Oxford is one of the jewels of European architecture, much loved and much visited. The city offers an unparallelled collection of the best of English building through the centuries. Matthew Rice's Oxford is a feast of delightful watercolour illustrations and an informed and witty text, explaining how the city came into being and what to look out for today.
While the focus is on architectural detail, Rice also describes how the city has been shaped by its history, most of all by generations of patrons who had the education and the resources to commission work from the greatest architects and builders of their day, an astonishing range of which still stands.
More than anywhere else in England, it is possible in Oxford to take in the history of English architecture simply by walking today's streets, lanes, parks and meadows.
'A lovely book extensively illustrated with his idiosyncratic and witty watercolours' Daily Telegraph on Building Norfolk.
'His pictures sing from the page. Unlike photographs, the medium allows him to 'emphasise, exclude or exaggerate', and its washes are ideal for rendering, say, the uneven colour of a wall of carrstone. Architectural features have annotations in the author's own hand, and these can range from the witty to exasperated' World of Interiors on Building Norfolk