William Pain (c.1730–c.1790)
- The Builder's Companion and Workman's General Assistant (1758)
- The Builder's Pocket Treasure: or, Palladio Delineated and Explained (1763)
- The Practical Builder (1774)
- The Carpenter's and Joiner's Repository (1778)
- The Builder's Golden Rule or The Youth's Instructor (1781)
- The British Palladio (1786)
- The Practical House Carpenter, or, Youth's instructor containing a great variety of useful designs in carpentry and architecture; the five orders laid down by an entire new scale. (1792)
- The Builder's Sketch Book (1793)
As the Fates have willed it, The Practical House Carpenter (the seventh edition, 1805) and The Builder's Golden Rule (1781) sit side by side on the shelf. Along with the lovely engravings of every sort of 18th Century architectural feature you could dream of, both books include a section on recommended prices for all sorts of trades work. The 1805 edition of The Practical House Carpenter has prices updated from the 1781 Builder's Golden Rule.
I like to think of these books as early Manga. Some descriptive text for each copperplate engraving, but mostly lots and lots of images. Or maybe a precursor to Marvel Comics? I wonder if R. Crumb ever read William Pain?
It will be a bit of time before I can get these two into print. For now, I've provided links to two online sources for these two titles (and just for good measure, the famous British Palladio). If you can pull yourself away from the engravings, take a look at the final section of either book and enjoy the cost of labor and materials as they were in the late 18th C. The 1805 edition of The Practical House Carpenter holds an updated list of prices. Unfortunately, I haven't found an online version of that one yet. Which means I'll simply have to get it into press.
True, PDF files are sort of impersonal, cold and clinical. Give me paper, particularly if it is old laid paper showing the marks of use, copper plate engravings and letterpress type.
Till next, Gary