John Rutter.Delineations of Fonthill and its abbey.  London,  1823.

John Rutter.Delineations of Fonthill and its abbey. London, 1823.

Fonthill was the home of William Thomas Beckford (1760–1844), author of the gothic novel 'Vathek', first published in French in 1786. Beckford had inherited a large fortune from his father and spent his life travelling, collecting pictures and other works of art. Fonthill was constructed as a folly in the Gothic style. Two years after the publication of this book the massive central tower of the Abbey, some 275 feet high, collapsed. The part of the building remaining was demolished about 20 years later. The architect of Fonthill, James Wyatt, was employed by Thomas Johnes of Hafod to build the estate chapel of St Michael.

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