William Butterfield

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William Butterfield

(b. London, England 1814; d. London, England 1900)

The son of a chemist William Butterfield was born in London in 1814. He trained as a builder then studied architecture under E. L. Blackburn. In 1842, after he established his own practice, he aligned himself with the Ecclesiological movement. This alliance with such a radical religious group influenced the architectural direction of his career.

Butterfield expounded the Ecclesiological doctrine that churches must be planned and designed as metaphors for the 'spiritual functions of sacrament and worship'. As a Gothic Revival architect, he reinterpreted the Gothic language into contemporary terms that would meet the functional and spiritual needs of his buildings which were mainly religious in nature.

Butterfield received the RIBA Gold Medal in 1884. He died in London in 1900.

Dennis Sharp. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Architects and Architecture. New York: Quatro Publishing, 1991. ISBN 0-8230-2539-X. NA40.I45. p34.

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