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(b Barcelona, Dec 15, 1847; d Barcelona, July 9, 1918).

Catalan industrialist and patron. After completing his studies in England, he returned to Barcelona to head the textile manufacturing company founded by his father, Joan Güell i Ferrer. He strongly supported Catalan nationalism and used his patronage of such Catalan Renaixença figures as the poet Ramón Picó i Campamar, the novelist Robles i Rodríguez Alcántara, the painter Alexis Clapés (1850–1920) and especially the architect Antoni Gaudí, whom he met in 1878, to promote his progressive and paternalist visions of society. The first work by Gaudí for Güell was the gate-house of his finca at Pedralbes, outside Barcelona (1884); the turrets covered with coloured ceramics show Gaudí’s interest in Islamic architecture. The Palau Güell, Güell’s residence in Barcelona (1886–91), is an extraordinary neo-Gothic palace, which contains some of Gaudí’s most innovative interiors. The elaborate wrought-iron ornament of the entrance arches and bay windows is one of the earliest examples of the Catalan ...