United Kingdom

Statues - Hither & Thither

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South West England

Queen's Square
(Queen Square House)

The Four Continents

H.T. Margetson

Bristol /  The Four Continents


Queen Square House was built for the Bristol Docks Authority in 1885 by William Venn Gough. On the four pilasters are stone allegorical statues representing the four continents.

Bristol - The Four Continents
Bristol - The Four Continents
Bristol - The Four Continents
Bristol - The Four Continents

In The Talk of Bristol in the Bristol Mercury of 16 February 1886 is written:

The members of the Docks Committee, we unlerstand, are much exercised as to the appropriateness of certain statues which have been erected on the ornate facade of the new offices in Queen Square. The figures are allegorically representative of the four continents, and the rumour is that some object to them on the ground of an insufficiency of drapery, whilst others think the material employed is out of harmony with the warm tone of the terra-cotta facings. As to the former objection there does not appear to to anything in the treatment of the figures to offend the susceptibilities of the sensitive mind; and as to the other argument, with the chimney stacks of two very active flour mills in close proximity there need not be the slightest apprehension but that the statues will very quickly assume a much warmer tone than they now present. The ratepayers probably will think that the best way to settle the controversy would be to dispense with the allegorical figures altogether.


Sources & Information


Location (N 51°27'0" - W 2°35'36")

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Item Code: gbsw068; Photograph: 21 March 2019
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© Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt

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