’t donker by geval getroffen: ’t diend nu meest
Om ’t als een Gilde kalf met trom, trompet gezangen,
En ander groot getier op ’t offren aan de slacht,
Wyl ik Mercuur zyn kap hang op de tiun: de bellen
Zyn daar verrasling aangenaajd door Laws gezellen,
Wiens springend tuin-dier heeft de koopmanschap berkracht.
Myn Martens-Gans en myn drie Konings krans betuigen;
Dat Marten tot Drie Koningen he slacht-saisoen
Heeft uitgerekt, dan zal er ’t meest nog zyn te doen,
Als veeler loosgekuip verstaafd valt wis in duigen.
De Griekse Alpha voer ik op myn ruggebult,
Tot veeler spigel; maar om ’t afscheids maal te geeven
’t Speenvarken praald ter feest, panharing, van je leven
Niet zoeter rondom-heer, verzilverd, ’t zwyn verguld.

‘k Zal op myn horen, om al ’t volk te nooden, blaasen,
Ter open dis, voorzien met venezoen, pasty,
Schoonhoofse zalm en meer ontelbre lekkerny
Zo tam-als wildbraad daar zig veelen aan veraasen
Zo ’t kalf vermagerd door ’t gesleep, blaas in zyn poort,
Hof-meester; want al ’t werk is opgeblaasen heden;
Schoon hier Vrou Faam trompet en lauwer werpt beneden
Zy word niet meer geacht: elk gaat in ’t zyne voort
Langpoot wil ’t ongediert aan de Actie vaart verslinden;
Howel ’t hem nog ontsnapt: ey! Zie aan de andre kant
Een die verarmd ’t gegraaf wil vatten by der hand:
Hy zal, daar elk voor schroomd, de Kat de bel aan binden.
’t Delfos orakel, daar de faam bewys van doet
Ga ’t zoeken: om goe raad in dees verwarde dagen
En zo die wysheid niet verklaard myn twyfel vraagen
‘k Ga handelen in niet, voor duistere oogen goed.

Fairlea (16) and Avon House (16a) West Cliff Road, Bournemouth, Dorset
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Image by Alwyn Ladell
Bricks from the collapsed wall are salvaged.

The ground is prepared for the rebuild.

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2 Responses to “Nice Prepare For Collapse photos”

  1. dianabuja2000

    Fascinating – rich symbolism, much of which may be ‘lost’ to us today. Thanks for sharing.

  2. blacque_jacques

    You’re welcome. But you’d be amazed at how much of the above is still encoded into Dutch culture.