Sir John Summerson (Sir John Newenham) Biography
(1904–92), (Sir John Newenham), The Architect and Building News, Sir John Soane, Heavenly Mansions
British architectural historian, born in Darlington, educated at University College, London. From 1934 to 1941 he edited The Architect and Building News and subsequently held lectureships at various colleges in Britain and America. He was Slade Professor of Fine Art at Oxford (1958–9) and Cambridge (1966–7) and was curator of the Sir John Soane Museum from 1945 to 1984; Sir John Soane (1952) is his appreciation of the architect and his work. The essays of Heavenly Mansions (1949) were among the early works that brought Summerson to notice as a writer on architecture. His major studies include Architecture in Britain, 1530–1830 (1953), The Classical Language of Architecture (1964, revised edition 1980), Inigo Jones (1966), and The Life and Work of John Nash, Architect (1981). His later essays were collected in The Unromantic Castle (1990). He was knighted in 1958.