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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;

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449. ARCHITECTURE, Virginia Capitol.—
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449. ARCHITECTURE, Virginia Capitol.—

I was written to in 1785 (being then in
Paris) by directors appointed to superintend
the building of a Capitol in Richmond, to advise
them as to a plan, and to add to it one
of a Prison. Thinking it a favorable opportunity
of introducing into the State an example
of architecture, in the classic style of antiquity,
and the Maison quarrée of Nismes, an ancient
Roman temple, being considered as the most
perfect model existing of what may be called
Cubic architecture, I applied to M. Clerissault,
who had published drawings of the Antiquities
of Nismes, to have me a model of the building
made in stucco, only changing the order from
Corinthinan to Ionic, on account of the difficulty
of the Corinthian capitals. I yielded,
with reluctance, to the taste of Clerissault, in
his preference of the modern capital of
Scamozzi to the more noble capital of antiquity.
This was executed by the artist whom Choiseul
Gouffier had carried with him to Constantinople,
and employed, while ambassador there, in making
those beautiful models of the remains of
Grecian architecture which are to be seen at
Paris. To adapt the exterior to our use, I drew
a plan for the interior, with the apartments
necessary for legislative, executive, and judiciary
purposes; and accommodated in their size
and distribution to the form and dimensions of
the building. These were forwarded to the
directors, in 1786, and were carried into execution,
with some variations, not for the better,
the most important of which, however, admit
of future correction.—
Autobiography. Washington ed. i, 45. Ford ed., i, 63.