Clytha Castle is a crenellated stone folly with gothic windows set on a rounded hill, amid chestnut groves, overlooking Clytha Park and the River Usk. It was built in 1790 by William Jones of Clytha Park in memory of his wife who had recently died. William Jones engaged John Davenport as the architect to realise his ardent wish for a folly built "for the purpose of relieving a mind sincerely afflicted by the loss of a most excellent wife". A tablet set into the walls of the folly records this dedication. A, perhaps more cynical, contemporary observer noted that Jones's wife was "the female heir of the House of Tredegar, who bestowed on the proprietor a splendid fortune."
William Jones in his bereavement wanted a beautiful monument, a sanctuary and a retreat. Built of rendered rubble stone with Bath stone dressing it is one of the finest 18th century Welsh follies. The plan is "L" shaped, with a square, two-storyed central block, with screen walls and drum towers to either side. It is exquisitely proportioned with picturesque asymmetry and located in a landscape that balances the building and complements it. "Everything is big and simple, to (be) read from a distance." The round tower is roofless and was designed as a shell in order to add symmetry to the facade.
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Famous quotes containing the word folly:
“Learn to live well, or fairly make your will;
Youve played, and loved, and eat, and drunk your fill:
Walk sober off; before a sprightlier age
Comes tittering on, and shoves you from the stage:
Leave such to trifle with more grace and ease,
Whom Folly pleases, and whose follies please.”
—Alexander Pope (16881744)
“Most womens intelligence tends more to the improving of their folly than their reason.”
—François, Duc De La Rochefoucauld (16131680)
“As there is no worse lie than a truth misunderstood by those who hear it, so reasonable arguments, challenges to magnanimity, and appeals to sympathy or justice, are folly when we are dealing with human crocodiles and boa-constrictors.”
—William James (18421910)