Follies-we all love these whimsical buildings that show a bit of insanity on the part of the builders who spent lavish sums of money on something with no practical value. Whether a grotto, a fake Gothic temple, a pagoda or a pineapple, these stone monuments were a statement of style and fashion in Britain's past.
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Now this new book brings together in one volume over 1600 sites where follies, grottoes or garden buildings are located in England, Scotland and Wales. The book has neatly subdivided the listings by counties, making them easy to find. The gazetteer guidebook provides interesting background information for each entry. Dates of construction are included.
But readers should note that many of these follies are on private land and cannot be viewed. Unfortunately, the book does not distinguish easily between which are and which aren't open to visitors. Only careful reading of each entry determines that. Still, reading about the follies, even if you are not visiting, is fascinating. All folly lovers can spend many an evening pouring over this book, then use it to plan "folly journeys".
Boydell and Brewer