John Vanbrugh was born in 1664 and, after studying architecture
, joined the army
. While in France
, Vanbrugh was arrrested as a spy
and imprisoned in the infamous Bastille
. After his release, he returned to Britain
to take up the safer occupation of architect.
Vanbrugh specialised in the Baroque
style then fashionable, and designed on a grand scale. His two most famous buildings are the magnificent Blenheim Palace and Castle Howard.
Blenheim Palace was the gift of the nation to the Duke
. The scale of the work was enormous and Vanbrugh decorated the house and its outbuildings with Doric
columns. Vanbrugh included columns in his designs for Castle Howard in Yorkshire
, where he also constructed follies in the grounds. Both buildings remain tributes to Vanbrugh's skill.