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Cappoquin House, Cappoquin, County Waterford
22810098
Representative view of country house.
Reg. No.22810098
Date1775 - 1780
Previous NameN/A
TownlandCAPPOQUIN DEMESNE
CountyCounty Waterford
Coordinates210274, 99700
Categories of Special InterestARTISTIC ARCHITECTURAL HISTORICAL SOCIAL
RatingNational
Original Usecountry house
In Use Ascountry house
 
Description
Detached seven-bay (six-bay deep) two-storey over basement country house, built 1779, on a square plan centred on three-bay two-storey breakfront; six-bay two-storey rear (north) elevation centred on two-bay two-storey breakfront. Vacant, 1911. "Improved", 1913-4. Burnt, 1923. Reconstructed, 1924-9, producing present composition. Flat roof behind parapet centred on lantern with concealed rainwater goods retaining cast-iron octagonal or ogee hoppers and downpipes. Part creeper- or ivy-covered limestone ashlar walls on cut-limestone plinth with rusticated cut-limestone piers to corners including rusticated cut-limestone piers to corners (breakfront) supporting dentilated cornice on shallow frieze below urn-topped balustraded parapet. Round-headed central door opening with two lichen-spotted cut-limestone steps, cut-limestone surround with flush panelled pilasters supporting monolithic archivolt framing glazed timber panelled double doors having fanlight. Round-headed flanking window openings with cut-limestone sills on "bas-relief" risers, and cut-limestone surrounds with panelled pilasters supporting archivolts centred on fluted keystones framing six-over-six timber sash windows having fanlight. Round-headed window openings (first floor) with cut-limestone sills, and cut-limestone surrounds with panelled pilasters supporting archivolts centred on fluted keystones framing six-over-six timber sash windows having fanlight. Square-headed window openings (ground floor) with cut-limestone sills on "bas-relief" risers, and cut-limestone surrounds centred on "bas-relief" keystones with hood mouldings framing six-over-six timber sash windows. Square-headed window openings (first floor) with cut-limestone sills, and cut-limestone surrounds centred on "bas-relief" keystones framing six-over-six timber sash windows. Square-headed window openings (remainder) with cut-limestone sills, and cut-limestone flush block-and-start surrounds framing six-over-six timber sash windows. Interior including (ground floor): central drawing room [entrance hall] retaining carved timber surrounds to window openings framing timber panelled shutters centred on carved timber surround to door opening framing timber panelled reveals or shutters, Ionic columnar screen centred on carved timber Classical-style surround to door opening framing glazed timber double doors having fanlight, and decorative plasterwork cornice to ceiling on "bas-relief" frieze centred on "bas-relief" ceiling rose; top-lit staircase hall (north) retaining carved timber surrounds to door openings framing timber panelled doors, cantilevered staircase on a dog leg plan with "spindle" balusters supporting carved timber banister terminating in volute, carved timber surrounds to door openings to landing framing timber panelled doors, and decorative plasterwork cornice to ceiling centred on lantern; and carved timber surrounds to door openings to remainder framing timber panelled doors with carved timber surrounds to window openings framing timber panelled shutters on panelled risers. Set in landscaped grounds.

Appraisal

A country house erected by Sir John Keane (1757-1829) representing an important component of the eighteenth-century domestic built heritage of County Waterford with the architectural value of the composition, one attributed to John Roberts (1712-96) and sometimes known as "Belmont" according to a watercolour signed (1843) by R. Armstrong (----), confirmed by such attributes as the deliberate alignment maximising on scenic vistas overlooking rolling grounds and meandering River Blackwater; the compact rectilinear plan form centred on a Classically-detailed breakfront; the construction in a silver-grey limestone demonstrating good quality workmanship; the diminishing in scale of the openings on each floor producing a graduated visual impression; and the urn-topped balustraded roofline: meanwhile, aspects of the composition clearly illustrate the near-total reconstruction of the country house following its destruction (1923) during "The Troubles" (1919-23) with those works attributed to Richard Francis Caulfield Orpen (1863-1938) of South Frederick Street, Dublin (Irish Builder 5th March 1927, 162). Having been well maintained, the elementary form and massing survive intact together with quantities of the original or replicated fabric, both to the exterior and to the interior 'reproduced exactly as it was' (Bence-Jones 1978, 56) where timber work; salvaged chimneypieces including a chimneypiece reclaimed from 52 Saint Stephen's Green in Dublin; and decorative plasterwork enrichments produced by G. Jackson and Sons (established 1780) of London, all highlight the artistic potential of the composition. Furthermore, adjoining outbuildings (extant 1841); and a walled garden (extant 1841), all continue to contribute positively to the group and setting values of an estate having long-standing connections with the Keane family including Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Richard Keane (1780-1855); Sir John Henry Keane (1816-81), one-time High Sheriff of County Waterford (fl. 1856); Sir Richard Francis Keane (1845-92), one-time High Sheriff of County Waterford (fl. 1882); and Lieutenant-Colonel Sir John Keane (1873-1956), one-time High Sheriff of County Waterford (fl. 1911).
 
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