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date: 19 September 2019


  • Patrick Nuttgens
  •  and Sunand Prasad


Designer of buildings, responsible also in varying degrees for the supervision of their erection. The term is derived from the Greek word architekton (‘craftsman’ or ‘master carpenter’). From this came the Latin word architectus, used by the theorist Vitruvius, whose treatise On Architecture was written c. 17 bc. The first use of the word in English came in John Shute’s First and Chief Grounds of Architecture, published in 1563. The role and cultural status of the architect have been differently understood at different periods of history. In the modern Western world the architect is generally held to be something more than an artisan or manual worker and is in practice often a chief executive or director of works as well as a designer. This concept, however, dates only from the Renaissance, the period during which a distinction came to be drawn between the architect as designer and the master craftsman, who not only designed but also built. Outside the West, different traditions have emerged, with the architect not generally receiving the same individual recognition as his or her Western counterpart....

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C. Wood: Dictionary of Victorian Painters (Woodbridge, 1971, rev. 2/1978)