Wednesday, 12 May 2021

The State Opening of Parliament during Corona and social distance period // VIDEO: The Queen's Speech begins 👑 The State Opening of Parliament 🇬🇧 BBC /


SEE ALSO :


State Opening of Parliament 2021

11 May 2021

https://www.parliament.uk/business/news/2021/april/state-opening-of-parliament-2021/

 

The State Opening of Parliament on Tuesday 11 May marks the formal start of the parliamentary year and the Queen's Speech sets out the government’s agenda for the new session.

 

State Opening

The State Opening of Parliament is the main ceremonial event in the parliamentary calendar and marks the start of the parliamentary year.

 

This year's ceremony is a reduced, COVID-secure event.

 

The timings for the 11 May State Opening are the same as in previous years: the main parts of the ceremony take place between 11am and 12.30pm. 

 

Queen’s Speech

Central to the ceremony is the Queen's Speech. Written by the government, it is read out by the Queen from the Throne in the House of Lords chamber. The speech contains an outline of government policies and proposed legislation for the new parliamentary session. 

 

Back to work

When the Queen leaves, a new parliamentary session starts and Parliament gets back to work. Both Houses agree an ‘Address in Reply to Her Majesty’s Gracious Speech’ and debate the content of the speech.

 

House of Commons debate

Members of the House of Commons debate the planned legislative programme for several days, looking at different subject areas. The Queen's Speech is voted on by the Commons.

 

House of Lords debate

The House of Lords debates the different subject areas of the speech over five days. After which, bills are introduced and the Lords returns to work shaping laws, holding the government to account and investigating important issues of the day.



State Opening of Parliament"

 

The opening ceremony of Parliament which traditionally takes place between November and December of each year, in the architectural ensemble known as "Houses of Parliament" in London , constitutes one of the great surviving moments of the unique conjugation between "Decor", ( The magnificent and iniguanável architectural set ) attributes, (heraldry, uniforms,banners,objects- constricting a phenomenon of "Pageantry" unique) and Symbolic Ceremonial ( Set of series of processions , militaria and voices of command, music, moments of deep symbolism with regard to the Political Constitution and its principles and values-"Pomp and Circumstance"). This Act reveals and symbolizes, ritualizes and proves, as the unique union between constitutional and democratic monarchy and its political constitution enrich, guarantee and safeguard the Metaphysics of the State and the Heterogeneous Patriotic Union of the United Kingdom.

Firstly, in a symbolic act, the beefeeters of the Palace of Westminster are searched, thus recalling the attempt of the attack in 1605 by the Catholics, which aimed at the destruction of Parliament and the mass murder of the Protestant king james I and the aristocracy at the same time.

Before the departure of the Royal Procession of Buckingham Palace, the Queen's residence, the Crown takes a member of the Commons to the Palace as a symbolic "Hostage" in order to ensure the Queen's safe entry into Parliament. Here we already have several symbolic acts of a Monarchy without absolute power and dependent on the People's Will and its Democratically Elected Representatives. The "Hostage" is returned to Parliament and the House of Commons after the Queen's safe arrival.

Also before the departure of the Queen and her Procession towards Parliament the Imperial State Crown is transported, with Circumstance, in its own carriage. She and two other symbols and attributes of monarchical authority and law, The sword of State and The Cap of Maintenance are transported in the initial procession already inside to be exhibited at the Royal Gallery of the same Palace of Westminster.

The Queen arrives at the Palace of Westminster, in the whole of the "Houses of Parliament", accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh and enters the Palace via the Victoria Tower. The Union Flag is replaced by the Royal banner. It is at this moment of entry that the voices of command of the regiments present are heard in no way and interval.

After having worn The Robes of State and placed The Imperial State Crown the Queen proceeds in Cortejo through the Royal Gallery towards the House of Lords. There is still a particularity ... on this route two (used to be four) of their companions, those in front, walk back wards all the way so that they never turn their backs on the sovereign and the symbols that accompany her.

The custom of always using the House of Lords for the ceremony began in the 17th century, after Charles I in 1642 entered the House of Commons with his guard in order to arrest five members of the Commons. The Speaker refused to turn them in. After this incident, no monarch entered the House of Commons again.

This fact is important for the symbolic act i am going to describe... After the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh's entry into the House of Lords and Queen has uttered the famous phrase "My Lords pray be seated", Lord Great Chamberlain elevates his symbol of office and signals instruction to the Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod, a character dressed in black, to address the House of Commons in order to call on the Commons to come and watch the Queen's Speech ... and... in a moment of a sublime symbolism ... the door is closed to him in the face, preventing his entry and thus affirming the authority of the Commons Elected by the People before the Royal Emissary. Only after he has knocked on the door three times with his stick (the Black Rod) is admitted. Having entered, he addressed the Speaker and pronounced the famous phrase "Mr/Madam Speaker, The Queen commands this honourable House to attend Her Majesty immediately in the House of Peers"

The members of the Commons, accompanied by the Ceremonial Staff, form an informal procession of two to two, led by the leaders of the two parties, where it is tradition a certain informality, conversation and ironies, in order to symbolize their freedom.

Members of the House of Commons, the Queen begins reading the Speech written by the Cabinet in power, and where the political programme of the year that begins is revealed ... the Queen reads the speech without emothes in order to accentuate her neutrality and impartiality.

JEEVES / TWEEDLAND


Tuesday, 11 May 2021

The Triumph Spitfire Story


The Triumph Spitfire is a British front-engined, rear-wheel drive, two-passenger convertible sports car introduced at the London Motor Show in 1962 and manufactured between 1962-1980. Styled for Standard-Triumph in 1957 by Italian designer Giovanni Michelotti, the Spitifire was manufactured for the duration of its production at the Standard-Triumph Canley works — and evolved over a series of five production iterations, with a approximately 315,000 manufactured over 18 years.

 

Developed on a shortened variant of the Triumph Herald saloon/sedan's chassis, the Spitifire shared the Herald's running gear and Standard SC engine. The design used body-on-frame construction, augmented by structural components within the bodywork and rear trailing arms attached to the body rather than the chassis. A manually deployable convertible top, substantially improved on later models, provided weather protection and a bespoke hard-top was available as a factory option.

 

Popular in street and rally racing, Spitfires won numerous SCCA National Sports Car Championships in F and G Production classes; won its class at the 1964 Tour de France rally, coming in second overall, and won the 1964 Geneva Rally. In 1965, a Spitfire won its class in the Alpine Rally.

 

The Spitfire nameplate refers to the World War II fighter plane of the same name.[7] Assembled at Canley in August 1980 shortly before the factory closed, the last Spitfire was an Inca Yellow UK-model including the factory hardtop and overdrive options. Never sold to the public, it remains on display at the British Motor Museum.

 

The Spitfire was conceived by Standard-Triumph to compete in the small sports car market against the Austin-Healey Sprite. The Sprite had used the drive train of the Austin A30/A35 in a lightweight. The Spitfire used mechanicals from the Herald saloon/sedan. Where the Austin A30 used monocoque construction, the Herald used body-on-frame — a chassis Triumph was able to downsize, saving the cost of developing a completely new chassis-body unit.

 

Giovanni Michelotti, who had designed the Herald, styled the bodywork, which featured wind-up windows (in contrast to the Sprite and Midget, which used side curtains) and an assembly of the bonnet/hood and wings/fenders that opened forward for engine access. The Spitfire's introduction was delayed by its company's financial troubles in the early 1960's and was subsequently announced shortly after Standard Triumph was taken over by Leyland Motors. When Leyland officials, taking stock of their new acquisition, found Michelotti's prototype under a dust sheet in a factory corner, it was quickly approved it for production.

 


 

Spitfire 4 or Mark I (1962–64)

The production design changed little from the prototype: the full-width rear bumper was replaced by two part-bumpers curving around each corner, with overriders. Mechanicals derived from the Herald saloon/sedan, with the notable addition of front disc brakes. Bodywork was bolted to the much-modified Herald chassis, the outer rails and the rear outriggers having been removed; with structural outer sills to stiffen the overall design.

 

The engine was an 1,147 cc (70.0 cu in) four-cylinder with a pushrod OHV cylinder head and two valves per cylinder, using twin SU carburettors. The Herald's rack and pinion steering and coil-and-wishbone front suspension carried over, having derived from systems used by the former Alford & Alder company that had been acquired by Standard-Triumph in 1959.

 

Rear suspension was by a single transverse-leaf swing axle,[8] an arrangement, that unless ameliorated by any of several options, can allow rear tires to undergo large camber changes during fast cornering, leading to oversteer – a dynamically unstable condition in which a vehicle can lose control and spin. As did many manufacturers who used a swing axle arrangement (e.g., Mercedes, Renault, Volkswagen]], Triumph would later modify the rear suspension. In 1970, the rear suspension was decambered, by incorporating what Triumph called a "swing spring". One leaf was eliminated from the stack and only the bottom leaf was attached rigidly to the differential. The remaining leaves were mounted to pivot freely — thereby eliminating the worst characteristics of the original swing-axle design.

 

The Spitfire was an inexpensive small sports car and as such received rather basic trim by today's standards, including rubber mats and a large plastic steering wheel. It was nonetheless considered fairly comfortable at the time, as it had roll-down windows and exterior door locks, as well as relatively full instrumentation. These early cars were referred to both as "Triumph Spitfire Mark Is" and "Spitfire 4s",[1] different from the later Spitfire Mark IV. The "Spitfire 4" name indicated the possibility of the appearance of a six-cylinder version.

 

In UK specification the in-line four produced 63 bhp (47 kW) at 5,750 rpm, and 67 lbft (91 Nm) of torque at 3,500 rpm. This gave a top speed of 92 mph (148 km/h), and a 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) acceleration in 16.4 seconds. Average fuel consumption was 31 mpg.

 

For 1964 an overdrive became optional to the four-speed manual gearbox.[4] Wire wheels and a hard top were also available.

 

An all-monocoque construction derivative of the Spitfire with pop-up headlamps, named the Triumph Fury, was proposed with a single prototype being built.

 


Spitfire Mark II (1965–67)

In March 1965 the Spitfire Mark II launched with a retuned engine, featuring a revised camshaft profile, water-heated intake manifold, and tubular exhaust manifold, increasing power to 67 bhp (50 kW) at 6,000 rpm. The coil-spring design clutch of the Mark I was replaced with a Borg & Beck diaphragm spring clutch; North American models retained the coil-spring housing and were also equipped with ACDelco distributors. Exterior trim featured a new grille and badges, and the interior featured revised seats, covering most exposed surfaces with rubber cloth. Carpeting replaced the original moulded rubber floor mats.

 

Its base price was £550; the Austin-Healey Sprite's was £505 and the MG Midget's £515. Top speed was claimed to be 96 mph (154 km/h) and its 0–60 mph time of 14.8 seconds was considered "lively". The factory claimed that at highway speeds (70 mph (110 km/h)) the car achieved 38.1 miles per imperial gallon (7.41 L/100 km; 31.7 mpgUS).

 


Spitfire Mark III (1967–70)

The Mark III, introduced in March 1967, was the first major facelift to the Spitfire. The front bumper was raised in response to new crash regulations, and the front coil springs were slightly raised. Slightly revised bonnet pressings were carried over. Rear overriders were deleted and bumper mounted reversing lights became standard (initially as two separate lights on either side of the number plate, latterly as a single light in a new unit above the number plate). The interior received a wood-veneer instrument surround and a smaller, 15-inch, wire spoked steering wheel. A folding hood replaced the earlier, more complicated design. For most of the Mark III range, the instrument cluster remained centre-mounted (as in the Mark I and Mark II), easily accommodating right-hand and left-hand drive versions.

 

The 1,147 cc engine was replaced with a bored-out 1,296 cc unit (the bore increasing from 69.3 mm (2.73 in) to 73.7 mm (2.90 in), stroke retained at 76 mm (3.0 in)), as fitted on the new Triumph Herald 13/60 and Triumph 1300 saloons. A new quieter exhaust gave a sweet distinct note and reduced cabin noise. In SU twin-carburettor form, the engine put out a claimed 75 bhp (56 kW) at 6,000 rpm, and 75 lbft (102 Nm) of torque at 4,000 rpm, and made the Mark III a comparatively quick car by the standards of the day.[citation needed] Options included wire wheels, factory hard top and a Laycock de Normanville overdrive. The Mark III was the fastest Spitfire yet, achieving 60 mph (97 km/h) in 13.4 seconds, and reaching a top speed of 95 mph (153 km/h). Average fuel consumption was 33mpg. The Mark III continued production into 1971, well after introduction of the Mark IV.

 

On 8 February 1968, Standard-Triumph general manager George Turnbull drove the 100,000th Triumph Spitfire off the Canley production line. More than 75 per cent of this number had been exported outside the UK, including 45 per cent to the US and 25 per cent to mainland European markets.

 

The 1968 model featured dual system (aka tandem) brakes with a brake failure warning device. The engine used a revised camshaft and a distributor with idle speed ignition timing retarded to address emissions. The twin SU carburettors now included overrun valves in the throttle discs and anti-tampering features on carburettor fuel-air mixture nuts.

 

Starting in 1969, US-bound models were "federalized" to comply with safety and emissions regulations. A reduced compression ratio of 8.5:1 resulted in a slight decrease in power (68 bhp) and 73 ft-lbs of torque. However, the 0–60 time of 14 seconds was still faster than the Mark II. The instrument panel was moved in front of the driver, and new seats were introduced with integrated headrests to help against whiplash. Cosmetically, the wood dash was replaced with a matte black finished assembly intended to imitate an aircraft cockpit.

 

The Mk. III's final production year (1970) included an integrated rear reverse and license plate lamp, side lamps at the front and rear and new badging. The separate "Triumph" letters on the front of the bonnet were removed and "Triumph" and "Spitfire" rectangular badges were used in the front, rear sides and rear. A limited number of U.S. market 1970s were adorned with an RAF style "Spitfire" badge (U.K. models had a plain badge without the RAF roundel) that rested in the right corner (car opposing point of view) of the bonnet. Additional exterior changes introduced included a zip up rear window, black radiator grille and a black (vs body colored) windshield surround. Full wheel covers of two styles were used including the 1969 introduced model with "SPITFIRE" circumscribing the hub and a unique derivative without the branding. Interior changes included a steering column mounted ignition switch, a key-in-ignition warning buzzer, driver's side under-dash courtesy lamp and a new black spoked steering wheel. Under the bonnet, some markets had the twin SU carburettors replaced with a single Zenith-Stromberg carburettor.

 


Spitfire Mark IV (1970–74)

The Mark IV featured a redesigned rear design similar to the Triumph Stag and Triumph 2000 models, both also designed by Michelotti. The front end was revised with a new bonnet pressing eliminating the weld lines on top of the wings/fenders, door handles were recessed, the convertible top received squared-off corners. The interior was revised to include a full-width dashboard, with instruments ahead of the driver rather than over the centre console, initially finished in black plastic and beginning in 1973 finished in wood.

 

The engine was now rated at 63 horsepower for UK market, employing the 9:1 compression ratio and twin SU HS2 carburetors. The less powerful North American version continued to use a single Zenith Stromberg carburetor and an 8.5:1 compression ratio) due to the German DIN system; the output was the same for the early Mark IV. Performance was slower than the Mark III due to its weight increase taller 3.89:1 final drive as opposed to the earlier 4.11:1.

 

The Mk. IV engine displaced 1,296 cc (79.1 cu in) throughout the production run, and in 1973 received larger big-end bearings to rationalize production with the TR6 2.5-litre engines. The engine was also detuned to meet new emissions regulations. With the overall weight also increasing to 1,717 lb (779 kg) performance dropped, with 0 to 60 mph (0 to 97 km/h) now in 15.8 seconds and top speed reduced to 90 mph (140 km/h).[1] Fuel economy was 32 mpgimp (8.8 L/100 km; 26.6 mpgUS). The gearbox gained synchromesh on its bottom gear.

 

A revised hardtop became also available, with rear quarter-lights and a flatter rear screen.

 

Importantly, the heavily criticized rear suspension was decambered, incorporating what Triumph called a "swing spring". One leaf of the suspension "stack" was eliminated and only the bottom leaf was attached rigidly to the differential. The remaining leaves were mounted to pivot freely — eliminating the worst characteristics of the original swing-axle. This was a different approach than that taken with the Triumph GT6 Mk II (GT6+) and Triumph Vitesse Mark 2, both of which received new lower wishbones and Rotoflex half-shaft couplings. The result on all these cars was improved handling.

 

The Mark IV went on sale in the UK at the end of 1970 with a base price of £735.


Monday, 10 May 2021

The Pursuit of Love review – absolutely glorious

 SEE ALSO IN TWEEDLAND :

https://tweedlandthegentlemansclub.blogspot.com/2013/01/the-horror-of-love-nancy-mitford-and.html

 

https://tweedlandthegentlemansclub.blogspot.com/2012/04/love-in-cold-climate.html

 

https://tweedlandthegentlemansclub.blogspot.com/2014/09/the-mitford-sisters-video-bellowthe.html




The Pursuit of Love review – absolutely glorious

 

Emily Mortimer’s immaculate adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s bestseller about the madcap Radlett family is an instant classic. What a magnificent treat to tuck into

 


Lucy Mangan

@LucyMangan

Sun 9 May 2021 22.00 BST

https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2021/may/09/the-pursuit-of-love-review-absolutely-glorious

 

For some reason – but never lack of urging by friends – I have not read any Nancy Mitford, including her most famous novel The Pursuit of Love, a perennial bestseller since its publication in 1945.

 

I have absorbed the basics, of course, through cultural osmosis. I know she’s one of the communist rather than fascist ones, and the one that gave us the distinction between “U” (scent, looking-glass, napkin) and “non-U” (perfume, mirror, serviette) terms. And that The Pursuit of Love is the one that introduces us to the madcap (and quite often simply mad) world of the Radlett family at Alconleigh. The children with their secret society called the Hons (headquarters in the linen cupboard). The foreigner-hating paterfamilias Uncle Matthew, who hunts said children with his bloodhounds across the Oxford countryside. The Bolter – also known as the mother of narrator Fanny, a Radlett cousin – committed to a vibrant life of serial monogamy since abandoning her only child to be raised by her sister Emily. The excoriation of female education for the loss of social graces that result, and the gain of hockey-exercised “thighs like gateposts”.

 

All of these touchstones are found in the first episode of the new, three-part BBC One adaptation. It is surely destined (as any translation of a classic book to screen is) to be frowned on by purist fans. But for those of us outside that select group it is an absolutely glorious hour. Immaculately scripted by Emily Mortimer (who also plays The Bolter as a sort of aristocratic Petula Gordino from Dinnerladies, for which choice alone she should be given all possible awards), it is at first glance a romp. Passionate, headstrong Linda (Lily James, perfectly pitching a character who could be very, very annoying indeed) is determined that her life should begin, if not sure how. She “lives in a world of superlatives” and can be trusted to try to throw herself out of the nearest window at the slightest provocation. Cousin and best friend Fanny (Emily Beecham, doing finely-shaded work in a less colourful part) is eager for life too, though less keen on anyone throwing themselves out of windows in the process. Father/Uncle Matthew is equally determined that no female offspring of his should have any kind of life beyond Alconleigh if he can help it. Dominic West plays him as a genuinely frightening genuine eccentric, without making him an absolute ogre or descending into caricature.

 

The hour moves at pace. The Hons go from linen cupboard to debutante balls and the London season via a variety of adventures and misadventures. Quite which category their meeting of the magnificent Lord Merlin (the magnificent Andrew Scott), the very brightest of bright young things, falls into we will have to wait and see. In the meantime, after a lunch attended by his dyed pigeons (“They love it,” he assures the Radletts, who are tenderhearted where animals if not children are concerned. “Makes them so pretty for each other”) he does his best to educate the unformed Linda. Alas, her attention is fatally drawn to the awful scion of a banking family, Tony Kroesig (“Full-blooded Hun!” – Uncle Matthew), played beautifully repellently by Freddie Fox.

 

The fun – and funniness – here is thanks again to such a deft, intelligent and loving script from Mortimer. It is edged with melancholy, and beneath it all lies a throb of pain. This is what may convert even the fans most hostile to the idea of messing with their heroine’s work. It is they, after all, who most lament Mitford’s dismissal as a light comic novelist (as if this wasn’t hard enough anyway) and the fact that the book’s insights into thwarted female potential have become ever more unregarded over the years. The entrenching tool with which Uncle Matthew hacked eight Germans to death as they emerged from a dugout in the war hangs over the dinner table, which is funny. The scene in which he in blind fury overturns the table, beneath which Linda is sheltering from a likely beating, is not.

 

The insistent intertwining of the pain with the laughter, instead of flattening the tale into a Wodehouse-with-women yarn, makes this adaptation feel like a classic in its own right. It is a treat for all. Mitfordians – please, do give it a chance.

Saturday, 8 May 2021

The Pursuit of Love will begin airing on Sunday 9th May on BBC One. / The Pursuit of Love: Trailer - BBC


The Pursuit of Love release date: Cast, trailer and news about BBC drama

Lily James, Dominic West, and Andrew Scott star in the BBC period drama.

 



By Radio Times Staff

Published: Tuesday, 4th May 2021 at 4:26 pm

https://www.radiotimes.com/tv/drama/the-pursuit-of-love-release-date/

 

If you’re a fan of period comedy-dramas with a modern feel, then it sounds as though The Pursuit of Love – BBC One’s upcoming series – will be perfect for you.

 

Based on Nancy Mitford’s classic novel of the same name and written by Emily Mortimer, the series stars Lily James (Cinderella) and Emily Beecham as Linda Radlett and Fanny Logan – two best friends and cousins embarking on exciting adventures in early 20th century Europe.

 

Speaking about the novel, Lily James said: “It’s funny, clever but at the core of it there’s a question of what really makes us happy. It is love? It’s bonkers, brilliant and beautiful… [Linda] is a wonderful character; free-spirited, passionate, impulsive, fiery, frustrating, selfish and a brilliant human-being. I was attracted to the story as the two women are so linked but so different.”

 

On Emily Mortimer’s adaptation, James added: “I’m honestly not just saying this but I’ve done quite a few adaptations of books and Emily’s adaptation is by far the best. Just before we started, I read the book again and I couldn’t believe that every section I loved in the book was included in our version. Beyond that, she’s added more depth, pain and honesty to Fanny and Linda.”

 

In the show’s first trailer, released by the BBC earlier this week, we get a glimpse of The Pursuit of Love’s terrific cast, which includes Dominic West, Andrew Scott, Dolly Wells, Assaad Bouab and Freddie Fox.

 





Here’s everything you need to know about The Pursuit of Love.

 

When is The Pursuit of Love release date?

The Pursuit of Love will begin airing on Sunday 9th May on BBC One. All three episodes will be available to watch on BBC iPlayer on the same date, after episode ones airs.

 

UK viewers will be able to watch the drama on BBC One, while co-producer Amazon Prime Video will host the series in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

 

Filming in the Bristol and Bath areas began in July 2020, according to a BBC statement, with production following strict health and safety guidelines and protocols during the pandemic.

 

Lily James plays “fearless” feminist Linda Radlett and Emily Beecham plays her cousin and best friend, Fanny Logan, as the pair embark on an adventure across Europe for their titular pursuit of love.

 

However, according to the BBC’s synopsis, “their friendship is put to the test as Fanny settles for a steady life and Linda decides to follow her heart, to increasingly wild and outrageous places”.

 

Emily Mortimer (who has penned the scripts and also stars as Fanny’s mother) said of the adaptation: “I’ve always loved Nancy Mitford so when I was asked to adapt The Pursuit of Love it was impossible to say no.  It’s an outrageously funny and honest story, whose central character – the wild, love-addicted Linda Radlett – still reads as a radical.”

 

Emily Beecham, who plays the educated but unfulfilled Fanny, said: “The story is told through Fanny’s eyes who is the narrator. She’s obsessed by Linda who is her best friend. She comes across as an introvert; it’s her journey of finding her voice. It’s their pursuit of love and them trying to find their place, mark, passion and meaning of life. There are societal boundaries due to them being women but it’s so colourful. It’s brilliantly hysterical. Nancy Mitford had a sharp and wicked humour. Linda and Fanny are different personality types but when they are together, you see what one lacks and the other has so they make a complete person. Fanny spends a lot of time in the story worrying about the trouble that Linda gets herself into.”

 

Dominic West and Dolly Wells join The Pursuit of Love cast as Linda’s parents, while Fleabag’s very own “Hot Priest” Andrew Scott plays their aristocratic neighbour, the eccentric Lord Merlin.

 

Assaad Bouab, Shazad Latif and Freddie Fox also all feature as Linda and Fanny’s various suitors.


Friday, 7 May 2021

Napoléon Bonaparte, emperor of imagery

Ah ! L`Empire !

Percier and Fontaine have achieved to create in a short period a omnipresent style and a piece of continuous regime propaganda, with a a unprecedented creativity around a single theme and obsession:- "Retour Ă  L´Antique";- "Retour Ă  L´Egypt"- and dedicated continuously and daily on promoting "Tous les Gloires de la France" J´Adore L´Empire ! Yours ... Jeeves It may be said that Percier and Fontaine are the creators of the official Empire style; they understood this epoch when national pride and war-like enthusiasm filled the air. The style of furniture which they conceived, with its broad austere surfaces defined by straight lines and sharp edges and on which they displayed golden Greek palm leaves and wreaths of laurel to crown the victor’s brow, or figures of victory with outspread wings and flowing robes, was admirably suited to Imperial France. The Empire style, sometimes considered the second phase of Neoclassicism, is an early-19th-century design movement in architecture, furniture, other decorative arts, and the visual arts followed in Europe and America up to around 1830. The style originated in and takes its name from the period when Napoleon I ruled France, known as the First French Empire, where it was intended to idealize Napoleon's leadership and the French state. The style corresponds to the Biedermeier style in the German-speaking lands, Federal style in the United States and to the Regency style in Britain. An earlier phase of the style was called the Adam style in Great Britain and "Louis Seize" or Louis XVI, in France. Two french architects, Charles Percier and Pierre Fontaine, were together the creators of the french empire style. They had studied in Rome and in the 1790s, they became leading furniture designers in Paris. They received a lot of requests from Napoleon. [1] The Empire style was based on aspects of the Roman Empire and its many archaeological treasures which had been rediscovered starting in the 18th century. The preceding Louis XVI and Directoire styles employed straighter, simpler designs in comparison with the Rococo style of the 18th century. Empire designs heavily influenced the American Federal style (such as the United States Capitol building), and both were forms of propaganda through architecture. It was a style of the people, not ostentatious but sober and evenly balanced. The style was considered to have "liberated" and "enlightened" architecture just as Napoleon "liberated" the peoples of Europe with his Napoleonic Code. The Empire period was popularized by the inventive designs of Percier and Fontaine, Napoleon's architects for Malmaison. The designs drew heavily for inspiration on symbols and ornaments borrowed from the glorious ancient Greek and Roman empires. Buildings typically had simple timber frames and box-like constructions, veneered in expensive mahogany imported from the colonies. Biedermeier furniture also made use of ebony details, originally due to financial constraints. Ormolu details (gilded bronze furniture mounts and embellishments) displayed a high level of craftsmanship. The French Ă©bĂ©niste recognized the necessity for decorating the large even surfaces of dark shining mahogany with gilt bronze mounts depicting a race of strange creatures. Everywhere are found winged sphinxes, winged lions and chimeras of every kind, often with heads of eagles, employed as table legs and chair armposts. Swans employed as armposts or as entire arms of chairs forming the legs with their bodies and the arms with their wings. The bronzes are often notable for the ingenious symmetry of their composition, the clarity of their lines, the effectiveness of their light silhouette against a dark ground, and above all for their chasing and gilding, which in the fine pieces, such as some of the bronzes by Thomire, are superb. Practically all the motifs that are found in these bronze mounts are borrowed from antique Greco-Roman or Egyptian art. There is a multitude of objects of every kind, gleaned from altars, tombs, Pompeian mural decoration, and even Roman goldsmith work. Such are antique heads, cornucopias, the winged thunderbolt of Jupiter, Neptune’s trident, Mercury’s caduceus, Bacchus’ thyrsus, casques, lamps, tripods, kraters, amphorae, winged torches, and musical instruments. Then there are emblems of victory, war-like emblems and Imperial emblems, motifs from the animal world and floral motifs, of which poppies are much favored. Most of the knowledge of antique furniture had to be acquired by studying classical prototypes represented on bas-reliefs, vase paintings, and mural decorations. Hence, Fontaine et Percier realized that it was almost impossible to remain completely faithful to antiquity, since it was necessary to create almost everything and adapt the remainder to modern needs.