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Moller, Georg

Moller, Georg (1784–1852). German architect. After training under Weinbrenner in Karlsruhe (1802–7), he became in 1810 Director of Architecture for the Grand Duchy of Hesse-Darmstadt, and created a Neo-Classical town-centre in Darmstadt itself. His architecture was austerely impressive: it included many houses (1811–25), the Freemasons' Hall (1817–20), the Court Theatre and Opera House (1818–20), and New Chancellery (1826–31). The RC Ludwigskirche (1820–7—a drum with an internal peristyle of Corinthian columns carrying the dome), the chaste Palace for Prince Carl (1837–41), the Greek Revival mausoleum on the Rosenhöhe (1826–31), the Doric Victory Column (1841–4), and Kasino (1812) were all very fine buildings, but Darmstadt was severely damaged in the 1939–45 war, so his work only survives in part.

Outside Darmstadt Moller designed several works of considerable importance, including the Gothic House (1823–4), and the remodelling of the Schloss (Palace or Castle—1825–41), both in Homburg, while at Wiesbaden he rebuilt the Schloss (1837–41—now the Hessischer Landtag (State Parliament of Hesse)). At Mainz the Theatre (1829–33), with its clearly expressed auditorium and blocky fly-tower, was derived from Durand's Précis (1802–5), and was reminiscent of F. Gilly's unexecuted design for a National Theatre for Berlin (1799): with its external arcades the building influenced Semper's celebrated Opera Houses in Dresden.

While Moller was one of the greatest of German Neo-Classicists, he was also a pioneering student of medieval architecture. With Boisserée he discovered (1814) the original plans for Cologne Cathedral that were used as the basis of that building's completion. He published Denkmäler der deutschen Baukunst (Monuments of German Architecture—1815–21) which came out in English as Moller's Memorial of German Gothic Architecture (1836), and was of immense importance as a source-book for the Gothic Revival. He was interested in constructional advances, using iron to reconstruct a dome at Mainz Cathedral, and bringing out publications, including Beiträge zu der Lehre von den Construktion (Contribution on the Theory of Construction—1832–44).

Bibliography

Fröhlich & and Sperlich (1959);
Haupt (1952–4);
Krimmel (ed.) (1978);
G. Moller (1815–44);
Watkin & and Mellinghoff (1987)

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