GW-Wren-1

The Great Westmen:

Architecture
CHRISTOPHER WREN
THE MAN THAT RE-MADE LONDON (Part 1)
English scientist, engineer, mathematician, architect
Born: 30 October 1632
Died: 8 March 1723
  Christopher Wren was one of the most highly acclaimed English architects in history, as well as an anatomist, astronomer, geometer, mathematician and physicist.

  When we think of the designation “Renaissance Man,” a name that comes to mind is Leonardo da Vinci. The term denotes a Westman of broad skills and learning in the arts and sciences capable of integrating all that he knows into an exceptional creative expression. Throughout history there have been great artists and great scientists, but seldom do these two gifts come together in a single individual as they did in Christopher Wren. Before he was seventeen, had invented a weather clock, a pneumatic engine, a device for writing in the dark, and a new language for the deaf and dumb. He went to Oxford where he gained a reputation as a brilliant scientist and mathematician. He was the first to demonstrate the use of opium as an anesthetic and the use of a syringe in transferring blood from one dog to another. Later, his interest in optics led him to become a professor of astronomy. Issac Newton dubbed him the greatest geometer of his day.

  Wren did not give his attention to architecture until he was 30. No information is available to explain the development of his interest in architecture, but his training in science and mathematics and his ability in solving practical scientific problems provided him with the technical training necessary for a man who was to undertake complex architectural projects. His temperament and education, and the society in which he moved, would naturally have inclined him to wide interests. Wren’s influence was such that his style of classical architecture is often called the Wrenassiance. He was knighted in 1673.

  Part I is mostly a summary of this architectural achievements, sans St. Paul’s Cathedral. The design, construction, and significance of St. Paul’s deserves its own video segment.
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